Thursday, November 28, 2013


This has been a crazy week!  Work goes from super busy, to "go home early" mode.  Monday turned out to be a go home early day and I was excited and thankful to get time to run errands and some house stuff ready for Thanksgiving. But the best plans often don't work out...for me anyway... I came out of work and found a flat tire.  Jack picked me up on his way home for lunch and then my son Jordan came back to the hospital lot to change the tire...he was on vacation this week and I was thankful for that!  Unfortunately, the spare was flat we had to load the tire up, take it to get repaired and then we decided to go pick up wood so Jack wouldn't have to later in the day.  So my early home day was filled with waiting for the tire, loading and unloading wood, and not much errand running! I did take a pic of the flat tire, but it didn't turn out very good so I deleted it.  Jordan just looked at me when I pulled out the camera for the shot and said.."Seriously Mom?"  Hey Jord, seriously, you know I'm a blogger!  Monday was also my son Jack's 38th birthday and he invited us for dinner.  38!! How did that happen? I mean, I'm only 29. (oops, my nose is growing). 
He needed a little help from his youngest son, Cameron, to blow out the candles.  It must be hard to get old! Just kidding Jackie!  Love you! We are super thankful for him.  The rest of the week was filled with grocery shopping for today and praying the big snow storm predicted wouldn't  hit our area.  Thankfully, it didn't happen.  We did get a little snow but we can handle that!  Last night I put the finishing touches on dinner prep and also set the table. Alexis and Addy wanted to help.  They wanted to know who was coming and where everyone would we decided to make place cards with names so they could find their spot.  Using something that we have plenty of here at the Pines...pinecones of course...the girls decorated the cards and put them on the plates.
My Grandmother's old dishes look cool! I'm thankful for them!
I'm thankful for my spot around the family table!  Today the kids were able to do a little sledding in the backyard and they had a blast...I was thankful for that!

Just enough snow for a nice ride.  Then we took a little hike up to the Creepy Woods to work off some of that dinner.  I spied a bear! OK, so it's only a burned tree but from my angle it sort of looks like a bear! My animal identification skills are a bit lacking..just ask Jack!
What do you think?  It's not called the "Creepy" woods for nothing!
Eddy was ready to save us if it was a bear...thankfully he's smarter than that and can't be fooled by an old tree!
So we took the path that leads to home and have snuggled in for the night. The kitchen is back to normal and the leftovers are awaiting the late night snacking (And tomorrow's turkey sandwich lunch!)  I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving and are in a good turkey and pumpkin pie coma by now....I have much to be thankful and friends and good blogging buddies are just a few on my list! Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Just Wait A Minute

"If you don't like the weather, just wait a minute"...yep, I've heard that sentence said about many places and it's certainly true about Ohio.  Last Saturday we had a lovely day full of Fall fabulous leaf raking, jumping, and throwing!
Rake them up and then toss!
Hey, don't toss at each other!  Lexi and Addy had fun with the leaves and also fun in the Creepy Woods.
Tree climbing
Or just hanging around like the little monkeys they are!
Ed had fun exploring and also eating deer poop....don't let him give you a doggy kiss with that tongue...yucky!
The girls and I played outdoors and jackets weren't needed.  The winds came by during the week and blew all the leaves back into the woods. I always have to thank God for doing the raking when that happens! But this Saturday was a different story.  The winds blew and the temps fell into the 20's.  Jack started up the wood burning furnace and around noon the snow started falling in big, juicy flakes.
A little frosting on the yard.
Some white hair for the pumpkins!
The holly berries didn't mind a bit of snow and cold...that's their season! However my last rose bud about to open wasn 't as happy.
Frozen in time...I'm not worried, I'll just wait a minute and I'm sure the whole picture will be different!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


Since I've been so "Chatty" this month, I thought a new post to honor a new word was in order.  The 2013 word of the year for the Oxford dictionary is "Selfie".  I was happy to see it beat out the word  "twerk".  Selfie is a photo taken with a digital a phone or camera of ones self...selfie..get it?  I've been doing that for years but never knew it had a specific name.  I thought "goofy shot" was the it's real name! Who knew?   In honor of this word I turned to the highly educated women I work with and handed them my camera.  And this is the result..a  "selfie" fest!
Deranged looking pals...Steph and Becky
Sweet and innocent looking Chris (photo bombed by my arm!)
The happy housekeeper Donna
Blurry besties...Donna and Yaya
The "oops" selfie
The Shay redo selfie
The "do I have anything in my teeth? Shay and Kim selfie
The Yaya "I just had my hair cut by my Granddaughter" selfie.  Yep, I'm really glad "selfie" beat out "twerk"....if you don't know the meaning of twerk, look it up and then try and visualize a bunch of nutty operating room personnel celebrating that one!  I hope everyone takes a selfie and gets a good laugh..we sure did!

