My Dogs

My dogs were actually our family pets. Rusty, Jocko, Corky, Trixie, Pinto, and Buddy.

Rusty may have been part Boxer, but we really don’t know for sure. My parents got him from a dog pound because with my dad traveling so much Mother was alone. They both felt better having a dog in the house with her, especially at night. After a few years they asked if we would give him a home and they brought him from Colorado to Michigan! They loved him and just couldn’t return him to the dog pound. We loved him too. At feeding time he would sit beside me watching me fill his dish, then he would wait until I said “Okay, Rusty,” and he would begin eating! That’s just one of his loving characteristics! We had Rusty for several years.

Timmy and Rusty. We were camping at Higgons Lake Camp Ground. He loved going with us. Pammy, Teddy, and Timmy all loved him, but Pam claimed him!
Teddy and Jocko. This is not a good, clear picture but it’s all I’ve got of Jocko. They are sitting on the tailgate of our pickup truck, with our new Gem pickup camper. He was a little Poodle. He was given to us by folks who were moving into an apartment where pets were not allowed. He was a one-person pet and he became mine. He followed me everywhere…but he was not allowed in our bedroom!
Corky. Ted’s dog was a very obedient dog and Ted taught him tricks! Here he’s sitting and posing, waiting for the treat in Ted’s hand. We got this dog and our neighbors took his sister and named her Muffins. Corky was hit by a car and one of his hips was broken.
Trixie. She was a tiny birthday present for Tim one year. She was so pretty and sweet! She even went on a trip with us all the way to Oregon!

Trixie loved it when I went cross country skiing in the woods behind our property. She would start barking and jumping as soon as I reached for my ski’s. She’d run ahead of me and then stop and wait for me to catch up and off she’d run again. This was a high light for both of us.

Then the day we got Pinto. Trixie and Pinto became great friends and played tag every day racing through the yard. But one day Pinto was hit by a car driving up the neighbor’s driveway. She lived and they were still best buds but their tag playing days were over.

Pinto. Our little Chihuahua. She pranced around like a little Pinto Pony, thus her name Pinto!
Pinto walking in her later years. She lived to be over 13 years old. We all loved Pinto. She was our baby.

Pinto was actually Christy’s dog. It was the fourth of July and we had gone to watch the fire works. Jerry drove his pickup truck to the fairgrounds and we were just watching from the parking lot. The kids were sitting in the back of the truck. A car drove by and stopped, a kid jumped out and ran to our truck. He then, tossed something at our kids, and the car drove off! We had no idea what it was… but Christy caught it! Oh my, it was a little tiny dog! We couldn’t just put it down on the ground, it would get run over. So we took it home with us, saying we would take it to the dog pound in the morning. Well…we went to our vet instead of the dog pound! Our vet said she was about two years old and she was part Chihuahua. Oh my, I have so many stories I could write about Pinto, but there just isn’t room here. One day she died in our family room thirteen years after Christy rescued her.

Buddy. Rob’s dog.

Rob and I picked Buddy out at the dog pound. He was a puppy and just looked at us like he really wanted to go with us. We couldn’t say no!

Buddy was a very obedient dog. He grew to be good sized. Buddy was a good pal and a good dog to have around for safety sake.

Buddy and I loved each other. He loved to sit in our swing with me! He never sat with anyone else! We loved each other! One night Buddy died after a tragic accident. I cried. I still miss him.

So this is the end of our family dogs…for now.

Our Greatest Earthly Gift

When Jerry and I were married we were given, as a wedding gift, a guest book. We were surprised but because my mother used one for special guests to sign, we decided to use it, and to be careful that no guests were left out.

This was the first house Jerry built for us and where we began using our first guest book.
Here we are, we moved into our new house in October, 1959, even though it wasn’t finished yet!

Our first signature in our guestbook was on October 28, 1959. An aunt and uncle of Jerry and his mother came to visit us in our new home. Mr. and Mrs. Luther May from Flint, Michigan and Frances Archer signed as our first visitors.

We had three children born to us in this first home.
Pamela Gail, Theodore Gerald, and Timothy Lee.

Timmy, Jerry, Teddy. Anita, Pammy.

We outgrew this little house, so we sold it and built a new, bigger house. Our family grew by two more children in our big house!

Pam, Ted, Tim, Jerry, Robby, Anita, and Christy!

We lived here for thirty-five years and had many guests from all over the world. I worked as an English as a Second Language tutor, ESL, and had students from many countries around the world. Most of them were in our home at least once, some several times. They all signed our guestbook.

This is our third and last home. Our dream come true! Our log home! We’ve lived here for over 20 years already and have had many guests who’ve all signed our guestbook.
We’re back down to only two of us! Sometimes Jerry kids our guests and says we need their signature so we can bill them for our next house payment! Usually they laugh, but once in a while a guest will look up with a worried look on his/her face and so Jerry quickly says, “Just kidding, just kidding!”
Our family all grown up!
Pam, Ted, Tim, Christy, and Rob. Anita and Jerry.

