Saturday, December 31, 2011

In Memory Of One Man On His Birthday in Heaven

I suppose that there are those
Who'll say he had it easy
Had it made in fact
Before he'd even begun
But they don't know the things I know
I was always with him
It may sound strange
We were more than friends

Its hard to tell the truth
When no one wants to listen
When no one really cares
Whats going on
And its hard to stand alone
When you need someone beside you
Your spirit and your faith
They must be strong

What one man can do is dream
What one man can do is love
What one man can do is change the world
And make it young again
Here you see what one man can do

As shaded as his eyes might be
That's how bright his mind is
That's how strong his love
For you and me
A friend to all the universe
Grandfather of the future
And everything I would like to be

What one man can do is dream
What one man can do is love
What one man can do is change the world
And make it young again
Here you see what one man can do

What one man can do is dream
What one man can do is love
What one man can do is change the world
And make it young again
Here you see what one man can do

Words and music by John Denver 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Prayer For An Unknown Man

An Excerpt from my diary: January 1, 2008

Today while driving my granddaughter home to New Jersey, I must admit that I was feeling a little sorry for myself. I had such a long drive ahead and I wasn't feeling very well.

Suddenly, my daughter Jennifer asked, "Is that a intravenous bag hanging in the rear window of that white car just ahead?" I peered and replied that I too thought that it looked like an IV bag. We commented back and forth with our thoughts on why it was there. One was a sick pet, another a sick person. My daughter works at a hospital and didn't think that a patient would be released with an IV still in them.

Whatever the reason the driver was speeding and soon was out of sight. A few more miles down the road I noticed the car pulled onto the shoulder. The back door was open and a balding man was throwing up out the door.

My ailments are cumbersome, but not life threatening. Sometimes I get depressed because my life had taken a downward turn in 2004 when I injured my spine,the nerves in my leg and arm, and have RSDS. But, this unknown man in the car on the side of the road gave me a new perspective to how I felt today.

I wondered why the inhabitants of this white car were hurrying down this interstate highway on the first day of 2008 with such a sick passenger. I pray for them that they get safely to their destination, and that they find peace and comfort waiting for them. I pray for this man's healing whoever he may be.

May you all find peace and comfort with a total healing this year.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

May The Blessing Of Peace Be With You This Christmas and Always

Come they told me pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
A new-born king to see pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Our finest gifts we bring pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum, rum-pum-pum-pum

Come they told me pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
A new-born king to see pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Our finest gifts we bring pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
to lay before the king pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum, rum-pum-pum-pum
so to honour him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
when we come

Little baby pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
I stood beside him there pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
I played my drum for him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
I played my best for him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum, rum-pum-pum-pum
And he smiled at me pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
me and my drum

Peace on Earth, can it be
Years from now, perhaps we'll see
See the day of glory
See the day, when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again

Peace on Earth, can it be
Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

I pray my wish will come true
For my child and your child too
He'll see the day of glory
See the day when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again

Peace on Earth, can it be
Can it be

Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas?

I say Merry Christmas, but would also say Happy Hanukkah to those who celebrate Hanukkah. I do not wish to force my religion on anyone, but to me the actual Jesus Christ came with the message of Unconditional Love and Peace and that is a wonderful message to spread to anyone. It is man who has misconstrued the meaning of his birth, life, and death. The Pharisees instigated his death, because he did not subscribe to their philosophy and interpretation of laws. He told them the greatest law was to Love God your Father with all your heart and soul and your neighbor as yourself. I also know that Jesus would have celebrated Hanukkah. 

The best gifts to give this season is unconditional love, acceptance, and forgiveness. I have heard judgmental people who claim to be Christians say we should not put up a Christmas tree or spread the belief in Santa Clause. Well to them I say, "Yes, Jesus gives us our gifts and one of them was Santa Clause!" My Godmother always said, "Your Christmas Tree is your Christmas Card to Jesus!" When I decorate my tree each ornament has a meaning and a memory, some from when my girls were children, some from those who have since passed on. Decorating my tree is a heart warming, loving experience. Christ was all for Love and Peace not creating drama over tradition! Say whatever you feel good about saying! Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Re-Post One of my favorite poems at Christmastime

