Saturday, December 31, 2011

Time with Jo!

It had been quite a day.  I was expecting a pretty easy morning and then heading over to get my sister Jo about lunch time to spend the afternoon together.  It ended up being a hectic morning here at the Polo Club and not getting away until 2:30!  I collected Jo and then we ran to Wal-Mart. It was not the quick trip I anticipated!  We met up with Wesley and had a burger together.  I felt a little discouraged that the day had slipped away and with it the plans of doing some fun things together.  What’s a girl to do??  Take a swim!  Then soak in the hot tub! Then get in your jammies and have a cup of hot chocolate!  That is just what we did!


Someone had given us this neat hot chocolate…a chunk of chocolate on a stick that you stir into a cup of hot milk…very nice! 



Sister time recaptured!

Happy Anniversary

Today is New Year’s Eve.  Sixty years ago on this day, a youth group was preparing to have their New Year’s Eve party at the Grant Park Christian Church in Des Moines, Iowa.  Before they met,  a wedding took place.  It was my Mom and Dad’s.  Dad had a few days off from the Army and he had hitch hiked home  from Maryland to Iowa to marry my Mom.  My Mom’s parents were both already gone but their good friends were the Garten’s.  Marilyn Garten acted as a witness for my Mom.  My Dad’s brother, Uncle Cutter stood in for my Dad.  It was very simple, very small but very real!  It was the beginning of sixty years together!

Mom and Dad's Wedding, 12-31-51

After the ceremony, they went to the Garten’s home and had a small reception.  My Mom said her sister Helen made a cake and some sandwiches and brought them on the bus to the Garten’s home.

Mom and Dad's Wedding, 12-31-51

Years ago my Mom had her wallet stolen and she thought her wedding pictures disappeared with it.  Recently she found these copies.


These pictures were taken to mark their 60th Anniversary


On Christmas Eve all us kids were in town. 

kids (1)

Marty, JoEllen, Nathan, Sherry and Scott
Dad, Mom and Robin

Sixty years!  That is a long time!  A lot of years of struggles, happiness, tears and laughter.  A lot of hard work to raise children and to fulfill a commitment to each other.  A lot of growing and changing, of having dreams and of letting some of those dreams go.  What an awesome accomplishment, what an example of love and faithfulness!!

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!


You’ve still got it!

Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it;

Psalm 127:1

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas Trees and Lights

One of our “duties” here at the Polo Club is decorating for Christmas.  There are about 17 lamp posts that get a wreath hung on them.  Actually, two wreaths, front and back facing.  Wally and his assistant, Nate, hung these back before Thanksgiving. 



When we returned from our trip to NY, we got the tree up inside the is a real, ten footish tree. Very nice!  However the decorations for it were slim, and old.  I was a little surprised by that.  I picked up a couple of boxes of ornaments at Sams Club.  Wally and Nate put new LED lights on it and…I think it is not too bad looking!


Wally and Nate also hung lights around the guard house and the trees at the entry.  Now this was the first time for Wally to hang lights on tress but they were pretty pathetic looking.  Again, there was not too many lights and one tree was particularly sparse.  I was embarrassed for a few days, especially as we began comparing our trees to some other neighborhoods.  Then one windy day, the lights all dropped of that one sad little tree.  Wally decided to call in the pros…and we bought new LED lights and they really are quite beautiful, particularly on a snowy night.  I did not get a picture of “the before” and its best we have no reminders of those around.


Then we finally brought our tree over from the house and got it up and decorated.

img_4380Its not really a leaning tree…just a leaning photographer!

I also saw this idea in Ace hardware this year and decide to copy…canning jars with a string of lights inside!  How simple!  The display had different sized lights in the jars.  I liked them.


I bought the half gallon size jars and put some loose ornaments in one. I intend to decorate the tops using my cricut, but have not gotten that far as yet!

One night when we were out I saw all these lights just kind of hanging above the rooftops…we followed the lights and found this…

photo (1)Now that is a lot of lights!

The older neighborhoods around us have beautiful light displays.  We are planning a drive around Denver after Christmas to enjoy them. I heard on the news that Denver is in the top ten for cities with the most lights, so we better go see for ourselves! 

Thankful Thursday

I feel like I was given an early Christmas gift today…a quiet morning!!  It was wonderful to just sit near the tree with a cup of coffee and the Word of God!  Nothing is in order in my home or as I look at the day before me.  But it is in order in my heart and the other things do not seem so unbearable now. 

Yesterday I read this in Psalm 139:

O Lord, You have searched me and known me.  You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off.  You comprehend my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways. 

