Tuesday, December 24, 2013

New Insight

Starting off with a quote from the book "Good Morning with God" by Jennifer Rothschild.  She is talking about the days we feel like giving up on life.

"The problem, however, with giving up or giving in is that we get what we give."

That made me think.  The Scripture she referenced is Galatians 6:7 which says "Do not be deceived.  God cannot be mocked.  A man reaps what he sows."  (NIV)  The Message puts it this way: "Don't be misled:  No one makes a fool of God.  What a person plants, he will harvest."

I've never thought of this passage in regards to anything but finances -  give generously and you will receive generously.  This is even though the following verses reference actions and attitudes.  I'm not sure if that's because finances have been taught in church in reference to this verse or what.  Either way - new thought - not the right word - for me...Jennifer applies it to attitudes and actions.  If we give into depression and despair that is what we will receive - defeat and despair.  However if, in those times, we deliberately focus on praising and thankfulness God will bless.  The following verses back this up so I'm not at all sure why I've not seen it before. 

Christmas time is a time I've always struggled - think I'm much like my dad in this area.  This year has been much worse than normal - we've had several days of rainy gloomy weather, I've had chickens die, little time with friends, money is a bit tight and we are coming up on an anniversary of Mom's home-going.  Yesterday I was extremely teary.  Today I'm going to do my best to focus on the blessings and go from there. Firstly the sun is shining today! 

Monday, November 18, 2013


Grief seems to be a bigger issue today than normal...last Thursday I found out that a boy off my very first bus route for the current school district I work for had gone missing.  He had walked away from his home and not been heard from since.  Authorities were "very concerned" about his safety.  That evening I heard that his body had been found - he had committed suicide.  He was 19.  Even though I was not "friends" with him I was able to read his Facebook page - every tribute on there talked about how much he'd impacted those around him - made high school easier for others, always friendly, always smiling...I wonder how someone like that could not have one person he could go to for help.  I grieve - for a life cut short, for his sister who also rode my bus, for his older brother and for his parents.  And I grieve - while I know he occasionally attended church I don't know what his relationship with the Lord was.  It's not my place to judge but I hope that I will someday see him in heaven.  I wonder if I could have done more, impacted more - if he knew that bus driver who was so strict with all the students really did care about him.  I think about kids on my current bus route - many of whom are very anti-"christian" - some of whom are truly struggling and I wonder if there is more I can do beside be there to listen and to pray.  I wonder if they know that I really do care about them - I'm not strict just to be a "witch" but because I want them to be safe overall.

We are coming up to a year since Mom went home to heaven.  Much of my grieving for her was done before she died as she suffered through that illness - but still there is a loss.  I was out shopping one day last week and found a set of music cd's she would have loved.  I put them in the cart to consider purchasing and forgot about them until after I'd checked out.  Now I have to decide if I'm going to keep them or pass them on to someone else or what.  I miss her more as time goes on - especially when I think of a question or find something I really want to know her thoughts on.  Thankfully I have the assurance that I will someday see Mom again. 

In the last week we've lost 2 kittens - sounds like a "minor" loss.  But these were 2 of the 3 survivors from Oddball who was out of our first litter of kittens here in IN and they had been bottle-fed since she'd been killed in the road a week or so before I had knee surgery.  They were tame (almost to the point of being a nuisance) and loved to come in our feet, be petted and talked to.  It makes me sad and again I grieve.  If it weren't for major allergies and Hubby not being fond of the idea we would have in-door cats and I wouldn't face this as much.   But he is and we do and so we don't. 

