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On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 07/07/2013 11:22:06

In the mid-'80's, shortly after I was diagnosed with my lung disease my then husband decided we were going to visit our daughters in Louisiana and Florida; we live in W.C. Iowa. Our son, Steve, had a hamster and we didn't know what to do with it. My sister-in-law told me to put it in the freezer as they will hibernate when cold. So, this we did, all the while Steve telling us we were killing his hamster.

 

Steve and I worried about that hamster the entire 2 weeks we were gone! I was so afraid that we'd find a frozen hamster when we got home. After 2 weeks we finally were back and we were all standing in front of the freezer anxious to see what had happened. I slowly opened the freezer door and low and behold there was that hamster sitting up looking at us! He immediately walked over to me and up my arm.

 

There wasn't any need to fear. He had corn, green beans, and carrots to eat, which he did. He chewed into all the packages of vegetables! Of course, he had water since, at that time, we had to defrost our freezers. That little devil never seemed worst for wear! He was a happy, healthy little boy for 2 years.

 

The next hamster we took with us in an aquarium though. Corky had a lot of fun traveling with us!


On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 05/28/2013 14:35:52

We can't believe our little "hospital" plant is blossoming so! This Snowball Bush was a spindly little thing in the "plant hospital" meaning it was next to being dead. We bought it for about 50¢, brought it home and planted it not believing it would do anything. That was about six years ago! I've pruned it a couple of times and it just keeps putting out all these lovely Snowballs for us. Sorry the picture wasn't that good; was facing the sun like I wasn't supposed to do but by afternoon it gets very dark back there. We've gotten a lot of plants from the "hospital" and most have survived for us. We have a couple of white Hydrangeas that were just given to us that are thriving! Another time for them.
 
I've been kind of laid up again with muscle spasms in my back. Doctor gave me some muscle relaxers which are helping but they make me so sleepy I don't feel I'm worth much. About all I've been getting done is some very easy meals and cleaning up the dishes. I'd like to do more yard work while the ground is wet but that's what caused the problem to start with! It has been raining every night with a lot of thunder and lightening. Pepper Dog has been taking the thunder a lot better than she used to! Anyway, it's rained every night for four nights now and we're expecting more tonight through Thursday night. I'd say we're no longer in a drought but we are having some flash flooding from the small rivers around.
 
My brother, Roger, and our friend for nearly forty years, Kenny, stopped by yesterday. They'd driven up from Carter Lake (Omaha area) to leave flowers at the cemeteries. This is the first time he's been here in many years. We had a "falling out" after our mother passed away that lasted about four years. I took the step to reconcile since it was hurting me more than him. I'm one that can't stand holding a grudge; that's something that eats away at a person. We've spoken many times, on the phone and we've been at weddings and family reunions together and the subject just doesn't come up; there's no need for it to. Without him telling I know he's paid financially and emotionally for what he did. I don't believe in rubbing salt into a wound. What made it even harder was that it's just the two of us; no other siblings. He ended up paying out much more than what he received from the sale of our parents home. It was to be mine according to Daddy but I was put out. That's okay. I like it better where I am and I don’t have to feel that I'll be "under his thumb" the rest of my life. We can enjoy each other company whenever that may happen. He's found out just how difficult and expensive it can be to take care of someone who's ill now. He takes care of Kenny who had a stroke. Enough of that for now!
 
Papa got called out to mow this afternoon. I'd like to do something but if I do he'll get after me and I know he's right. I should be taking a nap and had better be when he gets back or I'll hear about it! I do want to finish putting a few papers away that got stacked up on the kitchen table. That's the one thing that's bad about living in a small house, not enough room for some things. I need to start clearing out a lot of paperwork I've kept for years to make room for new.
 
Well, I'm really sleepy so I'll finish this up for now. Y'all take care and have a good week and keep lookin' up!
 
Much Love, Junie and Papa Allen

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 05/16/2013 10:56:14

Here's picture of the new Azalea that Papa bought me. I love the color! A little later we'll pick up another shrub or two to put in the large flower garden. We lost three of Papa's Roses and some other flowers during the winter due to the extreme cold. It would have been okay if there had been some snow surrounding them but we had little of that this winter. We have so much going this year that we may wait until fall or even next year before we concern ourselves with replacing them.
 
This is one tired old gal today! We went to the big city yesterday to get the Synvisc 1 shots in my knees. For the first time my doctor asked if I wanted the shot or a knee replacement. They'd taken more ex-rays to see where I'm at. He showed them to Allen and me and I could see where my left knee is bone-on-bone. The right knee is a little better. I, of course, opted for the injections and told him that as long as they help even a little bit I won't be having any surgery. Actually, I can't see having surgery, anyway, since I'll be 70 years old in a couple of months. To be realistic I don't know how much longer I have and I can't see spending it in very painful therapy. That would be worse than what I'm going through! The Synvisc 1 puts a cushion between the bones so they scrunch together and cause pain. So, I guess, We'll just "wait and see."
 
