Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sittin' Around on Sunday

Hey, Y'all,
Well, it is a Sunday afternoon, and I'm not doing much of anything today. Did some laundry about 9 a.m. and put it in the dryer. It is very quiet here, and I have been playing a computer game. It is one that I have played many times and been defeated many times. It is called 7 Wonders II. I play it until I get tired of being told "you have failed to build the wonder." The player gets 4 chances to build, and there are several levels that one goes through to build it. Of course there are seven wonders to build. I have built them all two times and am working on the third time to build them all.

Gramps is still in bed. He is now able to get up by himself without any help from me, so he is progressing. I will probably go in after while and insist that he arise from his bed of ease.,and have some breakfast at 4 in the afternoon.

Of course, we didn't go to church this morning, and I know it will make the day seem even longer, as well as causing the week to seem longer. They are having a cookout at the community center, and we won't make that either.

I put a tender chuck roast into the crock pot last night and it is yummy. It cooked all night. I had two sandwiches of it for lunch (with mayo). I may make some vegetable beef soup with the rest of it for tomorrow. Then maybe make some cornbread to eat with it. Mmmm, good to eat any time.

Update on brother John in Phoenix. As of last evening he was still in the hospital. They were administering a 24-hour iv drip to help his heart. They had cleared up the blood in his sputum, so that was to the good.

Not much shaking here today. I may work on the quilt pieces today. I haven't decided yet. I do have to water the flowers some time today. I have already put the car in the layby area of the yard so that I can pull the water hose down through the carport without any obstruction. The roses require a lot of water, so I try to water them every other day, if we have no rain. I water the flowers on the porch at the same time.

There is good television on the Hallmark Channel on Sunday afternoon, (murder mysteries), and also on the Game Show Network.

Thought for today: "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, and besides, if you reach into a bush to catch a bird, something may grab you instead." ha.

Well, this is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the day. Remember when you feel most alone, that is when you are not. God is always as close as a prayer. Bye for now.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Birthdays Sometimes Come in Threes

Hey, Y'all,

We (Gramps and I) want to wish several people a Happy Birthday! This weekend, three people very dear to us have a birthday; actually, three of our grandchildren do.

Our Grandson, Will (also known as B.J.) turns 23 this weekend; our honorary granddaughter, Jennifer turns 25 (?) this weekend; and our Grandson, Daniel, has a 31st birthday on Monday. Three wonderful young people and very important in our lives and in the lives of others.

Will is the son of our daughter, Teresa, and ex-husband, Bill, and step-son of her husband, Tom, and is an airman in the U.S. Air Force in California. Will has a cute little wife named Natasha, and an adorable baby girl named Alyssa, who is 8 months old.

Jennifer is our honorary granddaughter from Taiwan and is a graduate student at Carson-Newman in Jefferson City.

Daniel is our grandson who lives in Illinois with his wife, Whitney, and four children, Hannah, Austin, Noah, and Ellie. He is the pastor of a Bethany Community Church, and is the son of our daughter, Carol and her husband, Daryl.
We are so very proud of all three of them and wish them the best in the year to come.


Update on Gramps..He still has a stiff neck, but I think it is getting a little bit better. His head still hurts, but I think it is from his neck muscles. We had a little better night last night, and he is up (for the day, I hope). He was up at 7:30 this morning. We may go out on the porch after while and enjoy the morning fresh air.
Haven't heard any more about John yet. Will update you when I can.

This is about all for today from Blabbin' Grammy. I may try to do some quilt piecing today. (maybe). Thought for today: "if you can't say something good to somebody or about somebody, keep your mouth closed". (my version of that old saying)

Bye for now. God blesses us each even when we don't know it.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Update on Illnesses

Hey, Y'all,
It was a rocky night last night. Gramps couldn't get out of bed on his own, because of the crick (or whatever it is) in his neck and shoulders. So we stayed up for quite a while and I told him that he needed to sleep in his chair in the living room for awhile. I stayed up at my computer and played games until about 4 a.m. and figured we could safely go to bed around that time.

I went in to the living room about almost 4 and found him lying in the floor with his blanket, and got him up and we got him into bed after a bathroom visit. Then we both went to sleep and then were up around 7:30 this morning. We had breakfast and then he went back to sleep and i got busy with things that had to be done. So he spent the all morning and into the afternoon sleeping.

He is now moving better and can mostly get out of bed on his own with a few instructions from yours truly. So, I believe he is on the mend. We spent a while on the front porch this afternoon watching the bees drink the hummingbird food and also the hummingbirds sharing the feeders with them.

Gramps said he saw a bird yesterday at the bird bath and the bird had approached it cautiously, I guess trying to decide what to do with it. I still say we should go out and demonstrate its use to the birds. ha.

An update on John: we talked to Darlene last night and then today Hugh called her to find out more of John's situation. He is still in the hospital through tonight. He was coughing up blood in his sputum, and they seemed to think it was because he had been using more oxygen than he needed. He had turned it up to a five on the valve, which apparently was more than he needed.

I am hoping he will have a good night's sleep tonight (and that we will also). Today has been a very laid back day and I expect tomorrow will be too.

We had a root beer float for supper along with our small DeGiorno's pizza. It was sooooooooo good. It has been a while since we had had a root beer float. There is nothing like it in the summer time. It really hit the spot.

Well, this is all for today. Thought for today is: Do something for someone today (or tomorrow) that is unexpected by that person. You will be blessed and they will too.

This is Blabbin' Grammy ending the blog for today. May you feel God's peace in your heart and have a good night's rest. Thank you for your prayers on Gramps and John's (and my) behalf. Bye for now.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Settling Back In

Hey, Y'all!

We are settling back into our usual routine today. Yesterday was kind of a day of rest - well, I guess today was kind of like that too. We are never really running around a lot. Gramps still has a crick in his neck and shoulders and couldn't get out of bed easily last night. So, at around 2 a.m. when he needed to get up for a bathroom visit, he didn't wake me up until it was too late. I had to help him out of bed when I turned over and saw he was trying to get up. Then I had to change the wet sheets and mattress pad. Have you ever done that at 2:15 or 2:30 in the morning? I had to literally pull him to his feet (not easy to pull a six-foot tall person to his feet when you are only 5'2") It is a good thing that I have a lot of strength in my upper body and in my legs. Then I had to help him up again about 7:30 a.m.

Well, that time, it was not too late. Then I had to get ready a little later for my visit to the dentist. After breakfast, he wanted to go back to bed and I told him I would rather he stayed up at least until after I got back home from the dentist. So he did.

My visit to the dentist was quite quick because he only had to remove the temporary crown and put on the permanent one. Needless to say, I am glad to be able to wear my lower partial again, and not have to go back to the dentist until time for my teeth to be cleaned.

