Monday, April 13, 2015

March---Childhood Memories

My Favorite Childhood Memories
Erin & Dana: Cousin Dana and I are only 18 months apart. With neither of us having any sisters, it worked out well that we had each other to play with. We would love to play at Grandma’s house, especially when Grandma had us over in the summer for “Vacation.” We would catch fireflies, put the flag on the pole and play endless hours of “office” with Grandma’s supplies. I’m sure this lead to my professional life today. Then there was always “statue” where we would freeze when a car would drive by.  

Grandma and Grandpa Stamm would also take the whole family on vacation- usually to Holiday Inn and most often in Cape Girardeau. We would pile in a few huge vans and off we went. These family vacations where I got to play with all of my cousins and swim in the pool were awesome as a kid. We would usually get a trip to Show Biz Pizza (now Chuck E. Cheese) also. As we got older the girls would go shopping too. These “vacations” are some of my all-time favorite memories.
CANDYLAND: Is there any better game than this??? When my Dad would get home I was always ready with my game and we would usually sit downstairs and play. Ryan would try to play also and sometimes I would let him win.
Easter: Easter at Grandma Stamm’s was always so much fun! We each had to find the “special” egg with our name on it. I never knew until I was much older how our names got on our eggs.  Grandma even crotched us each our own basket. I still have mine and now have one for Nathan.  The egg hunt was always the best followed by Grandma’s famous sugar cookies iced with Easter colors.   

Bike Riding: Ryan and I would ride our bikes for hours, especially at Green Leaf Gardens when my Grandma & Grandpa Weber owned this business. I had a pink Schwinn 10 speed bile that I thought was awesome. I kept a plain yellow bike with a big banana seat at Grandma Weber’s. We’d get to take our bikes to Grandma Stamm’s since it wasn’t that far and ride around the truck lot- it was the perfect circle path for bike riding. 
READING: Ryan and I would always read “The Little Engine that Could” pictured here. As I got older I read the entire “Babysitter Club” series and many of the Goosebumps books. I wish I had more time to read now! I was the kid who would sneak a flashlight and read in bed at night, I guess there are worse things I could have been doing!
 Karolyn's layout.
      Growing up school plays and Halloween were always greatly anticipated mainly due to the costume.  Being number four in a family of seven children I usually had to wear a hand-me-down, being who I am that was always okay.  One year Mom took a dress pattern and turned it into a black and orange pumpkin. Having six daughters this attire got lots of wear. At school one Christmas the girls in second grade had to be trees.  Several mothers designed a pattern including cone hats with a star on top.  My angel costume was my favorite, maybe because I constructed the wings and crown all by myself.
        Granny Mo even put her expertise to work making costumes for Paige and Leigh.  Red Riding Hood and Snow White were worn over and over and even voted much nicer than the ones at the Disney Store! I even took an old pair of Mary-Janes and turned them into the red Ruby Slippers and they got glitter everywhere. So many good memories from all of the costumes through the years, I just wish I had the fore sight to save at least one of them. 
 Susan's layout.
 My layout.

Jeanne's journaling:
Jeanne's journaling. Hopefully layout to follow.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

February---Night Time Routine

This month, 3 people chose the same title: "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep." Of course, that's so perfect---I wish I'd thought of it too!!

The bedtime routine sure has changed since having a baby. Now, not only do we do our routine and make sure we have everything ready for ourselves the next day, we also have to make sure everything is ready for Nathan’s next day. This usually laying out clothes and packing his bag for daycare as well as making sure we know what is for dinner the next day. He likes to eat soon after we get home from “school.”  I would like to think I only check on him once after he goes to bed, but in reality, I know I check on him many times. 

