Sunday, May 25, 2008

Happy Memorial Day

On this Memorial Day weekend, I'd like to say thank you to the men & women who have served and continue to serve our country. I'm deeply grateful for my freedom.

In a freak occurrence, the temp here in Phoenix shot up to close to 110 degrees and then dropped back down to the 60's & 70's all in the same week. We also got a record amount of rain for May. Leaving bright, colorful flowers blooming in every nook and cranny of my neighborhood. Here is a flower from my walk with Honey this morning. Who says Phoenix is all brown? You're wrong!!! It can be so colorful at certain times of the year!

Happy Memorial Day to all and to all a good night....

Friday, May 16, 2008

Oh no!

So I wasn't going to write again this weekend - but I can't help but share. So, I took Honey in for her wash and brush. They thought I meant wash & shave. They shaved all of her hair off!

Here she is before, notice how fluffy she is:

Here she is now:

I almost didn't recognize her! She looks so different. She only has "honey" colored hair on her head and tail....I was in shock, to say the least. But now, it is starting to grow on me. I guess I will see how she likes it. There is no turning back now.

My hair cut went much better:

2 inches shorter and feeling a whole lot lighter and ready to tackle summer! Yay, Red door spa!

I also got this surprise on my doorstep today:

PRETTY! I love birthday flowers. I'm a pretty lucky girl, I'd say.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My birthday!

So, it is my birthday on Saturday. I'm taking a long weekend to catch up on some well deserved (if you ask me) rest. Honey and I are both getting our hair done on Friday. Honey at the Poochie's Pet Grooming, while I'm off to the Red Door Spa at the Biltmore for a cut. On Saturday morning, I'm meeting up with the girls for brunch and then I'm spending the evening with my handsome boyfriend, Joshua. The rest of the time will be spent doing exactly what I want, when I want. I feel like beading - okay. I feel like having coffee - sure. I'm just going to go where the wind takes me and maybe even stop to smell my roses on my back patio.

(our first rose bloom)

So, all that aside - if you are feeling generous and have a few dollars to share, please help me celebrate my birthday by donating to the Breast Cancer 3-day. The weekend before Thanksgiving - November 21-23, 2008, I will be walking 60 miles with Team Beadalicious in San Diego, CA. I am only a few dollars (well - $200) short from my minimum to walk. For those of you that have already donated - THANK YOU!

Donate Now!

Happy Birthday to me! Have a good weekend. Stay out of trouble - I'll be back Monday!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

My great grandmother!

I never met my great grandmother (my gradmother's mother) - Margaret Martin Hatzenbuhler. However, I have copies of her stories as translated by my great aunt Margie (my grandmother's youngest sister). She didn't speak English, although she moved to America when she was only a few months old. They moved to a community of similar people, family and friends who all spoke a dialect of German. I thought that I'd share an excerpt for Mother's day.

My ancestors had been promised many things in Russia, but now some of these promises were not being kept. Some of my people were starting to migrate to the New World, America.

Among those who had taken the long journey were my Aunt Mary and Uncle Pete. They wrote and told us about all of the opportunities available in the new land.

But Aunt Mary was lonely for her family, especially her father, who was living with us. They also needed help on their homestead in North Dakota. They decided to send for Grandpa and two of Aunt Mary's nephews, my cousins. One of these cousins was not a very well young man, and so his parents would not allow him to go. The other one was too young, so his parents would not let him go either.

However, Grandpa wanted to go to this new land, so the two tickets that had been intended for the cousins were transferred to my two oldest sisters, Ana and Theresa. My father sold everything he had to buy tickets for the rest of the family. There were eleven of us altogether. There were Pa (Thomas) and Ma (Veronica), Ann, Theresa, Eva, Elizabeth, Ottilia, Nicholas, Mary, Rose and myself, Margaret. I was only a few months old at the time.

We set out on this huge ship for America. My oldest sisters earned their keep during the trip by working in the ships galley, the kitchen. In the evenings they entertained the well-to-do on the upper decks by singing. The rest of the family, on the lower deck, didn't fair so well. What money there was didn't last long. Had it not been for a rich bachelor who brought food to Ma every few days, telling her to feed her family, we might have starved.

Finally, we reached Ellis Island. By then Grandpa was sick. The authorities wanted to hold him there while the rest of us went on to North Dakota, but Pa wouldn't leave. He knew that as soon as we would get on the train, the authorities would ship his father back to Russia.

Days went by and finally brought Grandpa back to us. We all got on the train and headed west. We arrived in Bismarck, North Dakota on October 27, 1899. On that day I was 10 months old, and Pa used to say he had 27 cents left in his pockets.

Pa claimed a homestead in Morton County, North Dakota but it was too late in the year to build any kind of shelter on it until the following spring. Ma's cousin, Lucas, had just lost his wire and was left with two little children. He invited us to stay with him for the winter, and in return, Ma helped take care of his children. Anna, Theresa & Eva had stayed in the Bismarck area and worked for their keep.

In the spring, a shelter was built into the side of a hill. This is where we lived for the next several years. It was during this time, and I'll never forget it, that some Indians rode into the yard. They stopped to talk to Pa. Never having seen any Indians before, I stood there with both my eyes and mouth wide open. A fly flew in my mouth, and I nearly choked. Some years after that incident a stone house was built that was much bigger.

I can't imagine what my life would be like if my great-great grandparents on either my grandmother or grandfather's side of the family hadn't made the hard trip to America in the late 1800's, early 1900's. I'm sure that it was a long and scary trip to make. I'm thankful that my great grandmother and aunt Margie were able to work together to pass these stories down so that they can be remembered in my family history.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

ATC Production of "A Clean House"

What a nice day?! I cleaned my house this morning and ironically enough, I went to see a play called The Clean House with my aunt this afternoon. My best friend of many years, Erin Erickson is the Marketing Director for the Arizona Theatre Company (ATC). Erin and I met in the drama program at our high school in Montana. Since then, she has blossomed into one of the most beautiful women that I know, inside and 0ut. ATC is blessed to have her and she is blessed to have them. At any rate, I decided to go out to lunch and to the play with my aunt for Mother's day. My Mom isn't here - so she is just about as close as I can get! We had a really nice afternoon. The Clean House was wonderful. It's a dark comedy by Sarah Ruhl. The neatest part of today's show is that beforehand, we got a chance to learn about the play and the play write in an ATC program called "page to stage". The play runs until May 18th at the Herberger Theatrein downtown Phoenix, AZ.


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