Tuesday, January 29, 2013
What a great place I have to work. Sheila, Liz and I were able to drive over to the Fort Leonard Wood area to eat at a great restaurant. The food was good and we had a good time visiting over lunch.
Our Rural Electric papers features a restaurant in MO each month and does a feature page on their business. We are always talking about going to try one out and we finally had the opportunity. If you like Asian type food, this is the place for you. Everything is made there and not shipped in like a chair restaurant.
One of Black Gold's salesmen lives in Texas and knew we were going to a Korean Restaurant. I told him it was in St. Roberts but being from a different state didn't know where that was in relation to Vienna. I told him the Fort Leonard Wood area. He goes, "That's weird, I had a buddy I went to college with years ago in KS from Ft. Wood. Him and a few of the others' mothers would come up and cook all this great food for us and one of the guy's Mom said when they retired they would like to open up a Korean Cafe in Ft. Wood. I told him I had the article and I could scan to send to him. He goes the guy's last name was Moore. I went to get the article and the names of the owner's was also Moore. I don't know yet if it's the same people or a mere coincidence. I'll have to find our tomorrow when Brian gets to where he can see the scanned article. Liz had the waitress ask the own if she knew Brian xxxxxx. She didn't but I'm sure a whole group of college boys eating you can't remember all their names but they certainly remember good food.
Besides the food, Liz and I found an idea even we might be able to make for Christmas presents this year. We found our own "Pinterest" for the day. lol
I am grateful for my job and work family.
Friday, January 25, 2013
Out with the blue...............
In with the yellow!!!!
You know how when you redo one room and the then room attached to it just looks shabby?!?
Well, that was the way it was with the bathroom makeover. The bedroom connects to it by a short hallway without a door. I asked Dwayne if we could paint the bedroom too. He agreed to it. I went with a lighter shade of the bathroom color. Our blue carpet had seen better days but it had held up well for twenty-four years. I thought I was really pushing my luck when I asked Dwayne about new carpet. He was like, well with the new bathroom floor the blue doesn't match very well and it looks dirty all the time. Huh? My husband?! The one that thinks a house doesn't need updating any. (which by the way, he has done several rooms for me throughout the years, but not without a bit of complaining)
I took a sample of our bathroom flooring to Vernon's Carpet in Rolla and matched the carpet color up to it.
I love it!! The carpet sample was only a 3x3 inch swatch, so I wasn't too sure of whole room in that shade of yellow. It's kind of hard to visualize from a small sample, but all turned out well.
As much as I like to redecorate and change the furniture arrangements in rooms, overall, I do not like change. So the wall color that I had worked so hard on years ago was a little nostalgic for me to let go of.
It had been just plain blue walls, then I added the flower border a few years later. Then I did a light feather treatment of white and various blue shades over the blue walls. Most people thought it was wallpaper.
When I first heard of the technique, I envisioned painting with a feather and it taking hours. My friend, Jan laughed at me. She said, "Connie, you use a feather duster"!! Oh, that does sound easier. It was a bit tricky with trying to get just the right amount of the various colors on the wall. Jan had only used one color so hers went much faster.
I had bought April some blue velvet throw pillows in Eureka Springs, AR years ago when she had blue in her room. Unlike her Mom, when April changes things, she gets rids of them. (I have various colors of throw pillows, etc. in a closet upstairs as I can't seem to let go of them, yeah I have that problem with "letting go" with my kids, too. lol) I asked for the cushions and then I found these golden color ones to bring in more of the yellow tones. I carried around my paint swatches for almost a year before I ever found a shade to match. They are a closer color to the bathroom walls but they still blend nicely. Then I found the round place mat and that worked perfect for the pitcher and bowl Dodie made for me when we built the house.
I love how bright and "new" the bedroom looks. I had to find a color to match with the blue as our furniture has the blue roses and we won't ever be replacing the furniture. (I had thought about it years ago, checked prices and thought, uh, no way!! Plus, Dwayne would never go for new bedroom furniture).
I am grateful for my home and my husband who built it and helps me redecorate periodically.
