Thursday, June 30, 2011


Today did not start well for me.  I overslept, rushed through getting ready for work, hit every red light, and then got stuck behind a trash truck.  My 10-15 minute commute turned into 30 minutes.  I was way late for work.

Then I was on the front desk first thing.  People coming at me from all directions.  I was not a happy camper and ended up in a really bad mood.  I hate being in a bad mood.  When I got off of the desk I called Joe and told him what had happened.  Just talking with him made me feel better.  And when he got me to laugh, the whole black cloud up and disappeared.  I am so grateful to God for putting Joe in my life.

Today was not only the end of the month, but the end of the fiscal year for the city.  I stuck to Donna all day and wrote down lots of information on how to do end of the month reports, deposits, etc.  The second half happens tomorrow with the first day of the month and fiscal year.  I have done all of this before, but it was a long time ago.  As she is doing things I am saying to myself, "Oh, that's right.  I remember that now."  But there are also things I have never done such as ordering deposit slips.  So it's all good.

I have to run.  I am making fried rice for dinner and the rice is done.  Don't want it to burn.  I'll check in tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


I'm sorry everyone.  Somehow I messed up the settings and no one could comment.  Just discovered it this morning.  Things should be OK now.

And I wondered by no one was commenting!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


I haven't talked about it much, but I have been very concerned about my new work assignment at the Haddington Branch.  It is not a great neighborhood and it is far from home.  I was not looking forward to having a 30-45 minute drive every day.  I kept thinking about being so far from Joe if he got sick or had a seizure.  

Another thing I  was concerned with was I still have not gotten my letter telling me I was promoted and where and when to report.  In other words, I've been in limbo not knowing if I were officially an LA 1 or an LA 2.

The third thing bothering me was that the Richmond Branch would be shorthanded without me there.  The first week of July Donna is on vacation.  That leaves only Diane there.  The second week of July Diane is on vacation.  That leaves only Donna.  And to top it off Donna has jury duty on Wednesday.  If she is picked, she could be out the rest of the week and that would leave no one to work the library.  The branch would have to close in the middle of the summer reading program.

I spoke to the branch head, Jerry, this morning about these things.  He said he had written an email to the Area Administrator, Anne, last week but hadn't heard anything.  I said, "I think I'll call her because I need to know where I will be going on Tuesday."

Anne was very helpful and it turns out that when she read Jerry's email, she went to her boss.  Together they decided that I should stay at the Richmond Library and not go to Haddington at all.  That's why I haven't gotten a letter to move.  They are giving me a month to get trained while Donna is still there and then when she retires on August 5th I will become the LA 2 for the branch.

I am so thankful to God for His provision for me.  I couldn't see how this would all work out, but He did.  And I am so happy today that I don't have to move again.

Monday, June 27, 2011


Friends of ours at church, Juliette and her husband Shaun, just became the parents of twin girls two weeks ago.  They have a 1 1/2 year old named Connor, so they really have their hands full.  Pastor Justin's wife, Cherie, came up with the idea of having several families in the church bring dinner to them this week.  Joe and I volunteered for tonight.

Because I worked today, I wanted something easy to do.  So Joe and I came up with the idea of spaghetti and meatballs.  Joe makes wonderful meatballs and spaghetti sauce.  So he did that while I was still at work.  When I got home all I had to do was make the spaghetti and put the garlic bread into the oven.  I also made a salad with things we had gotten from the farm last week and tossed it with a little Italian salad dressing.

We didn't know where they lived, so I punched it into my GPS and we took off.  Here they were only about 5 minutes from our house.

So we got to see the little twins.  They are so tiny with lots of black hair.  Sort of surprising since Connor is very blond.  Their names are Natalie and Kate.  So cute!

Juliette and Shaun were so very grateful for the food.  We were very glad to be able to help them out.  And when we got home we had the same dinner waiting for us!

Sunday, June 26, 2011


I finally got myself out to the yard.  There was a lot more work to do than I thought there was.  I worked an hour and a half and got just a small portion finished.  I thought I'd show you what I got done.

