Tuesday, May 26, 2009


Monday, Memorial Day, May 25th, 2009

Monday, Memorial Day, May 25th, 2009

When I was a kid Memorial Day was a special day. A day to give thanks to all who fought for our protection and to keep all the freedoms we have been accustomed to. A Day to remember all those who gave their lives to keep our country free and all those who came home with so many terrible disabilities to handle the rest of their lives. We owe them all so much. Now that night time is almost here, I need to go out and bring in my Flag. I do fly our beautiful American Flag on all important holidays unless the weather is bad. I need to bring it in as it might rain tonight, plus the frost could ruin it. I live on a short street with only about a dozen families living on it and as far as I can see, I believe my Flag is the only one that ever flies on my street. I love seeing the furls of the flag as the wind blows it. Wonder if kids today ever heard of the word furls. My father and most of our neighbors used to put out the flag when I was growing up, plus all the schools also used to have the Flag flying in the yard. Leaves me wondering what ever happened to respect for our country. Did removing the -standing and saying the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag with your hand over your heart in all schools before class started every day- did it cause the younger generation to lose the respect for our Flag? If so, then do we have to blame our generation for allowing it to happen. Looks like we need more people making our laws that did the war fighting and so knew the hard struggles they faced fighting for our Country. It is our generations that keep complaining about the lack of respect from teenagers today, and also our generations that are making the new laws removing God from all important places. I noticed they still keep God in the Inaugural process when putting a new President in office, so shouldn`t all others in offices need to do the same? If they can`t put the word God on plaques in the Court Room, then why do they still have to swear on the Bible to tell the truth, nothing but the truth? How can using the word God be wrong and using the Bible be correct? Are they not basically standing for the same thing. Wonder what would happen if all Lawyers also had to swear on the Bible to tell nothing but the truth? Would they be able to win their cases as much? God Bless all those who fought to keep our country free!!

I finally thought spring weather was here so I started putting the plants in my Earth boxes . Started some of my vegetable plants in the house months ago. This year, instead of using the miracle-grow soil, I decided to try out those small peat pods to grow in. They were being advertised so much, I expected good luck using them. Big mistake. Everything started growing faster at first, but soon the plants were bending over ( less than an inch tall) and couldn`t stand up because the stems were too weak and spindly. Next year, if I am still able to garden, I will go back to using the soil, not those peat pods. So, I ended up buying many of my plants at the nursery place.

As for the large reg. tomatoes, those I usually get from a son-in-laws father who has his own small green house in his own back yard. A while ago my Son -In-Law came over to tell me he has the tomato plants from his Dad sitting on his side porch any time I am ready to plant them in my boxes. Heard on the TV that it was going down to 34 degrees F tonight and that we should cover everything outside as we might have a wide spread frost. So, I have decided to leave the tomato plants on the porch overnight and plant them tomorrow. Will mean a couple boxes less to cover tonight. I will be covering the boxes holding the lettuce, pepper plants, zucchini, cukes and a few others I have already planted in some of the boxes. Green and yellow string beans are planted, but not growing yet, so no need to cover them. Also have other containers with carrots and beets growing which might need to be covered. Sometimes I wonder if all this work is worth it, but once I start eating those fresh grown veggies, I am always glad I did grow them.
Thinking of the old days when we used to have the huge gardens on the farm, now those were real busy summers. We continues having the farm gardens even after we moved up here. Relation owned the farm and allowed us to keep farming way out back. We would even grow enough potatoes to feed our family all through the winter months. Helped a lot needing less money for groceries and leaving more for other necessary items. I still can a few beans, beets, carrots and tomatoes, but nothing like the amount I used to can. But still enough for one person. I still have a few more canned string beans, and carrots from last years crop. I am hoping to can more carrots and beets this year than I did last year.
We usually do not have to worry any more about having a frost after Memorial Day, but this year we might have it tonight on Memorial Day evening. Weather seems less dependable every year, or so it seems.

