Thursday, August 16, 2018

30 Days of Summer - Post #24 - Childhood Summer Memories

I've never felt "old" and, most of the time, I don't even feel like I'm as old as I am or even getting old-er. (In fact, most of the time I don't feel a day over 18!) I mean, I know that I AM getting older. Like everyone else, obviously, I'm getting older than I was with every passing second! And I've always been extremely sentimental. But, this morning, something was different. I'm thinking that I'm turning into a sentimental, old fool or something.

I ran out earlier to check the fluids in my car before leaving to go pick my granddaughter up for her 13th birthday outing, and, I'm not sure WHY exactly but, when I lifted the hood on my car, I started having flashbacks to summer days spent at my grandparents house in the country at Bates City, Missouri. 🏑

When my cousin came to mow last night, I had moved my car from where it was parked in the driveway to an area that he had already mowed, and I failed to move it back to its usual place immediately, like I normally do. (Usually it is parked in the driveway or in front of the house.) This time I had moved the car over to the edge of the property and parked it under the trees that grow along the fence row and that's where it still was this morning. 🌳

My grandpa, George, used to park his car in the shade of a tree when he went to do any kind of work under the hood. Perhaps it was a combination of what I was doing (lifting the hood and checking the fluids), where I was doing it (I'm used to being inside a building or out in full sun on a tallgrass prairie...the shade of trees is not something that I experience very often at home), and the sights, sounds, smells, and other sensations that accompanied it...cicadas buzzing loudly in the trees overhead, the greasy smell of motor oil mixed with that of freshly-mown grass, the dewy dampness of the grass that tickled the bare spots on my sandal-clad feet. Somehow it all went together to produce a memory from something long ago and far away. In that moment I missed my grandpa and grandma so much that I almost cried. πŸ‘΄πŸ‘΅πŸ˜­

I tried to push the memory away, but, as I did, more memories came. I decided then and there, that when I got home, I was going to look through the old photo albums and see if I could find some summer memories.

I didn't find any summer pics of Grandpa or Grandma or their place at Bates City, but I did find a few summer photos of my growing up years in Grain Valley. 

Here is what I found...

Me on the fender of Grandpa George's old truck that, eventually, my mom and dad
had, then my Uncle Don, and, I THINK, that my Aunt Geneva or one of her children
still have to this day. What a great old truck it was, has been, and maybe still is! 😊
The place where I grew up on Old 40 Highway (AA) in Grain Valley, Missouri...the
house that my dad built with his own two hands and the shop where he worked
hard, made a living, and provided for his family. By the world's standards, my parents
didn't have a lot, but what they did have was theirs and I was proud of them.
My dad and I in the corner of that property where the flower garden was.

My mom and I in the front yard.

Me on my 13th birthday. The gift on top of that pile? From my husband's mom
and dad! (My husband now. He wasn't my husband THEN! πŸ˜† But we have
known each other since I was 5-years-old and our dads were best friends.) πŸ’—
These are a few of my childhood summer memories. What summer childhood memories do you hold dear?

Until next time...
~Rebecca

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30 Days of Summer - Post #23 - Summer Birthdays







Wednesday, August 15, 2018

30 Days of Summer - Post #23 - Summer Birthdays

Summer is the season for birthdays in our family! Half of our grandchildren (nine of them) celebrate birthdays in summer, as do two of our sons, a son-in-law, and myself. 



In addition to birthdays, three of our children and their spouses celebrate anniversaries in summer, as did my parents. In fact, my parents celebrated their anniversary on my mother-in-law's birthday! The majority of these family celebrations fall within the month of August.

Considering how large our family has grown over the past decade and a half or so, my husband and I don't go crazy with birthdays or holidays. In fact, we keep everything pretty simple. 

