Dusty Dreams

There are about nineteen days left in 2016. I never make New Year resolutions, but I do always look forward to what may be in store for us/me in the upcoming new year.

Ever an adventurer……

My future at this point is rather swelling with fear  anticipation. Last Thursday was the last day of my son’s semester at University and that marked the last day of me caring for my three year old grand daughter. I have watched her pretty much full-time for the last three years and her sister, now in kindergarten, since shortly after she was born.

I have mixed emotions. More on the side of taking the dreams off the proverbial shelf and dusting them, throwing away some, creating new ones, OR curling up on the couch and watching NETFLIX for a while……. a long while.

I do love changes. They actually wake me up and make me feel more alive. But know, Dear Reader, that I am extremely human (as opposed to being simply human ??) and I am terrified of what I am to do.

I see this change in life as another adjustment. As a loss in some ways. The girls are only just over an hour up the road. I have already FaceTimed them twice. But I shall let this minor grieving time have it’s way in me and I know that I will see my future, my new roads and dreams more clearly as the days go by and as I finish up a series in NETFLIX.

Have a Great Holiday Season!

Cate B


O Christmas Tree – Around The Burg

My last Christmas in New Jersey was momentous. My daughter-in-law and my youngest grandson took me to a Christmas Tree Farm. It was magical in so many ways. That day was cold and cloudy and the back drop of the farm was woods and wooden fences. They raised pigs there. We looked in on the full grown sows and made our way over to a small enclosed area that housed the piglets for everyone to see and take photos of and with.

Of course I stepped right in with my grandson and I grabbed a piglet and cuddled him and oooed and ahhhed in his precious face. He began to wiggle and then squeal so loud I had to put him down.  What fun we had that day.

Now, eight years later, in The Middle, we decided to venture out with our youngest granddaughter to a Christmas Tree Farm in the town of Knob Noster, Missouri.

While the back drop was more open farmland with wooded areas here and there, it was still magical. We were accompanied by the melody of a mule braying. Off we went with a saw in my husbands hand and a metal cart for carrying the tree back to the car.

Well, these trees were pretty but they were the kind that are bush-like. What I mean by that is you cannot see any branches or trunk. Just thick green needles. I was taller than most of them. For the life of me I could not figure out how I was to hang lights and ornaments on the hobbit trees.

I am old fashioned and nostalgic when it comes to Christmas. I love trees that look like I made them. We hang ornaments of all kinds from the years we’ve been a family. A mixture of home-made to old memories to modern eclectic. It comforts me. These hobbit trees just wouldn’t work for me.

Now the magic…. there, in the very last row of hobbit trees, I see it! A six foot scraggly fir-type tree with trunk visible and branches sticking out in every direction. A tree that started out with great posture and then went left then right then up then over as if realizing there was a whole world out there to discover!

A tree with a kindred-spirit to me.

The saw came out, and as our granddaughter watched in wonder, down came the tree and we plopped her on the cart.

As we were pulling her back to the car the tears came. I missed my kids from the east and the times we spent together. Such good memories. And now the new memories with another little one. I smiled through my tears and narrated to our girl  on the art of setting up a tree and decorating.

We belted Lu into her seat and unzipped the back window of The Jeep. Yes, I said Jeep. Wrangler. Soft top. Where does a jeep owner put a tree? I’ll tell you where…. trunk between the front seats and body next to granddaughter and top out the back window, that’s where! Off we went!

At home we sipped on Christmas Milk (aka Egg Nog – don’t tell Lu what the real name is or she will never drink it again) while we hung lights and ornaments accompanied by Christmas songs. 

Here’s to new memories and journeys and traditions! Here’s to not staying stuck in the same old- same old but moving forward while cherishing the past memories that shape us into adventurers.


Cate B

Around The Burg – Again…….

As I have posted before, The Burg is a small town in the mid-west.  It happens to be the county seat.  One of the treasures in this area are the other towns surrounding us.  Some are in the same county and some are not.  But most are only between eight and 30 miles away.

