Sunday, December 21, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I’m back, in one piece

Thank the Lord, I made it home ok, and with no pain at all! We made it home from the airport at 2 am Friday morning.  I am very tired, and yet the holiday comings and goings are still unrelenting.  Thank you all for your concern!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

From Facebook

Just to keep those of you on this forum thingy updated, here are some posts from my Facebook page:

I am having a good visit with my family out in CA, but I have been sick the whole time. I started out the trip thinking it was just a passing cold, which I attributed to our recent cold weather. However, when I landed in Phoenix, and again in Orange County, I thought my eardrums were going to explode. Everything sounded like I was with plugged ears off and on (mostly on). I sound funny, and am starting to get a bad cough. I was able to find another flight going out Thursday morning (I was supposed to fly home Tues) so hopefully I will be a little less congested by then. I have an appointment with my old family doctor in Hemet on Tues, so maybe he can hook me up with ear drops or something. I just worry about causing permanent damage to my ears! So, at the moment I am sniffling over my mother's computer. My sister, mom and I are going to hit the craft store, so that should make me feel somewhat better I'm sure... I'm really sorry about missing Weds night ladies!! I wish I could be there.

This sloshy feeling in my ears is NOT my brain liquifying, as some might imagine. I can tell you it is a freaky feeling tilting my head from one shoulder to the other and feeling fluid moving around in my ears, but nothing comes out! I went to see the doctor who validated my concerns about flying. He said the membrane in my ear that is suppose to look like a sail fluttering in the breeze, is concave, red and rigid. Hmmm. He concurred that if I had flown today, I would very likely have burst my eardrums. He likened it to ear trauma divers get from surfacing too fast. (I suppose ascending and descending 30,000 ft. three times in a day, with already swollen ear drums may have caused a leeeetle damage. So, in order to attempt Thursdays flight without incurring more pain and suffering, I was given a cortizone shot, Nazonex to take at night, Singulair at night, Allegra once a day. Then every 4 hours I am to take a double dose of Sudafed, and Ibuprofen. I hope I can keep it all straight. But it is encouraging to know that I was not just imagining things, and this was a serious problem.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Darrah’s Etsy

Darrah’s Etsy shop! <---Click here.  DSC04929

She is moving her jewelry on to it, and creating new fall/winter themed jewelry.  She has also made these incredibly cute pocket/cell phone holder bags out of old jean pockets.  Some she has even converted to hold pads of paper on the refrigerator.  Most just look really cute hanging on your purse strap.

Rose Quartz and Pearl stretch bracelet trio



Sparkling zircon and Iolite Briolette Dangle Earrings

Headaches and new additions


We FINALLY got our new washer and dryer, but not after major inconvenience and headaches.  The story goes like this…

On November 16th, Sears had a fantastic Friends&Family sale. They were offering these Samsung washer/dryer PAIR for the price of ONE of them!  We had planned on going with (and researched) the much cheaper, non-electronic, top loaders but when Hubby’s brother Michael told us about this, it sounded too good to pass up.  We had some problems with our washer, but it was still hanging in there.  Anyhoo, the sale was from 6pm-9pm, so off we went.  When we got there, they were out of them but were still placing orders for people. We were told that for a little bit more money, we could get the set in blue instead of white, and they would come in sooner. No problem. The salesman said to come back the next day, and he would see if he could get a hold of a white set and confirm our order.

When we came back, the sales person canceled the order for the blue ones, and ordered the white ones –but told us after he rang up the sale that the delivery date would be at the end of January. No way! So he canceled the white order, and un-canceled the blue order.  He printed everything out – it all looked legit, and said that they would show up on Weds, Dec 3. 

In the meantime, our washer started flooding the laundry room again! So, I could no longer use mine.  Darrah was kind enough to let me use her machines, and I have been hauling laundry next door and back all week.  Wednesday came, and we got the run around on the phone from Sears.  One associate said the order was canceled, another said it would come on Friday, and two others hung up on us.  So I marched down to the store, and saw for myself that the store computer said they were ‘promised’ on Weds.  We had already invited Matt & Ben Ruga (& their truck) for dinner to help us with it, so they just played video games with Hubby instead.  Friday came, and still no washer.  They said to call back in the evening after the trucks came. We called Steve & Erika and they brought their truck over. We called at 7, no washer; and at 9, no washer. They said to call back on Saturday. Meanwhile, on Friday night we had a 10pm soccer game at which Hubby injured his knee. He has been hobbling around in pain, but we think it’s just a badly bruised or strained.