I have at least one rose left.  There are some buds though.  I think if I deadhead the bushes I will get a few more blossoms this summer.

My hosta is huge!  When I bought it, it was just a few leaves.  See what seven years can do.

It looks so much better without the ivy all over it.  Ivy was all over the wall and plants.  It comes from the yard next door and is taking over my yard.  It was a lot of work getting rid of it.

Hopefully I will be able to work some more in the yard tomorrow.  I have so much more to do.


I got up early today and made some Lemon Blueberry Bread with some of the blueberries I got from the farm last week.  Boy, those blueberries have really gone a long way.  I made blueberry pancakes twice and now the bread.  I still have enough left over to do some blueberry muffins later in the week.

I got this recipe from a blog I read by Bevy over at "treasured up and pondered."  She calls herself a "Mennonite Martha Stewart" and I understand why.  She's really into taking care of her house and family and her recipes always turn out great.  So I am passing this one on to you.

Lemon Blueberry Bread
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
3 tblsp. lemon juice (I actually used a bit more -- I love the taste of lemon)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
1 cup blueberries, frozen and thawed or fresh
Beat butter, sugar, lemon juice, milk and eggs by hand.  Combine flour, baking powder and salt.  Stir into egg mixtureFold in blueberries.  Pour into greased loaf pan (8" x 4").  Bake at 350* for 60-70 minutes.

Good, good, good.  Thanks for the recipe, Bevy.
Now I've got to run.  Want to work out in my yard a little bit before the rain comes.  And we do need the rain.

Saturday, June 25, 2011


When I said yesterday that I wanted to sleep in I had no idea how much sleep I would actually get.  I didn't wake up today until 12 noon.  I was up for a couple of hours and then went back to sleep from 2 p.m. to around 4 p.m.  Again up for a couple of hours then slept from 6 p.m. to around 8:30 p.m. when I got up and got dinner.

Why would I sleep so much?  The only thing I can think of is that I was really exhausted and didn't know it.  I had so much planned to do today and got nothing done.  Guess I needed the sleep more than I needed to clean up my yard.

Friday, June 24, 2011


I love Pooh Bear.  And I love Fridays in the summer.  It means I have the weekend off.  Well, at least Saturday.

I'm hoping tomorrow to make a run to the new library I will be working at and see exactly where it is and how to get there.  Besides that, I want to sleep in.  I'm so tired this week.


I saw this in a blog that I was reading and borrowed it.  It made me think of my grandmother who always wore an apron.  I don't think I ever saw her without one until she got sick and wasn't able to do for herself anymore.  An apron was so much a part of her life that one time she actually forgot she had it on and wore it to a doctor's appointment.  Oops!

The History of Aprons

I don't think our kids know what an apron is. The principal use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath.  Because she only had a few, it was easier to wash aprons then dresses.  But along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children's tears and on occasion it was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished warming in the oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.

And when the weather was cold, grandma wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow while bent over the hot wood stove... chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron, too.

From the garden it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men knew that it was time to come in from the fields for dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace the 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Well, it's official.  I got a call this morning from Human Resources that I was to go to the Central library this afternoon and sign all the paperwork necessary for me to be promoted.  

It was a crazy day at work.  Lots of people.  (Where did they all come from?)  I didn't get to leave the Richmond Branch until 3 p.m.

It didn't take me long to get there.  I was worried about parking, so found a space three blocks away near where I parked before.  I paid the kiosk, walked to the corner, and there were two blocks of empty parking spots closer to the building.  But I had already paid and I would have had to pay again so I stayed where I was.  My knees were killing me and I was not happy that I had parked so far away.

Human Resources gave me a bunch of papers to sign for my pension, life insurance, deductibles, etc.  It turns out whenever you get a promotion they are actually letting you go and then rehiring you.  So everything has to be filled out again.  The same thing happened when I had my breast cancer surgery and when I had my stomach surgery.  So I have now filled out these same papers 4 times.  Give me a break!

