Thinking of Pastor Best . . .

We met Pastor Best when we purchased our house. It was his mother’s home and he was helping her to sell it. He showed us the house, we bought it and saw him again at the closing along with his mother. There are a vast amount of stories to tell after meeting them as we became close friends but i have a short little thing to say now about Pastor Best.

We, of course, all were saved at that church and all started faithfully attending. Wes had to go out of town for work for an entire month! I had 3 small children with me at home and at times at night I was scared! I hated that and I hated nighttime.

Pastor Best said something to me that I have never forgotten. He said, “God is awake all night. You might as well sleep.”

Today in The Daily Bread was this message. It totally reminded me of Pastor.

The last sentence is what reminded me of Pastor’s wise words. He thanks God for being awake and present with him through the night. I thank God for this as well! Those words from Pastor have comforted me often.

A New Battle!

Added to the squirrel/chipmunk feeding battle are the starlings or black birds.  Whatever they are they are big, black with a blue/green head.  I think Starling is what they are, at least when googling images that is what I think they are.

Anyway . . . OMG!  Boy do they rock a bird feeder.  We have the long rectangular feeder that is supposed to close if something larger  gets on the feeder, particularly a squirrel.

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This is what we have.  It is Squirrel Be Gone from Perky Pet. 

My sister gave this to us.  So, just an fyi, it does work for the squirrels.  The problem is those black birds have figured it out!  They hang on to the corners of the feeder and then bend down and grab a peanut!  Since they are on the corner, the opening does not close shut. Since Friday, they have drained a full feeder.  My husband continually rehangs the feeders in different places and different ways in an attempt to keep the squirrels out of the others.  You should google images of squirrels on feeders.  If you have not dealt with them, they are totally and completely awesome acrobats.  They can jump, swoop, reach and almost fly to any feeder!  It sometimes is fun to watch them perform but it still angers me that they empty the feeder by shaking the seeds all out.  I feel sorry for the birds, though.  They are probably tired of me playing hide and seek with them!

The squirrels are becoming too use to me because when I go running out the door in my feeble attempts to scare them away, they stand their ground and stare me down.  they even start that clicking noise and shaking their tail to summon others.  It comes down to a game of chicken.  Who will retreat first?  So far, I am the winner, but as they are becoming more and more brave, I think I may have to retreat.  Those claws look pretty dang sharp.

So, back to the starlings, I took the feeder and put it in his workshop so they could not eat any longer.  I hated to do it because that is where I put the peanuts.  The woodpeckers just love the peanuts and I love the woodpeckers! It is not that I think just because the starlings are big and ugly they should not eat.  Everybody and everything, regardless of looks should eat.  Haha.  I just do not like for them to drain the feeder.  It can be too costly to feed the birds then.  I thought perhaps if it were gone for a few days, they would seek food elsewhere.  They do tend to scare off the other birds as well.  The others will not come around while they are dominating the place.

I was telling my husband about them when he called from the road today.  He said there was a spring that I could adjust on the feeder.  I did not know that as he is usually the hanger!  So, I have adjusted it to the lightest degree and put it back out.  We shall see what happens now!  Wish me luck!

 

 

Did I Mention The Tick Bite?

Wednesday afternoon I was outside putting up some decorations and as always fighting with the chipmunks (Cody and Shelby use to call them Chickmunks) and squirrels.  I was relocating feeders and trying to find places those varmints could not reach!  Do not get me wrong, I know they need to eat too!  I even purchased cheap food for them and I scatter it on the ground. I even made them their own feeder. I do not begrudge them having a meal.  I just cannot tolerate them acting like I have hung their own personal pinata for them to destroy and empty.  They certainly can empty a feeder in nothing flat.  They do their trapeze acts and get them to swinging and before long the feeder is empty.  It drives me crazy!

Anyway, I spent a few hours outside messing with that stuff.  We came in and ate dinner and watched a movie and then I got my bath.  As I was drying off, I noticed a very small weird looking thing on my right arm.  It would not come off while I was drying off.  I began to notice that as small as it was, one part seemed to be anchored and the other part was protruding upward a bit.  I had only seen one other thing that did something like that and that was a tick!  Being a country girl I had seen several of them on the dogs and even on us and in our heads!  But . . . I have not seen any like this it was so very tiny and did not have those lighter brown designs on it like the ones dogs get.  You know, they get really fat and swell up and look like a garbanzo bean.  I will spare sharing a picture of the kind I mean because even just the picture is gross!

Anyway, some of my country girl sense kicked in and I went to get the cell phone to get a picture so I could do the zoom in thing. Sure enough that disgusting thing had legs and was embedded in my arm!  As small as it was I am glad that it was not in my head of hair, I would never had found it.  I started calling for my husband to come help me get it out of my arm.  Good thing he happened to be home that night.  That is unusual in itself!

So, in all fairness, Wes was asleep when I started calling for him. That will explain his disorientation. I show him the tick and tell him I need for him to help remove it.  He starts, of course, doing his happy dance that I have talked about in the past blogs.  He is jumping around repeating over and over, oh my gosh.  He just keeps dancing and saying that.  I tell him to stop, he needs to get this out of my arm. He says he had no idea they could be so small. I KNOW exactly what he is thinking. He wants to stop everything and have me check him for ticks.  You know that moment you hear the word tick or head lice your hand immediately scratches your head?  That is exactly what was going through his mind, I just know it!  He continued with his dancing, but he did try to help me.

Anyway . . . the stuff you read on the internet about removing ticks, do not believe it!  The alcohol did not work.  The soap did not work.  The heat has never worked, it just melts off their legs.  Wes googled and we tried the pressure with the tweezer method.  I was terrified we would just crush him and kill him and he would be stuck in me anyway.  I believe he finally did back out, at least there does not seem to be evidence of a head left in me.  Funny thing, we could not even get the alcohol to catch fire to burn that tick! Wes was really good, he did check my hair, part by part, and then and only then, did I check him.  Haha.  He is so terrified of them.  He still keeps checking his head and it has been a few days now.

Since I work for a doctor, I was able to see him the next morning and was put on antibiotics to prevent a possible lyme disease issue.  The first antibiotic I took only one pill of and had a terrible reaction so I was switched to a different pill the next day.  I am still cringing at the thought of a tick in me!  I do not like them at all.  I am still on the antibiotic – it is a 14 day dose.  I am sure that all will be fine!

Guess what, though?  When I googled ticks in the backyard, it said to try to eliminate squirrels and chipmunks.  GO FIGURE!!!!

(Side note:  Wes went out the next day and sprayed the yard for ticks!!!!)  Too bad that the spray does not work on chipmunks and squirrels!

 

 

Don’t Look At The Light!!!

We all know that I do not like insects, bugs, spiders, etc.  I especially do not like camel crickets or praying mantis.

I was thinking about the movie, A Bug’s Life.  There is a quote that I can never forget and we quote it so often for reasons other than how the movie used it too.  When we see a deer, we all yell, “Stay away from the light!”  After googling it, though, I found out that I have been quoting it wrong all of this time.  No biggie, I do that often.  Haha.

I always said, “Stay away from the light!”  The actual quote is a bit different.  Harry is a fly in the movie who is attracted to the bug zapper.  His friend wants him to not be hurt.  Harry’s friends says, “No! Harry, No! Don’t look at the light!” Harry says, “I can’t help it!  It is so beautiful!” Then, Harry gets electrocuted and there is the noise of a frying bug and he dies with a wail.

Bugs/insects always go to the light.  You have to watch it when in the yard or on the deck with the lights on because the lights have so, so many bugs around it.  You find yourself sitting there and swatting at them.  It is best to leave the lights off, but then you cannot see as much. When you leave your porch light on so you can see to get into the house at night, you have to make the mad dash to get in with letting as few bugs in as possible.  The worst is when those locusts come in and hitch a ride in on the  back of your shirt.  June bugs are even worse!!!  So, so gross! Yucko!

Well, why was I thinking of A Bug’s Life?  I was downstairs in the basement getting ready to get into the tanning bed.  Even though the basement is a finished basement and is nice, there are parts that are not so finished.  The laundry room is not finished and it is off of the finished area.  Next to the laundry room is the room where the tanning bed is.  The laundry room, perhaps because of the hook ups for the washer and the water heater and furnace being there, has been known to have some bugs/insects.  Therefore, when tanning, I often times think of the bugs/insect.

Today, while I am the tanning bed, all I could think of was that I hoped all of the bugs did not congregate to the “light”.  A lot of the time that I was in the bed, I kept saying, “Harry, No!  Stay away from the light!”  The next time, I will get it right.  I will say, “No, Harry, No! Don’t look at the light!” Haha.

 

A Penny For My Thoughts?

Wow!  I cannot believe I have not written anything lately.  I apologize for my inconsistency.  I have had tons of ideas and thoughts, but just have not written down anything to post.  As I am thinking of things to say, I wondered, how about just sitting down and saying what is on my mind with no particular story?  How about just putting down my thoughts?  I wondered if anyone would care to read it.  Haha.

Life has seemed more hectic than usual.  Of course, with Shelby getting married, there has been more to do.  Planning, making decorations, looking for dresses, etc.  Shelby did get married as was posted earlier and now comes the reception.  That is actually all planned, we just need to do the work now. Shelby and her husband were also house hunting so we had to go look at the houses they were interested in so Dad could give his approval. The hunting was most every weekend for awhile.  His knowledge as a carpenter helped a lot with the house hunting.  I think the children tired of us saying no to each house, though because  they looked at a house without us, made an offer and they close soon! We have only been able to do a drive by.  The outside looks nice and the neighborhood seems nice. I am sure they chose well.

Summer is approaching . . .  well, maybe, if the weather can make up it’s mind.  I think it is debating between a mild winter and a hot summer right now.  Either it feels like it could snow or it is really hot. The outdoor work takes up a lot of time, too.

One thing I can say is that we did try the homemade weed killer and it really does work well!!!  It feels so much safer than using other weed killers such as Roundup.  If you would like the “recipe” it is:  1 gallon of white vinegar, 2 cups of Epsom salts and 1/4 cup of Dawn dish washing soap (the original). It works pretty quick.  I did think our yard smelled like a dill pickle for awhile though.  Haha!

When I write my thoughts, I may tend to jump around a bit and that may not be good.  I wonder if people can keep up with my thoughts dancing all over the place.  I will try to keep my thoughts on Summer beginning.  We still have not opened the pool yet, but that will come soon.  Wes only has one full day off, Saturday, and the pool takes up most of the day to open.  When his Saturday is a rain filled day, nothing much outside can be done.  The decorations for summer weather will have to be taken out of storage and set out or hung up.  We have most of them out and it is nice to sit in your decorated yard and see all of the green grass, trees, flowers, etc.  It is just beautiful outdoors!  God sure gave us a lot of beauty to behold.

