title explained

Onward and upward! something that you say in order to encourage someone to forget an unpleasant experience or failure and to think about the future instead and move forward.

My e-mail: jjmiller6213@comcast.net

Thursday, March 31, 2016

March Is A Cruel Month

You know that old adage, "If March comes in like a Lion, it will go out like a Lamb."  Well, over the years I really bought into that.  We had a really cold, bad March 1st, but I just turned my back on it, because I knew, I could look forward to the last day of March.


This has been the scene through my windows all day long!

This has just destroyed my Pollyanna view of the world!!! That adage is not true!  A lot of adages are untrue.  

"Money can't buy happiness"
         Ever been so poor you didn't have enough money to              buy even a gallon of milk for your child?

"Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise."
         Early risers tend to be more proactive, but burn out                quicker.  Night Owls are smarter in the long run.

"Flattery will get you nowhere."
     Wanna bet?
I am so glad this last day of March is almost over.  These months with 31 days in them are a real strain on my budget.  I think Social Security should give us an extra $20.00 on the months with 31 days in them.  My Social Security is usually all gone by the 15th of each month, so the rest of the month, I am just whistling in the wind.  Digging in the coin jar or searching coat pockets for enough to get a gallon of milk.  HAH!
I finished up the last of the Mile A Minute blankets for Chris.  This one is an afghan throw.  Perfect for a gentleman I think.  <or really any man, gentle or not.>

 Now we are working on a knitted shawl with butterfly's.  Well, stitches that make it look like butterfly's are scattered along the bottom part.  Next we start a project I have been waiting on for quite a few months.  A far-out, crocheted, campy sort of vest, and a knitted baby sweater.  

You know, you can find any of Chris' patterns on http://www.ravelry.com/designers/crissycraft---chris-williamson-designs
My gray, rainy, windy, cold day has been spent inside.  Mostly in my chair, watching TV, cross stitching and letting the animals entertain me.


Of course, as it sometimes does, at the end of a dreary day, the sun broke through the clouds for a beautiful sunset.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Mourning, Rituals & Other Things I Don't Understand

On and off during Tuesday and today, I watched EWTN and all the priests and people talking about how Mother Angelica changed, not only lives, but the Catholic Church.  She started that whole TV network, that now reaches all around the world.  Bedridden for the last 15 years from a stroke and in continual, fierce pain.  

Her birth name was Rita Rizzo, and like her name implies, she was a feisty, Italian girl and nun!  She was so humorous in her Bible studies, I guess I liked that about her.  She had suffered abuse while a young girl--her father, an alcoholic left the family early on.

What I didn't know until today, her mother later joined the same Franciscan Order and lived in the same convent/monastery.  So SHE was her mother's, Mother Superior.

I watched as her casket was brought back to the place she built.  I do believe she is the most influential woman in the whole Catholic Church.

There were Rosaries (about every two hours) said for Mother Angelica.  I barely made it through one.  Then we had an hour long "Stations of the Cross", which was nice.  Mass and Communion services each day.  

Lots of things I don't understand about the Catholic rituals.

Why do they repeat the same words/prayer, over and over when they do the Rosary?  That started to get on my nerves.  Doesn't the Blessed Mother, God and Jesus hear them the first time?
Why do they have incense they wave around?
What's the deal with the Holy Water sprinkler?
And why do they have to keep praying for her soul?

My Bible says, "Absent from the body, present with the Lord,"--like instantaneously.

If there ever was a person that Bible verse would pertain to, it certainly is Mother Mary Angelica!!!

People have already claimed healing's by praying to Mother Angelica.  I do think she will eventually be canonized and made a Saint.


Now, wait a minute.  If they are praying for her soul, that must mean they don't think she is in Heaven as yet.  Probably in Purgatory?  Then how would they think she could send a healing?

Maybe there are so many services taking place constantly so that God will notice someone important has died?  Doesn't He already know that?  

I don't understand much so, I guess I will have to ask my Karen.   She knows all that stuff about the rituals and such.

Which just reminded me of something.  Years ago--about 25 years, Pam and Jennifer decided to join the Catholic faith.  They both had already been baptized when they were babies, so they didn't have to go through that again, but they took the Catechism classes and there was an evening service at the Church for them to make their commitment to the Church and take their first communion.

