Posts Tagged With: family


P1010997 (Copy)Daughter-in-law Laurie, greeting guests coming to my 75th birthday party. At some point, I think maybe birthdays should be forgotten, but 75 is a milestone of sorts.

P1020006 (Copy)My son Ken meets and greets our  old friends and relatives.

P1020022 (Copy)And then for awhile there was a whole lot of huggin’ goin’ on.P1020104 (Copy).

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P1020051 (Copy)The littlest cousin and the biggest cousin.

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P1020026 (Copy)Since this was an Oktoberfest birthday combo, Laurie got me into a hat.P1020016 (Copy)We all adore Abbie and especially like to try on her hair. She let me borrow it for a few seconds so I could feel young again.

P1020033 (Copy)The wine flowed-

P1020124 (Copy)A taste of what’s to come, passed around. Yum.

P1020151 (Copy)Ninety year old Bill Foster told everyone that he asked the man upstairs to take a couple strokes off his golf game, but he misunderstood and gave him a stroke instead. A lesson in never losing your sense of humor. His wife June is 88 but looks 65.

P1020085 (Copy)My favorite and long time quilting buddy, Kendra.

P1020031 (Copy)I think brother Stew is trying to convince brother Mason to grow a mustache.

P1020082 (Copy)Long time friend, Paul Moller from Calaveras Community TV.

P1020136 (Copy)Jim borrowed Abbie’s air for a mustache-

P1020193 (Copy)-but, then she put him through all of the props.

Anthony,Norma & Abbie

Anthony,Norma & Abbie. Abbie is an organizer like her mom who took all the pictures of my party.

P1020173 (Copy)Then they put me on the hot seat. I said no gifts.

P1020182 (Copy)Mostly jokes, lovely cards and fun.

Tom and Eleanor

Tom and Eleanor. All too soon it was time to call it a day. And, the end of a year.

For more photos, click the link:


A good time was had by all!

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Jim and I walk everyday and I usually bring my camera everywhere I go. Some deep cleaning, Pledging cupboards, cleaning the window runners,  hand washing, and etc. yesterday, so today, you get hodgepodge. Our neighbor has a bird feeder and I managed to get a few good shots of a pileated woodpecker several days ago.

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He came,he ate.

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I like the way they hang on to eat. For some reason or other, the jays come and hassle the other birds, but this feeder foils them and they can’t get anything out of it.

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The finches have their own feeder and the jays can’t get their seeds either.

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The river is low, we notice a camp across the river that in past years had but a  narrow strip of gravel in front of it.

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The river has such beauty and serenity.

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I didn’t think this picture across the river would turn out. A small deer has nothing to fear to browse during day time.

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Thunderbird Thousand Trails Park has sites on the hilly side of Ben Howard road as well as  the river side of Ben Howard. We walk both. Someone planted ivy on this tree.

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It will eventually reach the top of the tree and most likely kill it. Reminds me of the strangler figs we saw in Costa Rica. The tree dies and the fig remains standing in a circular shape of the tree it killed. Of course, sometimes, the fig dies too.DSC08542 (Copy)

On the way to town, one day, I spotted a huge tree with bright red “berries”. It was huge and I could never find it again to take a photo. Several smaller ones were about.

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A close-up of the clusters and the leaves. It may be a kind of pepper tree. The huge one I saw was spectacularly beautiful.

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The day we went to the parade, we had one of the worst lunches I’ve ever paid for at the Sock Eye, a restaurant with a beautiful view of a lake, but untrained wait help, slow service, and tasteless food. I can only think of twice in my life, I wrote a note and complained to the chef and manager about the food.

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Late in the afternoon, I tried to read my book, but cheerful, fun voices floated up from the river as people enjoyed a Sunday river float. I got up and took a few pictures. Jim, with his impaired eyesight, took his pictures blindly, hoping for the best.  Thunderbird Thousand Trails on the Skykomish river, is one of my favorite spots to stay.

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One of these time, I’m going to take this trip, “….down the lazy river, come as you please…” as it says in the song.



