Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


Spring Thing

Wow. Is the weather weird this spring or what? Here in Okieland, it’s been c-o-l-d! Wear-a-jacket cold. You know?

And usually by this time, it’s warm. Not this year. 😦

But yesterday was gorgeous.

I’ve had a chance to clean out the gardens, but that’s all. Mostly. IMG_3801 Usually, by this time of year I’ve had a chance to go to the garden center and make my deck look like this. Not this year, though.

Too much cold weather, rain and lazy daisy. (If my name was daisy.)

And last year I shared this with you.

bunny-glovesLooks sweet, doesn’t he? I told you his tale here.

He was a wolf in bunny’s clothing. After I rescued him, he came back and ate my plants. Not. Nice.

IMG_3879And last year I shared some wild flowers with you.

IMG_3871This year, there haven’t been as many. It’s either too cold for them to grow or too wet for me to get out and find them. I’m not too sure which. 😉

IMG_3851I did see a handful of these in a ditch yesterday on the way home from work. (I think they’re Indian Paintbrush, but I can’t promise.)


My hydrangea aren’t blooming yet, but at least they have leaves.


This if from last March, the day of Baby Boy’s wedding. That’s G-Man in the background. Hard to believe the redbud was blooming in March, isn’t it? They’re just now in full glory this year. (Right, no current pictures. Just this repic.)


Just for fun, I wanted to share again the Unity Candle that Baby Boy and DIL#3 didn’t have in their wedding. Instead, they planted this Japanese Maple together.

Is that cool or what?

So, that’s spring so far–not much. I’m just hoping we don’t go straight to full-blown 100°+ weather.

I’m kinda busy the next couple of weekends (one’s a shower for a niece. Grins!) so I don’t see much gardening happening. Oh, well. :} There’s always June. Right?

So . . . how’s your garden this year? In the ground? Tomatoes towering? Beans blooming?  Squash squishing?

Gonna share?


Urgent Fun!

Lifesavers - Five Flavor - 1950's Wrapper

Show of hands. How many people have a great time at an Urgent Care? I visited one last night where I had a ball!

Here’s the deal. Last week, New Hip decided to develop an invisible nail to stab me with occasionally. Not often–just once or twice a day. And the sharp pain didn’t last long–not more than five minutes, tops.

But when it hurt, it HURT.  One of those, ‘I can’t walk, don’t ask me’ times. You know? (If you don’t, don’t worry about it. You aren’t missing anything.)

After a week or so of these hip attacks, I started remembering a man from C-Town who’d popped his replaced hip out of joint 16 or 18 times. That and all the Hip-Replacement-Class-Action-Lawsuit commercials these days made me think I should give my sweet doctor a call.

Yes, he’s nice, and might be called eye candy by some people, but that had nothing to do with my call. 😉 I didn’t even get to talk to him. His assistant returned my call (sigh) and told me to go to their Urgent Care Center.

I always think of UC like an emergency room, so I figured I’d be there for a few hours. When we walked in, there were only two blue-haired women waiting. That encouraged me, until the larger of the pair focused hard on me and muttered a dour, “Good luck.”

I have to tell you, though, that was the worst part of the evening.

Everyone else had a delightful sense of humor. (Yay!) The x-ray dude x-plained why the metal brads on my britches (yoga pants, maybe?) showed up like a pair of glowing Wintergreen Lifesavers on the films and the PA’s assistant swore to go to her grave without revealing my weight. The PA I saw was absolutely delightful.

Since my x-rays were perfect (except for the Lifesavers) PA thought it might be something else.

Well, my knee on the other leg . . .  I whined. (Don’t  you hate whiners?) And . . .

She did everything but start singing–


“The knee bone’s connected to the thigh bone, the thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone, the hip bone’s connected to the back bone, now hear the word of the Lord. “

So sweet PA figured it out (I hope!) and ‘splained it to me so even I could understand without sounding like she was talking to a two-year-old. (I didn’t have to ask her to speak plain English once!)

Then we started talking books. One of my favorite subjects! And since I just happened to have a couple of my business cards in my purse that my sweet friend Ashley made for me, which just happen to have my book covers on them, I just happened to share one with her.

And I shared with x-ray dude. And the PA’s assistant. And the receptionist, who mentioned they have another woman who works there who loves to read, and could I leave one for her, too? 😛

Naturally, I invited them all to go eat at Ted’s with G-Man and me.

They didn’t. (They weren’t off work yet.)

Back to the show of hands. How many people besides me have fun when they go to an emergency room? Surely I’m not the only one.



Magic is Back

I get so excited when springtime happens. It’s almost magical when the new leaves bud out and the early flowers bloom . . . even though I’m the one who planted most of what’s budding and blooming, and shouldn’t be surprised by what’s happening at all.

You know?

So it’s that time again.

Sweet lilac is blooming, so is jasmine and a couple of ground covers. But the one that smacks me in the face each year, knocks me right off my pins with its beauty is the peony.


 Can it get any prettier than that?

