Remembering Mom – Part 2

If you missed the beginning of this list you can find it here.

I’m realizing that this list could go on for days, so we’ll see what happens. I hope you enjoy learning about what a wonderful mother and person my mom was.

 J Perkins 90th Birthday

11. Saturday was usually Mom’s shopping day. She didn’t learn to drive until she was in her 50’s, so when we were young she depended on Dad to take her to the A & P grocery store on the weekends. Can you imagine only being able to go to the store once a week with 8 hungry mouths to feed? She did a great job of stocking up to make things last for the week, but I remember drinking powdered milk at times either because she couldn’t afford to buy more or she couldn’t get to the grocery store. I’m guessing her weekly trips were also a time of solitude that she looked forward to, but sometimes she’d allow one of us to go with her. Those were precious times when she let us help her choose food for the week and maybe even get a treat.

12. Mom would sometimes bring home delicious fresh rye bread, deli meats and cheeses on shopping day. They never lasted much more than a day because they were favorites for the whole family. That’s where I discovered my love for a good deli meal. We had Munster, Colby, Cheddar, Longhorn, Swiss and American cheese with fresh sliced Ham, Turkey, Roast beef, Braunschweiger and more. In the summer sometimes we’d add giant slices of Beefsteak Tomatoes and fresh lettuce from my grandmother’s garden. Mmmm!

13. As the family grew, Mom and Dad gave up their bedroom so that all of us kids could have one. They converted the living room to a sleeping area at night and added a sliding door for privacy. They kept their clothes in my oldest sister’s room. I imagine that was quite a sacrifice since they had no place to get away until we were all asleep in bed.

14. She often planned a once a year summer day trip as the sole adult with all of us kids to the northern Ohio amusement park, Cedar Point. We’d get up early in the morning and walk a block or so to the highway to catch the bus heading for Sandusky, then ride a ferry boat from Sandusky across the bay to the park. We spent the whole magical day riding thrill rides, seeing musical variety shows, and traversing the skies on the overhead sky ride. She always packed a substantial lunch for us, then later in the day she’d buy those famous Momma Berardi’s homemade French Fries and salt water taffy to hold us over. We’d stay as long as possible to squeeze out every drop of fun until either my dad came after work to pick us up or we caught the last bus for home.Vintage Cedar Point

15. Mom let us choose what kind of cake we wanted for our birthday and I often requested freshly baked Angel Food cake with strawberries and whipped cream. I can taste it now!

Angel Food cake with strawberries
photo by Lacy DeVeney

16. In August of each year she took each of us separately on a school clothes shopping trip – I recall riding that morning bus in the other direction this time – to the Midway Mall in Elyria – just Mom and I, eating lunch at the restaurant in the mall and buying new shoes and clothes for the upcoming school year. This was probably my favorite day of the year.  Not because I was shopping, but because I got to have my mom all to myself for an entire day!Midway Mall in Elyria Ohio circa 1970's

17. A limited budget and endless creativity brought forth unique homemade Halloween costumes for us each year. I wouldn’t be caught dead in one of those unimaginative store-bought ones.

18. Halloween parties at the Vermilion-on-the-Lake (VOL) Clubhouse were organized by her. She dressed as a witch and made witches’ brew using dry ice. I remember dunking for apples, fishing for prizes with a clothes pin on a string, costume contests and so much more.Vermilion-on-the-Lake Clubhouse

19. There was a Christmas play one year, written by my sister, Sharon and produced by Mom at the VOL Clubhouse with the neighborhood kids. The stage background was painted by Wayne Crozier, complete with his signature mouse hiding in the scene.

20. Each year she creatively decorated our 5 foot silver aluminum Christmas tree with matching colored glass balls. Since there would inevitably be breakage in the process of unpacking and packing the delicate glass, the following year she’d buy a set of a different color, then the 3rd year she’d use a combination of the previous years. The tree was often perched on top of a table up and out of the way of little hands and active pets. You can see a sliver of the tree in the background below. I remember spending what seemed like hours sitting in the living room gazing at the ever changing tree with the colored light wheel casting shadows on the walls and ceiling. It was mesmerizing!Jaye at Christmas

Looking over these memories I can see so many things that I learned from my mother. How to use my creativity in decorating, sewing, having fun. How to shop wisely, how to plan ahead for special activities, the importance of saving where needed, but splurging once in a while…so many lessons that I still use today. I’m so thankful for her giving and teaching spirit.  What a gift it was!