Yesterday I finally fixed up the two boxes for the cemetery- one goes on Walt`s and the second if for my parents grave. I thought of taking the boxes down today, but after seeing the traffic (when I made a fast trip early this morning to the grocery store), I have decided to wait till another day. Supposed to rain most of this week, but the first nice day we have, I will take down the boxes which are filled with flowering plants and some long trailing Ivy.

When I picked up the plants and soil yesterday, I saw a small water fountain that wasn`t very expensive, so I decided to buy it. I have always wanted one for my yard, but never would spend the money on one. I told my daughter I decided to buy it, that maybe at my age , it was time I stopped worrying about every spent penny and started having a few things I have always wanted. She agreed. I also saw a pot holding a climbing Mandevilla flowering plant with the wooden trellis in the pot that the plant was already climbing up and decided instead of planting the morning glories this year, I would sit this plant in front of my taller trellis beside my side porch and let it climb up that trellis. When my daughter saw me looking at the plant she decided she was going to buy it and give it to me as an early Birthday gift (real early since my Birthday isn`t till Sept.). I read on the directions that in the winter it can become a house plant, Hope I have good luck keeping it inside next winter. The flowers on it are large and pretty.

To get back to the water fountain, It is just a small fountain and the top resembles a flower with the water cascading down from the flower top to one water holding place, then has small streams cascading down in different areas all around the fountain from the first dish like section to a second larger one below it. Small enough to make it easy for me to store when winter arrives so the weather will not destroy it and it should last me for years. now, I just need to decide where I wish to put it. If I had a patio, it would have been put on it, but since I do now have a patio, maybe place it by one of my flower beds.
Thought of setting it in the center of the flower bed out back, but then decided against it.
I should bring down my wooden glider swing and replace the top board so I can again sit out on the back porch in it on the cooler evenings. I used to sit on the back porch with Walt in this swing and either knit or crochet on Christmas gifts. One year it got left out on the back porch and the dripping eaves destroyed the end section of the top board. I do have the wood and the needed router to make the groove needed for the top board, so my only excuse for not having it already repaired is just too lazy to get it done I guess. It just seems like there is always something more important that needs doing first. Time to stop looking for more work that needs doing and take time for things to enjoy while I am still able to work in my shop.

I was intending on writing a tribute to my mother for Mother`s day, but just couldn`t get my mind working on it. As i mentioned in my last post, this year mother`s day fell on the same date that my Mother had died- May 10th, 14 years ago and her birthday would have been 4 days after Mother`s day on May 14th. So, Mother`s day started out feeling the loss, but it brightened up once my children and some grandchildren showed up, plus my newest great granddaughter that was born on my birthday last Sept. was also here to visit with me.

Last week was another happy event. My youngest granddaughter had invited me to her "Grandparents Tea" at her Pre-School. I wasn`t sure if I could make it, was hoping for nice weather. Turned out a nice day and when I arrived I saw little Latasha walking around looking lost among all her school friends and their grandparents. When she saw me, her mouth dropped open, her arms went up and she came on a run to meet me. It was fun seeing the excitement on her face and she kept telling her friends "this is my grandmother". I was told when she got home later she was still so excited that she kept telling her baby-sitter that her grandmother was there. Her Mom said she was still talking about it when she go home from work. Made me feel great knowing how happy it made her to have me make it.

Well, I am back. Just went out to cover all the plants and moved what I could up onto the back and side porches. Hope the new ones I just planted in the flower beds across the front of he house make it through if we get the frost. Sure is feeling quite chilly outside and it is only 7:45pm. Feels like fall weather, so we probably will get the frost. reads 48 degrees F on my porch, but that cold wind makes it feel more like 30 degrees. I thought we were done with the cold weather and some warmer spring weather was here to stay. Now expecting it to go down to 34 degrees. Shows you can never count on the spring weather to stay, even if the May month says it is spring.