Annie and Willie's Prayer, One of my favorite Christmas Poems

Written by Sophia Snow

Twas the eve before Christmas, good night had been said,
And Annie and Willie had crept into bed.
There were tears on their pillows, and tears in their eyes,
And each little bosom was heaving with sighs,
For tonight their stern father's command had been given
That they should retire precisely at seven
Instead of at eight--for they troubled him more
With questions unheard of than ever before.
He had told them he thought this delusion a sin,
No such creature as "Santa Claus", ever had been
And he hoped, after this, he would never more hear
How he scrambled down chimneys with presents each year.
And this was the reason that two little heads
so restlessly tossed on their soft, downy beds.

Eight, nine and the clock on the steeple tolled ten,
Not a word had been spoken by either till then.
When Willie's sad face from the blanket did peep,
And whispered, "Dear Annie, is you fast asleep?"
Why no, brother Willie," a sweet voice replies,
"I've long tried in vain, but I can't shut my eyes,
For somehow it makes me so sorry because
Dear Papa has said that there is no "Santa Claus."
"Now we know that there is, and it can't be denied,
For he came every year before Mama died.
But, then, I've been thinking that she used to pray,
And God would hear everything Mama would say,
And maybe she asked him to send Santa Claus here
With that sackful of presents he brought every year."
"Well,why can't we pray just as Mama did then,
And ask God to send him with presents again?"
"I've been thinking so to," and without a word more
Four little bare feet bounded out on the floor,
And four little knees the soft carpet pressed,
And two tiny hands were clasped close to each breast.
"Now, Willie, you know we must firmly believe
That the presents we ask for we're sure to receive:
You must wait very still till I say the 'Amen,'
And by that you will know that your turn has come then."
"Dear Jesus, look down on my brother and me,
And grant us the favor we are asking of thee.
I want a wax dolly, a tea set, and ring,
And an ebony work box that shuts with a spring.
Bless Papa, dear Jesus, and cause him to see
That Santa Claus loves us as much as does he,
Don't let him get fretful and angry again
At dear brother Willie and Annie, Amen"
"Please Jesus, let Santa Claus come down tonight,
and bring us some presents before it is light,
I want he should div' me a nice little sled,
With bright shinin' runners, and all painted red;
A box full of candy, a book and a toy,
and then, dear Jesus, I'll be a good boy.Amen"

Eight, nine and the little French clock had struck ten,
Ere the father had thought of his children again.
He seems now to hear Annie's half suppressed sighs,
And to see the big tears stand in Willie's blue eyes.
"I was harsh with my darlings," he mentally said,
"And should not have sent them so early to bed,
But then I was troubled, my feelings found vent,
For bank stock today has gone down ten percent.
But of course they've forgotten their troubles ere this,
And that I denied then the trice asked for kiss,
But, just to make sure, I'll go up to their door,
For I never spoke harshly to my darlings before."
So saying, he softly ascended the stairs,
And arrived at the door to hear both of their prayers.
His Annie's "Bless Papa" drew forth the big tears,
And Willie's grave promise fell sweet on his ears.
"Strange-strange-I'd forgotten," said he with a sigh,
"How I longed when a child, to have Christmas draw nigh."
"I'll atone for my harshness" he inwardly said,
"By answering their prayers ere I sleep in my bed."
Then he turned to the stairs and softly went down,
Threw off velvet slippers and silk dressing gown,
Donned hat, coat and boots, and was out in the street,
A millionaire facing the cold, driving sleet!
Nor stopped he until he bought everything
From the box full of candy to the tiny gold ring.
Indeed, he kept adding so much to his store,
That the various presents outnumbered a score.
Then homeward he turned, with his holiday load,
With Aunt Mary's help, in the nursery was stowed.
Miss Dolly was seated beneath a pine tree,
By the side of a table spread out for her tea.
A work box well fitted in the center was laid,
And on it the ring for which Annie had prayed.
A soldier in uniform stood by a sled
"With bright shinning runners and all painted red."
There were balls, dogs, and horses books pleasing to see,
And birds of all colors were perched in the tree!
While Santa Claus, laughing, stood at the top,
as if getting ready more presents to drop.
As the fond father the picture surveyed,
He thought for his trouble he had amply been paid,
And he said to himself, as he brushed off a tear,
"I'm happier tonight than I've been in a year.
I've enjoyed more pure pleasure than ever before,
What care I if bank stocks fall ten per cent more.
Hereafter, I'll make it a rule, I believe
To have Santa Claus visit us each Christmas Eve."
So thinking, he gently extinguished the light,
And tripping down stairs, retired for the night.
As soon as the beams of the bright morning sun
Put the darkness to flight, and the stars one by one,
Four little blue eyes out of sleep opened wide,
And at the same moment the presents espied,
They out of their bed they sprang with a bound,
And the very gifts prayed for were all of them found.
They laughed and they cried, in their innocent glee,
And shouted for Papa to come quick and see
What presents Old Santa Claus brought in the night
Just the things that they wanted and left before light.
"And now," added Annie, in a voice soft and low,
"You'll believe there's a 'Santa Claus', Papa I know."
While dear little Willie climbed up on his knee.
Determined no secret between them should be,
And told him soft whispers how Annie had said
That their dear, blessed Mama, so long ago dead,
Used to kneel down by the side of her chair,
And that God up in heaven had answered her prayers.
"Then we dot up and prayed dust well as we could,
And God answered our prayers,now wasn't he good?"
"I should say that he was, if he sent you all these,
And knew just what presents my children would please.
"Well, well, let him think so, the dear little elf,
it would be cruel to tell him I did it myself."

