GARDENCHRIS's SparkPeople Blog GARDENCHRIS's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community THANK YOU! Just a short blog to let all my Spark friends know that I care for each and everyone of them! <em>304</em> <BR> <BR> I don't always stop by to say hi, or acknowledge a post on my wall or my page, but each and every post brings a smile to my face! <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> Each one of us here on Spark has our own journey <em>535</em> <em>432</em> that take us to all the places in the world. I have Spark friends in far flung places. I get to "see" a little of your place in the wo... Sun, 16 Nov 2014 14:16:52 EST CATS!!! Grrrrr My cat Taz is a royal pain in my you know what! <BR> <BR> CATS!!! grrr can you tell I'm pissed at him?!?!? LOLOL <BR> <BR> He likes to chew the plants when I bring them in for the winter, so he can spit up his furballs. I have learned to put the ones he "likes" higher on the shelf, that he can't reach. <BR> <BR> Well this morning at 5:15 AM I come down to a upended plant all over the carpet!!! Good thing/bad thing I watered them all last night so it was more clumpy to clean up but it wa... Wed, 29 Oct 2014 07:40:07 EST ILLINOIS State Fair I go down to the Fair during GOP DAY. Always get to meet the candidates and I am pretty active in politics. Don't want to get into political discussions, just the back ground on why I go to the Fair. <BR> <BR> So, there is always interesting things to see and eat at the fair. I always give myself "permission" to eat one "strange" thing each year. <BR> <BR> One year I had chocolate covered fried bacon, and before you go euwww .... it was rather good like a salty choc covered pretzel. <BR>... Fri, 22 Aug 2014 12:28:05 EST # 2 on Spark leader boards Sarcastic Unlimited! I was doing some figuring this morning. <BR> <BR> About being 2nd place on the category leader board for Humor <BR> <BR> So the first place team has 2709 members, our team has 1185. <BR> <BR> They have racked up 131,913 points this month so far, at an average 49 points per member. <BR> <BR> Our team has racked up 82,259 this month so far, at an average of 69 points per member. <BR> <BR> ALL time points is 14,004,307 for the other team, which works out to about 5,178 points per person si... Sun, 17 Aug 2014 14:13:45 EST MY Little Pond As promised here are a few pictures of my rebuilt pond. <BR> It is rather like putting a jig saw puzzle together as you can see. So I had to put them all around build up an then fit them together. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I have white and gold spotted gold fish in the pond, there have been little green frogs know to come visit also. They are cute. One year a frog moved in just before I put the heater in and he froze solid...... :(... Fri, 8 Aug 2014 21:59:48 EST stupid bulbs!! Ok .. My blog yesterday talked about the "STUPID BULBS" I have all over one side of my garden. <BR> <BR> They are called Star of Bethlehem.... well I wish they would go back to Bethlehem! LOL <BR> <BR> So I am going to show you what I am up against! <img src=""> <BR> Pretty white flowers.... that look like grass in the Spring then wither away to nothing..... they multiply like ants! <BR> <BR> this is how they look when they are EVE... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 20:59:38 EST My Garden. This has been a bad year for my garden.... With all the rain and then very hot and humid. It was unbearable to be outside. <BR> <BR> I took off Friday as I did not need to work my part time job.... and the weather cooperated! <BR> <BR> I feel very good about all the work I did! I am sore, but I burned LOTS of calories. <BR> <BR> I even made my sifter for those stupid bulbs I have all over my garden <img src=""> <BR> <BR> It is 1/4... Mon, 21 Jul 2014 20:05:33 EST Vacations I have been on Vacation for the past week and a half. I usually spend all that time in my garden getting it ready for the summer. <BR> <BR> This past week I've been dealing with physical therapy for my knee, which has caused me to be behind in my garden, and I am just feeling my "age" some here! <BR> LOLOL I still enjoy the garden and want to finish, just going to take a little longer, plus the weather did not cooperate this year more, like blazing hot summer, to spring thunderstorms all i... Tue, 3 Jun 2014 13:31:37 EST Happy Mothers Day! To all the incredible Women here on Spark! Enjoy your day! <BR> <BR> Our Children do not care whether we are fat or skinny, short or tall, or