Category Archives: Things on my mind

Comfort and Peace

Every day when I  sit down to eat, I thank God for my food, but I also thank Him for the chair upon which I sit, the roof over my head, the husband sitting beside me and all He has provided.

When I lay my head on my pillow at night, I thank God for that pillow, the bed in which I am sleeping, that all is peaceful in my world right now, the husband beside me and all He has provided. That right now my family is doing well and we have our health.

I have been thinking a lot lately about all I have to be thankful for as I watch the news every day.  So many people don’t have the luxuries I have. And yes, I call the comforts of home luxuries.   Today in Texas, Louisiana, Montana, Oregon, Washington and California many people don’t have their beds to sleep in tonight or at least, not their own beds. Many have lost everything.  Some have lost loved ones.  Some have lost the pets they love.  I can’t imagine losing a family member or one of my pets in a flood or a fire.   I can’t imagine having to start all over again.   I realize that the United States is not the only country where people are suffering.  I just can’t wrap my brain around all the suffering that is going on around our world today so I am focusing on our problems right now.

So, I pray and ask God to make things better for people.  That His comfort will sustain them as they try to rebuild their lives. That they won’t lose faith in Him, because He is there in the people who are rescuing them, feeding them, providing shelter for them and trying to help the best way they can.  I sent some money to Samaritan’s Purse.  I know it was a drop in the bucket at what they need, but if thousands of us send some money, there would be lots of buckets full to help people in need.

To all those who are suffering right now I say, you are not alone.  We the people are thinking of you and want to help.  My prayers go out to all of you and I pray your lives will get back to normal as quickly as possible.

And on this day when we Americans are remembering one of the worst tragedies to ever happen on our soil on September 11, 2001, I pray for our country and it’s safety and peace.

To all who join me in prayer I say thank you.  Bye.

10,000 Steps

Back in about 2012 I think it was, I read an article that read if people would walk 10,000 steps every day, they would be healthier. 10,000 steps is about five miles give or take a few feet.   I decided I was going to try it.  I began by walking a mile or so every day.  I had the same route I’d take every  day, over the railroad track and around the back road where there was a rock quarry.  There were always a lot of trucks I had to dodge, but I would take this route every day. Then I started to branch out, walking around our block two or three times, it being a little over a mile around our block.  Then I started walking all over. Living where we do, there is a lot of traffic and not a whole lot of walking spaces. No sidewalks.   I would find lonely roads to walk. People began to notice me and talk to me   Then they began to notice I was losing weight. When I finally hit 10,000 steps I celebrated.  After that I walked five miles pretty much every day.  Rain or shine.  Even in the snow. I did not walk when it was icy out, but I walked inside.

I really did not do this to lose weight.  I never weigh myself. NEVER.  I went that route for years obsessing about my weight and finally  decided I would rather be healthy than skinny.  But, the weight began to fall off me.  I was still eating well, but it seemed like every day I would lose a pant size.  I think some people thought there was something wrong with me, but I was perfectly healthy.  My doctor, at one of my regular visits, told me how much I had lost and I didn’t believe him.  I knew my clothes were loser, but still I never weighed myself and I never look at how much I weigh in the doctor’s office.  I was rather shocked. Even more so that I had that much to lose.     I told him I was not on a diet, I just walked.   He said to keep it up.

The year we went to Alaska, David would stop at rest stops and parks and I would walk a mile or two before we drove on. I counted my steps diligently.   When we rode the ferry up to Alaska, I walked the deck over and over. One day it was pouring rain and only me and one other woman were out walking the deck.  I was obsessed with getting my 10,000 steps in.

Then about three years ago, I hurt my right leg. Pulled a muscle or tendon or something and I was in great pain.  It was hard for me to even walk three miles, let alone five.  I was just getting back to normal when in Fredericksburg, Texas, David and I walked up this small mountain and I tore something in the back of my left leg that hurt so badly, I just fell down where I was.  From then on, I was afraid to walk much because it hurt too much.   Then that began to heal and I was getting cocky about myself and was coming down the stairs pretty fast and got the most excruciating pain in my left leg again.  I became careful about going up and down stairs. I walked very little.  Then, this Summer, I thought I was having heart trouble  and could barely walk around in my yard without getting winded.  I had many tests done and my heart was fine. Just needed my medication adjusted.  The cardiologist told me to walk.  Soooooo.  I am slowly starting to walk again. I am doing it in my house.  I set the timer on the stove for twenty minutes and just walk.  Today I managed over two miles.   I am hoping to work up to 10,000 steps again.   Next year David and I plan a big trip out west and I want to do a lot of walking along the way.    I don’t care if I lose weight, but if it’s a side benefit, that’s okay.   I just don’t worry about my weight any more. Fat or thin,    I just want to be healthy.

