Thursday, December 31, 2009


Beauty is all around us...if we take the time to look. My children are beautiful! I know...nothing new...a mom saying her children are beautiful. But I'm talking about on the inside, too!

Jonathan's compassion and beauty is still masked (for the most part) behind being a 12 year old boy. I see glimpses when he holds the door for an elderly person, rushes to give me a hug when I come home but most profoundly is his love of animals. While he certainly enjoys hunting. If an animal is in need...he's there. He has a lassie vision in his head...even though I don't think he's ever seen the show. He loves that when Sidney is tired she curls up on his bed to sleep, and sleeps there every night.

Morgan's beauty has been shining brightly for sometime. Not only her stunning outer beauty when she's ready for a dance but her inner beauty when spending time with challenged friends. Most of you know she loves her sign language and has a good friend with CP. Well thanks to her Christmas gift from Nana and Pap Pap I get to show you a glimps of another side of Morgan...perhaps HER favorite side. We all know how much she loves her drag racing. Well Dad has also thought it was important for her to be able to take care of herself. I agree! She knows how to change her own oil. She's played a part in changing many engines, big and small. And now she knows how to change her tires. And no I don't mean a flat. I mean CHANGE her tires. Her grandparents bought her new tires for Christmas...I detect a little worry of a young girl on the snowy roads of Ohio. So Frank and Morgan went to his shop the day after Christmas to put her new 'boots' on. (that's racing talk) She loved it..really! She takes great pride in being a prima donna one minute and then going in throwing on her jeans and hoodie and getting dirty.

We were blessed with a beautiful snowfall this morning. I have always said "if it has to be better snow". The maple and oak trees are all ladden with snow on every branch. The pine boughs are almost touching the ground. It's that squeaky snow...the kind that the snow balls hurt.

So you comes in many forms...if you take the time to look. I would like to wish everybody a very Happy New Year! Bring on 2010!!!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas...

It's Christmas Eve! Wow...I should be stressed beyond repair! My wrapping isn't done, the puppy ate all the gingerbread last night (and Christmas cookies), and I have to go to the store to get food for Christmas breakfast. But instead I'm feeling rather relaxed enjoying a cup of java posting to my blog looking forward to heading to the gym with my dear friend Jack. What is wrong with me?! Well's what is 'right' with me. The peacefulness I feel is because God is with me...and I accept Him.

Don't misunderstand. I want my family to have a wonderful Christmas with gifts and goodies. And they will! It will all come together. And if I'm wrapping and watching Ralphie at midnight, it won't be any different than in years past accept for one thing...the smile on my face. Laughter, peace, friends and are the best gifts.

I thought I would share a few pictures and thoughts before I "get busy". This past year has been a rough one...and to be honest I can't wait for 2010. But as I was looking through pics to post I realized 2009 was a good year too.

We said good-bye to a dear friend whom I miss beyond measure (as does the rest of my family...mostly Momo). But, we welcomed in a new friend. And believe me, she is providing lots of mischief....but love too. We ventured to a new school and realized the grass was a beautiful shade of green right where we had been...and we're going back (can't wait). I remembered what a beautiful land we live on...and what amazing friends we are blessed with.

As Christmas approached this year our hearts began to open! Jon has begun singing the hymns in church and soaking in the sermons. I peaked in Morgan's room the other night and she was laying on her bed reading her Bible! Wow! We have always been Christian's. But I'm really beginning to feel Him. And it is amazing. Frank went hunting last weekend. While he walked through the ankle deep snow he also talked with God (something he's been struggling with as of late) and thanked Him for all his blessings. He is ALWAYS listening...even when your not talking!

My Christmas wish is for Peace and Love! I know, corny...but true. For all the little children to rest easy. For our soldiers to be safe. For the homeless to be warm. For the troubled hearts to be calmed. And most of all...for everyone to have a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

'Tis the Season...

Christmas concerts, baking and decorating...ooops almost I do NOT like to shop. I know it's unusual for a female but I really do not like to shop. I love to bake, spend time with friends and family and enjoy how the decorating makes the house feel when it's all done.

We have been very busy! Virtual juggling is my new, greatest achievement! Jon's concert was last week. He plays trumpet and seems to be really enjoying it. He's pretty good too...he's only in 7th grade!