For the grandchildren, we give cards with the number of $$$ equal to their age enclosed, plus, once they're old enough, I try to spend special time with each grandchild by taking them out for a one-on-one birthday lunch or supper to the restaurant of their choice. We spend that time chatting and just getting to know one another. It's a good time to catch up with what's happening in their world and find out what their interests are at the time. They seem to look forward to it each year and I do, too. In fact, tomorrow I get to take two grandgirls out...one for lunch and one for supper! (Both of their birthdays are actually on Friday, but I have to work that day, so we're going to celebrate on Thursday instead. 😊) In addition to that, we attend any birthday celebrations that we are invited to by their parents. πŸŽ‚πŸŽ‰πŸ¨πŸŽˆπŸ°

Only once (that I know of anyway) have I forgotten to take one of our grandchildren out for their annual birthday meal with Nana and that was last year with our next-to-the-oldest grandson. His birthday is in early January, and follows so close after Christmas, that I didn't even think about it! We were invited to his birthday celebration by his parents and everything and I still didn't think of it! Not until July or August, that is! It was then that I said, "Silas, I don't remember taking you out for lunch for you birthday back in January. Did I?"

He grinned real big and said, "No, Nana, but it's okay." 

I said, "No, it's not okay. You should have said something!"

He said, "I knew you'd remember sooner or later." Goofy guy! 🀑

Needless to say, Silas got a very belated birthday outing with Nana, BUT...it still ended up happening! 😊

My birthday was Monday, August 13th. Over the course of the week I've received many wonderful birthday greetings, some lovely cards, and these beautiful birthday flowers from our youngest daughter...


Birthday Flowers
Our oldest daughter, along with her children, took Papa and I on a surprise birthday outing for the day. I had no idea where we were going until we got there. We started with a visit to the Mildred B. Cooper Memorial Chapel in Bella Vista, Arkansas, and ended up at the War Eagle Mill near Rogers. We hiked a nature trail, visited the chapel, went through the mill, had a picnic lunch, played in War Eagle Creek, and drove through an Arkansas state park. It was a lot of fun and made for a great birthday!


The Mildred B. Cooper Memorial Chapel in Bella Vista, Arkansas

Walking the Nature Trail at the Mildred B. Cooper Memorial Chapel
War Eagle Mill 
This is the outside of the mill. This places has held special
meaning for our family for four generations now. πŸ‘΄πŸ‘©πŸ‘§πŸ‘Ά
The inside of the mill. The day we were there they were
grinding corn into cornmeal.

(For a history of the mill click HERE.)
After a picnic lunch we enjoyed playing in War Eagle Creek. The grandchildren
and I enjoyed collecting rocks and tiny clam shells together.
We ended our trip with a selfie in front of the mill. Papa was so busy making sure
that the grandchildren were looking at camera that he barely made it into
the picture himself! πŸ˜† We had a great day and it was a lot of fun! 
I ended my day with a banana split. I'm not sure how the tradition got started (it seems like it was, either my grandfather or my two aunts that started it all to begin with), but, either way, ever since I was a child, I have always celebrated my birthday with a once-a-year, birthday, banana split. Usually, I get one at Dairy Queen, but this year, I made my own. I started with homemade chocolate ice cream, then I added a banana, chocolate syrup, and whipped topping with a maraschino cherry on top! It was so yummy! πŸ˜‹
Birthday Banana Split. 
Well, that pretty much sums up summer birthdays around here! How do you celebrate summer birthdays in your family?

Until next time...
~Rebecca

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Happy Homemaker Monday - August 13, 2018




2019 Planner

Monday, August 13, 2018

Happy Homemaker Monday - August 13, 2018

It's Sunday evening and I just got home from work. Since I'm leaving early in the morning and won't be home all day, I thought I better get a jump on it and get this post written this evening. 😊

We had a good week last week. I worked the Children's Health Fair in Adrian on Tuesday and on Wednesday we went to Kansas City to see our daughter and son-in-law's new home. I really didn't have a lot planned on Thursday (which is rare), so hubby and I took off, went to the theater and watched the 12:45 showing of Christopher Robin. After the movie, we picked up a few things at the grocery store, came home, grilled burgers, and made homemade ice cream. In the process I was able to mark THREE things off my summer bucket list in ONE day!!! Let me tell you...I was one happy gal and it was an awesome day! πŸ’— I worked Friday, Saturday, and half a day today. 

