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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Remembering the sting

I just spent a little while in the backyard, stretched out on my bench, watching the birds flit back and forth between the cherry tree and the feeders. So relaxing with the gentle breeze and birdsong. Until I saw the bumblebee. I froze until it buzzed on by.
Some of you may remember my run-in with an angry bumblebee a few years ago as I was gardening in the early morning. I had long-ish hair, and hadn't pulled it up before going outside, which was my mistake. The bee got caught in my hair, and I tried to shoo it out.

Don't ever do that.

Anyway, I wrote an email to my homemaking list about what ensued, and I thought I'd share it this evening. The big event happened on July 8, 2005:

When gardening early in the morning and you are stung repeatedly by a bumblebee that chases you into the house, and you have to wake your husband from a deep sleep, and he can't even see the stings because he jumped out of bed and ran into the kitchen when you yelled and he forgot his glasses, and neither of you can find any baking soda in the house, but you know there is some for deodorizer in the frig in the garage, and he won't go outside in his underwear, so you run back outside, swearing because it hurts SO bad, and you come back inside and mix up the baking soda paste yourself because he went to get dressed, then he spreads the paste on your body with the fork you mixed it up with, and says "It's okay honey, I still love you" like he wouldn't still love you just because you were stung, then he says he's going to work, but "you should get online and look up treatment for bumblebee stings" and you say "Sure, just don't worry about watching me for anaphylactic shock or anything" and he says "you would have had it already" and kisses you on the forehead and leaves, you should remember that homicide is a punishable offense and you should wash a bumblebee sting with soap and water, use an antiseptic, and quickly apply an ice pack for 20-30 minutes. (Oh, and he did call when he got to work to make sure I was okay.)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Front door decor - Summer

Remember when I put together the Springtime door decoration? It made me smile everytime I drove past the front of my house.
Well, the weather may not agree, since the sun won't come out, but Summertime is on it's way, and it's time to brighten the display, I think.

I still took flowers out of the arrangement we got for Dad's funeral, and I bought one bunch of red daisies to put this together. I love how vibrant and colorful it is. Who needs the sun anyway?

Sunday, May 25, 2008


A year ago today at this time I didn't know I'd be in Sioux City by early afternoon, cradling this sweet girl in my arms. I took one look at her and promptly fell in love. Can't wait to see her next week!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Quick Trip

A week ago on Thursday we left for a quick trip to Texas. It was a long drive for a short stay, but we enjoyed being back in East Texas where there is lush national forest. As we got nearer to Jasper, all at once there was a change in the smell of the air. I asked Greg if he noticed that it smelled like Texas now. He agreed - and he was glad to be back.
We spent the majority of our time in Jasper, a small town with the same population as York. Shortly after we arrived in town on Friday, we drove around to find the rodeo arena, and just down the street, the house where Greg's family lived when he was a preschooler. The house is gone now, but he remembers living there. So even though he had to spend his birthday driving to Texas, I think he enjoyed also spending a bit of that day remembering his childhood.

On Saturday we drove the 15 miles to the Sam Rayburn Dam and ate our lunch sitting on a park bench, looking at the water and watching the birds. It was an overcast day, the temps were perfect, the area quiet. We enjoyed the little break away from town, just the two of us.

Then back to town for the reason we were there in the first place. Last December, my nephew Caleb married to his beautiful wife Bethany in a private ceremony with just their parents and siblings in attendance. Now they were having a larger celebration for family and friends, complete with a ceremony and reception.

It was a lovely event. The ring bearer carried the same pillow that was used in my wedding in 1981, Tonita's wedding in 1986, and both Alan's and Randy's more recent ceremonies. The bride wore her MIL's strand of pearls. Her father, the preacher, pronounced them "husband and wife for the second and LAST time". :o)

The reception had tons of good food and a chocolate fountain. Let me just say, from now on, all Regier events will have a chocolate fountain. :o) (There was also a "Texas table" which is apparently a tradition down there. I offered to whip up a Nebraska table, but they wouldn't let me.)
On Sunday we were able to drive another hour South and visit Greg's uncle and his wife, Lester and Peggy. We spent a few hours chatting and laughing with them, then visited the cemetary where his grandparents and another uncle are buried. Then it was time to head home.

