Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Weekend Menus

Whenever we get together with our kids and grandkids, food is a primary concern. It's also a cooperative venture, with all three couples contributing. Some of the grandkids are also now making and bringing their own contributions.

Our plan is to meet at our daughter's Friday night, and be together until Monday morning.

Here is what we plan to eat:

Friday night: chili and cornbread--Jeana
Fixins: Jamie
Saturday breakfast: pancakes (make batter night before, cook as people get up) Syrup-Jamie, bacon Mom & Dad
lunch/dinner: Turkey (Mom and Dad frying the turkey)
dressing, mac and cheese, green beans--Jeana Corn casserole, fruit salad and relish tray-Jamie
Supper: leftovers; meat, cheese and cracker platter, raw veggies and dip (Mom & Dad)

Sunday morning: breakfast casserole--Jeana
lunch: ?? work on leftovers?? Mom is bringing beefy vegetable casserole and a cheese ball; Chips and dip-Jamie
supper: enchiladas--Jeana
spanish rice and beans--Jamie
Jamie will also bring sour cream and extra cheese as toppings, we will bring drinks and lots of

Mom and Dad are also bringing banana bread, apple muffins, chocolate chip cookies, Heath bar cookies, and chocolate chocolate chip cookies, and sugar free cheesecake.

Latest bulletin: Jeana has bronchitis, a carry-over from Katoushka's bout with it during Thanksgiving, which I then took home with me, and passed on to Wick. So we may have to freeze everything, and postpone until Jeana is feeling better.

The date on the calender doesn't matter; being together is what is important.

We found a crate of games in the barn, so we will spend a good bit of time sorting through those, and deciding what to keep and what to trash, and then the great debate about what we are actually going to play.

Some of us are hooked on Settlers of Catan, so I'm sure there will be a Settler's tournament. Then maybe chicken foot, which all of us can play at the same time, or a scrabble tournament, or maybe Risk.

Doesn't matter much what we play; we always have a great time. The trash-talking, teasing, singing badly, and family stories will make new memories to go with the ones we already have.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas is for Family

Last Saturday, we met with my extended family to celebrate Christmas.

My parents had four kids. All four of us married, and had among us 11 kids. All 11 have married, and had kids.

The current count is 54, with several couples still in the child-bearing years, so that number may go up.

Obviously, too big a crowd for anyone's house, so we met at the community center where my folks live.

For years, we all congregated at my mama's house on every occasion, and often just to visit. Her house was Family Central. But we finally had to concede there were just too many of us for her house. My folks now live in a one-bedroom apartment, and there are no large gatherings there, although we try to visit at least once a month.

With so many of us, even a whole day is never enough to visit with everyone as I would like to.

But with phone calls, e-mails, and facebook, we manage to stay in touch, to keep track of the important events in everyone's lives.

All of this to say, after all, Christmas started with one family. A man who took a wife who was already pregnant, and the Child who was born to them on that night so long ago.

That Child came to save us from our sins, and our Father God says we are adopted into His family, brothers and sisters to Christ, co-inheritors of the Kingdom.

So, brothers and sisters, a very merry Christmas to you all.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Our Chihuahuas

This was Cassie's first major family holiday. She was a bit overwhelmed.

In the photo above, I am holding Sissy, our shy baby. Wick is holding Cassie, who has a black muzzle, as if she has been into the chocolate pudding.

She did not get into any pudding or pie, but tasted every crumb that dropped on the floor.

Our daughter has a large Golden Retriever, Emma, and two cats: Boots and Spencer. Our son has a Boston Terrier named Oreo. Cassie wanted to play with all of them.

Some were more enthusiastic than others.

The cats stared, hissed, and finally ambushed her. They never touched her, but to hear her shrieks, one would have thought she was being skinned alive.

Emma wanted desperately to play. But one little pat from a paw as big as Cassie's head sent her rolling across the floor.

Oreo is bouncy and playful, and a bit closer to Cassie and Sissy's size, but still big enough to send either of them sprawling with one mis-aimed leap.

They mostly played with each other, as they do at home, slept in their bed by my feet as we played Settlers of Catan, and did their best to charm bits of turkey and ham from unwary family members.

Sissy spent as much time as she could wheedle out of me, sitting in my lap with her head tucked under my arm, shivering if anyone else spoke to her or touched her.

