Wednesday, July 30, 2014

July 30, 2014

What Did I Accomplish Today?
July 30, 2014

There are those days that come to an end and I wonder what I accomplished and how I can be tired if I didn't do much.  This was one of those days.  I again felt great this morning and I did accomplish some things at the house before I went to the office.  I took care of feeding the birds and filling the birdbaths and ponds.  I folded and put away some laundry and cleaned the dining room.  I got a quick bite of breakfast and fixed my lunch to take to the office and then headed out on some errands on the way to work.

When I was having t-shirts printed a few weeks ago, I had left one shirt over at Paper Jay while I decided what I wanted them to print on it.  I decided yesterday and put the photo on a disc and took it to them this morning.  Then I needed to get gas in my car.  From there I went to Walgreen's for some over-the-counter medications and arrived at the office about the usual time I have been getting there lately.  Ron left a few minutes later on a job and was in and out for the rest of the morning.

Three different members of our Sunday School class came in for keys today.  One man came in alone and stayed a while to visit.  The other two are a couple and they only stayed a brief time.  Ron returned to the office long enough for me to eat my lunch in peace and quiet and then went back out on a couple of jobs.  My mom stopped by for a while to visit.  She will be taking care of the grandchildren tomorrow and we discussed supper plans so we could all eat together at Jeff and Barb's house.  My brother and his wife and three of their grandchildren are coming for an overnight visit.

Previously, I think I have mentioned that this weekend is my high school class 50th year reunion.  Several friends will be in town for that (and some aren't going to make it).  I heard from a couple of them today and they were letting me know when they would be arriving.  I am looking forward to seeing these friends.  I know my mom will read this, but I will say it anyway, and will probably get in trouble for it, but when my parents went to their 50th reunion, I thought they were OLD.  My friends and I are not old!

I spent much of the afternoon working on a quilt pattern that I had seen of Facebook this morning on Jinny Beryer's page.  She designed the square and I hope she doesn't mind that I tried to make one of the squares.  I was trying to make it from a photo, not a pattern.  I have it fairly close, but need to remake the corner squares because they are a little too small.  As with most patterns I try out, I don't do much more with them.  I may someday make a quilt out of all the sample blocks I have tried over the years.
As you can tell, this is only sewn in segments and not completed, but it has been fun to play with using mostly the scraps I had at the office for the granddaughters to play with.  I think I will redo the corners with a different fabric.  Maybe you will see the results soon, but probably not right away since I will be with the grandchildren some the next couple of days.

At the office I did pay some bills and waited on some customers, and ran the shredder for a while getting rid of old papers.  They sure stack up in a hurry.  I left the office a little early and picked up some supper on the way home.  Ron stayed at the office to work late.  He has several jobs to do tomorrow.  Maybe I will take another sewing project with me in the morning.  I do need to do some printing so I guess I will stay busy while he is out.  I sure have missed having my grandson at the office some.  He has been out of town much of the summer.

Once I got home I spent a brief time in the yard and then tried to work on one sewing project, but had to go to Plan B on it.  That slowed me down while I washed the Plan B fabric and so I never got to work on that project except to wash and iron the fabric I needed.

Our daughter-in-law in New Mexico and I visited on the phone a while and it was good to talk to her, but when she gets excited, she talks fast.  I had to slow her down some.  One thing she was trying to tell me she finally had to spell for me to understand the word.

I am ready for my housekeeper to come back from her trip to Italy!  My house and I miss her!  I don't want to spend my time doing that work when I could be sewing and reading.  Ron's brother and his wife will get to town tomorrow for the class reunion and I would like to have them over if I can get the house clean.  It isn't too bad, except for the floors needing to be vacuumed and clean dishes in the kitchen need to be put away.  Guess I need to stop typing this and do some house work.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

July 29, 2014

A Good Tuesday
July 29, 2014

Today I woke up feeling better than I had for a while.  As I told someone today, getting old is a challenge.  I have no major problems, just some joint pain and the mornings seem to magnify those, but today was good.  It is amazing how that can change your outlook on the day.