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I’ve been accused of hosting this family reunion  just to get my yard in shape. Doug came up and painted the deck and rebuilt the horseshoe pit and the new chicken coop. The coop came about because daughter Virginia is moving to Australia with her family for a semester. I inherited the chickens from her.

Ken removed trash, went to the dump, did some weed eating, moved heavy tables and umbrellas off the deck and into the yard.  His boys, helped out by bagging excess leaves, and myriad other routine but neglected maintenance. It was a massive effort because—I blame Jim— I travel so much I have little time for yard work. I had trees overhanging the house, foot deep leaves, little repairs, my orchard unfertilized and mostly unwatered. Aarrgh!

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The first to arrive for our big soiree was my recently widowed cousin, Gary, from Southern Cal. He came on Wed. July 2nd, so I told him I’m not cooking. He took me to an Italian restaurant and since Italy was on the wall, he said we could pretend we went to Italy. We were very close as kids.  On Thursday, I put him to work painting benches.

Hey, Mom? I don't have paws.

Friday Afternoon, Kristanne and Austin arrived, hamming it up. She has a newer car and a new license plate reflecting her dog rescue volunteer project.  The license plate holder reads, “All my children have paws.”   Austin looks a bit skeptical about that.

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Bev and Ted arrived later, and set up their tent as usual.

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Tyler, their youngest, got the job of stomping all the plastic bottles to make room in the recycle containers for the stuff to come.

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Cedric & Virginia were the last to arrive on Friday. We have a measure grid on the wall, and Owen was proud to tell me he is taller than his dad. They were jet-lagged, having just returned at 3:00 a.m. from New York where some of Cedric’s family lives. We spent the evening playing a new dice game, called Left, Right, Center. Great for all ages. When it got dark, everyone moved inside and we played one of the kids favorite games, Black Magic. Since we celebrate on Saturday, the only celebration of the official Independence Day was the hanging of the flag.

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Saturday morning, Virginia and Kristanne took their traditional morning walk at 5:00, and did 8 miles. By afternoon, jet-lag caught up with Virginia and she slept for two hours in a chair.

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Daniel and Owen had dish duty Friday night. In the morning, it was Theo and Austin’s turn. Because of the water shortage, no dishwasher was used. The dishwasher is used as a drain board.

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Laurie and I worked on some salads to go with the barbecue.

Helping Doug cut veggies for the shish ke bab

Kristanne helped Doug cut veggies for the skewers while they discussed favorite tunes.

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Alec works and attends college in So. Cal. He flew into Sacramento, and Cathy picked him up and brought him to Murphys. The boys inflated all the tubes for the flume.

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Abbie loved feeding snacks to the chickens. DSC07057 (Copy)

Niece, Rena came directly from FLorida to the reunion, her first time. Her boyfriend Chris, suffered some jet-lag too and took a long snooze, too.  Before the big feast, we headed for the flume. We waited for people who said they were coming to show up, and didn’t. But, it is late in the day, I’ll finish this blog tomorrow. I was having too much fun to take thorough pictures, so, there are big gaps in our event.






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My sister Dawn’s celebration of life was held yesterday in Sunol, CA. population about 300.

DSC03512 (Copy) Dawnie’s youngest daughter, Debbie served as caretaker through those tough months before her death. She knew that Dawnie’s joy in life came mainly from her  family, particularly, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

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Her only son, Tom, pointed out the main events in her life, how she met their father, the birth of four children, facing death and divorce, working, working, working, while I mentally toted up her most obvious character traits. She was a hard worker, uncomplaining, and could be quite stoic. Never self-aggrandizing, nor prone to taking credit for her accomplishments. She was like a mother to her younger siblings.  She helped me through teenaged angst, convincing me of my worth, and beauty when I knew I was an ugly duckling. When her children were growing up, she proceeded to  mother and shelter all who came with-in need. Her children have those same traits.

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At a recent funeral I attended, I looked about and saw so much life in the room, and the same was true here. But, since she was my sister, I couldn’t dispel feelings of sadness for those missing faces and the heartache of loss, as well.  Her daughter’s Kim, and Penny, pre-deceased her, the most heartbreaking thing a parent can face. Kim’s son Ryan, his wife Cody and their children. Ryan claimed as a grandson Dawnie always told him he was perfect.