How was your week and weekend?

While you're here, I'd like to invite you to join me in visiting Sandra and the other lovely ladies for Happy Homemaker Monday over at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom. It's a real blessing! πŸ’—

Today I'm joining Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom and
all of the wonderful ladies of 
Happy Homemaker Monday!
Right now I am...

...working on this post and doing laundry while supper bakes in the oven. 

Am thinking...

...that I probably should have boiled those pepper halves before stuffing and putting in the oven. We'll see how they turn out. 😟

On the breakfast plate...

...this morning I had my usual...THM Sweat Pant Oatmeal with blueberries and a cup of Twining's Irish Breakfast tea. I think that it's safe to assume that I'll have the same thing tomorrow morning. I don't know why, but that's what I want most every morning and I never get tired of it. It's like eating a blueberry cinnamon roll in a bowl for breakfast every single day and it's so yummy! πŸ˜‹

The weather...

Hot and cloudy at the moment. I'm hoping the clouds clear out soon because I really want to go out to the park later tonight and view the Perseid's Meteor Shower while it's at its peak. 

On my reading pile...

In addition to daily scripture reading, I am reading The Name of Jesus by Kenneth E. Hagin. I am still reading Discover Nature at Sundown by Elizabeth P. Lawlor, as I have time. 

On the menu this week...


With everything going on this week my menu plans kind of got switched around and all out of whack and I am just now getting around to making last Thursday's chicken stuffed peppers. It's kind of my own creation. 

I started with fresh green peppers from the garden. I cut them in half, removed the seeds, and laid them aside. Then I diced up some chicken that I had cooked earlier and some fresh tomatoes. To that I added some black beans, a few tablespoons of whole kernel corn, a sprinkling of shredded cheddar cheese, and my homemade taco seasoning mix. Mixed it all together, filled the green pepper halves with the mixture, and baked, covered, in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes. After that, I removed the foil, sprinkled a little more cheese on top and baked another 15 minutes. 

It turned out really well and my husband said it's a winner! πŸ˜‰

Monday - leftover chicken stuffed peppers (if home...otherwise supper on the road)
Tuesday - turkey Italian sausage with oven roasted peppers and potatoes
Wednesday - turkey meatballs and sauce over sauteed zucchini with homemade sourdough bread
Thursday - birthday outings with two granddaughters...one for lunch and one for supper
Friday - broiled salmon on a bed of sauteed zucchini with steamed broccoli
Saturday - turkey burgers and oven fries
Sunday - leftovers

On my 'to do' list...

- Monday - Celebrate my 57th birthday (dd is taking me on a surprise adventure and I have no clue as to what it could be!)
- Tuesday - Do my weekly "home blessing", work on things around the house
- Wednesday - Library programs in the morning and afternoon (sunflowers)
- Thursday - Celebrate granddaugter, Liz's, 13th birthday and granddaughter, Gianna's 11th birthday (am having to celebrate a day early with them because I have to work tomorrow)

-Friday - Work
- Saturday - Work
- Sunday - Church


In the craft basket...

...nothing at this time.

Looking forward to this week...

Viewing the Perseid's and celebrating birthdays.

Something interesting I watched...


This video on lichens in Edinburgh. (I'm sure that sounds boring to most folks, but I find lichens absolutely fascinating!)



From the camera...

Discovered my favorite flower, the thistle, blooming on the
prairie this afternoon. I've never seen one this color before. It
was actually more pink that purple, but it was beautiful! πŸ’—
Scripture passage...


Well, Ladies, that's it for this week! I pray that each and every one of you have a blessed and beautiful week ahead! And I'll see you next week! 

