Monday, February 26, 2024

happy spring - kind of - and what i'm up to

February in Illinois usually isn't a kind month. It's typical to have cold weather and snow. This year is different. We've actually had a mild February, including some abnormally warm weather for this time of year. Today is 66F and sunny. Tomorrow we're supposed to reach 70F, then strong thunderstorms will move in (with potential for hail and tornadoes), with temps plummeting to 20F by night! Yes, a 50 degree difference in the same day. Wednesday will only be in the low 30's with snow. CRAZY!! 

This morning when I opened the blinds in the house, I saw two spring robins in the yard. The first sighting of the season! Usually I don't see them until mid-March. Walking around the yard, I saw Bleeding Heart poking out of the ground. That's definitely a few weeks early. And then when I went back in the house, I heard the beautiful sounds of Sandhill Cranes flying overhead. They're back from Mexico, Arizona and California! 

(Bleeding Heart emerging)

What I'm reading:

I can't say enough good things about this book. You can probably tell I'm finding nuggets of wisdom and information from all the page markers. If you're a woman 60+, you'll love this book. From Amazon ~

"Filled with unexpected good news about growing older, Winter’s Graces highlights eleven qualities that ripen with age―including audacious authenticity, creative ingenuity, necessary fierceness, self-transcending generosity, and a growing capacity to savor life and to ride its ups and downs with humor and grace. Decades of research have established that the catastrophic conditions often associated with late life, such as severe dementia and debilitating frailty, are the exception, not the rule. Still, the mistaken idea that aging equals devastating decline persists, causing enormous and unnecessary suffering, especially for women. Drawing on decades of experience as a psychology professor and psychotherapist, Susan Stewart, PhD, weaves together inspiring folk stories that illustrate the graces of winter and recent research that validates them, along with a wealth of user-friendly tools and practices for amplifying these graces and bringing them to life. Written primarily for women over 50 seeking good news about growing older, Winter’s Graces offers adults of all ages a compelling vision of aging that celebrates its many gifts, acknowledges its challenges, and reveals how the last season of life can be the most fulfilling of all."

What I'm listening to ~

Halah ~ Mazzy Star

What I'm watching on TV:

Curb Your Enthusiasm

(Honestly, I'm not much of a TV watcher. We're just now into Season 2 of this series and still think it's just "meh" even though it has good ratings and our son and some friends recommended it. We'll slog along for a little while longer. Have you watched this?)

What I'm cooking (making this tonight):

Creamy Parmesan Ranch Chicken 

What I'm working on:

This mess!

We have small closets in this house. This is the closet in my office/the guest room/what-used-to-be Philip's bedroom. I use it for hanging my sweaters and hoodies, purse storage, and for my art journaling and scrapbooking supplies. Not shown: the messy closet shelf. 

While on a walk around the neighborhood last week, I found this tall, slim dresser at the curb of a neighbor's house. I thought it'd be perfect for storage in the closet. Brian got the dresser in the car for me and brought it home. 

I took everything out of the closet including the Sterilite drawers, went through every little thing, and ended up with three bags of things for donation. 

And...the after, so far! I still have more organizing to do. And then I have to tackle all the stuff on the closet shelf.

Have a good week!


  1. Hi Melanie! Wow you have been busy with all of that organizing! That tall, slim dresser is a great find and it sounds like the price was right too! You inspire me to keep going through things, donating what I don't need and keeping my home in good order. Our home here is 70 years old, so yes, I do understand small closets! The book you are reading sounds very good! We have had spring-like weather here as well, but winter and snow returns tomorrow. We are supposed to get 1-4 inches of snow in the valley and 1-2 feet in the mountains! It's always fun to see what you are up to. Have a great week!

  2. Hello! The book you are reading looks so good! Love your new dresser too!

  3. Yeah, that's a nice piece of furniture! No I haven't watched that show, but I'm going to check Amazon for that book.

  4. The organizing looks great. The book sounds wonderful and I will have to look for it. Sounds like a beautiful read. This crazy weather! Only in Chicago. Have a great week. Hugs. Kris

  5. Oh dear- another book for my TBR! And bravo to you on the tangible decluttering/organizing progress you have made.

  6. What a find that dresser was! I love it!
    I love the sound of Sand Hill cranes! We get them on the little lake over here. We've even gotten them at our feeder! 💕🤣
    I couldn't believe it when I woke up to ...snow. What a crazy February. But, I'm so thankful for the calm weather. It made driving up to Wisconsin (almost daily) so much easier. ❤️

  7. I love that dresser! What a find. The book sounds really good.
    Sandhill cranes are one of my favorite birds. There's an area in Colorado where they stop on their migration to feed. It's so cool to see them by the thousands. A sure sign of spring.

  8. Wow! What a great find and you put it to such good use. I've been doing a lot of cleaning up and out lately, too, but a free dresser really would help the process go much faster...and look much prettier!!

  9. I like your new stack of drawers, that’s a really useful thing for your creative supplies.
    I’ve heard of Curb Your Enthusiasm but never watched it and doubt I ever do. I don’t have anything specific against it, I just truly prefer old shows.

  10. What an amazing find! You where there are the right time . . . I can't imagine throwing that away.

  11. As much as I like snow, I’ve been enjoying the early spring even more. But today it’s snowing, but not sticking. You’re reminding me that I need to work on organizing my own closet, especially the shoes. Whew!


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