Today Is For The Birds….Day 12 of #21daysofgrateful

So yesterday was a bit of a quiet day.  Mikey went off to golf for the day, so Brody and I hung out.  After a good soak in the tub, we headed out for a walk.  Down to the beach, nothing happening there (and it’s still a little on the chilly side; sun or no sun) so we headed out through the Barrier Dune’s gates (that are now working since Michael tore them off!) and what to my wondering eyes should appear, but two BEAUTIFUL bald eagles, flying in synchronized wonder.  Did I have my camera?  Noooooo…but the iphone was in my pocket and was better than nothing.  Now in defense of the iPhone’s camera, these birds were pretty far away!


I bump into Catherine, who is returning from a long bike ride and excitedly tell her about the Eagles.  Catherine and I spent hours on a beach last year, close to our favorite Indian Pass Raw Bar, on our bellies waiting for a majestic Eagle to lite.  (see below)




As we’re talking, she looks up and there they are!  So beautiful.  Flying together and enjoying the sunshine.  We start to walk back, chatting about how cool it was to see the Eagles, and we see Jann and Nancy sitting outside reading with their pups.  We go and tell them about the Eagles….And they appear again.  After watching them for about 20 minutes, Jann insists that I run home and get my camera. I have never seen two eagles flying together…Usually just one, so I looked up the mean of two eagles flying together and this is what Google found:

Hello! Two eagles flying over your house is a good sign indeed! Native Americans use signs from Nature for guidance and direction from the Great Spirit. Eagle as a “power animal” or “Totem animal” is significant in its spiritual meaning. You can google “totem animals” and get some really great information or go to the library and check out books on totem animals or power animals as described by Native American authors. An example of eagle as power animal would be: Exerpted from Sacred Messenger carrying prayers to Creator and returning with visions and gifts for the people. Eagle feathers are sacred to the native Americans as their energy brings in spirit for healing. Gift of clarity and inner vision to use for the good of all people to bring light out of darkness.

On the way back, toting my camera, our friend the Blue Heron, who has a name which escapes me (if you know it, kindly let me know!) was waiting for his photo shoot, so I complied…

blue heron

blue heron-10

blue heron-11

Unfortunately, when I finally got back to Jann and Nancy’s the “eagles had landed”….No worries, I’m sure to see them again and this time hopefully packing my camera!

Here’s shot from the top porch (one of many, many porches they have!  I actually got LOST trying to find my way up to the top floor..that’s how large this house is!) capturing the lighthouse from Port St. Joe.  See it waaaaaayyyy of in the distance between the branches?  Oh, if only I had a 400 lens…ahem.

blue heron-15

The day ended with Catherine and Pete coming over, as they were having trouble with their internet.  Catherine is an amazing photographer and a dog trainer!  So to my delight, she worked with Brody and I so that he may eventually learn not to hoover everything off the beach.  My day didn’t start so well and I ended our beach walk early due to frustration!  So Thank You, Catherine, for your help!

My three grateful’s today are:

  1. I’m so grateful to be able to watch the beauty of the Eagles
  2. I’m grateful that after a frustrating walk first thing in the morning, I was able to turn around  my day into a positive one
  3. I’m so grateful to Catherine for coming to my aid and helping me to understand “dog speak” so Brody and I can enjoy our beach walks once again

I’ll leave you with this….

01-12-19 reunion dinner-32 copy

Life Is Good…

A little chilly, but who’s complaining? Day 11 of #21daysofgrateful

Okay ladies…check out this link!  Yes Robin, there really is a Santa Claus..

Whaaat! Yes! Finally some good news for a change…Eating Chocolate and Drinking Wine will keep us looking young!

Brrrr….it’s a bit chilly today, but the sun was shining during our walk (which later went in and hid).  We had a wonderful walk with the entire gang!


Jann & Magic heading to the beach!

beachwalk 01-14-19-4

Last one in’s a dirty, rotten egg!

beachwalk 01-14-19-6

Hey, Ma…I won!


Set those puppies FREEEEEE!  



Here’s Journey that doesn’t like to go in too deep…each day, she goes just a little bit further!


It’s not just the pups that love this beach!





The whole gang, well with the exception of the photographer!


There’s nothing like a good stick between friends


Besties with Magical



Treat?  Did I hear Treat?


Tammi on a mission


Ok..I finally got the what do I do with is?


One proud of herself pup!