There was a little time to spend in the yard and I filled the birdbaths.  My new flowerbed is not looking great.  I think something has been eating on a couple of the plants.  Not sure what I am doing wrong.  Of course the plants may just be having heat strokes.
This hanging basket is blooming up a storms, but has little greenery on it.  Any gardeners out there with suggestions?

I got a few things done at the house before heading to work.  At the office there were just the routine things to do as well as to balance my checkbook.  It is always nice when I find I made an error in my favor!
Vines are trying to take over the fountain in the new flowerbed.  

The next few afternoons I will be taking care of our five youngest grandchildren for a few hours.  Our daughter-in-law will be going to Kansas, with her sister to check on their father who is undergoing cancer treatments and having a rough time with the treatments.

Today was another of those days where I gave away one of the coffee cups that we keep at the office that say, "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."  Jeremiah 29:11  The lady I gave it to is a regular customer, coming in 4 or 5 times a year as purchasing agent.  She is always pleasant to deal with and I always enjoy seeing her.  As with many of our customers, we never really get to know them.  We chat about a few generic subjects.  She knows I went deaf, and it turned out that her sister had surgery with the same surgeon I had in Houston, so she always asks about my hearing.  She also asks about Ron's health, knowing he has had some problems the last couple of years.

When she came in today something in our conversation about her children (who are older teens and young adults) made me think she had lost her husband.  I asked and she said yes, and it turned out it was only about 6 weeks ago.  We had never discussed her husband, only the children in a superficial way.  Through tears she shared some of the things that had been going on.  She told of how helpful co-workers had been.  She talked about how she and the kids find things to bring happy memories and laughter as they recall their dad.  Ron was there and I asked him to get me one of the cups and I gave it to her and told her that she and her children would be in my prayers. 

I am so glad God prompted me to ask that specific question to clarify what she had said.  I am glad God prompted me to go out and talk to her even though Ron was already waiting on her.  I am thankful I could hear her tell me of the concerns she has and tell me about her husband.  I asked to see a photo and she showed me several.  We are all surrounded by hurting people.  We just need to listen to God when He prompts us to do something.  I love that even in my deafness, I can still hear God when He asks me to do something.

Thank you gift I received from the Mom-in-waiting, at Sunday's baby shower.  
Thank you, Mandy!

Monday, July 28, 2014

July 28, 2014

Yucky Monday Morning
July 28, 2014

There is something I forgot to mention yesterday about the cupcakes and the baby shower.  As I have said before, from time to time some of you have asked me about the music in my head.  I have said that it is still always there.  A few times lately I have noticed that it was not there, but that seemed to be for very brief periods of time.  98% of the time, the music is the old hymns.  Sometimes another song pops up and I can often tell why, but not always.  Yesterday the song was Rubber Ducky, from Sesame Street.
After attaching the pink bows to the miniature Rubber Ducks, to put on the cupcakes for the baby shower, I guess it was inevitable that the song would get stuck in my head.  It interrupted another song I was hearing on my way to work this morning and after a couple of minutes it went away and the other music returned.  It was a full male choir singing a very classy arrangement of the song.  I just thought I would share that with you.

Today started out fine, but I knew where it was headed.  My first stop was the dentist's office for the start on the process for a new crown.  I have been going to this particular dentist's office for over 30 years.  A friend recommended him and he always asks about her.  Apparently she is going to someone else now.  Hmm?  His son is now in the practice with him and the one I originally went to often takes care of my minor needs, but for something more major, he now suggests I let his son take care of it.

The original dentist came in to visit as soon as I was taken to a room this morning, and he did the deadening of the area for the work his son would do.  Now, I must tell you, there are a lot of things I don't like about being deaf and using a Cochlear Implant, but when it comes to going to the dentist, I wish you could all have one.  After talking to the dentist, I took the sound processor off and did not hear a hint of the drilling sound.  It is as good as it can be in the dentist's chair.  No whirring of the drill.  I barely even had any sensation of the vibration.  He did have to poke me once to ask me to "bite down", but time went quickly.