I went to Leeton, MO a week ago and went back the other day with my camera.  Leeton is quite small with a population of a little over five hundred people.  The buildings from down town are awesome, but sadly, vacant or used as housing, I think.  I always feel sad when small town America is no more.

I’ll let the images talk.  Please know that the last photos are something I do not understand totally or agree with.  I’m sure (hopeful) that the resident is not totally aware of how this affects others.  Especially when you read some history of the town and how the founder served in the Union Army for several years.  Also, given the recent occurrences of racial tension in our nation (or should I say ongoing?) I can’t help but think this is a problem……

Enough of that.  Enjoy the photos.  I love this area of our country.

cate b

Friday in The Burg

It is Friday.  The weather has warmed to a normal temperature.  The sky is blue and the sun is bright.

Tomorrow an old friend is stopping by for a night, with her daughter and doggie, on their way to a new adventure in the eastern part of our country.

I love catching up with old friends.  Facebook just isn’t enough.

I must go and prepare.  Here is a picture of a building I found in The Burg.  Honestly, I have no idea of the history of this painting.  If someone knows, please, let me know.  I have been fascinated by this since we moved here.

I love old brick buildings.  I love the hidden stories that can come from them………

Brick Building - Go UCM Mules!
Brick Building – Go UCM Mules!


cate b


Autumn is still here but the trees and the colors have definitely transitioned to a wintry look.  Sad in a lot of ways, but still beautiful.

These pictures were taken in Knob Noster State Park .  We were the only two people there.  I love that, but I feel like people are missing out on great views of nature and fresh air.  Oh well, I can call it my park 😉


cate b

Love Hurts

It’s been about three weeks since we moved into our new town and our new place that we call home.  It has taken me awhile to post with all the unpacking, cleaning and getting things into working condition.

As I have posted before, I have the privilege of helping our youngest son and his lovely wife with their two fantastic daughters while they attend University full time.  That is why my husband and I moved to the small mid-west town that we affectionately refer to as The Burg.

When we found this rental we were getting a bit anxious.  We had been looking for months to no avail.  We had a planned road trip vacation to the east coast coming up the end of June into July and wanted to secure a place before we left.

Well, we did.  And we are thankful to our God for this home.  The Burg is a small college town.  The University takes up a good portion of the center of town, so you will see many students living, well, everywhere and anywhere that will take them outside of dorm living.  It was hard to find a house with a fenced yard for the dogs that wasn’t trashed by intellectual  a house full of students with landlords that really don’t seem to mind.

Aside from securing a home before we went on vacation, I had it in my head to move in a couple of weeks after returning. I wanted our thirteen year old grandson – who was returning with us to Missouri until the first of August – to see where we would be living and to experience our new location.

More on the area next time.  Now for the real reason I’m writing this post.  Love.

Almost fourteen years ago, I had the most amazing experience of my life.  My oldest son’s wife invited me into the birthing room for the birth of her third child, the one who came home with us this year from vacation.  The one I mentioned above.

During his mom’s pregnancy, I talked to her womb often.  I basically said. “Hi.  It’s okay.  I’m here.”  When the moment came and this wonderful little boy popped out into this strange world – he cried.  The nurse took him over to the other side of the room to wash him and weigh him and so on.  He was lying there on a table just crying his lungs out.  I walked over to him and said, “Hi.  It’s okay.  I’m here”. And he stopped crying instantly.  We bonded for the second time at that moment.

This incredibly talented and big hearted boy and I became very close from that moment on.  When we left the east coast, five and a half years ago, my heart tore and cracked.  I didn’t think I could do this journey without him near me.  I was wrong.  My friend Jesus was there every step of the way for both myself and this young lad.

Every time we visit our family there I cry when we leave.  So you can see how important it was for me to have him see where I would be.  So he could have a visual.

Well, on August first, he left me again.  My husband did too.  They flew away together and my husband had business so he was gone for a week.  I thought that it would be a fast moving week because of all the unpacking and such that I had to do.

