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Thinking back….

The last time I saw my dad was on the day after New Year’s Day, January 2. That was one week before he passed away.

Mom and I went in to see Dad. He hadn’t been in a wheelchair in many weeks. He could no longer sit up, so he was placed in a recliner on wheels. The first time I saw him in the recliner, it was all I could do from breaking down. His body seemed contorted in strange positions and he was propped up with pillows.

Mom always went to the second floor to get Dad and would wheel that big recliner into the elevator and take him downstairs to visit with him.  She would have a bottle of Ensure tucked in her purse. She placed a straw in it and told Dad it was a milkshake. He would drink it down so well through a straw. Then he would drink a cup of coffee through a straw. He rarely talked on these visits and just didn’t seem to be much interested in anything. I always struggled as I didn’t know what to say….Mom would talk to him and fuss over him and he seemed almost distant.

On the last visit,  Dad grabbed my hand in his. Somehow, I knew he was telling me goodbye. We went downstairs for our visit and when I spoke, he didn’t respond.  At one point, his leg  slipped off the recliner. Since I was sitting near his legs, I gently moved his leg back up. He didn’t complain when I moved it, but later, he drew his legs up and said his knees hurt so much. He told Mom and I that we had no idea of the pain he was in. It was all I could do to keep the tears back. When I had moved his leg back onto the recliner, I was shocked to see his calf wasn’t much larger than my forearm.

A couple of days after my visit, my mom called and said Dad was in really poor condition.  He had internal bleeding but was in such weakened condition, it would be hard to even do anything for him.

Dad passed away, very peaceably. My mom, two brothers, and my uncle (Dad’s brother) were talking in the room when he passed.

I will miss my dad. He was an amazing man, driven by his deep convictions….

I guess the reality of the whole situation has suddenly struck me now.  I am so grateful that my dad was with me all my adult life. I know so many people lost parents at a young age. I thank the Lord for all the wonderful times we shared and all the happy memories!

Shhhhh…..

Don’t tell Ben I posted this!

Ben completed his first semester at SUNY Geneseo shortly before Christmas with outstanding grades! I was so pleased last autumn when he included a photography class as he needed a general course not associated with his business degree.

When I read the syllabus for the photography class, I cringed…not being exactly a “techie”, I was overwhelmed by things like podcasts critiquing photos, technical assignments, and the icing on the cake! The final assignment was a published photo book. My hands got seriously clammy even reading the word “stupendous”….the professor’s choice of words for an “A” on the book.

Ben chose the subject Barns of the Finger Lakes for his project. He went on photo shoots and I was able to point him to some cool barns I saw throughout my adventures. I was so pleased when his book’s grade was posted…he aced it with an A!

 

 

On my way to the dentist…..

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I could not believe my eyes! I saw “something” big sitting on the road from a distance. It was only when I got several feet away, I realized I was looking at an immature Eagle! I suppose it was as curious about me as I was about it….ot sat there for probably a minute before finally lifting off and flying away!

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Whoa!!!

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On Monday afternoon, instead of running to the grocery store, I wandered into the house and made another batch of French Macarons. This time, I made them dark pink and flavored them strawberry.

Monday night, I realized I really needed to go shopping! We were out of basics. I am not inclined to shop late in the day,  but I left the house after eight. I planned to shop at Walmart and Wegman’s. 

I worked along the aisles, eventually ending up at the back of the store in the frozen foods. As my eyes lit upon the box above, I nearly passed out! French Macarons for sale in a box!!! But wait, they were $7.98 for 4.6 OUNCES! Over $27.00 a pound!

I’ve made four batches of Macarons now and not one batch failed. They seem fairly easy to make. The hardest part is letting them sit awhile before baking.

Wow. I never realized how expensive these little treasures are! I do know the most expensive ingredient is almond flour. I paid about $9.00 for a one pound bag at Walmart. That bag makes about three and a half batches. $27.00 a pound? Yikes!!!

Gone to the birds…

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The feeder I have hanging in the living room window is getting so old, the wood looks rather disgusting. I was trying to think of a new feeder when I ran across this wire mesh type feeder at WalMart. The mount I got has two large suction cups and is supposed to hold five pounds. I had been using it for a thistle sock and I think this feeder might even be lighter. The birds have been feeding like crazy so we shall see.
I did rather like how this little goldfinch sat on top!

Awesome

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Sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be a word strong enough, descriptive enough, or just “enough” to describe a day or event. Yesterday was just such a day.

While the day wasn’t special, it really was just a great day.

Michelle, Mark, and I gathered some firewood from the woods. It was chilly so the work seemed much easier than when it is warm out.

Afterwards, I sat a good while resting and just enjoying the beautiful huge pot of Mums shown above. The late afternoon sun was hitting the flowers in such a way that they appeared to be emitting light I really like the little welcome sign with the squirrels on it…very fitting at our woodland house!

There wasn’t a lot of time for lollygagging (how is that spelled, anyway?) because our friend, Ralph, drove down from Rochester. We then drove him on down to practice music with our friends in Prattsburgh.Ralph is an amazing man. We figure he is about 84. That in and of itself isn’t amazing, but we returned home at midnight and he had an hour drive ahead of him. He insisted it was no problem!

We had a lovely time while the musicians practiced. Bill and Carolyn, the host and hostess, prepared a meal of chicken and biscuits that was so delicious! Sue, one of the singers, brought a terrific relish tray and I brought applesauce I made early in the morning. After the musicians finished, we were treated to pumpkin cake and ice cream.

Yeah…awesome might just be a good way to describe such a nice autumn day!