Oh, so many memories, so many changes! Some friends had married, some have died, and some are divorced. We get lost in our memories as we read through the books. We’ve had four bishops; and thirteen pastors, including assistant pastors. We’ve had many, many international friends from all over the world. What a privilege has been ours!

We’ve had at least twenty-one missionaries from all over the world! I’ll list the countries they served in or are still serving. China, Ecuador, Hong Kong, India, Mexico, Mozambique, Myanmar, Paraguay, Rhodesia, Rwanda, South Africa, Taiwan,
The Philippines, and Zaire. What a privilege has been ours!

My most treasured signature is that of Alice Taylor. We had an unforgettable time with Alice Taylor, missionary to China and Taiwan. She was visiting in our home in 1974. I invited a Chinese couple over to meet her. Oh! We were completely left out of the conversation! It was all in Mandarin! But, never the less, we had an unforgettable time with Alice Taylor!

I have so many interesting stories I could write about! One is about a guest who took his turn, along with his children, riding our sons go-cart! A few years later, he was voted in as one of the distinguished bishops of our church denomination! His signature in our book!

My International Friends

I’ve always loved International folks. I’ve always wanted to travel to all the world and make friends. Even as a little girl I was fascinated with folks who were a different color or spoke a different language than I did. I’m so fortunate! I’ve now been to 15 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, and South America! Oh, there are so many more places I would love to go to!

I suppose this came from when I was a very little girl! You see, my great aunts and uncles and my grandma Aanas all came from northeastern Iowa where many Norwegian folks lived. The farm that my great-great grandparents homesteaded was still in the family. My relatives were all white, of course, but they spoke a different language. Norwegian. It was a fascinating language to listen to. I can still see and hear my great aunts walking down the sidewalk to my great-grandparents house in Waterloo, Iowa. They were three or four women all talking at once, each trying to get the attention of the others! It was quite hilarious and I’m sure the neighbors had a good laugh!

Another recollection was in the early 40’s when a Japanese couple lived in a room in our upstairs in Des Moines, Iowa. They spoke English to us but Japanese to each other.

After my youngest son entered high school I became a tutor for folks who needed to learn English as their second language. I loved my job and I loved each of my students. They came from many different countries from all over the world! They were all ages and they were all here legally!

One evening I got a phone call from a girl with broken English, who asked if I would meet her to talk because she had a problem. Of course I said yes. When I arrived at the house where she was living, she immediately came out to my car and got in the passenger side. She said, “I need to talk to you. I have a problem!” I had never met this young person before and didn’t even know her name! But she slowly and softly told me she was pregnant. I felt we needed to back up so I could get to know her and her situation.

She had been hired and brought to the US illegally, by the folks she was living with, to be the caregiver for the ailing bed-fast mother, of the husband, in the family!

During an evening off she became pregnant by a young man who now wanted nothing to do with her! She needed to talk with someone and my name and phone number had been given to her! Our city had a medical clinic for low income folks but I told her first she needed to get a green card so she was here legally. I assured her I would go with her to Detroit to get it. I had made this trip before and she agreed to go.

A day before we went she called me again to tell me we didn’t need to go to Detroit now because she had gotten married! A friend offered to marry her so she was now legal! A few months later she lost the baby. I haven’t heard from her now in many years.

Today we have a problem! A huge problem! I still love all the international folks I ever see or meet. I’m for all people no matter their color, language, age, religion. God made them, He loves them and I love them.

My country has laws. I’ve been taught to obey the laws. I believe everyone should obey the law, citizens and non-citizens. Yes, there are non-citizens living here.

Those hundreds and hundreds of people in Mexico wanting to cross the border and come to live here are wrong to think they can just enter and make a new home here illegally. No, we have laws. I obey them as most all citizens do! Love has nothing to do with it! I still love them but they must obey the laws and come across our border legally. I don’t see any other way.

One person said to me, “Well, God loves them and He wouldn’t keep them out!” To which I replied, “Yes, God loves them, He sent His Son to die for them but even God has laws. God gave His Son for us so we could go to heaven when we die, but those who don’t accept Him will not go to heaven. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16. A person who is not born again will not go to heaven when they die. I believe it and I am born again.

I love all those people wanting to come across the border to live here. But they must come across legally.


I have lost another friend. Judy. Judy We’ve known each other my entire married life. She was fun, cute, full of energy, creative, and committed to Christ. She and Bob were married a couple years ahead of Jerry and me. Judy and I would both turn 80 in October of this year! Judy and Bob celebrated 60 years of marriage last summer, 2017.  Jerry and I will celebrate 60 years next year, 2019.

