Friday, February 28, 2014

Five Minute Friday

Every Friday I choose to join with a bunch of ladies who write for five minutes on one topic. We try really hard not to over-think it, or edit, or get really worked up about our writing. We just set our clock, use the prompt that she provides, and write  from the heart for five minutes. Her only rule is to visit the person who linked up just before you and offer her some encouragement. So here we go. This week the word is Choose.

Someone recently asked me how long I was going to continue to do this. 'This' meaning, keep Richard at home and take care of him. Yes, it is the hardest job I have ever had. But I made this choice. And I made this choice for many reasons, but most of all because it is a promise I made to him, in front of God, at the side of a beautiful lake, in the great state of Colorado. That promise included these words: "to love and to cherish, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, for better or for worse." This is what I chose to do. It IS what I choose.
It's not easy, that's for sure. But when you marry someone do you really think the rest of the days of your life, until death do you part, are going to be easy. Our life, leading up to the day, when we repeated those vows to each other, had already been difficult. I had been to nursing school. All the while working, as many hours, at whatever jobs I could find, to help support us. We put up with all the trials and tribulations that come with raising two boys. We purchased a house together and many cars. We were already like a married couple. Yet we hadn't made any promises to each other. In front of God. So when I stood there in that field of wildflowers, at the edge of Lake Isabel, near Rye, Colorado, with my best friend at my side, and made these promises, it is what I chose to do.

I did not know he would be sick someday. I did not know he would get Parkinson's disease or have a stroke. I did not know I would choose to keep him home with us. But it is what we have done. And I would choose it all over again.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Simple Woman's Daybook


Outside my window...the sky is dark but clear. The stars are twinkling so close that I feel I could reach up and pluck down a few. I would drop them into a mason jar and sit them next to my bed and watch the twinkling all night long. But it is cold. As it often is in the winter when the sky is so clear.

I am thinking...How really short our lives are. I am not usually this deep. I like to keep it light most of the time. But today is the birthday of one of our granddaughters, Piper, and it seems like she was only just born. So time flies by so fast. And yet it seems so short.

I am thankful...for everything that I have. I think of those without a roof over their head tonight. Out in the cold. Without a warm blanket. Or maybe even without a coat. And I think how un-grateful I sometimes seem to be.

In the kitchen...I have done well this week with following my menu plan. Tonight we had chili. I make it just like my mom used to make for us. It is my favorite chili and it is easy. And I love to have crackers and butter with my chili. And a big glass of cold milk.

I am new Vera Wang (yeah, right) knit pajama top. But since I don't like just tops I have on a pair of khaki Capri pants. Ha! Ha! I'll be you wish I'd share a picture. Well, don't hold your breath.

I am creating...Truly I am. I am making a St. Patrick's Day banner to take the place of the lacy red hearts that still adorn the mantle. I need to find some green things to decorate with too. Maybe a trip to the Dollar Store is in the works.

I am bed soon. This is my favorite time of the night. I have the kids in their beds. They have both taken to sleeping with their doors closed. Gads, I think they are growing up. And Richard is tucked in and I hear the humming of the oxygen concentrator in the background.

I am wondering...will I be able to finish this job that I have started. I don't know why I have been thinking about this a lot lately. Will I be able to keep Richard at home until the end? Will I make it parenting these kids until they won't need me anymore? Things to ponder.

I am reading...the Bible. I started it at the beginning of the year. I have read the Bible through a time or two in my life. But this is the first time I am reading it through in chronological order and plan to just take a year. Some parts of the Bible bother me. And make me think a lot. And wonder. I hope that is a good thing.

I am hoping...Hoping is something I do well. Hope is my word for 2014. I hope for salvation. I hope for sanity. I hope for peace. I hope for time. I hope for love. I have hopes for all of you, as well. 

I am looking forward to...Spring. Who isn't?

I am learning...This is where I wish I could say patience. But I am not learning patience. Richard has been coughing a lot lately. And coughing is just my button. You know the one. That one that causes irritation. And I don't like that. The Hospice nurse wonders about congestive heart failure. So we started a diuretic. So far the coughing continues.

