Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lost Days

This week has had two lost days in it!  On Monday I had planned to clean my house top to bottom, just as I always do on Mondays.  Things have gotten into quite a mess and the work needed to be done so I began in my room, finished it in a snap then moved on to the sewing room/office which was going to be a slower go as always things were piled high.  I cleared my cutting table, mostly, cut binding for the quilt in the frame, etc and had started in on the desk when "crash"  the legs on one end of the cutting table just caved in.  It went in the trash yesterday.  My sewing room/office is a full space, move or remove one thing and everything has to be moved and re-ordered!  So instead of getting my house clean I spent the rest of the day  ordering that space.  One day lost.

On Tuesdays I volunteer at the historical society, that went as usual but I never get any work done on that day.

Today, after my water aerobics class I came home to start again on the cleaning.  Sat down to check email etc when the storm alarms began blaring.  My first thought was "It's Wednesday, they are testing" only they don't test when we are in the severe storms bubble so I pulled up the local radar and yelled to Rob "I think this could be something!"  After packing up the laptop and grabbing my go bag I headed to the basement (the safest place in severe storms).  Rob turned on the TV and we sat listening to the blare of sirens and watching the radar as tornado after tornado was sighted.  Luckily, all but one were touch down and pull back up into the clouds.  No real damage was done in the metro but one took out some of Sedalia (about 1 hour east of here.)  It was scary, Beth's work was in the predicted path of about 5 and my house in the path of two.  It all turned out well but it was another lost day as the low pressure area that caused the storms was approaching and passing over and that always gives me a headache!  So it was medication and bed for a while.

I hope tomorrow is better, I would really like to see the sun for a few days so my gardens will dry out and I can get the weeds out!  The grass needs cut and the list goes on and on and on.  I did like water aerobics though.  Ah well a good night's sleep and all will be well!

Monday, May 23, 2011


As you probably know the city of Joplin, Missouri was struck by a mile wide F-5 (the highest rating there is, the scale is based on the damage caused)  tornado yesterday.  30% of the city is gone, including the hospital, the high school, Walmart and Home Depot.  75% of the city is damaged in varying degrees.  News crews and aid workers had to walk in as the debris was so deep, xrays from the hospital were found 70 miles away, and there are 89 confirmed dead.  That number is expected to rise.  If that isn't bad enough, today they were slammed again with high winds and heavy rains.  Three other Missouri towns and at least one in Kansas were also hit but by smaller tornados.  The only thing one can feel is sorrow for those who have lost everything, or loved ones in these storms.  Our weather man said just last week that it had been a mild tornado season here-guess that has changed now.  We are in the bubble for damaging storms today and tomorrow although it is believed to be wind, hail and heavy rain, not tornados.  Forecasting tornados and storm warnings have improved so much since I was a child, we have so much more warning now.  I am grateful for that.

If you don't know exactly where Joplin is-it's about 3 hours south of Kansas City on Interstate 44, almost in Kansas.  (Think, middle of the country for KC then go south.)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sunday in the Gardens.

This is what's blooming in my gardens today.  The blooms of Bleeding hearts, Buglewort, Clove Pinks and shooting stars have already passed!  Too bad.
Coral Bells in Pink
and Red 
Sweet Woodruff's tiny white blossoms!

These tiny purple bells are taking over!

Pink Poenies

Purple sage

Purple chives

one very odd tomato blossom!
There was a photo of the daisies as well, don't know what happened to it!  Still getting used to I-photo.  In the end I may have to go back to Picasa, also Blogger is making it very hard to move things around again, what's with that?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

It's raining, it's pouring, I'm thinking of snoring!

It is raining, started in earnest during the night sometime.  I woke at 6am and just laid in bed listening through the open window.  Then I got up, made the coffee and went to the gym.  WHAT? Went to the gym?  That's right, I've done something new, I've joined a fitness club.  I decided that just walking wasn't getting it done, mostly because I can't seem to be consistent-no dog to whine if I don't go.  I have lots of reasons for getting fit, I wrote them all down but I won't bore you with them, but perhaps the biggest is this:  I don't want to hurt myself just doing the things I like to do.  I've spent the last several months recovering from injuries I gave myself while gardening last year and I have more that I would like to do-without hurting myself or needing yet more shots of cortizone!  So everyday I'm off to 24 hour Fitness, beginning slowly.  Next week I'll meet with at personal trainer to set up a program then go from there.

Last night was Brayden's Preschool Graduation, he was adorable and scared silly!  He made it through just fine but we wondered if his tummy was going to hold!  While watching 20 or so 5 year olds sing, and jump around with enthusiasm it occured to me that by the time they were starting high school all that joy, that energy and enthusiasm would have gone cold.  That's sad.  We should all be more like them! I'm going to give it a whirl-you can laugh at the funny old lady if you wish.