Of course, I had to go into Jefferson City to pick up some prescriptions and then back home. Oh, yes, I had put some Bio-freeze on his neck and shoulders this morning before I left for the dentist and put some more on after supper today. If you have never used this product, it is excellent for arthritis pain, and back pain, and also leg cramps at night. This is not a testimonial, but just the truth as far as I am concerned. It can be purchased at chiropractor's offices or online. The main ingredient is menthol and probably Vicks salve would do the same thing for you, but I think the Bio-freeze has more menthol in it.

I had to have my afternoon nap today to make up for the sleep I lost last night. I did get sheets and mattress pad washed and dried today.

I was on my way home from the dentist's office when my cell phone rang. It was my sister-in-law, Darlene, who lives in Phoenix. She called to tell my that my brother, John, was back in the hospital. He has congestive heart failure, has had a couple of heart attacks and has had bypass surgery. (As you may know, my brother, Ralph, died of a heart attack; my brother, Hugh, has had heart attacks and two by-pass surgeries, and also has congestive heart failure; I have had by-pass surgery and have congestive heart failure --you may be saying by now that it must not be a good thing to have been born into this family, and in a way, that could be right. I would, however, take this family over many that I know of. We have our heart problems but they are only in a physical manner. We have more heart for each other than many families do)

We are waiting to hear how John is faring and praying that he will soon be able to be back home. We love and appreciate Darlene so very much, for she is a dear friend, and she takes such excellent care of John. It is very difficult for them, I know, to be out there away from family here in East Tennessee.

A recent picture is posted here of John taken when we visited them in Phoenix. John is the baby of the family. (well, he is 72 but still the youngest so he is the baby).

Thought for the day: My mom always said, "Anything worth doing, is worth doing well". She had a lot of sayings about such stuff. She instilled in each of her children an ethic for doing our best at whatever we do.

Well, this is Blabbin' Grammy turning it off for this evening. May each of you have a good night's rest

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

More Pics of Visit to Illinois

Hi, Y'all,

We are back home and beginning to rest up a little more. It seems we must have brought the rain with us when we returned home. I did get out today to do some running (not literally, you understand. I wish I could literally run!) to New Market Post Office to pick up our mail which we had them hold for us; to stop by the church and visit with one of our friends, Judy, who is secretary there; to go to the drug store; to refill the gas tank; to pick up some groceries.

I did get the clothes dried this morning, but they are still in the dryer. Don't worry, they'll not be too wrinkled. I'll just hang them up and the wrinkles will fall out, or they won't, but by the time we have them on, our bodies will press out the wrinkles. ha.

My afternoon nap sure did feel good, too. I am beginning to really need the afternoon nap. Don't most 75 year-olds take a mid day nap? Of course, when one stays up the night before until 2 a.m., playing on the computer, do they not need a nap the next day?

Gramps slept on a motel pillow on Monday night, instead of using the pillow we brought for him from home, so he woke up Tuesday morning (and this morning) with his neck and shoulders all stiff and sore. I had to help him out of bed twice during the night. Hope it doesn't take him long to recover from it. He is not a little bitty fellow, and is not easy to help pull up to a sitting position.
Tomorrow, I get to go back to my dentist and get the permanent crown put on my tooth. Mercy, I dread that! Maybe it will be the last work I will have to have done for a long time! Let us hope so!

I would like to put pics that Whitney took and put on her blog site of Gramps and I holding the newest member of their family, Ellie, who was adopted from Guatemala in January. She is adorable, and a lovely addition to the family. For more about her, just click on the link to the blogspot of Whitney.

Their whole history of the adoption is there and is quite inspiring to follow. Besides, there are lots of cute pictures and videos there.

Well, it is about time for me to wind this up for today.

Thought for today: Psalm 16:8 "I have set the Lord always before me: because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved."

This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. More tomorrow. God bless each of you who reads this. Bye for now.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Back Home

Hey, Y'all,

We arrived back in Knoxville today around 10:00 a.m. This morning at 5 a.m., I awoke to hear Gramps taking a shower in the motel bathroom. About 10 minutes later, I hear a clattering from the bathroom. Many times, I have cautioned him to not hold on to shower rods when getting out of a shower to give him balance. Well, this time, it happened. Yep, he pulled down the shower rod; it came out of the wall.

After he had finished his shower, and had gotten dressed, I had to take a "spit bath" using the basin and then we packed everything ready to go, carried it out to the car, and then went down to the lobby for the free breakfast (free in the sense that we didn't have to pay any extra for it). It was pretty good, but not a Cracker Barrel competition, you understand.

When I handed the room key in at the front desk, I told the desk clerk about the shower rod falling, and he said, "oh, my, did your husband get hurt?" and I said, "No, thank goodness, it missed him by a hair." Of course, he laughed and said, "good."

We left about 7 a.m. for Knoxville, in the midst of sprinkles of rain, which grew to a downpour as we progressed south. Not only was the rain difficult to drive in, my eyes wanted to close, because of my early hour of wakening, and the drumming of the rain on the car roof. After a while, I had overcome the desire to sleep, and was able to fully concentrate on traffic and driving. Thank you, Jesus!

I am posting some pictures that I took while in Illinois, of my family up there (Daniel, our grandson; his wife, Whitney; their four children: Hannah 7, Austin 5, Noah 3, and Ellie 2.) I am not in any of the pictures because I am the one behind the camera, you see.
One of the pictures is of the family group plus Gramps (minus me). Another one is of Daniel reading a Bible story to the two youngest, which he does every evening and then reads one to the older children. (When he is at a meeting, Whitney does the reading and quiet time with them, if he cannot be in time for their bedtime). Daniel and Whitney have instituted a quiet time when they read the Bible and pray, thus continuing a custom initiated by his parents when they got married nearly 33 years ago. Another of the pictures is of the four children dressed up playing. They love to dress in costumes. Another picture is of Gramps with little Ellie, the youngest, and recently adopted from Guatemala.

After we got back to Knoxville, we visited with Hugh, Imazo and Mae, and then went to (yes) the Cracker Barrel for lunch. We then left and drove home and promptly went in and took a nap. (Gramps is still napping - two hours was enough for me). I got up and unloaded the car, went out on the porch and ate a sugar free ice cream bar and watched the hummers for a while.

I came back in and unpacked the dirty clothes and put them in the washing machine and they are probably ready to put into the dryer right now, but can wait. Now, I am in here in my work/computer/craft room at my computer and listening to the news on television. It seems that the rain is going to continue for a while yet. We had been without rain in our area for the past 3 to 4 weeks. Walking on the grass in the yard had been like walking on crunchy straw. Thank you, Lord, for the rain!
Well, that is all for right now. Tomorrow, we get back into the "swim of things" and begin doctor's appointments. Sometimes I say, if it weren't for dr. appointments, we would have nowhere to go. ha ha. It seems the older we get, the better acquainted with doctors we become.
Thought for the day: If you have been delaying calling a friend or sending them a card, do it now, tomorrow may be too late.
Signing off for the evening, this is Blabbin' Grammy, hoping you get a good night's rest and have the peace of knowing The Master in your heart.