This past Wednesday was bussier than usual. Jon had a basketball game at Crestview school and Morgan had her Christmas concert at Leetonia. We raced from Jon's game, finished making soup, gathered the items we needed for the concert and were back out the door. I was so happy my Mom was able to attend Jon's ball game and Mo's concert. She was also gracious enough to help me put together one of the raffle baskets for the concert...she makes it look so easy. I even enlisted my dear friend Jack. He was typing address labels that needed to go with me. What would like be without great friends and family?!
Morgan had a solo in the band concert and nailed it! It was beautiful! You could really forget your listening to kids play when you come listen to our kids...they are that good!!

I have been very involved in the Band Boosters for several years now...and I have to say the band kids are the BEST kids ever! And every year the seniors shuffle out and the "young ones" shuffle in..and they are still the best. I am not only impressed with their integrity and musical ability but their ability and willingness to step outside their comfort zone. During their concert Sammie had some french horn malfunctions. So Jon Dean grabbed his guitar and played an impromptu version of White Christmas. He did a fine job. Jon and Morgan have gone to school together since cool is that!?

Tonight after work, school and basketball practice we decided we should decorate the tree...afterall, there are only 8 days 'til Christmas. Jonathan and I strung the lights and we all helped with the ornaments. I have to confess that when I got home Morgan and Frank had rearranged the furniture, brought down the decorations and had already started decorating. Christmas carols were playing and they were both giddy! The Christmas Spirit was swirling around them both.

The plan for the weekend is to finish up the shopping (are we ever 'really' done?!) and get a firm handle on the baking. A little snow would be nice...

Merry Christmas to All!

Monday, November 30, 2009


...the sun on your face, your childs hand in yours, the frustration of too much to do, the satisfaction of paying off that credit card, the anger toward the driver who just pulled out in front of you, the renewal of Sunday morning worship, the grief of feeling your dog go to sleep for the last time in your arms.

It seems the emotion we feel and display most often is anger. And unfortunately it seems to be the most accepted. Anger absolutely has it's place...toward the child abuser, the thief, the murderer. Anger is used for walls against pain and sadness. Forgiveness and healing cannot break through the walls of anger.

Happiness...the emotion everyone strives for, many fake and few truly feel. That happiness you felt on Christmas morning as a child, the happiness you felt when you past your driving test or the happiness you felt when you saw your soon to be spouse for the first time on your wedding day.

The emotion no one wants to feel...sadness! Crushing sadness. The kind you feel when you not only have to decide to put your best friend to sleep...but hold her in your arms as life drains from her body. The sadness of a longtime marriage coming to an end or your best friend moving 2000 miles away.

Feeling is healing! Ever called up a friend and start crying at the sound of their voice? Or you're doing OK until your Mom asks "are you ok?"...then you lose it? Crying to a song on the radio or happy tears when your watching 'A Christmas Visitor'. Venting with a friend when crazy drivers, maddening bosses and unruly kids are driving us mad. We feel better when we feel...really feel!!!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Biggest Loser...

As many of you know I have become obsessed with The Biggest Loser. I started watching it last year and am in awe as I watch these people not just lose weight but change their lives. I am especially inspired by Ali Vincent. She weighed in at more than 230 pounds and when she won was a mere 112 pounds. Incredible! If she can do it...I can do it. Fortunately I don't have that much weight to lose...but if I continue on the path I am it won't be long.

I have belonged to the Community Center for about 9 months. In the beginning I was going at least 3 times a week. Then baseball, school, work, in the way. I have been going again hit and miss. I know I have to make it a priority...for me! I feel sooo much better emotionally when I go. Today I was fortunate enough to be joined my buddy Jack, who works out regularly. He kicked my butt!!! I found muscles I didn't know existed, ran farther than I thought I could and had an absolute blast!!! We were at the gym over an hour and a half and it flew by. Oh if he lived closer I would be "smokin hot" by next summer :)

If I was brave (or stupid) I would post my own "before" picture to compare to the "after". But sorry...

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Patty Cake Cookies...

After being inspired by my new cookbook I thought I would try my hand at posting a recipe. I have taken pictures during preparing several different dishes but never felt comfortable posting. I enjoy baking and cooking. And think I'm pretty good at it...and I am not one to toot my own horn. I happened upon a blog called The Pioneer Woman a few years ago and instantly fell in love with the stories, pictures and recipes. After sharing it with my Mom she apparently became hooked too. She surprised me with a copy of Ree's cookbook. Downhome recipes, normal ingredients and amazing pictues. Thank you Mom!!! After reading (yes reading) her cookbook it gave me the confidence to post a favorite of here goes....

