Friday, March 4, 2022



Danny passed away on the morning of February 23rd. This is a photo I took at our house when Lindsay and Paul Allen were little. I have lots of these kinds of photos, but this one was on his mantel at his home. I loved it and thought it said a lot about him.
Kristan called him Uncle Dan Dan until she was grown.

He didn't want a funeral and I always said that about me too, but it is an odd feeling when you don't.

We are going to have a family cookout and a graveside service with just our family when Kristan comes in June. We were able to get approval to bury his ashes between Jeff's parents and have a Navy marker (Vietnam--USS Shangri-La) placed on one of their graves at our local municipal cemetery. I like that idea lots better than scattering them. 

We have been nonstop busy clearing out his home. He didn't have a ton of stuff but still it is a lifetime accumulation that has to be dealt with. We are donating almost all of it. We are going to keep his beds and take them to Auburn to swap out with some up there. Paul Allen is in charge of listing a few chests and a bookcase on Facebook and Lindsay, Katie and I have cleared closets and hauled to Goodwill. It has been a family affair with all of us keenly aware of the need take care of Jeff during this time. We are hoping to be finished with this part by the end of this coming weekend so we can get the house up for sale which Donna is taking care of.

Clearing out a home is another reminder of how I don't want to leave a mess for my kids. I came home one night promising myself the next day that I would cut my paper files by a large percentage. Doing it while we had just dealt with his desk helped me to be ruthless. I made a huge dent in that. Check...

I want to enjoy the things I have but I don't want kids having to deal with closets and drawers filled with unnecessary clutter. I will renew my efforts on this again.

One more note of sadness....
my friend Kim that I mentioned in my second to the last post will not get her liver transplant. She has not recovered enough from her downturn and they are just trying to keep her comfortable with the days she has left. 

YES, my heart has been in a rough place and couple that with the news of unnecessary moves by Russia has made it hard to even compost a post.

It has renewed that feeling of counting every good thing in life. 
Counting our blessings is what keeps us sane!

I consider it joy that I spend so much time with my family. Keeping my grandchildren is not always easy. It limits my free time, but I just keep thinking about how blessed I am to be with them and love on them and serve my kids by keeping them.

In a break last Saturday morning from the work of Danny's home, Mother and I went with Lindsay and the boys to the Armament Museum. This will be Tucker's 3rd visit in his short 3 years but he loves it so much. Again, we had to tell him the name of every plane. We put Mother on the pushing the stroller detail because we didn't want her falling down with Tucker as he rushed from plane to plane.

Palmer is 7 months old already.

I read a sad book in the month of February. It was Before We Were Yours, by: Lisa Wingate. I say sad because it was about an orphanage and somewhat based on a real orphanage in the 1930s-50s. I thought to myself at one point, "Why I am reading this when life is so sad right now?" I will say it was a very good book though and well written. I am reading more these days which is one of my loves that often gets put to the side in the busy days.

I have stitched on the heron when I have the energy. I have moved my goal date back to the first day of spring. We are going to try and go to Auburn the week before that so I am hoping to get some time to put the finishing stitches in him. I decided no more progress photos. I will share it when he is done!

I am also starting to think about flowers too. I have done some pruning and fertilizing and making lots of plans to work outside soon. I ordered a new rose to go into a container downstairs. I know I said no new plants but it is not a new plant in that I got rid of something to make room for the rose. I saw a lady down the street with this rose last spring and it was amazing. I asked her about it and she had ordered it and gave me the details. It is supposed to be a rose made for containers and should be shipped according to my zone. I can't wait. I am sticking to my smaller number or things to care for as it was so much more manageable last year.

Spring brings hope each year. I have a hopeful heart even in hard times. That comes from Jesus! As we move into the Easter season, my heart just has to focus there.

I will leave this post with one more quick story. In the midst of all that has been going on my oven decided to go out in dramatic fashion

I think I remained exceedingly calm, now Jeff will tell you differently, but I did. However, Gus didn't:)

It had a short or something and kicked on the broiler and burned the cookies I was doing for Mother to take to an event. I am so happy that Mother is getting out more. She has slowed down for sure but this new neighbor has done more good that you can even imagine.

