Sunday, October 30, 2005


Well, here I am....wide awake at 4:29 AM. So I decided to drink some coffee because I'm sure that I'm not going to get back to sleep anyway. I believe it is due to the change in Daylight Savings Time plus the fact that I went to bed earlier than usual anyway to prepare for the awakening this morning of an overnight guest! My youngest grandchild.....the one year old!

He arrived around 6 PM yesterday. He was as excited to see me as I was to see him! It's a mutual "I think you're great" type of thing. He is in the beginning phase of walking now. It makes me chuckle to watch him toddle about and almost lose his balance and stop and concentrate for a second to regain control of his movements with a big grin on his adorable little face! I'm sure that if I fell that many times in a day, I would just stay down and not get up. Of course, the floor is much closer to his "bottom" than it is to mine.

It's a nice break for all of us to have him spend the night. Mom and Dad get a well deserved evening to themselves and Grandma and Grandpa get some quality time with him. So, I will sit here with my cup in hand and anticipate the awakening of that small cherished little boy so we can play together before his parents come to take him back.

Saturday, October 29, 2005


My kitchen sink has a window just above it. Which is nice when I have to be there for any length of time (doing dishes, etc.) Outside this window is a planter with some still beautiful and colorful and still alive flowers.

When I was pouring my first cup of coffee this morning I noticed two pretty plump looking birds in the planter. They were slate gray in color with just a touch of white on the very edge of their wing feathers. I think they are Juncos but I am not very good at bird identification unless it is very obvious and a bird that almost everyone can recognize.

On my second trip for coffee, and discovering it was all gone thanks to the hubby, a very bright red cardinal landed in the bush just off to the right of the window. I have seen these many times in past years but not as up close as this one was. I never realized before how BIG they are. Even their beaks are larger and thicker than I had thought. And the beak is more orange in color than I imagined.

So I stood there watching in amazement as this colorful cardinal sat there looking around and was pleasantly surprised by the gathering of several different kinds of birds mostly sparrows,
with a couple of bluejays, goldfinches, morning doves and even a robin mixed in.

Frost was still on the ground but somehow they didn't seem to mind. I was wondering what they will do for food when the really cold weather arrives, and that's when I decided that I will have hubby build me some bird feeders so I can feed these little feathered friends. My only problem will be trying to find a way to keep the squirrels out of the feeders and the local feral cats away!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


I have 11 grandchildren. Today is the youngest one's (a darling, adorable little boy) first birthday. He is truly a miracle child and has us properly wrapped around his finger just as the 10 did that came before him. I've written of him before......the little guy with eyes so like his mother's. Happy Birthday Little Man!

I was lucky enough to be able to spend a good portion of the day with him and his mother, my daughter ~ my friend! We didn't do anything grand. We went shopping and ran some errands. But it doesn't matter what we did.......I was with two very important people in my life and enjoying every minute of it.

Tomorrow we will celebrate his first birthday with a party at his home. It will be a great gathering of relatives from both sides, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. He is much too young to be able to file this away in his memory so we will have to take lots of pictures for him to look at when he is older. Jeeeez! I have to remember to buy those camera batteries -----

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


Today was an absolutely beautiful day. Lots of sunshine and temps in the upper 50's.

I got up early so I could get some cleaning done and took my wonderful dog for a 1/2 hour walk. We walked down to the park near our house. It was deserted. We were the only ones there and I wanted to let her off her leash so she could romp and play but I didn't dare. She might have picked up the scent of another animal and taken off......and then her ears seem dysfunctional! It isn't like she is tied up constantly. Our yard is big enough for her to run in and most of the time when she goes outside one of us is with her so there is no need to tie her up.

That is, until today. We have 3 acres behind our home that has been for sale and listed as a commercial property. However, it is a very wet area, swampy in spots, and I think it would take a lot to fill it to be able to build anything there. At least I'm hoping so. It really makes a nice buffer between us and another street. It makes me feel like I am more in the "country". Not that I live in a big city. On the contrary, our town is pretty small but we are only 30 minutes from a large metropolis area.

Today I heard this noise outside that sounded like a semi was stuck so I glanced out the back window and saw a tractor with a brush hog on the back mowing down the 3 acres. My first thought was "oh no! They finally sold that land......D___! My husband won't be happy with that idea." I waited until he was out of work and called his cell. I was right, he wasn't happy, but we couldn't be sure that the property had been sold at this point.

