May 31, 2017

Home Is Being With You ~ 31st

I knew I loved him when home went 
from being a place to being a person...

Owning two hotels makes it impossible for Arvid and I to travel together
 any longer.  For now we have given up going to Mexico.  As Arvid puts it,
 "my favorite place to vacation.  The only place I can actually relax."

Usually we go together to Norway every summer.  This year he did it alone.
As he told me every night, "not the same without you."  When you're used to
 doing things together, nothing not done together is the same anymore

Even I will now go visiting family alone.  I don't mind so much.  Gives me 
an opportunity to mingle better than if Arvid was around.  Not that he 
does not enjoy being around my family, but sometimes even I must admit, 
it can become overwhelming.  Same goes for when we visit his family.

I'm sure his visit with his family was a very good one.  Brief but good, but like
 he told me, "I'm so ready to come home."  Yes, home is always the best place to be. 
 Be it when visiting his family or mine.  The visits are good, but one just looks 
forward to being back home to what is familiar and back to "normal" routines.

I have missed him, but I have also had some relaxing times.  Arvid is
 high energy.  I enjoyed some quiet evenings at home with Sniff, and best
 of all my stress level was way down.  Looking forward to having him
 back, at the same time I know it will once again become hectic days.

I love the life we share, and would not trade it for anything
 in the world.  With you Arvid Hvidsten and Sniff, I am home.  Not so 
long ago it was Arvid, Brutus and I.  Now it's Arvid, Sniff and I.

Forever is a long time, 
but I won't mind spending it by your side...


May 29, 2017

Monday ~ Memorial Day

Dear whoever is reading this.  
Hope you have a reason to smile today...

Yesterday I decided to make a little trip into Springfield and cruise around
 the malls.  I am on the hunt for a dress, and it is sure one of the hardest things 
to find right now.  I did do some online shopping, and unfortunately when the dresses 
arrived I was sadly disappointed.  They looked much classier on the Internet.

I started the day with a not so "healthy" but sure delicious breakfast.  I checked
 various stores.  Tried on quite a few dresses.  Some I really liked, but for
whatever the reason, these dresses were designed for very tall women.

Needless to say the search continues.  Now I am starting to get very worried.
As always the week has gone by fast.  Way too fast.  Today is Memorial Day
 here in the USA. It is a federal holiday in the United States.  Remembering
 the people who died while serving in the country's armed forces.

Today at Almost Home I will be having a BBQ with the tenants.  I always
enjoy doing something for them, and the fact that we have a few 
retired veterans living with us makes it even more special.

As the new week begins I wish everyone a week filled with productivity,
lots of laughter and always remembering to be thankful and grateful 
for another day that we wake up and see a new day.

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest
appreciation, is not to utter words, but to live by them...


May 28, 2017

After The Storm ~

When you come out of the storm you won't be the same person that walked in.
That's what it's all about.  After a storm comes a calm...

Yesterday was a beautiful day all the way up to about 7:45 pm. 
After that all hell broke loose.  The weather changed for the worse.  Once again 
there was a tornado warning in effect.  Rained like crazy, accompanied by thunder, 
lightning and hail.  The window was being pelted by hail at some point 
I was scared it was going to break.  Sniff is still terrified.

Earlier in the day it was warm, sunny and clear blue skies.  Here in Missouri
the weather changes faster than one can blink ones eye.  Getting used to that as well.
Yesterday was Reshma's senior prom.  A pretty big deal here in the USA.

Also, my niece Danielle graduated from college and  yesterday she had a little
 family gathering at her home in Pennsylvania.  I really wished Arvid and I could have
 gone to it.  Usually we would have.  Arvid has a special bond with Danielle in particular.

My nephew Max is in India on a study program.  Kimsy is in France on another 
study program, and my nephew J is in Punta Cana on a fishing trip. J loves fishing. 
 He also just graduated from Tufts University in Boston.  They are all grown up.

The days are going by very fast.  This has been a very relaxing and calm week.
Everything has been running smoothly and I have enjoyed a few days of relaxation
 in between and after work.  Hopefully it will continue to be this way.

Sniff is once again scared.  He is not eating and is pretty much jumpy.  It will
take him a few days to get back to "normal," by then another tornado will be coming 
this way with the bad weather and scare him all over again.  Crazy crazy weather.

