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Sunday, December 3, 2017

Randon - still making me laugh!



Did you know God has a sense of humor? I’ve experienced it firsthand this past week and I’m still laughing.

It began on Thanksgiving Day. I had no plans on my days off except to work on crochet projects I’m trying to get done for Christmas. One was a Christmas stocking. Now you must understand, our family has matching stockings and I wanted to make one just like the others - you know, so they wouldn’t be mismatched or look different.

Problem #1: I couldn’t find the pattern I’d used on the others. It was a pattern I bought for a dime when I visited a craft fair back when I was in high school. It was typed (with a real typewriter) on a plain page, smudges, typos and all. I have had it so long and used it so often, certain lines are barely readable with all the creases, fading, etc. I really wanted to find that pattern.

Problem #2: the other project I wanted to work on required an H size crochet hook. H is a common size, used for a lot of projects, but I couldn’t find one. I checked my hook collection which should contain every hook size known to exist in multiple quantities (see photo), but no H. I checked again. I checked three times and four. No H. I checked the drawers containing craft things, I checked bags containing yarn for current projects. I even checked under chair cushions. Still no H.

So what was a girl to do? I had days off from work and couldn’t work on either of these projects. The only option was to tackle the mess in my storage room. Do you have a junk drawer that’s crammed full of stuff and anytime you lose something, that’s a good place to start looking? Well, I am embarrassed to admit it, but the honest truth is that not only do I have a junk drawer, I have an entire junk room. Oh sure, we call it the computer room or the sewing room or it’s even been referred to as the “study” a time or two. Now that’s a word from the past (or from one of Randon’s clue games). Anyway, this junk room surely held both my missing pattern and an H crochet hook, if I could only find them.

Early Friday morning I began pulling stuff out of the the junk room and didn’t stop until most of the room was bare. Yeah - that solved nothing except transferring the junk from one room to another. Now began the hard part. Going through it, getting rid of what I didn’t need and putting it all back in some semblance of order. This process took the better part of Friday and Saturday and still isn’t completely done. I actually found the stocking pattern. I am going to make about a gazillion copies of it and put them all in different places so I’ll be able to find it again whenever I want. I don’t dare put it in the logical place, with my crochet patterns. No. That’s too easy. I like to make things really hard.

I found all sorts of interesting things during this process including the left half of three one-dollar bills. I found them all in different places, stuck into random piles of other stuff. I can only presume this was one of Randon’s tricks, though I can’t imagine why he did this - but this is so Randon, it just makes me laugh out loud.

As you’ve probably guessed by now, I didn’t find an H crochet hook. It’s not like they cost a fortune, and my husband would certainly buy me one when he went back to town on Monday. And anyway, I could make the Christmas stocking now. So I did, on Saturday night, until I ran out of red yarn and had to order some more. Now what? There was still a Hallmark Christmas movie on TV and I needed to get this crocheting done. I picked up the pattern again for the project I wanted to start. Lo and behold, the size hook I needed was an I - NOT an H. I had several I’s. I started crocheting with my I hook thinking how God must be smiling. Not only had He answered my prayers to find my pattern and the hook I needed for my project, but He’d seen to it that I cleaned out that awful mess that needed to be done a long time ago and given me a little love-note from Randon in the form of 3 half-dollar-bills in the process. Yes, God definitely has a sense of humor, but He wasn’t done yet.

Fast forward to a week later. It is Saturday night, I’m happily working away on my crochet project with my I hook. I didn’t bother to buy the H yet because I put it on my Christmas list instead, figuring Santa could easily slip one or two of those into my stocking on Christmas Eve. Then, I get to the part in the pattern that says “Switch from the I hook to the H hook”. You know that thing we learned in school about always reading the directions clear through before you begin? Yeah, I didn’t do that. Now I had just lost a whole day of this weekend because I wouldn’t be able to work on my crochet project the next day. I’d have to ask The Hubs to buy me a hook on Monday and maybe I could get on with it Monday evening. Feeling sad, I laid down my crocheting and decided I might as well just go to bed. As I was getting ready for bed, I started thinking about all the places I’d looked for my H hook and didn’t find it. I was certain there was no place else I even knew to look.

Ever have one of those moments when something totally weird pops into your head and you have no idea where it came from? Well, I had one of those moments just then, except I’m pretty sure I know where it came from. “You didn’t look in the pencil cans.” Say what?

The pencil cans are actually three tall cups I kept on top of the little chest of drawers in the junk room. I had them there for the boys so they could always find a pencil when they needed to do their homework. My youngest son graduated from college a year ago, which tells you how long those cups have been there and also how long it’s been since anyone used them. Why would I look there for a crochet hook? Why would I even think about these cups in the first place? I was tempted to just go on to bed, but I have learned over the years that it’s not a good idea to ignore those random thoughts that seem illogical at the time. Anyway, what could it hurt to check?

I picked up the first cup. Crammed full of pencils with worn off erasers, desperately needing to be sharpened. Second cup - much the same with a few ink pens that no longer worked and a stray crayon or two. I’m thinking I really need to get rid of this stuff when I notice an old pompom saved from some long ago sporting event pep rally, also laying on top of the chest-of-drawers. “I should throw that thing away too,” I said to myself. I picked up the pompom and guess what I found?