Blind father! Who caused your stern heart to relent,
and the hasty words spoken so soon to repent?
Twas the being who bade you to steal softly upstairs,
and made you his agent to answer their prayers.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Please Check Back For Amazing Vacation Photos

The Sun is shining the grass is green the orange and palm trees sway....
Heading out to where the sun is shining, the grass is still green, the trees still have leaves, flowers are blooming,  and the temps are in the 80s for three weeks of rest and relaxation. Spending time with friends and family too! 
Vacation November 28th-December 18th

I am very busy with so much to do and see with so many lovely family members and friends, but will keep trying to post the photos as often as I can.

First Florida Upload 

Second Florida Upload-Royanna's Pool 

Third Florida Upload, Park, Beach with Aunt Essie, Christmas lights, Gecko in Christmas Tree

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Just In Time For Christmas, written by my friend David Zippel

One of my favorite Christmas songs was written by an old friend David Zippel.  To learn more about David go  to my blog at Blue Mountain Road and read about this amazing lyricist: http://bluemountainroad.blogspot.com/2011/11/david-zippel-local-legend-and-my-friend.html

Why not have a man of the Hebrew Faith write a beautiful and poignant song about Christmas? Dave joins the ranks of Irving Berlin/ White Christmas, and Ralph Blane and Hugh Martin/Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.  Here is a list of many other Jewish Lyricists who wrote wonderful Christmas songs: http://www.interfaithfamily.com/arts_and_entertainment/popular_culture/The_Jews_Who_Wrote_Christmas_Songs_2010.shtml

 Just In Time For Christmas
Lyrics David Zippel, Music David Friedman

They had decked the malls and trimmed the town with plastic trees
Till the world was just a giant retail maze
Tis the season when you turn your thoughts to people you can't please
When you measure passing time in shopping days
And the holidays were something to get through
But the thing I hadn't counted on was you

Just in time for Christmas you came along
Just in time for Christmas when everything felt wrong
And I was sure my faith had all run out
Just in time for Christmas you showed me what Christmas is about

What I needed most could not be bought at any price
I was far to disillusioned then to see
I was going through the motions made a list and checked it twice and forgot to write down anything for me
But my long unspoken wishes had been heard
And an unexpected miracle occurred.