So I am writing this in order that I will keep the walking up. David is getting me a treadmill for when the weather is bad.   I am going to get up to 10,000 steps again, if it kills me. Let’s hope it doesn’t.   Bye.

Dreams

I have dreamed all my life.  I remember dreams I had when I was a young girl.  Some were really scary.  Some were rather funny.  David says he hardly remembers dreaming at all, although one night years ago he was fighting with someone in a dream and he punched me on the arm.  I shook him awake and told him what he had done.  He didn’t remember the dream. I have very vivid dreams that I remember for a long time. Some I cannot remember as soon as I wake up.

I read one time that we dream in only black and white.  Wrong. My dreams are in bold Technicolor and three dimensional.   I don’t know whether it’s because my neck has been hurting at night when I am in bed and my synapses are all screwed up, but the last couple of dreams I have had were so vivid and so real, I thought they were really happening.  You know those movies made in the fifties where the colors are so vivid?  That’s my dreams.

The other night I dreamed David and I were driving in England in our little PT Cruiser and off in the distance I saw the White Cliffs of Dover.  Now I have always wanted to go to England and see the cliffs, so in my dream I was really excited.  I told David to drive up to them and he made an immediate right hand turn and was driving on a rocky cliff with drop offs on both sides. The really strange thing was, I was standing outside of the car yelling at him to get off the cliff as he bumped and rolled on ahead of me. I was so scared.  I ran down this big mountain we were on and saw David driving down the side of it just as easy as pie.  My sense of relief was so great, I thought I would cry.   We arrived in this village where people were dressed up. The men wore bright blue jackets with white pants and white shoes and the women were wearing what looked like dresses out of the 1930’s, long and slender. The sky was a brilliant blue and the white cliffs that could be seen were so very white.  The people were just milling about and I could see just a corner of the cliffs around a corner, but could not get to them.  So, I went up to this very tall woman, she was at least six feet tall, with short, curled blonde hair and a very haughty look upon her face, and asked her if there were boats taking tours to the White Cliffs of Dover.  She said no, but there……..and there is where I could not understand a single word she was saying. Almost like a foreign language even though she was speaking English.   I was very disappointed. Then all the people started to exit this courtyard, going, I knew not where and I tried to walk to the cliffs and saw that the ocean was raging and a storm was at sea.  Then I woke up.  Hmmmmm.

I don’t know how that dream would be analyzed, but it was very strange.

I dreamed I shot someone in a dream once. I won’t say who as it was a long time ago, but I remember waking up shaking and feeling absolutely horrible and didn’t want to go back to sleep.   It wasn’t someone I disliked, either.  So, don’t know where that dream came from. It was right after President John F. Kennedy was shot so I probably had shooting on my mind.

When I had a tooth pulled years ago, I had laughing gas. I had a very fun dream during the time I was under. I was having a party with Disney characters with balloons and singing and having a wonderful time. When I came to from the gas, I was laughing and telling the dentist I had just been to a party.

Every night when I go to sleep, I pray to God I will have pleasant dreams.  I always wonder what I will dream about. There are certain things I cannot see before I go to sleep. Snakes. I saw some yellow snakes on tv one evening and that very night I dreamed there were yellow snakes under my dresser striking at me.  So, I cannot see a snake or even think of one before retiring for the night.

Do you have strange dreams?  Do you dream in color?   I find dreams very interesting.  Do they represent something in our lives?  I don’t know.  I just know I have a very interesting  dream life.

Here’s to dreams, the good ones. Bye.

To Curse or Not to Curse, That is the Question

I just came from reading a blog about Stephen Colbert and his vile tirade against President Trump and the affect of cursing on society.

