Staring the grandchildren!

Sarah's Brownie Troope in Parade Posted by Hello

Saturday my Granddaughter Sarah and her Brownie troop marched in the Royal Oak Thanksgiving Day parade! They marched the whole parade ringing jingle bells and singing Christmas Carols along the way! Sarah is the first girl on the right, with the gray shirt and black pants. Sarah loves being in the Brownies!

Today my daughter Caroline and I went to a special luncheon for Grandparent's day at Mathew's pre-school. Mathew had to be one of the tallest kids in his class! It was great fun, they served pizza with salad,(who don't love pizza?), and had a great selection of cakes and cookies for desert! There was a lot of enthusiastic grandparents there, and the tables were decorated with placemats that were made with the handprint of each kid. We had a great time, and I think Mathew was proud to have his Grandma there, AND his Aunt! By the way, Mathew had a very cute, and nice little teacher!

Grandparents day with Buddy Posted by Hello


Darin getting his award Posted by Hello

Darin reading his winning paper Posted by Hello

Proud of my Grandson

I'm really proud of my grandson, DARIN today.

He just graduated from the DARE program with his 5th grade classes, sponsored by the Warren Police department here in our city. He wrote a summary of what he learned in the drug and smoking prevention program, and his paper won one of 4 prizes for the best paper. He wrote how he learned not to smoke because of the health risks he's witnessed by the heart attack his mother suffered and the stroke that me, his grandmother suffered recently.

What a SMART boy he is, and my heart just swells with pride as I watched him get a well deserved prize.


TIME: Slow DOWN you're going TOO FAST!

Wow! Is it me or is time going faster the older I get? Where have the years gone?

I was thinking today of how we used to do both Thanksgiving and then Christmas years ago. We would always gather with all the Aunts and Uncles and Cousins at my Polish Grandma's house where she would put out such a spread of delicasies that only my Grandma could produce. There would be roast duck, home make Kluski noodles, with (let me guess the spelling) Charnina soup, and that luscious Babka cake that just melts in your mouth. MMMMM!

Nobody I tried has ever reproduced those wonderful flavors like she made it! For you non-Polish people, Charnina is a duck's blood soup, but it's filled with (let me think) I think there was raisins, or plums that made it a sweeter flavor, not like BLOOD at all! No wonder by 5th grade I was already overweight! I don't even think there is a store in the area that you can buy live ducks, or chickens, that they kill and clean while you wait any more.

My fellow cousins and I would delight (??) my Aunts, Uncles, and specially Grandpa and Grandma with the beautiful Christmas carols we would sing for them in the kitchen while the food was being prepared. We would sing our little hearts out!

Christmas at Grandma's was always special for me. With all the relatives there, my Uncle Chet use to go up in Grandma's attic and dress up in full Santa suit, and play Santa for us. When I was real young, I believed, but when older I realized that it was my Uncle. My Uncle Chet was over 6 feet tall and skinny as a rail, and it was easy to guess him. All the family would exchange little gifts and it was so good being with all the family.

(Seems like only yesterday, but so much has changed. Grandma and Grandpa are long gone, and too much of the family have passed away.)

Looking back too to some Christmases not long ago, with our girls on some old home video, we saw how they delighted in getting those special gifts they longed for, and the excitement they had. They couldn't sleep all Christmas eve. When they got where they could NOT sleep at all until Santa had arrived. So in the wee hours of the night, Santa would FINALLY stomp his feet and HO HO HO! and they knew he had come, so they could creep out of their beds run into our room and tell us Santa had come! I love the looks in their eyes when they opened their gifts and got that special something they had been hoping for. As they got older, Santa's (HRMPH) taste was not the taste of two growing young teens, so we delevoped fun ways to give them money to buy the things they really wanted. One year there was a Money tree just loaded with dollars to pick, another year there was a mobil filled with envelopes each representing the twelve days of Christmas, each envelope had money, and another year there was bunches of helium balloons filled with dollars, (they had to bust the balloons with anything BUT their hands) ,what a funny sight that was! We never laughed so HARD! I miss those days.

Now I am looking forward to another Christmas with my daughters and my 4 beautiful grandchildren. (Where'd the summer go?...Did I miss it?) GOD! Those grandkids are growing so big, and I find it more difficult to find things to get them that will still spark that special Light in their eyes when they open the gifts that we get them.

We have, over the past few years, made a tradition of having my husband, Barlow, dress in a cheap Santa suit. After dinner he dissapears in the bedroom while the kids are'nt looking and gets ready to play "Poppa Clause!" He delights in coming out and surprising all the kids and making them come and tell him if they have been good all year. (YEAH, RIGHT! tee hee!)

Then we all go in the rec-room and each kid brings up one of their gifts off the mountain tagged for each kid. Poppa Clause would tell them it's okay for them to open them one at a time. We try to get them to SLOW DOWN, so we will see the looks of glee in their faces when they open each gift, but after a while it becomes a free for all with paper flying! But we have great fun! I will miss this special kind of Christmas as the kids get too big for Santa and they're not little kids anymore. Time is just flying too fast..............and I want it to SLOW DOWN! (We're enjoying it too much!)

