Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Jacob has decided not to go to the zoo. I will probably not join you for that part of your vacation unless he changes his mind. If he changes his mind I will let you know. They may come to Janell's on Saturday. Will let you know on that too. I think we will be able to come on Saturday. I was going to go to the big antique sale in Walnut, IA, but I think I will skip it and join the fun at the Carson Ranch.

Tomorrow I leave for Charlotte, No Carolina for national bowling. We are spending a few extra days to be tourists since none of us has ever been there. I will be back on Tuesday afternoon and back to work on Wednesday. Will probably be the fastest week of the year.

My rain gauge showed 2.8" of rain the past two days. I had ordered some miniature roses to put in my new flower bed. They arrived yesterday. I did manage to get them in the mud between rains. Getting the lawn mowed was another challange. I rushed home over my lunch hour to get this done. I finished up in a light rain. I think I have managed to get all my outdoor chores done before my trip and between showers.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

bike riding

OK Janell you had sidewalks to ride your bike on but the older four of us grew up like Jack and Emily.

Here's how I learned to ride my Blue birthday bike. I think it was my 8th birthday when I got a bike. Uncle Franty and some of the race horses were staying at our place--the Roy Way place--(Janell and Shirley never live there).

There was a gentle slope from the house to the barn. I started at the house and rode down to the barn. Then I pushed the bike back up and did it again. All of these trips were not without many, many falls. Finally I was good enough to count the trips I made without falling. As he went about his chores, Franty would encourage me after a fall and ask "How many?" when I started counting the trips without accidents.

I don't remember anyone holding on to my bike as I learned to balance. It was so much trial and error. Probably it was nothing harder than packed dirt. Riding on a gravel road was especially difficult when they added new gravel. In fact I think it was impossible.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Visitors from California ++

Here's what it looks like now.

Arrival on Wednesday, Zoo on Thursday, CWS on Friday (Paulette is emailing Bob about tickets), Janell's on Saturday, Reunion on Sunday and getting Paulette to the airport after. David, Myrna, Skyler and Shae have a few more days. I was wrong about us having to leave on Monday.

For the Memorial day holiday, Skyler and I have a very busy day. We are going to the Sacramento County Fair in the morning, swimming in the afternoon and bike riding early evening.

Today Skyler rode his bicycle around the streets inside the apartment complex. It was his first time outside of their backyard. He was cautious and very excited. At first he went around the speed bumps and then started riding over them. It is a joy to watch him in his new adventure.

Visitors from California

Friday, May 25, 2007

Zoo schedule

I haven't seen the commercial. Of course we don't have Roberts dairy out here anyhow. We have happy cows making California cheese.

Sue Thursday for the zoo would be better I think? CWS plans have not been solidified by my children.

Shirley I hope we are not causing you too much extra work at home.

SO...updated schedule at the moment...arrive on Wednesday, Zoo Thursday, CWS???Friday, Janell's Saturday, Reunion Sunday and get Paulette to the airport.

David's kids are troopers and it is always good to wear them out so bedtime is not an ordeal.

I would have made this an email but my addresses are on my computer at home.

My 1 1/2 cents worth

I happen to catch part of "the commercial" just one time. I don't usually watch the Omaha stations - probably the reason I don't see it.

I used to go to the reunions all the time. I have cut back to just every 5 years. It got kind of boring since so few people go any longer. By the way, Janell, Jerry Connealy was in here yesterday. He bought a Focus a couple of years ago and gets it serviced here. He will be back today because he lift his prayer book in our waiting area. For those of you who don't know Jerry, he graduated with Janell, is a priest in Pierce and a chaplin at the hospital here in Norfolk.

Last night after I mowed, I planted a few zennia seeds. I had two packets to plant. They sure don't put very many seeds in a packet any more. After that I cleaned the bathroom. and then ironed for 2 hours. By nine pm. I decided it was time to read the paper and do my daily sudoku.

We plan to visit the cemeteries tomorrow morning and have breakfast in Lyons. Will be there about 8 am if anyone wants to join us for breakfast. Then we plan to go to Ashland to play a practice round of golf (weather permitting). My golf buddy, Donna, and I will be playing in a NWAGA tournament there June 18-19. Nothing special planned for Sunday and Monday. I have to get things lined up to go to No Carolina for national bowling tournament.

Still haven't got a definite answer from Jacob about going to the zoo. Myrna, if your schedule is flexible, Thursday might work better for him. Joe said they may be going to the CWS, but didn't
say what day. Still all kind of undecided. Tammie said she would like to join us, but wasn't sure about getting off on Friday since someone else was going to be off that day. Sure is hard to work around all these schedules. Will stick with the Friday plan for now. Janell, I probably won't be able to make it to your party on Saturday. Real busy schedule the next few weeks.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

My 2 Cents For Today

I do believe I just saw Janell's farm during the 10pm news. I have only caught the end of that commercial any time I've noticed it. But I caught it quick enough this time to get Bob to see it, and he confirmed that it looked like Janell's place.

