Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Father’s Day–a Great Way to Spend a Weekend!

Wasn’t this a great weekend?

On Friday, my critique group came to C-Town to have a yummy lunch (Dari Diner–oh, so good!) I love having them come to my stomping grounds. Fun!

Then Saturday, a couple of friends I’ve known all their lives (literally) got married. I borrowed this pic from their Facebook page.

10466893_10201967561261164_1336497916_nAren’t they adorable? I love it when people who should be together finally get together! Best wishes, Ronnie and Jana Kay!

Then my kiddos came out to celebrate Mother’s and Father’s Day. While we were getting ready for them, I found this

tiny-giftsI know it’s only a toadstool, but the bright color in the middle of those dead leaves grabbed me. Beautiful!

I warned the kids I wanted a family picture while they were here, so I took this picture of Minerva as a test shot.

Minerva's-tea-partyAlthough they weren’t thrilled to get to do it, I got several group pics. (I doubt I’ll get another one right away.)

This one is what I’ll probably finally have framed to hang over my fireplace.

fam-big-picAfter a little work with some Adobe help. 😉

But this one is my favorite. (It might end up over the fireplace.)

family-stairs

We had a wonderful dinner from Joseph’s in Drumright, Oklahoma. Then we played a game that had us all laughing so hard! I don’t remember the name of it, but DIL#1 and #2 got headaches from laughing so hard.

Not sure what that’s a sign of, but I think we need to play more games.

🙂

Then on Sunday after church, we went to Deb’s (She’s the perfect hostess!) for chicken and noodles. One of Dad’s favorite meals.

Another-dollThis is Deb’s youngest granddaughter. She’s SO cute! (Love the way she says my name.)

Canaan-DollyThis is Melanie’s older daughter. Aren’t they adorable? This one sang me a song about being a scarecrow.

love-that-face!Don’t you love that face? (This was right after she yelled, BOO!)

dad-and-jeff

And here’s my final Father’s Day celebration of the year. Dad and Brother Jeffrey. Handsome dudes, aren’t they?

I gave Dad a card for Father’s Day. It says he could write a book about raising perfect children. LOL!

And then, I had to have a picture of them with Deb who’s so good to have us in her home.

dad,-deb-and-jeffDad, Deb and Jeffrey.

A dad is so important in a person’s life. Whether they’re biological fathers, steps, adopted or borrowed, everyone needs someone to teach them how to live life the right way.

My dad, Carol Spess, made it easy to understand how our Father in Heaven loves us unconditionally, because he loves his children that way. He says his dad taught him, so maybe it’s genetic. Or it could be a learned thing, passed from generation to generation.

For some people, it has to be learned by watching someone not so perfect and seeing what not to do. But where there’s a will . . .

A good parent (mother and/or father) is essential. And, luckily, I had both!

So, how did you celebrate your dad?

 

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Hap-Hap-Happy Mother’s Day!

It’s Mother’s Day. CELEBRATE! (LOL)

My boys have always been wonderful MD observers. But one of them didn’t always celebrate MY motherhood, as I mentioned in this Mother’s Day Post.  😉

When I was born, my folks lived in an old two story house in the Basin near Old ‘Ford. They always called it, “Aunt Sarah’s House.” For a long time, I didn’t know I had an Aunt Sarah.

Aunt-Sarah

This is Aunt Sarah, who really wasn’t an aunt at all. She was my g-g-granddad’s 2nd wife. She had 357 kids with g-g-granddad Okay, not that many. Actually, it was twelve, but with his three kids from his first marriage, I’m sure it seemed like 357 on some days!

Aunt Sarah was 17 years younger than Grandpa Joe. I’m not sure when Sarah and Joe married, but Mary died in 1881 and Sarah and Joe had their first child in 1883.

They had their last child together in 1901, and Grandpa Joe died in 1903. Sarah then remarried and had another child in 1908. If all her children and step-children had lived (they didn’t) imagine the Mother’s Days Sarah would have had! She should have cleaned up!

EXCEPT: Mother’s Day didn’t start until 1908. Poor woman raised sixteen children with no Mother’s Days to compensate her.

Aunt Sarah’s house had three bedrooms upstairs and one down. I’m not sure where they put everyone. How many kids can sleep in one bed?

No. Running. Water. And yes, the bathroom was outside. Imagine that many people waiting to go! LOL.

 

great-great-grandparentsIn case you’re wondering about her, this Great-Great-Grandma Mary, who died at age 30 before Grandpa Joe came to OkieLand.

When you compare 12 or 15, counting step-children, to only 6, my mama didn’t have that many kiddos. And since I only had three, I’m a real piker! 🙂

I’ve had people ask how a woman could divide her love enough for so many kids.

The answer is, it doesn’t divide. It multiplies. (I learned that at my Mama’s knee!)

How are you celebrating Mother’s Day? Flowers? Lavish gifts? A good book? (I have a suggestion if you need one. *wink*) Inquiring minds!