any other things that we use to denigrate ourselves...... you are beautiful in their eyes! <BR> <BR> Went to church with my mom and my son. Heard a great speaker! and it was a very nice service. Then out to breakfast .... the place I was going to go to, had a long line, so stopped at the big box store to pick up some things, got gas and kept going ea... Sun, 11 May 2014 17:18:51 EST I was SPA dayed!! My Son owns 2 Planet Beach day spa's <BR> <BR> Yesterday every nerve ending I had hurt! I asked my Son if he had any openings for me to do message. He texted me back yes come at 2:30, So I show up and he SPA'D ME! for 3 hours! <BR> <BR> I did water message, it hurt like heck but I did it anyway, after about 10 minutes it felt better. He then put me in a sauna I sweated all that stuff out, <em>198</em> there was about 2-3 cups of salty water in the suit. He next gave me 2 sessions of Re... Sun, 20 Apr 2014 10:19:10 EST feel like I've been run over by a train Good grief! Is this what drug addicts feel like when they come off all those "good" drugs?? <BR> <BR> I feel like I've been run over by a train...every muscle and nerve ending is sore! And I could sleep all day. wow.... I gotta go back to work on Monday! Please keep me in prayer for energy and strength. <BR> <BR> Going to take a nice hot shower and get hair cut and try to join the living world today, might just "wake" me up. <BR> <BR> Everyone of you who take the time out of your busy liv... Sat, 19 Apr 2014 11:44:28 EST Thank you and feeling gratitude. I am feeling rather melancholy today. I was granted a work at home day and am taking advantage of it. <BR> <BR> I have spent a good part of my morning on the computer, after having slept like a baby from all the good drugs I am currently taking for my sciatic pain. The upside is that it has helped my knee settle down considerably. Considering the knee was the cause of the back pain I think they are even now! <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> I go back to my real job on Monday... I was having ver... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 13:15:33 EST Me and the younsters My time with the organizing youngsters is coming to an end. <BR> <BR> We won our NLRB election resoundingly! I am very happy for the employees, as there was wage theft going on and they will now be paid! <em>380</em> <BR> <BR> I have alienated only one of the girls, she is just afraid of me, which is ok with me. <em>40</em> The other mean girl is at least sociable to me and at least is intelligent enough to figure out not to continue pi$$ing me off, as she has witnessed my assets an... Sat, 12 Apr 2014 15:41:42 EST Well the younsters were finally given a dose of reality The youngsters have been given a good life lesson. <BR> <BR> I am still off doing my thing with my union. It had become increasingly frustrating on my part. I had been trying to do what I was asked to do, and kept getting resistance and condensation from these Millennials. <em>183</em> <BR> <BR> I really do not like pulling rank, as I can usually get things done with my "personality" LOL. But things had deteriorated to the point of why am I even here? My union is paying out a lot of mone... Sun, 16 Mar 2014 12:22:11 EST More about the youngsters! LOL Well they survived me so far! <BR> <BR> I did have to pull rank to get some things taken care of that needed to get done.... they now look at me with a little more respect an an uh oh look, they are not sure who I will talk to or what I will do to get things taken care of! Sort of liking the "mystique" <em>36</em> <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> During one of our "debriefs" I had talked about what I saw as needing to get done before we did something else, during another "debrief" the "hip... Sun, 23 Feb 2014 12:45:14 EST Glad to be home, and young people..... I was in Indiana working on a campaign for my Union. <BR> <BR> What is it with young people today?? I know I'll be 60 this year but I do try to stay abreast of "new" things. I'm around younger people each and every day, it's bound to sink in by osmosis even! <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> They insisted I be in some chat thing where I'd get updates ALL the time. Mind you I'm paired with someone else on this same chat ...... If it was that IMPORTANT they'd tell me about if. I asked to be removed,... Sat, 15 Feb 2014 14:26:46 EST Your not doing your job, unless you're offending someone!! I stole this from another Spark blog! I love