I will be beginning my new job on July 5th.  I still don't know where this new place is.  Joe and I are going to make a dry run this weekend or next to see how to get there and how long it takes.  This will be an interesting next 4 to 5 weeks.


This was a day like no other!  It began with me going to see the surgeon for my 6 month check-up.  My appointment was for 9:15.  We were making really good time getting there and suddenly all the traffic stopped.  They were doing construction on 10th Street.  Three lanes went into one.  It was only a block long, but what a tie-up it made.

When we got there, we had trouble finding parking, and then got lost in the hospital.  This place is huge!  So when we finally got there we were 15 minutes late.  It didn't matter though because my doctor had emergency surgery this morning and I didn't even get to see her until 10:45.  I never get in and out of there fast.

She said that everything looks good.  Sometime in September I am to get an upper GI test to make sure that everything is in place and is working the way it should.  GOOD NEWS!

We then went to the cashier and I finished paying for my hospital bill.  I no longer have that hanging over my head.  MORE GOOD NEWS!

Joe took me to the hospital's gift shop.  Being sick in the hospital I had never seen it.  It was nice.  I mean really nice.  They had some 3-D bookmarks and Joe bought me one with planets on it that I fell in love with.  He's a sweetie!

Joe and I went home, ate lunch, and then I went to work two hours late.  When I got in I was told to call the Area Administrator.  I knew this was something either very good or very bad because you just don't get calls from her for nothing.  I called and found that I was being offered the Library Assistant 2 job!  Very few people take the test and are offered a promotion the first time around, so I was surprised and very happy.  EVEN MORE GOOD NEWS!

So now for the not so good news.  Because there is no opening anywhere near me, I am being sent to the Haddington Branch which is a 30-45 minute drive away.  BUT, it's a little more complicated.  You see, I have been picked to be the new LA2 at the Richmond Branch where I am now as soon as my current supervisor retires on August 5th.  So until then, I have to spend my time across the city.  Basically it's for about a month, then I get to come back.  But you never know with the Free Library.  They often tell you one thing, and do another.

I told the Administrator that I had to talk to Joe and would give her a definite answer tomorrow.  Joe and I prayed and talked about it and have decided I should take the job.  The people downtown have really done their best to give me what I want and to promote me quickly.  If I work with them, they will remember it and work with me.  Also it's only for a month and one week of that month I will be on vacation, so it's really only three weeks.  Not many people get handpicked for a place.  All this seems to be working in my favor.  And when I prayed I had a peace about going to this branch.

So here's the next stage in my journey.  Let's see where this part of my trip through life takes me.

Monday, June 20, 2011


Today was a rough day at work for me.  It was my supervisor, Donna's birthday on Saturday, so my boss asked me to buy her a cake to celebrate today.  I woke up late and left late.  That didn't help.  I went to ShopRite where we usually get a cake and there weren't any.  The lady behind the counter asked if I could come back after 2 p.m.

So then I went down the street to PathMark and got a cake there.  I had to wait and wait to get someone to write "Happy Birthday Donna" on it.  So I was REALLY late getting to work.  But I got a pretty cake.  As it turned out the cake from PathMark was better than the cakes I've been getting from ShopRite.  Hmmm...

Today was the first day of the Summer Reading Program.  The kids have gotten out of school and there were tons of them in the library.  It was very crowded and very noisy.  Now don't get me wrong, I'm glad the kids are in the library and not out on the streets.  But it's hard on us workers.

I was so tired I stopped for pizza on the way home instead of cooking.  I'm still very tired.  Got to go to bed on time tonight.  I see my surgeon tomorrow for a post-op follow-up.  Then off to work.


It took me awhile to find a picture of my dad to post today.

This was the best I could do.  I found that I just didn't have a lot of pictures of him.  And in what I did have, he was far away with a lot of other people.

