Welcome! I am glad you are here. Join me with a cup of your favorite beverage and see what is going on in my life and what is on my mind. I would love to have you join my site and you can do that on the left side where it says 'followers'. And please leave a comment! Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, July 18, 2015


Here we are, already starting the second half of July! Summer will be over far too soon for the kids who will have to go back to school in August.

I thought I would get back here far sooner, but being so busy I was either working, napping or unable to put two words together and make a sentence.

We had our family reunion last Saturday and it seemed to go over quite well. I think we had about 20 people there. I do wish more had come, but then I think it would have been harder to visit with everyone. The potluck dinner was very good. I am hoping everyone will send us the recipes of the things they brought so we can put them in a family cookbook that we will put together and share with family. I did get the recipe for the awesome banana cake, and will share it later. (sorry, you will have to wait)

A bridal shower has come and gone for my granddaughter. She got many very nice gifts, plus will not run out of toilet paper and paper towels any time soon! Next is the wedding in about 6 weeks. I still don't have anything to wear, and have to get the wedding gift so that is what I will be working on for now.

The California sister-in-law and the Colorado niece have been here and gone again. It was really nice seeing them both again as it has been a few years. All this extra activity has really made me tired, so have only gotten things done that were most important, and unfortunately, blogging was not at the top of the list.

I may not post again until after the wedding. I have been saving up bits and pieces to write about, and am sure I will collect several memories as well, so please check back.

Sunday, June 7, 2015



Don't worry, I have not forgotten you! I am neck deep in genealogy again and it has priority. I feel like I did when I had to write a high school thesis before I could graduate high school. I had a lot of research to do, and then put it all together and write it, including footnotes and bibliography. That required a whole lot of time and work. Remember those days? If you went to college, you had even more experience doing that.

It is necessary to get this work done before July 11. That is when our family reunion is and I want it at least close to completion as I can get it by then. I am printing copies of census records concerning ancestors, and any other records I have managed to find online. I just recently found online the naturalization card for one of my great grandfathers. It all gets so interesting that I don't want to stop.

As to BRB, I can't say how soon that will be since the summer is just heating up and getting really busy until fall. So bear with me! As Arnold said, "I'll be back!" I will try to pop in now and then.

Saturday, May 23, 2015


When I was growing up May 30  was called Decoration Day. Several years ago that was changed to Memorial Day, and on a Monday so that it could be a 3-day weekend holiday.

A little history lesson - the first Decoration Day was declared 3 years after the Civil War ended. That was 1868. It was a day to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers.

Today, we decorate anyone's grave, usually family that have passed on. It is good to remember them as well, but it seems to me that the original intent of the holiday has lost its meaning. Our local American Legion puts a star next to the graves of veterans, along with a small American flag, so there is some distinction to show others there is a veteran buried there. Most cemeteries will have some kind of ceremony on the grounds, including Taps on a trumpet.

The mural in the picture above, is painted on the side of our Legion building. That wall is also right next to the property where my husband and I lived. Our garage was directly in front of the Legion wall here. It is so fitting to have the mural here, since my husband was a WWII veteran and very proud of it. He was also a Legion member from the time he got out of the service, until his death.

According to a newspaper article about this mural, the faces of the men were purposely left blank so that you could picture your loved one there.

I hope you have spent a little time this weekend, remembering those that have died in your family, as well as friends, but especially any veterans in your family. They fought hard for your freedom, and many lost their lives in the fight.

Friday, May 22, 2015


This weekend officially begins the summer cookout season.

In the past, every year on Memorial Weekend we went camping. Naturally, we had to grill hamburgers or it wouldn't be a holiday weekend, right? Or maybe you get together with some friends and have a picnic.

Some of you may remember that I am one of the world's great procrastinators, and I usually forget to take the ground beef out of the freezer ahead of time, whether for picnics or a meal at home. So here I am, with frozen meat at the last minute. What to do?

The usual way to defrost when you don't have time to put it in the fridge overnight, is to put the package under running water, leave it sit on the counter top, or try defrosting in the microwave. My experience with putting anything frozen in the fridge overnight is that it never thaws overnight, but takes a couple of days. Leaving it sit on the counter top until thawed is not safe, and still takes a long time. So I end up trying to defrost in the microwave, which can be tricky. Sometimes the outer edges get cooked before it is thawed and that doesn't work well if you want to form patties or balls.

I was reading a beef council section of the newspaper recently and found a tip on how to thaw ground beef a safe and quick way. You may wonder why I would be reading such a section since I don't raise beef cattle, but they often have good tips and sometimes recipes for using beef. If you would like to see more, check out this website:  http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/.

Here are the tips listed in the news article on how to defrost ground beef in the microwave in less than 5 minutes, and you can still form burgers, patties or meatballs this way!

1. Remove a pound of frozen ground beef from packaging and place in a gallon size storage bag.

2. Seal the storage bag leaving a small opening for steam to escape.

3. Heat the bag in the microwave (on a microwave-safe plate) for one minute on high.

4. Flip the bag over.

5. Heat on HIGH for 1 more minute, then wait 1 minute.

6. Remove beef from the microwave and massage the beef for 10 second.s

7. If needed, heat on HIGH for 30 seconds longer, followed by 30 seconds rest. The leaner the ground beef, the less time in the microwave.

