Take a walk in Blue Bell Woods listen to the sounds around you, of bird song and bees. Smell the flowers and the scent of Spring in the air. Every year is a new beginning and every day a blessing

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts." (Colossians 3:15a NIV)
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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Dinosaur park.......................

This past weekend Tristen came home for the weekend. Laura H dropped him off Saturday morning and we were to take him home Sunday afternoon. Well it rained all day Saturday, so what to do? We had taken out his piggy bank. I had needed change for my yard sale. So We emptied out his piggy and what we did was give him the amount to spend at Toys R US. Actually we gave him a bit more so the day was saved. He chose his toys and was happy for the rest of the day.
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Sunday turned out to be a lovely day and so I called ahead to be sure the Dinosaur park was open, it was and the weather was great. So I called Laura to have Reina ready and off we went. It is a 3 hour drive over to Alpena. Wow, it sure does not seem so far when I go with Edna. Edna says that's because we are yapping all the way. Gerry is not a talker. The kids dozed off so it was a nice quiet trip out. We got lost a couple of times, well not exactly lost, we just had to turn around a few times.
When we arrived they hit the floor running.
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This one got the boy
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But he got away
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I personally though the models were rather cheesy but the kids loved it.
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They were so wound up they made it around in record time I think
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They were just so excited.
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I also bought a pass so they could do the mini golf. They whizzed around that too they were eager to get to the shop.
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They didn't slow down even at the golf.
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They just wanted to get to the shop. Posing here with Paul Bunyon and they have their chosen stuffie.
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We stopped at KFC and bought something to eat before heading home. Tristen wanted to go back to our house. He said my house is home not Laura's house, but that will pass soon enough as he settles in. I am not sure when he will come again. Time will tell. It's his birthday next week and I am sure they will have a party for him. I have had a party every year so far, so this is sad too. I won't be going this year and neither will Laura. We will just have cake and ice cream next time we see him and get him a gift then.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

A day without kids.........................

First day of school and Laura and I were out and about relishing our freedom. It was a beautiful morning and we went to our usual beach to look for Blue Stones. We knew that a storm was coming in the afternoon but were willing to risk it. They said it would be in the 90s later in the afternoon.
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We were about ready to quit, aching backs and all that. The sun hot on shoulder and so on. Then we began to hear thunder. I was hoping for some good pictures but we didn't see the lightening. We carried along the beach for a time watching the clouds. Some beautiful dogs on the beach this day.
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The wise ones lowered their sails and came in.
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This lady took her drink and got in the tube to weather the storm, crazy? Yes I think so.
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We decided to have some fun and head into the storm. The next picture is not black and white
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It was bad further north but we just got a lot of rain. Still we went to Port Oneida and by then the rain had stopped so I got some pretty shots of the mist in the forests that reminds me of the Smokey Mountains. The old farms looked so pretty
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We headed up through the woods on the dirt roads, everything smelled so fresh and lucky for us no wash outs. Hehe dare not loose the muffler again. That would be hard to explain.

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we stopped at a couple of farms we had not gone to before. We must go back when it's drier. I did get to take off my swim suit bottom. Wearing jeans and no undies is not comfortable but beat the sand and wetness.
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We saw this guy drying off on branch he must have got caught in the rain. He didn't mind us talking to him and taking some pictures.
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We went up on a couple of different roads that wind through the forest.
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We actually saw someone going the other way. These roads go nowhere, just to abandoned farms and views of the surrounding countryside. We love them.
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The deer were out in one of the fields. A doe and two fawns who are growing up. Wish them a good life and successfully getting through hunting season and winter.
We came out of the woods again and saw some Sandhill Cranes. They were grooming themselves, also caught in the rain no doubt
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Some more farms. We think about what these places were like when they were bustling with life.
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This one had a sort of German look about it with the carvings. There are Bohemian settlements around among others.
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We saw some Monarchs. They are getting rare. We used to see fields of them, now its amazing to see two
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Well we didn't do so well as storm chasers but we did get to see how pretty it was after the storm
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I must say Laura may not be cut out for storm chasing. SHe was eating a muffin and the rain was sheeting down, she freaked when the lightening was close by, but never let loose of her muffin. I forgot she didn't like lightening but we stayed on the road and made it home in sunshine.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Long Sad Story...........................