It was at a local Church and of course, even though I lived 50 miles away, I attended.  After wards, the Priest came down the aisle.  He was sprinkling Holy Water back and forth on each pew.  I was sitting on the outside seat and when he got to me, he sprinkled the row in front, the row across from me and the row behind me and skipped right over me.

How did he know I was a heathen?  Because I hadn't gone up to take Communion with everyone else?  Anyway, I was a bit miffed that he didn't include me in the blessing or whatever that Holy Water is for!  and I felt bad about the people sitting in my pew row that missed out, just because of me!!  I'm still embarrassed about it.

I know that Catholics can be quite exclusionary. I realize that I can't take Communion at their altar because I might defile the Host, which seems not right to me.  I got upset about that once ( a long time ago) and told Karen, "In our church, as you well know, the minister states, 'This is the Lord's table. Open to all.'  Do you think that if I knocked on the door of the Upper Room and Jesus came to the door, He'd not let me in for supper because I'm not a Jew?"

Anyway, (or so I've heard), they tend to think their way is the only way and only Catholics get to Heaven.

That's why when you get to Heaven, you have to tiptoe past the Catholic room, so they don't realize you made it.  When you get to the Methodist or Baptist room, you can once again break out in loud hymn singing, shouting AMEN and PRAISE THE LORD!!  (old joke).

Sunday, I made another mistake.  I wished my grand daughter's fiance' Mike a Blessed Passover, because I thought that Passover is the same time as our Easter.  (Some years it is).  Well, come to find out THIS YEAR, Passover occurs on April 23rd. Passover is when Moses finally got the Jews out of Egypt--thus the reason "The Ten Commandments" movie is on TV every year at Easter time.

Our whole Easter thing is based on the Pagan thingie that has to do with the Moons cycle.  (Easter would be held on the first Sunday after the first full moon occurring on or after the vernal equinox.)

So back then, Jesus DID have Passover with his disciples on what we called Maundy Thursday.  But this year, the Easter/Passover thingie didn't line up together.

Instead, the Jewish people were celebrating Purim, which is from the book of Esther.

Oh Lord!  Save me!  

Not only do I need a Catechism class, but I need a Bat Mitzvah and if Maddie ever brings home some man named Abdul Mohammad, I am just done!!

Next time I am in the company of Karen's family, and the Jewish fiance', and asked to say Grace, I will start my prayer with, "Hear oh Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord, now Bless us oh Lord and these our gifts, which we are about to receive from thy bounty and (my old stand-by grace),  Bless this food to our use and us to thy service.  Amen."  

If nothing else, I am Ecumenical!!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

HGTV, Memories and Where Is Spring!!!

Something I have noticed.  People that leave comments on blogs, usually leave a comment about the last paragraph(s) the blogger wrote.  The blogger can write an impassioned post for half the page.  If they end with a short note about a robbery at their favorite store, the robbery will be what most commenter's write about.  I know that I tend to do it too.  I am pondering why that is?  It's a memory thing I guess.  We read the whole post, but only really remember the last part.  LOL
This past weekend, I watched many episodes on HGTV, about Tiny Houses.  Cute little places that come on wheels and you park them in a Tiny House park or on land you own.  In other words, trailers.  But, we can't call them that.  Oh no--that would take away the appeal to modern people and cost 1/4 the price!  LOL

When I first got married, we lived in a Tiny House, but that wasn't what it was called.  Back then, it was called what is really was--a trailer.  160 square feet.  

A year later, I moved to my brand new, just built home, only 1080 sq. feet, but enough room for three bedrooms, bath, kitchen, dining and living room.  

Ten years later, we moved to my Grandma's house.  Two story, full basement, over 2,000 sq. feet, not counting the basement. Now, that was living!!

Then I moved to Saginaw and the house had a full finished basement.  1,400 sq. feet, not counting the basement.  Three bedrooms, bath and a half, living room, kitchen and family room.  I lived there 12 years.  Corner lot, nice little house.

Then I moved here 13 years ago.  Not a Tiny House, although it came on wheels, in two pieces.  960 sq. feet.  A Wee House and just the perfect size for me!!

