Sunday, August 28, 2011

Crazy Week

What a crazy, long, sad week it's been. After last Sunday's phone call, I knew the week was just going to go downhill, well, needless to say, it did.....I received a call from my sister on Monday morning, that my Dad had passed away at 4:30 am (CDT), for anyone interested here is the link to his obituary.

This of course began a week of craziness in my life, first on the agenda, trying to find a reasonably priced ticket to Minnesota on short notice (good luck), I did find a not so reasonably priced ticket and made arrangements to be picked up in Minneapolis for the 2.5 hour drive to Milroy. I also needed to take care of everything at work, so I could take the week off and locate pictures for the picture board that needed to be put together before the funeral on Thursday. Tuesday was a very long day....waking up at 3:30 am is not my favorite thing to do and of course I couldn't sleep on the plane. Once in Minneapolis, my sisters and I met up with an aunt and uncle for dinner, before heading for Milroy.

Wednesday was the day set aside for getting the picture boards created, before heading to my stepmom's house to do that, I set up my sister's scanner/printer (since I'm the geek of the family, they wait for me) and scanned old photos and transferred all her pictures from her old PC to the new PC.

Thursday was a long day all the way around, between the funeral service and spending time (dealing) with family, I was very glad when it was over.

Friday was a little more relaxing and ended with a family cookout (sisters, husband and kids), while I packed to leave on Saturday.

Yesterday was another long day of driving and flights (first from Mpls to Chicago, then Chicago to Reno), needless to say I'm glad to be home. Hopefully, I can recover from all of this craziness this week and get back on track with everything. Next weekend is a 3-day weekend for Labor Day, so I'm hoping to head to Sacramento for some shopping and do some crafting.

Before I close, I just want to say that I'm very thankful for my sisters, stepmom and wonderful step-sister Debbie, who took care of so many arrangements this past week. She has been a god-send during this time.

Just to leave you with some family pictures......

Lisa, Patrice and Destiny (my niece)

The Jemming kids (Brian Jemming, Monica Boisner, Lisa, Pat Pape and Trudy Nephew (missing Mark(RIP), Nancy and Anita)

Some of Bill's grandkids - Zach, Jake, Tylee, Kelly and Samantha (missing Teresa, Andy and Destiny)

Jake, Samantha and Trudy

Zach, Bruce, Tylee, Pat and Kelly 

Most of the family (Jemming) - Doug, Zach, Jake, Bruce, Trudy, Samantha, Tylee, Pat, Lisa and Kelly

The beautiful flowers that my step-niece Christa (Debbie's daughter) did for the funeral. 

Hopefully, the next week will be devoid of any drama (I can't take much more). Until next time......
Dance like nobody's watching....Live for tomorrow's an uncertainty.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Just Waiting for the Stickles to Dry

As I'm waiting for the Stickles to dry on this weeks Crop Chocolate challenge, I'm also waiting for a phone call from my sister saying my Dad passed away. She called me earlier this afternoon, saying the nursing home - hospice unit had called and they didn't expect him to last too much longer. While I've been expecting this for the past couple of months, it still makes me cry. I thought I had prepared myself for all possibilities, but I guess we never do. My Dad has been suffering from Alzheimer's for the past 5 or 6 years, and has spent the last 3 years in a nursing home, since it got to hard for my wonderful stepmother to care for him on her own. I've been thinking today, and remembering the good times (and maybe some not so good).

I remember.......

Fishing for bullheads at School Grove Lake, I really dislike fishing, but I learned how to cast my line well. Many years later when Dad and Mirt bought a house on a lake in Glenwood, we went fishing for sunnies off the pontoon, I took a book as I don't fish, but wanted to be with the family on the lake....Zach was 3 or 4 and could not yet cast his line, so as he pulled his fish in, Grandma Mirt would take them off the line, Zach would put another worm on, and I would cast it out for him. One time when I was casting out the line, Dad looked at me and asked, where did you learn to do that, my answer....."You taught me", he was stunned I remembered.

When I was 4 or 5, my Grandpa Jemming bought a Shetland pony named Prince for us, that lived out on his farm. Prince had a pony cart and would let us ride him bareback. Not too many years later, when Grandma and Grandpa sold the farm, Prince came to live at our house on the edge of Milroy, my Dad fenced in part of the land we had, and weatherproofed an old shed, then he bought a second pony for us.....a Welsh pony we named Princess (of course). Dad and his friends converted an old farm wagon, into a horse drawn wagon, and would hitch Prince and Princess to this funny looking wagon and drive down the highway in their horse drawn wagon. I always liked to ride in the wagon, but preferred to drive the single pony cart. 