Monday, November 18, 2013


November 18th is a day that all of my family holds as important.  My Father passed away on this day in 1976.  I usually blog about this every year, so please excuse my repetitiveness.   Talking to my Mom today, she and my sister went to put wreaths on his grave and on my sister's son's grave. November has a few anniversary items that I'll never forget. When I was 10 our home burned down in November.  We have many stories and accounts of that day.  My first son was born prematurely in November. That's a day Jack and I will never forget and it's often talked about around the table this time of year.  My son will celebrate his 38th birthday in a few days...Dad will have been gone 37 years today.  So much time and so much living has gone by that Dad was not a part of..except in our minds and hearts...always wishing he was here and so many times the thought passing through.."Gee, Dad would have loved this...Dad would have enjoyed these Grandkids..Dad would have had a blast with new technology.  However, realizing he would be 93 and who knows what kind of health issues he would be dealing with, I know he wouldn't mind having left young. In fact, I had a private moment with him the day before he passed away and we talked about dying and about living.  He would be the first to laugh and say "Die young and leave a good looking corpse"...Morbid? Nah, Dad had a great sense of humor and a love of life and a desire to not be a burden.  He wasn't afraid of what was to come.  It's us left behind to sadly fill the blanks, to go on living.  The photo's I have of Dad are obviously old. In fact, I have only a few that were taken after our wedding.  Two of my favorite photos from my wedding were:
Dad walking me down the isle...all the while whispering in my ear: "You can back out any's not too late"..Thanks Dad for those encouraging words! Ha! Then there's this pic:
Dad singing to me and Mom at the reception.  He loved music. Dad played the guitar and he loved to sing.  It was a special moment for both Mom and me. (sorry these pics are so scanner wouldn't enlarge them) I have tons of good memories and I'm always thankful that he was my Dad...even if it wasn't as long as I would have liked.  He did a lot of living in his 56yrs.  He fought in WWII...raised 6 kids...took good care of his parents...worked at a tool and dye maker...wrote poetry...fished and hunted (not particularly successfully!) could fix anything..built his own home that Mom still lives in today. (Yep, the same one that burned..but they rebuilt).  I guess I could go on and on. This blog is journal for me. I hope one day my kids and grandkids will want to read it.  I put it into book form at the end of each year just for that purpose. They never knew my Dad.  Maybe they'll get a flavor of what kind of man he was and maybe when we're all together as a forever family on the other side of the veil,  they will say "Hey, I know you! YaYa told us all about your life" That's my hope anyway..atleast for today. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Century Of Honor

Boy Scouts has been a player in our lives for about 25yrs.  Jack has served in many have I...for those years.  He, much more than me!  We always laughed when the organization says: "It's only 1hr. a week"...Ha!  However, it's been fun, busy, hard work and I believe, totally worth it.  Boy Scouts can shape the lives of young men in many positive ways.  Achieving "Eagle Scout" is something that will be a major impact in their future. I know men who received jobs over other candidates just because it has "Eagle" in the resume.  Even if a young man doesn't get his Eagle..he has still achieved many goals and learned valuable lessons.  In 1913 the LDS church became the first to charter Boy Scouts Of America.  Last night we celebrated that 100yr mark with the broadcast "Century Of Honor" and holding an open house for the community.  We really didn't think many would attend.  Here in Ohio and in our small town our Church isn't exactly welcomed and embraced!  We weren't even sure how we were going to approach this activity!  Salt Lake sent a wire to our newspaper telling them we were going to have an open house and the paper interviewed Jack and our Scout Master.  OK then, I guess we'd better come up with something since a photographer was also coming out to document this event!  I put together a few picture boards using 100 photos from the past few years showing what our little troup 555 had done.
Jack and our friend Kyle...his wife Stacy writes  the blog Crawford Clan, put some props up.
On the table we had some of our Klondike awards and Stacy's son's shadow box from his scout years...he received his Eagle a couple of years ago and Dakota is now getting ready to go on a mission for the Church!  We had a couple of old Scout manuals. One from 1946!
Reading them is fun and seeing the notes from the old..boy/man who once owned it showing his advancements and the dates is pretty cool!  The best part is seeing that not much has changed...values that were important back then are still important today.  Duty to God and country, being honest, trustworthy, loyal, kind, courteous, clean, reverent and all the other values that seem to be a bit blurred by society today.  Since we were inviting our own scouts and the public, refreshments must served! (That's my motto..gather and feed!) I made a few different cookies. When I say "different", I don't only mean different flavors.  I had a cookie cutter shaped like the Boy Scout "Fleur De Lis" but somewhere between the cutter, the dough, and the oven it lost it's impact...
We decided they looked more like (a)..flying fish with 100 on them, or (b) ears of corn. Well, they tasted good! My other attempt at creativity turned out a bit better:
I thought some Boy Scout cookies were needed...can you find me in the mix? Hint: Pink scarf! Ha!  As predicted, we didn't get a huge turnout...although the photographer did show up.  I'll be curious to see what she came up with and if it makes the paper. The broadcast was good...a bit long...but good.  We enjoyed the company of those that came and the important part is inspiring these kiddos to continue on and also to go on to be adult leaders some day.  Here's the real reason we do this...
These are a couple of our scouts and they are great kids.  I've enjoyed being back in Scouting this past year and I hope we can go on for another 100yrs.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Three Little Words