it as everything is so true. <BR> <BR> I don't know about you but I've Pi$$ed some folks off on different threads and it gets pulled.....I wrote on another stream today and thought for sure I'd get spanked! <em>334</em> <em>18</em> Imagine my surprise when it didn't and other people actually agreed with me about this rather whinny hurt feeling type of person....... vindicated! <BR> <BR> I was pointed to this and STOLE it! Enjoy! <BR> <... Sun, 12 Jan 2014 16:41:27 EST Mom's computer continued! OMG! I was laughing with her and at her! <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> I had loaded Google Earth on her computer. We went exploring last night. She was born in a little village in Germany. Her parents house is still in the family. So we went to Grillheim in Germany on Google Earth...... what a hoot to see her navigate Google Earth and try to find the house.... I showed her how to zoom in and she didn't recognize some of the buildings..... so I zoomed out so she could get her bearings.....she sai... Tue, 31 Dec 2013 13:52:25 EST Merry Christamas! I want to wish all my Spark friends a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS! <BR> <BR> For all of you that have laughed <em>334</em> with me or at me ..... thanks! that's what friends do. For all the shoulders that I have <em>46</em> cried on weather in pain or frustration, hope I didn't get you to wet! <BR> <BR> For all the laughter <em>246</em> and though provoking <em>58</em> blogs, for the places <em>535</em> you have shared and taken me on, for all the sharing of your lives <em>223</... Mon, 23 Dec 2013 12:32:58 EST More computer stories. Well here I am, 1 week later..... love my new computer! I hope I am able to save some things from my old hard drive, going to take it in, as well as my Mom's. Mom has a ton of stuff on as she is doing a family tree. <BR> I am also not quite sure how to transfer stuff from one hard drive to another. Plus my Son bought up a good point, If I'd a just flash drived everything and Mom's computer had a virus..... I'd of infected her new one..... so leave it for the tech people! <BR> ... Sun, 1 Dec 2013 11:37:17 EST New computer story ! Well as most of you know my desk top gave up the ghost .... I would have had to buy one by April anyway as Microsoft was no longer going to support XP. So good excuse to buy a new computer! LOL <BR> <BR> I was using my tablet up til I got this new one. It is fine for traveling.... but not for everyday use slower and can't do things that I could on my desk top. <BR> <BR> I live in the Chicago area, so I have a lot of places available to me..... lucky me! <BR> Last week I checked out an Offi... Mon, 25 Nov 2013 20:05:53 EST We could all use a pick me up Asked by a Spark friend to copy and paste ..... <BR> <BR> We could all use these words of encouragement now and then. <BR> <BR> <BR> Everyone will go through some hard times at some point. Life isn't easy. <BR> <BR> Just something to think about...Did you know the people that are the strongest are usually the most sensitive? <BR> Did you know the people who exhibit the most kindness are the first to get mistreated? <BR> Did you know the ones who take care of others all the time are usua... Sun, 13 Oct 2013 13:02:32 EST Amazing Spark friends To all my Spark friends old and new! <BR> <BR> <em>304</em> <em>252</em> <em>104</em> You all have made me <em>246</em> , <em>46</em> with you, <em>58</em> learn new things, <em>410</em> celebrate wins, <em>636</em> <em>665</em> <em>673</em> <em>712</em> taken me to different part of the world, <em>215</em> <em>224</em> <em>243</em> <em>381</em> <em>386</em> <em>244</em> cheered me on, <em>40</em> <em>20</em> teased me ( all my Sarcasti... Sun, 6 Oct 2013 14:31:16 EST dicovery of how to organize my drawers I'm so excited! I read somewhere on how to organize tshirts in drawers.... <BR> <BR> Just finished laundry and thought ok I'm trying this! I have more room and I can see all of my shirt colors at one time! you fold then normal then in half again and lay them on end .... sorta like stacking then in the drawer. <BR> <BR> Why didn't someone tell me this years ago?!?!I would have saved myself countless fight with my kids about folding their clothes! Of course it was a mess, they had to dig dow... Sun, 29 Sep 2013 13:56:28 EST When children return home. One of my Sons has come home to live with me again. He has an apartment in Wisc and I live in Ill. He and his partner have 2 business locations and one being in Wisc and one in