Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Sleep, a Storm, and a Song

It's not late, but I need to go to sleep. I haven't been sleeping well and I have to be at work a half hour earlier now. Our baby room was overflowing this morning and we must stay in ratio. There were six infants by the time I punched in this morning. Theoretically, starting a half hour earlier means I'll get out a half hour earlier, but realistically, that ain't happenin'.

We're having another "winter storm." That means it's snowing and driving is nasty. I am still scratching my head and wondering why this is big news. Ever since I can remember we've had winter weather in the winter. We drove in the snow if possible, and stayed home if it was too dangerous. Okay, sometimes we stayed home.

If my praying friends are reading, we still need your prayers. I know I need to turn it all over to the One Who Holds All Things, but I don't always know how. The burden is bigger than I can carry alone and your prayers help. Thank you for lifting us up.

The song? It touched my heart many years ago. I came across it this evening and found myself touched all over again. I once sang it for a child, and today I wonder if it's really sung for me...

Monday, February 25, 2019


“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, 
and I will give you rest. 
Matthew 11:28 

The past few weeks have been more than emotional. What started as a little emotion, ended up transforming me into a blubbering mess. There are several converging reasons. As a family, we are battered and bruised, struggling to come to grips with our situation, and searching for answers. It is emotionally, mentally, and spiritually exhausting.

But, there is another reason too. Muffled, and all but forgotten, is the upcoming anniversary of my mother's passing. Loss need not be at my mind's forefront to render me weepy. There is no wallowing in this sorrow, only a recognition of its presence. Many are the moments I miss my mom.

In the midst of overwhelming sadness I have cried out to God. I know He hears, and I know He wants to help me, but like a child in the dark of night, I don't always understand when it appears He doesn't hear. How can I feel so completely terrified, helpless, and alone and He not answer? I know perfectly well why I did not answer every cry of my children in the middle of the night. Not only did I need sleep, along with others in the house, but the crying child needed to sleep as well. Somehow, some way, I must also learn to rest and trust that morning will come, and along with morning, the sunshine.

This weekend there were many tears, and there were prayers as well. God is listening. He hears. He sent a bit of unexpected financial help in the form of a few gift cards yesterday. I never saw it coming, but He knew. And tonight when I came home, there was a package wrapped in brown paper waiting on the counter. It had my name on it and said,"Contains Happy Mail!" An old blogger-turned-Facebook friend in Minnesota sent me a box of love and her timing was impeccable.

Does God hear my cry? He does. Does He hear the cries of my family? Yes, He hears them too, and He is loves each one of us. We are crying in the dark, hoping for morning, learning to trust in Him and rest.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

The Barn Collective

On my way home Tuesday evening... I turned the corner by the first barn and went a different way.

A friend's brother worked on the second farm as a young teen in the 1970's Looks like it's still a working farm today.

Have a great week everyone! See you over at Tom's Barn Collective.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Coffee, Tea, and Paradise

Today was good.

Another teary appointment today, but teary is not necessarily bad. I am learning about Me and that is good. I am growing and learning new things. I left my appointment and almost forgot the coffee gathering at Starbucks this morning. I remembered in time to turn around and be there on time. I didn't have coffee this time. I was treated to the "Pink Drink" instead, and it was yummy!

When I was about to leave Starbucks, I noticed a text on my phone. I gave my son Joe a call back and found he was hoping for a ride to Wegmans. I wandered around the store as he shopped, wondering where he'd disappeared to, while he checked out, and headed for the car. (Just like a guy.) It was one of those wonderful together moments. LOL. Truthfully, it was great to see him, to give him a hug, and to realize he's looking good.

There was a tea party at Bethany's house this afternoon. I brought the cookies and she supplied the tea. Earl Gray. She told me about her trip to Hawaii, actually Kauai and Maui. Nothing makes a body want to move away more than visiting paradise. She is in love with those far away islands I have never seen. What would I do if all my children decided to move away?

Irondequoit Bay and the Webster pier are not far from Bethany's house. Before coming home, I took a drive down the hill and around the corner to the lake. The birds would have been happy with a crust or two of bread, but I hadn't any and it was about to start getting dark. The beach was cold, icy, and wet, and though no stunning sunset lit up the horizon, it was pretty in it's own cold, forlorn way.

Tomorrow we shall have some big winds. I will probably not go to the lake.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Bits and Pieces

* It's Friday!

* I have a growing patch of dry skin on the pinky side of my right hand. It's a puzzle. Been there way too long. Eczema like. I thought it was ringworm a while back, but now I'm thinking it's probably contact dermatitis from my laptop. (Oh, dear...) Maybe stress related?

* I bought myself a St. Patrick's Day shirt today. Saw them on my way out of Old Navy and decided I need one for work next month. Along with a few other relatively inexpensive shirts. (I also got myself a burrito at Moe's, and shared it with Idris and Hannah when I got home.)

