Thursday, January 28, 2016

One Thousand Gifts

~ Getting back to a place in life where I can start spending more time blogging again

~ Becoming a Nana 

~ Enjoying the all winter long snow

~ Beauty in the glistening snow as it melts

~  New boots to keep my feet dry when I step into the large melted snow puddles

~ A new boss at work whom I like and get along with

~ Making some strides in defining who I am after the loss of my sweet baby girl

~ A sister who gave me a sweet and very lovely compliment. I call her my Mini Me lol

~ Reading a new book called Dead Weight and loving it

# 585 Starting a new TV series and loving it.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Nana's Binder of Memories

Airowona Juanita DeLong-Williams
sorry the pictures is so dirty it came in the binder that way but it is a great image

This is my Nana on my paternal side. I would have loved to have grown up around her but we didn't. 
As an adult I tried to spend as much time with her as I could and am so happy that I did. When she passed I was not ready to say good bye but when God calls people home they go. I miss her. 

My auntie gave me a binder of things that Nana had saved and so like I did for my other gram Granny's Box of Papers I am going to share them here with my siblings... There's not much compared to Gram's Items but fun to go through anyway. 

Today I am just sharing the love I felt from this matriarch. 

My Nana was a person whom I loved to visit. She always made me feel completely loved just for who I was. When we would go for a visit she would wrap her arms around us and you would feel the love in them. 

Our visits were very far and few between but when we visited it was a party. All the aunts and uncles and cousins would come over and visit with us. Everyone pulled out their musical instruments and played. We loved it so much and would sit on the floor and try to sing along. Johnny Cash was a favorite of theirs so I grew up listening to his music. 

I can remember the room being filled up with smoke from the many cigarettes everyone chain smoked. It was so bad that you could watch the smoke swirl around in the foggy haze that twenty smokers smoke filled the house with. It was worse than a smoke filled bar. It was not good for anyone but especially us little ones, back then we didn't know what smoking did to our lungs. 

My Nana was a very helpful woman and often helped out with any project that anyone was doing. She didn't drive but would be picked up by the one needing help and stay until finished or even come back the next day. She would sit for hours cutting, gluing, cooking, wrapping and so on.

That reminds me of a favorite thing she did for us once in a while at Christmas when my parents would visit. She would decorate a coffee can with felt cut outs and sequins then fill it with individually wrapped candies that she (with the help of her children) had spent a month preparing for all her grandchildren. Each sweet delight was wrapped in foil and to us it was like opening a gift with each morsel, you never knew what you were opening but always excited and surprise at what you got.

Everything was home made... here is a list of what we received... Two or three kinds of fudge, rice crispy treats, divinity, turtles (just hard chow mein noodles covered in chocolate) free flowing M&M's and popcorn and some others that do not come to mind right now. Once in a while there would be a tangerine and nuts. She did such a wonderful job and to us as dirt poor as we were felt like we had hit a jackpot. Oh my goodness... she really made some fun memories and times for us kids with that treat. We often would trade each other for candies that we liked more than the others, or use them as a bribe lol

I love my Nana very much and miss her even more.

As an adult when I visited her each month we had so much fun going places or just staying home. We would talk about things or hours always finding interesting subjects... Some times we sat and watched Soaps, "Price is right" and her favorite show "Little house on the prairie."

Her favorite place to eat was "Kentucky Fried Chicken" or "Arbys" so I would take her and we had lots of laughs with each other... When it came time for me to go she stood crying as I drove away, Sometimes I would pull back into the drive for another hug but she would say "I will be okay you go and I will see you next month" It tore my heart out each month to leave but I was four hours away from her with little ones at home.

I would not trade the memories of what we did for anything. They are among the best I have growing up and as an adult. I love you Nana and miss you a lot.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Gram's Cranberry Salad

One thing that we never go without at Christmas dinner is Gram's Cranberry Salad. As children growing up Christmas time was a magical time for us. It was not all about the gifts although that was never far from my mind...

Our auntie and two uncles and all the cousins would show up at our house a few days before Christmas. Those times in my memory are among the very best that I have. We had many fun outside adventures, sometimes we did not go back home until the sun went behind the mountains. Those were the days that children could safely be outside without supervision or worry of being abducted or what ever...

When it came time for dinner one thing we kids wanted was Grams salad, it was fluffy and sweet with just the right amount of tart flavor for our mouthes. As we grew this meal time special was never forgotten. I can remember one year that we somehow forgot this dish and my sister (Who makes it the best) went to the store to purchase the items because dinner would not start with out this delectable delight.

