Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Chores

I am supposed to be doing chores. Or calling Dad to see how he is doing. I don't think I will be traveling down to the cities today, so hope he is feeling better.
We have 9 inches as of an hour and a half ago, and it is still coming down, sometimes in big flakes and other times those nasty little ones that seem to fill up the yard and roads faster.
Measured the 9 inches on my top step where the wind hasn't gotten to it. Pretty safe place to measure. Metal yardstick does wonders.
The garbage pickup truck was just here, so I guess there are others out and about, although I haven't heard the snowplow yet. I shouldn't complain, Manistitque, MI, has tons of snow compared to our measly 9 inches. Ach! I need to get out of my jammies, comfortable as they are...they are the blue ones this time. I really love the fleece jammies and should toss all the other sleep shirts out....except when it gets warmer and I can't wear these any more. The horns of a dilemma! Well, need to call my sister, she sent me the most marvelous recipe for 15 Minute Tex-Mex Rice Casserole. Gotta make sure there isn't one ingredient missing though.
Huggs to all, and safe driving, ya hear!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all,
We spent a quiet Christmas Eve and went up to Grand Rapids, MN, to spend Christmas Day with my in-laws. Arrived around four p.m. and only an hour late. Roads were fine, after my mishap with my little pick-up on the bridge leading out of town towards Foreston. I was thankful to the good Lord that there weren't any vehicles heading east. I landed in the ditch just past Cemetery road, about 20 feet in. Blasted through one heck of a hard, ice-packed drift, went airborne a bit and 'drove' the last 10 or so feet when I stopped. Not a pleasant experience.
Evidently I wasn't the only one that hit the black ice on the bridge that day. A lady with a wheelchair equipped vehicle was the first. Why wasn't there a police car stationed at the side by the bridge? Good question.
Got home after the tow with a ride from a very good friend, and called 911 to mention that the bridge was slippery.
She told me she knew, that they had put in three calls to the highway department for sanding the bridge and were ignored. Go figure.

Took two days for the engine compartment to melt of snow. Only damage is the bumper where my beloved fog lights are, is not attached any longer. Will have to go somewhere for body work to get it re-attached. Except for a small power steering leak, everything seems to be running fine.
I am driving with four-wheel drive if it is the slightest bit icy...doesn't stop me from fish-tailing, but at least I have four wheels pulling at a slow speed. If they want to pass, I will wave to them as I pass when they land in the ditch.
Went to the Nosbusch Christmas Party today, and started out slipping and sliding just off our hill. Really didn't want to experience another ditch episode, but made it to the highway all right and proceeded to the party. It was nice, and nice to spend time with friends. (Forgot how squealey children under four can be.) But it was a good time spent.
Have other things going on, but don't really want to talk about it as I don't need to bring anyone else down for the holidays.
Have a good holiday season, and be careful for the New Year's driving. I don't want to lose anyone this year.
Huggs, to all,
CJ

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Just for today...

Just for today I want all the problems I have to be put on hold.
Isn't that what we all would like in this holiday time?
Then we tell ourselves that we can enjoy the season and not be hurried and rushed and cranky because we feel that we can't get every thing done that we think we should be doing?
I don't decorate the house for the holidays, I guess I lost my passion for it when the kids all left the house, but I will say that I didn't do much while they were little either. That must be a fault of mine as one daughter loves to decorate her house. Even the bathroom is displaying decorations for each holiday in turn.
Sometimes I look at all the decorations and think that I should and would love to decorate. But I never do. It isn't that I don't have the decorations, I do, but the thought of dragging them all down and then having to find room and displacing the things that I do have out, gets to be a large issue with me and time.
So to all of those of you that do decorate, a big Thank You! I envy you your passion and energy to do that. Please add a little 'extra' for me.
A little "lagniappe".
For the rest of us, just take each day a little slower in your mind. Savor all that comes your way.
When the cards come, look at each one, remember the sender, and if you are of the propensity, say a small prayer for them. Then go on to the next card.
Cherish and relish each day. We only have so many days in our life, try to enjoy each one to the fullest. Most times, it just takes a little slowing down mentally to get the job done.
My best to all this Holy Season.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

my letter to Jill

Yikes Jill!
Please, please, please don't let Chief CHEW on them. Those bits could get caught in his intestines and kill him! You wouldn't know the symptoms until way too late.
It is like my friend's dauschhound that ate some tinsel. He had been around it for years and years and never bothered with it. By the time he was ill enough to show symptoms, the run to the vet was too late. She lost her beloved little dog.
It is the same with people giving their dogs those DAMMNED rawhide bones. Two of my friend's basset hounds had to have emergency surgery and almost didn't make it because the rawhide had become caught in their intestine and had to be surgically removed. $300.00 each dog later, they were allowed to go home with the proviso that Betty would get rid of all rawhide 'treats' in the house. The best present to give a dog owner is a "Nylabone", bought at any good pet store. It is all nylon, an inert material and dissolves in the dog's stomach acid when the dog chews on it to keep it's teeth and gums healthy.
Please try to keep the bags away from Chief. I kind of like that guy, my Silver thinks he is as handsome as he is, and Minnie is just over the moon for both Chief and Bert.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008 1:38:00 PM CST

CeeJay said...
P. S. The $300.00 quote was for surgery about ten years ago.

$600.00 for two dogs surgery now days is just for the anaesthesia?
Betty still gets the shakes when she thinks how close she came to losing her best buds back then.
There are specially made 'tunnels' that are plastic bags from the pet stores to make 'crinkly' sounds encased in fabric so the cat can't get to the bag, but still make the 'sound'.
I personally think he likes the 'warmth' radiating back up to his body from the plastic. It would be better to get a hunk of Fleece, cut into a generous square of about 15"x15", doubled over and hem-stitched a couple of times at the edge, into a nice pad for each cat to warm themselves on. Fleece is not that expensive for a good heavy weight fleece to make a cat pad. I have a child's small carry-blankie made by "Boo" (a company no longer available to the general public) and my cats love it. Thanks again for the YouTube flashback in memory.Cait
Tuesday, December 9, 2008 1:51:00 PM CST

CeeJay said...
PPS

Chief looks to be a long haired Siamese. Siamese are notorious to love to chew on wool and yarn products. My Siamese Sampson had that habit. The vet's solution was to remove his back teeth, which is guess is the way to stop them from chewing yarn products. I couldn't afford the surgery, so Sampson had to go to a better home than mine. We had many years of 'talking' together though. He knew in the morning when he would talk to me and I fumbled with the coffee pot and said "Sam, give me a couple of minutes to wake up, will you?" He would literally sit at the kitchen table and wait for the coffee to get done, then continue his 'conversation' with me. I hated to give him away, but I simply could not afford the surgery, but know that he went to the best home I could have found him.
He went to two elderly people that lived in an apartment building that had lost their first Siamese when someone let him out of the building. They took wonderfully good and marvelous care of Sam, and loved him as much as I would have until he passed on to the Cat Heaven to be with Jesus....and to wait for us when we got there.

What happened to the Lotus?

