Friday, May 29, 2015

Flash Back Friday to May 2004


Friends. Family.

"There are a few people out there with whom you fit just so, and, amazingly, you keep fitting just so even after you have growth spurts or lose weight or stop wearing high heels. You keep fitting after you have children or change religions or stop dyeing your hair or quit your job... 
Somehow, God is gracious enough to give a few of those people, people you can stretch into, people who don't go away, and whom you wouldn't want to go away, even if they offered to." 

-From Girl Meets God by Lauren F. Winner 

I have been blessed with many such friends and I think, doubly blessed that my sisters are my best friends. 

With sisters we have our shared lives, our histories. Common interests come in second. In our family there is a genuine love and care for one another. 
I remember our mother saying, "If you can't play nicely with your sisters then you can't play with anyone else." 

Our mother was very wise. 

Then we lost our parents and our oldest sister stepped in to take care of us. 
She was only 20 and felt so strongly that this was the right thing to do; to take care of her sisters. She obviously was raised with a deep sense of duty; and we wanted her. 

This experience drew us very close to one another, in a very protective way. But I know deep down that it was our parent's leading that shaped our family and shaped our love for one another. 

Our parents loved us and it showed. They were friends to their siblings. They had fun and fabulous friends. ( The parties, the dancing, the drinking, the laughing...they had a ball) They taught us to be friends. 

I remember going to the Jewel with our mother. We needed two carts. She spoke with the check out woman in a friendly and familiar way. I remember thinking, 'she knows these people, these strangers.' 

Now my children marvel that I cruise the grocery store happily greeting the stocking boys and check out girls and the packers. 

We learn in very subtle ways don't we? 

Our friendly, cheerful mother and funny, dutiful father continue to effect their family 30 years later. 

Love can sure go a long way. 


Well, I meant to write about friends and ended up writing about family. I guess that is what happens when you go with your train of thought...and not with an outline. But in our family , friendship and family are one and the same. And for that I am truly thankful! 

Encourage one another, 

p.s.  this post lost it's pictures over the the pictures are not from 2004 but the words are.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

A thousand years. Josh Stefanski.

This young man is the son of my sister Janet's dear friend.
Josh teaches Lauren, Janet's baby.
Danielle, my niece, appears in this very pretty video.

I am sure you will like it!  He is so talented.

When I heard this song on the radio I wanted to see a waltz danced to it.
Wouldn't it be a good waltz song?
One, two three..
One, two, three.

from So You Think You Can Dance

have died everyday waiting for you
Darling don’t be afraid I have loved you
For a thousand years
I’ll love you for a thousand more

And all along I believed that I would find you
Time has brought your heart to me
I have loved you for a thousand years
I’ll love you for a thousand more

Encourage one another,

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Katie, Eamon, Katie. Lots of photos.

Last week Katie asked if I would do a photoshoot with a few of her friends.  I said yes of course.
I told her the times that would be good.  You know...we need light.

Katie's friend KatieT had something at school until seven.  In town.
They did not get her until almost eight.

I was fretting.

I fret a lot.

But we ran out the door to the grounds at Epic because I knew I could find an open space without trees.  It was my best chance.

Here are the fun pictures I took.

Eamon.  Talking and talking and talking.

Well.  Let's see.  You could run!

Lie down.



She's a beauty.

You could jump.

My Katie's idea.

She is on the dance team!


Still talking.

I love Eamon's natural smile in this picture.

Cool silhouettes!
Told you it was dark!

The pictures turned out okay and we had fun....
win. win.

Miz Boo

p.s. Katie auditioned yesterday at 4:00.  No one else signed up for the first day of auditions.
Katie felt it went well.  She will know next week if she makes it.  One funny thing that you musical folks will get a chuckle out of...
After Katie sang thru the piece her choir director said 'did you mean to sing the second page in second alto?'  
Um. No. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Onions, Onions, tra la la.

Sorry I was gone for so many days.
I had a hair appointment on Friday morning so that messed me up there and then the weekend came and I, well, took the weekend off.  :o)

Here is the before and after of my hair.

truth in advertising....
I should have my hair colored every few months...but I let it go for 9 months.
It's terrible.  When it get's all brown and grey I always pull it back.  
Seriously, I am not fooling anyone here.  I've given up.

Finally!  Thank you for the lyrics Emma and Miranda 😆💇🎤

Patrick purchased a gift certificate for a color and cut...and I finally went.
Emma shared a song with me called Platinum by Miranda Lambert a few weeks ago....
I knew just what I was going to write on my picture when I heard the funny words!

Gosh it's nice to be blonde again.


On Sunday and Monday Katie and I went to my sister-in-laws house for some much needed choir auditon assistance.  Susan is such a talented and generous person.  She plays piano beautifully and has helped loads of musicians and singers over the years.  Katie is trying out for concert choir this week and she did not know the song at all.  It's a challenging piece but very pretty.  Susan was a huge help!!!