It all began back in July. Truth be told it began when Alex first died so I will begin there. When she died we were all in shock, she died on a winters night following a car accident on snowy roads. There had been a Super Bowl party at Laura Herman's house and during the afternoon a sledding party. Alex took Tristen who was 15 months for his first sledding adventure. They had lots of fun with family and friends. My daughter LauraJane and her husband and Reina were there. Grandpa Dan (LauraJanes ex) Debbie his #2 wife as well as other friends.
Dan and Debbie left early and brought Tristen home it was snowing and roads getting bad. He and Alex were living with me at that time. During the early hours I got a call from Laura H that there had been an accident. The fire dept were cutting Alex out of the car, I could hear her screaming. LauraJane was almost home when she got the call and they went back to the scene and from there to the hospital. I got the call in the early hours that Alex had not made it.
Next day we began to make plans and I was asked to be guardian of Tristen by Dan. I unfortunately asked him to be co-guardian. I thought I was being fair in asking him so that I had input from his side of the family as well as mine.
We went to a lawyer and settled to that arrangement. The long term goal, when we were no longer capable would be that Laura Herman would take over guardianship, this was not written down, was just an idea at that time. LauraJane, his grandmother already had her hands full with Reina who was 4 years old and Raylene who was brain damaged. So she did what she was asked and waived her rights. We were all in shock and not really thinking right. We should have each had a lawyer or someone to think of our rights, but we didn't we trusted them. Meaning Dan. We should have known better but we just did not have time to think.
SO later Laura Herman came in with adoption papers. She thought we would let her adopt him. We said NO. He is fine here with us, that is me and Gerry because he has always lived with us. Alex lived with us since she was 16 because Dan could not handle her.
So the years passed. With long range goals in mind we started to let Tristen spend time with Laura and Todd Herman, every other weekend. Bare in mind this was a courtesy, she had no rights as 2nd cousin. It also gave me a break and worked well for us all. Over time she saw it as her right and was upset on the couple of occasions that we kept him home. That most recently due to his ADHD medication trials. She took that as we were withholding him from her. I was not.
Well she called me one day in July and started asking about legalities and what exactly was I to Tristen. She said that at work they had been talking about Wills and Trusts and so on. She wanted to know when we would be giving him over to her. I told her no time soon, maybe when we could no longer cope with him as he got older, how much older she wanted to know. Much older I said.................
So it was that during the following week I got a letter from her lawyer. I phoned her, she didn't answer. I pm'd her (Facebook) she would not respond. So I called the lawyer and found that she was suing for custody of Tristen.
I talked to him, a nasty man, and found that she was citing some incidents from long ago and currently that she said were endangering him. One was his booster seat that on a couple of occasions we did not use because the booster was with us in the van when Gerry picked up Tristen. We bought another booster after it happend again. Problem solved. The other thing was that she claimed I was using medication alone to deal with his ADHD. Not true, as testified in a letters by his doctor and teacher, his first year at school I tried diet. When he went to Kindergarden his teacher and I would talk, have meetings with the principle and so on. Working with his doctor to get him on track. I got letters from the teacher and doctor to this effect. So that didn't count.
The other thing she said was that I was allowing him to roam the neighbourhood unaccompanied and putting him in danger by who knows, there are sexual predators out there. The answer to that was that after a couple of times going to some friends who lived in our ally, in enclosed yards he was allowed to go on his own when I was outside. This child is almost 7 now by the way. On one occasion he went and I could not hear them playing so went to investigate. He was not there. Long story short I sent Gerry up the road to head him off because I guessed he was going to try to get to a friend on 9th st. He is not allowed to cross the road. Gerry brought him home and he was grounded. Then because of the letter from the lawyer it was made a permanent ban until resolved. This did not set right with Tristen at all.
They sent a lady from Dept Human Services to make a call. She came and I sent her with Tristen up to his room so they had private time to talk. She asked where he wanted to live and he said here with me. Next I took her out and showed her where he had been playing. There is a sign opposite our garden that says "Children playing" and Tristen proudly showed her his friends house. The lady, Stacey, said that it was fully appropriate for a child his age. She could find no fault and would recommend that he stay with us.
So we went to court. The judge said she found no reason to move the child who had lived in a stable home since birth. Then asked if they would drop it, they said no that they had more. Well............the judge set the date for 6th and 7th of February. The date of the accident and death of Alex.I could not bare that. I couldn't even speak.
My lawyer asked me to get as much on Laura H as I could. I had already told her of things that Laura had done with Tristen that were entirely inappropriate. For example taking him tubing on the river and having to be relieved of him because she was so drunk she had to be helped off the river. Taking him on a ferris wheel on a cold windy evening when he already had a cold/temp. They had been to a show and Tristen wanted to go. She could not say no. I could go on. Also with Dan, who even though he spent two years after he divorced Debbie living with us and Tristen, knowing full well what a good home he had with us, and after filling out the annual report stating that he had "excellent" care here, he was on their side. He wanted to get Tristen away from me and LauraJane. The things I could say about him but will not. I wont even go there as to what happened to Alex's money that should have been Tristens. He moved out of our house and into what would become wife #3 house and at that point he really didn't see Tristen much as it was no longer his priority. When I had to see the doctors and teachers and work with them regarding Tristen's ADHD and I asked Dan about it all he could say was "Look at his parents what do you expect" Tristen often asked why he didn't come by anymore and why he could not see Grandma Debbie anymore. LauraJane and I took him to see Debbie.
So after much misery and contemplation I decided that I would give up guardianship. They could sort it out. I could not do that apparently and my lawyer is still working on that.
I wanted Tristen to start school at the new school they chose for him, rather than change mid year, because I knew they would never give in. He has gone to Dan's house. (and #3 Deidre) This weekend they went camping. Tomorrow he will be at Laura Herman's house again for the new school year.
I could not go on as we were. Tristen was very upset, getting angry and belligerent. He knew too much and he heard too much. He was interviewed by DHS and so on, had clearly said he wanted to stay with us but they would not quit. So for his own well being and knowing he would get the best of care we gave up our rights. It was not as though he was going to foster care. They have given him a fun weekend and at 7 he will soon get over all this.It was inevitable at some point as we got older and he got bigger and harder to handle. I don't know what they have told him but I know that truth always wins out. We have had the best 7 years, his baby years. They will get to do all the homework, struggle with his ADHD and doctors and psychologists instead of me. At 70 years old they say I am too old. Well I think anyone who knows us and all the things we have done with Tristen and Reina they can see that's not true yet but............well, I must say it is nice to sleep in on a weekend. The first in forever and to take a shower when I want to. To have some freedom and not have to be home by 2pm to pick him up from school. I will enjoy the rest of the summer and sit back and watch what happens. They have NO idea, none, what it's like to deal with a child with ADHD when he comes down off of his meds. They soon will though.
One big issue for us was money. We have none. They do and could carry on forever. I already have to struggle to pay what I already owe the lawyer, and she has been kind. One thousand dollars already gone and a bill to come. I just could not fight it. My heart would give out. My chest and head are full of unshed tears and that hurts like hell. More so is the betrayal from people I have helped over the years, none who came to stand by me. Those who did were not the closest to me (meaning granddaughters) and I will be forever grateful to them. They say when trouble comes you know who your friends are. I do now. Bless their kindness.
I don't hold grudges and I will get over this but I wont forget.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Eddie Glowicki.......remembering a hero.