I also made some little stitches on the quilt in the frame, it's slow going as I am not very fast (nor very good) at the hand quilting.  Sure hope I pick up speed as I go!

Lastly, I've finished all the cross stitches on Tanya's stocking!  I also began on the back stitching, a little. I'm excited to see this one coming to an end, then I can begin Bri's.  I would like to get that one done this year, and start Kolby's.  If I can just get them done faster than we add new people I may someday get caught up!

On the sewing note, I'm off to quilt and maybe get the machine humming as well.  I can only quilt until my finger bleeds!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New Beginnings

Back home again after being in Columbia for Bri's Law School Hooding and party.  Afterward, Scott threw a party in their new home.  They have been working really overtime to finish the first renovations before the party and it's really shaping up.  Of course, they will be working on the house for a long time to come, but I have no doubt that it will be lovely when they finish.  Bri is looking for a job now as well-I wish her good luck there- she is smart and capable so I'm am sure she will find one soon.

With her hooding, I have only one more graduation to attend.  Brayden's Preschool Graduation!  I think that one will have different flavor.

So, now's it's time to return to my routine and catch up on things that I've let go for the past couple of weeks.  The gardens need work and the house tidied plus many tiny stitches need to be made.  More on all that later with pics!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

New Toys and Learning Curves

After having lunch with Steve, Candice and Nora one last time before they headed home to San Diego, Rob and I trekked on down and I bought myself a new laptop!  The PC I had been using was Larry's originally and was showing some signs that it might quit soon, plus I just plain hated that one.  He liked have the 10 key pad on the side but that just messed me up royally and it is so heavy, plus it didn't fit in my backpack.  I am now the proud owner of a MacBook Pro with a 13 inch screen.  I am learning the ins and outs of it more each day as it is a bit different.  I still haven't migrated any data, perhaps later today.  So far I like it very much.

I had Brayden for a sleepover last night which was fun.  He hadn't been over for a while without Kolby and sometimes you just need time away from your baby brother. (He calls him a half baby.) We looked at YouTube videos on how balloons were made-that's pretty amazing and much more complicated than you would suppose.  Then we watched some on boomerangs, how they were made and how they were thrown.  After those he made himself a "Boomerang" it didn't fly very well, ;)  Guess we'll do it again!  Kolby's still too young to come for an overnight without Brayden but his turn will come!

After I took Brayden home Rob and I loaded the back end of the truck with things I'm taking to Scott tomorrow.  Bri graduates from Law School tomorrow so we are all headed to Columbia tomorrow.  He's planned a party for her so we get to see the inside of their new (to them) house.  This has been a very busy month!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Miss Nora and her DaDa with Oma

Yet another update!

So the weekend didn't stop with Friday!  On Saturday I returned my Mother-in-Law to her home via the train, she had come up on Thursday for Commencement and stayed in the guest house (the trailer/yard weight).  I hit the grocery store on the way home to collect a few things I needed for Sunday and by the time I got home the grandboys had arrived.  I kept ALL the grandkids, that sounds like a lot but there are only three, while the siblings went out to a comedy club.  The boys are very good with Nora, who is quite a bit smaller than they are, and all went well until bedtime.  Brayden, gotta love him, crashed on his pallet on the floor but Kolby and Nora where a different story.  Kolby usually goes down really well for me but about the time I put him down Nora started crying for her Mama (and when she didn't appear then she cried for Dada.)  That started Kolby off crying for his Mama and sent out a distress signal!  We rocked, we went outside to look at the stars, we looked out the window in front for the cars carrying Mamas, and finally I gave up and played with them.  It was very late for Kolby, Nora is a night owl and on California time, when Mamas arrived.  Only a few minutes later Granna crashed!

On Sunday, we all had brunch together, Strawberry waffles, to celebrate Mother's Day, Steve's birthday and Rob had a few more gifts to open as well.  Then Beth and Lucas were off to St Joseph for Mother's Day with his Mom and things quieted down.  Nora picked up a few new words on Saturday, which she practiced on Sunday (yucky, and Charge-I have a toy truck that does the music and you say charge at the end which she loved.)  They had friends of Steve's to meet, Rob and Tanya were gone, so I had the house to myself! 

Yesterday, I managed to find most of the house after all the fun we'd been having!  I am so tired still, crashing early but can't sleep beyond 6:15am.

The weather was lovely until Sunday.  Well, it was sunny then but I had to turn on the Air-conditioning!  I only turned the heat off that morning!  And Friday it's only to be 69F.  Crazy spring!

I think I've caught you up for now so I'll be talking to you!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Graduation Day!

