Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Peter Pan !

Are they CUTE or what? Congrats Kate on your first MHS theater production experience! We had a blast watching you and see Peter Pan sprinkle around his magic sparkle dust. May we all get to enjoy seeing you in many more!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Remember These Two?

I remember vividly the day this photo was taken...out by Maplehurst Beach on Lake Lida one late Sunday afternoon...trying to get a christmas card picture of these two siblings. I put this picture out every year with my fall decorations, I guess to always remind me of what was. Me having the need to be the perfect Mother... sewing Ria her color coordinated church dresses, always making sure Ryan had matching pants, sweaters, socks.....and raise the perfect children.....concentrating on keeping a clean house, holding down a job or two and never really giving any thought as to what these two would become as adults. I realized when putting this picture out this fall, that it was taken 30 years ago...back in 1979...Ria was 3 and Ryan was 5. Looking back there are many things I wish I had done differently in that era of my life, but I guess I must have done somethings right because today I'm still the proud Mother of these two. They pick out their own clothes now, purchase their own homes, raise their own children as they see fit, and I just get to be an outside observer for the most part. The thing that I admire the most is how they each have become educated and each have followed a dream, turned that dream into a career and are both giving back to the community with their talents.

Ria as a photographer, giving many families the joy of capturing moments in their child's life in print, much like that picture taken back in 1979 does for me.

Ryan as a doctor of chiropractic, educating the public about the importance of spinal health and helping those in pain back on the road to wellness. I was so excited to get to attend the Open House for his new clinic location, and meet his co-workers.
From the first time I walked into his clinic over 10 yrs ago when he was just starting out, it jolted me to see my son, the same kid I had to nag about washing his face and hands, all dressed up in a tie, dress pants, wing tip shoes and a white lab coat!!

Ryan at the front desk with one of his chiropractic assistants! The back drop screen plays a view of the ocean with the natural sound of waves over the intercom relaxing you as you enter the clinic.

So I thought I'd brag a bit today about his success as a doctor and share pics of his new clinic for you. As someone who has worked in this field for almost 5 years now myself and visited several other clinics and how they do things, this place is a top notch, state of the art facility. You can check out more pics and features of his clinic at thebrostclinic.com. You can even sign up for a monthly newsletter with all kinds of great tips and info on spinal health!

Ryan's little wing of the clinic with his 3 adjustment rooms.

Ryan's desk area adorned with pics of his beautiful family taken by his photgrapher sister!
I wish everyone in my entire family would make the trip down and have Ryan do a thorough patient intake, exam, digital x-rays, computerized orthotics foot scan, report of his findings on your exam and top it all off with a great adjustment on you!

I also don't want my kids to ever forget who was most adamant that they receive a college education and helped them to get it.....I found this picture of my Dad with Ryan on his lap... it must have been taken in 1978 at one of my Dad's birthday parties as I had written on the back of the picture "giving Grandpa his birthday present from you... a minnow net!" So I made up this frame for Ryan with a bit of his ancestry; as he's the one who shares my father's name.

I can remember being a young child and traveling all the way to Davenport, Iowa to visit the Palmer College of Chiropractic as my dad wanted to pursue a chiropractic career back when he was about the age that Ryan is now. He never got to follow through on that pursuit... I think a wife and 3 kids to support at that time in his life pretty much halted him on that path, but I know he's very proud of what Ryan has gone on to accomplish and I know if he walked up into Ria's loft studio right now he'd probably shed a tear or two and think "WOW, all this from that little browned-eyed, brown-haired little pudgy girl who used to trudge out to the fish house with me just so she could eat butterfinger candybars one right after the other"....
The two little smiley kids of mine have made the best of an imperfect, in some ways very dysfunctional childhood. I guess I just have to keep telling myself I did the best I could with the circumstances I was given at the time. I'm very proud to be their Mom! Congrats to both of my kids on successful families and careers!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Speaking of my BIRTHDAY....