We usually grill all year round as the grill is just on the deck right outside the back door.  However, it seems to be more exciting when the weather is like it is.  I have all of the weird food issues and have not been eating much, so I do not cook like I use to.  I think I spoke of the issues in a prior blog.  To refresh, though, I am gluten intolerant, cannot have salicylates or nightshades which leaves few foods to eat.  Good news, though . . . I am a great deal better!  Being better means I am cooking more because I can eat, too!  Funny thing, when you stop cooking as much, you are not as good as you were and you feel like a new cook and make several mistakes! Today I was grilling chicken and using my brother’s recipe. I was smiling, thinking of him, as I was making it.  He taught me a method of cooking by putting the food in a foil pouch.  Cooking time is less and it is more tender.  We do not cook with pouches all of the time, just some of the foods we cook that way.  I followed all of his directions, at least I thought I did!  Haha.  When I brought the food in and opened the pouch of chicken, I had not put ANY barbecue sauce on at all!  Grrrr!  It usually soaks into the meat and it is flavored through and is so tender.  Now I just had chicken that appeared to be boiled and contained spices.  It did not even smell appetizing.  I was able to add the sauce and make a new pouch and cook it a bit longer and it turned out as good!  Wes did not know what I had done and he said it was good and just like he remembered having. (We have not been able to have barbecued foods for awhile, due to my issues.  That is why he said it tasted like he remembered).

I guess this blog is about getting ready to enjoy Summer. Well, actually, it is enjoyable getting ready for Summer, too! I hope you all will enjoy yours as well! Let me know your favorite Summer memory or tradition.

 

 

 

 

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day to you! Remember to thank God, your husband and/or father of your babies and your babies for the honor, privilege and blessing of those babies!  Love them extra special today.

When I was a child, I always wanted to get my mother a present that would make her so very happy that she would cry.  I wanted her to have what she had always wanted.  She usually always wanted a rose bush, but there were other things as well.  She could always use another rose bush.  Lol.  Every mother’s day, I think of a rose bush and every rose bush makes me think of my mother.  I miss her and loved her very much.  She was my BEST friend!

Mother’s day to me now that she is gone? I think she was the best mother ever, as does every child regarding their mother, I suppose.  I do think she was the best ever, though.  I wanted to be as loving to my children as my mother was to me.  I do love my children more than anything.  They are all I ever wanted out of life, that and a great husband.  On mother’s day,  I really, honestly just want my children to talk to me and love me.  That is all.  I want nothing, nothing at all.  I actually do not much care for mother’s day.  As I posted yesterday, I would really rather have a “Kid’s Day”.  They are the reason a person is a mother.

When you go to church around mother’s day and they speak of mothers biblically, it makes me feel so inadequate.  What women to measure up to!  I can never be like them.  After you hear how perfect they are/were, it does not make you feel much like being celebrated as a mother.  I have not been perfect.  I have made mistakes.  I will say, though, that I have always, always, loved my children with all of my heart and with all that I have.  I always will love them that much.  Yes, I had shortcomings.  I regret that I did, but I am not perfect.  At times, I wish to do it over.  My husband says I watch too much of the hallmark channel and shows starring the perfect parents and perfect children.  Haha.

I feel that there does not need to be a day for mother’s or father’s.  My father and mother always said that they are holidays that hallmark makes up to profit from.  Haha.  They said mothers and fathers should be treated kindly every day and I agree. Children should be treated kindly every day too.

Anyway, I am not meaning to be sounding depressing here or anything, I just feel like I said above, the reason you are a mother is because of your children.  I feel that on mother’s day, I should be thankful for my children and honor them. I do not mean that you should be thankful just today, I just mean that I feel that it is the reason for today. I have shown this better on some years than others, physically.  The children had to work or had to be gone one year so Wes asked what I would like to do for mother’s day.  I said I wanted to do something for them while they were gone so I cleaned their rooms and he helped me as his gift to me.  They were so appreciative that it was one of my best gifts that I received.  Another time, because I was so thankful that they made me a mother,  I made them all of their favorite meals and treats.  There have been other things we have done for them on mother’s day like that too.  Sometimes I do accept an invitation to my favorite restaurant, but I sure do love my babies.  They are exactly what I always wanted. They cannot be with me today or otherwise I would spoil them rotten!

Well, now you know what I think about on mother’s day.  Thank you, my dear, sweet children for making me a mother and thank you my dear, sweet husband for giving them to me!  Thank you God for the gift of them all!

 

Happy Children’s Day!

I do not know if the children will remember this or not, but….

Our children were home schooled as you may remember reading on here in prior blogs.  One day during school as Mother’s Day was nearing, I discussed something with the children.  I told them I wondered why there was a Mother’s Day and a Father’s Day.  I told them I thought there should be a “Kid’s Day”.  They were really excited about this and totally in agreement with me!

We discussed just exactly how we should celebrate this day.  They, of course would not like to have flowers, so a gift would be in order for them.  They agreed it should be a gift of a toy or a game rather than clothing or something useful.  They wanted to have their favorite meal that day.  Well, there were two of them, so if they could not come to an agreement on what to eat, we decided that one could have their favorite for lunch and the other could have their favorite for supper.  Perhaps, they thought, they could agree on a place to eat out for one meal and then have a favorite home cooked meal for another.

I thought that they should, of course, spend the entire day with me and when their father was off of work, him as well.  They could not just play in their rooms alone or watch television alone, they had to be together with us so that we could properly celebrate “Kid’s Day”.  They surprisingly agreed to this as well. We would play games, watch a movie together, go for a walk, sit around the fire or any family thing they could think of.

The next issue was what day we should celebrate Kid’s Day on.  After a lot of discussion (about a minute), we decided it should be today for the first day!  Haha.  What a great time it was.  We stopped school and went shopping for their gifts and then we went shopping for the meals and treats they may want to have.  They use to always want my home cooked meals rather than eating out because we did not eat out much when they were little. They usually wanted either spaghetti, lasagne or pizza! Then we spent the day and evening playing and just being together!

We decided that we should keep Kid’s Day on a school day because it was more fun to skip a day of school and that made it even more of a special event.  Who would not want to miss a day of school for fun?  We did decide that it should be between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day the next year.   I do not remember when we stopped doing this and I do not remember why we did.  We should never have stopped!  They are what is important!

What could be more important or exciting or fun than celebrating the gift of your children.  What great times we had.  I think we should start this again and get together and do this every year!  So, children, listen up and let’s plan on this!  We love you very much!

May 5, 1993 – The arrival of Shelby!

Our little baby girl was suppose to make her arrival a little later but she had other plans.  Or should I say God had other plans.  I began spotting with Shelby and in light of the placenta rupture with Cody, who was eight weeks early, the doctors told me to get to the hospital immediately.  However, it was 4:00 or 4:30 p.m.  They told me I must get there before 5:00 or everyone would have left for the shift and they would have to call people back in.  I thought that was odd that no one would be there, but we rushed out to the hospital.

I was excited, but worried.  I had to rush so much and just leave Cody quickly without much explanation to him and with someone he hardly knew.  I had to find a sitter because my mother and my sister’s family were exposed to chicken pox because my nephew had it, so they should not be around Cody and expose him when we would be bringing home a new baby girl!

I was even more worried, because she, too was a little earlier than expected.   Would everything be okay with her?  Would she be too small?  I could list the many fears, but you can imagine what was going through my mind.  She was not that much early as we had a c-section scheduled already, but the c-section was scheduled early, so I was worried. I think she was 3 – 4  weeks early, but I am not certain. I was excited because I could see my baby girl.  I was excited because this time I would not be alone.  I would get to share this with my husband and experience that.

So, nothing is ever as planned, you know!  We arrive at the hospital and everyone is waiting for us.  We are rushed in to a room and Wes gets to scrub and come in.  They have questioned and questioned me about the type of anesthesia.  I wanted the local so I was completely aware like I was with Cody.  I am not sure if they made a mistake or if they were just not giving me a choice.  The anesthesiologist started an IV.  I told him that it was to be a shot in the spine.  He informed me that he knew what he was doing and I informed him that was not how it was done at Carle Clinic (we were now at Sarah Bush for Shelby’s birth). I was explaining what type of anesthesia I had requested again.  Suddenly, that is the last thing I remember.  When I came to, I was so upset about that!  My husband was there and I have no recollection of it whatsoever.  The first thing I vaguely remember is the nurses trying to have me breastfeed Shelby.  I cannot remember much of that, just a vague memory. I also remember them telling me to wiggle my toes.  That is all!  GRRRRRRR!

My husband told me later that he would talk to me and I would answer, but, like a man, he really did not remember anything that was said, of course.  It makes me wonder if the hospital just asked me to be nice but had planned all along to do the anesthesia like that or if the anesthesiologist made a mistake.  In any event, it was not right and I felt it was not fair.  BUT!!!! . . . I had a beautiful little baby girl!!!!

Shelby came into this world at 6:29 p.m. and  was 6.0 pounds and was 20 inches long!  Wow, she was not a preemie.  (At least I thought not, but she was still small.  All of the preemie clothes we had for Cody were big on her, too).  She was completely perfect!!!  Once I was out of recovery, I never let her leave my side!  The nurses kept asking to take her to the nursery but I told them she was fine with me right where she was. Thank you God for taking care of Shelby and I!!!!  I love you Shelby Logan Sanders.  I guess now, as of two days ago, it is Shelby Logan Sanders Williams.

What I would say about Shelby as a person today . . . She has a great sense of humor, you will always hear her laughing when she is around, she loves music, loves the outdoors, board games, all games in fact, almost any type of social activity, loves to be around people, loves nursing and taking care of people.  She likes to make a difference in people’s lives. She loves to take care of anyone actually.  If she hears that you have an issue she wants to fix it.  She is so loving and compassionate. She is my favorite nurse and excels at her job as a nurse! She is intelligent and a very quick learner.   She does love the Lord.

As a little girl . . . (and maybe still the same today) very, very sensitive, loving, caring, loves family, loves a good joke and played several on us all of the time.  She would always get joke books and tell jokes all day long to us.  She loved legos, mario and nintendo games. Loved Disney movies especially Beauty and the Beast.  Loved camping and swimming.  She loved webkinz!!!  We were always on the search for new ones.  She loved music, played piano and guitar.  She loved the Lord! She was always reading the Bible and Bible stories and writing in her journal what she read.  She recorded her favorite scriptures as she would read them. She LOVED reading!  I think that her favorite books were The Velveteen Rabbit (although she cried through it) Winnie the Pooh books and we had several books that were collections of childhood stories and she loved those.  Actually, it would be hard for me to say what her favorite was as a child.  She just loved so very many.  She wanted every single book we had read to her!  When she could not read it herself and we were too busy to read to her, she would just open the book and tell a story like she was reading it.

I almost left out the two things that Shelby loves the most.  Haha.  EVERYONE knows that Shelby, to put it mildly, has a thing for cats!  Especially her beloved Cheeto.  She also has a thing for her little stuffed animal, Twinklen!  He has never ever left her side! She, to this day, even as a wife, sleeps with her little Twinklen!

Anyway, HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Shelby !!!  I am having a hard time realizing that I do not always get to see her on her birthdays any longer.  I feel like I have only missed one but I may be mistaken.  If that is so, today makes two.  I actually feel like today is the first day that I do not get to see her on her birthday.  I am thinking of you all day, though, Shelby Logan “Honey” “Pippi” Sanders Williams!

