Lots of Prayers Needed

As most of you know, Silver lost his mom this week.  Please keep Silver and his family in your thoughts and prayers.  I heard from Karen before Opal died.  She and Silver were traveling  She said they were going from Wisconsin to Florida, mainly back and forth for three weeks.  They were driving the rig and had to unload once in Cleveland, so Karen (who was helping drive the truck) had to drive through the West Virginia mountains!  I don’t think she was too crazy about that!  And I can understand…!  If you’ve ever been to WV and Appalachian Mountains, you know how steep the roads are.  The Rockies are higher, but at least in Colorado, the roads circle the mountains as you go up, so it’s a more gradual incline.  In WV you go up and down the mountains, literally!  Yikes!  I can’t imagine driving a rig there.  When I was a teenager, I pulled our camper trailer through there for a ways and that was enough! Being a passenger is adventure enough! Karen and Silver are expecting their 22 grandchild in January!  Opal left quite a legacy by giving us Silver, wouldn’t you say?!  God bless you all, Silver!

Please keep Deb and Frank in your thoughts and prayers as Deb goes through surgery for cancer.  It is going to be a long haul.  We are pulling for you guys and know you are both strong.  I am confident you will make it through the trials ahead.  Love to you both.

A dear friend of mine gave me a ceramic egg years ago that has an inscription on it that reads: “Do not pray for an easy life.  Pray to be a strong person.”  I remind myself of this often.  We are given many trials in life that it is not possible to have an easy life.  We may think someone has it made, but even the richest, most fortunate person has problems.  Life is not easy.  So, we need to be strong and persevere.  Easier said than done.  But we have each other to help us make it through. 

Vikki is continuing to recover after her near-death experience.  If you remember, she had seizures and almost died in July.  She still has some memory loss but things are gradually coming back.  Her ticker is plugging along with the help of rehab and meds.  Her family is a great strength to her.  Plus, Vikki has a very positive attitude and great sense of humor as you can tell by reading her Face Book entries!  Continue to keep her in your prayers. 

I need to join a Grandmother Support Group if any of you know of one!  Apparently, I don’t know all the rules yet, so I am trying to figure out how to be a good grandma without alienating anyone.  I didn’t know it would be so hard!  I am also getting used to not having Mike around. I really miss him even though he is just in Lincoln!  We used to have almost daily “intellectual” discussions or talk about world events.  I really miss hearing about his day and his opinions of what is going on in the world.  I also miss having my own personal I.T. guy around to help me with computer problems!  He is enjoying college, though, so I know he is fine. (It’s just his mother who isn’t!)

This is it Moving-Vicki, Michelle, jake, Anna, Mike

Moving Mike and Anna (girlfriend) into the dorm

Dennis and I had a fun weekend.  His mom was here from Valentine along with our best man, Gene.  Gene and Dennis are like brothers, having been friends since high school.  Gene lives in Valentine by himself and whenever he comes to visit, he asks if Dennis’ mom wants to come along.  She often comes with him even if she just ends up staying at our house and reading a book.  We went to the ConAgra picnic at the zoo Saturday.  (Dennis’ mom stayed at the house.  It’s hard for her to walk that much.)  It was a beautiful day, seventy degrees and sunny.  The breeze was actually a little on the chilly side.  We had a great time, though.  We were there from about 9:00-3:00.

Dad at ConAgra picnic

Black bear

Sunday Dennis and Gene went to the air show at Offut.  I opted to stay home with Dorotha this time.  She and I went shopping instead.  The guys said there was a lot of standing in line to get on the shuttles, so it was just as well that we stayed home.  The air show is always packed with people.  It’s a very popular event.  At least this year, it wasn’t so hot.  The time I went it was very hot and humid and we stood the entire time!  This year Dennis was smart and took lawn chairs.

A week ago, Craig was in town and we went out to dinner.  It was nice to visit with him.  We didn’t have much of a chance at the reunion, so it was nice to catch up.  (Everyone, come to Omaha and go out to dinner with me, so we can catch up!  I hardly got to visit with anyone at the reunion!)  After dinner, Dennis and I took Craig over to the pedestian bridge that crosses the Missouri River.  Here are some pictures.  They weren’t taken that night, but it looked like that when we were there.  Pretty cool! 

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I hope you are all well.  Let me know if you didn’t receive the DVD and CD.  I sent them out a couple weeks ago and everyone should have them by now.  Those of you who attended the reunion should have gotten them then.  I mailed ones to those who were unable to attend the reunion.  Let me know what you think of them, too!

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Vacation Or What?

Back to school time.  Mike leaves for UNL tomorrow.  It’s going to be hard.