I was such a lucky girl to get some "loot" for my birthday so I treated myself to one of my MOST favorite places on earth.... my favorite little shop in the whopping big town (population of about 363) of CARVER!..... this is the famous "Mustard Moon" owned by dealer Jane who has been featured in Country Living Magazine and is about to go national we think! Her shop is in the basement of this wonderful old building... and pretty much feels like a cave once you are inside. Carver is about 5 miles west of Chaska and always was one of my favorite spots to visit... it is quite like Erhard or Elizabeth...only tons more charming! Had I known it existed when I moved to the Twin Cities, this is the place I would have chosen to live.

What kind of fun things did I buy for my birthday with my stash?
Well.... this one's for my Mom... told her there was an antique bowl I had hidden at the Buffalo Nickel until I could get back to purchase it, and here it is Mom! Also was able to get the junior sized one pictured next to it.... Thanks Mom :-)

I also had the great fortune of bringing home a bit of history from one of my favorite shops in Chaska... the 1st pic was taken about 2 yrs ago in front of this shop... note the scalloped window flower box on the left, filled with christmas greens...
several times I had asked the owner if she was going to sell it, and the answer was always a firm "No Sandi, it goes along with the shop as a display!".... so when I arrived last Saturday, I was pretty surprised to notice it was gone... as I got near the back of the shop I saw my little treasure...leaning up against a wall way in the back corner... I ran back out to Linda the owner and said "WHAT???? you took down the front window flower box?"... and she just laughed and said it was time for something new out front.. and then it hit her...she remembered how I had always asked to buy it --- so guess what I came home with? I told her I almost felt guilty taking that fixture out of Chaska, and she assured me there was no one else she would rather see it go home with than me. I had also purchased the bench she had displayed beneath it 2 years ago. Can't wait to find the perfect place for it here in my home or down at the cabin where I have put the bench.

Finally, my favorite new treasure... a birthday gift from my hubby... this old, white, shabby, scalloped cupboard...straight from the farm yard... I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it... and can't wait to decorate it as each season changes.... ya shoulda seen us shoving that thing into the back of the Explorer...! I think this ones going to have to go into the nursing home with me someday :-)

a little of each....

so I had another birthday.... it was great and i even received greetings from nieces and nephews who remembered ! thanks guys! i love getting "real" mail and always try to send out "real" cards to friends and family via "real" mail..something about the surprise of getting mail in your mailbox... so this year I received many, many fun cards. also this year, a few wrote inside the cards the the people pictured on the front reminded them of "ME"... so thought I'd share some of them with you to see what you think!

got this one from jim and johanna... she wrote the "spirit-filled" girl on the front reminded her of me... I kinda have to agree!

got this one from my friend carol who i worked with at moorhead high... and i swear this is just how my grandma christianson looked back in 1952...seriously....i know i inherited her legs...ugh

got this one from my long-time friend jan... and i really think the lady in the green dress on the left has some "sandi" in her....

and finally I got this one from my old boss "DOC" in the cities... and of all them, i think this one most accurately reflects who i think i am... or who i'd like to picture myself as being... a lively, old retired lady just sipping her coffee in the local coffee shop down at the lake, wearing her sun hat, colorful clothing and flip flops....actually I have a pair of sparkly, sequined lime green flips flops just like these!

Friday, October 23, 2009


richie would buy me this cute little vintage camper that used to be parked by Hwy. 3 on my way to the cabin last summer... it lasted there the whole month of august.... and then when sept. came it was gone! on one of my summer road trips kate and i went to an occasional sale where the gal had a restored one just like this permanently displayed in her back yard where her husband had attached a deck to it and she held her sale in and outside the camper... adorable! don't you just LOVE that turquoise color?
IF i had my own cottage on some land at the lake I'd make this a permanent yard fixture and decorate it up like a dollhouse...just for my grand-daughters to come for a Lucy and Desi Arnez style slumber party!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

generation gap....

I can tell I'm getting older. And, it's got nothing to do with my birthday arriving yesterday.

I couldn't believe what happened the other night....probably wouldn't have affected me 10 yrs ago...but this just sorta enraged me....

So....Last Friday, I'm ready to head back to Fargo after a one day road trip to Eden Prairie for my quarterly hair color and cut... yes, I know...at $14.95 haircut and $68 worth of gas to get it... that's something like the "priceless" commercial right? well that's another blog entry... but...