Judy’s oldest son, Dennis and my oldest daughter, Pam, were very good friends growing up and right up until Dennis died, as a young man. Judy’s next son, Chris, and my son, Ted, were best buddies when they were kids. Judy’s daughter, Margie, and my son, Tim, were very good friends clear up through high school. Our whole family has so many memories of Judy and her family.

We were pregnant at the same time with our second babies, Ted and Chris. Oh my,  was she sure she was going to have a baby? She didn’t look like it! I did! She was so slender and carried her babies inward! I was slender but I carried my babies outward! I wish I had pictures to show you! Judy’s Chris was born about three weeks before my Teddy!

Bob & Judy family  Archer family 4 kids        These family pictures are from our church directory, 1970! They are even in pretty good order! Chris and Ted on the left of both pictures and Dennis and Pam on the right in both pictures. They were very good friends.  Marjory and Tim both in the front row were very good friends! Marj beside Judy and Tim beside Jerry. We had added Christy to our family and she’s beside me in our picture. Then we added another son in 1972!

One favorite memory of mine is of Judy and me going Huckleberry picking! There were so many good places for us to pick. We’d pick buckets full for baking pies and for freezing. Huckleberries and Blueberries are almost the same, except that Huckleberries are wild and smaller and more tasty! So much more tasty! They grow on bushes in the woods. With all the new subdivisions being developed here many of our favorite places to pick are gone! One day we were riding in the country together, Bob and Judy and Jerry and me. Country in Michigan means lots of wooded areas. All of a sudden Judy said, “Stop, Bob, there must be huckleberries in this woods!” He stopped and Judy and I got out. She had buckets in the trunk! We went into the woods and sure enough, there were huckleberries! We happily picked our buckets full!

Judy was very creative and loved decorating. She kept their home and yard very attractive. She also decorated our church up until just a few years ago. For a while we were both into Macrame. One year she came up with a clever idea for our church Christmas decorating. We each made matching white hanging tables! They were hung on each side of the sanctuary platform with evergreen boughs and large red candles inside clear glass chimneys as a beautiful center piece on each one! It was very festive and attractive! Macramae tables Mine is on the right side in the picture. For many years Judy kept our church decorated so lovely with her creative ideas!

Judy was attractive and very slender. I was okay in our younger years. I wish I had pictures of us but we just weren’t into taking pictures, like we are now days!              Here’s a recent picture of Judy and Bob. FullSizeRender (86)

Judy Funeral flowers These beautiful flowers were at her funeral. I’m posting them here because they were so Judy! They were created at the business where she worked. They knew exactly what to make and how to make them to represent Judy!

There is so much more I could write but I must stop. Judy was my good friend. The best thing about her was her faith in God. She was a committed Christian. Today she is in heaven, no doubt about it!

My Broken Wrist

Just when I got back into writing I broke my wrist! Please be patient with me! I’ll get back into blogging as soon as I’m able. The doctor says it was a bad break! It’s been very painful. This is my wrist now. In another week I’ll have a hard cast. I’m typing this with one finger! Thanks for understanding! I’ll be back as soon as I can…    IMG_1434

We Won…

We, Jerry and I, love to feed the birds. We have so many different ones who come to our feeders, but we’ve had a battle with the squirrels. Pilated Woodpecker This is a Pileated Woodpecker. He’s rather big to be eating at a bird feeder! But he’ll soon be gone and the smaller birds will return. We’ve always had a battle with squirrels. I know, squirrels have to eat too! They just don’t have to and they don’t get to eat from my bird feeders! It’s been a battle but we’ve finally won! Jerry put a stove pipe over the pole holding the bird feeder! The feeder is now safe! The squirrels can’t climb up the stove pipe! It’s so funny watching them try! They slide back down!  Notice the black squirrel with the brown tail! black-squirrels They can eat all they want off the ground! We have black, brown, and gray squirrels who come but they don’t mix! They stick with their color! I find that interesting!        Oriole 4 (3) In our front yard we have more feeders. This feeder with the Baltimore Oriole is okay for the orange on top. But the bag hanging is not good. The squirrels took over so we moved it. We now have a hummingbird feeder hanging there which you can see, in the next picture, if you look closely. Perfect! We hung the regular feeder on our porch. Then the squirrels were jumping up from the railing up to the bird feeder! But we smarter than the average bear… We now have a slinky hanging from the feeder! The squirrels can’t climb the slinky! Bird feeder on porch (2)       If you look very closely you can see part of the slinky resting on the rail. So we won!!! We do love watching the many birds who come to our feeders! Bird, Humming bird (2)  We love the Humming Birds and have so many come. I make the nectar, it’s so simple to make.