After three days with 14 people, four dogs, and two cats, Sissy was doing her happy dance as soon as we got inside our house. Cassie ran around excitedly, sniffing to see that everything was exactly as she had left it.

They are sleeping the sleep of exhaustion as I write, snuggled together under their fleece blankets, noses still twitching at the scent of the left-overs we brought home.

They have no idea that in a month, we will be doing it all over again for Christmas.

Sometimes, ignorance is bliss.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Menu

Since I posted about my myriad lists, I thought I would share our menu for the upcoming Thanksgiving gathering.

We are gathering at Jeana's. Mom and Dad means Wick and me.

Wed night
: lasagna, salad and bread (Jeana)

Breakfast casserole (Jeana)
Lunch: sandwiches, BBQ smokies (Jeana)
chips with Rotel dip (Mom)
Supper: Turkey, Dressing, Rolls, Mac and Cheese, Green Beans, Pumpkin Pie (Jeana)
deviled eggs, pecan pie, fruit salad (Jamie)
Veggies and Dip (Mom)

Breakfast (Dad)
Late lunch: Ham, Mashed Potatoes, Rolls (Jamie)
Sweet Potatoes, Roasted Veggies, Cranberry Salad, Apple Pie, Gingersnaps (Jeana)
Broccoli Casserole (Mom)
Dinner: leftovers
pimento cheese for sandwiches (Mom)

Sat: Breakfast (Dad)
leftovers again, banana pudding

Sunday: pumpkin bread before church

And here is the list of stuff we still need from the grocery store:

For the roast vegetables:
yellow squash
tomatoes (cherry or grape)

For the cranberry salad:
1 bag fresh cranberries
4 apples
4 oranges

For the banana pudding:
vanilla wafers
sweetened condensed milk
cream cheese
cool whip

For the coffee, which we drink from morning til night:
flavored coffee creamer (I like pumpkin or cinnamon sugar cookie right now, but pick something you like.)

For the big Pipaw breakfast the kids expect whenever we get together:
Yes, there will be gravy. A tub full of gravy.
pancake mix for Sat.

I baked today for Sunday's breakfast:
Pumpkin muffins
Pumpkin bundt cake
Banana walnut bread
banana walnut muffins
Chocolate banana chocolate chip muffins
Two loaves choc. banana choc. chip bread

The reasoning here is that Sunday morning will be hectic, trying to get everyone ready for church, bathed, dressed, fed, and still in our right minds, so all these bread-like substances will be easy to grab and go out the door.

As my late Mother-in-law would have said, we will have enough food to feed Cox's army!

Six adults, four girls, and four teenage boys.

Too much food? Not enough? Everybody has their favorite thing that we just have to have. When we all still gathered at my mama's, the crowd grew to 54 people. We can't have quite the variety that we had then, with everyone bringing something different, but we do try to include the traditional dishes we all love.

The extended family finally conceded that 54+ people was just too many for one person's house, so now we gather at the clubhouse where my folks live. But by getting together with our kids and grandkids, we are keeping alive the tradition of maintaining family ties, allowing enough time to really visit, to play games, to luxuriate in being with the people we love best.

In the words of the old hymn:

We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing;
He chastens and hastens His will to make known;
The wicked oppressing now cease from distressing;
Sing praises to His Name; He forgets not His own.

May all of you, my dear friends, have a most happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Making Lists

Holy Mama asked if anyone else is a list maker. My hand went up immadiately.

Do I have lists.
Grocery list for today, for this week, for stocking up, and for “when I feel especially rich.” Which hasn’t happened yet, but might someday, if we ever win the lottery.

A list of what I need to cook with for Thanksgiving, a list of things I am going to cook, a list of stuff I will make if I have time/feel like it.

A list of menus for Wed. through Sunday, showing what Jeana is making, what Jamie is making, what Wick is making, and what I am making. With an attached list of explanatory notes.

A list of stuff I have been meaning to take to Jeana, Jamie, the grandkids.

And a list of what needs to be loaded into the car now, tomorrow, and on the day. And a list of bedding to take. This is beginning to overwhelm me; I had no idea I had so many lists.

The great advantage of making lists is that at least I will know what I was supposed to do, what I was too tired to do, and what I forgot to do.

