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Journal for CollieSmileJournal for CollieSmile

(There is a good chance that you\'ve seen this journal entry already. It\'s the same one that I posted on many of your profiles.) :)

Monday, December 11, 2017

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are happy and well. I\'m sure you\'re already enjoying this season & are looking forward to Christmas day itself. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, you\'ve likely already seen your first snow. I rediscovered something today; it\'s no fun to drive in, but sure is beautiful to look at! :D

It was a little hard for me to say goodbye to Autumn. Not only did we get less leaf colors than usual, we didn\'t get any snow in my area until 4 days ago! Usually I see snow by mid November, or at least by Thanksgiving.

We got about 2 inches of snow today; the most we\'ve had in one day so far. Now that my yard is white, it finally looks like Winter outside. :)

My first 3 wallpaper designs are made entirely of Autumn leaves. My last one is made from one Autumn leaf, some orange & white berries, a shrub, and some snow that I added in. It\'s my first Christmas wallpaper of the year. (Most of you seem to be way ahead of me as far as that goes.) My Christmas Tree wall was the most fun to make, and it\'s definitely the snowiest one of the four. :)

Joyful greetings to a beautiful & meaningful season! Desktop Nexus is one of the best places to enjoy this season in my happy opinion.:D

Snowy Hugs,

Elaine :)


November 17, 2017

There were definitely some odd things about Autumn in Michigan\'s lower Peninsula this year.

We had an unusually dry August and September. As a result, the leaves, when they finally started to change color, looked crunched, as if someone had wadded them all together before they left the trees.

I did not go out of my way to photograph "crunched" trees, but some of them showed up in my wallpapers. The best example of it is the yellow tree in the wallpaper directly below. But even the leaves of the trees by this lake look pretty dry.

Another thing that was odd about Autumn, was that most trees either turned color all at once--- or they didn\'t turn at all. This photo that I took only 9 days ago, shows it perfectly. The tree in front was totally turned, while the one behind it hadn\'t even gotten started yet!

For the most part, however, trees changed color very slowly this year, because the weather was so mild. I began to wonder if I would ever be able to get photos of Autumn 2017 to upload to Desktop Nexus. I was sure that the trees were going to change momentarily. One good cold night would do it! But we never seemed to get that cold night.

My husband and I took a church bus trip to Pinconning Michigan in mid October. Pinconning is 3 hours north of where we live, and the further north you get, the more rapidly Michigan\'s leaves change. So I took my camera along, thinking that at last I\'d get colorful tree photographs.

We arrived there to find the trees only slightly more colorful than those in our area. I took pictures of the most colorful trees I could find. Then we took a very bumpy hayride through some forestland that looked a bit more Autumny. I started snapping pictures like crazy, bumps and all.

I shot about 150 pictures during that bumpy half hour ride. They came out surprisingly well. Here are a couple of them. I took the first one while the tractor was moving, and the 2nd one when it stopped for a few minutes.

During the 1st week of November, I visited a nature preserve in my area for the first time. This time I had much better luck at getting some Autumn photos. These are a couple of my favorites.

As of today, November 17, there are still some trees in my area that have barely changed color. Here are a couple of happy exceptions to that.

At last we are starting to get some cold days. Bitterly cold, as a matter of fact. On November 9th, it got so cold that we broke a temperature record set in 1913! But then we had a few mild days with rain and a rare November thunderstorm. (The trees around here probably don\'t know what to think!)

One thing for sure... Autumn has been very unique in Michigan this year. I\'ll never forget this one.

Happy Autumn, (or Spring!) wherever you live! :D

Elaine :)

PS. If your Autumn season has been unusual/weird, I\'d love to hear about it. :D
Saving the spot while I still have an October 31st date! I\'ll post this later. :)

Well... so far this is embarrassing... haven\'t had a chance to post here yet, and it\'s November 1st. I wanted to "save the October 31st spot" because it\'s a post about Halloween type stuff... :P Well we\'ll see what happens.....

November 2017
Well, the answer is, not much. At the rate I\'m going, I may not write about Trunk & Treat until next Halloween. :P

Time certainly has a way of marching on.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Feeling overwhelmed right now about the terrible, senseless shooting massacre that happened in Los Vegas Nevada last night. It is a terrible thing when someone takes out their pain, depression, despondency, & hatred on people who never even thought of doing anything to hurt them. Going ballistic is not the answer, nor will it ever be.

Lord Jesus, come back soon... Until you do, I will as always, put my trust in you.


