Where Antelope Roam

Thanks for the Memories
August 31, 2016, 7:30 am
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags: , ,

I’ve just returned home from one of the most physically exhausting, emotionally draining, mentally and spiritually challenging weeks of my life.

It was time for us to clean out my childhood home.   Dad passed away two years ago, and Mom just 6 months ago.   While we were happy for them,  we, their children, were left to clean out over 50 years of collections and so it began last week.

Each of us started where we thought we could make the most progress.  I was working on Dave Ramsey’s snowball plan.   You know, where you start with the smallest, least complicated place to attack and build momentum from there.   For me that was the “orange room.”   For some reason, when we were kids mom decided to paint the bedrooms different colors and they thus became know as the orange room, the blue room, the yellow room, etc.

Well, it didn’t take me long to clean out the orange room.  Now the blue room held a lot of memories for me and as I cleaned, I thought of those memories.   Like the night my three younger siblings, climbed into bed with me because of  a thunderstorm that had shown it’s colors.  (I, for one, revel in thunderstorms…. ever since I was about 4 or 5 and my dad took me on his knee one night during a thunderstorm….I don’t remember what he said to me… but I remember the comfort being in his lap gave me.   Sweet memory.)

Then the blue room also had an ornate hole in the floor where at one time the stovepipe of the stove downstairs heated the upstairs.  Now that’s not the cool thing for me.   The downstairs has a bay window and every year at Christmas time, that’s where the Christmas tree went and if one angled themselves just right you could see the Christmas lights on Christmas Eve.    The doors to mom and dad’s room was also just below that hole and if one waited up long enough, one might see what “Santa” was bringing them.   😀

As we got older, we were allowed to stay up later at night on Christmas Eve… Mom had a penchant for decorative candles and my brother loved to light them all on Christmas Eve.   It made for an almost holy atmosphere to see the lights and remember that the “Light of the World” came down to earth one night and was born of a Virgin that we might have life eternal.

Then there was the old round oak table that stretched with several leaves so that we could all gather around to enjoy the Easter/Thanksgiving/Christmas feasts.   Mom was a great cook and there was always plenty for us as we shared the camaraderie of family and friends.  Joy and laughter were often present then.

After those meals were through, the table cleaned off and dishes washed, we’d sit around the table and play games like Boggle, Trivial Pursuit, Uno and Skip Bo.  There were still plenty of leftovers to munch on the whole day.   Not to mention Grandma Beemer’s Molasses Cookies…. mom always made sure there were plenty of those…. well almost.

The kitchen held memories too.   It is an old kitchen so there was not a lot of counter space to work on, so it was the table that my grandfather had made on which we worked before these meals to first the pies and cakes and cookies.  Then mashed potatoes, salad, and veggies as the turkey or ham.  During the year, house chores were given in teams (there were 6 of us).  While two of us did the dishes and cleaned the kitchen, two others were dispatched to clean the living room and dining room, the bathroom was also included.

We had many, many happy memories in that house.   We had some sad and hard ones as well but they are our memories.   Life was not always easy for us.  Yet there was a foundation for life that was given in that house to build on as we each left that house to build our own lives as adults.

Soon the house will be sold and memories will be all we have.   Yet I am so thankful for those memories.

Until next time, love God, love others, remember the good memories and make new ones for the future.


Mom in the summer
February 12, 2016, 11:29 am
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags: , ,

Okay… so as a kid we’d all  probably agree that summer was our most favorite time of year.  It may have something to do with not having to be in school all day.

There were all kinds of things we’d do in the summer.    When it got warm enough… which was usually mid-June, we’d get to go to Dudek Park!   Man, that was great!   Dudek Park was the local swimming hole.   No swimming pools for us.   The Kalamazoo River ran through Dudek Park and as things would have it, it widened and deepened, making it ideal for swimming.   Not only that but there was an area that shallowed out so moms could take their little kids there.   Ahhh… summer.. if we were lucky, mom would get us pop and sandwich meat with some chips for lunch!