Yesterday I missed Brutus even more than usual.  I was looking at pictures and I 
just could not stop the tears from coming.  I saw Shadow and he was laying in his favorite 
spot by Arvids desk.  Broke my heart.  I cried like a baby, but afterwards it felt a little
 better.  One day it will be better.  But I miss my Brutus quite a bit.  He stole my heart.

Already Sunday. Our relax day.  Not sure what to do today,
but I have many ideas.  It is currently calm here at home.  Sniff is still not
sure if it's "safe," but I have him close to me and I am sure he
knows that as long as we are here he will always be safe.

Memorial Day weekend has begun.  It is officially summertime.
May we never forget that freedom isn't free.  Happy Sunday all.

Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it.  
It flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it...


May 27, 2017


Happy Saturday.  Wake up each day and be thankful for life.
Happy weekend.  May your days be as beautiful as your thoughts are...

Yesterday was ice-cream treat day for a few of the tenants, Tony and Benny.  All 
in appreciation of a good week and just because I wanted to.  Makes me feel good.

Yes, Friday was definitely a good day.  May have put on a few extra pounds
 that I did not need, but while doing so I was completely guilt free. 
 The guilt came later, but I ignored it.  I'm getting good at it.

Early start of my Saturday.  Busy, busy day.  Hardly have time to do much lately,
but I wanted a change.  I wanted to stay busy and we are.  Not complaining.

Sniff is good.  Loves to sleep even more than Brutus and Shadow did.  Must
be all that bird watching.  Just wearing him out.  Happy Saturday all.  For those
 who have already started on their long weekend..enjoy, have fun and be safe.

May your weekend be filled with positive thoughts, 
kind people and happy moments.  Let's roll baby...


May 26, 2017


Be the type of woman that when your feet hit the floor
each morning the devil says "oh crap, she's up"...

The day started out on the foggy side.  It is supposed to get nice and 
sunny as the morning progresses.  Will stay warm and no rain in the forecast until later
 in the evening.  Not a bad day at all.  Once again the week had gone by way too fast.

Have an early start of the day.  Many errands to do before
 I actually get to work.  Getting the hang of this running around
 and doing many things at a time.  Might even say I like it.

The pool at Almost Home was given the go ahead from the 
Health Department. Yesterday it was officially opened.  Still chilly, but it did 
not stop a few of the tenants to dip their feet and test it out.  With the sun 
the next few days we will be ready to jump in on Memorial Day.

Looking forward to another peaceful, quiet and relaxing day at Almost Home,
 and 76 INN.  Friday.  It's also ice-cream day here at Almost Home.

Wishing everyone a good day and to many this is the start of a 3 day weekend.
Live it up.  Be merry and always remember to be grateful.  Happy Friday everyone.

Train your mind to see the good in every situation...


May 25, 2017

Hello Thursday...

When you are working and staying busy you
 don't have time to be depressed and sad...

Here at Almost Home we are still full.  The calls keep coming in,
 and the nice thing about it is that some of the tenants who left due to family 
emergencies, job change or some other reason have been calling me back. 
 They say they would like to come back and live at Almost Home. 

I believe both Arvid and I have made a change in their lives. 
 Not to toot our own horn, but we hear it from the tenants and from 
others.  Everyone has told us that since we took over 
the 2 hotels the change has been one for the better. 

 We have been told that never before has it run this smoothly
 and efficiently.  We are happy to hear this because honestly 
this is or was a BRAND NEW venture for us. 

We now have the hang of it, but even so, there is always so
 much to learn.  When you think you have seen everything.. 
you're proved wrong and once again you start over.

Can you believe that Arvid and I have been talking about how bored
 we will be the day we do move back to Florida.  We love to be busy and
 boy here in Branson we ARE.  Yup!  We are a little concerned that we will be 
very bored when we do move back home.  Right now a little "boredom" can be OK.

 Beautiful warm days are here.  Almost Home soon is ready to open the pool.  
Everyone including myself is excited.  It sure is looking good.  The days
 are going by fast.  We have already been in Missouri for 6 months.

Sniff is loving his home.  His "friends" and everything surrounding him.
He's a happy boy and he makes our lives better.  I miss Brutus and I think so much at 
times of Shadow and sometimes the tears come freely.  It's better, but I won't lie,
it is definitely not the same without Brutus.  I miss him.

To all a very good day.  Just because we have some not so 
good days does not mean that we have a bad life.  It is what it is. 
 Life is not always a bed of roses, even so I am always grateful.

Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations...


May 24, 2017

Wednesday ~

I've got a peaceful, easy feeling. 
Life does not have to be perfect to be beautiful...

All quiet at Almost Home.  Many of our tenants just come to the office
 and talk to me, and every single one mentions how peaceful and quiet it is. 
 I am so happy about that.  I am extremely cautious and selective of who I take in.
  Having a well run place that is also peaceful and quiet is our goal.

76 Inn is also quiet, but like I said before; it being directly on the Strip makes
 it "alive"  A better location for the young ones.  Always something to do.  Restaurants
 and shows all nearby.  Arvid likes "his" hotel and I like "mine"  Both happy.

Yesterday it rained quite a lot in the early morning.  The temperatures were 
cooler during the morning hours, but rapidly warmed up.  I love it this way.  
Not hot.  Not cold just the right combination to keep one comfortable.
  Unfortunately, cold for pool opening as of right now. 

More storms are predicted, but hopefully that will not be the case. 
 Sniff is back to eating.  Happy about that.  He snuggles up really close to 
me in the mornings.  Just too cute for words.  Sniff knows when I am 
sad and is always there by my side.  I love Sniff very much.

Looking forward to another good day.  Will also be on the cooler side. 
 Also good for now.  Not much sunshine in view for the day, 
but even so, it's going to be a good one.

Peace comes from feelings of satisfaction when 
working with joy, living with hope, loving with abandonment...


May 23, 2017

New Week Already ~

Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week.
Start where you are.  Use what you have.  Do what you can...

Just when we start getting used to the so called "good" weather,
 we are hit with more tornado weather, rain, thunder, lightning and more flooding.
  Just hope this will not be the trend.  Once again Sniff is scared and has
 stopped eating.  Just when he gets over the last bad weather, the next 
one hits us.  It's getting to be very annoying now.  Wish it would just
 be summertime weather.  Warm and beautiful sunshine.

Here at our two hotels fortunately all is well.  No flooding or major 
disturbances.  I do have a very concerned citizen living at Almost Home.
  During the last tornado warning she got out her bull horn and at 
1 am started knocking on everyone's door.  

She was yelling that they should all basically evacuate their rooms 
and seek cover.  We do have a safe room for this. All was OK.  
The wind was howling.  Heavy rain, thunder and lightning, 
but noting serious.  Weirdest thing is that I am getting
 used to this crazy weather in Missouri.

Looking forward to the new week and to what it holds. 
 Already Tuesday.  Almost Home is still at 100%.  Hopefully we will 
be able to get all the approvals required for opening the pool.  
So far we are looking good.  Pool is sparkling clean, but a tad
 bit chilly since the sun has been in hiding.

The new week promises to bring sunshine and some more
 rain showers.  At least it will not be cold. Warmer/hot 
days are here to stay.  Happy about that.

  Wishing you all a great week ahead,  filled with smiles,
 happiness and all of the great things in life...


May 21, 2017

Day To Relax ~

Your calm mind is your ultimate weapon 
against your challenges.  So relax....

Sunday.  Plans for the day: spend it with Sniff and do absolutely nothing.
  No running around.  No stress.  No anxieties.  Just peaceful
 and quiet.  I'm happy and relaxed already.  

Sunday.  A day to refuel your soul and be grateful for you blessings.

It's all about quality of life and finding a
 happy balance between work, friends and family...


May 20, 2017

Weather Woes..

There are a lot of false reports about tornadoes,
when people are simply seeing dark clouds...

Sunny and warm.. what a joke.  It did not last yesterday.  Before you
 knew it the weather changed.  The tornado sirens were blaring
 and once again everyone was on alert for tornadoes.

The ice cream store across from Almost Home.  Black clouds rolling in.
The picture below was taken close to our home yesterday.

Not exactly sure anymore what today holds.  Just have to wait and see I guess.  
Right now it's time to start another work day.  Sniff is on the alert and not eating 
too much.  Constantly afraid that the thunder and lightning will strike again.  

Last night was stormy.  Currently raining.  Patiently waiting for summertime,
 hopefully will bring us better weather.  By then I'm sure we will miss the rain.
In the meantime, why not enjoy some summer drinks.  Sounds good to me.

Weather forecast for tonight: dark...


May 19, 2017

Beautiful Day Ahead...

Just because it's not always nice does not mean its not miraculous...

