Happy Birthday, Chrystalene Beth

Happy Birthday, Christy!  Christy & Pam 2015 (2)  You are on the left of my two beautiful daughters, Christy and Pam! I don’t seem to have a recent picture of just you! But this is a good, recent one! Sisters! I love both of you! You were the baby of the family for five years! Then a new brother, Rob, was born, giving us five wonderful and beautiful children.

Now, even though you assured me you were not following me, you have five wonderful, beautiful children! You’ve given me five fantastic, gorgeous grandchildren! Thank you for this precious gift! I wish I could be there to help them, and Sean, celebrate your day!

Heavenly Father, thank You for Christy! You have blessed her with five children. Please help her as she guides, plays, comforts, disciplines, and loves them. Please keep Christy well and safe as she drives here and there. Help her with her business. Keep her trusting in You, draw her ever closer to You. I love Christy so much and You love her even more. 

I Do Love A Taco

I made tacos for Jerry and me last evening for supper. We do love tacos! Tacos  I forgot to take a picture of an actual taco before we ate them! Sorry! This lazy Susan with cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, onion, and meat mixture in the center is just right since there are only two of us now.

I’ll never forget the first time my family had tacos for supper. We were in Portland, Oregon, visiting my sister, Lorraine, and her beautiful family. There were six in each of our families. This would have been in the late 60’s. Bob, brother-in-law, suggested we have tacos for supper. My family hardly knew what a taco was! It sounded Mexican. But we were game! As I recall everyone, old enough, helped out. Grating the cheese was the biggest job… We warmed the shells for just a couple of minutes, then filled them with seasoned ground beef, onions, lettuce, tomatoes, etc. Oh boy, were they good!

Tacos became a favorite of my family. Everyone pitched in to help with preparation, especially grating the cheese! We never ended up with the right amount of cheese, somehow it got eaten as it was being grated!

One year at our family camp, Pam, our oldest daughter, had her first boyfriend, Lyle. She asked if he could come for supper, one day. Sure, he was a very nice young man. Lyle and Pam were both young teenagers, and what a coincidence, my very first boyfriend was also named Lyle! We decided to have a family favorite, tacos! I worked hard making sure everything was just right. I grated the cheese myself and made sure we had a large bowl of it. We ate outside under our camper awning. I stepped inside the camper to get something and when I came out, I was shocked! The cheese was on the ground! I was mad…okay, I was upset. I said, “WHO SPILLED THE CHEESE?” No one said a word, they just looked at me, like they wished I would keep still! Then Lyle spoke up and said he was so sorry, the bowl just slipped out of his hands! Oh, I felt so bad and so embarrassed. We salvaged as much as we could. I apologized for getting upset. It could have happened to anyone. As I recall we ended up with just enough for everyone to put some in their tacos. Years later, I saw Lyle at family camp again. This time, he was there with his wife and two young children! We talked and laughed about that fateful day, so many years ago!

Years later, Jerry and I went to Mexico, two years in a row. We worked at Rancho Betania, a Free Methodist camp, near Santa Ana, Sonora, Mexico. We were there about two weeks both years. We had a great time. One highlight was going to town for Tacos! We’d been advised to be careful what we bought to eat whenever we went to town. But this little restaurant we were told was an ‘okay’ place to eat! We all went as a group. The owners knew we were coming. Oh my! I’ve never eaten such delicious tacos in my life! What a wonderful memory!

Once in a while we go to a Mexican restaurant here but the tacos we prefer are the ones we have at home, made by me! By the way, I now buy grated cheese, no more grating cheese by hand and eating half of it! What wonderful memories of a simple, but delicious meal!

 

 

 

 

Halloween Birthday

Yes, I was born on Halloween day. When I was a little girl I dressed up like a witch every year for trick or treating! How could I be anything else? While my siblings were fidgeting, wondering how they should dress up, I was quietly making my tall, pointed, black hat, finishing off my costume of all black clothes, and Mother’s broom!

The only problem with having my birthday on Halloween, as I saw it, was that my siblings didn’t care about a birthday, they only wanted to go trick or treating! And that’s all I wanted to do too. I don’t remember ever having a birthday party. But we sure had fun and we got lots of candy!

