If We Were Having Coffee…

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You’d find me relaxed and smiling when you came to the door this this morning. The weather has been beautiful (especially for November), and the week has sailed smoothly by. Come on in, coffee is on and there is fresh cake.

If We Were Having Coffee…

I’d want to know what I missed in your life last week, and how this week has gone for you. I had to miss coffee with friends last weekend much thanks to an unplanned weekend of work. I am at the point in my season where I should be off weekends, yet reasons keep springing up that drag me in.

It’s almost over for the year though, and yesterday I laid off the first round of men from the shop for the winter. That’s a sure sign my long vacation is just around the corner.

As the temps fall, so does the volume of work I have to be done, thus the number of men in the shop begins to dwindle.

If We Were Having Coffee…

Not much new and exciting in my universe to share, except for the science project our high school senior informed me of.

He needs a mouse trap car built for science class. I love these projects, not just for the creativity outlet they offer, but also for some one on one time in the workshop.

Our home is usually so busy, and the kids seem to be here in packs. It’s either a full house, or just Mama and I. So getting that one on one time is something I look forward to.

Besides, the project will give me another conversation piece in the shop. It already has a place ready right beside to the catapult I helped Miss Bookworm build a couple years ago.

The one I still get glares from Mama about, but that is a tale for another time.

If We Were Having Coffee…

Unfortunately I would need to keep our visit short, with the time change daylight runs out much too fast and I chose to sleep in a bit today.

I have a lot around here that is still not ready for winter, and the shop needs a bit more cleaning to make room for the bassinet build I need to get under way for Little Mama. Who by the way is doing well and so is the future Alan clan member inside her.

Just as soon as I can get a handle on the weatherization here, I will have more time to chat, and even share a few tales, not just check in on weekends.

But for know I must go, I will take some time a bit later to swing by your place and share a cup of Joe.

Don’t forget to stop over to Part Time Monsters Linky for more coffee and some very wonderful company!

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An Exciting Week

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If we were having coffee…

This morning you would arrive to find me floating on cloud nine. The smile plastered on my face has been there all week!

So come on in and sit a spell. There’s a pot of fresh coffee waiting, and oh boy do I have something to tell you!

If we were having coffee…

OK, so I can’t hold my excitement any longer.  Both of our daughters shared terrific, life changing news this week.

The first exciting tidbit came from our third oldest. A sophomore now at a large university, she had applied for a work program at Disney through the college.

She bolted in the door screaming, jumping, and flailing about with a piece of paper in her hand.

“I’m going to Disney!” She bellowed over and over.

The air was electrified with excitement and even the dogs bounced around as if they knew what was going on.

Our little bookworm that has always worked so hard to keep her 4.0 GPA is now seeing the fruit of her efforts.

Her acceptance into the program has now been confirmed! As I understand it, career wise, it’s a huge opportunity for her future. Many of the students who enter the program wind up staying put and building their career right there in Orlando.

The squeals and hopping of Mama and both our girls filled the house. Combined with what my ears would have to call girlish babbling.

Consider it a cross between listening to the chipmunks, and the voice you always heard when Charlie Brown spoke on the phone with his teacher.

Occasionally a specific word could be heard clearly. Words like packing, nine months, resume, shoes, car.

So the gist of the situation when translated:

She has already started packing for nine months in Orlando, beginning in January, which will be a big shot in the arm to her resume. She’s driving her own car down. And finally, she has no idea which (or how many) pairs of shoes should go along for the ride.

While both my pride and excitement for her are flying high, I feel a pang of remorse and concern.

Bookworm will be the first to travel so far away, and nine months… Wow… I’m going to miss her.

Just to ease my own mind about her trip, I have already began to pack too. I am slowly starting to compile every tool I think might be necessary to repair a car on the side of the road. By the time she leaves, my Jeep will be loaded and ready just in case…

It’s not that her car won’t make it, it’s just the way I think. Chance favors the prepared mind you know!

If We Were Having Coffee…

I would have to apologize for my long windedness today. Oh, and in my excitement I forgot to offer up some fresh chocolate cake to go with our coffee! Just where are my manners anyway?!

Ok, so now on to daughter number two and her news…

Just a couple nights ago, my most dedicated ice fishing buddy, being our oldest daughter came in holding an envelope with her husband in tow. A strange look filled her face.

I milled about the kitchen finishing up dinner while Mama settled in after another late shift at work.

“So, I have something the two of you need to read, but you have to read it together.”