Love this girl.  Our newest addition, 14 month old Tonka…no fear!


A leisurely Stroll




Beautiful boy


Our Brody is lovin life and feeling much better!


A race to the finish!


Like I said…No Fear!


This pup enjoys every minute of her life!


Nothing like a good shake!


Guys…Wait for MEEEE!


This pup is on top of the world!


Pete and his girl!


Mikey and his boy!


We ended the day at our favorite restaurant Indian Pass Uptown Raw Bar

My 3 grateful things today:-

  1. Grateful that I could put my two feet on the ground and look forward to the wonderful day ahead
  2. Grateful that I can walk the beach with my camera and shoot to my hearts delight!
  3. Grateful for my youngest daughter, Melissa, who is turning 37 years young today. So grateful.  Love you baby girl.

I’ll leave you with this….


Life Is Good…..

The Sun Is Shining Once Again! Day 10 of #21daysofgrateful

..Except in yesterday’s (ok, I still had a head full of snot) blog, I forgot my 3 grateful things. Now do I have to do 6? Oh dear…

It’s really tough. I mean, it’s not tough to be grateful, but it’s actually tough to write 3 things down each day. Which, I guess, is why it’s a “challenge” . So, I’ll do my grateful’s first.

1.  I am SO grateful that I’m feeling better and could join my buds on our morning beach walk! I can breathe once again and I certainly don’t miss the constant drip of my schnoz.


2.  I am grateful that, after an 11 hour drive, Catherine, Peter and their pups arrived safely and in time for dinner!


3.  I am so grateful that Brody continues to improve on his new diet..oh yes. I am so grateful.


4.  I am grateful for the amazing friends we have found here. I know, I said that one before, but I can stress enough how much I enjoy their friendship.


5.  I am grateful for the sunshine and time spent reading and relaxing on the beach today with friends and furbabies



6.  I am grateful for the relaxing evening with my hubby bingewatching netflix tonight!  Oh Yeah!


So, what a fun walk this morning.  If you know me well, you know my go to is a bubble bath.  Oh, I do love a good soak.  Well, the sea this morning provided it’s own…bubbles and frolick they did!




Here’s some pics of the wonderful dinner that Jann and Nancy hosted for us last night…











So that’s all for now.

I’ll leave you with this…


Life Is Good……


I Want My Momb… Day 8 of #21daysofgrateful

I’m sick. I have a rotten cold, which is screwing with my vacation!

My good friend who should be arriving at the Cape today, Christine, who has just suffered threw this insane cold, told me to wrap my head with a hat. Didn’t have one handy, so will Mikey’s Calvin’s do? They are clean. I sure hope so. I want this villain gone!

So, not too much good stuff for my blog today, but I do have three things that I’m grateful for:

  1. Tylenol Cold and Flu…I’m grateful it
  2. Kleenex and the good supply provided by the Condo Owner, Wendy
  3. I’m grateful that I can just stay in bed and feel sorry for myself. My hubby is a much better nurse that I.

I’ll leave you with this…..


Only “we” would travel 5+ hours to Costco! Day 7 of #21daysofgrateful

Now, I woud like to clarify that I am NOT a shopper.  Well, with the exception of Costco…

Jann, Nancy, Suz and I got into the truck and headed from The Cape to Costco in Talahassee, Florida to stock up on…well, stuff.  At first, the girls cited their concerns that my SUV wasn’t big enough to bring back all our “stuff”.  They evidentially have never seen me pack.

Before I get into our travels, let me tell you the three things I’m grateful for:-

  1. Wildlife on the beach…”Oh Deer”!deer jan 9
  2. I’m grateful for what I thought was a dog drowing in the ocean, was simply a log. But not before I was in there with my sneakers on up to my knees.

    pup? jan 9

    C’mon…I bet you would have thought that was a pup in need of rescuing too!

  3. I’m grateful for the wonderful time spent with my peeps on our trip to Talahassee!carrabelle beach jan 9The was a plaque to commemorate training for World War II D-Day from Carrabell Beach to Dog Island.  Thank you to all that served.

We had lunch at a little franchise that sold smoothies, and wraps and salads…but not before walking into a “wing” shop and then right back out again.  Oh Lordy…I’m so glad we didn’t stay!

Off to Publix, then to Costco.  Costco was very happy we came, we spent, we conquered!

Meanwhile…back at the ranch….

