kevin working and working…

by grace on July 3, 2020

almost a couple of weeks ago I wrote about how kevin and i (mostly kevin) threw our second barge-full of riprap up on the shore. kevin just gave me photos from the first barge, the Flinstones-sized rocks. Here, the barge is on the right side of the dock.

Glenn came over to help him and they set this…rudder? paddle? i don’t know what it is…on top of the biggest boulder to give perspective. i’m not sure that happened.

this is after they’d thrown a lot of the rocks.

and kevin saw a snake down amongst them! very interesting, although many people would be freaking out about a snake.

Kevin was very happy when he’d finished the load…

…and decided he needed to pose again! silly fellow.

the sledgehammer handles and hammers that he broke while breaking up the rocks. three of them? four? i can’t recall, but he went through quite a few of them.

here’s one portion of the shore all done.

since then i’ve trimmed up the bushes up there that aren’t doing so well this summer and i’ve pulled lots of weeds. and now the whole shore is set, at least for the next 80 years.

kevin is already hard at work at his next project, replacing the roof on the old side of the house.

very busy around here, on this holiday weekend.

ok then,

mrs. h.


wrapping up may, finally

by grace on July 1, 2020

a bunch of random images at the end of may…first, Riley and Les Paul trying to relax on the screened porch on May 24th.

May 25th, Memorial Day, Kevin relaxed down at the water for a brief time after doing some herculean effort, i’m sure.

There was quite a parade of goslings and geese that day.

a short video of them.

hmm, not sure where mom and i were walkingh on this day. it looks like there’s a crowd of cars back there, so maybe it wasn’t over at the university. plus since we had masks on it must have been a place where there were other people.

beautiful peonies from the yard…i don’t like to cut them because they don’t last long but on the other hand when they’re out in the yard they’re not getting seen as much.

power-washing the deck on may 28th. it seemed extra dirty this year for some reason.

An Historic occation on Friday May 29th – amy and jim canoeing! I had to run down to the dock to capture it.

They’re quite excellent at the canoeing!

I jogged down the road on saturday the 30th and then cut through the field by the university. this is supposed to be a path across a pond but it was kind of treacherous for me. luckily i did not fall. I’ve been back there since then and it’s still not fixed. I hope they get on that soon.

A great photo to end up the month – mom, kevin and i had a bonfire down at the water. mom ate dinner and kevin smoked a cigar and a good time was had by all.

so then…plenty of stuff happened in june and i’m going to get all caught up, i just know it. it’s supposed to be really hot in the next few days so maybe i’ll spend time sitting around working on that.

ok then,

mrs. july first hughes.


my birthday, mostly involving cake…

by grace on June 30, 2020

kevin has been making homemade cards for me for many years. this one is awesome, cleverly made from a file folder…

…plus all this stuff pasted to the inside!

so, my first social-distancing birthday. my friend julie called to tell me she’d left something in my mailbox. a dozen huge “small cakes,” and two are still left in my freezer. each giant “small” cupcake weighs about a pound and are so delicious…

and then, my friend randy called to say he was leaving something on my porch…and entire double chocolate cake! the entire thing is still in my freezer, because…

amy made me two dozen car bomb cupcakes! of course they have benn renamed to something like “irish whiskey, baileys and guinness cupcakes, because car bomb is not a friendly word. but the cupcakes…so delicious, with buttercream frosting made with baileys and the moist cupcakes filled with chocolate ganache.

i have a few of them left in the freezer but DON’T TELL MOM because she’ll be wanting to eat them and i’m saving them.

the funny thing is that amy called me on my birthday to ask where my frosting tips were. i thought this an odd request and figured she must be doing something crazy with cake decorations, which she’s never done before. she told me that she’d asked kevin to find my frosting tips, but he couldn’t.

later kevin told me that he’d looked everywhere, but of course, how could he know that i have a box full of cake-decorating supplies sitting on the floor of my pantry? he’s not good with things way down low, but now he knows where the supplies are if it ever happens again.

amy told me later that she was sure that i’d guess what she was making, but i assured her that they were a complete and completely delicious surprise.

an especially big surprise because she’d also spent days making me a mouthwatering indian feast. saage paneer plus other delicious things, and she’d gone to the indian grocery store where they had really great naan and some appetizers i’d never had.

although i missed having friends over for the celebration, it was a lovely time.

my other big surprise was that everybody chipped in and bought me an apple watch. i wasn’t sure if i wanted such an extravagant gift, but i quickly realized that it was awesome.

i wore it running on the 27th, three days after my birthday, and then mom and i were about to go walking and while in the UIS parking lot i took off the protective cover to wipe away the sweat under it and took off the watch…and promptly dropped and shattered it on the ground.

bad, so bad. i felt worse because they’d bought me such a thoughtful gift. amy quickly looked it up online and found that it would not be worth it to have it fixed and they hadn’t bought insurance for it.

after about a week or two i decided i wanted another one, and i have it now, with insurance, and i only take it off when they’re a cushion under it.


ok then,



may, mostly les paul…

by grace on June 29, 2020

we took a chilly boat ride on May 22nd and amy kept warm while driving.

On may 23rd lester had a nice walk down to the water, where he spent a lot of time in this old plastic tub.


I love this picture with les way in the background, his chin comfortably resting on the lip of the tub.

hmm, i can’t recall if kevin had completed the rip-rapping on this part of the shore.

Les is always such a contented boy.

zinging through may, as july is quickly encroaching. will i get everything posted from may before june is over? doubtful.

meanwhile…i continue to spend too much time reading the bad news. it’s hard to believe that the world has been upended since march, and also hard to grasp just how bad it is here in our country and i don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel.

so i spend as much time as possible outside, which is always calming. except now the humidity and temperature has climbed a lot, so maybe i’ll sit quietly on the couch and post some more stuff.

ok then,

mrs. h.


mostly Riley, way back in may…

June 27, 2020

here’s a short video of a couple of the cute baby groundhogs next door. I took some photos of them but they were too hard to see. meanwhile…this is the biggest gaggle of goslings I saw in may. they’re much bigger now. The moon looking pretty spectacular on may 8th. on may 10th, a beautiful […]

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kevin continues to work like a maniac!

June 22, 2020

after we threw rocks onto the shore and dragged away branches on saturday the 13th, i was spent but kevin kept on keeping on. he moved the barge and cut more giant branches off the oak tree which is leaning precariously into the lake. since it hasn’t fallen in yet, maybe it won’t before we’ve […]

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fresh air!

June 21, 2020

whew, i was starting to worry that maybe i wouldn’t write on here anymore. i have so many hopes of getting things done every day and then somehow the days continue to slip away… i really wanted to start a journal at the start of the coronavirus but i haven’t even managed to do that. […]

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June 14, 2020

earlier this evening i thought, ok, i can do this, i can write on my site, i can do it…it’s been a while, but i’m making time, sitting down, getting something constructive done… the weekend has been packed with physical exertion. well, yesterday was, anyway. today was packed with sitting on the couch, mostly. yesterday […]

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Deer in May

May 26, 2020

Kevin took Riley for a walk on Sat. May 2nd. I’m not sure if Riley has ever been out in the yard; he has always been content to stay inside the fence. But I think he thoroughly enjoyed strolling around in the wild for a bit. And actually, yesterday Sweetie rushed for the front door […]

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boat launch!

May 11, 2020

here’s one final thing to share, our boat launch on April 24th. first, here’s the fancy new cover that kevin installed. Because the top pole of the roof snapped in two when we pulled the boat under our big pine tree out front, we had to get a whole new roof. The replacement piece, plus […]

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