Catching Up – Going Back to July

I’m sorry I’ve been so delinquent on blogging. I like to keep it up mainly for our children to view one day. We had an unforeseen situation come up at the end of June from an individual that still has us reeling. It has been very hard to recover and I have not been much into writing friends or blogging. We are all okay, but it is something that will stay with us forever. Our entire family has never been hit with something so bad. I wish I could share.

My camera broke as well. I loved my Panasonic Lumix, I really thought it was a DSLR because the quality of the pictures was striking. It finally went out and I tried their mirrorless camera and found the colors in the pictures to be weird. I tried a Canon again and didn’t like the quality for the price. I am back with a Nikon again and very happy. It came with a 300mm lens. So, bear with the awkwardly colored pictures as I am not going to edit them since there’s really not a lot of pictures anyways.  : )

The kids made the twins a birthday cake for their 6th birthday on July 24th.

Happy to be 6 years old! Anna on the left and Tabitha on the right.

Waiting for yum yums!

This may not look like yum yums to you all but our neighbor Jim brought us some wonderful catfish. I had tried catfish from a local store in Missouri once and vowed never to try it again as it tasted like mud, but this was different. Just wonderful. Jim is a kind neighbor, probably in his 70’s. He is a beekeeper as well as my husband and calls my husband “Teacher”.  : )

I had to fry it with flour and butter….

My husband was without teeth for 6 months. His car accident in 1989 that left him with a brain injury, left him without teeth too. The VA gave him new teeth with posts over 23 years ago, the problem is that it takes 6 months and lots of appointments to get it all together. He has his new teeth now.

When I see this picture of him, I feel sad for him because of what happened back in June as he took the brunt of it. It was my husband’s worst day of his 58 years of his life. We do have family and neighbors and people from the church here that have been supportive of us through this time that we are so thankful for. The situation has brought a reuniting with a family member as well and it means soooo much to me.


Girls, Kitties and Flowers

One of the girl’s special spots that they go to, to read.

My aunt wanted to see some pictures of our new kittens. This is our old cat that came with the house.

Here’s one of our mousers…. he’s always chasing leaves and anything that moves.

We had bought three at $10 a piece at the animal shelter three weeks ago, however, we don’t know what happened to our black and white one. He went missing over a week ago. Anyways, one has long hair and the other is a short haired cat.


Here’s those flowers you wanted to see, Karen. We were told that they are zinnias.

July Birthdays

Hmmm, from this end the pictures I uploaded are looking smaller than normal. Maybe something I can fix later. Anyways, we had a couple of birthdays so far… Elisabeth and Benjamin.

Elisabeth made some cookies for Benjamin’s birthday. He turned 3. He is doing very well cognitively… he can count to eleven now. Not bad for being so behind.

Just look at your happy face Ben!

The three girls sitting on our loaner couch from our wonderful neighbors. This was so I could put my foot up. The girls just looked so sweet sitting there so I had to take a picture.

Elisabeth is 12 years old now! She has changed so much this year, grown many inches and is just as lovely as ever.

She wanted mom’s blueberry waffles. Leah getting seconds or thirds or fourths…

Sweet smile…

Here she’s laughing at something I was doing or saying. She’s usually in a good mood and laughs easily.

One of my pretty new dresses I made. My other ones are swimming on me. This fabric I got was on Another 30-40 lbs and I can wear that antique apron with it.  : )

Hoping to post a few more pictures tomorrow.  Corky and Debbie, you have been on my minds since hearing the news. We love you and miss you. Corky, I can’t believe you are almost 90 though… you still are so young at heart and that’s why we love ya. I remember you helping load wood into Matthew’s truck like a 35 year old. You two are a big part of our foundation days of our early marriage. If we didn’t have the kids here, we’d fly over there in a jiffy. We love you and will talk with you again soon. If you are well enough please consider flying out for a visit.

40 LBS


Yeah! Down 40 lbs and feeling good. I have been wheeling the wheel chair around my table and living room to music for an hour a day. It beats sitting around waiting for the 6 week mark. I’m starting to walk all over the place (in my home) now too though I’m not supposed to until my appointment on Monday. I can’t wait to ride my bike. I’d like to work up to 20 miles by the end of the year.

My aunt wanted some pictures of our zinnias and new kitties that we got for the kids last week so I’ll post those tomorrow. Happy 4th everyone!



Broken Leg – Fibula

Day 8 After the splint came off. Very swollen compared to the other leg.