There’s a bit more to come, so stay tuned.  Thanks for reading!

Does this bring to mind some things that you’re most thankful for about your mother?

List #2 – Things I’m Good At

Yeah, I’m still behind on the 30 Days of Lists;  This is # 2 and I should be on # 5.  We’ll see if I can catch up during the week.

Click to enlarge:

A Few Things About Me – 30 Days of Lists

So here’s list # 1 on the 30 days of lists that was supposed to start on March 1st.  I admit that I’m a little bit behind, but I’m hoping to catch up this weekend.  In honor of the #30, there are 30 items on this first list.

  1. When I think of things about me I immediately think of the other people who are an integral part of my life…family, friends, pets, etc.
  2. I’m a wife of 33 years to my wonderful husband, Terry.
  3. I’m so thankful that God brought him into my life.  He’s pretty amazing for putting up with me all these years.
  4. I’m a mother of a daughter (Amy), a son (Kevin) and a son-in-law (Andrew).
  5. I’m so proud of all three of them.  I could brag on them all day long.
  6. I wish I could see them more often.
  7. I love going to Disneyland and California Adventure. (That’s where the photo was taken.)
  8. I have a 20 year old cat named Shredder.  (she’s not in the family photo since she didn’t come to California Adventure with us.)
  9. Just about me…  I love to take photos – I consider myself a tourist of life.
  10. I cry very easily, mostly about happy things…not sure why – just the way God made me, I guess.
  11. I love God and the am constantly amazed by how much he loves me, in spite of what I do that must break his heart.
  12. I wish I had more of a green thumb so I could bring more of God’s creation into my home and yard.
  13. I enjoy interior decorating.
  14. I never have enough time to do all the fun and creative things that I’d like to do.
  15. I love unique architecture.
  16. I love to travel.
  17. I have an idea for a travel related blog, now I just need to find the time to work on it.
  18. I live in Phoenix, AZ.
  19. I miss having all four seasons.
  20. I lived in a very small town in northern Ohio until I was almost 16.
  21. I lived in Southern California for 18 years.
  22. I’m learning to love the beauty of the desert.
  23. I work 4 days a week helping several non-profit organizations.
  24. I tear interesting pages out my magazines when I find something that I want to refer back to again. (recipes, decorating ideas, gardening tips, restaurants, web sites, etc.)
  25. I was in the gifted program in high school (that was a blast) and graduated a semester early.  woohoo!
  26. I’m a chocolate snob.
  27. My favorite is Lindt Intense Orange Dark Chocolate bars.  Just buy me a case of it and I’d be happy as a clam.
  28. My absolute favorite food is Alaskan King Crab.  Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!  That (and maybe a good steak) would be part of my last meal, if I had to choose one.
  29. I love watching live musical theater and live musicians.
  30. I love hearing foreign accents and finding out where they’re from.

Hey!  Check this out.  A fellow blogger at R.S.V.P Responding to Life that connected with me through Amy’s blog, just put up a post with some responses to my list above.  Isn’t that just so sweet of her?  She’s a dear woman from Pennsylvania.  I love the internet!  Our world is growing smaller every day.

I accept the “30 Days of Lists” challenge!

O.k., so I’m a couple of days behind, but I’ve decided that I’m going to try to do the “30 Days of Lists” challenge here.  My daughter, Amy is one of the hosts of this project, so I already feel invested somehow.

I’m working during the day and busy tonight, (on my lunch break now) so I won’t be able to do much until at least tomorrow night, but I WILL do it.  I mean how hard can it be to write a list every day.  Hopefully I’ll have the time, energy and creativity to make it more than just a bunch of boring lists.  I’ll add some photos and trinkets.