Five days away, four of those spent mostly driving. We were glad to be back.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I've been awarded!

Last week an internet friend gave me my first blog award! I was really flattered to be included in her list of favorite blogs. Rhonda's blog is about making her home a place that makes her smile while living frugally and enjoying her family, and is one of my favorites, also. Thank you, Rhonda!
Now I'm supposed to list some of my favorite blogs - there are so many that I cannot possibly list them, but if you're one of my CHL friends, consider yourself awarded! :o)

Not much is going on around here this week - just getting ready to head for Texas tomorrow. Tonight Greg was sitting on the sofa programming the Garmin (GPS) for a map to our motel in Jasper. I leaned over the back of the couch to look at it, and guess who decided I'd make a nice place to nap? Tucker just walked across the back of the couch and up onto my shoulder, then laid on my back like I was going to stand there all night. Silly cat.

Yesterday was Tucker's and Max's birthday - they're 2 human years old now. What does that translate to in cat years?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

My Moms

Eleven years ago today, May 11, 1997, I spent Mother's Day at the nursing home where my mom was dying of cancer. She had slipped into unconsciousness that weekend, and never woke up again. Alan, Randy, and I gathered in her room, along with our dad (who was there despite the fact they'd been divorced for 15 years), and we spent the afternoon telling stories, reliving memories, and laughing about the good times our family had over the years. I hope she heard us. I hope she liked that we remembered the fun stuff.

Two days later, my mom took her last breath with me at her side. The last words she heard from me were "I love you." I miss her every day.
Also at her bedside with me at that moment was another mom. My other mom. The woman who birthed and raised the boy I married - my mother-in-law.
Her name is Jan, but we call her Nanny. When Nick was just learning to talk, he couldn't say "Grandma", but he could say "Nanny", so that is what she became. Eventually I started doing daycare, and she became Nanny to about nine other children, too. Those kids are all grown up now, but there are some who still call her that.
Nanny is a nurse. A nurse with a Band-Aid stash in the bathroom closet. The grandkids were allowed to have as many band-aids as they wanted. The first time Jessica came home from Nanny's covered in band-aids, I almost panicked. She had band-aids on her throat. I thought something awful had happened. But then I found the band-aids in her hair. And lined up on her arm. And on her tummy. Pretty much every area of her body was protected by them. :o)
The grandkids pretty much got away with almost anything with Nanny. Except when I made her follow up on her promises of consequences. When Nick was 3-ish years old, he kept leaving the yard and walking to Nanny's without permission. (Only a block away, but still.) Nanny told him one day that if he did it again, he would get a spanking. Sure enough, a few days later, she found him in the garage. She called me. I told her she had to spank him. She didn't want to. I told her she had to. So she gave him a swat or two and sent him home. He was shocked. She hated it. He stopped going there without permission.
Nanny likes to play games. We've played hours of Uno (with and without cheating), and she taught the grandkids to play Pitch. She plays Bridge with her friends. And she likes to play the Wii. Nick brings it to family gatherings and they bowl together. :o)
The day my daughter moved to North Dakota and I was sitting in my living room sobbing, Nanny came to me. She brought me wine and made me laugh and I was better. Thank you.
Hopefully someday my children will make me a mother-in-law. I told Greg the other day that I will be using his mother as an example to follow.
I love you.
Happy Mother's Day.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Show and Tell Friday

Show and Tell This show and tell is in memory of my mom. Next Tuesday, May 13 will be the 11th anniversary of the day my mom passed away at 52 years old. We spent her last Mother's Day at her bedside, my brothers, my father, and myself, and reminisced about our childhood - some of the happier times. I like to think she knew we were there and enjoyed our stories and laughter.
I have lots of things that were my mom's, that are special to me. For Mother's Day I thought I'd show her pin. Mom didn't have much jewelry, but I remember that she always wore this simple gold circle when she dressed up.
I wear the pin to all of our special occasions - both of my brothers' weddings, my kids' confirmations and graduations, and to church on Mother's Day. To me, this is a way to have Mom there with us.
To see what everyone else has posted for show and tell this week, go visit Kelli's blog. Have a wonderful weekend and a Happy Mother's Day!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Green Thumb Sunday