September 1, 2017

I created & uploaded the wallpaper above August 29th, of 2015. Almost exactly 2 years ago. The original description on it thanks Justin Verlander for a 1 hit game that he pitched on August 26th, 2015.

I updated the description today. I left the original description in, but here is the one that is at the top of this wallpaper now.

Update: September 1st, 2017:

Last night, just before the baseball waiver trading deadline, Justin Verlander the Detroit Tigers ace pitcher just got traded to the Houston Astros. He is one of the best players that the Tigers have ever had. It\'s been an incredible 12 years...

This trade is very bittersweet for me. The bitterness is that I believe that Tigers management, through a lot of poor decision making let both Justin and Tiger baseball fans down. Poor decisions on management\'s part cost the Tigers many ballgames and (arguably) World Series opportunities.

The sweet part is that at least Justin is going to a team in an area that badly needs something to lift their spirits as they are going through the devastation and aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Houston, I honestly hope that Justin Verlander will do something great for the morale of your city and for Texas. I hope you get a World Series win. Justin deserves one, and after all you have been through with Horrendous Harvey, so do you, Texas. Hang in there and please know that Tiger Baseball fans and all of America is rooting for you! :D

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thank you again Justin, for all of the wonderful years you gave us. Now go and cheer up Texas, a state that is hurting right now. God bless you.

CollieSmile :)

PS. Texas, I\'m certain that not just America, but people all over the world care very much about your recovery from hurricane Harvey! Hang in there... many, many people are praying and sending whatever help they can.


I bet that when my journal posts this it will say "August 1st". Well, Actually, where I live it is still July 31st... for 4 more hours! :D

July 31st, 2017

If you are one of my fans, you have this on your profile already. I\'m putting it in here mostly because I haven\'t done a journal entry in awhile... lol This is it. :)

Hi Everyone,

It\'s been a busy, but happy Summer for me-- which is the reason that I may not have been around to visit you for awhile. Well... mostly happy. Car problems that were not cheap kept me from seeing my 5 month old granddaughter for a couple of weeks, but at least the car is finally working again. :)

My job has been keeping me busy also. We are engraving a lot of Stainless Steel mugs right now. We have one type where each shrink wrapped mug must be unwrapped by hand before it is engraved. It\'s time consuming, and my hands are getting a little sore... but hey... it\'s a living! I can listen to any kind of music that I want to while I unwrap them too.:D

I try to upload at least 5 wallpapers a month. I uploaded one wall on July 4th. I tried to get more up here during the month, but things kept coming up. Finally, today, July 31st, I rushed these 5 wallpapers up here. I got them uploaded with less than 3 hours to spare; August 1st starts on Desktop Nexus at 8pm my time. (Michigan, USA) It feels great to have beaten the clock! :D I hope to get many more walls uploaded during the month of August, because I have a backlog now...stay tuned! lol

As you can see, I\'ve got 3 Cows Group walls up in this bunch; and 2 of them are especially silly...:P :D If you aren\'t a member of the Cows Group yet, you should check it out. There is such an incredible variety of cow wallpapers in it scenic, unusual, cute, humorous, etc... I think this group has become one of the most interesting (and fun!) ones on Desktop Nexus! :D

I hope that you are having a great Summer also, or a great Winter, depending on where you live!

Elaine :)

PS. PUPPYDAWG/ROGER news is that there isn\'t that much right now. He is doing better, but has an annoying, chronic cough. I do think he could use your prayers. He wants to come back to Desktop Nexus, but he needs a new computer to do so. He has enough money, but he isn\'t very mobile. Hopefully, one of his relatives will be able to help him out with that soon. Believe me, he misses everybody!


Just read this over and imo it\'s a bit long winded! If you can\'t wade through it all, just skim it-- and don\'t miss the cow wallpapers at the end! lol :)

June 15, 2017

Hi Everybody,

I am posting this journal while I can... because at the moment, my Internet seems to be normal! I don\'t know how long that will last. If I\'m lucky, the problem is over, but I\'m not going to count on it--- yet.

My main purpose in posting this journal entry right now, is to let you all know why I haven\'t been very active on Desktop Nexus lately. I want to be active, but I\'ve had some major obstacles in my DN path. Here they are:

(Prob1em #1) My internet connection, and/or my computer seem to be crazy!

My husband and I are doing everything that we can to track down the problems. I don\'t want to go into them at length, but I\'ll give you an example of what I\'ve been experiencing. I posted the following (very modified) comment on a friend\'s profile yesterday;

"I just got home from work about 10 minutes ago. My husband took a day off from his job because his car was in the shop. I got home to find him running many scans on my computer. He thinks at least part of the problem is that my computer needs more memory.