Around the house...There is so much that needs done around this house. I can only do things that are in Richard's sight. He gets worried when he can't see me. So if I am in the kitchen I have to keep popping in to see him. And cleaning in the back part of the house is out of the question. So that leaves the living room, the dining room, and the bathroom (while he is in there). I need a good spring cleaning.

I am many things today. I am thinking about getting some quotes to have the outside of the house painted. It's looking a bit shabby.

A favorite quote for today...

One of my favorite things... Was watching the Olympics. I am glad that we enjoyed it together.

A few plans for the rest of the week: Justin and Paige will be here on Friday and Saturday this week. The kids are going to Winter Jam, a Christian music concert, on Saturday. I might plan a little time away from home to do something with myself. Tomorrow ends the third quarter of school for the kids. Only 7 weeks to go. It has gone by so fast this year.

It has been awhile since I have done a Simple Woman's Daybook. I used to try to fill this out on the first of every month. Maybe I will try to do it monthly once again. Won't you join me? I would love to read your.

Quote Me Thursday

I haven't done a Quote Me Thursday yet this year. So when I ran across this quote today, I knew that I had to jump in and link up with Daily Mayo and share my quote. Her theme this month is LOVE

Good old Dr. Seuss. One of my all time favorites to quote. Don't you love Dr. Seuss?

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A Day begins....

Just before the sun comes up
My eyes open.
The house is quiet.
No one is yet awake.
It's my favorite part of the day.
Of my life.
The stirrings start. 
I hear a door.
I hear the flush.
Someone is up.
The light goes on in the kitchen.
The day has begun.
I lay quietly and I listen to the sounds.
The oxygen concentrator.
The water flowing.
A spoon against a bowl.
The rustle of the newspaper.
A small cough.
A big cough.
A sigh. (that's me)
I lie quietly and I wait.
One kisses me good-bye.
Another door opens.
Another flush.
More stirring.
More sighing.
Another kiss good-bye.
I wait quietly.
I know it will come.
I hear him beginning to move.
I'm waiting.
He says quietly...
"honey, you awake?"
The day has begun.
What will it bring?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Please Call Me Grandma!

I am almost 63 years old. And I am 'mom' to two teenage kids. How on earth did this happen? I was supposed to be sitting in my recliner enjoying my golden years. I was supposed to be planning another cruise with my happy, healthy husband. This was the plan I had for myself. I wasn't supposed to be doing this parenting thing again. I wanted to be a grandma. I couldn't wait to be a grandma. I wanted to read to them, sing to them, spoil them rotten and send them home. This isn't fair. I hear my mother whispering in my ear..."life isn't fair."

No it isn't fair. But it is what it is. Tonight I went with Harley to enroll in high school. HIGH SCHOOL, I am silently screaming in my head. This cannot be possible. She cannot be going to high school. We walk into a packed auditorium and find our way down the aisle to somewhere near the front. I look around at all the parents. Those parents with their fresh-faced almost freshman kiddos. Those parents who are just getting off work. Those parents who are probably somewhere closer to 40 than to 63. And I cry silently inside, thinking "I cannot do this again." 

But of course I will. Darian is going to be a junior. What??? A junior. Oh man, I have just got to quit typing and go lie down. How on earth did these two little tykes get to where they are now. And why can't I just spoil them and send them home. Why can't I proudly show up at the high school and watch their activities and performances like all the other proud granny's?  This just isn't fair.

But what would happen to them if they didn't have me? That is a question I can ask myself. And I do ask it. Often! They would have a grandma. But where would they have ended up? The foster system. Adopted by people who would not have wanted me to stay involved. I couldn't have that, could I? So here I am being the grandma/mom. And getting ready to do the high school thing with a girl! For the first time around.

Lord, help me.