**The explanation of names…. She was named Shelby Logan Sanders.  My father’s middle name was Logan.  I thought the two names sounded nice together.  (Later we realized she was named sounding like a tornado warning.  Haha.  Shelby and Logan counties were always named together in warnings as they were close to each other.)  When I told my mother, sister and niece that I was naming her that, my mother immediately said, “What?!  Why not Shelby Rene???”  I explained that I thought that sounded like a diaper medicine.  Haha.  My niece said, “Why not Shelby Lea??”  I told her it did not flow together. My sister, Honey, immediately said, “Why not Shelby Honey??”  That was also from the movie Steel Magnolias, they were always calling Shelby in the movie, Shelby Honey.  I firmly said, Shelby Logan.

With Shelby and her love of reading, and her little pig tails that she loved to wear, everyone started calling her Pippi (from the book Pippi Longstocking) and Shelby started referring to herself as Pippi.  Also, Shelby loved Aunt Honey so much and Aunt Honey persisted in calling her Shelby Honey so Shelby decided to go by that on facebook, etc. Now, if any of you are her friends on facebook, instagram and other things, you now know why she goes by so many different names. I have my own nicknames for her.  I call her Sweet Pea and Shelby Girl.

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Our little girl getting ready to go home from the hospital!
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Our little Pippi!
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Shelby in pre-school.  She does not like this picture, but I love that smile that she use to give at selected moments, with her little nose scrunched up!!!  What a cutie!  One of my favorite pictures!
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My boy and girl!!! 
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Heading to Colorado!

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HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!  THANK YOU, GOD, FOR THE GIFT OF SHELBY!

LOGALBUM . . . 3. About 13 photos of ships

I do not know what these are.  Perhaps they are tiny little postcards or something but on this first page, Grandpa wrote, ” The present line of defence of the U.S.N. ”  Yes, he spelled it with a “c”.  I would have used an “s”.  I googled the difference and it said that the difference is that one is with a “c” and one is with an “s”.  Haha!

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I am assuming you can read the names of the ships on these photos.  If not, message me and I will label them here.  

The top right photo, I believe, is too hard to read, at least for me.  I magnified it and it reads as follows:  “Admiral R.E. Coontz U.S.A. Commanding.  United States Battle Fleets.”  Then, on the other side of the photo, it reads: “S. S. Robison Admiral U.S.A. Commander In Chief Battle Fleet.”

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Shelby Sanders Got Married…..

May 3, 2019 at 11:30 a.m. Miss Shelby Logan Sanders became Mrs. Shelby Logan Williams.  This happened in Champaign, Illinois.

Here is a photo of my baby girl, looking like a bride already.

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She is with her older brother here.  Oh the joy she has brought to our lives.  I sure do miss being able to pick her up and put her on my lap and snuggle and kiss her like crazy.  Babies are suppose to grow up.  They are suppose to do well on their own and she certainly has.  But….. lol.  I sure do miss her and wanted to put books on her head or something and keep her forever on my lap and in my arms.  The books did not work with Cody, so there was no point in making her carry them on her head!  Haha.

Today, just a few days before her birthday  there is now a new event to celebrate.  Her marriage . . .

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Mr. and Mrs. Williams

Here she is today, just as pretty as ever.  She still brings so much joy to our lives.  We love you and wish the best for the two of you.  Congratulations on your marriage.

LOGALBUM – U.S.S. RALEIGH – 2

These photos are not too clear.  I hope you can enjoy them rather than be annoyed with my post.  This one, I cannot tell what it says actually.

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I like the photo in the top right.
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I guess he just named the people on this one and the one on the right either he did not know or was making a joke.  You do get to see part of the ship, though!
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This says Edinburgh Scotland.  What do you think the lower right photo is?  Open air bus?  Limo?

 

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This one says while in Iceland.  U.S.S. Raleigh.  And then I cannot make it out, maybe “with” and then I do not know.

I hope that you enjoy.  More to come.

Thank you.

100th POST! WOW!

WOW!  My 100th post!  I feel like I should really post something special.  My mind is blank.  I am in the middle of posting my Grandfather’s scrapbook from the Navy so this is an interruption. I did not want my 100TH to just go by and not acknowledge it, though! Lol.  I do have some interviews coming up with some band members to post as well.  That will be awhile down the road, though.

100th post – the first thing that came to my mind was the children being excited about the 100th day of school.  They were always having such fun coming up with the 100 things to take to school that day.  Well, for the short time they were in school, anyway.  We did home school, you know.  We talked about the 100th day and I would have let them gather 100 things, but I think they only did that once or maybe twice during home school.

Then, my mind went to 100 things I am grateful for or 100 things that I love.  I have way more than 100 things that I am grateful for and that I love so that would take way too long.  The one thing, though, and the most important, is that it all started with God, from Him, everything else fell into place.

Next, I turned to google.  That came up with hundreds of things, HaHa!  The first was the The Hundred Things List. That included things such as running with bulls, marry a stranger in Vegas, bet $1,000.00 on black, chase a tornado, complete a triathlon and on and on. Then there was the 100 Things To Do Before You Die, people now refer to that as the bucket list, but I do not think they list 100 things!  The possibilities go on and on… 100 Movies To See, 100 Things To Be Thankful For (my idea as well, haha), 100 Things To Bake, etc.  There are so very many.  These lists of things remind me of Spotify or Amazon Music, you can search Top 100 Country Songs, Top 1980’s, Top Big Hair Bands and on and on.

Well, what I have come up with is this….I started this so my children would be able to have something to look at later in life. I started by talking about my family.  Everyone is right, after everyone is gone and you have questions, there is no one to find out from, so here I have been writing it down for them. I had a book that I compiled by talking with my mother, father and my Aunt Alta.  They got a kick out of it.  Sometimes something would happen and they would say, put that in the book!  Then they would just laugh and laugh.  That precious book was lost in a flood, though.  I know there were such stories in there from them.  I cannot remember them but I do have the memories of the fun and all of the laughter we had while they were telling their stories!

I plan to continue and to also start posting stories about Wes’ family.  I am still trying to get him to start his own. That may happen or I may just tell his stories here.  One way or another, his stories will be told as well.

When I started this, I had no idea that it would be such fun and that I would have views and responses from other people.  It has been very entertaining and exciting as well.  So, for my 100th post . . . I want to thank all of you for your support!  Have a wonderful day!

 

 

U.S.S. OREGON, ROUNDING THE HORN, 1898

This is a framed photo that my grandfather had.  The frame is just stiff cardboard but is ornamental.  He has some writing on the back in pencil.  Up at the top he wrote in pencil “1917.”

Going along the side at the bottom he has in pencil what looks like some times.  It is as such:  505 A then under it and in a column it says 6 45 then 8 15 then 9 15 then 10 10 then 11 45 then 12 30 P then 1 22 then 1 05 then 6 30 PM and then 9 45 Sat Nit. I do not know if the times have anything at all to do with this photo or if he just needed something to write on for some reason and used the back of the photo.

On the bottom right corner of the front of the picture it has embossed what appears to be the following:  H. E. WALE and underneath that what appears to be BREMERTON, WNA.

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This is a neat picture.  Too bad it is not of better quality.  It looks like it is from the front of the ship and then you see the water as it is moving.   Pretty neat.

Below is what the embossing looks like on the photo.  I have zoomed in on it.

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This is not part of the journal.  I had the photo so I thought I would share it.

Thank you. If you have any information, please feel free to share it.

*NOTE:  I found this information when googling after someone asked me a question.

*Bremerton is probably best known for the Puget Sound Navy Yard, which is one of only a few US Navy repair and refit facilities on the West Coast.

*Also, I thought that on the cover of the frame, the embossed part said Bremerton, WNA.  When that was googled I found that it stood for Bremerton, Washington, New Americans.

 

LOGALBUM – U.S.S. RALEIGH

I am just posting this album of my grandfather’s, Phillip B Hutton.  I only know as of now without further researching that he was in the Navy, I have a photo of him in a sailor uniform.  There was a huge framed photo that was always in their home that said “In remembrance of my cruise in the Phillipines.  There were some military patches in the frame and a picture of him in uniform along with a ship.  This is an album of his.  Below is the cover which is black as you can tell and it says Logalbum U.S.S. Raleigh.

 

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There were a lot of these diary pages just loosely inside the cover.

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The best that I can make out the writing on this page is as follows:  Copenhagen Denmark. U.S.S. Raleigh July 1924 and on the other side…Copenhagen Denmark 1924.

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The best that I can make out what this says is …Jimmy Doran Mack U.S.S. Ral.

I hope that you can make these out.  They are fading.  I would welcome any comments that you may have.

I will add more photos later.

 

** Since posting this, I received a comment from someone as follows:

The USS Raleigh was a light cruiser that saw action in WWII. She was moored at Pearl Habor on December 7th, 1941 and was hit by one japanese torpedo in her #2 boiler room. There was no loss of life. She was decommissioned at the end of the war, interesting history!

 

Washington School Pictures…. Mattoon, Illinois

Here are some photos of Washington School located in Mattoon, Illinois.

The back of this picture says Grade Two, Washington School and has a list of children’s names on the back.
This picture has nothing written on the back

 

This picture has nothing written on the back.
This picture has nothing on the back, either. 

I am not sure if all of these pictures are from Washington School in Mattoon, Illinois.  I know they are all from Mattoon, Illinois, though.  Was there more than one grade school in Mattoon?

Does anyone know any of these people?  Are any of you in these photos?  Please let me know if you can identify anyone.  Thank you!

City of Charleston, Illinois . . . Part 7 and Final Part . . .

This is the final part of the booklet.  I am sort of sad that it is ending.  It is such a fun little booklet! But…. I have other books of Grandpa Hutton’s concerning the City of Charleston, so I will probably post some excerpts from those, but they are not as entertaining probably.  I still have some clippings from his scrapbook as well.

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I like how they say if it is worth doing it can be done in Charleston.
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The lake is improving today and looking like it could become a great place again.  Seeing Eagles is a real highlight!
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And the Coles County Fair is still claiming the title of the oldest!  It’s centennial was the year I was born!
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The final page.  So, it was available through the Chamber of  Commerce.  Still no date throughout, but you can call phone number 5!  I wonder what “the following” was?  I suppose since it said memoranda, you were to write your own notes as to what you wanted to phone for?

Well, thank you all for reading.  I hope you have enjoyed it as much as I have.  I wish people were as passionate about Charleston and things today as they were back then.  They truly were The Good Old Days!

I will be posting other stuff regarding Charleston at later dates. Thank you again!

 

 

 

Charleston, Illinois Booklet – Forgotten Page!!!

This page was opposite the cover and I failed to post it, I am sorry!  It is a really neat photo, though.  I am glad that I found it!

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This booklet shows such pride in the City!  I love it!

Was Midwest Homes not the same as the Reasor Homes?  I remember IBC Homes, I think at the beginning of Reynolds or Douglas?  My home on Meadowlake is a Reasor home. I thought IBC Homes developed this area here where I live and the office was an A-Frame at the beginning of either Reynolds or Douglas.  I think there were some pre-fab homes built on 12th and 13th Streets, but I am not sure.  Does anyone know anything about these homes?