We have a holiday weekend coming up. Anyone going to the Alumni Banquet? I won't be -- I have things to do to get ready for our company next month.

I was out digging in the yard again tonight until dark. I have this habit of buying plants and not allowing time to plant them the same day or next. So I end up digging in the dark. This will come to a screeching halt if I start running into those snakes in the dark. I am almost ready to say I can deal with them being around in the daytime, but at dark -- that won't happen. Anyway -- I have been highly motivated to get some new plants going this year -- several from last year are looking so good now. Weeds are looking pretty healthy, too, though. But this gardening stuff is fun.


NO, I'm not packing yet. I have been trying to get a number of tasks done that would test the patience of a five-year-old and his grandmother. Skyler comes to stay with me starting Monday. He will go to school with me and stay in our on-site baby sitter for the student's children. He will also get to go to our end of year party and staff lunch. He may get to go to school with Paulette the next week and we will both join Paulette's class at a Rivercats game.

That said, Paulette and I got new cell phones, bi-annual renewal of contract. I bought a new digital camera. My old one was too slow and I had out grown it. I got my bike tuned up well I took it for an $80 service and It is in such good shape, he oiled the chain removed a noisy plastic disk, checked the brakes and said happy riding. I'm going to get a pedicure this afternoon and drive to the cheap(er) or (est) gas station for gas. I have also been trying to put away the things I have that I find ordinary and the kids think are exotic toys. Markers that can't be around my white leather love seat. Sewing stuff, various computer and camera cables and rechargers that I leave plugged in and dangling. This morning I decided I didn't need a haircut before vacation but this afternoon I think I might. And I have to go out and ride my bicycle for the first time in my new neighborhood.

I only have four more days of school because we have a holiday on Monday. Party on Wednesday, movie on Thursday and I may have to plan something academic for Tuesday because two movies would be too lazy on my part. I did show The Gods Must Be Crazy I this week over three days. Only one student had seen it and several wanted to know where they could buy it. I now own a copy--the first video I have purchased.

Oh yes, Blogging on the road...I am developing a website that I hope we can access from Paulette's Ibook to update. I don't think it will be a problem. That way I can put photos up. I haven't figured out how to get photos from Iphoto to Don't try to find the site, because it hasn't been uploaded yet.

Thursday already

Can you believe it? May is almost gone! Myrna, are you packed yet? Looking forward to your arrival. Did you learn how to blog on the road? It will be fun to track your progress (or lack thereof.)
I talked to Mick yesterday and he is planning to come out and spend the afternoon and supper with us on that Saturday and go to the reunion on Sunday. Did you know Crystal is engaged? To Matt, the young man who came here with her for Mom’s services. Can’t remember the date, but she is sending invitations to all of us. Randy thought we might try to go out there for the wedding.
It rained here all night and part of the morning. It was so cold and windy, Cody and I had to cut our daily walk way short. We were only out for abut 10 minutes and my clothes were soaked by the time I got back inside. It wasn’t raining when we started out, but it sure started up again after we got going.

My favorite couple won Dancing with the Stars – Apollo and Julianne. Yay. Now I can find something useful to do on Monday & Tuesday nights instead of parking my carcass in front of the TV.

Last week, I was afraid I might be going blind – things were blurry and out of focus, both up close and far away. It was about Wednesday that I discovered I had gotten my contacts switched, so the left one was in my right eye and vice verse. So I guess it’s good that I’m not going blind, but not so good that I could let that happen and just wander around out of focus for 3-4 days.

I found a disposable camera in my saddle bag last Sunday, and this was one of the pictures on it. This is from October ’05 - the Nebraska-Oklahoma game.
Huskers lost :( Sue, I think you were at that one, too?

So what’s going on with everybody?


Sunday, May 20, 2007

A winner

OK so Street Sense didn't win and the Monarchs lost their season opener to the Shock (in Detroit) on Saturday.
And then on Sunday a Kenyan woman WON the Bay to Breakers--she beat the men. According to local reporters it's the first time a woman has beat the men in running.
Sooo it wasn't a total losing weekend.

Saturday, May 19, 2007


Years ago, forty or more, Mom gave me a wool comforter that had been Grandma Anderson's. I have dragged it everywhere I ever moved. It covered in plain cotton and I used it on my bed and it was the cover the kids and I wanted when we had a cold or the flu. When I got my down comforter I put this aside because the cover was thin and frayed. I thought of covering it with satin or silk or something. I didn't, I just kept storing it. When I moved last December I decided it would be the last move, unless I could think of a use for it.