Those verses kind of stopped me in my tracks and reset my heart and mind.  I feel like I have been on a non stop roller coaster ride since mid-August and the only thing I could see was the climb up another terrible drop on the ride!  It was good for me to remember instead that the Lord has been there with me each step (or scream) of the way.  He has understood all my fears, failures, discontent, inadequacies and struggle in our move and all its’ adjustments.  And while that is not a new thought to me, He did comfort me anew with His Words yesterday.  I am thankful for His Word…it is alive and and powerful; it discerns my heart and thoughts; it is my anchor, both steadfast and sure!  (Heb. 4:12 and 6:19)

I rejoice at Your word,
As one who finds great treasure.
Psalm 119:162


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Thankful Thursday

A little more than a year ago I began posting a Thankful Thursday post each week.  I saw the idea on another blog where they were doing that for the month of November leading up to Thanksgiving.  I have since discovered that there is a linking party each week called Thankful Thursday.  But I like the idea because I thought it would tune my thinking into gratitude.  After all there really is so much to be thankful for and I wanted to give credit to the Lord for all He has and continues to do for me.  I think I can do this for another year.  I may not always get my post written in a timely way, but my thoughts have definitely been more in tune with thankfulness.

This week I am thankful for a couple of specific things.  First of all, I am thankful for the safe travel our family had to and back from New York last week.  We put in a lot of miles!  Wesley drove from Tennessee to North Carolina.  He hooked up with Kenny and Becky there and they drove to Brooklyn together.  On their return trip they stopped in at Washington D.C. Then all back in their places, safe and sound.  Thank you Lord!

Wally and I had booked our tickets to fly into Newark, NJ this time.  We had a straight through flight.  HIs Mom was to fly in from Tulsa and get right on the plane with us.  But early in the day I had a phone call from Southwest telling me Gramsies flight would be an hour late and she would miss the flight with us to NY.  Southwest had secured a spot for her in a flight to St. Louis and then onto Newark is she could make it in time. Now how often does an airline do that, much less on the busiest travel day of the year!  Grams made it with seven minutes to spare!  Of all my experiences flying into and out of New York, this busy time of the year was the smoothest of all.

The second thing I am thankful for is that my Mom heads for home on Saturday!  She still is not able to bear weight on the leg for six more weeks. And she has some tough days ahead yet, but I am so thankful for her healing, progress and the Lord’s watch care over her since her fall!


Here she is in one of therapy sessions the first week at rehab.  She walked fifteen feet that day.  She has to do a step-hop kind of maneuver since she can step on the left leg at all.  She has since had the immobilizer (that big black thing) and 35 staples removed from the leg.



“…in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
I Thessalonians 5:18

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Grandpa Meets His Grandson

Wally had not met Nolan yet. And although we see lots of pictures on Andrea’s blog and we Skype, there’s nothing like real thing! 








Cute Guys!

Thanksgiving Day

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.  We were in Brooklyn, NY with all our kids!  Wally’s Mom also joined us.  We arrived late on Wednesday night.  Kenny and Becky and Wesley drove in earlier that day.

Andrea did a wonderful job preparing our meal.  She got started early with pies and before I ever left Denver she sent me a picture text of her apple pie…and she had a little helper…who also made a pie!

img_2420This pie never made it to our dessert time…I think it got eaten before Thanksgiving Day!

Here is Ben taking the turkey out of the oven…scrumptious!…


Here is our table all set…


Becky made our name cards…


And they included a scripture verse on the inside to share after the meal…


And the family gathers…


Oops, I cut Kenny off, so here’s a better shot of him


Of course, after the meal there are a lot of dirty dishes…


Now here’s something I had not seen in quite awhile…



And finally, those pies.  Andrea made apple. pecan topped pumpkin and a pecan pie for her Dad.  Grams made her raisin pie…


We had a great day, lots of talking and sharing and laughter.  Plenty of food.  A round or two of Snorta (that’s a game by the way.  And of course grandkids!  

Thursday, November 17, 2011


In my new neck of the woods, there are actually a lot of trees!  (Imagine that!!)  This year the fall colors have been absolutely gorgeous. A few weeks ago, on the way home from church, I took some pictures.

This is University Blvd. which I now drive rather regularly. There are a couple of neighborhoods that I love to drive through, the trees are mature and gorgeous! This is near Bonnie Brae.



This year I missed our own Autumn Blaze Maple tree blooming.  But there is one behind our apartment.  I can see it from our balcony.


img_4018This is the outside of our neighborhood. I loved to walk around the outside and crunch the leaves covering the sidewalk. These are Ash trees. Just gorgeous! 

img_4021This is the sidewalk

img_4023Gypsy liked crunching the leaves too!


These trees I enjoyed inside our gated neighborhood




The leaves have been falling…and falling…and falling.  We have had two wet, heavy snows…It did not stop the leaves from falling, just delayed their activity a bit.


This tree is outside our living room window and I love looking at it.  It’s a honey locust tree and the tiny millions of leaves are miserable!  But I still like it!

When the snow disappeared, the leaves resumed their falling!  This is what it looks like at the Polo Club as the leaves are falling…

Someone blows the leaves out so that the mowers can come along and mulch the leaves!


img_4048That’s a lot of leaves!

img_4051Then someone else follows up blowing the sidewalks and drives clean!

Can you believe there is another contractor responsible just for blowing out the gutters!  The last week we have had 60 degree days but a lot of wind.  I walked into the office today to hear one of the residents leaving a message.  She wondered if something could be done about all the leaves that were piled in front of her garage door!!  Suggestions, anyone??


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