Friday already.  This has been a very warm and sun shiny week.  Yes we have
 had some heavy winds, but it feels good.  I am really enjoying the time 
I have here with my tenants/friends.  I know that there are days when I
 would prefer to be back home in Florida, but at the same time I also 
know I will miss the people here I Branson when that day comes.

  For now, it is a new and interesting time in our lives. 
 Very challenging at times, but NEVER boring.

Nothing but work planned as of right now, but who knows?  Our favorite
 restaurant serving our favorite adult drink is not far from us.  Like last Friday,
 it is only a matter of jumping in the car and heading out there.  Arvid has 
discovered a few things here in Branson that he likes very much and I can 
always tempt him with that if I wanted.  Flan!  Yes his new favorite.

Yesterday was pretty quiet at Almost Home.  Happy about that.  Arvid
 being on the Strip sees a little more activity.  He likes it like
 that, I like it the way I have it.  Both of us happy.

That time of the day already.  Time to get busy and start the day. 
 Happy Friday everyone and wishing you all the perfect weekend
 ahead.  Sunny and warm here.  Could not ask for better.

Challenges are what make life interesting and
 overcoming them is what makes life meaningful...


May 17, 2017

Happy Birthday Brutus and Shadow ~

Missing you comes in wave, and today I'm drowning...

Today our Brutus would have turned 11 years.  It's a year, six months
 and 12 days since he died.  Not a day goes by that I don't miss his little 
face.  Yes the pain is less agonizing, but missing him is something
 that does not go away.  I wish I could hold him again.

Our little Shadow would have been 2 years old today.  He died too soon and
 we never really got to know what he would have grown up to be.  Fearless 
and super curious is what we had with him for a short time.

Here in Branson there is a little kitty that looks exactly like Shadow. 
 We pass him everyday on our way home.  As I mentioned a while
 back, I asked his owner about him and his name.  The little
 kitty that looks exactly like Shadow is named Shadow.

Sniff has filled our lives.  He makes us laugh.  We love Sniff Sniff,
but a part of my heart belongs to just Brutus and as of today
 no one else can or will ever be able to go there.

It's a beautiful day here.  All is good.  Weather warn, Sniff is happy,
Arvid and I are having the experience, adventure of a lifetime 
here in Branson, yet something is missing.  Happy birthday 
to our Brutus and lil Shadow.  Mama misses you
 everyday Brutus.  It's not the same without you.

Happy birthday Brutus and Shadow.  I miss you very much.

I miss you a lot today...


May 16, 2017

Breakfast Time ~

All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast...

Our day starts once we have had a good breakfast.
After that there is no telling what we will accomplish.

If you want breakfast in bed tomorrow, sleep in the kitchen tonight.

Living in the USA for over 20 plus years, Arvid still has a few things he 
likes/prefers from his country.  One of those is his Norwegian jam.  
Every morning he has it. He does not like change at all.

I am not like that.  I like my own made in the USA stuff, but have to say there
 are some Norwegian products that even I have to admit to liking. Especially 
some of t heir sauces and Norwegian shrimp.  Just delicious.

Arvid and I are like clockwork.  Breakfast at the same time everyday Monday 
through Saturday.  Sundays we live "dangerously" and have a later breakfast.  First
 he calls his family and when he's done we relax to a leisurely/larger breakfast.

Good morning everyone.  I'll eat some breakfast then change the world.

Eat breakfast like a king.  
Lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper...


May 15, 2017

Let's Do It...

A brand new week to laugh, love and shine your light...

The weekend was very good.  Made better by sitting out on a Friday 
evening enjoying good Mexican food and yes, a delicious PiƱa Colada.

We have had some gorgeous sunny days, and by the looks of it, it is just
 getting better and better.  Fingers crossed that we get no more rain.  Talking
 about rain, Arvid and I visited the Dam.  The water levels in the lakes were still 
very high so the dam was still open.  I was pretty impressed with it.

What used to be parking lots are now flooded.  Picnic benches covered 
with water.The trees are covered with water.  Hopefully the rain 
will stop and things will get back to what is considered "normal."

Looking forward to the new week.  To see what new challenges we 
are presented with.No matter what life is always interesting and definitely 
you never know what will happen once you get to your hotel.

Here is  to a good start of the new week for all of us.  
Happy Monday friends.  Let's do this!

One small positive thought in 
the morning can change your whole day...