Saturday, February 28, 2009

Spring already?

Well, I'm back here "on line getting ideas for engagement photos I'm taking tomorrow" and got side tracked reading posts and so now that I'm done reading posts, I thought I'd post something myself. Not much to say today; Except that Spring has sprung here in the valley of the sun. Out of nowhere; from sweaters to cooler cloths.. So I'm saying good bye to boots and sweaters for another year.. heavy sigh......

Friday, February 27, 2009


Sophie's eating eggs

During my working days, in CA, I had long commutes; VERY long. During the very early 80's I listened to Ken & Bob from KABC 570 in L.A. They were fun and they gave us the "word" Egbok.. Everything's Going to be O.K.  This was during a difficult economy 20% mortgage rates come to mind.  These were the years I became hooked on Talk Radio; The days before the "Hosts" were either WAY to the right or left. I would spend my lunch hours in my car eating and listening to Michael Jackson ---- the REAL one. He'd have all kinds of guests and was a real gentleman. I felt like I knew these guys and missed them when they were gone.

I still have talk Radio on but my local station, other than "the nearly famous one Barry Young", offer only right wing Loud Mouths and leave me trying to figure out how to use the I-Pod I bought a while ago for an outdoor party, in my car. I miss the days of the very gentle Michael Jackson (not the one you may be thinking of) and Ken Minyard, his son, and Roger Barkley, and Bob, his first partner. 

So In keeping with my theme of yesterday, EGBOK fellow bloggers, EGBOK.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

20 shots for ONE good Photo - Family Ties

These photos were two among about 50 tries on two poses in October 2007. I wanted a family photo along with one of all the children. Sophie wasn't here yet. I was pretty irritated when I first downloaded the photos as there were so many taken and yet we didn't really get ONE good one of the whole family. Katie denied to the hilt that she EVER looked away from the camera.  Why do that when I'm looking at photos of her looking off into space? I cut and pasted for our yearly Christmas Card and vowed NEVER AGAIN.. As it turns out, I smile more when I look at all these missed shots than when I look at the cut and paste on the Christmas Card.
My point today...
I've read other blogs and hear in the news an awful lot about the state of our economy. It pretty much is in the toilet right now I guess and things could get worse. Paul and I have survived the worst in years past and I worry things might get that bad again. BUT maybe I'm older and a bit wiser than I was or maybe I've got my head in the sand or up my.... but I'm feeling more like Singing... "No Worries, be Happy". Let me be clear!; I'm not threatened right now that I'm going to loose my home as others are these days. Due to being on Medical Disability and Paul changing jobs last year, things have been rough; I've lost my credit rating and I won't be getting that big screen T.V. any time soon but for now, I'm in my home. I won't say I haven't stayed up at night once or twice worrying about the fact that we didn't plan this pension thing well and if Paul does go before me; Well lets just say it won't be on Easy Street that I'll be living. But I'll be o.k.

Maybe families will pool resources and live together if the days ahead are darker? We almost lost Katie 31 years ago; I nearly died 4 years ago. My kids are wise NOT to tell me of their close calls so I don't stew in worry. I learned 13 years ago amidst a ruinous financial time for us that we'd be o.k. We were o.k. and we survived to thrive again, which we did.  Probably fair to say we didn't learn a lot from mistakes made back then.
And the Lottery still ranks high in my retirement plans.. if only I'd remember to play!

My kids should probably worry; since my back up financial plan is to live with one of them... :) but I don't worry. If they lost their jobs or means of support, we'd be a little crowded but we'd make it together. 

I think America is strong; and I believed Obama last night when he said we'd come through this time.. We will get through this and if the worst happens, we'll survive to rebuild. Maybe even look at what's really important in our lives. Our families, our health, our spirits; our souls and not at our material goods. 
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad

I made this for Dad's Memorial 1998

Blake Circa 1920  ( I think)