Until Next Time...
~Rebecca

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Be sure to visit our 30 Days of Summer blog series. To find out more check out this post on Jean's site and this one on mine. Jean and I hope you'll join us in our summertime adventure! 🌞

Thursday, August 9, 2018

30 Days of Summer - Post # 22 - My Summer Friend

We met less than a year ago as mutual bloggers on Sandra's Happy Homemaker Monday series. We seemed to have a lot in common (we both lived in the same state, came from the same area, enjoyed visiting some of the same places, doing some of the same things, etc.) and her posts always made me smile. 😊 Sometimes I would even laugh...right out loud. πŸ˜† Sometimes I still do! 

We learned early on, though, that we did have areas that we differed in, the greatest one, thus far, being that I love fall πŸπŸ„πŸŽπŸ‚πŸŒ» (which she doesn't) and she loves summer 🌞⚽πŸ‰πŸŒΊπŸ˜Ž (which I don't). LOL! Not too big a deal either way, but it is the one difference that really brought us together.

Last October I was invited to join Crystal Stine's Write 31 Days writing challenge. For the subject of my 31 day challenge, I chose to write about the joys of autumn. For me, it was something that I loved and, to me, the possibilities were endless! Jean took up the challenge, as well, and decided to join in as a way of maybe learning to appreciate certain aspects of the autumn season a little more than she did. I think we both did a fine job with it!

Earlier in the year, this year, I was bemoaning the fact that summer (my least favorite season) was looming large before me and I was dreading it. Jean quipped off something about maybe I needed to do a 30 Days of Summer blog series to help me better appreciate summer in all it's glory. 😜 What started out as, I think, a joke, turned out to be a great idea and we went with it! 

Jean and I teamed up for a 30 Days of Summer blog series and have been hosting it together since June 21st of this year. The idea was to put out two or three posts per week over the course of the season, until a total of 30 summer-themed posts have been posted towards summer's end on September 21st. We hoped that some other bloggers would jump on board and join us...and a couple have here and there and, for them, we are thankful...but, for the most part we've been on our own and that's okay. We've had a ball and, besides, we had to start somewhere and this has been a fun first go-around! 

Now...I have to say this...

I still don't love summer and I don't feel that my posts have been what they should be (or could be if I really did love it or if I actually had the time and energy to devote to it like I'd like to), but, it's been a lot of fun and I've enjoyed searching out the little things that make summer unique to me and in my neck of the woods...er uh...prairie, I mean.

And that brings me around to the main point! The funnest (that's fun-nest...not fun-ni-est) thing about this whole blogging journey with Jean is...that we got to meet in person! πŸ’—

On Saturday, July 28th, Jean made the two-plus hour trip down to the park where I work and I gave her the grand tour. She went through the nature center, we viewed the bison, and we even walked a trail together. It was awesome! (You can read more about Jean's trip to Prairie State Park by clicking HERE and HERE.)


Jean and I @ Prairie State Park
It was a great day and this whole blog series thing has been fun, but, the bottom line is...seasons come and seasons go, but Jean of So Not Organized will forever be my "summer" friend! 🌞 Enjoy and appreciate her!

Until next time...
~Rebecca

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30 Days of Summer - Post #21 - Summer Picture and a Summer Poem of My Own

30 Days of Summer - Post #20 - The Dog Days of Summer




Wednesday, August 8, 2018

30 Days of Summer - Post #21 - Summer Picture and a Summer Poem of My Own

Euleta's Summertime Creation
My friend, Euleta, created this cool summertime picture and gave me permission to use it on the blog. Isn't it pretty? I need to have her show me how to do things like this! Thanks, Euleta! πŸ’—

And, after I wrote yesterday's post about the dog days of summer, the words to a poem, or a song, or something from long ago, kept flitting around in the recesses of my mind. I finally figured out what it was. It was a poem that I had written back in August of 1991. My cousin added music to it later and turned it into a song. Since it fits the summer theme I thought I might as well go ahead and share it here! So...here it is!

AUGUST
by Rebecca Knox

Warm winds blow
under summer's hot sun,
The dog days of August
filled full of fun.

Insects chirp loudly
of summer's last days,
The hot sun of August
sets blue skies ablaze.