Monday was my little sister's 64th birthday!  I never, ever thought I'd still be alive when she was this age.  She has been sick again with that nasty flu bug that has been going around.  She has had it twice in two months time!!!  Yes--she did have her flu shot.  I still think a lot of the congestion is caused by the smoke that their fireplace expels every time the door is opened and by the dust from the dry wall.  

They are finally finishing up their last project in the house.  New master bedroom en' suite--I think that's what they call it on HGTV.  Not so much their bedroom, that is in what used to be the parlor, but redoing the bedroom next to it, into a bath and huge closet/dressing room.

What did I get my little sister for her birthday?  Well, I got her a coloring book and a case holding 72 colored pencils, of course.

My Dad's mother, Grandma Helene, Susan and Me.
Mother's Day, 1953

Monday was also the 4th anniversary of my best friends passing.   SHE was my only "sister" until I was 13 when my real sister was born.

I have told the story before.

I had no neighbor children to play with way out in the country, so on the first day of Kindergarten, I was pressed with my back into a corner, tears sliding down, looking out at the chaos and scared of all the children and the noise.  I just wanted to go home and play with my Mommy.

She, on the other hand, was missing her older brother and sisters, who were upstairs in the same school house.  The teacher would not let her go up there and be with them.  She came over to me, tears sliding down her cheeks, so cute in her two braids, put out her hand and said, "Will you play wif me?"

I grabbed her hand and we hung onto each other for the next 68 years.  Double dating in high school, standing up in each others wedding, living only 4 miles apart, we raised our children together and went on many family vacations together.

Hers is the only funeral I have ever cried at...and I didn't just cry, on the way out of the church, when I passed her casket, I broke down and had to be helped out of that area.  I felt awful being like that in front of her children, but I found out later, just how well she knew me.

Three days before she died she told her kids, "You keep an eye on Aunt Judy.  This is going to be hard on her."  Yeah--it was and it still is.

John left early Tuesday morning for the 8 hour trip to our Upper Peninsula to visit his siblings.  I have to admit, I am going to miss the Little Nipper and Maizey.  They stop in every day now.
Can you believe?  The DST change still has me flummoxed!  I am not ready to wake up when the clock radio comes on and I am not ready to go to bed when the cuckoo clock chirps out eleven times.  


I am starting to get the "let's take down the winter drapes and put up the spring sheers!"  "let's get out there and clean up the gardens."  "Let's paint the front porch."  The Farmer's Almanac said we were going to have an early, warm spring.  The TV weather man didn't get that notice.  

It was nice and sunny a warm today and warmer tomorrow, but---low 20's at night by this weekend.

Mother Nature is a nasty old, cranky woman!!!!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter, Volleyball and Religion

Easter Sunday, I drove down to Karen's and had a late dinner (or early supper) with her and the grand kid and their significant others.  I remembered Easter Sundays in the past where we all went to church and then on to grandma's for an outdoor Easter egg hunt and dinner.  Dressed in our finery for the entire day.

I had to kind of smile as the grand kids arrived or came down from their bedrooms, dressed in their blue jeans and T-shirts.  

It was a lovely, warm, sunny day, near 70 degrees.  After eating, we went out to play volleyball.  I love volleyball!  Karen was a star on the high school team.  When I was in high school, we only played it in Phys. Ed class, but years later, I did play on an adult team.

Well, come to find out now--I am not very good.  I am still a terrific server, skimming the ball just over the net and scoring points, but I can no longer run around on the uneven ground.

Thankfully, by the time I realized I needed to get off the "court", so that Karen, Mark and the kids could play without me in the way, it was after six and time for me to start home anyway.

I had a lovely day.  Karen and I did get to sit by ourselves and gossip chat a bit about Jennifer's situation.  It seems that not only has her husband NOT started work as yet, he hasn't even met with his father to discuss it!!  So, Jennifer is still supporting the whole family, by commuting back and forth between New Jersey and her office here in Michigan.

Isn't that just lovely?

Why did they move from their home here in Michigan?  The reason given was so that Jen's husband would work for his father, eventually take over the multi-millionaire business and Jennifer would be home with her children and do some pro bono law work.

The real reason?  I don't know for sure, but have an idea it was because he quit his job, because he was told he had progressed in "level" and salary as high as possible and Jennifer could not support that big house that they had gotten in over their heads.

At least, when she isn't commuting here, she IS home with the kids----and the husband.