Menu Plan Monday

The weekend is over and it was a good one. I did a pretty good job of sticking to the menu plan this past week. Those Crispy Southwestern Chicken Wraps, that I made on Monday, were super easy and very, very good. I did not use cilantro and I grilled them on my new Cuisinart Grill we got for Christmas. I actually ended up with more than the recipe said and we ate them during the week for lunch and snacks. Both Richard and the kids loved them, so this is a keeper. On Tuesday we did have the sloppy joes with the Pasta Salad and it too was another big hit. I will make it again as well. When the kids went to church on Wednesday night, I loaded Papa into the car, we drove through the car wash and then went through KFC drive-thru, because he has been craving fried chicken. Yummy! Thursday we did the White Trash Casserole. This is one of my kiddo's favorite and it always is a winner. Friday we had leftovers from the week. On Saturday we went with spaghetti and today for dinner I made the Pork Chop Suey. I served it with both rice and chow mein noodles. It was a big hit with all but the granddaughters. They ate mini corn dogs. Thanks Wendy for that easy recipe. I will do that again as well.

Now lets get on to this week's plan. Shall we?

Week of February 24-March 2


I have all the ingredients. I get to go with Harley tonight to enroll in high school


Chili dogs
French Fries


PGEO night!
Wonder where we'll go this week




We are going to order Pizza


Chicken and Noodles
Mashed potatoes and gravy


Corn Beef Sandwiches
Ham Sandwiches for the picky girls

I am linking up with I'm an Organizing Junkie

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday Stealing

Sunday Stealing

(click the icon to play along)

Fifteen Meme

What was your first job like?  I babysit around the age of 12. And my first real job as a waitress.

It’s a typical Sunday, how are you spending it?  Like every
other day of the week. Sunday's are no different.

What was the happiest day of your life?  The day that I graduated from nursing school. It had been a long, hard battle.

What was the best decision you ever made? To marry Richard

Tell your go-to “pretend” game as a child (who was your alter-ego?) I don't remember ever playing make-believe as a child. 

What email service do you use? Cox

What fandoms would you consider yourself a part of? The Good Wife

Do you use anything on your lips? (eg. Chapstick, gloss, balm, lipstick) nothing on a regular basis...chapstick or balm if needed

How many devices do you own which can access the internet?  3

Last strong smell you can remember smelling? We had a skunk near the other night. Smell was really bad. I put Vicks in my nose to get rid of the skunk smell.

If you had to move your birthday to another date, which one would you choose and why?  I can't think of a reason to change the day that it is.

Inspiration behind your blog title?  It used to be Paula's Place and i shared smidgens, snippets, and bits of my life, so I just changed the name to that.

If you could spend a rainy day with anyone in the world, who would you choose and why?  Richard, because he needs me.

Is there a foreign culture that you love? There are several that fascinate me: French, Italian, Spanish

Do you have a favorite soft drink?  Pepsi or coke!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Putting Pressure on Teenagers

On a Facebook page that I follow a question was recently posted on 'giving some ideas for teenage boys to romantically ask their dates to the prom'. This kind of stuff makes me flip out. I wonder how many boys out there really want to find out a romantic way to ask a girl to the prom. Most of them don't even want to find an un-romantic way to ask. They are scared to death to ask. They hope the girl will ask them. And take away all that fear of rejection.

This got me to thinking about who is it that is putting so much pressure on teenagers today. I read a lot in the media about this being the generation of kids that are so stressed. I recently read somewhere that parenting is the most competitive adult sport in today's world. Wow! That says it all right there. It is the parents who are pushing kids so hard that they have such stress in their lives. I think back to when I was raising my own sons and it was a "keep up with the Joneses generation", but it was nothing compared to today.

I have heard that it is called hyper-parenting. Kids are just not allowed to be kids. It starts when they are very, very young. At birth parents start to worry about what pre-school their child is going to get into. For crying out loud, it is pre-school; not college. But it seems to matter. And I know of parents who send their children at the age of 3 (whether they can really afford it or not) so the kid goes to 2-3 years of pre-
school before they ever enroll them in kindergarten. Why is it that a child needs to know how to read at age 4? If they learn at 6, they will still know how to read for a lot of years before they die. Who is the parent really concerned about at this age. Their child? I think not. I think they are much more concerned about how they will look in front of the other parents in their circle.