Ireland, My First Impressions

I love to travel! I’ve had several countries on my bucket list and I’ve been able to visit some, but not all! I wish I could say Ireland was on my bucket list but it wasn’t! So when our daughter, Christy, and her husband, Sean, and their two younger children, Mason and Maddie, moved to Ireland for Sean’s job, I quickly added Ireland to my list!  Our daughter, Pamela, and son-in-law, Gene, decided to go and invited us to go with them. They didn’t have to ask me twice! We flew by Aer Lingus. It’s a very modern airline and I loved it! They served us a very delicious dinner and of course, beverages and snacks. Our flight was long, about eight hours, but very smooth!Ireland Air Line (2) Traffic is, of course, very different. Driving on the opposite side is the norm. The traffic moves smoothly with few stop signs or lights because they have roundabouts! There are some traffic lights, of course. In the city of Dublin, there are more traffic lights, but not as many as we have in the US. There are few stop signs! It’s no problem! Roundabouts take care of the traffic! We have one roundabout here in my town and no one likes it! Folks get confused with it and complain about it all the time! But the many roundabouts in Ireland were very fascinating to me!

Ireland Parking Notice the parked cars are facing each other! That’s perfectly fine!

Signs were another very fascinating subject to me! Folks respected and obeyed the warning signs! Ireland warning sign (2) The end of this street ended in the Irish Sea! This sign warned drivers not to go any closer and they didn’t! Ireland sign (2) This man made right into the cement sidewalk showed which way to walk! It’s so simple! Ireland Pam and guard rail (2) Pam is standing beside the guard rail at this harbor! No one was falling in! This was warning enough! Ireland sign bends  I smiled at this sign. We would have written Dangerous Curves Ahead! But this works! DANGEROUS BENDS AHEAD.

We took the train to Dublin to do some sightseeing. I love riding the train, but oh my…I’ve never been on such a modern train before!   It was wonderful! It ran so smoothly and so quietly, it was incredible! 

Ireland Modern train (2) Ireland train                We sat and visited like we were in our living room! That’s how quiet the train was! We visited without raising our voices the least bit and we could hear just fine!

We took a tourist bus on a sightseeing tour of the city. This isn’t the actual bus we rode on but I wasn’t quick enough to get a good picture of our bus! So this one will do! We went all over the city! The driver explained everything to us! We had a woman driver and when we were in an area of not too much for her to explain about, she sang Irish songs for us over the speaker! She had a real Irish brogue!         Ireland tour bus (2) Ireland open air bus (2)              We sat upstairs on the bus, right in the front seats where we could see well! Pam, Christy, and Gene sat back where there was no roof over them! You can see them in the picture here. They could probably see even better but we wanted the protection from the sun or rain or wind or whatever! It was a ride worth taking.

Ireland is a country that cherishes and protects its history. I love it! Notice the building here behind the tree! It’s been there for hundreds of years! It’s only what’s left of the building but its hundreds of years old! Ireland Old Building (2) Ireland preserves its history! I love it! Another interesting feature here is the wall around the property. Everyone has a wall around their property! This one, above, is of bushes and vines and is hundreds of years old! Ireland Pam & Jerry by wall (2) Jerry and Pam are beside a wall covered with stucco.

Ireland stone wall (2) Jerry is standing beside a stone wall. This next one is an ancient stone wall with vines overgrowing! It’s hundreds of years old!Ireland, very old wall (2)

Most walls are stone, some are cement! The height varies from a few feet high to several feet high. Some are hundreds of years old and some are new. It was very interesting to me! In Canada, almost everyone has a fence. In the USA some folks have a fence and some don’t. In Ireland, everyone has a surrounding wall!

100_6090 (2)

This is Christy’s house with a brick wall across the front and a high wall covered with stucco along the side yard! The house is very nice and fairly new. Downstairs it has a living room, completely separate from the rest of the rooms! There is a family room, office, laundry room, kitchen, dining/sun room, and a half bathroom. Upstairs there are four bedrooms and three bathrooms!                                             Then there is the third floor! It’s all open but with the spiral stairway going up in the middle so it’s like there are two rooms. There are two skylights, one in each room.

Ireland spiral stair (2)


 We visited places that go clear back to the 11th century! Unbelievable! I’ll show a few examples here.  Trim Castle! The building of this castle was begun in the 1100’s! It was added on to in the 15th century and again in the 17th century! The folks standing here aren’t quite that old, but getting close! It’s Jerry and me, in case you don’t recognize us! Castle with Jerry and Anita Ireland Cemetary Dublin 3 (2)

Cemeteries are so old and some date back to the 1300’s or older! This picture is of one in Dublin. It’s unreal! I have more cemetery pictures I’ll show in a later post.

It was chilly that day but you can see the sky was blue with white clouds! We had beautiful weather the whole time we were there! It rained one day! We were so thankful because it was quite unusual! I’m going to stop now and write more another day! It’s actually taken me several days to write this!