* I have plans for next Friday evening. Something newish. I think I'll just keep it a surprise and you can find out about it later.

* Idris found a pen when his mommy was otherwise occupied.And she thought she had all the writing utensils safely hidden. (I stole her photograph because he is so cute.)

* I've been fashioning people at the pottery studio. They are not perched atop boxes this time. It's therapeutic Christmas present practice. (I have all kinds of ideas...)

* Speaking of Christmas, my little Christmas tree is still gracing the corner of the living room downstairs. Number Nine stops to admire it from time to time. I found it plugged in and glowing just the other night. Maybe I'll just leave it up all year long. Ha ha!

* This afternoon I caught up with one of my favorite friends. Called her out of the blue, because today is her birthday and I love her.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Hugs and Pasta

My little friend Derek is getting attached. For the past week he has been hurrying over as soon as I enter the room, looking for a hug and a bit of attention. (How do they know I love them?) He was just being dropped off today when I picked him up. Mom wanted a little goodbye hug and he gave a yelp and grabbed onto me instead. That didn't stop Mom. She said, "Oh, no.." and plucked him out of my arms for a last snuggle before heading off for the day. He didn't holler, and I laughed. A little out of embarrassment, but mostly because I liked his mom's reaction.

It was Veggie Lasagna Day. Kind of. That's what the menu says, but I've put my own spin on the recipe. I use Rotini Pasta instead of those big, thick, lasagna noodles, and I've given up putting any veggies in other than sauce. The veggies go on the side, otherwise they won't eat it no matter how good it tastes.

One more day and then the weekend.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Using the Old Noodle

I hear strange things from my post in the kitchen. "That's not how you use the noodles." That was yesterday. Today I heard, "Don't break the noodles." Without context the comments don't make a lick of sense. Sensory bins. (I hate them.) This one was filled with dry pasta, for the kiddos to play with. Apparently they were playing with it wrong. Ha ha!

Today I made macaroni and cheese. The kids love hot dogs, they chow down the goulash, but when it comes to macaroni and cheese, the whole place gets excited. Teachers pray for leftovers and embellish the number of children in their classrooms. One sweet teacher, with a gleam in her eye, told me she was expecting 42! I rarely make enough mac and cheese, but I did good today. There was more than enough for the children, and a few teachers were found smiling too. (Mac and Cheese Day is my favorite.)

No school this week. No school mixes up our numbers. We are missing a few of our infants, specifically three one year old babies, and we've gained two tiny babies this month as well. It's a continual change, and a continual supply of hugs, snuggles, and baby barf. It's moving up time for one small child when she returns. Moving up is always bittersweet. Thankfully, my kitchen job keeps me connected, somewhat.

Took my camera along for the ride yesterday. I can't take pictures inside the daycare, but I can take them on my way to and from.


Never has it been so hard to make my head rule my heart.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Back to Work

Weekends are too short. (You probably already knew that, huh?) Saturday was a good day; cleaned up my room, did my laundry, visited my brother, and got my groceries... Sunday was a rough. I woke up with a headache down both sides of my neck and across my forehead. Went to church anyway, but it just wasn't the same. A short nap afterward helped a little, and so even though I still had the headache, I went back to church for my afternoon class... Another nap when I got home again, and then, because I was afraid I might be ill if I didn't, I fell into bed at 8:30 pm and took a Benadryl to help me relax and sleep.

Today I only had half of yesterday's headache. Only one side of my head hurt (which technically made it a migraine), but it was a tolerable migraine. I'm not complaining. Really, I'm not. Aside from feeling sleepy, today was a good day, even with a headache.

Pretty sunset tonight.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Calling Hours

Two friends lost their mothers this past week, one last Saturday, the other Monday morning. One mom was 93, the other just 67. Goodbyes are never easy, no matter how expected the passing.

On Thursday evening I drove out to Williamson to find my friend Sandy and offer my condolences. As expected, I found other friends as well. I had hoped perhaps Sandy's cousin Wendy might be there. She is a longtime friend, but I seldom see her. Wendy and I shared a long hug and decided we need to catch up for coffee some day, along with our mutual friend Angel.

Tonight the funeral home was in Webster. This mom was a neighbor of my parents and lived just a few houses down the street. Her step children were my friends. I don't see these friends often either. Two of them live out of state and I wasn't sure they would be there tonight, but there they were. More hugs, a few stories, and then it was time for me to go.

My mind is tumbling memories...

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Bits and Pieces

* On Sunday afternoon my older younger sister invited me over for dinner. I was so tired when I arrived that I took a pre-dinner nap. Ha ha! Just curled up on the sofa, put my head on my wadded up jacket, and went to sleep. I felt much better afterward. It's nice visiting someone who loves me enough to let me sleep for a bit. Of course, it helps that I've let her take a nap at my house too.

