Words from a nine year old

This little monkey wrote this for school, obviously before Thanksgiving and I just found it now.
I wanted to share this with you even though the Thanksgiving has passed. All spelling and punctuation is as written.

Thanksgiving reminds me of all the things I’m thankful for.  I appreciate family, God and, school.

I’m especially thankful for family because they care for me and give me love and keep me alive. They provide me food and shelter.

I also appreciate God because in my world he created life and made the world. Without him we wouldn’t be here now.

Finally, I’m grateful for school because if i stay in school I will get a good education and maybe a job.  And with a job then i get money to keep me alive.

As I enjoy this holiday season. I relize that I have may reasons to be thankful. Family, God and school are very important to me.

Wrestling Season Has Started

Wrestling season has started.

With two kids in the sport it makes for a very busy season.

This OK, because I really love watching them wrestle.

But let me tell you it is stressful.

It is great when they are winning.

Because you are so happy for them.

Relieved actually

If they are losing, well that is a whole different story.

There are matches that they will lose.

Their opponents could be stronger and better trained.

Or they could just be a dirty wrestler. (does not happen a lot)

The ref could miss something or choose not to call it.  (as a mom you think this happens more than it really does)

That is really hard to watch.

Especially when they are putting it all out there.

There is no equipment.

There are no team mates helping you out.

It is one on one with strength and skill.

When they win you are so happy and so RELIEVED.

But when they lose, well we just won’t go there.

P.S. My kids are in the green.

Way to go guys! So proud of you both.

Sophia and Mia, ACRHS Homecoming 2012

 Homecoming at A.C. Reynolds High School was this weekend.
Hard to believe that the little girl in the photo below is grown up enough to be my daughter above.

The saying that time really flies, is true.
Although there are times when is seems to go backwards, that we will never get beyond what is happening at that moment

My daughter who is strong enough pin the boy above is the beautiful young lady in a dress and heals with make-up and jewels.

The little girl with the black eye from the neighborhood boy (HE is a TWIT) is the stunning young lady below.

Hopefully not taking themselves too seriously and having a good time.
Good friends.

You both looked beautiful, I hope you had a good time.

Getting Braces at 43 Years of Age….I must be crazy.

I did it.
I finally got up the nerve to get braces.
Well that is not exactly the best way to put it. I finally got up the nerve to spend that kind of money of myself.
My teeth were never really bad. I was lucky to go 43 years with fairly straight teeth. Unfortunately, like everything else when you hit the 40’s things started going a little wonky…how is that for a word. Wonky.
Everything started to get really crowded and when I smile I am all teeth and gums. I started to see crooked teeth, especially on the bottom and that bothered me.

Lovely picture huh?
I took these with my cell phone. I am sure Kim thought I was losing my mind taking pictures of myself looking so “interesting”. I have to say it is quite impressive just how much stuff they can cram into your mouth. And they tell you all about it as they are doing it……
These to pads go into your cheeks to absorb all the moisture in your mouth.
Then we are going to place the barrier between your lips and your teeth so that  you resemble a  golden retriever that is hanging it’s head out a moving car window.

Yup, that is what it feels like.
 That is what it looks like!
In go the cotton  tubes under your tongue to absorb more slobber.
Then the suction tube with its cotton bladder over it to suction up anything that could possibly be moisture in your mouth.
Apparently I must produce copious amounts of saliva, drool etc. because they put ANOTHER cotton tube under my tongue.
Think you used to have cotton mouth after a night of drinking? PFFT! At least there was no hangover to go along with it.

Getting braces is definitely something that I could have easily elected not to do for myself. Something that I could have come up with a dozen reasons for not doing it.
They are not crooked enough. It is money that should be spent somewhere else. It is going to be inconvenient.  yada yada yada
Because I have been bringing Sam to see Dr. Keith Black it kept being pushed into the fore front of my mind.
Because when I bring Sam to his orthodontist appointments I have seen first hand what an amazing place Dr. Blacks office is.
Because of Sam’s appointments and the atmosphere of the office and the amazing family he has put together you cannot help but feel like your are being well taken care of.
They go out of their way to make you feel comfortable, to make sure you are at ease with what is going on.
Even for a wimp like me.
Somoething tells me I will get no sympathy from Sam.

Family visits Asheville

My sister in saw Susan and her family came to visit Labor Day weekend so of course we had to go downtown to experience the Asheville vibe. Friday night was spent going to the drum circle and walking around to people watch. The “statue” above was pretty cool, she remained completely still and when someone made a donation she played the snare drum.

