43 Things about Us, A Work in Progress

This may take awhile to put together.  Statements are not in any order,  just how they came to mind.

1. We were both born in California about 30 miles apart, Selma for him and Fresno for me.

2. I have never lived more than 4 hours away from Fresno, He spent 2 years in Portland, Oregon for college.

3. He is 8 years 2 1/2 months older than I am. It has never seemed to make a difference, I have felt old all my life.

4. He has spent    years in college, I have taken 6 classes.

5. We have had 9 addresses, Shaver Lake, Rancho cordova, 3 different spots in Carmichael,  Sacramento, 3 more different spots in Carmichael.

6. We have 5 children, 3 girls, 2 boys; 2 daughters-in-law; 9 grandchildren 7 boys, 2 girls (we’re kind of light on girls)

7. We have had numerous dogs, most notable: Buddy, the beagle; Charlie, a black-faced shepherd; Rosie, the escape-artist basset; and not least, Silky Dude, a long-haired mini doxie.

8. Cats, we’ve had a few. He would say a few too many. Sir Thomas Dooley, a Siamese mix, we’ve had the longest of any cat, Taco, a black cat, Digit, my first multi-toed cat(I think he had just 6 on each front foot), and my favorite, Seymore Toes, the cat with 27 toes, he loves me!

9. Cars, I think this is the right order of ownership; jeep, ’63 Pontiac, Banana Dodge Van, chevy van, Suburban, green chevy truck, Buick Park Avenue, Suburban,  seems like there was an odd truck thrown in here or there. We drove my dad’s ranchero,These are the ones I mostly drove.

10. We moved to Carmichael , July 4, 1968, and really don’t want to live any place different.

11. We both garden, me in pots flowers, that seem to dry out faster than I expect them to, He in the dirt perfectly.

12. His favorite flower – tulips,  mine – yellow roses

13. He does things habitually. I do things whenever I feel like it.

14. He a morning person, yep, I’m a night owl (just not wise).

15.  He reads political news religiously, I could not care less about politics. In fact, I just sign my ballot, he fills in the blanks.

16. Neither one of us wears a watch.

17. His phone is always on,  I’m doing better at having my phone on since we don’t have a land line.

18. He usually lets me drive.

19.  We both love traveling in our rv.

20.  He has gone mainly vegetarian, I still love my beef.

21. As of October 20, 2010, we are living cozily in a 27 Komfort trailer.

22. We both are saved and sanctified, and are determined to give the Lord thanks for all He does for us.

23. We both have 4 living siblings, he- 2 brothers and 2 sisters; me-4 brothers.

24. In 2007, we traveled across country for 53 days and visited 32 states.


Published in: on June 16, 2010 at 9:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Playing House

Last week ( I think) we gave Uncle B a white wood cabinet for his kitchen. He lives in a very old house with very little storage. The cabinet is now his pantry. Part of what went in the pantry came from wood shelves in the breakfast nook. I asked him if I could move the shelves to the opposite wall, which would give access to the windows. He didn’t care. So today I played house in his kitchen washing shelves and dishes, window seats and the floor, and starting to rearrange a widower’s kitchen. I’m tired. I hope he can find what he wants. I’ll go back again tomorrow and try to do some more damage.

Published in: on May 18, 2010 at 5:12 pm  Comments (1)  
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A Week Finished

What I did week ending – January 10:
Monday Bible Study
Went to work 4 days, learned how to enter time from work order sheets
Finished blue, green, white variegated sweatshirt sweater
Started browns/pink sweater – I really enjoy making these sweaters
Wrote a ‘thought’ for every day
Posted 2 times on Church website
Made 2 desserts for Sunday
Made chili for this week
Laundry washed and put away
Carpooled to work (this is new)
Attended Revival and helped in kitchen Friday night and Sunday am, pm

Published in: Uncategorized on January 11, 2010 at 12:20 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Thanksgiving Recap