The boys were on furbaby duty….for all 5 of them.  Some missed us more than others. Sorta like having a substitute teacher and taking advantage, don’t you think???

journey missing her momma jan 9-3

Journey and Mikey

journey missing her momma jan 9-4

Journey & Trevor

journey missing her momma jan 9-2

It’s a Dogs Life!

I’ll leave you with this…

jackson copy

In Memory of Jackson, who loved this beach

Life Is Good….

Day 6 of #21daysofgrateful…And today, I have much to be grateful for…

We found this amazing beach here at Barrier Dunes @ The Cape mainly for our dog, Brody.  My parents jokingly ask where “Brody is taking us on vacation this year?”…no joke, we’re here for the beach friendly community and beach.  It’s also called  The Forgotten Coast.  You could shoot a cannon down this beach some morning and well, we like it that way.  Hmmmm…perhaps I shouldn’t be giving away all this information, as if you tell three people, and they tell three people…and they tell three people…

I digress.

Here are the three things I am thankful on what is day 6 of my 21 days of grateful challenge:-

  1.  BRODY.  I am so grateful for our furbaby, Brody.  Brody’s had a tough life in his short 5 3/4 years on this earth.  The reason that we were able to find Brody in the first palce is that he was left behind when his supposed “forever” family decided that, due to contracting Juvenile Cellulitis  as a little puppy, they didn’t want to “wait” for him to get better before taking him home, even though he would be completely cured and this “puppy strangles” would never return.  So…their loss our gain.  We fell in love with him the first time we saw him run down that dirt road at the breeders farm from the barn.  Ears flopping and tail waging.  He was ours; no doubt about it.  But when we were picking up Brody to bring him home from the breeders, she mentioned the vet saying there may be “a small cateract in his right eye”..nothing to worry about; wouldn’t affect his eyesight…moving forward to 18 months old and Brody had to have his eye removed.  No worries; he dealt with it better than we did.  Only gratification was that the specialist said that it was as he could not see out of the eye anyway and it was as painful as a migrain for him and then we wanted it gone too!  Then this past Summer, Brody developed a limp that wouldn’t go away with rest…turns out he has displaysia in both elbows and one shoulder…Gawd, give me a break?  Oh no…then he’s developed some kind of intestinal tract issue, and as our amazing vet says…”If we ever find out what the issue is, I’m going to write a paper”!  Our poor bubs had every test, x-ray (call me Ms. Munchausen)  you could think of and nada, nothin…Over the next two months we had him on bland diets, supplements and he seemed to respond..Then Christmas came and those weird issues started rearing their ugly head.  Which brings us to the last 48.  I won’t go into details, but our poor boy was up all night long with diarrhea (I’ve typed this word so much in the past two days that I finally know how to spell it!) and this morning spurting nothing but blood from his backside.  Our amazing friend and vet, Pete, was messaging me back and forth trying to calm this out of her mind worrying dog mom and provide some suggestions.  Along with Brody’s own vet, who also went above and beyond.  SO THE GOOD NEWS and what I’m truly grateful for is that Brody seems to have turned the corner, is eating and wanting to walk on the beach.  Thank you Pete and Thank you, Dr. Kathleen Norman.  You guys rock.



2.  Wine.  Today, I’m grateful for WINE!  Okay, yesterday it was martini’s…hmmm, perhaps I have a wee problem?  But wine, my friend, got me through this day! (I know, I’m reaching for things to be grateful for today.  But all the same, I am grateful!).  C’mon, I know many of you love to enjoy a nice glass of wine, after a long glass of wine…..


3.  I am grateful for our amazing sunsets here on Cape San Blas(t)!!!  P.S.  yes, Mikey took them on his iphone, with the exception of the great shot taken by Jann…on his iphone!

jan 8th-2

jan 8th-3

jan 8th

I’ll leave you with this…

nothing comes easy

Life Is Good……

It’s been a quiet day here at The Cape.  The sun is shining and the weather is warm (22C).

The three things I’m grateful for today are:

  1. Pete & Catherine – Pete is a veterinarian and a good friend.  Catherine, his wife, is also our good friend, an amazing photographer and a dog trainer.  They have both been so helpful and kind over the past year.  Our Brody unfortunately has run into some kind of illness that has stumped our own vet, and the vet friends we have.  Jan Masica has also been so helpful along with Pete, in guiding us as we benefit from their years of experience.  Our long time friend, Kim, has also weighed in with her opions as a long time vet (and cop, I might add!).  We hope we’re on to what maybe ailing Brody.   I’m so grateful.


