Thursday, December 31, 2009

I am

no longer just the grandmother of 10, I am now a great grandmother! Yeah! Lucy Katharine was born this morning and she is beauteous! I saw a photo. I've been waiting for this for a very long time, and am so happy for Susan and Adam. A great journey is ahead of them and they will love it.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Practicing photos today......

My family is my true heart's home. But---------------here is the other heart's home of mine. St. Teresa beach. We try to go every summer , because we are indoctrinating our children to the wonders of this place. Also it is very healing for arthritics, of which I am one. Part of me will always be in this place, where I grew up.
Loverly, isn't it?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Before you, you see a genuine, honest to
goodness, Texas Red Oak - aka my meditation tree.

Here, y0u see genuine west Texas snow. This is a really big deal for us, honestly.
F0r snow and trees and all God's gifts, may Jesus Christ be praised!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Funny -

I am not "into" Christmas they way I used to be. Why is this? Only some vague ideas. I haven't had a 'regular' Christmas tree for years. No big one with all the family legendary ornaments, made by our children, by Aunt Betty, etc. It just doesn't fit, anymore. I have a 4' very narrow tree with white lights - I wrapped it with silver stuff to stand in the window. Across from my chair is my favorite fiberoptic one - changes colors all the time and is very soothing. But it's really not for Christmas. Sometimes it stays up for months, just because I like to look at it - more like an accessory than a Christmas tree. Maybe when we were all together as a family, all that love in one place made it Christmas. Maybe though the love is still there. But, also maybe, as our lives draw to a close, we are to leave the tryanny of the urgent (trees, parties, gifts )and just let it be to meditate on the message of what the coming of Jesus has and will mean to our existence. I find myself more and more drawn to books about Jesus and what He wants from us, and how, and now my library sack looks very different from the way it used to. I have a grand book on the 'collects' for each Sunday of the church year, which I pick up and down. When I read it, I really need a highlighter because it has all become so very important. I want to preach again.
Christmas is no longer about tinsel and parties and, ruefully about wide eyed children on Christmas morning. I do miss that, as they begin to learn what gifts are to them, in order to understand later what the greatest gift means to them.But it seems to me that the plethora of surprising gifts most of our children receive, and the fact that they believe they came from a wondrous, mythical creature who operates from love, is a forerunner of our real truth. As adults, we also receive a surprising and wondrous gift from a mysterious Father just because He loves us. We can't meet him yet, but his gift is always there for us to take. Real magic! Jesus is the gift and it's not just for Christmas but for all time. How telling to begin teaching this to children with Santa Claus, and them easing over into God the Father who loves us more than even Santa Claus does.
Our family love continues to grow as we remain close in spite of grandchildren scattered all over the U.S. We love from a distance, and we pray that they all come to understand what Christmas is really all about - and how very important that understanding is. I no longer need the hoopla - it is enough to have family who love us and care about us and to grow in the knowledge and love of our Lord.

Blessings to you all at this time, and always.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


my three erands have morphed into one. I just can't run all over town chasing places that sell the Kraft garlic cheese and I can't make garlic cheese grits without it. So-- later for that one. I am taking my eggnog pumpkin pie to the congregational dinner tomorrow, instead. Much easier, but sorry to disappoint the folks waiting for the grits.

Also, just can't get to the UPS place today, (it is mobbed and the lines are forever) so those pkgs will go out Monday. Barb,I know yours will be waiting for you. Have a safe trip to New York.

I will, however, go to the library. After all, I do have an accurate idea of what is important.

This is not the season to be running from pillar to post, but to be in prayer and meditation. I'm starting that now, tho I don't promise to meditate Monday when they stick all those honking big needles into my spine. Bleah!!!

It does seem to me that it is almost impossible to maintain calm at this time of year. Maybe if we ran away to a retreat center, we could center ourselves. Or maybe we are supposed to learn to do this through0ut all the hoo-hah that surrounds us. Lord help us to see through all of that to the really important event of the time of year.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Also, last night,

I sat beside my wonderful Saxon (grand) who warned me before the program started that he hoped I had brought my ear plugs. I asked the required 'why' and he told me that everybody in the program sang very loudly and very off key. Well, ummm, there were some off key parts, but it was grand anyway. Nancy's class sang Silent Night in both English and German. A couple of classes did songs such as 'The first day of christmas' and used the 'card up' ploy we used to use in the card section of football games back in the early '50's. Very effective and funny! And the first grade! Well they sang about Rudolph and each of them was holding a red lollipop over their noses. Spencer played in the elementary recorder part of theprogram. He promises to teach me to play one. You would think I could figure it out, but no!
Sax also commented that he certainly was glad he wasn't in this program any more. He is certainly pleased to be in middle school. I think he feels infinitely superior.
Also, Mally and her scout troop came by tonight and sang their two Christmas carols for us. We have photos coming to prove it.
Tomorrow I have three errands and I am finished!!! and finished in many ways. Now I plan to steep myself in the mystery of Christmas, where I should have been for the last three weeks.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Mertzon Elementary Christmas Program

Just returned home from a great program. You'd never know they put it together from ideation on in just one week. It was just great. Then the high school band played. They are fantastic. Watching them come in and out with their parts as directed, makes me sad that we don't have a choir which sings parts. I particularly love motets. But our music is worshipful and very excellent. I can't complain because I'm not going to do anything about it. I do have the children's choir. Our next song is our first outing with 'sort of' instruments. Should be interesting. We are singing an African song' Jesu, Jesu. We have sticks, a tambourine, things with sandpaper to rub against each other and many, many bells. I am warming them up for the next one, which is "The Holy Ghost will set your feet a dancing!" I think the whole church will be dancing after that one! Come and hear!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


I've just finished reading a humongous book. 'Haj 'by Leon Uris. Very well written, but the way the Arab world works (or doesn't work) makes me feel as if I am in the dryer and it is going. As portrayed, most of them don't really like each other. Or anyone else, either. Oh well.

Went to the livestock show in Mertzon lately. It's really neat to see the children with their animals - they have to know how to show them and keep them in the right position. Saxon's pig (first time for pigs) was neat. First I saw the pig sound asleep in it's pen with Sax sound asleep, head on the pig's belly. I had to leave after the sheep, goats and rabbits, but Nancy said the pig earned a 3rd place - the judges said he was too fat. One lady told Nancy to exercise next year's pig more. She said she played soccer with her pig. Nancy plans to do that and I plan to go and watch. Remembering this should be enough to make me giggle in the middle of something serious, anywhere and anytime.

Looking for Mary Beth this weekend. Hoozah!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Pictures in blog posts!!!

Here is Mally at the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab in Panacea, FL.

Hi everyone! Guest post by Mary Beth to show Mom how to include photos in blog posts. Look for more soon!

Also, this is her 200th post, so give a cheer!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

MRI report

Well, family and friends, things aren't looking so good here. I had read the MRI report and knew there were problems, but didn't realize that I have "pushed the limit of my luck" with my back. I have an appointment with the neurosurgeon mid December (I will call and ask to be pushed up if there is a cancellation) and see when he wants do this surgery. There are 4 discs involved and one is in a disastrous position, so I am to be careful and not go near a chiropractor till this is over. My doctor was just wringing his hands. He did say he didn't want me to go go Dallas for this shoulder after the back. Said to remember he has two patients in this family and he doesn't want dad having to drive back and forth from Denton to Dallas every day. I may have to anyway, but there is a possibility of a new ortho person at the other hospital who has the experience to do a reverse shoulder replacement. First things first, however.

I'd hoped I was through with all this operation stuff. Maybe someday.

I hope you all are having a magnificent Thanksgiving this Thursday. Scooter, Nancy and children and we are going to Big Lake to Scooter's cousins ranch house. We've been before and really enjoy being there. Lots of people, good food and good company.

Prayers for all of you who are traveling over the weekend. You Barnes who are all in New York, give Susan an extra hug from us.

Blessings on you all......

Sunday, November 22, 2009


A quick note here. After the sermon this morning, one lady was so excited she stood up and began to clap. Lot's of us felt like it, but pastor went right on as if it hadn't happened. Why can't we stand up and clap for a particularly meaningful message? I was so awed by what he had said I hadn't entertained the idea of clapping.

I am already tired of 'happy holidays'. My response is 'and a very blessed Christmas to you!' Holidays indeed!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

a phone call

When I heard from my sister the other day, it was a great suprise. We had talked briefly a few times since we left Florida. She's in a really bad way and I will phone our mutual cousin to try to set up some help for her. This situation is one of those generational things. We were abused both physically and emotionally as children, but we responded very differently. I didn't buy into the control the abuser needed, and was able to break the cycle later in life. My sister didn't, and her first husband was a physical and emotional abuser. Now she is married to the king of emotional abuse. I had never realized the exent of this until I talked with Mary Beth about it - she was able to clarify it. My mom was also abused as a child. Blessedly, I was able to raise children who put up with no crap from anyone. I pity anyone who tries to abuse any of them! Sister didn't and she and her children are totally estranged.
I need to credit my father who helped me break the cycle and get out of it. He was also a victim, to some extent.
So, if I can help sister Nancy get on Medicaid, get food stamps and find a free lawyer (legal aid, perhaps) who may can help her protect herself. Maybe. That's about all I can do but pray and I do that without ceasing. At 73 I am not sure she is able to even understand how she got into the mess and I'm also not sure she is not too afraid to try to get out.
May the good Lord take care of her and strengthen her.

PS Just had a phone visit with said cousin. She is all set to find all the things Nancy needs. Thank you God for family who love us.

Monday, November 9, 2009

a really good day.....

