October Beauty

22 10 2011

I just had a hunch that we better head to Pennyroyal State Park and enjoy the beautiful Autumn day of October the 11th.  The sunshine and warmth were abundant.  The park is just 22 miles from our home.  I suggested to Jim that we spend the day there and just read and enjoy lunch at the lodge’s restaurant.  And a lovely day it turned out to be.  Sometimes a mini retreat is in order to refresh the body, mind and soul. 

Hope you enjoy these pictures of our day!  God Bless!





Back To School and Waffles

12 08 2011

I was anxious to hear how Anna’s two boys were adjusting to public school.  They have been part of a Christian private school for all their early education.  John is in the 4th grade  and Alex is in the 2nd grade.

They are adjusting quite well.  Partly, because Anna enrolled them both in a summer day camp which allowed the boys to get  used to meeting new children.

I’m out of a job though.  I’ve picked up the boys all of their years of private schooling.  I have felt a void this week because it is a routine that had been such a part of me.  I’m on the emergency list though–If Anna needs help in any way.

Anna ate lunch with us today and we had old fashioned waffles.  I’ve made homemade waffles for 37 years now.  It was an inexpensive meal to serve at least once a week when our children were growing up.  Made with plenty of eggs and milk–the waffles provided some good protein and carbs for our growing children.

I don’t make waffles very often any more but it was good to make them today.  It was fun to catch up with the boys week.

Ruth put her stepson in school this week, too.  She and William came by on Monday to get an old chest of drawers that we had bought used in 1979.  She just called to tell me that she spent the day refinishing it.  She found the date that it was made–August the 8th, l958.  And , I gave it to her on August the 8th.  Wow!  Ruth and I always get excited about stuff like that.  William likes school.  He is a student in the Trigg Co. school system.  He gets to ride up and down all the country roads on his school bus.  He especially likes the cafeteria and all the good food that is served each day.

So everyone has had some great experiences this week.  And, the waffles were yummy!

God bless each of you!





A Hint of Fall In the Air

8 08 2011

After many weeks of heat waves with heat indexes that make life very uncomfortable–there is a hint of fall in the air.  I can tolerate August’s heat because I know fall is just around the corner.I love the grass beginning to dry up.  Those large brown patches make my heart sing.  I’ve never been one to spend a great deal of time or money on my yard.  So the death of it –is always a joy.  I know this offends those who love their yards. 

I love to see the first dried up leaves in the  yards, too.  This is happening quite a bit since we’ve been absolutely scorched by the sun.  We pay to have our yard cut–so the end of yard season makes me want to dance.  We’ve a bit to go though–but the end is soon here.

I’ve already been scouting the second hand shops for more harvest decorations.  I’ve put away all of my spring and summer decorations.  I do love my potted plants but they are with me all year long.

Labor Day is my favorite 3 day weekend.  Just a few more weeks to go before it arrives.  It is then that I begin some of my fall cleaning.  I also begin to prepare a winter pantry of canned goods to last throughout any winter crisis that might occur. 

I have my air conditioning off today and it looks like it might be off the rest of the week.  I love open windows.  I love the cool nights.  Here’s to the first faint hope of Fall.

God bless each of you!





Nichole’s Slices of Life–Visit To The Cancer Doctor

15 07 2011

I have 3 checkups a year to make sure my cancer is not active again.  Today, was one of those check-up days.  In 4 months, they’ve changed quite a bit at the center.  They usually call us 3 at a time to take our weight and our blood pressure.  Today, I got called without any company.  They have ditched the blood pressure cuffs for a gadget that goes around the wrist and is held on the heart.  The nurse said that their new system is more efficient. 

Next, I went to the lab to have two vials of blood drawn.  The cancer doctor saw me within 20 mintues after my blood was drawn.  Everything seems to be fine.  I have just the right amount of white and red blood cells.

He did caution me to follow-up next April with another colonscopy.  I had one done this past April and it showed that I had a serrated polyp consistent with Sessile serrated adenoma.  I was upset at first because only 2x was taken from the growth for the pathologist.  Later, my surgeon explained that unlike other polops which are easy to remove–mine was on a thin section of the small intestine.  I could have ended up in major emergency surgery if they scraped it all. 

In fact, if it doesn’t go away–cancer or no cancer–it will probably have to be removed by major surgery.  But, that is on next Spring’s agenda.  I will try not to worry about it.  Meanwhile, I will keep my regular quarterly appointments with my cancer doctors. 

We have a wonderful cancer center here in Hopkinsville, Ky.  It has been going strong for 20 years.  I’m so thankful that I don’t have to travel to get good treatment. 

God Bless each of you!





A Birthday, An Anniversary, A Stepson, Fudge and A Fish

14 07 2011

I made 4 lbs. of  fudge yesterday with Steven’s birthday in mind.  He is Ruth’s husband of almost 8 years.  He loves my fudge–which I give to him for his birthday and Christmas.  Steven also had another birthday present.  His son ,William ,flew in for a month from California.  William has never been to Kentucky.  Ruth has only met William once.  Last summer, Steven and Ruth went to California for the funeral of William’s great grandmother. 

It was fun to meet William today.  He is 11 years old and has blonde hair.  He is a slim little fellow and very quiet.  Our dogs immediately took to William.  We’re looking forward to spending more time with our step grandson.

Anna ,our oldest daughter, and her husband, Jeff, have been married 16 years.  They are in the Great Smoky Mountains as I write –for their wedding anniversary celebration.  We’re taking care of their fish.  I don’t know what kind of fish it is.  She told me that I should probably clean out the fish bowl today.  Poor little fish didn’t know what to think when I took an ice  cream scoup to get him out of the dirty water into a glass of clean water–while I cleaned his bowl out.  He, She , whoever, is very happy and content now.