But making lists makes me feel as if I have already accomplished something, even though all I have actually done is make lists.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Rainy Afternoon

We are still in the midst of a drought, according to statistics, which indicate we are shy 20 inches of rain for the year.

Our county and those around us have been under a burn ban for months.

But this afternoon, it rained.

The back wall of our cabin is windows, about 25 feet of windows, looking out onto the lake. It is so beautiful to watch the rain as it starts on the other side of the lake, and gradually moves over the water, like the Spirit of God moving over the face of the deep.

Both our front and back porches have tin roofs, so we enjoy a symphony of rain falling on the tin and running down the ridges, dripping off into the earth. The lightning flashes, the thunder rolls, and we cuddle with our chihuahuas under a hand-made quilt, and watch the blessed rain pour down from heaven.

Let us praise His name for His goodness endures forever.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

What a difference three years makes

Three years ago today, I was in hospital, recovering from surgery for four abdominal abcesses, and expecting to go home by the weekend.

Little did I know that I was just beginning a two-month marathon stay in hospital.

And another surgery.

And kidney failure from a bad reaction to the contrast dye.

And a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, with a heart four times normal, and a projected demise within 10 months, if nothing changed, or I didn't get a heart transplant.

And losing about a pound a day, because I couldn't eat much, and couldn't keep down what little I ate.

And four months of physical therapy.

And having to take disability retirement, or being in a wheelchair and then a walker and now a cane.

But I also didn't anticipate the outpouring of prayers and love from family, friends, friends of friends, and churches and people I had never met.

Or the constant comfort of Bible verses memorized in childhood and teen-age years, speaking of the love and care of God the Father.

Or the way our marriage relationship knit ever closer.

Or the tremendous sacrificial care I would receive from our children and grandchildren.

Or the strong unwavering sense that God kept me here for a purpose, even though I am still not sure what that purpose is.

God is good, all the time.

Monday, October 17, 2011

More Photos

Here we are with our Sunshine, at a football game, during half-time. Isn't she just adorable?

This the quilt I made for Pie for graduation from high school. It is made of jerseys and t-shirts from her club soccer years. Now, each of the other six grandchildren want one. So I will be doing a lot of quilting over the next few years.

Actually, they don't all want t-shirt quilts. Katoushka has already said she wants an Irish Chain pattern, in green and white, the colors of the university she plans to attend. Buddy and Sunshine do want t-shirt quilts. He graduates next year. Sunshine and Katoushka graduate the next year. I better get my sewing stuff organized.

I guess I should explain that these are not my gradchildren's real names.

Pie is the oldest, and in college, on a soccer scholarship.

Buddy is next, a junior who plays left tackle on the football team our son and my brother coach.

Then Katoushka and Merideth, who are just 3 months apart, currently in 10th grade.

Next is A-man, then Lolly, and last but not least, Big D.

K. and L. play piano, and A. and D. play violin. They are our daughter's kids, and are home schooled.

The nicknames are based on the pet names I have used for them since they were babies.

Their parents want to preserve as much of their privacy as possible, so I don't use their real names.

They are my babies, and my darlings, and we love them immensely. In them we relive our own children's childhood, and through them we glimpse our future. We are so blessed.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Frogs and Rabbits and Other Lakeside Creatures

During this drought filled summer, we have seen more little rabbits than ever. When I take Sissy and Cassie out after dark, they are everywhere, their little white powder puff tails almost glowing white in the security lights.

They gather mostly in our neighbor's yard, because he waters and his grass is lush and green, unlike ours, which crunches like shredded wheat underfoot.

When we come out, they freeze in place, unmoving, except for their wiggly little noses, which twitch furiously as they attempt to identify our alien scents. Their long ears quiver, as they wait to see if we are going to approach or move away. When the chihuahuas finally notice them, of course, they feel compelled to alert the whole neighborhood, inciting all the other dogs to bark and howl furiously.

As the pandemonium mounts in intensity, the rabbits break free from their freeze, and scatter into the shadows, disappearing in an instant.

Most of the frogs we see are dead and dried little mummies, their tiny bodies lying in the sandy soil, victims of the drought.

The dogs seek out these tiny corpses, rub their faces on them, or pick them up to carry around until they finally drop them elsewhere.

