Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ten Reasons Why I Haven't Been Blogging

Number 1:Wegman's LPGA
Number 2-10:

Grandma Judy, aka, Mrs. Toad!

Okay, so it turns out to be eleven reasons, but I couldn't leave out Uncle Mike and Alyssa. Although we are only on day two, I am pronouncing Son Rock Kids Camp a rousing success. Yesterday we had 84 kids, today 104. Isn't God good?
Speaking of that, I have a really fun story to tell. Yesterday, we had a little first grader who just didn't want to be at VBS. From the moment his mom dropped him off, he was just that, a little off (balance). He didn't like the assembly, didn't want to sing, wasn't interested in playing games at REC and when REC was finished, he proceeded to run away. His teacher, Sherry, saw him and started to run after him. He was gaining distance on her and nearing the main street of our little town when Sherry shouted, "In the name of Jesus, Stop!" Don't ever doubt the power of that name because soon after that, he lost steam and did STOP. Although we have all gotten a good laugh over this, in retrospect we see that God protected, not only that little boy, but the whole of our VBS. We do serve a great God.
I managed to stay awake until 9:30 last night, doubt I'll make it that late tonight.
~Hippo Hugs~
He will yet fill your mough with laughter
and your lips with shouts of joy.
~Job 8:21

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bits and Pieces of My Crazy Life

How can a retired person be too busy to post on her blog? I have asked myself that question a lot in the last few days. Alas, I haven't come up with a really good answer. I have known for a while that our June and July schedule was rather busy, but when I sit down and take a good look at the calendar, I am overwhelmed. There are all the usual appointments, no problem. Then there are all the fun things, like dinner with friends, parties, weddings, showers, no problem. There are the obligations that we have chosen like Vacation Bible School and Church Camp, these, too, are no problem. It's adding in all the necessities of life, you know, laundry, vacuuming, dusting, cooking, lawn work, gardening, those things are what create the problem.
Today, I'm just setting all that aside and spending some time here at my computer and out there with my dear friends in Blogland. So here we go with the current installment of Jim and Pam plus none. No drama here, my friends. No divorce, no births, no trauma. Just the day to day fun in the lives of two happily married "geezers".
I think at last post, I had just returned from spending some time with my Aunt and Uncle. My Uncle is recovering rapidly from his surgery and sounds just like his old self. I am hoping this last little emergency will help convince them to make some changes in their living arrangements, but I'm not holding my breath.

Prior to that little sojourn, we had just returned from our "camp opening expedition" to the Adirondack Mountains. We had a great time, definitely not all work and no play. Here are a few pictures.
We planted flowers. Sixteen window boxes, six geraniums each,

We dusted, vacuumed, mopped, cleaned tubs, etc.

We also, sat on the deck and the porch

where we enjoyed the view of the lake.

Back in the land of reality, we had lots of yard work to do. We (like much of the country) have had lots and lots of rain, which encourages growth of grass. With Jim's hand still in recovery, I am helping with the mowing for the first time in maybe 20 years. I'm actually not doing too badly. I admit to lots of aches and pains at the end of the day, but hallelujah for A*dvil PM.

Did I mention that along with grass, the weeds are growing like, well WEEDS. Consequently, we've been busy in the garden. That too, is something I've not been involved in in past years, but this year finds me out there weeding and cultivating. More aching muscles.
The result of all our hard work. It will really be worth it in a few weeks when we are eating all the wonderful fresh vegetables.

There has been some entertaining going on along with all the work. Last Friday night we had dinner on the porch with friends, and played one of our favorite games, Bonanza. The food and company was good and we had a lot of laughs.


Bruce made these "whoopie pies" from my SIL, Carolyn's recipe. They were fabulous. Calorie free, of course.

Tomorrow we're off to the Wegman's LPGA. I am really excited about seeing all the women golfers who I watch on TV. I enjoyed myself so much last year that this year, we are going for two days. BIL, Laverne, and his friend Cathy are coming on Thursday evening which will make the weekend that much more fun.

Today, we're off to grocery shop and do some errands. I think I might even talk my dear hubby into lunch. Hey, maybe I'll offer to pay.

~Hippo Hugs~

"When things go wrong,

don't go with them."

Elvis Presley

Friday, June 19, 2009

It's been a long, long time.

I feel like I'm venturing into a foreign land today as I sit here to post on my blog for the first time in ten days. Much has happened in that time; some fun, some not so much, but all working out as it should.

Jim and I spent five days in the Adirondack Mountains with our friend, Bruce, getting their summer home opened. It wasn't all work and no play, as we finished in record time, got the boat out of storage and spent some time on the lake, as well as enjoying good company and yummy food.

