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Special Memories
Growing Up  
Some of my fondest memories growing up were walking to the local grocery store in Kidder, MO, where my grandparents (Cornelius) lived, with a little loose change in hand & getting a ice cream bar with my cousins.  We'd eat it on the way back to their house then go upstairs & play in the attic.  There were these little miniature doors that led to storage areas but we would pretend to play store or just hide & seek.  We'd enjoy a nice Sunday dinner with my grandma's maccaroni & cheese.  Years later, after I was married, she shared her secret with me & now my son, Dallas, loves my mac 'n' cheese (grandma's recipe).  Thanks grandma.

I remember my grandpa smoking his pipe or cigars & blowing smoke rings.  We would try to catch them.  I remember helping my grandma run the freshly washed laundry through the old time ringer washer.  I thought it was so neat to watch the clothes get so flat!

I also had tons of fun with my other grandparents, Nannie & Grandpa Alden.  I remember my grandpa taking  his false teeth out and making funny faces without them!  We would have bunking parties for all grandkids'  birthdays.    We'd play  "Authors" card games and Dominos and have weenie roasts...that was the big thing.  I remember milking the cows & squirting milk at the cats.  Fresh cow's milk was always my favorite thing to drink.  I remember Grandma skimming the thick cream off the top & setting it aside to make fresh butter.  We'd go gather eggs from the hen house.  When I got older, I remember there being a copperhead or two that my dad had to come & get rid of because they were eating the eggs.  Once in a while, my brothers would have calf riding comtests.  It was fun to see who would be the first to fall off.

When it came time for the local 4-H fairs & the state fair, my mom & I would make a shopping run to St. Joe.  We'd stop at the Goodrich Dairy store, or whatever it was called ,and get some ice cream before heading 
home.  When we got home, sometimes we would go to the store & get all the fixins' to make our own bananna splits for later on.  I also remember the family would always watch Disney movies on Sunday nights & mom would always make popcorn & homemade fudge...Yummy!

Mom & I played Canasta for hours on end.  When I was sick & had to stay home from school, she'd always get me paper dolls to play with.  I remember her taking us fishing in the afternoon when we got off the school bus.  I used to fish ALL the time...I was such a tom boy.  I loved to climb trees & ride my brothers' motorcycle.

Growing up for me was mostly fun but I hated not having anyone close by to play with.  I had to work hard, mowing the yard & working with the cattle.  In the summer, when I was old enough, I helped haul hay from the field to the elevator where I unloaded the wagons for the guys in the barn. I always had a crush on the guys in the hay crew.

I couldn't wait to be able to ride Robert's Honda 100 motorcycle.  I got pretty good at jumping terraces & popping some small wheelies!  That was a blast for me!

My Best Friend In The World  
God carved out a special place in my heart just for you when our paths crossed in 1991. How has it turned into that many years? It seems you have always been a part of my life.  Little did I know,  what a very special  friend you and I would become.  We instantly bonded and became as close as sisters and the best of friends. There are friends that are ALWAYS there for you.  You are that kind of friend to me. The kind of friend you could call at 4:30 am with a sick child and you would bring over Tylenol and cough syrup. You would ask, what took you so long to call?  What is most valuable is not what we have in our lives, but WHO we have in our lives.

It was an honor when you asked me to be your matron of honor in your wedding to Bruce. I've shared some special times with your family. Some were babysitting Whitney, the birth of Dallas, (my video taping the happy occasion, even if most of it was of the floor :-) until I got the hang of it.  In years to come, their crinkled little noses pressed against clean windows, toothless giggles, potty training, bedtime stories, birthday parties, spiked fevers, crutches, twisted ankles, kindergarten, grade school, jr high, high school, tears when they lost a favorite puppy & kitten and hundreds of questions that were hard to answer.  Whitney is now almost ready to graduate and preparing for college. We watched as Whitney turned into a beautiful young lady, it seems she was born under a lucky star. She will no doubt be successful in all that she endeavors. Dallas is beginning Junior High and will be in band & starting to play sports & have girlfriends.

You are the most beautiful person inside and out that I have ever known. You are a PROVERBS woman in every way. (Here's where you read every verse in Proverbs to see how wonderful you are). You are so caring, thoughtful and compassionate of others. You have enriched others lives in so many ways.  You have turned so many simple everyday things into special occasions. You asked yourself what in life has lasting meaning and live your life as though that matters. You have important goals raising and loving your family. You put your love for God and those things first in your life.   You  always see a future filled with hope and promise.

You have struggled through some tough times and found happiness with Bruce and began to live life again with a stronger faith and a newfound direction. It seems that no matter what the circumstance, we support each other with our long long talks, hugs, tears and have prayed together many times to our God.  We share a strong faith in the Lord and He has blessed me with your support, encouragement and a soft place to fall sometimes. We always have each other to lean on and you have filled my heart with a friendship I truly cherish. Thank you for being YOU and for loving me. 

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