I grew up in a family where my father cursed quite often, especially when he was working on a tractor and something would go wrong. His cursing stopped the day He became a Christian and was saved by Jesus Christ. I never heard him say another curse word.  My mother very occasionally said the S word when she was exceedingly distraught.  But cursing was not the norm in my family and still is not. But now, in our society, cursing has become the norm.  Words one would never have heard in polite society are regularly used by women as well as men.  Some people think it’s hip and quite cool to spew out vile words with gusto no matter who is around, children or women or men who don’t curse.

I find that cursing becoming the norm is a very sad thing about today’s society.  Many young people can barely carry on a conversation as it is and then to add curse words into a sentence pretty much makes them uncommunicable.   There are thousands of words in the English language that can be used to carry on a conversation.  Beautiful words that can express someone’s meaning without being crass or vile.

When I go to a movie, I want to hear conversations that are uplifting or intelligent. I don’t want to be a captive to having to listen to curse words spewing out of people’s mouths every other sentence.  Imagine Cary Grant or Audrey Hepburn speaking like some of the actors and actresses do today.  I don’t think people would think as much of them if they had.   The actresses I hear today can be as vile as the men and I think that makes them look worse than the men.   They call it “edgy,” but I call it unnecessary.

I find it abhorrent that women think cursing is proper.  But I also find it abhorrent that men and teen-agers do also.   When I see a pretty girl and then I hear curse words coming from her mouth, she doesn’t look nearly as pretty to me any longer.  Girls that curse usually end up with men who do also and I wonder how men who curse regularly treat their women.   It’s just a thought.

So back to Stephen Colbert.  He hates President Trump.  So many think what he said on his show was funny and cool and mainstream and how everyone feels. They are wrong.  Millions of us out here believe he was vile and sounded unintelligent and was very disrespectful of our president.   If a so-called comedian like Stephen Colbert had said the same vile things about President Obama, the same people who are laughing now would think it was wrong.  I would think it was wrong then, too.    I hope we can get back to civil discourse and intelligent conversation once again.   Notice where the vileness is coming from and steer clear of it.  We don’t need that in our society.   We all need to be uplifted and we all need to speak to one another with civil tongues.

And that is my preaching for today.  Bye.

I Am Tired

Had a perfectly wonderful weekend and I will tell you about it as soon as I get the pictures uploaded.   And I do have a ton of pictures.

I haven’t stopped for a breath since last Friday.  Usually when I go away for a few days, I have a day to unwind before going on, but not this week. The contractors come VERY early in the morning which means I have to be up to let them in.   There has been pounding and banging going on continuously and now a fan is running all day and all night to dry the new dry wall they put up.

Add to that I am painting all the woodwork for the bathroom so I have been working on that the past couple of days.  Sometimes when I hire someone to work on our house, I feel like I end up working almost as hard as they do!  I also have a barn door I am staining to replace a closet door.  It’s a big door and needs several coats of pre-stain, stain and polyurethane.

We also decided to move the chicks back with the hens this week which involved cleaning my shop because the dander and dust from the chicks was horrible.  Now they are still in their cage, but in the big coop to get the other chickens use to them.   I found my little lame chick, Miss Mary Foster, sitting on the roost the other day. I was so happy for her because with her bad leg, I never thought she would be able to roost with the other birds.  Go, Miss Mary Foster!

I still have not planted my flower pots even though I have had the flowers for two weeks.  Plus I have tomatoes and pumpkins to plant. I have rhubarb to cut to make rhubarb crunch.  It’s going to rain the next few days, so I won’t be doing much work outside.  So much to do and so little time.

We had a Bible conference this week at church and I got to hear a couple of the speakers.  Tonight, my neck, that I hurt a few weeks back, was really hurting so I laid down with a heating pad and fell asleep and David fell asleep in his Lazyboy and we missed church.   I felt bad about it, but I guess we both really needed the rest.

Next post there will be pictures, I promise and I will tell you about the fun weekend I had. Just a warning. It’s sort of political, so if you steer clear of politics, you may not want to read my next post.  Just don’t say I didn’t warn you.   But I had a great time.  My fairy godmother made the weekend possible.  I have her picture, too.

I hope it’s sunny where you are and have a wonderful day.  Bye.

