Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Mary Trying on "Hi Ho" Shoes - for Fun

I SURE hope that pair of shoes is for a very petite older woman and not for a little child.
All the charm of a Vegas show girl....

She calls them "Hi Ho" shoes instead of high heel shoes.

Very 7 dwarf-ish sounding.

"Hi Ho. Hi Ho. It's off to work we go."

Mary said, "I love you....oh so lot."

I believe she was trying to say "oh so much".
I'm sure I use this term.

We were out and about last week, and she saw a bag of marshmallows and said, 
"Look mom. Mushrooms."

So - before the afternoon dental appointments yesterday, I used my birthday/Christmas gift cards to buy a new pair of walking shoes.

I bought my last pair so I could walk up The Great Wall of China.
March - 2013
For my trip to adopt Molly

Some folks would say I was long overdue in getting another pair...but...

lean more toward the persuasion of, "Let's use 'um up. Wear 'um out."

My own girls have worn shoes a little past the time of - uh - how do I say this....uh - past the time that many girls (these days) might wear them.
It's fine.
Their psyches are not scarred.
We don't just run out and buy, buy, buy.

Actually - I'd say 75% of every shoe (for Emily and Mary only) that's been in this house was a gift from someone or great hand me downs from others -- mostly hand me downs.

Molly's shoes are custom fitted and made to coincide with her AFO (brace). 
Bless her heart.
We go to doctor's offices to get her shoes. 

The girls are so appreciative of what they have, and yes.
They love to shop -- but they love a bargain.
They're typical girls in that respect, and we have so much fun having "girl time" shopping.

I have fun along with them, but I'm not a shopper.
I give up too easily.
For someone as hard headed as I am, if I don't find what I need or cannot locate a clerk to help me...I've been known to tear up (almost cry) and walk out of a department store.

Seriously. I'm not kidding.

But....yesterday the clerk, Adrienne - a nursing school student who has helped me in the past at this this specialty sport shoe store - measured my feet - sitting standing measurements. 
She gave great advice, 
I took the first pair of shoes brought out.
They worked perfectly.

I wore them out of the store, and while at the dentist, Dr. Susan (a runner) said, "Gotcha some new kicks?"
I was sorta glad I didn't have on my former pair. They did seem pretty 'dire' compared to the new ones.

I just don't notice things like that. 
Others obviously do.

I may re-think my fashion choices in 2016.

And what -say ye - was that sonic boom you just heard?
It was my mother praising the Lord that her prayers are being answered.

Femininity might just be looming on the horizon.
Hope springs eternal.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Day 1 of Holiday Medical Appointments

Molly is reading Little Men while waiting for the orthotist to fine tune her shoes.
This usually takes hours, but our tech - Mrs. Dawn - used measurements that she had on file.

Molly loves this book and was reading aloud to me while Emily pushed Mary around on the tech's rolling stool.
This is an old copy of the book.
It has a check out stamp from 1968.
We got it from the church library.

We both laughed at the part where Rob - a boy who lives at Plumfield - is awed by a little girl "with long golden hair, dainty dress, and lofty ways."

The book says, "...he considered her a sort of doll and dared not touch her lest she should break."

I laughed cuz Molly laughed.
I do love the choice of words and phrases in this dear little story.

Mary read to us, too, after she finished a little even number counting and some time telling practice with me.

Her story was about an umpire.
Not as intriguing as Louisa May Alcott's Rob and his little doll princess friend.

Just making some profitable use of time while we wait!

Mary Made This Heart on Nanny Carol's Coffee Table

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas Pics

That's Piper - the Penguin
She coos and makes sweet little sounds.

Mary let Ms. Donna hold Piper when Ms. D came over yesterday to bring my birthday cake and gifts galore.  

Little Missy let Ms. Donna cuddle with Piper
Asked her to please not push any buttons.
"...that'll run the batteries down!"

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Yup. It's My Birthday.

(Marlene's Artwork.)