My boys had not been to the circle yet, not quite sure what they thought about it.


Giggling Susan…finding that she had to be a little creative when sitting down on the rocks in a skirt.

Susan and her husband Mike. She has just passed the half way point of her chemo therapy for breast cancer and really seems to be doing amazingly well. Her positive approach is impressive. I watch and listen to her and wonder if I could have the same approach.

On so many of the streets of Asheville there will be groups of people playing instruments, singing, juggling etc. The little girl above was belting out the music and was so cute.

Asheville is known as Beer City. We decided to go to Pack Place and have a barley pop. The kids played a game that I cannot remember the name to save my soul. Driving me crazy trying to think of it. Anyhoo.. Susan and the kids had Root Beer Floats and the rest indulged in fare of the local breweries.

Carter and I have a game we play by saying I love you….wonder if he remembers my reading this book to him when he was little?

And the Biltmore. Asheville is not a visit without a visit to Americas largest private owned home.  We are watching Downton Abby and the similarities are kind of cool. Can you imagine growing up in this home? There would be some seriouse hide-n-seek going on.

Chad and Sam have the same smile going on, must be the braces.

Susan sporting the blond today.

The grounds of the Biltmore are so beautiful but it is a lot of walking. we really should have gone early in the day so it would not have been so warm.

We then went over to Antler Hill Village and Winery.  Carter was enjoying Cedric who was George Vanderbilts St. Bernard.

There was music on the lawn at Antler Hill

Really enjoyed having them at our home for the weekend. It was fun hanging out, talking and eating. Lots of eating.

Asheville Drum Circle with Friends

My childhood friend Shawn and his wife Georgine came to visit two weekends ago. They were in Charlotte for the weekend and made the drive to Asheville to see me. (at least that is what I am telling myself)
Shawn and I grew up as next door neighbors from the age of 6 until we graduated from high school.
Well he graduated a year ahead of me. He’s OLDER than me. Much older than I am.
We grew up in a community of about 300 people, if that many. It was the rockin town of Knife River, MN.
We did Luther League together and went on retreats to Camp Vermillion in the Nisswandt’s decrepit VW bug. Confirmation together with Pastor Reppe. Had bonfires on the beach of Lake Superior. Played spin the bottle behind the church. Played kickball at the Rec Center. Played cartoon tag in my cousins back yard. Swam in the river at the Chup pond. Basically ran amok and had a blast doing it.
But we had not seen each other in 26 years.
When you don’t see someone for a long time like that you wonder “How is this going to go?”
It was so wonderful to see him again and to finally meet his wife and hear about his FIVE kids, four of which are girls!
For them to make the effort to come to Asheville meant a lot to me.

While they were here we went to see the Asheville Drum Circle. Every Friday during the warmer months they meet in a park in the downtown. Anyone is welcome to join in.
It’s eclectic.
It’s a little bazaar.
It’s wonderful for people watching.
Very relaxed and a great way to get a feel for the Asheville vibe.

If you make it to Asheville for a visit it is worth doing.

Doughnuts, Dognuts, Dohnuts, Donuts. Go nuts?

 I got a wild hair the other day and decided that I wanted to try making doughnuts. I think it may have come from watching the Food Network.
 The show was on everything fried.
Fried okra to fried bacon. Yes, fried bacon. Batter dipped and deep fried.
 As if bacon needed help have more fat.

 Grama Ethel use to make home made donuts and I remember them being absolutely wonderful. Fried in a cast iron skillet and the oil she used I am sure was good old Crisco. Giving them the best flavor ever. The same frying pan she would use to fry fishcakes and walleye.

I know I do not have a donut recipe so I call my mom who is in the middle of dealing with a flooded basement and deconstruction.

ME:   Mom, do you have Grams recipe for donuts?

MOM: Oh, I am sure it is here somewhere. What do you think it is under? Cakes, Breads, Desserts, Misc.

Me: Look under cakes.

She then starts reciting all the recipes in the box. Mind you my mom has a lot of recipes and where they are in the box only makes sense to her.

MOM:  I know it is in here I just saw it the other day. (this could mean 5 years ago) banana bread, blueberry muffins. oh, blueberry muffins I have so many blueberries I need to make muffins. when Dennis (her brother) and I went picking last summer we picked so many blueberries we were eating them by the handful..

Me:  MOM! Donuts. We are looking for donuts.

MOM:  Well I wonder why I have Sauerkraut salad under desserts. Wonder how that got there.

Me: I can only imagine….Donuts mom.

