Sibling Assignment 2015.7: Capturing Moments #3Siblings

This week Christy gave us our Sibling Assignment for the week:

 " Write how photography has enriched your life".

Here is where my sister wrote about photography here, and my brother's post will be here.

As I look back through my life, I think photography has enriched my life by capturing moments in time that help preserve not only my history, but the history of what is going on around me.

It also helps me remember things I have done in my life.  People I have met.  Places I have visited.

I love looking at the first photograph ever taken of me.  I was five months old.  It was once explained to me that a photograph was not taken at an earlier age, because I almost died of pneumonia soon after I was born.

First photograph of me when I was five months old, being held by Mom.

I has been a record of my garden from year to year.

Healthy looking beans.


It has helped me chronicle the years of my children's lives and of our family.
Molly, Coco, and Zoe

As a reporter for our local newspaper for a few years, it helped me preserve historical images of the Silver Valley.

For me, photography isn't so much a creative medium, but a medium where I catalog memories of things that have happened to me over my life.

Sadie and Paul, Christmas 2008.

I like looking at photographs from my childhood that show what kind of things I did, and how goofy I looked at times.

I love finding photographs that I don't remember seeing before, and trying to figure out when they were taken.

I love remembering my time at the University of Idaho, my summer in San Bernardino, California, my time living in Glendive, Montana and our daughter Molly's birth.

University of Idaho graduation, May 1985.

I love looking at photographs of our time living in Meridian, Idaho, and the births of our daughters Zoe and Cosette.  The looking at photographs of their various birthday parties they had filled with the many cousins who lived close.

I love looking back at photographs of living in our first Kellogg house up on McKinley, the house that no longer exists.  Thank goodness we have photographs of that time.

I love looking at photographs of my dad with me, with my siblings, with my mom, and with my daughters.  Dad is longer here, either.  In June he will have been gone 19 years.  But the photographs help keep the memories alive.

Grandma Woolum and I.

Mrs. Price and I.  Mrs. Price came into our home and took care of me the first three years of my life.

Mom and Dad...aren't they cute?

I love looking at my wedding photographs.

I love looking at photographs of all the many pets we have owned.
Our Keeshond Peaches.

I love looking at photographs from different places we have visited, such as Washington D.C., Baltimore, New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle and Portland.

Washington D.C.  This is from my second of three visits to our nation's capital.

I love looking at photographs taken at the Oregon Coast, Yellowstone Park, various places in Montana, Grand Coulee Dam, camping trips, visits to Christy and Everett's house.
Oregon Coast

I love looking at past Christmas photographs.  Some of this helps me remember the country we cooked food from.  Some of the photographs helps we remember warm, happy holiday moments.
Christmas 2008---Africa

This reminds me of the Kodak commercial from the late '70's that used the Paul Anka song "The Times of Your Life".


Sibling Assignment 2015.6: Pin It! #3Siblings

Pin It!

You find something you like, what do you do.....

Pin It!

Recipes. Crafts. Pottery. Books. Quotations. Blog Posts. Decorating Ideas. Ways to use bottles.

These are just of few of the things I have pinned on my boards on a Social Media phenomenon called


And Pinterest is the topic of this week's sibling assignment given by brother Bill:

Write a piece about Pinterest.  What do you value about Pinterest?  How has it made a difference in your life?  Can you tell a story about a particular thing you did at a particular time that went really well because you are a part of Pinterest?  On the flip side, is there anything about Pinterest that disappoints you?

 Bill's post is here, and you will find Christy's post here.

I was leary of becoming a part of Pinterest.  I had heard stories of friends getting "lost" on Pinterest, spending hours of time looking for and finding items.it didn't become much

But I eventually succumbed and started making some boards, and I didn't get "lost" in the world Pinterest.

The things I value about Pinterest are the ideas.

I love looking for ideas about new recipes, crafts, decorating ideas.

Pinterest has simplified finding particular kinds of recipes.  The search function is great.

For example, last week I had corn tortillas, cheese, peppers, black beans.

Search for Mexican corn tortilla casserole vegan.

Voila!  I found a delicious casserole that I could make with all the ingredients needed on hand.

My brother has recently been boasting about this wonderful peanut sauce he makes.

Click, click, Pin It!  Now the recipe in on my Recipes I Want To Try board, and I made it tonight for dinner.

