Sunday, June 24, 2012

Honor Flag Pole - for Grandpa's

We have always had a flag flying at our home.  
My Dad loved the United States of America and loved the beautiful Stars and Stripes!
He is a Veteran of World War II.

There were many special occasions when the family would rise early, have breakfast and then attend our "Flag Ceremony".  We always did this on Independence Day.  The little ones would learn how sacred this flag is and how to raise and lower the flag properly.  Also, how important it is to salute the flag as it is raised or comes past you as colors are posted.

To honor her Grandfather's who both fought in wars, my daughter Amanda erected an honor flag pole in her front yard and has a plague honoring them with their names engraved - Elden G. Price and Leo C. Petersen. I am excited to stand at this flag pole and salute them and the flag.

Oh What Do You Do In The Summertime?

Oh what do you do in the summer time when all the world is green?
Do you fish in a stream, or lazily dream on the banks as the clouds go by?
Is that what you do?

My Mom always spoke of the lazy summer days when she and her Mother would find pictures in the clouds.  This past week I took my lunch and went to the park to unwind for a short hour from a very busy work morning.  As I sat and let the sun warm my face I looked into the sky and marveled at the beautiful few clouds there were floating by.

 Then I thought of my Mom as a young girl lying on the grass creating her playground in the sky.  What wonders a child can create!  I glanced at my watch, and knew my time was almost spent, but as I strolled slowly back to my car I took the time to smell the flowers and marvel at the little things we are blessed with each day.

So .   .   .  What do you do in the summertime?  What memories can you make each day?  What beauties do you find in a glance, in an hour, in a few moments?  They are all around us, and I am grateful!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Caterpillar to Butterfly

My sister Nancy and her family sent Mom the best gift for Mother's Day this year - a live Nature Gift.  The day before Mother's Day we received this package at the door which said open immediately.  Inside were two covered cups, and inside those were teeny tiny caterpillars, 6 in each cup.  So we read the directions and the life cycle of our "Painted Lady" butterflies began.   

Cups with caterpillars from
With our kit of 2 cups of caterpillars we also received a pop-up habitat which we hung the caterpillars after they spun themselves into the Chrysalis.  We were able to observe the process. 

 This is the "J" hang 
Each caterpillar eats and eats the food in the bottom of the cup and then eventually climbs to the lid of the cup, spins some silk to attach to the lid and then forms a J, then immediately they begin to change into the chrysalis.  It may seem like nothing is happening but this is where the magic begins.  24 hours after all the caterpillars are snug within their chrysalis we had to transfer them from the cup to the habitat.  This was a little tense as you want to make sure NOT to shake or jiggle to much so none of them fall off the attached lid. But we had success!  We had 12 chrysalis in all - 6 on each lid.  But only 9 became butterflies.

 Our first butterfly!
One week after we transferred the chrysalis to the habitat we had our first butterfly - it was Memorial Day! Our instructions tell us to put pieces of watermelon or banana in the bottom of the habitat.  This butterfly is "tasting" watermelon. 

 One of the Painted Lady Butterflies - ready for flight
Did you know that the normal life span of a butterfly is is 2 to 4 weeks.  They will not breed in the habitat and must be released in order for the cycle of life to begin again. 

 I'm not sure why this one was so comfortable on my hand and finger,
but she is beautiful!

Mom released 6 of her new little painted ladies and she caught this
 photo just as the last one was ready to bid farewell.  
Mom said it was sad and exciting all in the same moment. 

And the next day, the last 3 were ready to take flight as well.  
Nancy described this wonderful experience best.  She said it was a life lesson in struggle and victory.  We had such a great time tending to this little family of caterpillars - kind of ugly to look at and watch, but then they struggle to get to the lid of the cup and form their "J" hang.  We knew that a few days later beauty would find victory and they immerse from the tight confines of the chrysalis.   Our Painted Ladies were beautiful and we will forever remember this exciting experience!  Thank you Clark family!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Batter Up!

It Spring time and the kids are all signed up to play baseball!  It has been so much fun to go to my grand kids ball games!  Damon plays for the Pirates.  His Grand Grandma Price and I attended his first game together.  He is one of the smallest kids on the team but OH MY - this kid has heart and gives his all to be a part of this team!