Then I grew up and got married. At that time, in Jerry’s family, a party was held for each one on their birthday. So for my birthday, I made a birthday cake, and everyone came over from the oldest- Grandma, to the youngest- baby, Marilyn. The thing I remember most about that party was that my cake wasn’t big enough!

So the years have gone by. Our family grew and our kids loved to go trick or treating. I remember one year, 1970, we had a Halloween party and invited our neighbors and friends. It was a lot of fun. Everyone, including parents, wore Halloween costumes. Halloween party We played all the common Halloween games: bobbing for apples, counting the pumpkin seeds. In this picture, Carolee is trying to eat a donut hanging from a string! We even had a small ghost house! I can’t remember all the games we played, but it sure was fun! Halloween party, Carolee One of the mothers, knowing it was my birthday, baked a birthday cake for me! Surprise!!! It was decorated like a jack-o-lantern!

I’ve continued to have birthdays and Halloween has also continued. We live in a woods with a long driveway today so we don’t even get any trick or treater’s. Jerry always takes me out for my birthday supper.

Three years ago I had an unforgettable birthday! I turned 74! Yes, it was Halloween, but we were on the Norwegian cruise ship, Pride of America,  cruising the Hawaiian Islands! What a special birthday! Jerry and I were with Pam and Gene, daughter and son-in-law. They celebrated their anniversary! Kay, second cousin, was, also, with us. What a fantastic time we had! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Two years ago, I had another fantastic birthday! I turned 75 and we went to Iowa to visit my Iowa cousins! It wasn’t a birthday trip. It just turned out to be the best weekend for all of us concerned! Tim, our Canadian son, came down to visit us. We traveled to Chicago where Pam and Gene, daughter and son-in-law, joined us and we all traveled to Iowa to visit our cousins. It happened to be on my birthday. I had requested to, please, keep still about it being my birthday. Well, the first thing that took place was Leroy, my most favorite cousin in the whole wide world, bringing out a huge cloth bag and handing it to me, with a huge smile on his face!

I looked at Jerry and Pam. They both looked as surprised as I did! I slowly opened the bag and inside was a BEAUTIFUL AMISH QUILT! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Leroy!  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Carolyn!  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Rose of Sharon quilt, hand-stitched by Amish ladies! Carolyn said she knew it was my birthday because of facebook!

Well, that wasn’t the end of my birthday! That evening we went to an Amish dinner! Oh, my! Other cousins joined us! FullSizeRender (79)  The only lights were kerosene lamps.  IMG_0216 (2)  My birthday dinner plate! Everything was so delicious!  FullSizeRender (84) My beautiful birthday cake made by one of the Amish ladies!

So, today I’m planning on a normal Halloween birthday! Jerry will take me out for dinner. I’ve already gotten some phone calls from some of our kids. The mailman must have chuckled when he delivered my birthday cards today! They were addressed to Grandma in various ways!

So begins another year in the life of me! I don’t feel 77! I don’t think I look 77! I know I don’t act 77! I am blessed!

Fun Loving Dad

My dad was a baby,  Scan_Pic0108  who started out racing with the doctor! Dad won! The doctor arrived at the Iowa farmhouse after he was born! My dad was a boy, who lived on a farm until he was ten, then his dad retired, built a house in town, Scan_Pic0006 and Dad became a city boy. You can see their  1916 Saxon, which my Grandpa bought brand new!  My dad was a brother, the youngest with six older siblings. My dad was a college student until the financial crash in 1919. He was going to be a lawyer!

My dad was a cook’s helper and later a chef. Scan_Pic0103 Dad’s the cook in front.

He was a husband 3905_1067392805078_6714086_n and a  daddy. Scan_Pic0107 He was Dad 45 a minister, pastor, evangelist, and a writer, Scan_Pic0254 He published 13 books!  And he was an executive.

My dad was an actor! He portrayed B. T. Roberts, Glen as BT Roberts the founder of Free Methodism.

My dad was a world traveler, having traveled to various countries in four continents: North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Because of all his experiences and knowledge he was bestowed an honorary Doctors Degree of Letters!