Well, that depends on what you like best. I’ll show you what I mean.

See? It’s really hard to choose what you like best . . . unless you have a bias to start with.

Anyway, look quick. ‘Cause they’ll be gone soon.


Friday–A Great Day

After a few stressful intense days at work (Tax Time. Whoda thought?) yesterday was a very welcome respite. Wanna know why?

Dad bought something to entertain the entire office.

A tricycle.

Yeah, it’ll be hard for all of us to use at once (Snort!) but we’ve learned to share.

Actually, Dad bought it for my little buddy to ride, and I think Dad was more excited about it than my buddy was. At least at first. The truth is, he didn’t know what to think. Wasn’t really sure what to do with it. At-first-sightBut he didn’t walk away. 🙂

We enticed him closer.

a-1-mama-rings-the-bellMama taught the kiddo how to ring the bell.(And in case you didn’t notice, his fans are watching. LOL.)

It wasn’t long before the little guy was riding the trike like he was born riding one. (His mama’s probably happy he wasn’t. Ouch.)


Pretty soon, he was hanging off it and riding like a pro. Even offered to take me for a ride on the back step plate. 🙂

That would have been a great day all by itself, but there was more.

I walked down the street to Celebrations, my favorite flower shop in the world! As I walked, someone beeped a horn at me. I jumped and looked to see a sweet blond headed girl grinning at me. Naturally, I had to tell her that beeping at old ladies like that could make us fall down dead on the sidewalk.

That made her laugh.

It’s a real thrill to hear this child laugh. In fact, I’m privileged to know this girl.

In her young life, she’s been through brain tumors and surgeries and check ups and pain and the loss of an infant brother. She practically a baby herself, but she’s a spiritual heavy weight. She knows Jesus, walks with Him, and helps people around her get to know Him. One Sunday, I watched her baptize one of her friends into Christ.

If this girl started a parade, I’d beat the bass drum!

Oh, and she hugged me. 🙂 That made my day!

I toddled on to Celebrations. Not only do they create gorgeous arrangements, sometimes it seems as if it’s a kind of gathering place for women here in C-Town. This week, the women working there have been busy, busy, busy getting ready for the prom. They rent tuxedos there (the only place in town) and most of the kiddos order their corsages there.

Since the C-Town prom is tomorrow, most of the ‘Bration crew was on hand, making wrist corsages and handing out tuxes. Kids were going in and out, getting ready for the big night. I had so much fun, I wanted to just stay and watch and enjoy.

Ever notice how much fun something is when you aren’t directly involved?

AND I also got a new app for my iPhone. Snapchat. Like I mentioned on Twitter, I’m not sure what it’s about, not sure how to use it and I only have one friend on there, but I had a great time with it today. The niece with Snapchat and another niece and their friend all went to get mani/pedis. (I was invited, but I had to work. 😦 ) I sent my senior niece pics of her car, getting new windshield wipers. (And me wearing her sunglasses. And the guy replacing her wipers.)

She sent me a pic of the girls. And her NEW sunglasses. LOL.

So! Much! Fun!

In case I didn’t mention it, yesterday was great in our Small Town World!



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Under the Stairs Hidy Hole

It’s Tornado Season in Okieland.

And you thought there were only four seasons–Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring–in the year, didn’t you? Actually, Tornado Season is sort of synonymous with Spring. Except when it’s not. 🙂

Some years we have only a close call or two.

Some years, it feels as if we’re dancing with tornadoes. 😦

The spring after Middle Son was born, we had twisters about every-other-night, all spring long. (At least it seemed like e-o-n!) We lived in a two story house with all the bedrooms upstairs and big windows on both sides of the stairway. Not the best choice on our part, but who thinks about nighttime tornadoes when choosing a house plan?

Our house was just about a mile outside of C-Town. Most of the time I could hear the tornado siren if I was awake (do towns in states outside the middle of the nation have those?) but just in case I missed it, I made a deal with one of my sisters to call me when the sirens blew.

We didn’t have a ‘fraidy hole. But because of the way our staircase was built–very, very sturdy–under it was even better than the inside room the big boys recommend you to hide in. G-Man worked twenty-four hour call at that time. Often, he was gone on a job when storms hit.

#1 son was five then, so he had a pretty good time under the stairs. (Actually, we waited in the small hallway next to the door that went UTS.) If the baby was sleeping, he had all of our attention and we would color or play games with him.

We had a small wooden cradle that I kept downstairs for Matt to snooze in next to the stairs.

We never had an actual hit from a tornado while we lived in that house. In my life, I remember very few times when a tornado got very close to us. There’s an old wives’ tale that because of the way our town is situated in the bend of the river and beneath South Hill, we’ll never be hit. While I don’t trust old wives’ tales, so far it’s proven true.

Of course, I don’t live in the city limits of C-Town now, so I keep a weather eye. (The house I live in was destroyed in 1991 by a twister.)

Funny how those frightening experiences turn into fond memories, isn’t it?