After losing over 30 lbs, and being able to ride my old bike pretty well again, I thought it was time to buy a real mountain bike so that I would be safe on these dirt, gravely, country roads. On June 1st, I got up early and eagerly went to get my bike – a Trek Skye S mountain bike with front suspension and lockout. It is the female version of the Marlin 5. Since I was up to working out two times a day, and on an old, rickety Walmart bike in which I had to constantly move the handlebar back in place while riding, it was so smooth to take it out for my first try out. I road it down the street towards our neighbors and couldn’t believe the difference between bikes. I got to the end of the road and slowly started to turn around when my bike slipped out from under me on the gravel. My leg stayed. I knew I had fractured it as I couldn’t put weight on it or get up. I crawled to the side of the road and waited for someone to come by so I could point them to my house to get my husband.

While I couldn’t walk, I could drive… up to the VA in Kansas City. I brought the two girls with me so they could get someone to get me into a wheel chair. They did x-rays to confirm a broken fibula and a chip off of somewhere. I had to go back again for what I thought would be the real cast and the doctor said for me to come back on Thursday the 14th for surgery. The next day I took a fall coming in the house trying to hold onto a handle that broke. I had just wanted to sit on my porch. I hurt my leg again and knew I needed to go in again for x-rays. It swelled up profusely and hurt more than the original fracture. I couldn’t sleep that night thinking of driving up there so far from my husband and home again and then being so far for surgery. I was at my end where I couldn’t do it emotionally or physically. I talked to my husband that next morning about going local as I’m on ChampVA program but wouldn’t get it for free as I would at the VA on the CITI program. We agreed that it was the best thing to do. I went in on Friday then saw the doctor yesterday with my husband and he shared that I DO NOT NEED SURGERY!!! I am already 2 weeks into the healing process, we needn’t start the healing again after surgery and we are both so relieved. My husband is doing all the meals and laundry and EVERYTHING. He is doing such a good job but it sure is a strain on our family right now, bad. But, thank God for the good news and deciding to go local to hear I won’t need surgery. I may get to walk with a walking boot on July 9th. Be safe, have a good summer everyone.


Mother/Daughter and Weight Loss Picture

I had my husband take a picture of my 30 pound weight loss today (since March 1st). While I can feel a significant difference, it’ll take all summer to lose a good amount. It is NOT coming off as it did before just 4 years ago, but I am happy, content and satisfied with the results. My hips, feet and knees were hurting and I was starting to have health problems. I know that what I do now will affect my days of old age that are coming upon me. This to me is my last chance to gain strength and health before I get old. I had gained 15 pounds in a couple of months last winter due to taking Metroprolol for heart palpitations. I got rid of it and thought that losing weight would be best for my future (and kids future). I’ll take another picture at the 50 lbs loss. I’m walking and started bike riding again on the beautiful country roads out here.

Elisabeth was nearby so I had her join me.  Our picture is a bit washed out. She will be a healthy 12 in July. She follows me around all day because she says that I’m interesting… hmmmm, only a kid would say that.  : )  I love how close we are. I love this age and miss it so much from before. Only the Lord knows how much. Such a blessing to have an almost teenage daughter again to love.


I’m blurry but I like the picture of Elisabeth here. I can be blurry, right?  : )

She likes when I give her kisses still…

We have pictures of a bee inspection we had with our neighbors yesterday. But for now it will have to wait because my husband went to bed already and he has to tell me about some of the pictures I took. I know, bee linguistics….  : )

When a Friend is Dying

My husband and I visited our friend and neighbor today, who is dying on his bed. Oh how sad it is that society (in the US) is sheltered from such a privilege in seeing a loved one who will soon pass. Our brother David is a Christian man who in our short time here in our hometown has made a significant impact on us. He could not speak coherently. He uttered phrases over and over again, though peacefully. His wife asked him to pray and he could pray perfectly. Matthew and I had tears streaming down both of our faces. Though he couldn’t speak, he could pray. So beautiful and soooo meaningful. So heartbreaking that we will have to wait some years to see him with the Lord one day through our own parting from this earth. We will miss him and all of our small town will… how one person can touch a few lives so deeply through Christ’s love.

Dolls and Dresses (and Suits Too)

One last post before my mother arrives. My photos uploaded on here in the opposite order than I intended…  rather than re-doing them I’ll just leave it as is.

My mother’s ramp. He did a superb job. We are very happy with this.

Matthew and Elisabeth walking out in our field after receiving some home sewed dresses and suits from my friend Judy. I’ll share more later.