Most people that I introduce this dish to have never heard of it before. I do not know where my Gram found it or if it was a family tradition from when she was a child. We have a very large family and this recipe feeds us all with no leftovers but you can cut it in half for a smaller dish. This will feed depending upon the serving sizes 25 to 30 people. This recipe is very forgiving and can be altered in any way... here is the basic recipe

What you need:
2 bags of fresh whole cranberries (crushed)*
2 cans of chunky pineapple (drained)*
1 to 2 bags of mini marshmallows (I used 1)
1 or 2 large bowls of whipped cream (refrigerated not frozen - I used 1)
Sugar enough to coat cranberries
(Optional) Chopped nuts of your pleasure (we omit this)

The night before wash and sort your berries, look for moldy ones or very soft ones and remove them. Bring out your hand crank meat grinder and grind the berries.*
Coat berries with sugar and leave over night.*
Next morning mix all ingredients together leaving the marshmallow for last the put back in the fridge until ready to serve.

* Note:
Cranberries are hard to tell if they are over ripe. All soft ones are bad and should be tossed. if in question cut it open it should have a whitish or yellowish meaty inside and be firm
I no longer have my meat grinder but my food processor worked just fine but the results are best with a meat grinder because the food possessor makes it to small but it still tastes yummy.
I added the Pineapple to the cranberry sugar mix. Gram sometimes did this and other times she didn't
The chunky pineapple may be to large for and could pose a chocking hazard for those under 5 or even over 80 years old so use shredded pineapple instead

Monday, December 28, 2015

Blogging by Eddie

I wanted to share a poem that my Cousin wrote... It made me laugh I think he is clever and fun
See his site here He just started blogging. You are so clever cousin... below is his poem

Blogging, Blogging, Blogging 
Lets do some blogging
When we do some blogging
Our brains go nogging
When our brains go nogging
We do more blogging

My cousin and his mother on his birthday

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas Breakfast with Nana and Poppy

Breakfast morning this year was a delicious one thanks to my BFF and second mom for sending us this breakfast from Swiss colony... It was very delicious! Thank you Diana xoxoxo
The plate above is our grandson's first Christmas breakfast. Obviously a two week old cannot eat this but my fun loving husband handed me this plate and said here is Tay Tay's breakfast. I cracked up. My husband is so funny and always making me laugh. Below is me getting to hold Tay Tay while his parents took their first small trip to the store without him. He has a lot of hair for such a small one. Although he is sleeping here when he is awake you can see in his eyes great intelligence which seems kind of weird. But when he looks up into your eyes it's like looking into the eyes of a very wise soul.
The picture below was taken the day Tay Tay came home from the hospital. My husband in this picture said that his eyes seem very alert and intelligent. Here is where Tay Tay made his first voice noise other than crying. Joe picked him up and said "Hey there, you ready to come home?" and then Tay Tay made a cooing sound. It was quite surprising to hear something other than crying come from him. It made us all stop and smile... It was as if he had answered his Poppy. I love this picture 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Elf On The Shelf Visits Work

I have had way to much fun with this little guy. I have a co-worker that has been laid off at the end of this year because the Lab office she works in has closed. She is understandably a bit upset. I wanted to do something to cheer her up and remembered this little guy. Again, I think that I had more fun than she did. She was so bugged trying to figure out who was doing this that she spent the last three weeks grilling everyone for answers. You see each night after she left work I set up the next days scene starting with the letter below. I was told that she had a smile on her face each morning and was happy to come into work to see what was next. I would call that mission accomplished!

Here Mistletoe had a visitor by the name of Tinsel helping him make a Christmas garland
 Next day was a snow ball fight between the two of them
 Next was a marshmallow roast and it looks like Mistletoe is a bit infatuated 
 Aw, Tinsel had to leave and it sent Mistletoe into a chocolate binge and hangover
When I came in this night after Mistletoe's binge I found him and the shelf all cleaned up including his face and she had written a note for Tinsel... I laughed so hard because she could not let him sit there with a sugar hangover lol she is so fun. Her note says "Dear Tinsel it seems someone has rendered you ill. Well I'll fix you!!" Then she turned Tinsels note upside down.
After Mistletoe's sugar binge he had some energy to use up so he started to play pranks but Santa's army captured him and tied him up. He was caught red handed with the streamer still in his hand
Well the next day when I came in the whole place had been cleaned up and she put Mistletoe on her shelf with a note attached to his shirt. Again I fell into laughter as she had hidden my little soldiers and freed Mistletoe. I started to suspect that she had grown an attachment to this little guy
 Next Mistletoe visited the Nativity
 After his misbehavior Mistletoe went for some much needed guidance
Next... I found out where she had hidden the soldiers and took them back all except this little one with a ransom note. I had her look for candy canes kinda like a treasure hunt
When I came in she had found all the candy canes and then she taped the soldier upside down on the ransom note... She is so fun
I knew that Mistletoe had to thank her because she had now saved him twice so she received kisses from Mistletoe
 Next he made snowflakes for her
 Then Tinsel, Ginger and Mistletoe had a game night
Then finally this was the last night. It's just a snow scene and he is holding a Christmas ornament that I happened upon that says "When one door closes, another one opens" she loved the ornament and held it to her chest saying that it is so appropriate for what she is going through right now. It was a touching moment between her and us
Lastly this little guy was suppose to sit on her shelf but he is in the back of my car holding her last letter of good bye and a clue as to who it was that did all of this for her. It was Thrusday and I was going to set it up for the morning but I got wind that she was leaving that night for Arizona and would not be back until after Christmas... Soooooooo, I asked for help from our security guard and he took this little guy inside and handed it to her saying that this was for her and the person who dropped it off was not here... lol. we sure had her fooled as to who was doing this for her each night.
Inside the Christmas stocking I had some candy canes, scrabble squares and the note below
So I left a bag of scrabble squares and she worked on it for twenty minutes and it was almost time for her to leave so I had someone go in and help her arrange the squares so that she could know it was me. I had wanted to leave it a secret but everyone told me that it would not be good for her and would drive her crazy... So there you go. I don't know who had more fun... Me or her lol but I accomplished what I had set out to do and that was to distract her for three weeks so that she did not dwell upon her shortened time here.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Snow Fall