At night when I’m winding down, getting ready to go to bed I start going over the check list of, have I or do I still have to do, things. Taking meds is  the start, of course I also have to make sure a drink is available, just in case I need one. As the time gets closer to turning in it’s a hopeful last trip to the bathroom that includes making sure the hair is twisted up for the night. Then as my destination gets closer I have to set my very old alarm clock, on work nights. Turning on the TV and setting the sleeper timer, is a very important step, I can fall asleep so easy with the TV on compared to laying in the dark trying to stop my mind from racing from one subject to the next. Reading is an alternative but it does hurt when the book hits you in the face. Of course the bed has to be prepared by removing the throw pillows, if they were put out.  Ron seems to never see them when he is the last one up – which is the norm since his retirement. I take my last round of meds and then it’s time to turn down the sheet and fluff up my very flat pillows. With everything done it’s time to Lay Myself Down To Sleep, which is the little prayer I say to myself  when I’m finally all the way in bed.  Pictures > It seems that the whole family has been able to fall asleep where and when needed. The crowded bed is the day I came home with Jackie, Alexis and Mike must have missed me, Ron gets Mike asleep easily in his chair – which Mike learned to do to baby Jackie on the couch. Jackie shows recliners are great sleep spots no matter what you were planning to do. . 
My title: "What's on our nightstand"
Besides the list of what each of us have on our nightstand, I focused on Butch's "candy stash." Everyone eats candy before bed----right???

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

New Year, New Plan

This year, I've chosen "My Book of Lists" as our theme. For January, the topic was the grocery store. As always, this year long workshop is story focused. I love all the creative titles that the girls come up with.
 "Dressed to Shop" by Carla M. Journaling:
Vist to Jamie’s Feb. 2013 in Toledo, OH
The girls were playing dress-up and saw no reason to stop even if we were headed to the grocery store.  I started to protest, but Jamie said,”Mom, choose your battles wisely and just have fun.  Wise girl!!!

We had such fun on that visit.  Olivia and Charlotte only see each other once or twice a year but they sure have fun and do not seem to mind sharing Grammie.  They do so love posing for photos for Grammie’s scrapbooks.  

I used the 3 and 5 since that was their ages at this time.
 "Grocery Shopping a week at a time" by Janet. Journaling:
Grocery shopping is a weekly job for me. I go on my way home from work, since I usually don’t go back out once I’ve gotten home. My trips usually include a list which may show just a few items to complete recipes or other times it may be a big stock up list. The list usually only has items for the menu I’m planning plus Ron will also add some of his needed or wished for items. Most of the food staples or extras I pick up aren’t written down, they are just items we normally need such as butter, milk, white bread, chips and soda. I’m also a Marketers dream- If something is on an End Cap &/or on sale, AND WE USE IT, I will pick it up. I would say a short list is my favorite because of the obvious: it takes less time to shop for, less time to put away, at home and finally it takes less time to cook or prepare. At least when I get home Ron does help with the unloading. The store I usually go to is Schnucks, it’s the one I know where everything is located. The hardest list to write is for the occasions when Ron takes on the shopping, chore, every detail has to be written about each item. I have hopes he will move out of the novice category some day. He also prefers going to Dierbergs. 
 "Grocery Getter" by Erin. Journaling:
I became the “Grocery Getter” when I was in middle school. My Mom went back to school and time was precious, so my Dad took over grocery shopping duties. Every two weeks when he would get paid, we would go to Wal-Mart and stock up on all the basics. Since the closest major grocery store was 30 minutes away, we had to make our trip count.  My Mom would give us a list, we would sort the coupons and then off we went. It was a whole afternoon outing. My favorite part was that we always went out to lunch afterwards, usually Taco Bell, sometimes McDonald’s.  Then we would schlep it all home, up the steps and help Mom put it all away.  I think my early training has certainly affected my buying patterns today- stock up at Costco and at Schnucks when there is a sale, and I really only need the perishable items from week to week. Even though I have a nice grocery store 5 minutes away, I just can’t break myself of this pattern!
 "Got Groceries" by Jeanne. Journaling:

 "Going to the Grocery Store" by Nancy. I have to say, I am so impressed with Nancy and her layout. She is brand new to scrapbooking. This is the very first layout she's done by herself!! Journaling:
  Growing up in a family of seven there always seemed to be a need for daily
trips to the grocery store. Being that there was only one car and my father’s
job took him away for several days at a time, trips to “Woodlawn Market”
were not a problem. They delivered! Mama kept a list by the phone and if
there was something you thought of you could add it provided you were going
to prepare it! Mr. and Mrs. Austen owned the market located on Woodlawn
Drive down from Natchez Trace where the Tennessee Central Railroad Tressel
crossed. The Austens lived in a house right behind the market on Westwood
Avenue and they would just walk across the back yard to the market.
       I grew up thinking that all one had to do when paying for your
groceries was sign your ticket pad! I didn’t understand that my Mom had an
account and would pay up at the end of the month. With the passing of time
deliveries were discontinued, however Mom could still call her list in and we
would go and pick it up. Progress and the construction of Interstate 440
caused the Austens to sell the market which was demolished.
     I am a list maker, not that I always stick to it, but I am always forgetting
something if I don’t have one. Technology being what it is, I have learned to
put lists on my phone. Times are really changing!
 "Grocery Cycle" by Pam.
"5 Generations of Grocery Lists" by Karolyn. Karolyn is that one person that you love to hate!!! Who in the world has actual grocery lists going back to her grandmother?? There isn't a single topic I can throw at her where she doesn't come up with the most amazing memorabilia from the past. Incredible and always amazing! I don't really hate her---she's one of my closest friends. I do hate her a little. I'll add her journaling when she sends it.
 "Fill the carts and pay the price" by Susan. Journaling:
When I think about how much time, effort and money is spent grocery shopping and preparing family meals, it is staggering.
Using a list and cutting coupons help with the time and money---but the work is still a lot of work. I try to shop the specials at Kroger, Harris Teeter and Publix. My mom did the same when we were kids. Friday night was her shopping time! Armed with her list and coupons, she left the minute my dad got home from work---we only had one car. After having grilled cheese or fish sticks, we would help her carry all the bags in. From the sixties to today, very little has changed---except the prices!!! Just wondering…will we have to grocery shop in HEAVEN?
"The Great Grocery Store Debate" by me. Journaling:

I hate grocery shopping. It’s a necessary evil---from checking recipes to making the list, to sorting coupons, finding a place to park, the actual shopping, hauling home and then putting it all away. There’s no part of it that I like. When Butch retired, I pictured us shopping together as a weekly outing. In the “Norman Rockwell” image of my mind, we would enjoy the process together. All it took was ONE time to realize that would never work. First off, Butch prefers Kroger, I prefer Publix. He swears Kroger’s prices are better. I think in the long run they are about the same. Still, I was willing to compromise and go to Kroger for our first shopping experience together. All was going well until we reached the pickle aisle. We nearly had a “knock down drag out fight!” I wanted the tiny baby dills. The slightly larger ones were on sale. It went something like this---Butch: “What’s wrong with the Kroger brand, they’re on sale?” Me: “I don’t like those---I like the baby dills.” He: “With those you have to have 5 or 6. With these you don’t need as many.” Me: “Come on Butch, we’re doing pretty well, can’t I just get what I want---even if they’re 20 cents more?” He: “Fine, get what you want.” Me: “Never mind, just get the Kroger brand.” He: “No, get what you want.” End of story. That was our first and last time shopping together. These days, he goes more often than I do. I really appreciate that---even if he gets a lot of it wrong. I do not criticize because I don’t want to do it!! I do get pretty worked up when he looks at the list and decides I don’t need the quantity of something. When I’m cooking and looking for the ingredients, he’ll say, “well, I didn’t think you needed that much.” Sheesh! Case in point, just his past Christmas. I brought home 8 lbs. of butter and 8 blocks of cream cheese. Right away, he said, “Oh my gosh! You don’t need this much butter!” To which I replied, “Look, this is not a fun job---planning meals and grocery shopping for the whole family for 5 days. As it is, it takes me two trips to the store. Any time you want to take it over, it’s all yours.” He didn’t say another word!! We’ve never really solved the great grocery store debate. He still goes to Kroger and I mostly go to Publix. Really, for me, it’s whichever is most convenient based on where I’ll be when I need to stop.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Kickin' Off the New Year