I'm leaving the Ridgedale Mall just after 9pm and decide to gas up in the little quick stop station located right there in the parking lot... I get my gas all while the attendant, all of about 20 yrs old, stands outside the little hut where you pay smoking a cigg... he says to me "hey, lady you're dog's really barking"...(I had taken Hazel along with me for the ride to keep me company for the day) to which I think "yeah, well she's just wondering why there's smoke coming out your nostrils".... so he follows me inside and proceeds to ask me if I'm goin all the way back to north dakota tonite... of course to which I think "ALL the way back to ND?"""

So just as I finish paying for my gas this elderly man, complete head of silver hair, nicely dressed, with somewhat of a Jewish accent walks in and asks the attendant "I'm looking for Hwy 12, can you direct me? I've got to find a town called Wayzateeeeee and I'm lost". I sorta chuckle cuz he doesn't even know how to pronounce the name of the town and he so reminds me of my Dad...but, wait, my Dad never would have stopped to ask directions.... OK Mom you can quit nodding your head now...

and this is what enraged me...

the kid goes "well just get back in your car and follow the signs"...

to which I'm thinking and want to shout "what the hell you idiot kid, if the guy could just follow the signs he wouldn't be in here asking you".... I mean, I can clearly see the elderly man is looking for someone to say "you go to the first stop sign and turn right, then turn right at the next stoplight, then stay in the right lane until you veer onto the ramp... then immediately get in the left lane and stay there..... you know that kind of directions... comforting ones at 9 pm at night when you should be asleep in the nursing home.

Anyway, so the elderly man says "well I need Hwy 12 and I don't see it and I've got to get to Maple Plain to my sons"... to which the kids says "well this is Hwy 394 and there's signs out there..." and the poor old man just looks at me...

Now I know how confusing it can be to get out of that mall parking lot and on the right path off 394 to the old Hwy 12 and up through Wayzata, Orono, Long Lake and on the road to Maple Plain. I can see his little wife sitting out in the shiny new gold Cadillac with Arizona license plates, looking concerned so guess what I end up doing?

Yup, I ended up going back to his car with him, telling him to follow me in my big white Explorer and proceeded to lead him out of his darkness and down 394... the opposite direction of heading west down I-94 way back home to ND....

But it felt good when I got him there and could see his big smile and hardy wave goodbye as I turned around...

also made me realize I'm in his generation...those of us without GPS or fancy phones with mapquest :-)

and what was the kid doing as we drove off? standing back outside his hut smoking another cigarette... and I just let Miss Hazel bark all she wanted ---

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Bucket List Lady

This is my new friend Jackie.

She rents Cabin 6, across the yard from our Cabin. She's a woman after my own heart, even though we are about as different as night and day. Jackie likes to cook, garden and fish. I hate to do all 3. I like to create, decorate and sunbathe. Those things are foreign to her. The minute I'd get to the cabin, Jackie would come scampering over with a family member, friend or other cabin renter to "tour" my little cottage. She couldn't get over that someone would actually have that many "red and white" THINGS as she called my prized little possessions. She was so impressed that late in the summer she came over with a "surprise" for me... she had grown miniature red chile peppers in her garden for me to dry out and hang in my cabin kitchen. They were adorable and I loved them.

There were a couple of things though that Jackie and I did have in common.... we both had husbands who didn't particulary love the lake like we did. Her husband George had a love of his Harley, and only came to the lake about 3 times for a few hours each time all summer! My husband has a love of his jobs and while he came often, not once did he spend the night at the lake. Another thing Jackie and I truly had in common though was a love of "pontoons". Early on one night while conversing by the campfire Jackie made all of us go round the circle and name one thing on our bucket list. Being a newcomer to the group I didn't want to get too personal, but I did have one at the top of my list that made sense. I said that someday I had hoped to own a pontoon. That when my final days came, they would be spent on Lake Lida out on a pontoon, and that my dust remains would be floating away off the dock on an air mattress for eternity. Well, the next day Jackie explained to me that the pontoon on dock #4 was HERS! and hers alone... her husband bought his Harley, so she bought her pontoon. AND, Jackie being the great gal that she, is told me where she kept the keys to the pontoon and that I could take it out whenever I wanted. I thought "Wow, I can sorta cross that one off my bucket list!".