Does anyone else have memories or traditions like these they love to remember? Want to share some of them?


Bored searching blogs

I have been doing a lot of searching for some interesting blogs through Blog Explosion and Blogerama and not finding much worth reading. Anybody else finding the same? Is there more places to search for some interesting blogs? Any suggestions? I dont want to read a lot of advertising or political stuff.

Boomer's Great Adventure

Boomer's Great Adventure
is hot off the presses or at least my keyboard!

Another new children's book that I have just written and am in the process of illustrating myself. Stay tuned for the for the story in my blog soon.

My grandkids are delighted and I hope you will too. Later.......


A Saint Here on Earth

I have an aunt, her name is Sally, and I consider her not only my Aunt, but a surrogate mother figure to me. She is the closest thing to a saint than anybody I have ever met or read about in my life.

Sally is now 83 years old and is currently in the hospital from complications from her heart , which is very weak. I pray that they get her feeling better so we can have her around for as long as possible. So many people love her, and have learned so much from her .

She has been married to my Uncle Ed for over 62 years, and soon after they married he was drafted into the U.S. Army and sent to the Pacific in World War II. She worked during the war at Chrysler, Dodge Main sewing seat covers. She learned from her long time friends how to cook, and shared their life experiences, and she became a real special person.

After the war, she and her new husband were very hard working people, and are charitable, sometimes to excess. They have had a comfortable life and have helped so many people with their generous caring nature. Not only have they helped my Mother and my Dad, (her younger brother) to get their their first house, they have aided and guiding my sick Mom, myself, and my daughters, as well as the generous gifts they have given in time of need. They take joy in helping anyone they love or are in need.

They are charitable to church, animal protection societies, and those less fortunate than them. They have long been sending huge packages of clean, pressed, and repaired good used clothes to 3 families of cousins and their kids who live in Poland and which she has not seen in many years. They correspond with her regularily, for years. Sally knows all their sizes and always tucks in soap, little toys for the kids, and cookies and candy treats, and has sent money for operations or other aid to these families. She sends things that are hard to find in Europe to make their life easier.

They have rescued and nursed many hurt or lost animals with gentle care over many years. My Uncle captured and released into parks many wild animals who lost their homes when a builder tore down the forest behind their house. Sally took in two dogs who had been abused by former owners and gave them a good life to their natural death. They even feed the birds daily with scrap food and seed. They preach how precious all life is.

Many relatives have asked for their aid over the years, and Sally and Ed have actually volunteered their selves to paint, or repair their old houses, or help them see to funerals and personal financial needs with no compensation offered or taken.

Sally has taken in her only son who was recently divorced after 12 years of mariage. She gives up her bed for the couch, so that her only grandson has a place to sleep when he comes for bi-weekly visits with his Dad.

This woman, and this man, have been everything for me and my family , with spiritual guidance, moral support, their generosity, and their life example. I only hope to be half the example of goodness and giving that Jesus preached, and that Sally has taught me a person can be.


Little things bring me great Joy

Funny how some little things bring me a feeling of joy. I was shopping the other day at a store called Big Lots! We saw the cutest doll of Santa sitting in a chair reading a book. When you squeeze his hand he actually talked and read the story of the Night before Christmas while he nodded his head up and down like he was actually reading and his mouth and eyes moved like real! The doll was about 18" high and cost $29.99, I think. Well, I didn't have enough so I passed.

Yesterday I was at my local CVS drugs store with my daughter getting some film when I spotted the same kind of doll about 12" high on sale for $14.88 and I just happened to have an in store coupon on any purchase for $11.50 off any purchase over that much. I was excited and happy to bring the sweet thing home for the cost of $3.70!

Not only did I save great money, but upon setting him up and playing the whole story I found myself reciting the whole story WITH HIM, (well, except a few words I forgot),to my SHEER DELIGHT! Made me feel like a kid again! OH the feeling of JOY!

Does anybody else feel that way about anything they've experienced? Or am I just getting mushy in my old(er) age?


Blogarama - The Blog Directory

I've Got and Idea

I just recently got a really neat idea for writing and illustrating another children's story based on on something that really just happened to my two oldest Grandkids, Darin and Amber! It concerns a lost animal.

I wonder if any of my readers might be interested in seeing it here later............ any comments on this? Working on it now. LATER.....



Yes, thank heaven for MY little girls!
I'm so happy to have my daughters, who are now the big girls in my life. Sure they are grown and married and have a family of their own, but there always was, and still is, a special bond that my girls and I have. I've never had sons, so I can't speak for any sons, but from my observations of other family's sons, there is not the same, emotional closeness with sons as with daughters.

My girls have shared some very personal health problems I have had in the past year and a half and helped me cope and encouraged me to get stronger and that they needed me still around for them.

Both, in their own way had done all they could to be there for me and I love them dearly. Caroline has been with me through a meriad of medical tests, my surgeries, and taking me to appointments, and shopping. My Wendy (with two younger kids) has been there during and after my surgeries, helped with cleaning my house and both have just been there period, careing and sharing.

