Thursday, May 30, 2013

Snapshots . . . . . long weekend

After the all the 'shake rattle and roll' weather last week - 
I think everyone in Oklahoma was ready for a very quiet long holiday weekend. 

I did remember to fly my little flags for all those who serve their country.
WWII, Korean, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan - where ever or when ever they served.  
 -- they were honored with a little bit of red, white & blue blowing in the Oklahoma wind. 

I did a bit of tidying up in my little sewing corner  (it was way past due)
A bit of sewing happened: 3 pairs of sleep shorts and one twirly skirt.
Those bright flowers remind me of the 60's -- and make me smile!

Discovered the series 'Longmire' on our streaming Netflix -
and watched 5 episodes from the first season back-to-back.  
How did I miss this show last year ?
Good storylines and I'm getting very attached to these characters already. 
Need to watch 4 more episodes before the new season begins next week. 

It was just the weekend I needed

Friday, May 24, 2013

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

What defines us . . . .

From the Huffintonpost - another article I don't want to forget (and because I don't know how long these links will work - - with an apology to Ms Walters, I have done my copy/paste thing to preserve it here)

     Mother, Wife, Okie

'This Will Probably Come to Define Us'

Posted: 05/21/2013 8:11 am
When I was in my twenties, I lived on the East Coast for a few years -- at various times in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. First, as a nanny, then just as a young woman trying to make true the line, "If you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere." And, like most small(ish)-town girls gone to the big city, I got asked where I was from a lot.
"Oklahoma." I'd answer.
"Oooooooklahoma, where the winds come... something, something, something about the plains!" they'd sing.
Or, "Oh? Like, near where the Oklahoma City bombing happened?"
Sometimes even, "Oklahoma? Where is that, exactly?"
But, as often as not, I'd get some variation of, "Oh. Tornadoes! Yeah. I could never live there."
Yes. Tornadoes.
For me and my fellow Okies, it's a word that we're used to. It's probably one of the first words we hear as children. We play "tornado" with our friends -- running around and hiding under tables and or bathrooms, just like we're taught at home and in school. We assign the role of "weather person" to one friend, the role of "tornado siren" to another (usually the kid with the loudest voice). We "go to the cellar" when the alarm is sounded. We act scared and scream... and then laugh and move on to another game.
As adults, especially in the spring, we dutifully note the appropriate weather watches and warnings. We are the best armchair meteorologists you will ever meet. We know all about dry lines and wind shear. We have more than a passing familiarity with updrafts and hook echoes. We know the Fujita scale and the TOR:CON index. We can tell cirrus clouds from cumulus. And we are great at geography. We know our counties. We know our small towns. We not only know if they're North, South, East or West of us -- we know Southwest, Northeast, North-Northeast. Tiny degrees of direction that tell us whether this watch or warning is something we need to worry about. We watch the weather, make the appropriate mental calculations and go on about our business.
Yes, for us, "tornado" is our normal. In the spring, it can be, quite literally, our every day.
But this. This is different. This, most definitely, is not our everyday. It is anything but normal. This is something that we don't even dream of in our worst nightmares. This is something that no amount of experience, no ingrained, Okie-native understanding of the weather or geography can ever prepare you for. When they teach tornado drills in school, they don't tell you that if it gets really bad, your teacher will throw her body on top of yours in order to save your life. They don't tell you that even that might not be enough. The part where your parents watch helplessly as fireman, policeman and other first responders dig frantically through rubble to save you is not a part of the game. And all of our geography prowess goes right out the window when the landscape is so decimated that you can only tell east from west by the rising and setting of the sun.
No, this is not -- thank God -- every day.
Going forward, this event will probably come to define us to people who have no other frame of reference for us. Oklahoma will forever equal "that terrible tornado" in the minds of people who will probably never come here or really know any of us personally. In the future, other Oklahoma girls will go forth to other big cities and people will ask them where they're from and they will say, "Oklahoma" and people will say, "Oh" and their expression will probably say the rest.
That terrible tornado.
BUT we are so much more. We are a feisty bunch. We are so strong. We are so brave. We are so generous. We are so tenacious and stubborn and kind and lovely. We will get through this together. Those of us who can will open our hearts, our homes, our businesses and our wallets to our friends and neighbors who so desperately need us. We will reach down and pull them up and out. Then we will help them forward. It will be a long and hard road. But do not ever doubt for one second that we are up to the challenge.
Maybe by the time fall rolls around we will go back to being Sooners or Cowboys. Or Lions or Jaguars or SaberCats. Or republicans or democrats (yes, there are democrats in Oklahoma). Or Baptists or Presbyterians. We will debate if Tulsa or Oklahoma City is better or which lake is our favorite. Or whatever it is that divides us in our every day life -- A life that, at the moment, seems very far away.
But for now, we are all just Okies.
And this is home.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

To our knees . . . .

Six years ago, I started a blog (Prairie Homestead) - and in my second post, I wrote about about a spring storm and what it means to live in Oklahoma - in the middle 'tornado alley'.

Spring storms are a fact of life here on the Southern Plains - but, yesterday's storm brought us to our knees -- in shock over the loss of lives and in prayer for strength to continue. 