When he got home, he came in the house, pet the dog, gave me a kiss and said that he was going to go talk to the man on the tractor. Well, it turns out that the property isn't sold. The real estate company that has it listed hired someone to mow it down to make it more attractive to perspective buyers. Tractor man told Hubby that the realty people hadn't had any bites on this listing in over 5 months. I'm thinking that's a good thing! Hubby was happier about someone just mowing it than someone purchasing it, too! But now we have all this open area in plain view for the dog. And she is chomping at the bit to go and sniff everything out there and do a through investigation. So much for keeping her under control and within the confines of our yard.

Mowing it down has destroyed some of the natural habitat for the rabbits which is a sad thing. The dog likes chasing them too. But there also might be a good side. Maybe it destroyed the nasty "box elder" bug (or box elderly bugs, as my granddaughter calls them) habitat! I can only hope!

Sunday, October 23, 2005


We have this dog. We got her from a rescue shelter 3 years ago. She was the strangest looking dog I had ever seen. She was stripped like a tiger cat and her head was shaped like some kind of shepard puppy. She was awfully little for 11 weeks old. I remember she trembled a lot.....A LOT! She was so strange looking she seemed exotic. It was sort of a combination of us choosing her and her choosing us.....kind of a mutual thing. The usual granddaughter was with us......she was 7 at the time. The dog rode home on the granddaughter's lap.......I believe it was love at first sight on both parts.

The dog seemed sickly so within two days we had her to the vet. After a thorough examination we were told that she was full of parasites. You name it, she had it! Everything except heart worms. She had fleas and ticks and hookworms, and roundworms and pin worms and even a tapeworm. Poor little thing. No wonder she only weighed 7 pounds. After shelling out several $20. bills we were on our way back home with the hopes that she would recover fairly fast. And fortunately for us she did just that.

After several more visits to the vets office for immunization and further examinations to make sure all parasites had been eradicated the vet asked us where we had found such a unique dog. When we told him from a rescue center he asked if they had any information on her parents. We were told that her mother was a pure bred boxer and her father was a "sneaky neighborhood dog". The vet then concluded by her shape and size that her father was most likely some kind of shepard.....either German, Australian or perhaps an Australian Cattle Dog which is different than an Australian Shepard. I think that I forgot to mention that she has a purple tongue, which Chows have but the vet assured us that other breeds also have purple tongues and it was a sign of intelligence. Her parentage didn't matter to us for we had fallen deeply in love with her.

She was an intelligent dog. She was housebroken in 2 weeks, and was already doing tricks for milkbone treats. She continued to learn quickly and so did we. She was getting us well trained too. After she eats her supper, she stands and barks and paws at the floor to let us know that it is now time to go out for a romp. And being trained as well as we are, we accommodate her.

Saturday, October 22, 2005


I am posting this poem for a dear friend of mine who is in need of encouragment. You know who you are! : )


When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit ~
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a person turns about
When they might have won had they stuck it out.
Don't give up though the pace seems slow ~
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the victor's cup;
And he learned too late
When the night came down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out ~
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit, ~
It's when things seem worst that you mustn't quit!

I realize, dear Friend, that this may not quite fit your circumstances but I wanted you to know that you are loved. Consider this a "warm, fuzzy hug!"

Friday, October 21, 2005


The first frost has finally arrived here. Not a killing, hard frost, but none the less a frost! Gosh how I love that cold, crisp, fresh air when I take the dog out in the morning. Mind you, I don't wish to stay out in it for long but the way that it hits you in the face sure is an eye opener!

The leaves are turning a beautiful array of colors. Yellows, bright reds, magentas, golds and oranges mixed in with the still green leaves on some trees is truly a lovely sight. I didn't used to like the fall since it signaled the coming of winter and that means SNOW! Well, it's not the actual snow that I dislike, it's the slippery roads. But I'm getting ahead of myself with this talk of winter.

How I love to go on our annual "color tour" in the fall. This year, with the price of gas, I'm not sure that we will go. Of course, fitting it in this year has become a monumental task also. This is our first fall in this house and there sure is a lot to do.
For the last 10 years we lived in a mobile (excuse me....politically correct : manufactured home) in a manufactured home community. We had a small rented lot with absolutely no trees. Our new home has four huge trees, plus many adjacent trees on other nearby properties. Needless to say there will be a lot of leaves to be raked after they have finished their cycle and gently float down to my yard. I'm sure the grandchildren will love jumping in the huge piles that will be produced upon raking. Oh my back! I can feel the stiffness and soreness already. But watching the joy on their faces will be quite worth the effort involved. It will trigger memories of my childhood. Of course then I didn't worry about sore muscles; didn't even know what sore muscles were. Ahh the bliss and innocence of childhood.........but I'd rather be who I am at the age I am than to go back and have to learn everything all over, sore muscles and all!