This being a particularly busy time for me, I was delighted to look forward to a good ten days at home to prepare for VBS and my LPGA company. That, alas, was not to be. On Monday I received a call from my elderly aunt and uncle who live in Pennsylvania and they needed some assistance for a couple of days. Monday evening I drove the 3-1/2 hours to their home and spent two days with them. I was happy that I could help out in this minor emergency, but it did cramp my plans for getting organized here. My schedule had to be rearranged a little, but I'm happy to report we seem to be back on track. We'll see what comes up to throw a monkey wrench in my plans from now until next Thursday.

Thursday is the day Jim and I plan to spend at the Wegman's LPGA in Rochester. We plan to attend on Saturday with Jim's brother and his friend also. I'm planning on a clean house by then and hoping for good weather. We shall see.

My creative juices seem to be stagnating for the moment (might be stress), but I received this in my email today and thought I would like to share it.

The Buzzard, The Bat and The Bee
The Buzzard:
If you put a buzzard in a pen that is 6 feet by 8 feet and is entirely open at the top, the bird, in spite of its ability to fly, will be an absolute prisoner. The reason is that a buzzard always begins a flight from the ground with a run of 10-12 feet. Without space to run, as is its habit, it will not even attempt to fly, but will remain a prisoner for life in a small jail with no top.
The Bat:
The ordinary bat that flies around at night, a remarkable, nimble creature in the air, cannot take off from a level place. If it is placed on the floor or flat ground, all it can do is shuffle about helplessly and, no doubt, painfully, until it reaches some slight elevation from which it can throw itself into the air. Then, at once, it takes off like a flash.
The Bumblebee:
A bumblebee, if dropped into an open tumbler, will be there until it dies, unless it is taken out. It never sees the means of escape at the top, but persists in trying to find some way out through the sides near the bottom. It will seek a way where none exists, until it completely destroys itself.
In many ways, we are like the buzzard, the bat, and the bumblebee. We struggle about with all our problems and frustrations, never realizing that all we have to do is look up! That's the answer, the escape route and the solution to any problem. Just look up.
Sorrow looks back, worry looks around, but faith looks up.
~Hippo Hugs~

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What a wonderful weekend

It was fun, fun, fun all weekend long. Jim was laughing this morning saying that we slept in a different bed each night of our long weekend.

Night One

We drove down to Wellsboro, Pa and met our friends, Jeff and Jan at the famous Wellsboro Diner for lunch. The plan was to go out the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon after lunch and hike, but the weather intervened. Instead of hiking in the rain, we thought shopping in the rain sounded much better. We spent a fun afternoon browsing the shops. I found a few patriotic decorations for my seasonal tree. Sometime after three, we drove out to

Bear Mountain Lodge

where we spent our first night on the road. Jim and I had been here last fall and enjoyed it so much we wanted to return. Jeff and Jan were as enamored with this wonderful hideaway as we were. After a leisurely couple of hours visiting in the great room of the lodge we went to a nearby restaurant for a delicious dinner.

These darling little girls were swinging on this little swing when we walked into the restaurant. I couldn't resist taking their picture. Their families were seated at a table near us and they were the best behaved little children.

Clever bench posts. This would be a good place to mention our waitress who was not only efficient, but lots of fun.


Saturday morning it was off to hike the canyon. The weather was definitely cooperating with beautiful sunshine and clear skies.

This is the view from the top of the canyon. The trail is about a mile long down to Pine Creek.

There are some steps and landings on the trail, but most of it is switch backs.it may be hard to believe, but it's a lot easier going back up than it going down. My poor legs really ached on Sunday and Monday.

We bid farewell to Jan and Jeff about 1:30, they back to Lancaster and Jim and I on to Austin to attend our Alumni Reunion.

Saturday Evening

The Class of '63. This was the first annual Alumni Reunion and wasn't as well attended as we would have liked, but we have hopes for the future. The Class of '63 only had four of it's 25 graduates attending. We have high hopes for next year

Huston Family graduates. My Aunt Shirley and cousin Amy are also alumni. After the alumni party, we drove to Jim's brother and SIL's home for a visit and our second bed of the weekend.


After brunch at a Boy Scout fundraiser in Austin, Jim and I attended church where we we grew up worshipping and were married. It was nice to be back in that church once again. Then it was on to spend some time with his mom. We had a great afternoon riding around the area where my mom, aunts and uncles grew up. We topped the ride off with ice cream sundaes before we took Mom back to her residence.

We ended the day in Bradford, PA with my SIL and niece. It was so good to see them. It's such fun to be with Kacy as she still likes us and wants to spend time with us.

Isn't she cute? And she thinks she's soooo funny!