My one sister-in-law, Maggie,a single Mom, has two daughters and one son and it's her girls that are always by her through her surgeries and health problems and seeing to her daily well being.

Another sister-in-law, Henrietta, has 2 daughters and 2 sons and it's her daughters that are always with her through her health problems, and helping her cope with with being a new widow again.

I'm sure that their sons care about their mommas too, but on a different emotional level than girls.

In my old age...Hrmffff.. I am really am lucky I have my two wonderful girls looking out for me and careing about my wellbeing. I feel so grateful I have them both. I think even my husband feels the same way. His health is wanning in his old age too, and they worry and fret about him taking better care of himself also.


Margaret's Special Cat (a children's story)


Dedicated and Copyrighted: May 8, 1988 to Margaret Bagnasco
( A true story from her childhood)

1 Posted by Hello
Way back in the year 1919, Margaret was a lovely auburn haired six year old girl who lived on a small farm in Illinois with her Mother and Father and older brother. Father raised chickens and pigs to sell to the market.

Margaret was lonesome for someone to play with. There were no girls her age in the neighborhood.

One her way home from school one day, Margaret saw a woman giving away some kittens. She ran home to ask her Father if she could have one for a pet. Her Father said, "No, you can't have a cat. Cats are known to eat birds. I can't afford to have a cat eating my baby chicks."

2 Posted by Hello
Margaret was so sad, but the tried not to think about it any more. She played tea party with her dolls by the pond near her home. She had a special spot in the cattails that she pretended was her house.

3 Posted by Hello
A few days later, Margaret was playing by the pond, when she heard a tiny sound coming from the bushes behind her. She crawled over to the bushes and peeked under the leaves. There sat the sweetest little black and white kitten, all alone and frightened. "Oh, how cute you are!" Margaret said. "Come here so I can see you better." At that, the kitten creeped out of the bush and curled up in her lap and started to purr.

All day Margaret played with the kitten and her dolls by the pond. She dressed the kitten in a bonnet and they had a tea party. When it came time to go home, Margaret could not leaved the kitten there. "You will come home with me little girl." said Margaret. "I will feed you and we will be best friend." Then Margaret remembered what her Father said about having cats around his chickens. "I know Daddy would not let me keep you. Let me talk to Mother, I know she'll find a way."

She got home just before her father and begged her Mom to let her keep the little kitten. Mom said," If you keep her out of your Father's sight, and away from the chickens, I can't see how she could do any harm."

5 Posted by Hello
That night Margaret found herself a huge shoe box and placed it under her bed for the kitten to sleep in. She brought the kitten milk and scraps of from her dinner.

For several months Margaret would carry her kitten everywhere in the shoe box. When se went to school, she let the kitten play in the schoolyard until she got out. Every day the kitten would be waiting next to the box for Margaret. They were such good friends!

6 Posted by Hello
One day, Margaret noticed that her cat was getting very fat. Mom said, "I believe you kitty is going to have babies of her own." Margaret was so excited. "But, how will I hide her and her babies from Daddy?"

That night Margaret's Mother explained to her Father about the kitten, and how well Margaret had raised her to be a good cat. When he found out that cat was due to have kittens any day, he said it was alright to keep her as long and she did not go outside near the chickens.

Margaret was going to have to give away the babies when they were old enough though. Margaret was so happy, she hugged her cat all night long. The the next day, Mom prepared a box in the kitchen for the babies to be born in.

At dinner time, Margaret's father brought three baby chicks in the kitchen and put them temporarily in the box. "Well have to protect these babies. The mother hen got too near the pig pen and it accidentally killed her. Without their mother, these chicks will not live out there alone." said Father. "I trust your cat will have the sense to leave them alone tonight. If she doesn't she'll have to go too!"

7 Posted by Hello
Margaret was dressing to visit her Grandmother and while she dressed, her cat was laying on the bed watching. Margaret whispered, " Please take care of the baby chicks tonight and make sure nothing happens to them. Daddy will be very angry if you hurt them." The cat just looked up at her and purred.

All evening long, Margaret worried about her cat and the baby chicks. She couldn't wait to hurry home and make sure they were alll right.
When they arrived home, Margaret ran for the kitchen door.

What a surprise they all had when they walked in the door! There in the box was Margaret's cat licking and washing the three baby chicks and along side her were three darling newborn kittens! Father was amazed to see a cat take care of baby chickens.

9 Posted by Hello

From that day on, wherever the momma cat went, three kittens and three chickens followed. The chicks grew up believing that cat was their mother, and nothing could seperate them.

What a sight to see. That momma cat walking down the path with three kittens and chicks close behind!

Margaret's father could not believe his eyes. He grew to love the cat as much as Margaret did. He never again was afraid to have her or her babies around his chickens, for he knew that she was a SPECIAL cat.

10 Posted by Hello


Mother- in- Law, Margaret

Back in 1988 and 1989 my Mother-in-law, Margaret was diagnosed with cancer of the lower spine after she complained of pain in her leg, and back. It was discovered that cancer had already eaten holes into her spine and was fast eating away more.