Please Lord, keep my mouth sealed as to the advice I so want to give her!!!!!!!!!
I am kind of sad today.  There was a TV program that I watched every Tuesday and Saturday evening.  It was re-runs of shows back in the 1990's by a nun called Mother Mary Angelica.  She founded a Catholic TV station called EWTN!  I loved watching her shows and always felt renewed.  She had suffered much in her life and often stated, when it became near her end of life, she would not go into hospice and "euthanized".  She wanted to be as awake as possible and wait for God to take her, not some drug.

Appropriately, she passed away, at age 92, on Easter Sunday.  Oh.  I loved her!
No, I'm not Catholic and even my Catholic children don't watch the show.

I remember, back in the '50's, my Mother watching a TV show with Bishop Fulton Sheen.  My Daddy thought Mother was nuts.  For some reason, even with her background of being brought up completely prejudiced against Catholics, she watched Bishop Sheen's TV show faithfully, every week.  She thought he made sense and came to realize that "Some Catholics are actually Christians.  He preaches from the Bible!"

I think my Mother would have felt the same way about Mother Angelica.  I dearly loved the no nonsense nun!  She'd scold the church leaders, the priests.  I'll bet she would scold the Pope they have now too.  She wanted nothing to do with the liberalization of the Catholic Church.  I feel the same way.

A lot of people are trying to liberalize my Methodist Church, and I don't like it a bit.

There is the Bible.  There is the doctrine, the discipline, the beliefs of each denomination.  Leave them alone!  If you are a leader in these denominations and want to change the Church doctrine to now say, Gay marriage, Gay pastors and abortion are all right, then go to another denomination that feels the same way.  

Quit messing with the discipline.  Join a more liberal church, where you will be much happier than causing upheaval in the church I grew up in.

In my opinion, the Church is trying to gain more members--perhaps younger members, so they are lowering the standards the Church has always had, to meet the society we now live in.  Why?

I don't believe in transubstantiation (where the bread and wine turn into the actual body and blood of Christ).  Therefore, I do not go to Catholic or Lutheran church.  If some of their members feel that same way now, then  they should leave go to a different denomination.

Now, and this is just my opinion, I don't want my religion to come down to my standards.  I want them to "hold my feet to the fire" or something like that.  Just like God does.

People like to say, "Well, Jesus wouldn't judge."  Are you kidding me?  Jesus is God.  God judges and so did Jesus.  Yes, he forgave, but he said, "Go and don't sin again."  He didn't say, "Okay, I forgive you, just go over there and say a prayer and you can go back to your sinful life."

What did God do to Sodom and Gomorrah?  Was that not a judgment?  

We want it to be comfortable.  Like the Mega church up the road from me.  It has a couple thousand membership.  Mostly younger people and young families.  You walk into the "sanctuary" or whatever they call it, dress in your blue jeans or shorts, with your flip flops on, bringing with you your coffee, or Pepsi or whatever you want to bring in with you.  I'm surprised there isn't a smoking room off to the side with the "sermon" piped in.

There isn't a Cross in the entire building!  There is no communion.  The "speaker" gets up in front and gives a talk--be loving and kind to people.  Don't judge anyone.  Be happy and we'll all go to Heaven.  I call it dessert preaching.

Well guess what?  Even the Bible tells us to judge the company we keep.  "Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas."  "Don't cast your pearls before swine."  We need to know the people we keep company with.  Are they edifying or do they drag us down into the pit?
Sorry--I guess I went off a bit.  What was my point.

Oh. I guess my thought was that Mother Mary Angelica didn't believe in liberalization religion and neither do I.

Thursday, March 24, 2016


In regards to the popcorn, because I have it three or four a couple times a week, I am going to get one of those poppers that is used IN the Microwave, but with regular popcorn.  Pam and Jennifer have one and really like theirs.  Then I can add my own REAL butter.  They say, this one is the best.  You have to use disks in the bottom to concentrate the microwaves.  Walmart--about $13.00.
So--Dar stopped in.  ARGGH!  She was in hospital last week for 3 days.  She had a fast heartbeat, caused from a reaction to a Flu medication she was on, plus dehydration.

She was in the same hospital I stayed in last spring and had to have a cardio-inversion, to get her heart back to normal sinus rhythm, just like I had.

To hear her tell it, "They tried to kill me!"