Saturday, Nancy dropped off Saxon for a while so she could take the others to the mall (gag!). We had such a glorious time, that when she came to get him dressed for a wedding they were going to, I asked if he couldn't just stay. She asked him if he really wanted to go to the wedding and he had spent the morning telling us how much he didn't want to go. She let him stay the whole day and they drove off with Spencer shouting that he didn't want to go to the wedding either. It's his turn next. It was an eye opening day. First we played Up Words (for those not familiar, it is Scrabble with a third dimension variable ) And he Won! By a lot! One of his words, I just had to challenge - he went to the computer and found it. It is really Latin but is used contemporarily so much that I allowed it. Really humiliating to be the 'words person' gran and be so stomped. But it makes me proud too. He is a joy to be around. When I ask for help, he is up and ready to do whatever I ask. We cleaned out the jewelry chest so it can go and live in Mally's room. He was even impressed with some of the jewelry (costume, fer sure).
About this time, he found my magnifying glass and after receiving assurance that it was indeeed glass, and not plastic, he raced out ahd burned holes in many leaves. Not sure if he tackled the ant bed or not. I cautioned him as they are fire ants and they really mean business.
Then the Preppers lady came (pre packaged meals ready to cook, and frozen. He put some in the freezer and told me there was no more room for the rest. I showed him how to make room. There's always a way. He wanted to make a pumpkin pie but I was unprepared with piecrusts and eggnog. Both boys and I usually spend a lot of time in the fall making these and gobbling them down.
Grandaddy took him over to the club house and they played pool and a form of table shuffleboard. It seems that he slid a puck and it stopped and then, unexpectedly it moved some more. He wonders if this is magic. And the crowning event! He is now taller than I am! So I am looking up to these last grands.

Meanwhile, grandaughter Susan is having our first great grand. A girl, and I need to finish this baby blanket. We are pretty excited, though we won't see her much as they live in New York. Pictures are always good, though and if they come to Houston, we will try to go over and see them.
At the family reunion before last I was able to hold twin great, great niece/nephews. Amazing to see the generations come along behind us.

Next, one of the other grands will come for a day and I will tell you all the exciting things we do. These days are really high points for us.

Friday, November 6, 2009

chortle, chortle

:) :) :) :) --- also yippee skippee and huzzah!

I have been cut off from my computer for two days! It demanded a password which I didn't have and couldn't get. The clue was daughter. I tried all of your combinations, including the names of all of you at once, and no go. A wonderful computer man just came out here for slightly over an hour and found it - it was "marybethie" of all things. Now I don't need this pw any longer. He found massive infections and removed them, adding a new filter syster. He also checked for the parental control blocker and couldn't find it. So now I know to look at my spam before I ditch it.

Honestly, this has been almost as bad as nicotine withdrawal. I have felt cut off, desolate, etc. But this loverly man has said to call anytime and ask any questions I have. He does a lot of work out here and is kind enough to come to our homes, being that we are all doddering.

First, gotta high five for Mary Beth for her new, wonderful job. I still expect books from her one of these days. I know they are in there. She will really enjoy this work.

Otherwise our lives are moseying right along. We are preparing for the day when we will have to leave our church building. It may not happen, since the suit is still in action, but it may. We are trying to identify what we have purchased so that we take only that which is ours. We have several options of where to go while we finish the court doings. Then we either get our church, or we go find or build another one. Whatever.

Kudos to Katie for selling all those scarves for me! You are greatly appreciated, Katie! If you have any suggestions as to what sort of thing sells best, do let me know. Sarah just called with a couple of new orders, but I have to go out and chase down purple eyelash yarn. If it exists, Hobby Lobby will have it there. We don't have a proper yarn shop in SA. Sanger, I think, is the school with purple and gold for colors. I make these, changing colors half way through (behind the neck). I'm not knitting as much as my hands get tired sooner than they did. NOt fun. But I can still play with the yarn.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Friday Five

On this Friday before Reformation Sunday, let's talk about music. Share with us five pieces of music that draw you closer to the Divine, that elevate your mood or take you to your happy place. They might be sung or instrumental, ancient or modern, sacred or popular...whatever touches you.

Some of us even love hymns. (Well, I do.)"
1)Faure “Requiem Mass”
2) Peter, Paul and Mary “Where have all the flowers gone?”
3) Mozart Requiem Mass
4) Shall we gather at the River?”
5) Lift High The Cross
6) I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light

I know, that's one extra. There are many others - Music is a huge part of my life.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

golf or not?

When DH and I married in 1964, I decided I wanted to learn golf. I had taken lessons before our wedding and once when he came to visit we went out to play. I hit a monstrous stroke - the ball hit two trees and wound up just an inch from a (?) hole in one. This irritated him enormously. When we went to live in Texas, I tried playing with him, but my tennies slipped. He wanted to get me golf shoes with cleats. I really worked at explaining that I needed to play barefooted. I like my bare feet on the ground, and I found I could hold on with my toes. If this sounds simian, consider the source. At any rate, such a thing is apparently "just not done". My friend Heather and I played several times, just as barefooted as yard dogs, but I learned to watch DH play. He just never could convince me that 'real' golfers wore proper shoes. I remembered this when I wrote the previous post about shoes and feet. I just never liked shoes. I do like to watch golf on TV. Nobody yells.

Friday, October 16, 2009


October 16, 2009
Friday Five: Feets

1. What is your favorite footwear at this time in your life? Always SAS shoes or sandals with the left foot built up 3/8" (because the left hip replacement left my leg short by that much. Bah)

3. What kind of shoes did you wear in your childhood? Tennies? Mary Janes?
There were no tennies when I was a child - they hadn't been invented. Yes, I am ancient. We wore only leather shoes - that was our only choice. Capezios were a favorite for school and something disgusting and shiny, like leather Mary Janes for church. As a teenager, I loved 3" heels and wore them whenever possible. When I had a tall boyfriend, I even wore them to class in college. Ruined my feet, they did.

4. How do you feel most comfortable? Barefoot, flip-flops, boots, or what? Barefoot is great but I keep the house too cool for it to be comfortable. Slippers are nice, or sandals, even with socks.
Growing up, we never wore shoes except in the winter, at school or church. The minute we got home from school, the shoes came off! Trees are much easier to climb barefoot, but we had to wear shoes to roller skate.

5. What kind of socks do you like, if any? Very soft, with no elastic in the ankle to cut off circulation (I told you I was ancient)

Bonus: Anything you want to share about feet or footwear. I insist that my shoes NEVER hurt my poor feet. And that includes hurting this bunion I am ignoring.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Church of the Dog

I don't usually comment too much on the many books I have read, but I am going to mention Church of the Dog. This book came to me in a sack from a friend. She and her husband buy books by the dozens. I can't imagine having to find a place to put them, but she is good about sharing them. Usually her books are murder mysteries, so imagine my suprise to find Church of the Dog included. It took me a bit to orient myself to this story, but it turns out to be a luminous and enchanting book. Mara (protagonist) lives a life similar to the one I had during that brief time when I was responsible to absolutely no one for my life. Part of this was during university, when we formed and reformed vastly unlike groups who somehow fit together, and drifted apart when the need came. This sounds absolutely an unreliable way to live, and it was, but it worked until it didn't. Sorry if this doesn't make sense. This is a sort of story of magic and of redemption and can open us to the magic in our lives. I plan to read her other books. PS If you read this, don't miss the answer to the second question on page 217. One of my daughters will recognize herself here.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Thoughts about The Pain and the Promise

You will see this book listed on my book list. Mary Beth found it by "accident". This will be a long post as it is my reaction to what I read. I start by saying I am astounded that so much could have been going on in my home town, about which I knew very little. This book documents the people involved, both white and black, in the efforts to bring about integration. I knew very few of the black people, and almost all of the white. These were my parents friends, their children were my friends, and their sons my occasional dates. In my childhood, Tallahassee had about 25 thousand people in residence. Today is another world, totally. I did know that were sit-ins at the lunch counters downtown and boycotts of the buses, but had no idea of police brutality or jailing, etc. The editor of our local paper was very clever in what he did and did not print, and even that information was filtered through my dad. I had no idea the Episcopal clergy at FSU along with other clergy persons were deeply involved.

Since I lived both in and out of Tallahassee during the 17 or so years it took to bring about the end of segregation, and since Tallahassee is my town, I think I can offer insight into the years I was actually there. I was born in 1931. The only pertinent happening in my memory was from my early childhood when mamma and my nursemaid would take me downtown. I always called her Addie Pye Poogie since I tripped over her last name - Pryor. I can remember always wanting to know, and loudly, why Addie had a different bathroom than I did and I wanted to go and see it. More, I wanted to use it, because Iloved Addie. I also wanted to taste the water in 'her' fountain and see if it tasted different from that in 'mine'. I was an unusually curious child and 'why' was always my favorite word. My mother shushed me as best she could. I don't think she felt strongly about the situation, but was anxious that I not attract the attention of the people (white) around us who would probably wonder why Mary was raising a child who would ask these unsuitable questions.

In 1948, when the first 'sit-ins' started at the corner drug store downtown, I was a junior at Leon High school. Many of my friends went daily downtown to that boycotted drugstore for a coke after school. I didn't go, since my $2.00 monthly allowance didn't buy too many cokes and because I was expected at home to help with the housework. When I heard what was happening, I asked my mom why the store didn't just sell the cokes to whomever wanted them, and when they were finished they would leave. It made perfect sense to me at the time. She again shushed me and told me it would never work. Mom was not born into the carefully honed society of Tallahassee, but married into it. It was a very stilted, rigid society, but she enjoyed it and never understood why I didn't. I didn't run into the bus boycotts, because it cost money to ride the bus, and I usually didn't have any. As a child I was sometimes given a couple of nickels for rides back and forth to FSU for my piano lesson, but usually we walked. Just guessing, now, I would imagine it was near to a couple of miles each way, but we had always walked everywhere we went, so it didn't bother us. I heard about it however and, again, didn't see what difference places on the bus mattered. I didn't voice this to mother,however, because I knew she was fearful I would blurt out something that might make people ostracize her and dad.