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Liam Paul Birdsong
April and I met at the Junction of 133 and 42 to drive on over to Crocker to visit Tyler, Andrea and newest little member of the family, little Liam.
Liam was born on New Year's Eve and we hadn't seen him yet. Unusual for this aunt and cousin but work, distance, and flu season seemed to get in the way before now.
We had a great visit with Ty and Andrea and of course, Liam. We took turns with him but I won out on rocking him and giving him his bottle.
If any of you have been around our family much, we sometimes break out into hysterical laughter.
My sister Judy I think comes in a close second with Mom but I am right behind her. Kate's laughter is pretty spontaneous also, but she seems to contain it better than the rest of us.
We were discussing MacKensie trying out for the school play and Andrea asked Tyler if she got the part. I had just started to take a drink of my soda when Tyler replies, yeah, she's playing the part of a dead person.
Oh, my goodness!! It hit me so hard and funny I couldn't quit laughing and was trying not to spew soda everywhere. Didn't work, I couldn't swallow for laughing and soda went everywhere. Andrea also was taking a drink of soda and the same thing (much less hysterical than our family, but we will get her there in the future lol). We both had to run to the kitchen to get a towel to dry off and clean our chair messes up. I guess it was just the moment and Tyler's quiet dead pan voice of saying, "Yeah, she's playing a dead person". I will have to check with MacKensie on the part and see if she gets to be alive any........ Needless to say, we will be going to the play.
I am so grateful for all of my family and especially Tyler's new baby. Ty spent alot of time at our house when he was growing up and he holds a special place in my heart.
Thank you God for all the good times.
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Friday, January 18, 2013
Actually, I was originally his idea on the bathroom to install a new counter top. We had a very nice oak counter top and it looks good-27 years ago....... I really liked it but we needed an update and after Dwayne installed a new vanity top for April and Mike the year before, he liked it so well he wanted one like it.
But he forgot or didn't realize you can't just do a counter top and not update everything else!!
We had blue in our bathroom, blue sink, blue wallpaper, blue toilet and tub. We did get rid of the blue carpet about ten years ago but blue was just getting old to look at. Therefore, with a new counter top, we needed a new stool to go with it and a tub. Tubs are expensive and we would have had to take down the door and possible some studs and sheet rock to get a new tub into the room. I'm not too picky on a tub, we only use the shower anyway. It's nice to have a tub for bathing kids when they visit and HOPEFULLY one day soon in the future, possibly a grand baby. (hint, hint kids!!) lol Since it didn't matter to much to us one way or the other on a new tub, we just bought the tub and tile paint and Dwayne painted it. It looks okay if you don't look too close. Plus, we have a shower curtain that covers most of it.
The paint color was so easy to chose. We painted April's spare bedroom the year before with this beautiful yellow that isn't too lemony of a color or sunshiny. I love it.
I lightly sanded the finish of the cabinets and light fixture and stained them a little darker. You can't do all this and not install new light fixtures. lol I found a combination light fixture/exhaust fan in an amber color to match the other light fixtures. The fixture over the sink I bought at Lowe's on clearance for $15.00. Everything matches so well and wasn't all bought at the same time.
It's funny how deep cleaning a room and repainting to update makes the room so different and gives you a whole new outlook on how it looks.
I am grateful for my home and also that Dwayne "humors" me every once in awhile on updating.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
Squid Worm Creatures
Past & Present:
Ashlyne & Lizzy's Squid's last year:
My Hot Dog Man:
Nathan & Lizzy's Squids from last week:
Picture doesn't show but Lizzy's was part squid and part hot dog man. He looked like he was from outer space. Nate's was put together lengthwise and looked like a centipede.
It seems squid worms are a neat thing to make at Aunt Nonnie's. Don't know if they like them that well or just they are super fun to make. We stick spaghetti noodles in the hot dogs in and make different creatures and then boil them. It's fun to see what shape they emerge in and the "hair" aka spaghetti noodles turn into.
I'm grateful for these kids that are in our life and the joy they bring to us "Empty Nester's".
Friday, January 11, 2013
This month's birthdays will be celebrated at Mom and Dad's on Sunday afternoon with cake and ice cream.
In this family picture taken several years ago are the two January birthdays.