As the lake dries up, the small critters are disappearing. We didn't see a single brood of baby ducks this summer. The frogs are running out of shallow water in which to breed.

We help as we can. We keep the hummingbird feeder filled with sweet nectar; we put our fruit and vegetable parings out behind the back porch for the rabbits, who devour them almost before I get back in the door. We keep the bird feeder full for the jays, sparrows, wrens, robins, cardinals and blue birds.

We can't do anything about the frogs or the ducks or the geese, except hope that eventually, when the lake returns, so will they.

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Pictures I Should Have Posted

I have already blogged about these subjects, but never posted pictures. So herewith I offer you, from the top:

Mother and Pa

Son and grandson on the football field

Our front door

Our back porch

I have tried five times to upload a picture of us with our cheerleader granddaughter, but failed. Sigh.

I never said I was a computer whiz.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Fires Contained--For Now

The latest report is that, barring a rising wind, the fires in East Texas are contained. Not out. Just contained.

30,000 acres burned to a cinder in Marion County alone. Many homes, barns, fields and pastures now dry, black, and smoking. A 20 yr. old woman and her 18 month old baby dead in Smith County.

Other parts of our country are flooded. Texas needs rain desperately.

Thank you for prayers for the safety of our loved ones. Please continue to pray for rain, so that the still-blistering ground can cool down, and some of the ashes be washed away.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Wildfires in Texas

I don't know if y'all are following the news about the wildfires that seem to be consuming Texas. Our son and family live in deep East Texas, and are subject to evacuation any time, and Pie's boyfriend and his whole extended family had to evacuate last night--the fire is within two miles of their homes.

We have been praying all night for them, and I covet your prayers as well.

Without rain, and in a drought so severe that our trees look like they are dying, the fires are very difficult to contain. We need rain desperately.

Seeing this kind of tragedy on the nightly news is bad enough. But now, it has a face--the faces of the ones we love.

We are trusting our loving God to keep our loved ones safe.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Grits: That's What's for Breakfast

If you are not fortunate enough to be from the South, or live in the South, you may never have encountered the (mostly) breakfast dish called grits.

We Southerners love our grits. No self-respecting Southerner would ever make instant grits. We cook grits until they are creamy, smooth, lump-free. Then we add plenty of butter, a little salt, and a sprinkle of black pepper, and dig in.

You can eat grits alone. Or you can eat grits as part of a big ol' breakfast platter.

I love grits with fried eggs over easy. I like the way the golden yellow yolk runs into the grits, and I love sopping it up with toast.

I have no problem with a little of that skillet gravy slopping over onto the grits; I just sop that up with a biscuit.

Sausage is good with grits. So is ham. And bacon, of course.

Some people add a little syrup over their sausage, or pancakes, and like for the syrup to run into the grits. I don't care for syrup on my grits, but hey, if they like it, I am fine with it.

What I do not like is grits with sugar. You can put sugar on oatmeal, or cream of wheat, or whatever other kind of hot cereal you like. You can add it to your cold cereal, even your frosted flakes. I don't mind. But sugar on grits is just not right.

What brings all this up is that Wick and I had breakfast at the Shed, in Chandler, last Saturday. The Shed is an East Texas legend, and serves up all kinds of down-home cooking, but what we like best to eat there is breakfast; we ordered fried eggs with runny yolks, biscuits with gravy, and a side of sausage, with a big bowl of grits.

As we were waiting for our food, we saw a couple at the next table. She had grits with lots of butter, and salt and pepper. He, however, was pouring sugar on his grits.

Not just a little sugar. A lot of sugar. As in, about an inch of sugar topping his grits, so much sugar that when he stirred, the sugar ran over the side of the bowl.

He must have put half a cup of sugar on his grits. We stared in amazement.

Then we looked at each other, and started laughing, and saying, "did you see that??"
"what was he doing??"

When we finally stopped laughing, I said, " Well...what I say is...if you don't like grits, don't order grits, and then ruin them with sugar."

Next time you go to the store, get you some grits. Go home and cook you up a big pot. Add plenty of real butter, and some salt and pepper. While you are at it, cook you up some sausage and fried eggs and buttered toast. Enjoy.

And if you have plenty left over, I can give you some recipes for great stuff to do with left-over grits.