In March, browsing the farmer's market in Davis I met Jane Deamer the owner of the Yolo wool mill. I asked her what I could do with the wool besides cover it. She said it might be possible to spin it into yarn. A few weeks later I took it to her at the mill and she washed it, added two pounds of new wool and yesterday I picked up twenty skeins of yarn.


Friday, May 18, 2007


Was she ever diagnosed with narcoplepsy? I thought it was some kind of severe anemia that she and Julia had?

Anyhow, I remember the NAPTIME game that went on and on and on and on tat summer in California.

I remember sitting in my swim suit with my towel waiting for Mom to have a little nap. She would say five minutes and that was usually enough. She was also "famous" for being able to get in a nap on her lunch hour when she worked in Fremont at Campbel's. If I take the scenic route to work i.e. get off the freeway one exit early, I pass a Campbel's tomato processing plant, and think about her working with the chicken.

One year she was here during tomato season and worried about the tomatoes on the bottom of the huge trucks being squashed. And they wouldn't be any good.

I remembered another song after the rest of you suggested some Marsy dotes and dosey dotes or Mares eat oates and Does eat oates. I found my Scott Joplin CD and there are some of her favorites on that.
One day I was with her in the church when she was "doing my bit" (that was what she called it). She was dusting the organ and found it had been left on (and she sure knew who would do that). Before she turned it off she sat down and played some of the rag time pieces. Hearing that music bouncing off the walls and stained glass windows is one of my favorite of Mom's playing music.

Looks Like I got on the list of contributers to this blog.


And welcome home from Rome! We missed you.

Thursday, May 17, 2007


One odd thing about Mom's affliction was that she never fell asleep while driving. She would
conk out in the passenger seat in a minute, but never while behind the wheel.
When we were little, we had this rocking chair that Mom would sit in to read to the four of us.
We would sit on the wooden arms and Bobby would probably be in her lap. She would be reading and nod off. One of us would nudge her and say "Wake up Mom." She would wake up and continue reading. Shirley, do you still have the chair?
Her sister, Julia, was even worse about falling asleep. Maybe that is the reason she never drove. There is a picture taken of them both sitting on a couch with heads together fast asleep.
I guess there is something good in everything - Mom never had any trouble going to sleep at night.


Mom had such a struggle with narcolepsy – she once told me that was the reason she never finished nursing school: because she couldn’t stay awake to do her homework. I remember once she was sitting at the sewing machine going full speed ahead and suddenly she stopped, leaned back, crossed her arms, dropped her head to her chest and snored for about 5 minutes. She jerked awake, called out, “Not just now!” looked around, a little wild-eyed, and started sewing again.
I also remember trying to get her to read to me out of an Archie comic book and she sort of abridged the story by “reading” the pictures; “Well, this guy went to school and saw this gal there and they got into a fight, so she went and told this other gal and she …” then her head started to droop a little and the narration stopped, so I nudged her and said, “Mom, what else does it say?” And she pulled her head up and she tried to go on, but was fading fast, “Well, they went to the soda shop and shaw her fahzer there…” and her words and voice railed off into nothing. “Mom,” I said, shaking her arm. She jerked her head up, took a deep breath and tried again, “So, he drove them both home and they lived happily ever after.” And that was the end of that.
What do you remember about Mom’s narcolepsy?

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Consider yourself invited

Okay, so the California people are coming next month. I will host anyone who wants to come out for Saturday afternoon and supper that week, if you aren’t all worn out from the zoo.
Just give me a headcount so I know how many to cook for.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Completely out of control

Someone please stop me. I’ve become obsessed with putting in bedding plants. I found a great new greenhouse just outside of Arlington- Siffring Landscaping – and they had the most beautiful flowers there. I planted an arrangement of unpronouncables in the two big pots at the end of our driveway. I put in a row of 12 zinnias (for Mom) right along the house, behind the horseshoe border. I added some pink and red mottled leafy things – no flowers, just color - behind the zinnias. I put in two new miniature roses and replaced a dead spiderwort at the end of the sidewalk.
I managed to fit in all the tomatoes, peppers and eggplants in our little garden spot. I packed each plant in with a generous helping of horse manure and this morning, all the existing plants got a dose of Miracle Gro. I had to get back to work today in order to get some rest form all my gardening.
Our new dog, Cody, followed me around throughout the whole process, carrying his squeaky toy, hoping for a game of fetch. He waited very patiently, so I obliged him until he got tired and just laid down with his toy between his front legs. He seems to have settled in with us pretty well. We go walking every morning for at least a half hour and his big WHOOF WHOOF WHOOF announces cars coming down our driveway as well as going into the drive across the road no matter what time of day or night. When no one is outside with him, he rests in the shade of the front yard. He’s the perfect dog for us. He has already learned all his good manners and has no interest in chasing our cats – tho you couldn’t convince the cats of that. They have been going around with pretty much permanently arched backs, wild eyes and frizzed out tails since he got here, but one of them seems to like perching on top of his dog house. At one point, Cody surprised Webber coming around the corner of the house so she ran up a tree. Unfortunately, it was a tree that was next to the veg garden and at that moment, the sprinkler was going, so she got soaked as well as scared.
I trust you all had a good Mother’s Day and graciously received accolades from all your grandchildren as well.
Until next time!