MOM: Well maybe it is in the other box..wait here it is…Grams Donuts.  2 eggs, 1 tsp Cardomin,

Me:  MOM. MOM. Slow down I have to right this down.

she proceeds to give me the recipe slower so that I can write everything down, ingredients that is.

Me;  MOM, this cannot be right. there is nothing holding it together. Isn’t there flour in the recipe.

MOM:  Well it is not written on this paper. Maybe it is on the other recipe in Grams box. It’s a good thing I didn’t throw that box out, let me look. Oh, for Christ sake where is it?

While this goes on and she is digging for the recipe she proceeds to tell me who made donuts last and who had the deep frier and who loaned it the this person and that and didn’t bring it back and she has it and that it was a good thing she didn’t give this recipe to so and so because they would have had a mess.blah. blah. blah.

So after much digging she finds the original recipe that gram used. If your grandma is anything like my grandma she NEVER wrote any directions down. Ever!

So I ask mom  “How do you make then”

MOM: I don’t know, I have never made them. Gram always had them made when we came home from school.

Me:   OK, then let the experimenting begin.

 I don’t like to fry food in the house. In fact I went and bought this fry daddy just for the donuts. The one thing mom did say is … she always opened up brown paper bags to let the grease soak it up.

Brown paper bag ….Check!

 I mixed the batter, patted it out and cut the donuts.

 These are a little too dark.

 Long tongs are a must.

 A determined pierced looking mouth is required.  Good Lord what a face.

 I determined several things with this first batch of donuts…
HOT GREASE is a must.
Letting the dough rest after you cut them out makes lighter donuts.
“Dirty” grease is best.

And next time we dip them in chocolate frosting!

Fourth of July at the Bounds

 Our neighbors, the Bounds hosted  a wonderful 4th of July picnic at their home today. Complete with hotdogs, potato salad and watermelon.
Of course there were fireworks too!

 It has been incredibly, unseasonably hot here but thankfully the weather gave us a break with the heat.

 Sparklers are always fun. Amazing how even adults can become mesmerized by them.

 Little Miss Kate your a pretty thing I say flashing that smile!

 We had a brief rain shower that cooled things off a little and added a bunch of humidity. Made shooting of fireworks a little safer in that we were not going to burn down the sub-division.

 Wake up Trae! He is a little sleepy after running a 5K this morning.

 You can just hear her saying “hehehehehe”

 The boys wet from chasing each other with the hose I believe. I never really got the full story on that one.

 Miss Rel telling you all about it!

 Sam looking absolutely thrilled but being a trooper with no one there his age.

Trouble. Looks like Trouble. There is serious plotting going on here, I can tell. I am a mom. I know these things.  There are intent looks going on.

 Glow sticks! Didn’t get any pictures of the glow sticks in balloons, but a cool idea. Gonna have to give that one a try. I bought bubbles that glow in the dark but forgot them at the camper.

 Reclining on Dad.

 Sam continuing to be a sport.

 Dave explaining the finer points of  a Corona.

 Kids don’t cross THIS LINE____________! The safety Zone

 They are staying put. I am impressed.

 The Dads lighting off the fireworks.

 They say it is for the kids but we know the truth.

 Sam attempting to remain a good sport.

 He was so tired I honestly thought he was going to fall asleep right there.

 Must. Not. Fall. Asleep.

 They act just like little kids. You know they were the kids with the bottle rockets and cherry bombs when they were younger.

 Hey Carter, look this way!

 So he did.

 Little girls in their ruffled skirts and rubber boots.

 Rel and her friends.

 Explaining it all to them!

 That is my boy!



 Love this one!

 Sam is no longer being a good sport and is just making faces at his mother with the camera. He asked me to delete this one. Nope. You did it. I blog it.

 See Sam, shouldn’t do that.

Happy Fourth of July folks!

Happy Birthday to My Sister In Law Susan!

Happy Birthday Dear Susan!

Susan Enters this world on May 10th 1964
Then in 1967
Now in 2012
Then in 1966
Now in 2012
Susan on her little red bike
Susan now getting ready to try on her red hair!
Susan in 1979 with brother Bobby and sister Amy
Susan Now
Susan in 1988 in red with her family
Susan now still with that great smile.

Susan in 1967
Susan now with her sassy smile and brown hair

Susan with Uncle Buddy in 1967
Susan trying out the blond diva look

Susan in 1967 giving you those “eyes”
….and the eyes

Susan with the Birthday Bunny
And Susan with Chad
Susan with the Christmas tree…

Susan now

Susan at the ocean front
Susan by the water near her home.

The cowboy hat in 1965
Now we know where it all comes from!