Thursday, May 29, 2014

What Can I Say?

Well good morning and welcome Through My Back Door. I am so happy to see you and invite you to have a cup of my wonderful coffee and a piece of birthday cake. It seems a long time since you have come to visit me. So much has happened since we last talked. I have been on one of the best vacations you could experience. The weather was perfect and the food, well, the food was delicious. We had lunch on the way up to Sugar Creek,Ohio, at the Golden Lamb Inn, in Lebanon. We have gone there for years, but my sister in law had never been. She wanted to visit some rural Amish country, not as commercialized as Lancaster County, so I took her where my Grandpa carried the mail. We did go to Berlin and Walnut Creek, but stayed at the Carlisle Inn in Sugar Creek. Karen Martinsen,  you would love going there in the early fall. They put on plays and Wanda Barnstetter(?????) is going to be there.
This was outside the Carlisle and I kept trying to get Margaret to give me a ride and she refused. lol

Two views from our room. I would recommend this Inn to anyone who was going  to be in the area. Clean as could be, a good breakfast, and walking distance to a family restaurant and different shops. Close to Berlin and Walnut Creek.
We left on Wednesday morning for Niagra Falls. I had no idea what to expect, but the Falls are breath taking. We stayed at the Embassy Suites and our room over looked both falls. It was just indescribable at night when the lights were on. The mist was amazing.
The American Falls are in the distance there, and the Canadian where the mist is.
Night picture. See my reflection?lol All of these were taken from our room, on the 18th floor. We had a gorgeous view.
The Sky Lon. Total of 800 feet in the air. 500 feet above ground.
Margaret and I on top. This is outside. Our guide said they had to place wire around it because people had jumped. Oh my!
A fun picture!

On the Horn Blower riding to the falls. That white stuff you see by the rocks, is ice!
The floral clock. The flowers were beautiful in Ontario. The tulips too gorgeous to describe.
Just a little patch. We enjoyed walking everyplace and I visited a casino for the first time. Wanted to see what is was like.
On Friday, my birthday, we went to Niagra on the Lake. It was drizzling rain and I got no pictures. We ate a club house on the golf course, our bus driver on the tour recommended it and the food was delicious. We went into the shops, drove back down to the hotel and had a restful evening. On Saturday we left for home. Stopped in Lebanon again, ate dinner at The Golden Lamb, then went down into Ky, spent the night, and home on Sunday.
The kids had a birthday dinner for me, Sunday night, and I enjoyed that. It was a wonderful way to celebrate a birthday. I guess this was the most special birthday ever, even if I am half way through the 4th quarter! My sister in law had given me this trip for Christmas back in 2011. Life got in the way, every time we planned to go. I must say the timing was perfect for this.It could not have been any better. We met some really nice people and enjoyed talking to them. Again I had a wonderful birthday week.
The timing is perfect for you to come Through My Back Door where life is good.
PS:I am leaving again in a bit. This time for the beach. Then am home until the Grand Ole Opry trip.
PSS: Please remember to pray for our blogging friends. Many are still going through some tough times.
PSSS: You have no idea how much your birthday wishes were appreciated. I was in Canada and had no service, but hope you got my thank you on FB, later. I am blessed to have met each of you and to call you friend.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Half Way Through The Fourth Quarter