Well, time went quickly until the assistant began to prepare the temporary cap.  That took a long time and I must say, good dental assistants are a treasure.  The older of the dentists has an excellent one.  I have encountered two dentists who have assistants that do not measure up to the one I am most familiar with.  I don't think we always realize how much of the process is made easier for both the patient and the dentist, with an excellent assistant.

With half of my mouth deadened and my checkbook thinner, I left the dentist and headed to our office.  Ron decided to leave on a job while I was still pain free.  Good idea.  I spent the rest of the morning and early afternoon on the computer with an assortment of tasks.

The afternoon was a little slow.  I did some filing and got rid of one of three stacks of papers on my desk.  I did a little bookkeeping and located some files for Ron.  I left the office a little early and stopped for some tortillas so I could make enchiladas for supper. 

Working in the yard for a while when I got home, I disturbed a little wren.  For at least 10 years I have had at least a pair of wrens in the yard and maybe more, but have gotten almost no photos.  I think I have about 5 photos.  They are shy, quick, and hide in the bushes.  Naturally, this one chose to pose on the fence for 15 seconds or so this afternoon, while my camera was in the house! 

It did remind me though, that when we had our Family Gathering by Lake Travis last week, I took a bird feeder and bird seed.  It wasn't too long until I had visitors at the feeder.  There were several Tufted Titmice and a Bewick's Wren.
Funny thing is I don't think I have even seen a wren at the feeder at home and here he was on the feeder at the campground!  First I saw him hopping on the porch and then he flew to the feeder before returning to the porch.  I enjoyed their Sunday morning visits.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

July 27, 2014

A Sunday of Celebrations
July 27, 2014

Yesterday I promised a photo of the cupcakes I made last night for the baby shower this afternoon.

What a wonderful Sunday this has been!  I was running a little late this morning and asked Ron to go on without me and I got to Sunday school about 15 minutes late.  We had a good class and enjoyed seeing some who had been out for a few Sundays due to health reasons. 

In the worship service there was a group sitting in front of me that had come from Joshua, TX to spend the week working in various mission projects here this week.  Their pastor, Jerry Clements, grew up in our church when his dad was our pastor.  A former Music Minister in our church here, Edgar Hood and his wife, Linda are now members of that church.  It is a small world.  I wish they could have come with the group.  At least we get to keep up on Facebook.

While on the subject of Music Ministers, that is where much of the day of celebrating centered.  Our current Music Minister, Craig Smith, came here to serve when he and his wife were expecting their first child.  Today we were giving a baby shower for that child, Justin, and his wife Mandy who are expecting their first child in about a month.  Justin and Mandy were celebrating their first wedding anniversary today and Justin preached this morning's sermon.  Craig's parents were in the service also and had just celebrated his dad's birthday this weekend.  There must have been a lot of fun times this weekend with the family.

It is so wonderful that I had found that using the personal audio cable for my Cochlear Implant that runs from the sound processor to a transistor radio that our church uses for the hard of hearing, works well for me for the sermons.  It was a blessing to hear Justin share from God's Word this morning.  After he completed college, he spent two years serving in a foreign country.  At the time Mandy was serving in a country next door to his and they met and as they say, the rest is history.  Now they are awaiting the arrival of their daughter and once she is 6 months old, they plan to leave to go to the country where Justin served before. 
Part of the 60 cupcakes for the party.
After the service I brought our two oldest grand daughters home with me for a quick lunch and then we loaded up the cupcakes I had made last night and went to their house for the baby shower for Justin and Mandy's soon to arrive baby. 

There was a wonderful turnout for the baby shower - probably about 45-50 ladies and a few little girls.  Oh, and one little boy, the new grand baby of our church pianist, Judy.  Her daughter and son-in-law,  Kristin and Tim are the proud parents of this cute little boy.
Judy and her grandson.

The food and decorations for the shower were perfect. One of the hostesses had this stand for the cupcakes.
We had a veggie tray, a fruit and dip tray, nuts, M&Ms, a very good punch, crackers and dips, a cute centerpiece made from disposable diapers, and a lot of fun.
After the shower we stayed and visited and cleaned up for another hour before I headed home.  I did not realize how tired I was - more sleepy than tired.  I spent the next three hours napping in my recliner, so of course that makes it hard to get to sleep tonight.