Margaret was no easy woman to live with, but still, she at some times , would help my husband and I. and would put us up for a while we looked for another apartment to live in. She also helped my husband with caring for my first daughter as a baby while I worked days. Being a young, inexperience Dad, sometimes he was just didn' know what to do. Specially if the baby got sick. We all got along a lot better though when we didn't actually live with her, and would just love our visiting her.

She always had great pride of her belongings, and took good care of them. Living room furniture was covered in plastic seat covers, and the kitchen was the main seating place for visitors and family alike.

She always was ready to offer cookies and coffee or meals in that kitchen, and would make a big spread of goodies for visitors, weather you were hungry or not. She would go through so much trouble that naturally you would want to have something, just to be sociable with her.
She'd share whatever she could to help someone less fortunate and food was one thing she would have plenty of.

She hated seeing anyone go hungry, because she knew hunger as a young girl growing up in the the 1920's and 1930'. She was always ready to pack up a sack full of goodies for you to take home if you told her that you were short of money and didn't have enough food to make it to payday.

She lost her husband in early 1972 to 6 gunmen that had surrounded him in front of their house in Detroit, to rob him upon his return from work one night. She stood in the front door screaming for her husband to get into the house as the men surrounded him and shot him 6 times at close range. She drug her husband into the house and called police, while the gunmen scattered. They were never caught. He lived 2 days, then died from his wounds. This happened on the eve of his retirement and two days before their 40th wedding anniversary. The family then sold her house and moved her to the suburbs and a peaceful home.

She lived 17 years in the suburbs and that's when she was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

That's when my husband's 5 of 6 sisters and I decided to helped nurse her and make her last year or so as comfortable as we could. The one sister, lived out of town, and came when she could. We decided to take shifts taking care of her. Some sisters did not work and some did, but we managed a schedule where someone was with her day and night in 12 hour shifts. I took the weekends since I worked weekdays.

At first she could walk with a walker and sit in a chair. Later we had to rent a hospital bed for her and doctors and/or nurses would come to the home to see about her care and increase her medication as needed. Hospice stepped in when things got worse, and as the cancer later spread to her lungs an other organs.

During the long evenings caring for her, we would prepare her meals, and give her her medications as prescribed. We spent many hours talking to her and keeping her spirits up. The most delightful times we had with her is when she shared stories of her life with us.

She told us of times as a young girl with her younger brother in E. St. Louis, Illinois. She was the daughter of fairly poor parents. She told of dressing herself at five and her little brother, and only having bread, butter and sugar to make a meal from while her Mom and Dad worked during the day. Their favorite place to play was along the banks of the Mississippi or in the railroad yards among the train cars. She had fond memories of the fun they would make from found items and little things she experienced. She grew up a tomboy and could play baseball or other games as well as any boy in her neighborhood.

She shared many memories about playing baseball in school as a teen. And she even helped her team win a championship for her school. I was delighted to call her old high school, where she went in Detroit. (her parents moved up here in her teens.) The school was able to find the old yearbook picture of her and her team with mention of their championship and sent me a copy. She was delighted!

She told me a funny story of her Mom and Dad when she was about 6 or 7. It was about a kitten she had found. Her Dad had told her she could never have one. You see, her Dad kept chickens and some pigs for food in the yard and he didn't want a cat killing his young chicks and eating their much needed food. She told a funny story of how she kept the cat, raised it in secret, and taught it to be live in harmony with chickens.

I wrote a short children's story about that incident and even illustrated in. She loved the story so much, that she hoped that someday I could have it published. I really tried, but after many submittals to children's publishers and many letters of refusal I gave up. I still have the original, and have copied it to all the family. Now, I have one medium to publish it, and share it with other people and it will be forthcoming in this blog.

As I was saying, after a year, the cancer took her but she left a little bit more of her with us with the stories she told us, of her life, family history as she knew it, other little pieces of herself she shared. Im happy and honored that I was able to help her during those times, and record some of the information she shared for posterity. And to call her Mom even though I had lost mine to cancer only a few years before. At least I was able to share a special time with her that I will cherish forever............


An Iraqi Family who cares


If you want some interesting reading concerning what's happening to the other side of the War in Iraq try reading Raed's blog, along with his Mother's, Faisa , who writes about the terror of living in fear, of the bombs. Her hopes for her children in a Mother's perspective. You can view whats happening and how they are looking forward to free country and trying to learn all they can about Democracy and what they can do to help people.

It gives you another perspective about the war and it's effects, other than what the national news reports tell us there. Don't get me wrong, I'm also reading American Soldier blogs, and all the news reports I can stomach. Getting as well rounded a view of the full story from all angles as I can get.


Noah's Ark

This just came in an email from my cousin Lorie, Author Uknown:

Everything I need to know about life, I learned from Noah's Ark .. One:
Don't miss the boat. Two: Remember that we are all in the same boat. Three:
Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark. Four: Stay fit. When
you're 600 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big. Five:
Don't listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.
Six: Build your future on high ground. Seven: For safety's sake, travel in
pairs. Eight: Speed isn't always an advantage. The snails were on board
with the cheetahs. Nine: When you're stressed, float a while. Ten:
Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.
Eleven: No matter the storm, when you are with God, there's always a
rainbow waiting...Pass this along and make someone else smile, too

Mommy's Place IS at HOME

Yes, a Mommy's Place is at home and so many times I wish I still had mine around to share with her the wonderful family I have and the many times we've had together.