We were in Chicago last week and visited the baby and her parents.  Being a grandma is very interesting!  We managed to go downtown one day.  We visited the Art Institute because Joe, our art major, hadn’t been there since he was in 6th grade.  It held a totally different perspective for him this time.  It is pretty awesome to stand in the presence of great art that we have seen in books, magazines and movies through the years.  To look at an original Van Gogh or Manet or Rembrandt and think, “This is the real thing!” is an incredible feeling.  There is so much to see at the Art Institute that we barely saw half of it in an entire day.  Granted, we did leave for lunch and walked through Milleneum Park, but we spent hours at the art museum.  It was different for me this time, too, because the boys are older and we didn’t have to scurry through.  We didn’t go the armor section this time either.  That was always the boys’ favorite when they were younger because it has coats of armor, swords, lances, axes, and other weapons of medieval warfare.  Somehow the guys didn’t want to go see it this time!

Art-Van Gogh

Art Institute Impressionist gallery

Our baby girl is growing so fast.  I miss her.  It will be awhile before we visit again.  We spent almost a week there.  Joe and Mike stayed with Dave and Carlota and we stayed at the Ramada.  It was much less crowded that way.  Joe and Mike had a blast with the baby and Joe made her laugh a lot just by making faces at her.

We stopped in Amana on our way home and did a little sightseeing and ate a great lunch.  If you have never stopped there, I would recommend it.  It’s kind of a neat area.  You don’t see many (if any!) Amish, but it’s still cool. 

Amana near a winery Amana lace shoppe Amana August 09

In my last entry I mentioned muskrats and seeing their habitats from the helicopter.  I didn’t know what they were called.  Linda R (“LD”) educated me.  (She works in the Ansley schools, ya’ know.  Smart lady!)  She said “Muskrats have burrows. Even though they enter underwater, their burrows are somewhat like groundhogs dig underground. Is that the 64 thousand dollar question?. Hope your week is super. Thanks again for the blog work!!!!   LD”

Unfortunately, it is not the $64,000 question.  I did buy a lottery ticket today with our office pool so I may throw a few bucks LD’s way when I win the jackpot! 

Deb and Frank had a busy week!  Their son, Logan, got married Saturday.  The engagement picture was in the Chief.  She is a beautiful girl.  She and Logan will be living out near Deb and Frank. Logan will take over the farm when Frank gets too old.  He may have to wait awhile!

Our friend and former classmate, Vikki, had a shaky start to July.  Sometime around our reunion, she ended up in the hospital and almost died.  We are glad she rallied and is back to being her ornery self.  She told me the other day she lost her breath and I told her that’s OK because I lost my marbles, so we can search together.  I should have asked her, “Where did you leave it last!?”  Anyway, Vikki still has her sense of humor despite being frail.  Keep her in your prayers, please.

I had the pleasure of communicating with Betty A lately.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have her address for the reunion and we couldn’t find her so she missed the reunion announcements.  I was excited to learn that Betty is a fellow writer!  I hope we can get together sometime and share our writing.  She recently submitted a book that is being looked at by a publisher!  I’m excited for her.  To even have completed a book is a major accomplishment!  I have never done that, although I have started a book a couple times.  I tend to write short stories and magazine articles.  I guess I have a short attention span!  Anyway, congratulations to Betty for getting this far!  We hope her book is accepted and we see it in print someday.  (These things seem to take forever sometimes!)

Kathy and Ken P didn’t come to the reunion, but Kathy is emailing me.  We discuss being grandmas.  I think I want to start a Grandma Support Group.  I appreciate the encouragement I have received from all you grandmas out there that tell me it gets better.  I haven’t learned all the rules yet, so it is helpful to hear from your guys and learn some of the stumbling blocks you faced. 

Face Book has been a great tool for remaining in contact.  I had hoped to stop in Port Byron on the way to Chicago and see Craig, but there is massive road construction on I-80 and 88 so it took us awhile to get around that.  Also, we were in BAD construction (traffic at a standstill) around Adair Iowa, so we were running late anyway.  Turns out Craig is in Omaha today, so we may get together yet!  He is here for a John Deere meeting. 

Besides Logan and Rebecca’s engagement announcement, the Chief featured a large spread on the National Guard.  Deb Mc got to ride in a Chinook.  There are lots of cool pictures in the paper, if you get a chance to see it.  I don’t always know a lot of people in the Chief, but I subscribe anyway because, once in awhile, there will be an issue like that and I get lots of good information.  It’s nice to be able to read about someone you know that isn’t in the obits!  Let’s try to stay out of that section for many years, you guys!

Lynne commented on Face Book that the World Herald had a story about the changing face of Face Book.  They said it used to be for the “hip” generation, but now there are so many of us on it from our generation that it is becoming the “hip replacement” generation.  I dispute that!  For one thing, we are the HIP generation, so the “hip generation” and the “hip replacement generation” are one in the same.  Those young kids who started out on Face Book just think they’re cooler than we are, but we know better.

It was so great seeing all of you at the reunion.  I hope we can stay in contact for many years to come.  We’ve all grown up and become people we may not have been in high school, but you guys were there during the strange and wonderful and confusing teenaged years, so you are special to me.  God bless you all.

 


 

Whew!