Just in time for Christmas one silent night
Just in time for Christmas you filled my life with light
And there was joy where there had once been doubt
Just in time for Christmas you showed me what Christmas is about

And all at once the bells began to ring
and hark the herald I heard angels sing
Whom am I to resist their call
You brought me the greatest gift of all

and now my spirits sing
just in time my heart is caroling
From deep within my soul I want to shout
Just in time for Christmas
Just in time for Christmas
Just in time for Christmas you showed me what Christmas is about

This video is of poor quality but the voice of the late Nancy LaMott is the BEST!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Walp's PA Dutch Bacon Dressing

Yields 1 quart
8 slices bacon,
fried crisp

4 eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 cup white vinegar

1 cup sugar

1 tsp salt

2 heaping tbsp flour

Fry bacon until crisp. Crumble bacon when cooled. set bacon and bacon fat aside. Mix dry ingredients thoroughly, add beaten eggs, beat. Combine sour cream, heavy cream, and vinegar, and heat in double boiler, add egg mixture, bacon fat, and
crumbled bacon. Cook and stir until thick and smooth. Server warm over chopped ice berg lettuce, endive, dandelion, or other greens.

My mother who is of PA Dutch heritage, cut the strips of bacon into small pieces before frying, fried, added apple cider vinegar and sugar, made flour water mixture as for gravy, added it to the bacon/vinegar mixture in the pan, stirred until thick. Which was most likely what the real PA Dutch would do. Walps recipe seems more French than PA Dutch.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Re-Post A Happy Childhood Memory, The Ingersoll Rand Christmas Party

If you lived in the Phillipsburg, New Jersey area from 1950-1990 or so, you most likely had a relative or friend who worked for Ingersoll Rand. In our family my brother Buddy, my sister Ruth Ann, and I had worked for I.R.

I think it would be fair to say that it would be hard to find a kid who had not attended the Ingersoll Rand Christmas Party that was held every year. I can remember attending my first party when it was held at the former Hillcrest Club which had been in Delaware Park before it burned down on March 9, 1966. After the demise of the Hillcrest Club, the party was held in the Gym of Phillipsburg High School.

The Saturday on which it was held, the entire gym was transformed into a Christmas Wonderland. The bleachers were packed full with excited children who were filled with the spirit of the wonder of the season.

First there was always a show that was made up of performing dogs, who could dance and jump through hoops of fire. Then there was a magician, and when my girls were little that magician/ventriloquist was the extremely entertaining Linda Holliday who was actually Linda Cotugna a Phillipsburg alumni.

After the entertainment all of the children join in on a sing along of Christmas carols and songs, which usually ended with Jingle Bells or Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, with a request to sing it louder and louder...then Santa arrived.

While all the children filed out of the gym, Santa, or one of his elves handed each child a Christmas decorated shopping bag filled with a toy, and orange, apple, animal crackers, and hard candy.

It is so heart warming to write about this event, as it has brought back all those wonderful inner feelings of being in that moment. It was an experience that I have shared with my siblings, friends, and even my children, and their friends.

Ingersoll Rand is no longer the force it had been in Phillipsburg, I am not sure, but I think it is totally gone. There hasn't been a Christmas party for many years. It is a sad day that this tradition in Phillipsburg no longer exists for our grandchildren, as it is such a wonderful memory.

In Alpha we also loved to attend the John Dolak American Legion Christmas Party. They also gave the best gifts, and their bag of goodies included chocolate candy. That too is now just a memory.

If you had attended this party, please leave a comment below with your memory.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Side Dish- Roasted Brussel Sprouts With Caramelized Garlic

Serves 4-6

2 pounds Brussel Sprouts (halved from the top through the stem) 
4 Thinly sliced cloves of garlic
1/2 cup  Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Caramelized Garlic, Heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in saute pan, add thinly sliced cloves of garlic until golden brown sprinkle lightly with sugar, remove from pan.
    1. Heat oven to 450 degrees. Trim bottom of brussels sprouts, and slice each in half top to bottom. Heat 1/4 cup oil in cast-iron pan over medium-high heat until it shimmers; put sprouts cut side down in one layer in pan
    • 2. Cook, undisturbed, until sprouts begin to brown on bottom,put in garlic, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. and transfer to oven. Cook, shaking pan occasionally, until sprouts are quite brown and tender, about 1/2 hour

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Mother, She Is So In My Heart, She Could Never Be Gone...