What happened to the Lotus?
We were anticipating a wonderful lunch with friends yesterday, and when we drove by, it wasn't there!
They were tearing down the building!
We drove in from over 2 hours away, and were so disappointed that it wasn't there.
What Happened?
Did they move somewhere else?
We had to settle for a Thai restaurant a few blocks north, on the corner of the east side of Hennepin, closest to Hennepin/Lake intersection.
Was not pleased with the waitress as we were preparing to leave.
She WOULD NOT allow ME to box my own lunch, saying she didn't want ME to MESS HER TABLE, and after four or five requests and attempts to grab my plate from her to box my own lunch, she proceeded to mix in the rice with my entire meal.
#1. I didn't want her hands touching my plate after observing she had her hands on other multiple plates with other people's saliva and germs on their plates transferring to her hands. I know she didn't take time to wash her hands between taking other people's plates into the back and coming back with the box and bag to my lunch.
#2. I had the rice in one corner so it could be plated separately from my mock duck on reheating, and she proceeded to MIX it ALL in with the rest of my entree. I need to control how much carbohydrate I consume as a leftover as I am a diabetic. It is now mixed totally, hopelessly and completely in with the mock duck entree. I unfortunately do not remember the name of the restaurant since we live over two hour's north and it was our first time there, but it is on the south-east corner of the block on Hennepin Avenue, a block or two north of Lake St.
I would have recommended the restaurant, but for her attitude in making me feel as though I was a child and would mess her table.
Heaven Forbid!
Her actions, unclean hands are enough of a turn-off that I would never eat there again.
You make your own choice....I prefer not to get sick from other people in this cold and flu season because of her unsanitary actions.

Monday, December 8, 2008

'Chemotherapy'

I have a friend that lives in Hudson, Wisconsin.
Her name is Sue D.
Sue is a very lovely, stubborn, feisty, independent, woman that does some of the most beautiful Hardanger stitching I have ever seen and is not afraid to tackle Hardanger in a table-sized piece.
She is a generous and loving friend and I love her very, very dearly.

Years ago she and her doctor discovered she had cancer.
While I don't really know exactly where her cancer was located, she told me her Mom died from cancer. Her Dad was unable to go with her to her chemo treatments because he was afraid she would die from the same cancer that took his wife.
She told me the story of when she was about to undergo chemo for the first time. Being apprehensive of the treatment, and who wouldn't be, she hired a lady clown to come in and 'entertain' her and the people undergoing treatment the same time Sue was.
While Sue was starting her treatment, she heard a voice outside the door.
"This must be the place...any place with the word "MOTHER'' in the middle of it, has to be the right place!''
With that, the lady clown came in and lessened the worry for a bit for the chemotherapy patients that day.
Years and years later, I had a dear cross stitching friend that was diagnosed with breast cancer. I asked Sue if I could relay the story to her, ironically another lady named Sue, and my Suzie said 'that it would absolutely be all right!'
I did, and my cross stitcher stitcher friend, Sue M. emailed me back.
The story I had related had touched her.
It seems that her Mother was known for her frugal methods in bringing up several children and getting the most for her money. They all called her their ''cheapy'' Mom. She said that the story particularly hit home with her because if you combine the remaining letters after you take 'Mother' out, you are left with the word 'Cheapy', and that is what they all called their dear Mother.
Sue M. did, unfortunately, pass away from the disease, but her gentleness, grace, humor, passion for counted cross stitching, and love for her fellow stitchers still live on.
My heart aches.
I miss her still.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

New clothes for Dad

I bought three new shirts, two new pair of slacks and eight more pair of the knit boxer briefs for Dad yesterday.
Two of the shirts were the brushed variety and xl in size, so he can wear them over another shirt if he desires. He was putting his arm in the 'red garnet' brushed cotton shirt and said 'Ohh, nice and warm.' So I think that was a good purchase. It is an imitation of a chamois shirt, and is just what he needs. He is wearing his sweaters out. The other just like it is a 'smoky olive' in color, both by Faded Glory brand.

The third shirt is a Puritan brand, a dress shirt, ''barley' in color, and think I should have gotten him a large instead of the xl. He said that the sleeves were just right, even though the shoulder seam is way past his shoulder. I guess it doesn't matter, it will most likely reside under a sweater also.
Then came the two pair of pants by Wrangler. I originally got him a 36 waist x 30 leg. He stood up and struggled to get the button closed, finally laughing and said that it wasn't going to get there. I looked and sure enough, quite a bit of space there. I took the measurements off of another pair of his old pants he wears. I got tired of seeing his pants leg turned up in a cuff, and thought maybe we should get a shorter leg.
He said that the length was just fine, but couldn't get his fingers to work that darned waist button. He said that he would rather get a bigger waist and then use his belt to tighten than struggle with those darned buttons.
Then he mentioned that he put the new webbed belt away and got out his old leather one.
It seems that he almost 'lost' his pants while downstairs in the common room! He is laughing as he says this, and so it must have been pretty funny. Those 'peers' of his in the building are quick to see something funny in someone's 'drawers' falling off! I teased him about losing his drawers in front of the ladies, and I meant 'mooning' them, not the other meaning, but I think he got my meaning.
So I accused him of getting 'chubby' and said I would return the slacks and get him a 38x30 size. He is trying to keep that 'manly figure' and so I am surprised he didn't comment on the larger size. But then different manufacturers cut for 'size' but are different from another brand.
He said that that would be ok and I didn't have to hurry back, Sunday, Monday or Tuesday would be all right.
I got him the same Wrangler brand in a khaki and black, both with a pleated front. Very nice slacks.
This way I am also not going down there every week and wasting gas for that hour down and hour back to collect laundry. I should be checking in on him every week though. At 93, he could fluctuate so quickly in health. Maybe I will still go down, but not to collect laundry and just to check in and see how he is doing. Then treat myself to a Thai lunch.
I have a fresh basil plant growing now and will use that in my noodle soups along with a dab of fish sauce. Don't know if that will duplicate the 'Pho' noodle soups, but am willing to give it a good try.

I almost lost the plant a few days ago, as it got so dry in the plastic sleeve, and I forgot to water it......Ooops. I have to get it planted in a pot today. I may have to ring it with chicken wire though, as I put it in the bedroom to keep it safe from the other cats, and Silver ZONED in on it on the bookcase top. He never learns. Thought he would have had enough with the stomach pumping he had when a kitten eating the poisonous azalea buds, flowers and leaves. Silly boy. Well, think I will shower and then take a nap after baking the bread for the crew dinner.
Still bummed out about my large baking circle cracking in half. I think I can still use it, but it isn't whole any more.
I posted these on a 'Little House Neighborhood' blog.
With all that has gone on since 9:30 p.m. on last Sunday nite, November 30th, my world has been turned rather upside down and rolled over.
I may get the courage to post what happened later.
Just don't want to 'skew' the results by posting now.
It will have to be after the morning of December 24th, and I may not know the results until after the HolyDay.

CeeJay said...
There is a saying that "a memory is never fogotten onece written down."I have started to do that on my blog, because at 66, I am afraid my memories are already gone.Very nice idea of the addresses.
December 6, 2008 8:18 AM

CeeJay said...
How about a chuckle for today? Posts to 'myself' and thought I would share with you. It is now around ten to eleven in my morning here in east-central Mnnesota, have been up and baked two mini quiches and one apple pie, frozen, that CRACKED MY PAMPERED CHEF BAKING TILE CIRCLE IN HALF!!! I am heartbroken, it was just starting the journey to being a mahogany color...but anyway here are my two posts.