Papa got three new windows in our house! One he has the trim work finished on the outside. He has a "job" today so maybe tomorrow he can work on the trim for another. I have a few damages to repair on the inside trim and then I can paint all three of those inside. I've been doing some deep-cleaning in the bedroom and need to do it in the living room, as well. After our son passed away I barely slept for a month. After the Memorial Service I crashed and with being laid up for four months this winter I didn't get anything done. So...it's been 2½ years since I've done any "real" cleaning. It feels good to finally be able to do it!
 
I was thinking that while Papa is gone today to putting Steve's photo albums and such in totes and get them out to the garage and free up a lot of space in the living room. I didn't receive his personal affects until last fall so I feel I haven't done too bad there.  We no longer look at a lot of that stuff; what pictures we really care about I took out to put in another album. The rest is his ball glove, Grover and a baby blanket that his grandmother embroidered almost 80 years for his father and did get finished. I finished it just before Steve was born 43 years ago. I have his Boy Scout uniform, etc. in my wardrobe and I don't believe I'm ready to put that away yet. I still have his baby bottles out in the garage! Papa was wanting me to get rid of them but now he doesn't say anything. I guess he figures there isn't any chance of that now!
 
I suppose I'd better get started and accomplish something today. Y'all take care, have a great day and keep lookin' up!
 
Much Love, Junie & Papa Allen

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 05/02/2013 11:55:45

This was our May Day gift! We received 1½" of snow. It started out hailing the night before then poured down rain and rained all night. When we went to town yesterday it was a cross between rain and sleet. The wind was also blowing so when this hit us it hurt! Then turned to snow and snowed all day into the night. The weather doesn't know what it doing!! It is all starting to melt off now, though.
 
Papa and Pepper Dog are taking a nap while I showered and cooling off in front of the computer. I have a Epidural procedure this afternoon. I'm not looking forward to it because I always have a pain that goes down my left leg. Kip says he gets the needle in so far and it starts curving. He's shown it to on the ex-ray. He does it with it ex-ray so he knows exactly where he's at. Even with this complication I feel he's really good. At least, he doesn't leave a bruise mark all the way across my back like the first person who did it! I end up with just a teeny-tiny spot where the needle went in and that's all.
 
Anyway, when I get home I will be laying down for a few hours whether I want to or not. It works better that way. We need to do some more shopping but it will just need to wait until tomorrow. We have several places to go, too.
 
Think I'll go sit in my recliner for awhile then get up and use the curling iron on my hair. Oh, how I hate doing that! That's why I always wore my hair long and pulled up and back on the sides. But it's too short to do it that way right now. Since I color my hair I've discovered that it grows almost a half inch every month so it won't take too long now before I can go back to the old way. The perm is nearly out of it, too; very loose on the ends in the back. I can't wait!
 
We hope y'all have a great day and evening! Be careful and keep looking up.
 
Much Love, Junie & Papa Allen

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 04/28/2013 15:00:41
Whoa! Am I tired and so is Papa! We've been working on the back yard the last two days; Papa did the tilling and some of the raking while I trimmed or removed old plants. I also planted some wild flower seed and Scarlet Runners. Papa also dug up two trees that died over the winter. We had a very cold winter but little snow to help protect plants, shrubs and trees. In some places we need to start over again. He also lost three Rose bushes! But the climber that was left in a pot rooted through the pot down into the ground so we left it there and hoped for the best. Would you believe it made it?
 
I was so tired and sore last night I couldn't sleep so I got up and started laundry, did dishes and cleaned the kitchen. While I was up and busy Pepper Dog didn't need to go out even once! When I really want to sleep she has me up every hour. But she's been playing pretty hard the last two days. It's been a very long winter for her not being able to chase that ball! Fannie Mae (Brat Cat) has been out with us, too, and never left the yard. She's turned out to be quite the cat! Once, I called her in and she had a tiny snake and had ideas of bringing her new play toy in with her. She changed her mind in a hurry.
 
Doing bedding and writing this Blog while I'm resting up some. I'm getting ready to make the bed (Papa might have to help me later?) and going to make his Salisbury Steaks for dinner. He's out mowing the yard right now. When we was downtown we noticed the ban thermometer said it was 80°! WOW! Is was 75° Friday and Saturday but it's supposed to start cooling down again and rain almost all week. That's why Papa is mowing today. If he leaves it until next weekend it will be much to high.
 