Honoring my mother Ruth Marie Dunwell on what would have been her 90 th Birthday

November 20, 1921-March 30, 1992

I am the one in her arms in this photo from 1957. My mother was always there for me. She was the most loving mother even though she never really knew her own mother.
She mothered everyone, even her own peers. She was one of those people who touched the hearts of all she met. She taught us to love unconditionally, to forgive completely, and to love God with all our heart and soul.
Once when I managed Boardwalk Fries I had been up to my waist in work and almost that high in flooding water coming in through the back door, not to mention that I had overflowed the front sink too!
My assistant called off that day and the kids that worked the night before left a mess and did not do any of the prep work needed for an on time opening in the morning.
Just as I was ready for a nervous breakdown the door bell rang at the back door. I was so upset, as I had thought it was the bakery delivery man with the rolls; yet more work for me to do.
I answered the door and there she stood,my guardian angel, my mother. I did not call her that morning, and yet she knew I needed her. She told me that she had a feeling that I needed her.
I will never stop needing her. But she is here for me in my sisters, my daughters, my cousins, and my friends, as she left her imprint on all who knew her.
She is so in my heart, she could never be gone.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

In Memory Of Gertrude "Nanny" Nicholas

The most classy, delightful, kind and unconditional loving woman who has blessed our lives.  
 Gertrude Nicholas, age 100, formerly of Finesville, NJ, Riegelsville and Easton, died Tuesday, November 15, in Old Orchard Health Care Center, Bethlehem Twp., PA. Born: September 27, 1911 in Nutley, NJ; a daughter of the late Michael and Ellen Connely Kiggins. Personal: She was last employed as a site manager for the Easton Senior Center. Prior to that, she worked in sales for the Orrs and Pomeroy Department Stores in Easton. She was also a hosiery model for Orrs. She was a fabulous decorator and wonderful hostess. Memberships: She had been a member of St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Riegelsville and St. Bernard's Catholic Church in Easton where she was a member of the Catholic Daughters. Survivors: three daughters, Judy Shadder and her husband, Ed, of Williams Twp., PA; Janet Lindmeier and her husband, Philip, of Southampton, PA and Jill Nicholas of Bethlehem; a son, Jay, and his wife, Vicki, of Bath, PA; eleven grandchildren; numerous great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; and a sister, Virginia Moser, Florida. She was preceded in death by her husband, Jacob, who died in 1967; and seven brothers and sisters. Services: Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated Monday, November 21 at 10:30 a.m. in St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Riegelsville, PA. Interment will be in the Riegelsville Union Cemetery. Friends may call Monday at the Robert W. Snyder Funeral Home, Riegelsville from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Memorials: contributions may be made to St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Riegelsville, PA 18077.
Abigayle, Jacob, Maggie,  & Jamiann, with her  Nanny Nicholas at 100 Birthday Sept.24, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Stuffed Mushrooms

1 lb. med. mushrooms
1 sm. onion, chopped (about 1/2 c.)
1 sm. green, yellow, or red bell pepper, chopped (about 1/2 c.)
3 tbsp. butter
1 1/2 c. soft bread crumbs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
1/4 tsp. ground turmeric
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. of olive oil

Cut stems from mushrooms; finely chop enough stems to measure 1/3 cup. Cook and stir chopped mushroom stems, onion and green pepper in 3 tablespoons butter until tender, about 5 minutes; remove from heat. Stir in bread crumbs, salt, thyme, turmeric and pepper. 2 tablespoon olive oil in shallow baking dish. Fill mushroom caps with stuffing mixture; place mushrooms, filled sides up, in baking dish.   Bake uncovered in 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. Set oven control to broil and (or) 550 degrees. Broil mushrooms with tops 3 to 4 inches from heat 2 minutes. Serve hot. 


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Re-Post We Made It Through The Rain

On Veteran's Day, Wednesday November 11, 1999, my daughter Jamiann and I ventured into New York City on a whim. We truly exercised our faith that day, traveling approximately eighty miles in the pouring down, cold, November rain in hopes of obtaining stand by tickets for the audience of The Rosie O'Donnell show.

The show would air on Friday November 13, 1999, the guests were Matthew Fox, Barry Manilow, and Rosie's longtime friend Jeannie Davis.