Friday, May 11, 2007


This is what our creek looked like last Saturday morning. It’s usually an ankle deep trickle at the bottom of a 7-10 foot ditch. Fortunately, it didn’t stay over the driveway for very long, so we were never stranded. It really left a lot of debris in the yard (south of the horse trailer) when it went back down. Top photo is looking east, second and fourth are looking south; third one is looking north, towards my little quilt shop.

Well, the birthday supper turned out very well and I even found some time between the baking the cake & marinating the steak to take Bubba out for a ride. (Hmmm… I feel a poem coming on…) I am having remnants of the supper for lunch today, but the microwave committed unspeakable evil on my onion rings, turning them from hot & crispy to lukewarm, limp and soggy shadows of their former crunchy selves. (How’s that for a commuter sighting?)
When I was in town today, I purchased 4 tomato plants, 4 pepper plants and 4 eggpplant plants. I need to pick up some flowers as well, but I’m having trouble finding zinnias this year. I can’t seem to get them going from seed with any success. So that tells you what I will be doing tomorrow. The weather is supposed to be good for that type of thing.
Also tomorrow, we are getting a dog. Cody, a 10-year-old black Lab from my friend Fran, who will soon be moving to town. He’s a good dog and he already knows us since we do some house-sitting for Fran a few times a year. If any of my hunting in-laws or nephews or nieces ever want to take him hunting, I think he has been trained for it. All I ever do is walk with him and he heals really well. I’m counting on him to help me walk off some flab.
We have at least one graduation party to go to. Are there any anniversaries, birthday parties or Heaven forbid funerals I need to know about? Was Jim & Irene’s in the paper or something? Someone needs to give me a heads up on this stuff, because I don’t get the Mirror-Sun.
Have a great weekend, everyone!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Happy Birthday, Jack!

Today is Jack’s 25th birthday, so he took Randy & Emily to the zoo for the day.
I had to work, so he left me with strict instructions for his birthday supper. We are having grilled steak, onion rings, Portobello caps and cake. So I am leaving work early to go bake a cake and fire up the grill.
Until tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


Birdie, Birdie in the sky, dropped some white stuff in my eye.
I'm a big girl. I won't cry. I'm just glad that cows can't fly.

Mick taught this little ditty to Chantelle when she was about 2
years old.


Janell's Five Blessings

5. Blogging.

4. Fine Arts: Poetry, literature, music, paintings & photographs.

3. Bubba & Lucy

2. Family and (human) friends.

1. My Salvation.

Thanks, Cindy, for thinking of this.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Sue's frustrations

5. Shopping for pants. They are either "old lady with elastic waste", Alway too
long, even the short/petit sizes, or made for teens with very low rise.

4. Trying to keep grass out of flower beds.

3. Being all caught up at work and way behind at home.

2. Idiot drivers

1. Getting to and keeping a healty weight. This could have it's own list of
frustrations or maybe even a whole blog.


Thursday, May 3, 2007

Top five frustrations

(Inspired by Brooke’s blog. See the link on One Square Mile)

5. Hilary Clinton – what’s she so mad about anyway? She doesn’t deliver speeches, she shouts them.

4. Getting rained on and then having to sit in an air conditioned office in a wet shirt.

3. Insomnia.

2. Randy’s allergies.

#1. People in authority who give you just enough information to make you look stupid.

Now it’s your turn.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Lost weekend

On Frday morning as I put on my socks, I got a pain in my side. My first thought
was I pulled a muscle while lifting some boxes at work. I took a couple of Tylenol
and went about my business/ work and golf and supper/dinner out. By Saturday morning
the pain had become unbearable. Off we went to the emergency room thinking maybe
a gall bladder attack. After all the tests and x-rays it showed an impacted bowel.
It is very embarassing to have a doctor tell you that you are full of s**t. He
gave me a prescription and had me pick up a very strong laxitive at the drug store.
I was relieved that it did not require any surgery. Am feeling much better, thank
We did manage to go to Menard's and Earl May on Sunday. I am going to redo one of my flower beds. The grass has taken over and it is no longer pretty. Thanks to birthday gift certificates from Tammie we had part of the project paid for.
Sure hated to miss out on the beutiful weather on Saturday, but I am sure we will
have more.