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Daylight Savings Time–Love It Or . . . ?

How do you get along with Daylight Savings Time?

After a couple of days, dragging myself (not springing, for sure!) out of bed, to the kitchen and my ‘puter, I’ve found something I like.

Dreams!

My sleep is messed up right now. I woke this morning at three o’clock, read a little (thank you, Elmore Leonard–OUT OF SIGHT is great!) and drifted off again.

That’s when I had this weird dream that G-Man and I were renewing our vows in an old-home-turned-wedding-venue right here in C-Town.

My gown was stunning! White, full skirt (lots of layers) with a black portion running across the shoulders and down the sleeves. I mean, it was straight out of Vogue-In-My-Mind!

I was so disappointed when G-Man showed up (yes, he was really going to marry me again!) wearing a tan Polo shirt and slacks. 😦

“Where’s your tux?” I wailed.

He shrugged and showed me his dimple. “I didn’t want to wear one.”

About that time, I discovered I’d forgotten to take along a certain piece of my underclothes.

Our youngest boy, all grown up and married like he is today, ran around the venue, past the guests, servers, florists, photographers and everyone, yelling, “Mama forgot her ***! Mama forgot her ***!” He was wild and sweet and innocent just like he when he was little. He filled me with joy!

I also dreamed up a couple of daughters (I have no daughters) who weren’t nearly as cute as my sons. One made me mad, so I chased her. (Yes, I was wearing my wedding gown.) 😉

G-Man woke me just in time to save her. (Isn’t that just like a dad?)

I woke up, remembering the dream and laughed out loud! Believe me, giggles when I wake are rare! (Like, never.)

If I can get up each morning for the next eight or so months with a smile or a chuckle, DST will get a big thumbs up from me!

How about you? Do you like DST or no?


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Babies are Springing Up All Over

Have I mentioned that the Spess Clan is growing with leaps and bounds? We got two new additions just recently and wow! Those nieces of mine did a fantastic job!!!

260277_586836311348945_527513799_nThese are Kendal’s two children. AKA–Sister Cindy’s grandchildren. (Well, two of them.)  Aren’t they adorable???

954820_597685926930650_1539731043_nHere’s Cindy’s granddaughter with her daddy. The love just radiates, doesn’t it?

happy babyBeautiful Kendal with her baby girl.

941829_590261407673102_455470_nI don’t know that I’ve seen a happier baby e-v-e-r! I makes me grin just to see her pictures. (I haven’t had a chance to love on her yet. But when I get my great-aunt time, look out!)

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This is her great-grandmother holding her. Her granddaddy is there in the background.

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This is Niece Ashley and her crew. (AKA Brother Jeffrey’s grandchildren.) Aren’t they sweet, sweet, sweet?

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My brand new great niece. Couldn’t you just love on this baby for hours?

1010564_10101266488429002_1191482151_nProud Brother Jeffrey. Don’t you love his smile?

998344_10101266187851362_945497399_nAunt Laura getting in some baby time. 🙂

1044903_10101266106070252_1006852547_nI love this picture of the exhausted daddy. Having babies is hard work!

But here’s my favorite picture of the entire bunch. (BTW: All the pictures are from Facebook. LOL)

1044126_10101266103595212_43243435_nYou can’t see expressions. You can’t really see who it is in the picture. But this is a picture taken when Ashley’s getting close to delivering, and Ashley’s Mama is praying with her.

Does it affect anyone else the way it does me? It brings tears to my eyes.

I saw a picture a few years ago of a friend of mine, praying with her daughter and her bridesmaids just seconds before her wedding. I cried over that one, too.

Why?

Well, I’m a crybaby, for one thing. 😉

But the real deal is, these Women of God were in the midst of absolute chaos (and if you’ve ever been almost to deliver a baby or in the hustle and bustle of a wedding, you know what I’m talking about) and they stopped everything to simply pray. To stop the turmoil and simply talk to the Father.

They know what’s important in this world.

And it’s beautiful.

Ps: None of these pictures are mine. They belong to the mommies of these beautiful babies.


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Happy Father’s Day!

I hit the jackpot when it came to parents. I know, I’m bragging, and I’m sorry about that. But it’s true. God gave me top-of-the-line, never-been-beat, parents to die for.

No. Kidding.

Dad with his six kids on his 80th birthday.

I didn’t do anything to get such great parents, of course. But I’m Number One in the kid department, and I’m just thrilled I wasn’t such a bad kid they didn’t want more.

Mom and Dad the summer before they married. (Dad was 19.) The baby is my cousin Lindy. (Thanks to Aunt Wilma for sharing this picture.)

This is Dad today with his great-grandson, Andrew. (That’s Faith texting in the background.)

I love working for my dad. (I might have mentioned that before.) Love learning from him and watching him get excited over the work he does. He says he’s never worked a day in his life. He LOVES what he does. (Great attitude, huh?)

 Celebrating one of his birthdays. Isn’t he a hoot?

He’s just as nice as he looks, too.