The hearing at the party was very difficult.  Large crowds in small spaces just creates a rumble on the Cochlear Implant.  I hear a lot of chatter, but can't follow any of the conversations.  I spent most of the time in the kitchen helping and could visit with one or two pretty well, but late in the party time another lady and I went into the den and chatted for a while.  It was a nice visit and I could hear her.  She is another of the new moms at the church.  Her sweet little baby didn't come with her to the party and that may have been good because I would have been holding her and not helping.  She is a precious little one that is a true miracle from the Lord. 

God has been good to the families in our church.  We have all had problems and heartaches over the years, but we love to celebrate together the wonderful gifts from God - especially the new babies and the young couples getting married.  In fact that grandmother in the photo with the new baby, is a new bride.  There are so many wonderful things happening at First Baptist Brownsville: mission groups, new babies, new brides (and grooms), lots of children who accepted Christ during Vacation Bible School a week ago (over 30) and on going mission work.  Praise God for His many blessings.

Here is another of those blessings.  This is Jo Ann Reed on the left.  She just had major heart surgery about 6 months ago and is doing great after following doctor's orders for a long, relaxing recovery.  She and her husband Roy just had their 60th wedding anniversary this past week.  Next to her is Rhonda, the "grandma-to-be" of the baby the shower was for.

A friend set her plate on the kitchen counter for a minute at the shower and the colors were just too much to pass up and out came my camera.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

July 26, 2014

Long Day, Semi-Productive
July 26, 2014

Boston Fern
My housekeeper is still not back from her month in Italy, compliments of her son who is participating in a music festival in Milan.  I miss her help at home, but am so glad that she was able to go on this trip with her young adult son.
Since the housekeeper has not been here all month, I had to do some house cleaning this morning.  I got up early and started with cleaning out one drawer in the sewing room and then the cabinet where we keep all medications.  The last year and a half, Ron and I have had more prescriptions than in the previous 15 years put together, I am sure.  Some needed to be disposed of and some needed to be better identified.  Now at least things don't fall out when I open the cabinet door.

I had a quick breakfast and then spent an hour working in the back yard.  I keep having a problem finding a proper potting soil for the hanging baskets.  The one I am currently using is loose but when I water it, and then dig down, it is only wet about 1/4 inch down in the planter.  Frustrating.

The laundry had already been started earlier in the morning and I kept it progressing all morning and finished it around lunch time.  I had all the laundry from our trip as well as the everyday stuff.  It is nice to know that everything is clean - for a few minutes.  I finally finished unpacking everything, and think it is all put away.
My new flower bed is doing fairly well.
I spent time in the recliner reading late in the morning and nodded off for a bit.  After Ron got home, I went to the grocery store for a few items, mostly for the cupcakes I needed to bake and decorate for a baby shower Sunday afternoon for the grand baby of some friends, which is due in September.  I had shopped last  night for decorations for the cupcakes.
Hibiscus over the waterfall.
After lunch, I picked up things in the kitchen and then returned to the recliner.  I was tired and had a headache.  I napped a little and read a little.  I got fresh sheets on the bed and clean towels out in the bathrooms, but sure miss my helper! 
Early evening, I started baking cupcakes.  I made three mixes and then made frosting and decorated them.  I will share photos tomorrow evening, after the shower.  I am pleased with them.  My kitchen, which was clean when I started this project is now a mess and I will try to get it clean before I head to bed. 
Ron mowed the backyard for me today and I appreciate it.  That is usually my job but I just didn't have the energy for it today.  He also went to the store to get me more eggs for the cupcakes.  I forgot them when I went to the store earlier. 
Our two oldest grandsons left this morning on a mission trip a long way from home in Southern Mexico.  They will be with a group from our church this week.  I will miss them while they are gone, but know this is something they wanted to do.  They are great boys.  We are so proud of them - and all the other grandchildren, too.
Ixora getting ready to burst into bloom.
I wore my sound processor much of the day, but there were times when I was home alone that I left it off.  I have watched some television but am so used to reading the closed captioning, that I often leave the sound off on the television so it won't be too loud for Ron.  Of course sometimes, if I have the sound processor off, I may think the sound on the TV is off and Ron may come ask if he can turn it down.  If the processor is off the volume on the TV can be all the way on high and I can't tell.