Daddy worked in the Lewis State Bank, and I worked there from 1949-1953, all the summers, Easter and Christmas vacations from University. This helped finance my education. I was honored, when I graduated, to have the bank offer me a regular job - honored and very surprised - I am terrible with numbers. Daddy and I walked to work, back home for a noon main meal, back to the bank for the afternoon. I don't remember him ever mentioning the subject of integration to me so I have no sure knowledge of how he felt - but I can guess. My own grandfather stopped going to church for fear some unknown black person might show up to worship with us. How Christian of him! It sounds ridiculous now to say I simply didn't know what was happening regarding jailing, etc. The newspaper went into daddy's hands and the rest of us seldom saw it. Not much radio and certainly no TV existed. In the bank we had both black and white customers and never had any problem.

From 1951-1953, I lived in Gainesville, Florida, attending the University of Florida, from which I graduated in 1953. Later in 1953, I went about half way down the state to Citrus County to work in the county schools as a speech-language pathologist. When I arrived, one of the first questions from my new county superintendent was whether I would mind working in the black (segregated) schools as well as the white ones. I told him I had no problem with this. And I didn't. The only problem I saw was that the black schools were pathetically inadequate, as were the teachers. It is a miracle anyone ever learned anything there. But God is in the miracle business, and children who really want to learn will usually do so even in meager circumstances - and some of them did. I taught in a central hall there, with the only wood stove in the school, or on an unheated school bus, or in other inadequate places for teaching to take place. The white schools were not much better - I used freezing auditoriums or broom closets, or the ends of halls.

After the two years in Citrus County, I moved to Atlanta to work in a residential school for speech/language impaired children. I was there for four years, and had two children during that time. I returned to Tallahassee in 1959 to live with my parents and my children. I went to work in the local schools in my specialty, and in a still segregated situation. Once I was called to the black Miccosukee school to evaluate a high 'at risk' child and went gladly. I asked several people in authority, several times, if they wouldn't like me to cover the black schools. Each time, I was given an emphatic 'NO'. But my repeated questioning, I like to think, caused the school board to hire a black specialist for those schools. She was from the north and I was impressed by her education and training. She, in turn, was not impressed by the schools she was serving. Several times, she and I met in secret, at her schools, as she found she could not even understand the children when they spoke. I also tested with her. We never told anyone, because I knew they would tell me I couldn't go. On the theory that it's easier to say "I'm sorry" than to ask permission and have it denied, I just did it. Now, I don't think anyone cared enough to even see what we were doing. I sometimes wonder if I was ignored - maybe my readiness to go and help would have caused the house of cards to fall sooner than it did.

During this time period, I employed a caregiver for my children while I worked, as mother informed me she had no intention of raising my children. Well, ok. I insisted on registering Genie into the Social Security program, and we both paid for it. When I found that she could neither read nor write, I taught her to write her name so she could sign official documents with something other than "X". It was a real labor for us both, but she was really proud and lived to be grateful for the money I made her put into social security.

In 1964, I remarried and moved to Texas to live. My new husband asked me if I had any prejudice against Hispanics - I asked how I could when I had never met one? It turns out I didn't and don't. When we returned to live on the beach island in north Florida in 1991, I taught in both the Leon and Wakulla County school systems for 6-7 years in completely integrated schools. No problems there, but I did have to spend some time with my black students convincing them that they were really and truly just as good as anyone else and could, with work, be successful in their lives. It takes work for anyone to be successful. In 1999 I re-retired from work and we returned to Texas to be near our six children and their families.

One of the problems of integration, when it first happened was the fate of many of the black teachers. Their educational backgrounds were so deprived by the system in which they were educated, that they often lacked a store of knowledge common to more fortunate teachers. They were helped by all the teachers, and most of them made the transition and went on to be teachers in an integrated system.

In retrospect, I was raised in an atmosphere with a large strain of fear in it - fear of black people. No one was ever specific to me, but I was taught that Tallahassee was 60% black (not true) and that the black people might rise up and riot and hurt us. Silly as that sounds, this was a pervasive fear, and fear was all around us - thick as molasses. I think it was a justified fear and that the people who felt it knew perfectly well they were doing wrong, but they seemed to think they needed some group to whom they could feel superior. There is a cause for this, even if it isn't a reason - when you consider that we were also raised to be very very angry about the treatment of the south by the Carpetbaggers after the Civil War. Silly, you say, and years after the fact, yet the agricultural south felt the revenge of the Carpetbaggers more than anyone else, and Tallahassee is and was an agricultural area. Of the entire south, these farmers suffered more than any other group. Tallahassee was also one rather small town, surrounded by even smaller towns, much as San Angelo is today, in Texas. The only connection we had with the 'outside' world was every two years when the legislature came to town. Tallahassee was busy then - these men (yes, all men) came either to work or to party and plenty of both went on. So, in this atmosphere of isolation, there ws no one in town or near town with the sophistication to say, basically, 'hey, you folks just get over yourselves and get on with the world after the war (often called the 'war of northern aggression'). But Tallahassee had not forgotten the aftermath of the Civil War, to the point that it had seemingly become part of the DNA of their memories. They feasted on it. There is a hatred there, going back many,many years. And remember, the south is the only part of the United States on whose land a lost war has been fought. From the people I talk to now, this fear and hatred is finally dissipating. God knows, I hope so. It is past time we stopped looking back and looked forward. There will always be people who are so inadequate that the will search for someone to whom they can feel superior. Dumb as this is, it will probably always be true. But true integration of the public schools has happened in Tallahassee, of all places. Since there was no busing, some of the schools were largely still black and poor white. To the credit of the school board, they took the worst of these schools and inaugurated an IB (International Baccalaureate) program there, and it did draw many students with fine minds to the schools. If you get to know people it's harder to hate (or fear) them than it is if they remain a faceless group. Remember that. And if I remember fear, I shudder to think what the black people felt. I thank God daily for Martin Luther King for teaching peaceful resistance instead of taking up arms. Talk about a war on US soil! It would have been a massacre.

Another thing worth mentioning here is that our beloved governor, Leroy Collins blew his (very, very good) chance ultimately at the presidency of this country by going on public radio and telling Florida that the time for peaceful integration had come. Redneck Florida just blew him off for that, even though he was speaking his conscience and his conviction - as well as the obvious truth. To his credit, I am sure he felt it worth while to speak the truth as he saw it, but I grieve for the potential loss to our country. He could have been one of our greatest presidents. (redneck literally means you work out in the sun daily,and your neck is always burned from it.)

Once, during the years I worked at the bank, I was at a window in the savings department. My work there changed every two weeks as other employees went on vacation and I took their places. This particular day I could not balance my cash drawer at the end of the day, but was short. Happily, we were not required to make this up. The next day, the coach from Florida A&M University (then a non- integrated black school) came in and spoke to an officer. He was well known and regarded by the entire community. His message was that a man he knew came to him and said "that lady in the first window at the bank gave me too much money in change yesterday, and I am afraid I'll get into trouble if I to take it back". The coach was returning my shortfall. Just imagine fearing trouble for doing the honest thing. Their fear must have vastly exceeded ours, and ours made us pretty uncomfortable - I feel sure the discomfort came from knowing we were wrong, wrong, wrong. May God forgive us all.

In retrospect, if I am not prejudiced against people of other colors, am I prejudiced against anyone? I don't think it is prejudice, but frustration and exasperation I feel at the people who would like to kill me because my God is not their God, but I suspect their motives are prejudicial. Again, education is what is needed. I also am appalled at anyone who does not want to learn new things and do a better job of being a good citizen. Education is out there and it's free - go and get some and keep learning all of your life!

Living in a town (San Angelo) which is much like Tallahassee in its relative isolation and being surrounded by many smaller towns, what I believe will keep us clear of what happened in Tallahassee and other places, is communication. The internet has opened the entire world to us all, and we can't put the genie back in the bottle -although places like Iran have tried. We are more connected to each other than ever before. There are dangers here for us, but the benefits are incalculable. Thanks to whomever developed this kind of communication.

Thanks to those who managed to wade through this trip back in memory. It was illuminating for me to write it.

Friday, September 25, 2009

I think I may have finally grown up...

and I don't like it very much. I have always loved Disneyesque movies. I agonized over finding Nemo and Chloe is my favorite Sesame street character. Last night, I saw advance previews of many new movies of this type and with the exception of Where The Wild Things Are, I kept thinking 'spare me!" Are they newly stupid or am I finally grown? This isn't what I wanted to happen even at almost 78. Help! I don't like this grown up stuff.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

written at the beach

by my very good friend, Muriel.

Among the trees that arch the bay

The mumbling bees drop in to pray

Taking Communion hour by hour

From the Chaliced purple flower

The chorister mouse sedately walks

Among the aisles of seaweed stalks

The butterflies like angels passed

Above the buttresses of grass

And here the gentle God is praised

Where chanted psalms to Him are raised

By murmurings of man, bee, and mouse

Among the pillars of His house.