I am thankful though that we didn't lose more than a few small tree limbs and 2 bird feeders during this latest storm.  Considering there were many tornadoes as a result of this storm we were blessed not to have damage.
I took this picture after the storm had gone through - taken facing west where the most of the weather comes from.  We continued to have major wind until very late into the night but no more strong rain.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Writing again...maybe

Feeling relieved this morning - have satisfied myself that if it's not already in my freezer or canned it's too late to do it this year.  There are still a HUGE amount of wild grapes I pass every day that I've been eying longingly.  However this morning I stopped and tried one - they are quite tart and a little off tasting as well as beginning to dry up.  So I concluded they are done.  Apples that are still on the trees are rather mushy - we've already had a couple of hard frosts.  So...the fruit is done.  And the garden has been done for awhile.  It's kind of a relief to know I can put the canning supplies away and start enjoying what is in the pantry.  Having said that I really stepped out of my comfort zone and tried some new things this year.  I did applesauce, apple butter, apple pie filling, grape jelly, grape juice, wild grape jelly, slice peaches, peach jam...those are all canned.  In the freezer are sliced apples, diced apples and grapes at least.  Oh yes - also raspberries and cherries.   And I canned raspberries as well...Not too much in the way of veggies except tomatoes - will have to rely on the grocery store for those at this point.  All the fruit was given to me or free for the picking.  I was abundantly blessed. 

I still feel that since the harvest was so abundant the winter may be quite a long one.  Have longed to find a persimmon to check to see what it predicts but don't know enough to recognize them on trees.  Even the farmers have commented on how excellent the harvest is. 

Now that the preserving is done, band is done (I drove the bus many Saturdays to competitions) and soccer is done I will be able focus on catching up around here...housework, bills, finishing ornaments for my route kids...scrapbooking, drawing...the list goes on.  Every Wednesday night I watch Little Bit and her baby brother (who needs a nickname) so their mom can finish up cosmetology school.  Other than that and the biweekly Sunday nights when I go to church life should slow down.  Just will need to be "strict" with myself and not spend all my "free" time on the computer.  I get to start walking for exercise again Monday - will be doing that at least 2 mornings a week.  It's a start.

The knee is about as good as it's going to get after surgery I think.  Still gets stiff easily and still catches some but not as bad.  And according to Hubby I'm walking better. 

I wanted to post some pictures but at the moment they are still on the phone so will have to wait. 

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Well surgery did happen and it went well overall.  For the first time ever I did not get sick from the anesthesia at all.  I didn't wake up "well" according to Bruce but did wake up and make it home. The damage in the knee was worse than the doctor expected and surgery did take longer.  I'm looking at a knee replacement sooner rather than later.  That however will have to be done over a summer break when I can have a boy handy at home and don't have a job to worry about. 

I'm recovered to the point that I want to be doing and walking...not just sitting trying to entertain myself.  So today I'm grumpy I admit.  I have stuff to do but it's not convenient to get it and no one is around to help.

Guess I'd better post this and be done.  Maybe next time I will be more cheerful.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Feeling Stuck

Feeling stuck today.  My knees have always been an issue - way back to high school days.  I've not been able to drive a stick shift vehicle partly as a result of the knee issues as clutching was a challenge.  (Hubby would say it's also that I can't "hear" the engine when it's time to shift).  Either way...last spring I fell and ended up injured.  I have a torn meniscus now in the left knee that is scheduled to be "fixed" Wednesday morning.  Fixing basically involves going in, cutting out the torn portion and then smoothing/shaving off any rough edges of bone.  Then I will be on crutches for 5 days not allowed to put any weight on it.  We have the following Monday off for Labor Day so that means only 3 days off work if all goes as planned. 

However I pulled a "stupid" and have a severe case of poison ivy reaction - one friend told me I look like I've been beat-up.  My face is swollen and bright red, one eyelid is swollen...Usually when I get this reaction it requires steroids to treat it.  However having surgery scheduled for Wednesday may mean I can't take the steroids or have to reschedule the surgery.  I don't want the surgery but nor do I want to reschedule it. 

I'm waiting now for a call back from the surgeon's office to let me know what to do.  I also do have an appointment with my family doctor so I can at least get a prescription for the steroids.  In the meantime I'm also doing all the non-prescription and folklore type treatments I can...including taking an antihistamine that tends to make me a little sleepy every few hours.