My dad dropped out of school at a young age to join the Marine Corps.  This was one of the best parts of his life.  He was very proud of being a Marine.  (He did get his GED later in life.)

He had 8 children and we were all very important to him.  He loved us very much, had our pictures on his desk at work, and bragged about us all the time.

Twelve years ago on Father's Day we all got together for a family reunion.  My dad had liver cancer and we knew he was dying.  He went to be with the Lord four days later on June 24th after suffering a great deal.  I am so glad we were with him that last Father's Day.

He was 64 years old when he died.  He had been planning on retiring two months later when he turned 65.  He worked very hard his whole life and I wish he had had time to just relax and enjoy his life.  But God had other plans.

So Father's Day is always a hard day for me because I miss him so much.  But I know I will see him again.  I love you, Dad.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


It was farm week again today.  I was really happy this week because we got a lot of things I actually use and don't have to look up recipes for.

There was:
     1 head of butterhead lettuce
     1 bunch of carrots
     1 pint of blueberries
     2 heads of broccoli
     1 organic baby fennel
     1 bunch organic baby onions
     1 lb. English peas
     3 slicing cucumbers
     a slice of Toma Primavera cheese
     1 dozen eggs

I am especially thrilled with the peas.  It is impossible to find peas in the pod anymore and I love peas.  I am having them for dinner tonight.  While watching the TV show "Simply Ming" I saw a recipe for rice with fennel, onions and celery, so I am making that too.  Let's see if we like it.  At least we are adventurous in our veggie eating.

It's so good to get nice organic vegetables all summer long.

I also got another impatience plant for the flower bed and an eggplant plant with a baby white eggplant already growing.  I am a happy girl.


I haven't posted a recipe in awhile so thought I'd give you one for my favorite dessert.  I got it off of  It is very easy.  I've made it a lot with various fruits and it has never let me down.  If you need a quick dessert, this is the recipe for you.

Picture from google images.


1/4 c. butter
4 c. peeled and sliced peaches, nectarines or apples
1/2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. plus 2/3 c. baking mix (Bisquick)
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tbsp. firmly packed brown sugar
2 tbsp. milk
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In 1-quart shallow casserole, combine peaches, sugar, 1 tablespoon baking mix and cinnamon. In medium bowl, mix remaining 2/3 cup baking mix with brown sugar. Cut in butter until mixture is size of small peas. Stir in milk until moistened; drop spoonfuls onto peaches. Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted into crust comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

Friday, June 17, 2011


What a day!  I left for the interview in plenty of time.  I got there at 9:20 (my appointment was 9:30) and there was no parking.  Not here, not there, not anywhere!  I drove around for 15 minutes and finally saw a guy pull out of a spot three blocks away.  I immediately pulled in, paid the parking kiosk (I couldn't figure out how to do it at first) and ran three blocks to the library.  The pleasures of driving in center city!

When I got to the building, they weren't open yet, so I had to walk another block to the back of the building and go in the employee entrance. Of course that took more time.  By the time I got to Human Resources I was 20 minutes late.  What a way to start an interview!

 Wish I could have parked here, but they are doing construction and all these parking spaces are gone!

I apologized for being late and everyone said it was OK.  They understood about parking.

The interview lasted a whole 10 minutes.  They asked me what my strengths were, how I would handle different problems, why I would make a good LA2.  At the end they asked if there was anything else I could tell them about myself.  I mentioned that I have an Associate's Degree in Library Science and that made an impression on them, especially when one of the interviewers knew my college professor.  I also told them I had helped to teach the new Sirsi computer system when it first came in.  The two interviewers wrote that down too.  And even though I was on the payroll for 15 years, I had volunteered for 4 years before that so I really have 19 years worth of experience.  "Oh, a volunteer!" one of them said and wrote that down too.

So all in all it went very well.  Hope this is a good sign that they liked me.  But where I want to be is not available and where they want to put me is in a bad neighborhood far, far from home.  Guess I will see what happens.  I can always turn it down.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Tomorrow morning is my interview at Human Resources for the Library Assistant 2 job.  I am excited and a little nervous about it.  I hope they offer me a job close to home.  