You know it's a kicker when your child comes up to you on a religious holiday and says, "Mama - The toilet won't flush and water is coming up real high..."


Thank goodness we were headed to Nanny Carol's for Christmas.

In all fairness, there is a #2 potty in our house.

So...guess what I bought myself today for my birthday?
#1. An accordion style plunger
Because the rubber half bowl shaped one can reverse itself and flick toilet bowl contents and liquid(s) onto my face
**** It happened. ****


#2. That's a Freudian slip.
"Number two"
The other birthday present I excitedly bought myself was a commode "snake"
a.k.a. toilet auger 

And boy did I ever have me some happy birthday fun.

Forrest (Robin's hubbie) said, "Geesh. Your birthdays sound like mine."

Had a great day with family.
Marlene and Donna came over and spoiled us all.

Her Sisters Dressed Her Up "Goofy" and Had Her Pose

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Cards & Crafts for Jesus

Molly made the sheep from a Philadelphia Creme Cheese box.
I love the creativity!

Emily's sweet creation

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Bethlehem's Cradle - Calvary's Cross

A wooden cradle
A wooden cross
Together they would redeem the lost
One not complete without the other
Both were required 
Sin's debt to cover 

(G.Jeffries - author)

Making Happy Birthday Banner for Jesus

Mary did this of her own accord.
Some one of us must've helped with spelling.
She cut her banner out
With swirly curves
And taped it to our gate - between the dining/kitchen/laundry area and the living room/rest of the house.

The gate helps me corral dogs and dirt!

Well...not dirt
But possibly leaves

Dirt and dust in this house have spiritual characteristics.
They seem to be omnipresent.

We're doing a little chopping - celery, pickle, and boiled eggs for our yummy chicken salad -- dinner after the Christmas Eve service to tonight.

Most everything -not all - has been completed.

The girls are going to write little birthday cards to Jesus.
I thought that would be a reflective way to express thoughts...and ponder the day approaching.
Keeping the focus!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

We Love Ms. Ouida - 92 years difference between them

This precious saint is is 98 years young.
Can you believe it?
She's a doll.

Family friend.
 A Treasure!!!

Coppin' a Squat - Eating Pineapple on Tupperware on the Floor

Monday, December 21, 2015

Cookie Took Them Shopping and Bought Them These Outfits

Sweet huh?
Cook's got good taste - very feminine.
I dress more like a farmhand.

Cookie's real name is not Cookie.
It's Waudean -- "Wah-dean".
Never known anyone with that name.

Actually her first name is Mary.
I one time asked her, "Uhmmm...why didn't you 'go by' Mary?"

To each his own.

We've been friends for years.
We met while teaching.
She was the Counselor at my school.
She lives in another town and is now retired.

We meshed.
Big time.
We both love vintage relics.
Mine have to be from my own family -- which means no antique store buying of items.
I look but don't touch.

She'll buy anything anywhere.

We used to take our lunches to school - as adults/educators - and wrap our sandwiches in Cut Rite Wax Paper.
It reminded us of our childhoods.
We both have happy memories of being children.

Years ago -- pre-children -- she gave me the most darling set of old timey autumn dishes from a Pentecostal church yard sale.
They're under the bed at Nanny Carols's house.
The dishes.
Not the Pentecostals.
Mom pulls the dishes out some years.
I really enjoy them - but have all the dishes I can fit in my house.

Anyhoo - at Cookie's mom's funeral back in two thousand something, she was sitting across the table from me.
We were in the fellowship hall at their small country church.
We were eating the covered dish meal provided by church members.

I'm talkin' Hooterville.
Precious folks!
No Arnold Ziffle kinda people, tho.

Back to the fellowship hall conversation.
Waudean said, "Ya know. I think I want a another name. A cute name. A happy name - like Cookie."

My response, "Cookie it is."

Sooooo - that's how her alternate name came about.

She's an angel-like kinda friend.
Loves people.
All people.
And animals.