By Muriel Christian Crusoe

Sunday, September 13, 2009

falling, falling

Yep, I fell again. Saturday morning as I was leaving for a study session at church, I turned my body toward the door and started out. Somehow, my feet didn't turn. Dad says a shoe was in the way - whatever, I cracked the floor again. Got to that meeting, skipped the next one and was pretty sure I had a broken foot. After a really bad night, and prayer, realized that no - no break. The sprain is getting better but it still takes a walker outside and a cane inside. It could have been so bad and it isn't! Joy! I see the ortho guy tomorrow for more shoulder shots and I'll get him to check it out. Already I am paring the coming week down to the bone so I can mostly stay home. As my friend, Pooh says, Oh bother!

It has rained for three-four days here. We always get a 10-15 minute downpour and then it's over. This is just amazing. If you put your head outside and are very quiet, you can actually hear the grass grow. It may even start singing.

I've recently finished an amazing book about the racial integration of Tallahassee, Fla. It holds the dubious distinction of being the last city to cave in. I am writing a commentary on this - we are talking about my home town here, and while I was not in residence much of the time, there are things that need to be said here. IMHO only.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Ok, so I found the photo of the clapotis (nifty shawl) in Webs magazine, fell in love and chased it all over the internet. When I finally found it, I printed (free pattern- yeah!) and I now have it. Read thru it and realize that I really don't know what some of those abbreviations mean? But, looking at it, I think I might be able to do it without the pattern. Moral of this story. People who use abbreviations should provide translations.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

another day,

no more dollars. Oh well. The weather is cooling a little bit, and everyhthing helps when we have been running wellover 100 for a couple of months. We all pray for rain and occasionally we get about 20 minutes worth.

I've not posted lately, because I have difficulty using my left hand and arm. One doctor thinks the arm is broken, one says no, it is riddled with arthritis and osteoporosis. When I told him I don't have osteoporosis, he disagreed, saying it is impossible to be 77 and not have it. I shall tell him I will appreciate a test to prove that. We have no reliable dianosis for my pain (which kept me up till nearly three this morning) but I plan to not be cooperative about waiting weeks and weeks for an appointment and roar that I need one NOW. I expect we will need further tests to accurately diagnose this continuing problem. I cannot even chop onions, Dad is a little stunned that he actually has to peel them completely before chopping. He keeps giving me "why does this matter?" looks. I finally slept this morning about 3 AM, after hydrocodone, ice and prayer, listening to psalms - very soothing.

Nancy is still bringing me a mid sized chest of drawers for the bedroom, but shehas been covered up with various responsibilities. Mb will be here the 19th, and hopefully we can knock out the rest of this mass of paper.

Dad played golf his past week for the first timein several months. He enjoyed it, playing with a friend, and his game hadn't slipped too very much. He will be 84 very soon. At this point, neither of us really wants much that we don't already have. His blood tests were outstanding! Our doctor was dubious about us trying the Nutri system for diabetics, but it has been a miracle. His only problem was a possibly too low blood pressure. The dizziness problem seems solved since he has picked up his monthly B-12 shots. He had forgotten to go in each month.

The garden is a jungle at this point. Needs weeding and cutting back - one of these days. I have been forced to learn what can take care of itself in this alkaline soil and punishing heat, and those things which are adapted are actually still blooming. Probably some fertilizer would help. We make slow progress on trying to do something about this garage. have total faith that it will happen. Since I have a Mally box and know how to reach christians in Action (they pickup stuff) we are moving things out of here. I keep losing weight, but I'm afraid to get rid of the 'fat' clothes. Been here before and done that. But I may have to stop wearing my wedding ring as it keeps slipping off.

The hearing over our possession of our church building will be held soon. We would of course, like to keep it, and truly feel it is legally ours, however if the judgement goes against us, we will need to move. We had one judge whom we all approved (both sides) and after he started the hearings, he died. Two more were put up - we dismissed one, and the other side dismissed the other. So now we will have one and have no choice about it. It's in God's hands, here, I'm glad I don't have to worry aboutit.

There is nothing profound in this post - just our lives.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Anna is here!

My new housecleaner is here,busily working away. She is Sylvia's mom and I like her so very much! She is a terrific housecleaner. Even cleans the trash cans so they shine.

Huzzah, huzzah, huzzah!!! thank you Nancy, Sylvia and Anna, who brought this about!

If you are tired of being old and think you want
to be young again,

Remember Algebra!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Today I am ticked

at our President. He has actually said that he and God are going to be partners in the new medicare scheme when it comes to the proceedures used for patients in their old age. First of all, this is an extraordinary claim to make. I can't see God handing over the life span of anyone to President Obama. It is His purview alone, we just need to leave our lives in His hands. I object to any person deciding whether I can have any treatments except for my family and my doctors. Obama doesn't need in on these decisions.

We went to Nancy's Saturday to swim and visit. The boys each had a friend over and Mally was upstairs in her room. I'm pretty sure she was reading and I can't fault anyone for that since I spend most of my time reading. The boys swam with us, but mostly Nancy, Dad and I visited. This was great, since we haven't much time for just the three of us. While I always hurt the next day, I think sitting in the hot tub before we go home helps ease some of that. I've decided to go to the neurologist here. The last one (Fort Worth) demanded instant surgery (some 6 years ago) but this doctor doesn't believe in surgery unless nothing else works and he has lots of treatments he tries.

Saxon's friend was Hank, who is the new quarterback on the JV - Saxon is the manager and even helps occasionally with the varsity. He enjoys this and will do other activities later -tennis, golf, etc.

My bedroom looks as if a volcano erupted there. I am moving furniture and the floor is full of boxes of just 'stuff'. I wish I dared put them all in the garbage, but I don't. The good news is that when I go through these boxes I keep finding all these 'thingies' that I don't want, but won't throw away. So, now I keep a 'MallyBox' and put these things in for her babysitting business. Maybe they will go home with her clients - ok by me. I just don't want them here. Nancy is bringing me a loaner chest of drawers as the volcano also hit Mally's room. My standing mirror is going to her room also.

Working on a prayer shawl and a scarf and spinning some fleece for Mary Beth right now, but my left hand still isn't quite over the sprain from our week in Florida. That first finger lets me know when it is being overused. I'm going to order a woollee winder ( I know, you don't know what that is - don't worry about it) as it will give me larger bobbins and make it easier to spin.

Dad has been on altar service 4 weeks out of the last 5, and now with the new schedule he isn't on at all. They don't seem to spread this stuff out. I am lector one Sunday and then we can sit together in church.

Nothing really profound today except that all my neighbors hurt also. That's why I only talk to a few of them. Misery compounds. I prefer the folks at church. They have problems, but as a church we are pretty much overcomers.


Monday, August 24, 2009


It's been a long time since I blogged. When Mary Beth was here, she checked her blog, and it didn't go away. Today, by phone we (she) figured out what to tell me to do to get back to mine own. It worked!. If my computer just had a listening component, so I cold explain my problems to it, it would probably die laughing.

Church yesterday, loverly! Our preacher was a young man who, with his wife are training and raising funds to join friends in a mission in Moscow for two years. They have most recently, been in New Orleans with Crusade for Christ. Learning Russian must be a really hard job, being a different alphabet and all. After church, took communion to a friend who fell and broke her hip. She's 85, but she still goes to work every day. We are taking on a local school to sponsor. I am limited, but plan to volunteer one afternoon a week to read to or tutor or whatever. As long as I don't have to teach algebra, I'll be ok. I will also be prayer partners with the teacher and being there once a week will know the children and can pray probably more effectively for their needs. We'll see how this works out.

I have learned that I can only do two things in one day, or I simply forget to do them. There's probably a lot of wish fulfullment in this. I missed a meeting and a prayer and praise both this week, but when evening comes, we find we really want to stay in. Some of TV we both like but when it is awful, I just read and am able to block out the Tv if it isn't too loud. If it is, I complain and it goes down.

Teresa has quit and I now have no housecleaner. Looking, though. Surely someone will turn up before we drown. We are going to have to get someone out here to spot clean the carpet, but I don't want to do that befoe I finish moving the furniture in my room. I've been using the hose soaker on the garden, but only the yellow bells and the yellow lantana are blooming. The rest looks like a jungle. Some pots need to come out and some need moving - we'll get to that when I have help. Nancy is coming in a while when school gets going, with a truck and some boy scouts and they will clean out this garage. Can't wait!. I have two rugs which are going away this week, and a bag of angora, which looks a beautiful tan, but I expect to turn white when I wash it. That's on for today.

KIds were here for a couple of hours on Saturday and we had FUN. Mally, Spencer and I played aggravation and Sax played some game or other. Mally was very calm and encouraging to the two of us, and I'm glad to see this developing. She was a good sport about not winning also. Spencer said he'd teach me to play Texas Hold 'Em but when we started it turned out he really wasn't sure how it went. Last week when Mary Beth was here, she, Dad and I went to the Scotts (Scooter,Nancy and Mally weren't home) and used the pool for a very long time. Spencer and I solved lots of the problems of the world, just floating around. then we were all hungry, so we sent Spencer out to the henhouse and all 5 of us had scrambled cheese eggs and toast for dinner. Yummy! They are so much fun.

Mary Beth will be back next month for a weekend and I hope to get the rest of these piles of paper either filed, shredded or ditched. She's great help. I have a box of 5 scarves to get off to Katie and a book to get off to Mary Bethie. This is the week - not a lot going on to confuse me. (Not that I'm not generally confused.)

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Thursday, Dad asked me to go to see the new Harry Potter film with him. Yes, he really did - are you astounded too? He just knew I wanted to go. As usual, I stewed over the parts that they left out, but I don't really want to be in the theater 10 hours or so watching the whole thing. There seemed to be a lot of whooshing around going on in this one. Very fast. Too fast...

