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

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

For one who lives such a mundane life, I sure get busy at times!  Before I know it, it's bedtime and too late to post anything on here.  "I'll do it first thing in the morning."  Then the next day comes, with more distractions and.............I forget.  
I need to get on one of those, "I'll post everyday" kicks.  Hm-mm.  Every other day?  Twice a week perhaps?  I just know, I need to do better.
Last Thursday, I had lunch with my Old School Pals.  There was only 5 of us, so it was easy to talk and hear each other.

One of the ladies, the one I have known since I was born, seems to be getting very senile.  Or something--I don't know what to call it.  She has always been an exaggerator, I've known that, some of the other's don't, so when she went off on one of her stories, I didn't bother to let on that over half her story came from some imaginary place in her mind.

Now--she has taken to a bit of paranoia in her stories.  The other day, she claimed that Beth's husband called her and told her never to call Beth on the phone again.  Never!  The rest of the gals looked a little stunned.  Then she went on with a tale of her voting experience and how she knew her ballot had been thrown away, how another of the people working at the polls had told her she couldn't vote after the age of 80, and that ALL absentee votes are not counted.

Ruth Ann, one of our gals, has worked at the township voting place for over 20 years.  She got a bit irate and started to tell Liz (senile) that she was absolutely wrong in her thinking.  Liz went on to tell Ruth Ann that she had been told these things and it must be different in her township.

Then Liz told us that Beth's husband is so mean to her.  He wouldn't allow her to take any of their stuff from their home to their new retirement condo.  Well, that remark sparked June into saying, "We were at Beth's last month for lunch.  All their furniture is what they had in their home.  She has all her antiques.  Didn't you see them?"

So Liz dropped that and went on to tell a story about how Beth's husband had offered to give one of us a ride home, but he kept stopping to run errands and it took 6 hours to get home.  I just kept on eating my Taco's and then Liz said, "Don't you remember, Judy?  It was you!"  My head sort of snapped up and I said, "Wasn't me.  Must have been someone else."

Now all eyes are on me.  Liz said, "You told me how tired and exhausted you were when you got home.  You said you thought maybe he was kidnapping you!"

"Wasn't me," I replied.  "I've never even ridden in a car with him."
Pretty soon it was time to leave.  Liz got up to go, said she had to leave early to get home so she could curry and brush her husband's new registered race horse. (?)

I motioned for the other gals to wait a minute--when Liz left we all sat down and my other gal pal Sandy and I, who have talked a lot about Liz's problem, filled in the other gals with what is going on with her.  Sandy, who is a retired nurse said, "Don't confront her, just smile and nod and keep eating while she tells her tales." 

When I got home, I e-mailed Beth (who wasn't there) with all the sordid details of what Liz had said about her and her hubs and that her hubs had "kidnapped" me.  Beth's hubs and Liz's step-son are very good friends.  They are aware that Liz is falling off the edge.

What puzzles me...most senile people are forgetful, but she tells some of the same stories every month...with the same detail.
Saturday, Grand daughter Helene invited me down to her Mom's, daughter Karen's, to watch the MSU football game on their big TV.  Of course, Great Grand Della was there and now that she has warmed up to me, we had a great time.

Instead of downsizing when their kids moved out, Karen and Mark opened up one end of their small living room and built on a 30 feet extension.  With their 5 kids getting married and having babies and the way their family does everything together, they need more room now than when the kids were at home.

They have a 72" TV and a 15' curved couch.  I camped myself on one end, put up the recliner, pulled out my crocheting and was happy as a tick.  Pretty soon, Grand daughter Maddie came in with pizza's and salad.  We had a girls afternoon and it was lovely!!!  MSU lost and I didn't even care. :-)
Monday Beth came over with two cloth shopping bags full of her family tree research.  Different members of her family have done a lot of research on their family--even going to Europe to trace down other cousins, towns, churches.  

Beth wants me to sort through, organize and put it all into a book, like I do with other's genealogies.  Basically the research is all done.  The sorting through and figuring out to get it all in order to put in book form and be cohesive and understandable, may take a few months.  She mentioned one of the ancestor's on her mother's side has been traced back to Roman times!
Tuesday, I got a pattern and yarn to test for my Bonus daughter.  It's a pretty involved pattern.  I work the pattern and then tell her if there are mistakes in the writing of the pattern--that sort of thing, and crochet her up a "mock" item.  

This means, I have to figure out a work schedule for myself.  Work on the genealogy in the morning and the crochet in the afternoon and evening.
My yard guy got all the leaves up and put them up on the porch until next Monday, when he promised he would haul them out to the street for pick-up early Tuesday morning.