This is the best winter season we have had in several years. We sure need it as our reservoirs are very low. Our snow pack in the Sierras is the lowest its been in over 500 years. A lot of the pine and evergreen trees in the mountains are dying off from lack of water for 4+ years. I pray this weather continues all winter long. 

As I sit here this morning the sky's are dark grey, the winds are blowing so hard that the trees are swaying hard and the rain is falling sideways not downward. Chain controls are in effect over the Mount Rose Highway and the Sierra Mountain Range... I will have to cross that way twice today. 

I love the snow... being in it, driving in it and so on and I hold a healthy respect for the dangers it will pose while crossing. 
Usually as winter comes I settle into a restive state where I work on things like blankets, Christmas traditions and such. Well this year so much has been going on that we have had no time to rest or for traditions. 

One of my favorite things to do this time of year is make Gingerbread houses and I had planned on doing just that but every weekend it seems something interrupts my attempt. I usually make them from scratch but it takes two to three days depending upon the humidity in the air to accomplish that. I am still hoping to get one done but but we will see. 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

One Thousand Gifts

~ More snow falling making it a winter wonderland

~ Long tall hanging ice cycles beautiful but dangerous

~ Sparkling snow flakes glistening like diamonds in the suns rays

~ Tall snow drifts filled with brightly hued snow suits worn by kids as they sled down the drifts

~ My first experience seeing a snow duster (micro tornado)... Extremely beautiful

~ Snow powder swirling into pretty designs as the wind blows over the streets

~ Large clumps of snow falling off trees creating a wall of snow dust... Fun to drive through

~ The crunching sound snow makes as you walk across it

~ The silence snow brings to the world

~ The blessing of water for the high sierras this summer

~ Hearing the call of an Eagle as he soars over head

~ The promise of a snow storm again today

~ Knowing that I am a TRUE Pluviophile but snow comes in second Joy, Joy, Joy

# 575 Elf on the shelf experience and surprise for a long time co-worker leaving at the end of this month to explore other options. (Pictures later)

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Granny's Box of Papers

Well... I think I have exhausted Granny's box of papers and will end for now... I will add more from time to time if I find worthy items. Although there is much more, I feel some things are just not interesting enough to share. (Any of my siblings want to see more then please stop by)

This picture of my gram was taken in 1975-76? 

She lived in an apartment down the street from us. Gram was raised on a farm and had a love of growing things. Behind her in this picture sits only about 1/4th of the plant life she had growing there in her small space. She also had a couple growing outside the door.

I remember once she purchased a mini banana tree and actually grew mini bananas something that I thought was impossible here in Reno where it is dry and snows but Gram had a very special talent with growing plants.

Grandmama... I have had so much fun going through all your papers. Thank you so much for saving all that for me and our family so that we could remember and learn so much more about you. I love you and miss you so much! Until we meet again

Next I will post items from my other gram... Nana she was my gram on my fathers side

Friday, November 27, 2015

One Thousand Gifts

This man... the love of my life... heart of my heart... my husband

#561 Last year in this month of November I started to search out the things in my life I feel blessed to have, experience, see, deal with, and so on. I have learned how to seek out these blessings in my life and appreciate them more fully. It has been a real eye opener and in a way has made me more appreciative of all the things in and around me in life.

Through out our marriage and especially this year the number 1 blessing in my life has been my husband. We celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary this month. To me this is a significant accomplishment considering the attitude of marriage today.

My sweet husband and I have shared many of life's experiences together, some good, some bad, some we never ever want to experience again.  Mostly we have shared with each other the joys of living. We have grown from awkward teenagers into our middle aged lives together.