Just don't add any sugar.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Yesterday, we were in Tyler all afternoon, and it rained! The temp dropped from 105 to 77, there was lightning, and rain, blessed rain, fell for about half an hour.

It was only about a tenth of an inch total, but how wonderful it felt, falling rain, cooler temps (at least for a little while), and what a relief from the 60 days of 100 plus temperatures.

Thank you, Lord!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Will It Ever Rain Again? summer 2011

It is hot. The hottest summer in years. And the driest.

107 this afternoon, and nearly 60 days of over 100 degree temps.

No rain.

A couple of days ago, for about 5 minutes, we heard the sound of light rain falling on our roof and the trees. Not enough to really even get the cars wet.

But a breath of cooler air.

And a promise that rain will come again.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Chihuahuas Are Like Potato Chips

We used to have a Pomeranian. Frankie was with us for 16 years, and I always figured I would have another Pom when Frankie left us.
But instead, we rescued a Chihuahua, Sissy, 5 pounds of sweetness. She is a very submissive little dog, and totally attached to me. She is not interested in anyone else, which is hard on Wick, since he is crazy about her.
She does, however, love Little Bob, a Chihuahua who belongs to our friends Bob and Dean. She always wants to play with him, jumping and running and trying to get him to play with her.

So we decided that we would get another Chihuahua, a puppy who would love Wick, and who Sissy would enjoy playing with.

Cassie is eight weeks old, with a black muzzle, and she loves everyone, especially Wick.

But for ten days, Sissy avoided her, refused to sit or lie next to her, and didn't even want to go outside when Cassie was taken out for her house training lessons.

We had been told that Chihuahuas recognize fellow Chihuahuas, and that they were much more inclined to bond with their own breed than with other kinds of dogs. So we were surprised and saddened that Sissy seemed so unhappy about our new puppy.

Then, suddenly, yesterday Sissy initiated play with Cassie. They are so funny to watch, and such a source of entertainment to us.

So that's why I say Chihuahuas are like potato chips. You can't have just one.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

This Is Important Stuff Right Here

I believe that life should be lived every moment. Life never goes on hold. The moments spent with loved ones are the foundation of life, and we should never waste an opportunity to be with them.
I believe in prayer. Constant prayer. Giving thanks for all things, because we never know what lessons we are learning until we live them out.
Treasure every minute with your babies. They are grown and gone before you know it.

I believe in chocolate. Chocolate makes everything better.
I believe in real food:
Real butter, not margarine, or oleo as my grandmother used to call it, which makes it sound even more gross.
Real cream, not whipped topping made of vegetable oil . Ugh.
Real vanilla extract, not imitation, which definitely alters the taste of anything.
Real potatoes, not flakes.
Real rice, not instant.
Real eggs, not stuff in a carton or box. What's really in there, anyway?
Real food, not fat-free. The manufacturers usually replace the fat with sugar, because fat carries the flavor, and sugar is what they use instead, so it isn't really better for anyone.

If it is man-made, in general it is crap. There may be a few exceptions, but I can't think of any right now.

I believe that children are a gift of God, and a blessing.

I believe that mothers who sacrifice their own desires in order to stay at home with their children are blessing them for their whole life. These mothers are raising their own children, instead of paying someone else to do it. I realize that some mothers have no choice but to work, but I believe that God designed us so that two parents, both mother and father, are the ideal people to bring up their children, not paid strangers.

I believe that family comes first.

I believe that it is possible to forfeit one's place within a family. I believe it is possible to renew the relationship, with true love and repentance.

I believe that we are born into a biological family, but we also create family as we grow older.

I believe that I am not a particularly interesting person, and I am always surprised when people remember me after not seeing me for a long time.

I believe that God gives each of us a gift, and that we have a responsibility to use it for His glory.

I believe that I am still alive because God still has a plan for me, something I am supposed to accomplish. I'm not sure what it is, but I am always listening for His guidance.

I believe in marriage. My husband is my best friend, my lover, my greatest fan, and the love of my life. I don't think I could live without him.

I believe that I have talked too much, and should stop now.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Adventures with a Toddler

Holy Mama asked me to write about the time when Scott was a toddler. There are several stories I could tell, so this may turn into a series.