I never had to take that pontoon out by myself... as everytime Jackie was going to go out on it she came over to get me to go along! The pics were taken the very last time we were out on her pontoon... it was Sunday morning in mid-September... she came over about 8:30 that Sunday morning, pretty much waking me up saying "c'mon girl, the crappies are biting".... I'm like "Jackie, I'm still in my jammies and I haven't had a shower!"... to which she of course responded "who the heck needs a shower, this is a pontoon on a lake woman!". I told her to give me 30 mn... she said she was leaving and to stand on the end of the dock when I was beautiful and she'd be back in to get me.

So here we are that gorgeous fall morning...she's crappie fishing with her fish hat and fish clothes on and here's me....having had my shower, properly attired in my white sundress, with the required bare minimum of at least some blush and lip gloss on and my morning cup of coffee.

How different we are, yet how alike. Can't wait until next summer... I'll add something else to the bucket list by then I'm sure...and Jackie will still be giving tours of my cabin.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Time Away....& Tuesday Freedom

My sister reminded me the other day it was time to update my blog.... I thought "What's this? Someone who is actually interested in what I've been up to?"

So after she took me to dinner last night to celebrate my birthday, I thought I'd give her the view from here....

this is what I saw when I came down to walk Hazel in the dawn of yesterday morn.... it was so dang soft, and white and pretty in the dusk of morning....seemed strange though to see the white snow on pure green leaves!

Since we've closed up the cabin, I've spent more time in my creation room...realizing how much I miss my little sales booth down at the Nickel Antique Mall.... I've been grazing over various antique dealer blogs and websites....jealous of their craft and ability to put it all together....but even more jealous of the freedom of time they have...which I can't seem to quite arrive at in my life yet.

Since I am lucky enough to have a job where I do have a weekday off, I've tried to make sure I value that day and not spend my entire day of freedom just doing the mundane like cleaning or laundry. This summer I tried to get to the cabin or out of town each Tuesday. I remember one particular day when I hopped on down to an antique store in Fergus Falls prior to heading to the lake and just so enjoyed my ride on the back roads near Maplewood State Park with the blue sky and the summer white clouds thinking how much I valued not having to be at work on a Tuesday!

Realizing nothing quite gets the juices flowing in me than walking into an antique shop or into a thrift store.... on my day off last week, I spent the day cruising both and came across my new favorite!!!

this old, vintage jack-o-latern... and it's not just a plain, plasticky one..but it has "sparkles"... this hummer has to be over 20 years old and guess what ? I got it for a mere $3 bucks!! it has since lit up my living room every night...and I've enjoyed the warm, orangy glow it brings the room. I swear my Aunt Bainy used to have one just like it back in North Moorhead in the 60's.

Visiting these blogs and websites brings with it "motivation" to get in gear....Last weekend brought the following projects.....

trying to make fake looking caramel apples for an antique tray I have.....


making picture frames of old pics of my kids in their Halloween costumes I used to so enjoy sewing


putting together vintage halloween prints I purchased from a dealer in the twin cities....

Somwhere in my past, I'm sure I was at a Halloween party bobbing for apples just like this picture....

I also found these vintage paper-doll cut-outs for Halloween decorations...which are another new favorite in our home....this little guy reminds me of my brother when we were little....stick out ears and all....

and of course this one reminds me of my angelic little sister... who could do no wrong in Mom's eyes....

So since today is another Tuesday, I'm off to see if I can scrounge around the shops and find one that reminds me of me when I was little....hummm.... I wonder what that would look like......also
time to look around for a little spot in one of the shops for a booth of my own again I think :-) something more to do with my "Tuesday Freedom".

Saturday, September 12, 2009

That's One Big Truck

Looky! Looky! who I ran into out and about the other day...Work has picked up!