I managed to get a new furnace filter in place.  Vacuumed out my dryer tube.  Made sure all my windows are closed tightly and locked tight.  Got the humidifier ready to turn on.  I also got the yearly oil change on my car.  I had pushed the Trip Tik last year when I got the oil changed and found out yesterday, when I went to set it back to zero, that I drove all of 2,322.6 miles in a year.  Can you even imagine?  I think back to my working years and I drove 80 round trip a day.  Oh well, my 20 year old car only has 55,000 miles on it.  It is going to rust out before the motor gets bad.  LOL

This morning, I wended my way through the bags of leaves to get to my squirrel and bird feeders.  I have them all filled up and ready.

All this has been brought on by our early winter.  Last spring, we jumped from about 4 days of spring into an unusually hot and dry summer.  Then we had about 5 days of nice autumn weather and jumped into cold and snow.  We've had no Indian Summer.  Man--the earth is going through some climate changes for sure!
I will sign off now and let you get back to your life.  I am feeling great physically.  Emotionally a bit heavy, snitches of worry trying to creep in, but very satisfied and happy with things.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

I am truly humbled.  The help I have received from you all staggers me.

Thank you Trudy, I did get your card.
Thank you Carol in Ontario, I got your card too.
Jenny, please thank pastor for his prayers, he sure does good ones. LOL
I have been extremely busy, trying to put my perennial gardens to bed for the winter, finishing up a small genealogy for my neighbor.  A funeral for my Karen's father-in-law.  And my water heater went out twice in 3 days.

PLUS--I got a notice from the DHS--Department of Human Services--Welfare, that as of December 3rd, the State WILL pay my Medicare.  So the paperwork I sent in, even though I was still 2 cents over the limit for income, they must have rolled it up to the nearest dollar amount of $4.00, which put me just under the limit, and took pity on me.

They also lowered my food assistance from $41 to $23.  That's fine.  I will have $$$ for my other bills.

Through the gifts I have received from you blessed people and a grocery gift card from my cousin, I will be able to pay all my November bills.  This just blows my mind and makes me weep.  Help from people I have never met---it is amazing and a godsend.
I decided to drain my water heater, like I do every six months, because of the heavy rust and lime in the water here.  We do not have city water and are not allowed to have a water softener.  Everything seemed fine when I closed up the unit, the gas was heating up so I put all my clothes back in the bedroom closet--where my wh resides.

The next morning, no hot water.  I called for repair and emptied the closet.

The guy that came was 6'2" and easily weighed 300#.  He had one heck of a time trying to wedge himself in that closet and get down low enough to relit the pilot light.  After half an hour of struggling, all seemed well and he left.  About an hour later, I wanted to wash my hair and I did have warm water, so I ASSUMED the heater was working.  I put all the clothes back in the closet.

The next morning, no hot water.  That was yesterday.  So I called and asked for an appointment for today.  I told the girl about the tight working area and asked if she could send out a smaller guy.

Then, I drove on up to the graveside service for Karen's father-in-law.  I didn't know where the cemetery was, but I knew the road name and the area so I thought I'd have no problem.

I stopped in at the gas station in my home town to use the facilities and get a bottle of Diet Pepsi to tide me over.

Then made my first mis-cue by coming south east, out of town, instead of going north up to another little town.  I knew the cemetery was south-east of that town.

I got on the right road and headed north and then....the road ended--arrow right or left?

I had to ponder for a moment on which way to go. Hm-mm. I hadn't been in that area in 30 years, but......I thought if I went left, I'd go into the little town and then find my way around or stop and ask.

As I got near the town, I veered off to the right and turned onto a street, vaguely remembering that it turned into the road I needed once I got out of town.


Trying to watch for the road I needed to turn on--I didn't know which way I needed to turn, and all of a sudden realized that I was behind four or five cars turning left down a gravel road.

Now--why would four or five cars, on a dreary, cold rainy  Tuesday morning, all be turning down a gravel road? An auction, perhaps. A direct way over to the highway? 

I followed them and there we were, soon pulling over on the side of the road to park. I was the last car in the "procession".

I could see the cemetery off in the distance and wondered how I was going to manage to walk that far. Thankfully, I had my cane to lean on and off I went.

As I got near the cemetery, there was my oldest grand girl quickly coming to me--I leaned on her, and then appeared the other two grand girls and they all led me up the hill to the grave site.

They were the pall bearers, but as they lined up behind their Dad and his siblings, I stood behind the girls and just leaned on them.

My two grandsons weren't there.  One had to work and one, in medical school, had to be on his rotation at the hospital.  Karen also had to teach.  They had all been to the funeral on Monday.