 Last Friday (May 6th) we had a party!  A Graduation Party! For Rob!  If you had told me seven years ago that I would EVER see this happen I'd have laughed in your face.  He dropped out of school at 16, was in and out of trouble and I very nearly lost the hope that things would ever change.  Until one day, 6 years ago, he asked me to go with him to enroll in college.  He began at Community College and finished at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, with Latin honors-cum laude, in Computer Science.  To say that I am proud of him would be a vast understatement! 
 Rob and Tanya, his girl.  She's next to go back to school!
 Rob and his younger brother, Scott.  Both Scott and older brother, Steve, helped Rob with problems.  Scott in Math and Steve with programming issues.  He says he couldn't have done it without them!
 My four children.  Between them they hold SEVEN college degrees (6 from University of Missouri schools) and Elizabeth is working on another Masters.  I am so proud of them!
 This is one happy Mom with the graduate!
And two nephews and a niece who may not have been happy with posing for photos but who adore their Uncle Rob.

Yee-Haw!  I'm four for four!

A lovely surprise!

On Wednesday last I received a lovely surprise!  The door bell rang, which it rarely does, I expected it to be someone trying to sell me something as it was too early for UPS and I didn't have anything ordered anyway, instead it was my postman!  He needed me to sign for a package, from Australia.  I was so excited, I could not wait to get it open!  All things Aussie!  Biscuits (cookies as we call them), chocolate, vegemite (haven't tried that on toast yet), A calendar of lovely views from down under, a note pad, a cute koola with he boomarang, and a Christmas mitten made by Ann.  (Who always does lovely work.) Almost forgot a wee fruitcake! Apparently, I was to receive it at Christmas but somehow it was better now!  I'm still smiling.
Here's Brayden eating one of the chocolate frogs!  I still have the rest but not because he didn't try to eat it all!
Normally, the chocolates would be long gone but it's been really crazy around here, but that's for another post!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Thoughts, part two

I am not much of a TV watcher, a bit in the evenings but almost never during the day.  My family all knows this so each time there is a news event they let me know-The Murrow building bombing in Oklahoma City, I get a phone call "Turn on the TV,"  The Challenger explodes, I get a phone call "Turn on the TV."  On September 11, 2001 I was madly cleaning house before I left for my history grad classes and I got THREE phone calls "Turn on the TV, you need to see this."  So last night, after I'd gone to bed it shouldn't come as a surprise that there was tapping on my door.  "Mom, did you know bin Laden has been killed?"  I got out of bed.  Caught the last of President Obama's speech, then couldn't go to sleep.  Unlike many of my countrymen I was not elated.  Instead, I wondered.  What will happen now?  Will he become a martyr, used to forward terror on a global basis?  Will their funding dry up?  Is this good or bad?  He was a religious fanatic, who hated the US and possibly the entire western world.  I don't understand why, although I'm sure one of my children will enlighten me.  Just because of the accident of birth, he hated me.  (Personally, I've always considered that accident of birth to be a great thing even if I don't always agree with those who run this country.) I am glad that those who lost loved ones on 9/11 have some closure (even though it will not heal their pain).  I am glad that one less religious fanatic lives to torment the rest of us.   The war is not over.  I do not like having our men and women in harms way, I want them home, I want the world to live in peace.  That being said, I remember Vietnam and the devastation that not completing the task set for the military created in our servicemen.  I do not want our soldiers to feel that grief, and I do not want the people of Afghanistan to be returned to life under the Taliban.  So, I will not join those who want them all home yesterday.  Progress towards peace is being made.  If nothing else, this war should teach us that religious fanaticism in ALL forms, ALL religions is a very dangerous thing, a very dangerous thing.  For ALL of us.

Thoughts, part one

There has been some comments on Facebook lately that have made me think.  So here are my thoughts.  Several folks have mentioned that while the US sends aid (both personal and governmental) to many countries after a natural disaster no one sends any to us.  While there have been some exceptions, traditionally, our government refuses aid from other countries saying that "We take care of our own."  I think that may be because aid always comes with strings-even if we can't see them.  The truth is, we don't take very good care of our own either.  Very shortly after the horrid fires took lives in Australia last year and again after this year's flooding there, Aussies quilters sent out a request for quilts and sewing packets for the ravaged areas.  People all over the world, including the US, began sending supplies, quilt blocks, and money to help.  (Quilters are very generous!)  I have never seen such an appeal for those hit by tornados, hurricanes, etc here.  Maybe it's out there and I just haven't seen it, but there don't seem to be any requests for aid to the people affected.  Why is this?  Do we expect the Government or Insurers to take care of everything?  Or maybe the Red Cross? I'm just wondering.