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The girls in Dawnie’s family from right to left. Kelly, Penny’s daughter. Kaitlyn, Kim’s daughter. Julie, Debbie’s daughter. Casey, Kim’s foster daughter.

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Dawnie’s niece, Christine Juliot and her son Seth, with his wife and kids.

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Dawnie’s other niece, Vickie Julliot.

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The Juliots are from Dawn’s husband’s side of the family.

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Debbie made sure there would be things for kids of all ages to do. The message here is clearly Grandchildren are our most important assets.

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CJ and grandpa.

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Margaret and Abby.

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Dawnie was an inveterate card player, scrabble and boggle champ and in her later years, a collector of eclectic jewelry. Plenty of all decorated the room. Everyone was invited to take a pin and earrings to wear for the event, which we did.

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I am wearing a Hershey’s kiss on my sweater and some gaudy gold balls on my ears from her collection.

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I tried to make sure I got a picture of everyone but I sprained three fingers in a fall yesterday and the fingers didn’t swell up until i drove home. So it has been slow going this morning and I’m just going to post pictures. and a link to the complete album at the end.

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img982Dawn%20Moore%27s%20Graduation%20Photo%2C%20Escanaba%20High%20School%2C%201951. (Copy)

My sister, Dawn, died yesterday after struggling with cancer. This is her high school graduation picture. img005Dawn%27s%20first%20Communion%20at%20Hardwood. (Copy)

Her first communion. Families mostly took pictures on special occasions.

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Dawn, the oldest, Bill, the first son, and myself, the baby.

img526Dawn%2CMaryRuth%2CBill%2CDan%20inside%20car. (Copy)Then, another brother, Dan, peeking out of the car.

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In her Air Force Uniform.  I idolized my sister when we were growing up.

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We didn’t have a family picture taken until Dawn was married and had four children of her own.  In front is Norman, Mark, on Dad’s lap, Clark on Mom’s lap, and Dan.

Mark died at age 50 in 2005. Dan died at age 59 in 2002. It is hard to lose siblings. But, I’ve discovered that those we lose are never gone. They stay with us always. I am thankful for remembrance of the times we shared.


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Our annual family reunion is really a family and friends reunion. The first to arrive on July 4th was Wendy and Paul Lothrop from Southern California. Long time friends of my daughter Kristanne.  it was designed to be a surprise for her because she hadn’t seen them in a about two years and didn’t know they were coming.

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Doug was cutting tile for one of three tables he rebuilt.

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Kristanne and Austin arrived next. After having a chance to visit with Wendy and Paul, and since we were waaaay behind schedule with extremely hot weather, my inability to do very much, and a lot of things left undone for too long, Doug put Kris to work on the barbeque table he rebuilt, staining the wood trim and later two coats of Varathane.

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Austin hung the flag, washed and tested all the squirt guns to make sure they worked, emptied the garbage and sorted recycling for a run to the dump before the big event on Saturday.

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He only had to toss one gun.

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On Friday, the young cousins arrived. Abby got sparkles in her hair and the boys sported newly painted mohawks for the occasion. Later Kristanne fixed a mohawk for Austin, too.

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Sisters, Bev and Kathy. Bev is mother of the boys and Abby.

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Kathy always brings something zany for the kids, this time some 4th of July sunglasses…

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…and some weird teeth for herself. Boy, what Hollywood can do to make you look old.

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Ted and Bev set up the first tent. The kids played on the trampoline and had squirt gun wars all day, while Wendy kept us all fed.

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Doug put Ted to work patching tubes that went dead.

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Virginia, Cedric, Theo and Owen arrived late on Friday, but the kids got some trampoline time in and we adults played a game called What’s Yours Like?

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It is a guessing game, brings a lot of laughter, and the good thing, is you can snack and drink with the game without worrying about getting your cards or board wet or spilled on or greasy. More reunion stuff tomorrow. Have to visit the Chiropractor this morning.







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