With that she opened the envelope and handed a single piece of folded paper to each of us.

It had been folded twice to fit inside the envelope. As my fingers flipped open the first fold, I eyed her husband seeking any sort of clue I could find on his face.

And then the shrieking began… Followed by girlish babbling…

Mama bounced up and down waving her arms as she collided with our daughter for a hug.

I had stalled too long and for a millisecond was behind the times with regards to the exciting news.

Then my eyes landed on the word Positive just after my brain recognized her doctor’s letterhead.

Yep, that’s right the Alan Clan is about to have another member!

If We Were Having Coffee…

I would finally settle enough to ask how life was in your world. This day finds you well and smiling I hope.

If We Were Having Coffee…

By now I’d be ready for a refill, how about you?

I’ve got a lot to do, but to be honest I don’t want to do any of it today. Even the weather seems to agree with me, its cloudy and wet with an occasional rumble of thunder.

Seems to be a good day to sketch out and plan the baby crib Little Mama ask me to build.

Thanks ever so much for stopping by and listening to me chatter!

And by the way should you stumble across an avid ice fisherman looking for a buddy to wander across frozen lakes, send them my way. The ice is no place for a pregnant woman, so my dear partner is benched for the coming season!

If We Were Having Coffee…

About now  I would be ready to head out the door and over to Part Time Monster’s Linky to see  some old friends, and find some new ones.  Care to tag along?

Have coffe mug, will travel…

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Good morning everyone!

It’s been quite sometime since I had the pleasure of your company, too long in fact.

It’s been a long grueling season at work that occupied seven days a week, ten to twelve hours a day. Life outside work came to a screeching halt!

On the bright side I have much to share, laughs and funny tales, some sadness and even a couple horrific moments that nearly caused me to panic.

Those tales however will have to wait. Today is not about me, but rather the friends I have here whom I have not seen in way too long.

Since it was me that seemed to fall off the face of the earth, it is only right that I step out the door with a coffee mug in hand to pay a visit to as many of you as I can to say hello again.

So if you will still have me, I am out and about with a smile on my face and will stop by to see you.

And after that, I can see I need to get the new Weekend Coffee Share logo before I look like that outdated guy in the group who never bothered to step into the current decade!

Off I go, and I am looking forward to seeing you!

For any of you that might have happened upon my page and do not know about the weekend coffee share, Part time Moster’s Linky with help you get around  to meet some wonderful folks and have enough coffee to keep you twitching all day long!

Weekend Coffee Share 3/29/15

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If we were having coffee…

I’d happily greet you at the door, excited to see you again! The past couple weeks have been a whirlwind around here that left me little time for much of anything.

Some has been good and some not so much, but I found myself missing the great people I have come to know here.

Grab a mug, let’s chat!

If we were having coffee…

I’d share with you the sadness that has touched my extended family. My dad lost his sister this past week. While I truly was not close to her due to distance, dad’s reaction shook me up pretty well.

He has always been my rock. When there’s trouble a foot in in my life, he always seems to have the answer I am looking for. But this time I found myself on the other side of the table, and worse yet, I didn’t have all the answers he needed.

I felt nearly helpless as I spoke words of encouragement into the phone while wishing I could be with him at her side.

Then the good lord called her home. A tumor in her lung left the doctors saying they could do nothing but make her comfortable and wait for the inevitable.

I felt as though I should be with him, yet obligations to my own clan meant I could not make the fourteen hour drive. So dad did… alone.

I have paced, fought to focus on tasks I needed to do, and waited by the phone feeling helpless knowing he drove through the night with little sleep and his mind surely not focused.

As the week wore on, the tiredness and stress of the situation clear in his voice, I found myself worrying about his own health. Pushing his limits to be somewhere I felt he should not have to be alone.

With some luck, tonight’s phone call will find him back at home beside Mom, able to rest and recover.

I just can’t help but feel I let him down in some way, even though his words say different.

So I’d ask if you would join me in raising our morning mug in honor of a woman whose smile spell bound me as a youngster, and left me with impressions of a person I wished I had the chance to know better.

Here’s to you Auntie!

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if you had any recipes you would mind sharing. As of late with Mama working so many hours, the food around here has become mundane. I can hold my own in the kitchen, but to be honest only for short stretches at a time. I don’t have her skill at whipping together a wide variety of meals, and to be honest some of the recipes I have read in her books leave me a bit intimidated!