My daughter Jamiann who was nineteen at the time, was a die hard Barry Manilow fan since the age of nine when my sister Irene had won tickets on a radio show to be chauffeur/limo driven, complete with long stem roses to the Stabler Arena to see Barry in concert. Irene chose to take Jamiann along with her that night, which led to a fourteen year fantastic journey into the world of the Maniloonies. When Jamiann learned that Barry would be a guest on a taping of the show on Veteran's Day, and that I was going to be off of work that day, a plan was put into action.

Upon arriving we parked a few blocks away from Rockefeller Center where the show was taped. We both were in dire need of a restroom, and despite its disgusting condition we had to use the one in the parking garage. In our moment of excitement, coupled with a painfully full bladder, we both forgot our umbrellas in the car. We knew we needed to be in line before 8:00 AM in order to obtain stand by tickets. We did not realize just what odds were against us.

After what seemed like hours of trying to find shelter from the rain under an above ledge just outside of the entrance where the line formed, a young lady dressed in Rosie show garb, came out with a top hat in hand. Inside the hat were numbers to be picked by each group of potential audience members. I allowed Jamiann to reach into the top hat and pick. She picked a low number, I believe it was the number three if my memory serves me right. While we stood there rumors were spreading that they call out higher numbers first, and we started to become discouraged. We were then allowed to file into the building. We took our wet coats off, and used the restroom to try and make ourselves presentable.

It really seemed like hours passed again, and I was silently praying for Jamiann's sake, that we would be chosen. But, I must admit, I too wanted to get the chance to see Rosie in person. I realize since then that Rosie has alienated many, but I still like her. She has done a lot for many who needed help. She has always been down to earth, and forth coming. Perhaps her candid way of expressing her thoughts has earned her a reputation of being a bit too liberal, but much of what she has said is the truth. I do agree with her position on peace, adoption, unconditional love, and gun control. She is also a very funny comedian, and excellent actor.

Finally, the young lady from the Rosie show appeared again and called out our number, and we were escorted to an elevator. Suddenly a commotion erupted by a nearby entrance to the lobby, and there approaching us was the legendary comedian Nipsey Russell and his entourage. We stood in line there and also went through a metal detector. Once we entered the elevator, I began to get butterflies in my stomach. Once we reached the floor of the Rosie studio, we walked down a long hall way with photos of Saturday Night Live Shows on the walls. The excitement of the moment kept building inside me, and when we walked through the studio doors I actually had tears welling up in my eyes. I was not just happy for myself, but thrilled for my daughter that her dream was coming true, and my adventurous nature was instrumental in making it happen.

We were seated in separate rows, and didn't mind, as we just felt so fortunate to get in. We in fact were just filling in empty seats. As Jamiann was positioned in front of me, she was led to a seat near the front on the left side, just behind John McDaniel and his band. I was seated directly behind a roving camera on the ceiling, and practically every time they either cut away or came back from a commercial there I was smiling and waving. On the following Friday when it aired we taped the show. My big moment of television history, being a silly, excited fan in the audience of the Rosie O'Donnell show.

I really did want to see the expression on Jaminann's face when Barry Manilow appeared on the stage. He first came to Rosie's desk to be interviewed. Barry was promoting his Frank Sinatra tribute album, Manilow Sings Sinatra. It was evident that he had a nasty head cold. He asked Rosie to help him sing and they sang Strangers In The Night.

And in the typical Rosie O' Donnell show fashion she shot Koosh Balls into the audience, gave us a snack, and a goodie bag full of nice things, including Old Navy mittens and an ear warming head band, a toddler toy Billy Blaze, a Koosh Ball, a Rosie T shirt, and a Christmas ornament.

She also had a cooking segment where she joined her life long friend Jeannie "Weanie" Davis making a squash recipe for Thanksgiving Dinner, which ended in a food fight.

In between commercials they inserted a pre-taped interview with Matthew Fox who at the time starred in the television show, Party Of Five. Today Matthew is well known as playing Jack on Lost.

We later received tickets by mail a year later to be in the audience of the show with Al Pacino as the guest. After we filed into the audience seats we discovered that Mr. Pacino did not want to be taped in front of a live audience, and instead two shows would be taped to be aired during the holidays. To our amazement and utter joy the guests were Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, James Garner, and even Florence Henderson popped in sweeping the floor as it was "Sweeps Week".