After, we used a gift card and went to Chili's, where we found the 2 for $20. dinners. We ordered our appetizer and when we had finished that we were ready to go home. We made a serious effort to eat our entree and quickly gave up, taking both that and our mini desserts home. The next night we ate from their menu again. It was novel, and fun.

Mally had a great time at camp. She chose the medical track this year and ended up by dissecting both an arm and a cow's heart. She was indignant that the cow's heart squirted 'cow juice' on her. Probably formaldehyde. Yuk. But she is sick now - with a bad throat. Since they are planning a a trip to Schlitterbahn, Nancy will probably take her to the Doc in a Box for some help to get her well.

Scooters dear Aunt Mary has died and we will go to the visitation tonight and the funeral in the morning. She was a lovely lady and very gracious and kind to us both -- we thought very highly of her. She was always interested in Scooter and gave him a great deal of academic help while he was in college.

At the doctors suggestion I tried knitting again with this sprained finger. Yesterday at the Fiber Arts group I discovered I can't use the finger yet, but the second finger works just fine, so I'm off again. So many projects in mind that I have trouble deciding what to do next.


Monday, August 3, 2009

Round up---

I have been invited to attend the West Texas Crochet and Knit Round-Up here this next weekend. I am thinking that I may go for a little while - I'm not able to stand for very long, or walk around. I think I'd just like to see who is there and how this goes. Started by a young service wife whose husband in stationed at Goodfellow, here, this is really going 'uptown'. The real reason I'm not interested is that she plans for us to start two different guilds -one for knitting, one for crocheting and pay dues to each as well as elect officers. The guild I now attend has both knitting and crocheting, and I even offered a spinning demo for a program once. We provide programs from our membership mostly by volunteers. The potential guild offers classes, and conventions. Also they talk of organizing as in officers and dues, etc. I really want to run away here. At my age I really enjoy the two groups in which I participate. In one we chip in a dollar each time we come for a gift for the church in which we are meeting. The other one is in our church and costs nothing. We have no officers, nobody reading minutes, no real agenda except to help and teach each other and create things for both hospital NICU's and for the church, as well as for ourselves. People have tried to organize me all my life and I still don't like it. So I think I'll stick with what I have.

At church yesterday, friends were horrified at my recent fall. They had threatened me earlier to wrap me in bubble wrap - several layers. Now they talk of bolstering that with pillows. They have picked me up often enough. Just realized that when I fall on carpet, I usually don't damage myself but if it is in the bathroom or kitchen, I really do. Maybe I should see a neurologist about all this falling - it is increasing. Maybe some PT would help. Something needs to.

Nancy is coming in today - we will be off soon to run and play a bit. A church friend brought in lunch, which looks to me more like dinner, so in the fridge it goes to be heated up tonight. Loving churches are good places to be - we are blessed. Likewise, blessings to you all.......

Saturday, August 1, 2009


I've been doing some of that. Partly because being incapacitated means I have more time to just think. I remember getting my drivers license at 18, just because I thought I should. I had no car to drive - my parents certainly weren't letting us near their car! I had learned to drive on Allan's parent's car - they probably wouldn't have been too pleased but they didn't know. At any rate, my dad promised me a car when I finished college. I never asked him too much about that, but it turns out that my expectations and his were very different. I was ready to start my first job, half a state away, and he took me to find a car. We found a very fine third hand Studebaker and it even had a 'hill holder' on it. No AC of course, or automatic transmission, but when I came to the top of the hill, the car wouldn't drift backwards while I changed gears, because I had a "hill holder". I was pretty pleased with this. Then, dad took me to the bank and took out a loan for me, and he co-signed the loan. This was his gift to me. I hadn't had any way to build any credit, so he gave me a chance to get a start on my credit record. It was really a good thing for him to do - much better than just giving me a car. I learned his work ethic very early.

Next, he had me drive out into the country, and pull off on the side of the dirt road. He got out of the car, went back and let all the air out of the rear left tire. Then he looked at me and said "Now what are ya' going to do?" This began my first lesson of what a jack was, how to use it, how to get the lug nuts off, etc. In short, I learned to change a tire. This really has blessed me all my life. Everyone should learn to do this. OF course today, we have cell phones and AAA and all that. We also have credit cards, which hadn't been invented either, when this happened. I remember when the first cards came out. Daddy deeply disapproved of them - he really thought they were a tool of Satan, and predicted dire consequences for people. He finally had to take one out, because the bank where he worked required him to have one, but he never trusted them. They really can be a trap, easily fallen into. Been there, done that. No more.

We've just had about two inches of rain. I expect the flowers will be beaten down, but they'll come back. Church tomorrow. Hooray!


Friday, July 31, 2009

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

And now.....

Nearly half a month later, I am back at the computer. We have been on a marvelous trip to my beloved St. Teresa. Dad and I stayed at Old St. Teresa at night in a mega comfortable place, but spent our days with our family. Unfortunately, after only two days there, I managed to splat myself all over the bathroom floor, damaging my knee and my left hand. More unfortunately, I managed to cause Dad to also go splat as he tried to get me up. I hadn't realized how much I had grown to depend on the grab bars we have out here in our bathrooms. They really are indispensable for me. Also, I had taken two hydrocodones, but 3 hours apart. That probably had something to do with me falling. At any rate, we went to town that day, and I determinedly went to a luncheon with some of my old friends from Leon High. '09 is the 60th anniversary of our high school graduation and I had a great time, once Dad got me in the door and seated. After lunch we went to the emergency room and spent 5 gruesome hours. It was full of people moaning and wailing and making every other noise you can imagine. It turns out to be a good thing that the knee I fell on had already been replaced or I would have shattered it. It's hard to shatter titanium. The damage to the surrounding tissue however is extensive, and in addition I managed to sprain my left hand - no knitting for the next several weeks. This injury will probably cut this post short as my forefinger is still sore. Anyway, I was given oxycodone and spent the next few days vegging out on the couch, reading and sleeping. Now I am down to one of these tablets at night, which is helpful as I call them my 'stupid pills'. I did get back out to the beach to sit and look at the shells the kids brought in. I was really pleased to see the shells. They were there when I was growing up and then just disappeared. This is the first year I have seen them come back. Too bad we couldn't get out to the sandspit - the best ones are there. The grands are beginning to build a grand collection of shells. Since I am ready to begin to disperse some of my smaller ones, we have a date to pass some of them on their generation. Our vacation was mostly courtesy of our family and I do thank them most sincerely for such a great trip. I especially thank Nancy and Scooter and family for their expert nursing care and love.

We stayed with MB both coming and going and I an totally hooked on her work on the site. We took my maternal grandmother's line way, way back - amazing when I thought I knew so little about her, but it turns out I knew more than I thought. And - are you ready for this? - I am descended from both Charlemagne and Chaucer. Wow! Who knows who else will turn up? We found an error in the immigration info from Baltimore on my grandad's line. It will stop with his parents I fear, as my great grandmamma immigrated from Munich and my great grandad from Portugal. His name was even changed at immigration - anglicized actually. Maybe we can find those immigration records and look even farther. I'm so glad MB is doing this. It really is addicting.

More later when this sprained hand works with more efficiency. Blessings to all,......

Monday, July 13, 2009


This is a word that strikes terror into my heart. I was raised by an organized mother - a superorganized woman. She always knew where things were and could put her hands on them in an instant. How did she do that, I wonder? Granted, I have 'too moch stoff'( this spelling you will not understand unless you knew Gloria, who saved me from living in a dirty house for years ). I know this, all my children know this, probably anybody who has ever been in this house knows this. But I was also raised in the 'great depression' by a frugal mom who taught me the watchword of the depression:
'Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without"

Translated, this means keep it until you have used it up or worn it out. But this is not the depression - really, even though some of you think this recession is one, it isn't. And I have not used it up or worn it out,so now, all of 'it' resides here in this house with me. I seriously consider giving things away and sometimes I have managed to do it - but there always raises the question "what if I ever need it - what'll I do?" I have read book after book on organization. I have haunted the aisles of The Container Store (nirvana for me) and yet I have not found the way to organize what I have. I am getting rid of things right and left, but what is left still isn't in the right place. (Where is the right place?). When I was a child we saved rubber bands and aluminum foil (this last was for the war effort - I have no idea what they did with the foil we saved from our chewing gum, but we diligently saved it and shipped it off to the government to win the war. And all the things we saved were eventually used because they were Organized!! How did she do that, my mother? Youngest daughter stays organized because she is ruthless about clearing out and throwing away. Do I dare turn her loose in this house (and would she ever consider it?) Suppose she threw away something I might really, really need. Oh dear!
I am looking at a wall of skeins of yarns - many are already warps which have been wound for the loom. I am thinking I will take them to my friend June, who makes things like this go away. And I am wondering if I really want to be a weaver when I grow up. I definitely am weaving a rug for Scooter from his sheep, but otherwise, knitting and crocheting have become so comfortable for me, I have to wonder about weaving. No question abou spinning - it is easier to pray when I spin, so I won't leave that off, ever. Besides I can knit or crochet my spinning.
And now I am no closer to a solution than I was when I started this rant. Ideas,anyone? And do remember that this place I live in frowns on bonfires in the backyard.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Post reunion- pre Florida

Time to pack again. Nancy is coming this afternon to do many things--
help me print my photos for the Florida trip and class reunion, change water bottles, bring in new water bottles, move plants to make it easier for the lady who waters, advise me about the house we will be staying in (Is there a coffeemaker? - important things like that), refill my medicine boxes. However, when I just phoned her to find out when she is coming, she told me she is in Oklahoma,but is still coming later. Oklahoma? Really? Turns out she took her debaters to debate camp and it is there. She is never, ever going to be still and rest- maybe in Florida? Let's all hope so.

