Monday, July 6, 2015

Dear America- Late Bday Card. Sorry.

(Piggy & Dirt Stars @ had this one custom written on for J. It says: Be Brave)
Dear America,

Your Birthday is coming up,  I am starting this letter right now , so it will be ready for YOUR DAY! (*written a few days ago and added to over the course of days. sigh. sorry

 *(INow it actually is PAST your day and I am trying to finish up your letter!! )

I LOVE our Red, White ~n~ Blue Piggy & Dirt stars hanging in my window.
They are so cute holding hands. : )   

I want to celebrate your  birth! I want to decorate
or somehow show my gratitude.
I want to see the parade!
This Piggy and Dirt Star from reminded Kurt of the frozen pops you get as a kid. To me, it is penny candy fish from Madsen's Ben Franklin's and the blue popsicles..... sweet summertime!
~Only ONE problem.~
 I have to stay off my foot. That makes it harder to get there. Or here.
 Or anywhere.
And if it's hot.... DOH! I hate not feeling well around a holiday.
Or any day if I stop and think of it.
*Readers, at 5 am J's alarm went off on the 4th of July. Then 6 am. The parade didn't start until 10.
I did not have the strength to go to the parade. I had to measure out how much energy I could take for the day- this includes feelings of joy, mind you!
(How cute is this Jefferson Star is made by Kurt over at Piggy & Dirt on It's as cute as
American moms making pies and dads making hamburgers one the grill, Readers!)
 Decorating and gardening seems, "Once Upon a Time" = A Fairy Tale due to my health,
Padre's threats to grow grass in the space where the garden sits, almost have me believing my days with gardening are over.  
This is America though!

And I am putting my faith in the brilliant minds out there and
in God
 helping them so they can help me!!!!!!!!!!!!
They have happened to me before and I am going to throw the hope and wish to the stars for some more.
To the real ones and my fake ones.
(Padre jokes that they are those one things Karate people use. He's funny.)
It has been a relief to let those tasks go and focus on my health.
Which has needed to be focused on with the Hubble or Spitzer telescopes to figure out what to do.
( this picture looks like a mask- their centers are two merging galaxies!!)
Speaking of those amazing NASA telescopes, look at the amazing things they can see out in space with them! I picked this picture because it reminded me of an Owl. Really it is two galaxies coming together.
Is my grandma getting a front row seats to this sort of thing? I hope so! She seriously deserves it.
(Kurt and Rebecca can almost capture the same color and beauty of real life in the Teal times five
STAR. Find it on their etsy store: Piggy & Dirt.)
I don't know if what they can find out about my body, I wonder if the "footage under a microscope is even half as pretty as what those two telescopes captures in space....
 So back here on earth....I have an older garden  picture that had some of my favorite flowers lined on the path I would take to check on my veggies, pick the raspberries or clip some chives or another herb for a meal.

Talk about an over exposes picture that I don't want to edit.

Or see this flower below that blooms during just a few short hours during the day and then close when the shade hit it.

(I think it was a Portecula or something. Mojave Tangerine is what I remember it's other name was..)
I loved this flower and will miss it this year!!! I loved its sorbet colors and desert name.

I loved when the grandkids would come over and pick peas and eat them, curling their toes over the concrete ledge or standing in the dirt barefoot.

Now the grandkids can actually DIG in it without the wrath of Padre (it really is hard to get it even again, but that's life-
right, America?
So maybe it isn't such a bad thing!

In fact, you would not believe the sunflowers that are coming up from last year's seeds?

It is an army ready to blossom. One already has.
 Padre would have had me get J. to pull them because they would have overshadowed the tomatoes but now we don't have to worry about that and I think we are going to be bringing the bees in from distant lands that will help in the pollination of our nation!

 (yes, this sunflower AND Bee were made by Piggy & Dirt on their store.)
America, I am so glad I have had someone else's pictures of things while I have been unable to take some myself.
*One of my nieces went up to smell the first blooming sunflower and a bee on the 4th and guess what.....
Piggy and Dirt made this bee. It doesn't sting.
There are bees and she was almost stung.
  It followed her right out of the garden until she swatted it away or it went away.
 Poor thing.
I think we will have an army of bees which will not only pollinate but sting a few grandkids if they dig in the garden. 
(I love some of  the centers of the stars Piggy & Dirt make They are called Cabochon- which means it isn't faceted.)
Sometimes it is hard to Be Brave, America. 
Especially if a bee is following you.... or you have to "Be" sick, or unable, or whatever your trial is in life.
There is no place I'd rather be than here, to go through these things.
*I need to pause this holiday and say that all of yesterday's enthusiasm, has turned into that feeling  one gets after eating Thanksgiving Dinner:

I need a nap.
And not a just close my eyes and meditate and then try to see

Melalueca's Freedom Celebration


I need some serious rest and then watch the display.