Wayne, my oldest brother turned 65 on January 8th and the baby of the family, Katie turned 44 on the 9th. So hard to believe Katie is 44!! She was born just an hour after Wayne's 21st birthday in 1969. Wayne was in Vietnam at the time and we were so hoping to have the first and last with the same birthday.
Not Katie, though!! Even as a little girl she did not want to share her birthday with Wayne. I think it was because she was about two years old before he was around much and she was scared of him. She would say, Wayne is your brother and Russ is mine. lol
Wayne, Judy, Mom, Kate, Dad, Me & Russ
The second pair are Katie's grand kids. Mariah turned six yesterday on the 10th and Brighton will be five next week on the 16th. These two are my niece, Kayla's. They have lived in IL and we seldom got to see them. They moved to Rolla over the summer and we have enjoyed getting to know them. Mariah is a very smart girl and a very protective big sister. Brighton is as they say, "all boy"! lol He is a good little boy but very much full of energy.
I am grateful for family and the birthday traditions we share.
Thursday, January 10, 2013
It's hard to lose a friend and even harder when you unknowingly arrive not long after that friend was discovered dead. A year ago on Friday, December 23rd I received an email from Chuck Jurgensmeyer stating Janet, his sister had passed away the night before. We grew up together and lived just a mile or two apart. I decided to leave work early as it was almost Christmas break and stop by Janet's parents, Charles and Bev on the way home. Imagine my surprise as I come around the curve and see the sheriff''s car, deputies and hearse in Janet's driveway. Lights were flashing and people in the yard. I halfway pulled in the driveway and ran up to the porch. Bev met me and said, our Jannie is dead, our Jannie is dead. I was so shocked to have come upon this scene. Apparently, Janet had passed away the evening before while watching TV from a heart attack. As Friday was the day she was confirmed dead, that is the date of death for her certificate. So much heartache and decisions to be made. The family was so lost and confused. Bev asked me to stay and help make phone calls. It is true God gives you strength at times like these. It was a very emotional afternoon.
Since it was almost Christmas, it was decided the funeral would be after the holidays. On Christmas Day Dwayne and I went to visit Charles and Bev after church. Bev asked if I would give a eulogy at Janet's funeral. I was honored but scared, I had never done anything like that before. Dwayne said he didn't think I would be able to do it as he knows how emotional and nervous I get. But I felt like it was something I should do since Bev and Charles asked me to.
My first thought was, I need to call Pastor Karen and get her advice. Then I decided this was something I should work out myself and draw on the words Karen has always done on making the funeral service as a celebration of life. Janet and I grew up together but our lives had taken different paths and we seldom saw each other anymore. Our childhood bond was still there but so many years later I wasn't sure what to say.
But one day, it just all clicked and memories started surfacing.
December 30, 2011
Janet Mae Jurgensmeyer
March 13, 1957 – December 23, 2011
We’re here today to celebrate the journey of Janet’s life.
Janet was the first daughter born to Charles and Beverly Jurgensmeyer. Janet also held a lot of firsts in my life. Janet was my first friend outside of family. The first person I connected with on the school bus on that scary first day of school. We lived in a rural area and people didn’t go to a lot of places the way they do now. We found that since we lived so close to each other we could visit often. And that we did!! Summer days we would walk to each other’s house. We spent much time going to the creek, riding bicycles, and one of Janet’s favorites, catching frogs! Ugh!
Another favorite of Janet (and Jackie) was eating my Mom’s green tomato pickles. We would almost make ourselves sick eating the pickles and drinking the juice after we were done. Actually, we would pour the juice in glasses and pretend they were martinis like we saw on the soap operas. We thought we were really something.
Janet was the leader in our friendship. Bev would take us to the roller rink and Jackie and I would follow along in Janet’s wake. Trying to imitate her in skating, which I failed miserably at!! Never could get the hang of it. Not Janet, she seemed born to skate. Movies: Janet loved horror movies!! Not me, I hated them! I would close my eyes and pretend to like them just as much as Janet. I think Jackie always liked them too but maybe not, she may have also closed her eyes, I’ll have to check with her on that. Speaking of movies, I had never been to the drive in before. Bev loaded us all up in her car and away to the drive in we went. What an experience!