I just finished stuffing the rest of the envelopes with the DVDs and CDs in them.  Bill F sent me the rest of the copies he made and I spent the evening addressing envelopes, putting the DVDs in the envelopes, sticking on return addresses and then four stamps on each manila envelope.  Whew!  Time to go to bed!

But…before I do that, I wanted to update the blog real quick.  I won’t be able to do it next week because my schedule is full! 

Most of you heard that Linda Gehrman Allen died last week.  She had a bad heart and was in a nursing home since last Spring.  If you guys are on Face Book, I created a group called the Broken Bow All Alumni group.  I am encouraging people to share news with each other and one of the discussion topics I started is deceased classmates. We are posting the obits on it. 

All is not gloomy, though.  We also have a topic called “Where do you live now?” and “most memorable teacher at BBHS.” (Heard that one before, right?)

Vikki had a rough couple of weeks in mid July.  She was hearing the angels!  I’m glad she decided to stay on Earth with us awhile longer, though!  She was flown to the Kearney hospital after having a seizure and cardiac arrest.  Fortunately, she pulled through, but it was touch and go for awhile.  One good thing that came out of this is I became her daughter, Babette’s, friend on Face Book!  Vikki is maintaining her sense of humor.   She had lost some of her memory because of the seizure and arrest, so Babette made a memory book for her.  She put pictures of the various children and grandchildren in the book and is helping Vikki remember the names.  (When Vikki came to the other day, she knew Babette was her daughter, but didn’t remember her name.)  Vikki told Babette she didn’t want to call it a Memory Book because that made it sound like someone was dead!  So, instead, they are calling it the Remember Book.  Our prayers are with Vikki as she recovers. 

Sonia had an interesting time a couple days ago.  What a grandma won’t do for her grandkids!  She and two of her granddaughters (ages 3 and 6) had a slumber party in their camper. During the night, the 3 year old started throwing up!  What an adventure!  Then Sonia started gagging.  She said, “I guess we should have gone in the house and slept on the bathroom floor!”  You guys broke that camper in good now, Sonia! 

Deb Mc had the opportunity on Monday to go on a Chinook helicopter with the National Guard.  She flew (“choppered?”)  to Wyoming to a training base.  She is sending me the pdf file so I can share it with you.  She said the scenery was breathtaking.  They left the back of the helicopter open.

I remember flying in the medical helicopter for the med center and I always thought the view was the most fantastic thing!  I am afraid of heights and refuse to go up in a ferris wheel, but I loved flying in the helicopter.  Once we were flying over a stream and I could see individual muskrat homes. (What do you call them?  Beavers have dams.  What do muskrats have?)  Anyway, it is fantastic (although noisy, so you have to wear earphones).  Our pilots were Vietnam vets who flew during the war so I always felt safe.  I figures it they flew helicopters in Vietnam, they could surely do it in the Midwest!   Once one of the pilots, Wes, was taking a doctor and me to Hastings to pick up a set of preemie twins.  It was late at night and stormy.  We were bouncing around quite a bit.  Wes’ voice came on our earphones.  “I don’t know, you guys.  It’s pretty rough.”  A  little while later, he was on again, “I just wonder if this is a good idea.”  He kept expressing his doubts to us.  David (the doctor) and I were getting pretty nervous.  We could see lightning and the ride was pretty bumpy.  Again, Wes said, “Holy cow, guys!  It is rough out there! What do you think we should do?”  I yelled, “We don’t know, Wes!  You’re the pilot!  We’re back here saying the rosary!  You decide!”  We made it to Hastings intact finally.  We picked up the babies and headed back to Omaha.  The ride home was much better because the storms had passed.  It was a crazy flight.  I have a lot of medical transport stories, but that is one of the most memorable ones for me! 

The class of 1970 has had their share of losses lately.  I wrote about Deb Smith earlier.  Initially, they were saying she had pneumonia, but then the test results came back and she had H1N1 (swine flu).  She was the first death in Nebraska caused from H1 N1.  Then last week Dennis White died of heart cancer. Patty D told me Dennis was the fourth in their class to die this year and they have lost 10 total. 

Neil emailed that he wished he could’ve made it to the reunion.  The discussion about draft numbers brought this response: “I remember my draft number very well. Kleeb and I were living together at Kearney when it came up on the tube. NUMBER 18.  Daves was in the 300’s if I remember. Seems I drank that day. It was as good an excuse as any!”

Hob pointed out that Brad’s comment about the Senior boys who helped finish the new school missed someone.

“I also worked on the School to get it ready for us to be the first graduating class in the new Building. I worked on doing some cement for sidewalks and putting shelves in the library.” 

He added, “I think all those old school papers should be given to the Alumni Center as they are priceless and a glimpse into life at the New High School at the point in time.”

Well, I better go to bed.  I have to get up and go to work in the morning and it’s already 12:30 am!  Keep in touch!  And watch for your DVD and CDs if you weren’t at the reunion!  Thanks again to Bill for helping out with those!