I also made my bread today and gave Ruthie some for their dinner this evening. 

I saved a little fudge to take to our coffee hour after church this coming Sunday.  A friend who dropped by yesterday –also got a chunk to take home. 

To me– these small celebrations make life worthwhile.  God Bless each of you!





July the 4th, l961

11 07 2011

I can’t let July gain too many more days before I write of my 50th anniversary of arriving in Hopkinsville, Ky.  My mother is a native of Hopkinsville.  She married a soldier from Camp Campbell in l943.  My parents moved to Lansing, Michigan so that my father could attend college to study to be an engineer.  Mother taught school in Lansing until her first son was born.  Then she became a homemaker.

I was actually born in Detroit.  Early in l960– my father pushed my mother to update her teacher’s certificate.  We all sensed things between my parents were not good.  By June l960– my father left.  My mother had already made arrangements to take classes at Wayne State University that summer.  She already had a babysitter lined up for us.  I can’t imagine how she managed all of that.  We didn’t have a car.  Mother took the bus to her classes each day. 

She did gain employment for the l960-l961 school year.  My youngest brother wasn’t even old enough for kindergarten.  So mother hired a sitter for him and she was at the house for us as well–when we arrived home from school.  Later, I found out that one particular couple befriended my mother and loaned her the money to accomplish all of these feats.  This couple had been friends with my parents for a very long time. 

I have the actual letters of correspondence between my mother and grandmother about the pros and cons of moving back to Hopkinsville.  In the end, mother decided that she needed to be where her family was living. 

We were renting a house –so it made it a little easier to uproot.  We left by train on the afternoon of July the 3rd, l961. A train ride from Detroit to Hopkinsville was a great adventure to four children.  The stop in Chicago was especially fun.  Mother let us have soda fountain treats and she bought us plenty of comic books. 

Arriving in Hopkinsville, Ky about 8:00 a.m. on July the 4th–we were met at the train station by my mother’s brother and her sister.  Grandmother was waiting for us with open arms.  She had buckwheat pancakes already made up.  We were to live with Grandmother in her part of the house until school started.  Then we would move upstairs.  There was a young married couple who had planned to leave that apartment the end of August.

Grandmother had endured a mastectomy the summer of l960.  Now that I am 59 years old and a grandmother myself–I can’t imagine how she took us into her home.  That was a very generous deed!

Grandmother made sure our lives were full of structure.  She never allowed us to sleep in or be lazy.  We always had to help with chores around her home.  And church was a part of our education, too.  Not only did we attend church on Sunday mornings–we also attended all the youth activities on Sunday and Wednesday nights, too. 

Mother taught school at the old Westside School the first year.  After that first year, she taught at the old Virginia St. school.  That was just a few houses from our home.  Her last year of teaching was at the brand new Holiday Elementary School. 

Mother died of breast cancer in l985.  Grandmother died when I was 25 years old of heart problems. I left home when I was 19 to attend Southeastern Bible College in Birmingham, Al.  I met my husband there.  He was raised in Iowa.  We moved back to Hopkinsville in l985. Hopkinsville has been a great place to raise our four children.

The structure and love my grandmother gave me as I was growing up has stayed with me my entire life.  I’m not much of one for sleeping in.  I always see my dear grandmother’s face.  I feel her with me all the time.  I keep pushing on in life because of the building blocks of love and leadership that she provided for me.

My brothers have often spoken of the same sense of grandmother’s influence. The four of us have done well in life.  One brother is a college professor, another is a lawyer, another works for  the state in Denver, Co.  I have been a teacher/homemaker.  Together all of our children have grown up to have multi-varied talented careers.  My children love to hear about Grandmother B.  They cherish her memory even though they never knew her. 

I, too, have survived a mastecomy.  I am a 4th generation breast cancer survivor. 

Today the old train station is now the center of Art’s here in Hopkinsville.  I drive by the old station several times a week.  Always, the memories of arriving on that train in l961 flood my mind.

Thank you Grandmother B for taking such good care of us.

God bless each of you!





Memory Lane With My Grandsons

9 07 2011

What a morning Jim and I had going through all of our pictures and videos on  our computer.  We haven’t been the best at keeping up with organizing all of our cyber memories.  Thanks to our daughter, Vera, we have all of 2008 and 2009 photos  and videos  neatly organized.  The rest of our memories are not. 

First, we went through all of our pictures of the last year into our present moment in 2011.  As Jim showed them – I made note of the different categories .  This will make it easy now to place our photos in albums. 

Lastly, we reviewed all the albums that Vera had set up for us.  When this video showed up–I knew that I had to share it on today’s blog.  The boys have grown up so much.  No longer do they want me to read stories to them or spend time working with coloring .  Yes, those days are gone forever.  But I’m glad that I have so many wonderful memories of spending time with the boys in their young days. 

This video also makes me miss Vera.  She  spent 16 months with us.( She lives in Pittsburgh, Pa. now)  She was a great help with the boys.  I’m also grateful that she was still living with us when Jim had his second Aortic episode in October of 2008.  This clip was made 5 months before his second trip to Vanderbilt Medical Center.

Now the boys have a precious brother who everyone calls “P”.  P is getting a head start with this social media age.  I doubt that we will have the same experience that I had with his brothers.  P will be 2 in September.

Hope you enjoy the Youtube.  God bless each of you! And, a great big thanks to Jim to making this video a Youtube. 








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