Remember, some days I don’t blog at all. Some days I blog more than once in a day. Some days I even blog several times a day. Just so you don’t forget to go down until you see the post you already read.

You may now go back to your regular viewing schedule.

*Public Service Announcement for those of you not brought up in the 50’s.

An E-Mail

It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him.

Over the phone, his mother told him, “Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday.” Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.

“Jack, did you hear me?”

“Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It’s been so long since I thought of him. I’m sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago,” Jack said.

“Well, he didn’t forget you. Every time I saw him he’d ask how you were doing. He’d reminisce about the many days you spent over ‘his side of the fence’ as he put it,” Mom told him.

“I loved that old house he lived in,” Jack said.

“You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man’s influence in your life,” she said

“He’s the one who taught me carpentry,” he said. “I wouldn’t be in this business if it weren’t for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important…Mom, I’ll be there for the funeral,” Jack said.

As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser’s funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.

The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time.

Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space a! nd time The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture….Jack stopped suddenly.

“What’s wrong, Jack?” his Mom asked.

“The box is gone,” he said

“What box?” Mom asked.

“There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he’d ever tell me was ‘the thing I value most,'” Jack said.

It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.

“Now I’ll never know what was so valuable to him,” Jack said. “I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom.”

It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. “Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post off! ice with in the next three days,” the note read.

Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention. “Mr. Harold Belser” it read. Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack’s hands shook as he read the note inside.

“Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It’s the thing I valued most in my life.” A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.

Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved:

“Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser.”

“The thing he valued most was…my time”

Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days! . “Why?” Janet, his assistant asked.

“I need some time to spend with my son,” he said.

“Oh, by the way, Janet, thanks for your time!”

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away,”


Think about this. You may not realize it, but it’s 100% true.

1. At least 2 people in this world love you so much they would die for you.
2. At least 15 people in this world love you in some way.
3. A smile from you can bring happiness to anyone,! even if they don’t like you.
4. Every night, SOMEONE thinks about you before they go to sleep.
5. You mean the world to someone.
6. If not for you, someone may not be living.
7. You are special and unique.
8. When you think you have no chance of getting what you want, you probably won’t get it, but if you trust God to do what’s best, and wait on His time, sooner or later, you will get it or something better.
9. When you make the biggest mistake ever, something good can still come from it.
10. When you think the world has turned its back on you, take a look: you most likely turned your back on the world.
11. Someone that you don’t even know exists loves you.
12. Always remember the compliments you received. Forget about the rude remarks.
13. Always tell someone how you feel about them; you will feel much better when they know and you’ll both be happy .
14. If you have a great friend, take the time to let them know that they are great.

New Linky Goodness

Yes, I’ve found some more new people (I don’t want to hear how I don’t get to the ones I already have often enough, it’s true...). Just go visit, say “hi” and tell ’em Sue sent ya. They won’t have a clue…

Just Run
Brand new and shiney – Somewhere Over the Rainbow – we don’t get ’em this fresh very often!
Gorillabuns – I love this gal!
If You Only Read One Blog This Year – Not sure how I found this one, but there is some excellent writing interspersed.

I’m sure more will be coming. They keep following me home…honest, Mom…

A Couple of Things

First, I want to acknowledge the last day we’ll have Christopher to pick on here at work. Like the feelings Sizzle has so eloquently put into words, I’m sure he’s full of joy and sadness at the change. Unlike all the lovely things Siz put about her friends and co-workers, we are the ones being left behind. His intentions are great. He’s moving back down to Missouri to be close to his sister-in-law and his little nephew. He’ll be near his dad, too, and his other siblings. It’s been one helluva year for him, losing both his mother and his brother, and his family will be thrilled to have him close again. We understand, but it doesn’t mean we won’t be sad. He’s a great guy and we wish him and his lovely wife all the best… and he darn well better keep in touch!

The other thing I’d like to mention, is, it’s raining!! OMG! It is really! I went out before work this morning to water my garden and although the sun was shining a few sprinkles started to hit me. I thought I was imagining it at first… you know how you do that when you want something really badly? My daughter came out of the house to leave for work and looked back and commented “there’s a rainbow over our house!” Sure enough, it was very dark off to the west and a full, bright rainbow went right over. I would have taken its picture, but I’ve never gotten good rainbow pics.

A few minutes later, the sky opened and it began to rain…through the sunshine. I turned off the water hose, went in the house, and called Hubs to give him the good news. Not wanting to get too excited, in case this was one of those 10-second showers I drove to work through a pretty heavy downpour, thanking the Powers that Be.

I just looked at the radar. It looks like there is rain all over the northwest corner of the state… heading this way. Could it last? Could this be one of those all-morning one-inchers? Wouldn’t that be nice…

Despite Rumors…

…I’m still alive.

Damn, that mulch is tough stuff. Spent all day yesterday coughing up crap and feeling like death warmed over, but much better today. A night of tossing, turning, and feeling jittery did nothing for my desire to leap out of bed this morning, but a rude wakeup call from my Hubs got me moving. Bedtime is going to come early tonight.