Thanksgiving was good this year. We broke in a new location, Camp Del Oro near Nevada City, CA. Monica, a niece, works there full time in the office, and Darrel works with the kids in the summer.Kitchen was easy to use and dining /meeting room and lodging were very comfortable.
The Crain mother, siblings and families, (plus anyone else shows up) start their visiting Wednesday evening and we go home after cleaning up Saturday morning.
Thursday morning some went on a hike with Darrel in the lead. After lunch David arranged target practice, many guns were brought to show off and try out. Young and old, male and female shot the guts out of large zucchini, narly looking crooked neck squash, apples and a stuffed pig. 48 sat down to turkey dinner.
For entertainment as if people watching wasn’t enough, Darrel received the honor of a talking stick, and continued to talk. We couldn’t tell there was any improvement having received the stick.
Friday a group went to a used book store hosted by Ben. Another group went on another walk. The children were taken outside, even though there was danger of rain, to use up Crain energy; when back inside not of lot of difference in the energy level was seen.
Two jigsaw puzzles were put together, many hands of May I, Uno, SkipBo, Crown 5 were played. Apples to Apples provided laughs.
Saturday Morning we woke up to no electricity. Fortunately, the dining room had a large fireplace, and the kitchen a gas stove. Water was heated for tea, cocoa and dish washing. Eggs were scrambled. Leftover ham, red-skinned potatoes, toast and biscuits were heated, and gravy made from bacon drippings. Equaling a breakfast worth the thanks. With many willing hands, cleanup was accomplished and we were on the way home before noon.
Thanksgiving with the Crains is a tradition that is worth the effort it takes to make it continue, Many memories are made and friendships strengthened. I’m thankful I’m a part of this clan.

Published in: Uncategorized on November 30, 2009 at 6:06 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Adjusting plans

Today I volunteered for  Kyle’s first grade teacher at 10:15. My plan then was to meet Elmer at the shop and ride with him to a job site to deliver material and nuts UPS was to deliver. Big goof up with UPS, so I got to drive to San Jose to Grainger to pick up the nuts. So today I am thankful for a safe trip to San Jose, that I can be a help at the shop occasionally, and that my bed is where I left it and is ready for me.

List three things you are thankful for

Published in: Uncategorized on November 4, 2009 at 9:34 pm  Comments (2)  
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Home again

We’re home. trying to put all the pieces back together, I’ll spend sometime later filling in the past days before I forget it all.

Published in: Uncategorized on November 1, 2009 at 8:36 am  Leave a Comment  
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October 25, 2009


Quebec… if you ever get a chance to visit Quebec don’t turn it down.

A romantic city of narrow cobblestone streets at the narrowing of the St .Lawrence River, Quebec invites you to wander and take your time exploring. A horse drawn carriage gives a glimpse of more of the town and whets your appetite to spend and extra day or two.

Emily visited the city 4 years ago and tried to tell me what it was like, but I needed to walk the streets myself, hear the sidewalk musicians play, feel the breeze off the river and see the lights as they came on at night to really appreciate Quebec.


The weather was gorgeous, sunny and clear and crisp. We were told the 23rd it snowed, and the 24th it rained all day long. We were thankful for the weather prepared just for us.


I spend some time exploring outside on deck watching the lights of the city and along the banks of the river. A large half moon hung in the sky watching over me as I meditated the grandeur of God’s plan in a quiet almost deserted spot.


With Emily’s 219 pictures, Mary’s 149, Mom’s and Elmer’s,  I’ll have many to try to show my version of Quebec.


Published in: Uncategorized on October 26, 2009 at 5:10 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Overcast and Cloudy

October 24,2009

At sea, over cast and cloudy all day. We all wandered here and there taking in the programs, listening to live music, eating as the spirit moved us, sometimes together and often apart.


That is the end of October 24, 2009.  Good Night…Sleep Well…Love you


Published in: Uncategorized on October 26, 2009 at 5:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Bunches of Nothing

October 24, 2009

Today at sea.  I saw a hint of land about 5:30pm, Anticosti Island as we went through the Gaspe Passage.