 In the last hour I've muttered a few words...mostly three little words.  They are as follows:
 Are you kidding?
It's here already?
No way Hosea!
Guess what Jack!
Yep, it's here.
It's snowing out.
To explain it better I've included 3 little pics.
Snow on pumpkin
Snow on plants
Footprints in snow.....

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Weekend Thoughts

Today we made the trip home from Chicago.  It's a trip we've done for the last 40yrs.  We've gone for many reasons...weddings,  baby showers, vacations with Grandma, cousins, aunts and uncles, holiday celebrations.  Unfortunately, we've also gone for funerals.  Yesterday was the memorial service for my Sister-in-law. A celebration of a life well lived.  She and my brother only had a short time together.  In the scheme of things, she only had a short time here on earth.  But the length of time didn't stop the amount of living put into those years.  Looking at the picture board of all the things Candy and Phil shared, you realize that no time was wasted and much time was enjoyed.  Phil's doing as well as can be expected.  He has plans to head to Florida this winter. He said he just needs a break for a while.  Unless he decides to leave earlier, I'll see him when we make the trek back to Chi-town for our annual family Christmas gathering.  I think our family is made up of survivors.  We get through things and continue on with determination, blind faith, and usually a good sense of humor.  It was good to see family there, holding, hugging, smiling, and supporting.  It was good to see Phil's 3 children, their spouses and his grandchildren all together.  Our good family friend, Father Damien, did the service.  He was wonderful as always.  He's buried, married,  baptized, confirmed, laughed, and broke bread with us and been a huge support to my Mom and sister.  He and Jack have a good relationship and for some reason I always have to smile when I hear him say, "Oh, it's Dr. Jack".  Father followed us down to the funeral home, an hour from my Mom's house.  He had a hard time keeping up with Jack's speedy driving!  When he asked if Jack always drove over 60mi an hour I really did laugh!  Are you kidding me? Chicago? If you don't drive fast you will be run over! Anyway, I took some pictures...of course...but left the camera at Mom's!  My sister will get them to me, but for tonight I'll leave with just 2.  She put together a really special tribute to Candy.
It was filled with lovely photos and stories of her life.
I know Phil was very appreciative.  After we got home I made some homemade soup and had some of my Mom's homemade bread she sent home with us.
The weekend went quick and thankfully so did the drive home...Yes Father Damien, we did go faster than 60 miles per hour! I'm not asking for forgiveness!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Pink Scarf Project Full Circle

In October of 2012 I became involved in "The Pink Scarf Project".  This has been on my sidebar for a year.
The project was started by my blog buddy Vicki, at 2 Bags Full.  You can read all about it at her beautiful blog!  I can't believe a year as gone by so quickly.  I had some great friends here in my little town as well as other places over the country and globe contribute beautiful scarves. Some were purchased by folks who, like me(!), don't knit or crochet.  Most of the scarves I received however, were hand made.  So thoughtful, so beautiful.  Here is just an example:
My best friend Donna from Starkey Hollow was diagnosed last year with breast cancer and hearing about this project to make and give scarves to breast cancer patients really hit home. I decided to jump on this bandwagon.  It was my way of supporting Donna and others going through treatment.  Well, the month of October was the deadline to hand these beauties out.  Vicki asked Donna to give them out where she had her treatments.  I gave some to our hospital last week and the Cleveland Clinic, Wooster Ohio, will receive them also.  I made arrangements with our outpatient department where the chemo treatments are given, to hand them out.  They were really excited to participate. I contacted our hospital public relations person about it also and she had our local newspaper contact me.  The reporter came and interviewed Donna and me and did a great job of reporting!  I gave him a photo of 2 of our nurses from outpatient, Jenny and Kathy, accepting the scarves.
Today the article was in the paper and I hope they enjoyed their pic and the article!
The moto for this project was "Make a scarf, make a difference".  I added, "Give a scarf, give a smile".  I hope all who receive these gifts from the heart enjoy them and understand that we are all hoping for a cure and they are not alone in their fight. Thanks everyone who sent Vicki and myself the beautiful scarves that will touch so many lives.  Bloggers are the best!!