Sixty Happened

Some things in life we can control. Aging is certainly not one of them.  Whether I wanted to or or not, at 3:10 a.m. this morning I entered a new decade. Sixty happened! I usually wake up around 3 a.m. but set an alarm just to be sure not to miss my official entry in to my sixties. Jim sang Happy Birthday to me at exactly 3:10 a.m.!

Wait! Me? Sixty? How on earth can that be? Seems only yesterday I as enjoying life surrounded by my older family members, well loved and protected by them. Now I am Nana to adult grandchildren.

Over my sixty years I have been so blessed with a loving family. Growing up we were far from wealthy by monetary standards, but when it came to feeling loved, no amount of money could match that. Along my life path there have been joys and there have been sorrows. I know I was a bit of a challenge as a teen and I was glad I had the chance to make that up to mom and dad! Marriage, kids and grandkids brought joy and of course challenges. Mistakes? Oh yes, made quite a few of those. But we pick ourselves up and move on.

As we get older it is easy ponder how differently you would have lived life if you had the wisdom you have now when you were in your twenties. BUT if I would change things from the past I would not be where I am today. I would not have the people in my life I have now. Mistakes are life’s lessons. So I rejoice in the fact I have made it to a new decade carrying the triumphs and scars with me as trophies.

Since my parents passed, mom in 1992 and dad in 2000, birthdays are bittersweet. It is the time of the year I miss them and my grandparents the most. They always made my day so very special. I can remember the anticipation as my birthday would approach. My parties were held at my grandparents across the street so I knew searching for presents in my house was futile. All day I would look forward to when we would finally go to my grandparents.

September 24, 1961. My 4th Birthday Celebration.

Top – 1961, Bottom 1965
Presents were always the last event of the celebration.

TRADITION! For as long as I remember my birthday dinner was hog maw and in place of a cake, pumpkin pie wore the candles. After my grandmother passed my mom made this meal for me even when I was an adult. When mom was no longer able to do this, my oldest daughter carried on the tradition. My husband and I are looking forward to going to her house tonight to celebrate with the family.

Beside a family gathering, my husband and I always go off on some adventure somewhere. Usually a day trip to a favorite spot, shopping and dinner is the itinerary. We did that Friday. Along the way we picked up Birthday treats at Shuey’s Pretzels and Wertz Candies in Lebanon. Next week’s menu; salad and water!

Sixty happened! I have made some choices recently to focus more on time with hubby and enjoying my hobbies and not as much time volunteering. Balance! I have many interests when it comes to crafts and hobbies, but the one hobby that has been consistent since I was young is my love of family history. I am sure that grew from being an only child and spending most of my time in the company of my older relatives. I loved sitting and listening to their stories. Currently I am working on reorganizing my years of collecting data and photos so when my time here is done my kids will find a good history of family lines.

Related to my genealogy, I am very proud to be part of The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). In the past year I was so busy with other things I made very few events. Choices made recently allow me the time to be active again with The Colonel James Smith Yorktown Chapter. I attended the September meeting and then yesterday joined my DAR Sisters to celebrate Constitution Day. Our Chapter was the host for the region this year. This meant we didn’t have to travel far and we gathered at the Roosevelt Tavern in York. One more fun thing making my birthday weekend special. I have made some wonderful friends with this group, and they don’t get tired of talking about genealogy!

While my body does remind me of my age at times, I will stick with my mind which still thinks I am young! Staying positive, spending time with those I love and doing things I enjoy will help me embrace this aging thing. And hey, I now get even more Senior Citizen discounts!

Sixty happened. Life is good!

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Dusting Off The Cobwebs

Dusting off the cobwebs on this blog and rediscovering my creative and crafty side! Goodness, it has been almost two years since I blogged. I had to give myself a quick refresher on how to do it.

Been so busy with outside commitments I found the time had come I needed to evaluate my commitments to free up more time for myself and to have more time with my hubby. As empty nesters we can come and go as we please. We used to go on road trips for the day often until I got so busy. I cherish each day I have him by my side and need to get back to more time for us! Autumn is on the horizon. I thought this was the perfect time to discern what I would continue to do outside the home and things I needed to step back from. I can say I am at peace mentally and spiritually with the decisions made.

Writing is one of the things I have neglected. As a young girl I often thought I would like to be an archaeologist OR work on a game preserve in Africa OR become a writer living on the coast of Maine as I let the creative juices flow.  As I am approaching my 60th birthday the end of this month I realize the first two are not realistic expectations. BUT I can still write! Might not be on the coast of Maine, but who knows? Hubby retires in a few years. Wanderlust may lead us to New England.

I love to sew. My husband bought me an amazing new sewing machine for Christmas. It too needs to have the cobwebs removed. I belong to a quilt group at church and have had the same project in process for months. Going there today and hope to make headway on two tops.

Hubby and I have created quite a nice “Woman Cave” in the basement for me. It is very big giving me the space for a nice sewing area as well as tables for other craft projects. With the holiday months ahead, time to be creative!

Since I last wrote hubby and I did our DNA tests with Ancestry. I will share more on that in another post. Genealogy is my passion. I really want to work on reorganizing our family history and photos.

As part of my Genealogy I discovered my Revolutionary War Patriot Henry Spalding and joined the DAR a few years ago. I also added two supplementals with Henry’s father Basil Spalding and his father-in-law William Elder. I only made one meeting over the last year. Saturday is our first meeting of the 2016-2017 year and I am looking forward to going and seeing my DAR sisters again.