"Can't even spell forgotten! Sheesh, did I miss out on the sleep I needed or what! No coffee, just a decaf sugar-free mocha with decaf Senseo coffee. Hmmm, something is out of place here. I know what it is! I am trying to do the 'nicey-nicey' typing as they suggest....fingers curved over the keyboard instead of the 'pounding method' I usually use. Gonna quit that curved finger scrap!

On Sat, Dec 6, 2008 at 10:31 AM, Cait wrote;obviously the memory has gone, I can't even spell once."
December 6, 2008 8:58 AM

Friday, November 28, 2008

FLEECE FABRIC

O.K.
I want to find the person that created fleece fabric for jackets and now pajamas and other clothing items.
I want to bow to that person in homage and kiss their feet.
I am not kidding!
I live in a 93 year-old farm house. The field-stone basement gives new meaning to 'ankle-biters'.
But Margaret discovered fleece pajamas for me one day at K Mart while I drove her down for her therapy appointment.
I bought TWO pair, one a pretty pink and one a medium, comforting blue in a large. They were exchanged the next day for an xl as the arms were just too tight. Can't stand tight fabric around my upper arms.
I had to hem the pants up two inches on the bottom of those legs, and I might just take that out and put in elastic. It will not keep the legs warm if the pant legs are constantly roaming up to the kneecaps. Plus, in dire coldness, I could snuggle the feet past the elastic to keep those blocks-of-ice 'foofies' warm.
I hate shopping for clothes, did I mention that? That is the reason I bought two pair, or as ever practical daughter mentioned, one to wash, one to wear. And they air dry beautifully!
I reiterate, I want to kiss the feet of the person that invented fleece!

MOM'S DELIGHTS

My mother didn't have much education in the school room sense. But she was an avid reader, as in prolific. She loved to read....loved to learn.
Born in 1917, her journey in life saw so much.
Phones, television, rockets to the moon, men walking on the moon, microwave ovens, automatic bread makers, stoves that didn't use wood to create heat, cell phones, computers, laptop computers, radios and music that can be housed in a shirt pocket, fleece jackets to keep you warm, jet planes, planes period. Cars that went faster than 10-20 miles per hour, automatic HEAT in those cars. Beds that didn't have to hold more than one child each. Heat in your homes that you didn't have to cut the wood for. The list could go on and on. She loved them all.
When you think on it, the journey from 1917 to 2001 holds a world of miracles.
Things we take for granted.
Our children and grandchildren have grown up in a world that is so consumer friendly. Some children don't know what to do to open a car window when there isn't a button to push. They don't know what a window-crank-handle is. And vanity mirrors on the passenger side. One gal we know will get into a vehicle on the passenger side and immediately fold the visor down so she can check her image in the mirror. When she got into a commercial truck, she did the routine and was surprised that it didn't have a vanity mirror on the passenger visor.
We get used to so much.
This morning I received an email from an author that was sent from her Blackberry. That brings up 'texting'. Another phenomenon that I personally, absolutely abhor......
My Mother would have loved it all. She got to see a lot of it, but with all the new things coming up, she would have reveled in all that knowledge floating around out there just waiting to be processed into her hands and most importantly, her mind.
My mother was an extremely precocious and very smart woman.
I miss her.
I love you Mom.

Memories

There is a saying that 'memories written down are never forgotten'.
One of the current Kay Jewelers commercials on for the Christmas season, prodded a memory to resurface.
It is the one where a young couple are at a city 'tree lot' picking out a tree for the Christmas holidays. Underneath one particular tree is a small box. A ring is presented.
My memory is of the lighted tree lot.
I remember going with Mom and Dad to a city tree lot. I was fascinated by the lighted wires overhead. Oh sure, I was excited about getting 'the tree', but the lights overhead held a fascination for me.
Mind you, I was a small child, about the age of three. My sister Dee was born December 20, 1946 when I was four. There are four years separating us.
Lights were on a table or sprouted from the ceiling or wall. Never just a wire with a lightbulb dangling from it.
These lit the entire city tree lot. People were bustling all around in the night, in that bulb-lit tree lot, trying to find that perfect tree, just like we were doing. I was along and I don't remember any other siblings at that point, and since I can pinpoint that, I must have been three.
Dad had come home from the war in the Phillipines, so that really dated the time.
He came home on Christmas Eve day, 1945.
All I remember about that was that there was a knock on the apartment door, and this man in a green suit handed me this little cloth horse, told me its name was Skeezix and then he enfolded my Mom in for a hug. She was crying.
I didn't know this man.
I got in between them to try and keep her from crying. I didn't know why she was crying, but she was. In my child's mind, when I cried, she held and comforted me. I didn't like that she was crying and this man in the green suit had made her cry.
So the first Christmas memory I had was going shopping for a Christmas tree in a city of Minneapolis tree lot, lit by these fascinating lightbulbs overhead on wires.
Department 56 has a lighted tree lot in their product line. I do want to get that piece, as it is so reminiscent of that compelling memory. That is a real heart tug for me at this time of year.
When I go by the Boy Scouts tree lot in one of the parking lots in Elk River on Highway 10, I get that same smile on my face as I remember the lights.
Thank you Kay Jewelers for that wonderful resurfacing of my memory.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I brought clean clothes to Dad tonight, and he is doing pretty good for being 93.
There are days when he is on top of it, and days where he seems to be confused. It is the confusing days that bother him, and he tries to compensate. Sometimes it is with a corny joke, other times it is is with anger and trying to pick a fight.
It must be frustrating for him when he can't remember things.
We all thought it would be Mom who would outlive him. It wasn't to be.
He has friends at the residence he lives at, but it isn't the same as having a spouse.
There are so many times he is alone. The building is full of people, yet I can tell that he is lonely.
When I come to change his meds, he normally would have stayed downstairs to visit or just sit after his meal. The days I come, he scoots up to the apartment, and will just start talking. It doesn't seem to connect, like it is just prattle, but it actually has a pattern. Loneliness. Just to talk to someone in his 'home', no matter what the subject, but to just talk so I won't leave so quickly, hoping that I will find a subject to comment on and have a discussion.
He is lonely. But I don't want to take him from that residence to come live up here where he is closer to me. The few friends he has there are a pseudo-family. He cares for them, and they care for him.
One particular gentleman seems to be the 'fixer'. When Dad has things that don't work well, or he can't seem to figure them out with his diminished eyesight, he calls for Orville. Orville comes and fixes.
The people that live there take care of each other.
I am heartbroken that he has lived so long and has to live in anonymity. Because of what the oldest son has done, what the youngest daughter's propensity for taking things, and her constant requests for money, he has to live in fear that they will find him. One of his grandchildren did, by fluke, by accident. So far we don't seem to have trouble with the children, so the granddaughter may have honored his request and not told them. We continually hold our breath that a problem will occur. So far it hasn't happened. It isn't good to live in constant fear.
So even though I am in contact with Dad almost every week, I don't spend enough time with him. I am not happy with that. I need to spend more time with him. Sometimes I wish I wasn't so busy. I do need to think some things with a rearrangement of priorities. I wish I could take him places that he would enjoy, even with his diminished sight. Macular degeneration is a nasty bit for people to experience. So there isn't a lot he could do simply because of his vision. I really need to think of some things that he would enjoy.
On Thursday, Mike will be picking him up to take him to Fern's for dinner. He is looking forward to that very much, even though it is with reluctance that Mike is doing that.
I hope he has a Happy Thanksgiving with all those people around. Enough to stave off the loneliness for a while.
We are going to a local restaurant for our dinner. It doesn't compete with a homemade meal, but we have so many people coming from so many directions, that having it at someones home is just not logistically efficient.
I hope Dad will have a good day.
Well, it is time to say my prayers for those on my prayer list and then go to bed. Tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