The wind in the meadow
blows warm on my face,
While wild flowers dance
in the breeze like fine-lace.

A warm August breeze
is like wind of fire,
Filling my heart
with summer's desire.

Not much to it, really, but there it is! 

Until next time...
~Rebecca

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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

30 Days of Summer - Post #20 - The Dog Days of Summer

Did you know that "the dog days of summer" is a real thing? I didn't until recently.


Photo Credit
I remember hearing about "the dog days of summer" as a child. I can remember my grandparents warning me to stay out of the water (wading or playing in the creek) because we were in "the dog days" and it was "dangerous". I can remember thinking, "What are "dog days"?", "Why do they happen?", "What's their purpose?" and "What do dogs have to do with it???" πŸ˜•

According to The Old Farmer's Almanac, "the dog days of summer" begin July 3rd and end August 11th. These are the 40 days that, traditionally, coincide with the dawn rising of Sirius, the Dog Star.

According to The Old Farmer's Almanac for Kids, Sirius is the brightest star in the sky (not counting the sun, of course). Under the right conditions, Sirius can be seen with the naked eye during the daytime. Sirius is one star in a group of stars that form the constellation Canis Major, meaning "Greater Dog", thus, the nickname, the "Dog Star."


Photo Credit
In Ancient Egypt, the Nile River overflowed it's banks each year, usually beginning in late June. It was a welcome event because, with the floodwaters came rich soil that was needed to grow crops.

No one in Egypt knew exactly when the flooding would begin each year, but they noticed that it occurred just after Sirius began to rise before the sun. This event was so important to the Egyptian's survival that they began their new year with the New Moon following the star's first appearance on the eastern horizon. 

Unlike the Egyptians, the Greeks and the Romans, were not pleased with Sirius's appearance. They believed that the "combined heat" of Sirius and the sun is what caused the sweltering heat of the summer season and, with it, came drought, disease, and discomforts of all kinds including fever and lethargy. 

While I know that there is no "combined heat" of Sirius and the sun, I do often feel lethargic and generally unwell during the hot months of summer. That's one of the main reasons that I really don't enjoy summer as much as some people do.

Was all of this just superstition? When my grandparents warned me to stay out of the water during "the dog days of summer" because it was "dangerous" were they just passing along some old wives' tale that they had heard or grown up with themselves?

In 2009 a Finish study confirmed that the rate of infections were, indeed, higher during "the dog days of summer." The authors wrote, "This study was conducted in order to challenge the myth that the rate of infections is higher during the dog days. To our surprise, the myth was found to be true."

Today, due to a slow wobble of the Earth's axis, the Dog Star now seems to rise later in the year than it did in ancient times. Its ascension no longer coincides with the start of the Nile flood (which doesn't happen anymore anyway, due to the river being controlled by the Aswan Dam), but Sirius does still make its appearance during the long, hot days of summer.

So...there you have it..."the dog days of summer" is a real thing! 

To help you find Sirius in the nighttime sky, I am including this:

Canis Major (The Great Dog) is named for the larger of Orion's two hunting dogs (the other, Canis Minor, has only two stars). 

Finding Sirus in the Nighttime Sky

To find Canis Major, imagine a straight line through Orion's belt. 
Move your eyes left (south) until you come to a very bright star - that's Sirius, the nose of the dog. Look farther south to find a triangle of stars that marks the dogs hindquarters. 

Sirius in Canis Major
Photo Credit
Until next time...
~Rebecca

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Happy Homemaker Monday - August 6, 2018



30 Days of Summer - Post #19 - Summer Quote



30 Days of Summer - Post #18 - Summer Sales




Monday, August 6, 2018

Happy Homemaker Monday - August 6, 2018

Good morning, Dear Friends! HAPPY MONDAY! πŸ’—

Well...another month has fairly flown by and here we are...into our first full week of August! Can you believe it? How was your week and weekend?

Our week was good here...full. I worked at home Monday and Wednesday, but was on the run the rest of the week and weekend. 