Anyway,  this is a great page and neat pictures, in my opinion!

Office Mishaps . . . Continued

Now, for the second most embarrassing moment in the office. This was not in the same office that the other one happened in, but it was still in a downtown Chicago, Illinois, law firm.

I am not even sure that I can explain it in words well enough, but I will try my best.  This actually was more embarrassing than the first one, and the most embarrassing moment, but it is the second one I am writing about.  Lol.

My desk was in an L shape.  At the smaller part of the L was my typewriter.  Yes, haha, I said typewriter.  We did not have a computer then.  I did, however, have a memory typewriter.  It was a bit like a computer as it had a memory and you could save things on a magnetic card.  The typewriter had a memory capacity of its own of a page or so, I believe.  You also could store the smaller documents of a page or two on a number that was available on the typewriter.

Anyway, I had not been working there that long.  You know how it is when you have a new job and when you start learning and feeling comfortable, it sort of shows in your attitude?  You start walking around with a bit of confidence showing?  You start acting like you know what you are doing and no longer hesitate in your actions.

Well, I was typing and my boss came over the intercom asking for a document.  Instead of stopping what I was doing and taking my time, I reached behind me to the file drawer to pull out what it was he needed. I quickly flung open the drawer.  I guess it was  with such force that it made my chair fall backward.  This caused my legs to be wedged under the desk (the smaller part of the L where my typewriter was) while the back of my chair was on top of the opened drawer. I do not know if I explained it well enough, but my chair is falling backward while I am in it and I am wedged in place. This position, of course, made my dress go up over my head.  I am stuck and I cannot move, not even to pull my dress down.  I cannot see as my dress is over my head.  Ugh!

I am, of course, embarrassed as can be and trying to figure out how I can get up without falling on down and hitting my head or knocking more stuff over.  I was concerned that with the bottom file drawer opened that if I moved too much, the entire cabinet would fall over with me on top of the bottom drawer.  For some reason, I did not scream or anything, I was just sitting there stuck.  I honestly did not know what to do. I could not move my legs as they were completely stuck under the desk.  My arms were stuck somehow. I was slightly concerned about what would happen if I rolled sideways. There was a trash can under my desk as well and somehow that was involved.  I do not remember what happened, I think my arm may have been in it. I think my other arm was still holding the drawer and my chair was on top of that.  I was not hurt at all yet, other than my pride, and I did not want to make a movement that might injure me.  I felt like a bug on his back.

I really could not move my arms much to pull down my dress.  I cannot explain why, but I was in such an awkward position I could really not move anything.  My dress being pulled down was what I wanted done first and foremost, so I was carefully attempting to do that.  Suddenly I hear laughter.  This is not good.  It was not my boss, but it was one of the other attorneys.  He just stood there laughing.  Now I am a bit angry.  I tell him to pull down my dress and get me up.  He just laughed  more for a bit and probably made some comments that he considered funny and I think we conversed for a bit . . .   Him making comments thinking he was a comedian and me demanding he get me up.  He finally assisted me.

He had great fun telling the story around the office.  I basically walked around with a red face for awhile.

Office Mishaps….

Two of my most embarrassing moments while working in an office were when I lived in Chicago, Illinois.  Those two times were also when I was working downtown for law firms.

The first embarrassing moment was not my fault.  Haha.  It was the fault of a couple of attorneys. They had dropped an important folder that was needed in court in a few moments.  The problem was that they dropped it behind a file cabinet.  A tall file cabinet. . . Taller than me which would be more than 5″3″.  It was actually quite a bit taller than me. They had a dilemma.  If they called for maintenance, they would be late for court as maintenance never was something you could count on to arrive immediately.

I am typing away, doing my job and two of the attorneys and some of the secretaries were approaching me.  They motioned me to come with them.  I was hesitant and was asking what they wanted.  I knew they had suspicious looks on their faces and that they were up to something! They went to the file room. They had the filing cabinet pulled out as much as they could and they said they would like to lower me down there to get a folder.  I, of course, refused!  They went on and said you are the smallest one here (I weighed about 102 then) and we cannot get it pulled out more than it is.  We will get you on top of the cabinet and then lower you down and then we will lift you out.  I refused!!! I told them it would not work and they would not be able to get me out.  

They were adamant and kept telling/asking/begging me to do this.  I kept refusing.  Finally I gave up and agreed.  The lowering me down turned into me getting on top of the cabinet, turning around and more or less dropping to the floor. The cabinet was not pulled out much at all and I could not even bend down to retrieve the folder.  I could not reach it if I were to bend sideways either.  I looked up at them and they wanted to hand me a broom or something to scoot it with. I swear, they were not using their heads.  What good would that do?  It was really a tight squeeze there! All I could do was extend my leg to the side of me and that was it!  There was no room for me to do anything much at all other than to stand straight in attention. I could only lift my leg to the side.  I had to use my foot and sort of slide the folder up the wall until one of them could bend over and down the wall to reach it.

You know what, I was right! Once I was down there, they could not get me back out.  It was physically impossible.  I could not do anything to help but just stand there.  There was no room to move at all.  They were on chairs leaning over the filing cabinet and there was no place for them to hold on to me to hoist me out of there.  I could lift my arms straight up, but there was the issue of exactly where they could touch to lift me as well.  This was very awkward.  They really did not have the strength to lift as they were laying across the top of the cabinet.  Looking back, it was funny to see their faces.  They had various expressions as time went on.  First their forlorn looks because they could not get their file.  Next, their desperation as they were begging me to do this.  Then, their looks of bewilderment once I was dropped down there and the realization that I could not accomplish what they wanted.  The last was their looks on their faces as they were leaning over the file cabinet looking down  at me and the predicament I was in and trying to stifle their laughter. They looked like two little boys who knew they were in trouble and did not want to laugh.

Guess what?  Maintenance was called.  Hmmm.  Good idea and maybe that should have been done to begin with!  Haha.   Well, they left for court, with their folder, and a few of the girls stayed in there and kept me company.  Maintenance finally came and had a good laugh first and then moved the file cabinet out enough for me to get out.  I should never have agreed!

The second most embarrassing moment was my fault!  Totally mine and totally more embarrassing!  I will post the second one tomorrow!

 

 

I Missed Easter . . .

On Saturday, we went to Champaign and spent the day with our daughter, Shelby, and her fiance for Easter.  My husband, Wes, is only off of work on Saturdays.  Cody works Saturdays, so we were going to spend Saturday with Shelby for our Easter. It was beautiful weather and we just hung around Champaign all day browsing stores and then we ate a bite and went to her house.  We just visited there.  It was a very, nice, relaxing day.  A really, really nice time!

I meant to post on Easter but I had a surprise given to me.  I was at home alone which was fine because I needed to spend the day working anyway.  We had spent what we were considering to be our Easter on Saturday with our daughter.  Of course, it was a bit disappointing not to see both of the children, Cody and Shelby.  My husband got off of work at 2:30 p.m. which is unusual.  He is never home on Sundays!  We were going to go to Home Depot.  Home Depot is in Mattoon, Illinois, about 10 minutes away from us. About 5 minutes from home, my husband asked if I would like to eat dinner at Hyvee.  There is a restaurant in the Hyvee store in Springfield, Illinois.  This is not the cafeteria part in the store, this is a separate restaurant.  I really did not know how to respond as Springfield is 2 1/2 hours away.  I smiled at him.  He said it is about 3:00 p.m., we will get there around 5:00, eat with Cody (our son) and stay until about 7:00 and be home at 9:00 p.m.

I was stunned.  I asked if he were serious and if he really meant it and if he felt up to it.  He asked if I needed to go home and get anything or could we just keep driving.  Wow!  I was so excited.  I told him we could just go from there.  So we did.  How nice!  We got to see both of our children on Easter weekend and spend some time with them when I had no idea I was even going to get to do so.  I like surprises.  My husband, is a sweetheart!  When your children grow up and move on, at times you are not always able to get together as a family.  Cody and Shelby did not get to see each other, but we were able to spend time with our children and I am thankful for that.

However, what I was going to post on Easter is the following:

Matthew 28:

He Is Risen

28 Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone [a]from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.

But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.”

So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.

And that, is the meaning of Easter!

 

 

 

City of Charleston, Illinois . . . Part 5

Here are the next 5 pages of the booklet of the City of Charleston, Illinois.

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Some more information on the airports.  I LOVE the “unusual occupations” that were created!
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Does this seem like a high unemployment rate for a small town?

 

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This is interesting. 
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Nice! Charleston was the educational hub.
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Informational.

Thank you for reading.  I will post more later.

 

Good Friday – Matthew 27:11-65

11 Now Jesus stood before the governor. And the governor asked Him, saying, “Are You the King of the Jews?” So Jesus said to him, “It is as you say.” 
12 And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He answered nothing. 
13 Then Pilate said to Him, “Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?”
14 But He answered him not one word, so that the governor marveled greatly. 
15 Now at the feast the governor was accustomed to releasing to the multitude one prisoner whom they wished. 
16And at that time they had a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. 
17Therefore, when they had gathered together, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” 
18 For he knew that they had handed Him over because of envy. 
19 While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.” 
20But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitudes that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus. 
21 The governor answered and said to them, “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” They said, “Barabbas!” 
22 Pilate said to them, “What then shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” They all said to him, “Let Him be crucified!” 
23 Then the governor said, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they cried out all the more, saying, “Let Him be crucified!” 
24 When Pilate saw that he could not prevail at all, but rather that a tumult was rising, he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just Person. You see to it.” 
25 And all the people answered and said, “His blood be on us and on our children.” 
26 Then he released Barabbas to them; and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered Him to be crucified. 
27 Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole garrison around Him. 
28And they stripped Him and put a scarlet robe on Him. 
29 When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand. And they bowed the knee before Him and mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 
30 Then they spat on Him, and took the reed and struck Him on the head. 
31 And when they had mocked Him, they took the robe off Him, put His own clothes on Him, and led Him away to be crucified. 
32 Now as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. Him they compelled to bear His cross. 
33 And when they had come to a place called Golgotha, that is to say, Place of a Skull, 
34 they gave Him sour wine mingled with gall to drink. But when He had tasted it, He would not drink. 
35 Then they crucified Him, and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet: “They divided My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.” 
36 Sitting down, they kept watch over Him there. 
37And they put up over His head the accusation written against Him: THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. 
38 Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. 
39And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads 
40and saying, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.”
41 Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, 
42 “He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. 
43 He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ” 
44 Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing. 
45Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land. 
46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” 
47 Some of those who stood there, when they heard that, said, “This Man is calling for Elijah!” 
48Immediately one of them ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine and put it on a reed, and offered it to Him to drink. 
49 The rest said, “Let Him alone; let us see if Elijah will come to save Him.” 
50And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit.
51 Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, 
52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 
53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 
54So when the centurion and those with him, who were guarding Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that had happened, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly this was the Son of God!” 
55 And many women who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him, were there looking on from afar, 
56 among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons. 
57 Now when evening had come, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who himself had also become a disciple of Jesus. 
58 This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be given to him. 
59 When Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 
60and laid it in his new tomb which he had hewn out of the rock; and he rolled a large stone against the door of the tomb, and departed. 
61And Mary Magdalene was there, and the other Mary, sitting opposite the tomb. 
62 On the next day, which followed the Day of Preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees gathered together to Pilate, 
63 saying, “Sir, we remember, while He was still alive, how that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise.’ 
64 Therefore command that the tomb be made secure until the third day, lest His disciples come by night and steal Him away, and say to the people, ‘He has risen from the dead.’ So the last deception will be worse than the first.” 
65 Pilate said to them, “You have a guard; go your way, make it as secure as you know how.”