But, alas, mine passed away back in January 1972 from ovarian cancer at the tender age of 45. I was married in 1970 and had one daughter and age 1-1/2 and pregnant with another who was born January 3, of 1972 only days before my mother's passing on the 12th of January, so she never got to see and know my children very much.

My mother, Jeannine had a sad life. She was born in 1926 in Sudbury Ontario Canada when her mother was in her late 30's because her mother had spent the time to nurse her own mother with the same cancer. Right after my mother she also had my Aunt Yvette and I understand my mother and her sister were quite close.

After her mother's passing, her father tried to raise the girls the best he could, but I understand the early 1930's was a tough time for everyone. He had taken on a job as a logger, and had to bring the girls to the logging camp in the summer in order to work. I understand that the girls got lice and generally had a rough life that year. He later worked for the railroad and had to travel a lot out of town to make a living. He died while on one of those trips in Montreal from contracting cerebral Meningitis. Being that it was very contagious, I understand he had to be buried there quickly. That left my mother and her sister orphans at the tender ages of 6 and 5!

I supposed that nobody in the family was able to take in the kids and help raise them at the time, so my mother and her sister went to a Catholic orphanage and lived a very depraved life with no love or hugs or Christmas presents, and very strict catholic nuns running their lives. The only thing my mother ever shared with me about that time was when the orphanage caught fire during their stay, my Mom and her sister hidden in a closet in fright and firemen fortunately found them in time and saved them.

Mom and her sister lived there until they were about 17 and 16, when two Aunts on her Mother's side took them in, each to a different Aunt, but at least still together in the same town.

The Aunt who took my Mom already had several children herself but was kind enough to take one more on. At least she was again surrounded with loving family around her, who saw that she was dressed properly and developed into one beautiful young woman.

She eventually moved with that family to Detroit during War time and left her Sister in Sudbury. She found a job in one of the skyscrapers downtown running an elevator. She was able to get a room of her own from a old family friend who owned an apartment building in River Rouge becoming an independent woman. She called that old family friend Aunty Bert, even though they were not actually related.

Things were looking up for her, and that's when my Mom met my Dad, in a dance hall in Detroit called the Greystone Ballroom. They had what I think of as her great romance and she fell in love with a handsome prince charming who had come into her life and changed it forever for her.

I guess hardships during the War caused her to loose her job downtown, and because she had no money to keep up her rent, Aunty Bert told her she would have to leave her building and find somewhere else to live. That's when my Dad, begged his Mother to take in his future wife in their extra bedroom in the attic of his house in Hamtramck until he could afford to marry her and get their own home.

In August, 1948 they were married and honeymooned in Sudbury, taking her little Sister back home from their wedding. I guess that's when I was made, I was born 9 months from then in May.

During that time my mother studied and got her American citizenship. They eventually moved into and upstairs apartment downtown with me as a baby. Later they got their first house in Madison Heights that they both finished together as they bought it as a shell and had to finish the inside themselves. I was 4 going on 5 then, and I still remember many things from that home.

I remember she always threw me wonderful birthday parties with all my friends, something I know she probably never experienced herself. She was always home for me to make me breakfasts and be there when I came home from school.

But,alas, I was a Daddy's girl, and I loved to help Dad either helping him build his first garage, or wheeling a wheelbarrow and digging for a slab for our patio on our second house in Madison Heights. I was always out with Daddy, helping him and getting my hands dirty with him. Later too, I would even be under the car with him if the car needed work and fetching tools for him and learning how things worked. I even became a fisherman at a very young age, and would go out with him like any son would do. We even went out icefishing in the winter, and he would rent a shanty and watch the fish swimming below us, while nice and cozy inside the heated shanty. He would bring a big thermos of coffee with lots of milk to keep us warm inside and sandwiches to fill our bellies. I guess that's why I am so mechanically inclined, because of all that Dad taught me.

Momma was always at home, ready to make a good, simple meal, and I loved her so, but took her for granted I'm afraid in those days. My mother did work some part time jobs to help out my Dad financially occasionally, but she was either working at night, or weekends, when I was not aware she was gone. She was I understand was a good waitress and could make good tips when she worked. She was liked by whomever she worked with.

My little sister, Nancy was born when I was seven and we all had great summer vacations, either going to Sudbury to see family relations or renting cottages on Lake St. Clair or Lake Huron. Once we took a great trip up North in a rented little trailer camper and we circled Lake Superior. We drove up through the Soo Locks and into Canada following the top of Superior through very thick desolate forests, to the meeting of Canada with Wisconsin, then back through the upper peninsula and back down to the lower. What an unforgettable experience that was.