The ground beef should not be hot to the touch. You don't want to cook the meat, just thaw it enough to form it into your desired shape.
(From the Iowa Beef Industry Council)

Now I admit I have not tried this yet, but will do so when the need arises.

The best thing to do is form patties or make meat balls as soon as you bring the ground beef home from the store, but we are often in a hurry so just throw the package in the freezer to deal with later. You can also buy already frozen patties, but that is not as frugal, plus the ground beef may not be the best, or you like to add your seasoning and other ingredients before freezing.

Sometimes it is just easier to grab a package of frozen hot dogs and put those on the grill instead!

Have a great holiday weekend, and don't forget to honor the veterans first.

(the Beef Industry Council did not pay me to write this. I discovered this myself.)

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


My daughter recently posted this old picture of me on Facebook. One of my friends mentioned putting this on the blog, so here it is.

I have my new pet, Pal, in front of me, dressed in doll clothes. I did that a lot with both the dog and the kitties, poor things. They were my live 'babies'. I had a lot of dolls, too, and loved to play with them.

It looks like the doll dress might match the dress I am wearing. Mom made most of my clothes as well as doll clothes so it is very possible they match. The doll clothes would be made from the fabric that was left after making mine. The matching dresses could be the reason Mom took the picture, showing off my new dress and doll's dress.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015


About 7 years ago I received this in an email, printed it, and never thought it would become part of a blog. I pray you get as much out of it as I did.


You put the devil out, but you let him leave his bags.

Never quite looked at it like this before. . . .

You got out of a bad relationship because it was bad,
but you are still resentful and angry.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You got out of financial debt, but you still can't control
the desire to spend on frivolous things.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You got out of a bad habit or addiction,
but you still long to try it just one more time.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You said, I forgive you, but you can't seem to forget
and have peace with that person.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You told your unequally yoked mate that it was over,
but you still continue to call.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You got out of that horribly oppressive job, but you're still
trying to sabotage the company after you've left.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You cut off the affair with that married man/woman,
but you still lust after him/her.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You broke off your relationship with that hurtful abusive
person, but you are suspicious and distrusting of every new
person you meet.
You let the devil leave his bags.

You decided to let go of the past hurts from growing up in an
unstable family environment, yet you believe you are unworthy of love from others, and you refuse to get attached to anyone.
You let the devil leave his bags.

When you put the devil out, please make sure he takes his bags.
                                                                       Author unknown

Wednesday, May 6, 2015


In another area of the grove, my dad built a lazy susan picnic table. I don't know why he chose that spot as that area was more dense and had lots of weeds and undergrowth there, which also meant more bugs and mosquitoes. Swatting bugs at a picnic in no 'picnic'!

I wish I had a good picture of that table but I didn't find one. Here are two pictures of one of the picnics we had out there. Look at all those weeds!

Notice all the women have scarves on their heads and most of the men had caps, but then farmers always had caps on. It was too long ago for me to remember the reason for the scarves. It might have been protection from bird droppings? Or maybe to keep the bugs out of the hair, or it was just chilly out there.

Notice the bench made with two large old wooden wagon wheels and planks. There is a large log stump standing in front for a table and a metal picnic basket sitting on top of it.

Now, about that lazy susan table. It was also made from an old wooden wagon wheel plus the hub and axle. The axle was planted into the ground so that the wheel would turn. Dad covered that with wood to become the lazy susan part of the table. We could just spin the wheel around to get to the dish, catsup bottle, or whatever we wanted. Around the outside of the wheel, Dad used planks to make a stationary ring where we put our plates and cups so we could eat. You can see some old chairs being used, but Dad also had pieces of logs cut to chair seat height that we could sit on. I thought both the table and bench were unique ideas. I don't know if he thought them up himself or if he had seen something like it somewhere. It was fun, except for the mosquitoes!

At first I was thinking this is the same bench that was in the grove. But when I look at the other one, this is made a little different. The one in the grove seems to have planks on both sides of the back board, so you could sit on either side. I think the one by the house only had one seat, and this back board is wider than the other one. The wheels might be smaller on this one too. Wish my memory was better, or maybe that I had paid more attention at the time. I think we take things for granted when we are kids.

Dad didn't make a lot of things that I can remember. He was too busy farming for one thing. I do remember watching him make a ring for me out of a dime. I wish I still had that ring.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015


Memories. . . . . . .

Growing up on a farm with a large grove, I and my friends often played in the grove. Sometimes there were vines hanging from the trees that were strong enough to swing on. I have no idea what kind of vines these were. One day my girlfriend and her older brother decided to make a playhouse in the grove. There was a small junk pile in there, where Mom and Dad threw things that couldn't be burned. Among the items were old metal tractor seats that looked something like this:

And there were old seat springs that were something like this:

Those became our sofa and chairs in our playhouse. We would find old aluminum coffee pots, teakettles, and I don't remember what else. We made 'walls', or at least marked where the walls would be, by pushing short forked tree branches into the ground and then laying long, narrow branches in the forks. I am pretty sure the older brother came up with that idea. My memory no longer tells me what else was in this playhouse, but we did have some fun with it. Maybe it was more fun just making it than it was playing in it. This just shows what kids can do with old junk and some imagination to make their own playthings. Those were the 'good old days.' That was before television, computers, cell phones, WIIs, Playstation, and such. We made our own fun.