City of Charleston, Illinois . . . Part 4

Following are the next 5 pages of the booklet from The City of Charleston.  This page is a continuance of the last page in Part 3.

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I like how they describe the trains…. ten scheduled fast trains and two scheduled passenger trains.
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I did not know they had stock yards!
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Charleston, Illinois…. ” ’cause it’s for you!”
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Interesting…..
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Again, the more than ample water bragging!

Five more pages will be coming soon!  Thank you for viewing.

 

City Of Charleston, Illinois . . . Part 3

Following are the next five pages of the booklet.  This is the continuance of the last page in the prior blog, Part 2.

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I never knew that we had two newspapers!

 

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Was this elevator the Whalen’s?

 

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My father and many uncles worked for the New York Central Railroad.  One uncle worked for the Nickel Plate.
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Another map, this time with closer, smaller towns/cities.
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And, apparently there were two airports!

I will try to post the next 5 pages tomorrow.  If not, I will let you know when they are posted.

Thank you for viewing!

 

 

 

City Of Charleston, Illinois . . . Part 2

Following are the next 5 pages in the booklet promoting The City of Charleston, Illinois.

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Sort of a neat little map showing the distance to larger cities. 

 

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I agree about the rolling hills south of the city.  South Fourth Street is still my favorite area.  It is beautiful!

 

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Interesting…. Labor strife is unheard of in Charleston. 

 

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This is sort of an advertisement for industry

 

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They are mentioning the ample water pressure again here.  

Tomorrow I will post the next five pages.  Thank you for reading!

 

April 16, 1991 – The arrival of Cody

Our little baby boy was suppose to make his arrival in June, but he had other plans.  Or should I say God had other plans.  I use to say that Cody could smell my cooking and wanted to eat it so much that he arrived early.  When Cody was little, he told me that while he was inside of me, Tigger was there too and Tigger cooked him pancakes every day! Haha.  He actually said that Tigger was “down there too”.  So, see, my theory about the food was probably correct.

Wes and I were at my cousin’s house playing games and my water broke.  We were suppose to go to the hospital then and there, but Wes said to wait until tomorrow, so I did.  The nurses gave him what for the next day!  They said that was so dangerous.  I did not know since this was my first so I listened to Wes.  Afterall, he had been through this three times prior.  I will make this long story short and tell the entire story at another time … maybe.  Haha.  Anyway, that was the beginning of a twelve day stay in the hospital. The hospital was in Champaign, Illinois, about 45 minutes from home.  I was approximately two months early.

They gave me shots to slow down the labor every time that it started and a shot to speed up the growth of his lungs as well.  The longer I kept my baby inside, the better for him.  They educated us on everything that we needed to know about a pre-natal baby.  This was all so scary.  I had labor about six different times that each lasted about three hours before the shot kicked in to stop it.  It was very easy labor, not hard at all. Well, some were sort of intense, but not really. So, I always say that I was in labor for 18 hours.  Haha.  I had always figured that I would get to do all of the regular things like say it’s time to go have a baby, go through labor, everyone waiting, etc.

After being there for twelve days, my placenta ruptured and I needed to have an emergency C-section.  They told me that when he was born, he would look like he was crying, but he would not make a sound due to his lungs not functioning.  I was told to not be scared because they knew what to do.  Actually, Wes had just left to go to work and I could not get reach him.  I was alone.  My mother happened to call and I guess they told her to call in the family.  Wow!  Cody and I both were in danger.  It was a good thing they did not tell me that, I only found out when my mother, cousins and sister arrived after he was born.  I assume they were so worried about losing us both because Wes happened to call and they brought in a phone and held it to my ear so that I could tell him I was having a baby!  I thought that was really special of them to do and I did not even think that anything could be wrong.  I have to add here that all of the staff was wonderful.  I was so spoiled by all of them.  The nurses were exceptional and actually became friends. You get to know people after staying twelve days.

Anyway, I said this would be the shortened version, so…. Cody arrived.  He was crying loud and clear!!! Lungs were working!!!!  Shortened version… Cody had to stay there for 12 days due to various reasons, he could not coordinate the suck and swallow to eat, he had lost down to 3.5 pounds, he developed jaundice.  He did get to come home and all is well today!  He came home in a cabbage patch outfit and it was way too large for him. They did allow him to come home at the low weight of 3.5 pounds and a little jaundiced still.  I was to lay him in the window in the sunlight for a certain amount of time daily.   There was not a selection of preemie clothes that we could find.  We searched all over Champaign.  We were not thrilled with the outfit but it was the best we could do. The most important point was that we did have our baby and he was going to be okay! Thank you God for taking care of Cody and I!!!!  I love you Cody Lee Sanders.

What I would say about Cody as a person today . . . He has a great sense of humor, loves music, loves the outdoors, board games, all games in fact, almost any type of social activity, loves to be around people, loves anatomy and discussing it, I think that he loves to teach about anything actually, body building, nutrition, anything anyone will listen to.  Haha. He does love to talk. He is intelligent. He does love the Lord.

As a little boy . . . (and maybe still the same today) very, very sensitive, loving, caring, loves family, loves a good joke and played several on us all of the time, loved legos, mario and nintendo games. Loved Disney movies especially The Lion King.  Loved camping, sports, he was a great basketball player.  He loved music, played piano and guitar.  He loved the Lord!  He was almost like a little minister. He was very bold.

Anyway, HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CODY LEE!!!  I am having a hard time realizing that I do not always get to see him on his birthdays any longer.  I feel like I have only missed one but I may be mistaken.  If that is so, today makes two.   I am thinking of you all day, though, Cody!

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Photo reenactment.  To the right, Cody on April 15, 2016 with dad and on the left, Cody in April, 1991 with dad. 
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When he was my little awesome Guitar player.  I wish he had time to pick that back up.
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When he went to Eastern Illinois University.  Quite a way from that little 4 pound baby.
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On the way to Northern Illinois University – Grad school graduation.  Cody – Mr. Anatomy –  With his sister, Shelby, and Jerry, her fiance, in the back seat. 
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Mr. Cody now.  Still working out!

HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!  THANK YOU, GOD, FOR THE GIFT OF CODY!

 

 

 

 

 

City of Charleston, Illinois . . . Booklet Promoting Charleston. This Was My Grandpa Hutton’s Copy

Following are the first 5 pages of a book that I found that was my Grandfather’s, P. B. Hutton, City Commissioner.  I will be posting 5 pages at a time until the entire booklet is posted.

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This is the Cover of the Booklet.  

This booklet is held together by those wire brads that you spread apart to close the book.  They are showing in the picture below.  It is a neat little booklet.

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Page 2
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Page 3

I wish that this was dated.

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Page 4

You could probably figure out the date of the booklet from the information on this page. My father, George “Bun” Hutton, worked for the New York Central Railroad that is mentioned here.

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Page 5

I like that it says, “You will find a grand welcome here”.

The next five pages will be posted on April 17, 2019.  Thank you for your interest and your comments are welcome.

 

 

French Fries . . .

Everyone loves french fries, right?  At least I do and so does my entire family.  Maybe it is because my grandfather was Irish.  Haha. My very first nephew and I shared this love the most.  He was around 10 years old when we had our most memorable event with french fries.

We all lived in homes beside each other in the country.  It was awesome to have everyone right there!  My mom and dad had sold their house to my brother and were living in a trailer until he completed building their new house directly beside him. Since our family loved french fries, we had a kettle with oil in it that we cooked the fries in.  We periodically changed the oil of course.  Everyone was outside working on the house and just hanging out.  That was the great thing about living so close, too.  At any given moment someone was always outside and you could go out and visit with them.  It was wonderful!  Anyway, back to the french fries.  I was hungry so I went inside to make a small batch of fries.

I was waiting for the oil to heat up and my nephew walked in.  He could smell the oil and he asked if I was making fries. I, of course, said yes and asked if he wanted some.  That was a question that was unnecessary.  Haha.  I was getting the fries out of the freezer and then I asked if he would like to go to McDonald’s.  That was another love that we use to share back then.  I do not care for it at all now, but we loved double cheeseburgers and their fries were the absolute best! He, of course, said yes.  Off we went!!!

When we got home were not greeted so well.  Everyone was angry with us.  We were happy, our bellies were full and we could not understand what we had done wrong.  It turns out, in our rush to go to McDonald’s, I did not turn off the oil!  It was a gas range as well, so that was double the problem.  That is not a good thing to do in a trailer.  Lucky they were right outside working on the house.  They heard the alarm and saw the smoke and quickly acted.  My brother got the fire out and there was minimal damage.  Wow!  I cannot believe I did that.  Trailers can go up in flames so fast. I am sure that would not have looked good to the insurance company for the trailer to go up in flames and a new home being built!

So, another thing about french fries.  My nephew would always look over his fries and find the longest fry that he had and compare to ours and it was always important to him to have the longest fry.  I believe in high school or junior high he even wrote a paper about the quest for the longest french fry.  Last night I baked some french fries for my husband and I and I found the longest fry!  I had to text my nephew a picture of it.  That fry must have come from one large potato!  I have pictured it below.

I feel like I have to make a special note here.  We, of course, like french fries the best that we make ourselves rather than the frozen ones.  My children love them and if I start frying some, they never want me to quit until the whole bag of potatoes are used. Haha.

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Check out this steak fry!  It almost takes up the entire plate!

 

Lost In Nashville

This will be a short little story, but I do have to tell it. I have always been one to laugh at inappropriate times. I also have always been one to laugh when someone gets hurt or they fall, trip, bump their head, etc. It is not that I think it is funny that they are hurt, it is how they get hurt that makes me laugh. In between laughs, I try to ask them if they are okay and I am right on the spot to help them up or help them in any way that I can. I truly am sorry that they are in pain, but I cannot help myself. However, if how they fell is funny to me, I break in to uncontrolled laughter. I know that I am not the only one that does this. They even have shows about people getting hurt that people seem to love watching. I do not like to watch those shows at all, so I am not that bad of a person.

Anyway, this leads to my story of getting lost in Nashville. Mom and Dad were driving us down to visit our brother, Jerry, and his family. It was late at night, maybe around 11:00 p.m. and Dad was trying to find his way to a room for the night. He was getting very tired. They realized that they had just been going around and around and winding up at the same place each time. (Now would be a good time for the saying that men never stop to ask for directions and on and on. I do not know that he would not stop, I was just throwing that comment out there because I could. Haha.) Mom and Dad were in the front seat and my sister, Honey, and my brother, Phil, and I were in the back seat. Mom was talking about it not being good to be lost at such a late hour and was sounding like she was a bit fearful. They were getting low on gasoline as well. We were quiet and wondering if we should be worried/scared.