Thursday, October 20, 2005


Couldn't let this day pass without honoring it even though I am really feeling crummy today. Woke up at 3:30 this morning needing to hurl! Have a bad headache and have thrown-up few more times since then. I'm so very tired. Anyway......

If my first husband had not succumbed to the cancer that was ravaging his body 30 years ago, he and I would be celebrating our 38 Wedding Anniversary today. Looking back I can remember that day just as plainly as it happened yesterday. I never thought so much happiness could be stuffed into one day......I was wrong. But rather than getting melancholy here, suffice it to say that my life went on, I raised my three children, found love again, remarried and have had a good life. In spite of all that, I feel it is important to remember those special days in my life and to appreciate them for what they were no matter how long they lasted. Even though he was only a part of my life for 8 years, they were 8 very good years. Had I known when I married him that is all the time we would be allowed.......I would have done it anyway. It was worth it. Thinking of you with love today, Dave!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Something for the Grandmothers!

I have done a lot of thinking regarding mothers and motherhood in the past and have turned my most recent thoughts to grandmothers. Could be because I saw three grandchildren yesterday or just because I really enjoy being a Grandma! Anyway, following is a little something for all the Grandmothers:

Today's Grandma

In the dim and distant past
When lifes tempo wasn't fast,
Grandma used to rock and knit,
Crochet, tat and babysit.

Grandma now is at the gym
Exercising to keep slim.
Now she' golfing with the bunch,
Taking clients out to lunch.
She's going north to ski and curl
And all her days are in a whirl.

Nothing seems to stop or block her,
Now that Grandma's off her rocker.

Way to go, Grandma's! Keeps us young if we can keep up the pace, right?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Today is the 37th birthday of my first born. She has grown into a wonderful, beautiful young woman. I am very proud of her and all she has accomplished.

I had her over to my home this evening for a birthday celebration with one of her favorite! And of course the usual birthday cake and ice cream. The hubby and I gave her a small present that she had been wanting. But in looking back at all of her birthdays, it is I who have received the best presents. The love and the memories that this young woman has given me are more than enough to last any one person more than a lifetime.

The memories began the moment she was born and she looked at me with those beautiful eyes that you can get lost gazing into. Through those eyes I began to see the world in a whole different way. Just the little blowing the white fuzz off a dandelion, a new box of crayons with all the pointed colorful ends staring back at you, a line of ants carrying some tiny speck of food back to their colony, a bee rubbing the pollen he has collected off his antennae. Old hat and simple things to an adult but to a child a whole new magical world. Those are the presents she left me and so many more too numerous to name here.

She said her proper "thank you" for the celebration and the gift; but it is I who should be telling her "Thank you". Thank you for so much more than you will ever know! I love you, Dear!

Monday, October 17, 2005


While attending my grandsons football game a few weeks ago a spectator in the stands was yelling at the team mates that the ball carrier needed some blockers. First of all, I'm sure that they were unable to hear him and secondly I wondered how many games he had played in, if any. How easy it is to sit in the stands and criticize the players and how difficult it must be to keep trying your best only to be beaten in most games!

It reminded me of several years ago when my children were young and played baseball/softball for the summer recreation league in our small town. There at every game was one father who had a child on the same team as one of my children. I had three children at the time so it was inevitable that this man's child would play opposite one of mine.

He was a rather loud and boisterous kind of guy. And the impression I got was that he was always right and his child was better at "everything" than anyone else's child. He would sit in the bleachers and yell at the other kids on his son's team if they would make a mistake. Mind you, he wasn't the coach or the assistant or I'm sure he would have been out on the playing field with the team. Just a loudmouth know-it-all! The things he yelled were rude and totally without thinking. And they were directed at children!

Excuse me! When did Little League become the world series? When did the game start to be more than a game for these kids? I thought I had signed them up to learn sportsmanship and the basics of the game. As it turned out they were learning offensive language and rudeness! All of a sudden this didn't seem like a game anymore and it was no longer fun!

Adults really need to remember that whether they are boys and girls playing little league baseball or highschool students playing on the football team, they are still youth and still learning. They need guidance and acceptance, not ridicule for their efforts.

And with that, I will get off my "soapbox" as my hubby calls it and say....."good night".