And now we can talk about sports. Little, tiny basketball and soccer players who are being pushed by their parents. They have barely learned how to walk, let alone learned and know the rules of sports games. I sincerely doubt that any of these tykes asked their parents to 'please, pretty please sign me up for basketball.' And then there are those parents who sign their kids up for private lessons in soccer, wrestling, basketball, etc. Seriously? Have we really lost the ability to let our kids just get out there and play. And figure it out for themselves. Have you attended any middle-school or high school sporting events where the parents coach from the side-lines? It is sad to watch. I feel for the child whose mom or dad is constantly screaming at them on how to play the game. The child seems so confused on whether to listen to their parents  or the coach. Often times the coach has told them to do something else. And there is always the 'ball-hog', who is not a team player, because mom or dad want him to be the star of the team. Parents work tirelessly to promote their kid in a sport their kids might not even want to play.

I have heard parents talking around me, as I sit in the stands watching a grandchild play at a sport, (of their choosing, because for the most part I don't even like to attend these events) worrying and talking about what college their child will go to. What the child will be when they grow up. Who is the best guy for a boyfriend! Are you kidding me? Let the kids figure this out. When my granddaughters were in elementary school there was a teacher's aid, who had a son their age, and she made it her job to try to get them to be her son's girlfriend. That is a bit over involved don't you think? I happen to be one of those old-fashioned ladies who believes kids in grade school (or even middle-school, for that matter) should NOT be 'dating'. Period! Plenty of time for finding Mr. Or Miss Right much later down the road. Let them be kids!!

Parents, stop pushing your child to be what you want them to be. Encourage them, yes. Help them make decisions that are the best decisions for them, yes. But otherwise stay out of their business. Don't be a hyper-parent. Don't be pushy. Quit putting so much stress on your kids. A's and B's are great grades. Hell, even a C is considered average. What is wrong with having an average child? Of course you can encourage them to do better, if they are capable, but screaming at them because they got a B!! That is a bit over the top. 

You don't want to be the reason they are some day, laying on the therapist couch, trying to work through why "they just don't feel they are good enough."

*as a anyone reading this who thinks I am one of those parents, I am working on getting past all of this myself.

Five Minute Friday

On Friday's I join with Lisa-Jo and others for a writing exercise. She provides the prompt and we write for five minutes. We try not to over-think the prompt. Just write from our hearts. We don't edit (I do, a bit I will admit. It is my feelings of perfectionism). The only rule is to visit the person before us and offer them a word or two of encouragement. I try to visit them all. Sometimes I make it and sometimes I don't. So here we go!

Today's word is Small.


In this big, wide world that I live in, I feel small. Most of the time the things I do are small. When I help Richard reach for his cup or the Kleenex box that are right next to his chair. Those are small things. To him they are big, because his extremities don't work like they used to. There are not many things he can  do for himself any longer.

When I give a hug to a teen who has arrived home from school, that is a small gesture to let them know I am glad they are home and I love them. They are out working all day in a tough world. A much tougher world than the one that I grew up in. My family life was different than their's, but the outside world, for the most part, was kinder.

When I smile and talk with the cashier at the grocery store, that is small. Think of all the grouchy people she has to deal with on a daily basis. That is big compared to who I deal with. Although there are days I am one of those grouchy people.

I often have to remind myself compared to a lot of others in the world my problems are small. My life could be so much worse. I have many, many things to be thankful for. I moan and groan but really my problems are small. I thank God that he watches over all of our small problems and helps me not to fall off that path he has chosen for me.


Now let's all join with Lisa-Jo Baker and write on Friday!

Friday Letters

Does anyone else find it really hard to believe that we are only a week away from the end of February? Weren't we all just writing about Christmas? I swear time just keeps speeding up and speeding up. We are not even slowing down for the curves in the road.

Time to write a few letters:

Dear Mother Nature: Thank you so very much for the brief respite you gave us this week. To actually have a day where it was almost 70* gave me so much HOPE. I am not crazy enough to believe that you are through with throwing some winter our way, but it really helped to have a couple of days of beautiful sunshine and no snow! All of the 14 inches are gone. And thank goodness so are the ice dams.