herbs

Yesterday I drove Margaret down to the hospital to have labs done and it was a 12 hour fast. For a diabetic, this can be an issue. When we left her blood sugar was down to 88. So after labs, we headed to the McDonald's on the corner.
She got a barbeque Snack Wrap, tore off about 1/3 of the tortilla and was able to get that chicken down because it was moist with the sauce. I tasted it and found that it was a marvelous blending of flavours. My choice is usually the grilled chicken with Ranch. With the chipotle barbeque, the sauce is over the entire chicken instead of just in spots with the ranch. I may have to switch.
So then we were down to the physical therapist in Elk River. Waited in the truck while she was in getting tugged and pulled and prodded. It was a good thing she took her pain pills after her 'breakfast' and before therapy, as she was definitely 'peaked' looking when she came out.
Went to Target and bought one of those living basil plants. Brought in my pots from outside and plan to plant it. Miss the basil for my oriental noodle soups.
I plant herbs in the spring and summer. I don't use most of them, but love to see how they grow and mostly how wonderful the aroma is when you brush against them.
This year I thought I would garden again. Started with herbs and pansies after Bobby's wonderful girl helper cleared out a lot of the small trees and weeds in my herb garden after three or so years of neglect. I found that my arthritis and strength has diminished my ability to pull weeds and condition the soil. I am a bit upset with that.
I may have to find exercises to do this winter to alleviate this problem. I am starting with counted cross stitch again. So that is helping to get the fingers nimble again, as well as this blog. I find that typing on my laptop on my little wooden tv table is just the right height and it helps to keep those fingers nimble.
Now to just find exercises to strengthen my upper arms and back. Dad has some papers from the Elim Home he was at this summer that I may be able to copy. He uses a rubber band-type of strech strap that helps him stay strong. Sounds like a good idea.
Well, I got the potting soil with Miracle Grow in it to use in the pot, so my basil should have some good nutrients. I wish I had thought ahead to bring in some of the herbs from outside before the ground froze, but I didn't. Now to find seeds......hmmmmm.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I just looked up Justin Wilson III, and found out he passed away on Sept. 5, 2001.
I am sorry he is gone, but his humor and liveliness while cooking on that PBS program endeared the man to me. Also to our son.
Our son is a good cook. Read that as 'very good'. He is not afraid to try new things, and I love him for his eccentricities in food. He even conned me out of my set of Graham Kerr cookbooks. (Well, conning isn't the right word. I finally gave in to his hints and gave them to him as a present.)
His coffee however, is another thing. If the spoon doesn't stand straight up and slowly sink as it is dissolving, it is not strong enough. But he has an esspresso machine now, and I love the decaf beans he forages around for me. I am the only one that drinks decaf and that he thinks to provide me with that is very special. Thanks Pete.

Cinderella

On one of my various needlework sites that I have subscribed to in my inbox came this quote out of no where.
I thought on it and think who ever thought it up should get the Pulitzer Prize for everything!
Here it is:

"Cinderella is proof that a new pair of Shoes can change your life! "

Think about it.
We don't live in a fairy tale, but can we apply the references they allude to in our life?
You Bet!
In this case, go out and get a new pair of shoes for Thanksgiving! It will change your life!
"I Gar - own - tee!"
(Thanks to Justin Wilson for the parody on his pronunciation of the word.)
When I find it again, I will give credit to the person that included it in her post.
*****I just found her posting. It is from Vickie in Arkansas on the Mystic Stitch stitching SAL club. Thanks Vickie. It is the loveliest sentiment around.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Today I spent time in the library in our town.
I am a volunteer and mostly what I do is shelve books.
I have a marvelous time because I am a cross stitcher, everything has to be in its place.
It probably takes me longer to shelve than any other volunteer because I am constantly 'reading' the shelves.
Translation of 'reading': Putting books in the correct numerical or alphabetical order.
I'm tellin' ya! Libraries need to only get cross-stitchers as volunteers. We will put them back in order!
I have snizzle-fits when I find whole sections backwards or out of order.
But Sharon doesn't mind, she can't or won't fire me for being slow in shelving. One of the ladies that worked there told Sharon she could tell when I was in to work. The shelves just made more sense. She could find things for people.
I enjoy it.
It is quiet, no one bothers me and most questions I can answer.
I am even learning to love shelve the 'Easy' books for the little ones (pre-grade one or grade two). I am so fascinated by the artwork on these books. If you never have seen the artwork for these books, visit your local library or go to the book store and just delve and immerse yourself in the children's sections. You will come away smiling and wistful for those books. I guarantee it!
(P.S. I have been known to secretly take out some of them or read them in the back of the stacks while shelving adult books if I have some on my cart. Oh for the innocence of life again!)
Libraries are great places. I have been tempted to take my stitching and sit by the fireplace and just forget about the time for a half day or so. Wouldn't that be grand!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Surgery Day

Today my husband had surgery on the back of his head for the removal of a sebaceous cyst which was about the size of a small, exercise handball. The surgery took an hour or so, and when he came out, he was a little shaky on his feet.
The only other surgery he has ever had in his life was a tonsillectomy as a child.
Norwegian males and doctors and hospitals/clinics are really not on speaking terms. Especially North Dakota Norwegians. There are a lot of 'jokes' about the sanity of North Dakota people because of the whiteouts in winter.
I have experienced a North Dakota whiteout. We were traveling north on 29 for our annual set-up for the Christmas show at the mall in Grand Forks. Husband was ahead of me in one vehicle, I took the follow-up behind him. I just concentrated on his tail lights and nothing else. When we got to the mall and I backed up our pickup, I had to sit in the cab for about 5 minutes because my legs simply wouldn't work.
My opinion of the people of North Dakota is that they are very smart, most of them did not join us in the foray up 29 from Fargo to Grand Forks. They were all most likely hunkered up in their cozy homes with hot chocolate, popcorn and movies.
So the North Dakota people are very hardy, stalwart people. Hard-working and very generous, and understandable when a born and bred Minnesotan will brave their wondrous world of snow.
I remember the first time I rode with my husband through his native state. We were zipping westward on 90 and I was doing something and not paying attention to the landscape. All of a sudden, Bobby slowed down and pulled over to the side of the road. I looked at him questioningly, and he said "Look out your window."
What I saw absolutely took my breath away.
There was a North Dakota flax field in bloom.
There is no more beautiful sight on this God's green earth than the flax field in bloom. It is an incredible periwinkle blue and it went on forever, as far as the eye could see. I really cannot say that I have ever seen such a beautiful sight, ever. I am sure that there are pictures, but nothing compares with the sight first-hand.
But back to the surgery. His sister was there and did the major part of the hand holding while he was having it done. I was out in the waiting room with my Father-in-law.