Monday, August 25, 2008

In Richmond, Kentucky

Hey, Y'all,
After driving all day (mostly) we arrived in the lovely little town of Richmond, Ky. and are ensconced in the local Super 8 motel. We went to Wendy's for supper of fast food. Dub has already gone to bed, but I am up watching my Monday night shows, and spending some time on my laptop. (Do you remember when a laptop was actually a cover that you put on your legs to cover them from cool air? Or a place you set a child to cuddle them? ha) I know one thing, my lap is not big enough or flat enough to hold a laptop computer and use it well!

We stopped in Indiana at Brownsburg, where we stayed going to Daniel's and had lunch (breakfast food) at the Bob Evans where we ate when we stayed there. It happened to be at the right place on our way home, for eating lunch.

We had a great time at Daniel and Whit's and were treated royally while there. The children were so much fun and we did some fun things together. I had the chance (and took it) to read to the four of them and enjoyed it thoroughly!

I took them a craft to do and we did it together. The craft I took was some little suncatchers and the paint to paint them with. It was such an enjoyable activity. Gramps and I got to do a lot of snuggling with them, too. I will be posting some pictures after I get home and can download them from my camera to my regular computer.

Gramps gets confused sometimes at night about where he is, and wound up twice in Whitney and Daniel's bedroom, looking for the bathroom. They were very understanding (of course) and took it humorously. He just will not sometimes wake me up, when he gets up.

We were privileged to attend the Sunday services at the church where Daniel is pastor, and to hear him preach. We are so very pleased that they have made a wonderful life in their community and they are living to serve the Lord, and are bringing up their children as they were raised, in fear and admonition of the Lord.
Daniel's sermon was about the transfiguration of Jesus, and the effect of the transfiguration on his disciples. Also, what the effects of seeing HIs glory should be on us, and how we are called to worship, and hear, and obey Him.

At lunch yesterday, Dan asked Noah, his 3 year old, what his sunday school lesson had been. He couldn't remember at first, and then when his older brother, Austin, said it was about Heaven, Noah said, "oh yes, we won't need band-aids in heaven". Isn't that a wonderful concept for three year olds to learn and understand?

It was a wonderful visit, and it was difficult to leave, knowing the possibility that we might not be able to make the trip again. Not knowing what can transpire in the next year, we can not be sure of anything, can we? We just have to take life as it comes, haven't we?

Well, we are on our way home to morrow, and hope to visit with Hugh, Imazo and Mae tomorrow before we finish our trip from Knoxville to New Market. We have missed seeing them. We will also see Mark and Allie maybe when we get to New Market.

We love to go, but there is nothing like coming home, is there?

Thought for today: If we could see what Heaven holds for us, would we try so hard to hold on to this life?

May you feel God's love and peace in your heart and have a good night's rest tonight. Blabbin' Grammy is signing off for tonight. Bye for now.

Friday, August 22, 2008

At Dan and Whit's

Howdy, Y'all,

Well, we made it almost all the way to Dan's house without having to call him, but as luck would have it, we (I) were (was) not sure of the final part of the journey, since Dub was reading the printed directions out loud and had not gotten to the last part of it before I chickened out. But, we were going the right way and could have made it without help. We were pleased to have him help us.

We are having a delightful time playing with the great grandchildren and will have pictures when we get back to E.TN in a few days. They played with us, and then went outside to play after the two youngest took naps.

We had a delicious supper prepared by Whitney and then the children took baths. After baths, the children came back in for evening activities.

Here it is the next day (Saturday) and after a good night's rest, every one is ready to take on a brand new day. Everyone has had breakfast and Daniel is working on his sermon for tomorrow, the children are playing with Gramps and Whitney is busy doing stuff. I got some really great pictures yesterday evening, but they will have to wait for downloading until we get back home.

I am using my laptop computer right now, while I am waiting for whatever will come today in the way of activities. Tomorrow is church day and we will get to hear our grandson preach again. We are so very proud of him and Whitney in their service for the Lord and the way they are raising their four children.,

Well, that is all for today. Got other things to do right now. May God's peace and love reign in your hearts today. Bye now from Blabbin' Grammy.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

In Brownsburg, Indiana

Hey, Y'all,
Here we are in Brownsburg, Indiana. We traveled the distance of about 375 miles or so today from New Market. It didn't take an awfully long time and was relatively without problems. Traffic was not bad, and the directions I printed off of AAA webpage were fairly clear. Tomorrow's look to be really interesting, though. I will consider myself quite fortunate if I don't get lost a couple of times. It is always when I get close to the destination that I have the most difficulty.

We had had cereal at home this morning at 7 a.m. I had to then go out and clean and refill the hummingbird feeders before we loaded up the car.

I have my cell phone turned off and hooked up to a charger so it won't go out on me tomorrow. We stopped for lunch (which turned out to be breakfast because that is what we ordered) at the Cracker Barrel around noon.

I had trouble finding the entrance to our motel. I could see the sign sticking up, but finding the entrance was something else again. I told Dub that it puts the Cracker Barrel locations to shame. (You know how difficult finding the entrance to them can be)

Then after we got to the motel, we carried in stuff and rested for awhile. I made a few calls to let people who might be inerested that we had gotten in for the night.

After we rested for a while, we went to a Bob Evans restaurant which is very close by, and had some supper. We are hoping to get a good nights rest and be ready to travel again in the morning. Dub is reading the paper and the tv is playing. I don't think he can survive with out having the tv on. That is always the second thing he does when we come home from anywhere. It is the last thing to be turned off at night. I'll bet if we didn't have a tiv, our electric bill would be cut in half. ha.

Well, that is all for tonight. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off. May you feel God's peace and love in your heart always. See you tomorrow. Bye now.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Getting Ready to Travel

Hi, Y'all,
Well, we are getting excited about our upcoming trip to Illinois to visit our family that lives there. I have printed off AAA directions to their house, looked for a motel to stay at on our way, and one to stay at on the way home. We will be staying in their home while we are there.

Of course, we will probably have to call them when we are almost there, because we will probably get lost. ha. I am really good at that sometimes.

We went to Knoxville this morning to take Hugh, Imazo and Mae out to breakfast at the Cracker Barrel (one of our favorite places to eat) and after taking Hugh and Dub back to their home, Imazo, Mae and I went to Krogers so they could get some groceries.

I got our laundry done yesterday, so that is out of the way. Tomorrow, I will be carrying off the trash to the dumpsters because we live out in the country and there is no trash pick-up out here. I just vacuumed the house, and all that kind of stuff, so the house will be clean when we return home.

Tomorrow we will be packing for the trip and doing last minute decisions on "what to take". We always take more clothes than we need, do you? It is difficult to know for sure. Medicines are always one of those things we have to make sure to take with us. It seems the number of medications has always increased as the years roll by.