Dear Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics: What a week this has been. It was awesome to see Ted Ligety win the men's giant slalom. The first time a non-European wins Gold in this sport. My heart melted as Meryl Davis and Charlie White won ice dance gold. Skating together for 17 years! The deserved it. And I was so proud for Adelina Sotnikova from Russia as she skated beautifully to become the first Russian to win gold in women's figure skating. Her emotional reaction touched my heart. I would have loved to have seen an American victory but Adelina deserved the medal. I felt the pain of the American women as they lost in hockey today to the Canadians. But those Canadian women have much to be proud of.

Dear NBC TV: I don't like that you are not showing the medal ceremonies this year.At least air the ones that America wins. You are, after-all an American TV station. That was always a highlight for me to watch the medal ceremonies.

Dear Dean at Cox TV: Thank you for listening to my complaints about my cable bill and helping me find a way to make it a bit less. I won't save tons of money, but every little bit helps. And you are right, you aren't a bit like Verizon. Verizon didn't give a hoot about my circumstances when I tried to lower my bill.



Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Finish This

click to join the link party

I have been in a slump lately and just haven't felt much like "putting it all out there" if you know what I mean! But I like doing Finish This cause I don't have to think very hard and I can just let the prompts lead me. So here goes:

1. I plan on current list of what I plan on buying includes: an electric blanket for Richard's hospital bed. I am tired of putting 6 blankets on him (and he is particular about how they are put on) so I am going to try an electric blanket. I also need to get something called "Outgrow" to put on Richard's toenail and some more Epsom Salts to soak his foot. The Hospice nurse is going to bring along some powder that is called arglaes powder. We'll see if this will cure the infected toe. So far nothing else has worked. I think we are experimenting. Nothing much else that I am planning on buying. Boring, huh?

2. I give myself five stars because: I feel like it. Sometimes I don't give myself enough credit for what I do. Taking care of Richard as well as two teenage grands is not an easy job. So here you go self: *****

3. I felt courageous when...I do something I haven't done before and it turns out okay. When I hear noises in the night that jerk me out of my sleep and a cold chill spreads across my body I am the one who gets up to see what caused the noise. That is courageous. I used to make Richard go check it out. I have even been known to grab my big, black flashlight and go outside in the middle of the night. I walk around the house and see what is going on. Yes, might be crazy, but I have done it a few times. And I wouldn't be afraid to slug someone with this thing.

4. I feel about swimsuit shopping like I do...about picking out a casket. Not only is that something that I don't want to do, but it is something that I am not going to do! Got swimsuit shopping or pick out a casket! Richard and I both want to be cremated and scattered so there will not even be a urn sitting around this house. Just not my thing. And if I should find myself needing a swimsuit I will buy one on-line and pray that it fits. I have NO delusions that I will look like the person who models it.

Now if you find this fun and want to join along hop on over to Becky, Jen, Lisa, or Nicole's blogs and join the linky party. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Hope in Kansas!

My word for this year is Hope! I was wandering around the internet today and discovered that right here, in my home state of Kansas, there is Hope. That's right. Hope, Kansas. The population is 361 so it is tiny. And the town's motto is "There Will Always Be Hope in Kansas." 

This little Town was founded in 1871. It is located close to the town of Abilene. The Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library is located in Abilene. 

I love that we have Hope in Kansas.


Cabin Fever Cure

The 'sweet' old man who lives at my house has been cooped up too long. I can't remember the last time that I took him out for a drive. So he was starting to look like the gent off to the left here. Today, here in Kansas, we reached temperatures in the upper 60's. I think it was 69* actually. So after Harley came home from school we loaded Papa into the car (no small feat) and took him out for a ride. Now, I am pretty sure there isn't anything in 'bloom' or any dust hanging around in the air, but ever since we got back home he has coughed, hacked, and sneezed until I am having day-dreams about smothering him. Not really! I am just kidding. Don't call the police on me. It's a joke. He really enjoyed the ride. But I can't figure out what has brought on this allergy-like attack. I have him medicated up really good and he is in his chair snoring right now. Think I will just cover him up good and leave him be for the night......Sometimes when you cure one thing (cabin fever) you end up with something else. 