Have already brought Sassy, my border Collie, inside for the night. She has started wanting to stay indoors all the time unless I put her food and water out on the porch to interest her in going outside. I always bring her inside in bad weather as she is getting old and I think the dampness might bother her, especially on days like this when the chilly wind is blowing. Sassy turned 13 years old this past March. One day over 13 years ago, we were visiting at their trailer and here was this tiny about 3 month old puppy. She was chewing on the large cats ears and also on the old cocker spaniels ears and no one was correcting her, so I decided to teach her it was a no. Seemed like the more I corrected her the more she was following me where ever I walked. When it was time for us to leave, this little puppy beat me into the car and hopped up onto the back seat. I removed her, but she squeezed behind my seat into the back again before I could shut my car door. Then I carried her all the way to their porch and put her up on the porch and hurried back to the car. Still she beat me in before I could shut the door. The nieces husband told me to take her home. When I said I couldn`t take their dog, I was told I had to because the puppy had chose me and she had never followed them around like she was following me. Our niece agreed with her husband and also told me there was a small dog at the local Mall pound she wanted to get, but already owning three dogs, she couldn`t, but if I took Sassy, then she could get the other dog. As far as we knew she never did get another dog and they moved from the trailer soon after wards. Sassy was named by my husbands niece and her husband before they gave her to me and since she came when called, we decided to keep her name. On her papers she is listed as Sassy Babe. She was the first dog that Walt got real close with. He taught her how to walk backwards in front of him and today she still often slows me down by walking backwards through the house in front of me. When I am in a hurry, I wish she hadn`t learned to walk backwards, but most of the time it doesn`t bother me. I sure would miss her company and hope to have her for many more years, but sometimes I notice that her kidneys are starting to leak a bit and that causes me to worry more about losing her. Vet tells me she is doing great considering her age. He was surprised at how good her teeth still were at 13 years old. but she does loves her chews and her meaty or milk dog bones and they do help keep the teeth clean and stronger. There was a spell when she started getting too overweight, but I was able to get her weight back down to between 50 to 55 pounds and the vet seemed pleased about that weight. At night I keep a long piece of cardboard, covered by plastic which has layers of newspapers over the plastic just in case she should leak while sleeping. It is not continuous yet and I am hoping it never gets any worse. Love and depend on her too much to even think about not having her here with me. She gives me such a safe protected feeling, so living alone I can go to sleep at night with no worry. Any noise outside and she will start barking, rather she is outside or sleeping here in the house with me. I have learned the difference in the sounds of her barks, more sharper when someone has entered my property, duller when she is just trying to send a cat or squirrel out of my yard. She is loud when it is a larger vehicle such as a town or garbage truck going down our road. Still another sound when it is just the whirring sound of the cars and trucks on the Northway a few blocks from my home. The Northway is our local speed road and is much higher in the air -way above our local roads so the sounds carry loud at times. I remember when it was first built. Many of the neighbors used to complain about the noise, especially the loud clang made by the long delivery trucks with the second trailer added on the back- we call them piggy backers- two large enclosed carriers attached together and then connected to just one cab. It sounded like home to me as there was just a huge wooded area- large forest- between where I lived and where the railroad was located-- about a mile or two of woods going from our home where we grew up to the Railroad station. We would lay in bed at night and listen to the loud clang noise made when they would back up the train and slam into another car (train section) to connect it to the end of the train. Well, the piggy backers made almost identical noise as the two sections rattled where connected. So, I was used to hearing that loud clanging noise.
Our local railway closed up for a few years after I was married, but then it re-opened and is still in use today, being used both by passengers and also for transporting supplies for factories. I got to ride this train when I was a Senior in high school. We took the train -about a 4 hour drive- from our town to New York City on our senior trip that year at Easter time. After spending 4 days seeing all the important places in New York City, even went up into the top of the Statue of Liberty and also up into the torch, what a view of both New york City and also of New Jersey, plus out over the ocean that seemed to stretch forever. Gave you a great feeling knowing how - probably millions or more by now- of immigrants came through this port to become US Citizens so many many years ago. A couple years later they closed off the way to the torch for needed repairs. we then rode a bus from New York City to Washington, Dc where we spent 4 more days visiting where our President lives and where all our Senators and Assemblymen (and women) sat when they passed laws for our country. I remember how we found the seats saved for those from our state and we sat in them to get the feel- seemed like the feel of power must sit there. We were also allowed to sit in the presidents chair and other important government officials seats. The Cherry trees were in blossom when we were in Washington and i still remember how beautiful they looked and the wonderful aroma these cherry trees gave off. I still have the picture of our class and those from many other schools, some from our state and many classes from other states-all sitting on the hugs green lawn that stretched out in front of the Capital building. We saw houses where early president had lived and learned a little about the way they lived from the style of furniture in those houses.There was so much that we got to see that week. Even though there was many more important buildings for us to see in NY City, many of the kids in my graduating class wished we had spent just 3 days in NY City and the 4 days in Washington DC. It was beautiful in Washington that time of year. People there seemed so polite and friendly, while in NY City it seemed like everyone was in such a rush all the time, heading off in every direction. We did get to spend a few hours shopping in the large stores, such a Gimbals and other popular places we had only heard about and never expected to set foot in. Some were a little too expensive for us school kids, but it was still fun to check out the items bought by the rich. I had saved my baby sitting money to spend on this trip. I bought gifts for my parents and my baby sister, then found some small items to bring back to other family members. In my old scrapbook I still have the receipts from Gimbals for some of the items I bought there. We stayed at the New Yorker Hotel.
I still also have the very long pencil with a three pointed flag on the eraser end. This flag has a picture of our New York Capital building on it. This I bought when my eighth grade class made the bus trip to Albany, which is the capital City in our state of New York. On that trip, we left on Friday and came back home late Sunday night. Teachers didn`t waste any time during that trip, we were constantly seeing one important place after another, including where our own State laws were made. I wish schools were still continuing these trips when my children were in school. I would have loved them being able to enjoy such education trips and all the fun that goes along with these trips.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Mother`s Day 2009