Because of Joe's disability it is not possible for me to work far from home.  Only twice have I had to go home because he had a seizure and had fallen out of bed.  But I don't want to be 30-45 minutes away if it would ever happen again.

I will be sure to let you know what happens next on my trip through life.

Monday, June 13, 2011


Four years ago today I had surgery for breast cancer.  For the last four years I have been cancer free.  I am thankful to God for every day that He has given to me.

Joe took me out to dinner to celebrate.  We stopped at Target on the way home and I got some new shoes for work.  I tend to wear canvas shoes because I am on my feet a lot and regular sneakers are heavy by the end of the day.  The ones I am wearing now I have had for over a year and they are in sad shape -- starting to go in holes.  Joe said he wanted to buy these for me so that I am comfy and to celebrate my special day. 

It was a terrible day at work.  I almost didn't go in because my knee has been bothering me again.  But good thing I did.  Our part-timer didn't show up and my supervisor's son got sick and she had to go home at lunch time.  One of the librarians was on a vacation day.  So we were really shorthanded.  Of course that was when all the kids in the neighborhood decided that they should come into the library to use the computers.  It was very crowded.  Lots of people returning videos too.  I am very tired, so it's off to bed for me.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Today was a special day at Wissinoming Bible Fellowship Church.

Joe was installed as an elder at our church.  Here he is with Pastor Wayne.

Shaun was installed as an elder also.

Sydney and Patrick were installed as a deacon and auxillary deacon.

It was a short, but very moving ceremony.

At the end Pastor Justin prayed for the men and their desire to serve God in their new responsibilities.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


I finally got around to getting outside today.  It's just been too hot this week to do anything.  So today was the day.  I got the grass cut and then cleaned up the patio.  How do I accumulate so much stuff?

The next thing I did was my center bed with the gazing ball.

My mums came back this year.  I thought they had died.  And one is starting to bloom.  Stop!  Don't you know this is the wrong time of year for you to bloom?

All of a sudden even though it was sunny it started to rain.  I stayed out for a little bit, but then it got heavy and I had to run into the house and wait until it was over.

Joe bought me this wind chime for my birthday a couple of years ago.  I love it.

So after the rain let up I weeded the small bed near the house and planted the impatience I bought at the farm last week.  The flowers have fallen off, but there are lots of buds on it.  I want to get another plant when I go next week.  There's one lamb's ear plant left.  I used to have a lot of them that I got from my sister.  Hopefully this one will spread to fill in the bed.  I also put in new solar lights.  They are looking beautiful tonight.

I put my lettuce in a tall pot to save it from whatever animal was eating it.  It's looking good.

But my poor herbs have been burned up by the heat.  The rosemary, parsley and chives are still there, though, so hopefully they will recover.

I planted the squash plant in my long container.  I want to get another squash plant next week too.

My tomatoes are doing well too.

Here's the first tomato.  (You can tell I was digging in the dirt.  Look how dirty my hands are.)  I can't wait till it gets big enough to eat.

Friday, June 10, 2011


I got a call at work today from Human Resources.  My first thought was "What did I do wrong on my time sheet now?"  But it wasn't about that.  I am being interviewed next Thursday for a promotion!  I am so excited about it.  Even though I'm going to be working only a few more years, it would be so great to have the extra money (and extra pension) coming my way along with more responsibility.  I will let everyone know what happens.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


It was very hot there today.  Up around 97 degrees.  The mayor closed all the schools in the city at 1:30 p.m. so the library was full of kids.  And I do mean full.  They were loud.  And I do mean loud!  When I was a kid I was afraid to whisper in a library.  What happened to those days?  But they weren't bad or destructive or anything.  It just gets loud with 30-50 kids all talking at the same time.  I guess a lot of parents were working and the library was a safe, cool place to be,

I had a lot of energy today.  I got a lot done.  I couldn't figure out why I was moving around like I was until I realized I had been drinking caffeinated iced tea.  Apparently that is the secret to my success!  Ha, ha!