Monday, May 4, 2015


I had clipped the following from a church magazine some time ago, and just ran across it again. I am sharing it with you, and then I get to throw the paper away because I will have it recorded here. One less paper in my pile!

ROBELASH: When the sleeve of a robe catches the arm of a pew and abruptly turns the person sideways -- and becomes a pain in the neck. (When you witness robelash, look for that person after worship to offer a neck rub and some kind words.)

BIBLIDUE:  The build-up of bookmarks, bulletins, notes, and other miscellanea that collects in one's Bible.
(guilty of this one!)

HYMNASTICS:  1. The entertaining body language of the song leader. 2. The contortions of juggling multiple songbooks.

NARTHEXEGESIS: Unsolicited post-sermon commentary given the preacher by armchair biblical theologians.
(don't know how to pronouce this? --- narthex.eh.gee.sis)

PEWTRIFY: To occupy a precise spot in the sanctuary for more than fifteen years without once, showing signs of sentient life.
( I had to look up what sentient means - able to perceive; feel things; conscious)

DEACONSCRIPT: An unwilling church officer cajoled into a position of leadership.

HYMNPROVISATION:  The abrupt and unannounced transition from one song to another, usually a chorus unfamiliar to most present.
(that is when our praise team are the only ones singing.)

PULPTUITARY: That phenomenon familiar to those seated on the front pew, during which a preacher produces hazardous conditions with alliterative Ps.

I hope this gave you a giggle or two.

Friday, May 1, 2015


It has been quite awhile since I did a FAITH FRIDAY post. I have been saving some, so it is time to get back to this.

I listen to several ministers on TV, and one of them is Ron Carpenter. One week he talked about Ruth and Boaz, and how Boaz slept on the threshing floor. A threshing floor is where wheat is tossed into the air so that the wind blows the chaff away. The wheat kernels are heavier than the chaff, so they fall to the floor.

When harvesting anything there is always a part that is kept and a part that is thrown away.

Jesus lives on the threshing floor. He throws US up in the air. The Holy Spirit is the wind that removes what we don't need, so that eventually only what is good remains in us.

Thursday, April 30, 2015


Did you get the story figured out?

Here is the story again, with the answers.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

On a certain February day, a pair of SPOONERS started on their journey through life. He had given her enough compliments to TURNER head. He promised never to BEATER or WHIPPER and to keep her CUP of happiness full. Their home at the FORK of the road had a PANtry and all. As they approached she tried to open the door, but could not, and he said, "Dear, I CAN OPENER."

Their first dinner was not a grand success as she forgot to SIFTER flour into the biscuits and STRAINER tea. All this made her as hot as an OVEN. He wanted to SQUEEZER but was afraid to do so. He told her he was TEAKETTLEd (tickled) to death over the dinner but was glad he had not jumped from the FRYING PAN into the fire.

When twilight approached he SPIDER looking out of the window at the big DIPPER and murmured softly to her, "Dear, you never can be anything but sweet." And she replied, "No, but the CREAM CAN."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

What's that? Did I hear a bunch of groans?
Tell me how many you guessed right in the comments.

If you do want to use this for a shower, it might be a good idea to list the kitchen items in random order to give them some ideas for answers.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


Spring is finally here, and it won't be long and it will be June. We all know what that means, don't we? Weddings! June has always been known as the wedding month, though I don't know why. It seems there are more weddings in September now.

I have a granddaughter getting married the end of August, so no a June bride, but there will some bridal showers coming up before long.

In case you are giving a bridal shower for someone, you might be interested in this little game that was played at a shower I attended decades ago. It is a little story about the bride and groom, but with some blank spaces. The ladies are to fill in those blanks with items from the kitchen to complete the story. I will admit that the younger generation might not know what some of these things are, but the older ladies should be able to get most of them.

Like I did in a previous post with a game, I will give you the story with the blanks, and tomorrow I will give you the answers.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

On a certain February day a pair of ___________ started on their journey through life. He had given her enough compliments to ________ head. He promised never to ________ or _________ and to keep her ____ of happiness full. Their home at the _____ of the road had a ____try and all. As they approached she tried to open the door, but could not, and he said, "Dear I ____________."

Their first dinner was not a grand success as she forgot to _______ flour into the biscuits and ________ tea. All this made her as hot as an ______. He wanted to _________ but was afraid to do so. He told her he was ________________ to death over the dinner but was glad he had not jumped from the _________________ into the fire. 

When twilight approached he  ____________ looking out of the window at the big ___________ and murmured softly to her, "Dear, you never can be anything but sweet. " And she replied, "No, but the ______________."

Tuesday, April 28, 2015


I need a kick start to get going with blogging again. There are just too many ways to spend my time. I recently went through my pictures folder and deleted many of them. I ran across these, remembering I was going to blog about them. So here it is.

Several years ago, 1992 in fact, that I did the following two counted cross stitch projects. Reminder to self - always initial and date your projects. You can see how much this helps since I would have never remembered how long ago it was.

Since my husband was Dutch, and I live in a predominately Dutch community, I knew I had to make these two pictures.

 Blue Delft is also popular with the Dutch. I really like this one.

These two pictures always hung in our kitchen. But in this little house, I just can't find a place for them. I asked my kids if they were interested in having them, so they will go to my son later.

Monday, April 13, 2015


I have a very crafty friend who enjoys making her own greeting cards. I don't know where she comes up with all the cute ideas. I know I could never come up with them.