Church was fantastic this morning - such preaching and such music! We are in the right place, fer sure. I did my class, but I still wish Fr. Stan would let me just show the Missler DVD's as he is a far better teacher than I am, but he insists I teach. He will cover for me the next two Sundays. He should just do it as he is a fabulous teacher - far better than I, but I guess he is training us to do some of these things. I have finished 1 Timothy and Titus, and the other two pastoral books are 2 Timothy and Philemon. It would be easier to teach if he weren't in the class - I am always so aware of my shortcomings. But I soldier on. We seem to be having lots of visitors who are staying.

Dad is still in pain, but we have talked with several folks who have had this proceedure done and they all say this is the way it goes. I still have to be confrontational to get him to take pain meds - he always says it's not that bad. Suffer in silence, that's him.

Florida!!! Can hardly wait!!! blessings to you.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Post reunion......

What a blessing it was to be with family last weekend. Our members came from LA, NY, Maryland and all over Texas. Some were,of course, missing - inevitable with a cast of nearly one hundred, but all of our (George and my) children were there with their children, and a promise of a great grandchild on the way. Hallelujah! I knew I was crocheting this blankie for Susan, now I know why. It takes me awhile, so it's good I'm about half through. Susan and Adam live Brooklyn, so we don't get to see them as much as we'd like, but we stay in touch. Since son Bill died last year, he was represented at the reunion by wife Janet and son Marshall. We had never been able to know them until now, and they are a great addition to a huge family.

Sarah was here for a few days and we worked sooooo hard! I can't do this by myself - I need a cheerleader and she is that! I didn't realize how bad the refrigerators had gotten, but they are now sparkling. Since we leave for Florida next weekend, I am not pushing the Nutri system program quite so hard. When we get back, we will go back on it with a vengeance. The very first day we used it, G's sugar levels dropped dramatically. This program is for older men with diabetes and also takes glycemic index levels into account. Some of it is good, some not so good, but it is EASY and fast and I like that. We will stay there until we are the weight we need to be and his diabetes is under easy control (he has already cut out two shots a day), and then use it some days as needed to maintain. We have both been digging our graves with our forks all our lives and it's a pretty dramatic change to think of food as fuel, and not as something to celebrate. All our lives food has been a ceremony - a gathering of people to enjoy and relate. Sad to lose some of that, but you can't have it all- food is either a gluttonous feast or fuel. As fuel, it can also be enjoyable but there has to be a dramatic mindset change in how it is regarded.

Sarah was also able to get my medicines in order. Sometimes I do get them in a muddle - there are so many of them. I only medicate twice a day and I don't know how people manage a midday set of meds. We are working on 3 month Rx by mail through our provider - it would really make things easier to set up.

She and I also met with the healing prayer group at church and we spent about an hour there. They are so good to meet when there is a need - they are a dedicated group of soaking prayer warriors.

We must have our suitcases and boxes of linens packed by Tuesday at the latest and out to Nancy as they are leaving earlier than we are. They are traveling in the mobile home and trailering her car, so they can pack mega stuff. Thus we will only travel with carry on bag. I always carry my Rx with me - last time Dad packed his insulin in his suitcase and it went all over Florida before finally getting to us. Had to make calls to his doctor and have Rx sent to a nearby pharmacy there. He had a miserable time worrying about it. This year we will carry it, if I have to do it.

Time to go get our water bottles filled and mail Sarah's favorite shirt home to her. Since we also cleaned the studio ( there is a carpet under there, Virginia - really) I am making a box for Mally as she is going into the baby sitting business. Beads, etc. things for kids to make. She is so good with this sort of thing. And now it will be in her room and not mine. As I get older, I look at some of the projects I have planned and realize that I won't live long enough to get them all done, so have been turning more and more of them over to other people. Come one, come all - get your projects here!

The newest Friday Five, which I sometimes do, is all about exercise and since the doctor doesn't want me to do this, I'll pass until the next one.

God's blessings to you all.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Brief one...

Things are veeerrrrrrry slow around here. Neither of us has any energy at all, so we just sit. There is some excuse for Dad, but not for me. He had the morphine pump removed yesterday, I think. He has other meds, but isn't seeming to need much of them. We leave for the reunion tomorrow and we are looking forward to seeing family who live far away. MOre later.

I'm not sure why I had an urge to post when I had nothing to say.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

It's just too bad...

I have written two long posts and this machine ate them both - or maybe they are flying about in cyberspace. All I know is that I can't find them. Soooooo- you don't get to know about Spencer and the stain on his tux, and about being boycotted because I am caucasian, and about our very wonderful trip to Denton/Bedford/Plano and being with Mary Beth and Ken, or about any of that stuff unless you see me at the family reunion this weekend and ask me. Then you will know. If you want to.

Anyway, I hit the grocery store today, in my riding cart, and at checkout the young man was loading them into a push type basket, and he asked me how in the world I every got all that stuff into my smaller basket. I told him it was superior organization and lots of practice. He just kept shaking his head. Very young, he was.

I just finished reading a very lovely Victorian novel. It was a great story, in spite of the fact that I hate, hate, hate Victorian manners, dress, conversation, rules and the place of women in their society. Thank God it is over. But reading it always makes me want to scream and throw many china teacups at a brick wall. Did I need to say that? Yep.

My Bible class went well this morning. I am finally hitting my stride, since my daughters have shown me how to access my DVD's on the subject on my computer. Even in this machine frustrates me, I love, love it. So I have listened to the master teacher and it filtered through me and out today.

Tomorrow Dad has surgery. Everybody pray and we'll be just fine.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Friday Five (on Saturday)

As to the question, what home fix it project is on your big ToDo list?

Two, really. The everlasting, horrible, don't look at it - garage! After 4 years here, there is no hope of getting a car in there. I finally have a plan, and just need to buy some shelving and put it together. Not much point there, though, since I can't lift and bend.
The second one is the studio. I have laboriously bagged all of my wonderful yarns, by color, and shoved them in the cabinets. The longer I live with this, the more I know it isn't going to work. I simply have to see the yarn - be able to touch it - put others beside it to see how they go (or don't). Again, I have a plan. Put all the crap on the top of the cupboards inside of them, and put the yarn in open bins on the top. Again, with the can't bend stuff. I used to be furious because my body doesn't work well any more, but now I am just resigned to it. Whatever. So the studio is impasssable because I have all the bags dragged out so I can get into them, and play with the yarns.

2 What event is on your big ToDo list....
Going to the Anglican organizational meeting in Bedford next month to set up a formal Anglican diocese in North America. And staying with MB. That's the fun part.

3. What trip is in the offing?
Going to the beach, what else? We missed last year, and because I married a very quietly stubborn man, we are taking 6 days to come and go, in the car, because he has a hate on for airports. Not planes - he flew combat in Korea - but airports. So I guess we are boycotting them. Oh me......

4.What do I wish was on someone else's big ToDo list?
First, I wish hubby would help with the garage. Also wish devoutly that his current obedience to the diabetic diet he has been ignoring for 33 years,lasts on and on. He would be much better off if he stayed with it. He never has, but this may be the time.

5. Something else on my ToDo list - I have agreed to teach 1&2 Timothy and Titus and maybe Philemon in summer school. I have made very clear that I will have to miss probably 3 Sundays in July - was told, just tell people no Sunday school next week. Good way to lose people, if you ask me, but I don't run this show, and I don't want to. So we'll try it his way.

Makes me tired to look at this list. All except for going to the beach. Yeaaa St. Teresa!!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

God is really amazing.(all over again, and all the time).

Dad and I had hoped to go to the big Anglican Meeting in Bedford next month. It will organize a diocese of North America for the Anglican church. It was just too expensive, so we decided I will put in 1/2 and Dad would do the other half, and be would go and I would run and play with Sarah, friend June and Mary Beth when she is not working. Lo, Father Stan called me after church and said the Holy Spirit talked to him on the way home and told him to pay my way out of his discretionary fund. So now we are both going, and thanks be to the Lord. This should be a wonderful opportunity to see the beginning of a dream come true.

This afternoon we went to the Girl Scout award ceremony in Mertzon. Most amusing -I was a brownie and scout during the 30's and 40's and was the oldest scout there. I took my old uniform and a photo of me wearing it. I must say, the scouts are wearing more fashionable and certainly more comfortable clothing today. Mally received her bronze award. I do enjoy sharing their successes.

Blessings to you all.

Saturday, May 23, 2009


It rained today and just maybe it could, perhaps, rain again tomorrow or tonight. I scattered some alyssum seed in all the bare spots in the garden. I used to do a rain dance when it rained but today my spirit is dancing.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Plethora of Pleasures...

This is turning out to be a very busy time of year - and all the busyness is fun stuff. Last Saturday, Laura (English) Wooldridge and her mom Sally Williams were in town and we all met at IHOP. We ate some, mostly talked. As Sally says, 'it's a shame we can't think of anything to say'. They are old, old friends from Ascension, Houston. We had just started to catch up when they had to go. Darn! But we now know where and how each other's kids and grands are.

Then, Sunday after church, we took off for Mertzon for a truly amazing service/meeting. Scooter's boy scout troop had 8 (yep, eight) boys who were awarded the Eagle Scout Badge. When you consider that only 2 of every hundred boys earns this, this achievement, from little Mertzon, is just outstanding. After the awards service we trooped over to the community hall where we were served a marvelous luncheon and the boys each spoke about the projects they did to earn Eagle and how it has changed them and set their feet on a path to achievement. Then, lots more talking and hugging. You could literally see how much Scooter and his other scoutmasters and these boys loved and respected each other. Coming from a father who was a longtime (like years and years) scoutmaster and who, with his boys literally chopped the trees and built the scout camp, complete with fire tower, I especially appreciate this.