We took along Rosie O'Donnell dolls that she autographed for us. I also had the pleasure of occupying her audience one more time with a group of Barry Manilow fans in the fall of 2001.

Here is a link to the day we saw Julie Andrews:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqR2YufBzoM

Rosie Ornament is always on our tree!

Jami and I

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Re-Post Today


This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Wildflowers at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary

Grandson enjoying his day.

Getting soaked and loving it!

A messy face, eating chocolate at Grammy's.

Getting to ride in the caboose.

Meeting your favorite celebrity.

Finding your soul mate.

Creating Holiday Memories

Fulfilling a dream, and inspiring others

Today (Randy Sparks)

Today while the blossoms still cling to the vine
I'll taste your strawberries, I'll drink your sweet wine

A million tomorrows shall all pass away
Ere I forget all the joy that is mine today

I'll be a dandy and I'll be a rover
You'll know who I am by the song that I sing
I'll feast at your table, I'll sleep in your clover

Who cares what the morrow shall bring?

Today while the blossoms still cling to the vine
I'll taste your strawberries, I'll drink your sweet wine

I can't be contented with yesterday's glory
I can't live on promises winter to spring (winter to spring)
Today is my moment and now is my story

I'll laugh and I'll cry and I'll sing

Today while the blossoms still cling to the vine
I'll taste your strawberries, I'll drink your sweet wine
A million tomorrows shall all pass away
Ere I forget all the joy that is mi-uh-ine today

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Re-Post~ What Better Time To Reminisce Than Just After A Birthday~

Do you remember this doll attached to a bamboo cane by elastic string? Perhaps you were at the Phillipsburg Halloween Parade, The Great Allentown Fair, or Bushkill Park. If my memory serves me right, I think there was also a celluloid monkey with lots of feathers attached to a bamboo cane.

Who doesn't have fond memories of Bushkill Park?

How about a ride on old Route 22 passing by the Dixie Cup, did you always sit up trying to get the first glimpse of the huge paper cup on the roof of the factory?

When we lived in Alpha, we would hop on the Trans Bridge Bus to shop in Easton, PA. We disembarked in front of the Easton Sweet Shoppe. Does anyone remember when the bathrooms were under the Center Square? Look closely at the photo on the right, lower right hand corner, and you will see the (green house type covering)top of the steps that led down to them. This photo is looking toward N. Third Street corner.

Well, if that picture brings a nostalgic tear to your eye, check out this next one.

--I have a fond memory of Christmas shopping for my mother, and getting a Bing Crosby with the Andrew Sisters Christmas Album for my sister Irene at that Woolworth's. I sure miss the old downtown Easton shopping district. Does anyone remember John's Bargain Store?

Have any of you gone sleigh riding/sledding down the iron stairs of Phillipsburg? Well, my late brother Buddy did, and lived to tell us the story.

There were two pairs of these stairs, one between Bullman and South Main Streets, and the one on which Buddy tried his dare devil stunt was situated between Washington Street and Shimer Alley/Tyndal Avenue. This one was torn down, but the one between Bullman and South Main still stands.

We had climbed the one to Washington Street many times to go to the movie theater on the corner of Hudson and Chamber Street. Was it called the Philmont Theater?

Speaking of movie theaters, The Boyd on North Third Street in Easton was my favorite. I loved the winding stairs, and the Spanish style of architecture. I would purposely go to the bathroom so I could wonder around and relish the regal surroundings.

Now, I would like some feed back on this blog post from those of you who hail from my neck of the woods.

My question is this: Is it menopause, or nostalgia that makes tears well up in my eyes when remembering these places and things from our past? How about you, do you tear up too? I am so thankful for my memories, for these places, and fun little things from my childhood.

Can you remember when the Halloween parade was just the Phillipsburg Halloween Parade? Does anyone else remember the blue and pink rubber cars or the windmill spice cookies that they sold at the South Main Five and Dime? Did you ever buy a Christmas tree from the Jersey Hose in the lot next to it, or hot dogs from Bill's in that same lot?

Nostalgia for what we have lost is more bearable than nostalgia for what we have never had...