Right about now our evening meals have become more like a favorite TV show at the end of summer. A steady flow of reruns that leave the kids and even myself wrinkling a lip ready for something new.

There just might be a mutiny around here if they see another pack of chicken on the counter!

And can someone please tell me what on earth do you do with a large pork butt roast, besides put it in the oven with potatoes and carrots?

If we were having coffee…

I’d share just how good it feels to have most of my crew back to work. The shop is awake again! Now if we can  get mother nature to turn up the thermostat just a bit all will be flowing on the right track.

If we were having coffee…

I’d want to know what I missed that has been important in your life. I know a lot of you have been busy with new blogging goals and ideas, and I have not been able to keep up as of late.

So please share how things are going!

If we were having coffee…

About now I would have to wrap things up. I know its a bit short, but there’s several folks I need to stop by and visit before I pull out Mom’s recipe for Enchiladas in a Hail Mary pass to keep the kids eating something better than McDonald’s.

Next week I’ll have a fresh cake to go with our coffee, and hopefully have life back on track.

Don’t forget, there’s plenty of conversation and more coffee over at Part Time Monster’s Linky. I’m headed that way now if you need a lift.

So until we meet again, I hope your week is full of positive thoughts, clear skies, and some funny jokes. I still believe laughter is the best medicine!

If We Were Having Coffee 3/14/2015

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If we were having coffee…

Today you’d find me moving slower than normal. Oh, don’t worry the coffee and cake are fresh, ready and waiting. It’s just my body refuses to move at normal operating speeds.

After a very long week of equipment repairs at work, muscles seemed to laugh at the thought of getting out of bed this morning. I swear this spring every piece of equipment in the yard has ganged up on me.

Ah well, better now than when our season is in full swing!

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if your town has noticed old man winter finally running out of steam for the year. Around here his icy grip is getting weak.

Just like a movie villain hanging onto the edge of a cliff about to fall to his doom in the canyon below, one can feel his grasp slipping. There’s nothing to do but stand there smiling as each finger tip slips away. In the words of Bruce Willis from Die Hard… “Yippie Ki-yay *!#%**

Another rough winter is just about over. In many ways I’m darn glad to see it. In others, well I kind of wish he would stick around.

The answer to the question floating through your head right now is yes I am a bit crazy. But think about it for a second….

While all of us are ready for t-shirts, blooming flowers, and the wonderful scent of fresh cut grass, Are you really ready for mosquito’s, humidity, oppressive heat and millions of spiders?

If we were having coffee…

I would tell you that my list of things I never want to do again before I die grew by one more item last night.

I learned real quick that enjoying a missed episode of the TV show Bones does not go well with pizza! Yep, that sure was a short dinner.

If we were having coffee…

I’d offer up one last salute to another gorgeous winter…

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Fair well snow drifts,  icicles, and frozen lakes.

If we were having coffee…

I am sure by now you would have noticed that while still making progress on our renovation, things have slowed quite a bit.

Time for all those little loose ends has been short, but it’s almost done. At this rate another two weeks should finally have us ready for the carpet to be installed.

If we were having coffee…

Wow our time goes fast. I must get my butt in gear now. Today is working on the house day. This weekend has been shortened by a day since my beloved Jeep needs some attention tomorrow. At nearly 200,000 miles, she’s given me a list of items that are tired and need replacing.

So today will be sawdust and stain. Tomorrow rust, grease, and mud…

Any body out there have a 36mm axle nut socket I can borrow? It’s the one tool I seem to be lacking, and Mama hates it when I tool shop. With all the cool toys in a big boy toy store, walking out with just one… Well that’s like eating just one potato chip!

Until next week then. Yeah I am still way too busy… But I will play catch up with everyone soon.

Here’s to a week of fresh spring breezes, soul warming sunshine and a chance to break that bad case of cabin fever I am sure all of us have!

Don’t forget to swing into Part Time Monster’s linky and say hello to everyone. It’s a great place to make new friends.

If We Were Having Coffee 3/7/2015

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If we were having coffee…

This morning you’d find me running back and forth from my workshop to the house. It’s clean up day today! Mountains  of tools and supplies are headed out the front door back to their proper places in the shop.

Our renovations are finally so close to the end I almost can’t stand it. If only I could find my magic wand to wave about in order to cinch the last little loose ends tight.

A couple light switches here, an outlet there, and a few tiny pieces of trim to cut. Then it’s off to spend some time sanding and staining cabinets to match.

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but for some reason I feel like I am chasing it rather than gaining on it.