Good morning and welcome Through My Back Door. Grab a cup of coffee(we have Deathwish Coffee again, Mothers Day gift from Lindsey and Curt)) and help yourself to some homemade apple cobbler. I have had company so there is something sweet. It has been a wonderful week here. Mothers Day as usual was so nice, My kids and grand kids spoil me terribly.  I am blessed and I know it.I am thankful for it as well. The best part of Mothers Day is getting to be with all of my babies, maybe not at the same time, but during the day. Anyway, it was a beautiful day and I enjoyed every minute. I am going to share a gift I got. There were a lot of nice ones, but I thought you all would enjoy this.
I hope you can enlarge and read this. I have never been a sign person, but Pam and Frank sent me one that I love that says, "It is what it is" and that is a phrase I use all of the time. Sharon bought me a casserole dish with it on it.This is so true and I love it. The South is just the South.( I may be part Buckeye, but have been raised in the south)  We saw this when we were out for a girl day and I started to buy it, but couldn't think where I would hang it, Amanda knew if she got it I would figure out where to hang it and I did. Over my sink where I could see it several times a day. I love it
Monday some friends from Ohio stopped over on a trip they are doing down the Natchez Trace to New Orleans. They brought their sister and brother in law with them and what a good time we had. It was just so nice visiting and eating and visiting and Well you get it. They left yesterday and it was very quiet here. I was trying not to be envious, but they were going to the Grand Ole Opry last night and one of my favorites, Gene Watson was going to be there. You all know I love the old country music. Carl Smith, Ray Price, and Hank Williams are in my cd player in the car as we speak. I open the moon roof and sing along loud!lol anyway this is what they are traveling in.
Don't you feel sorry for them?lol
Patsy and  Me above, Alice and Kathleen below. I love the laugh on Alice face in this one. I
 am so happy we all reconnected a few years ago.
Now for the title of this post. Remember last year when my friend Patsy, my friend from high school,  made the comment, that we,(our little group) were in the 4th quarter of our lives. I did a post on it. Well, it is another year and I have a birthday looming in the shadows. It makes you stop and think when you reach a certain age, and that age varies for different people. I am blessed to be a descendant of people who live into their late  80's to mid 90's. I am not thinking I am going to die soon, but lets face it, there aren't as many years left as if I were 50. So, with that said, I was thinking over Mothers Day about some women, and I mentioned them on my last blog, who had mentored me as a young wife and mother. It made me stop and think have I helped anyone? We just don't know, do we?  I hope I have.
Being half way through the fourth quarter, gives you freedom. How? You are more willing to try new things. You will step out of your box, you forgive easily, you don't get your feelings hurt very easily and you don't get angry. You can laugh more freely, at yourself or the situation. You know what is important and what isn't. You know people matter, things don't.You know you are blessed in ways you didn't in your 30's, 40's, and 50's. You enjoy things in a different way. You are free to be, free to do and free to enjoy life. Curt made the comment many years ago when I let my hair go gray, he told Deb one day, "Mom has gray hair. she can do what she wants, Why she can sit on the curb and spit in the street, if she wants too." Well  I haven't done that yet, but who knows, I may just to see what it feels like!lol So being half way through the fourth quarter is a good thing. I am thankful I had my children young, because I am now enjoying my great grand children which is a real treat. Only Mollie tells me I am gaauuuorrrrrgggggguuuus!lol (Said in a fake southern accent) So this birthday coming up may be a milestone, but I will enjoy it and look forward to many more. This one will be spent with my sister in law in Niagra Falls. We have been planning this trip for 3 years and something has happened everytime, so we hope it actually happens this She has a daughter who is expecting in June so anything could happen. However it will come to pass, sooner or later. We have so much fun traveling together, and yes, lots of times we just fly by the seat of our pants. Oh yes, we have had some adventures. I will post lots of pictures, you can count on it.(I know you can't wait)lol
I had a nice surprise the other day. My cousin Carol Sue, and her husband are going to visit their daughter in Franklin in July and invited me to come over. I am going and we are going to the Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night. I am marking the days off like a kid before Christmas. I grew up going and CarolSue and her family went with us, when we were children. So this is a double treat for me. In June I am going to the beach for the June trip. I LOVE this trip. Eating sea food and just being. Love the panhandle and Seagrove is the most peaceful place EVER!lol
See what I mean? You can just be and I love sitting here. I always think of the line from the poem. "Dear God your sea is so vast and my boat is so small" This place just wipes everything away but the present.
Also in July Debs family is taking a celebratory trip to a cabin in Pigeon Forge for a few days. We will celebrate Curts graduation Ryan finishing his residency and all of them moving back home. They all have bought homes here and we cannot wait to get Amelia here. The parents are welcomed
So you see there are lots of fun days ahead, if the Lord is willing. I truly am enjoying this quarter of life. God is good and I am grateful.
One personal thing I will share. I think with Curtis' illness and nursing home for 6&1/2 years, then his death last year, I never took time to grieve. I tried to stay strong and be brave for my children and grandchildren. I must have succeeded because several comments I pulled out of the jar referred to my strength. I was happy to be an example for them. However the week before Mothers Day it hit me. I miss him so much and wish it hadn't ended the way it did. I would love for the greats to have known him, as well as the grand in laws. But I can say, I finally let go and let the grieving. Now I must move on toward the rest of the fourth quarter. I am glad you came Through My Back Door where life is good.
PS: I hope you enjoy everyday to the fullest. Tell those around you that you love them.No matter their faults.
PSS: Continue to pray for fellow bloggers, that are mia, due to things going on in  their lives
PSSS: Thanks  for all the e-mails about Dodd's victory. I know he will do his best.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Mother's Day