And, then we stood up and continued with the rescue and recovery.  Soon we will lay our loved ones to rest and begin the process of rebuilding - may our faith keep us strong today and in the weeks/months ahead.
And, because I'm not sure how long the above link with be available - I copied/pasted the text below(my apologies to The Daily Oklahoman).

Another storm, another prayer for God's mercy on Oklahoma

The Oklahoman Editorial | Published: May 21, 2013  
A row of backpacks on hooks in a roofless grade school corridor.  This is just one of many images that will stay with us because they represent the horror without actually being the horror. The fate of the students, the fate of their teachers. The fears of parents helpless to help when their children needed them the most.

May 20, 2013.
So accustomed are Oklahomans to severe weather warnings that Sunday's tornado outbreak took a while to get our attention. Then came Monday. Then came comparisons to May 3, 1999. Then came images of storm path charts showing where the two tornadoes crossed, a common point separated by 14 years and a thousand indelible memories.
Then came the image of the backpacks at a Moore school reduced to rubble in a flash.
It will be ages before anyone questions the need for frequent program interruptions and those annoying weather maps on the bottom of television screens. Our colleagues in broadcast journalism deserve high praise taking the threat seriously from the moment a funnel cloud began its descent near Moore.
Meteorologists had advised of the possibility a major storm was brewing, but they couldn't say for sure. The tornado bisque they described boiled over. We viewed in horror a grim repeat of that May 1999 “storm of the century,” a pristine cone turning nasty and black as it wrapped itself in dark rain and ground our bones to make its bread.
How awesome and furious was this fresh show of celestial fury, in a different century yet seemingly in the same place. That more lives weren't lost on that Monday and this one is a tribute to the preparedness that Oklahomans have built into their thinking.
Now come the sad stories, the heartrending deaths of young and old, the miracles and the survivals, as the black funnel wraps itself in grief. Now come the recovery, the selfless deeds, the sacrificial giving and the comforting words.
This is a time when patience is the supreme virtue and thoughtfulness second to none. Homes will be rebuilt and families brought back together, but it will take years to restore normalcy. Talk of closure and healing is premature.
The hurts are impaled on our consciousness. The wrath of weather on full display reminds us that there are forces that do not answer to man. We are at their mercy and all we can do is ask for mercy.
Most of us were spared in 1999, but the next time came for new victims. Next time we could be the ones to lose homes and loved ones, who have an unclaimed backpack on the hooks in a roofless corridor.
This is all more reason to stay prepared, to stay tuned to weather alerts but also to stay attuned to a Greater Power that rules our lives and calls forth nature. Through death and destruction, in chaos and calamity, but also in recovery and redemption, God is in control.
Have mercy — once again — on Oklahoma, O Lord! Let your peace prevail. May your grace shower the city and wrap it in light. Help us share the suffering and make our hands yours to rebuild shattered communities and lives.
This editorial by Opinion Editor J.E. McReynolds is adapted from “The Storm — and a prayer” published May 5, 1999.


Friday, May 17, 2013

Another page . . . .

. . . . in my 'memory book'
Nothing sweeter in this world than a sleeping child

Friday, May 10, 2013

This moment . . . .

following her lead:

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

One step at a time . . . . .

Food security occurs when people have consistent access
to sufficient safe and nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life.
For too many people, food security is a dream and food insecurity is their reality. 
At the present time, one child dies from hunger-related causes every 5 seconds. 
 In the U.S., more than 43 million Americans don't have enough to eat.

Sunday afternoon, Joe, Laney and I turned in our donations, picked up our signs - and started walking at our very first Crop Walk sponsored by New Hope UMC.  As we walked, we held up signs for passing cars to read - and some even honked their horns.  Very exciting for the grandbabes.

When Joe and Laney got tired of all the sign-holding, they raced ahead of MoMo until they heard  'freeze' - the took off again at  '1-2-3 Go'

And, even with the walking and running - we still were lagging behind.  I discovered that walking with two little ones requires many stops --  to look at bugs, to pick flowers and to chunk rocks into the water -- all of that, might have slowed us down a bit. 

Which means we were the very last ones to cross the finish line -- and even though the crowd had thinned out a bit - they still cheered us thru those final steps. 

Later, as we enjoyed a sweet treat at Braum's Ice Cream - we all agreed that walking 3 miles was further than we thought it would be (if you look carefully - you can see Laney in her white jacket waiting for Joe and I to finish the 3 mile walk - her short legs only lasted 1 mile).  We also agreed that we were very tired -- but, we felt good that we collected donations and walked to raise awareness to World Hunger.  And, on that walk, we made some sweet memories too.  Plus, they both want to do it again next year.

To learn more about Church World Service's efforts to End Hunger One Step at a Time in the U.S. and around the world - click on this link:

Friday, May 3, 2013

{ this moment }

following her lead:

{this moment} - 
A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Sooner Tradition - it's 'Elementary' !

Oklahoma Land Run - April 19, 1892
For more information check out this website

Oklahoma Land Run Re-Enactment 
April 26, 2013
Northwood Elementary
Piedmont, Oklahoma

Their wagon might not have been the biggest --
but, they made up for that with good old Sooner enthusiasm --
running the length of the field to stake their claim!