Anywho the stove wouldn't turn off. The cookies were on fire in the oven! I had no fire extinguisher (I do now). I was on the phone with Jeff telling him to come home. He suggested turning off the breakers. I did do that, but I knew I needed to get those cookies out of the oven. I literally think the pan was going to explode if I didn't. I decided in my head if I couldn't get that out the door I was calling 911. I pulled them out and threw 3 towels on top of the cookies to smother the flames. I took about 10 pot holders to take it down the long hallway out to the driveway. I knew I couldn't take it out the back to the deck because it would burn the deck. The broiler burner took about 15 minutes to quit being red that is how hot it got. Jeff and Paul Allen arrived back at the house after I got the cookies out and Paul Allen moved the stove out from between the cabinets so it wouldn't damage them. 

I know they were secretly wondering if I had hit broiler rather than bake. NO! Jeff tried it later that day to see if that was the case and no it did the same thing and wouldn't turn off. 

SO, I have a new stove after cooking two weeks on a hotplate and a toaster oven. I think all that worked pretty well and I guess I could do a TV show on how to manage without a stove. 

I was just grateful we found one to be delivered in just two weeks!!!!!!!

Now, back to Gus. I am pretty sure he thought there was a demon in that stove. AT one point, I noticed he was sitting in the middle of the driveway so he could see me. If a dog can have a panicked look he had one. He didn't want to come back in the house and when I finally coaxed him back in he wouldn't go near the opening of the stove. It took him hours to calm down.

That is not the end of the story....

You see I remembered that stove didn't have an outlet to plug it in visible. 

Of course, this all happened right before Danny passed so Jeff had zero time to deal with it, so he sent Paul Allen over to find the outlet. We thought maybe during a time when some mice got in 20 years ago that maybe it had been sheet rocked over:) So Paul Allen cut the sheetrock to find no plug. Jeff then remembered that when we purchased the stove 20 years ago that it had just been hardwired in. 

The sheetrock has been repaired. Paul Allen, Jeff and I are actually pretty good at that now if you need tips:)
The new stove arrived yesterday and all is well again. 

Paul Allen and Katie are officially having a boy and Katie is doing well.

I barely responded to the last set of comments, so I hope to get back out there to read some blogs and participate in life again next week. 

Life is filled with ups and downs. I try to focus only on the positive but sometimes....

Well, that is it for now. I will be back next week,


  1. Such a lot in this post. First, condolences on Danny's death. And energy to you to deal with everything.

    So glad, though, to get good news of your mother. As you know, I like to hear about her.

    1. Oh Boud, this new lady that moved into Mother's neighborhood has been amazing. They walk. She is a retired nurse and when Mama cut her finger which is why I was baking the cookies for her she bandaged up like I have never seen before. It has healed so well and yes, she has just been a good fit for her.

  2. Blessings to you. I can identify with much of what you have shared. My older brother passed away in October and we had a terrible time getting him buried. Also went through his belongings and cleared out his apartment. My favorite cousin suddenly died in July and I began to seriously think about the paperwork and messes I have about me also not wanting my children to have to deal with all the messes when I die. I have much to do to get to a maintenance mode. I'm chugging along. God bless you.

  3. My sympathies for Danny's passing.
    Prayers your life has smoother days in abundance. The boys will remember and draw strength and happiness being with you. Togetherness is a priceless gift.

  4. That was a good book…sorry for your sadness…makes us think…we have had so many tragedies…I have stopped reading blogs with people complaining…prices are what they are…Florida one of the highest with Snowbirds lol…that is life….take care

  5. My sympathies on the recent loss of your brother-in-law, Danny. It is good to read how much help you have in clearing out your brother-in-law's house and getting it ready to sell. Even though I was glad my hubs and I were the ones to do this with my brother's house a year ago, it was exhausting (physically, mentally and emotionally - the last thing mostly on me). I pray for your stamina as you finish the task, and continue all the care you're giving to others.