Oh yes, did I mention The Boyfriend? She's growing up despite my desire to keep her a little girl.

Kacy has a Super Mom. She's a pretty good sister-in-law too.

Monday it was back home and reality once again. The weather was still cooperating and we were able to get the lawn mowed. I also managed to get the rest of my mulch spread. We were pleased, but tired. We collapsed into our own bed pretty early and slept through a huge thunder storm.

Tomorrow, we're off again. This time to the mountains with our friend, Bruce, to get their cabin ready for summer habitation and plant some flowers. Bruce says we aren't going to work very hard. I'm taking him at his word and have packed two novels and my crossword puzzle book. I'll be back on Monday reporting on the progress we make.

Until then, have a wonderful week.

~Hippo Hugs~

"If there is anything half so much fun

as being alive,

I'd like to know what it is."

*Blogger's note - Blogger was really uncooperative tonight. It has taken me over an hour to get pictures to load. ARGG

Monday, June 1, 2009

Monday Musings

This coming Saturday Jim and I will be in Pennsylvania attending an all school alumni reunion at our high school. In anticipation of this event, we have been talking about who might and might not attend. This conversation led us to remembering teachers we had in high school and wondering what has happened to them.

I know that many of them are no longer with us as they were in their 40's and 50's fifty years ago when we began as freshmen in our newly constructed school building. That year, we were introduced to a new Home Economics teacher, Jean Streeter. Mrs. Streeter drove 45 miles a day both to and from our school. Fifty years ago, no one had snow tires or all wheel drive and the winters were ferocious as I remember. Still, I don't remember her missing any days of school.

Mrs. Streeter was the Freshman homeroom teacher. She was responsible for taking attendance, collecting our lunch money, receiving our absentee excuses (many of which had forged parent signatures) and all other manner of daily housekeeping. And, of course, she taught Home Ec and was the advisor for the FHA. Somewhere along the way, she became Ma Streeter. Before you think it was a title of disrespect, I need to say it was spoken fondly each time it was used. She was truly Ma.

I emailed my friend, Priscilla, a day or two ago to get some details about this reunion and mentioned Mrs. Streeter. Her response was one of delight that I, too, had been thinking of this wonderful teacher and mentor. As well as being called Ma, Priscilla also nicknamed her , Lean Jean and Her Sewing Machine. Again a name christened with love.

To say she spoiled us would be an understatement. I'm not sure about other classes, but we of the class of '63 were her girls. She loved us and we knew it. I'm sure we gave her many moments of heartache, just as all daughters do, but she never abandoned us or made us feel bad about ourselves.

Back in the day, you made an apron in 7th grade, a skirt in 8th grade and a jumper in 9th grade in Home Ec. I can still see the fabric I chose for my jumper. It was brown with a pink rosebud print. I remember wearing it once it was made, but what I remember most was the help and encouragement she gave me in making it. Without her stepping in and fixing my mistakes that jumper would never have been fit to wear in public. Priscilla remembers receiving the same help.

Mrs. Streeter encouraged us to be everything we could be. With her support and encouragement I ran for an office in the state FHA. She helped me write speeches, accompanied me to County and Area meetings of the FHA all the while being my champion. Not only did she urge us as individuals, but she also taught us to work together as a team. Twice, with her direction, we presented demonstrations at the State Farm Show in Harrisburg. I don't think we ever won a prize, but as girls from the smallest school district in Pennsylvania, we learned to believe in our abilities to compete.

And she was fun. When we went to Harrisburg to the annual Farm Show, she was the best chaperon anyone could ask for. My mom often accompanied us as a chaperon and she and Mrs. Streeter became fast friends. My mom always loved to tell a story of Jean frantically searching all over their hotel room for her glasses. After practically tearing the room apart in her search, she discovered them sitting on her head.

At some point in the years after I graduated, Mrs. Streeter left teaching in Austin. I think she took a job closer to her home. The last time I saw her was a day or two before my wedding when she stopped at my parent's home to deliver a wedding present. We had a great talk. For awhile after I was married I kept in contact with her at Christmas, and then we just lost touch with one another. I'm pretty sure she is no longer living and it makes me sad to think of this world without her.

If anyone was a born teacher, she was. She knew we weren't really very serious about the things she was teaching us, but that didn't stop her from giving us her best. The Home Ec room was a haven for all of us. We knew when we walked through those doors we were in a safe place where we were loved. Although a lot of what I know about making a home was learned from watching and listening to my own mother, Ma Streeter played a big part in the person I am today.

~Hippo Hugs~

"Keeping in touch with childhood memories keeps
us believing in life's simplest pleasures like
a rainy afternoon."
~Chrissy Ogden~