Home Alone

This was started a year ago in March. I guess I will leave this part as it is and continue writing at the end.

Today, Larry left for Australia. I am not quite “home alone” because Josh is home on spring break. I feel “home alone” because he is always running around and I don’t see him much.

Tomorrow I take Mom in to the surgeon to have some skin growths removed. I will miss a half day of school. Hopefully not many kids will show up while I am away.

October 6, 2006, my mother went home to be with the Lord. She was a good mother and did her best for her family even tho things were tough.

I look back and wonder if I would be as content if I had as little as she had. Probably not. My parents were dry land farmers. That means if it rained and the grasshoppers weren’t bad and it didn’t hail, they might get a good crop. If it didn’t rain, if the bugs were bad, if it hailed or flooded they were without. No second plantings. They did have cattle and could and did sell some of those during the hard times. They also had between 30 to 35 milking cows. That helped a lot, but they barley got the equipment paid for and fancier equipment was required. The milk would go straight from the cows to a big “bulk” tank. The milk trucks would then come and pump the milk from the bulk tank into the milk truck. At that time my parents decided to get out of the milk business.

We used to have milking machines that had “suckers” (can’t think of a better word at this moment) that you put on the cows teats. One had to be careful and hold them just right while they were putting them on, or they would lose their suction and fall off. When the can was full, we carried it into the other part of the barn away from the cows and poured it through a sieve with a filter paper in it to get the cow hair and dirt out. Then it went into 10 gal. (I think) milk cans and put in the cooler ready for the milk man.

Sometimes we would meet the milk man someplace and put the cans on his truck and sometimes he would come to our place and pick them up. I liked it when we met the milk man because sometimes I got to go along. My dad would sing hymns like, “When The Roll is Called Up Yonder” and other old hymns. (If others come to mind I will add them) I would put my head on his lap as he drove and listen to him sing. He was a fair singer. It was nice and cozy and comforting. My brother and I took turns riding with our dad.

We sometimes would “separate” the cream from the milk with a machine that we turned by hand. I got to do that sometimes. One of my favorite things to do was to help my dad. Below is a separator similar to the one we used. We would put the milk in the top. We had a big can on the floor under one spout for the skimmed milk and a smaller can under the spout on the round “shelf” to catch the cream. We then turned the crank and out came cream and skim milk. We fed the milk to the pigs. We sold the cream and used some for butter.

14C Hand Butter ChurnThis is similar to what we used to use to make butter. We put the cream in this and turned it until it started to get thick. Then we kept turning it until the butter started sticking together and the “whey” was left. We took out the lump of butter and washed out all the whey. (whey doesn’t taste very good and I don’t think the butter would last as well or taste as good with it left in) Then we would knead in some salt. Yummy, that was good on fresh bread.

We usually took the cream into town to sell it at the creamery. I am not sure what all they did because we usually had to stay in the car, but I know they checked it to see how good it was. We also could buy chicken feed at the creamery and that is what we usually did. My parents used the cream money to pay toward the chicken feed. The chicken feed came in pretty bags and my mother would choose the bags that she liked. I got a pretty white dress with pink flowers on it once. My mom put tucks in the front and pink bows on the shoulders. I liked it. (Most clothes then had to be ironed. Chicken sacks were no different) She made dish towels, curtains and quilt backs as well.

Well this blog has turned out differently than it started. It is good to remember.

The interesting thing is that Larry is gone again. He was in Australia when this was started. Now he is in Los Vegas at a communications conference. He is staying at Circus, Circus.

Enough for today.

Another Granddaughter

We have been so blessed! We now have another Granddaughter. Rachel Marie was born to Nathan and Elizabeth McGuire the 8th of January 2007. She arrived at 1:08 P.M. in Beckley, West Virginia. She weighed 7 lbs. 4.5 oz. and was 20.5 inches long.

We were able to take a long weekend the 15th of January and meet her. We got to visit her again this week and see how she has grown. She has lots of dark hair that curls when it is wet. She smiles a lot and loves to be held. Her big brother, David, is just a little bit proud.

She is a beautiful little girl and she keeps the numbers even. Three Grandsons and Three Granddaughters. We are so blessed.

It’s Been a While…

It has been a while since I wrote. It has been busy and then to have a length of quiet time to write and think is difficult. One would think that with the kids all gone quiet time and time to set at the computer would be easier, but it is not.

A lot of things have happened since I last wrote. The first important thing was last March 21st. I received a phone call at 1:30 A.M. asking if I could come stay with three of our grandchildren That was the night Adrian Matthew was born. He arrived at 3:33 A.M. about 45 minutes after Mom and Dad arrived at the hospital and a few minutes before the doctor. He weighed 7 lbs. 11 ox. and was 20.5 inches long.

It was so much fun to celebrate Adrian’s first birthday with him. He is an active, inquisitive, happy little boy, just as he should be. He has a mouth full of teeth. He climbs up and down stairs with no fear. He threatens to walk, but has not yet.


Edible Play Dough

Edible Play Dough yields about 2-1/2 cups of fun:

1 cup powdered dry milk
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup honey

In a bowl, combine all ingredients. Chill. Shape into faces, letters, shapes, etc. or cut out with cookie cutters. If mixture is too sticky, roll in additional powdered milk. Decorate with raisins or candy if desired.

Glasses, Finally!!

After one month of repeated trips to the eye guy, I now have my glasses. They seem to work fine. I have discovered that I may prefer to drive without my glasses as I have better peripheral vision without. Since my vision is now 20/25 in my eye with the contact lens and 20/30 in the eye with the transplant, I can legally drive without the glasses. The glasses do add brightness and sharper edges to objects, which is nice. I can read with these glasses. I am so pleased with my eye sight!

New Glasses? How hard can that be?