Sorry this post isn't very positive - just needed to get stuff out there. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Writing again...

It has been a coon's age since I've written.  What else is new in my life?  However, having said that, so much of what I've read and heard recently - in devotionals, blogs, and even our current sermon series at church is the importance of telling "our" stories and remembering what God has done in our lives.  While I certainly am not a writer and am not always good at remembering those things I am encouraged again to make writing more of a priority.  (I notice I wrote about this back in May of this year as well - wish I knew where the blog entry I wanted to link to was.  Yikes.) 

School has started back up again already.  I've had a really smooth start to the year in spite of the fact that my bus has been crowded in the mornings.  The "country" part of my route only has maybe 2 new students on it.  However when I get back to go through town my numbers easily triple in just 4 or 5 stops.  Most of the kids who challenged me so much last year are freshmen in high school now so I only have them on the bus for a very short time which means less time for them to challenge me and problems to arise.  Having said that I do have to watch for some inappropriate boy-girl interactions.  My afternoon route has more "new" students but is not nearly as crowded as it was last year and the year before.  That makes it nice.  I will still do a seating chart - it makes my life much easier and I don't tend to not realize someone is on that way.  Plus the kids seem to do better overall knowing they have a "reserved" seat each day.

Lately I've been busy with canning and freezing apples.  Was blessed with probably 4 bushels of "wild" un-sprayed granny smith type apples this month.  All I had to do was go help pick one afternoon.  A few were run through the dehydrator - I've decided in order for that to not be frustrating it would be nice to have more racks.  There are probably enough peeled and sliced in the freezer for 3 or 4 apple pies as well as a couple cups of chopped pieces for muffins, etc.  Then for the first time ever I did canned apple pie filling - got 5 qts of that and 13 pints of unsweetened applesauce as well as two batches of apple butter.  I've also canned tomatoes - would have liked to try drying a few of them as well but forgot in the rush to get them done.  Have 6 or 7 qts of sauce and probably 8 or 9 pints of diced tomatoes, mainly yellow ones.  Peaches are ready and I would like to do some of them.  And I really would like to go pick elderberries for jelly this week.  Earlier this year I canned and froze raspberries.

However the challenge at the moment is pain that has greatly increased over the past few days.  I'm not at all sure if it's simply that it really is increasing or the fact that I finally admitted that there was a problem in the knee and went to the doctor to confirm it means that I can no longer ignore or deny the pain.  Either way - I'm scheduled for knee surgery next Wednesday morning (week from tomorrow) to repair (cut out the torn part) my medial meniscus.  It is supposed to be an out-patient surgery where I'm home by mid-day and on crutches for the next 5 days.  If all goes as planned I should only have to take 3 days off work and be able to return after the long Labor Day weekend. 

I'm sure there was more I wanted to write about - need to update on the boys.  But it's time I got around for work this afternoon.  So that will have to wait.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Eventful Month

Robin's nest in Grandpa's bird house
Hard to believe it's been almost a month since I've written.  This summer has become crazy busy again.  Tonight my heart is heavy - so many hurting people.  Two girls off my bus route tried to run away today.  They were found safely but have accused their parents of abuse and as a result the girls are in the care of CPS while the parents are facing questions from the authorities.  I know the parents as well as the girls and don't for a minute believe the accusations.  However the questions still must be dealt with.  I can only imagine the emotional pain.  The aunt of one of my best friends had a stroke yesterday and while prognosis initially looked good things are grim tonight.  To make matters more stressful aunt was in town for the wedding of one of her niece's supposed to happen this Saturday.  Two boys that I've had on my bus in the past lost their grandfather this morning. 