Married at 40 years of age.
She was almost an old maid like me.

She took the girls out for their annual jaunt to the Hallmark Store to get their yearly Hallmark ornament.
This is her little tradition.

Last year they all went while I was in China for Mary's adoption.
This year they went while Mary was in school, and Em and Molly picked out her 1st Hallmark ornament.

We are blessed to have such kind and loving friends who enrich our lives.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Ballet - Classic Songs and Christian Emphasis

It was a beautiful presentation!

The older 2 girls are wearing one of their Christmas coats (on sale...bought a month ago.)

Mary's glasses broke, and she's getting a whole new frame.
I suggested she take her beloved binoculars.

With one of the ballerinas

My iPhone camera does not capture people in the light of bright staging.
Time to upgrade.

These 2 male dancers were incredible.
The one on the right said he was 'blessed by adoption and was adopted from the Philippines as a baby."
His family lives in Maryland.

Notice his arm/hand on Molly's shoulder.
Uh hum.

The young fella next to Emily is from Colorado. 

I'm so glad we made time to attend the ballet tonight.
Nanny Carol came, too.
Great time!!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

WHERE is that button?

The button that I obviously trigger when I sit down on on the potty.

The button that subconsciously signals to brains and beating hearts in this 1,475 sq.ft. dwelling that I am seated in the bathroom
on a round ring 
of porcelain.

** My mother is clutching the pearls at this point in reading this post. **

The button that causes every child under this roof to think of some random question that could've been asked at any point during the last 247 days....and moves them directionally to the very spot where I am to inquire about said topic of thought.
"Mama - why is there pinwheel pasta in your makeup drawer?"
"Mama - did you get dry skin between your toes when you were a little girl?"
"Mama - do we have to change our sheets again this year, or do we only do that during months that start with A?"

They may just want to have a conversation.

I'd think this is hilarious if I didn't find it sooo incredibly coincidental.
And I'm not talking about just the 6 y/o almond eyed angel.

It's the whole kit-n-kaboodle!!!
Even the animals bust up in there.
(Maybe I should get a covered litter box.)

And I'm not at my best appearance-wise when this caravan of kids and critters comes journeying my way
in the bathroom
attached to my bedroom
while I'm 
"using the facilities".

I know. 
I know.
Lock the door.

Friday, December 18, 2015

"Mama Olaf and her baby...", said Mary.

Thank you, Janet!

2014 - She gave Mary the big Olaf.
2015 - Baby Olaf comes along.

At our house, we don't care too much about Daddy Olaf.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Mary's Angel - She Only Colored It

I love the pale face, black Chinese hair, and brown hands.
She did a good job with her coloring.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

She Is So Thrilled With Learning To Count By 2's

She asked me, "Do you want to take my picture?"
I said, "Absoltely!"

We're leaving the little numbers behind and making mathematical sense of a hundreds chart.

That's a Horizons kindergarten math book - B (for second half of year).
I ordered it a long time ago so I could provide math experiences along the line of national expectations.

She's ready.
We discuss math concepts in the car when traveling to school -
Counting by 5's
Simple time telling with a clock that moves with gears as the long hand/minute hand moves 
Money - talking about 10 pennies = 1 dime, playing with piggy banks and coin purses 

Gotta remember -- Mary didn't even know the term "penny" until 2015.
Or nickel
Or dime
Or sun
Or moon
Or any English words

All new vocabulary words to her!!

She's done well! 
She works hard...but we try to make it fun, not time consuming, and of course...
We always hope to make everything a learning experience and a field trip.

This was Mary's Job While we Cooked Christmas Goodies

Monday, December 14, 2015

Fantasy Fudge and Chex Party Mix

I can only make the Christmas fudge in that very pan because that's how it's always been done.

Mom and I have a combined total of 43 copies of this fudge recipe...cuz Kraft quit printing it in the back label 
Probably back during the Reagan administration.