He came, ostensibly, to keep me company, but I think it was more for him. He NEEDED to be there. He loves my husband very much. There were tears in his eyes, along with genuine love. You can't get much better than that. Sheila called on Sunday morning and said that Bobby didn't need to be at the Auction House on Sunday, but he told Sheila that he wanted and needed to sit and just talk with his Dad. And that is what he did.
We all know our parents love us, but rarely does it get shown. I saw pure love today. I am completely happy.
Husband has a slight burning where the incision is, and a slight dullness in the back of his head, but otherwise, seems to be fine.
My sister-in-law told me to drive home so he could just kick back.

Chortle, chuckle, snort, LOL.
She doesn't realize that Bobby needed to be in control again, and needed to take back possession of his life. He drove all the way home and was actually quite happy to be driving. Once I felt he was in complete control, I am afraid that I napped a bit. I had a fairly rough night and got maybe 3 hours of sleep. I was afraid I would oversleep.
Everything is fine.
Love your spouses, that is THE number one rule in life.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Rough day

It's been a rough day for me. I was silently accused of setting something up that I had nothing to do with.
I do wish people would leave my affairs alone. Or at least when they do meddle, own up to it, immediately, when you cause the action, instead of leaving me take the flak and fallout by their omission of ownership.
That is a problem with us all. We don't want to admit when we have been wrong. 'We' know it all. 'We' think 'we' can fix everything. They don't reailze that certain people are stubborn, won't listen to anyone, and their heritage makes them feel they are invincible. We aren't. None of us are. We all have the same foibles everyone else has. It is all in how we are brought up.
I was brought up to care for people, not to hurt anyone by mouth or deed. So therefore, I don't say things to people that would hurt them. I believe I am allowed to employ a little white lie for that.
But, in my upbringing, this trait has brought me much grief.
No one out there can fix anyone else's life. It must come from within the person.
Let me paraphrase....'If you wish to take the twig out of my eye, start with the plank in thine own.'
However, no matter how bad this day has been, I will carry on. Try to put it past myself and, eventually, try to work on it to let the incredibly immense hurt go.

Mom's 'snow'

With the small snow storm we had recently, it started out with coating the branches of the pine trees, just slightly. It looked like you had taken a sifter with powdered sugar and had gently shook it over the trees. It wasn't windy, so it stayed for a while.
It brought to mind the 'snow' my Mom used to put on our tree after it was brought into the house and set up, but before the ornaments were put on.
She got a big box of Ivory Flakes and somehow mixed them with water to make this 'snow' to put on the tree. It was marvelous! Talk about magic for a kid to see. We weren't allowed to help, and she was so smart in that, and it fell to her to do this every year.
The snow was so much better than that tinsel stuff.
Eventually we discovered that Mom had an allergy to pine pitch so no more fragrant pines brought into the house. We got one of those 'fake' trees. This was when they were still new on the market and no one looked down on you for having a fake tree. The one thing I am grateful for was that it wasn't one of those aluminum trees. I love the smell of pines. Even if we couldn't have a real one anymore, you could still see the green and imagine.
We never had a star for the top as I was given a post board image of Jesus as a young boy with a pine tree over his shoulder in chatechism. That was our tree topper every year from then on.
When Dad's house burned, we were all afraid of what we wouldn't find. My brother handed me an envelope while we cleaned the house out for inventory for the insurance co..
I opened it and there was my tree topper. I started to cry. I was so grateful that Mom had thought to put it in an evelope instead of with all the other ornaments. I still have it and will continue the tradition.
Thanks Mom for the marvelous, wonderful memory.
Wonder if Ivory flakes are still available.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Willow coloring

During the time I was along with Hubby on the trip down to the cities, I was noticing how beautiful the willows were this fall.
Most of them were this beatiful gold color. A few were still green and gold in combination. I really don't remember this beautiful gold color before.
Isn't is strange how things seem to 'pop' at you when you probably have driven by them many times before and never noticed?
One of the things I love about my dear hubby is that he is always looking and seeing things to take joy in while he is driving the same old route to the cities. We have seen hawks of different varieties, eagles, deer, and a lot of things we wonder if other people take the time to notice.
Even though he is so busy, he takes the time to notice things. That is what makes it a joy to drive cross country with him.
On earlier trips from Las Vegas, there is a place in New Mexico called Laguna. Just off the road is a place where old homes in the Mexican/southwest pueblo-style were built. It is right on the freeway and is one of the oldest, unspoiled places where people had lived. A treat to see. We stopped and I took pictures.
As we were traveling through Arizona and New Mexico, it was the old 'shoot-em-ups' personified. I can remember watching those on tv when I was a kid and the buttes and bluffs were still there. I kept expecting cowboys riding around the corner chasing the bad guys. It was that powerful. Nice to know that they are still there for kids to 'believe' in.
And aren't we all kids at heart. I still like shoot-em-ups.

Lagniappe

'Lagniappe' (lan'-yap) in Cajun country means 'something a little extra'.
I was talking with a gentleman the other day and he mentioned that it was his Mother's birthday that day. I asked him if he was sending her flowers. His head came up and he looked me in the eye and said that 'he hadn't thought of it'.
I mentioned that if he wasn't going to send her flowers, maybe a gift with 'Lagniappe' would be nice.

He didn't know what it was.
I explained that in Louisiana Cajun country it meant 'a little something extra' like buying twelve beignets (fried dough with powdered sugar eaten with Louisiana coffee!) and the shop keeper throwing in the thirteenth beignet. A little something extra.
Like buying a jewelry box and filling it with Godiva Chocolates. A little something extra.
His eyes took on a far away look and I think his Mom got some graciously bestowed 'lagniappe' that day.
We could all do with some lagniappe in our daily lives. Whether it is to give to someone else, or to give to ourselves.
A small bit of time carved out for ourselves to pray, meditate, look at the snow falling and 'Thank' the Lord for it, or to give someone else a special something 'little extra'.

Try it.
(and let me know how it worked)

Veteran's Day

Well, Veteran's Day brings tears to my eyes.
Always has, always will.
I was teased terribly in high school when we would go to the auditorium and they started playing 'Taps'. I always started to cry.

That song played on a trumpet will always generate tears.
Peers can be a taunting pack.
The notes of that song soar and are so lingering in the heart. I have heard it so many times, that each note is special.
My Dad was a cook on Leyte in the Phillippines.
He saw his best buddy die.
He doesn't talk about it much.
I understand.
This is a man that would take an hour to pick out just the right card for your birthday, because he had to read each one to make sure it was just the right card for you.
He would always say that he had an eyelash in his eye when caught wiping away a tear when watching a sorrowful part in a movie.

He is 93 and the VFW doesn't charge him yearly dues. The post commander feels that anyone that served in WWII paid their dues.

The American Legion charges dues.
Thank you for that VFW post.