2 c brown sugar
2 c granulated sugar
1 lb (4 sticks) butter/margarine
2 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
4 c flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
12 oz chocolate chips
1/2 c chopped pecans
2 c minute oatmeal
2 c crushed corn flakes

Cream the sugars and butter. Add vanilla and eggs. Blend flour with soda and baking powder, then add to sugar mixture. Finally add chips, pecans, oatmeal and corn flakes. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto baking sheet. Bake at 350F about 12 minutes.

These are large, yummy cookies. I am not one to follow a recipe to the letter. Therefore do not be afraid to substitute different flavored chips, nuts or cereal. I have used regular oatmeal if I was out of minute oatmeal. I think some people are afraid of cooking/baking because if they don't have the exact item in the exact quantity specified they fear the recipe will fail. While this may happen sometimes...other times that's how other great food is born. So get in the kitchen, make something yummy and have fun!!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Fall Roundup...

Happy Halloween everybody!!! What a great, rainy, cold day!

We have been passionate about Fall round-up for years. However had never had much luck. Breakage and poor weather have continued to ruin Fall round-up year after year. Well not this year!! While weather postponed it for two weeks...last night was beautiful. And fortunately they had problems with the "tree" (the starting lights) which postponed actual eliminations until the kids and I could get there from the last football game.

Frank was in a such a laid back mood. He was happy to have made a couple of runs and didn't care if he won any rounds or not. Well...he won some rounds. All the way to the final!!! Unfortunately he ended up being runner-up. But it was a great drag race with good lights and the car ran great...track was pretty greasy...but car and driver performed flawlessly. Soooo happy for Frank!!

Today is a wash for the juniors but the weather is supposed to clear and they will run tomorrow. Hopefully I will have additional good news to report.

Happy Halloween everyone...don't eat tooo much candy...on second thought...go ahead!!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Organized home...

I am a Virgo! Everything I have ever read says that Virgo's like things neat, orderly and in their place. How true, how true. When my area, desk and/or home are clean with everything in it's place I feel at peace. I have many non-Virgo friends who feel the same way.

I read an article on Yahoo the other day talking about 'energy zappers'. A cluttered home/office/space was on the list. Your brain doesn't get a chance to bounces from one object or pile of papers to the next. Yep, makes sense to me.

Do you ever drive past those homes where everything is neat and tidy. Not one of those big fancy houses with the professional landscape. That house where the grass is neatly cut, the flower beds are weed free, firewood cut and stacked with tarps neatly covering each stack. You can tell the people inside love their home. Yep...that's the kind of house/home I want. In my ideal world our house would be like the Cleaver's or the Cunningham's. Dusting is all done, counters are cleared, when you hang up your clothes they stay wrinkle free...I could go on but I think you get the idea.

I remember one day in particular when DH and I were first living together in a one-bedroom apartment. We have always had too much "stuff". Our multiple personalities are only rivaled by our multiple hobbies. He had been gone for the day and I was in cleaning mode. There wasn't a drawer or cupboard that I did not clean-out and organize. The laundry was done, the frig was cleaned out and dinner was cooking in the oven...even the candles were all lit. I couldn't wait for him to get home. That was the last time I feel that the house was really clean...all at the same time!

This morning as I was reading blogs (instead of cleaning...hhmmm maybe that's the problem) I happened on the LazyOrganizer. At first I felt bad for her kids but the more I read she makes a lot of sense. While I may not implement such a rigid schedule, I definitely will not feel as guilty when I have the kids clean their rooms before they go anywhere. Well today is a good day to I go...time to wake up kids!!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Senior night washing...

Tonight is Senior night for Morgan. This is an annual event held for Seniors during the last home football game. Parents come to the field and walk with their son/daughter to celebrate their accomplishments during high school. Every year for at least the last 8 years it has rained for senior night. And I mean RAIN!!! Typically we dress up for this special occassion. Heals and soggy football fields don't mix. However...I can't wait!