It was only on the Kraft marshmallow cream container...not on any off brands.
Often - stores were out of the Kraft version and we'd have to get a rouge brand.
Jet puffed?!?
No recipe on them there containers.

I'd finally find the Kraft Fantasy Fudge recipe -- somehow -- write it down and then not find it in time for the next year's cooking session right before Christmas.

So I'd sheepishly asked mom for her nice typed copy of the recipe from her file folder in the cabinet over the washing machine. 
You know.
The good ole Kenmores from Sears-- the washers that lasted 25+ years.

Then she'd lecture me about how many copies I've had and misplaced.

There was a year or two through the decades when she couldn't find her sacred copy of the recipe.
So we'd go searching for some lone copy and then make more copies.

This recipe just took on a life of its own.

So it was time to make our annual batch. 
Mom had one of her copies- attached to a small clipboard.
Very official
Very intimidating.

See the girls smiling?
They have no clue how they are preserving family history. 

I would never tell mom that I cannot put my hands on one single, solitary copy of this fudge recipe (at my house).

I'm determined to keep my part of the recipe irresponsibility in tact.
Like I've said, I'm steeped in tradition!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Another Christmas Tree to Pose in Front Of

I know.
The post's title ends in a preposition.

Don't care.

This gorgeous tree is at church - outside the children's church area.

We recently watched a DVD about The Legend of the Candy Cane.

I guess seeing all the red and white peppermint candy in the photo made me think of that.

It's a sweet little movie with a tender message about the sadness and the splendor of Jesus's life. 

Then there's a personal favorite of mine...

Raise your hand if you love Burl Ives!!
"Have a holly jolly Christmas..."

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Friday Night Christmas Musical - Our View

Magnificent - to say the least 

After the Musical - Celebrating the Birth of the Savior

The sanctuary is decorated beautifully. 
The sacrifice and hard work of these people 
Who've given of their time and talents
To present the Gospel in song.

It was a glorious evening with mom and the girls
And meeting new friends who'd traveled distances to come to be a part of the event.

This is how Emily and Molly watched it.

This is sorta how Mary watched it.

The pre-show activities for kids kept them entertained. Emily took this photo. I told her next time to push Mary's glasses up on her nose.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Another Christmas Book with Emphasis on the Birth of Jesus

Last night's book was about Prancer.
Another about Frosty the Snowman.
I checked out a bunch more this evening at church.
Can't wait.

Waiting on Emily...

I won't say where Emily was, but it starts with a "r" and ends with "estroom"
Shhh. Don't tell. 

Mary had her little Christmas party In church choir tonight.
She's munchin a Christmas cookie and sippin apple juice.

The little cup with juice in it reminded me 
of a urine sample at the doctor's office.

Hand me a black Sharpie.
I know exactly what to do!

Nanny Carol is wearing a Christmas pin her mother sent to her YEARS ago. It's special - to say the least.

Neither she (my grandmother) nor my mother would ever speak of such topics -- as urine specimens and toilets -- publicly.

I think it's hilarious.

Mom gave it her best shot -- to somewhat dignify and confine my subjects of conversation.
She fought a losing battle from Day 1.
sure give her credit for trying, tho!

We celebrated mom's birthday yesterday.
Plan on celebrating a little more this weekend. Ya Hoo.
 The girls gave her homemade coupons - to personally give her massages.

Maybe I should give her coupons offering to refine my speech.

The mother in Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility said, "If you cannot refrain your comments to speaking about the roads and the weather, then it is best you say nothing at all."

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Christmas Stories We are Reading - from Church Library

Story about a little lamb that traveled with a boy shepherd -- and the lamb kept Jesus's feet warm.
I love lambs and little wooly sheep...
And the stories of the Bible.

Just finished this one - for Mary only.
Em and Molly are on a mission.
They're making a birthday card for Nanny Carol.
Her bday is Tuesday.
We're gonna celebrate all week.

Saturday, December 5, 2015