A day at sea means you can do bunches of nothing or go from one activity to another provided by the activity crew.

We did alot of one and a little of the other. The other was the show that was supposed to be country and western. It was loud and not very country or western. I guess I’m just not that kind of person.

I saw Mary once while she ate breakfast/lunch and Em before she left for the day. Mom went to a comedy workshop. she said it was really funny, she had a good time.  We had dinner with Mom and then saw the show. Elmer got ice cream to eat in the room. Back to our cubbies. I ate the gingerbread with lemon sauce that I got at Peggy’s Cove, It was yummy even though it was cold.

What the girls did???I don’t know may be  I’ll find out tomorrow.

Published in: Uncategorized on October 24, 2009 at 6:53 pm  Comments (1)  
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Halifax to Peggy’s Cove

October 23, 2009

We woke up in Halifax, Nova Scotia, 702 nautical miles from New York.

We had a bus tour through Halifax to Peggy’s Cove, a rustic fishing village where 40 people live year around and on a loop back to Halifax. We really enjoyed the tour. Our tour guide was good, that’s important. We heard about Halifax’s part in the rescue of the survivors of the Titanic, a shipping explosion in the Halifax harbor and the crashing of an airliner from New York. (I’ll have to check with the others for info I forgot).  You’ll

need to see the pictures, to kind of understand the remote, lonely feeling of the Cove.

We had Italian for dinner. I thought of you, Shirley, while I ate Tiramisu. Elmer and I went back to the room. Mom followed Mary and Emily this evening.  I’ll have to get the low down tomorrow.  Tomorrow a day at sea, Quebec City, Sunday morning.

That is the end of October 23, 2009.  Good Night…Sleep Well…Love you

These posts will be so much more complete when I can post the pictures.

Published in: Uncategorized on October 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Lazy Day at Sea

October 22, 2009 written October 23, 2009

We were at sea this day, so were pretty lazy. Overcast in the morning so didn’t eat breakfast out side. We checked out different parts of the ship, did some shopping, 2 sweat shirts, and a cup with a lid for me, and a water bottle for Elmer.  Reading, knitting, and enjoying the ride were high on the list of activities.

We met for dinner dressing up a bit, Em wore her mink coat and cowboy boots. Elmer went back to the room, Mom checked out a couple performers on her own. I hung out with Mary and Em following them around. Some of the performers were pretty good, some we didn’t stay for very long. M & E pick seats so if they don’t like the act, they can leave easily with out disturbing anyone.

That is the end of October 22, 2009.  Good Night…Sleep Well…Love you

Published in: Uncategorized on October 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm  Comments (1)  
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Relatives in Burying Ground

October 21, 2009 written October 23, 2009

This won’t have pictures, it takes too long to upload and insert them one by one, since I’m having to buy internet time and speedy it is not.

It was nice not to have to hurry. Elmer and I went up to breakfast about 11:00 at the Grill, a mini breakfast bar with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, fruit, pastries, hash, toast, coffee, juice, at the rear of the ship. It was sunny. After we ate Elmer went back to the room, while I sat and knit for a while. One waiter said he’d watch my progress.

We arrived at Boston 12:30pm. We didn’t have a tour planned. I wish we had, because we didn’t

know where we were going and the map we had was tiny and not too clear. Elmer again stayed on the boat and the Ladies went walking. Years ago when the buildings in Boston were built there was land around them, now there are tall buildings and sidewalks and busy roads. We did find an used bookstore that Emily said was how bookstores should be. And we found a cemetery on Tremont Street, King’s Chapel Burying Ground. The stones had skulls and skeletons and father time engraved on them. There was a plaque tell what the symbols meant. When we started reading this plaque, Mom said Joseph Tapping that is the name of our forefather, Tapping was changed to Topper. (For those who don’t know Topper was my maiden name.) I’ll include part of the plaque information:

“One of the first and most famous gravestones, visible upon entering the burying ground, is that of Joseph Tapping, (d.1678). The marker is famed as a work of art conceived by the unknown carver known as ‘the Charlestown Stonecutter. The stone is one of the most elaborate in the burying ground with beautifully carved symbolic images: the skull with wings represents the soul leaving the body, the hourglass represents time running out, the skeleton snuffing out the candle is Death ending life, and the bearded figure is Time attempting to stop Death. The stone’s Latin inscriptions refer to the quick passage of time and awareness of death’s inevitiablity. Little is known of Tapping, a Boston shopkeeper who died at the age of 23, leaving his young wife Marianna, a widow.

Next is the grave of his father John Tapping (ca.1628-1678), a felt maker, and the double tombstone of his mother, Mary (Woodmancy) Tapping Avery (ca.1629-1709) and her second husband William Avery (ca.1622-1686). His mother is said to be the first female bookseller in Boston.”

This was the highlight of Boston for me.

At the ship, we all went our separate ways, Mary and Em pairing off. Elmer and I had a late dinner and crashed. Mom did the same. Mary and Em watched different performers, while playing cards and knitting.

That is the end of October 21, 2009.  Good Night…Sleep Well…Love you

Published in: Uncategorized on October 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm  Comments (1)  
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from New York City to the Ship

This post had such creative dialog and pictures, then………..the computer monster entered the process. Maybe someday we will see the pictures, please just use your imagination as you read.

October 20, 2009, written October 21, 2009, 8:30amEST

View from hotel room window about 8:00EST – Mom’s room

View from Mary, Emily & Mom’s room

Mary, Emily, Mom and I left Elmer in bed at 9am (6amCaliTime) to see the sights.

After some discussion with a longsuffering concierge, Emily and Mary as our fearless guides led us to the subways of New York. Subways are underground and not dark and dank as I had pictured. In some areas it was like mini malls food courts and stores. Other areas were waiting areas for the trains. We bought $8.00 passes that were good for 4 transfers. We used three.

We took the R downtown train to 34th. Walking in New York felt like San Francisco and Chicago, but  not like Birmingham.  We breakfasted at a Café, that was long and narrow; food counters on left side, tables on right. A waiter took our order although we could have ordered at the counter. Everything was available: traditional breakfast, lunch, sandwiched, soups, Chinese dishes, fruit, luscious looking desserts and muffins. We visited Duane Reade, like a rite aide. DR are located often through the city.

When the doors of Gotta Knit opened at 11:00, we were there. On the 5th floor a room about 15×20, full of samples and yarn on the left and rear, on the right portioned off by screens was their office. Not a very large variety of yarns, but high end cost and quality. Emily was the buyer, a skein of hand spun, she make a pair of sox or a scarf as the spirit moves her.

Down to E subway, downtown to W 4th  to Purls a quilt shop.  On ground level, again the store area was very narrow 8 ft wide and 20ft deep, with office/storage behind closed door. Different fabrics than commonly seen in Sac. Emily purchased fabric of a baby quilt (that had been on her list) and princess and the pea fabric for a pillowcase as a souvenir of New York. Mary bought fabric to make a tote bag to remind her of the City. My buy was the store’s own canvas tote, $15.00, The girls didn’t tell their totals, but the main fabric in the princess and the pea collection was $18.00 a yard

Walking on down the street about 4 stores is Purls, a yarn shop about twice as wide and the same depth,  Both shops are owned by the same people. Everyone escaped with no yarn,

By now it is 1:20pm, we were to be back at the hotel by 1:00. Elmer has checked out of the hotel, put luggage in storage, and has had breakfast (about 11:00). He is now waiting very patiently in the lobby for us. I missed judged the time because of the subway rides and the walking to get to where we wanted to go from the subway stations.