A friend reminded me that some of what I’m feeling could be the result of withdrawl from my anti-depressant. Maybe a little. Probably the jittery, paranoid, anxiety-ridden stressed-out feelings. The bad dreams, soaked-with-sweat, heart-racing, dry-mouthed, mental ramblings. Yeah, that’s probably from the medication. I’m pretty sure the fever, hacking, nose-blowing, black-crap-coming-out-of-me is the mulch.

Nonetheless, I’m at work. Putting in my time. Watching the clock tic by. Wishing I would find a way to a.) make it rain – not hail b.) offer up the Gods that be on the Board of Trade something that would get the grain prices to go UP for a change c.) win the lottery or d.) all of the above. D would be nice. Any suggestions?

The Mulch Did It

I woke yesterday morning full of vim and vigor. Why? The only thing I can think of is I’ve quit taking the anti-depressant medication. I’m not near as drowsy as I was – I don’t crave a nap an hour after I’ve arisen. This is good. As far as what I was taking it for, the anxiety? Well. so far so good. Maybe I’m just going to have to comprimise…

At any rate, I was up with the birds (okay, to be fair, our birds are around all the time, so that’s not exactly true). I was up early with the pups – let them out to do their thing, then went back to bed for a couple more hours. I won’t say it had to do with a bit too much bourbon the night before, but I did have a tad…

Finally, up at a reasonable time to start the day, I dressed, did the dishes, got some laundry going, took care of all the critters – feathered and otherwise. Then Hubs brought the small tractor and loader bucket down to the house and I gave him a ride back to the shop. Now the real work begins.

He let me borrow his heavy leather welding gloves. Why? You ask… was I going to be welding? Nope. I was going to comb out my much-knotted himalyn cat. Normally I’ve taken her to the vet where it takes two or three people to hold her down while they comb her out. They do it bare-handed, which in my mind is pure foolishness. Yes, she has no claws, but she does have extremely sharp teeth and under those circumstances is not afraid to use them. I figured I’d watched the vet handle her enough times to know that even when her eyes bugged out and she made those “I can’t breath” noises, she was okay. My cat also has a cool move I call the “aligator roll”. She’ll just start rolling until she breaks your hold on her neck. I had her on the kitchen counter, though, where she couldn’t get traction (no claws) and when she tried her twisty-kitty move she rolled in my hand about four times until I just picked her up and let her hang. That got her attention and she stopped immediatly. About 30 minutes later, I had another whole cat’s worth of fur on the counter (and myself) and a beautifully groomed cat. She hates the process, but you can tell she always feels so much better when she’s done. When I put her down she didn’t even run!

One funny note… as I was doing this, the other cats all took turns getting up on the barstools to watch. I don’t think they knew quite what to think of this!

Then I really got down to business. Mulching the gardens. A lot of things had been mulched last fall before the snow set in – the roses, and some of the more sensative plants. Now I had a bunch of bare spots to fill in as well as the area of the garden I’d extended in the back yard. Mulching is go nice for the plants – holding in the moisture and keeping their little “feet” cool. I had a huge pile of mulch the local tree trimmer guy had brought down and I donned my garden gloves and an attitude and began. Much to my dismay, this was not the best mulch he has ever brought. It was full leaves as well as wood, and although I couldn’t see it, I’m sure in all that dust I was generating there was mold. Mulching from about 10 a.m. until almost 5 p.m., I got a snootful – and a lungful. I felt fine at first. I showered, and my eldest daughter came by to have supper with the younger daughter. (Hubs was racing again).

As we sat and visited I gradually began to cough… and felt my chest begin to tighten. This is not a good feeling. My younger daughter had picked up Thai food on her way home from work, and I could barely eat. Hubs called and said the races got rained out, so they were coming home. We were sitting on the porch when it clouded up and began to spit rain… yippee! We need it badly. Hubs got home just as it started to really come down. We all sat on the front porch and watched it rain… bundled in jackets and sweatshirts. It had really cooled down! Unfortunatly, not as much as we’d hoped – only about a 10th. Bah.

The girls decided to go to Dairy Queen and pick up some dessert, so I rode along for the company and they decided I needed to try some Muselix (sp?) – the medicine that’s suppose to break up phlem in your lungs. I’m game. At this point I feel pretty congested. On the way home I began to shake. Uh oh…this is not a good sign. It’s cooled of, but not that cool. Home, I decide to medicate and hit the bed… by now I’m shaking like a leaf and my teeth are chattering. I climb into bed with heavy pj’s, a sweater, heavy socks, and my electric blanket dialed up to 7. My big black cat flops down across me, trying to do his part, and I just shake. Finally, Hubs comes to bed and I make him throw another blanket over me.