Today I am Cleaning House

Well not really cleaning house! That would just take too much energy. But I am going to do some cleaning. I use Feedly as my blog reader and every single day of the year I read 126 Blogs (if they made an entry for the day). And today for some reason I just decided that it is time for me to clean house. Why? Because sometimes reading other women's blogs (and two gents) makes me feel sick. Inferior. Un-worthy. Sad. Incapable. Ugly. Lazy. Slow. Behind-the-times. Are you getting the picture?

I am going to delete everyone of those blogs that makes me feel that way! I don't want to see anymore pictures of perfectly designed and decorated homes. If I need inspiration, I will check on Pinterest. There are plenty of ideas there. So good-bye to all blogs related to decorating. (Except for one. She is my ex-daughter-in-law and I love to read what she is doing to make a home more beautiful for my granddaughter.)

I will keep all of the cooking blogs because that is where I get inspiration to fix meals that are not the same over and over and over- again foods that we usually have. I don't get any answers to "what do you want to have to eat?" anymore, so I need some inspiration from somewhere. I also love Pinterest for this as well.

Mommy-blogs are making me want to puke.(Sorry mommy-blogs, but I speak bluntly). I am a grandmother. I am raising two of my grand kids. And I don't need any motherly advice from a generation of women who want to smother and coddle their kids. If I read one more self-righteous post entitled something like  "I saw you today on your cell phone while your daughter was trying so hard to get your attention" I think I will seek you out and choke the life from your blog. You are not perfect. And I am not perfect. And you should not be sitting in judgement of other mothers. We should support each other. There isn't a book to teach you how to be a mom. And no matter how hard you try, or how right you think you are, sometimes they grow up and become criminals or drug addicts anyway. And I sure don't need to feel like I did something wrong along the way. So good-bye all you mommy know-it-all's.

I will keep the organizing blogs cause I am still seeking a good, easy way to organize my home and there are some blogs that offer good advice. And of course there is Pinterest for this too!

And I will keep blogs that make me laugh. Cause, only God knows, how much I need to laugh. Humor in a post once in awhile is good for all of us. Right? I feel like sometimes all I do is whine and cry about how hard my life is and I want to go out there and find others who feel the same way that I do. Life is hard. And I need to seek out you gals who think so too, but make me laugh about it.

I am going to keep all of my friends. So don't worry Cristy, Wendy, Lisa, Allison, Elaine, Goodnight Gram, Myra, Lisa, and Elena. I hope I didn't leave anyone out. I need you guys. You lift me up and keep me going. Even if you didn't realize it! Also you two guys Mr. Snowbrush and Mr. My Daily Disaster I am keeping you guys too. Just because I haven't found too many 'guy' blogs that I enjoy like I do you two. 

There will be a couple of others that I will leave....just because. But I am ready to clean house. Do you ever feel this way? I think if you want to make yourself feel better than sometimes you just need to clean house!

*Update: I went down to 56 blogs and I already feel better! 


Monday, February 17, 2014

How Did I Ever Raise Kids?

I wonder how I ever raised two sons to full adulthood. 

We did not have car seats for them to be buckled into. Heck our cars didn't even have seat belts installed. Sometimes I even held my infant baby on my lap while I drove the car. Can you imagine that! More often than not, one of the boys sat on my lap and the other sat in the passenger seat next to me. He usually stood and chattered away at me as I drove. If I had to brake suddenly, I always threw my arm out to keep him from slamming into the front window. I still do that. Even though the person next to me is firmly belted into a shoulder harness.


My boys walked or rode their bikes to school. We lived approximately a mile from their school. There was one really, busy street they had to cross. There was always a 'student' school crossing guard at that corner. I worked night shift and my husband worked days. Many times he left before I got home and they had to get themselves off to school. It was the way most of the people in my generation did things. And I never heard of too many problems.
 Sure, once in awhile a kid would give himself a haircut before he went to school. Or there were a few brotherly fistfights that took place over breakfast. But otherwise all went okay.