Matthew and I. He’s wearing his new suit that my friend made for him. Vest and all…. I lost 15 lbs since this picture. We’ve had the flu since March 22nd, a very bad flu, so I haven’t been able to walk since getting sick. We’re expecting snow tomorrow of all things… and after a beautiful day today of nearly 70 degrees.

Hannah in her dress and homemade doll from my friend, with her matching dress. She made dresses for all the girls with matching dresses on homemade dolls. Can you believe it? They are their favorite dolls now.

Matthew’s homemade suit. Yes, even the shirt! She is a pro… really, she made a living sewing at one time and had employees.  I hope I’m not sharing too much. I am just in awe still that she would go to such means to make such things for all of our children. Even Ben has a suit that matches his brother’s.

Ben’s gift was also this sweet, little truck and car set. He loves it.

Hanni adores her doll.

See how the dresses match? I like Leah’s the best. They are all unique too. Some of the dolls are blonde, some are red heads….

Thanks for bearing with this post, it really is out of order.  : )

What a gift. How do you repay something like this…


Little Leah…

Pup all excited after receiving her dress and doll.  : )  Thank you so much friend.

And look who we have here… our new dove. I always wanted a dove. She/he coos and just  recently started “laughing” on occasion. We still don’t know if our dove is a boy or girl. I suppose is she lays eggs, it’s a girl. If he bows while cooing, he’s a boy. I can’t seem to come up with a name quite yet. We also got some sheep. Katahdin sheep… a momma and her two baby ewes. They are so cute….


One last thing… I just became a contributor on Shutterstock Photo’s.  I thought I’d see what would happen after submitting a few photos and they accepted! I haven’t received a download yet and from what I read, will probably only get about .29 per download but I am enjoying learning Photoshop CC (online they are only $9,99 a month), and tinkering with old photos or taking new as I did with a simple rug in my bedroom and a shot from my living room chair towards my bedroom (the black and white photo). Fun, fun…

This and That

I have a couple sets of pictures to share before my mom arrives. She is arriving on my birthday, April 10th.

Our handsome pup at 4 months old.

Elisabeth showing off her dress I bought her (right before my friend made dresses for all the girls – I’ll share those on the next post).

I bought a couple of cheap coin purses off of Amazon for my purse to keep my things secure. The kids loved them of course so I bought them all one as well. They’re about $2.00 a piece as a set of four.

A glimpse at our unique (and dirty – what do you expect? Small kitchen, ten people), kitchen. Matthew sanded the floor some months ago but we haven’t been able to go forward with it as mom’s house has taken a priority. The floor was getting ugly looking without a finish so I thought of buying a rug for a $100 fix for a couple of years if need be. We think it’s pretty with it in there.

Showing off my lamp I bought last month. I like the homey look for a home, a bit old fashioned, as it seems these days to be going away towards cold, industrial, boring, Scandinavian like structures that don’t even resemble “home” anymore. That’s just my opinion anyways.  : )

I might have showed you this picture I bought last summer for $25 at the thrift store. I think it’s called “The Shepherdess.”

Another cheap decoration…. $15 for an old door off a shelf. It’s pretty above the old, brown high chair that most of our kids used.

Some goodies that our wonderful neighbors gave us recently. Thank you, Gregory, Patty and Karen.

Sigh…. our sad story. Yes, you already know where this is going. I had to go to the VA hospital in Kansas City recently for an ultrasound on my thyroid. I took Hannah with me. On our way back I took her by a pet store. We fell in love with the parakeets and the price of them. Hannah picked her out.

We grew really attached to her and she to us. We didn’t even have a set name for her. She was only with us for a week.

The day before she died, our neighbors did their usual soil burning all day long (see the entire black field). It was directed at our house for hours with the winds. I had to have the kids go in. It didn’t bother us but it was too much for our little sweetie. I knew that morning when she was sitting at the bottom of the cage that she would die. I held her throughout the morning as she let me and she died in my hands while the kids were eating lunch. I cried the most, I think because I got to hold her in her last hours. Such a sweet little bird. I love birds.

Daddy made a little burial box for her and we said a prayer and buried her underneath a tree outside the kitchen window. We still miss her…

Dad and Mom

Since I’m always the camera man (woman), I rarely have pictures taken of me. First, I thought I’d share one of when I was 4 years old (1974). I remember this day. He took this picture in our home in Renton, Washington.



An Ipad picture…. not the best but this is what I look like this year. My hair is getting Blonde/Gray in some areas. I love it.

Dad this morning, using my shawl. I had to take a picture of him with my Ipad (reason for the bad color tone) to show him how good he looks in it. Well, at least to me.  : )