Friday, July 25, 2014

July 25, 2014

The Love of Reading
July 25, 2014

Being able to read is a treasure.  Or maybe the books are the treasure and the ability to read them is the key that opens them and lets their messages into our hearts and souls.  There was a brief time in the early 1950's when educators decided that phonics did not need to be taught in school and that happened to be about the time I was learning to read in first grade.  As I recall, there were 2 first grade classes in my school and one taught phonics and one didn't.  I landed in the class that did not teach phonics.  Instead we learned to memorize words and then put them together as we would read.  That was an experiment that failed at that time, but they discovered that too late to help me.

Because of that method of teaching reading, I am not a fast reader.  Reading has been a challenge for me for much of my life.  I was smart and could remember what was said in class and could usually learn the material by just listening to what the teacher said in the classroom and didn't have to read the text all the time.  I could read, but it was slow going.  Assigning me a chapter to read in a history book was a terrible punishment.  Having to read a book for a book report was not fun.  There were times that I read for pleasure, but not as many as there should have been.

During one history class in high school, the teacher asked me to grade papers for her.  I think she figured I might learn history by reading the work of the other students.  One test I took in her class was all essay questions and I did my best to fake my way through the test.  She wrote something on the paper along the lines of I was good at creative writing, but not at giving factual answers to her questions.

In college, the Dean of Students hand selected a group for her Freshman Orientation class and I was in it.  One day she was testing us and we were to read a selection and then answer a set of questions.  At one point as we were reading, she said, "Mark," and we were to mark how far we had read at that time.  Then we were to continue to read and answer the questions.  After a few days, we were each scheduled for a one-on-one session with her to go over the test.  When I went to see her, she told me I had the highest comprehension score in the class, but the lowest reading rate.  I read slowly, but I knew what I had read.

My husband is an avid reader and always has been.  I have read over the years, often for information as our children were growing up.  I read child care books, books on allergies (since all of our boys suffered from allergies), cookbooks, Bible study books, my Bible of course, and books on becoming all that I could be serving the Lord, and as a wife and homemaker.  There was not much time while the boys were little to read for pleasure, but I had a few shelves of books.

As time went on and as the boys grew up, I had a little more time for reading and the books were often craft related, homemaking, or gardening; still not too much fiction.  About 12 years ago I discovered the world of Christian fiction.  I began to find books that were fun to read and still brought me closer to the Lord as I saw the characters dealing with various situations.  I have always wanted to help people with their problems and these books gave me new insight.  I continued to read my Bible and to read non-fiction books by Christian authors that would help me grow spiritually.  My bookcases grew in numbers and the books were overflowing the available space.  

Now with my Kindle, I can walk around with 93 books in my purse, just waiting to be read.  I could add more, but at the moment that is the number on stand-by.  Often after I read a book, I will write to the author and make comments about how the book touched my life and made me think.  Many of these authors have answered my notes.  I often send emails since currently many authors include an email address at the end of their books.  There are several authors who are my Facebook friends and I enjoy following the progress of their next books or seeing pictures of their gardens and pets, and family.

Not all the books I read are by Christian authors, but most are.  I have enjoyed murder mysteries over the years, but it gets harder and harder to find "clean" books in the assorted sections of the bookstores.  I know that in the Christian fiction section, I can trust the story lines to be what I want to read.   With the expansion of e-books, authors can more easily get their works published, but it can be harder for us to find the type of books we want.  In the mystery section, more and more of the books include psychics, witches, and ghosts.  That is not what I am interested in reading.  Tonight I just finished a book that I completely enjoyed reading.  The author is Catherine Ryan Hyde and the book is Take Me With You.  It is a new release and an ad appeared in my Kindle a couple of days ago about the book.  I am glad I bought it to download to my Kindle. 