Here is a card she made just for me after my cat, Felix, died. I am sorry the pictures aren't that great, but you get the idea.

This is the front of the card. Those three red dots are actually 'gems' that are glued on.

Inside the card is the cute tag that is also glued on. This card WILL go into my permanent collection for several reasons, among them is the artistry, because a friend made it especially for me, and in remembrance of my fur baby companion.

Friday, April 10, 2015


This is how I feel this week! I had not intended to take so long between posting again, and I have no excuse other than being busy with several other things that took priority with my time and energy.

We have been having some dark, dreary and damp days and that does not help with my energy either. I need sunshine! But we need rain, too.

I need to be working on studying two different Bible studies, and am not getting those all done. I have been working with a cousin as we try to get things organized for our family reunion coming up this summer. And I set up a Facebook group for the reunion as well. It doesn't seem like it should be much work but it all does eat up a lot of time. Since I do not sleep well at night, I need an afternoon nap almost every day. You may say that if I skip the nap I would sleep better at night. Nope. It doesn't work that way for me, so I need to catch sleep when I need it. All I can say is that it is a good thing I live alone!

I am still on post surgery restrictions so am limited to lifting no more than 10 pounds, and not do anything strenuous. Other than that and my knees, I am feeling quite well. And since I need to take it easy, it should be a good time to do some blogging, but I also should be working on getting the genealogy binder put together so it is ready for the family reunion. I know the days will go faster than I would like as far as getting that done, so I am starting to get a little tense. Not panicking yet, but it won't take long. I feel like I am on a treadmill and it keeps going faster and faster, and I can't keep up.

I also have two letters I need to write to some high school classmates. I had intended to write one of them shortly after Christmas when I got a nice letter from her, and now we are 10 days into April already. My unwritten to-do list keeps getting longer and longer.

Right now my tummy says it is past time for breakfast, and I haven't had my first cup of coffee yet. So I am off to take care of the physical needs for now, and hope to write some more posts today, but I also must work on a Bible study today, so we will see how far I get.

Thursday, April 2, 2015


When my daughters were here, they were going through some of my old photo albums. I showed them a recently found picture of my mom when she was a teenager, and I said I thought the oldest daughter looked a little like her and the youngest daughter couldn't see it. We always say the oldest looks like their dad's sister, and she does, including some mannerisms.

Later the younest daughter sent these pictures as you see them, side by side. The girl on the left is my oldest daughter and on right is my mother. My youngest was totally shocked! I didn't realize it was this close either. What do you think?

Oldest daughter ---------------Mom

The old colored photos are deteriorating. Who knew, at the time, that the colors would change over the years?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015



It is a little hard to believe that it has been 10 days since surgery. One daughter and the twins left for home Saturday afternoon, and the other daughter left on the Tuesday after surgery.

The daughter that stayed shampooed some of my carpets as well as my van, and giving the van a good cleaning inside. Now the house and van smell so much fresher. Those were both much needed jobs to be done and I was not able to do either because of my knees. And now I can't do too much and can only carry 10 lbs, which the doctor said was a gallon of milk. I really do appreciate all the help from the girls while they were here.

I have received several lovely cards, and some of the church members have brought meals over. I appreciated the food but the visiting meant even more. Today is Sunday as I write, and after church a couple from church dropped off the bulletin and the things in my church mailbox, plus something large in a plastic grocery bag. It turned out be a gift basket from a church committee called the ARC Angels, and this is what they do. Anyone who has been ill and/or in hospital will usually receive one made up especially for them, and the people who are doing this is kept secret. As I type this I realize I need to get a picture of it. If it isn't in this post it will be in the next one.

 This is the gift basket from my church. There is a current issue of Better Homes and Gardens, and one of Midwest Living. These are two magazines I really enjoy but no longer subscribe. Also 2 pair of fuzzy, soft slipper socks, Aveeno body lotion, Suave Sweet Pea & Violet body wash, and a Skinny Cow candy bar.

This is the bouquet my daughters gave me at the hospital. I should have taken this earlier when it was still fresh. This is after 10 days. The vase is a blue canning jar. That was chosen because I have a few antique green jars.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

PART 4 . . . SURGERIES continued

The day has finally arrived for the complete hysterectomy. My daughter and 10 year old twins came the night before, and my other daughter arrived about 45 minutes before we had to leave for the hospital.

The man at the admitting desk had lived in the same town I had lived in for awhile. And the gal that took my insurance cards and other admitting detail used to work in my local hospital several years ago. Do you find that no matter where you go or how far from home you are, there are always people you have some connection to?

A volunteer came with a wheelchair and wheeled me to the pre-op area and I got the 'lovely' paper surgery gown on, then had a line of several people come in to prep me. Would you believe we all had a hilarious time? We did! My daughter's were in with me, and one is a medical assistant and had the same procedure done that I was going to have, so she asked questions. We all joked around a bit with each person that came in and several said we made their day!

One especially funny incident was when a nurse was listening to my heart and all of a sudden this loud, weird voice said something like, "Help. I am stuck in your pocket and can't get out." and it kept repeating. It was my daughter's cell phone letting her know someone had texted her. It set us all to laughing and the nurse said she thought my heart was speaking to her, which has never happened before. More laughter! We definitely made her day!

