The Most Amazing Woman I Have Ever Known

It is almost the anniversary of my parents deaths. My Father died Oct. 1, 1999 and my mother followed ten months later on Aug, 16, 2000. Before I lost my parents I figured with in a couple years of losing someone you just got over it. I now know you never recover, you never forget, you never stop missing or loving them. Sometimes it is easier than others, some days I still want more than anything to just call them, talk to them. They are forever with me, that i know, but I  miss so much the wisdom, knowing that a lot of what I am trying to learn they already knew and could have, would have loved to teach me, teach my children.

Every year from mid August to the beginning of October I struggle with my depression, more so than any other time of the year. Silly  me just figured this out last year, so this year I am hitting it head on. I am attempting to tackle the situation and see if I can keep it better at bay. One thing I am doing is celebrating my parents. Today since my Mom is so close to my heart I wanted to share about her. She, Barbara Joyce (Branstietter) Cook was the most amazing woman I have ever known. She loved with everything she had, she protected like a true Mama bear, she was smart, kind, hard, faithful, loving and talented.

I wished I had paid more attention while I was growing up to my parents doing things like canning, making jelly and jam, knitting and crocheting, gardening. I have had to learn all these skills and more on my own. I like to think they would be proud of me, actually I know they would be proud of me. I also know if they were around, my garden would be more structured and productive, and I wouldn’t be afraid to knit so much or crochet socks! I have no idea why socks seem so difficult, I know I just need to focus and do it, then it won’t seem so hard. Kind of like making bagels. I had wanted to make them for years, pinned numerous recipes then yesterday, I just did it! But that is a post for another day.

I hate that my kids have to grow up without them, knowing they would be there for everything, from sports games to music concerts to scout events. They would have taken them for sleep overs and camping. Daddy would have experimented with food to help me figure out Rebel’s allergies. Mom would have been there to listen and comfort me about how hard it can be to raise a child with special needs. I miss them with my whole being, the tears just keep flowing as I write this. You would think after all this time it would stop hurting so much, but it never does.

Taking it one day at a time,



Drying Herbs and Refashioning Nightgowns

I have been busy with garden and crafty things. My wonderful husband gave my sewing machine a much needed cleaning and oiling, then through some research and trial and error I got it to stop bunching (at least till I was showing the kids how to use it) I was able to make Princess a couple of night gowns from some old t-shirts that Jeremy doesn’t wear. I loosely followed the instructions form It’s Always Autumn but Princess doesn’t like things tight around her arms or neck so I just cut arms into short sleeves and left neck line as it was originally.

I have also been busy drying herbs. I have dried 2 batches of basil and am currently drying rosemary and thyme. My house smells so good right now with the herbs in the dehydrator. I am also trying yellow squash again, the batch I did the other day worked but I had no idea how much water was in the squash, they shrunk so much I could hardly get them off the tray. The cubes for soup I think will be ok. Today I cut the squash thicker and we will see how it goes.

Hopefully I will get my sewing machine to quit bunching again and I will be able to finish the apron I am in the middle of making from one of Jeremy’s old button up shirts. I could sew it by hand, but I would rather do it on the machine since I have been working on repairing an old quilt by hand.

I am off to continue all my projects,