Ill they are only about 1 hours apart, but about 1.30-1.45 to my house <BR> <BR> There is a falling out personally, but professionally they are still partners. <BR> <BR> I feel for him as a mom... but he is a grown 34 year old man. I am treating him like a grown man. I don't pick up after him, I make him buy his... Fri, 26 Jul 2013 12:29:51 EST My Spark friends To all my Spark friends..... <BR> <BR> I love to get your little comments, your cheery notes, your goodies, days when you just stop by to say hello, you make me smile, you make me THINK! <em>58</em> <BR> <BR> I don't always respond to each and everyone of you ..... BUT... I do appreciate all the times that YOU took the time to jot me a note or send me a goodie. <em>304</em> <BR> <BR> I go through life with a very demanding job that is getting harder and harder for me to do each a... Mon, 22 Jul 2013 20:11:59 EST CONTRACT WORK. Most of you know I work for a State agency giving road test to truckers.... a whole 'nother story some other time. <BR> <BR> Any way I also sit on our bargaining committee and we just wrapped up this contract. Which means that the 15 of us break up into 2's and travel this "great" state of Illinois to talk about, answer questions, find out problems etc. <BR> <BR> I know Union.... and I'm a conservative Republican?!?!? from the State of Illinois??? I am no shrinking violet believe me when I... Sat, 29 Jun 2013 11:02:32 EST Spring that is to long in coming...... I see hope in my garden! I have daffodils that are just starting to bloom out, other signs of life in my garden, trees budding out, grass greening.... winter has stuck around way to long! <BR> <BR> I NEED to be in my garden, for my physical and mental wellbeing! My garden is my happy place. Work has been stressful and just life in general at this time in my life... so Spring Hurry up and make an appearance!!! Wed, 17 Apr 2013 22:06:52 EST Spark Friends Just a quick note to say how much I appreciate all of you! <BR> <BR> Your sarcastic comments, your smiley faces, your cheery greetings, your goodie gifts to me, comments on my blogs, just all around <em>304</em> ! <BR> <BR> Hope everyone is having a good day! <BR> <BR> It is snowing here, you all know how much I hate winter! Wish the sun was out and the garden was in bloom..... can't wait to be back in my garden! <BR> <BR> <em>345</em> <em>220</em> <em>247</em> <BR> <BR> Mon, 18 Mar 2013 14:28:35 EST Spark Solutions I just pre-ordered the new Spark Book Spark Solutions. <BR> <BR> I love free stuff! If you pre order you get $45 of free stuff from Spark! PLUS I got 1000 spark points also <em>244</em> AND 3 months of Spark coach!!! PLUSSSSSS 30% off at the Spark Store!!! <BR> <BR> ALL of this for only 15.75 from amazon!! How amazing is that! Ok does this qualify for me spreading the Spark ON Spark! <BR> <BR> Seriously folks how can you go wrong with this!?!? <BR> <BR> here is the link to todays b... Fri, 1 Mar 2013 11:54:57 EST SUNDAY RAMBLINGS Not sure what I'm posting for .... nothing really important. <BR> <BR> I'm just feel rather old right now and sorta out of sorts. I am worried about 2 of my sons, one needs surgery and no insurance, the other is under employed and I'm sending him food, as he "makes to MUCH money" to qualify for assistance! Only in America can you be trying to do the right thing and no one can help when you need a hand... my mom's health is rather steady... but she will be 80 this year...I already help her wi... Sun, 3 Feb 2013 13:24:23 EST Getting to Know Chris more I stole it from some of my other team mates! <BR> <BR> Where is my cell phone? <BR> sitting on top of my computer tower charging <BR> <BR> Spouse? <BR> divorced, happily single <BR> <BR> Your hair? <BR> short, naturally gray, gave up the dyes <BR> <BR> Your mother? <BR> lives close by here in Illinois <BR> <BR> Your father? <BR> deceased <BR> <BR> Your favorite thing? <BR> gardening, it is my happy place, quiet, and beautiful <BR> <BR> Your dream last night? <BR> I very rarely remember... Fri, 11 Jan 2013 08:50:21 EST Merry Christmas!! To all my Spark friends... you have made me laugh, challenged me, made me think, inspired me, made me cry, and just been such nice people while we navigate the challenges of everyday life! Thank you! Wishing you a blessed day! Mon, 24 Dec 2012 11:50:49 EST Spent the day with Mom I've been needing to get a new phone for a bit now... it was having issues of logging off all by itself and the speaker would go on and off.... anyway yesterday was the