Cleaning out the fridge before we carry off the trash is a necessity. Somehow or other, left overs seem to accumulate til the fridge gets a little crowded. Don't you just hate to clean out the refrigerator? I do.

I may even sleep a little late tomorrow. Maybe until 8 a.m. if I can. For me, that is late, since I am usually awake by 6:30 or so. My mom never let any of us sleep late, so it is a lifetime habit of waking early and being out and doing. Each night, she would wind the alarm clock and say, "bedtime" and we would turn out the lights and go to bed. There was never any question of not going at that time. Next morning, it would be, "time to get up", and out of bed we would roll and start the new day.

Well, that is about all for now. We can hardly wait to get to Illinois to see Daniel, Whitney, Hannah, Austin, Noah, and Ellie! Leaving on Thursday morning...smiling.

Thought for the day: Psalm 25:4 "Show me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths."
May you feel the love and peace of God within today.
Bye now. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for now.

Monday, August 18, 2008

A Visit From Tanya, Kevin, and Adam

Howdy, You all,
Just wanted to share with you the fact that Allie and Mark's oldest daughter is in from California with her two children visiting and it has been wonderful to see them again. Kevin is almost three and Adam is close to being a year old. They are beautiful children and very well-behaved. Tanya is a really great mother to them. Their dad, Bryan, is an architect and couldn't get away to come with them.

The other day, when I was over there visiting, the kids were anxious to get into the swimming pool. So nothing to do, but put their bathing suits on, along with a life vest for Kevin and let them do their thing. Tanya kept a close rein on little Adam, and put him into a vest that was on Tanya. It was some kind of safety device that holds a baby in place in front of the mother, kind of like a front carrier back pack, only on the front instead of the back.

Tanya's sister, Jessie came over and swam with them as well.
Mark and Allie are having a wonderful time being grandparents. It suits them very well.

Yesterday evening, Allie cooked bratworst and hamburgers and had our friends, Gene and Judy; Mark and Allie's daughters, Jessie and Rachael; Rachael's fiance, and his two children; Jennifer (our honorary granddaughter, and Mark and Allie's honorary daughter); and me; over for a meal. It was great fun! Tanya has to leave on Tuesday, the day after the fourth daughter, Sarah, comes in from California as well.

Sarah will be here for a week, but I will only get to see her a short time, since Dub and I will be leaving on Thursday for Illinois to see our grands and great grands. We can hardly wait.

I have been doing laundry today so that we will have the clothes we want to wear.
You know how one wears the same things all the time (favorite clothes, you know).

I have my laundry done, and Dub's will be done before bedtime tonight.

I took pictures of my roses this morning and they are beautiful, I think. I am posting today a picture of them, and also of Tanya and her children. I posted a picture of Allie holding Adam.

We had Gene and Judy (our good friends) over for supper on Saturday evening, along with her mother, Marian (the 90 year old lady), and after supper we played dominoes. One of our favorite pastimes, you know, is dominoes. We always have a great time laughing and talking. We are all very social people and love company.
Well, I gotta go get some work done. Laundry to finish, and supper to get, and dishes to do.
Thought for the day: Psalm 19:14 "Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my Redeemer."
I trust each of you will have a good night's rest and feel the peace in your heart that only Christ can give you. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the evening.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Growing up In Jefferson City - Part IV

Hi, there, this is Dub again, doing the last guest blog for a while.

This picture is of my friend, J.W., and his wife, Donella. They came to visit with us on Friday and Grammy took this picture as they were getting ready to leave. They were in town for a high school reunion.

Growing up here in Jefferson City, my friend, J.W. and I went to movies and tried to go each Saturday for the double feature which was ususally a western. We sold chickens from his mother's flock (given to us by his mother) to Shipe's Grocery and earned money to go to the movies. One movie I remember that I demonstrated to my brother, Howard, showing him how the Indians attacked with tomahawks. I picked up the fire shovel and was waving it above my head. I knocked out overhead light in the living room.

J.W. and I collected pasteboard wherever we could find it and worked for ten cents an hour trying to make enough money to go to the movies. We then sold the pasteboard to the local spring factory because they used pasteboard (cardboard) between the springs when they packed them for shipment.

One of our pastimes was trying to see how far we could walk around the school on the protruding concrete edge of the school foundation. We held on to windows while we were doing this. Eventually we would get to a part of the school that had no windows.We would then have to let go and jump off.

Another one of my many antics was when they were putting light poles around on the streets of Jefferson City. The holes were quite deep. I was still in grammar school at the time. I decided I would drop down into one and check it out. I found it was deeper than I thought. I was embarrassed, scared, and after several attempts to get out, I found out that by bracing my feet on either side of the hole, I could push myself up til I could get close enough to the top to get out.

This was not the last time I found myself in a tough spot, but God has helped me out many times.

Thought for the day: Proverbs 1:7 "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; but fools despise wisdom and instruction."

This is Grammy again.
I'd like to thank Dub for being the guest blogger over the past few days. He is a good man, and I appreciate his wisdom and kindness. I love you, Dubby.

Our good friends, Allie and Mark, are enjoying a visit from their oldest daughter, Tanya, and her two children, Kevin and Adam. They left husband and daddy, Bryan, back home in California, working hard. Hopefully, he can come with them next time. More on their visit tomorrow.

This is Grammy signing off for today. I hope each of you will get a good night's rest, and feel God's peace in your heart. Good bye for now.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Growing Up in Jefferson City - Part III

Hey there, this is Dub again, pinch hitting for Grammy.

When I was in high school, I worked for Shel Emert, down on the creek, chopping out willow sprouts and he would come and get me on his horse to take me to his house for dinner. I got to ride the horse and it was great fun. His wife, Love, had been a teacher of mine, and I had it made, because she liked me.

It is said that Shel was a horse trader. They were one time dragging a dead horse off to put in a hole on his property. We went by a fence row, and there was a black snake that scared the horse pulling the wagon that we were in (scared me too). Shel finally got the horse calmed down, and we took the horse we were dragging, and put it in the hole.

The old-time sawmills in Saw Mill holler made saw dust piles and we went down and played in those piles of sawdust. We watched the workers split logs into slabs. It was exciting for us to watch them. They brought the logs down the hill on trucks and would roll them down the hill and would catch them with hooks and move them into the saw mill, then saw them into slabs.

I caught some crawdads for my high school biology class so we could dissect them. It was fun.

On the way to Mossy Creek there was a hackberry tree we had to go under. It was a straight path to Mossy Creek. The first person to go under the limb would get to swing up onto it and hide. Then he could fool the others that came looking for him.

Part of the fun was having a Catawba ball fight. They were sticky and would stick to the person they hit. We would play fox and hound at night near the school because we lived right near it. We had cow pile smashing, because there were pasture fields nearby. If someone got near a pile, they would throw a rock into it and splash it on those unsuspecting others who happened to be nearby.