This morning a fellow Senior Mom sent an e-mail that was sooo fitting I felt compelled to share. Every moment is so precious..even if it's raining. We will dry! This will be Morgan's only Senior night and I intend to drink in every soggy moment. The stories we tell down the road will be colorfully enhanced by the rain.

Here's is the e-mail I received:


A little girl had been shopping with her Mom in Target. She must have been 6 yards old, this beautiful red haired, freckle faced image of innocence.

It was pouring outside. The kind of rain that gushes over the top of rain gutters, so much in a hurry to hit the earth it has no time to flow down the spout. We all stood there, under the awning, just inside the door of Target.

We waited, some patiently, others irritated because nature messed up their hurried day.

I am always mesmerized by rainfall. I got lost in the sound and sight of the heavens washing away the dirt and dust of the world. Memories of running, splashing so carefree as a child came pouring in as a welcome reprieve from the worries of my day.

Her little voice was so sweet as it broke the hypnotic trance we were all caught in, 'Mom let's run through the rain,' she said. 'What?' Mom asked.

'Let's run through the rain!' She repeated. 'No, honey. We'll wait until it slows down a bit,' Mom replied.

This young child wited a minute and repeated: 'Mom, let's run through the rain.' 'We'll get soaked if we do,' Mom said.

'No, we won't, Mom. That not what you said this morning,' the young girl said as she tugged at her Mom's arm. 'This morning? When did I say we could run through the rain and not get wet?'

'Don't you remember? When you were talking to Daddy about his cancer, you said, 'If God can get us through this, he can get us through anything!'

The entire crowd stopped dead silent. I swear you couldn't hear anything but the rain. We all stood silently. No one left. Mom paused and thought for a moment about what she would say. now some would laugh it off and scold her for being silly. Some might ignore what was said. But this was a moment of affirmation in a young child's life. A time when innocent trust can be nurtured so that it will bloom into faith.

'Honey, you are absolutely right. Let's run though the rain. If GOD let's us get wet, well maybe we just need washing,' Mom said.

Then off they ran. We all stood watching, smiling and laughing as they darted past the cards and yes, through the puddles. They got soaked. They were followed by a few who screamed and laughed like children all the way to their cars. And yes, I did. I ran. I got wet. I needed washing.

Circumstances or people can take away your material possessions, they can take away your money, and they can take away your health. But no one can ever take away your precious memories. So, don't forget to make time and take the opportunities to make memories everyday. To everything there is a season and time to every purpose under heaven.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

An interesting weekend....

Busy...yes! What I had planned...definately not!!

Friday was a my last home game at Leetonia concessions...said with a little tear. I have been in concession for the last 4 years. I have grown quite fond of my other Booster Mom's. Mo is a senior and Jon is going to Crestview so this is my last time at Leetonia. The weather was horribly cold and rainy...hence concession was extremely slow. But we had a good time laughing and passing the time.

This was to be fall roundup weekend at the drag strip...the race we look forward to every year. It's the final race of the season as well as trick or treating and trailer decorating contests. Lots of fun with a little crispness in the air and it's just fun. Most people stay for the weekend and watching the track wake up and greeting your competitors with a good morning is kinda cool. Due to the weather being cold and rainy they postponed fall round up until Halloween weekend.

Jon and I were supposed to go stay overnight up by the game but decided to go see Michael Stanley and the Resonators instead. Jon was ok since he wasn't feeling well and just wanted to sleep. We had dinner with our great friends Medford and Sandi to celebrate Medford's birthday and then went to see the show. It was great!! I have been to several MSB shows and have never been disappointed.

Then Sunday was the big Steelers game!!! Jon and I were very excited when we won 2 tickets on the 50 yard line at Heinz field for the Steelers to host the Cleveland Browns. Then we realized we were in the next to the highest row of seats!!! Unfortunately we left before kickoff. Jon wasn't feeling well. But we did have the in person experience.
We were there when the gates opened and got a couple pics of Hines Ward and Big Ben. I'm pretty sure it's the first and last time I will ever spend $4 on a 20 oz bottle of Coke!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Renewing the soul...

This past weekend we loaded up the motorhome and headed south. Unfortunately Morgan was not able to come along...something I'm trying to get used to. She's 17, a senior in high school and has her own activities she wants to attend.