 

Sadness and Happiness

Sadness and happiness live pretty closely, side by side.  Life can change in an instant.  Joy can turn to sorrow. And vice versa.  It happens every day to people.  Life is not promised and we may not see tomorrow here on earth. I have been thinking a lot about death lately only because I know so many people who have died in the last few months. When you get to be my age, you start to lose friends and family at a regular rate, it seems.  My church family has been hit pretty hard lately.  Today I just found out a friend’s husband has died.  I grieve for her although she had a pretty hard life with him at times.   She is a very strong woman, though, and will come out on the other side of this stronger than ever.

The weather has not helped my emotions. We are stuck in cloudy, gloomy weather right now.  Generally, the weather doesn’t bother me.  In fact, I look at bad weather as a good time to hunker down with a good book or go out into my shop and make something bright and pretty.  I have done both of those lately, but I still have felt a little melancholy.  I know this, too, shall pass, for I really am, for the most part, an optimistic, happy person who looks at life as one big adventure to be lived looking at everything as a miracle. Because it really is.  You reading this are a miracle. Is my life perfect?  Heck, no.  Am I sad sometimes. Of course.  But I do feel I was placed here for a purpose.  You were placed here on this earth for a purpose. Some of us find our purpose late in life while some children already know theirs.   I read a blog the other day about a family who had a little baby who was not well and died very shortly afterward and yet, that baby served a purpose. Thousands of people who read the blog were touched.  People who had lost babies themselves were touched.  It made me think. How am I touching people’s lives?   I get up every day and ask God, “Let me be a blessing to someone today.”   I don’t know if I accomplish it most days, but I try when I can.   I hope in some small way I am a blessing to those who read this blog.

I find my relationship with Jesus Christ has helped me immensely in this walk on earth. I met Him at a young age in my small church one night at a revival.  He’s been by my side since then. He was always at my side, I had just not acknowledged Him before.  He’s by your side right now. I have been reading some of my diaries from when I was a young girl and I see how my walk with Jesus has affected my life in so many ways.  I have found comfort in Him when times have been tough.  Joy when times have been happy.    I married a Christian man and that has made my life easier.   Do not be unevenly yoked, the Bible tells us. In other words, don’t marry someone who does not believe as you do or does not like how you believe.   I think that is true. At least it’s worked for David and me.

I didn’t mean to get all philosophical here or push my faith on anyone, it’s just who I am.   It’s what I have been thinking the last few days.   I have been blessed beyond measure. If I were to die tomorrow, I have lived a blest life.  I was blest to be brought up in a Christian home, although my daddy did not become a Christian until later in life.  I saw a transformation in him like nothing I had seen before when he accepted Christ as his savior.  I can vouch for the fact that Christ does change people.  My daddy stopped cursing and smoking cigarettes from that moment on and I never heard him say a curse word or see him smoke a cigarette ever again.  And Mother never had to beg him to go to church. He went gladly.

I was going to post a whole lot of pictures on here of things I have purchased at a new antique store we found, of my chicken quilt I wrote about in my last post, of the strange people populating my shop right now, but since this has become a “things on my mind” kind of blog, I will save them for another day.

I hope and pray you are having a wonderful day, that the sun is shining on you and that peace reigns wherever you live.  Bye.

 

Under the Weather

I always wondered why the term “under the weather” meant one was not feeling well.   Some weather I love to be under, like sunshine, soft rain, cooling breezes and more.  But I will just say I have been under the weather for a few weeks.  Not completely under, mind you. I have been functioning and doing all the things I normally do, just not feeling completely up to par.

Today I think I felt the worst I have felt in a long time.  Let me explain what I think started all this. Two or three weeks ago, I went outside on our back deck to empty the dogs’ water pan and put fresh water in it. It was dark out and I didn’t turn on any lights.  I bent over to pick up the pan and rose up and hit the top of my head hard on a frame for canopy we have right outside the door.  And I mean hard.  It hurt.  But I went about my business of filling the pan so the dogs would have fresh water and went to bed that night thinking nothing of it. I am always banging myself on something. I drove a huge stake in my calf one year, bandaged it up and went to a Cincinnati Reds game with our son.  I try not to let things stop me. But today, I woke up aching in every single muscle in my body.  It hurts to turn over in bed or to try to get out of bed.