On Saturday morning I called Sears and a nice female associate said that they were in the store.  By this time they knew me by last name (as the crazy lady who keeps calling about the washer), said she saw our name on the ‘Samsungs’.  I called to see if Brian was available to help carry them up the stairs, since Hubby was now out of commission, and we called Steve & Erika again. They were nice enough to meet us down at the store.  We get there… and they have no idea where our washer and dryer is.  No record of it coming in on the trucks, and no idea what that woman saw with our name on it.  After an hour or so of looking for it, exchanging heated words, etc we were ready to scream.  Some how, in this day and age, they are unable to track an item for you! How is this possible?!  Everything you order online is traceable, how can it be so hard for Sears?  They couldn’t tell us where our washer was, or even a close guess as to what day it would arrive. AAAAACK~!  So what do we do?  They have our money- we have no washer.  I pitched a fit, and finally the sales manager told us that they would give us a ‘comparable’ deal on a washer they had in stock, or we could buy the blue floor models of the same kind we ordered.  They were sitting in an outside garage, and had been scratched and dinged up a little.  I complained a leeetle bit more, and the manager agreed to take $100 off because of the dings and scratches.  I just wanted to get a washer home, I didn’t care if it was hot pink. 

Long story short, we have a new washer and dryer in our house.  Thankfully, they work well so far, no puddles on the floor! What a headache though.  I think we will think twice about buying something in a store that has to be ordered/backordered.  

Go Flyers


I love hockey!  I never thought I would get into it, but I really, really love it!  I have come to know the players, and have a few favorites… and I actually understand the game!  Other sports seem so dull now.  I keep waiting for a fight to break out at a football game, but I am always disappointed! And now, even professional soccer players look like they are moving around the field soooo slowly.  Hubby and I went to a game up in Philly with Steve and Erika on Thursday night.  We lost in overtime, but it was so much fun! We got all-you-can-eat seat tickets for $35 each! You can eat more than $35 at a game.  Thankfully, I was able to show some restraint.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving


Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  We had a house full!  We drove to Lancaster to pick up Ray and Ruth Land on Wednesday. Cindi was kind enough to cook the turkey, and we had enough food left over to feed 5 or 6 more!  Michael is a great cook too and he made the gravy.  Grandma Sikora was there, and Cindi’s brother Steve and his wife Suzie stopped by for a visit. 

DSC04968  DSC04987







What are you thankful for today?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Fall Gathering

   We had a Ladies Fall Gathering at my house this past week.  It was so much fun!  We swapped recipes and decorating ideas.  Darrah put some of her jewelry out, IMG_7329and nearly everyone brought sweets!  We had so many wonderful treats there was enough for everyone to take some home.  Why is it that women congregate in the kitchen? : ) Someday I need to get a bigger kitchen to accommodate more people!

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Saturday, November 08, 2008

Out of the goodness of his heart

We have a new toy in our house.  Hubby bought a new HP TouchSmart computer.  The screen is huge, and you can actually touch the screen to do things and/or use the traditional mouse and keyboard. He has been having great fun with it! Then to my surprise he told me that it was for me! He wanted to get me a desktop pc so that I wouldn’t have to hunch over a tv tray to work on ‘my’ laptop like I normally do, and he wanted to replace it with something faster to handle the mountain of pictures I try to store and work on.  Isn’t he a doll, doing all of this just for me?  ; )  He has worked very hard on it, uploading all my pictures, videos and programs, and I am very thankful to have such a considerate husband. It is a lot more comfortable to work on… and it is pretty cool.

IMG_7321In other news, we are not selling our house anymore. Well, it’s more like it didn’t sell in the time we had to get into a new home, so we took ours off the market.  I’m sure it’s no coincidence that we decided to sell our house right before the economy tanked, so we took it as a sign from the Lord and we are moving on.  We are very comfortable here, and very thankful for it.