My favorite picture of my Dad is one of him doing the dishes with my uncle Mike was Christmas Eve at Grandma and Grandpa Bergman's home many years ago. It seemed that every year, the ladies would always get stuck with the cooking and the dishes, this time Dad and Mike did them and I captured it on film. Funny, that's the only time they did the dishes after a family dinner.

As a family we tried to go on a vacation each summer.....most of the time it was just a camping trip, or renting a cabin at a lake, usually near Alexandria, MN.  Although, I remember one year, taking a tent and going to the Wisconsin Dells, what I remember most about that trip, is my Dad went all out for him, we went on a boat trip on the river and to the ski show (Tommy Barlett's I think). I also remember it rained hard, and the tent leaked, so we kids slept in the bed of the truck under the topper, where Dad and Mom would usually sleep, and my parents slept sitting up in the front seat of the pickup. 

Another year, my parents and their friends converted an old school bus into a RV, and we took it out to Lake Shetek for a month, Dad would work during the week and come out on the weekends. 

My Dad was a hard working man, he did a variety of jobs, just to make a life for his family, he farmed, ran a gas station and worked for Schwan's Dairy as a material handler and a long-haul trucker. After my Mom passed away in 1981, he had the added burden of raising my brother and sisters, who were still teenagers.  He retired from Schwan's back in the late 90's and married a wonderful lady "Mirt", they enjoyed going out dancing together, and visiting with family and friends. They fulfilled a dream that my Dad and Mom had, and lived on a lake near Glenwood, MN for several years. So, I'm glad he got that enjoyment, he loved living on the lake and fishing year round. I joked with Mirt one winter, we were talking about Dad being out in the fishhouse on the lake, he had everything out there (stove, recliner, TV), I told Mirt, if he decided to move the big screen and the VCR out there, she wouldn't see him until spring.

My Dad
William (Bill) Arthur Jemming

I have been very blessed to have my Dad and Mom....and also my stepmother who provided loving support for my Dad these past 20 years. I Love You All

Thanks for reading this week, I'll probably be in Minnesota next weekend, so until I get back, Keep Dreaming........

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August Already

Where did July go? It's always a busy month for me, but this year it just flew by and August is here. It's funny, but my Grandma always said that years go faster as you grow older, I'm beginning to believe it's true. 

I've been busy this weekend, between cleaning carpets and getting my hair done, I did manage to find some crafty time today. I really wanted to work on the recipe challenges from Crop Chocolate this weekend, so here are my contributions. 

Blueberry Muffin

Blue and Brown Cardstock or Patterned Paper
Something floral
Letter Stickers
*Mystery ingredient – go dig out your old funky edge scissors and try to use them*

How did I do?

For this card, I used the new
Authentique - Journey and Splendid lines, as well as Paper Reverie - Brun Antique letters. I also made my first attempt at dryer sheet flowers, using Glimmer Mist (Bahama Blue, Trunk Bay and Sun Sisters) and Stickles (Lagoon, Mermaid and Yellow).

The second recipe was Strawberry Shortcake
Pink & Black Cardstock or Patterned Paper
Brads or Bling
3 flowers
Letter Stickers
*Mystery ingredient – Try to repurpose stickers with glitter, paint, ink, stickles…* 

Again, my paper of choice was from Authentique, this time the Uncommon Collection, the flowers, brads, letters and lace are from my "Sable" and again Stickles, this time in Star Dust were used to accentuate the lettering.

This card is for my cousin, who lost her Grandma this past week. I just wanted her to know I'm thinking about her.

My last two projects today were for one of the wonderful ladies on Crop Chocolate - Purplesmog who is putting together a couple of scrapbooks for some young boys who are sadly losing their Dad to cancer, I volunteered to do a double page layout for each book, in a Me and my Dad theme. I tried to keep them very basic........

MME's Stella & Rose - Hattie line was the basis for this layout, the letters are highlighted with Cinnamon Stickles.

American Crafts - Happy Trails is the paper I used here, the tag is from MME and Thickers complete the page. 

I feel for these little guys, especially since I know what losing a parent is like. Tomorrow is the 30th anniversary of my Mom's passing. I was much older than these two little guys when she passed away, I was 21, but I still miss her very much. 

Next week is shaping up to be a very busy week, followed by a short well deserved vacation. On Saturday, I'll be heading to Portland, OR for a couple of days of sightseeing and relaxation. Oh, don't worry, I'll still be creating, I always take my X-stitch on trips. I started working on a christmas present for a friend, so I need to keep going on the piece and maybe actually get it finished in time to mail it. 

As always, keep dreaming........