I was so tired tonight so we went and got hoagies for dinner.  I was going to cook, but this was a nice treat.

You know on a day like this there had to be a strange phone call.  Here it is:

Me:  Richmond Library.
Man:  Is this the Free Library of Philadelphia, Port Richmond Branch?
Me:  Yes, it is.  (Knowing this is a salesman, just by the way he is speaking)
Man:  Oh, good!  Could I speak to the owner please?
Me:  The library is owned by the City of Philadelphia.
Man:  It is?  Oh, well then I need to speak to the mayor.  Is he there?
Me:  No, his office is at City Hall.
Man:  Oh, well I'll call there.  I want to present to him a wonderful offer.  Thanks for your help.  (Hangs up.)

Yes, the heat brings out the best in everyone, even over the phone.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Today is my grandmother's (mother's mother) birthday.  If she were alive she would be 107 today.  She died in 1969.  I was a young teen, so didn't really get to know her the way I wish I could have.

Here is a rare picture.  I'm the only one in the family that has this picture.  I want to make copies for my brothers and sister so I took a digital picture of it.  If you click on the picture it will get bigger and you can see it better.

They are (from left to right) my great-great grandmother Elizabeth Barrett, my great-great-great grandmother Susan Kenny, my great-grandmother, Gertrude MacElroy and my grandmother Sylvia MacElroy (later Evans).  By looking at this picture I imagine my grandmother was about 4 or 5 years old, so it was probably taken around 1908 or 1909.  I know it was in the backyard of a house in the neighborhood I live in now.  Probably just a few blocks from my house.

I have been researching my family history and it's really fascinating finding out things about these people.  And who has a picture of four generations of their ancestors?  This is a real gem.

So happy birthday, Grandmom.  I wish I had known you better.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Yesterday was the first farm co-op day of the summer seasonIt was so good to get some fresh organic food again.  And what we got was beautiful!  We got:
          a head of green leaf lettuce
          a bunch of mint
          a bunch of swiss chard
          a bunch of organic kale
          a quart of strawberries
          2 lbs. of crimini mushrooms
          a bunch of asparagus
          2 lbs. of zucchini
          1 lb. of cheddar cheese
          1 dozen eggs

I have menus planned for the whole week to try to use these things while they are fresh.  Joe and I tried the strawberries and they were the best we have had for a long time.  Very sweet.

I also bought an impatience plant and a yellow squash plant.  The squash already has small fruit on it.

And here are my flowers for this week.  I think they are really pretty.

Went to church this morning.  The message was about the ascension.  Very interesting and thought provoking.  I had to hurry out at the end though because I was working this afternoon.

A water pipe in our basement sprang a leak yesterday and was spraying water all over the place.  We had to turn the water off in the house and call a plumber.   Fortunately it was an easy fix, but the money I made today working overtime will just cover the cost of the plumbing.  Sigh.  We never seem to get ahead.

But at least we have good food to eat!

Friday, June 3, 2011


Here it is my last day at the Fishtown Branch for the summer.  I have been working here for two years now and have always brought my lunch.  Today I was running late and didn't have time.  So I walked a couple of blocks and went to a Dunkin' Donuts that I saw around here.  I was pleasantly surprised.  The service was good, the people were friendly, the place was immaculate and the food was tasty.  I had an egg and cheese on croissant sandwich.  It was yummy.  Why did I wait so long to go there?

Thursday, June 2, 2011


While making dinner tonight I glanced out the window and saw the sky.  It was so beautiful I just had to take some pictures of it.  The pictures just don't do the sky justice.  It was much more vivid than it seems.  I am inside so much working that I rarely see the sky.  It just reminded me of how beautiful God made the world.  What a wonderful God we have!

He has made all things beautiful in its time...   Ecclesiastes 3:11