Some flowers in bloom in time for Mother`s Day. First picture shows the flower bed along my driveway from the front end, the second picture shows the same flower bed from the other end. The other smaller flower bed is out front and the flowering tree is near the back porch.

Mother`s Day -May 10th, 2009

Today is Mother`s Day and also the date that my mother passed away-May 10th.
Her Birthday was May 14th. It has been 14 long years since she died- on May 10, 1995
I sure was thinking of her and remembering how we used to go to visit her every year,
both on her Birthday and on Mother`s Day. We never missed one year without visiting
with her. She was a wonderful mother and will always be missed.

The day started getting brighter when company started arriving. I have seen all my 6 children and their mates-plus a phone call from my step son. A granddaughtetr stopped with my newest great granddaughter who is now 8 months old. While I was playing with her she let out a burb and gave us both a bath. Even I had to change my clothes. But she is a sweetie. Later a grandson stopped with his wife and three of my great grandsons. Then a received a second phone call from another grandson who lives in Virginia- about 7 or 8 hours drive from me. Two other gandchildren came with their parents. So, I have had my 6 children and their mates, 4 grandchildren and one`s wife, and 4 great grandchildren stop here to visit with me and wish me Happy Mother`s Day, plus two phone calls- one from my step-son and one from another grandson who lives too far away to visit.

I know Later tonight my daughter-in-law in North Carolina will also phone me. She phones me every week and on every important Holiday plus on my Birthday.

I received a lot of nice gifts, but the best gift is always having them phone me or drop by for a visit. Isn`t it wonderful when grandchildren not only think of their own mother, but also of their Grandmother on Mother`s Day. I have such a wonderful family. My table looks like a flower place with so many flowers and flowering plants sitting on it, plus one large one is already hanging on my side porch.