Some nice days this past week allowed for several hours of gardening. Mostly I'm still cleaning up dead stuff from last year and pulling fresh, new weeds. There is a light frost on the grass this morning, but the nights are supposed to be warmer this coming week, so my plan is to plant things this week. We're almost to the last-frost date for Nebraska. I hope Mother Nature knows that! :o)
The cherry tree I showed you last week has deposited a carpet of blossoms all over the back yard. We had some big wind this week and it was a bit like a snowstorm out there - something kind of magical about standing under the falling petals, though.

So this week the dwarf iris finally bloomed. I have spots of bright purple scattered around different beds in the yard. My friend Cindy gave me these when I first decided to have flowers. I have since been able to share them with many people. Each year I dig up and divide a clump or two and pass them on.
In the front of this photo you can see a sprig of mint. That stuff is the bane of my existance. I was told to plant it within the confines of a buried bucket. I did not listen. I pull it out and pull it out, and still it spreads. Argh! The bleeding hearts also bloomed this week. This particular plant does really well in the south corner where the front deck meets the house, and it is huge.

Besides blooming flowers, there have been birds and squirrels and bunnies. My next-door neighbor has a bunny nest in one of her whiskey barrels on the patio. Five furry babies snuggled in a tiny hole. They are precious.
Birds I've seen this week include house finches, goldfinches, cardinals, bluejays, sparrows, robins, a hummingbird, a woodpecker, and a house wren, along with those annoying blackbirds that bully everyone else away.
Time to get outside and enjoy this lovely Spring morning and see if there are any more new blooms!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Show & Tell Friday

I used to have a magnet that said, "Refrigerator: a bulletin board that keeps food cold". I've always had special things hung on the frig, even before we had kids. I remember having to tape Nick's school pictures instead of using magnets, because Jessi would take them off otherwise. :o)
Now our frig is stainless steel, and magnets don't hold on the front. I have a small portion of one side of that box to display my treasures. Take a look:
Photos and invitations come and go, but the magnets pretty much remain the same. I see I didn't label the photo of Jessi and Matt - Matt is my friend's son, and they are like brother and sister.
I also didn't label every single magnet. There are several inspirational Bible verses, some ceramic flowers, and some little ones I made from flat marbles and pictures I printed from the computer. Oh, and the paper heart-shaped one that says, "When Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy". :o)

I hope you enjoyed this quick little show and tell today. To see what everyone else has posted, take a look here.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Spots of Sunshine

One of the great things about the internet and blogs, is that a person can read about any subject matter that interests them. It's like having subscriptions to dozens of different magazines. Several of the blogs I read are about design and decorating. Angela at Cottage Magpie has issued a color challenge for bloggers to post photos of the color yellow in their homes or gardens, and I thought I'd play along.
Yellow is not one of my favorite colors, so when I first read about the challenge I didn't think I'd find much of anything, but kept it in the back of my mind. Over the past few days I have been able to see that there are little spots of sunshine all around me. I just had to look... I first noticed what was out in the back yard:
Yellow and orange tulips
Daffodils, of course...

The finch feeder and my favorite American Goldfinch

Metal lawn chairs that Jessi painted last summer (the rock is inscribed "Tammy's Garden" - more about that in a few weeks)
Old Tonka toys - a grader and dump truck (Garett was playing with them in the garden the other night)

Then I started looking inside the house:
A primula that desperately needs to be planted outside, but we have to wait until after the 30-something degree nighttime temps coming this weekend...

This cheery watercolor painting I purchased last Fall at Goodwill. It hangs in the bathroom.
An apothecary jar filled with lemons...

Yellow words painted on the walls in playroom (Oh! and there are yellow toys!)

And my most favorite of all, my sweet Garett in his yellow shirt. Isn't his smile like sunshine, too?