Well anyway come on in!

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if you’d seen the weather reports for this week. It is finally going to reach into the forties around here. While the ice fisherman in me is screaming “Not Yet”, the rest of me is more than ready to feel some warmth that doesn’t come from multiple layers of clothing!

If we were having coffee…

I’d offer you brownies instead of chocolate cake to go with a steaming cup of Joe. I had been pestered for weeks to make some by our youngest son.

“You always have cake, when will you have some brownies?”

I’m the biggest sweets eater in the house, and it turns out, other than the occasional piece of cake eaten by Mama, I am the sole cake eater in the house.

So I made a batch of brownies while I had the oven going for cake this week.

After two days of reminding him they were on the counter he headed out the door for a weekend at a friends. When I popped the lid I discovered he had yet to even touch them.

Granted they are a box mix, Martha Stewart I am not, but he didn’t even nibble on an edge!

So before I can make another cake, I have to save the brownies from turning to hockey pucks.

If we were having coffee…

I’d want to ask if you know where Bald Eagles go during the winter. There’s a pair at work who have yet to grace me with their presence this year.

What has been back to greet me is our resident hawk, although as you can see in the pic, he is still just as camera shy as ever. When I lifted my phone to shoot the picture, he had settled on top of the pole. Just before I heard the digital simulation of the shutter, he jumped off with his wings spread wide.

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If we were having coffee…

I’d remind those of you affected by Daylight Savings Time to change your clocks before you go to bed tonight. Yeah, it’s that time.  And since you have the step ladder out, replace those all important batteries in your smoke alarms!

Well, I suppose it is time for me to get my butt in high gear for the day, so as much as I would like to sit here and chat over another cup, I really must excuse myself. Those damn magic elves have been slacking off of their late night duties so all the little loose ends are still waiting for me.

Here’s to a warmer week full of sunshine, muddy roads and song birds! For those of you who entertain our robins during the winter, have they left yet?

Their arrival back here in Michigan is the sign I wait for to call back my crew, and I am beginning to go stir crazy in that big shop all alone!

There’s more coffee and good times to be had so when you leave here be sure to stop by Part Time Monster’s link page and mingle!

If We Were Having Coffee 2/28/2015

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If we were having coffee…

You’ll see a big smile on my face this morning as I meet you at the door. This week was an awesome one, and I can’t help but let it show.

Please come on in, the coffee is hot, there’s fresh chocolate cake and the mood around here is as bright as the sunshine that is blaring through the windows.

If we were having coffee…

I’d tell you about a crazy first week back to work. Even though our temps have not gotten much above ten degrees, it felt good to be outside soaking in the sunshine.

 I spent a couple days waking up the stubborn old road grader from it’s winter slumber. If you compared my equipment to the seven dwarves, there is no doubt that grader would be named “grumpy”.

Just when it finally seemed I had coaxed him back into work mode, he gave me quite the unexpected surprise. Somewhere under that yellow and rusty exterior a hydraulic line blew, sending a bright pink geyser sky high.

As I tried to run through thigh high snow drifts to reach the cab and turn the key, I wound up face down in a drift while pink transmission fluid rained down from above.

I guess he won that battle, but the war is not over!

If we were having coffee…

I’d share the excitement we feel here. Our oldest daughter and her husband are now only a couple days away from moving in to their house. After some weeks working with the bank, they are officially home owners.

And the best part, they are moving in right next door! Monday is moving day, so one week of work under my belt this season, and I already put in for a day off.

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if you managed to dodge the bug that seems to be going around. Thankfully it has (thus far) missed our house, but it sure has been raging through the area.

I hope this day finds you healthy and smiling.

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if the cake was better than last week. I’ve been practicing and using all the advice I have gotten from Mama, our daughter and my mom.

Each cake is getting better. Maybe Mama’s oven doesn’t hate me after all!

If we were having coffee…

It’s about time I excuse myself, before I get focused on some trim work in the house, I need to run out and find a pair of gloves.

It seems our pup has gotten board with the milk crate full of toys at her disposal and decided shredding one of my insulated work gloves would be more fun.

Ya just gotta love the chewing stage!

With some luck I’ll pop in a bit more this week, but I will make sure the coffee is hot next Saturday.

Until then, think warm happy thoughts and let’s drive old man winter back north for the year!

Oh and don’t forget to swing into Part Time Monster’s link page. Lots of wonderful people are offering up enough coffee to keep you twitching and jabbering all week long!