I just uploaded my test wallpaper, and it made it to Desktop Nexus! But right now your profile page is spinning \'round and \'round even as I type this. Your page is only coming part way onto my screen. My own profile page is also spinning. At least I got the wallpaper up. I\'m sure getting tired of "spin cycles" on my computer. It\'s making me dizzy!"

(In case you are wondering, my test wallpaper is the Tulip one above.)

(Problem #2) Chronic (but not life threatening) Health Issues

As many of you know, some chronic health problems I\'ve had for years have flared up unexpectedly. Actually, I\'m experiencing the worst flare up that I\'ve ever had in my life.

I am treating the problems as aggressively as I can. One thing that isn\'t helping me is that I just found out my health insurance will not adequately cover some treatments that would help me a lot. I\'m still kind of in shock about this. Nothing like treating chronic health problems on a chintzy insurance budget.:(

At any rate, I\'m doing the best I can with cheaper time consuming treatments. There has been improvement, but not enough yet.

(Problem #3) To top the other problems off, the little job shop that I work for has gotten insanely busy. I\'ve had to increase my work hours by nearly a third. I love my job, but... it\'s been nuts!

So between trying to get more sleep, treating my health problems and lots of work, my time is at a premium right now. Add in that I\'ve been having trouble posting words on DN, and it makes for a real mess.

For the time being, I\'ve had to

a. Cut back on wallpaper comments. I really don\'t like doing that. I know how much those comments mean to me and to all of us who upload. I\'ve been trying to do more "f 1" shorties to make up for it a little.

b. Can\'t check up on the Cow group as much.:( I like to vote them up & favorite them while they are still new walls, but that\'s become hard for me to do also.

c. My own wallpaper uploading has slowed a lot, even though I have lots to upload. Also, I like to do Profile Greetings with the walls and news about my life... well actually you are reading news about my life right now. lol So if you\'re wondering why I haven\'t been by your profile page lately, now you know why.

All of these things are only temporary. We will either figure out what\'s up with our internet, or it will finally start behaving again. My health problems will eventually improve. And work will calm down also... we go through cycles, & this is the busiest we\'ve been in months.

If only all of these things hadn\'t happened at the same time!!!

At any rate, I wrote all of this to let you all know that I am looking forward to being able to spend more time up here in the (hopefully) near future. I love DN, I\'m not going anywhere, and you all are stuck with me! :D

Love you all!

Elaine :)

PS. Thank you cow group members for putting smiles on my face. I sure can use them! :) (And I wish I could fit more of \'em in this post-- I tried!)

(The wallpaper below is one of Betsey\'s Uploads. Many of you will be reading this on your profile pages: I am posting it here for Betsey\'s friends who I may not have on my fan list so they can read this also.)

January 17, 2017

To my friends & everyone else on Desktop Nexus,

I am the bearer of some sad news.

Betsey Butler, a member of Desktop Nexus since September of 2008, passed away on November 20th, 2016. I did not find this out until last Sunday, January 22nd.

Even if you did not know Betsey, please read on. I have something to say that you may never have thought of before; something that could help you and many others.

Most, if not all of us, have made some good friends on Desktop Nexus. Some of those friends may mean so much to you that you\'ve even exchanged email addresses with them and have become pen pals, (or perhaps I should say email pals.)

Betsey and I were email pals. We wrote back & forth on a regular basis. Often it was just short notes. We had days where we wrote each other as much as 10 times. Sometimes 3 or 4 days would go by before we wrote again, but we always kept in touch.

On October 24, 2016, I wrote Betsey that I was about to go to Canada for the first time in 25 years, and that I\'d let her know all about it when I got back. She wrote back;

"Have a great day!"

That was the last time that I ever heard from her.

I kept writing her, and got more and more concerned when I didn\'t get any replies. Betsey had dealt with some health problems, i.e. she had what she called a "small stroke" and had to go live in an assisted living center for awhile, but then she got her own apartment again. I began to wonder if she\'d had another stroke and was back in assisted living with no computer access or something. It never occurred to me that she might have passed away.

I finally found out that she had from another one of her friends who was just as shocked as I was about it. My friend read it on her Facebook timeline. No details were given.

Whoever may still be reading this;

Please, if at all possible give a trusted friend or family member access to your Desktop Nexus account; your Face book account; your email account. You matter. People care for you. People will notice when you are missing.

Please have someone lined up to notify people, just in case you leave this earth. None of us knows the day or the hour when that might happen... If you pass on, people will wonder and eventually worry about what happened to you.