When my surgeon came in to see me before surgery, he went to sit down on the rolling stool, his feet slipped out and he fell onto the seat, making it go down to a lower level. More laughter. He said he was always afraid he would slip one day, so he got that out of the way. I am sure glad that happened before surgery! I told him now that we got the jitters out of the way, we should be all set to go.

Soon I was rolled down the halls to OR, asleep soon after, and then woke up in the recovery room. After some time I was taken to my room and all but the healing was finished. I was there overnight and left to go home by 2:30 or so the next day. I don't remember the exact time as I was more than ready to get home.

I am fortunate that I did not have much pain the day after the surgery, or since getting home. I was issued some narcotic pain med but only took the prescription ibuprofen, and that was more for my knees and other aches and pains than anything else. I told my daughter I was a little disappointed that I never took a narcotic and was tempted to take one a few days after surgery, just to see how it felt. But she said NO.

Since I had what is called the da vinci surgery, which is a robotic assist laperoscopic surgery, my recovery was very quick. There were only a few small, 1" incisions instead of one large scar. I highly recommend it if you ever need a hysterectomy, and any laperoscopic surgery for any other kind of surgery. If you wonder what the da vinci surgery is like, you can find information online by searching.

I must tell you that through this whole ordeal, I have had a sense of peace. I am not sure if I was in denial, or the anti-depressant I always take, but I prefer (and believe) that it is a peace only God can give. I don't really think I was in denial. God has blessed me in so many ways for years, and I know I can count on Him.

Monday, March 30, 2015


Back to my saga. My surgery was scheduled for March 19 in Sioux Falls. BUT. . . before then, the day before in fact, I had an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon! This was on the day that I had to be on clear liquid diet only - all day.

My appointment had been moved up from 1:30 to 11:30, and they want you to be there 20 minutes early. I arrived shortly after 11 and checked in, then waited, and waited, and waited. There were people waiting that had appointments ahead of mine and still waiting. Finally at 12:30 a nurse came to the waiting area and said the doctor was in surgery and not sure how much longer. She hoped to start taking people back at 1:00! So everyone waited some more, and a few went to the cafeteria for lunch. Shortly after 1:00 she finally started calling people back and I got in the exam room at 1:30, my original appointment time!!

The nurse took the usual information and said the doctor would be in shortly, and I waited . . . . and waited . . . . and waited. Around 2:10 the doctor opened the door but did not come in. He said he was called back to surgery but it would only take a few minutes, so I waited some more. He finally came in at 2:30.

He did say he would do a knee replacement but I am a high risk patient with greater risk of infection in a long scar, prone to blood clots, harder recovery and rehab. And no guarantee that the glue would set properly. Not encouraging at all, but I expected something like that. Then I had to drop the bomb and tell him that I had recently been diagnosed with cancer and was having surgery the following day, so I would not be able to schedule knee surgery for awhile. He said he wouldn't do it for at least 6 months after this surgery, which brings us close to my granddaughter's wedding and I am not doing knee surgery just before that, so it might be a year from now. At least that gives me more time to try to lose more weight and not be such a high risk patient.

I got all my questions answered, and finally got home at 3:00. What an exhausting day of doing nothing but sit and wait for hours.

Part 4 coming up. . .

Thursday, March 26, 2015


Chapter Two

The following Monday, March 2, I went back to see the surgeon to get the results of the biopsies taken during the hysteroscopy. Not good news. I had endometrial cancer, grade 1. The doctor did sound encouraging, and from things I read online, this cancer is usually contained and does not metastasize, and that sounded good.

This surgeon referred me to a gynecologic/oncologist (try to say that fast 10 times) in a bigger city 60 miles away, and that appointment was the next Monday, March 9. Are we hating Mondays yet?

This specialist said a total hysterectomy needed to be done, but he was also encouraging as he said that this cancer usually doesn't spread if caught early and I would probably not need radiation or chemo, but if I did need something it would be radiation. We set up the surgery date.

Once I told my church family, I started getting many phone calls and several wanted to come for a visit. I turned down the visits as I did not want to get exposed to the cold, flu and other bugs that are currently floating around. I encouraged them to visit after surgery. After I started telling people this, I found on hystersisters.com that this was exactly what I should do!

After my diagnosis I kept busy going through old medical papers/bills and such that no longer had to be kept, and I started shredding. I almost got through my whole filing cabinet again and got rid of a lot, including 3 stuffed kitchen garbage bags of shredded paper. It still needs more work, sorting, filing, tossing and organizing, but I do have quite a bit more room in those drawers.

I discovered a forgotten shoe box in the back of one of those drawers, and I was surprised to find several more letters written to my mom from her brothers while they were in the service during WWII and after DDay, but still occupying in Europe for awhile. There are a couple of small photo books and some other important genealogy items. I hope to share these things with you in the near future, but I have other things to do first.

End of chapter 2.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015


I sat down here at the computer two hours ago to check email and write some more blog posts. But. . . . I just spent most of that time on Facebook! I have spent very little time there the past while, so it was rather fun to check out several posts there. And I just barely touched the surface!

Now it is 12:30 and my tummy is telling me it is time to fill it again and have a cup of hot coffee. It is downright chilly in here. Outside it is only in the mid 30's and a strong 28 mph northwest wind with 39 mph gusts. I guess spring was too chicken to stick around any longer (grumble, grumble).

More later.


The calendar says spring and we did have some really nice, almost summer, days recently. But today is dark, 32 degrees, and wet. I did notice that my tulips are up about 2" today so there is a good sign of spring even if it is dreary and cold.