Mike's brother D is still healing from his bicycle accident that he had last week.  He had stitches in his hip, has 2 broken bones in his hand, lots of road rash and possibly a broken rib.  He missed his grandfather's funeral this past Friday as a result of the accident.  Grandpa K was 97 - he lived a long life.  His health had been going downhill for several months and he'd been between rehab and hospital several times.  He broke his hip in rehab on a Friday night - had surgery to repair it Monday (10 days ago) and did well during surgery.  They were planning to send him back to rehab the end of last week.  He died on Tuesday.  The blessing was that up until just the past couple of weeks his mind was still sharp - he winked goodbye to his dear friend that afternoon. 

Squirrel and that old red plastic bat
Stretch, Squirrel and I took off last Thursday for TN so we could attend Grandpa's funeral.  It was a bittersweet trip - and fast.  When I told Squirrel last week about Grandpa having surgery he immediately started listing off his memories from when we'd visited - playing ball in the yard with the red plastic bat, riding the lawn mower, shucking corn...it was important we made the trip. I loved the place in TN - out in the country, beautiful view...that place will likely be sold now.  We were home by midnight on Saturday night as all 3 of us had responsibilities at church the next day.  Sunday evening D's wife La arrived at our place with her youngest son.  She spent the night so that Monday morning early (5:30ish) we could hit the road again to go meet the guy from the funeral home to bury Grandpa in OH. (We weren't sure he knew we were coming). I'd been to that cemetery when Grandma K died - 5 years ago I think - but didn't remember exactly how to find it.  We used maps on the phone and in the atlas to get close - then things started to look familiar.  After that it was pretty much by the seat of our pants.  We made it in time and spent about an hour and a half there - it was very interesting to talk to the guys who worked there.  Turns out the one had known Grandpa's sister's first husband.  From there it was back home so that La could be home to her place that night. 

While the weekend and Monday had their share of tears it also had times of laughter and fun.  On the way back from TN we were privileged to meet up with one of my very good friends from high school for a meal.  There was much laughter and talk there.  There was also much talk and laughter during the drive with La.  I'm definitely a country girl and my nephew is a city boy. 

Things don't look like they will slow down much over the next month.  Dad is coming down the end of next week and should be here for about two weeks.  Squirrel and I will meet him halfway so he doesn't have to drive the entire way down.  A week or so after he leaves J and her family will be in the area for about two weeks.  4H fair will be during that time so we will be busy - even though we don't have boys participating we are at the fairgrounds nearly every day for several hours at least.  In addition Squirrel has a summer class he is participating in that runs for 3 weeks in July as well as the two online classes he has to complete.  Additionally he is considering trying to make a college visit.  Stretch has his job on campus that has entered the busy time as well as messages to prepare.  Dipstick is working an average of 30 hours a week with his dad here in the shop at home. He's also got a couple of other temporary jobs to do.  I am just mom - trying to keep up with cooking, cleaning and working the garden at a friend's. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013


Gospel Choir outfit at ISSMA
Today is Squirrel's birthday.  It is hard to believe he is already 17 and will be "leaving the nest" in two very very short years. 


Wow - time has flown by.  You have experienced a lot in your short life - been protected by God in amazing ways, moved several times, grown and changed so much.  You were always the child that I figured would give me the most grey hair - you had no fear of results from your actions.  You were not supposed to be able to walk normally let alone run as a result of a knee infection when you were just an infant.  I remember putting you in your crib in that hospital room so I could say goodnight to your dad.  Just as a nurse walked into the room you pulled up for the first time since you'd gotten sick.  Her reaction was "he's not supposed to be able to do that".  Later you used to love to jump into the deep end of the pool at the apartment complex even though you couldn't swim yet - you trusted me to catch you then would scramble out the shallow end and toddle as fast as you could back to the deep end to do it again.  At about 2 years old after we'd moved into our house you fell off the edge of the car and bounced onto the concrete floor of the garage.  That required stitches in the center of your forehead to close the hole from the corner of the car door.  The "run to the er/doctor" falls stopped for awhile after that - until we moved from OK to IN.  Then you fell off the play-set at a local seasonal eatery - this time that was an ambulance ride to the ER.  You must have been 6 or 7. No stitches that time.   Probably your biggest, most traumatic fall happened when you were in 7th grade - resulting in a PICU stay of several days and of course an ambulance ride.  Amazingly you only ended up deaf in one ear as a result of that fall - it could have been so very much worse.  As a high school freshman you were out running one afternoon and managed to get your foot run over by a car.  Again that could have had such a different outcome - even though you still have occasional issues with that foot you can still run and play.  God has clearly been protecting you.  