Part of my pain might stem from the fact that Saturday I helped with a funeral dinner for a lady in our church who had passed away , as I was carrying food out of the kitchen, returning food to the kitchen, washing dishes, taking out trash, and just being busy for several hours.  We fed over one hundred people and there was a lot of food to move around.  After five hours of this and cleaning the kitchen, we all left and went home. I was so tired, I went to bed extra early, but could not sleep because every muscle in my body was screaming with pain.  My neck, especially.  All day today I could hardly move without pain running throughout my body.  I don’t take pain very well and when I feel unwell, I just want to crawl into bed and lay there and not be bothered.     It especially bothers me as David has had four days off this weekend and I want to do something fun with him and just don’t feel like getting out of a chair.  Here I am in my husband’s lounge chair at one o’clock in the morning watching “Julie and Julia,” one of my favorite movies, and feeling, well, not so well.

I think I have a low grade fever and that makes me feel even worse.  I almost rather it was a full blown fever that would kill all the bad germs coursing through my body, but instead it’s a fever that just taunts me with unease and the feeling of always being warm.  But then I feel chilled and can’t get warm. Maybe it’s the flu and a combination of other things, but I know I am ready to be done with it.

I am not a good patient either.  I don’t want to be waited on or hovered over.  If I am hungry, I get my own food and I try to hydrate myself continually.

Gee, I am sounding like a whiner and I really don’t mean to. It’s kind of cathartic to talk about something that is bothering you and sometimes it makes things better. I am hoping this will pass before I have to make a visit to my family doctor.   I don’t like to take pills and I know he would prescribe antibiotics.  I just got over a run of antibiotics and steroids a few weeks ago that left me depleted and tired.  I have decided steroids will not be something I will take ever again.  They are really not good for people and the less you have to do with them, the better. I am not a doctor, but I saw what steroids did to my system.  It took  weeks for them to get out of my body.

Are you a  good patient when you are ill?  Do you like being cared for or are you like me and just want to hide under your blankets and be left alone?   I really hope this will pass soon. I have so many things to do this Spring and places to go.

Here’s to good health. Bye.

Why Has the World Gone so Crazy?

I’ve lived quite a few years and voted in several elections.  When I became eighteen, I was so excited that I could vote for the president of the United States.  I grew up in a family that talked politics at the dinner table and have never had trouble talking about politics to anyone.  A lot of people are uncomfortable talking about politics. Not me. I like a good rip roaring debate as long as it doesn’t devolve into name calling and swearing.

I have never missed voting in an election.  I have been unhappy with the person I voted for at times and at other times I have been extremely happy.  I am happy now.  There are people who say I am dumb, can’t read, should be dead don’t pay attention to the news and all manner of mean spirited things just because of who I voted for this time.  I have never seen anything like it.

This year has been different for some reason. I have tried to figure it out, but, honestly, I don’t know what all the uproar is about.  I have lived through several presidents I really didn’t like, but I didn’t attack them incessantly.  Here we are three months into a new president in the White House and the angst hasn’t diminished.

I began to really notice this phenomena right after the election last fall.  I went to my favorite blogs. Blogs that were all sweetness and light and suddenly I felt like I was visiting a complete stranger. The vitriol that I read was astonishing.   People so upset, they talked as if their lives were completely ruined.  So upset they said horrible things about our present president.  People have attacked me online just for mentioning something good about our president. I have been called a bigot and a racist.   I wondered how their lives had changed so much overnight after the election.  Sure, I have been disappointed when a president was elected that I really did not like, but I didn’t immediately start attacking everyone who had voted for him.  I didn’t think my world had ended.

There will be other elections that I won’t be happy about.  But for now, I am enjoying the fact that the person I voted for won.  Fair and square.  Just like every other president has done.  But now there are some who are trying to say the Russians helped him get elected.  How silly.   They are doing everything in their power to try to destroy this president. Our president who is trying to uphold our laws and help people get jobs. I read lie after lie about him and it saddens me that we Americans have become so divided that some cannot accept a free and lawful election.

I’m not even sure I should post this because I think it will make some people so angry they will not want to read my blog any longer.   They will miss out because I have some great stories to tell.     I hope all of you that are reading this don’t suddenly hate me.   There is too much hate right now.  Signs in your yard saying, “Love More” won’t work if you are not willing to love those with whom you disagree.

I pray every day for our president and our country.  I want our country to be the best it can be.  It cannot happen if people are not willing to follow our laws or attack with animosity those with whom they disagree.