Today, Aggregate has Richie off at Yunker's Farm for their annual Kids Day Event showing all the little tykes how a cement truck works. Richie volunteered for this event... which surprises me as he's known to be a man of few words :-). He gets to bring the newest, shiniest truck of the fleet and give tours! ... you know, sorta act like the "MayTag Man" I guess....as we all know, an Aggregate Truck is always on time and never breaks down!

I'm off to my cabin... to sew and create all day ... and sit and watch the leaves turn golden :)
I finally got the bathroom done... Thanks Mom for the red rugs! They're a perfect fit!
Tommorrow Richie says we're going to Dalton??? to some Steam Thresher's show???? Yikes, I thought he got his fill in Rollag last week.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Grandma says.....If I Did the Crime

I must do the time. I keep telling her it was Miss Emme that tore up all the tissue paper on the floor...but I'm the one taking a time-out in my kennel.
Oh Well..... I'll just lay here resting my head on Mr. Fishy while Grandma cleans it all up AGAIN.
Hummmmm.....Life's still pretty good here even when your in "the doghouse".

Friday, September 4, 2009

Happy Anniversary Honey!

After 20 years of singlehood, this is what I now come home to after work each night...Dinner being made by my hubby and his "helper" (who it appears is getting a pre-taste). Happy 3rd Anniversary Richie! Thanks for all the yummy food and mealtime company.

Pray for this man, as I'm off to Gull Lake to join up with Ryan and Ria and families for some fun. Richie's staying behind to care for these two! By the looks of this pic, you can see he's in for one heck of a time!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Looky, Looky who turned "1" last Friday. She's survived (or should I say "we've" survived) her first year and has hardly even had to have one of her calming pills lately! As the vet said "well now she's into her "teen years" ya know", I just about choked... Puppyhood was bad enough, and now we have a teenage dog? What I need is a menopausal dog who just wants to eat and feel exhausted all the time like me! Even though I've threatened to give her away, I never could now as it'd break Richie's heart.... here she is each morning as her best buddy leaves her to go to work for the day. She's even gotten to go out on the route a couple of mornings with him...might as well get her trained in to help throw the morning news!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Why Is It?

that at 9:30 in the morning Mom's bring their children into a doctor's office each child carrying a can of sugar -filled soda pop in one hand and a fistful of sugared candy in the other hand and then she wonders why they can't sit still and they start to badger, kick and scratch at each other all while the Mom threatens them with no results and then retreats to bribing them into good behavior with another quarter for the M&M machine out front? It's called SUGAR OVERDOSE people ! It gets old.... and I see it daily. I just gotta wonder why they don't get it.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Road Trip - Take 2

