Friday, December 26, 2008


Christmas 2008 is finally over but still more gifts to give.

Christmas 2008 is finally over, but I still have more gifts to hand out to some family members who didn`t make it on Christmas Day. So far, everyone seems to love the gifts I gave to them. I also still have more gifts that I was not able to deliver in time due to both the weather and my Uncle`s Funeral. I do feel God was with me as I drove down and back to the Funeral place alone on Wednesday. All of my children were working and unable to drive me there. I knew the roads were a bit on the slippery side and that the snow would be changing to sleet and later rain that morning and early afternoon. Since the hours were 10 to 12 noon for the Wake and the funeral was to start immediately after that, I stayed alert throughout the morning and early afternoon. It was just snowing lightly when I left home. It never started sleeting until I was on my way driving back home and the heat on the windshield kept melting the sleet so it didn`t get real bad seeing through it. It did have me being extra careful for a few minutes when the sleet was freezing on the windshield and I had to lean my head down to look through the small area that was still clear. That brought back many memories of the old days when I had a car with wipers that stopped working. One time I drove home from my mothers home with my head stuck our the open window so I could see to drive home. The wipers refused to work . Glad I never passed any officers on the road while snow had completely covered my windshield making it impossible to see through it. I can imagine what other car drivers were thinking as the watched me driving with the window wide open and my head stuck out that window . An other time Walt and I had made the trip to visit my step son and his family who lived in North Carolina. It was snowing hard as we were driving up the winding steep hill through Virginia on our way home. You couldn`t see anything through the windows. So, that time I also kept my head out the open window so I could see where the car lights showed the road only in front of the car itself. The difference this time is I wasn`t the one driving the car. We had to keep driving for miles and miles because we could not see any roads to turn off the road. We ended up driving from Virginia, then threw the other stated this road entered and left. Finally we reached the state of Massachusetts before we drove out of that bad storm. We were so relieved to be able to see where we were and with my map I was able to direct us from Mass. back into New York State where I directed Walt till we were back in more familiar territory. To get back to my ride home from the Funeral Parlor with the ice forming on my windshield, once I turned the heat onto the dash the sleet melted off the windshield in just seconds letting me see well again. My many years of driving in bad weather sure came in handy again. One daughter said she could drive me there before she left for work and suggested I hail a Taxi to bring me home. But I guess I had seen too many accidents over the years involving taxies. As I told her you never know if the taxi driver would be one who had plenty of practice driving in bad weather, or if it might be a new driver with little practice. So, I felt a bit safer driving myself. My new car held the road very well. Too many of the older experienced Taxi drivers have now retired, so there are a lot of new ones now.

It was -17 F when I got up that morning and had only gotten up to -15 by 8:30AM , so was still very cold when I started driving, but got up into the 20`s by the time I was driving back home. Later it warmed up to 31, and soon after the rain started. We did not get much rain , so it never lowered the high snow banks any. When I was getting into my car to head home, my sisters came over to put some Christmas gifts in my car from them. I have been having pain in my back and it had gotten worse and the pain started going down my right leg, so it was giving me some trouble walking and even sitting. I thought about putting the gifts in my car for my brother , sisters, and sister-in-law -knowing they would all be there, but it was too painful climbing up and down the porch steps. I would have had to make a lot of trips up and down those steps to carry everything from the house to my car. I was afraid if I tried, then I might not be able to go to the Funeral home, and I felt I had to be there for my Aunt and cousins, plus I thought a lot of this Uncle. He was the last one in my mother`s family. Now I have no more Uncles and the only 2 Aunt`s left are the one married to this Uncle and the one who was married to the other Uncle who died earlier this year.

Yesterday was a bit warmer and no storm all day. I went to a son`s home for Dinner with him, his wife and 2 children, plus my stepson and his friend also joined us. Most of the children phoned to tell me Merry Christmas before I left. My youngest son showed up with his friend as soon as he knew I was back home. No more than he left my youngest daughter came with her little 4 year old daughter. One of my other granddaughters visited me on my Anniversary Date- 23rd. She has meet a nice lad and wanted me to meet him. She had phoned me a few days before to tell me she would be bringing him with her. So we exchanged gifts on my Anniversary. It helped make that day a bit more pleasant for me. Out of all the days in the year my Anniversary is the hardest one to handle. So, I was happy she decided to come then. After she left, I was invited to another daughters home to celebrate Christmas with her, her husband, her son and her three grandchildren. It was this daughter`s only night off as she sits with an elderly person and had to work on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. So I exchanged gifts there with all of them. We had already celebrated Christmas at her home over a week before when her daughter was visiting from out of state. She is the mother of the newest great grand daughter who was born in Sept. on my birthday. So, we finally got to see that beautiful little Dakota. I tried to scan her picture to add to this post, but today my scanner is acting like it has a mind of it`s own, I will need to check it out again. I usually can get it working after I fool around with it for a while. Maybe I can post the picture later.