Blake & Geraldine Welstead May 23, 1945

Dad and Friends WWII My dad is on the left
My Mind is slipping. Typically, each year, I mark each day around this time. Today is my Dad's 90th Birthday.  I didn't realize that until the date on my web site jolted me.  
Happy Birthday Dad. 
I've spoken here about my dad and mom.. adnauseum (is that a word?).  Today, I'll only share what I consider to be one of the most remarkable things among so many remarkable things about this man.
He was born February 24, 1919 in AR.. (didn't care a lot for those AR jokes after Bill Clinton's election).  His parents were divorced shortly after he was two. His mother moved back near her family in IL or WI. His father came and took Dad and his brother for a weekend and never took them home.  Uncle Tommy went back to live with our Grand mother but my dad did not.. not for a long time. The story goes that my grandfather was a sales man (fuller brush?) and traveled all over the country. My father wanted more for his children and he and mom owned only two homes in their life together. My father was raised in the traditions of the south during the 20's and 30's and to a certain extent was a product of his up bringing. He wanted more for his children and again,  changed his ways for them. We were raised to understand that all people are equal. He wanted his children to be better than that. We were pretty shocked, in our twenties, to learn he was  a product of his upbringing.  His beliefs about race didn't really change all that much until much later in his life, and this change came from the love of his grand daughter. I remember his quiet anger once when I related a story of bigotry of a boss I had in the early 80's. In a way; we returned the favor he gave us as children; when we reached our twenties and his belief system did change.
I've always marveled at his ability to accept certain things and yet, want his kids to be better and to raise them *us* the way he did. I never really said Thanks Dad for the way you raised us.
I think he knows now how grateful his children are, to have been raised by two of the greatest, from the Greatest Generation.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sabby's Weekend included a ride on a Whale

Katie took Sabby to Sea World this weekend with a friend from California. The little miss was in rare form this morning while I urged her on in her morning routine for school. She'd gotten a new outfit this weekend and seemed to think she was little miss Hip Hop. On our walk to school, She reminded me of walking down the long hallway that is my house with my three dogs walking in front of behind and to my side, all the while me trying to to trip over her and all the while, chattering about dancing and school and it looked just like mommy farted while sitting on Shamu (photo shamu only).. 
Hope you all enjoyed your weekend, Sabby certainly did and how I wish I could bottle her exuberance for life and the day ahead of her.
Oh yes, and even after marking the date a while ago... I forgot Friday that it was one year ago on Friday that I started my blog. I'm so glad I did.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Thank you Rudee for including me in this award!  I've copied and pasted below and am passing it on to some fellow bloggers!
 "These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbon of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Michelle, My World V. Joe Cool's Blog Well I'm New  Tonya Carla's Blog Tricia's Blog

Sorry everyone, I still don't know how to pass on awards properly!
Have a good day and thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Thanks Tricia!!

Tricia from Bluff Area Daily passed this on to me and I'm passing it on to 7 more. Thanks again Tricia! A Knitting Nurse Sandy's Blog Brenda's Blog Michelle, My World V. Joe Cool's Blog Well I'm New

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Saying Good Bye to Rex

In October, as I've mentioned,  we lost Rex, our Collie.  It was pretty rough. Today, we drove up to Red Rock State Park, near Sedona and Oak Creek. It's not legal here to spread ashes on the ground or in the water. This is Oak Creek. We didn't spread his ashes in the water but buried them. It's a beautiful place; my favorite; and I want a little of me left there some day. I think Rex would have loved this place. We still miss him a lot. No matter how bad his pain was, when Paul got home every night, he'd drag himself up and greet him at the door.We were here last summer. Today was quite different with no leaves on the trees but no less beautiful. Oak Creek is one of the most beautiful place I've ever seen. Red Rock State park is only one of many places to enjoy the creek.
Thanks Sandi & Jim for coming with us

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Dealing with the City

I realized last week that I hadn't paid the traffic ticket I got when I was in the fender bender last month and by then it was too late to go to traffic school.. Besides, Traffic school cost more than the ticket AND I'd still have to pay the ticket!

Today, was my court date, so bright and early this morning, I set out to Buckeye City Hall, Court House. I worked for the Federal Government right out of high school for two years; after that I worked in the private sector for over 30 years. The customer was king or queen and always, customer service was our main focus... Either our clients or our vendors.