Fingers crossed tryouts go well.

Then Susan gave me some vidalia onions from her son-in-law from Georgia.

Vadalia onions take me back to a funny story from junior high. #onbloglatertoday

The rabbit trail continues......

Vidalia onions remind me of a special mom who was in my life for just a few years in grade school and middle school.  My best neighborhood friend, Claire moved to Wheaton in 6th grade.  We became fast friends.  On hot summer days Claire and I would get together and play chess in her living room. Of all things I remember the chess is most prominent.  (other than the onions...) 
 Claire's family always seemed so refined.  Genteel.  I think it was due to Mrs. Lamb and her southern roots.  But I always remember it being so quiet in their house.  Claire's mom wore her red hair in a chignon and wore neat dresses.

One spring day for lunch Mrs. Lamb was making a sandwich.  It was an ONION sandwich.  
This I had never hear of in my life.  If I recall correctly she used white bread, butter and slices of onion.  Uncooked. Raw onions.  

She made one for me and I liked it.

Soon after this I decided to make myself a nice onion sandwich at home.
I reached for the onions we had in our house.  Probably yellow onions.  They looked just the same.
And I made a sandwich just like hers.

Oh my goodness!  Was it strong and awful!
I am sure Mrs Lamb told me that her onions were special onions from Georgia...
Vadalia onions which are sweet and mild.

But I was a kid.   What could be so different?

So yes, every year that the Vadalia onions are in season and I see them at the grocery store I think of Mrs. Lamb and my friend Claire.

Claire stops by the blog to this day.  It is a real delight for me to see her name in the comments.
I'm not sure if I've told this story already.  I hope not.  But if so....enjoy the repeat.

Perhaps I will try a Vadalia onion sandwich for lunch today.
What do you think?

Encourage one another,

p.s. the title of my blog is part of a song from the 1960's.  My mom liked it and I remember her singing it with glee.  It was called I love Onions.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Throw Back Thursday


A sweet visit to Missouri which always included many trips to the pool.
Cindy, Janet, Donna (oddly the only person in glasses) and Sue.
Babies....Janet's James with the little cap on.
Sue's Jeffery with the watering can.

Good times sitting around the baby pool with my sisters.
The best.


Today is my sister Nancy's birthday!

Isn't she just the prettiest?


Nancy is now a grandmother of five!  Four of them live in her area....
She is so blessed by this!  And if anyone deserves, and I mean deserves this special blessing in her life it's Nancy and her hubby.

I am sure she will spend many, many days watching her grandbabies swimming and climbing and driving little cars.

Happy birthday Nancy.
You are an incredible sister, mother and Yaya!
Love you.
Mean it!

Donna Elsie

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I hate cooking for my family.

There.  I said it.

I try to be a good cook for them.
I try to make nice things to eat that they will like.
And you know what?   After 35 years of making the same five recipes I want to scream.

Two nights ago I asked Katie what she loved to eat.

She said chicken fingers from restaurants and mac and cheese.
She loves it in a box and at nearly every restaurant.

So when I saw a recipe for a baked macaroni and cheese I thought I would be a nice mom and make it for her.  I thought she would be thrilled to have something delicious after one of her long days.

I spent at least $15 on the ingredients.  Happily, I made John Legend's famous macaroni and cheese as seen on Martha Stewart.

(I can not eat cheddar cheese it gives me a tummy this was a labor of love just for Katie.)

It looked beautiful!

I tasted it and it was plain. 
But like I said, I'm not a good judge of these things cause I don't like mac and cheese...and my taste buds are still off from time to time.


Katie had a long day yesterday; school, softball game and choir concert.
When we got home I warmed up some of the macaroni for her.

She hated it.
Picked at it.
Will not eat another piece, I am sure.

and so....

The top three reasons I hate cooking for my family.

3. It's a waste of money
2. It makes me angry
1. It feels like a huge rejection

From now on I will joyfully buy this stuff.
Katie will be making it for herself .

And that's why I hate cooking for my family.


p.s. this is not the first time this has happened...
i've felt this rejection many many times before

the macaroni and cheese will be thrown out

if you want the recipe.
google it.

Monday, May 18, 2015

I forget the rest...

Favorite snacks from farmers market. #bbqporkstick #homemadedonut

Emma came home for a mother's day visit and to go to cousin Willie's law school graduation party!
It was a beautiful weekend with fun visits and deep talks and loud laughs.

Emma and I went to the farmer's market on Saturday morning.
I bought pickled beets, eggs, sugar donuts, cookies and a bbq pork stick.
I have my favorite vendors and it's wonderful to find them up at the square year after year.
Not a lot is growing this time of year..patience is a virtue, don't cha know.