It has been a long time since I last checked in, and that is because a lot has been going on here. It will take a book to tell you all so I will break it down in small portions day by day, as often as I feel up to writing.

I have been making rounds with more than one doctor and hospital to keep me busy and on my toes. Starting on Monday, February 16 I saw two different doctors and a hospital visit through March 9. Saw another doctor on March 18, had major surgery the following day, went home the day after that, and my two daughters and 10 year old twin grandchildren were here to help me for a few days. Whew! What a whirlwind!

I will begin this saga with that first Monday - February 16. I had a consult with the local surgeon about my ultrasound that was done January 29. He told me I needed a hysteroscopy with D&C. And since it was time for my regular 10-year colonoscopy, they could both be done at the same time. Those two procedures were done as outpatient surgery on February 23, another one of those Mondays.

I kept the road warm between home and the hospital 10 miles away.

More to come in the next chapter. . . . . .

Monday, March 2, 2015


This isn't the greatest picture, but I hope you can see that this is an electric can opener, my new best friend.

I have developed arthritis at the base of my right thumb and it was becoming increasingly harder to use a regular can opener, even though I had bought a more expensive and better can opener not long ago. Before, I just had one of those really cheap ones and never had a problem. I think those little 'teeth' on the wheel had gotten so smooth that it wouldn't grip to go around the edge of the can anymore. That new one worked great. . . . at first. It seems there are some cans that are just plain difficult to open, no matter what, while others present no problem.

As the arthritis became worse and hands weaker I was to the point I could not get a can open at all and was getting very frustrated. I began to really appreciate the cans that have the pull tabs that don't need an opener! But not everything comes with that type of lid.

I had an electric can opener many decades ago and really didn't care much for it, so never thought I would own one again, but I was getting desperate. And I don't even use that many canned good when cooking. I use mostly frozen or jarred, if and when I cook. Sometimes we have to eat our words, don't we.

So far, this can opener works very well. It even takes tall cans, but I need to remember to hold it steady or it can tip with a heavy can. I also like that a magnet holds the lid after opening.

At least now I don't have to cry with frustration because I can't get the blankety-blank can open.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

MMM.. . . MMM. . . .GOOD!!

Do you need something quick, easy and delicious to serve with coffee to your friends or family? Have I got a treat for you! Only 6 ingredients and 5 minutes needed to make it, and 40-45 minutes to bake, for a piece of heaven. Quick, easy and delicious. . . . my kind of recipe.

I just tried this recipe today and it is a keeper for sure. For my Dutch friends who love almond patties, this tastes a lot like them, without the flaky pastry. You gotta give this a try.


1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons almond extract (I use Watkins)
2 Tablespoons sliced almonds
Powdered sugar (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 325 F.

2. Melt butter in glass bowl in microwave. Using a fork, beat the eggs into butter. Add the flour, sugar and almond extract and mix well. Pour into a small (8-inch) pie plate or an 8-inch cake pan and sprinkle sliced almonds on top. Bake 45 minutes, or until golden brown and a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Let cool, then sprinkle with powdered sugar, if using. Serves 8.

No mistake, there is no leavening in this recipe. And when it says 'pour' into pie plate, I think it should read 'spread' as the batter is thick. I did not add the powdered sugar on top as it is sweet enough and I think is only used for appearance, plus I didn't feel like going back out to the pantry to find the powdered sugar. I thought I had put plenty of sliced almonds on top but after baking I wish I had added more because I love nuts (all kinds, even human ones).

Naturally I had to have a piece right away to see if it was any good, so it was still warm, and I love it that way!

Come have a cup of coffee with me as I go have another slice. I will share.

Friday, February 27, 2015


I have lost my focus. I did not get very far with decluttering or cleaning since I last wrote about them.

It is high time I get back to them, as well as back to blogging. Maybe now that we are getting a few sunny days my outlook will also be brighter instead of funky.

I have also been dealing with a health issue that has been my focus of late. I had some tests done earlier this week and am waiting on the results, but I already feel better, knowing the ball is rolling in dealing with the issue.

Where does time go? Does anyone know? It is so easy to fritter it away and not accomplish a thing.

Thursday, February 26, 2015


I just finished reading this book and really enjoyed it. It is a Christian novel and I so appreciated there being no filthy words. I just hate it when an otherwise great story and plot has so many filthy words that are not necessary to the story at all.

The story takes place in England in the 1800's and depicts what life was probably like in that country of that era.

Here is a quote from a book review by Carrie Daws found here.

A husband’s unexpected death sets off a series of events in the historical novel The Widow of Larkspur Inn by Lawana Blackwell. A family used to a large house in the city full of servants must move to an abandoned inn in the country and figure out how to do everything from clean to cook to serve others. A cast that includes three children round out the fun and challenges, while a faithful servant adds mystery to the story.

I happened to get this on my Kindle as a free book at the time. I see it is not free right now, but you never know when it might show up on the free list again.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


As some of you know, I do almost all my shopping at the local Walmart store. I do that because they have the electric carts that I can ride around the store, since my bad knees will not stand all that walking. Because the store is 10+ miles away, I don't run there every time I need a few items, but try to stock up on everything I need for at least 2 weeks.