Next on my reading list is a book by a friend, Rebecca McLendon titled The Day I Grew Wings - Journey of a Soul with a Destiny.  Rebecca (Becky) has been a friend since childhood and we re-connected a few years ago on Facebook.  Becky has retired from teaching and shares her inspiration and encouragement to all of her Facebook friends along with her love for the Lord.  If you were to read any of Becky's Facebook postings it wouldn't take you long to know that God is the center of her life and she is delighted with that arrangement.  She is a gifted musician and loves to play the piano as well as write music.  Recently at 65+, as a grandma, she took up flying and is now a private pilot.  This book takes us on her journey to earn her pilot's license, but shows us what God has been teaching her during that time.  It reminds each of us to look for those teaching moments in our lives.  I have just started Becky's book, but know I will enjoy it.

I may still need to go back and take a speed reading class as I become more and more dependent on the closed-captioning on the television set.  I do continue to use the audio books along with the e-books to help with my listening skills since my Cochlear Implant.  I like doing that when I have time to sit and read and listen.
This shows both copies, the one on the left is the printed copy and the one on the right is the audio copy.  I have them both on my Kindle.  I hope you enjoy reading as much as I do.  It is a great activity for these hot summer days.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

July 24, 2014

Thankful For Our Yard Crew
July 24, 2014

Our yardmen hauling a huge broken limb back to the brush pile this afternoon.

This is one of those 2-day blog entries.  I am still recovering from our Family Gathering.  I fell asleep in the recliner last night reading and later moved to the bed.  This morning, it dawned on me I didn't do a blog entry.  I think part of the reason was that yesterday was not very eventful - until the evening. 

After work, Ron was going to stay and prepare things for a big job today so I texted our daughter-in-law and asked if I could stop by for a little while.  We had a very nice visit and of course it was good to see the grandchildren - or at least all were there except the oldest.  We talked about the Family Gathering and what we thought could have been done better, etc.  We were both very pleased with just about everything.  I also needed to talk to her about a baby shower that she and I are hosting Sunday afternoon with a couple of other ladies from the church.  Then just as I was about ready to come home our son arrived and it was good to have a brief chat with him before I headed home.

Today at the office was a little more interesting.  Ron was out on that big job most of the day and so I was helping customers most of the time.  Several had problems that they wanted me to solve.  It is frustrating when they buy cheap, Chinese made imports and then want us to "fix" them.  We don't have parts and most aren't made to be taken apart and repaired, but it becomes my fault in the mind of the customer who may stomp out saying, "I thought you were a locksmith!"  I want to say, "I thought you were smart enough not to buy cheap imported junk."  But I don't.

One man came in sort of demanding that I do something that is against our policy - not illegal, just not something we are willing to do.  Another customer had come in at the same time and stayed close by listening to our exchange.  When the unhappy customer left, the other man stepped up and said, "You deserve a gold star for not punching him out."  I knew the man leaving was mad and was ranting and raving, but I really could not understand what he was saying, so I told the other customer that I was very hard-of-hearing, and that some times that worked to my advantage.  He said that must be true, so I guess the first man was really spouting off and thankfully I did not hear any of it.

That second customer stayed for a long time visiting (he may have been hanging around in case the other guy came back).  The second man had been (now retired) a band instrument repairman and we talked about the "joys" of trying to repair "Made in China" items.  We really found a lot in common as we chatted and he brightened my day.

Then a lady came in with a patriotic shirt on and I complimented her on it and said several customers today had shirts on with various flag pictures.  She said she thought maybe we had all decided it was time to stand up for our country.  We also had a good visit.  All three of the above mentioned customers were strangers, but I could engage in conversations with them.  The first one who left mad, God may have just plugged my ears so I could not hear, but also he was walking away from me as he complained.  His voice was aimed away from my sound processor and I couldn't do any lip-reading.  I do very little lip-reading, but sometimes just enough to help in a difficult situation.

Several other customers had unique problems and I did my best to help them.  Then a man came in 45 minutes before closing with a box of locks he wanted re-keyed, while he waited.  I told him it was not possible at that time of the day, plus Ron was still out on that job.  He was not pleased.  Oh, well.  You just can't make them all happy.  But we try.