Good morning and welcome Through My Back Door. You may have some homemade cookies or some strawberries and pound cake (I found in the freezer) along with your coffee. This is Mothers Day weekend and I want to do a short post to talk about Mothers. I miss my own Mother so much, still. My Mother was a character. Really. She told it like it was. She minced no words and would always say if you said "You shouldn't have said that", "Well the truth will stand on judgement day!" She had lots of funny little sayings and I did a blog once about them. We all still use them and have a good laugh. She was one of the most loved people ever. Beth said to me not too long ago, "I miss her." Everyone has happy memories of her. UNfortunately I have only this one picture of her on my computer, from when Seth was like four and he is now almost 24.
Curtis was showing Seth how much the this apple tree had grown.  The tree is much taller than Seth now.
I need to get some pictures on my computer and maybe I will now. Anyway my Mother liked to sing. Deb takes after her and has a pretty voice. Both Mother and Daddy sang. Daddy could play any strnged instrument he picked up. Any.Both my boys play the guitar. Mother played the piano. I have, to my Dads dismay, no musical ability. I did take piano lessons and HATED them. I wanted to play the guitar and yodel! Now go I am sharing way too much with you
This Mothers Day we have two new Mothers in our family Beth and Lindsay. They make me proud. Amanda is a good Mother, so is Anastasia. I am also proud of  Deb, Renda, and Kristy, for being the Mother's they have been. I am also thankful for the Mothers of Michael and Renda for raising such  wonderful children. Also for Rita, Renee, Teresa, and Dawn for my grand in laws.
One of the best parts of my own life is being a Mother. So this Mothers Day lets all take time to let our Mothers know we care. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, a simple I love you, will do. If you like me no longer have your Mother, sit quietly and call on your memories. Be grateful you had them.
I am grateful you came Through My Back Door where life is good.
ps: I know not every one who has the Mother titile is or has been a good one. You don't have to honor her, but give her thanks for giving you life. Not aborting you. If there is someone in your life who has been a Mother figure or mentor. Honor her
PSS:Won't be long until a couple of vacations are coming. I am having company the first of the week. Summer is here and I love it!
PSSS: I want to add there were a few people in my life who I respected and who shared their wisdom with me. My Aunt Annie, was always there for me. Trula Wells, and Lavetta Crawford, were Godly women who mentored me. I loved both of  them dearly and I feel bad I haven't done for younger women at my church, what these two did for us years ago.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A New Commissioner

Good morning and welcome Through My Back Door for a quick visit. No you can't stay too long, because I have company coming tomorrow and must clean and do laundry. But on second thought, grab a cup of coffee and stay as long as you like. I am a procrastinator from the get go!!!
Just wanted to say to let you know, Dodd won his bid for Seat B, District 6 in Blount county. Seat A was filled by a young man I met yesterday and I think he and Dodd will make a difference in Blount County. He had to be a good guy, his mother and father in law were campaigning for him! Thomas Cole is his name.
Learning he had won. His face was sunburned from being outdoors all day yesterday.
Victory Hug
Deb and I campaigning
All in all it was a wonderful day and had a happy ending. I am proud of Dodd and I know he will make an excellent commissioner and the schools and kids got a supporter.
This is supposed to be a happy post, but I have to share some bittersweet news too. Bittersweet because in some ways it is a beginning not an ending. After lots of thought Sharon and Johnny have decided to close the Hen. Yes, no more Speckled Hen. They are going to do some things for them, which they deserve. They will continue to do shows along, but the shop is closing. I want to thank all of my blog readers who have gone in there after learning about it on my blog.I have loved every day I have worked and enjoyed meeting some wonderful people. I wish them the very best.  Please note I am not saying goodbye to them. We are friends and will always be, but will miss the Hen. I know you will too.
Well thank you for coming Through My Back Door where life is good.
PS:I don't know abut you, but I am thankful for these warm days.
PSS:Please continue to pray for Lori, (Black Crow) son Jason. He is still in critical condition.
PSSS: I want to thank you for all the e-mails, FB comments, and blog comments a bout Ryan and Zeus! Don't you love a happy ending?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Oh Happy Day