You have experienced several moves - first at 3 weeks old moving from IL to OK.  Then a move from our original apartment there to the house closer to where dad worked.  Another major move to IN to get a fresh start and one more move to where we live now when I married again.  

You have always had a strong determined personality.  You wanted to go straight from being nursed to a sippy cup - at 6 months of age. Potty training was a trip - you refused until I bought you "big boy" unders - and wouldn't wear even training pants.  However as soon as I allowed you to wear your "Thomas the train" unders you trained.  You struggled with kindergarten but not academically - it was more dealing with your dad's illness and hospitalization.  You were definitely a "mama's boy".   You used to hate getting up in the morning - I remember walking to the bus early mornings carrying you because you didn't want to go - you meantime were hollering at the top of your lungs.  When I finally got you your own alarm clock and made you responsible for getting up on your own you did fine.  You wouldn't try new foods - at least not unless you had applesauce to dip it in.  Applesauce and pizza, applesauce and corn-dogs, applesauce and fish sticks.  You used it like other kids used ketchup.

Because of that strong personality discipline was a huge challenge for me - I believed in spanking and that was simply ineffective in your case.  I remember Awowe telling me not to bother - it just made you more stubborn.  I despaired of seeing you grow spiritually - you asked Jesus into your heart at a very young age while we were attending COTM.  But growth seemed like a long time coming.  I am so excited to see the spiritually strong young man you've become - you have a heart for God and a heart for others.  I am looking forward to seeing how God will lead you and use you - in whatever area of the world you end up.  

You have run for years - since you were in 3rd grade at least.  The past couple of years have been difficult for you in this area - the coach did not approve of you doing two sports and the team just didn't feel like a team.  However you stuck with it with a good attitude and learned from it and still managed to improve your times.  What is important is that you do your personal best in all you do.  
There is probably so much more to write about - but I probably need to stop for now.  Will end with a quote from a book we used to read together - "I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always.  As long as I'm living my baby you'll be".  (From Love You Forever by Robert Munsch).  

I love you!


PS You would far rather be behind the camera than in front of it...

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


The wind is blowing hard this morning - I can hear it howling.  It is supposed to get quite warm out so that will be ok.  I have plenty of flowers to get planted later though I still don't have mosquito spray made. 

Last night B worked until almost 11:00 pm.  He came in from doing physical work about 8 and had supper.  Then he and I worked on the computer looking for parts for a skidder that was down.  The owners are quite concerned about getting it repaired as quickly as possible.  Once I figured out that I had to look under forestry equipment it was much easier to get information and pictures of the part. However because the part with the hole in it is aluminum that is going to be difficult.  B cannot simply weld a patch onto it.  By the time he was off the phone with the owners and a friend for input it was almost 11.  Made for a short night as it still took awhile to settle down after.  