I didn't become really close to Mom until I was in high school and was old enough to drive. I was working weekends in a Nursing home as a nurse's aid and she was working lunch hours in a bowling alley bar as a waitress. I used to drive her to work and sit with her and talk about many things while she folded cloth napkins into bishop's hats for the tables. She would tell me things and I would talk about myself and my work and I found we really made a bond then as two working women.

When I met my husband at 18 he had been married a few months and had a baby boy with his then wife, but they did not get along and he had moved back in with his mother and was seeking a divorce, because he knew she was not right for him. When we became serious, I spent all my free hours with him after work and weekends, and stayed out all hours of the night. My Dad got furious one evening, he did not like me dating a "married" man, even if he was getting a divorce, and because my Daddy was loosing his little girl.
Dad locked the front and back doors and locked up my car into the garage so I could not take it. He had co-signed for me. My husband, Barlow and I went to a motel for the night, and in the morning I went home and packed some of my belongings and clothes and announced that since I couldn't be free to be with my beloved when I wanted then we would just move out to be together. My Mom tried to talk me out of it, but Dad's move of locking me out of my own house was my last straw.

For a while, we visited, and my mother even planned and threw my entire wedding and party for me, for we didn't have the money to throw one ourselves. And I was 8 months pregnant with my first daughter. Mom insisted on taking us and the entire wedding party including my little sister Nancy, my witnesses, beloved Aunt Sally and Uncle Ed to a restaurant for dinner after saying our vows before a justice of the piece in his St.Clair Shores home.

Mom tried to hold the family together, all the while my Dad was seething about the man I picked and the lost of his daughter he loved so much.

Mom threw a beautiful party in their basement the next night for Barlow's sisters. It was a very small wedding party because nobody got the invitations I sent a week before, and if I hadn't called several of them just before the party and checked if they were coming, nobody would have known. Only 3 of his 6 sisters and their husbands could make it.

Dad kept his distance and we kept ours, not visiting too much, until that frightful day that he called me at work and told me that Mom was operated on and was filled with ovarian cancer and had just had a hysterectomy and was in the hospital. That night I went to see her and she was so little and covered in tubes and so weak. I fainted at the sight! My Mom was never so sick in her life.

I was working and raising a daughter in a Detroit apartment on just my salary and my husband's disability income from and industrial broken arm injury and could not be at my Mom's side like I would have wanted to.

For a while, my Mom seemed to get a little better, and she was back home with my little sister. Dad told me that they didn't tell my Mom that she had such a bad case of cancer, but I'm sure she knew. My Dear Aunt Sally would help take Mom for cancer treatments or doctor appointments when my Dad couldn't miss so much work, because he needed to keep up the medical insurance he got from work.

For Christmas 1971, my Mother insisted on my Dad finding me, which he did by calling my Mother-in-law to find me, and inviting us for Christmas Eve. We came and I was astonished to see my Mother had changed from a portly woman to almost a skeleton of only 98 lbs.! She was very weak and almost a shadow of what she once had been. Little did I know that it was her last Christmas.

Right after I came home from having my second daughter I went over their house to show them both my new baby and when I got there, he told me that she was in the hospital again, for some kind of bleeding ulcer and she needed blood donated to replace the blood that they have given her. He took a Polaroid picture to Mom that night of my baby daughter so she at least saw the pic.

Little did I know that Mom passed away during that hospital stay, and I never got to see her and tell her so many things I would have wanted to say, specially how much I did love her and how sorry I was for hurting her and moving out like I did with no regard for her feelings about it. IF I COULD ONLY HAVE ONE MORE CHANCE TO TELL HER ALL THOSE THINGS I SHOULD HAVE TOLD HER SO MANY TIMES AND YEARS AGO, I CAN'T TELL YOU HOW MUCH I REGRET IT! IF ONLY I HAD ONE MORE TIME WITH HER..........

If you still have your parents, hug them and kiss them today, because your never sure that they'll be there tomorrow, and then it's too late to tell them anything.

(I have spent over 3- 1/2 hours writing this, but it has been needed saying and I've had a great cry while doing it, but it was worth every minute of it. Maybe Mom can read this too wherever she is and cry with me because of it. I feel a little better from telling it.)


Let me tell you about these GREAT Grandkids I have!

Now, Sarah age 7 going on 8 and Mathew or Buddy as we call him is now 4 going on 5 both in January and they are the children on my youngest daughter Wendy who is the more sensitive of my daughters, who reflects the quieter side of me, like I was as a young girl. She has had learned to be more outspoken in self defense as I did as I grew up.

Sarah is a beautiful shy young girl who loves her pet cat and it loves her tremendously too. She loves all animals and cherishes everything she owns and saves everything. She protects her things and tries to keep her little brother from destroying them. She does share willingly always keeping an eye on her things and keeping them close around her. She has the most beautiful olive skin and dark brown eyes that is someday going to mezmorize some young man into love with her. She a product of both the our Italian side and the American Indian other side of her heritage. She is smart and amazes me with her capacity for genuine love and tenderness. She has a talent for art like her Mother and me, and possibly may pursue further studies in that direction, who knows! If you got the talent, you should use it. I did for a while, but I didn't go far enough to make it a career. I just never made a lot of money from it.