I want to keep my blog happy and light and this will be the last time I write about politics for a long time.  I just felt there ought to be a blog for the other side.  Bloggers who agree with me are probably afraid to post about this.   I’m throwing my opinion out into blogosphere and who knows. Maybe someone will understand the other side.

Be happy today. You are alive in a wonderful world if you want to make it that way.  Bye.

My Mom

Today is my mother’s birthday. If she were alive, she would be celebrating 102 years on this earth, but, instead, she is celebrating in heaven with my daddy and that makes me happy. I miss her. I always will until I see her again.  The day she died, I became an orphan. I became the matriarch of my family and I didn’t know if I was up to the job.

My mother grew up in the days of silent pictures, horses were still on the streets, indoor plumbing was not the norm, and clothes were hung out to dry, not put in a dryer.  There were no takeout restaurants.  No giant stores.  No cellphones.  No big screen tvs. In fact, my grandfather didn’t have a tv for a long time and when he did get one, it was about the size of a large radio and in black and white. She lived during the days of radio shows where everyone would sit around the radio and listen to show like “The Shadow.”   She was born just a few years after the Victorian era and she still had a little of that Victorian aura about herself.  She was the oldest of four sisters with whom she stayed close all her life. There is only one of the sisters left now and she lives in Michigan.   Life for my mother was school, church and home.  I never heard her speak of any vacations her family took.  They probably never did. People didn’t have time for those kind of things back then.  Making a living was all people had time for.  She did go to dances and in fact, I found a copy of a letter she wrote to some band asking them to play at a school dance.  I think she was the president of her class by what I read.  She was a woman before her time.   I really wish I knew more about my mother’s early years.  I bet I could write a book.

DSCN4874

This is my mother’s senior picture taken in 1932.

Mom was born just before WWl.   She grew up in a small Indiana town where she knew everyone and everyone knew her.   She lived in the same house until she married my daddy.   That is a story unto itself.  My parents were some of the most ordinary, quiet, sensible people you would ever meet, but there was a streak of rebellion and excitement in them.   I am not exactly sure when they started dating each other. I found an autograph book of my mother’s where my daddy wrote some things that made me think he was in love with her, but she wasn’t quite sure about him at the time.  I have that book  around my house somewhere, but I have lost it and have not been able to find it.  Anyway, at some point, daddy won my mother’s heart and they became a couple.  After they graduated they continued dating and then one night, when they were suppose to be going to a basketball game, they headed on down to Kentucky, found a justice of the peace and got married. They came back home, each to their own home and continued living their lives like nothing had ever happened, But….. one day the newspaper came with wedding licenses in it and my grandpa saw that Miss Jeannette Driggs  Ridenour  was wed to Mr. Paul K. Pentecost and let’s just say the roof came off.  So, parents and my parents had a meeting and it was decided that since they were married, they needed to make a home together. No more living at home with Mom and Dad.  So they started their life together.

I am not sure where all they lived, but there was one place my mother called “Tucker’s” that my mother evidently loved.  She talked about it often.  Then my daddy’s mom and dad wanted him to come home and farm the farm as they were getting old and couldn’t manage any longer, so Mom and daddy packed  up and brought their little family to the farm where I grew up.   I am not sure how many of us kids were born at that time.  But my mother and daddy lived there until they had to go into nursing homes.

Life was not always easy on the farm. It was hard work, but my daddy was never one to shy away from work nor was my mother. I believe that is where I got my strong work ethic.  Mom raised six children on that farm, making our clothes, canning, washing clothes in a wringer washing(worshing) machine and hanging the clothes on the line to dry. Ironing, cooking and cleaning.  That is about all I remember my mother doing at home. Besides reading.

My mother loved to read and every two weeks she would pack me and my younger brother into the car and drive five miles to Hagerstown where the nearest library was and we would all get armloads of books to bring home to read.  I loved going to the library.  I loved how it smelled. I loved the two older ladies that checked out the books.  I got my love of reading from my mother and I am so glad I did.  My aunt told me one time that when my mother was a girl she always was reading, even when she was ironing clothes.  I believe it. She would get up early every morning and read the Bible and read her library books.   With six children to raise, she had very little time during the day to sit down and read.  Early morning was her time and if one of us kids would get up at five a.m., Mom would tell us to go back to bed for a while longer.  It was her reading time!