Last weekends' road trip adventure was with this man... my husband Richie.
It was his turn to plan the trip...doing the one thing he's done every summer for like the last 100 years... something I don't understand why any person would want to do...but being the good wife I go along...the big Dakota County Demolition Derby.
The folks down there have this derby 4 nights running!! and the place sells out every night. Ya gotta get in line for tickets by 5:00, the gates open at 6:00 and then you sit there on those dang uncomfortable aluminum bleachers until the races start at 7:30... pretty soon the ugliest, messed up cars come out and start smashing into each other... some have cutsey things painted to adorn the doors, and fenders... others have fake heads with wigs glued to the roof of the cars... must be a "man thing". Anyway, I never see Richie any happier all year long than when he's sitting at one of these demo derbys. This year they added something new... the "MINI-VAN" competition... all these little mini-vans come scootin' out on this dirt course with their wooden side panels and their wheels all painted and decorated and pretty soon, you realize you really don't want to ever ride in the back of one of those things again by the way you see they cave in so easily when broadsided. Of course my willingness to go along on the trip comes with what I call "TERMS".... this year my terms were to stop in Buffalo at the flea market going on downtown, and then to make a pit-stop at the Mall of America to see the Lennon Sisters perform!!
Much to my surprise, Richie was more than agreeable to both. So we left Fargo at 8AM... did our things for the day... and left the demo derby by 10PM due to a thunderstorm, getting drenched on the mile long walk back to try to find our car, (which by the way we had great diffculty doing). We arrived back home at 2AM and Richie changed clothes and went right back out to do his Sunday Forum deliveries. As I was driving on the way home while he slept, I realized how many ways he is like my Dad was. He loves to drive and take these little day road trips... so did Dad. He likes to sleep only in his own bed...so we most always have to come back home. I remember my Dad saying the same thing. He keeps his new car in the garage, and what does he drive around town and down to the cabin? His old, red paper route car that he bought for $800 bucks. Reminds me of my Dad in his old red and white pick-up, while the white caddy sat in the garage. He likes to talk to strangers about the weather... or just about anything. When getting a hotdog at the flea market, he was telling the seller all about the fish he caught and the fact it was raining on the way down from Fargo that morning... Who cares???? lol.... and he's always looking for a way to make money. So was my Dad. He can drive by a storage rental building for sale in Buffalo and say "hey, that's for sale, I bet that'd be a money maker". His current new business venture is to open up a roasted almond stand...talks about all the places he'll go and peddle his almonds... all while I respond "SUre honey, I"ll be at the lake floating on my air mattress, you go and have a great time!". Actually, he's told me several times he thinks that owning a resort would be great fun.... Hello DAD?????? Lord knows if I told him there was such a thing as a "gray uniform" and that my Dad used to wear one every single day, Richie would order himself a bunch and that'd be all I'd ever see him in... same as my Dad. I did find one thing he's very different about though... as we walked by Mom's red caddy at the lake the other night he said to me "does your Mom's car ever have a speck of dirt on it?".... I had to chuckle and say "Nope, Dad never let a dirty car leave the driveway"... anyone who has ever seen one of Richie's cars knows they never get washed. His proudest moment when we buried his old white paper route Kia with over 300,000 miles on it was "and she never once had a bath"....Now that would make my Dad shake his head and go "Sandra Louise! What were you thinking !"

Great Job Katelyn!

Ever have one of those times when you're going to be in your most favorite antique town in the entire state, but you're a bit short of extra spending cash cuz you are really there to be in a wedding as the priority? and... your sweet husband realizes it's going to pain you greatly to just have to "look" and "wish" so he reaches deep into his pocket and comes up with a $20 bill and hands it to you saying "now get yourself a treat and don't spend a dime more!".... and you go like "WHAT???? WHAT could I possibly find for a mere twenty bucks! Whatever...." but thank him anyway, kiss him goodbye and tuck the money into your pocket saying to yourself "well, that'll buy me and Kate a snack on the way down".... (wink-wink... we did stop for watermelon :-) Well, I did go to just "look" at a store and lo and behold guess what was waiting there just for me !!! This adorable, antique, metal, red phone... just perfect for our cabin. And the asking price? A mere $19.99 ! ! It was MINE!
Then overnight as I planned where I'd put my new toy in the cabin I realized it needed and rightly deserved it's own display shelf. So before we headed for home, Kate and I headed into another antique store with one mission... find a display shelf... that hardly cost a thing! and Guess What? ANOTHER perfect find... this time by Katelyn... .She came running with this shelf saying "Grandma... this will work and it's only five bucks!!".... so Kate, here's our phone now on display at the cabin on your very first antique find with Grammy! It's my new "Favorite Find".

Monday, August 10, 2009


Miss Katelyn, Miss Emme and I went on a little road trip last weekend....

We went to celebrate a belated birthday for this beauty.....

And to finally marry off this beauty...... !

The wedding had a bit of everything.....

a brand new deck in their newly designed back yard built just for the wedding....

Doc and her 95 year old Grandma whom I came to love during my tenure there....

( i hope all my grandkids get married before I'm that old and have to stand in the heat for a pic!)

a clap of thunder as they said their I do's and a light rainstorm during the ceremony.....

(that's her sis holding an umbrella over her head)

an arrival of the 911 Rescue Squad for the lady that collapsed from heart issues due to the heat & humidity during the outdoor pig roast reception.......

and her former "team" gathering for a quick pic during the dance while the tornado sirens were going off .....

This is us.... after a long day/night of celebrating in the high heat and humidity and rain
Congrats to Doc and Matt.....
And thanks to Ryan and Ann for taking us in... and waiting up with Emme until I got back after midnight :-)