Our son, Travis, came by to pick up the little Mantis tiller. Katie wants a couple little flower spots tilled up. She is going to stop working again so she'll be home. Travis discovered that between the day care and gas she wasn't making any money so he said that's enough! We can imagine she doesn't like it because she isn't much of a homemaker, like many of us were in the early days, but if it costs more to work than one earns then it time to stay home and save some money. Travis has a very good job as an electrical apprentice that pays well. He has less than a year and he will be certified and can work closer to home and make even more income. Right now he has to do a lot a traveling and that's hard on the little ones. He's been making his wife take more responsibility while he's home so he can do the things that need to be done around the inside and outside of their home. He used to take care of the children while she did her own "thing" and never got much accomplished. It looks like he's seeing things a bit different now; takes two to make things run!
 
Guess I'd better to get to fixing supper and/ or making that bed. Y'all take care and have a good evening and week!
 
Much Love, Junie and Papa Allen
 
P.S. Thanks, again, Administration for fixing the paragrahing; makes copying and pasting my Blog sooo much easier.

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 04/18/2013 19:00:32
It rained here all day Tuesday and Wednesday. In the last week-and-a-half we've had 8" of rain. I was up about 2:00 A.M. and it was raining, sleeting and snowing; all at the same time! Later it was snow and winds gusting to 30 - 40 mph. The snow is all gone but the winds are still blowing. There was much more activity north and south of us. But what we've been going through is nothing compared to Chicago and many other areas.
 
April 6th. a young friend of mine passed away a couple of hours after bearing her stillborn child. Her mother called me and I just lost it. My heart is breaking for her mother, husband and 12 year old son. The young lady was 39. I've known her mother all my life; we went to school together and she looked after my mother when I had doctor's appointments and such.
 
Then, this last weekend, Papa Allen lost a dear friend of his. They'd know each other for many years, were neighbors and always helping each other out and having a lot of fun with each other. His funeral was yesterday. Two of our children came down for the service; they'd known him well, too. I knew him and all his family; cousins and such. We all grew up together. My father ( who would be 102 now) grew up with all this fellows older family and we even had one marry into our family.
 
The people who have been renting his house (they originally came from another town quite a ways from here) are taking his death so hard; won't even listen to what my husband has to say about the many years either of us have known the family. I wonder if he's taking it so hard because he now knows that things won't be so easy for them. One of the sons will be taking over the financial side of things so his mother won't have to worry about it. The poor lady has really been taken advantage of the last year while our friend was trying to recover from an illness. The bot already told us he will be "setting things straight right away." We believe it's already happened!
 
There is so much tragedy in the news again! Boston, Chicago and West, Tx. Oh, I can't forget the Ricin scare. How much more can people take? The explosion was, perhaps, unavoidable but the others events were not. When are these criminals going to be dealt with like they should be? We have the laws we just need stronger enforcement and sentencing.
 
I'd better let this go for awhile. Y'all take care. Our hearts and prayers are with everyone facing trials and hardships.
 
Much Love, Junie and Papa Allen
 
P.S. For Meemsie: That Brat Cat tried to take some treats away from our old Tasha Rae (24) and for the first time she wasn't having any of it. She pulled back her arm and, while hissing, slapped that Brat and knocked her two feet back! Brat needs more of that!!
 
Oh, and for whomever straightened out the paragraphing in our Blogs: thank you so much!

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 04/03/2013 20:41:03
Oh, what a day...a day of shopping, that is! After the second store I was ready to go home but we needed to stop at the grocery first. My legs and back were killing me. Got everything put away and started a casserole for for dinner. Our neighbor came over and asked what we were having and Allen told him and he didn't think too much of it; isn't a steak or roast. Can't, or shouldn't, eat those things every day.
 
He told Papa that when he goes to bed at night his feet are "black." That really concerns me. He's very overweight and sits all day at home and he's very brittle diabetic. It sounds very much like he's losing circulation in his feet. Considering the way he continues to eat and continues to gain weight and the fact he's finding any excuse to no longer have to work he's looking for big trouble! Certainly he realizes he could lose a foot or two if he continues like this; he's unable to control his blood sugars There in the 3 and 4 hundreds. But there's no talking to him; wants to be on disability from the sounds of it. But he's going to become more disabled then he's looking for if he doesn't start taking care of himself. What does one do with someone like that? I've seen it happen too many times.
 
Anyway, while he was here I could barely walk; I was in so much pain. We don't know if it's the weather or the fibromyalgia or both but there's no let up unless I'm on a heating at night. Papa won't let me lift anything which I'm thankful for but I feel like such an invalid. I try to keep my spirits up for him. He's seen "down" for so long after Steve passed away. In fact, even with the pain, he's told me I'm acting and talking more like my old self and that makes me feel better. I actually went in yesterday and colored my hair; hadn't done that for two months and it looks terrible! I styled it this morning and put some makeup on; haven't used makeup for many months. That put me in a better frame of mind.
 