Good morning and welcome Through My Back Door. I want to share my weekend with you, but first grab a cup of  coffee and lets go sit here. It is a beautiful morning and we have been looking forward to coffee out here for months. I am sorry there is nothing sweet, but I have been gone.
Nothing changes out here. It always looks the same. But I love sitting out here and reading.
Anyway, I have stated before I have 8 grandchildren. Each one is a unique person with lots going for them. I have 2 still working on their college degrees and I am proud of each of them. However this past weekend belonged to Curt. Curt has always been there to help on whatever project was going on at my house. He wasn't made to do it, nor asked, he just came and helped. He has cleaned out my rose garden when I had one, he has painted the old building behind my house, and my back deck. He helped put down and stain my wood floors. He is a hard worker and I must add here, that all of my grands have a  good work ethic, that I am proud of.I think I may one day do a blog on each of them. Anyway, Curt decided to become a Pharmacist like his Dad. People don't realize that Michael is a Doctor of Pharmacy. He would never tell you that. He is just "Mike" to his customers. Many who go to my church say, I just found out my pharmacist is your s-i-l and he is so nice. I digress, this is Curts day! Anyway I went with Deb and Michael on Thursday to Nashville. Friday was honors day and a reception. We were able to be there for all of that. Sat was graduation and they were hooded.(I was hoping it would be like med school and the dads or moms who were pharmacist could hood their child) It wasn't. When Beth finished Ryans dad who is a physician hooded both Beth and Ryan. It was touching.
I do want to say it was refreshing to attend a commencement and hear God's name, prayer, and reference to the Scriptures. Don't hear that at the University of Tn nor any of the other graduations I have attended.(BTW  have attended a few)lol
Proud Mama and Daddy
Honors day. That is Linz sitting next to me, her Mom and Dad. Yes they came too. Everyone on both sides was there for his big day, but Beth, She was working(taking care of the sick) or she, Ryan, and Amelia would have been right beside us.
On Friday Amanda and Clay with Mollie and Andrew came over and so did Linz sister Whitney, her husband Ryan and Brynne and Emory. What fun. BTW Whitney has a blog,Keeping Up With The Bandermann's.   Check it out. I could never KEEP UP with the Bandermanns
Anyway Whitney works part time at her church's preschool program, is the mother of two, yet she took time to make these fabulous cookies for Curt. They were as good as they looked.
Isn't this sweet? On Friday night we ate at Pucketts in Franklin. Michael and I enjoyed looking at the pictures they had on the walls. The food was good and they accommodated all 15 of us with out a hitch.So sorry our little Mollie can't be seen in this. She is beside Deb. And she is SO cute.
 We went back to hotel room to visit and eat these cookies
Saturday we went to graduation, skipped the reception and went to eat lunch where we could all sit and visit before we headed back home and they head to Missouri. It was a wonderful weekend and I just had to share it with you. Hope it didn't bore you all to
I have to admit to doing something I haven't done since Andrew has been big enough to want to help, and that is bake cookies alone!(Sure hope he doesn't find out I did, or I will be in trouble) Whitney I did my recipe leaving out the vanilla entirely and using only the almond and they are sooooo good. However I have to admit, they are just plain round cookies. But I will ice them.
It was an Oh Happy day and it always is when you come Through My Back Door where life is good.
PS: Curt and Linz have bought a house and will be moving home in June.We will get to see a whole lot more of the Pingles. Linz Dad is a history buff and fits right in with us! We love the whole family and Mollie and Brynne were so cute, but I have no pictures. Maybe later.
PSS: Tomorrow is election day and tomorrow night we will know if Dodd has won.Win or lose I am so proud of this boy.I will say if he loses he will still be an advocate for Blount County.
PSSS: Let us continue to pray for our fellow bloggers who are having a hard time right now. There are several.