We had home preaching from Carson-Newman preachers who came into our homes. Everyone listened to the Midday Merry go Round on the radio and we had the first stereos ever heard by this means, because everyone's windows were open. This was before the stereo was ever invented, ours was just natural.

We visited neighbors, sharing food, stories, and feelings and death. We were always there for each other. As kids, we made skate board scooters. We took one part of the skate and put it on the front of the board, the other part on the back of the board, and put a handle up where we could hold it with two hands, and away we went all over Jefferson City.

I remember when I was little and I was very sick, I heard my mama out on the back porch praying for me to get well. She came in and said, "you are always going to be my good little boy, aren't you?" and I have always tried to be.

The rest of my story tomorrow.

Thought for today: Isaiah 40:31 "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."

This is all for today. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off. Bye for now. May you have God's peace within you.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Growing Up in Jefferson City- Part II

Hi, there, well, here I am again as a guest blogger (Grammy's husband, W.B. also known as Dub) writing some more about my early growing up years in Jefferson City.

Up the creek we went possum hunting and had a place up that way where there was a pond we called the "round pond" and we also skated on that pond when it froze over in the winter. It was not very deep, but probably deep enough to drown in. The terrapins made big round circles in the water.

We gathered walnuts and hickory nuts up at the head of Mossy Creek in fields that were unoccupied. Walking back through fields to go home, we came through Shel Emert's field where he kept his cows. He had a Jersey bull that made us drop our sacks and scoot across the foot log that crossed the creek and the bull started butting the walnut sack. We went back later and got the sack of walnuts. We also picked blackberries and wild grapes and chestnuts along the creek.

I found a nest of turtles in the creek and got all of them out of the hole and ran a piece of wire through their legs, put them on a pole and carried them home. I cleaned them and fried them. Nearly every one of us got sick.

Up at the head of the creek, there was a place we called the "blue hole". It was a round deep hole of water. We never knew where it came from or why it was there. It was very deep and the water was very blue looking. We went fishing in it and caught one. It was a surprise to us that we caught it.

There was a spring down from our house in which we cooled watermelons, milk and butter. It also had water cress growing in it, which are very good to eat. One time Howard was standing near the water and was looking up. He said, "Look at the little yellow bird", and was not watching where he stepped and he fell into the water.
After that we called him little yellow bird. He didn't care too much for that.

We hunted for arrow heads in the land around us around Mossy Creek and found several. It was on Shel Emert's land that we found them.

There were some near drownings and deaths from swimming in the mine hole. there were two mine holes for swimming. One was for the white kids (boys) and one for the black kids (boys). The mine holes were said to be 90 feet deep, and we were constantly warned about swimming in them; but we didn't pay a lot of attention to the warnings. There was a lot of diving and jumping into them. My brother, Howard, had jumped off in all of them. The highest rock was called "Cake" because it had layered stones that looked like cake layers.

When the mine hole went dry because of mines working around it drew the water out of it, we found out the hole wasn't as deep as they said it was. They just said it was that deep to keep us from going over there.

Right down below Cake there was a piece of machinery that had an axle sticking straight up out of it, that could have killed any of us if we had landed on it just right. When the area dried up enough, we could go from one mine hole to the other under the ground. The whole area was honeycombed with caves.

A thought for the day: From Psalm 86:11 - "Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name."

Well, this is Blabbin' Grammy again. I trust you will each have a good night's rest and think on how God has blessed you. Bye until tomorrow, when Dub (Gramps) will take over the post for me again.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Growing Up in Jefferson City

Guest Blogger for Today is my husband, Dub (W.B.)
Hi there,
I'd like to tell you some of my memories of growing up in Jefferson City. We moved to Jefferson City when I was three months old, and my dad was a miner who worked in the zinc mines, shoveling zinc ore. When I was three years old, some rocks fell on him and injured him. He lived a short time after that. I never really knew him. I had an older brother, Howard, and an older sister, Johnnie, and a younger sister, Bonnie, who was only a little more than a year old when our dad died.

When he died, the zinc mines paid my mother insurance money, and we used that money to build a small four room house, near the Carson-Newman College, and near Mossy Creek (only about a block and a half away), and there was enough left over for some other needs.

My first knowledge of life in Jefferson City involved a Maltese cat who did his business on my gray overcoat My brother, Howard, took the cat and threw it into Mossy Creek. The cat returned home looking pretty, clean and healthy. I don't know what happened to the cat after that. We may have thrown the coat away after the cat messed it up. I don't recall for sure.

We went fishing in Mossy Creek and caught suckers and minnows and rode a paddle boat on Mossy Creek that belonged to someone else. We rode from where we got on it down to the mill race and then had to turn it around and come back home. We paddled it up to the head of the creek and had to go under a railroad bridge that was just culverts and duck our heads and go on.

We also went swimming in the old mine hole at the quarry. One time, when I didn't know how to swim, we had a little part of the water that was shallow where we went when we couldn't swim. We crawled around and got some motions of swimming and as we got more experience, we would move out a little farther. This area was called "Little Bitty" because of the little bitty kids that learned in it. One time when I almost drowned was when I jumped on a water-soaked log which was between Little Bitty and a rock crossing called Snake. I saw the log and thought I would jump out on it. When I did, it went down and could not hold me up in the water. I went down and hit the bottom with my feet, would bounce back up and holler "Help". I did that at least three times before Jr. Collins heard and rescued me by the hair of my head. He set me down on Snake (the rock). I had to start my learning back in Little Bitty all over again.

We also went swimming in the creek where there used to be a bridge that led to Dandridge. We always swam nude, called "skinny dipping" because it was only we boys who went swimming together. We swam in Shel Emert's field where Mossy Creek ran; where he put his milk cans in to cool. We dammed up the creek to make it deeper and stood out in the water to get used to how cold the water was before we started to swim in it.

We also went frog hunting on Mossy Creek. We had gigs to spear the frogs and carried carbide lights or flashlights to shine on them. One time when we were hunting them, we walked over through a pig lot and scared the pigs, and started running every which way and it was every man for himself. With the frog gigs in our hands, it was a wonder that we didn't hurt one another.

My brother and I once saw a heron and tried to corner and catch it. It was the first time we had ever seen such a big bird. We didn't get it. Another time, we were in the same field and we accidentally set the field on fire with a match. We tried to put it out with big tree branches (unsuccessfully) and then took off running. It burned up the whole field.

Near the place where Carson-Newman had their end-of-year picnic, and at an earlier time they got their water supply, a zinc mine was started up during World War II. It was called Mossy Creek Mines. This was down from Mountcastle Street on Carson-Newman's property.