Bus route this morning went pretty well even though I was a bit tense.  I was due to have a couple students return who had been suspended from riding over defiance and I was a bit anxious about how they were going to behave.  That whole situation was a mess - it started simply because I had had to change my rules on hat wearing on the bus.  The one student refused to take his off which made the other (who I'd been having other issues with) put his back on and refuse to remove it again.  At that point I figured it was outright defiance and that I will absolutely not tolerate.  However the administrator at the one school refused to deal with it as he figured it was simply "hats" - turns out he didn't even talk to the students at all or contact the parents.  I knew he wasn't going to contact the parents but I did expect him to talk to the students.  If it was simply the student refusing to remove his in the first place there still would have been disciplinary action due to defiance but I doubt it would have gone to the extent it did.  (And I certainly would have been far less angry).  However as it turns out it appears that 2 of the 3 students involved (the 3rd was dealt with by a different administrator at a different school) will not be riding my bus in the mornings for the rest of this year.  I have yet to see if the one who rides both ways will be riding home with me - unfortunately that's where I had most of my issues with him.  But all of that to say while route went well overall I was sad to hear that the one parent was still extremely upset about the situation - I have had her kids for several years and really do care about them.  Currently only the one is still riding with me.    This all reads about clear as mud but I can't be more specific.

Yesterday afternoon when I got home I got a text from my sister to tell me to check my email - that my Uncle S was having open heart surgery right then.  She had forwarded the email from my Aunt BJ (Mom's sister) about it that gave sketchy details.  I found out this morning that he did come through surgery and had bypasses done.  Don't know how many or any more information.  However it all brought some grief to the surface again - if only for the fact that we are spread so far apart that I can't go visit.  Made me think how Mom and Dad coped when they were in Africa and received news like this.  There wasn't "instant" communication like we have today.  At best there were very occasional long-distance calls and telegrams. Most news came through "snail mail".  Also reminded me of how I felt when I received a letter from my Mom while I was at boarding school - was in 6th grade.  She told me in her letter that she'd had a stroke and had been paralyzed on the left side for 3 days.  God worked a miracle there - probably one of many in their lives - and healed her.  However to me a stroke meant you were going to die and I was very very upset.  I remember being told "why are you so upset?  Your Mom is fine" and that I needed to stop crying.  And true - she was ok.  But I wasn't home with her and had no real understanding.  It was scary.  I don't remember how long after that it was before I got to see Mom and Dad.  But I can still see myself hiding behind a chair crying. 

This is getting really long - I want to link to a blog I read the other day about telling our "stories" - how blogging doesn't have to be perfect, etc.  I also want to write about Mother's Day and the fact that I have a son who will be 17 in a week.  But guess that will have to wait until later - I really need to get out to the shop office and find some information to get some paperwork done. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Very Strange Spring

Sheets of rain coming across the field
Migrating field
Landslide located a mile down the road from us
Overflowing drainage ditch just down from the house 
Fuel tanks at bus garage
Sitting here watching it snow outside.   Right now it is fairly heavy snow - coming down fast and hard.  However so far it's not accumulating on the ground.  It has been an odd month - we go from heavy extended rain to snow back to 50's and above back to rain and snow.  Last week (Thursday) we got several inches of rain in a fairly short time.   I was home alone that day - it was kind of nerve wracking to watch the rain just come across the field in sheets knowing we were under several different tornado and thunderstorm watches.  Dipstick and I went to Grief Group that night as planned - driving both directions in continued rain.  Friday morning school was delayed to give people a chance to see where they were going and be able to avoid flooded areas.  I had to back out of one road on my bus route - not too bad considering.  It did put me running about 10 minutes behind but that wasn't too bad.  Several other buses had to reroute completely.  After morning route I went grocery shopping.  On the way home I was able to take pictures just on our road - one place where a field had migrated onto the road and another where there was a landslide.  It was crazy.  Most of the water went down fairly quickly and roads were opened again by Monday mostly. However Saturday morning we had snow on the ground again.  It was gone by that evening.  Last night we got another inch or so of rain - there was another smaller landslide on our road and water is at least lapping at the edges of roads in areas.  In the time it's taken me to write this the snow has stopped - at least temporarily.   We had no water at our house.  However at the kids' high school water was lapping at the edge of the building.  The school is located in a town south of us right on a river, as is our bus garage. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Question for Discussion (I hope)

Question: How old were you as a child when your parent(s) stopped waking you up in the morning? As a parent - how old do you think your child should be when they are expected to get up on their own? What reasons do you have for those expectations? Really hoping for some chat here.