My mother was the best cook for miles around.  She fried the best chicken I  have ever tasted. Just last week I fried some chicken and for some reason, it tasted just like Mom’s and I was so excited.  I hadn’t done anything differently.  Maybe it was the chicken itself. I do know the chicken my mother fried was killed one day, dressed and prepared the next, so it was nice and fresh.   Saturday was baking day and all kinds of cakes, cookies and pies came out of Mom’s kitchen.   I was often in the kitchen with her baking something for a 4-H project.  One summer my family grew sick of yellow cake because that is the kind I had to show at the fair.  And one year it was orange breakfast rolls that we had every single week until I showed some at the fair.   I love to bake and it all began in my mother’s kitchen.  I don’t like cooking so much. I think because it is something one has to do every single day if one wants to eat unless you go out to eat every day, which we don’t.  My mother was cooking all the time when she wasn’t cleaning or gardening.  She loved to garden.  I have some of her perennials in my own garden today.    I remember an old fashion rose bush that smelled heavenly growing on a fence by our vegetable garden gate. Every year it was loaded with pink roses.  She grew African violets and my daddy built her a window hothouse in which to grow them. She became quite an expert at raising them and had many beautiful violets growing all year round in the window.

My mother was terrified of storms. When one would come up, she would tell us to stay away from windows and she would huddle somewhere in the house far from any window.  One year lightning struck our house and blew the telephone clear off the wall.  That kind of reinforced Mom’s fear of storms.  And yet, she liked to watch rain come over the hill and down to our little farm. I loved storms until this year lightning struck an electric poll near our house and took out several of our electrical appliances and the internet. Now, when I hear thunder, I start unplugging things.  I understand now to be fearful of lightning.

Mom wasn’t a hugger or kisser except when Daddy would grab her and spin her around and hug and kiss her. She would act all embarrassed and we kids would go, “Ewwww!” but we really loved it.  With her strong German heritage, she didn’t demonstrate her love that way and even though I got few hugs from her, I knew she loved me.  There was no doubt in my mind.   She would do anything for her children, but she did expect us to mind her.

My mother told us interesting stories like when Pearl Harbor was attacked and about all the airplanes that flew overhead for hours heading west.   She lived through the Great Depression and told about men who would come to their door asking for food and Grandma would give them some. My Grandpa worked in a grocery so they were never without food and shared what they had.  Back then they called those men hobos although they were men out of work traveling across the country looking for a job.  She told about a little boy who went missing in her town when she was a girl and that the last time he was seen he was walking with a woman with long, dark hair.  I don’t know if she told me that story in order that I would be wary of strangers, but it sure did make me so.  She told about the days when she would go home for lunch from school, crossing the rail road track and then when she was going back to school a train would be on the track and how some kids crawled underneath it to get back to school on time. I asked her if she ever did and she told me, no.  I wish I could talk to her again and hear her stories. I know I would listen more closely and ask a whole lot more questions.  She told me about walking to church and the library just a few blocks from her home. I thought it was wonderful to live so close to a library.   One of her best friends was Dr. Dubois’s daughter. He was the town doctor.  He lived just a couple of blocks from my mother’s house.  Her friend moved to California and she never heard from her again. I am glad I still hear from my best friends from school.  Not often, but we do keep in touch.  I think my mother always missed her best friend.  She told me about her Aunt Emmie and Aunt Idy whom she loved and visited quite often. They, of course, lived in the same town not far from my mother and she could visit them any time she wanted. All my aunts and uncles lived far away from me most of my life so I didn’t get to experience that closeness with them.  I wish I could have.

If you still have your mother with you, ask about her history.   Have her write it down.   One day you will wish you had.

Happy Birthday, Mom.  I miss you.   Say hello to daddy for me. Bye.

 

What Happened to My Favorite Blogs?

I got into the blogging world late.  A late bloomer, you might say.  The day I found out about blogs, I spent almost the entire day reading them.  I discovered Posie Gets Cozy and Pioneer Woman.  I read every post they had written.  I discovered Henhouse and Posey and Attic 24, blogs from England. Nostalgia at the Stonehouse.   Tales From the Coop Keeper.  Pamkitty Morning.  I read and read them and wanted to start a blog of my own.   I read so many blogs that I have forgotten their names and wish I had written them down so I could visit them again. Posey just disappeared one Christmas and has never come back. I hope she is well.   I really do care.  Tales From the Coop Keeper started a business and has stopped blogging regularly.   I can understand.  Henhouse opened a guest cottage and hasn’t written since.  I would love to visit her guest cottage in England one day.   I imagine she is kept busy.