One Desktop Nexus member who did think to do that was Sparky/Kate Hatheway. Her sisters were able to access her Desktop Nexus account and let everybody know. That was such a wonderful to do...


I wrote to Betsey for 14 weeks without hearing from her. It hurts to realize now that I was writing to someone who would never read what I had to say.

I have been in mourning since last Sunday when I found out. That is why I\'ve been wearing this wallpaper of Betsey\'s on my profile for the past week. (By the time you read this, I\'ll be wearing one of the one\'s I made for Betsey.I wish I could wear more than one wallpaper at a time!)

I put aside some abstract wallpapers I was going to upload last Sunday. Instead I have spent this week creating two wallpapers in memory of Betsey Butler.

This one is my mourning wallpaper...

I was only going to make the one wallpaper, but I decided that another one was needed. To the best of my knowledge, Betsey was a Christian and had Jesus in her heart. She is now in a better place...so I created this happier wallpaper in her memory also.

Please choose either of my two wallpapers and put your thoughts and memories of Betsey in the comments. I would love to read them and possibly learn some things about her that I didn\'t know before. :)

One more thing. Betsey fanned 387 members here. I\'ve fanned only 159. If she has fanned anybody that I have not, and they are still active friends of yours, please let them know about Betsey too.

Thank you for reading this...and God Bless...all of you! This sad experience has made me realize just how special you are...

With much love,


I thought it would be fun to post something on January 1st, but there\'s a good chance that you\'ve seen this already. This is just my New Year\'s Greeting that I posted on about a zillion profile pages yesterday... :P :D Happy New Year to you! :) :) :)

January 1st, 2017

Father Time & I are dropping by to see you & say goodbye to

Let\'s say hello to 2017 instead! :D

Yahooooooo! It\'s a brand new year! Be sure to party and celebrate it to the max! :D

Best warm wishes for you in the New Year. I\'m looking forward to more Collies, more Cows, more Wonderful Wallpapers, more Smiles, more Kindness, and more FUN on DN with you! :D :D :D

Love & Hugs,

Elaine :)


December 10th, 2016

In Fall of 2015 I was looking forward to collecting beautifully colored Autumn leaves. It never happened, because of the auto accident I had in late October. It basically rendered me immobile well into Spring 2016.

This past Fall, I was more determined than ever to gather lovely leaves. I started in late September and was able to find great leaves through mid November! In my area of Michigan (metro Detroit) the leaves turned colors very gradually this year. So I was even able to locate certain kinds of trees & anticipate when their leaves would be at their prettiest before I gathered them up.

I wanted to get as many colors and shapes of leaves as I possibly could. Many of the most beautiful leaves I collected were from maple trees. Norway, Silver, Red, Sugar, Autumn Blaze, and Japanese maple leaves found their way into my collection. I also gathered leaves from sweet gum, ash, beech, sassafras, magnolia, elm, hawthorn, oak, and birch trees. And there were mystery leaves also. I wasn\'t sure what kind of tree they were from! All together, I must have collected well over 1,000 leaves!

At first I kept my leaves in plastic bags in the refrigerator. Gradually, I started putting them between the pages of dictionaries, catalogues, and telephone directories. Actually, no large book was totally safe, especially older ones without color plates.

Then came photography day. In years past, I photographed them by the garage in my back yard so that I could shoot them in natural sunlight. It wasn\'t easy. No matter how nice a day I picked to photo them, The gentlest of breezes would shift and blow some of them off my tray. I tried some gluing and taping, but I soon learned that leaves do not cooperate with these materials!

This year I hit upon the idea of going to my mother\'s house and working on her screened in porch. She also had storm panels that could be moved into place and skylights for natural lighting.

I spent over 3 hours "wrangling" my leaves and shooting photos of them. I added two things besides leaves to some of the photos; "helicopter" seeds from a small Norway maple in my back yard, and tiny blue berries attached to thick red stems. The berries came from the ivy that grows on the sides of my house.

All in all, it was a lot of work. There were times that my back got quite aggravated. But it was worth it in the end. I now have plenty of beautiful leaf photos to create designs with, for years to come.

Elaine :)

PS. When I was finished photographing my leaves, it was kind of hard for me to part ways with them. One thing that helped was that I was able to save my prettiest leaves to give to a little girl who lives across the street from my Mom. I\'m sure she had a lot of fun playing with them. Perhaps her mother even helped her to iron some of them between sheets of waxed paper, like we used to do when I was small. :)

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