I was happy that I managed to finish all the hanging towels for everyone. OH, here is one to smile about. When I was at my daughters and gave my grandson`s wife her gift- which included 2 of the towels among the gifts- She said that mike asked her where are all the kitchen towels? So, after he arrived from work and was opening the gift I gave him, I also gave him one of the towels. I told him his wife mentioned he had asked where all the towels went to and now he knew where his own towel was. That brought a smile to his face and others got in with the laughs. This grandson was one who grew up living next door to me and any time he came over and saw me cleaning, he would always say he wanted to clean with me. One thing he was always doing was checking out my bathroom sink. Back then I had two sons who were always working on their cars or motorcycle and getting the sink dirty. They sometimes waited till they finished getting dirty to wash out the sink. They would always rinse it out, but if any grease mark was left, they would scrub it better when they finished what they were repairing. If Mike saw a dirty sink he would tell me " Grandma, they are doing it again", meaning the boys left the sink dirty. I would find him using the sponge and cleaner and was scrubbing my sink clean. My daughter once told me that she wished I could teach her son how to help her the way he kept helping me. He is still a great grandson today. Oh, I do have such a nice family where any one of them would help me if they saw I needed help. Can`t be a luckier Grandmother or great Grandmother than I am.
Here is part of what was written on the card I received with the gifts on Christmas Day from my youngest daughter: "In all my 40 years, you have been my strength. You have taught me so much and when I need you, you are there. If not in person, then in thought. Just knowing all that`s needed is to pick up the phone and you are there. You let me talk and at times you don`t say much about the reason I call, but I gain much from listening to what I am saying to you. When those calls end, I do feel so much better and re-focused on what I need to do. .... "At the very end of the writing she said "Thank you for being my Mom! ,and I pull my strength from you. I have had many others write such nice things to me over the years. It sure helps make all those hard years raising a big family so very worth while. Nothing makes a person more happy than to know their kids both love and also respect a parents advice. Yes, God sure did Bless me with a wonderful family.
So, all in all, even with the pain, my family brought me lots of pleasure and helped make Christmas a lot happier. As soon as I have a better feeling day, I need to take the gifts to my brother and sisters. I know they understand. When I was heading for my car after the Funeral, I heard one of my sisters yell to me asking me if I would be alright. Of course, I told her yes and my older sister came over to my car to be sure I would be able to drive home ok. Before leaving I had told my brother that I would see him after Christmas and when I went on-line this morning there was a message from him telling me the present wasn`t important, all the family cared was that I feel better and that I would be ok. I am so lucky to have such a close family that we all love and worry about each other. I am so glad I decided to buy the new car as right now I wouldn`t have been able to drive my standard car as it needed two feet for pushing both the clutch and brake and I only could use the left foot till the pain lets up. With the new automatic car with power steering, I knew I would be able to drive ok without using that leg. Must admit that I was happy when I finally got home so I could take the pain pills. They make me sleepy, so won`t take them if I am going to be driving the car. Christmas day my son came to pick me up to go to his house, so I was able to take the pain pills and have a better time while I was there. I know all the therapy exercises by heart and am back doing them to help with my back and I think the leg is from the pressure on the sciatic nerve. Been there many times in the past. The only difference this time is I think I have arthritis in the joint that connects the spine to the leg as the pain started there. I always manage in time to put everything back in place so the pain lets up. It just takes a little time. I am due back to my Dr`s on the 15th, so then I can find out if I am right about the arthritis being involved.
I hope everyone had a wonderful , very Merry Christmas.
Next thing on my mind is wiahing everyone a very Happy New Year.

Awww, what a wonderful tribute from your daughter! You know that you raised her right :) The weather was sleet-y and rainy here today, too. Not good for driving but at least I didn't have to roll the window down!
Dot, I'm sorry to read that your uncle passed away.

I sure hope your pain gets better, and that you take good care of yourself. Yes, your daughter sounds like a wonderful person, but then all of your family do also.

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and have a Happy New Year!
Thanks PBS. It is cards with personal messages added that makes me feel proud knowing my children appreciated every thing their Father and I did for them. Makes all the years of hardships worth every minute spent raising them.
Hope I never have to roll a window down again just to see while driving.
Happy New Year to you and your loved ones.
Thanks Sally, He sure will be missed.

I feel so lucky to have such a loving family who learned the importance of Love for one another. I think we can handle most anything as long as we remember the power of love. As a nephew once said to me " I would give away ever penny my family has if I could have the love in our family that you have in yours". My brother was a millionaire but it never went to his head, but money became more important to his wife than family and their kids felt cheated and unimportant to her. Now, without their father around to give them love, the kids are feeling lost without him. Just proves the old saying that money can`t buy happiness.
Happy New Year Sally.
Thanks Deni. I did have a wonderful Christmas. Hope yours was just as nice. I wish you a very "Happy New Year.
The halidays iare all about family and you have one of the best.
I think you are the goal for them to follow because you have set an example of being strong and loving not only to your family but to people in general.

Happy New Year Dot
Happy New Year, Dot. I hope it goes well for you and the wonderful family you have. As Walker says, I think you must have one of the best! ((HUGS))
Thanks Walker, I do my best- like the old saying goes, the name was clean when my Dad gave it to me and I have done my best to keep it that way for my kids. Must admit that when I first took on the married last name, there were a couple who were giving it a rougher name, -nothing serious, thank goodness for that- but Walt and I did our best to improve on it for the kids.
Thanks for stopping by. You are a great friend.
Thanks Sally and a very happy New Year to you. Glad we became friends. From many of your comments I can see you grew up in much the same circumstances with a very caring family. I wish everyone was that lucky.
((Warm Hugs to you too)) :).
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