So today, was quite the eye opener. The courthouse in Buckeye is small and was not very crowded this morning. I went into the wrong building; walked up to the counter with a smile and was immediately asked by an unfriendly, unhelpful girl if I'd pulled a number. I had and there was no one ahead of me. When I told her yes, she nodded over to a pack of chairs and told me to wait there until my number was called.. Okey dokey.. After about 5 minutes, I decided I may be in the wrong place; I was in the Department of motor vehicles. Hesitantly, I approached the desk again.. Excuse me? Is this where I pay my ticket?  NO - go across the walk way.. Okey Dokey. 

I walked into the Right place and waited, and waited until a woman about my age, walked over and asked if she could help me.. Well then, some service!  No I couldn't make payment arrangements; yes they'd take cash and my ATM card. 
She then asked another employee if she was busy-- I guess the second girl did the receipts. YES the girl was busy! Now this is the cashier department of the court.. So collecting payments? Wouldn't that be her job?
Anyway, she took my money, then while I waited, she stood there, talking to her co-workers in the office about her weekend, before processing my payment. I looked back at the woman behind me in line who burst out laughing.. Unable to believe that an employee of this office would keep a "client" standing there while she related to her co workers the details of the accident she'd been in this weekend.  During my working days, I'd have been written up or fired for treating a customer like that. Her supervisor, simply looked over at her annoyed.  I'm not just her customer! As a resident of Buckeye, and the community of Sundance, I pay about 300.00 a month extra on my house payment every month to pay her salary!!!!

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Still trying to upload this video

I'm expecting the error signal as I write this. This is a long video and my many attempts to reduce the size to the early part of the video have been  unsuccessful. If you choose to watch this video, you only really need to watch the first two minutes or so as this is the part that so explains Izabella Rose.  Izzy is two in this video and having trouble coming to terms with her sister having a birthday party when she's NOT.  Big sister Makayla was clearly enjoying Izzy's pain and Clearly, Izzy ruled the roost in April 2008 or wanted to.

Thanks for taking the time to read my second blog today

Hockey, Valentine's Day and How was YOUR weekend

I LOVE Hockey. Ricky got tickets to the Coyote Game Thursday the 12th. We had seats in a suite! He's got connections :)
Seats were great and this time I took my "big camera" with telephoto.. Of course my bag was searched and the woman, who did the searching, clearly wanted more power in her life and told me I couldn't use my wide angle lens... Why? Because it was "too professional"... I'm glad I never served on a PTA board with her. Even the other guard rolled his eyes with that one. I USED the lens by the way..

True to my hopes a fight broke out.. See the lady on the upper left side? She was taking pictures too.

Hope you all had a great Valentine's Day. Paul surprised me with Roses.. AGAINST the rules but I loved them. I hoped all day yesterday for customers who got engaged on Saturday.. No luck but I did join Face Book while waiting. I'm glad I joined. My niece Suzanne lives in Germany and now I can keep up with her and her life... I've missed her since her husband was transferred to Germany.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What a Magical Place

Last Week, Katie took Sabby to Disneyland. She used some of her tax return and they had a wonderful time. Part of the trip was staying at a hotel near Disneyland so they spent two days there. February is a good time to go to Disneyland. They did get rained on one day but the rain didn't dampen their time.
I LOVE the first picture; It shows the magic in Sabby's eyes. She really thought Cinderella was a real princess.. I didn't mean to, but I spilled the beans, telling her someday she could play the Mermaid Princess with her red hair.
They have "Breakfast with the Princesses" now and Katie and Sabby went to that. Sabby got many autographs that morning. 

Somehow, when Sabby came home (to Aunt Lyndsey's for the party), she brought a little of the magic of Disneyland with her. She does that a lot; filling our home with Magic everyday. 
By the way, she promptly got busy cleaning up Aunt Lyndsey's house. Lyndsey stood at the sliding glass door for a minute, looking out at her patio and asked... "Sabby?, did you clean my patio?".. Yep AND she made Aunt Lyndsey's bed and cleaned up the girls' room so Makayla would come home to a clean room.