One thing that has been a really fun way to use Pinterest is getting ideas for making pottery.  I have collected all kinds of ideas, and used many of them in the past few months since I have learned how to create pottery. My friend Rachael also find ideas she may think I would like, and she shares them with me.

Here are a couple of example of items she shared with me, that I later made.

One piece nativity scene by MacMichaelPottery on Etsy, $24.00

The only thing that disappoints me with the links sometimes.  You can't find the item that you pinned.

Other than that, Pinterest has been a very useful tool.


Sibling Assignment 2015.5: Boy Crazy #3Siblings

Since it was Valentine's Day weekend, I gave the sibling assignment with a Valentine's theme:

Think back to celebrating Valentine's Day in Elementary School, and share about any memory or memories you may have from one or more of those celebrations, and how it made you feel.
Here is Bill's post about Hating Valentine's Day here, and Christy has her Loving Valentine's Day blog post here.
My, how Valentine's expectations have changed for me since back in grade school.
For example, I couldn't have asked for a more perfect day with my Valentine Paul this year.  We drove to Coeur d'Alene and had breakfast at the Garnet CafĂ©.  Then we came home and took a nap.  Then we walked the dogs.  The we had dinner at my mom's house with Christy and Everett.  Then came home and visited with Coco and her three friends before they headed back to Moscow.  Then Paul and I started watching "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" on Netflix, until it got too late, and it was time to head to bed.
Just the fact I got to spend the whole day with Paul made this Valentine's Day very special.
I think I was a little boy crazy back in elementary school, so I probably really analyzed the Valentine's certain boys gave me, and probably read more into it than was actually there.
Apparently me liking boys goes back to at least back to second grade.  Recently my mom has been going through old photos, cards and letters, and she found the following letter I wrote to my Auntie Lila when I was in second grade.
I have no recollection of who this "boyfriend" might have been.  But it looks like I have written proof that I had one at the young age of seven.
I wonder what kind of Valentine I received from this "boyfriend" of mine?
Looking back on Valentine's Day with Paul, one of my favorite Valentine's memories was one of the first years we were married.  We were living in Glendive, Montana, and we traveled to Billings, Montana for the weekend.  We each were given $10 to buy the other person some Valentine's gifts in the mall in Billings.  That evening, we saw Bobby McFerrin in concert, before he was really famous.  What a wonderful concert.
Valentine's used to be about getting cute cards or special candies.
These days, the best Valentine's present I could ask for is what I got this year, spending the whole day with my one and only Valentine Paul.
I guess I'm still boy crazy after all these years.....but the craziness is all for one special boy named Paul!


Sibling Assignment 2015.4: Kellogg, Idaho is My Corner of the World #3Siblings

This week's sibling assignment was given by Christy:
Write on the following:'My Corner of the World."

Christy's assignment is here, and Bill's is here.

Kellogg, Idaho was my corner of the world growing up.

I lived here from the time I was born, until I moved away to my first job after I graduated from college.

My life's journey took me to Glendive, Montana and Meridian, Idaho.  But then that journey returned me back home....to Kellogg, Idaho.

I have lived here, for the second time, for almost 15 years. 

This is home.  It will always be home.  It is also home for my husband, who lived between Kellogg and Meridian his whole life growing up, but claimed Kellogg as the place he always felt was his home.

Kellogg, to me, isn't just a place I live.  It is my history as well.

My great- grandparents on my Dad's side came out to settle in Idaho in the early 1900's.  My Grandma and Grandpa Woolum followed them out here.  My dad was born in Kellogg in 1930.  Kellogg was still a pretty new town at that time.

I think my love for Kellogg is in my blood.  Dad loved Kellogg.  He loved living here, and when he had to move to Spokane with my grandma when he was still in high school, I know he wasn't very happy about it.  But after he went to college in Lewiston, he returned to Kellogg and never left.

He was home.

When I grew up in Kellogg, I don't think I thought much about living here when I got older.  But after getting married, and moving from place to place, I think Paul and I didn't really have a plan to return to Kellogg, but we just knew we would eventually end up here.

And we did.

My corner of the world has seen a lot of changes over the years.  Legend has it that Noah Kellogg's Jackass found an outcropping of galena on the hill that eventually became the Bunker Hill and Sullivan Mining Company, back in 1885.

This is me portraying Noah Kellogg a few years ago in a local theater production I wrote about some Kellogg history.

There used to be a billboard greeting you when you entered  Kellogg that has been resurrected in the past few years that looks like this:

 I am not ashamed to be descended by a Jackass.