day. <BR> <BR> Mom had one of my older phones. Which I insisted that she take so that I can rest easier and she has a way to get a hold of me. ( she is pace maker dependent) I put her on my plan and adding her was not a big deal for me. She did not want to "PAY" for a newer phone... hence my older phone. <BR> <BR> She is so... Sun, 16 Dec 2012 11:08:09 EST My new Tablet It is rather funny that I'm suddenly getting all these tech things! <BR> <BR> The Nano was a gift for giving blood.....this tablet was my Christmas present to myself! A new Samsung Galaxy 10 in Tablet, wi-fi already on it, opened early of course! <BR> <BR> I have been looking at this since it came out. I travel quite a bit with my job, requiring overnight stays for at least a day sometimes longer. My laptop is from the Jurassic park days! it is a 17 inch Toshiba. I bought it used for a ve... Sun, 25 Nov 2012 10:02:40 EST IPOD NANO I am the recipient of a new IPOD NANO. <BR> <BR> Didn't cost me anything as I got it for giving lots of pints of blood, and the blood bank gifts us with points to "purchase" things, and they like my blood a lot as I am a universal donor! <BR> <BR> Anyway.... This thing is literally 2 inches square... i spent most of the afternoon yesterday loading it with cd's. I already have 16....I repeat 16 CD'S on this thing and I've only taken up about have the memory!!! <BR> <BR> Amazing!!! How ama... Wed, 10 Oct 2012 16:37:19 EST Morning All, Have a great DAY!! This is not the norm for me to post blogs....still a little strange at times! <BR> <BR> Just wanted to come on and say good morning to all my Spark friends current and new ones. So very glad to be a part of such a caring, funny, intellectually diverse group of people! <BR> <BR> You have made me LAUGH, to cry with you and for you, be filled with joy for you and your accomplishments, to celebrate you, sorrow with you, visit with you, see parts of the world that I will never get to, through y... Sun, 16 Sep 2012 10:53:37 EST Taking care of me OK so here is the deal... I've been to the dentist on and off for years, for the last 8-10 YEARS I have not seen a dentist. I was keeping up with maintenance etc, in fact the hygienist said that my teeth were in pretty good shape for not having been to a dentist in so long. They NEVER hurt, I had more important things to do, raising 4 boys alone, replacing all my doors and windows in this very old house yada yada...... I decided that this was the year that I was going to get back to the denti... Tue, 11 Sep 2012 23:06:27 EST It has been some time.... I haven't posted in some time. <BR> <BR> My Sons are always on my mind... I'm a mom what can I say! <BR> <BR> Brian paid us a surprise visit Labor Day weekend. It was very nice to see him and we spent some time together. He is struggling with his business in this economy. He also told me that he is now without health insurance, couldn't keep up... more worry for me. As he is the one who had 4 surgeries last year. <BR> <BR> Joshua in New york is now working after being without a job for a... Fri, 7 Sep 2012 11:16:45 EST wonders od the internet! I just got off a video chat with my Mom and one of my Sons who are in Germany! <BR> My mom and her cousin are the last of her generation, and this cousins son is dying of cancer..... so sad. BUT I got to see them and talk to them via the Internet!! How cool is that!! Pretty amazing stuff. <BR> <BR> Glad my Son is with my Mom as this is pretty hard on her. Just wish I could have gone also, just didn't work out. <BR> <BR> Anyway, just thought I'd share and tell everyone how exciting it wa... Sat, 30 Jun 2012 09:01:29 EST gratitude I just got back from a trip to Colorado. <BR> <BR> The mountains were so peaceful and calming to me... just breathtaking. I got to see the continental divide, framed between mountain ridges on either side. I took lots of pictures. <BR> <BR> I'm home now and took extra days to spend in my garden, which I always find refreshing. I know, lots of work, but I like it and look at all the calories I'm burning! <BR> <BR> Any way, the point of this blog is that I'm blessed to be able to do some tra... Sun, 3 Jun 2012 08:46:24 EST In a rut Ok so I really do not like winter or cold anything. I have been in a bit of a funk all winter because I'm "stuck" in the house. I work outside all day so when I get home I just want to get warm and not do much of anything. <BR> <BR> My friends are all single ladies and money is tight for all of us with the economy the way it is. We try