The mobile imaging van that stops at our hospital once-a-month forgot to put their ramp up before leaving and it (the ramp) a small bridge railing before getting out of town and tore it off. They have C-scans and all that technical stuff in the van. Not only is it going to be expensive to replace that ramp but all the machines will need to be checked out before using them again. WOW!
 
It was a beautiful 59 degrees today but we had a 20 mph. wind. With the wind we felt a chill from time-to-time. The Naked Ladies are really growing; must be 6 to 7 inches high now. We also have some Tulips coming up. The Iris' are just starting to pop and I saw a few buds on the Roses. Looks like the rabbits did a little nibbling on those. Hope it doesn't affect them too much. Papa loves his Roses!
 
Well, he's calling me about a very good program so I guess it's that time again. Y'all take care and have a good night and rest of the week.
 
Much Love, Junie & Papa Allen

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 03/31/2013 22:03:00
When we go to the grocery store tomorrow I'm going to have a talk with our friend, John. He told me after our last snow we weren't getting any more and if we ddid I could give him a good "talking to." It rained this evening and now the snow is coming down pretty hard and fast! Are we ever going to see spring? We had spring-like temps for three days and now it's winter again.
 
We had a quiet day at home. Instead of the traditional Easter dinner I fixed some short ribs with my special sauce. I don't use regular BBQ sauce as it's too spicy for us now. The sauce I make is a bit sweeter and I use it for a lot of different meats; very versatile. And I made some Baked Mac and Cheese. I've been wanting to do that for a very long time. I usually just fix it in a pan on top of the range and let it go at that. Baking it is sooo much better! Fixed Brussels Spouts with butter. That's the way Papa likes them. And I made a small Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, as well. Even though, I made half-batches of everything we still have plenty of let-overs!
 
Papa is still feeling pretty tough. Actually we both have been feeling that way. We going through a lot of pain, probably from our Fibromyalgia, and Papa has a cold from laying on the ground the other day., too. It doesn't take much for him to catch cold. Will need to keep a close eye on him since he's susceptible to pneumonia. (Hey, I spelled that right according to my spell-checker!) Papa's been doing a lot of resting.
 
Papa's waiting for me to watch TV with him again so I'd better get out of here. Hope y'all had a wonderful Easter. Take care and have a good night.
 
Much Love, Junie & Papa Allen

On Our Corner of Paradise
Posted On 03/28/2013 15:59:24

 

Looks like I need to get out to clean some garden spaces; the Naked Ladies (Spider Lilies) are coming up already! They've come up right through the snow and ice. They don't usually start showing up until latter April.
 
The last 2 days have been pretty nice but there's still a chill in the air. It's been in the lower 50's; tomorrow is supposed to be even warmer them the temps will plummet yet again and expecting a small amount of snow.
 
Papa is out working on our pickup. He went out to change the oil and found the carburetor was loose in 3 different places. Whoopi! Always something!! That probably why I've had trouble starting it last couple of months; it's sucking air. He'll get it fixed okay but his chest will hurt him for a few days from leaning over into the engine compartment. And he has a van, of a friends, to work on tomorrow.
 
Our son called a little while ago and I spoke with him. He's been in Oklahoma for the last month and will be home only until Tuesday and will head to Houston, I believe. He'll probably be there for a month, too. He's an apprentice for an electric company. He's hoping that when he gets through his apprenticeship he'll be able to find a job locally. It's been especially hard hard on his youngest son (5). He called his Daddy a couple of nights ago and begged him "to please come home." That is so hard on him but he's doing what's necessary to earn a living and be able to stay at home later.
 
I tried to call our granddaughter today. She's moving to Georgia April 6th. and I was unable to reach her. The phone has already been disconnected. I'll try to find another way to get ahold of her. Her husband is taking Special Forces training in the Army right now. Until she can join him she and the 2 children will live with her parents and she'll work for her Dad detailing cars. That will give her some extra money to work with.
 
Just got back from O'Rielly's; had to get another air filter for the truck. Still would like to replace the rotor, etc. But that will wait until a little later; it will be another $45 or $50. Replace that and another exhaust system and that old (1985 Ford LTD pickup) will be in tip-top shape!
 
I've been off my weight-loss program the last 2 days; been sleeping too late (staying up too late at night watching movies). When I don't stay on schedule I really mess up. Started out right today. And I feel better! Every time I eat the same things Allen does I start feeling terrible. I wonder just how many times I need to go through that before it hits me? Stay away from Allen's food!!!!
 
It's getting time for me to thaw out some chicken breasts for my dinner. Hope you had a good day and have a wonderful evening. Until next time:
 
Much Love, Junie & Papa Allen



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