  1. 21751652_1278989952210823_7253860353366461598_n

Photo Credit Shand Photography



Photo Credit Shand Photography


Jan Masica, a vital person involved in the turtle rescue and release last year!


Kim in Mexico volunteering her time as a vet to help the poor displaced animals

Photo Credit…some awesome photographer!

2.  I’m grateful for my belly being full!  But especially grateful today for our Indian Pass Raw Bar Uptown Port St. Joe.  We were able to steal away for a little date lunch!

 jan 7th-4

jan 7th-3



Here are a few images from the original Raw Bar from last year!  This is an experience, if you are in the Indian Pass (between Port St. Joe, FL and Apalachicola, FL), that you won’t want to miss!!!!!! Original Indian Pass Raw Bar since 1929!

Damn you Hurrican Michael..but in spite of you will reopen again middle of March!

jan 7th-7

jan 7th-6

jan 7th-2


3.  And…the third thing I’m grateful for today is…..drum roll….my amazing martini!

jan 7th-8

c’mon, don’t judge….

I’ll leave you with this….


brody quote

Our Brody

Life Is Good….

Sunshine, lolipups and no Rainbows, thankfully! Day 4 of #21daysofgratitude

Three things I am grateful for today:

  1. EAGLES!  Juvenile Eagles

Yes!  I got some shots of a juvenile eagle this morning!  Now, if only I had a 400 lens (ahem), they would be clearer, but that being said….he was pretty far away!




2.  Sand Dollars!  Our first sand dollar.  Well, spotted Jann!


Here is an interesting story of the Sand Dollar:-

The Sand Dollar Legend is an Easter and Christmas favorite which tells a story that includes the five slits representing the wounds on Christ when on the cross, the Easter lily with a star in the middle representing the star of Bethlehem and on the back is the outline of a Poinsettia, the Christmas flower.

3.  And number three of my grateful day is watching Jann walk on the beach.  After       last year with Jann laid up in hospital most of her winter vacation, due to a shattered knee and recovering from major surgery, she is only just now walking on her own without the aid of crutches.  This gal’s got guts!  Way to go Jannie!


Oh what a glorious day!  Had the most amazing frolick on the beach with the furbabies and furever friends.  The sun was shining, the ocean calm(er)…all is right with the world!


Brody doing what he loves here…swimming in the ocean and playing with his friends!








I’ll leave you with this…


Life is Good….

…Day 3 of the 21 Days of Grateful Challenge

Three things I’m grateful for today, day 3 of the 21 day grateful challenge:

  1. Claudia…I’m grateful for Claudia, our cat sitter!
  2. Our home away from home
  3. Last night’s dinner with friends!

Well Mother Nature, you strike again!  I was RAINING in the Sunshine State yesterday, pretty much all day.  Oh not just rain.  MN doesn’t do anything minimal here at the Cape. She rained…HARD – really hard.  Flooded the roads in our condo community.  She blew huge winds to throw rubble through the streets when hard working people are trying to repair their homes. This morning she dipped the temp to 50F (10C) and I had to flip on the heat.  I’m not too happy with you right now, Momma N.  I know, whoa is me.  I should be grateful!  So, on the bright side (pun intended) she is suppose to shine through today. Temperatures in the low 60’s (around 15C) with sunshine.



Back to what I’m grateful for.

Claudia.  She is our sweet neighbour across the street.  She’s working her way through University and, along with her boyfriend – Ham, is our kitty sitter, .  They come in each day and play with, cuddle and feed our two cats, PollyWogs and DexterBen.  And, she lessens my guilt for leaving them!  Claudia taught me how to use SnapChat, but darn…I’ve lost the pictures she sent…booo….Thank you, Claudia…thank goodness for you!  I am GRATEFUL!

[insert substitute picture, as I don’t know how to save my snapchat pics]?!



We have a lovely Condo we rent from Wendy @ Cape Escape Vacation Rentals. This lady is on the ball.  One phone call and she’s on whatever doesn’t float our boat (oh, that was not nice considering the flooding).  This is our home away from home and sometimes we forget that it’s not our own!