Also Genealogy related, I have not touched my website, ANCESTORS, for ages. I have more information to add, including my DAR Patriots, so I am hoping to have time in the near future to update that.

For now, breathing easier and ready to head to Quilt Group!

Quilt Projects

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Hanging of the Greens

 

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We had quite a joyous celebration at Advent Lutheran to mark the First Sunday of Advent. The music, readings and reflections as well as the participation of the congregation in decorating the church was beautiful and moving. The pews were filled with people of all ages celebrating together as we began the Advent season.

The processional hymn was one of my favorites, “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”.  How exciting to see all of our choirs processing in, from the adults down to our wee Cherub Choir. The readings and prayers inspired us. As we progressed through the service decorations were added to the church.  The first lesson shared the story of the Annunciation. The perfect model of faith, Mary, who surrendered to God’s will with her response “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38),

Then the processions began. With each one there were hymns and readings. First the Light. 10 family groups carried candles, one for each of the windows in the church. Next the Holly and the Ivy  was carried in to adorn the candles on each window. (I was honored to carry one of these.)

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The children were then called up to decorate the tree with the Chrismons. As the processions continued we had two precious children portraying Mary and Joseph and a youth carried the star which was added to the top of the Chrismon tree.

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All of our choirs sang different selections. The music is always wonderful for our services but this night was truly a blessing. Joy filled the sanctuary! The final choral offering came after the church was fully decorated. The Chapel/Chancel Choir performed “Savior of the Nations Come” by Richard Nance. Narration by one of our members made this especially moving.

The evening closed with fellowship at a reception in Fellowship Hall that featured tables full of sweet treats and goodies shared by those attending. This evening was also the kick off our Alternative Gift Fair which gives us a chance to make a difference by helping others. Donations are made to organizations in honor of or in memory of someone. In exchange for the donation you may select one of the many handmade star ornaments displayed on the trees. The stars reflected the theme of “BE A LIGHT” and were made by different groups and Sunday School classes from the church. This photo shows the star made by the Prayers & Stitches Group I enjoy being a part of.

As Advent continues we wait with joyful anticipation to celebrate the birth of our Savior!

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Thanksgiving Wrap Up

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It was my intention to share a post daily in November reflecting on things I was thankful for. Well, My husband and I were taking turns being sick and quite honestly, I didn’t have the energy or time to write. BUT I will add one more item I am thankful for and that is that we are both feeling better!

Thanksgiving was a wonderful celebration for us this year. My husband is in the choir and our church hosted the community Thanksgiving Service. It was very nice and well attended by the members of the participating churches.

Thanksgiving Day we watched the parade and then went out to eat. In the evening we were invited to have leftovers and dessert with friends. A really nice, relaxing day.

And while I may not have completed my daily posts here, I do remember to give thanks each day for the many blessings God has bestowed upon us!

Index to my gratitude posts – GIVING THANKS

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Day 11 of Giving Thanks – Our Veterans

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VETERANS FROM OUR FAMILY

Jesse Deeter 1921-2011
My Husband’s Father
US Army Air Corp WWII

Charles Warren Spalding 1930-2000
My Father
US Navy Korean Conflict

Bernard Benjamin Spalding 1922-2003
My Uncle, Daddy’s Brother
US Army WWII, European Theater

Clayton Sylvester Weirich 1919-1993
My Uncle, Daddy’s Brother- in-Law
US Army Air Corp WWII, European Theater

Francis Oliver Klinedinst 1922-1995
My Uncle, My Mother’s Brother
US Army WWII, European Theater

Related Posts:

Thank You To Those Who Serve Photos of Family Veterans in this post.

WWII Memories From My Dad

Thanksgiving Day In The Service Of His Country

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Giving Thanks Index

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WWII Memories From My Dad

My Father's Armband

My Father’s Armband

Daddy always lamented that he was sorry he was not old enough to have served in WWII like his older brother Bernard and his sister’s husband Clayton. He would serve his country though in a different way. As a teenager he served locally as a plane spotter. As part of the observance of the 50th Anniversary of the end of WWII our local historical society did an exhibit that included stories about York Countians and their lives during WWII. Daddy had loaned his arm band that he wore as a spotter. It is pictured here along with the tag from the museum exhibit. I was happy that he loaned them this as they encased it in archival covering to help preserve it.

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During daddy’s final months he was in and out of consciousness. When he was awake it seemed he spent a lot of that time reliving or retelling things from his younger years. Knowing stories of his past helped me understand what he was talking about when to others it may have just seemed like the ramblings of an older man.

I visited him daily and each evening I would call in to talk to the nurse to check on him. One evening I called she was with him and they had the tv on for him. She said he kept repeating numbers and letters. I asked her if there was a war movie on and she said yes. She said there were images of planes flying when he would do this. I told her about my dad being a plane spotter and I would bet that is what he was doing when he saw these planes.

Daddy was always so proud of his big brother, Bernard. Uncle Bernard did not talk a lot about his war time service, but we do know his unit  saw some of the heaviest fighting in Europe and they were part of the liberation of Concentration Camps.

My Uncle Bernard home on leave during WWII pictured here with his younger brother, my dad, Charles.

My Uncle Bernard home on leave during WWII pictured here with his younger brother, my dad, Charles.

 

RELATED POSTS

Thank You To Those Who Served

Thanksgiving Day In The Service Of His Country

Day 11 Of Giving Thanks – Our Veterans

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