Monday, November 10, 2008




One fall day a couple of years ago, I was headed to the cities and drove by this enchanting field. I didn't have the time then, but on my way back I stopped and shot a couple of pictures. I think it loses something in the translation from eyewitness to photo, but it is still pretty. I have a few other views and I still enjoy them as they come up on my screensaver.
See, I can post photos other than my cross stitch.
I love the Minnesota countryside in all seasons. I love seeing the golden corn stalks bending with the wind over a snow field. That 'old gold' has a softness and mellowness that just tweaks my eye and gives joy to my heart.
I am a frustrated painter, never having done any, but would love to get the whole Bob Ross video set and just Play, Play, Play at being an artist.
I was watching another water color painter's show on PBS one day and he mentioned that Bob Ross had passed away.
I never knew.
To this day, I don't remember what the man was painting because I started to cry.
A heart-wrenching cry from the bottom of my soul for a man I never knew or met other than through his PBS television show.
My very 'dear friend' who got me through another week when I was experiencing such 'down-ness'.
Some weeks he was the only thing that seemed to keep me going from one week to the next to be able to look forward to his half-hour program.
The gentleness of his voice and his gentle, hypnotic soothing ways were a balm to my battered soul and psyche. Who is to say what will trigger a slide down a slope where we don't know how to climb out of?
All I know is that I love Bob Ross, his critters, his painting, his belief that we are all painters in our souls, and will love that gentle man for the rest of my life. His gentle manner and love for the people in this world made it a priveledge to know him, if only through a PBS program. With tears in my eyes and a hurting heart, I miss you Bob, and 'God Bless'.

The 'variance' of holiday meals

I read a lot, and throughout my reading, I keep hearing about having mac and cheese for special dinners like Thanksgiving and Christmas. That just blows my mind, because my Minnesota heritage doesn't acknowledge that at all. It sounds like instead of having breads in various forms like we do, other people view mac and cheese in that vein. I have come to the conclusion that it is a regional dish like having Brussels sprouts in casserole form (eastern coast) for the holiday meals. We don't have those either. For other meals, yes, but it isn't one of our mandatory dishes for the holidays.
Isn't this just too intriguing???
Our holidays have stuffing (with or without apples, nuts and our personal favourite- with smoked oysters and onions and celery), corn or corn pudding, green beans in a casserole or alone, squash with all its various additions such as brown sugar or marshmallows (we like it just plain with butter, salt and pepper), mashed potatoes, cranberries, relishes, crescent rolls, apple , mince or pumpkin pies.
A lot of us also have wild rice, either plain with butter, salt and pepper or paired with white rice in a creamed casserole dish.
Moms all around Minnesota always tried to get veggies in us with a salad, but most of us opted for just the celery sticks, carrot sticks and those most loved veggies, green olives. Black olives were tolerated for color contrast, but they didn't have the addictive saltiness of those lovely, pimientoed greens.

Of course the appetizer course always included herring, but my husband is Norwegian and can't stand those lovely pickled fish. I can and do. I'm not Norwegian...and of course, I love lutefisk, he doesn't. I 'fight' with his brother for a good chunk at dinner and my father-in-law just chuckles as he eats his portion. My sister-in-law makes it but refuses to eat it.
I came upon lutefisk late in life, around fifteen or so years ago, and have loved it ever since. I don't have it every holiday, but as often as I can. I even go to one of our local restaurants to have it...alone. It is a staple for our area's Scandanavian heritage to have various churches in our town to make and serve lutefisk dinners for the holidays. Haven't gone there as the restaurant in town serves an enormous plate of it to you.
But making mac and cheese, God's gift to us, our most loving comfort food, a specialty item on a holiday table has me just bamboozled to say the least.

But hey, I'm willing to join the bandwagon.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

having trouble finding this site

I am having trouble finding this site, so am trying to distinguish between the site with capital headings and the site with lowercase headings. I am not so fond of the one with the red in it. So if that is the one you signed onto, contact me, I will try to re-direct you to the correct one with the current posts.

Friday with Hubby

Well, went down with hubby yesterday and he promised me a good dinner if I tootled around with him in the big truck. So I did, brought the Diane Mott Davidson book 'Double Shot' along and my BoInk. It is the one in the Goldy Schultz, Caterer series that I somehow missed. Has to be that dreadful habit of publisher's to include a chapter of the new, upcoming, unpublished book at the end of the last in the series. I can't tell you how many in a series I have missed because I look at the first chapter of the new book and think, "well, this is familiar, I've read this already", and then miss the next installment!!!
Got some stitching in on my very delayed BoInk and am going to love my choice in green (DMC 3848) It is a beautiful soft, medium green. I am going to switch out the yellow I chose, 726 for a brighter yellow. Will see, maybe the original choice will look better.
Somehow my glucometer slipped out of my purse (wondered why it felt so light and had so much extra room and ease of zipping), so was a bit nervous with my food choices yesterday and why I was feeling so strange and didn't know where my blood sugar was at.
Stopped after his last sale and bought another $18.00 glucometer and was able to establish my bs. By the time we got to Mystic for dinner it was down to 109, which is low for me. When it gets that low, I start dropping fast. Glad we were in the restaurant so I could get those carbs and other foods in. Felt much better after eating.
Well, gotta go, have auction house crew dinner to make, and we are having meat loaf, baked potatoes, croissants, green beans (if I can find them in the kitchen there), veggies with dip and carrot cake for dessert.
So gotta boogie.....Huggs

Thursday, November 6, 2008

second blog

Well, I don't like the second blog. The one I like is in the softer colors. Not the ones with the red. The softer colored one has all my older posts also. Just have to figure out what happened when they said my name needed to be registered. Shoulda just gotten outta Dodge when that one come up!Hello Maegwin! Gosh I hope I spelled it right. Gotta go get some breakfast in me. I know, it is pretty late for breakfast, but wanted to get some things done on the computer before I puttered around in the kitchen.

ST. MARY'S CHURCH ELECTION DAY DINNER AND BAKE/CRAFT SALE

Well, by all appearances, both were a sucess.
I bought $17.50 worth of baked/canned goods and hand stitched items. I still have to get the $50.00 worth of horseradish from Genny C. at the church. Bobby gave me $60.00 to give her because he said it is worth it. The turkey dinner was still going gung-ho after 7 p.m. with people still coming in the doors.

I had to drive Margaret back and forth to St. Cloud for an MRI for her shoulder since she was on some pretty heavy pain meds, and she had taken me out to lunch as a thank you. So, I had eaten a late lunch with Margaret at La Casita in St. Cloud, and was still full, sigh. My favourite meal is the Thanksgiving turkey meal they serve every year.
Bobby was at home 'devouring' the channels with the remote on the day that is his special day. I have a husband that LOVES election day and has ever since he was eight years old. Don't even think of calling him, ya hear!
On a lighter note, the bownies I made for the bake sale are MARVELOUS!!! Bobby said that whoever bought them are most likely saying, "Who made these and where can I get the recipe as they are just the best!"
I packaged and donated a dozen and even have some left over for us to nosh on at home. Thank you Betty Crocker!
Well, I am going to take this very sore back and try to get some sleep. I have a feeling that it is this director's chair that is making me walk bent over like an old lady.
Tomorrow the dishes!
Maybe some time for stitching too.

