Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Worth a Thousand Words

There are times in life when the photograph says it all.  
Auntie and nieces enjoying themselves and each other. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Plays Well With Others

I know my cameras aren't much good.  
That's right, both of them.
One of them is a very nice looking camera.  It looks like it should be better than it is.  It was cheap and you know, you get what you pay for.  It does have a very nice zoom and color correction, so it is useful when I have nothing better.  
The second one is nearly an antique (if any digital camera can be considered such) and when I want to take photos that have the potential for moving subjects, that one is my choice.  
Howsomever, when it comes to taking photos of my grandchildren I need something with the shutter speed in the nanosecond range.  
I'm going to post these photos anyway, just take in the general idea, don't focus.  
hee, hee, hee

My grandchildren were here today, with their mother, of course.  How else would they get here?  They came to visit an Auntie they don't see very often.  They paid her the tribute of playing very nicely together.  
I just love those kids.  

And, no, we didn't clean all the pancake plates off the table.  

Tuesday, December 15, 2015


Grandchildren bring busyness, mud, hugs and kisses, mess, and pleasure.  They also bring new social opportunities. It's that time of year again...
School Christmas Concerts.

Zane has changed schools from a small one with 5 students in his class to a larger one in a closer town with 20.  He is doing very well there.  He is doing better in a larger class, since there is more than one...well, that likes lots of attention.  

He's grown enormously this summer and that keeps his mother buying clothes to fit.  He's all dressed up and ready to go.  

We enjoyed the time, the 1st through 3rd graders sang all together and they did a pretty good job, too. 
Once we picked out Zane, he was easy to watch and it was plain to see that he was enjoying himself.  One year makes a big change. He sings, keeps up with the crowd in the actions; he has good control of himself.  

Zane is a busy, adventurous boy, and sometimes he is hard to keep up with in his zest to keep busy. 
I really like to have him help me in the kitchen; he really likes to mix things up.  I have to keep one step ahead of him or too many eggs will end up in the recipe.  
I'm glad to see him settling in to his learning environment to get the most out of school.
It was been so much fun to see him learning to read.  I think I was too busy looking after my own kids, and I missed that part when it happened to them.  His mother reads to him and that is the very best thing to turn your kids into book lovers and readers.  

Even so, no classroom where Zane is will be boring.  

Monday, December 7, 2015

December 7, 2015

Today is a day that goes down in the annals of history as a "Day of Infamy". 
I usually remember the day. Anytime our country is assaulted from foreign shores we need to remember.
There is another reason we are going to remember this day.  It is the day my friend had surgery to remove a sinus tumor. Not just like mine, but close enough. Aggressive, interfering.  Just as her family waited with mine, so we waited with hers.
We waited until the time came, "the surgery proceeded normally, the tumor is removed, everything is going well", and she was safely through recovery and in her room.  She was awake, she knew her family, now healing begins.  

One hurdle is over, there are more to come.  

Tuesday, December 1, 2015


I took a trip down memory lane today. 
Actually, I've been taking a trip down memory lane for the last little while.
About 2 weeks ago we received the sad news that a dear friend has a sinus tumor.  
Here in the same state, a friend of mine, someone my age, our children have grown up together....
 a SINUS TUMOR!!??!!
No one has ever heard of sinus tumors, it isn't something that doctors even think about, and here are two people in the same state who know the fear and uncertainty of having a fast growing tumor in their head.
I feel anxious as I write this, I feel anxious every time I think about it, I feel anxious anytime I talk about it.  
It's like going back three and a half years and remembering.
Remembering the fear, the anxiety, the surgery, the treatment, the hospital stays, the pain, the recovery.  
I don't know what the road my friend will travel will be like.
It won't be the same as mine, but some of the signposts will be all too familiar.   

This time though, I'll be on the other side, and yet by her side.  I'll be watching and yet with her in spirit, because I know what it is like to be where she is.  
I went in unsure and came out fighting.  

And because I was fighting, I know she can, too.  

Monday, November 30, 2015

Winter Planting

Over the last few years Jim has been buying trees from the NRD and planting them in nursery rows so we could transplant them when they were larger to various places on our property.  
He rented a tree spade and moved 6 nice pine trees into the north front lawn to finish out the row of pines already there.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thanksgiving 2015

Many years, we celebrate Thanksgiving at our house.  As the years go by, more people gather around our dining table. 
Grandchildren add a happy and noisy tribute to our day.