{from Grammy: Hey you all, Gramps will be back tomorrow to write more of his early years memoirs. I checked on Imazo this afternoon and she is doing fine. The dr. told her this morning at her appt. that her eye is looking good. (her grandson, Tom, took her for the appt. this morning.) Hope you all have a blessed evening and may you feel God's love each day. See you tomorrow.}

Imazo's cataract surgery

Howdy, You all,

We went to Knoxville yesterday morning (left here at 6:10 a.m.) to take Imazo to the outpatient surgery for her cataract surgery. I had thought to take her and leave Hugh at his house with Dub, but he had plans to be with her, so the three of us went and left Dub alone at the house.

We left about 7 a.m. and of course, it only took about 5 minutes or so to arrive at the surgery. About 10 a.m., the surgery was over and Imazo had done just fine and we were able to take her back home. Since no one had had breakfast, we stopped at Burger King and picked up breakfast and took it back to their house for a morning repast.

By around 12:00 we were all feeling the effects of the early morning hours, and Imazo lay down for a good nap, and the other three of us went out on the front porch to talk and watch traffic and the birds. Hugh and Imazo have a bird bath and I brought some fresh water out and filled it. What fun it was, watching the birds come and flit around in it and flipping their wings!

I sat on the porch in the warm breeze and before I knew it, I was drowsing, so I went inside and took a lying down rest on the living room couch.

About 3:00 p.m. I took Dub with me and we went to the drug store, the Pizza Hut (to pick up supper) and on to the grocery store for some food items for them.
When we got back, we put away the groceries and then chowed down on Meat Lover's Pizza. Yum! Love that crust on Pizza Hut's pizza. No one can do Pizza like they can.

Dub and I left about 6 p.m. and motored home, pleased that we could do this small thing for our brother and sister (in law). She is more a real sister than in-law. We are hoping to take them up to Ohio to visit her sister, Lois, in September. We are also looking forward to visiting our family in Illinois very shortly. We can hardly wait.

Oh, yes, when we got home last evening, I checked my e-mail and found a reply to my letter to AT&T. It seems they have finally fixed my account so that the payment for this month is much lower and the one for next month will be even lower, from the adjustments they have made. Thank the Lord! This just shows that PPO (persistence pays off), doesn't it?

Well, that is about all for today. Hope each of you has a glorious day tomorrow.
Bye for today from Blabbin' Grammy. See you later.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Howdy, folks!
Just got back from the grocery store and Dub finished putting groceries away for us. Shopping for groceries always seems to take the starch out of me, and so I headed for the computer room and my computer chair.
I couldn't sleep last night when I went to bed, so I got up and played computer games until about 3 a.m. then went to bed. Unfortunately, the need to sleep has just hit me, but I will resist until I can resist no longer. (or nap at the computer). Sometimes I do that.
Well, I called the AT&T offices this morning and I think I have it all straightened out. We will see when I get the new bill in September. Can you believe it is so close to Autumn?
While I was at the grocery store, I saw someone that I hadn't seen in several years and we had to catch up on what had been happening to family since seeing each other. This was a woman who had gone to school with Carol and Teresa. She was telling me how her sister, Sue's, husband had died two weeks ago. Not exactly how he died, but that he had. Her parents have alzheimers, and also her aunt is not well. She spends her time between them and doesn't have a lot of time for herself.
It is always great to see old friends again. We hugged each other, I gave her my phone number and we were both on our way.
Our grass outside is so very dry and we are hoping for rain this evening.
We will be getting up early in the morning to take Imazo to the hospital to have cataract surgery in one of her eyes.
Well, my eyes are shutting down in spite of myself. More later.
May you be aware of God's blessings on each of you! Bye for now from Blabbin' Grammy.

Monday, August 11, 2008


Howdy, you all,
Went back to the dentist today, and had another impression made (I'm very impressionable, you know) for one of my crowns. One of the permanent ones that he was not satisfied with the way it fit, so we did a do-over today. Last week, I got to wear my lower partial and then had to give it up again today to have it sent off with the impression of my tooth that it fits over. Not a bad visit at all.

We went to Knoxville yesterday and had lunch with Hugh, Imazo and Mae at Shoney's. One of our favorite places to eat. After lunch, we went back to Hugh's and sat around talking (other than eating, one of the things we do best). I passed on the information about our brother, John, who lives in Phoenix with his wife, Darlene, and their son, Mark. John is the youngest of the family and also has congestive heart failure just as Hugh and I have, but his is much worse than ours (not saying a lot for ours even).

Anyway, then we got to talking about Magnolia Avenue in Knoxville and some of the buildings and businesses that have changed hands and disappeared from existance.
One of them is the Park Theatre. Dub and I used to go to Knoxville and go to the movies there. First we would go to Weaver's Restaurant on the corner of Prosser and Magnolia. Mmmmm, such good food they had there. Good home cooking and we were never disappointed in it.

Another place we used to go was the Cherry Park-In which was on the corner of Cherry Street and Magnolia. They had the best sandwiches and made some of the best banana splits we ever indulged in.

We also used to stop at the Krispy Kreme Doughnut shop just a little ways past Cherry Street on Magnolia. On our way home from visiting Hugh and Imazo or Mae and Bill or Ralph and Thelma, we would turn left on Magnolia and stop at Krispy Kreme and take home a dozen warm oozy yummy doughnuts, fresh from their ovens.

A business that my brother, Ralph, used to live next to, was Swan's bakery. He worked there and would often take home fresh hot bread right from the pans. That probably didn't do his arteries any good, eating all that bread, because he had had eight heart attacks during his life, and finally died of one, right there in the manager's office, at the age of 61. Swan's bakery is no longer there.

Before he died, though, he and Thelma, and their son, Mike, moved into the house next door to Mae and Bill. They enjoyed spending time together and living next door to one another.

Those are just some of the businesses that I remember. There were also once stately homes along Magnolia, that have now been either torn down, or turned into apartments and businesses.

Chilhowee Park and the Knoxville Zoo are still there and quite active. Many events take place at the park and the Knoxville Zoo is growing each year with new exhibits being added. The Tennessee Valley Fair is scheduled to open sometime in September. We won't be going, but a lot of people do. Parking is always at a premium along Magnolia, and a lot of people who live along there make a good amount of money letting people park on their property. One can see people with flags motioning drivers to come and park.

Update on my battle with AT&T: They still don't have it right and I have to call them again tomorrow. Wish me luck. They seem to employ people who can really be stupid. Wonder where they find them?

Well, that is all today from Blabbin' Grammy. God bless you all and hope you have a good night's rest. Bye for now. My husband says there won't be a good night's rest because people will be up watching Monday Night Football. (but not this chicky) He has just asked me to pop him some pop corn. . Bye!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Dearly Beloved

Father of the bride, and bride.

Howdy, You all,

Weddings traditionally begin with the words, "Dearly Beloved" and that is how last evening's wedding between my grandneice, Tiffany, and her groom, Sam, began. It was a beautiful ceremony and the bride was lovely and her groom was handsome.

When we hear those words, we are reminded of other weddings we have attended, including our own. We see the young hopefuls beginning their life together and pray that their life will be one that truly becomes one life, with two partners working together and making Christ the center of their oneness.