Fairs and carnivals: We loved them! Janet was always the thrill seeker, so the roller coaster, octopus and other “scary” rides of the times were what we rode. I loved going with Charles and Bev to the Rolla Carnival as they would stay later than my Mom and Dad.
Slumber Parties: That is something classmates have mentioned in remembering Janet and elementary. We would often have slumber parties with as many as ten girls spending the night. We would all tramp in off the bus and the fun would begin. Our poor parents-we would have fashion shows, singing contests and of course staying up all night. I don’t think the teachers or bus drivers would appreciate that today as we had them during the week and our already crowded school bus would have us morning and evening. And falling asleep the next day in class happened often. Most of our friends love to talk about our slumber parties to this day.
I was Janet’s Maid of Honor when she got married. She was also in my wedding along with her beautiful little girl, Angie. Angie, she was also a first in my life with Janet. The first baby to come along and bless us in our friendship. Dwayne and I spent many hours spoiling Angie when she was small. And then later getting to know Angies’s girls, Hailey and Taylor and son Dusty.
As life goes, we went in different directions for awhile. Janet had moved away from the area; I was busy raising a family and we just didn’t get together like we had all of our life. But there was always one thing that stayed consistent, my annual birthday card from Janet. And the signature! I can still see her signature in my head. It is so unique the way she signed her name. I will so miss getting those cards as I will also miss sending Janet one every year on March 13th.
No matter how far you go in life, childhood bonds are never broken. And where Janet was the leader growing up, we seemed to switch roles in adulthood. Janet would often call me when she was feeling down or just needed a friend to talk to.
Janet was a very caring person and she worried about her parents. Several years ago Janet called late one night. Beverly was in the hospital in Springfield and it really scared Janet. I think it’s the time in life we start to realize our parents aren’t invincible and we don’t know how to relate to them not being the strong force in our lives. We talked quite awhile, contemplating life and the many changes to come as our parents got older.
Janet moving back to be closer to her Mom and Dad was also a turning point in their life. Janet was there to care for them, provide companionship, help with their health care and most of all reuniting that special bond of parent/child relationship.
Janet’s journey of life took a lot of twists and turns and had come full circle. She had a job she loved, a home close to her parents, children and grandchildren she adored, brothers and sisters to call and just say hi, how is your day? Friday, during the shock of Janet’s death Bev and I were talking about how good Janet’s life had become and we were so saddened that it ended. By Sunday, Bev had come to realize and stated. I’m so glad Janet was in a good place in her life and her last days were happy ones. I hadn’t thought of it that way and I felt some peace at that point. Janet knew God, her life’s journey is over.
I am honored to be asked to speak today. I pray we each know God and reach out to others as our journey is found in our daily life, our neighbors, friends and family.
March 13, 2012
Dwayne drove me to the cemetery on Janet's birthday and we cleaned the grave site.
It is somehow therapeutic for me to reach out in this way.
That afternoon at Janet's house, I was outside making phone calls for Bev. Janet had several cats and one in particular caught my eye. I am not an animal person and especially not cats, but this cat was beautiful. It was the fattest, fluffiest cat I had ever seen. It came up and wrapped itself around my leg and kept purring. I guess kind of silly, but I thought this cat knows I'm a friend of Janet's. I later asked Dwayne if I could have Janet's cat and he said no, you don't even like cats. I'm like, but this is Janet's cat and it would stay outside. Well, I didn't get the cat, which is probably a good thing as my sister, Judy is terrified of cats.
As I said, Janet and I have always sent each other birthday cards every year. This year on my birthday, I looked out the window and there was a cat staring up at the house. April was there and I said, Dwayne, April, Janet sent a cat to wish me Happy Birthday. lol They are like, yeah, right. I could believe that if I wanted to and who knows, maybe there was a connection. Probably not, as my Aunt Fern's cats occasionally come to the house, but maybe not, who knows. Gave me some comfort and a chuckle as it would be so Janet if she could do something like that.
I am grateful to have had Janet as a friend and the Jurgensmeyer Family for the close neighborly bond we share.