The landscape of my corner of the world has gone through many changes.  Kellogg is in the middle of a valley in the Bitterroot Mountains.  The South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River flows through Kellogg.

Now I think of this body of water as a river.

Growing up, it was known as "Lead Creek", because of the mining waste that flowed through it. 

Growing up, I didn't not think of it as a river.  It was "Lead Creek", a place you didn't go in to.

The mining changed the landscape of this area, causing the hillsides to become bare, and the river to be polluted.

This is a photo of the landscape from 1958.

Here is a photo I took of Kellogg last summer.  Things have changed in the last 50 years or so.

Today a friend a graduated from high school with traveled from Kennewick, Washington with her church's youth group to spend the weekend here in Kellogg.  She had not been in Kellogg for many years, and commented on how beautiful it was.  She also said that, once she arrived, she felt like she was home.

That is not an uncommon feeling for people who lived here.

Through mining booms and busts, EPA clean up, Silver Mountain Ski Resort expansion, and other local changes, my corner of the world has survived.

It is filled with people who do things hard....the like to live hard....they like to party hard.....but most of all....they like to love hard.  They are generous to a fault. 

And they are my people, here in this corner of the world.  And I am proud to be a part of them.

I wouldn't want to live in any other corner of the world right now, but this one nestled in the middle of Idaho's Silver Valley.


1/29/2015 Blessing: Worship Team Practice

I am on the worship team at my church.

I love it when we get together to practice songs.

This week we sang a song that particularly touched my heart.

The song is called "Lord, I Need You".  Here are the lyrics.

"Lord, I Need You"
Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You're the One that guides my heart

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I'll fall on You
Jesus, You're my hope and stay

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

You're my one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You
It was a great reminder of how much I need God each and every minute of the day.  And I like that.  It is a comfort to me.  Jesus is my hope and stay.  He is my one defense and righteousness.
And it was a blessing to be reminded of it during our practice. 

1/28/2015 Blessing: I Love Pampered Chef

My whole kitchen is stocked with a variety of Pampered Chef products.

I was a Pampered Chef consultant many years ago, and I try and have a party at least once a year to replace some worn out products, or earn some money to get new free products.

After my party last week, I was able to get all the items I wanted either free, half-off, or 60% off.

Pretty good for such high quality things.

I am blessed with all my Pampered Chef items, and it makes working in my kitchen that more enjoyable!!

I can't wait to try out my new Brie and Garlic Baker.  I love warming up Brie Cheese for an appetizer, and preparing it in this new dish will work great.

1/27/2015 Blessing: Talking With Kids

I love going into classrooms and working with the students in my Gear Up program.

It had been a while since I had been in the classroom, because of Christmas break, and the end of the first semester.

But this week, I got to go and be with the students, and they were great!!

They did a Career Interest Inventory, and filled out a form to help me when I meet individually with them this semester about choosing classes for next year, and knowing about all their options.

I really love these kids, and want the best for each and every one of them, and I believe each of them can do whatever they set their hearts to do.  I am blesses each day I work with them.

1/31/2015 Blessing: Wildcat Pride

It was a fun day spent in the Andrew's Gymnasium at Kellogg High School for the annual Brawl for the Ball competition against the St. Maries Lumberjacks.

Kellogg got the ball back!!

I was so impressed with our community for helping with this competition, by donating food, buying 50/50 tickets and donating to the coin drive.

The KHS Leadership team did an awesome job of organizing the event and making it go well.

The Kellogg fans were great, and all the athletes did a great job, whether they won or lost.

I am proud to be a Kellogg Wildcat, and, as the shirt above says, "One A Wildcat, Always A Wildcat".

One of the competitions was the band competition.  The KHS band outdid themselves with their performance.  I wish you could have seen it.

Here are a few photos:

Paul even got to shoot some 3-pointers, and made an impressive 3 our of 5 attempts, helping Kellogg win this particular competition.

This was a day I as blessed to experience much Wildcat Pride.

1/30/2015 Blessing: Eggplant Parmesian

Tonight we had Mom over for dinner and I baked up some Eggplant Parmesian.  It was so delicious!

1/26/2015 Blessing: Walking Again

My friend Nikki and I have been walking together for close to ten years.

We had been on a bit of a break since December, but we finally got back into our routine today.

It is a blessing to be able to walk down our street early in the morning after a brisk morning walk.