When Scott was a toddler and Jeana a baby, we lived in a two-story house that was more than 100 years old. The bedrooms were all upstairs. I put the kids down for naps every afternoon after lunch, and usually lay down for a little while myself. Because of Scott's propensity to run off, I locked all the doors and put on the security chains before I lay down.

One afternoon someone knocked on the door about half an hour after I had put the kids down for their naps. When I opened the door, there stood my sister-in-law with Scott by the hand.

She and my brother-in-law were driving down a busy street just a block from our house. They found Scott in the middle of the street, with a rolled-up newspaper, "directing traffic" by swatting at the cars as they passed.

They threw on the brakes, grabbed him up and brought him home to me.

The curious fact is that the doors were still locked and the security chains still latched.

How did he get out of the house? I never found out.

But this is why, when we went out in public, he wore a special harness, with a leash. It was the only way I could keep up with him. I'm not saying it is ideal, nor is it for everyone. But for Scott, it was the only safe option.

I swear the child could climb a straight wall. Maybe he could even walk through them.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Lost & Found

About two weeks ago, our Sissy got lost. For three nights, she was astray, dragging her little pink leash, despite hours of calling and searching through a heavily wooded area.

We had given up. The creek running through the woods has coyotes and bobcats, owls and hawks, so we were both secretly convinced she was a goner. Aloud, we both said, she is so little and so cute--someone probably found her and kept her.

The third day, we were on our way to buy another puppy, when the phone rang to tell us someone had seen her.

We drove two and a half hours back to where she was lost, and again called and searched. Friends, family and strangers called, looked, and prayed with us. Again, no luck.

The next morning, Wick was up before daylight. About 6:30, he came and got me, and again I called and called. I asked every jogger and bike rider who came by to keep an eye out for our little fur girl.

At one point, we were ready to give up, but Wick decided to make one more effort. About thirty minutes later, he emerged from the woods, dripping blood and covered with scratches, with Sissy in his arms.

Her leash had gotten tangled in a briar patch, and she had wound herself round and round the briars. Wick's arms and legs were covered with scratches from the briars, but he says it was well worth it, to find our Sissy.

God answered my prayers when he sent her to us, and He answered prayers when He sent Wick in the right direction to find her. God cares for us, even in the littlest matters.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mother's Day 2011

Dearest Mother in the world,
Once a year our nation celebrates mothers. I celebrate you every day, praising God for letting me be your daughter.
You are a beautiful woman inside and out, full of love and grace.
You are the foundation of my life, the rock to which I cling when sad or hurt.
You have shared your faith and your love like a bottomless spring of sweet water.
Your happiness since marrying Pa overflows to all of us.
Thank you for being you.
We love you.

Jan and Wick

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Our new little dog Sissy is beginning to settle in, and has *almost* decided that Wick is not going to hurt her.
Being a puppy mill survivor, she is getting to know a whole new world, and every new sight and sound sets her aquiver, with a heartbreakingly worried look on her little face. Sometimes she runs to me for comfort, but usually she scurries under the futon, or the bed, or the bathroom vanity, and hides her face.
She has found a favorite spot to sleep, under a little lap quilt on the futon. she wants company, and if I am sitting elsewhere, she runs to me as if to be picked up, but the at the last second, runs to the futon and looks back at me to see if I am coming with her.
She loves tiny bits of chicken, pupperoni treats, and little bits of bread crust. She does not like to eat out of a bowl, but prefers to eat from our fingers.
When we go outside, she stays about six inches from my feet, constantly looking up at me and begging to be picked up. I guess grass feels strange to her, after spending so long in a crate.

Other than things we have done for humans, adopting this little dog is the most satisfying thing we have done in a long time. Rescue dogs are truly grateful for what is done for them. We highly recommend rescuing a dog, instead of buying from a breeder.
There are thousands of dogs waiting for a loving home. If you are looking for a dog, won't you give one of them a chance at a new life?

Friday, April 08, 2011


Wick and I went shopping for a deep freeze this week, an upright, about half the size of the one we had when the kids were younger. That one was the biggest one Sears had, and you could have buried a couple of people in that thing.

Thinking about that freezer reminded me of an experience one of our cats had with the freezer.
She was a little Siamese kitten, full of curiosity. She loved to jump into empty boxes, suitcases, paper grocery sacks--anything enclosed.