Another highlight for me, at least, was Vacation Bible School.   You see mom was the director of VBS at our little church.    Mom using her creativity, could make those Bible stories come alive.   So alive, in fact, that the day she told the story of Adam and Eve, she got a call from a concerned parent because their child had come home saying, Mrs. Beemer had been behind the piano, naked!   Hahaha…. Now mom never disrobed for that story but her ability to make it come alive even for the youngest of children was unparalleled in my experience.

Today, I know that those were not just stories to be told to children but sometimes as youngsters, it was hard for us to grasp the deeper teaching in them.   Yet the way my mom told those stories laid an important foundation for many of us who were there during Bible School.

Teaching her children about God and how He interacts with His children and why was important to mom.    It is something we never forgot and to this day we have all tried to pass on her legacy in that way — some with greater success than others nonetheless, we’ve tried.   Thanks, mom.

Until next time, love God, love others and don’t neglect to teach your children — it’s important.











Lord Willing and the Creek Don’t Rise
January 8, 2016, 8:34 am
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags: , , ,

The other day someone asked me if I would be attending a certain class.   My response was “Lord willing and the creek don’t rise”.   It was sort of an automatic response… one that took me back some years and made me think of my mom.

That was a saying I remember mom used to say a lot.   It was one of many I remember mom saying.  When mom would get angry or frustrated at something or a situation (not usually at people) she might be heard to say “Well, damn Sam and cooked cunchion!”   Well that was the closest I ever heard my mother get to swearing and it was a curious thing for her to say to us kids so as we grew older we questioned mom.

The story behind that was that when they lived in Kentucky, her brother Bill came home one day after having had a fight with his best friend Sam.  Grandma had cooked pumpkin for supper.   Uncle Bill hated cooked pumpkin as a kid and so he was heard to say that day, “well, damn Sam AND cooked cunchion.”   Uncle Bill couldn’t say pumpkin so his pronunciation of it came out as ‘cunchion’.   After that, it seems this became something that at least my mom used as a cuss phrase.

As many mothers and daughters, my mom and I had our differences, particularly in the preteen through young adult years.   You know, the years we daughters are trying to grow into our mothers shoes and want them to believe we can do it.   However, those years aside, I have many good memories of my mother.

For instance one of my first good memories is of when we lived on the farm in the hired hand’s house.   The house was  set on a hill and in that house there was an east-facing large plate glass window that overlooked Grandpa and Grandma’s house as well as the barn where the cows were fed and milked.,

One morning, as my older sisters were waiting for the school bus to pick them up, (I really wanted to ride the bus with them but I was not school age yet!), mom took us younger kids to the plate glass window to “help” watch for the bus.   As we sat there watching for the bus, the morning sun showed it’s face over top of the barn.    It was glorious and I was enthralled!

As we grew older, mornings with mom had rules.   For one, we were never to talk to mom before she’d had her first cup of coffee and had her time in the Word.

Another time I remember on the farm with my mom (and as it would have it, my dad) was when we all  laid on the living room floor with our eyes closed and listened to Scheherazade and Swan Lake being played on the record player.   We thought we were rich!

I have more memories I’ll share with you in the next few posts.

Until then, love God, love others and remember to cherish the good memories!

In My Father’s Arms
June 20, 2015, 1:53 pm
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags: , , ,

This will be the second Father’s Day since my dad left this world for the next but the Lord reminded me of a special event from the past to remember my dad this year.    If you’ve been watching the news, you know we’ve had a lot of storms dumping rain in the west causing widespread flooding this spring.  In fact, this year from the week before Mother’s Day to this week, we’ve had some pretty torrential rains.

At the beginning of this week, we had a rather strong thunderstorm come through our area after midnight.  It was one that woke both hubby and me up, partially because the thunder bothered our dog who kept barking at the thunder.

As I lay in bed, listening to the thunder and watching as the lightning played across the skies, I was taken back to a time when I was about 4 or 5 years old.   We lived on Grandpa’s farm in the hired hand’s house.  It was a two-story farmhouse and as I would later recognize as the pattern, us kids had our rooms upstairs while mom and dad’s was downstairs.

