Thursday, February 28, 2013

February 47th

For being the shortest month of the year, this month has felt extremely long. I'm not sure if it's because of getting new snow almost every day, or because I had a lot of activities, but it was long. I was actually relieved to turn my calendar to a new page in my office today.

Why is it time flies when we're having fun, and drag when it is not so special? Hopefully, March will prove to be a great month!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


Merriam Webster says:
Definition of VOLUNTEER:
A person who
voluntarily undertakes or expresses a willingness to undertake a service: as

a: one who enters into military service voluntarily

b (1): one who renders a service or takes part in a transaction while having no legal concern or interest
   (2): one who receives a conveyance or transfer of property without giving valuable consideration

* * * * * 
Over the years, I have volunteered for various things. There was a time I was a Cub Scout leader. I have been a Sunday school teacher, and a volunteer choir director. A few years ago, I was a volunteer for One by One, a program for tutoring Hispanic young people. I tutored Rosie for three years, and really enjoyed it. Currently, I voluntarily sing in my church choir. All of these activities I chose to do because I enjoyed them and felt I was meeting a need.
Many in my family have volunteered to serve in the armed forces. The two closest to me are my brother, and of course, my son, Hans.

One of my co-workers, Whitney, volunteers at a nursing home 3 of the 4 Thursdays a month, doing manicures for the elderly. This particular nursing home is many miles from her home, yet she faithfully drives there on Thursdays after working all day. Many of the residents have filthy hands and are at times crabby and seem ungrateful, but Whitney continues to volunteer.

I was most impressed by this selfless act last Thursday, Valentine’s Day. She is young, a newly wed, and yet she went. Her husband asked to go along with her and took this photo for me. I’m proud of you, Whitney!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Peder's kids

Friday night Aurelia had a "sleep-over" at my home. It had been some time, and she was quite excited. We went out to eat, shopped in a grocery store, and came home to watch a movie. Then it was bedtime. Bless her heart, she let me stay in bed until a little after 7, which is always welcome to me on a Saturday  morning.

After a breakfast of waffles, she played with my dolls, and then we played a few games of "Trouble." She easily beat me on the first two games.

When I was overtaking her on the third game, she didn't want to play any longer. That's typical five year old behavior, right? So we put it away. After playing with Nels and watching another movie — one which follows with questions relating to the movie, we had our lunch and then got ready to go to a little surprise birthday gathering of one of my choir friends.

Once home from the birthday party, we started to prepare for Peder, Sarah, Felix and Leo to come over for an early supper. I had every intention of having Aurelia help me in the morning with making red jello with sliced bananas, but wouldn't you know it: I had forgotten to buy the jello when we shopped at the grocery store the night before.

Aurelia helped a bit with setting the table and then played with some toys while I started dinner. In a few minutes, her family arrived. After that, things were pretty "busy" in my small home. It was fun to see them again. Felix is now big enough to sit on the Amish stool; Leo now sits in the booster chair. My, time flies!

Felix, 2 – turning 3 May 1

Leo, 10 months

Felix, enjoying strawberry short-cake

Friday, February 15, 2013

Happy 7th Birthday, Annika!

Happy Birthday, sweet Annika!

It doesn't seem possible that my sweet granddaughter, Annika, could be seven years old already. Where does that time go? I'm pretty sure it hasn't seemed like the years went by that quickly for her and her family. She is a girl who already has quite a little history.

Born in Japan, then living in Rhode Island, followed by a few years in Germany, she now lives in Virginia. I remember asking her once where she was born and she told me "Minnesota." I chuckled and told her she really wasn't born in Minnesota, nor has she lived there. She looked a bit puzzled. I know by now she has it figured out.

I got to spend a little time with her and Josiah at the beginning of January this year. She still delights me - her love of animals, especially. I'll never forget the day she went with me to pick out Nels. It was really one of the highlights of my life.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Happy 204th Birthday, Abraham Lincoln!

204 years ago today, my favorite President was born. All I know about him, I have learned from books and visiting the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum and Library in Springfield, Illinois and New Salem, Illinois, where he lived when he was young. You can revisit my blog entry of our visit here and here.

Still in the theaters is the movie, Lincoln. I have seen it twice, because I wanted to see more details that I may have missed at the first viewing. Of course, I cried each time when I saw him die. What a man with a big heart. He was a real servant.

Saturday, February 02, 2013


I spent a greater part of today moving furniture in my cottage. My goal was to make the seating better for entertaining friends for "movie nights." Moving this and that, I unearthed some things I haven't seen for years - you know, things tucked away — "out of sight, out of mind."

Speaking of moving, one of the things I found was an old address list. At the time this list was created, Hans was stationed on the USS Carney, and lived in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; Peder lived in Colorado Springs, Colorado; Heidi lived in Grand Forks, North Dakota; my brother and sister, and her husband, lived just north of Highway 14 in Rochester, Minnesota; my friends, Jim and Lil, lived in Waseca, Minnesota; my nephew Keith lived only 2 blocks north of me in Woodstock; my friend, Sandy, lived in Plymouth, Minnesota, my cousin Linda lived in Chicago, Illinois (not in the same residence as she lives now); and 3 people are no longer with us: Aunt Liz, Uncle Vic, and my dear friend, Cassie. Oh, and I lived in an apartment in Eden Prairie. Wow! That's a lot of moving!