HEAVY HEART

It is with a heavy heart that I just completed and sent off a message to a fellow 'BoInk' stitcher.
I did some heavy soul-searching for the last four days before sending this message and I sincerely hope the recipient will be understanding in my reasons.
It still makes me feel queasy, and that is probably why I have been feeling so very, very ill the last four days.
But it is done. I will use the supplies for my own stitching.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

WORKING TODAY

Well stopped off at the library today. Just had an armload of books and books on cds to drop off because they were DUE!
Then, even though my back was killing me, decided to do the work thing. Hopefully it would allow me to loosen up. No such thing. Asked Sharon, our lovely librarian if she had any Tylenol, and she didn't.
Hubby called, and had to pick him up at HyTech so he could drop off his little truck to have the brakes worked on.
We decided to check and see if Lisa down at New China Buffet had had her baby #2 yet. She did, but not on Sept 12 as scheduled, but last night! She had a boy and seemed like Dad was pretty happy. Daughter Sara was ok with it as she doesn't have to share anything now.
Came home and back still hurting after two Tylenol, so going to lay down now.
No political comments today, but, oooh, am so glad that the regular commercials are back on!!!! Even with the Christmas commercials on on November 5th!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Cute sign on a car and maybe a philosophy on life?

On the way down to the cities today, I saw an oval sticker on the back of a car.
Wag More
Bark Less
Think about it. It doesn't necessarily mean just our canine 'people'....isn't it a good philosophy for all of us to adopt?
Sometimes the unadulterated love a canine has for us is a beauty to behold.
While traveling to Highway 169 a short time ago, I was on a connecting country road. The school bus was letting a young man off the bus. He was somewhere between 13 and 16, most likely 15 or so when he doesn't have the option not to ride the bus.
He was exiting the bus to his farm home and I saw the dog well before the bus stopped. The dog's body had no bones. The wiggle traveled up from the tip of the tail to the rest of the body. Nothing there but pure unadulterated love for his young master.
The joy was boundless.
The young man was annoyed and used his knee to push down and away the dog's joyful, small one half foot leap to his young master. He never reached down to pat that lovely head or murmur a gentle welcome.
The dog never stopped wagging his tail and body.
His joy was powerful.
He had waited all day for his master to come back to him.
I was so saddened the young man was so disinterested in that love.
The joy was so infectious, I found I had a small lump in my throat and found the tears start.
I wanted to stop my pickup, get down on my knees and give that loving dog all my love.
It would have been returned.
One of these days I may stop by with a Nylabone, large sized, and some dog treats as a 'Thank You' gift.
That beautiful dog stole my heart.
Wag More
Bark Less


Monday, November 3, 2008

Oct 31
I have had this site on my inbox mailings for a while now and am soooo glad I did.
I neded to calculate the amount of fabric needed for a certain size stitchery that I am going to be working on but am doing it in a different count of fabric than the fabric suggested.
With their fabric conversion chart, I was able to type in the stitch numbers by length and width and calculate the amount of fabric needed! It is a wonderful site for helping us with that knotty problem of math calculations.
It is called Cyberstitchers.com They also include an area for pictures of 'finished stitched' pieces as well as the 'stitched back' postings (my personal favourite, as it helps you 'learn' how to keep your backs NEAT by seeing), floss conversion charts, floss conversion calulator, as well as matt board calculators, floss checklist, fabric size calculator, tuck pillow pattern maker, A FREE GRAPH PAPER area to printout on your printer, finishing techniques, manufactures, and links.
It is a wonderful site to get into if you are really interested in 'tweaking' patterns and stitching them on something other than the fabric included with patterns. I hope a bunch of us sign up for the site. It is well worth our support.Huggs, Cait

busy day ahead

Just finished doing a bunch of things on the computer. Didn't get much sleep and am yawning already. Need to get going to get ready for my appointment at 3:15 an hour and a half away, and just don't seem to have any energy.
Blood sugars down today at 9:05 am with 2 eggs, hot green tea 12 baked Cheetos (I know, I know, but they were the only carbs in the mini-meal) and about a half hour later, 6 chocolate M&M's the Weigh Down method.
However, need to eat something now that it is 11:05 am and have to get going.

Made oatmeal with a craisin and golden raisin blend. Needed some protein other than the 1/2 cup milk, so made a cheddarwurst with a small piece of baguette with 1 1/2 tsp butter.
Really have to go, I have to leave around 12:30 and that is just a little over an hour from now.
Took the baked Cheetos along for the ride.
Huggs,

What a day!

Well, went to check on the name of a surgery, and lost the entire posting. Well, since I don't want to go through it again, leave it to say that this has been the most unproductive day, ever.
I didn't even get one stitch in on my BoInk (Book of Ink Circles site) for the cross stitching project I have just started. A bad day is a day when you can't stitch.
Sinus infection is still giving me a run for the money and started the second session of Levaquin 500 mg tabs today. It is better than the Zithromax on my body insofar as I don't have the 'bad bowel' syndrome. 'Nuf said on that score.
Hubby is gently snoring and had his fill of Craig's List today. Well, maybe not. I will get a t-shirt that says "Pray for Me...I am a Craig's List Widow"!
But that is ok with me. It is his business to check pricing on all sorts of goods as that is his job, 24/7/52. He lives and breathes, how shall we say, commodities? Things we all buy to live our lives with. From Soup to Nuts...as that is what eventually appears in the Auction House.
My blood sugar has been all over today, and finally at 11:35pm it was down to 135. Since I had that one horrendous meal today (could have done without the carrot cake muffin with frosting for dessert), I was hungry. So I opted for the standard fare of 2 basted eggs and about 10 baked Cheetos for carb value.
I really have to get back into the Glycemic Index way of eating.
I feel so much better when I do....but when you aren't feeling well, you grab what is handiest, in this case, my ever favourite basted eggs.
I am enjoying a cup of hot green tea, and will have to go back to putting green tea bags in my water bottle. Looks kind of funky, but I can ingest a whole lot more water that way. Need to drink more water. Green tea is good for you, it should be put in our local water supply. But since I live on a farm, it would be difficult to put into our new well.
Well, am not boogey-eyed from sinus pressure (med must be kicking in), and I do feel 'un-tired', gee, wonder why, so think I will get a package ready for mailing to Washington to my friend Penny Q. tomorrow. She deserves the goodies I will send. She has more health problems than I do, and I just want to help her find the additional joy in cross stitching with some cross stitching supplies. Hope this package will do it. May tuck in a small goodie if I can find them. If not, I guess that means I need to reorganize things around here.
Since it is now 1:30am+, good night all, sweet dreams.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Harley's epitaph from Marie Freeman, Blue Ridge Blog