A lot of people recognized me, and I recognized a lot of people but couldn't remember names. It's that way whenever I go where there are people that I haven't seen in the 30 years I've been away.  They recognize me because basically I haven't changed.  I am still tall and slender.  Still wear my hair short, except it is now gray instead of blonde.  Some of those people have changed a lot.  Shorter.  Fatter.  More wrinkled.  

What was really strange, I went up to a "used to be", next door neighbor and she didn't know who I was.  Although, as she talked, I could see that senility was her enemy now, so I filled her in, but by the look in her eyes, even though she "pretended" she then remembered me and all I had relayed to her............she hadn't.

The best part, it was wonderful for me to see my son-in-laws siblings--I've known those kids since my Karen married into the family 37 years ago, so they seem like my own family.

There was much hugging and kissing and I love you's and "so glad to see you", and "thank you for coming."

Well of course I went. This man that was laid to rest, is one.....could very well be...the finest man I have ever known. You can see it in his 5 sons and daughter. Nothing could have kept me from honoring him. Nothing!

I feel sad for his wife though.  She was always spoiled by him.  Four years ago they moved up north to their retirement cabin.  Then last year he got sick.  He had a rare disease called Amyloidosis.

Amyloidosis (am-uh-loi-DO-sis) is a rare disease that occurs when a substance called amyloid builds up in your organs. Amyloid is an abnormal protein that is produced in your bone marrow and can be deposited in any tissue or organ.
Amyloidosis can affect different organs in different people, and there are different types of amyloid. Amyloidosis frequently affects the heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, nervous system.
His affected his heart and lungs.  He even tried a new treatment using chemotherapy.  He was sick for a year.

She found it difficult to cope because he had always done everything (I used to be jealous of her) and then, she was the one that had to set up doctor's visits, staying with him in hospital and caring for him at home, and she wasn't well equipped for that.

Now, I worry how she is going to cope.  Always one to have a glass of wine at her elbow, I fear now she is alone............................well, you know.
This morning, I emptied the bedroom closet again and the repair man came.  A thin, short little guy who scrambled back into that closet like a little monkey, relit the pilot light and was done in 7 minutes.

I have done a load of laundry and a full dishwasher cycle.  Lots of hot water.

We shall see.  I know I need a new heater, but am going to coax this one along as long as I can.
Michigan had the highest turnout of voters for the mid-terms, than they have had in 56 years.  Want to know why?

Proposal 1 was to legalize recreational marijuana.  People from ages 20-50 that had never voted in their lives, came out to vote, and being the Liberal little scamps most of them are, filled in the square for the Democrat running for governor.  Even parts of our State that are normally Red--were Blue yesterday.

I saw some interviews of those voters on TV--even the repair guy this morning--I asked if he had voted yesterday.  He said, "Yep.  Got registered and voted....for the first time."  (He was in his 30's)

I said, "How did you know the judges and Senators to vote for."

"Oh.  I didn't even mark them.  Just the governor and........I wanna get my pot."


Tuesday, October 30, 2018

After our rain last night, Rocky once again has water in his basin.

Someone from Phoenix, Arizona, who reads this blog, mailed me a $20 dollar bill.  I don't know how you got my mailing address, but thank you so much!  It went into the nearly dry gas tank on my car!

I also got a grocery store gift card from my cousin and I took that and shopped for all those expensive things we need--like bathroom tissue, laundry and dish detergent--those things we need and can't eat!  I also had enough to buy a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk, some lunch meat and cheese.  

The end of last week I spent calling businesses and companies.  Trying to get lower prices on my utilities, health insurance, car insurance--those monthly bills.  I am at the lowest health insurance available.  NO--I did not get another Advantage Plan with Zero monthly payment.  You won't remember, but I got roped into one of those 4 years ago.  It was great because I did not see the doc very often, so the $20 co-pay was no big deal.  But...then I had the emergency AFib, with an ambulance ride, and 3 days in hospital and came out with a bill for $2,600.00  If I had Traditional Health insurance, like I did before and do now, everything would have been covered.  

I did get my gas bill lowered--some sort of 12 month plan.  I pay $39.00 a month which is lower than a regular budget payment.  Couldn't get my electrical bill lower, but did get my cable TV/Internet/Phone taken down $10.00 for two years.  

My friend Bethie, had her genealogy done years ago.  She has it traced back into the 800's!!!!!  BUT, it is in separate files and folders and pages stuffed in manila enveloped.

She wants me to organize it and put it all in chronological order in a book like the genealogy books I make for my clients.