I know one of my nephews was being taken home and scheduled for a nap and it sounded like a good idea, America.

Ya just can't run faster than ya have strength or you end up not being able to run at all.
I need to take my own advice and just sleep.

This is a photo of the man who spends roughly 1oo G's to put on the patriotic show that includes a live orchestra, if you have paid tickets, oh and dinner.

(Frank Vandersloot puts on the fireworks for us. Thanks, Frank!)

Businesses like his thrive here in this country because of you, America.
I am always crediting a company that starte small; Piggy and Dirt;  a little company that got to be a big company all off the creativity, ideas, and hard work of the people who started them.

Fireworks from the Freedom Celebration...

It is a lot of money to spend on fireworks but I have enjoyed and felt proud to see them when I have been able to.

*I was able to head over with the Padres to the "easy spot" that is by our neighborhood. The lower fireworks are not visible and you can have audible conversation with whoever is next to you.

  It isn't like being right there as the boom and scattering of light shatters the night air.

Getting up close takes walking and I can't walk that far right now. Nor did I want to be in the traffic for hours afterward. So we had to do it the old person way.


As I watched  tonight, it didn't matter we were at the Geriatric Location.

 Just seeing them conjured up enough feelings I have for my family, my son, and my country.

It's hard to express how one can love their nephews and nieces and to be proud of them and then you look up and  you see the beautiful colors and massive explosions in the night sky and it says what you've been feeling.

After listening to the music that is in sync with the show- I was moved to give Padre a bit of a forearm massage to loosen his hard twisted muscles! Yes, Readers, I gave Padre the gentle-Grandma Mary Lu massage. (i.e.  Light as a Feather because she was so sick.)

If you are a new Reader, my Grandmother was able to give my Dad a "neck massage" a week before she passed away. It was more of a gentle rub but she insisted so he gave in and knelt at her feet while she "rubbed spot."

I guess after so many years of putting in some elbow grease, you simply can't stop until the very end.

After 15 years of Parkinson's Disease she still had it in her.

He allowed it merely because she wanted to give him one as badly as she wanted to give a visitor a meal or at least a Coke. When you went to Grandma's she wanted to be of service. Whether feeding you a meal, making you comfortable, or offering a Coke. Which must have been her go to elixir when things just got hard.

I i
( Frank's fireworks mirrored on the Snake River. Sadly, I see that the news has reported a man went missing tonight- he was drunk and it is assumed he fell into the river.)
I appreciated my Dad for dragging out chairs for family members to sit on afterward, putting a roof over my head.
It's the people in America that have made it possible for my son to become a good kid. He is surrounded by many good examples of hard work, dedication, honor. I am so proud of what he has accomplished by programs like scouting that we have here, in America.
He has taken it seriously, thus far, we have had a lot of help from neighbors and friends and I am grateful for that. And it sounds like Mr. V. has donated a couple million for a new scout building here in Idaho Falls.
On my end, I am trying to teach him and something hilarious happened the other day as I tried to introduce him to Shakespeare. I recalled being tortured by it in HS, and Jr. High so I figured if I got him sort of accustomed to it early on, he'd be ready for the tests that are to come.


Anyway, I picked out some educational videos. One packet from the library was the works of

Shakespeare. It is very old. He looked up from watching a series called Mountain Men, or something and as the three women were wailing in Macbeth and asked why on earth he has to

* Actually I found myself up early this morning and getting to the parade wasn't a priority.
My health helps put things in a back seat and stuck there.

(hmmm, go with the "bow tie" or no? Me playing with my computer's different apps. I obviously am in need of help. The big white star reminds me of my Grandma. Piggy & Dirt made only so many of them and they look like a doily center. It is a milky pointed star. The blue stars and stripes are soooo cute. Especially when I put a smaller red star next to it. But it had to go upstairs for the Star Parade in the Living Room Window.)
(Piggy &Dirt's American Jewel in 7 inches. It easily is a top five favorite. On the etsy site it looks like this, America:
American Jewel- 7 inch stained glass star with faceted blue glass center
*Kurt does a way better photo shopping job than I. Actually I am playing around because I am not artistic and have to learn.

Where were we??? Oh, JAM! I wanted to talk about jam in this post so that was where my mind was going before the distractions.
 What does jam have to do with America???
(this is a navy star with a jewel in the middle that Kurt made for me at Piggy  & Dirt)

It has to do with being able to:
-make something yourself.

-Plant it.
-Pick it.
-Put lots of sugar with it and
 -pour it over Corn Flakes or
-make jam                                                     

that will be stock piled in the freezer to last all winter.
*piggy and dirt sell twine as well at their store on 
But it won't make it past Thanksgiving because it is so delicious!
is the sticky stuff that holds families together.
It has to do with Grandmas and Families and we get to do that here, in America.