The setting for the gathering was back in a wooded area in a FOP Lodge, very quiet with lots of room for people to enjoy seeing one another and helping the couple to celebrate their new life together.

Tiffany is the great granddaughter of my oldest brother, Bill, (deceased) and his widow, Mae. My sister-in-law, Imazo, and I traveled the few miles to the Lodge, and only got lost a couple of times. It is not the first time I have driven somewhere that I didn't know exactly the destination. ha. Between us, we found it.

We got to see a lot of people we didn't know and also several that we did know. It was great fun.

Imazo and I left soon after the wedding, and didn't stay for the reception, because I don't see too well to drive after dark and don't like to drive after dark in unfamiliar territory, and she doesn't drive at all. My brother, Hugh, and my husband did not attend, but stayed at Hugh's.

After we got back to Hugh's and Imazo's, I took the four of us down to Shoney's (familiar territory) for dessert. We were able to sit comfortably and enjoyed talking about the wedding and how beautifully the Lodge was decorated and how cute the kids were, especially Bryson, Mae's great grandson, was in his little tuxedo.

The best picture I got was of the wedding cake. Somehow, my camera had trouble capturing pictures inside the Lodge, because of the lighting, and I am still trying to learn how to use it well.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

My Dad

Howdy, You All,

I was talking with my brother, Hugh, yesterday about our dad, and what a character he was. So I decided to dedicate my blog today to stories about him.

Our dad, James Campbell, was born the oldest of eight children. He was born in 1896 and they were living at the time in the Sequatchie Valley area of Tennessee. He had a wonderful sense of humor and loved to tell stories, quite often laughing as he told them, because they were ususally funny.

Hugh was telling me how Dad had once told him about the time our grandfather decided they would go visit his dad. I think he said Dad must have been about 7 or 8 at the time they went. So our Grandpa hitched up the horse and wagon, loaded Granny and the kids up into the wagon and took off for the visit. They traveled (very slowly, of course) for about 2 and 1/2 days, camping out each night. When they finally reached Dad's grandfather's, his dad pulled up into the yard, and hollered, "Hello, the house!". They went in, and visited that night, and then the next morning, they said good-bye, hitched up the wagon, and left, traveling back home for another 2 and 1/2 days. Dad said, in relating the story, that was the only time he ever saw his grandfather.

Dad and Mom met when Dad was about 21. He and his family were living in Loudon, and she saw him walking along and saw the sun shining on his blond hair and how handsome he was. Right then and there, she "set her cap for him".

They were married a year later, when she was seventeen, and he was twenty-two.

He since told us that he only finished eighth grade because he had to work on the farm and help his dad and mom. His dad was kind of a "jack-of-all-trades" and carpenter. His dad also liked his alcohol, and was not a great example for his sons. Some of his sons became drinkers, but my mom told my dad that if they were going to be married, he would not be touching alcohol. My dad took her at her word, and left alcohol alone. His brothers were all good hearted and eventually stopped drinking, and became good citizens.

Dad was a very sympathetic person, and often said that when he went to a funeral, that he was just another of the mourners, even when he was not personally acquainted. He felt no shame in crying, either. I never met a more kind-hearted man than my dad was.

Dad also said that when he was going to school, he always played with the girls because the boys played too rough. Of course, he liked to flirt is what it was. ha. After our Mom died in 1973, and he had time to mourn her passing, within a couple of years, ladies in the church tried to catch his attention. He said he wasn't interested in any of those OLD ladies that people tried to match him up with, he wanted to pick his own out. He never went with anyone of them though. He just liked to talk and laugh.

He liked to tell the story of a relative of his who liked to tell lies all the time. His wife was always saying that if he didn't stop lying, one day he would be struck by lightning. Well, one evening the guy was getting ready to go to bed and it was storming outside, thunder booming and lightning flashing through the windows. He had been telling some whoppers to his kids. The doors had been opened quite a bit that day, and some wasps had gotten into the house. Well, a couple of them got into the bed when he did, and when he lay down, they stung him several times. He yelled, "Burnt, and burnt bad!" and jumped up. He never lied again.

We loved hearing that story, because he would tell it and then repeat the punch line. "Burnt and burnt bad" and then just laugh. Of course we would repeat the punch line and laugh too.

Daddy loved to tease us. He would pull mom's apron strings and untie them, and she would laugh and say, "You stop that, Jim Campbell". He loved calling me "Squirt" and calling my brother, John, "Whistlebritches". His pet nicknames for us. Imazo said that he was always calling her "short stuff". (She is petite).

Once when I was about eleven, one of my sandals had a broken strap, and I had tied a string around my foot and shoe to keep it on. Dad was always telling me that my foot was just part of my leg bent down. One of my cousins asked me why I had a rag tied around my leg, Dad said, "see, I told you that your foot was just part of your leg bent down". Ha.

When dad was in his forties, he had gone to the doctor, and the doctor told him that he had a bad heart and he'd better go home and put his affairs in order, because he hadn't long left to live. Hugh said that it really shook dad up to hear that. He worried about it and didn't know what to do. He finally decided that he just had however long he had and was not going to let it affect him. It was not long after that that he and Mom decided to start looking for a farm to move to, because if we had a farm to live on, we could have food to eat if he passed away. Well, needless to say, he lived for another 36 years after the doctor pronounced his gloom and doom prediction.

My dad, although a faithful husband and father, was not a Christian until he was about fifty-four years old. When we moved to New Market and the farm, he was not a Christian. As you know, the farmer has to depend on the rain coming at the right time for the crops to succeed. When he would see the rain come and it would stop near the edge of our property and come no farther, he would stand on the porch and shake his hand at the heavens with anger. Needless to say, when he became a Christian a couple of years later, he no longer did that.

Dad has been gone now for close to twenty-nine years, but he is remembered fondly by all whose lives he touched. When my daughters and I moved to the farm to live for several years, they were his constant companions. They followed him around and watched him sharpen tools and fix things. He would sit for a long time, and let them comb his hair, and he would tease them just like he did us kids when we were growing up. They loved their Grandpa. He would pick up his hat (felt) and go outside to sit under the huge oak tree in the front yard, and they would follow him, or maybe even take his hand and walk out with him.

When dad was in his last illness and Daniel was about two years old, his mom and dad brought him to the hospital and sneaked him into the window to visit with his great grandpa. I know that meant a lot to my dad.

The picture I have posted is of Dad and Carol and Teresa taken soon after the girls and I moved to the farm. I know they might not have chosen this particular picture to post, but it is a dear one to me. It was taken on a hot day and probably about 85 degrees or more in the house. (no air conditioning). I think it probably was taken in 1961 or 62.

That is all from Blabbin' Grammy today. God bless each of you and have a great night's rest.
Bye for now.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Happy Birthday, Emily Irene!

Howdy, Friends!