Our freezer was in the carport, so unless I needed something, it was out of the usual traffic patterns.

One day I went to the freezer to get some meat to move into the refrigerator freezer.
A couple of hours later, I realized I had not see the kitten lately, so went in search of her. She didn't seem to be anywhere in the house, but cats are good at hiding when they don't want to be found, and rarely come when called, so I wasn't too worried.

Later in the afternoon, I realized I needed something else from the freezer. Normally, I might go several days without opening the big freezer, so this was unusual.

When I opened the freezer door, I found the kitten. She was sitting on the bottom shelf, shivering. When I picked her up, her whiskers were frozen, and just touching them broke some of them off.

If I had not forgotten something from the freezer that day, she would have frozen to death. I guess there must be a special angel for curious kitty cats.

Fortunately, even though we have a new freezer, we no longer have cats. I just hope Sissy isn't as curious as that kitten was.

Monday, April 04, 2011

Seven Random Things

Kelsey at asked me, among several other of her blogging friends, to tell seven random things about myself.

1. I haven't been blogging much lately, because I haven't had much to say. I know, unbelievable, right? I, who *always* has something to say, can't think of anything to say. I suppose it has something to do with Wick retiring, and doing stuff together every day, but then...I wasn't blogging in the months before he retired, either.

2. In case you haven't heard, our Pomeranian, Frankie, who lived to be 16 years old, passed away last month. His demise left a big hole in my heart, and in my life. I still miss him, but not as agonizingly.

3. Probably because this week we got another dog, Sissy the Chihuahua. We named her Sissy because she is scared of everything. She spent the first year of her life locked in a cage, as breeding stock. But her first season, she had one huge puppy which died, and she almost died too, so she was no longer of value as a breeder. Which is how she came to live with us, and we are very happy about that. She has brown eyes, is the color of honey, and weighs about 4 pounds.

4. We are looking forward to warmer weather, and the yearly influx of family and friends who come to the lake during spring break, Easter weekend, Memorial Day, and every chance they get. Last year we had about 35 people here for 4th of July. Swimming, fishing, cooking outside, catching up on all the news, and loving on my kids and grandkids, nieces and nephews and cousins--it's great.

5. Wick built a raised-bed garden for his tomatoes, and I for one am hoping the tomato plants outdo themselves. He plants big ones for him and the tiny grape or cherry size for me. I love them, and could eat them like candy.

6. We finally found just the right kind of drop-leaf table, at a good price. It needs refinishing (thus the good price) but it has 2 extra leaves, and I love the Duncan Phyfe style. Apparently, I don't know how to spell the name, but y'all know what I mean, right? No chairs, but chairs generally don't last nearly as long as tables do.

7. We had a good rain storm this morning, which we needed. We haven't had much rain lately, and the lake is so low we can't get the boat out of the boat house until the water rises. We have one of those pontoon thingys, big enough to take all our kids and grandkids out at once, so we are hoping the water rises enough, before hot weather.

There are a lot of red squiggly lines under words in this post, but I don't know how to spell the words blogspot says are misspelled, so...oh well.

How's that for randomness?

Monday, March 07, 2011


Sixteen years ago, Wick gave me a little double handful of fluff, with a little pink tongue and big brown eyes, as a Christmas gift.
We got him from a breeder near Lake Tawakoni.
She lived at the end of a dirt road, in a run-down mobile home. When we knocked on the door, a raucous voice screeched, "Who is it?"
When the door opened, the voice said, "Shut the d--- door!" It was a large parrot, strutting across the top of a big wire cage. Half a dozen tiny Pomeranians skittered into the room, followed by a couple of dust bunnies--their puppies.
We made our selection, and the woman went into another room to write up the paperwork. The parrot screamed, "Don't you sh-- in that floor!"
It was a cold night, so Wick zipped him up in his jacket, with just the little foxy face sticking out under his chin.

We named our furball Frankincense, Frankie for short. He went almost everywhere we went, making every step we made in the house, and patrolling the back yard for intruders.
He was crate trained, and came to view his crate as a safe retreat when our little grandchildren wore him out playing.

For sixteen years he was my companion, my little buddy, my fur baby.

Last Friday morning, we made the final journey with Frankie. He has gone where good dogs go, and I certainly hope we will see him again in Heaven one day.