Dad about to walk me down the aisle.

I saved this picture until last because I can never look at it without my heart melting just a bit. It takes me back to that exact moment. He looked at me because the photographer told him to, but then he whispered, “I love you.”

I gave Dad a garden fork for Father’s Day this year. (He’s turned into a gardener extraordinaire in the past several years.) Of course, he dug his potatoes that morning before he came to work (sigh) but at least it won’t be worn out (or rusted out) for next year.

Here are some gifts I’ve received from Dad–

Great advice: “Pay your taxes the way you should. That way you can always sleep at night.”

Best Day: The Easter we were baptised together at the old church in C-Town.

Funny memory (now, anyway): Deb and I talked and played in church. When we got home, Dad spanked us with his old belt. (Probably because it was softer.) I got spanked first. When it was Deb’s turn, she got a couple of whacks and the belt broke.

Punishment over.

Sweet, happy memories: (I can’t choose just one.)

  • Summers at the lake where Dad taught me to ski.
  • When I told my parents I was getting married, Mom said, “If you do, you can’t move home again.” Without missing a beat, Dad snapped back, “Oh, yes she can, too!” (I never did.)
  • The tears in Dad’s eyes when I told him I was going to have my first baby. “Have you told your mom?” When I told him no he said, “Don’t ever let her find out you told me first.”

I didn’t.

If you have a memory you can share of my dad, please do!

Or if you have a memory of your dad you’d like to share, I’d love it!


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Goober Gala

I started to call this post “GOOBER WORLD” but if Dad saw it, he’d wonder what it had to do with peanuts. 🙂 I’m can be such a goober, though, I thought I’d share some of my goober-isms from the last week with you.

Can you see the baby in this picture?

Maybe not, but he’s there. How about the next one?

 I’ll bet you do. It’s a baby-ish bunny. One I rescued from the snake.

Yes, he’s cute. And he’s sweet. But Goober here (that would be me) rescued this little guy so he could eat my garden plants. How silly is that? But honestly, wouldn’t you think that since I saved him from the black jaws of the evil snake, he’d be at least a little grateful?

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We Celebrate

Saturday night, my man and I met our kids and kids-in-laws to celebrate our family’s December and January birthdays.

Yes, it was February. Yes, we were late. Yes, I’m usually late, and my boys’ wives are always early when they plan something. I hope I’m gonna be just like them when I grow up!

We usually make everyone happy giftwise by just handing over a check, so each kiddo can get exactly what they want. And we did that Saturday.

But #1 son got a little extra.

I was cleaning out a file cabinet and found some things I thought he might enjoy having. Three baseball trophies (T-ball?) and the trophy he received when he won Pryor Creek’s science fair. He also won the state science fair (in his section) and got a grant for his school from the State Geological Society. (I think the school bought a fossil with it.)

I also gave him a copy of the book he wrote when he was in grade school.

THE WOLF HUNTERS by DJ Dexter

Notice, I gave him a COPY. Not the original book. It’s mine. It lived in my bedside table for years, then moved to my office file cabinet. Can you say proud mama?

I’m thinking he was in about the 4th or 5th grade when he wrote it, because by 6th grade, Mrs. Head had become Mrs. Davison.

I know it’s my book, because of the dedication.

 “Dedicated to my mother, who helped and pulled me through this (rather complicated) book.”

Notice, he took a pen name. DJ Dexter.  Don’t ask me where he came up with it. I have no idea. LOL!

 DJ Dexter also illustrated the book. (Multi-talented author, isn’t he?) Notice the symbol in the upper right hand side of the picture? He thinks it was supposed to be a pentagram with a strike through, like in Ghostbusters.

Remember?

I love the story. (I have permission from DJ Dexter himself to post it here, but it’ll be another day.) My little boy did a wonderful job!

But there’s another part I enjoyed almost as much. It’s from the teacher and on the inside cover.

Danny, you have completed an entire book that didn’t exist weeks ago–except in your imagination. You read each other’s stories & asked questions about things you didn’t understand & that’s reading. You edited for capitalization and punctuation & and that’s language.

You work in groups cooperatively & that’s social studies. So when you wondered, “Why didn’t Mrs. Head give us more homework on our books?” you didn’t realize what skills you were using every day.

I loved watching you . . . thinking, changing and rearranging your text & illustrations, to get them just right. I love your book, because it shows what you can do when you let your creative genius & your academic brain work as partners.

But most of all, I love you for your courage & determination when you turned that rough copy into a masterpiece & those blank pages into brilliant illustrations.

I hope your book will be a treasure to you & remind you not to quit . . . because you do have the abilities to turn your dreams into realities.

Love, Mrs. Head.

Wasn’t Mrs. Head (aka Joanie Davison) a great teacher? I can’t say that about all the teachers my kids had through the years, but I still appreciate the really good teachers who, like Mrs. Head, went above and beyond to encourage the kids.

Thank you!

Any fantastic teachers in your life or your kids? Tell them thanks.