I realize some of this is obvious to some readers as we were in boarding school at least some of our school years - and had to get ourselves up. But when we boarded in elementary school how did we get up on time?  I don't remember having an alarm clock until I was 7th or 8th grade. 

This is a question I really struggle with.  Stretch and Squirrel were both expected to get themselves up by 2nd grade.  I remember Squirrel asking for an alarm clock - he would fight me when I woke him up but once he had his own alarm and knew how to set it he typically got up on his own.  It was and still is rare for him to oversleep.  Stretch was not one to oversleep either when he was still at home - he tended to sleep a little later than Squirrel but that worked out well for morning showers and shared bathrooms. 

On the other hand, Dipstick has 3 alarm clocks and still struggles with getting up on time, letting alone getting up at all.  Often his dad will holler up the stairs at him to get him up.  This morning I asked him how long he expected to have a parent waking him.  His answer (and it may have been intended to be a smart-aleck response) was "until I move out".  Being as he is 16 1/2 almost I feel strongly that he should be the one to get himself up - without regularly being hollered at.  He daily leaves for school without breakfast and sometimes not completely dressed - carrying shoes and socks into the car to put on on the way to the bus. 

Really hoping for some discussion here - not as a bashing situation but for insight. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Can hardly believe it's been a month since I've written.  Over actually.  But it has been a busy month.  We had more than one snow day in March.  My hubby surprised me with a dinner with friends and family for my birthday.  There was school, bus discipline issues, state bus inspection...

Our last day of school before spring break was March 29.  We were off the first week of April.  It was a short break but much needed.  Stretch had his spring break a couple weeks before - his seemed to fly by.  Squirrel and Dipstick both went on the Campus Life trip to Florida this year.  Think they both enjoyed themselves.  They left on Saturday night (before Easter) and arrived back the following Friday morning.  They did have a really sad occurrence during that time - not sure how else to put it.  A student who had pre-existing heart trouble, from one of the other schools, died.  He had been on the same charter bus as the boys but they had not really gotten to know him.  I feel for those kids who were right there when it happened and for his family. 

Today has been a very long day.  The father of one of my closest friends had recently (like within the last month) had recently been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.  He had told her that if it was confirmed as cancer he would not do treatments - he would instead have his pacemaker shut off.  Long story short she called me about 4:15 this morning to let me know he was gone.  I didn't sleep much from that point.  After bus route I was able to go to her house and spend the time between routes sitting and just being with her and her girls.  We laughed, we cried, we talked...the time together was good.  Other friends came and sat as well.  Very different from when Mom went.  But I have to admit tonight I'm tired.  And she still has the weekend to get through.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

A "Real" Snow Day

We have a snow day today - a real one complete with snow instead of ice or fog.  Thankfully a delay was called last night and the cancellation was called early this morning.  I wasn't able to go back to sleep though as Hubby was very awake. So I've enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, a short nap and taking pictures. 

Sorry the picture is blue - not sure why.  But that is the walk-in door to the garage on the south end of the shop covered by the drift.

Hubby, Squirrel and Dipstick have shoveled and plowed out the driveway and the back deck.  He did end up with the skid loader stuck in across the road for a time.  
Front porch has been left alone and that is fine.  The birds are enjoying the feeders but are in dire need of suet cakes - I will be working on those soon.

Snow totals - 11 inches for our wee small town, 9.5 inches for our next bigger one and 10.5 for the closest "city". 

Guess that is all for now - I'd best be away to accomplish something. 