I know that some of you hate Walmart for various reasons, and some of you do not have a nice, clean store like I have, with great employees, so I don't blame you if you prefer to shop elsewhere. I would shop in a few other stores as well, if they had carts to ride on.

In my area, Walmart usually has lower prices on the things I buy than the other grocery stores here. We don't have an Aldi within 60 miles, and I don't feel I can save enough to pay for driving that far, plus the extra time it takes. Walmart will also match prices from other stores, but I don't always get all those ads so that I can check their sales. Since Walmart has started their Savings Catcher program, I signed up in early December and I have already saved almost $17.

The best way to save with this is to read all your local ads to check the things you need that might be on sale. Sometimes I find things at a really good price that I may not have on the list but use regularly, so add those to my list, including their sale prices, so that I can compare the prices in the store when I get there. (bad memory, you know) Then I go ahead and buy the rest on my list.

When I get home I enter the receipt number and date, and the program checks all the store ads to match prices, and usually they find some that I was not aware of. Sometimes I just don't take the time to check ads and still end up with some price matches, but later when I do look at the ads I find some that I wish had seen earlier as I would have stocked up. Oh well. Such is life, right?

Here are two examples of savings I was not aware of before shopping. I bought a gallon of Land O'Lakes milk. I paid $3.75 at WM, and they usually have the cheapest daily prices on milk here. But Fareway had it in their ad that week for $2.88, so I got a 'refund' of 87 cents.

Another time I bought 4 Banquet pot pies @ 80 cents each for a total of $3.20, but Savings Catcher found them priced @ 59 cents for a total of $2.36 in HyVee, for a savings of 84 cents. I had seen that Fareway had Yoplait yogurt on sale for 50 cents and usually WM's price is 60 cents, so I bought the required 10 cartons, but they didn't show up as a savings. Then I looked at my receipt again and found WM had reduced their price to 42 cents each! I didn't even notice that when I was shopping, or I might have bought more since I always try to keep that on hand. So for just a few minutes of your time to enter the receipt number, you can save quite a bit. And if you also have manufacturer's coupons for those items, you save even more.

I don't have a smart phone, but if you do, you can download their Savings Catcher app and then just scan your receipt. I have to go to the website and type in the receipt number, but when I do that I can also check which stores had the cheaper prices.

I am not as good as my friend Rhonda over at http://ifyoudostuff.blogspot.com where she has shared all her savings at CVS. But we do not have CVS stores here so I can't work on that like she does. Rhonda, you do amazing things with that store!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

HOME. . . .


I recently found these quotes about Home in the October, 2004 issue of Real Simple that I fell in love with.
I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

"The woman is the home. 
That's where she used to be, 
and that's where she is. 
You might ask me, What if a 
man tries to be part of the 
home -- will the woman let him? 
I answer yes. Because then he 
becomes one of the children."

-Marguerite Duras, Practicalities

(I bet there are several wives who will agree with that!)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

" 'Home is the place where, 
when you have to go there, 
They have to take YOU in.' "

- Robert Frost, "The Death of the Hired Man"

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

"Home sings me of SWEET things
My life there has its own wings
To fly over the mountain, though
I'm standing still."

-Karla Bonoff, "Home"

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

"Keep the home fires burning,
While your hearts are yearning,
Though your lads are far away
They DREAM of home.
There's a silver lining
Through the dark cloud shining,
Turn the dark cloud inside out,
'Til the boys come home."

-Lena Guilbert Ford, "Keep the Home Fires Burning"

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

"It's the sweetest thing I know of,
just spending TIME with you.
It's the little things that make a house a home,
Like a fire softly burning and supper on the stove,
And the light in your eyes that makes me warm."

-John Denver, "Back Home Again"

(I love that song)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

"Home is a place not only of strong affections, 
but of entire UNRESERVE; 
it is life's undress rehearsal, 
its backroom, its dressing room, 
from which we go forth to more 
careful and guarded intercourse."

-Hariet Beecher Stowe, Little Foxes

Saturday, February 7, 2015


Life has been a little busy again and I have not had the energy to even think, much less write a blog. I have had a series of doctor and dentist visits the past couple of weeks and that wore me out.

My knees have finally become bad enough that I am ready for knee replacement, I think. They are just making life too difficult and painful, even the limited amount that I was still able to do, so it is time I do something. I have a busy summer ahead and am not sure I want to be recovering from knee surgery during those activities, a granddaughter's wedding for one.

So, I had decided to ask my doctor about cortisone shots to tide me over the busy summer when I went to see her for my 6 month med checkup. She doesn't give those shots so referred me to an orthopedic surgeon that does a specialty clinic in our local hospital. I had an appointment with him this past Wednesday.

I didn't get to see the surgeon, but visited with his PA instead. Since this was an initial visit I also needed to get x-rays taken. That was the hardest part of the whole thing! Why do they make you become a contortionist to get the pictures they want??? Here I am, barely able to stand any length of time - just normal standing - and now I am expected to strike all those poses while standing and bending very painful knees, and not only posing but holding that pose for an eternity! I was so thrilled when they finally said they had all they needed. I am very thankful they got good one on the first try and didn't have to retake any. I think there were about 8 in total.

Then it was back to the exam room. I was able to see the x-rays and saw how really bad my knees are. The PA was more than happy to do cortisone shots and said I can have as many as I want - forever - as long as they keep working. He is not sure that the surgeon will take me as a surgical patient because of my excess weight. I will find that out when I finally get to visit with him in 6 weeks.