Mom and Papa John were out here for a visit a few weeks ago! It was so good to have them here.  Sometimes, I just miss my mommy.  Fall is in full swing so we took a trip up to Lancaster and road on a train to get a view of the countryside… and Papa John is a train enthusiast.  IMG_7283 It really is beautIMG_7289iful country. 





I am frequently in awe at the wonders of God’s creation, but no more so than in the fall.  The beautiful colors that can take your breath away, and the multi-hued trees look like they have been hand-paiIMG_7294nted by God.

This was a two person job. There are two teams of horses and the driver you can’t see is steering the actual corn-picking  apparatus, while the boy is

   IMG_7312                                                                          keeping the  trailer in line right behind it. The white barn is vented for drying tobacco, the other stores tons of corn cobs! Maybe for feed?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Fall Fun

We found this quaint road with beautiful trees, turning every color of fall.  We tried to coax, cajole, beg and plead with Lily to get her to smile, she was not cooperating!  But, in spite of her running away from me most of the time, she still looks adorable, and I managed to get a few shots to turn out ok.  Look at her cute little curls!  Did I mention that it’s beautiful here in the fall ?!

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Thursday, October 09, 2008

Celebrating Autumn


I am celebrating Autumn with Clairol #22. 

Darrah celebrated Autumn by hosting a PartyLite party at her house.  Everything was very fall and gave you warm fuzzys inside. She made this IMG_7278fabulous pumpkin dip for



ginger snaps and mulled cider in the crock-pot. It is so exciting to see the leaves starting to change. The burIMG_7279sts of red and

gold in the trees is just a glimpse at the beauty that is to come!


I spoke to them today and both said they were feeling much better than they expected to! They have bruising from the airbags, but thankfully no further injuries that they can find.  They seem to be in good spirits, and are still trying to decide what to do about a vehicle. Thank you all for your continued prayers for them.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Prayers Needed

My grandparents, Ken and Eunice Fournier were in car accident earlier today.  I don’t have details on the accident itself, but both of their airbags deployed and they have cuts and bruising from them.  My Uncle Dan took them home to their house, and they are going to the Doctors in the morning to get checked out.  They are shaken, I’m sure frightened and by tomorrow, will be very sore.  They, along with our family, would value your prayers.  Grandma has considerable neck and back pain on a daily basis, and I’m sure this is will take her a very long time to recover from.  Coupled with the economic  strain that has resulted from plummeting stocks on Wall Street, and the loss of most of their grandchildren moving out of the area, they are in much need of prayer.  Please lift them up.  My heart goes out to them.  I love them dearly, and regret that I am  so far away.


Sunday, October 05, 2008

The Sikora’s

It was time for our annual family picture!  sikora family 08

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Heavy Metal

This past Sunday, Hubby IMG_7207and I drove up to Valley Forge National Park to listen to a concert of sorts.  A friend from work had told me that his friend, Doug Gefvert was a Carillonneur and played at the Washington Chapel there on Sunday afternoons.  A Carillon is a set of bells. There were at least 50! It was a fascinating experience! We climbed this teeny tiny spiral staircase up IMG_7182the bell tower to








the small room that houses the ‘piano looking’ instrument used to actually play the bells.  It consists of wooden levers, which are connected by cables directly to the bell clappers.  Similar to a piano, the harder the lever is depressed, the sharper the note will sound.  Some of the larger bells require more force to strike, and are linked to foot pedals. I took a short video of him playing Amazing Grace.  He is very talented! This is his profession, and he skillfully answered all of our questions.


The Washington Memorial Chapel that houses the bells is a tribute to George Washington, as seen in all the carvings of soldiers.  The grounds areIMG_7202 beautiful as well and hopefully we can go back after the leaves start to change.  It will be magnificent. This  was a great learning experience, and we had so much fun! 




In October they are playing the original silent b/w version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame inside the chapel, and they have hired an organist to play along with the movie.. and there will be bells involved as well.  How incredibly cool is that going to be! 

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Pictures to make you chuckle

Swim day at Grandpa's house.
Grinning with mouth full of pear

Giving big brother 'the look'.

Flying Leap

Taking a hike