"I tried to tell them,, I am allergic to everything!  But, they wouldn't listen to me.  They acted like I was a  hysterical, old woman!"

"Did you get in one of your hysterical fits?"

"Probably.  I remember crying and talking very loud. They were trying to kill me!"

"How did they try to kill you?"

"With the inversion!  They put something in my IV and I went out like a light!  When I woke up, they told me they zapped my heart to get it back in rhythm.  They didn't tell me they were going to do that!"

"I'm sure they did.  When I had it, they explained it all to me and I had to sign a paper giving them permission.  Did you sign anything?"

"Yes, but I didn't know it was for that!"

"No one explained it to you?  They just put something in your IV and you went out?"

"I thought they were giving me something to calm me down!"

"And it did, didn't it?  Fentanyl works great that way.  You get a nice nap and feel great when you wake up." ( and I giggled.)

"Then I had to have a stress test and once again, they put something nuclear in my IV and my heart rate went up and I started yelling.  I must have been allergic to that too!"

"They probably used Thallium as the tracer dye to show if your blood flow is sufficient for your heart.  Did you lay on the table, with the electrodes on your chest while they did the procedure?"

"Yes.  But my heart rate went up."

"It's suppose to.  Like if you were exercising or on a treadmill."

"Well, they didn't tell me that was going to happen!"

"Were you nervous?  They probably told you, but you didn't hear them because.......well, you know how hysterical you get when you are in the hospital."
Then we dropped that subject (thank you Lord) and she went off on a tirade about how her brother and sister-in-law are trying to kill her ninety-four old father.

"I know they are controlling him!  I would like to get him out of there, but he can't come live with me because of my son and grand kids being here."

"I thought you gave him the option last fall and he didn't want to live with you."

"He didn't.  He said I was a woman and women are controlling.  Besides, he is afraid that people will talk if they see me living with a man." (What?) 

"Why doesn't he go live with your other brother.  Take him up to their new house....like for a two week visit.  He'd enjoy being near the water.  Then, he could just stay there."

"I have already thought of that.  Pat (SIL) always took such good care of him when he used to live with them.  I plan on calling her when I get home and set it up.  I'm off work so I can take him up for a visit tomorrow."

Well, tomorrow came and went and her car didn't leave her driveway, so I guess Daddy is still stuck in the house with the son who is "trying to kill him."

I suggested two years ago that Daddy move into one of the many Senior housing places around here.  We have half a dozen of them.  Very nice and expensive--like $3,500.00 a month expensive.  Since Daddy is a millionaire, and loves to be around a lot of women, he'd probably enjoy it.  But, that is out of the question because, "We don't want Daddy to think we are sticking him in a home."  So they never suggested it or took him around for a tour of the places.

Dar did not ask how I was doing, nor did she notice the cedar chest just 3 feet away from her.  She hasn't noticed as yet that the tall media cabinet is no longer there.
John and Maizey stopped in this morning.  He sat in the same chair Dar occupies when she visits.  He talked while I cooed to Maizey, petted her and gave her a few Cheerios as a treat.

John told me the very same things he told me last night, when they stopped in.  He has to have an ultra sound on his foot.  That is Monday.  At the UofM in Ann Arbor.  He is going up north Tuesday, to visit his sisters/brother, he will be back next Friday.   He got upset with his neighbor playing music too loud at 2:00am and turned him into the office.  (That is the 4th time he told me that), and he has to take Maizey to the groomer tomorrow.

John did not ask how I was doing, but did caution that it was raining very hard and I should be careful if I had to drive today.

An hour later, I stood up and said to Maizey, "Precious Pup, I have to get busy and you have to continue your walk."
(In other words, time for you to go, John)
Sometimes, I gotta tell ya, these two people drain every ounce of energy out of me!

I need to go up and visit Pearl again, where she and I would have a TWO-WAY conversation.  Like normal people.  

Normal people seem to be missing from my life.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Stuff & Such

Maizey and her Daddy stopped in last evening and while we were talking, Merle and Pearl walked in to give me a box of Peeps, for Easter.