As your birthday has neared I have seen and felt you in so many places.*besides jam. 
Being "unable" makes me stop and look at things a bit differently.
I have seen YOU in so many places lately and it has made me quite emotional.

Back when Padre was driving us both to physical therapy, I had an especially hard morning. It must have been a Friday. Which meant the end of a three day week  of P.T.

Due to soreness and pain I was already in before we left the house, I climbed into the truck,  put the seat back so my spine was lined up, gravity wasn't weighing it down, and I could focus on breathing.

I let my eyes gaze up at the sky while talk radio played in the background and I tried to toughen myself up mentally for the therapy,

Dad headed out and onto the highway when suddenly a huge flag bearing your red & white stripes, your white star filled the window!
It startled me and I sat up.
 It was The American Flag!
The Annin American Flag
(Best Made Co. for the picture)
A new business was being constructed, and they have put a gargantuan flag up in honor of you. It made tears come to my eyes because it almost seemed to be just for me that day.

(I hope my small tributes to you, America, show my gratitude)

Make that TWO flags of Yours that ripple in the Idaho wind that take my breath when Padre drove me to P.T.. A car dealership has one up. But the previous one came into view during one of those moments of self pity. And when I saw it wave, it made me toughen up and be grateful I could even
GO to physical therapy.

That flag was waving so beautifully that it made all of the sacrifices for it apparent to me.

Because it was SO large, it looked like the stars and stripes were in s-l-o-w m-o-t-I-o-n.
When in reality it is Idaho wind whipping and if my hair were subject to a rolled down window; it would be all over the place/ so that I looked like I've been through a wind tunnel when I need to walk into an appointment.
In an effort to get ready for your birthday, I have tried to decorate the window in my room and then get it upstairs.
Hasn't happened. Yet.
 But it has been really busy here with the funeral of Grandma. Then the wedding. Before that there was something..... oh, Grandma was sick and we had another grand child born into the family.

I painted my toe nails that won't be seen but they are officially red. The name of the red:
Color So Hot it Bearns by OPI.
Whoever has the naming of the nail polish job, probably is really creative. I wonder how much it pays?
Speaking of jobs..... America, I am doing my best to be independent and able. I've seen you
working so hard
and it humbles and inspires me.
I saw you in the woman who was at Wal-Mart who was cleaning the bathrooms.
She looked like she could actually be a grandma..... with arthritis, moving slow but steady and earning that few dollars an hour.
I saw you in the young kids that are working at Sonic or fast food places learning how to use a cash register.
I saw you in the men who worked at the car wash who had gauges in their ears. I try to tip them the best I can because I know that it makes a difference.

I felt you when my family all sang together with those who came to the burial of my grandma.
We sang Families Can Be Together Forever at the cemetery.
Never seen that or heard that before.
 It was the most beautiful thing I have seen! Many looked at those of us that were related, and knew the words as it was an impromptu that Padre said Grandma wanted us to sing and it got left out of the funeral at the church.
So there we were- and YOU, America.
Your birth is why families can be together forever.

Thank you.

I miss some of them dearly.
I felt you as I held my newest niece
(Dan and Kat brought Kali to meet the family)

When I see the veterans, read about them, see the planes they flew in or hear them take off from the airport by my house.  

These airplanes are flying around above my house and I can hear them right now as they give rides in preparation for the 4th.

I see you in a young mother trying to buy groceries or run errands with several kids in tow or trying to make dinner or wonder what to make for dinner. Trying to budget funds so that there can be dinner for a child that grows up in America.

I see you in my son.
(him taking a playful picture of his firework colored shoe while we visited cemeteries)

Do you feel each day  a weight on your shoulders to teach your kids? Or a kid?  I have failed a lot in this area. I can do so much more. I know I need to impress upon his mind how lucky we are. Many around the world think we are not grateful enough.

Please know I try to be. It's easy to forget when times are not trying. As I have become unable- after once being very able I am sad that I didn't do more when I was young. When I was young my body could have helped so many people now that I know the ways in which they can be helped.

Isn't that how life is though? It isn't until I have learned something or experienced a horror of some sort that instantly I think of the past and what I could have done.

EVEN praying.
Cosmic Sparklers
(sparklers that never go out according to Nasa at Jet Propulsion Lab CA. Institute of Technology.)

"While fireworks only last a short time here on Earth, a bundle of cosmic sparklers in a nearby cluster of stars will be going off for a very long time. NGC 1333 is a star cluster populated with many young stars that are less than 2 million years old -- a blink of an eye in astronomical terms for stars like these expected to burn for billions of years"

Now that is the kind of fireworks I would spend some money on!
Bet they would be pretty expensive.

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