When Charles M. Schulz wrote, "Happiness is a warm puppy," he was right on... Add a tennis ball, two, three or four and Harley is in her element.
Harley's only fault is that her life was too short.
I am heartbroken to say Harley died today.
She was resting her head on my eldest daughter's lap when she went to sleep.
True to Harley's unselfish nature, she masked the severity of her illness. On Monday we went on a hike through the woods. On Tuesday she shunned her doggie diet food, but was coaxed to eat a hamburger. Wednesday, when loading her into the car, she seemed sluggish. By Wednesday afternoon when we reached Chattanooga, it was obvious Harley was deathly ill. Her kidneys were failing- there was to be no more chasing tennis balls in her future, or eating. or comfortable living...The four of us talked with the vet. We all knew, especially Harley, what was happening. Harley deserved comfort and dignity in her dying.
Maybe I can talk more about it later. But not now.
Tomorrow we shall bury her near my favorite rock. In the meantime I am working on her an epitaph. I like this one and may have to work on a variation:
"Near this spot are deposited the remains of one who possessed Beauty without Vanity, Strength without Insolence, Courage without Ferocity, and all the Virtues of Man, without his Vices. This Praise, which would be unmeaning Flattery if inscribed over human ashes, is but a just tribute to the Memory of Boatswain, a Dog. ~George Gordon, Lord Byron, "Inscription on the Monument of a Newfoundland Dog"
Please excuse me. I am trying oh so hard to make this a dignified post worthy and in celebration to the memory of Harley, but it ain't easy... I'm seeing tennis balls bounce everywhere...
I sob. I miss her. I am thankful for Harley.
Harley Star Shiloh FreemanApril 1998-November 23, 2008
November 24, 2007 in
Harley

Simply because I miss Belle

I stumbled on your site through Alanna Kellog's and have been reading for the last half hour.Then I came to Harley. I am still weeping.
I lost my gal Belle several years ago. I only had her for about a year. She wandered into our barn to die.
I wouldn't let her.
She was a beautiful, elderly black lab (around 14 or 15 the vet said) and unless the weather was too hot for her in the minivan and then a pickup, she went everywhere with me. I still have her stepstool needed to help her get into the pickup behind my seat.
I fell in love with that beautiful face the first time I saw her in the barn. I asked everyone I knew, posted ads in the papers, placed ads on the local radio stations....no one came to claim her.
I got the message, Lord. You wanted me to keep her for her, unknown to me, last year of life and show her what the beauty of unconditional love from a human is. To experience the total love for her that NO ONE had shown her in her previous years.
I found out later that she had belonged to a neighbor just one farm away, and he had gotten her from one of his foster children that found her abandoned at a farm where she knew the people had left.
Through proper care and good nutrition, her coat changed from the dull, rough brown and black patchy coat to the glossy, jet black that well-loved labs have. She was a beauty to behold.
No one had ever shown her how to play, a tennis ball or any type of ball was unknown to her. Belle did kind of know how to crouch and stalk side to side, on her forearms, butt in air, if you crouched and played in the same fashion, but her childhood held no play. Her childhood held only her will to live with people that didn't care for her and eventually left her to forage on her own without human companionship, unfailing love, a gentle pat on her lovely black head or body, or just the gentle words of 'Good morning sweetheart'. Or to comfort her while she shivered and shook the bed during a thunderstorm. She had none of this. Until the Lord directed her to go to my barn, wait for me to come and find her and love her for the last year of her life.
The Lord knew how severely I was grieving for my English Springer Spaniel, Murphy, who had died in May that year. He told Belle to go there and help that lady love another dog as they should be loved, and to help her mourn for Murphy.
She did, abundantly.
When she came to me, she was infested with ticks, and I patiently pulled them off of her to drop in a jar filled with alcohol. Why I didn't think to have her tested for Lyme's Disease, I will never know, even though when I had her at the Vet's, someone else was asking about the Lyme's vaccination. The Lord whispered, and I was unable to connect it to Belle.
My Beautiful Belle passed away from Lyme's Disease.
She is buried under our aging, ancient Haralson apple tree, facing the sun to warm her bones.
I asked the Good Lord to take her and to have Belle, Murphy, Kirby, Jaro, Tessa, Mitsy, Bitsy, Molly, and Duke (my first canine furbaby), all my canine and feline children, waiting for me when I go to greet the Lord.....if I can live my life in accordance with the Good Lord's teachings to be able to see my beloved dogs and cats in His House.
I will be their keeper and gladly watch and love over other people's furbabies until they arrive in the Lord's House to claim them for themselves.
I still remember that she would never soil the grass, she would go out into the brush and trees to do her thing. She would ask to go out for her twice daily 'squats' in the trees, but when I was sick, she didn't leave my side. I told her "Belle, Sweetheart, you have to go, Momma's not feeling well and don't know when Dad will get home to let you out." With that, she would go into the trees, turn around a couple of times, trampled the brush, and come right back to sit in front of me. She did this three times at my urging, and the last time she came back, sat in front of me and looked at me as if to say "Mom, you're sick, let's go back inside so you can lay down again. I will be all right until Dad comes home."
And she was.
We went back in to lay down in the warmth of the house, each of us to our own bed. Belle at the foot of my bed watching the door so no harm would come to me, and me to mine where I could still see her.
We would walk the fields twice a day. It was her job to get me out of my sorrow for Murphy and experience the joy and beauty of God's world again by simply accompanying me to skirt the trees and walk our fields in the last four seasons of her life.
Thank you for painting the picture of Harley with your words, and to have the photos to share.
I never took a picture of my Beloved Belle Starr, I was too content to have her next to me in bed, and by my side on the leash and in the front seat of my pickup. She was an elderly, queenly lady, and I miss her terribly....still.Cait
Posted by: Cait J
November 02, 2008 at 01:41 PM

Followers

Well, I am so new to this, but as I was clicking around, I see that there is supposed to be 21 followers on this blog.
I am honored.
That means I have to be eclectic in my topics, yes?
I really am a wanna-be hippie (sigh) and missed it the first time around, even though I am of that era. But, am try to make up for it now that I am in my sixties.....that still surprises me, except when I crawl into bed after a night at the auction house kitchen. Then I know my age.
Well, hubby just came home with the food from last nite's auction, so will have something better than oatmeal to choose from.
Huggs

other than cross stitch

I do know how to take pictures of things other than cross stitch, but will have to wait for another time. Reaallly hungry now. Guess that's good, might mean that the food is healing body???

pictures











OK, let's try to post a few things I have stitched

Ach!

welllll, the comment color is better, and have figured out that the pencil is to be able to EDIT my mis-spelling and words. LOL
Rather like the new blog. Just need the memory to write in it now. Sorry about the brown, hopefully this will show up better and am testing it out by this bit of silly verbiage.

cozyday

Today I am still feeling the effects of the sinus infection that I have been on meds for the last five days.
Really do hate it when people that burn garbage or shove their face into my space and spew tobacco smoke at me...gets me sick with a severe sinus infection every time.
I didn't go to church (have to be awfully fuzzy not to go, and my head is still pounding with the infection), staying in bed to recoup some energy.
Auction wasn't late last nite, we actually got to leave the auction house before midnight to wend our way home.
Finally got up to answer tummy rumbles, but got sidetracked. Think I will look forward to oatmeal cooked in milk (the only way to get milk into me) with golden raisins and cranberry blend. So far, have staved off the hunger pangs for over two hours and should be doing the cooking, in the microwave if nothing else. Gotta go, take the blood sugar first to see how much oatmeal I will have....