Obituary for Edmund Joseph Glowicki.

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TRAVERSE CITY - Edmund Joseph Glowicki, 92, of Lake Leelanau, passed away on August 12, 2016 at the Grand Traverse Pavilions.

Edmund was born in Detroit on April 24, 1924 to the late Martin and Stephanie Glowicki.

After graduating from high school he enlisted and honorably served his country in the U.S. Army. He served in World War II in both the European and North African theaters. He participated in the Omaha Beach and Normandy invasions as well as the Battle of the Bulge. He received both the Purple Heart and Bronze Star.

He married the late Mary Genevieve Morrow in Detroit on August 5, 1950.

Edmund graduated from Wayne State University with degrees in Liberal Arts, Business and Pharmacy. He was a registered Pharmacist in the Detroit and Traverse City areas. The family relocated to the Traverse City area in the 1970s. He especially enjoyed fishing and was a member of the Lake Leelanau St. Mary’s Catholic Church, American Legion, VFW, DAV.

Edmund is survived by his son, Mark (Denise) Glowicki , and grandsons, Martin Glowicki and Evan Glowicki, all of Suttons Bay.

He is preceded in death by his parents, wife Mary Genevieve (2014) and brother, Theodore Glowicki.

Visitation for Edmund will be held from 2-4pm at the Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home on Sunday, August 14, 2016 with the memorial service commencing at 4pm. Burial will take place at Arlington National Cemetery at a future date.