Looking through a magazine this morning I found this poem written by Bob Fox and thought it belonged with my most recent post:

"Just A Little Boy"

He stands at the plate with heart pounding fast.
The bases are loaded; the die has been cast.
Mom and Dad cannot help him, he stands all alone.
A hit at this moment would send the team home.
The ball meets the plate; he swings and he misses.
There's a groan from the crowd, with some boos and some hisses.
A thoughtless voice cries "Strike out the bum."
Tears fill his eyes; the game's no longer fun.
So open your heart and give him a break.
For it's moments like this, a man you can make.
Keep this in mind when you hear someone forget.
He's just a little boy and not a man yet.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


We were invited again this year to my Aunt and Uncle's orchard for what they call "Big Apple Day". It is a tradition they began 20 years ago for their grown children and young grandchildren. The invitation reads "Come, Pick, Squeeze, Eat & Take Home"! So we did!

We took one of our granddaughters with us again (the same one that usually accompanies us wherever we go). We had a blast. Picking apples off the trees, helping to cut them up, putting them in the press and turning the crank to squeeze them into cider is quite an experience. This year the granddaughter worked hard turning the crank.....she was probably at that post for at least 3 hours without quitting. She could have quit whenever she wanted but instead chose to stay and keep at it. I was impressed with her "sticktoitiveness"! So were the rest of my relatives. This little girl is 10 years old, weighs about 52 lbs and is pretty petite for her age. But she sure is strong. She even got to take extra cider with her so she could take it to school and share the fruit of her labor with classmates. Let me tell you....she is one proud little girl!

I think this is a great tradition and am happy that they include me and my family. It's the one time of the year that I can visit with so many cousins at once.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


Most of what I really need to know about how to live, and what to do, and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the curriculum, but there in the sandbox at kindergarten seemed to be where it was taught. These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair. Don't hit people. Put things back where you found them. Clean up your own mess. Don't take things that aren't yours. Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody. Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you. Live a balanced life. Learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work some every day. Take a nap every afternoon. When you go out into the world, watch for traffic, hold hands and stick together. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the plastic cup. The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why. But we are all like that. Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the plastic cup - they all die. So do we. And then remember the book about Dick and Jane and the first word you learned, the biggest of all: Look. Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule, love, basic sanitation, ecology, politics, and sane living. Think of what a better world it would be if we all ~ the whole world ~ had cookies and milk about 3 o'clock every afternoon and then lay down with our blankets for a nap. Or if we had a basic policy in our nation and other Nations to always put things back where we found them and always clean up our messes. And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out into the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.


While sorting through pictures the better part of the day I found so many treasures. Pictures of my children with their Dad when they were small, mementos of their childhood, things they have made for me in elementary school, letters written to Santa Claus and letters written from Santa to them. How did I ever forget what their early attempts at writing letters looked like! The childish scrawl, the misspelled words and total lack of punctuation have left me with a wonder at how much they had to learn back then. Not only with school work, but life in general.

I had hoped they would grow up with very little emotional pain and strife in their life. Yet, each one of them has had the fair share and survived remarkably well. It's been harder for some than the others and some have brought the adversity on themselves by the choices they have made. But that's the part of living that can't be taught; it has to be learned by each individual as a part of the passage into adulthood.

In looking back I realize that I made some mistakes in those trying teen-age years. I tried to follow something that I had read in the Ann Landers column. I am going to post it with the hopes that those of you with teenagers will also find it to be of some benefit while raising your kids through difficulties in this world:

I loved you enough to ask where you were going, with whom, and what time you would be home.

I loved you enough to insist that you save your money and buy a bike for yourself even though we could afford to buy one for you.

I loved you enough to be silent and let you discover that your new best friend was a creep.

I loved you enough to make you take a Milky Way back to the store (with a bite out of it) and tell the clerk, "I stole this yesterday and want to pay for it."

I loved you enough to stand over you for 2 hours while you cleaned your room, a job that would have taken me 15 minutes.

I loved you enough to let you see anger, disappointment and tears in my eyes. Children must learn that their parents aren't perfect.

I loved you enough to let you assume the responsibility for your actions even when the penalties were so harsh they almost broke my heart.

But most of all, I loved you enough to say no when I knew you would hate me for it. Those were the most difficult battles of all. I'm glad I won them, because in the end you won something, too!

Monday, October 10, 2005

Some thoughts on Mothers.....

After having gazed through many blogs last night when I couldn't sleep, I decided to post today some thoughts about mothers! Following is a poem I learned once. I don't know who the author is or where I even read it first but I think it is a great tribute to all the mothers in the world ~


What would we be without mothers?
How would the world survive?
Who would know how to make rainy days fun and who'd keep the goldfish alive?

Where would we be without mothers?
Who would believe in our dreams?
Where could we turn when we needed to hear that nothing's as bad as it seems?

How could we live without mothers?
Who'd be our chauffeurs and nurses?
And where in the world could we put all the stuff that mothers all keep in their purses?