Day 1 List was to write…

“A few things about yourself”

Day 2 List is to write…

“Things I’m good at”

I promise I’ll do these and get caught up on the next few days at least by the weekend.  My hope is to at least do it on my blog, but I’d love to have a hard copy to leave behind for my grandkids someday.  🙂

Won’t you join me and think about giving it a try?

Sounds like a fun and oh so easy project, doesn’t it?

What a Crazy Week!

First we came home from our marvelous trip to the Grand Canyon to discover that our dishwasher wasn’t working properly and when the repairman came, we found out it was going cost nearly $400! Yikes! So we decided that instead of repairing a 5 year old appliance, we’d just buy a new one, since the cost was about the same and we’d have some warranty for a little while. Bad news!

Next Terry’s “check engine” light came on in his car plus he needed new pads for his brakes, so he took the car in on Saturday to a mechanic that he had used for basic service, but not for anything major. As is the case with some mechanics, he had a less than ideal experience and after SEVERAL HUNDRED MORE dollars, the “check engine” light still wasn’t diagnosed or fixed and we still needed to take it somewhere else for that repair.
That was more bad news!

On Monday when he drove to work he discovered that the “check engine” light was off! Yea! So, either the issue that triggered the light was inadvertently fixed when it was in the shop or at least we’ve delayed it for now. Good news!

Then, tonight when I came home from work, I was running some water at the kitchen sink and the top of the faucet just FELL OFF RIGHT IN MY HAND!! What?!? I have NEVER had that happen before. Crazy news!

At least it’s a Price Pfister faucet and my information says that it has a lifetime warranty. Let’s hope that’s good news when I call the company tomorrow!

O.k., let’s recap – no dishwasher to wash dishes and no kitchen sink to wash dishes. I guess that means we’re eating out a lot, or washing dishes in the bathroom or the pool. Fun, fun, fun!

The new dishwasher will be delivered on Friday and I’m hoping we can get the faucet guy out then too. We’ll see…

A week like this makes me thankful for all the weeks that aren’t like this and reminds me of all the amazing blessings that we are constantly receiving both large and small. It also makes me realize that so many others are going thru far more difficult things than the few inconveniences that we’ve had this week.

God takes such good care of us with the cherished love of so many family, friends and brothers & sisters in Christ, in addition we enjoy good health, stable jobs, a more-than-comfortable home and everything we could possibly need.

The truth is that even if all these precious gifts were taken away, God would still be a good and gracious God. (Read the book of Job sometime.)

“And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” II Cor. 9;8

My 50th Birthday

So I’m told by my husband that I may not be home on my birthday (its a surprise), so I’m posting this a little early.

In honor of my birthday, here are 50 random things about me, in no particular order.