Well, I better make this a short post as I just remembered I promised a sister-in-law that I would phone her back. She phoned me earlier and when my company started arriving, I asked to call her back after everyone left and I do believe it is important to keep my promises. Plus I also need to phone the Hospital to see how my brother is doing. He was having trouble standing on his only leg. I think they plan on putting him back in therapy.

Happy Mother`s day to all the ladies everwhere.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Here are the Tag rules:
just write a post of your own (5 things that you love about being a mom) and find someone to link to and tag - someone from your own country, if you like, but definitely someone from another country (Google is a good resource if you don't know any; google any country name and 'mom' in their blog search function) (be sure to let them know that you've tagged them!) - and link back here to me and also leave a comment to HBM so she knows how close we are getting to the 80 clicks to different mothers.

This tag was started by HBM way back on March 31, 2009. She is hoping to connect blogging Mothers all over the world in 80 clicks. I was Tagged by Hip Grandma on April 12, `09 and am finally finding some time to think about what it was like being a mother, before I became a grandmother and later a great grandmother.

As you have probably guessed, it was a long time ago when I was raising my own children. My youngest is 40 years old and my oldest is now 56 years old. WOW, does that make me feel even older. Funny how 77 didn`t feel old until I saw that 56.

My first daughter was born in September, 1952- just 20 days after my 21st Birthday. But, she was the second daughter as I also was raising a step daughter who was 4 yrs old when her Father and I married. I knew nothing about how to raise a child or how to be a mother with no years raising her to learn from. The sd was very jealous having a new baby in the house. I soon learned that mother hood was not to be an easy job, like I had imagined it would be. I thought "Love could conquer anything".
Boy, was I ever wrong! I tried giving the sd extra love and attention, hoping to make her know she was loved and the new baby wouldn`t change that. Nothing worked and it got so I had to keep a close watch on her whenever she headed for a room where the baby was. I once caught her slapping the baby across the face hard enough to leave her hand print. After that I started keeping the baby in the same room I was in. Was months before she stopped acting out.

The baby grew up to be a very easy child to raise. I could take her anyplace and she never touched anything without permission. I remember a friend who had a coffee table filled with breakable knick knacks and I feared she might break one. The friend went and got an unbreakable object, made room on the coffee table for it and told my 1 year old that she could play with that toy (as she called it) but not to touch any of the others as they were not toys and would break. From that day on, every time we visited there, my little daughter would pick up that one so called toy and never would touch the rest. I felt so proud of her- just turned a year old and obeyed so well. Today she is the mother of 6 and the grandmother of 8. She worked her way through College, holding down a job and raising her school age children at the same time. She has always made me proud to be her mother.

When my first daughter was 2 1/2, we were blessed with twin boys- not identical- one had blond hair, other light brown. My husbands mother and my father were blonds, while my mother and my husbands father had darker hair. One son was larger and soon became like the big boss over the little one. This continued till the day the little one learned to walk , while his brother was still crawling. I remember feeling like a failure when nothing I tried stopped the older one from grabbing every toy the littler one picked up. They were small and in a playpen together when all this kept happening. I used to feel sad watching the little son putting up with what his brother was doing and just crawling over for another toy. He never cried or even whined, just acted like it was ok. When the little one was almost 9 months old he started walking. Every time his brother crawled over and started to take the toy, the little one would get up, run across the playpen and hold the toy outside the playpen. Every time his brother crawled close, he would just run to the other side. Finally I thought I would be able to stop feeling I wasn`t such a good mother. Then, the older one started crying because he could no longer take the toys away from his brother, and I again felt I should have been able to handle things better.
Today the oldest-which was then the smallest- is a great father who raised 3 children alone after their mother left and is a grandfather of 2. The younger twin which was the larger of the two and his wife are the proud parents of two lovely adopted children. They are both hard workers and make me proud to be their mother.