We only had one telephone in our house. And it was connected to the wall. If someone called you could stand next to the phone and talk. Later on we purchased a really long curly cord so that I could walk into the kitchen or the bathroom. Or even into the bedroom to break-up a battle over whose race car belonged to who.
The kids didn't get to talk on the phone. Or it was rare. They talked to grandma occasionally, but they both lived in the same town where we lived. So mostly we just visited them. Around the age of 12 my oldest son began to get phone calls from girls at school. They usually came during our supper time. So he always told them he couldn't talk now. Never in a million years did I ever dream that one of my boys needed a cellphone. They hadn't even been invented back then. From 1990 to 2011 world wide phone use grew from 12.4 million to 6 billion users. That is  too much for me to even fathom. In 1990 my oldest son was 19 and he moved away from home. And had not yet been bitten by the cell-phone craze.My younger son purchased his own cell phone (it was a pay as you go kind) in his last year of high school. Now people are equipping their kindergartners with cell-phones! What if they need to get a hold of mommy during the day? Can you imagine. Or their 8 year old is spending the night next door and mom needs to ask her something. Viola...get her a cell phone.

My boys rode bikes and skateboards and played soccer. They didn't own helmets or shin guards. No one did! The fell and hit their head. The skinned their knees. My youngest one even fell off the monkey bar and broke his arm. But he mended. We all mended. A band aid fixed everything.

Kids are so over-protected now. I hear people who say "the world is so much worse than it was back then." I don't know if I really believe that. I think we just hear more about how bad the world is because we now have 24-hour news available. And to fill all those hours the media needs to sensationalize everything. Kids have been walking to school or riding their bikes around town since like forever. 

I wonder what is going to happen to these kids when they leave home? Will they know how to take care of themselves?  Will they be able to make a decision without calling mom on their cellphone? Will they know what to do when something goes wrong? Because right now mom and dad interfere with everything to make sure little Bobby or Susie are being treated fairly. My mom used to tell me when I was growing up: LIFE ISN'T FAIR! And she was right. It isn't. Sometimes we just have to figure it out all by ourselves.

I am not sitting here, in my ivory tower, trying to tell you that I know everything. Or that things were better back in the 'olden days' (even if I think it WAS simpler). And I sure did not raise two perfect kids. And both of my grandchildren have cell-phones so I can always get in contact with them. And I worry about them. And sometimes I interfere and try to make sure they are being treated fairly. But I tell myself almost daily to "lighten up. Let them figure it out."

What do you think? Share your thoughts with me.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

I haven't done a menu plan for a couple of weeks and it sure does make a difference in how our week goes. I hate having to come up with an idea for supper at the last minute. So I have my plan all ready to go. And. as usual, I will link up with The Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday. I get so many great ideas by browsing around other people's posts. So here goes:



Re-fried Beans


Sloppy Joes


We call this PGEO night
The kids eat at church with their youth group
Papa and Grandma eat out


White-Trash Casserole


Pork Chop Suey


Garlic Bread 


Cheesy Ham and Hash Brown Casserole

Check out some of the menu plans at I'M an Organized Junkie's Menu Plan Monday. You might find a new meal that your family will love.

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Story of an Old Father, His Son and the Sparrow...

I have a new blogging friend who blogs at Goodnight Gram's Blog. Tonight I was at her blog reading some old posts of hers (I like to do that to better get to know my new friends) when I came across a post that referred to this You Tube Video. I can guarantee you that a tear or two might have fallen from my eyes. And Wendy, my friend from A Day in the Life on the Farm, I thought about you and your mom. Sometimes these lessons can come back to haunt us. Tonight Richard will get some extra good-night kisses......