We, of course, took our puppy (Sidney) with us...our house would not have survived her being alone that long. As we were headed out of town I could feel the weight of the daily rat race lift from my shoulders. We were blessed with beautiful weather. As many of you know...I am a girl from another older time. While I enjoy the internet, cars and electric...I also enjoy cooking in a cast iron skillets over an open fire, walking in the woods drinking in God's magnificent artwork and listening to sound of crickets and bull frogs float in on the cool crisp evening air.

We camped at a campground designed for horse trail riding. There were a couple of pounds for fishing, numerous marked trails for walking (or riding) and serenity all around. For me sitting by the campfire and hearing the clippity clop of the horse's shoes hitting the roadway...well that's just a little piece of heaven.

Jon wanted to "explore". So he loaded his new fanny pack with all of the apple, a pepsi, his knife and his whistle. He grabbed his fishing pole, strapped Beary in and off "they" went. Frank and I followed about 15 minutes later...when we got to the Jon. We decided to head along the blue trail (that's the one that runs between the 2 ponds) to catch up with our boy. When the blue trail came to a gravel road we agreed Jon wouldn't have crossed the road so we turned back...figuring he was probably sitting at camp wondering where we were. As we approaced a fork in the road (aka the white trail splits from the blue trail) we decided to take the white was in the direction I had thought I heard Jon's whistle earlier. Well let me tell you...the white trail is LONG. An hour later when we arrived back at camp we saw evidence that Jon had been back...his fishing pole and Beary were left behind. So we decided to sit tight and wait for him to show back up. Let me tell ya...every minute felt like 10. Finally my cell phone said I had a voice message...not enough signal for it to actually ring. Jon had left a message he ended up at the shooting range (he had crossed the road) and was headed back. I being the worrier lept up and started running toward the shooting range. This is not a straight shot people...this is back up the blue trail...yes I said UP. A twisting, turning gravel trail. Thought I was going to have a heart attack half way up...heart pounding in my ears, sweat rolling (gotta get back to the gym!) But I kept going. I got to the gravel road and thought I heard voices. I called Jon's name...nothing. Decided to walk toward the voices and (to my delight) around the corner comes a pair of horses with my son on the back of one of them. These wonderful people were camped at the same campground and heard Jon blowing his whistle. They followed the sound and rescued my dear son..who confessed he was starting to accept the fact he would have to spend the night in the the way it was around 5pm.
After all the excitement and exercise we had worked up an appetite. So we threw a steak in the skillet, some corn on the grate and rounded off our meal with some home canned beats and some mennonite rolls. That was the best meal I had had in years. And of course for dessert....toasted marshmallows! Frank did the shopping for our trip and decided to treat us with not only regular marshmallows, but strawberry ones too. They were delicious.

The next day we scouted out around their hunting grounds (a bit farther south) before returning for lunch. We knew it was time to start packing up, but Jon wanted to fish one more time. He caught this beautiful large mouth bass (Dad hooked this one the day before but failed to bring it to shore). So much to our dismay...we had to head home. It was so peaceful and beautiful down there. I can't wait to go back!!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Over the hill?

Well I turn the big 4-0 tomorrow, Sept. 3rd. My wonderful friends and amazing family planned a surprise party for me this evening. You can check out the details, so beautifully written by my Mom on her blog.

Thank you sooo much Beth, Tami, Sandi, Teresa, Carrie, Jacquie, Kelli and, of course, Mom and Morgan. In this day of schedules so busy you need to schedule time to turn around...these beautiful ladies took time out for ME. Each one holds a special place in my heart.

Beth...for being my savings grace! If I had had a would've been her.

Tami...for always smiling and making me smile. You have a heart of gold...and the greatest boys in the world.

Sandy...for showing me how to do anything I put my mind to. You're such a strong, compassionate woman...the perfect role model.

Teresa...for lighting up a room just by walking in. Your unwavering faith and calmness are contageous virtues.

Carrie...for always making me laugh. Oops...I'm the one who makes you laugh! You've shown me it's ok to laught at myself.

Jacquie...for allowing me to be me! To vent! To say whatever is on my mind...and its OK!

Kelli...what an amazing young lady you've become.

Mom...what can I say...I love you!!! I now understand the sacrifices, sleepless nights and tears you've shed throughout the years. You always put me first! Thank you and I love you don't even begin to express the depth of my gratitude and affection. beautiful and amazing daughter. I couldn't be more proud of you! You make my life complete. I love you more than life itself.