So all of you mothers out there who have little ones still at home and all of you who have grown children, I think that the job of being a mother is one of the most important ones in the whole world. Be proud of who you are and what you are doing!

Thursday, October 06, 2005


Funny how the events of ones life take place. I was thinking of my father. Today is his birthday. He's been dead for 42 years now. He would have turned 91 today. October was packed full of events for him. The three most important life events....Birth, Death, Marriage....All happened in October for my Dad. He and my Mom were married on the 12th of October. He was discharged from the army on Oct. 19th which is also the day he was killed (many years later) by a drunk driver. It seems odd to me that all these events happened in the same month, albeit years apart.

There are some important life events in October for me, also. My first husband and I married on the 20th of October 1967. Our first born, a daughter, was born a year later on the 18th, just 2 days shy of our first wedding anniversary. Two life altering events within a year. And alter our lives she did! All babies do that....but 'ours was special'! She seemed wise beyond her years from the very start. She would stare at me with her eyes as if she already knew what I was thinking and was trying to convey what she was thinking. This baby girl has now grown into a beautiful young woman with children of her own. The last having been born in October also. Now fast forward 37 years! On the 26th, we will be celebrating the first birthday of our first borns youngest child. A beautiful little boy with curly blond hair and a truly contagious smile and his mother's eyes. I feel as if I'm melting when he looks at me with those eyes so like his mothers. A flood of memories takes me back to his mothers first year of life. And the similarities between him and his mother are astounding. And yet, he is his own person......not like anyone else in this world.....aaahhh, the uniqueness that makes us all indivduals!

When I married again, I acquired two more children. One who was born in October! Another October event. And two years ago one of my sons had a daughter born on the 19th. Now the day my Dad died has taken on a new meaning. Still with sadness I see this day, but also with some new memories to make around a little girl's birthday.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

A different view of TIME......

My friend, Clew wrote a piece on "Time" and it triggered a memory of something I had read a long time ago. Here it is to the best of my memory......

Once upon a time, there was an island where all the feelings lived; happiness, sadness, knowledge and all the others, including love. One day, it was announced to all of the feelings that the island was going to sink to the bottom of the ocean. So all the feelings prepared their boats to leave. Love was the only one that stayed. She wanted to preserve the island paradise until the last possible moment. When the island was almost totally under, Love decided it was time to leave. She began looking for someone to ask for help. Just then, Richness was passing buy in a grand boat. Love asked, "Richness, could I come with you on your boat?" Richness answered, "I'm sorry but there is a lot of silver and gold on my boat and there would be no room for you anywhere." Then, Love decided to ask Vanity for help, who was passing in a beautiful vessel. Love cried out, "Vanity, help me please." "I can't help you," Vanity said. "You are all wet and will damage my beautiful boat."

Next, Love saw Sadness passing by. Love said, "Sadness, please let me go with you." Sadness answered, "Love, I'm sorry but I just need to be alone now." Then, Love saw Happiness. Love cried out, "Happiness, please take me along with you." But Happiness was so overjoyed that he didn't hear Love calling to him. Love began to cry. Then, she heard a voice say, "Come, Love, I will take you with me." It was an elder. Love felt so blessed and overjoyed that she forgot to ask the elder his name. When they arrived on land, the elder went on his way. Love realized how much she owed the elder. Love then found Knowledge and asked, "Who was it that helped me?" "It was Time," Knowledge answered. "But, why did Time help me when no one else would?" Love asked. Knowledge smiled and with deep wisdom and sincerity answered, "Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Love is."

Monday, October 03, 2005


and a few other things. Not necessarily wanted things, but they have arrived none the less.

I opened the blinds this morning and discovered THEM! THEM meaning the dreaded "box elder bugs". They either hatched or just swarmed due to the unseasonably warm weather we have been having. There must have been thousands of them. This being the first year in our new home I didn't have a clue as to how to get rid of them. Thank goodness for the internet! But, much to my chagrin, there isn't any thing on the market that is really effective in controlling (by controlling I mean killing) them this time of year.

According to the internet the best way to get rid of them if they have infested your house is to vacuum them up. So, hubby decided to take his shop vac to them on the outside of the house. I'm sure that if the neighbors saw him outside vacuuming they must be thinking "ah, the new folks are either really clean, or really crazy". Trust me, the later one is probably truer! It looks as if he got the majority of them which is great since he burned the motor up in his shop vac sucking the varmint up. But it feels like an even trade to me......1 vacuum versus thousands of red and black flying pests! We will replace the shop vac soon.........then, "have vac, will travel!"