Now the fun begins. The pups start to growl and work up to a bark – the male, anyway. I hear the other one coughing. Great… they were out in that mulch when I was putting it out, too. I suppose they’ve got the same thing I have. I got up about 11 o’clock and let them out, thinking that would satisfy the barkiness… but no such luck. I don’t know if he knew something was wrong and was trying to tell me, or what, but I did not need to jump up every hour to tell him to be quiet!

I was still shivering, so took my temperature. 101.3. Huh. I really was sick!

All in all, a “fun” night…

Now? Now it is almost 11:30 a.m. I got up about an hour ago, ate some cereal, and took more medicine. The sweat-soaked pj’s tell me my fever broke during the night sometime, and my body is trying to recover. I’m still congested and have a headache and feel really bleck, but I’m guessing (and hoping) the worst is over.

Hubs came out yesterday with is normal wise comments… “You crazy woman! You’re going to overdo it again! I’ve seen it a hundred times!” Damn. I hate it when he’s right.

Party Time

Last night was fun had by all… it was a going-away party for the guy who is leaving at work. It was at their house and it was a fun group – people I work with, a few neighbors and friends, and a few of his wife’s co-workers.

My only regret was Hubs was at the races. Son got rained out – right before his race. So, double feature next week and nothing to show for this week. It didn’t even rain at our house, which is where we really need it.

We’re really going to miss this guy… He’s got one more week. We’ll have to make it last…


Why do we all find moments of pure happiness so fleeting? If you ask anyone “How are you?”… how often will you get the response “Happy.”?

I was thinking about this last night as my Hubs got home from work and asked me to sit out on the deck with him. I was holed up in the bedroom (as usual) playing WoW and taking a few minutes for myself to regroup.

I’d gotten off work, rushed to the landscaping store to replace (yet another) tomato plant. Home, I’d let the pups out to run and took some time to weed in the flower beds. Figuring out what to have for supper (grilled burgers) as I worked up a sweat I took my group of furry friends inside and took care of the rest of my furry friends that aren’t allowed outside.

Changing into something more comfortable and getting the pups settled, I had no more than logged into WoW when Hubs got home. Momentarily surprised by his request, I agreed to sit with him and have an “adult beverage” – him, not me – and we sat in the shade and visited about our day. We let the pups back out and watched as they were being silly, chasing balls and each other. We talked about the kids, the farm, touching on several subjects. There were even moments of silence when we just sat and contemplated the beauty of the woods and the quiet.

It dawned on me as I was sitting there, that if someone would have asked me at that moment to be truly honest about my feelings that my response would have had to be “Happy.”…

Later, after we busied ourselves with dinner and clean up and went to our seperate areas to relax – he to his TV, me to my WoW – I chatted a bit with some friends online and the subject of happiness came up. One friend spoke of being so happy at this moment in time that he was afraid it wasn’t real. It actually frightened him to think of facing some things that he was thinking were going to take him back out of this happy zone. He wanted it to last. He wasn’t sure it could.

Hubs and I have talked about this feeling before, too. Sometimes it is a bit unsettling when things are going just a little too good. You begin to wonder when the “other shoe” is going to drop and the bad is coming back.

Living with a farmer has been a true adventure in faith and a miracle to sustain happiness. I, too, used to be always looking for the pitfalls, the downside, the draught around the corner. In 1995 I became a new person. I went through the darkness and came out the other side a much better human being. A happier human being. I will never claim to be “Suzy-Sunshine”, nor will I ever advocate anyone else being that way. Pollyanna didn’t have all the answers. Reality is a fact that has to be faced. However, when Hubs goes to the coffeeshop in the morning and all they other farmers are whining “woe is me” and “it’s never going to rain again”… I have a secret deep in my soul that I share with my Husband. It will be okay.

God, or whatever “powers that be” that let me go through hell in my youth is not going to take away my happiness now. He/She/It gave me this man, this life partner, when I was in some of the darkest days of my life and together we’ve come through into sunlight. We’ve been tested, through the years, but never left to die. We’ve been blessed in so many ways, too numerous to count. Every year when the forecasters have said, “it’s going to be a dry one”… we’ve gotten the rain. When the future looked bleak, we’ve had angels step in and give us hope (ya listening, Harold?). We’ve had days of laughter and days of pain but we’ve had each other, and that’s an ever-sustaining thing.

I know they say you come into this world alone and go out of it alone. That’s true. But while you are here, I hope you have something in your life that you can give claim to Happiness.

Dad Update

Thanks everyone for your kind thoughts and prayers. It appears after my parents had their physicals yesterday that things are going to stay about the same. They are now claiming Dad’s neck pains are arthritis, and are saying his wrist was just badly bruised. They want him to use the cane and stop drinking. Neither of those things are going to happen, I know. They also took him off the antidepressant. I’m not sure that’s a great thing, as they seemed to help his mood a lot. He claimed they made him overly tired. We’ll see… I’m sure if he just stopped the drinking it would help his mood a lot. He’s not a “happy” drunk, if you get my drift.

My mother checked out just fine. As she says, “one of us has to stay healthy to take care of the other one.”

That’s all I know for now. Again, thanks for listening.