  1. My favorite entrée is King Crab legs
  2. My favorite dessert is a Lindt Excellence Intense Orange dark chocolate bar with a big glass of milk
  3. I have a wonderful husband who treats me like a queen
  4. I miss spending time with our kids
  5. I go back to bed for a half hour or so in the morning after I take a shower (the only quirk I’ve ever been able to think of for myself)
  6. My favorite vegetable is asparagus, second favorite is fresh sweet corn
  7. I’m not a person of extremes, so it’s hard for me to pick one favorite movie, song or book, etc.
  8. A few favorite movies: Chariots of Fire, On Golden Pond, The Sting, Sleepless in Seattle
  9. A few favorite musicians: James Taylor & Amy Grant
  10. My father had 10 siblings that lived to be adults and every year at Thanksgiving we would all gather at my grandmother’s house for dinner.It was a huge crowd full of love and laughter and good food.
  11. Although I love music, I have no idea what my favorite song would be.
  12. I love to look at magazines for decorating, travel and just plain living tips
  13. I love to travel!
  14. Although I’m an organizer, I love to be spontaneous and do things on the spur of the moment.
  15. I’m very visual, so I need to write things down to remember them, so if you want to send a strong message, show it to me in writing.
  16. My favorite hobbies are photography, scrap booking, journaling, and decorating (all very visual)
  17. I’d love to learn to do landscape design or architectural drafting.
  18. I love being in the mountains, especially near streams
  19. I think often of losing weight and getting in shape, but rarely do anything to move in that direction.
  20. I love the fact that all of our kids are creative and talented and confident enough to pursue non-traditional career paths.
  21. Because I grew up in a family of 8 without much money, birthdays are a big deal to me.No need for spending lots of money or having big parties, but a card, a kind word and a little extra attention make it extra special.
  22. My favorite colors are almost any shade of blue or green.
  23. For me, the look and design of a room, restaurant, outdoor space, etc. are very important to the feelings they evoke.That’s why I like to look at photos of restaurants before I go there for special occasions.
  24. In all my years growing up, our family only took one vacation.It was a drive at Christmas break from Ohio to Phoenix.
  25. I would love to ride in a hot air balloon someday. It just seems so magical.
  26. I love my church and am learning so much about God’s grace there.
  27. The top places that I’d like to visit are: Anywhere in Australia, Ireland, England (or nearly anywhere in Europe), New England in the Fall, Banff National Park, Alaska (again)
  28. Some of the most amazing places I’ve seen: Havasupai Canyon in northern AZ, many of the national parks, including Denali,
  29. I have the most precious friends that anyone could ask for.
  30. I have been given so many good things that sometimes I feel guilty about it.
  31. I grew up with 2 parents, 3 brothers and 2 sisters (that’s 8) in a 1200 square foot house, with 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom.The bathroom had one small sink and a claw foot tub with no shower.We had no true closets or doors in the bedrooms and my mom painted the floors red and white so they didn’t look so bare.
  32. Sometimes I mistakenly feel that my value is derived by what I do, instead of who I am…then what would happen if I couldn’t “do” anymore?Would I stop being valuable?
  33. Favorite flower: Hydrangeas, but really almost anything is wonderful!
  34. If I were a billionaire, I would help to fund the ODF building project or even help to move them to a new campus with more space. I’d give a good chunk to Leadership Catalyst, then I’d have such fun deciding which other ministries to give to. I would travel the world, design and build my own home, see lots of live theater, buy gorgeous original artwork and have fresh flowers in the house every day.
  35. Each summer I spent several weeks at the farm with my grandmother, aunt and 2 cousins.It was an amazing time of exploring and adventure, picking fruit and vegetables, playing, swimming and enjoying life!
  36. Favorite theme park: Disneyland – I love the magic of the Magic Kingdom!
  37. My mother’s mother was an orphan, so it will be hard to trace a family tree on that branch
  38. I love the colors and smell of Autumn!
  39. In fact, I love to stop and smell the roses or anything that smells good.Some of my favorites, a freshly peeled orange, sliced cucumber, lilacs, new mown grass, eucalyptus trees, rosemary, steak cooking on a grill, and so much more…
  40. I have a hard time staying in the same role (at work) for more than 3 years. I get bored once I learn the job and if the job doesn’t change, I usually need to.
  41. I would love to learn so much more about photography.
  42. I look forward to someday being a grandmother.
  43. Age is just a number on a page.So far, I’ve enjoyed every age I’ve had the privilege of experiencing.
  44. When I got married, one of the commitments I made to myself was that we’d have cloth napkins to use for special occasions.
  45. If I had the chance, I could spend time in Colorado in any season.
  46. I love plays and especially musicals.I watched Newsies again last night.I love that movie!
  47. I have a wonderful cat named Shredder.
  48. I’ve always wanted to be a travel agent, because I love the excitement of planning the trip, plus the perks would be awesome.
  49. I had a pony named Midget when I was younger and if the weather was cooler here, I’d love to have a horse again someday.It’s good exercise!
  50. As a child every year before school started my mom would take each of us kids one day at a time, to go school clothes shopping.She didn’t drive so we would catch a bus to the next town and spend the day shopping and having lunch, and enjoying the special day we had one on one with our mom.It was one of the few times each year we’d get time alone with her.

Although there have been tough times in my life of loss, sorrow and pain, I truly believe that am blessed beyond my wildest dreams!