Emma likes The Grumpy Troll.   #mthoreb #wisconsin #beerhere

Emma requested we go to The Grumpy Troll in Mt. Horeb.  It's a small town a few miles away.
We had a nice meal there.

Pretty ride home from the Harvard train.

It's much quicker and less expensive to take the train back to Chicago, so I drove Emma to Harvard Illinois last night.
It was a gorgeous night.
The sun was warm and the wind was windy. (nature's air conditioning)

And I was with my precious girl.

Encourage one another,

TY:  lettering by kelly cummings

Friday, May 15, 2015



The Important thing about Spring is that it is green.
It is cool and it is rainy
and it tries to warm up..
But the Important thing about Spring is that it is green.

Encourage one another,

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

How-Old hilarity!

There is a website/app that guesses your age.

It's so much fun!

My sister Janet posted a picture of herself on Twitter with her 'guess'...
but first, I had to go try it....


90% of the time the app could not see me!
It was creepy.
I am the invisible woman.
Or from a tribe that can not be photographed.


Finally I got one to work.

I told you I was 35!


There.  That's closer.  I used the 'take picture' feature.
With glasses and without glasses I got the same age with this picture particular picture.  I wondered if the glasses made a difference.  It didn't in this case.
I tried it with my hair down many times and it could not see me.
(Once it did and it thought I was a man and really old, if I remember correctly.)

But sometimes the results are quite hilarious....


Oh my stinkin heck!!

I love you Janet!

(True facts: female and not yet fifty.)  is super easy to use on your phone.
(It can also be used on your computer)
Just go to the website and start loading pictures or taking pictures.

Have a blast!!!

Encourage one another,

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Spring unsprung.


A friend of Emma's asked if I took pictures of Katie's freckles.

Why, yes, I do.

I'm looking at sunny warm pictures in my photostream...
cause it's in the 40's today and I am trying to lighten my mood.


Ahhhh..... August....
It's not 46 degrees in August.





Softball game this afternoon...
you can be sure I will dress for the frozen tundra.

Happy Spring!

Encourage one another,

Monday, May 11, 2015

Epic/Harry Potter phase

Very near our home is a big company called Epic.  If you go to the doctor or hospital you will most likely see your nurse or doctor typing information into a computer that has the Epic system.  This place is a pretty big deal.  I have shown you pictures of the beautiful farm area and today I am showing you the Harry Potter area.

We haven't been here since Christmas day.

My, they have been busy.

A Mother's Day visit to our favorite construction site/business. #Epicsystems #harrypotterphase

This looks like a famous train station in England, doesn't it?

Astonishing #Epicsystems #youcanworkhere #tech #notdisney #wisconsin

We aren't really that crazy about this building's design.
It is still cool...I guess they didn't want to take a hundred years to build
the castle.
(ie pillars of the earth)

Now about Katie.

She really does crack me up.  Sometimes it's hard to remember she is 15.
When we go to Epic she gets out of the car and runs.  She runs down the gravel
roads and straight for the buildings.  She asks if she can climb on the rocks and scale the hills.
My little filly.


Encourage one another,

Friday, May 08, 2015

Flash back Friday to...San Francisco

Let's go back to June of 2010.
I think you will enjoy seeing the pictures of our family vacation.
If you go to the archives at the bottom of the page, look for June 22 2010.

I really need to get out more.
My blog is much more fun when I get off the couch.



If you're going to San Francisco
be sure to....
take the Bart.

Hi everybody!

We just got home this morning at 4:00 am.

I loaded the pictures onto the computer and edited a few for you.
You have waited very patiently to get a glimpse of
Di and Donna take Coit tower.

I just know it.

So here are a few photos of our Thursday in San Fran.

The guys were at the US Open on Thursday.
But this is just the beginning....
I will share more tomorrow.

Until then....

Katie, Emma and I took the Bart to Embarcadaro.
We met Diane at the Ferry Building.

The coffee drinkers drank the best coffee at Blue Bottle Coffee.

I took pictures of mushrooms.



The End.

Naw. I'm just kidding :o)


We walked from China town (where we ate at The House of Nan King....and we all LOVED it) to Coit tower.

Katie and Emma skipped and floated up the hill.

Di and I, well.....she was kind to stick by my side. It was Mt. Everest Slow.

But we did it and we are proud.

And have pink cheeks to prove it :o)


We weren't comfortable with one another AT all. Ha!

Being with Di was a great gift to me.
She is sincere but not too serious.
She is easy going and smart and funny and lovely.

My heart is full and I am thankful for her.


Here is Diane with most of her gang with a few extras thrown in for good measure.

Gosh! They were fun!
Thanks for coming to the big city to bum around with us!


It's so good to be home.
The humidity greeted us...
and so did the empty highways and smooth sailing.

I loved our trip....
but I really love coming home.

Come back tomorrow to see lots and lots more.

Love ya,