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Beautiful scenery this morning - everything coated in a layer of heavy wet snow.  We had a 2 hour delay then went to school.  However even after 2 hours the roads were still bad.  Many in our school district had not even been plowed yet and even the main roads were not clear.  The major east/west highway was clear and fairly dry but I have to say that was it.  Even though I've driven in this for several years for some reason this morning I was a stressed out mess.  Of course the fact that Squirrel was driving all the way to school did not help me - I am not ready for that yet.  He said basically "Mom I know that some day I will slide out.  Better to do it now when I'm younger than later.".  That didn't calm me much though.  However he made it safely to school and I simply have to learn to trust that he is God's child ultimately.  

It is snowing big heavy flakes again now and the birds have been busy at the feeders.  That tells me that the snow and the cold is going to last at least most of the day today.  It is predicted to last into tomorrow possibly.  We've not had much snow this winter - we get a couple inches then it melts off.  However thankfully we've had more moisture then we did last winter and the drought for this area is officially over.

B has been busy in the shop.  Yesterday he spent most of the day cleaning but today he called in extra help.  He was asked this morning to replace brakes on a trailer that belongs to some of the local Amish.  They call him frequently when their equipment breaks down and it is usually a rush job when they do.  I am thankful that his business has been good.  God has been good.  He always is good but often we allow the times of stress to overshadow that knowledge.

I don't have huge goals for today - 2 hour delays make it hard to accomplish much.  I will likely lay down for a short nap and need to do hand dishes in the kitchen.  I will probably throw something in the crock pot for supper - some sort of roast.  I've been really trying to expand my cooking repertoire this year and not do a lot of repeats.  However today as I know I have to wait for Dipstick after school I will want something either very easy or something that is mostly done.  Of course I could do tuna noodle casserole as Squirrel won't be home.  He is not fond of fish.

Guess I'd better be away.

Friday, February 22, 2013


No school today - it is freezing drizzle out now on top of snow that we got overnight.  Sadly there is not much snow - just a couple of inches.  However I figured that now would be a good time to try to start blogging again.

Everything is expected to melt off this afternoon with warming temperatures.  However it was most enjoyable to watch the birds at the feeders this morning.  I've not actually counted how many birds there have been but I have several different varieties - 4 different woodpeckers, chickadees, at least one pair of cardinals, goldfinches, nuthatches, and 2 or 3 other birds that I've not yet identified.  So far I've not tried to take any pictures of them - for awhile I didn't have a memory card for my camera.  That problem has been solved - I have been doing some major cleaning - step by very slow step.  I know I'm still missing one - suspect it may have been left in Ontario last time I was up there over Christmas break.

Much has happened since I've last written.  It's hard to know where to start - and there's no way to include it all.  Mom was called home to be with Jesus December 31st, 2012.  All of us kids had spent time with her - I was the last one to arrive as the boys and I weren't able to leave here until Christmas Day.  We drove straight through even though we hadn't left until 3:30 pm.  Roads were mostly decent - except for some heavy snow in MI.  As a family we spent that last week taking turns sitting with Mom - reading, singing and visiting with each other.  Usually there were 2 of us "on" while the rest took turns resting and spending time with Stretch and Squirrel.  She was very peaceful at the end.  I will try to post some of the tributes in a separate post later.

B and Dipstick came up for the funeral and left that same day.  They were not excited about the 7 lanes of traffic going one direction...and totally feel like country living is the best.  Stretch, Squirrel and I got home late on the 5th and immediately jumped right back into daily life.  All are doing well overall but that was tough.

Dipstick is struggling with school again - not that he's unable to do the work, just that he does not want to.  It is frustrating - nothing seems to really motivate him.  He is involved in archery - and doing well at that.  State high school athletic rules say a student must pass 5 of 7 classes so he can still participate unless his dad and I pull him out.  But considering this is the first sport he's ever done we hate to do that. 

I guess I'd better be away. 

Picture at the top was taken on my phone camera one early Sunday morning when I had to drop Squirrel off for a Gospel Choir concert.  I thought the sun shining on the hoar frost was beautiful.