Dad kept driving and we kept ending up back at the same place. Finally mom spotted a police officer and said that dad could ask him for directions. They told us to all be quiet so that dad could speak to the officer and get us some help. Dad always drove these huge cars. I think we were in a Bonneville or something like that. Big old boats are what we called them. It was really nice, though. It had four doors and all electric doors and windows, which was a big deal then. So, Dad pulls up next to the officer and ever so calmly and being so cool, rolled down his window and stuck his head out as he was saying, “Hey, Buddy.” Well…. Dad rolled down the window and stuck his head out saying, “Hey, Buddy” . . . BUT he rolled down the back window! Hahahaha! His head did not go out the window and he actually hit his head pretty hard. Dad quickly grabs his head and is rubbing it and making a noise like you do when you are in pain, sort of a wail. Another thing to point out here is that Phil had his pillow against the window and was napping. His face when he woke up as that window was going down was such fun to see! He had no idea what was going on!

True to form, I totally bust out in laughter. My mom quickly turns around and is making faces at me telling me to stop. That is just fuel for the fire. I laugh even harder watching her make faces at me and being all frantic and stuff. Honey and Phil are lightly hitting at me telling me to stop and I only get worse. Honey and Phil can no longer control it and are laying down in the seat, hands over their mouths to stifle their laughter and burying their faces in pillows. I, witnessing all of these things, laugh harder and louder and harder and louder. They are all hysterical looking to me. A video of all of this would be nice.

Meanwhile, dad had finished rubbing his head and was listening to the officer explain the directions to him. Poor dad, hurt head and his family acting up and he has to pay attention to directions. He did a great job, though. Then, he rolled up the window and turned around to me and said…”Well, you would have a wonderful time at a funeral!” That did it. It was all over. I was rolling then and, in fact, everyone else finally openly released their laughter. Dad was sort of smiling, he was not really angry and he looked at me. I said, “Hey, Buddy!” and pretended to hit the window with my head and that was when he lost it and joined in the laughter. We laughed until we could barely breathe.

As you have read that we have done before, this is another comment that we occasionally will make and everyone will laugh because we remember the story . . . Hey, Buddy!

Bunnies and Shelby . . . OR … HEYYYYY BUNNNNYYY!

I was at Rural King Saturday and, of course, you can hear all of the “Peep Peeps” as Cody and Shelby use to call them.  Rural King has baby chickens, ducks and bunnies.  We went and visited them all, of course.  I feel a bit sorry for them all cramped up in the containers.  There was one at the highest point just sticking his head out as much as he could.  That reminded me of my little brother letting out all of the quail that I blogged about earlier.  Well, one thought leads to another in my mind and I have a few things to blog about now.  One that I will post later will be about Shelby and a large chicken.  Well, that brings to mind another so there will be two stories about Shelby and large chickens. Actually one is a chicken and one is a rooster. Another will be about Wes’ mom and her bunnies in Sullivan, Illinois.

This one, however, will be about Shelby and a bunny.  Every Easter Sunday a human sized bunny rabbit would walk right around our corner with a bright colorful basket.  The bunny was white and wore a pink plaid vest and a bow tie. Shelby saw that bunny and her pretty little face lit up in all smiles, her eyes just shining.  She was jumping up and down and calling in her sweet little voice, “Bunny!  Bunny!  Hi Bunny!” I was so excited that they got to see this and that a bunny was actually in the neighborhood.

To my surprise, and dismay, that bunny ignored her completely.  Shelby was so close to the bunny and we were all outside.  We were very noticeable.  You would think that if someone were walking around the neighborhood dressed that way, they would expect to wave to any children they might see.  That bunny should have imagined the effect upon a child when what they thought to be the Easter Bunny ignored them??!!  I was so upset, I wanted to go talk to that bunny!

Of course, the Easter Bunny is not the point of Easter, but the children knew all about Jesus, so I saw no harm in the Easter bunny and Easter baskets.  For this bunny to ignore the children that way was terrible! That person had to know that children would be excited to see them when they were obviously walking around on a notable day in a very noticeable costume.  Why were they even doing this if they did not want to be noticed???Did they really want to convey that the Easter Bunny was rude and mean?  I could not believe the behavior. We distracted the children and all was well.

However, the very next year….same bunny, same behavior.  Little Shelby was all excited again and ran closer and was calling to the bunny and waving again.  Sadly the bunny still ignored my sweet little girl.  I was really considering following that bunny and having a talk, but I felt it best to distract the children and make them happy again.  I even used the old, well that probably is a helper and they are grouchy, do not let their actions affect you.   Either Shelby or Cody said that the real one would be really mad at this bunny.  (Keep in mind, as mentioned in other blogs,  that Cody did not believe in any of this at all and was only supporting Shelby, so I cannot really remember if Shelby said it or if Cody said it to help Shelby cope.)  We again, had a nice time in spite of the bunny and his ways.

You guessed it, the next year, the same thing exactly!  Well. . . not exactly, Shelby had a bit of a different attitude.  She is three years older now you know! We are all outside and sure enough around the corner comes the bunny. Shelby is old enough now that she remembers the past encounters.  She is still such a sweet child and is so excited when she sees the bunny.  She runs closer to the end of our yard and exclaims, “Hi bunny!  Bunny!  Bunny!  Hi!”  Shelby is all smiles and so very excited.  The bunny is it’s true mean, grumpy, rude self.  Cody and I are watching and are very sad and angry at this bunny. I have no idea why it is like that.

You really had to see Shelby here, she was so cute anyway, but this was great.  Shelby loses her smile and gets a little frown on her forehead and her eyes seem to become darker in color.  She puts her little hands on her hips and stands tall.  She is just looking  more cute here!  She uses her deepest, loudest voice (which is adorable sounding) and with anger states (she does not call out here, she simply states) “HEYYYY …..BUNNNNNYYY!!!”  I wish I could let you hear how it was said.  Guess what the bunny does?  Walks right on by.  Darn that bunny! Unbelievable!

I also wish I could do a better job of telling these stories so that you could actually visualize them because this was so priceless.  Each of the times Shelby took this mistreatment from this bunny and was still so sweet and innocent.  She was sweet again and finally she had had enough and stood up for herself.  Cody and I watched her transformation from happy to angry.  Even angry, she was still being so sweet about it and so very cute! Her voice, though… haha, when she angrily stated HEYYYY BUNNNNYYY!, Cody and I lost it.  As I remember, we even fell to the ground and were literally rolling on the ground in laughter.  Shelby was great!  Finally giving that bunny just what it deserved, we were so proud of her!  The bunny, of course, never acknowledged that either.  That did not stop Cody and I from our admiration of Shelby, though.  The bunny went on by and Shelby, with her hands on her hips, looked down and sighed and shook her head.  Cody and I erupted in laughter again.  This was too cute.  Shelby started giggling and joined us on the ground in our laughter.

We have not and will not forget this rude bunny.  In fact to this day, when someone is rude or mean, we sometimes will look at each other and say, HEYYYY BUNNNNYYY!!!!  It gets the point across to each other and we all know what the other means when this is said.

 

The Chipmunks May Have Won, BUT …The Squirrel Will NOT Win!!!

If it is not one creature, it is another.  Now, the squirrels are waging war with me.

I thought only the chipmunks hated me, but I was mistaken.  What angers me the most is when they eat every thing I plant!  They dig them right up!  I have tried for years to have tulips.  They seem to love those the best. We began to set live traps and relocated the chipmunks.  Year before last we relocated over 30 and I live in town!

Wes is gone more frequently and I do not want to take a ride with them and release them so we stopped the relocation practice.  I feed the birds and I always put some seeds on the ground to keep the chipmunks off of my feeders.  This has started to work…. a bit.  I still cannot have plants no matter what I feed them.  Last year, however, one would sit on my deck by my back door and stare me down.  (Perhaps it was not one and they took turns, I do not know.) He comes up to the screen door when it is open and torments the cats.  I would either make a noise or stomp my foot toward him and he would just spread his front legs and make a wide stance and stare me down! He would not leave at all.  They are fearless!  I have to shut the door now because I wonder if they will tear up the screen and get in the house.  So, they torment the cats and me.  Let’s move on to the squirrel….

The squirrel is bigger than the chipmunk obviously.  This could be a good thing.  A tiny little critter is somewhat more spastic and could easily be up your pant leg or anywhere.  At least the bigger a critter is, the easier it is to keep track of.  Also, the bigger the critter, perhaps the more damage or injury to a person.  Haha.  So…. today, I was telling the squirrel to leave in a variety of ways…clapping my hands, slamming doors, closing windows hard, etc.  The squirrel would inch away a bit with each noise.  Okay, so that appeased me.

I was sitting on the deck a little later on talking with Wes on the phone.  The squirrel hops up the side of the deck and comes right toward me.  I clapped my hands and told him to go away.  He inched forward toward me.   I stomped my foot and told him to get out!  He started that thing with his tail raising up and down.   I do not know if that means for his friends to come and help him or if he is saying look out here I come to get you.  I hesitate to find out which it means. Haha.  I thought I had once read that it meant they were warning their friends of danger, but I don’t think he felt that he was in any danger at all.  I am using “he” here but I have no idea of the sex.

Anyway…. he eventually got on the fence and started rapidly wagging his tail at me.  Wes said to hit the fence with something and the noise would make him go away and perhaps the vibration.  I did not want to get close to the fence so I threw a rock at the fence.  I did NOT throw it at the squirrel, so don’t get upset.  I am surprised, but I did hit the fence! It was even with enough force to make some noise.  The squirrel…unaffected.  Wes said he heard it hit and was surprised I hit it too! (He knows me too well and shows no confidence in my ability or should I say lack of.)  The squirrel looked at me as if to ask if that was the best I had.  Wes told me to throw another.  Again, it was a success and made a loud noise and again Wes was impressed.  The squirrel was not.  He finally just looked at me, shook his head and walked across the top of the fence.   He got over to the other side of the fence and started threatening me again with his tail.

Of course, I went in the house and shut the door.  I swear it is my yard, not his and I will win.  I tried to be nice and share it with him, but he is becoming aggressive.  We will see what the summer brings.  I will keep you posted. I hope it does not turn into a reenactment of The Mississippi Squirrel Revival!

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Look at his mouth! With it open like that, it looks like he is just as shocked as Wes that I hit even hit the fence.  

Skating!! Angela, My Niece ….North Carolina Amateur Sport’s Athlete of the Month!

I thought that I would share an article about my niece, Angela.  She was featured as NC Amateur Sports’ Athlete of the Month! You can read the article if you click here… Angela

This article ends with the statement, “She is looking forward to competing in the Adult Silver Freestyle event at this year’s Powerade State Games Figure Skating Competition taking place on March 30th at Extreme Ice Center in Indian Trail, NC.”

Well, guess what….. SHE WON!!!

Angela

She is pictured here, on the right.  So very, very proud of you Angela!!!!