Who needs the magic of Disneyland, when You have the "Magic" of Sabby everyday?
Or the Magic of Madi, Makayla, Conner, Izzy, and Sophie for that matter. I hope very soon to be able to take ALL six to Disneyland... thus confirming, I'm crazy.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pictures of the Fiesta

The people were wonderful; the food was awesome and the music fantastic. Despite the heavy rainfall, so many people were there to celebrate Sophie Monique's 1st Birthday. Even Aly, Saul, Kat & Ema were able to make it. Rosa (Victor's Mother) is famous for her fiestas and cooking... For good reason!
Here are just a very few of the many pictures I took this weekend. 
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I'm Home Again

For over 20 years (approx) I've driven without an accident or ticket. Now it seems I shouldn't leave my house. Since December, I've received three tickets and had one accident. While  driving home from CA today, an exhausting drive by the way), as I approached Blythe (the border city between CA and AZ) I came upon two police cars. I knew as I passed them I was going to get a ticket. My first clue...? The white police car made a U turn and was coming my way. The lights coming on, with my second clue... 
A Very nice CHP officer reminding me that the limit in CA was 70; and I was clocked at 86.. I think my speedometer is off. I thought I was doing 80.. Anyway we had a nice chat and now I have two tickets to pay.. I already paid the Camera ticket. 
I need to catch up around here; download photos from Sophie's party (a fantastic fiesta by the way) and Sabby is getting out of school in a few minutes.  I also want to find out how all my blogging friends are doing since I haven't read any posts for some time.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Friday, February 6, 2009

I don't get it

I don't get Wheaties and I'm a little irritated at them for their non renewal of Michael Phelps' contract. Yeah they have the right; but I can't help wondering how many of the decision makers there have smoked pot in their own lives. I am not a pot smoker, but I DID INHALE a few times when I was younger. I've been told that Pot will help with symptoms of M.S. but don't like the idea of inhaling anything into my lungs... After years of smoking.....
Some one I love uses pot to help with severe migraine headaches he's had since he was three years old. That's ALL that has helped him. Drug addiction should be treated as a health problem and not a crime. The smugglers, and sellers are a different matter.  But we wouldn't  have that problem if we made pot legal. 
O.K. I've said enough.
I've got sixteen million things to do today before leaving for Sophie's birthday party in CA. 
I haven't been to visit blogs much this week so will catch up with all of you soon.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Only a FEW of the photos from this weekend...

We really did have a great time Saturday night. I don't remember taking all the photos I took or had taken but apparently we had a VERY good time.

The morning after....

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

WARNING LONG Remembering... And all sorts of Musings

The end of January and early days of February bring me different memories and emotions. My niece, Aly, was born February 2nd. A time mixed with excitement, profound love, pain, hurt and determination. My sister brought Aly to us after an awful day (not in a bed but on more of a emergency type of bed)... on her back, with back labor, and a doctor who left town for a day of golf AFTER learning Kathie was in labor. Mom was there with Kathie, but the days, weeks and months before Aly's birth
Aly and her Aunt Betty, March 1975
were filled with discord as to Kathie's choices and her decision to keep Aly. Raise her, herself and not risk to chance the environment her baby would grow up in. Our parents disagreed with that choice, out of love, but in the months leading up to the birth of Kathie's baby, it would seem, often, that we stood alone together. We lived with each other then and both of our lives would change. I wasn't much help to Kathie in the early days. Of course, once you were out of diapers, Aly, I had you with me all the time. Kathie worked hard to support Aly and had to work a lot of overtime to make ends meet. There was no child support. Over the years, of course, life would change as our parents fell in love with Aly and fully supported (emotionally) Kathie. Dad loved her so much and once when Aly lamented in front of Grampa Eny that she had no daddy, he offered to be her dad. It was Kathie though, who bore the joy and burden of being sole support to Aly until she married Rob, when Aly was nearly 9 in 1983. You did good Kathie.... (cont... below)
Mom and me at my wedding shower, March 1978

Aly, the night before my wedding, Grampa Eny (my dad) took this picture with his new telephoto lens
My dad and me on my wedding Day He was really a handsome man

My dad, with my daughter Lyndsey in 1983.. "Sharing his wonder with her"
My parents in February 1983, Celebrating Dad's birthday at Kathie's condo
Me, and Kathie on her wedding day, 12/31/83. When Rob became Aly's daddy and always took good care of her
Dad with my girls at our family Christmas Party, at My sister Mary's house. Mary would always make the parties and holidays so beautiful.  This was in 1984

Dad, 1995,  Mom and Dad's 50th Anniversary

Mom and Dad, May 1995 50 years together. 