One night, I remember coming downstairs having been awakened by a thunderstorm.   I was frightened by it.   I remember coming into the kitchen where my dad happened to be.    When he saw me and realized I was afraid of the thunder, he picked me up in his arms and we sat in an old wooden rocker and rocked for a while.   He talked to me in soothing tones, though to be honest, I don’t remember what he said.   Being in my dad’s arms helped calm my fears and I’ve never been afraid of the thunderstorm since.   Truth be told, I love a good thunderstorm now.

My dad is now in heaven but I was reminded of what God’s Word says in Psalm 56 verse 3.   “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee”  and Deuteronomy 33:27 says, “The eternal God is thy refuge and underneath are the everlasting arms….”

Life is fraught with storms… personal storms, family storms, societal storms, yet as a child of God if these storms make me afraid, I know I can run to my Father whose everlasting arms provide me with refuge from the storm, comfort in my fear and knowledge that I CAN trust Him.

Are you facing storms right now?    Run to the Father….He’s waiting for you.

Until next time, love God, love others, and find refuge in the Father’s arms!



Banana Pudding and Meatloaf

Does that sound gross to you?   Well, DD had her laser procedure yesterday… I know, I know… I errantly called it surgery but it was a “procedure”.   I sat in the same room with her while it was done.   She said it felt like little scissors in her eyes snipping but not bad… Anyway, we had to go to Greeley for her to have it done.

When we go to the “big” city we are usually gone for a good portion of the day and we generally end up at a buffet of some sort.  DD and my favorites ones  are Golden Corral and Country Buffet.   Now, Country Buffet has the most wonderful banana pudding and, of course, hot fudge cheesecake!   (Cheesecake is wonderful with hot fudge on top of it— yes, I put my own on).   

DH is not fond of banana pudding to say the least.  He would only eat it if there was nothing else to eat but me… I LOVE banana pudding… Perhaps because it reminds me of mom and home and growing up.  Banana pudding as a staple dessert for special occasions in our family of six children.

Now, meatloaf… I love meatloaf… just not mine… for some reason I cannot make meatloaf that’s worth eating to save my life!  DH has never said anything about it but I can see it in his eyes…. the pleading … “don’t make this EVER again,  PLEASE!!!”…. though he’d never say anything to hurt my feelings.

So, yesterday, I got my meatloaf at Golden Corral… though they didn’t have banana pudding…they did have another childhood favorite that brought lots of memories… bread pudding… Now, mom always put raisins in bread pudding for what ever reason… and I can’t say I liked that part but the rest of it was wonderful.  Again, this is something DH would NEVER eat unless he was starving! 

This has been a bonanza week for doctors at our place.   I took DH to the ER on Friday with his “it feels like someone’s standing on my chest” pain.   Thankfully we found out it was “just” pneumonia… He’s on an antibiotic and he sees the doctor again today… so we’ll see how things go… then, of course, DD was yesterday…. tomorrow…it’s me.

So until next time, love God, love others… and try some banana pudding and meatloaf… it’ll make your life grand!  😀

I used to hear…
March 4, 2010, 6:56 am
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags:

that the older one got the faster time went. I honestly didn’t believe them when I was a much younger person but… I’m starting to be a believer.

Wow!  Uncle N. sent this to me and said Aunt D had been carrying this around for a loooooooong time!   Did I know this person??   This was good for a belly laugh… I did recognize her… I was about 6 or 7 in this picture and I was always so proud of that little topknot!    I think mom put it up there to keep the hair out of my face… which always seemed to be a problem for me.

My, time certainly flies!  

Here I was a little older I think… though honestly they could have been taken around the same time.

What is it that makes us look back with nostalgia when we get older.   Well, speaking of Uncle N and Aunt D, it was around this age that I remember their boys came to visit us on the farm.   We all went outside to play.   Being a farm, there were always a multiplicity of things to play on… one being a hay wagon.   Now this hay wagon had a steel tongue and a front board in front of it.