There couldn't be a better birthday present than this amazing group of ladies. I am truly blessed. Thank you all for making my birthday perfect!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

This 'n That...

This is our last "free" weekend. Jon starts at his new school on Monday. I think he is am I. This year has seemed to turn topsy turvy for my family. When my children were little I told hubby that whatever school they attended in Kindergarten would be where they graduated. Since we were renting at the time and Morgan was 3 1/2 we stepped up our house hunting. We were successful and Mo will graduate from Leetonia...where she has attended since she was 5. However, things are not looking good for our school to be in existence by the time Jon graduates. Therefore we have decided to send him to a neighboring district. He is in complete agreement and was excited. But as we close in on the first day that excitement has turned to nervousness. You suddenly realize you don't know anyone and the comfort zone you have built over the last 13 years is gone. I'm sure we will have rough days. But I'm hopeful that either a.) he will love his new school or b.) Leetonia's levy will pass and he can head back "home".

We also are preparing to leave our puppy, Sidney, home alone for a full day for the first time. It's been such a change adjusting to a puppy again. We miss Josie everyday...some days the pain is overwhelming...but we're moving forward. Sidney is learning to live with us. Her house training is coming along...slower than I would like, but she's getting there. She definately seems to be getting comfortable with us...not saying she's attached...but comfortable. She goes to the track with us every weekend and is starting to bark when people come over. At the track she stays under the trailer until we come back from running the cars. Then we head to the motorhome for a drink and a snack. Saturday we had some downtime between races. Apparently Sidney and Frank needed a little cap nap.

This morning I was getting ready for church...August is one of my months to Deacon and feeling a bit lonely. Frank was headed to the track to run, Morgan was working and Jon had just rolled out of bed. I've been a bit overwhelmed lately with Morgan being a senior and getting ready to start her adult life. I suddenly know just how precious every book we read, game we played and song we sang were. I am all about family. Always have been. Sundays are my favorite. When I was growing up it was a time for church, family picnics, visiting...things like that. Now it's still family day. Could be church, visiting, watching Nascar, football or drag racing (on a good day all three)...could just be getting some chores done as a family and then sitting down for with nummies while we play some cards or a board game. Lately Mo has had to work alot of Sundays, and it's just not the same without her. When I opened the frig this picture was what greeted me.

I think it was God's way of saying everything will be ok. I know, I know! But who says God can't use a pickle to communicate?!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Around The Dinner Table...

Sitting down with your family for dinner (aka supper) used to be part of daily life. Unfortunately due to schedules that are way too busy families rarely take the time to visit over an evening meal.

When I was pregnant with my daughter (17+ years ago) I started making my hubby sit down for dinner. Even though it felt a little odd with just the two of us...we kept it up. When Morgan was born we pulled her high chair up to the table...and then there was three. By the time Jon came along dinner together was part of our everyday schedule.
This is such a wonderful time to decompress from the day, to connect with your family and to get ready for what your evening may hold. Chores, games, homework, school activities, meetings, etc... With a little planning (and I mean a little) you can have a meal. It doesn't have to be fancy. It could be take out (but not too often). It's more about the family time than the food.

Over the last few months my world has felt disconnected and ungrounded. Dinner became whatever you could grab on your way to the next "obligation". I hadn't "talked" to my kids or my hubby for that matter. I took a step on Monday to get back in touch with my life, family and peaceful feeling by planning a sit down dinner. As you see the food was not fancy (tasty though). We were ready to sit down to dinner when Morgan walked in the door from band. It was amazing how the mood of the household lifted just by taking the time to sit down together. Morgan shared her first day of school, Jon talked about what he did throughout the day (he starts at Crestview a week later than Mo)...we just visited. It's great to reconnect.
Even if you open a couple cans of soup and grab the loaf of bread...take the time to sit down with your family and your friends. It's more rewarding and relaxing than you can imagine. Life can change in the blink of an eye...grab every moment you can while you can.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Now that's Blog candy...

This is my first attempt at linking for blog candy. If you scrapbook or rubber have to check this out!

Good Luck!!!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Goodbye dear friend...