 

Warm Apple Pie . . . Not Always A Good Thing?

Apple pie is my favorite fruit pie.  Well, sometimes it is a toss up with cherry, but mostly I will choose apple pie.  As mentioned, my mother, in my opinion, made the very best apple pies.  Even her crust was the best.  When she would make pies, with the leftover dough, she would just bake the strips of the crust and we could not eat them fast enough.  They were so flavorful and flaky.  (This is the part where everyone starts thinking about baking them with a little cinnamon and sugar.  We never used the left over for that, we would just make pie crust cinnamon rolls.  We loved the crust strips the best.) I guess that I failed to post her pie crust recipe when I posted the pie recipe.  I will have to remedy that soon.

I often made her apple pie recipe.  As life became more hectic with the babies, I would buy pre-made crusts instead of taking the time to make her recipe.  This obviously drastically changed the taste of the recipe and it was no longer even close to mom’s recipe.  I say close, because no matter what I did, hers always tasted better. I found a cheat, though, that seemed to help.  I started making her apple crisp recipe!  Wes and the children loved it.  They even at times asked if I could just make a pan of the “crisp”.  Haha.  I did make them a small pan once and they found that it is not good without at least a bit of the fruit, though.

I would always store whatever desserts that I made in the oven.  I did not refrigerate them and I did not just leave them on the counter.  There is probably some “gasping” now at the thought of not refrigerating them.  If I made them today, I would refrigerate them but I did not then.  They usually did not last long enough to worry about refrigerating them anyway so that is why I never did.

My husband worked for a trucking company initially.  This was before he started his construction company.  I had made an apple crisp along with supper before he left one night.  When he returned home he was so excited because he “found” it in the oven.  He had figured we finished it off, but checked the oven anyway and to his delight there was some left! He grabbed a plate and fork and served himself a huge plate.  He was pleasantly surprised that the pie was warm!  How exciting for him!  He had no idea how I had done that but he grabbed a second huge piece.  He figured that I had recently served it and had warmed it up.

Suddenly, he was not so excited any longer.  As he was eating this second, huge, warm piece, and was all smiles, he noticed something.  He started picking at it.  There appeared to be this white, fuzzy stuff on the pie.  He was not happy at all.  Mold had grown on the crisp.  He wondered when I had made it and why this had happened.  He began to feel a bit nauseated but just because he was thinking about it, not because it actually made him ill.

Well, after some investigating he solved the mystery.  Someone, possibly me, who knows, had left the oven light on.  Wes made a point to tell me all about his “warm, apple pie” and to explain to me that I had left the crisp in the oven and with the light on.  He stated that with the light bulb on, I had created a thing like an Easy Bake Oven.  He said that this had created an environment to grow mold.  He was a bit upset. We all found it funny.  He seems to be getting a bit irritated with the fact that we find him and the things that happen to him to be so humurous but that just makes us laugh more.  We just cannot help ourselves.  He is so funny!  He was sort of gloating saying that he was getting to eat the rest of it and we were not going to have any.   Was that some sort of justice? Also, we all were very happy. We were happy because he had the bad crisp and saved us from it.  Haha.

That was the day that I stopped keeping desserts in the oven and started refrigerating them.

Granny’s Kitchen Apple Pie Recipe … Also Known As My Mother’s ….

As I mentioned about my mother earlier, she was a wonderful cook in all areas of cooking!  I had mentioned that she opened a restaurant, Granny’s Kitchen and Bakery.  She also published a cookbook with some of her recipes and some of her recipes that she served at the restaurant.

I would like to share her apple pie recipe with you here because I am going to follow another day with a story about warm apple pie.  When she published the cookbook, she decided to name her apple pie recipe, John’s Apple Pie.  She did this because my boss at the time of this publishing absolutely LOVED her apple pie.  Obviously, his name was John.  Lol.

Every so often, she would make an apple pie for him for no reason other than that he loved it.  She did that a lot for people.  Someone would come to mind and she would remember that a person liked her banana pie and she would make them one.  She would remember that someone liked her raisin creme pie and she would make them one.  She just was a very sweet, thoughtful woman.  Everyone LOVED her pies.  The smells of the pies baking were just as wonderful as the taste of the pies!  Anyway, following is a picture of the recipe that I took from her cookbook.

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When I would tell my mother how great her pies tasted, I would ask her why hers were always better even though we would follow the recipe perfectly. She would smile and pat my face and say that it was all of her love that she put in it.  I would smile and then she sort of paused and thought for a minute.  She would smile again and say that her mother would always tell her that some people just had a touch for certain things.  She said maybe she had that touch.  I am positive she did and I am sure that others who have had her pies feel the same way.

Let me know if you try this recipe and how much you love it!

Do They Have Enough

It is so very hard.  You gave birth to them, you watched over every move they ever made.  You loved them with more than you ever knew you had to give.   You still love them with more than you knew you could. You still try to watch over their every move, but they no longer live with you and they are grown!  Haha.

I recently had to replace a windshield wiper.  When it was snowy, I was using a broom to sweep the snow off of the windshield because I could not reach it with the scraper and the wiper blade fell off. It broke and could not be reattached.  I must be more powerful than I knew!!  Go me!  Consequently, I had to have a new wiper. Obviously I had started to write this awhile back because it is 58 degrees today, April, and it has not snowed for awhile. I promised to post on each Thursday, so I found this one and thought I would finish it up and post it.  I have several drafts of things that I intend to post at some point as I write them as I think of them.

Back to the wiper, the auto shop person told me they were relatively new appearing to him and that I should just buy the one that I needed.  I had no idea what type to get so I took his suggestion.  It cost me $31.00.  This is stupid, but I LOVE that wiper.  I feel sort of silly loving a wiper, but it is really, really nice.  It is a Rainx if any of you know what that is, but I am impressed with them.  At a later date, my other wiper was not cooperating.  My husband suggested that I go get the other blade.  It was cold and I did not want to stop to get it and I figured perhaps it had some ice on it and was dragging.  Sure enough, that is what it was and it works fine.

What does this have to do with my children?  Well, I was standing at the stove frying some cheerios and my thoughts were running away with me.  I thought of the ability to just go buy that other wiper blade.  I remembered a time when we may not have been able to afford a wiper blade right away.  These things were the unexpected bills.  I was remembering the hard times and how we made do so that we could do the things the children needed.  Anyway, the point of this story….I was thinking of them and I was wondering if they had the money to just go buy a wiper blade if they needed to.  I figure that they may be struggling at times as we were due to the times.   Sure, they do not have 5 children living with them but times are so tough.  My husband and I always discuss how could someone starting out alone, with one income, make it these days.  There are so, so many taxes, fees, charges and things. Prices fluctuate and become so high for food and gasoline at times.

Anyway, I was thinking about this and was hoping that my children will have enough.  They have great jobs and I am sure they will be fine, but this thought did occur to me.  I just want so much for my babies.  My husband and I have both said that we do not know how anyone starting out can afford an apartment and all of the bills and then a car.  We thought maybe one or the other, but not both.  Sure they do not automatically have children to take care of, but it seems that you make the decision to go to college and then there are no career positions available and the student loans begin to eat you alive.  There are so, so many taxes, fees, charges and more and more being added.

Anyway, I hope they have enough. Better yet, I pray they have enough.

 

Exploding Mail Boxes

We were in the bedroom one night getting ready to go to bed.  I had just gotten into bed and my husband was getting ready to get in to bed.   All of a sudden we heard an explosion . . .   A loud explosion.  Instantaneous to that someone started loudly banging on our front door.

I was so startled and my husband and I both started excitedly talking about what the explosion was and who was at the door.  The banging on the door was getting louder and louder. Haha! We both realized we had better get to the door.  Well, now that you all know Wes, I am certain that you know that he, in reality, was a big chicken and wanted me to go see who was at the door! All of this was probably just a minute or so. It was a bit scary to go to the door, however, because we had no idea if the knocking was from the explosion or two different incidents.

We half jog/half creep down the hallway to the door with some uncertainty.  As we draw closer (I am sure I am in the lead) we could hear a familiar voice.  It was my brother at the door.  He is pounding with both hands exclaiming, “Let me in! Let me in!”  I then rushed to do the door because I did not know if he was injured or just what was going on!  He also was scared and probably more so since he was out there with that explosion!   He said that he was walking up the sidewalk to visit and heard the explosion.  He then, of course, broke into a run to the door and started banging, wanting inside as he did not know what happened.  Since we did not get to the door for a minute or so, he started scoping out the situation.  There would be no way that he would keep his back to an explosion. He would naturally have to turn around.  It was then that he noticed that our mailbox had just exploded!

We called the police and they stated that it was it was a prank by children.  They said it has been a happening thing lately.  They went on to say that it was, of course, a stupid prank, as they said what the children mixed to blow up the mailbox could have exploded in their hands. That would have been such a tragedy.

What a freaky thing to happen at the precise moment my brother was walking up the sidewalk.  We teased and teased him.  Honestly, everyone else that that could have happened to would have been just as scared!  We were scared and we were inside of the house! There is no way that we were not going to forever tease him about it, though!  It was just too much fun.  He is no longer with us, but he never forgot this incident and we never will.  I am not too sure that he appreciated all of the laughter we were having with it, though.  Again, where was that camera?!

Cody Strikes Again!!!!

There was a prior blog, Tooth Fairy? Yes? Or No?  In that blog, Cody totally blew me out of the water for playing along with the tooth fairy idea.  If you have not read that, please go back and read it.  It will go along with this story.  Haha.

Today is April 1, 2019.  Also known as April Fools’ Day.  The day to prank people.  I have such fun memories of my mother always, always “getting” us with a prank.  We totally enjoyed it and then we would spend the entire day trying to “get” everyone else. They were usually simple little things. Mom would wake us saying get up you have overslept.  We would sprint out of bed and she would smile and say “April Fools’ Day”.  Sometimes she would wake us saying we missed the bus.  Some of her other jokes were that we had to change our clothes, we had a big rip in the dress, there was a spider on you, just fun little innocent things.

Naturally, since I enjoyed that so much, I wanted my children to have the same fun.  I would do the same thing, tell them there was a bug, they overslept, they had a rip in their clothes.  I could not tell them that they missed the bus because we schooled them at home.  Shelby would giggle and then try to get us all day with some sort of joke.  Cody never much did anything and I finally found out why.

You have read about Cody in the tooth fairy so you will understand how he is.  He has this way of bringing out the truth, or you might say that he will let you know exactly how he feels.  I am guessing that he played along with the jokes until he had the understanding of the language to tell me exactly how it is.

So…. here I am thinking I am this great mother and devising plans to play with and “get” the children on this day.  I think Cody was in 3rd grade on this particular incident.  I ran in and “got” Shelby.  Of course, she was full of giggles and hugs.  Then it was on to Cody.   I go in to “get” him and I probably say something like get up we have to do blah, blah, we are late.