The four of us sat and chatted and gosh--it was fun!  Other than John interrupting a couple of times to turn the conversation back to him (he has a bad habit of doing that), we had a nice, generalized conversation for an hour.  It reminded me of "normal".
Today has been another "do nothing" day and I have to admit--I was bored all day!  Nothing to keep my hands busy.  Nothing on TV except news from Brussels.  Not in the mood to read, so just sat in my chair.
No matter that the rail planter on the porch is filled with Squirrel food, there is always one maverick critter that thinks the bird seed far above is better.


Quite often, I have popcorn and milk for supper.  I use microwaveable popcorn.

When I take out the bag to dump it into a bowl, the butter splatters on the counter.

I have to use Soft Scrub with bleach to get the stains off the counter.

I have been thinking, if that "butter" is that hard to remove from the counter, what kind of bad thing is it doing to my innards?!
I posted this pondering on Face Book.  Do any of you "Seasoned Ladies" ever feel this way?

It's difficult to get older and try and maintain a positive attitude and youthful mind. We get stripped of our dignity.
We can't walk as quickly and steadily, as we used to. There are foods that are difficult to eat, because of our shaky hands. We have spots and stains on the front of our clothes, from those mishaps. We should wear a bib, but that would cause more dignity to be stripped from us.
If asked a question, we can't think or respond as fast as we used to. Everyone around us seems to talk so fast, and jump from subject to subject, we can't keep up. Hearing problems cause us to miss conversations. So we sit and smile and do the "bobble-head" nod.
Some days it takes so much effort to get up and dressed and drive to a get together. Sometimes all the noise and action involved in those activities just simply tire us out. We want to stay involved, to keep active, so we push ourselves. Which, in the long run, is good for us.
Sometimes we feel invisible. We just aren't as vital and vibrant anymore, which can make us feel not needed. Yet, in our minds, we are still 30 years old! We want to be quick of wit and walk. We want to join in with our humor. We are just slowing down, in all ways.
We don't want pity. We don't want looks of concern. We don't want offers of help up and down the steps. All that just proves to us, how old we are!  Some of us are stubborn that way.
Someone said, "Growing old is not for sissies!"
How true!! Anyone else my age feel this way?

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

.....and the beat goes on............

........and more terrorists attacks and we hear the news and see the pictures and say, "This is terrible.  This world we live in is in trouble."  Then we go about our day, as I did today because---I am becoming inured to it all.  When I see the Alert--"Breaking News"--I wonder, "Oh!  Where now?"  Then I sit down and watch TV a bit and then change the channel or get on with my day.  It's becoming part of our lives, isn't it?
I moved the cedar chest over on my "fireplace-to-be" wall and took the Rattan trunk and put it at the end of my bed.  I am thinking of swapping out the handles with black iron or something, as these handles make it look too Early American style, which I have NEVER liked. :-)  My fireplace will have black iron handles on the doors.

So when I get it, and move the cedar chest back in front of the couch, they will match up really well.  Right now, I am a couple hundred dollars short of the $402.00 I need, but on a good note---I have $600.00 in my "Car Repair" envelope.  I am planning on getting the car fixed next month.  YAY!!!
I did make a quick run up to Walmart this afternoon.  I was out of milk and Nestle's Quik, which I have for breakfast every morning.  Also needed a banana, two candy bars and 4 jugs of Pepsi.

This is what I noticed today with my Purry Furry's.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Oh. My. Gosh!

Where do I begin?  
Where did I leave off?
What a weekend!!

Of course, by now, you've all heard of my Spartans tragic loss.  One and done!  For the last couple of months, sports commentators and those in the know have been stating, "I see the Spartans going all the way and winning the NCAA Championship."  I have stated that, "I've heard that before."

In reality--I bought into the whole hype.  They won the Big Ten Tournament.  They had a terrific season.  We had the Big Ten player of the year.  We had the winningest coach in Big Ten history.  What could go wrong?

A bit too cocky perhaps?  Thought playing a 15th ranked team was going to be a walk in the park?

The biggest upset in NCAA Basketball tournament history.

This says it all:
After I recovered from that--well, actually I still haven't recovered and probably never will! 

Anyway, a kid that used to play softball for my Dad and graduated with my sister and a Friend on Face Book, is moving and had a cedar chest for sale.  A LANE cedar chest.  I have always wanted one.  My Mother had promised I could have hers, someday, but apparently when my little sister was in her teens, Mother also promised it to her.