Any time we get together with my folks, we roll out the puzzles.  Often Mom buys a new one every year for us.  This year we tried a new one called a mosaic puzzle with all the pieces having square corners, like a grid.  It was an easy puzzle except for trying to keep it straight on the table. 
The boys are interested, but not quite big enough for a 1000 piece puzzle.  They may be the cause of the missing piece from the brand new puzzle, or it may have been dragged from the table by an adult sleeve, which certainly happens often enough.

Jim tried something new with our turkey this year.  Other years we have used our Big George to rotisserie the turkey, but this year we tried it using the gas grill.  We have discovered in our meat adventures on the grill this year is the importance of soaked meat in brine so he did that. 

A turkey on the grill rotisserie cooks a lot faster than in the oven so it was ready in plenty of time. 

Ready to carve! It was a delicious moist turkey.

The large picture window at the front of our house and the patio door in the back make it extremely difficult to get good photos.  Even with the drapes shut, the back light gets in the way.  And, when you have a family that would much rather eat that waste time on a picture..., 
well you take what you get. 

 Anyway, we were all here, and all fed. 

With three exuberant boys coming we thought maybe a great big play room in the garage might be the thing.  It was for a little while, but they do like to be with the rest of us as well. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Winter is Coming

In this beautiful state where I live it doesn't rain very often.  It certainly very seldom rains all day long. At least it hasn't in the last decade, we've been in a drought more often than not.
So, it was very pleasant to sit in the house with a fire and watch the gentle rain come down.
It was not very pleasant to dash into the library for knitting group, but I was prepared with a hooded coat.  
We hadn't taken our rain gauge in for the season yet so we could tell how much rain we got.  
2 1/2 "!! 
That's a lot for around here.

The best was yet to come. The tail end of that storm dropped enough snow to whiten the landscape.  The clouds rolled away to the east at sunrise.  

Of course, no week is complete without a visit from the grandkids.  These two little blondies can always find something to do together. This day it was Othello.  Barry wanted to put the black sides up and have Christian use the white sides so they could tell who wins.  Christian likes to do whatever Barry does so we had a one color board.  I love the way they can play together without fussing most of the time. Once in a while strife breaks out and often they can resolve their differences without intervention. 

On another note, my left ear (not the most recent surgified ear) was draining again.  The canal was filling up with goopy stuff just like it had a few weeks ago and it turned out to be a fungal infection.  
So, we whipped up to Omaha yesterday to get the infection suctioned out and to get some more powder that gets puffed into the ear to heal it and keep it dry.  
I don't have any ear photos, but I do have a photo of my puffer with the yellow powder. 


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Day With Papa

When I was raising up my children I mostly saw them through the lens of a camera.  I wanted to make sure I would remember what they looked like and what they did as they grew up.
I seem to have a peculiar affliction that prevents me from remembering faces.  When I think of people, unless I've known them well, I remember not themselves, but a photograph.  
There are places I've been as a teenager and I don't remember them because there are no photographs of the incident to remind me.  
I wonder if my brain would have compensated if there were no photos at all, 
but I didn't want to risk it.  
I have way too many albums from when my kids were little and I love them all.  
I don't take nearly as many photos these days.  I like to enjoy these children in my life and not spend my life behind a camera.
Sometimes, I wish I could have recorded the second two boys early years in the way I did Zane's, but I couldn't.  Zane was right here in the house, and I had cancer when Barry was one.  
I don't really need hundreds of photos to have a record of what those boys looked like while they are growing up.  Some things are more valuable because of their rarity.

That being said, it's Zane's turn for the spotlight today.  He spent part of weekend with us a week ago when November was still harking back to October.* Zane is a busy boy at nearly 7 and it is a good thing for him to have productive activities to occupy his time.  

Jim is cleaning up some trees on the edge of our property and he thought Zane could help him load twigs and small branches.  While Zane did help with that, he had a lot more fun using the Sawzall cutting off smaller branches.

It's never too soon to learn about steering. And what could be more fun than Papa's John Deere.

 You can't really see it, but Zane has his hand on some lever or other as they get ready to back out of there.  

We want to remember these days.

*Anne of some place or other

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

You Just Never Know

I don't read horoscopes.  
I don't even think about them from one year to the next.
However, when we were in Omaha for my post-op ear check, I was killing time by reading the funnies.
My eyes strayed over to the horoscopes and this was mine for the day.