A Garden in February

It is time for Five Minute Friday. I will link up with Lisa-Jo. I am not feeling much today. Just tired. Heavy. Sad. So I don't promise much. Our Word this week is: Garden


Today my garden lies covered in snow. My garden is much like my heart feels today. Heavy and dead. I don't know why I almost always feel this way on Valentine's Day. The weather is gray and so is my mood. I try to be light. Light like a feather blowing on the cold wind that promises spring is around the corner. I cannot find a light. It is just that tiny speck at the end of a very long tunnel. I don't feel much like hearts and flowers today. I had all of that in my much younger years. Those years before I really knew what love was all about. Those years when my garden was busy growing kids and relationships. When my hope was still filled with romance and the days to come.

This is nothing new to me. I have these days. I know, though, that spring will come. And my garden will be filled with blooms and today will be forgotten.

But for today my garden lies covered in a layer of cold, wet snow.


To All My Family and Friends

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The 'crazies' are here

I never know what will bring about the night 'crazies', as I call them. Our day can go along beautifully. Richard can be oriented and peaceful and then WHAM...the crazies come out.

Tonight is one of those nights. We went through the entire routine leading up to bedtime. We soaked his foot. His toe doesn't look like it is getting any better. We will see what the Hospice nurse thinks on Friday. She was supposed to come today but I had to cancel. A certain teenage girl, who lives here, forgot to tell me she had a detention (for being late to class) and would miss her bus ride home. This meant that grandma had to pick her up. Right at the same time that we had scheduled our Hospice visit. Anyway, I am a bit off track. He had his ice cream and then his sleeping pill and other bedtime pills. Got him all tucked into bed and kissed good-night.

Then.........."honey, my pants are up the crack of my ass." This from a man, who before his stroke, never said any cuss words. So I went and fixed his pj's for him. And kissed him good night!

Then.........."honey, that tube has come out of my penis." So I get up and check and reassure him that the catheter is right where it needs to be. And kissed him good-night.

Then........."honey, I know I am being a pain but why is that white car in the driveway?" Now we haven't had any kind of car in our driveway for more than a week because we have about 13 inches of wet, heavy snow in that driveway. And it is pitch black outside. And there is NOT a white car in the driveway. And I reassured him and kissed him good night.

Then........."honey!" What now???? I just wanted to tell you that you haven't kissed me good night.....

Please, dear Lord, don't let this go on all night. I have to get to bed now. And kiss him good night....again!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

So What! Wednesday

Already Wednesday! And time to join Life After I Dew's link up to see what everyone is saying "So What" to this week.

So What! Wednesday

So What...We love the Olympics. Don't you? I can't decide which is my favorite, the summer or the winter? But we always watch. Especially opening and closing nights. This year in Sochi, Russia was awesome, even though if the announcers had not been explaining what was going on I am sure that I wouldn't have had a clue.

So What...If Shaun White didn't win another Gold Medal. He is still going to be known as the greatest snow boarder of his era. And didn't that Russian-born, Iouri, look fabulous on the Pike? Congrats go to Iouri!

So What...Would it make me less American if I really want to see Tatiana Volosozhar Maxim Trankov win. They are mesmerizing to watch. I love Americans Chalie White and Merly Davis. But secretly I am rooting for the Russians. 

So tell me do you love the Olympics? Do you have any favorites.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

14 Years Old

The tiny cake
With all that has been going on here I have forgotten to share Harley's Birthday pictures. Her birthday was last Tuesday. The day of our big snow. School was canceled and she was devastated. Middle school girls make a 'big deal' out of other girls birthdays at school. School was also out on Wednesday. So by the time she went back to school the girls (who all have short attention spans) had forgotten about her birthday.
Darian and I treated her to a
tiny birthday cake with one 
candle on her birthday.

A funny!
 Then on Saturday, when her Uncle and cousin came we celebrated again. This time she invited another friend and they had a sleep-over. I am not sure why they call it that. There isn't much sleeping going on. They played Rock Band and watched movies and played the Wii. They ate and ate. And had Blind Makeovers (where the person putting the make-up on the other person wears a blindfold.)They had a good time.
14 years old
Papa and Harley

The girls

Photo bombed by Uncle Justin

Rocking out

Darian made the name plate for her! It's her favorite college
Kansas State University.