We called Elmer, got back on the subway and were back to the hotel about 1:45. As the porter brought out our luggage to load into the taxi, he said to Elmer, “Looks like she brought the whole house!” A Yellow Cab was whistled down, a suv type, five seats for passengers and luggage compartment big enough for everything. By 2:30 we were at the port and saw our ship. I knew the ships were big, but hadn’t realized just how big.

This is what our balcony looked like. We had two rooms side by side with connecting door on the balcony

We checked in with little waiting in lines, got our picture taked and walked up the gang plank. Champagne and orange juice waited for us.

This is what our room looked like.

We got on our way about3:00 and safety drill at 3:30. We learned how to put on our life vests. The vest weren’t flattering to anyone.

We went back to our rooms to put life vests away, get settled in, have coffee (thanks, Mom), and relax on the balcony. We watched the Lady as we left New York Harbor. Mary started singing The Cross is my Stature of Liberty.

Neat Picture of the Lady

Mary and Em went scouting; the rest of us vegged.  By chance we all meet in the Garden Café, a buffet, for supper and watched the sum sink into the ocean.  We split up again,

Elmer and I to sight see and get internet connected, Mom to the library, etc, and M and Em ?????.

I crashed about 9:00, I must have walked two miles in New York and there are many steps down into and up out of the subway.

More firsts:

My first subway ride, on one leg of the trip I knitted.

First time I (we) was honked at crossing the street.

My first Yellow Cab ride, from hotel to boat dock

this one I didn’t watch too closely as he drove.

Now I know about the others after dinner:

( the short version)

Mom went back to her room, took a bath, had a flood in the bathroom, called the plumber, water got cleaned up and read in bed for a while.

Mary and Em picked up their knitting, card games, and water bottles(because the cups are tiny) and went to –

  1. Crystal Atrium, listened to a string quartet
  2. went to get water
  3. back to Atrium  for sleepy music ( their words)
  4. went to Bar City, Constance played piano, then another lady played guitar and sang ballads and played Phase 10
  5. went to the theater and played garbage while the band played, then watched a comedian re-enact the Wizard of Oz
  6. returned to room to shower and bed and read.

Beautiful sunset

That is the end of October 20, 2009.  Good Night…Sleep Well…Love you.

Published in: Uncategorized on October 21, 2009 at 4:48 pm  Comments (3)  
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To the things I’ve done…

I can add; I have walked the streets of New York City.
We did leave at 5am after taking this picture of stuff, 6 suitcases, two garment bags, two carry on bags, three purses, one back pack and a briefcase.

Allpacked up and ready to go.

All packed up and ready to go.

At the airport little snag, one suitcase weighed 63#. Yep, it hadn’t thrown up enough. So some shuffling was done from suitcase to Mom’s garment bag. All was well. We took off on time to Minneapolis, we had lunch, yummy tomato/basil soup for me. On to New York City, I was told by someone in the know to get in the cab and close my eyes. The ride to Hotel wasn’t bad. The cabbie was a good tour guide pointing out Empire State Building, Chrysler Building, the Brooklyn Bridge, etc. I think Renee could have driven us, after riding with her in Philly.
As Elmer said, Ladies went out for dinner, Italian. We walked about 4 blocks. We each had something different that I can’t spell but could taste. If I could remember the name of the restaurant I’d recommend it.

Ladies made plans for Tuesday, again Elmer is sitting this one out. I guess you’ll have to check back in to find out what Elmer missed.

Published in: Uncategorized on October 19, 2009 at 9:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It is still dark…

at 4AM, people are beginning to stir, you notice I didn’t say wake up. I’m packed but my three suitcases got to gether and made a carry on for me. I feel so ……..
I just don’t know how I feel. I haven’t been to sleep. That is normal for me before a big trip. The coffee is ready, now I’ll go make an egg sandwich and be ready to go. (Autumn, make sure Kyle knows I thought of him while I was eating my sandwich)

Published in: Uncategorized on October 19, 2009 at 4:06 am  Leave a Comment  
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