1/24/2015 Blessing: Relaxing With Paul

After a day of a theater board retreat, it was a blessing to sit at home with Paul, just relaxing.

1/25/2015 Blessing: Blue Bloods

After I finished watching the two seasons of "Bones" on Netflix I hadn't seen yet, I wanted to find another series to watch.

I remember seeing the previews for the show "Blue Bloods" on some of the tapes Mom sent over in the past, and thought I would check it out.

I have fallen in love with this show.  It is about a family that lives in New York City.  Tom Selleck plays the Police Commissioner whose father was also the P.C., and a son who is a detective for the NYPD, and another son you just joined the force after decided he didn't want to be a lawyer after attending Harvard Law School.  His daughter works for the District Attorney.  And there was another brother who died in the line of duty.

It is a wonderful family dynamic, and I love the story lines each week.  It has turned out to be a great show!!  I am blessed by some good tv entertainment.

Sibling Assignment 2015.3: Yes, I am an Extrovert, but I LOVE my trend toward more Introversion #3Siblings

This week my brother Bill gave the Sibling Assignment.  Here is our task:

Write about yourself as an introvert.  You can do with this whatever you want.  Discuss what it means, tell about your experience, or anything else.

My brother's post is here, and my sister's post is here.

I have always been classified as an Extrovert.   Here are some attributes of an Extrovert:

Extroverts are social beings always on the look out for excitement. They are outgoing and do not hesitate to assert their needs. They are predominantly occupied with activities ‘outside the self’ and crave for human interactions. Extroverts are essentially talkative, sociable and enthusiastic in dealing with people in general. They love to take initiative and plunge into action. They can make friends easily and often adapt to new environments without any problem. Extroverts are  open and do not hesitate to share their thoughts with others. It is easier to get to know an extrovert as they do not hesitate to lay bare their feelings and thoughts.

I have many of these attributes, and have most of my life.

But I have noticed, as I get older, I am becoming more introverted.  Here are the attributes of an introvert:

Introverts are more concerned with the inner world of the mind. They enjoy thinking, exploring their thoughts and feelings. They often avoid social situations because being around people drains their energy. This is true even if they have good social skills. After being with people for any length of time, such as at a party, they need time alone to "recharge."


I find myself wanting and needed my alone time more.  If I don't have this time, my energy becomes depleted.  And each social situation does not energize me.  It depends on the people with whom I am socializing.  If I am with people I'm comfortable with, and enjoy their company, I am energized.  If not, it can be very draining.  I find if I go for a time without spending time alone to think and contemplate, I lose my energy.  So there has definitely been a shift in my life.

There was a time when I didn't want to be away from a group of people who were having a conversation for fear I would miss something.  That is not as important anymore.  In fact, now I often go away and perhaps hide in the kitchen to work to avoid people for a while.

I remember taking the Meyers Briggs personality test, and I always came out strong Extrovert.  But I would be curious to take it again, and see the results.  I believe I would still be an Extrovert, but the result would show me with a higher Introvert rating.

It is interesting how your personality and way of interacting with the world can change.  I still will walk down the street and say hello to strangers much easier than my very introverted husband.  But I do need more time alone to do the things I need to do....to recharge....to evaluate the way I spend my time.

In my immediate family, my husband and middle daughter very introverted.  My oldest daughter is closer to a split between introvert and extrovert.  My youngest daughter and myself are extroverts.  Because we all perform people think we must be extroverts.  But that is not the case.  I have seen my husband play a role and schmooze a room with the best of them, because he was playing a part.  But a couple of weeks later, he was a nervous wreck at a graduation party we attended, because he dreaded the small talk and chit chat that he may have to do at that gathering.

My brother is an Introvert, and I believe my sister is becoming more introverted, but was probably at one time a stronger Extrovert. 

I am thankful for my leaning toward more introversion, because I believe it is helping me slow down, and look at things more clearly, and make more thoughtful and though out decisions. I am not always on the go. 

And I hope I continue to use this alone time to give me energy for the things I want and need to do in my life.


1/23/2015 Blessing: Kelly's Pub

The original plan was for me to drive my brother Bill to the Ramada Inn by the Spokane International Airport on Friday afternoon so he could catch his early morning flight on Saturday.

So I asked my friend April if she wanted to ride along on the way so I would have some company on the way back from Spokane.  And I figured we could stop and eat somewhere to eat on the way home.

Then I texted my friend Tina to see if she could join us on Friday night in Coeur d'Alene for dinner.  She said she could make that work.