to do fun stuff now and then...... but you know how it is sometimes. <BR> <BR> I miss my Kids.... they are all busy and on with their lives etc etc... still... Sun, 29 Apr 2012 13:38:51 EST My Mom Ok I will admit I am a little baffled! <BR> <BR> My son from Arizona surprised me and flew in for a few days. He is leaving today and will only be able to stop by for about 3 hours. I called my mom to tell her and she said she's sorry she is going to the senior center for lunch and card playing!?!? Really??? <BR> <BR> I mean I know she has a life and all that as I do, but your grandson is only here for 3 hours? and you're not able to forgo eating a 3 dollar lunch and cards with other seni... Sat, 21 Apr 2012 10:12:25 EST My Sons I have 4 Sons. My oldest is working trying to start a family and has had multiple miscarriages. The middle one has his own business and is struggling in this economy, it is very stressful for him. The twins are also struggling, both are working, one will be laid off by June, the other is in New York and has had his hours cut way back. <BR> <BR> I am financially helping the one in New York. There was a point where he had no food in the house. <BR> <BR> This economy is very bad, this should... Sun, 1 Apr 2012 16:26:04 EST random thoughts It has been very busy at work, I've been under lots of stress at work. <BR> <BR> mom has been ill, my kids have been going through things, the us economy is in the tank, Everything costs more! <BR> <BR> Yesterday during my walk to get rid of a major headache, all I did was thank God for all the good things in my life. My headache was gone after the walk and I felt better. Prayer works. Sat, 11 Feb 2012 09:53:38 EST feeling rather melancholy this Christmas Don't have any particular reason... my family is rather small 4 of my sons. my mom, and a daughter in law, my brother and his wife, a niece and a nephew, that is it. <BR> 2 of my sons live on opposite ends of the USA, so I do not always see them each Christmas. My niece and nephew are from 2 different families so they often share holidays, not really an issue. The older son is going through some trying times right now trying to get pregnant,with fertility issues, and going back to work after... Fri, 23 Dec 2011 11:18:59 EST going to Wisconsin to help my Son My son and his partner bought a foreclosed franchise, that is a mess inside, I am going to help clean more of it today. <BR> <BR> It is just over the boarder in Wisconsin from Illinois so it is not a real far trip. <BR> <BR> I'm excited for him, that he is willing to step out and take a risk, especially in these economic times speaks volumes to my heart. I always told them you can do whatever you want if you set your mind to it. <BR> <BR> Lord, protect him in this adventure, help them to m... Sun, 27 Nov 2011 09:09:30 EST My riding lawn mover and Coach Nicole Strange thing to blog about I know! <BR> <BR> This spanking new, only second summer, mower would not start on Sat. The battery kept needing to be recharged. It is kept outside in an unheated shed, might have something to do with it. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I was in a time crunch this weekend. Had to be at a fundraiser at 4 Pm, got home from work on Sat at 2:30 by the time I finished picking up all the fallen branches from the wind in the yard it was 3:00 pm. <BR> <BR> i knew I'd not have time ... Mon, 7 Nov 2011 08:00:10 EST Spark Friends are amazing people ! I am so moved by all of Spark people friends! THANK YOU, THANK YOU! <BR> <BR> My Son and Daughter in Law are trying to get pregnant, She has had a number of miscarriages. They have tried invetro and still miscarried twice. <BR> <BR> Another Spark friend of mine had a family member having a serious health issue asked her Spark friends to pray. We have been doing that. Well today she gave an update on the family member and shared the information with her all friends. <BR> <BR> I asked her fr... Sun, 25 Sep 2011 16:30:05 EST very lazy day I had such plans for today, it was rainy and dreary all day. <BR> <BR> Was planning on clearing my kitchen table, it tends to be the drop of place for mail and everything else. <BR> Well I had a long distance call that had to get out of the way, that took some time. I had errands after church. <BR> My foot was bothering me, after being on it all day yesterday, as I was catching up with e-mails, I kept yawning. <BR> So I took a 2 hour nap! Woke up from being all warm and snuggy, got back o... Sun, 18 Sep 2011 22:22:39 EST