Much to my dismay, Cody strikes again.  He asks me to come to him and sit on the bed.  I am thinking he must not be feeling well today.  He proceeds to tell me that I am his mother and he thought that he could always trust me.  He tells me that he knows that I will never lie to him.  I tell him that is true.  He can trust me.  Now for the huge let down.  He asks me why I lie to him and try to prank him.  He said that is telling him a lie and he does not like it because he never thought I would tell him a lie.  He added that he did not like to think of me as a liar and would I please not do that any longer. Well, that ended that I have not pranked him since.  Boy did I feel like a horrible person. At the same time, I was glad that he could trust me and knew that I would not lie to him. He, at times, makes perfect sense although it can be unpleasant to hear.

However, Shelby, you look out!!!  I will still have fun with you! I will not lie to you either, Shelby. You can trust me, but, I can play with you! I will attempt to “get” any other one that I can too!

Speaking of Eating…..

Here is a short little blog that I should not share because then you will really know just how weird my family and I are.  You that know us are probably thinking, wait, we already know! I am referring not to just my family created with Wes, but my family created by my mother and father as well.  Yesterday while eating lunch with my husband, a topic that my family and friends use to have came up accidentally.  It makes me wonder if anyone else is the same.  I know that my cousins from my mother’s side are because we use to speak of these issues.

So, when you are eating, do you find that when you are finished eating that you need to end with a certain thing?  For instance, do you need to stop eating with something salty as the last bite?  Or do you need to end with something sweet as your last bite?  I always, always, had to end on salty.  If we went to dairy queen and had ice cream as a treat after the meal, I always had to save back a couple of french fries in order to “end on salt.” I still have to end on salt.  Do any of you have this same quirk?

I learned from my mother and absolutely love to have sauerkraut with pork chops.  My husband wants nothing to do with sauerkraut and does not even want to allow me to cook it.  Haha.  Since we were a family of 7, she had to cook a couple of skillets of pork chops…cast iron skillets, of course!  When the pork chops were finished, one skillet was reserved to make the gravy in and the other skillet was reserved to cook the sauerkraut in.  The sauerkraut was browned in the drippings and it is the very best!!  The point of this bonus story is that that was what was for lunch yesterday. 

plate to use for blog
I did not take this photo with the intent of posting, so it is not the best.  The french fries were baked and I sort of burned them accidentally.  The point of the picture was to show you that wonderful browned sauerkraut! And, no, I did not eat that much food!  Haha.

This leads to another quirk I have and I am sure I am not alone because my nieces, nephews, cousins and I share this as well.  Maybe not all of them, but some of them because we have talked about it.  Yesterday we were eating lunch and my plate was almost empty and I had a dilemma.  I said to my husband that I was not sure which food I wanted to end on to have that as my last taste.  All bites were of course salty but I had to end on a particular taste. Of course, he just looked at me and said nothing.  I waited and then he said, “For sure it should not be that sauerkraut!”  Funny he should say that, because that is exactly what I saved for my last bite….A bite of pork chop with that sauerkraut!   Does anyone else like to end with their last bite with the best part of the meal?

I realize that these may not be all that quirky because I had heard that there were studies done by the food industry on how to dress buns, layer desserts, salads, etc. because they stated that it was in what order tastes hit your palate/taste buds to make the taste the most pleasing.

I do know of some who eat a certain way that I do not understand at all, but each to their own.  They probably do not understand me either. Some people will eat all of a certain food at once before they move on to the next food.  For instance, they will first eat every single french fry.  Next they will eat the sandwich.  They do this with their other meals as well.  I prefer to have a bite of each rather than to have nothing of one food left.  I even save my salad that is served at the beginning so that I can have a bite here and there with my meal.

This brings up the hibachi grill…. first you get salad and soup, then you get your rice and veggies and last is the meat.  People start eating immediately.  I take a few bites because I am hungry, but I save most all of the food until it is all cooked so that I can have a bite here and there of each item.  Besides, if I ate all of that I would have no room for my steak!

One of my nieces or nephews use to use a french fry or they would tear strips of bread and divide their food so it would not touch.  Perhaps this is why they came up with divided plates.  Anyway, to each their own.  As my mother said, it all ends up in the same place … all mixed up anyway.

Feel free to comment and share your agreement or disagreement with anything mentioned here or to share your different eating habits!

 

The Garden — Favorite Foods of Long Ago

Thinking of what to plant in my garden this year makes me think of my mother’s fantastic garden!  Having a garden prompted some very wonderful foods that may have otherwise been left undiscovered.  At least that is my opinion.  I feel like we ate some of the things we did because of the abundance of garden foods that only last so long.  My mother’s garden was huge and I mean huge.  Where her garden was is where three houses are now!

It was great being able to play outside all day and just grab a snack when you were hungry without going in for lunch.  Just pluck off a tomato and eat away.  Rhubarb was always fun.  We use to all get a stalk and on the count of three take a bite and see who could go the longest without puckering up.  We loved it, but that first bite was always a challenge. My mouth is watering just thinking of that sour first bite.

Mom was very creative with vegetables…. cabbage, lettuce, cucumbers, radishes, tomatoes, green beans, corn, carrots, potatoes, green onions, only the tops of the green onions, zucchini, and more and even pumpkin blossoms! Mom would make cucumber slices and onions in a vinegar, water, sugar combination.  I still make that today, but sometimes I add sliced green, yellow and orange peppers.  It just depends on which way I feel like having it.  We would have fried cucumbers and even cucumber sandwiches.  My favorite was cucumber on toast with butter and salt.  The very best, however was a toast and tomato sandwich.  Before I had all of the food allergies, I would still have that for lunch.  So good with butter and salt.  So many things we would eat on toast or just plain bread and butter….. radishes, green onion tops, cucumbers and tomatoes.

The salads were awesome.  Sometimes we just had vegetables with salad dressing and no lettuce.  Mom canned a lot and froze a lot of things.  We had the best vegetables year round.   She kept the potatoes and perhaps some other things in the basement that was accessed from outside so that kept them fresh longer. She was even creative with that.  She kept her canned goods in the basement, too.  The tomato juice and canned tomatoes were bountiful. There was something she canned that I would love to have but I do not have any idea how she made it.  Perhaps I can google that and find it somewhere but it was green peppers with cabbage in the jar and some sort of liquid.  I think it was a vinegar concoction.  It was delicious whatever it was.  It may have been picked cabbage if there is such a thing.  Speaking of that, she even made pickles, both dill and sweet pickles.  When she canned, I remember her saying that she loved the sound of the lids popping because that meant the seal took and the food would be good and last long.  We would be watching television when she had finished and you would hear pop….pop….pop.  You could look over at mom and just see her beautiful smile.  Dad would look over at her and smile back and wink at her.

My mother made fried green onion tops.  They were so good!  She used the recipe for wilted letttuce, I believe.  I am not sure, but they were so good. They were totally gross looking though.  We called them frogs. Haha.

Then, there were the fried goodies.  She would either batter them and fry them or just fry or saute them.  Fried green tomatoes and fried cucumbers were my favorites.  She also fried zucchini and pumpkin blossoms, just about anything you could think of.  As the garden neared the end of the season and everything we could use had been used, there was always the final use.  The rotten tomato fight is what we called it.  It was not just tomatoes, though.  It was whatever vegetable we could find to use for a weapon! The neighbors, of course, joined in.  People were all over the garden tossing vegetables at each other.  (Well, not exactly everything!  You weren’t allowed to throw something dangerous such as a potato, cucumber or pumpkin.) Tossing is putting mildly.  Haha.  Such a great time.  When you think about, it we made fun with everything back then.  Such creativity and imaginations.  They truly were the good old times!

We had a peach orchard, blackberry, gooseberry and raspberry bushes and we grew strawberries.  The fresh fruit and pies and desserts were the best.  There were plenty of these to freeze as well. My mother worked so very hard. I plant a small garden here in town, but nothing will compare with my mother’s garden and her fantastic cooking!

Return Of The Tree Frogs………Unfortunately

Okay, back to the tree frogs….

The children were young and we were camping when we had our encounter with the tree frog in the prior blog.  The children are grown and have since moved out and the tree frog was just a memory that we spoke of and laughed about often.  WAS is the key word.  I have heard that history repeats itself and sometimes in a much bigger fashion.

Here I am alone in the house sleeping peacefully and here comes the loud scream that I remember from the past.  OMG!  Well, I will just go back to sleep and have Wes find the little fellow and relocate him when he gets back home on Saturday.  Nope!  Silly girl, think again.  There are two frogs…one at each end of the yard and they are screaming back and forth all night!  It is only Monday… I have the whole week to go.  I am so annoyed.  There is no way that I cannot not hear these frogs.

I post on facebook that I cannot sleep and all of my friends make comments about how they love to hear frogs, crickets, and all of the night noises, etc.  So do I.  These are not your little frogs that you normally hear in the night.  These are horror movie screams.  Each frog makes that noise, they do not know how to just talk.

My husband and my sister-in-law get the brunt of my issue with the frogs.  I complain to my husband about his being gone again and I complain about being sleepy.  My sister-in-law has to listen to me on the phone.  Okay, so Tuesday night I am tired and I think I can sleep through those two.  I swear, they have doubled and there are four!  I whine again to my husband, Wes, and my sister-in-law, Georgia.  Wednesday night it is even worse.  I try to get sympathy from my facebook friends, but they do not understand this is NOT a soothe you to sleep type of noise the frogs in my yard are making.  Apparently they are screaming because they are calling the entire town over to my yard!  There must be 20 or more it seems.  Every night, I discuss this with Georgia and continue to feel a little angry at Wes for not being home to relocating these.  I even went out on the deck and recorded them and played them to Wes.  He could not believe they were so loud and said there must be a lot!

Georgia calls one night and says that her son, Seth and his fiance, Kathleen, are coming to town and they may come visit me.  I quickly say please do!!! You and I can get these frogs and Seth will be even better, because I am not fond of them at all and do not want to be close to them.  They are gross, remember?  Yay!!! I can barely wait!!

So, we are sitting on the deck and I had told Georgia, Seth and Kathleen that we should be hearing them soon.  Nope!  Not going to happen.  Sure, everyone will just think I am the nutty old lady!  Well, I finally remember that I had a recording!  I play it for them to hear and guess what??  Those frogs started answering!

I have these containers that I buy by the case to send Wes meals in for the week.  I went in and got several.  It was unbelievable!!  They started coming out like crazy.  I think Seth and Kathleen were having fun catching them and were sort of in disbelief as to how many there were.   We had mentioned how it reminded us of reading about the plague of frogs in the Bible.  We thought they would never stop appearing!   So many people get on me when I say we “relocate” things.  They hope that we are not relocating them to Heaven.  Lol.  They think the circle of life ends with me.  I can reassure you that it does not, I just want their circle of life continued someplace else.

Beautiful Kathleen and wonderful Seth relocate these frogs to the lake.  They drove clear out there and delivered them.  I am so glad they did this for me and I think they were so sweet to care and deliver them clear to the lake that late.  Just to give you an idea, here are two pictures of the frogs they relocated.

Proof that these were so very many and all screaming, how could it be that soothing night time noise?  I  cannot remember if Seth and Kathleen said they were quiet on the ride to the lake or not.

Thank you Georgia, Seth and Kathleen!