Now, I know Bethie is doing this to help me out financially, but because it isn't an outright "pity" job and it will take lots of work on my end, I can't wait to do it!!!!!  Just think, the research, the hardest part, is already done for me.  YAY!!!  I get to do the fun part of organizing and writing her family history.
So--things are working out.  I can't believe the number of people who have notified me that they are praying for me.  My friend Jennifer in South Carolina had her pastor pray for me at Sunday night services.  I watch her church Sunday mornings, live streaming on my computer, but I am not a member of that church and to have the pastor pray..........for me?  That brought a lot of ease and comfort to me.  
Tomorrow is Halloween--a "holiday" that I have detested most of my life.  My Mother loved it--even as a kid, I hated it.  My kids loved it and all of my friends, so I never ruined it for any of them, but oh....how I hated the dressing up and the stupid parties.  Oh well--no one will come here asking for candy, so I can just ignore the whole thing.

In fact tomorrow, I will empty my bedroom closet to switch my summer clothes for warmer ones and while that closet is empty, I will hook up and drain the water heater.  When I get some extra money, I will get a new furnace filter too and next month, my sister and BIL will come down to put plastic over the inside of my back door to keep out the winter drafts.

We didn't have much of a summer here--so hot and humid we couldn't enjoy being outside and stayed closed up with the A/C running and soon the snow will come and we will be closed up again with the furnace running.

I hope I get some good genealogies to occupy me through the winter months.  I do love the snow, but not fond of the really cold.  

Friday, October 26, 2018

My sister and brother-in-law came to visit today.  They brought me doughnuts and cider from the cider mill they stopped at on their way.

As long a strong BIL was here, I had him get Rocky out of the trunk of my car and place him under the down spout of my porch roof.

On October 30, 1988, my 2nd husband and I were on our Honeymoon in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
I should say, "Horrormoon" because it turned out that way...

We were high on a bluff, looking down at Lake Michigan, when I spotted this rock with a basin carved out by the hundreds of year of the swirling waters of the lake.

I scrambled down the hill, but I couldn't lift it from the waters edge, so hubs came down, carried the rock up the hill and stashed it in the trunk of the car.

Thank goodness it was October so no one, including DNR rangers were around, because it is probably illegal to take a rock that big.

I always had him under the down spout--every time we moved, he went long and was put under the down spout.  When it rained, the water swirled in that basin than flowed out into my garden.

Then, when I left that man, I had to leave the rock too.

You know the rest of the story--how I met up with the ex and he asked for my forgiveness for the abuse he bestowed on me and I told him I had forgiven him years ago.

As I was leaving, I noticed the Rock.

"Rocky"! I yelled.  "You still have Rocky!"

"Well, of course I do.  He's mine."

"Oh really?"

"Yeah...really.  I toted him up a very tall hill."

"You never would have known he was there, if I hadn't gone down the hill first to get him."

So, a month ago, the ex called to say he had cleaned Rocky up and if I wanted him, I could come and get him.

AND I did.

So, nearly 30 years to the day when I first found him, Rocky is with me and under my down spout.  

I call that...WINNING!!!!

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Sorry, not much time to post.

Making so many business calls, trying to get expenses lowered--nearly impossible.

I'm exhausted.

Please keep praying for me.

 XX OO  Jude

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Well, I've have another disaster on my hands!

Not of my own doing, but I don't quite know how I'm going to survive this one.

When I had my re-determination with DHS (Welfare) in early September, I was supposed to have a telephone conference with my Case Worker.  Because I am soooooo good about getting all the required forms and proofs organized and sent in, apparently she found no reason to call.  I waited all day for the call.  It is noted that if you miss the call, your benefits will be cancelled.

My only benefits are food assistance and the State pays my Medicare payment.  They don't take it out of my Social Security.

I got a paper in the mail from DHS stating that my Medicare would be paid and my food allowance went up from $23.00 to $41.00 a month.  YOWZA!!

Tuesday, I received another notice from DHS that they were going to stop paying for my Medicare and because it should have been activated in October, my November SS would have DOUBLE the payment taken out.  $238.00, taken out of my November 3rd SS deposit.  Then, from December on, $134.00 would be taken out each month.
I called my Case Worker and for once, she answered the phone, instead of it going to voice mail.  I asked her why.  She said she didn't know and would have to check it out.  She put me on old.

While I was sitting there waiting, I could feel that cold sensation around my middle.  The one I get when I am told really bad news.

She came back on the line.  The cut-off on monthly income is $1,234.00.  My income showed, $1,238.00.  I had made $4.00 too much.

What to do!  I was shaking so hard.  Then I remembered that just last week, I got a notice that on a very small annuity I have, the State was going to start taking out 4.10% withholding.  It totaled $3.98 a month.