It was rough.  Here I was in a new town and just the dogs to talk to.  My buddy went home and the tear in my heart hurt.

When I had children my heart grew.  But when I had grandchildren it got stinkin’ big!

I never knew I could love so much.  I never knew that true love can hurt so bad.  We lost a daughter and our hearts exploded.  But our hearts heal.  The scars are there and the cracks and the wounds and cuts are there.  I do believe that these things make our hearts stronger and even bigger…….. if we allow.

There are times I want to close the door to loving someone.  To getting close to friends or loved ones.  I know it’s because I don’t want to hurt if they leave or when they leave.

Driving through town today we saw many parents leaving their kids at the University for the first time.  I saw it on their faces.  It was all too familiar.  You are happy for them and their adventures but your heart is aching and cracking a little as you say goodbye.

It’s part of life as a human.  You have, you have not.  You love, you get hurt.  You give and you take.  We do have a choice.  We can choose to love so much that it feels like the earth flew off it’s axis.  Or, we can decide to with hold love – giving and taking it – so that we will not hurt.  That’s the worst.  I know.  I’ve tried both.  I’d rather risk the hurt than never have loved.

Alfred Lord Tennyson said it well:

I hold it true, whate’er befall;
I feel it, when I sorrow most;
‘Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.

If you have read any of my previous posts you know that I do like adventures.  So here I am, once again, beginning a new adventure.  The University begins classes this Tuesday.  The little lassies will be over to Mammy’s house and we begin a new school year adventure together.  I write this with a tear in my eyes thinking of the journey I am on with these grand daughters.  To be able to be such a part of their life is amazing.  Just as I am a part of my grandson’s life.  We still have that bond – even though he is entering his teen years – I am his Uma and will always be.

Keep your hearts open, my friends.  Love is there, around every bend and in every step we take.  I hope you choose to take the love.

The Glory of Love

You’ve got to give a little, take a little
And let your poor heart break a little
That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love

You’ve got to laugh a little, cry a little
Before the clouds roll by a little
That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love

As long as there’s the two of you
You’ve got the world and all its charms
And when the world is through with you
You’ve got each other’s arms

You’ve got to win a little, lose a little
And always have the blues a little
That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love

As long as there’s the two of you
You’ve got the world and all its charms
And when the world is through with you
You’ve got each other’s arms

You’ve got to win a little, lose a little
And always have the blues a little
That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love
That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love




cate b


So Long, Farewell

In two days we will have moved all our worldly goods out of the KCMO area.  It was a great tour of duty. Moving is exciting to me and exhausting.  It also stirs up all kinds of emotions.

Our last five and half years in this location has been very good, yet very hard in some ways.  I think we felt a bit lost at times.  Trying to find that fit.  Seems that most of the organizations we tried to fit into just didn’t fit quite right.  And that is part of life.  And that is okay.  For the most part we saw the “ill-fit” and moved on.  A couple of things we left scratching our heads, a bit bewildered.  But no worries, we picked ourselves up and dusted our selves off and moved on.

Now, we move physically as well.  It will be a very good thing for us and our family.  But leaving from one town to another stirs up some things for me.  When we left the east coast to come to the mid-west we left family, friends, memories of good and hard times.  All that was stirred up in me the other day.  Memories of a great family loss – https://wingedprisms.com/2012/07/22/our-darkest-day/

It’s odd how our minds and hearts get stirred up at times.  I like it, actually.  Even the painful ones.  They are strangely dear to me.  The memories are a part of me.

So, this is a time to reflect, a time to start anew, a time to look for all the opportunities and adventures the good Lord has for us.

the old mid-west
the old mid-west

I will be off the grid until next week when I look forward to telling you of our new adventures.  Have a great week, Dear Readers.


cate b


Whistles Callin’ Me Away

moving along
moving along

I have the earliest memories of longing for adventure.  We lived in a simple ranch house, just big enough for us.  The yard was big enough to hide in and play baseball or whatever.  We had woods across the street that we took ownership of.  But, when I attended elementary school and was invited over to a classmates house for the first time……..