On Tuesday I took a friend to Lamar to pick up her new glasses and do a little grocery shopping. That evening we celebrated granddaughter, Mercy's, 3rd birthday. 


Miss Mercy Getting Ready To Blow Out Her Candles
On Thursday a co-worker and I worked the Missouri State Parks booth at the Ozark Empire Fair in Springfield. It's always fun to the work the fair, but it makes for a super long day. On Friday and Saturday I worked my regular shift at the park.

After church on Sunday John and I attended the local Bible Bee's Proclaim Day at our daughter and son-in-law's home. The children did an excellent job of reciting their verses and, afterwards, received their certificates and awards. We could tell that they've put a lot of work into Bible memorization and were very proud of all of them!

After Proclaim Day, John and I went to Lamar and took advantage of Missouri's Sales Tax Holiday. As we've done every year, since first learning about the tax-free weekend many years ago, we loaded up on enough notebooks, pens, pencils, markers, highlighters, and other items to last us a year. Even though the children are all grown now, with families of their own, I still continue to keep a daily prayer and study note journal (daily since April of 1992) and John does a lot of note-taking when studying for, and preparing, his sermons, etc., so, in a year's time, we really do go through a lot of these items and tax-free weekend is a great time to stock up on such things.

Enough about last week! On to the week before us! Please join me in visiting Sandra and the other lovely ladies for Happy Homemaker Monday over at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom. It's a real blessing! πŸ’—

Today I'm joining Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom and
all of the wonderful ladies of 
Happy Homemaker Monday!
Right now I am...

...finishing up my breakfast while working on this post.

Am thinking...

...about nothing really...except this post. Unlike most mornings, it's such a relaxing morning that the only thing I'm thinking about is what I'm typing at the moment. It's wonderful! 😊

On the breakfast plate...

THM Sweat Pant Oatmeal with blueberries, two clementines, and a cup of Twining's Irish Breakfast tea

The weather...

The heat is back, but only for another day, then cooler temperatures promise to prevail. (And, by cooler, I mean mid- to upper-80's instead of the upper-90's like we've been having.)  We desperately need rain. The grass is mostly brown now and it makes a crunchy sound when you walk on it. Everything is extremely dry.

On my reading pile...

finished reading Jesus - The Open Door by Kenneth E. Hagin last night and plan to do the review today. I will test and mail a little later in the week. In addition to daily scripture reading, I am still reading Discover Nature at Sundown by Elizabeth P. Lawlor, as I have time. 

On the menu this week...


Monday - spinach and feta turkey burgers and oven fries
Tuesday - on the road
Wednesday - on the road
Thursday - chicken stuffed peppers and cheesy zucchini
Friday - broiled salmon on a bed of sauteed zucchini and baked potatoes with cottage cheese and chives
Saturday - turkey Italian sausage with oven roasted peppers and potatoes
Sunday - leftovers

On my 'to do' list...

- Monday - Plan the week ahead, do my weekly "home blessing", laundry, wash and clean out car
- Tuesday - Vote, wish our eldest son a happy birthday, work the Children's Health Fair in Adrian
- Wednesday - Out of town
- Thursday - Put up garden produce
- Friday - Work
- Saturday - Work
- Sunday - Church, work in the afternoon, view the Perseid meteor shower (provided it's not cloudy)


In the craft basket...

...nothing at this time.

Looking forward to this week...

...seeing our daughter and son-in-law's new home for the very first time! 🏑

Something interesting I watched...


...nothing that I can think of.

From the camera...

Bronze Sunflower Growing in the Backyard
Scripture passage...


Well, Ladies, that's it for this week! I pray that each and every one of you have a blessed and beautiful week ahead! And I'll see you next week! 

Until Next Time...
~Rebecca

Recent and related posts that you might enjoy reading...



30 Days of Summer - Post #19 - Summer Quote




Be sure to visit our 30 Days of Summer blog series. To find out more check out this post on Jean's site and this one on mine. Jean and I hope you'll join us in our summertime adventure! 🌞