Now that I’ve figured out how to find this place again, I just thought I would tell about my adventures getting my new glasses.

Exactly one month ago, I took my prescription to Dr. Cripe in Goshen to get my new lenses for my glasses. I had gotten my prescription from Dr. Whitson in Indianapolis. He is the one who did my cornea transplant. I called Dr. Cripe’s office and was assured that it would be no problem to get my lenses there. I went on over and left my prescription and paid for my glasses. They took some measurements and I was told they would be ready in about a week. The next day I received a call that they needed another measurement. I went back and they took the measurement. Next week, I received a call that the lenses were there. I made the appointment to have the lenses put in the glasses, only to be told when I arrived that the lenses had been cut incorrectly. The new ones would be ready next week. Next week, I returned only to be told that the lenses were the right shape, but too big! The next day I received a call that the lab had called and would not cut another lense without my frames. I left my frames and a few days later received a call that they were ready. When I returned the call to make an appointment to pick them up, I was told they were booked. The next day, I picked them up and the gal handed me a paper to sign. My first words were, “I can’t read anything on this paper! I can’t see it.” The gal mumbled something about needing to get my eyese checked again, but that Indianapolis was a long way off to do that. Maybe I just needed to get used to the new prescripton. Well, that evening I still could see nothing when I tried to read. Distance was good. I peered through the lense to see how they changed because I got none of the glare or reflection that I had on my previous progressive lenses. There was nothing there! The next day, I called and said there was nothing in the bi-focal part of my glasses. I took them back to have what I already knew confirmed. I mentioned that I thought that I should get some sort of refund since it had taken so long and been such a nusience and I had had to buy some reading glasses to get me through the weeks, I was without my glasses. I was told they would leave a note for Dr. Cripe and my new lenses would be there on Monday. Monday I had an appointment for my mom at 4:00, so I asked Larry to take my frames down so my glasses would be ready to pick up quickly. I called late in the afternoon to see if I would have to leave work early, to be told that they were not there and they would call as soon as they arrived. Wednesday, I received a call that they would be there on Friday and a refund check as well. Hopefully I will have the correct prescription and they will actually be ready. It has been one month to the day since I dropped off the prescription. The girls in that office made comments about seeing me a lot. Not my fault!

The good thing is that my vision today is 20/30 in my eye with the transplant and 20/25 in the other eye. I can see in the daylight without my glasses!! Eighteen months ago, I was counting fuzzy fingers with that eye. I can drive with no glasses. I just can’t read. The pressure in that eye in 11 or 12. That is good after using the Pred-Forte drops.

Something New

Thanks to Allan, I am trying something new. Right now I am just experimenting to see if I can do this right. If I don’t Allan will have to fix it. Good thing we have a computer whiz in the family.

I can’t tell by doing this, just what will show up on the Blog. Will the date just appear? I guess I will find out.

Kisses to the grandkids.

Me and My Grandchildren

What to put under Oma’s Corner?? That is a hard question. I could do many things, but maybe right now I’ll just talk until I have a better idea.

I enjoyed my grandkids a lot this Christmas break. I purchased some foam picture frame ornaments and we decorated them and put their pictures in it for their parents. They are really cute. I think that I will have Opa make more pictures so all the grandparents can have a copy. I will have to send David’s to him and see if he will decorate it at home.

We also had fun making stepping stones. They are almost too pretty to put outside. Maybe we can make more, decorated in different materials and/or hand prints and foot prints next Christmas (or maybe sooner). That would be fun.

Also, we had fun at Pottery Smottery. Mark, Andrea and David painted a cocoa mug in a class. They also got hot chocolate to drink and stories. It was fun. Audrey made a mug with her mom and put her hand prints on it. They will be real cute and fun to drink from. I should explain that Pottery Smottery is an open studio where one can go, buy and paint pottery. They have lots to choose from and the price includes the paint and the glazing afterward. The bad part is that one has to wait a whole week to get the finished product. That is a long time to wait for something you have worked on so hard.

Audrey, her mom and I went for several walks. Mark, David and I and Opa visited Great Grandma at Greencroft Retirement Center. Neither one wanted to leave. They were having fun. They were watching the cat under the chair and discussing the fact that the cat was not used to David because he hadn’t been there before. There they lay, flat on the floor with heads stuck under the chair. David said, “I think that it is getting used to me. I just pet it gently. That’s how you get cats used to you. Just pet gently.” Pretty soon, Mark said,” OK, now let’s see what we have learned.” David said,”I know what I learned. Cats can sit up like dogs!”

Mark has lots of friends at Greencroft. He gives them hugs and kisses and talks to them, even when he can’t understand a word they say or they can’t talk. He is a real little missionary to those people and the nursing staff. One lady was talking to him about his daddy being away in Pakistan. She was saying how terrible the earthquake was and how bad it was to have his daddy gone. Mark just said that “God allowed this to happen so that those people would get to know Jesus.” That lady could only say, “Well, how about that.”

We went to church on Christmas Day. David, Mark and Andrea set with us in “big church” and did very well. It was Andrea’s first time. We went home and had a huge turkey dinner (29 lb. Turkey) and then opened presents after hearing the “rest of the story”. We read some of Jesus’ birth on Christmas Eve before the grandkids opened the traditional pj’s from Oma and Opa and then we heard the rest on Christmas Day. It is wonderful to see that even 2yr. old, Audrey, knows that it is Jesus’ birthday we are celebrating.

The Lord has blessed us with wonderful grandchildren, who are being taught the important things in life. They are being taught about Jesus and how to please Him by learning and reading His Word. They are being taught that others are important. I am so thankful and blessed beyond what I deserve. I continue to pray for them, their parents and uncles, that they would continue to love our Heavenly Father and choose to serve Him and please Him where ever they are. I pray that they would be pure in all ways for Him.