We met Mom for supper and had a nice visit.  We also talked about our trip and what things we thought worked well and what we might do differently next time.  We had a good time chatting and a good supper. 

When I got home Ron was setting the sprinklers in the back yard and I had seen some tools in the front yard.  I went out there and it turned out our crew of yardmen were getting ready to haul off a huge limb that broke in the ebony tree while we were out of town.  Ron had not even seen it and I had told him but it was going to be a big job for him.  The yardmen without even asking took care of it.  I was so very thankful.  It was big, ebony limbs have stickers, and Ron just really didn't have time to take care of it.  I am thankful for a Christian yardman and his workers who look out for our needs.  He is so kind and thoughtful.  When he comes each month to collect (he comes by the office), he and Ron always have a nice visit, often discussing scriptures and things going on it their lives.

Just before I started this blog entry, I was able to talk to our daughter-in-law in New Mexico for a bit.  I have had trouble of the cell phone a few times using the cable.  Sometimes it is too loud and sometimes it cuts out.  We had a little of both problems tonight.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July 22, 2014

Enjoying the Memories 
Of the Weekend
July 22, 2014

There was so much that went on over the last four days with our Family Gathering that my mind is still in a whirl of happy memories.  It just all went by too fast.  I am reminded of rides at Six Flags Over Texas or a carnival where you are whirling around so fast that everything becomes a blur of colors and sounds.  I almost feel that way about the weekend.  It was all just going by too fast to fully be involved in the multiple activities.
I think this game is Risk - Lord of the Rings

Some of our guys like the strategy games like Risk or the newer ones like The Settlers of Catan.  There are so many that the guys (and Kristina) love, but are not my idea of fun.  I want a game that will allow for conversation and little thought.  I do not want to do strategy when I am trying to relax.  I would come closer to working a puzzle.  We tried to have various activities for the wide variety of ages and interests in our group.  We ranged from 2 1/2 years old for our youngest granddaughter to my mom at 91 years old.

Swimming was fun for many.  On Saturday it was still pretty cool for swimming, but that didn't stop most of the kids.  They also had bubbles to blow, Frisbees to throw, and Glow Sticks to Glow.  Vickey even found some balloons that glow in the dark.  There is a tiny light inside them that I think is solar powered.  Anyway, in the middle of the night I had gotten up and looked out the door to see them hanging on the porch, glowing int he dark - Awesome!
Several times I got frustrated when I would have to ask over and over for something to be repeated, but none of the family showed any irritation or impatience with me - it is just my impatience with myself.  Our son Stephen has always been super caring and sensitive about my hearing needs, even before I had the Sudden Hearing Loss.  When I was just hard-of-hearing for years, he would be good about seeking ways to help me.  Now, he reminds the others to speak louder and slower. 

We enjoyed the devotional thoughts that Vickey shared at the end of the shower.  She had been attending a conference in Pflugerville about the various personality groups and at the shower she passed out sheets so that everyone could do their own evaluation and then shared scriptures from the Bible about how we are each created by God and that we are each different.  We need to know our strengths and weaknesses and serve the Lord with the strengths He has given us.
We had great food: hot dogs, pizza, homemade strawberry sherbet, homemade vanilla ice cream, tavern burgers, and just a great variety of easy to fix items.
This was the first batch of pizzas that were ready one evening.  Having 4 ovens (4 cabins) was very helpful!  Yummy!
Everyone tried to help with the little ones so Jeff and Barb could also enjoy the time away.
It was a great weekend - all about the generations.  

Diana and her niece and nephew had already left after the lunch we had at Rudy's before we all headed home.  I came around the corner of the restaurant to head to the car and Jeff's 3 girls were waiting on a bench. 

Soon Jeff's boys joined in for the photo.  So sorry Diana's niece and nephew had already left.  Here they are in earlier photos at the cabins.
Diana's niece with a dish towel she made for Stephen and Kristina.
Here, her nephew was helping in the pool with one of Jeff's little ones.
What a fun time together.