    And WOW! what a story about the stove! Yikes! I'm glad all is well now and you've gotten a replacement. I hope you're enjoying it. :)

  6. My sincere condolences on the loss of your BIL. It's wonderful that your Mom is more active again, a blessing that neighbor is to keep her engaged in activities. Your certainly blessed to have Palmer and Tucker in your life. I can imagine that reading after a day chasing them is restorative!! The stove experience was a frightening one for sure and I'm gong to go out and buy a new fire extinguisher!! Mine is so old I'm sure it wouldn't work. Don't put pressure on yourself for the heron, otherwise it will become a chore instead of pleasurable to work on!

  7. Sandy, I am sorry about your BIL. You and your family continue to be in my thoughts and prayers. I am thrilled your Mother is getting out more. What fun pictures you shared of Tucker and Palmer! Oh my, on the stove. I am glad you and Gus were safe. Thrilled to hear the new addition to your family is a boy and that Katie is doing well.

  8. I'm so sorry for your loss. It is especially hard to go through the stuff of a lifetime. Love seeing the little ones and knowing you have a good family to help through the hard times. Sweet hugs Diane

  9. Bless your heart, does seem that things all happen at once. I would have panicked about that stove. I have a fire extinguisher but would I know how to use it???? That Palmer...what a precious little bundle. I know those two boys have kept you going in the last month!!

  10. That first picture of your children with Danny is so special. Thanks for sharing it.

    Your stove story was fascinating and SCARY!!!! When we first moved into this house, we had a cooktop that would turn itself on all by itself during the night, even when I had "locked" it. Brand new, just like this house. Turns out the company did a recall on it and gave us a full refund. So I have an understanding of how you felt, only your experience was much more serious than mine.

  11. I'm so sad to read about your brother-in-law, Sandy. I take it he was a bachelor? How wonderful to have your family nearby for him--there is nothing like a beloved uncle to make kids smile. I'm sure Paul Allen and Lindsay have wonderful memories of their times with him. I'm also sorry about your friend not being able to get her liver transplant. A sad, sad month for you especially with the cloud of war hanging over the world.

    I'm sure you will never, ever regret giving up your free time to care for those precious boys. That first year goes by so quickly! And you will always have such special memories of all the "firsts" you witnessed.

    I'm glad your stove situation worked out--that is very scary and even though we have a fire extinguisher nearby I worry that I would panic and not use it properly.

    So glad your mom was able to go on your latest outing with you--stroller duty was perfect! And those sweet boys--just adorable :) And soon you'll have one more boy in the mix! Amazing :)

    Take care now and I hope the rest of March is easier for you ♥

  12. I am so sorry for your loss, Sandy. And I will keep your friend in my prayers.Good luck with your new stove!

  13. Sorry for your loss, a big strong hug.

  14. I can't believe I didn't read this earlier. I am so sorry about the loss of your brother in law. I can imagine how hard it is to cope with that great loss and also have the responsibility to clean out his home and find homes for everything. Sounds like you all have done an amazing job. Praying for you as you finalize everything. Now, that stove caper sounds pretty wild! Wow!!! So glad all's well that ends well and that you now have a new stove and I assume a new outlet for it to plug into! Wow wow wow. Love the pictures of the boys. They are so adorable. You are truly blessed, but I can imagine how "draining" that can be sometimes. But on the other hand it probably helps keep you more energized than just sitting around retired like us. We've gotten too sedentary and I wish I could do more about it. Anyway, please take care of yourself and don't overdo it. Happy to hear your mother is doing better too. What a blessing that is!!

  15. Hi Sandy: Oh my I am so happy you were able to get the pan outdoors, how sad to have this happen.
    I am happy to hear your Mother is getting out, this is a blessing.
    Those boys are so cute, you are truly blessed.
    I am so sorry for your loss, he is in a better place and how lucky to be with Our Lord.
    Glad to hear Katie is doing well.
    Poor Gus I bet he was afraid.
    Have a lovely day.



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