Our final assignment for our "Back to School" album was Art. Here are the layouts:

 Awww, Jeanne---thanks and I love you too!! You've always been so willing to do anything I wanted---even if I had to drag you kicking and screaming some of the time!! I'm so glad you are scrapbooking with me!!
Olivia loves all of Grammie’s crafts.
Whenever she is going to spend the
night she tells everyone that will
listen that she is going to Grammie’s
house and we will do art.

December 20, 2014 was one such
night, but Grammie was in full swing
with Christmas planning and cooking.
What better idea than have a four-year
old help you bake cookies and decorate!!
Armed with her apron she was determined
to help.  And help she did.  We started at
2:30 pm and did not finish until 8:30 pm.
There we no complaints and a short break
to get more supplies and Chinese food for

A quick bath and by 9:15 pm we were in
bed.  She said, “Grammie I am not tired yet.”
By 9:20 pm she was fast asleep.

Next sleepover we will be back to card
making and scrapbooking.  What a lovely
partner in “art crime”.

 My Grandma Stamm has crocheted for as long as I can remember. Once she retired she really got in to quilting. Her 12 Grandchildren and 7 Great-Grandchildren have certainly benefited from her amazing talents! She makes every family a white afghan for the baby to use on their baptism day. This is a picture of us at my shower. She also makes other goodies- the Candy Corn hat Nathan has on as well as the Elf hat are compliments of her handy work.  Grandma made each grandchild an Easter basket years ago, this year she made each great grandchild one as well. I have two quilts from her- she hand stiches the entire quilt. She has another one in progress for me- I’m so lucky! The green afghan was our wedding gift, and the rainbow afghan was my first creation I received from her. I was a little girl and asked her to make me an afghan and this is what we selected. I still cherish it to this day.  I love watching her work with her hands, she so talented. I know every finished product is a product straight from her heart!  

  I learned early in life that – “Artist Ability” comes to Some naturally and Others, such as myself, have to work hard just to make any creative project come to a somewhat passable finish. This realization came during the summers when I spent time with my cousins, Kevin, Kathy, and Diane. One pass time they enjoyed was drawing and I always hoped that I may be able to keep up with Diane since she is 6 years younger than me because there was no way I could come up with anything comparable to Kevin or Kathy. I have a comic story Kevin drew when he was around 11, yes he was into blood and gore at the time, (it was always hard to go to sleep after one of his made up stories he would tell us girls at night!).  A lot of the talent comes from my Uncle Charlie, who could doodle /sketch some pretty amazing things. Here I have an ink drawing he did for my Grandma one Sunday at her house (Q: Know who it is?)  Also Aunt Audrey may have not draw but she has an eye for design, she worked in Advertising for a short time, more talent. Art is just something I pushed my way through because I know my ability is limited. (These are our school pictures from 1966)            {A: Jane Fonda]

My journaling:
I've never considered myself particularly artistic. In fact, I realized in the first grade that I was no Picasso. When it came to staying within the lines, I just couldn't. My coloring was never nice and even like everyone else's. By the time I got to high school and had to take art, it was pure torture. I could not draw a darn thing. I'm pretty good at accepting my limitations. As an adult, I've done pretty many things that you could consider artistic. I have an eye for color and putting things together. I love to decorate and am pretty good at it. I can put flowers together in the garden for a beautiful effect of color and texture. And I can do the same thing with my stitching---choosing gorgeous fibers and fabrics. Even though I do not consider myself artistic, if there's one area where what little talent I might have shows through would be my scrapbooking. Although I am not particularly artistic, maybe I have a little creativity in me after all.