No, not an H crochet hook, but the other half of two of the dollar bills! Randon must be laughing his head off watching me from heaven. I picked up the halves and compared them to the other halves I’d found last week. Yep - two perfect matches. I’m laughing to myself as I lay them on the kitchen table so Hubby can see in the morning and have a laugh as well. Off to bed now.

“But wait - what about the third cup of pencils?” The voice wasn’t audible, but it may as well have been. I went back to the room, picked up the third cup, and there among the eraserless, dull pencils and dried up ink pens was a bright red H crochet hook.

So, God is belly laughing right now and I’m laughing with Him - and Randon, as I crochet away with my H hook. And the other half-dollar still missing? I’ll bet you three bucks I find it someday!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Vacation



We went on a brief vacation this last week to Cuchara Colorado. It is the same little town my family loved to visit when my brother, sister and I were kids. We were there to celebrate my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary.

The family picture has been a dream of my mother’s for a long time. The whole family has not been together at the same time for many years. The 5 people on the left are my brother Tim, his wife Carrie and their three children Drew, Tyler and Megan. My sister Jill and her husband John are in the middle back. My parents Rae and Joyce in the middle front in yellow shirts. My family on the right; husband Bernie, son Ty and his wife Rachel, son Nolan and his girlfriend Kasey.

I was quite taken with the resemblance of my son Ty to his grandpa in the wedding picture. What do you think? Are those two related?

That’s it, no moral of the story, life lesson, or humorous anecdote. Just a fun memory.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

FAQ Regnier Fireworks



Another fireworks season is history. If I said I loved this time of year, most all of you would know I was speaking an untruth. However, if I were to say I love what we accomplish – that would be very true. My husband and son are to be credited with the kudos for organizing a fireworks stand that funds our community event, Celebration in the Sky. They are also to be commended for pulling off a fantabulous fireworks show that has come to be a much anticipated and enjoyed local event. Me, on the other hand – well – I spend a lot of time in the background trying to put out fires (pun intended) that come up during the busiest two weeks of the year at the Regnier residence. Here is my list of FAQ and the answers I have derived over this past few weeks:

Q: How much Powerade and water can our staff drink?
A: More than you think

Q: Why is a square thing with goofy pictures and a fuse called a cake?
A:  I still have no idea

Q: How do I take a picture of our fireworks crew AND be in the picture with them as they insist?
A: Grab an unsuspecting customer who just parked his car and offer him $5 in fireworks for clicking the button

Q: How come all of our “little” packs of firecrackers aren’t connected?
A:  To prevent someone from being disappointed that it only takes a split second to blow them all up at once

Q: How many snappers are in one of those little yellow boxes?
A: As many as can fit in there

Q: How much change do I need to get ahead of time because the bank is closed weekends and holidays?
A: Somewhat more than I actually get

Q: How come it’s always so hot during this thing?
A: Because our forefathers weren’t thinking it through when they signed the Declaration of Independence in the dead of summer

Q: What happens when I don’t speak fireworks-ese?
A: I am considered illiterate

Q: What happens if a surprise rainstorm hits?
A: Everybody yells commands at each other and moves really fast

Q: What if the girls find a stray cat and fall in love with it?
A: Find a farm girl to send it home with  (Thanks David and Chloe)

Q: How do I stuff more leftovers in the refrigerator?
A: Push really hard

Q: What do we do with all the cardboard?
A: Find someone with a big garden and convince them it’s mulch

Q: What do I do when the cat thinks he’s not getting enough attention?
A:  Go find Leslie

Q: What happens when you get tired of red T-shirts?
A: Switch to the gray ones. (This also works vice-versa)

Q: What happens when an artillery rack blows up during the show?
A: Point, laugh, and keep lighting

Q: What if the printer breaks the day before we open?
A: Send hubby to town for a new one

Q: What happens when the toilet breaks?
A: My personal plumber is the man

Q: What if the credit card machine breaks?
A: Call it in the old fashioned way

Q: What do I feed 9 college/high school age kids?
A: Most anything works

Q: What were the memorable quotes of the week?
A: “Our family is crazy. We spend thousands of hours and dollars to blow things up.” by Nolan
And, in regard to the man who spent $600 and asked Chelsea to throw away his receipt so there would be no paper trail for his wife to find: “I’m glad my husband doesn’t spend that much money on fireworks” by Cindy

Q: How do I endure all those kids being around all those days?
A: Fall in love with them. I lost my heart in a fireworks stand and here’s why:

Lance: You do the yucky jobs with a grin
Avery: You make silly jokes and eat stuff
Taygen: Your quiet goes well with your muscles
Chloe: Always happy and ornery
Trista: You understand Bernie’s numbering system
Leslie: You eat the ice cream
Chelsea: You make me laugh when I’m ready to cry
Kasey: My ‘Killer Cash Register’ tamer and chief barista
Nolan: your fireworks inventions make me proud and scared all at the same time
And so ends the saga of 2017 fireworks. Save the date in 2018. We’re already working on it!