Then he became a student again, earning his BA and his MA at age 70!

In all of these roles. he still loved to have just plain fun. Scan_Pic0127  This was in the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago! Dad & Mother relaxingDad and Mother relaxing in the park!

He walked me down the aisle and gave me away. Wedding June 13 '59 001  Then he walked up onto the platform and married Jerry and me! wedding-day J & AGo-cart0098  Here he’s having fun riding my son’s go-cart! Anita & Jerry Merry-G-Round 79 Portland0001  He’s riding a Merry-Go-Round! Scan_Pic0059  He’s letting Annie drive his scooter!  Yes, I have many fond memories of my dad. He was a man with a mission…who loved to have fun! He lived four days shy of his 96th birthday. I loved my dad.

Happy Anniversary, Christy and Sean

Happy Anniversary, Christy and Sean! Christy & Sean '14  This is year 22! Can you believe it? Time sure flies by! Well, I suppose with three children in college, one in middle school and one in elementary school, there are days when it does seem like 22 years! I’m proud of you and of your beautiful family!

I’m not sure what you’re doing today but I do know that this fall just the two of you are going to Ireland! What a wonderful trip that will be! Oh, I know it’s not all pleasure but it’ll still be a fabulous experience for the two of you!

Heavenly Father, thank You for Christy and Sean! Thank You for their marriage. Bless their marriage. Please keep them close to each other. Give them wisdom in raising their children. Guild them in their plans for this fall and then later on. I love Christy and Sean so much and You love them even more!             

 

 

Sisters

Who can be closer than sisters? Sisters are special friends. They share bedrooms, even beds sometimes. They share clothes and jewelry sometimes. They have likes and dislikes! Secrets are big among sisters! They love to tease and have fun with each other!  Christy, Pam & Kay  My own two daughter’s, Christy and Pam!

One of my daughters-in-law and her sister. Jessica and Sarah. IMG_1343

0008  ???????????????????????????????  Two of my granddaughter’s, Isabella and Sydney!

Haleigh & Elmise  Two more granddaughter’s, Haleigh and Elmise!

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Maddie and Megan

Two more granddaughter’s, Maddie and Megan! (I’m looking for a better quality photo of them, when I find one, I’ll post it.)

01-22-2009 01;38;52PM  Four of my nieces, belonging to my sister, Lorraine. The oldest playing her violin is Christy. Playing the piano is Rhonda. Singing is Linda and then also, little Sonja! Of course, they’re all grown up now with children of their own. But such sweet sisters. The next picture of three sisters is of my great-nieces, daughters of Rhonda.

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Austin, Mackenzie, and Taylor.

Three more great-nieces, Kimberlyn, Courtney, and Jenna!

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Kimberlyn, Courtney, & Jenna.

Yes, sisters have a special relationship. My own sister and I played together as children. Family 001  Oh, the fun we had back then! We played ‘house’ with our dolls! We spent hours playing Paper dolls, Jacks, Jump rope, School, Tag, and more!  We listened to our favorite programs on the radio, like Fiber Magee and Molly, Let’s Pretend, Amos and Andy, and more!

Then as teenagers we kind of went our own ways. I’m not sure why. Lorraine & Anita as teens    She went away to a Christian High School, in her sophomore year of high school, so we were separated from then on. Of course, we were together occasionally but we lacked the close intimate relationship as sisters. We were both so busy with life.

But in retirement we connected again as sisters should and do! I’m on the right with grayish white hair!Lorraine

We lived across the country from each other but we spent hours on the phone, usually late at night, so there were no interruptions. We discussed everything from our childhood, the fun we had, to the strict rules placed upon us; our school years; our belief in God; husbands and children and then grandchildren! We seldom discussed politics. But we gained back that close relationship we had had as children! We loved each other.  We got together whenever we could.

Then late one night the phone rang. I was sure it was Lorraine and I eagerly answered. But no, it was my older brother. He called to tell me Lorraine had died, unexpectedly. I went into shock and still miss her so much!

I loved my sister.