Their son, Kelly, gave me the end of a rope and told me when I got up on the back end of the wagon, to keep going backward and he’d tell me when to stop… Problem is, he didn’t do it in time and I fell over the front board and hit my head on the tongue.   I ended up in the smalltown doctor’s office and several stiches in my head!   Now, this might account for a LOT in my life now… Thanks, Kelly!   😀

Time… flies so fast.   These days it seems it’ s flying even faster than usual.   I get up, go to work, come home, and though most of the time I’d like to just go to bed, I end up getting supper and laying on the couch, falling asleep before bed!   Oh, my… where did the time go?

Well, until next time, love God, love others… and don’t let time get away from you!  It’s the most precious commodity we have.

Okay, so…
May 22, 2009, 7:42 pm
Filed under: Day-to-Day, From my childhood | Tags: ,

I was driving home from town after dropping dd by the church so she could go to the youth rally tonight with the kids in her youth group and so many things were going through my mind like… the phrase “big doings”…

Actually, I had stopped by Walmart on my way home and saw someone I know and before I knew it out of my mouth came my mother’s voice… “Got big doings this weekend?”  Or maybe it was my dad’s… I”m not sure now… Now, tell me, what are big doings?   I remember mom or dad saying that when I was young  (did I roll my eyes as dd would at me?) and I really never understood it even though I heard it come out of my mouth, I still don’t believe it.   Big doings… is that like “are you having a party?  Hmmm… must think more on that.

Then as I was driving home, the rain started… and it just made me smile.   It wasn’t a driving rain but rather just a nice soft rain… coming down and I wondered if my dirt-ridden car would get a nice wash before I got home.  I thanked the Lord for the rain… we’ve needed it for so long.    I thought my tomato plants and bell pepper plants, the strawberry plants, the cucumber and squash plant would be drinking this in thirstily.

As I turned on to my gravel road, I could hear the sand and gravel kicking up under the car and knew we’d already gotten some pretty nice rain.  I looked at the pastures and saw that color was popping out everywhere!   When you live in a semi-arid high plain desert area, it takes so very little rain to make color pop!

When I arrived home, I heard it!   Thunder!   What a tremendously comforting sound!   Oh, I know perhaps you don’t think so… but every time I hear thunder I remember the time when I was about 4 or 5 and a thunderstorm woke me up and I went downstairs scared.

My dad (who was still up) was there… and there was a rocking chair.  Now, I don’t remember all that he told me that night but I do remember that  he picked me up in his arms and sat down in that rocking chair and part of what he told me was “that’s God talking”.   You know, I’ve always loved the sound of thunder ever since.  Even when it’s what someone I know used to call head bangers.

 Then I thought ah… dh and I will be able to spend some time alone tonight… It’s not that we would do anything special, it’s just that well, we’d be able to just enjoy each other’s company.  Even if we end up falling asleep in our respective places of residence for the night… but we’ll be startled from our repose by the phone ringing and we’ll need to pick up dd. 

Ah… I also thought about that Cheerios commercial where Steve comes into the room while his wife is eating a bowl and asks ” Are you trying to lose weight?”  Steve’s wife says, “Do I need to lose weight?”  Steve looks like he’s been caught out and sputters… well, no but the box says this helps in losing weight… Wife says, what else does the box say?”   Steve says, “Shut up, Steve”… then you see Steve’s wife smile with a very satisfied smile on her face.   It’s not a mean smile it’s a smile that says, “Oh good, I really didn’t marry an insensitive man… and I’m glad…!” smile.   I like the way her eyes crinkle at the edges.   Her smile makes me want to smile..  not at Steve but because she’s smiling.  

So, then I wonder when I smile does it give others the urge to smile too?  Hope so…

Well, there I go again… those are my musings for tonight… think I’ll go find that respository for me to fall asleep on until the phone rings… you have a good night and remember….

Love God, love others and pursue those relationships… {crinkle smile}