Mathew, or Buddy is a charming and smart 4 year old. He's still slow in talking clearly, but he has no trouble asking for what he wants, and he's not inhibited in showing his smarts. He's been able to play computer games that would stump an older kid since he was old enough to move a mouse and sit up at the computer. He's big enough to look like a 7 year old, and who knows, might become a great football player or something, but I'm betting that soon he will show us that he has great things in that little mind of his and could be the next Einstein or whatever he chooses in his future. He is loving and has no qualms in showing it with great hugs and kisses. I see great things for this kid someday, just wait and see.....

Sarah Posted by Hello

Mathew (Buddy is his nickname) Posted by Hello

Let me tell you about my Grandkids!

Below you will find pics of my two oldest Grandkids, Darin who is 10 and Amber who is 9 now. They are the greatest Grandkids a Grandma could have. They are the children of my dear daughter Caroline who helps me so much and has shared so much of my pain and problems I've had with my health.

Darin is a smart and sensitive boy, sure he likes to tease his sister sometimes, but he's a good boy and is kind and easy going and will do anything for you without complaint. He loves his computer games and his Gameboy handheld and is naturally good at them. I have high hopes that he keeps the same attitude and really becomes a great young man someday. And I sure hope I will still be here to see him grow up and be all that he can be, and maybe see him marry some pretty little girl who will love his great personality.

Amber is a lover of animals and such an inquisitive,spunky, and opinionated young lady. That makes her so special. She can never have enought pets, and has several types in her managerie right now. She is ready and willing to adopt any lost or hurt animal, bird, and even baby field mice if she might find them slipped into her house. She even plays with insects outside and tries to nurse baby birds who have fallen out of their nests. Even if you tell her its impossible to save them, she has to try her darndest, even if she has to hide them and stay up all night and try to feed them worms or bread in secret. I admire her spunk and energy, of which she has enough for 10 kids her age. Still she can be a little girl, and a young lady and loves to help people in need of her help. Her teacher tells her mother that she loves to assist the other students who haven't quite caught on. Now if she wasn't so busy rearranging things constantly in her room, her Mother would like her to keep it neat for at least a day! LOL! I have great hopes for her to be some kind of vet or doctor and save the world, and be a independant strong young woman.
Next my two youngest Grandkids, Sarah and Mathew from my youngest daughters family.

Amber Posted by Hello

Darin Posted by Hello


Gammamom Posted by Hello


A Little bit more about Me

Like I originally said, I am a Mother and a Grandmother as well as a wife. Until January of this year I had worked for 16 years for a construction products distributor as the general manager, and until last year the only person running the day to day business.
I met many nice customers, and developed a good working relationship with many long time customers who I considered friends too. I did all the customer service writing up their orders, helping them select the right materials to use, and keeping up files on computer of all their purchases and account information.
I was in charged of keeping track of inventory, ordering more stock and expediting it into the shop, doing all the shipping by UPS or whatever needed and keeping it in order in the shop. I even drove the Hilo to unload trucks and move stock around. I was very good at keeping popular items in stock and not ordering too much that would have to be scrapped if over shelf life. During that time I never got any vacation, because the owner didn't pay for vacations, and only the minimal days of Holidays.
That was until last July when I got sick with Flesh Eating Bacterial infection last summer in July in a private area and spent 4 weeks in the hospital with 4 surgeries to remove both the infection and debrade dead skin. It took me two weeks out of the hospital and then I ended back in due to three blood clots that had formed in my leg and lungs, making it painful and difficult to breath with every step. Anyways.. I spent another week in the hospital to get rid of that.. during the big black out of 2003 yet!
Since I was the only one who usually ran the place, the boss's granddaughter did the best she could to quickly learn to run the place. She had to leave for her first teaching job out of college, and she trained her boyfriend who stayed. During the weeks I was in the hospital, the owner passed away after many months of fighting cancer of the lungs and brain and other things. The boyfriend did alright and was eager to learn. The son of the owner took over as my supervisor under his Mom who inherited the business from her husband.
When I finally returned in late September, the son was going to make the boyfriend an "on the road salesman" as he learned the business and I would continue to run the store. That continued until early January, when naturally, the business slowed down quite a bit. THEN! The Son actually laid me off instead of the kid. His reasoning was that he couldn't afford both of our salaries and he wanted the kid to stay and learn more, and try to drum up more business from new customers.

During January, February and March, and April I was collecting unemployment and was working a few hours here on call, until business picked up when the kid needed to go out and see a potential new customer. It was on May 7 th I had my stroke and ended my career in that company and I was actually scheduled to work for them. Let me note here too, that I rarely missed a sick day in all those 16 years unless I was so sick that I had to be hospitalized for a day, like the time I had a kidney stone and missed a day, or when my Dad passed away in Florida and had the fly out on Friday I left and returned to work again on Monday. Otherwise I was always there. That's gratitude for ya! HA! HA! No retirement fund, no nothing!