This Grandma Was Determined

Miller graduated from high school at 4:00 on June 4, 2015. Haleigh graduated from high school at 7:00 on June 5, 2015. No problem…I can go to both! I have 15 grandchildren and am determined to be present at each one’s graduation, no matter where they live! Even if it means going to Malaysia, Canada, South Carolina, Illinois, Michigan! So far, so good!

This year it was a bit tricky! Miller graduated in South Carolina, Haleigh in Michigan…one day apart! I flew to South Carolina and enjoyed a week with the family, ending with Miller’s graduation at 4:00 PM on Thursday, June 4. Miller Grad (2)  Miller graduating

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Miller and me!

After graduation, there was a family and friends supper. Miller wanted home-made pizza! So there were at least four big pizzas made by my son-in-law, Sean, and neighbor, Ruth. They were all delicious! My favorite was ham and pineapple! Chips and homemade salsa and fruit were appetizers. I made a watermelon fruit basket. I couldn’t find a long watermelon! I found a round one that was shaped just right and sat up perfectly! I filled it with watermelon balls, blueberries, strawberries, and green grapes. Oreo Ice Cream Cake was dessert made by Miller’s Aunt Corrie!

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Watermelon Fruit Basket.

At 5:15 AM, Friday morning, June 5, daughter, Christy, drove me to the airport to board my United Airline plane and go home for Haleigh’s graduation at 7:00 PM that evening. No problem. I would fly to Washington D C, then to Chicago, then to Midland, Michigan, arriving at 4:00 PM. Graduation was to be at 7:00 PM! I could do this! No problem…WRONG!

I had booked my plane through Cheapo Air. That was my big mistake! For some reason, I couldn’t print out my ticket. I always had before on flights. I did confirm my flight on-line before I left home! But not before I left Columbus! When we arrived at the airport I thought my flight was with United. Oh no, it was American Airlines! Well, skipping details here, I missed my plane! A kind gentleman booked me on another flight, but not to Washington DC! To Philadelphia, then to Chicago. I made that flight!

I arrived in Philadelphia and found my gate only to discover I had missed my plane! What!? How could I miss two planes in one day? So another kind person booked me on another flight to Chicago. This time on US Air. I had to find my way from American terminal to US Air terminal! A very long way but I was given directions and I made it!

When I arrived in Chicago I had to change terminals again! This time from US Air to United. Another very long way but I found it! Next I decided I’d better find a restroom. There wasn’t one nearby! I asked and was told where to go. On my way back to my gate, can you believe it? I got lost!

I stopped to ask directions and a very kind young man offered to push me in a wheelchair! I told him I didn’t need a wheelchair, I just needed to find my gate. He took my suitcase and said, “I’ll take you there.” As we walked we visited. He was very young, 19 or 20 years; very good-looking; very friendly. I noticed he keep looking around for signs, we had to backtrack once. Finally, he told me he’d only been working there for three days! So he was still finding his way around! The name on his name tag was very strange so I asked him to pronounce it for me. “Oh! What country is that from,” I asked. He said, “Africa”. So I asked what country in Africa. His answer made me laugh! He said he googled it but he still doesn’t know! We had a good time visiting and finding our way back to my departure gate.

I wanted to give him a tip for helping me. I didn’t have any idea how much I should give him. I gave him $3.00, but I wish I’d given him $5.00. If he had pushed me in a wheelchair I know I would have given him $5.00, but all we did was walk.  But guess what! I’m not the only one who enjoyed our walking and talking! Before he left me at my gate, he gave me a big hug! I’m going to look for him anytime I’m in Chicago O’Hare Airport again! I wonder if he’ll remember me? I’ll never forget him!

I arrived home on time! Jerry was waiting for me. He fixed a lunch for me, I took a shower and we left for Haleigh’s graduation ceremony! Haleigh grad 4  Graduation Haleigh (2)  Graduation Haleigh (3)  Haleigh grad (2)  The end of a very long, but very worthwhile day! My grandchildren are worth it and this grandma was determined!!!

This morning Jerry asked me how I felt about the day. Wasn’t I terribly frustrated? I was so glad I could tell him honestly that I knew God was with me all the way. I never doubted it. What a mighty God we serve!