Now, this Sunday we go back to see Mally get her bronze star award for Girl Scouts. She hasn't always been in this program, and I'm really glad she is doing it now.

We're gearing up for Josie's quinceaneara (sp?) the first weekend of June. Later in June, we may go to the formation meeting of the Anglican church of North America. We can stay with Mary Beth and see her also. Goody. Butler family reunion coming up over fourth of July weekend, and a trip to Florida to the bestest place in the world - St. Teresa.

Haven't been able to figure out why I am so tired - reading over this, Ihave figured it out. But tomorrow and Saturday are free and I will rest and rest.

On Pentecost Sunday all the congregation is wearing red clothing to celebrate.

I just read a book (sci-fi) and almost put it down and didn't finish it until I finally picked up the thread of Martin Luther's actions, taken to remove the abuses from the Roman Catholic church. It's a quirky retelling of this and was much more interesting then. Besides, I like sci-fi.

Oh, and we went to the baseball games again - watched both kids for awhile. I think there is only one more.


Friday, May 15, 2009

Ball game funnies.....

We went to see Spencer play last night. His whole team is really getting good, and especially Spencer. Home runs all over the place. The time before, when we went, they were changing sides (is that between innings?) a little girl on his team shouted loudly "Y'all gotta wait a minute - I gotta go pee!" Off she went, and they waited for her. Love it. The fifth grade was in Houston for the week studying Texas history, so they had to cancel the older kids game - too many gone.

Today we did a very large grocery shopping. Dad follows me with a cart. He may have a heart attack at the way I drive, but I haven't run into anyone yet. Maybe because when people see a white haired old lady zooming along,they know to move over. But not always. I wait on lots of pokey people to move for me. But the funny is, when we got home, and Dad got the groceries in, he collapsed in his chair and said "Boy, that is exhausting! I had no idea!." I answered him with 'welcome to my world".

Our minister has been away for two weeks and has a week to go. Our poor deacon has been sorely tried. 4 people have been in for surgery and one has to keep going back in. He's paid his dues, for sure, and he does do a good job.

Blessings to all.....

Monday, May 11, 2009

busy, busy people

The world is so full of busy people, and just until lately, I was one of them. It's interesting to look at their lives from the point of view where I now live. I miss being busy and doing interesting things all the time - tho some of them are booooring, always. But I am learning to enjoy this time in our lives - most of it, that is. The inevitable breaking down of our corporeal
beings is just a continuing amazement to me. Our bodies have always been able to cope with most anything we can throw at them, and now they are balking and failing in so many ways. This is, of course, a natural result of living on borrowed time. I consider that God gave man three score years and ten (70 years) and any beyond that is borrowed, against the time until we leave here for our real home. We use the best available medical resources, but they can only do so much. Not sure why we fight going home so desperately. We are both sure it will be better than anything here, but it is still the unknown. Besides, we delude ourselves that our children 'need us'. If anything, we now need them, and they are always there for us.

Dad's diabetes is spiraling out of control. The doctor thinks it is a miracle that he made it 33 years with this disease with this not happening much sooner. He now has his regular injections and pills, but also will have to test his blood several times a day, and use a different kind of insulin if those times show unregulated sugars.

I look at the possiblity of having a hip replacement redone (they call it a revision), and have a cardiologist telling me he isn't sure this is a possibility for me. For both of us, it has to be a 'whatever' situation. We will be here as long as we are supposed to be and then we will go. Personally, I plan to stay near and keep an eye on the kids - but I don't even know if that's possible, or if I'll still want to by then. Am I not the cheeriest person you know? But you need to be ready. This is not bad, it is just different. And the difference can be a lovely time of life also.

Our minister is out of town, so our deacon preached the service yesterday. For the first time in my life I heard a sermon on Mother's Day. At one point he asked all the women to stand as they are the created persons who carry new life. Then he asked the girl children to stand for a blessing also, for the future. This is a touchy subject. I hope we didn't have anyone there who had wanted children and were unable to have them. We have several in this situation that I know of, but they all adopted, so were mothers. Being a preacher takes a lot of consideration.

If I do agree to lead the new Bible sudy, I had planned on either John or Daniel, and suddenly I am seeing Psalms wherever I look. Whatever. I can do that too, but hope to have a DVD so that when I have to be away, someone else can cover for me. I can't be counted on every single Sunday at this point in my life.

In spite of the setbacks, we forge on. Dad is at the center playing pool with his buddies and i am headed for there to sit with the crafts group. I was supposed to take the wheel and spin, but don't feel able to haul it down there, so I'll knit or crochet or something. Talking is what we do mostly.


Friday, May 8, 2009

A Fish Story

Today I am the proud possessor of a (free) pattern to knit a fish. It looks a bit like Nemo. Why I want to do this, I can't imagine. I already have a bird I knitted in a workshop, and he just seems lonely hanging in the window, so I envision a fish hanging fairly near. This fish is orange, but it may need a greeny-blue one for company. I'm going for this, even though I usually really hate projects that require me to pay attention while I work. I know you are panting to know how this goes. Ummmmmm -when I start, I'll let you know.......

blessings to all

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Oh my! (second post today)

I didn't tell you the best part of all!. First, Teresa (housecleaner) called me and said she had just needed some time off and she would come when she could. I said fine. She offered to come the next day but we were off to Johnson City to see Nancy Grace graduate. So we left her a key and she cleaned and we cane home to a clean house. JOY!

But the best, for the last, is the graduation. I wish you could all have been there. Nancy graduated with a 4.0, and had a gold cord around her neck to signify that. Johnson City is a central point for a combination class and online degree offering from both Texas Tech and Texas Tech at San Angelo. She has driven 3 hours early on Saturday for months and months as well as working at home. I've watched her work and I am totally impressed with the content and creativity of this program. My MA was an exercise in uselesness- all theory and pie in the sky. The doctoral work, however was much more useful and interesting. She is really excited about what she learned and I am also. Scooter was there with the kids and we all sat on the front row. Each student was asked to make a statement of what they had learned and how they planned to use it. Nancys' was outstanding (not just because I'm her mom, but really!)In fact a superintendent from another county tried to talk her into moving and teaching for him. And this in front of her own superintendent!. So our supt. told the other one to leave her teachers alone!

Then we all adjourned to a state park and had a bbq lunch. Lots of fun, laughter and pride. I wish she would rest more, but trying to get her to do that is like standing in front of a tank knowing the tank will keep going, over you if necessary. This girl has goals, y'all!. So do I, but mine are to rest a lot. Have to admit I was much like her at her age, but today's teachers have so much more in the way of opportunities, resources , etc. that I wish we had had.


May, already???

How did that happen? When I was a kid, and we started school in September (yes, children, it was September back then, not August), it was at least 10 years before school was out - actually there was no end in sight. It would never be over. And that, from me, who loved school. And now I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around it being May already.

Noxt month we go to Bedford, Tx. to a huge meeting of Anglicans for the formal formation of a North American diocese. We are going to Denton and stay with MB and drive back and forth. Hee,hee - we get to see her too! I am not usually one for hese huge meetings but I have a feeling this is an important one, and as always I will have my knitting. Once I went to a Diocesan meeting as an alternate and George was very sure I needed to spend some time in there listening. We were out of chairs so I sat on the floor (this was a long time ago, folks, when I could get up and down) with my back on the back wall and pulled out my knitting. The Bishop came in after a bit, looked me up and down and told me he thought I was the smartest person there. ??? Just because I was knitting? Who knows? I don't guess I'll ever get over the need to be doing something with my hands.

And now comes the H1N1 flu. Denton schools (Sarah's job) are closed for a week. Episcopal school in Houston (Barbara's) is closed indefinitely. They had a confirmed case. Nothing out here is closed so far in our county but some of the surrounding ones are closing. I have not seem anything so far that indicates that this flu is much more dangerous than the ordinary flu. Naturally the stores are stripped of masks, Theraflu, that sort of thing. People are even stockpiling paper goods. We have been told that we are at stage 5 out here and that if we progress to stage 6, the Mall (no problems for me there) and the grocery stores will be closed. Problems here. Seems to me that opening grocery stores is simpler than trying to furnish food to all hundred thousand or so of us. Mob mentality going.

Spent yesterday seeing doctors and waiting to see doctors and then waiting for meds. But I was able to get the meds I needed and had one added to get this water out of me. Doctor says I am hauling around about 12 pounds of water. All those clothes I put up till I could get back into them can come back out.

All of you help me watch for a new book by Donna Woolfolk Cross. She wrote Pope Joan and it was and is just a grand read. We had a teleconference with her at book club and she promised she was working on a new book. Pope Joan was published in 1996. Whatever she writes, I need to read it, so if you see it send the info my way,please. I am very frustrated that I can't find a way to underline in this program.

I'm cooking a corned beef roast for dinner. Yum! About time I made a real meal.

God's blessings on you all......

Thursday, April 30, 2009

It's baseball time!