Looking back through our lifetime of memories I can truthfully say that it was not always an easy ride. We both have different personalities, thoughts, goals and so on and some times they clash but we took the time to work it out. I remember reading a statistic once and it goes something like this,

"Throughout the years of being married you will naturally fall in and out of love... Stay, wait, hold on and soon you will fall back in love. Remember to continually behave in a loving and courteous way to your partner and very soon you will find your self in love all over again."

Although it may sound bad and I feel hesitant about saying this... I have experienced this first hand and so has my husband... we've talked about it to each other.

As an 18 year old I had different views in life and so did my husband. We had things like, expectations, views, needs, goals, likes and dislikes that differed from each other. We had spaces in time where we changed, changed in all the above as you do during normal progression in life. Sometimes this change can lead to a different you and I can attest to this! I am not the person I was when we were married and neither is he.

I can remember through out the years the both of us having this very specific conversation after a very tense few weeks...
"I can see you are changing and all I ask is that you give me some time to catch up with you!"

To which one of us would reply...
"Thank you for talking with and me helping me understand where you are"

That is really just a basic and to the point short example of the both of us asking the one growing and changing to have a bit of patients and hold on until we catch up to each other again.

I have found that it gets really easy to become impatient with your partner during the times you are changing and growing and it causes significant issues, fights and or divorce. All of us grow, learn, dream and desire new things in life when we change in our natural course of life.

But in the working it out you gain a very beautiful relationship worth keeping, a partnership in sync and a love that will withstand most everything in life.

Today my husband and I give to each other 100% not 50-50 like some feel. I try to always take into account his needs and feelings in each choice I make in life. But that being said I love it when he defers to me lol.

SO....... really I guess what I am saying through this long post is that I today am so happy and feel so loved by this man... the one that makes my heart sing and go pitter patter when he walks into a room.

This sweet man lives to make me happy and I only hope that I do the same for him (although I am sure that I am in the negative and he is leading the race lol)

My hope is that even though we all loose it from time to time we need to try and go the extra mile, take time to care and show loving tenderness even if not felt at that moment. Remembering that you chose this person to spend the rest of your life with.... This is and will be one of the most important relationships you will have. It will be the one person you share life's ups and downs with and the one who will care for you when you are down or take care of you when you are unable to do so yourself.

This being my 561st post on my thankful list I have dedicated it to the love of my life and partner... my sweet husband... I love you

P.S. There are some exceptions in life I feel... some significant reasons not to stay... in my opinion they are... Abuse, Drug addiction, Alcoholism and pornography... These destroy and do major harm to the ones who have to suffer through or watch it happen... Each life is important and we should all treat each other in a way that we want to be treated ourselves

This post is not intended to point out things to my family... These opinions are mine only and not reflective of anything you may or may not be going through in the past, present or in the future... Love you all.... Thank you

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Granny's Box of Papers

A small Kardlet of facts about the year that my Gram was born... I will share a few
1. Gram was born on a Friday
2. Henry Ford established the first assembly line
3. Income tax imposed by congress 
4. Federal reserve banking system established
5. Los Angles Aqueduct opens 
6. One of the movies of this time was "The Battle of Gettysburg" 
7. Music of this year Danny boy, Peg O' my heart, TOO-RA-LOO-RA-LOO-RAL
8. Fritz Carlson won the Boston Marathon 2hrs, 25 min and 14 seconds
9. The electric refrigerator was invented 
10. Gallon of Gas .12 cents
11. Household yearly income 1,296.00 dollars
12. Born this year was Presidents Ford and Nixon along with entertainer Burt Lancaster
And finally number 
13. Life expectancy was 50 years

Gram lived to be 92 years young... a very long and experienced life

Thursday, November 19, 2015

One Thousand Gifts

 ~ Acquired wood this summer for fun DIY projects, all kinds of Ideas but need to focus on one to start... Tons of ideas running through my head, Pinterest has a plethora of ideas :-)

~ Able to breath a bit better now that my son is out of danger... Hospital neglect  :-(

~ More snow fall in two storms than we had all of last winter. Phew! We sure need it

~ Being given a gift... always so fun to receive

~ Snow... I'm sorry it had to be said again lol I love snow

~ Reading and rereading favorite books

~ Being chosen to host Thanksgiving dinner this year... I love to host party's

~ A new pop up trailer for camping gifted to us... needs repairing but is still usable as is

~ Pumpkin spice foods and drinks everywhere this time of year but my fav is the wax scented melts

#560 Gathering ingredients for the Ginger Bread Houses I am making this month. YAY!!! I love this time of year

Inspired by this lovely lady

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Granny's Box of Papers

Mom... Look what I found... I think this paper is around "#%" years old lol. Pretty cool right?
A paper that Granny kept with your birth information... I continue to find fun things that really are only important to us kids and other family members but are very fun to go through and record 

Sunday, November 8, 2015