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I knew Eddie for many many years because I worked with his wife Mary. Mary always loved horses and so did I. Eventually I bought a horse and we had many adventures together. Eddie was her husband. Mary didn't have a lot of respect for a lot of people but she was fiercely loyal to Eddie. She talked of him with much pride. He was a very smart and very kind man, and VERY patient. One would have to be to be married to Mary. Oh the stories I could tell and maybe some day I will. For now this is about Eddie. After the war was over he still suffered his entire life from the injuries he sustained. He was injured on Omaha Beach and his life was diminished somewhat by those injuries, or would have been had he been a lesser man. For a time he was a quadriplegic and spend a lot of time in and out of hospitals. He overcame, he was eventually able to walk again, mainly with crutches or sticks but he was determined and did what he wanted to do. I think his bravery was more in the life he led after the war. He never talked about the war as most people who were in that war did not. My Dad was a POW in Japan, and he never talked about that much either unless he remembered something funny or interesting, but not about his own ordeals. That was Eddie too. His pain did not end there, he suffered from Kidney cancer. Lost a kidney but survived and overcame that too.
Eddie loved to fish, they had a modest home on Lake Leelanau and he had a boat and enjoyed that time when he could get away and relax and fish. Mary would be at the barn with her horses and he would do his own thing. They were socially active for many years and we would see Eddie often at friends gatherings or bank parties. There is one story Mary told of Eddie showing up at a home party one Christmas and Mary was very late. So after a drink and some snacks he had sat chatting with everyone and finally asked if anyone had heard from one knew who Mary was. Eddie was at the wrong house. Their party was down the road a bit. It just went to show how amicable he was that no one noticed that they didn't know him. Eddie looked just like Ed Asner if you remember him?
My boys both liked Eddie very much and only lost contact during their Marine Corp days. Justin went to see him soon after he got out but Eddie didn't really remember him by then.
Eddie ended his days in The Pavilions in Traverse city with his family with him. By then he had cancer in the spine and had last I heard lost at least one of his legs. For a time Mary was also there and shared a room with him until she died. The nurses there loved him from what friends have said. He was a decent and good man, he bore his pain without complaint and to me was more of a hero after the war. A good man has left this world and I hope he has a new body and crowns of glory in the next. If anyone deserves the peace that passeth all understanding it is Eddie.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

No Camera, oh no................................

On Sunday we had enough of staying inside and the heat so Laura and I decided to go for a drive and get the kids outside. Well I took my camera but, I forgot to put the chip in it. Now do you think you can buy one? No, remember if you wanted film you could pretty much pick up film at any old store? well not anymore.
So, lucky Laura's phone has a really nice camera on it so she is the photographer for the day. She will no doubt remind me next time we go out as I was "take a picture of that" all day.
We headed for the general direction of Leland because we were hungry so that is where we headed. With Reubens in mind. By Lake Leelanau was a beautiful field of sunflowers and people were in the fields taking pictures. So off went Laura to take a few for me
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We continued on to find food. We love the Reubens at Fischer's Happy Hour. Best Reubens in the area.
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With very full tummies we headed to a trail we had wanted to explore. The Clay CLiffs area. The woods were just beautiful. Unfortunately the kids were replenished and full of energy. Oh the noise the noise. Can't wait till schools in and Laura and I can explore on our own. It was a bit difficult for me in the dappled sunlight, I didn't put on better shoes so could not feel my way very well. It gets harder to see these days, but I still do well enough.
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The view from the top of the Manitou Islands.
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The sky, so blue and the water so vivid, aqua near the shore and so blue beyond.
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In the woods trying to show them some beautiful bark, and they are offfffff
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We continued on, the kids getting ever restless. We took some back roads but not much wildlife. Fine by me as I had no camera haha, saw turkeys though and we went by some of our old haunts where we used to live.
Let the kids out to run in the fields and let off steam.
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On the way home we stopped in Cedar for ice cream as they had finally settled down some. Then we stopped at Gallaghers Farm market. I bought some corn and a cherry crisp pie for Gerry. He had to find his own supper so I figured he would enjoy that.
Tristen always loves to stop at the play area at the farm.
We saw a hen and tiny fluff balls, must be two day old chicks.
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I had really wished I had my camera as we looked at the Hollyhocks, the light was amazing. It doesn't do it justice here but it will remind me to go back and see if I can do get it before they are gone.
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I no longer get pleasure seeing the animals as I know their fate and can't get passed it. I know they have a good life but such a short one. Poor things. Still they live in the sun and get good food and lots of attention. Better than factory farms for sure. I don't know and don't want to know if they slaughter their own.
The chickens are free range that's for sure and always seem to have babies around. Roosters strutting. I love watching chickens and still hope to have some one day soon.
Next time I will be sure to have my camera. I usually take two but well..............this day I didn't. So thank you Laura for the pictures.