I told her about that and my income had dropped $3.98 a month since my re-determination.  

She told me to send in "proofs"--bank statements showing the deposit in September and the one in October showing the decrease.  I did that--scanned them and uploaded them to the DHS website, then called her back and left a voice mail so she would know and perhaps could get this whole thing fixed.

BUT--it won't be fixed, if it can be fixed, for two months. You know how tight my budget is now.  In November, I will be $261.00 short.  In December, $127.00.
I don't know what to do.  Let my health insurance lapse?  My car insurance?  

I consulted with my blogging buddy Jean about selling stuff on EBay.  She told me I probably wouldn't make enough to go through all the hassle.  She was right.  I checked the price on a Japanese Wooden artifact I have from "Occupied Japan", made in 1948.  There was one just like it--sold for $6.99!


I had a place setting from my Mother's Sterling Silver ware.  My grandmother, my Dad and I got my Mother a service for 12 over the years.  We ended up with service for 13.  I had it and used it for family dinners in the 70's & 80's.  My kids loved to eat off Great Grandma's china and Grandma's "real" silverware.  Last year, I kept one place setting and gave the rest, in it's nice velvet lined box, to my sister.

I took that place setting into a jeweler's yesterday.  A reputable man.  He looked it all over, weighed it = $27.00.  When we bought in for Mother, back in the '60's, it was $50.00 a place setting.

I almost cried having to part with it, but sold it to him.  It will help pay for the last bill I have this month.
What really annoys me; if my Case Worker had called me in September, like she was supposed too, as we went over the paperwork I had sent in, she would have noticed I was $4.00 over the limit and I would have known then, instead of being totally shocked!!!

Well, you know my theory.  God has always provided for me.  I can only be assured He will with this problem too.  I have to be strong and not let fear and panic get to me!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

I don't quite know what to say.  I didn't intend for my last post to "scold" you all into leaving a comment, but..........Oh.  My.  I was over whelmed.  So many I have not heard from in such a long time.  I did a good job of replying to your comments too--didn't I?

I will just pat myself on the head for that because.........you know.........I am one of those needy people that needs praise, even if it is only from myself.  HAH!!
Did I tell you?  I got that big genealogy in the mail on Friday--just like I wanted.  She should get it today.  I hope she likes the presentation.  That book weighed 3 pounds!!!!!  170 some pages--well, that's double sided, so..........85 single pages?   She mailed me a thumb drive with a lot of old, old photos to add to the book.  Some so dark they were difficult to see, but I put them through Pic Monkey photo editing and lightened them up a bit and "crisped" up the images.  They printed out pretty well.

Funny thing about the thumb drive.  I have never used one and had quite a time for awhile figuring it out and learning how to save the photos.  I always make a File Folder with my client's name in my pictures in a main Genealogy folder.  In that file under the clients name, I make sub-files with the 4 main families I am researching.  Then I save the photos to those sub-files so I can remember who goes where.  It gets real fun when I have photos that have the same "male" name only generations apart.

As in the old days, men tended to name their first son after them, and so I end up with a lot of William's, same last name.  Sometimes, I have to make sub-folders in the sub-folders.  LOL  William I, William 2, William 3, and so on.  Then, I have to make sure any records, photos, cemetery and grave marker photos I find on line, go into the correct folder, so that when I make the book, I get the right photos for the right person.  Anything I find on line, like census reports, marriage, birth, death notices, I print out, trim to an appropriate size, scan and then save as a photo.

Yeah--it takes time, but when I am ready to write the book and put it together, everything I need is in that person's photo file folder and it makes it easier.

Complicated?  Yes.  and  OH LORDY...I DO LOVE DOING IT!!!
 Frost on the Pumpkins this morning and on the roof tops and the cars and shady places on the lawn.  I still have a major garden clean-up to do.  Maybe this afternoon?

When the sun comes out and starts to "burn-off" the frost on the roof tops, it almost looks like smoke.  The first time I noticed it, I thought Dar's house was on fire!!!  
Sunday, I got the planter that sits on my deck railing, filled with shelled corn, sunflower seeds, peanuts in shells and shelled peanuts.  It is for the squirrels and I figured, with it getting colder now, they would be gathering and storing up for winter.  Mostly they just sit there and eat their fill right now.

Blue Jays also like this.  The main reason for the squirrel feeder was to keep them off my bird feeders.  Now, the birds come in to enjoy the squirrel food!  Oh well.

I'm not much of a photographer, but I got this lucky shot Sunday.  Isn't he adorable?

That second photo looks like he is calling in his buddies to come eat.