January 24th 1998 started out so happily, we were moving into our new home. That evening while I laid on the couch, wiped out, Kathie called and my world changed again. Dad was dead. Mom had been sick and getting weaker for years. She had emphysema and had been in the hospital a couple of times since Christmas. She woke up from a Nap and Dad was gone; no warning; no goodbye; no thank you for all you did for us and meant to us all of our lives. Just gone. We buried dad on January 30th or 31st, and the following day, Mom would go back into the hospital and died on February 5th.. 11 years ago tomorrow. I believed and still do; that their death, so close together, was a reward from God for a life well lived.  Those 12 days between January 24th and February 5th in 1998 were hard, as we sat in disbelief  and watched our mother die. Six of us, middle aged by then; but unable to accept our mom and dad were gone. So life changed a lot early in 1998 and because of problems during and shortly after this time, my parents' children have never been together all of us since.

Blaike, Mom and Dad's first Great Grandchild would turn 4 on February 6th so we celebrated the fact she wouldn't share her birthday with such an anniversary. Aly was married on March 7th, 4 weeks later. We celebrated her new life with sadness and joy... and a sense mom and dad were there, and stayed with her during the struggles she would face for the next 10 years. Aly, I think they were in Maui in July :)

So tomorrow is 11 years; I still miss them, I will occasionally still cry when I think of them. They were remarkable, even among their fellow members of the greatest generation... They stood out. That is not just the ramblings of their daughter; This knowledge was shared by people we'd never met before,  at their funerals. I regret they never met my 6 grandchildren; but I sense they enjoy them from heaven.  Last year, our youngest grand daughter, Sophie nearly died on the 10th anniversary of Dad's death, of Jaundice so bad she needed a transfusion. I knew dad was there and she'd be o.k.

So on January 24th, I remember with fondness, Paul and I celebrating getting into that house on Primero; and sadness at the memory of the shock later that evening. On February 2nd, I celebrate Aly's arrival into my life and I remember  the struggles of my sister Kathie to raise her to the beautiful woman she became. On February 5th, those twelve days each year come to an end for one more year, and I remember that Blaike, who was named for her great grand father, is getting older every year!!!
I've learned during my 56 years that the book of Ephesians is right in the bible, or the Birds were, when they sang Turn Turn Turn. There is a time for joy and a time for sorrow.....
Happy Birthday Ground hog baby, I love you every day!!! Happy birthday Blaike; Happy anniversary mom and dad, we'll see you soon.
Thanks for taking the time... if you're still reading!.... to read my blog today.

Monday, February 2, 2009

What a Weekend

Carla and I celebrated this weekend that the wonderful family's who's wedding celebration we photographed were very happy with the end result. We struggled all week to make the Friday Deadline I'd set for us by promising proofs in 7 days.. Having them like the pictures, made us very happy.

While saddened by the late in the fourth quarter win by Pittsburgh last night, WHAT A GAME.. The weekend was crammed with activity and we didn't get home until late last night. Poor Paul, I think it was only my snoring that kept him awake on the drive home.
Aly, Saul and a friend of theirs threw an incredible party Saturday, where I was 'Over served'. Carla and I did a lot of WHOOOOing, but  I don't remember much after the first Margarita. Paul, Robbie and Carla do remember and are taking great pleasure in reminding me of the entire evening. Fortunately when I was woken by Lyndsey at 3:30 am. IN my niece's bed, there were many others around the house passed out. Some people can't handle their liquor.. Lyndsey and I are two of them. Carla, honey, if you post those pictures..... Like I said.. You'll learn what I look like on a broom stick!
Anyway, I'm pretty sure it'll be another 22 years until I'm "over served" again. Yesterday was busy and what little I had left of my voice was used up on cheering/screaming on the Cardinals. Our Grand kids at Lyndsey's learned some new words yesterday. I hope they do not use them at School. 

I am still a loyal and happy Cardinal fan today. Still Love Kurt Warner, and Larry Fitzgerald!

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.