(photo lifted from the internet prior to Hurricane Michael)

AFTER MICHAEL – pretty much untouched!134.jpg

Last but not least, I’m grateful for the wonderful fish fry dinner, that we have all been dreaming of since we were here last year, at Jannie and Nancy’s last night.  It was a group effort, but Trevor and Mikey did an amazing job on the Grouper Fingers and Shrimp.  Nancy’s salad hung in there and was wonderful and at Jannie’s request, I made another batch of Yorkies (she will eventually tire of them, but as long as she doesn’t, if I bake them…she will come!).  I’m grateful to you all for the lovely dinner invite!




It was a quiet day, so that’s all for now.

I’ll leave you with this…..

use for future blogs


Who’s Up for the 21 Day Challenge? Day #1

I am..well, sort of!   I can’t commit to every day for the next 21 days, but I’m going to try my best. Will you join me?  I will try to blog each day for 21 days beginning today, if only to just recall 3 things I’m grateful for!

So here goes day 1:

  1. I am grateful for my amazing, kind, hubby.  I met Mike  (Mikey) Wilks in the Summer of 2001 and found my soul mate.  I know that sounds howkie, but if you’ve finally found yours, you know what I’m talking about!  And I am grateful each day for him. He is my rock.  He puts up with me when I’m cranky and never mentions when I fail terribly at multi-tasking.  He reminds me to “focus” (those of you that know me well, know what this means.  Those that don’t….when I enter the doors of my favourite retail, Costco, I receive a text that simply says…”Focus”.  I got bubble bath this Christmas from Mikey..called, you guessed it…”Focus”).  He thinks I’m beautiful…even in the morning when my mascara is smeared all over my face cuz I was too tired to remove it the night before and my breath is nothing short of eye watering.  (now that’s love) He LOVES my children. No, I mean he really LOVES my kids!  And most important, each one of them knows that.  They have a cool, loving relationship.  Don’t try and tell him they aren’t his, either.   You may just, for once, encounter Mikey’s “dark” side. How important is that for a step-dad? He refers to them as “our kids” or to third parties as “his” kids. He’s been there for each one of them in dark times, to support them and in good times to share in their joy.  Mikey has also been there at each of our grandchildren’s birth.  The last three, he had the privilege of being invited into the birthing room.  He cut the umbilical cord of our last grandchild, Emma.  A special gift from our baby, Melissa and her amazing hubby, Lucas.  An experience he was not fortunate to have previously and will never forget.
mikey young
  • 2. I am grateful for my children.  Each one holds a very special place in my heart. Each think I love the other more and nothing can be farther from the truth.  Which brings me to this beautiful poem that I once had framed in our bathroom, by Erma Bombeck

Dear First Born, Dear Middle Born, To my Baby,


Dear (Michelle) – First Born

michelle and me

I’ve always loved you best because you were our first miracle. You were the genesis of a marriage and the fulfillment of young love. You sustained us through the hamburger years, the first apartment, our first mode of transportation, and the seven-inch TV we paid on for 36 months. You were new, had unused grandparents, and enough clothes for a set of triplets. You were the original model for a mom and dad who were trying to work the bugs out. You got the strained lamb, the open safety pins and three-hour naps. You were the beginning!

Dear (Joey) Middle Born

joey and me

I’ve always loved you the best because you drew a tough spot in the family and it made you stronger for it. You cried less, had more patience, wore faded hand-me-downs, and never in your life did anything first. But it only made you more special. You were the one we relaxed with, who helped us realize a dog could kiss you and you wouldn’t get sick. You could cross a street by yourself long before you were old enough to get married. And you helped us understand the world wouldn’t collapse if you went to bed with dirty feet. You were the child of our busy, ambitious years. Without you, we never could have survived the job changes and the tedium and routineness that is marriage.

To (Melissa) My Baby

image to cropMelissa and me

I’ve always loved you best because while endings are generally sad, you are such a joy!! You readily accepted the mild-stained bibs, the lower bunk, the cracked baseball bat, the baby book that had nothing written in it except a recipe for graham-cracker piecrust that someone had jammed between the pages. You are the one we held on to so tightly. You darken our hair, quicken our steps, squared our shoulders, restored our vision, and give us a sense of humor that security, maturity, and durability can’t provide. When your hairline takes on the shape of Lake Ontario and your own children tower over you, you will still be our baby!!!

Author: Erma Bombeck

3. Health, I’m grateful for my health. Age has never been an issue with me, as I’m a GRATEFUL to have reached 63 years of age. Many have not had that privilege.

So, what three things are you grateful for?

I’ll leave you with this


Life is Good…..