I did not get one for my graduation, as most of my girlfriends.  I was getting married.  I needed mixers and electric fry pans.  I didn't need a "hope" chest.  Then when Mother died and my little sister was two weeks shy of her 18th birthday and about to graduate, of course I didn't say a word and let her take the cherished cedar chest.

So, I inquired as to the price and he wanted $200.00 for it.  Sadly, I could not afford to pay that.  I loved it though.  It was just my style and the wood matched my furniture.  I didn't respond to his comment on the price, but last Thursday, he personal messaged me and said, for me, he'd sell it for $100.00 AND deliver it!!!  I took the bait!!

He brought it over on Saturday.

I have felt guilty ever since for spending that money, but....I DO love it!!!

and, Guess what?  It was manufactured in 1956-57.  The year I would have picked it out for my hope chest!
Sunday the Big Day for Maddie's ballet.  I had no idea what a BIG DAY it was going to be!!

I always leave early for these kinds of things.  Just in case.  I usually get there a half hour early, find a nice up close parking spot and sit in my car and people watch.

The ballet was to start at 2:30.  I left here at 1:30 to make the 12 mile trek.

I thought I knew where I was going, but when I got there?  I wasn't where I was supposed to be.  So, I back tracked and started again--3 times I did this.  Then I got out my "for emergencies only" Obama SafeLink phone and called:  Karen--Pam--Jennifer.  I found out later, they didn't recognize the number so they didn't return the call.

I decided to try one last time and go beyond where I thought the high school was.  As I sped along, I could see the big school off in the distance, but for the life of me, I couldn't figure out how to get there.  Finally, I just turned on a road that looked like it might be near the school and ended up at the middle school, wended my way around the paths and ended up at the school.  2:15!!!

Luck was on my side, as the parking lot was filled to the brim with ONE handicap parking slot open.  I pulled in, searched for my handicap thingy (that I rarely use) and whipped it over the rear view mirror

I got in the school, ran into the ladies room and there stood Jennifer!  We glanced at each other and didn't even recognize each other at first.  She washing her hands and me racing into a stall.

The ballet was lovely.  Of course.  There were 3 starring roles, Maddie had one of them.  Of course.  I got to meet my oldest grandson Marcus' girlfriend Lauren.  Karen was right.  She is a lovely girl.  Not pretentious in the least.  Very real and normal.

 LtoR: Karen, Mike, Helene, Lauren, Marcus, Mark, Jennifer, Pam

Then, we all went to supper at a nearby Mexican restaurant.  I knew right where it was and was the first to arrive.  HAH!

My oldest grand daughter and her boyfriend Mike, Mark and Karen--left

Marcus, Lauren, Jennifer and Pammie on the right.

I sat down, across from Pam and next to my oldest grand daughter, Helene.  Helene leaned forward a bit and said to Jen, Pam and I, "You know how grandma always says it's so nice to have a new baby for Christmas?  Well, I'm pregnant.  I'm due October nineteenth."

Thankfully Jennifer and Pam started in with the squeals and the congratulations, so that I had time to recover, gain my composure and instead of saying, " YOU'RE WHAT?"
grabbed her in my arms, hugged her and whispered, "Oh my Sweet Girl.  How wonderful!"

Then I went around and over to Karen and hugged her.  "Oh Honey.  You're going to be a grandma.  You are going to love that so much!"

The family ALL appears to be very happy?  I had all these words running through my mind.  "My grand daughter is Catholic and dating a Jewish man?"  "My strict Catholic grand daughter is pregnant and unmarried?"  "They act like this is some how normal and worthy of celebration?"

Of course, I had to put those thoughts right out of my head and join in.  After all, she is my first grand child and I love and adore her unconditionally.  True acceptances comes into play because, after all...........what can you do about it now?  Mike adores her and takes such wonderful care of her.  She is 31 and it's now or never?  There is going to be a marriage--sometime.  Plus, it is none of MY business!

AND--I do love having a new baby around at Christmas time!!  and I told them, "It's going to be a girl!  Grandma's know these things."

I will have to review my baby afghan and quilts, I have stored and let Helene pick out the one she wants.  

YIKES!!  I'm going to be a Great Grandma!!
Then, there's this one, with her sweet, innocent nature and her Purity ring firmly worn on her ring finger!!  Let's keep it that way.  Okay?