Tomorrow is the twenty-first birthday of our granddaughter, Emily, who is also my namesake (same middle name) and the only namesake I have.

Emily is so very dear to us and a darling young woman. She is currently studying art in a university and is very talented, don't you know! Emily makes top-notch grades, too.

She is the youngest child of four, and she was the only girl born into the family until our great grandchild, Hannah, was born just seven years ago, who is also her niece.

When we go to visit our daughter, Emily's mom, Emily is usually the one to very generously give up her room for us to sleep in. Of course, we appreciate it so very much.

Emily is not only talented, she is kind and thoughtful, as well. We always look forward to seeing her and spending time with her. She has a marvelous sense of humor and smiles easily. She is also very intelligent and charming. Most of all, she is a Christian who lives out her faith. We are extremely proud of the young lady she has become.

The picture here is of her trying on a western hat that Dub brought to her.

We love you, Emily! Happy Birthday to you!
This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the day. God Bless you all.

Monday, August 4, 2008

What Is There in Your Workspace?

Hidy Do, Friends!

I have been looking at and sorting through dusty quilt pieces this morning and have just about sneezed myself out. I am allergic to dust, and am hoping that the sneezing doesn't turn into an asthma attack. These are quilt pieces that had been cut out some time ago by my sister, Margaret, who passed on to her reward a little over seven months ago.

Let me do a little philosphizing (sp?) here. When she passed away, it became the responsibility of my brother, Hugh; his wife, Imazo; and me; to empty out her one-room apartment. My husband, Dub, helped where he could by helping to carry stuff.

Margaret was born in 1925 during the middle of the Depression years and consequently learned the value of thriftiness. Needless to say, she never ever threw anything away that "might be of use later on".

If you have never had the occasion or need to clean out a space vacated by someone's passing, you have really missed a chore.

She had stuff packed back and away in every conceivable space in that tiny room where she lived: under the bed, in drawers, in bookcases, in storage containers, in suitcases, in shelves, in trunks, in footlockers, in boxes, in bags. You get the idea, by now, I am sure.

There were oodlings of quilting stuff, which I went through some while we were there (on one of many trips), and then brought home with me in 8 large under-the-bed boxes, which I later went through at home and winnowed them down to 5 such boxes.

Margaret lived on a small fixed income, and because of needing to scrape and save, she even washed the plastic baggies like food is put into and stored them in a cabinet drawer for reuse. We found food leftovers that she had saved. She had more clothes stored in her closets than she could ever have worn; some looked like they should have been discarded some time past. Some had never been worn; she was probably "saving them" for special occasions. Imazo had worked at Proffits and had bought some of them for Margaret.

All this brings me to observe that when someone comes in to clean and clear away stuff that we have put back, what will they find? Have you ever looked around in the room where you spend most of your time during the day, and tried to see it with the eyes of a visitor? What would they see? I can see all kinds of "unfinished projects" in my workroom. The quilt pieces were part of unfinished projects that Margaret had in mind to do. Little did she realize the morning that she broke her leg, that she would never live to finish them. Six months later, she was gone.

Are there things that you need to do, projects that need to be finished? Are there people you need to visit, or talk to, or send a card, write a letter, call on the phone?

Anyway, I have in mind a project - making a quilt for my grandson, Matthew, using some of the cutout quilt pieces that Margaret so painstakingly cut out. And I do mean, painstaking, because she had arthritis in her hands for the past several years, and I know it was painful for her to use the scissors. I will be thinking of Margaret and also of Matthew as I work to do this quilt. Thank you, Margaret, for your work on these pieces. Pictured here is a sample that I put together to see how the blocks would look. As you can see, it is a flower made of seven pieces and appliqued onto a colored square.

Well, this is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for now. I just pray that God will allow me to finish the projects I have in mind so that I can leave behind a few items that my family will appreciate having. God bless each of you. Bye for now.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Our Honorary Granddaughter, Jennifer

My husband and I have an honorary granddaughter, Jennifer, from whom we heard today and she tells us she will be returning from Taiwan, where she lives, to go to school again at Carson-Newman College.

We first met Jennifer about twelve years ago, when she was about twelve or thirteen. My mind is a little fuzzy when it comes to remembering exact dates and ages. She was an eighth grader and her younger brother, Nelson, was a fifth grader and their father, Daniel, was a student taking courses in English at C-N so that he could get a degree in English and teach it in Taiwan and win students to Christ. His family: Jean, his wife, his children, Jennifer and Nelson, are all Christians.

He had brought them with him so that they could have the advantage of some schooling in the United States and they lived with him in one of the apartments on campus. I had become acqainted with Daniel at my church when he came to worship and he asked if I would tutor his children in English, and since I was retired from teaching in the public school, I took on the task, and loved it. I grew to love Jennifer and Nelson and Daniel. I tutored them all of that school year and then they went back to Taiwan at the end of the school year.

In the year 2000, in February, I went to visit her and her family in Taiwan, and it was a wonderful two weeks where I was steeped in the culture of that country. I was priviledged to meet her family members while I was there, and got to meet her real grandparents and her aunts, uncles, cousins.

In the autumn of 2000, Jennifer came back and was an exchange student and lived with Mark and Allie during her Junior year in our local High School.

She chose then to live with Dub and me during her Senior year. We had so much fun together that year. I made breakfast for her each morning, took her and picked up Mark and Allie's girls most mornings and picked them up after school. We baked pies together, cooked meals together, got up in the middle of the night to watch the asteroid showers in the sky, worked on her homework together and so many things. I was her "Grandma Ruby", Dub was her "Grandpa Dub" and she was a granddaughter to us. (and still is) Jennifer was very concerned with passing the test of speaking English and being able to go on to college, so I taped many hours of words and their meanings so that she could study them. Of course, it was a labor of love for me.

She went to church with us, I presented her "promise ring" in a church ceremony with other young people, and along with them, she promised to remain pure until marriage. She lived here in the states and her family was far away in Taiwan. I know what a sacrifice it was to all of them.

While she was here we took her up into Kentucky and Ohio to look at Universities during the spring break. It was a wonderful trip. We stopped in Berea, Ky. and looked at crafts and met interesting people.

There is so much I could tell you about but space prevents it. Jennifer is an artist and very talented. She started her undergraduate work at the University of South Dakota, where her brother, Nelson, is still a student, She finished her work at University of Tennessee in May, and is now going to be doing graduate work at Carson Newman beginning in August. We look forward to seeing her a lot more over the next months. Her father and mother are both teachers in Taiwan, where she and her brother, Nelson, have been this summer, seeing their parents.

I think it must be very difficult to be away from parents and parents away from children for such long periods of time, don't you? Anyway, this is just a little bit about a lovely young lady who has come to mean so much to Dub and me and about the profound impact she and her family have had on our lives and the lives of others.

Well, this is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the evening. God's blessings are on each of us, you know, each day. May you feel His love and care for you. See you tomorrow.