March 30, 1997 was the day our dear Josie was born, 5 years to the day after my beautiful daughter, Morgan was born. Six weeks later she came to live with us. I was pregnant with my son at the time. Josie was very smart and caught on to commands quickly. She did, however, think that she was human. And I now know she wasn't...she was soooo much more!!!

I could tell many, many stories of how great she was. Funny stories too. She loved human food, bread and cheese being her favorites. Shortly after I redid the kitchen the cupboard were chipped. I finally figured why day I found the empty wrapper, from the brand new loaf of bread. She was jumping up and pulling the bread down. From then on we made sure to push the loaf to the back of the counter, but made sure she got a slice every morning.

She went camping, boating, swimming and to the drag strip. For over 12 years she was a very special part of our family. The vet had originally projected she would live to be 9 to 11 years old. When we passed 11 I was thrilled...when we reached 12...I was elated. I knew she was getting old but I was starting to think she might make it to 13. Unfortunately, that was not to be the case.
Her arthritis had increased but other than that she was healthy. Good heart and lungs, her eyesight was still good...I suspect her hearing was waining a bit though. Her appetite was good, especially for bread, cheese and ice cream. She loved when Jon won his ball game..she always got a baby vanilla in a cup.

On July 24th it became crystal clear that she couldn't be forced to endure anymore pain. Her back legs weren't working at all. And the pain meds she was on were, while a lethal dose for humans, not nearly enough to dull her pain. It was the hardest thing I have ever ever had to do. Morgan, Jack (the most amazing friend in the world) and I were with her. My friend Terri works at the vets and was there too. I can't tell you how much my heart was screaming no, no, no don't give her the injection while my mind knew this was my opportunity to love her as much as she had always loved me. She was in so much pain. And then for the first time in a very long time she was still, calm, pain free. But my friend was gone! The pain is unbearable! We burried her at the barn...she loved being at the barn...with her blanket from my ottoman and her rope.

Each day will get better...I know that. The week before Josie left us we had adopted a new puppy, her name is Sidney. Josie liked her. She certainly does not, will not, replace Josie...but she helps the healing process.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today is Mom's birthday! I won't tell you how old she is but she looks damn good and can still, and probably always will, run circles around me.

She is an amazing Grandma (aka Neener). Growing up Mom had to work but was always there when I needed her...still is! I took swimming lessons every year and the days she could watch from the observation deck were the most special. When she worked swing shift I always liked dayturn. When I came home from school she was usually ironing sheets or curtains watching her "story". It felt comforting having her there.

We did the dishes together in the evenings...she'd wash and I'd dry. Some of the best conversations took place around that sink. And they weren't deep heavy talks...just about stuff...just catching up. As I got older the talks got a little deeper and I could always go to her, even when I'm sure she would rather NOT discuss whatever the current teenage crisis was.

While financially times were always tough, she always made our house a home. And when the big events came...16th birthday, graduation, my wedding...she always made them special and part just by being there by my side.

Now that I'm a Mom I understand the sacrifices she made...and she made alot of them. Thank you for being an amazing Mom!!! I LOVE YOU!!!

Saturday, July 11, 2009


What a beautiful summer day we have had. We went to the drag strip this morning and got our runs in before the rains came. But the rain was a nice steady garden friendly rain. And our garden needed the rain. Then the sun came back out accompanied by a wonderful breeze.

Jon and I decided to head to a local farmers market for some fresh fruits and veggies. That's one of my favorite parts of summer. The fruits are so much sweeter, tomatoes taste like tomatoes and I enjoy canning and freezing. My family enjoys the taste of summer from the canned goods in winter, too. They all love fresh blueberries. My Morgan used to call them booberries...we always had to have them in the cooler when we went camping. And we can't leave without picking up some Stewart's soda. Frank's favorite is Black Cherry, Jon's is Cherries 'n Cream and Mo & I love the classic...Cream Soda.

After we took some leftovers to the chickens the kids wanted to go horseback riding. Romeo (the brown horse) is the only one who is broke to ride. Meg (the yellow one) is what they call "green broke". But Morgan had a lot of luck with her tonight. Meg was responding well to her commands and she was able to walk all around the front pasture with her. Jon did ok on Romeo except when Jon was trying to get him to go one way and exclaimed "oh great, now he's in reverse!". Cracked me up!
Now they are building a bon fire and roasting marshmallows! Yep, yep...summertime...good times!