Damon up to bat, this was ball one, but he 
slammed the next pitch and got on base! 

 His second game he was put in as catcher - something 
he had never tried before but check out that form!

Tabitha plays on a team a little older than Damon's.  There are two girls on her team!  You go Tabitha!  Show them how we girls can play!  She is a girly girl but when she needs to be she can be rough and tumble!  We had such fun walking between the two games because both kids played the same night at the same time.  And the weather was BEAUTIFUL!

Tabitha takes a swing!
I took these pictures through the chain link fence.  I had to set my camera between the links to hopefully get a good shot.  Pretty good huh!  Anyway, Mom and I are sure having fun cheering from the sideline seats.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Stay Strong!


Monday, April 9, 2012

Oh My!

I have had a wild and crazy week at work.  My supervisor has been on vacation so I have been here trying to keep "the home fires burning", the stress level low and keep everything in it's place.

I was doing pretty good.  In my line of work (Escrow) we use a lot of paper and I make several copies during the day.  This is all good because I am very organized and my focus is determined.

Everyone knows that I DO NOT like spiders AT ALL.  I don't care if they are tiny or huge - a spider is a spider!  Well - I took a stack of papers to the copy machine to do my copying, I open the lid to start my copies and right in the middle of the glass is one of those fuzzy black jumping spiders.  Yup!  I let out a screech, dropped the lid and stepped away from the machine - trembling.  I figured the drop of the lid would smash the monster - but NOOOooooo!  I open the lid and he scurries to the back of the machine.  Stress level has gone from 0 to a 3.

I wait a few minutes - take a few deep breaths and open the lid again - no spider in site so I hurry and make my copies needed and dash away from the danger zone! Stress level is now a 5!

I have NOT forgotten that the monster is still SOMEWHERE!  And every time I walk out to the copy room I look on the floor, on the stamps, on the pens, on the handle to the copy machine before I lift the lid and then after I make the copies I timidly look in the tray to grab my papers before the fuzzy thing crawls out to scare the bajeebies out of me - AGAIN.  And it did!  Stress level is now at 9 1/2.  But this time I had the can of canned air in my hand ready to defend myself!  I filled that fuzzy monster with cold canned air - no where to be seen again.  So I went from having an A-OK day, just minding my own business, getting my work done to a crazed maniac carrying canned air around to fight off the monsters!

And this is what I looked like by the end of the day!

Fast forward to the next morning - mind you I am still alone, new day, no memory of the day before fighting off yucky crawly scary things - and there it is - sitting on top of the fax machine - my weapon of choice NOT within grabbing range - so I take a file folder - make sure it is big enough that I do not have to accidentally touch this black, fuzzy scary monster with any part of my hand and I start beating the fax machine.  When I stop, the monster is dead, the file folder is obliterated, my heart is beating ferociously but I am triumphant!  I am the conqueror!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

We have Spring Fever!

On Saturday March 17th a few of Mom's kids got together to "spring clean" her yard and flower beds.  My brother Terry arranged for some good soil to be delivered so we could work it into the flower beds.  The morning was a bit chilly and very windy, but we had a great time together!

 Terry and Ruth reset the edging bricks around
the tree before adding soil 3-17-2012

Everyone brought shovels, gloves and dug right in removing last year plants, dead grass and leaves that continue to fall from the trees. 

 Mom, Terry and Scott 3-17-2012
Terry and Scott are trying to look all serious - don't let them fool you!

We have to be careful when Mom works around dust and lots of wind (and/or different fumes).  She gets coughing spells that are really bad and scary so we make sure she is protected with her safety mask.  She was a great crew boss - she loves her gardens and a well manicured lawn - she is soooo adorable! 

Dominic, Jeremy (Ruth's son), Ruth, Mom, Terry and Scott
(Janet is taking the picture) 3-17-2012

Here is the whole crew!  Honestly - I did help out in the yard - I even used the leaf blower and picked up a bunch of debris - I just enjoy taking pictures of everyone! Everything looked so wonderful, cleaned up and ready for springtime to get here a few days later.  Interesting - later that evening we had a small snow storm that left everything covered in snow.  And then like magic - Spring comes and the daffodils are ready to burst!  I LOVE Spring!