Well, to put it simply – a whole new world opened up to me.  Everyone I played with in our neighborhood had the same houses.  But the development next to ours, well, they were amazing to this little girl.  The simple life in a small ranch house became a split level house.  So much more for the imagination.  From that moment on I longed to move.  I wanted something different.  Something more imaginative.

As neighbors began to move on to the latest housing developments in other towns, we stayed.  Year after year we stayed.  I know now that I am an adventurer.  I love change, I love challenges.  Some challenges are awful but I never turned and ran the other way.  I may try and plant my feet in the ground and cry and throw something…… but then I take a breath and jump in.  Still scared, still crying, still wanting to throw something but I jump in.

I married a man who also was not afraid to jump in.  We have moved often in the forty years we’ve been together.  It’s been good.  So, once again I am surrounded by packed boxes and a new adventure is waiting for us.  Soon.  We are moving a week from Friday!

I spent the last school year, four days a week, in university housing with my son, wife and two daughters, helping care for the wee ones while their parents attend classes.  That was a long, cold, tiring year away from home and hubby – but an adventure and I would do it again if needed.  We finally found a house just two blocks from them!  The girls will come to me and I will sleep in my own bed each night.

Some may say I have a restless spirit.  It’s the ones who are content to stay that think those thoughts.  But I describe it not as restless.  I love adventures and I love change.  Don’t fault me on that.  I’ve tried hard to not be that way.  I even stopped moving the furniture around often.  LOL.  But adventures…… it is me.  Just like the ones who are not that way – that is you.  And you know what?  All of us are OK.  Neither of us are wrong.  That’s the beauty of being human.

So once again, the beach girl is moving and I’m moving to a tiny mid-west town that is surrounded by farms and US Air Force and farms and full of university students.  Can’t wait to tell you all about it.

Until then, you can catch up on my adventures in the mid-west here:  https://wingedprisms.com/2013/04/11/cate-plain-and-tall/


cate b

School Days

Sigh. For some unconscious reason I check out my High School page on Facebook from time to time. Don’t get me wrong, I actually remember some of the names of classmates and a fleeting thought of sweetness passes through my mind. Then I realize I really never “knew” them.

We had a “huge” class back then. Was really quite impossible to have known them all. Not to mention that I should have gotten the title – “World’s Best Wallflower” – if they had that one. I was pretty pathetic. Those who know me now I’m sure are wondering what I’m talking about?? I’ve come a long way, baby!

If any of my fellow classmates from MTHS should read this, please, do not take this personally – you probably don’t even remember me so there are no hard feelings.

Through most of HS I had 2 good friends. HS is pretty intense. So much to be concerned about – style, hair, homework, grades, friends or no friends. Boy! I’m so glad it’s way behind me now. WAY behind me!

After reading a few posts on my HS page in FB today it triggered some memories and I saw some pics of an old friend. I started to think, by looking at their pics, that they looked rather successful and fantastic and totally happy with their life. I started to wonder what I’ve done with mine! Arg! Nothing! Or so it felt at the moment…….

Actually, I’m quite happy. I’m married to the same guy for 37 years. My children are wonderful adults living wonderfully happy lives and married to fantastic women (last one to marry June 27th)! Then there are the grandkids! 3 great boys back east and a new girl here near me. Ahhh, this sounds better all the time.

And me? I do the things I love to do. I get to travel now and then, I read a lot, I write, I fiddle with art work and music, I have great friends who actually KNOW me, I love the great outdoors and my awesome dog and I’m learning to ride horses! Wow. I feel pretty good right now.

How about you? Can you say you’re happy and satisfied with who you are? Or do you know yet who you are? It took me a while to know me. It wasn’t until our third child came along that I began to see who it is that our God created. Childhood was an adventure and a lot of kinks came along the way. Sometimes we don’t fully discover who we are till much later in life. That’s OK – never give up. Always continue forward ever learning more and more about yourself and others.

I love adventures and I love mysteries so I look forward to learning more and more about me!


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