But for now I am happy. I am able to rise from chairs much easier and without much pain, able to walk with minimal pain, and what is really nice is that I can lay flat on my back in bed and not feel like my knees are caving in, and without any pain. Now I am able to sleep much better, so am hoping I will have a little more energy and a clearer brain again.

I must still be very careful walking since my knees are still very unstable because of no cartilage at all and being bone on bone. That means my joint is very loose and the bones can slide around. But things are a whole lot better than they were!

I had heard that there is a limit of how many cortisone shots you can get, and you probably have too. So I asked him about that, and he said that is true IF you still have some cartilage left. It seems the cortisone softens the cartilage over time and ends up causing more damage and loss of more cartilage. So now you know in case you end up with bad knees some day.

I had also been told by others that those shots are very painful. So when the PA was ready to do them I asked if I needed a bullet to bite on. He just laughed and said it shouldn't be that bad, and besides, they were out of bullets. haha. I found the only painful part was when he started to inject the numbing med first. That stings for a second or two until the numbing starts. I didn't feel the cortisone going in at all. And then I was done, and happy.

Thursday, February 5, 2015



I had a hard time figuring out how to get good pictures of this to show it off the best. I don't think I did a very good job but at least you get an idea of what it looks like.

It ended up being quite large. It was made from a kit and I was concerned I would run out of yarn before it was finished, as that has happened to me in the past. But I made it . . . . with only a small 2" ball of yarn left! That is really cutting it close!

I am writing this the middle of January, and the auction doesn't take place until February 4, so this is not being published until after the auction. I will let you know how well it does either as an update to this post or in a new post.

Just got the news that the afghan made $1000 for the church! I thank the gals that suggested this pattern as well as the color.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


What do you think of bobble heads? I never cared much for them.

One year for Christmas my son-in-law gave me two Elvis bobble heads because he knew I was a big fan of Elvis. I thought it was a crazy gift, but opened the boxes and was blow away with them. What do you think of these?

 Jailhouse Rock

1957 Year in Gold

I still don't care much for bobble heads but I do like these. They are much better quality than I expected, and not the kind you find on car dashboards.

Right now they are on the top of my computer desk in the bedroom. Maybe I should start displaying them in the public rooms of the house. I am sure they will make good conversation pieces. And maybe add a little whimsy?

"Thankya verah much."

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


I had planned two curtain projects months ago. I showed the first one yesterday. Here is the second:

This is the small bookcase beside my chair. My phone is on top so all the regional phone books have to be there, plus a dictionary, Bible, photo albums and some books that are still unread. Again, this is eye sensory overload and cluttered to me, so another curtain is desired.

Much better. I still don't know how to clear the clutter from the top since those are things I use daily in that area, and I must have things convenient. So I guess I will have to live with it. I made this curtain the same as the other one, and used a tension curtain rod to hold it. When I first planned this I was going to use one of those curtain springs that are usually used to hold the bottom of a curtain at a door window, mainly because I have one on hand. But when I got ready to work on it, I realized it would be impossible to use a hammer to get the hooks attached to the inside wall, and I did not want them on the outside. I LOVE tension rods! And everything is temporary and easy to remove.

There are the two UFO's that are finished! Now, where is my project list??

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Another "FINALLY!" happened around here during the holidays. The reason for UFO in the title is that this is an Un-Finished Object or project.I finally took the time to make the curtain for table in the kitchen. I never quite know what to call this table. It could be a sofa table - one that resides behind a sofa, as it is narrow and long. It could be a credenza, a hall table, and maybe there are other names and uses.

I like where I have it now, in front of the pony wall in the kitchen. But I don't like the clutter that is ever-present under it.
Actually, this picture is a cleaned up version. Usually there are several Bible study books, large pencil bag full of colored pencils and highlighters, many more empty shopping bags (that is what is in the otherwise empty tissue box), another full tissue box, plus whatever I need to have handy and have nothing else close where I can stash it. The mesh container on the left is where the recycles go until I can take them outside. The wicker chest is there because I can't find another place to put it, and it holds the bedding for the hide-a-bed you see in the left background. Not only does this spot always look messy, but it is eye sensory overload for me. And it is the first thing people see when they walk in.

So one day I was thinking about what I could do to hide it all, and then remembered one of the HGTV shows, it might have been Designed to Sell, or something similar, where they showed hanging a straight curtain over a tall bookcase to hide the little kid's toys when the house was to be shown to a perspective buyer. AH-HA!!

Then I had to decide what fabric to use, and then remembered I had a lot of fabric left from the kitchen curtain valance I had made for the previous house. And since I am able to use that same valance in this house, it would all be coordinated. So that is frugal since I didn't have to go out and buy more fabric.

I am embarrassed to say that I came up with this months ago and just never got around to working on it, until now. My procrastination at work again.


I didn't want it gathered like a window curtain, but just a flat panel. Then the question - how to hang it. I used a tension curtain rod. Works well, don't you think? It doesn't look so flat in this picture for some reason. It is easy to lift up or push aside when I want to access what is behind the curtain. And I can change it when I get tired of this. If I can find a dark brown to exactly match the paint, would it look more like a solid piece of furniture? Maybe. But for now, the clutter of essential things is hidden.

When making the curtain I doubled the hem and the side hems to give them a little added weight for stability.