Every Thursday we go to Mertzon to see Spencer and Mally play ball. Spencer plays machine pitch ball and for Mally it is regular baseball. The funny one is the group playing T-ball. Our kids aren't in that now, but I still sneak a peek. If one of he kids manages to hit the ball, about five go running after it, then they all fall on the ground and have a fight to see who gets to pick it up and throw it. There's no admission, but if there were, it would be worth it to laugh that hard. Last week, Mally got hit in the head with a ball- actually she hit it, it went up and she looked around to see where it went when it smacked her in the back of the head. She was wearing a helmet, thank goodness. I thought for a minute she might go take on the pitcher, but when she gave her head a good shake she went on and took her base. She plays outfield, just as I did, and again , just like me, she doesn't catch balls, she chases them and throws them back. I never willingly played baseball. Her mom tries to get her to wear her uniform pants and socks for when she slides into base - her answer was there was no way she was ever going to slide in. It seems to be a boy thing. They really love it. PE was at the bottom of my list of classes - well, maybe after algebra. Spencer is a master catcher, but none of them really throw accurately. Last week we watched him hit a home run. There's a good concession stand and typical food. Sometimes Nancy sings the national anthem. Maybe next week. It's a fun afternoon.

I get to know more and more Mertzonites. Our new church secretary is from there and has a child in Nancy's class. She does a good job for us.

I still haven't found a house cleaner. Eeerk! I must do a better job of networking to find one. George is going to mop the kitchen tomorow and I will try the bathroom - the one people see.

Now I hear worse and worse news about the new flu. I am sure all the Tamiflu and other such products are gone from the shelves, but we need more aspirin and Tylenol. Also a few other things. Nancy said she wiped all the doorknobs in her school and all her student's desks with clorox wipes. Wonder if I can get some of those.

The fire ants I dumped when we repotted some of the plants have moved back in. Scooter bought me some fire ant poison and I applied it - the next day they had just moved over. Repeat and so now I have put the poison all around where they were. They are so clever and determined. I can ask to be put on the monthly exterminators list, whether it is our month or not and I may have to. They may be more determined than I am.

I have been asked to lead a Bible study again, and am mulling over Daniel vs John. Need to visit the bookstores and see what they have to help me. It's been a long time since I taught the feasts of Israel and it's very pertinent to the Christian calendar, so that is also a maybe.

Dad finally saw the doctor and he has increased his insulin and is injecting twice daily. The levels are going down accordingly. I need to pick up some more sugar free puddings and jellos. He loves things with sugar and I love things with fat. He's diabetic and I have a bum heart. We are, indeed, what we eat.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I read a book...

by a lady who complains about how hard it is to just sit and do things you want to do. She is overwhelmed by the tyranny of the urgent. I'm so glad I'm not afflicted with this. I can look areound at all that needs doing and happily go back to my book. Some day it will catch up to me, but until then, bring on the books. I'm reminded of Zits in the funnies today. It's a teen/parents strip, and Jeremy's best friend hands him a paper saying, 'don't lose this. It's my only copy." Jeremy says "I'll put it with my most important papers' as he throws it over his shoulder. Then he says ' its a great filing system, but it'll be heck when I have to find something. I really identify with all this. I think I'll hire a filer. Yes! Good idea!

Since dad's blood sugar is outa sight, he saw the doctor today,who greatly increases his insulin and now he is injecting twice a day. He is sad he has to give up ice cream. Really!!!

Nancy had a disastrous upper GI test this week. Not enough anesthetic, so really bad.

On Sunday, after church (during which I served as LEM and torch bearer both- you have to be versatile around here) and one of my partners said, as we left the church, 'You really scare me'. I know I wobble, and the Deacon often steadies me with a hand on the shoulder, so I finally got the messsage and took a leave of absence from this work. I will still read the Epistle, as that is done by a parishoner coming from the pews. This is making me very sad, but I am going to nag my doctors to 'fix' me so I can go back to serving at the altar.

We have just made a decision to skip going to the symphony next year. We love the music but it has become a real chore to get ready and get down there. We have a bus to ride, but it makes Dad furious because we are first picked up and last let off. There is a reason for that but he doesn't care. He does have a short fuse.

My prayer shawl is almost finished. I somehow made it entirely too wide. I won't do that again.

I went shopping for my spring plantings. Brought them home and realized I am in no shape to do this work. So I sent an SOS to the Scotts who took turns coming to help. It was a lot of work, and I really appreciate it. People are stopping and asking me what various plants are. I meet lots of people this way.

Hey, guys, it rained 3 whole inches a couple of nights ago!. It may save some of the crops. As usual, I slept through the whole thing.

We are so looking forward to going to the beach in July. I dream about St. Teresa often, and again last night. I do miss it, and I'll love being there.
Big family reunion in July also and a big church meeting in June. I guess we'll have our foot in the road a lot, but after all this, we'll stay home.

I'm reading a really good book on journaling. My blog is my journal, and I guess that's why it is often disjointed. It's a reflection of me. Might as well be homest.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Just reading,

and I found a marvelous quote from Sara Teasdale :

If Death Is Kind by Sara Teasdale

Perhaps if death is kind, and there can be returning,
We will come back to earth some fragrant night,
And take these lanes to find the sea, and bending
Breathe the same honeysuckle, low and white.

We will come down at night to these resounding beaches
And the long gentle thunder of the sea,
Here for a single hour in the wide starlight
We shall be happy, for the dead are free.

I love that she loves the sea as much as I do. I absolutely expect and hope to be visiting back here and there, and will definitely go to the sea, which is St. Teresa beach to me.

I had my hair skinned off today and it's a relief not to have to mess with it. Also picked up some new nose drops which guarantee to stop allergic reactions. I surely hope it works since we are going to be going to ball games.

Reunion time is drawing closer for the Butler family. We need to hear from all who are coming since we have reached the head counting stage. Y'all hear?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

after Easter....

Easter Sunday service was so wonderful I'm suprised we all didn't ascend as a group. We were nearly floating. It's funny, as much as I love to sing with the choir, how much more worshipful the service is when I am not up in the loft shuffling music. I sing just fine in my seat downstairs.
I am still hauling my knitting with me wherever I go. Or a book. Or both. These are my security blankets. I am so sick and tired of knitting this prayer shawl!!! I cast on way, way too many stitches and it just does not need to be this big, but God forbid I should ever rip it out! I am about to start tapering the ends off to minimize it. I can't imagine what I was thinking about. Maybe a blanket? I am also crocheting a baby blanket and a scarf. I think maybe this is faster than knitting and I do like the results.

I have decided that the doctor doesn't get to tell me I am old. I am not old until I say so, and I don't say so just yet. I did skip the tree climbing,however. We had Easter noon meal with the Scotts and had wonderful ribs. Scooter is a magic cook. The rest was good, too. Baseball starts this Thursday, and we'll be there for the children's games.

I goofed and signed up for the prayer vigil for Easter at 4:00 am on Thursday night. I think somebody changed it, because I have better sense than that. But,since it was done, I set the clock and the hour seemed amazingly short. We are both scheduled to serve at the altar this week and next. I will see how this goes. I love doing this and hope I can keep it.

My garden is all fixed. I think I will grow one of those upside down tomatoes there this year. Not exactly compatible with a flower garden, but it's my garden and I get to do what I want. I am ordering a unit that flashes a light when somebody or something comes near. Maybe that will scare the deer off.

Now, this is a promise. Tomorrow I am going to straighten this front room up a bit. Mucho filing to be done and lots of paper to shred. I thought computers were to free us from paper but it has multiplied rather than decreased. Still, I love,love, love my computer.

I went to the dollar store today and had a blast. I also bought a new watch at Pay Less. $9.00 whole dollars. My, I am extravagant. But I can see it and it doesn't flop around on my wrist so it meets my needs.

Have glorious days, y'all...

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Oh, darn....

I saw the GI specialist yesterday, and it seems (he thinks) that I am making my own stomach ache. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with my body (except age). I wasn't prepared for this and was looking for something to fix it.

He knows I have an anxiety disorder and have meds for it. What he actually said was that 'you are almost 78 years old, you have a bum heart and pretty bum lungs. Also you've had four joint replacements and have arthritis all over your body. Basically, you are old.' I told him I didn't appreciate that, which he thought was very funny. He has decided to treat this for a month with more Xanax during the day, which does seem to quiet the stomach ache a lot, and go from there. He also suggested that I stop racing around doing so much, and try to live a quieter life - one easier on my body. I looked down at my bag of knitting (which goes everywhere, because God forbid I should waste time!), and I asked if that was part of the problem. He told me that is the beginning of insight.

So, I have decided to do the things I really want to, which don't make me tired, and skip the other stuff. I hate giving up serving at the altar, but am so dizzy that I fear I might spill the chalice, or fall over. So-- this is TEMPORARY!!! I will try it his way. I can't imagine not being busy. I have realized however, that there are multiple opportunities for ministry out here, just visiting with my neighbors and listening to their woes. I am not sidestepping the doctor, I don't think, just reducing my racing around. What the church is really all about is preparing members for ministry. I'll let you know if this works. Dad isn't sure I can stop. I expect my body will force me to. Maybe I'll wrote a book on growing old gracefully in case I can manage to be graceful about all this.

In other news, Nancy receives her MA degree early next month and we are going to the ceremony. We are really proud of her, as we were of Mary Beth. An MA is a lot of hard work. I know.

We are definitely going to the beach this summer, and I am truly excited. Since I never know what may be the next to last trip,(the last trip is ashes) I plan to hook up with those members of my graduating class who live there and we'll have a loooong lunch and just visit. Otherwise, I plan to relax and wallow in sand and salt water. We hope to go over to the St. Marks river and rent a boat for a day fishing on the flats. Maybe a speckled trout dinner, even, if we are lucky. With fishing ,for me, the catch is secondary. Just fishing is enough.

Blessings to all.....

PS. I may get Nancy to help me climb a tree on Sunday, since I am only old, not ancient. Do you suppose she will?