Two years later along came another daughter. I remember again feeling like I wasn`t being the best of mothers as I didn`t have money to waste on the more expensive pretty little dresses. She had a lot of hand-me-down. Beautiful dresses, but I felt I let her down because I couldn`t buy her own nice dresses that no one else had ever worn. Why did I let it bother me? It made no difference to her and I was able to buy them when she started school. Today she is the mother of 2 and the grandmother of 6.

Next- 5 years later, along came the youngest son ( the carpenter)who didn`t have his mother home with him every day like the others did. When he was about 3, it became necessary for me to get a job. I remember how every payday I would buy him a small kids book. Guess I was trying to show him I loved him and I told him if he was good I would buy him another book next week. I used to feel so guilty for leaving him. I had never left the older children, was home with them all day until they were old enough to start school. I used to read the books to him before he went to bed. Many times he would ask me to read the books again and again and his then 8 year old sister loved sitting beside me while I was reading. She also enjoyed the books. Sometimes she would bring home Library books from school for me to read to them. This son is the father of 2 sons. The year he was born we took in the step son who was 14 years old. His mother had kicked him out. I soon learned that he was a lot easier to raise than his sister had been. He was grateful that his father and I took him in and he still calls me mom today.

Last came the youngest daughter - I had been working for a few years and due to problems I had to quit work. So, I was home with her like with the older ones. She was a surprise because we hadn`t planned on having any more. There hadn`t been a baby in the house for a few years since the last one was already 6 years old. It felt like I was starting over as the others were 6, 11, 13, 13, and 15 , 18 (stepson entered the Marines at 17)and the sd was 20 ( already married) when she was born. I was a lot more educated in motherhood by then so I think I was probably a better mother as things didn`t bother me as much and I took everything in stride without letting it upset me. Plus, it was a lot easier by then as I knew better how to handle the little problems that came along with raising so many. The first ones were the hardest because I knew nothing about raising a child and each one taught me something new. I think I learned as much from them as they did from me. I do think all the baby sitting I did while growing up helped some. Today this youngest daughter is a Correctional officer in a prison, the mother of 2 and the grandmother of 1.

Being a mother had many scary times, like when I was told to meet the playground attendant at the Hospital because one son was taken to the Hospital with a Jart ( a very very large dart) stuck in his neck (1/8 " from killing him- Dr said). Another son broke his leg a few years later, at age 14 the smaller twin almost died from fever caused by Arthritis in his ankle, then there was the car accident, we found the car with broken windows, glass all over the car and blood enough to say it could be serious. Ended up with head stitches. Many other scary times and each time it reminded you that motherhood, while wonderful, could also take a lot out of you from fear and worry. Today when I think of my children and their families I feel so proud of all of them and it makes all those many years of motherhood and hardships worth all I went through. I now feel I must have done something right while raising them for them all to have turned out so good. So, I went through times when I felt I was failing them, or letting them down and would wish I knew how to be a better mother. Then I remember the key chain that a daughter-in-law gave me years ago. I still have it today. It has a picture of a car and says "If a mother`s place is in the home, why am I always in the car". I would drive the boys to little league and to Boy Scouts, and the girls to Girl Scouts , plus taking them to friends homes, or bringing their friends to our home. I was a Cub Leader for 15 years and on the Boy Scout Troop Badge counseling committee along with other things. Our yard became the neighborhood hangout for all their friends and the neighbors kids. I always felt it was better to have all the kids here driving me crazy than wondering where my kids were or who they were with. Many baseball and basketball games were held here even though my property then was only 90 feet x 100 feet and that included the house and bike shop areas. Today I own 150 x 100. Wish we had owned it when the kids were teenagers with so many friends hanging here. Then there was the step sons`s band playting in my cellar and people 4 streets away telling me how good they sounded. They got moved to the garage when hubby was home. A wonder I have any hearing left.

Now, for who to Tag:

hillgrandmom from Kerala, India

Sally from USA

starry nights from California, USA

deni from N Carolina, USA

I am having trouble trying to keep the underline below all the names when i paste them in.

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