Then I extended the invitation to a larger group of friends.

In the meantime, Bill tells me he only needs a ride to CDA on Friday.  Someone else will take him to the Ramada Inn.

By Thursday, he has a ride from Kellogg, to the Ramada Inn, via a get together with some of his friends in Liberty Lake.

By this time, my dinner with friends had snowballed to about seven people joining us at Kelly Pub and Grill in Coeur d'Alene, so I just kept with the plans of heading to Coeur d'Alene.

So I picked up April, and our other friend Kellee, and headed to Coeur d'Alene.  We were joined by Tina and her daughter Joanie, Connie, and Tammi.  Marian was going to join us, but she unfortunately had car trouble, and had to take her car to Spokane to get fixed.

This group of women that were gathered to dinner have quite a history together.  I have known Tina and Kellee since before going to Kindergarden.  I met April in grade school, and Tammi and Connie in junior high.

We have made it a priority in our lives to stay in touch and get together on a fairly regular basis.

It is a blessing to have a group of friends that you can, kind of spur of the moment, throw out dinner plans and have that many show up.

As we grow up, we realize it becomes
less important to have a ton of friends,
and more important to have real ones.

1/22/2015 Blessing: Mom's Okay

Since it was the last night before my brother was returning to his home in Greenbelt, Maryland, I invited him and my mom over to our house to join Paul and I for dinner.

When it was about time for him to arrive, I got a text asking for help when Mom arrived, because she had fallen on her way to the car at her house, and may need a little help.

Paul kept a lookout for Mom and Bill to arrive, and helped Mom into the house.

Mom made a bee line to the bathroom, because she had a bloody nose.

When she came out of the bathroom, it was obvious she had hit her face pretty hard on, we are assuming, the snow in her yard.  The force of the fall smashed her glasses into her face, causing quite a bit of bruising and swelling.

But, other than her face getting discolored and a bit swollen, a little scratch on her shoulder, and a swollen thumb, she was alright.

She was talkative, and immediately started putting ice on her face to relieve the swelling.

One thing that we discovered after Mom arrived was she had lost a lens in her glasses.  So Bill grabbed a flashlight, and went back to Mom's house to find the lens.  He was successful.

But as he was at Mom's house, the snow started falling, and he felt it was better to get Mom home ASAP before the sidewalks started getting slippery.

So we packed up the four dishes that contained our meals, and transported them over to Mom's house, and had a lovely meal of vegetarian stuffed peppers, corn bread, apple, beet and carrot slaw, and fruit salad.

Mom was amazing how she handled this whole ordeal, and it was a blessing that she not hurt badly.

1/21/2015 Blessing: Happy Birthday PEO!!

I belong to a Philanthropic Education Organization called P.E.O.

By being a member of Chapter M of P.E.O. here in Kellogg, it has given me a chance to get to know a lot of different women that I wouldn't normally have had a chance to meet and spend time with unless I was a part of this group.

Some of the women of mothers of people I went to school with.

Some of the women of people I went to school with.

Some of the women are people I only have interaction with at our twice monthly meetings.

A main focus of P.E.O. is the focus of the education of women.  Locally, we provide two scholarships to two KHS women who graduate from high school each year.

Internationally, we also have grants and scholarships and loans that women can apply for through P.E.O.

P.E.O. has their own private women's college in Nevada, Missouri called Cottey College.

Today I had the pleasure of hosting the bi-monthly meeting at my house.

It was also P.E.O's birthday today!!

I enjoy being a part of such a wonderful organization, and I have also enjoyed getting to know such a wide variety of women here in the Silver Valley.


1/20/2015 Blessing: Chef Molly

Oldest daughter Molly called me saying she wanted to get some "Wah Hing" for dinner.  But then I realized that our favorite Chinese restaurant in town was closed for some renovations until next week, so I told her to go and get us something else for dinner.

"Surprise us," I said.

So when Paul and I arrived home, Molly was busy preparing a dish she has been talking about since I made homemade Mac and Cheese a few weeks ago. 

Better than Boxed - Homemade Mac & Cheese 
Vegetarian Mac and Cheese.

There is Mac....but no cheese.  Instead there is sweet potatoes, coconut milk, cumin and yellow mustard.

It was quite delicious.

Served with a baguette and a glass of red wine.

I was blessed tonight to have "Chef Molly" in the kitchen, preparing tonight's dinner.