Still, I found more bloggers and went into their worlds and read about their lives and their businesses and families.  This week, Ree, the Pioneer Woman wrote about the loss of their beloved dog, Charlie, and I cried like it was my own dog. Ree has created a mega business from her simple little blog.  A tv cooking show and a store.  Dishes and books for sale.    I read From My Front Porch in the Mountains and about her horses and the birth of a new foal and watched as that foal grew up.   The writer suffers from a debilitating illness and wrote about that, but always foremost were her animals.  All her dogs and cats and horses.  Then, suddenly, one day, she stopped writing and has not written another post.  I feel like I lost a friend.   I wonder if she is well.  What happened?

I read blogs from almost famous people, like Susan Branch who designs calenders and writes beautiful books and illustrates them herself.  I even got to meet her.  Many bloggers have become almost celebrities in their own right.

Then there are the blogs that talk about quilting.  I love those blogs.  Many have quilt alongs where you can make a quilt right along with them as they instruct you.  One of the bloggers, who use to own a quilt shop in Iowa and that I met once, also is a designer of quilts and has written several books and patterns with a friend.  I visited her quilt shop before she closed it. It was so cute.  In a former chicken coop.  And she talked to me and took me on a tour around her house.   How about that?

There are blogs about knitting which has drawn my interest lately.  Cozy is a prolific, outstanding knitter who seems to knit a sweater a week.  Canadian Needle Nana is a like minded soul who loves creating with her hands and I love the scenes from her Canadian home.

I finally decided to try this blogging thing a few years ago and my first blog was called,
I LOVE MY DOGS.   I wrote it for a while until I lost a lot of pictures on it.  Then my son bought me another site and I began this blog.   It’s become a hodge podge of different things about my life, stories, poems, history and English lessons, my dogs and chickens, our travels.  Whatever I feel like writing about.   It’s become a diary of sorts that I hope one day my children will read about their mother’s life.

There is a blog of just pictures called Murmuring Cottage. The photos are exquisite and many make me wish I could go inside them and live they are so beautiful and warm and cozy.

There is a blog called Quiet Life and she is still blogging steadily.  Almost every day.  She got me interested in reading a book about Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Christian man who was murdered by the Nazis because of his beliefs.   She was having a book discussion on it, but stopped suddenly.  Perhaps because the book was about a thousand pages long and it got to be tedious. Not the book. The book was wonderful. Written by Eric Mataxes.  I think that is how his last name is spelled.  I even read a blog where the blogger was all excited about having dinner with this author.  Small world, isn’t it?   Sometimes I think all we bloggers are connected in some way.

Wishwishwish.   A blog written by a young English woman who models her clothes and is now earning her living with her blog.   She has style and travels a lot and takes her readers with her through all the pictures she shows us.   I often wonder how one so young got so smart and mature so fast.   Of course, when I was her age, I had two children, had bought two houses already and was working and raising our family.   I still don’t think I am so smart and mature!

I have learned so much from blogs.  Things to cook.  Things to sew. Creative things to make. The latest blog I have found is Ann Wood’s blog. She is a creative person who shares some of her patterns for free.  She made the most glorious flamingos from paper.   I can’t wait to see what she will come up with this year.

There are many more blogs I have read.  Some have just disappeared or the blogger has found something else to do with her time or something has happened in the family that causes them to have to stop blogging.  I know blogging can be time consuming with taking the pictures and putting them on the computer and then writing the blog.  Notice all the pictures I have here today?!   Sometimes I just feel like writing without pictures.

Another blog I loved was Coal Creek Farm.  The blogger wrote about her family with humor and often had videos of her dancing or the family dancing.  Then the kids grew up, her husband got cancer and her blogging stopped, which I could understand, But I wonder how they all are.  If everything is okay.  I worry like they are one of my family.   I will tell you, if I ever decide to stop blogging I will tell you why I am stopping, if I am able.  I look at blogging like it’s a book.  A beginning, a middle and an ending and you must include the ending.

So that’s why I blog.  So many people inspired me to do so.  To all you who have stopped blogging,  I miss your blogs and to all you that I still read, keep blogging.    Bye.