* Yesterday was spaghetti and meatball day at work. It's a favorite with the kids. Somehow I managed to sneak in a batch (or two) of applesauce cake for snack too! Smelled yummy at daycare.

* The babies have had colds and runny noses. I was back in the baby room for the evening, tissues in hand, when I noticed Derek was in need. There was a white booger peeking out of his nose. I wiped/grabbed it and was in for a surprise. It was a piece of spaghetti! Well, just a quarter piece. I broke them in quarters before cooking them for the little ones. (So gross! Ha ha!)

* I went to work a half hour early today on dry, clear roads. I drove home this evening through snow and slush. I think "wintry mix" is right! Powdery snow, sleet, freezing rain... I even heard some people got hail. Ah, nothing is unheard of and anything is possible. Can't wait to see what tomorrow morning looks like.

(The photos are old. That's my Number One grandchild a few years back.)

Saturday, February 09, 2019

The Barn Collective

So many memories...

I don't get "home" often these days and photos can either conjure up sweet memories or leave me with a catch in my throat... Sometimes I wonder why God fashioned me into such a sappy, nostalgic individual. I soak it all in; the sights, the sounds, the feelings, ... and they drip out when the sponge that is my mind gets waterlogged.

Come over to Tom's place and check out some more fine structures.

Friday, February 08, 2019

Pottery People and A Sleepover or Two

My oldest daughter has been out of town so her three children spent a bit of the week with Aunt Hannah. I'd intended to spend a few evening enjoying my grandkids after work, but it turned out to be a rather busy week. A staff meeting on Tuesday and the Thrsday evening invitation to dinner from a CoDA friend, took me out the two evenings I would have been home. (Strange how that works...)

I made a quick pottery studio stop on Wednesday evening to look for my boxes. I didn't find any finished, but did find something else, a sculpture I'd made and tried to fire at home back in 2005. It hadn't finished firing and the glaze was dry and cracked like sun-baked mud. I left it on the bisque shelf a week or so ago, along with a note asking if they could refire it for me. I had no idea what to expect, but hoped for the best. I was pleased to see the glaze had melted in the second firing. It made me smile.

I got home that night just before the kids headed off to bed and was rewarded with the opportunity to read my granddaughter a few stories before she went to sleep. I read the stories, she said a little prayer, and I laid down next to her for a little bit. When I attempted to leave, she started to cry. I know at home she very often climbs into bed with her mommy, and I knew she was missing her, so I put my head back down and settled in for the night. Once or twice she woke up with a cry, noticed I was still there, and went back to sleep. Last night I grabbed my pillow and we had another sleepover. I don't think she woke up at all during the night and I slept too. It was a good slumber party. Maybe we'll do it again someday. :0)

Tuesday, February 05, 2019


There are many mornings when I wake up, pull myself out of bed, and wonder "What in the world am I doing?" Going to work every day still feels foreign, at least until I get there... Sometimes I want to believe the little voice in my head that says, "You have better things to do," but the truth is, I don't. Not really. Yes, there are moments I wish I could be there to help my kids or spend a leisurely day with my grandchildren, but I know there would be far more moments where I wouldn't know what to do with myself. Going to work is good. It is good for me, and it is good for others too. It's where I'm meant to be for this season of life.

We have another new baby at work. I snuggled her for a bit this afternoon, and I snuggled her brother too. I snuggled our old, new baby, and all the other babies too. I popped into the toddler room this morning so the teacher could use the restroom and ended up with four little ones on my lap all at once! (You might wonder where I got the inspiration for a future clay sculpture...) I love these little people! And I love when they love me. They are the perfect medicine for my hurts. God knew they would be a healing balm and that is why He gave me this job.

I dropped my water bottle today, the one Leta gave me for Christmas... It broke and the water inside spilled all over the break room floor. Guess I'll be taking my old one again. It's so hard to drink water in the winter. Coffee tastes so much better in January and February.

Sunday, February 03, 2019

The Barn Collective

I have no idea how old the remnants were when my dad loaded them on his trailer and hauled them from NY's southern tier 80 miles north, but my guess is they were already close to a hundred years old. Dark, with deep weathered grooves and full of character, just the thing to panel our new "country room."

It was the late sixties, several years before it became the in thing to do, and the neighbors were asking "why?" Maybe it was because he'd grown up in and out of his uncles' barns, or maybe because he'd always wanted to be a farmer. I don't really know for sure, but for all except the very early years of my childhood there have been barn beams across the ceiling and barn boards covering the walls of that little room. Dad would add an old wood stove in the mid seventies. So cozy!

We don't use the wood stove anymore (kind of a fire hazard...) and the barn boards make the room dark, but with new carpet it's once again become the favorite room in the house. For my daughter, it's Grandma and Grandpa's house, but for me it's home. Always has been and always will be.

For those who want to know, "Yes, I was brought up in a barn."

Meet me over at Tom's for more of the Barn Collective.