This morning I had my leg checked at the hospital, they did a thing called doppler that can dected if there's anything blocking my leg arteries. They didn't find any so I am so lucky. I guess it's just muscle strain and I should be alright.. so far.
The doppler is kind of like ultrasound but can read blood pressure too.


Glad to be home

Hi Everyone.
I have been home for little more than a week and a half and am still very swollen and numb, but relatively no pain. I think as the swelling is going down, the numbness might subside slowly too. I have a pretty big cut, from just below the ear to just above the collar bone, but the doc says I was lucky he got in there when he did, as two clots were breaking off and trying to work their way up to my brain which would have caused another stroke.

I'm having a little muscle pain in the back of my left leg, and remembering an illness I had last year, it turned out to be a blood clot forming in my left leg and had to go into the hospital again for some clot busting drugs because I was also having two clots in my lungs and one in my leg from all the bed rest I had that time. I think I will contact my doctor, just in case he wants to check it out to be sure. I then had returned to the hospital because I could barely catch my breath too.

My daughters were just great, standing by me and making sure I was comfortable and doing well as soon as I was out of surgery and each day thereafter. Even when I got home they helped me clean house and get my medicines and make sure I was comfortable. Luckily I had the prayers and best wishes from my family, my husband, by Aunt Sally and Uncle Ed, and several other family and friends who were all concerned about me and really cared about what happened to me. I am still weak and need to build up my strength some more, but I feel pretty great considering what I've been through these past few months.

This Wednesday I completed the last medical test that was required by Social Security, so that should lead to a decision in the next 2-3 weeks from now. I hope they decide for me, as I will never be able to qualify for work as I had done in the past. More about that later....


Well I Survived

Well, I survived the surgery and have been recovering at home. Thanks to both my daughters who helped and prayed and are trying to do everything to help me through this time. More Later......

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Well, here I go again! I'm scheduled for surgery again for this Monday. I sure hope to get this over with and stop my worrying. Wouldn't you know that the doctor had gotten called for jury duty and had to wait to find out when before he could be sure he could schedule me.

I'm very nervous about this surgery. I hope it comes off without any complications. Has anyone else had any experience with this surgery can tell me more about it? It's to open up a blockage of the carotid artery.


Dealing with Social Security

I've just gotten a letter from social security that they will dismiss my case unless I appear for their physicals and they will not re-schedule them a second time as each one were scheduled during a time when I was re-scheduled for surgery.

That means that if I don't appear this Friday that the 5 months I have waited thus far will be lost. I have to convince my doctor to do my surgery by Tuesday, so I can be out by next Thursday or else hold off my surgery until after next Friday and stand the possibility of my artery closing and having a huge stroke in the next few days.

I have been off my blood thinning meds for just over a week. I'm getting worried now...I pray to God that it all works out. After being a working woman for the past 36 or more years I deserve the disability money I worked for all those years. I certainly won't qualify for any new job if I tried to apply, and I would not be able to perform work like I did before the stroke. I have not been notified about when my surgery will be re-scheduled again.


Today, again for the second time my surgery was postponed this type due an emergency surgery for my doctor. The first time on September 27th was due to my blood being too thin and not clotting. I had to stay off my blood thinners all week so I will not bleed to death. Today the hospital called and told me about the emergency that called my doctor away. I am getting nervouse that I may have another stroke before the doctor is able to clear my artery of the obstruction. I'm waiting now for the surgery to be re-scheduled.

I got to hand it to my oldest daughter for sticking by me in this. There's a lot of running around and re-scheduling going on and she has been great trying to work with my schedules and be there for me. She drives me to everything as well as taking me grocery shopping and the bank. I owe her a lot for all her help. I love having her with me in times like this. She understands and stands by me in times of problems.


Today I found out that my surgery is scheduled for September 27th. I will hear more later this week as far as the details go. I will have to see the hospital this week for blood tests and find out more details as far as time and see the anastesiologist.


A Stroke for my Birthday?

Recently,in May, the morning of my birthday, I woke up to find weakness on my right side and slurring of my speach. I was taken to the hospital where it was discovered that I had a slight stroke for my 55th birthday! I am so lucky that this stroke did not paralize me, but I have lost the sense of pain sensation of hot or cold in my right hand and cannot control my hand very well. I have also lost much of the taste of food on most of the inside of my tongue and mouth. I have a little droop on the right side of my mouth, I slur my speach a little,and my muscles are weak, but can walk fairly well, and use a cane more for balance and climbing stairs or walking on rough surfaces.

I found out during my hospitalization that my left carotid artery is about 99% closed up in the area leading to my brain, and have to have that artery opened and cleaned out soon or I stand the chance of having another stroke with more severe repercussions. I have just finished testing of my heart to make certain my heart did not have more blockages and could withstand the surgery. Now I am just waiting for the surgery to be scheduled. This surgery is scarry, and I hope everything turns out alright.

I would love to hear from others who have had this same surgery done, and how their experiences were like. I should be scheduled any time this month.

Momma's Place at Home

Hi! I am Gammamom and I am a 55 year old mother and grandma. As I can I will post my thoughts about myself and people I know.