Friday, December 31, 2010

Farewell 2010-So Long Tiger!

Well it is the end of another year.  It has certainly been eventful. Mary graduated high school, Matthew lost his appendix, I was relieved from plantar fasciitis, Sarah lived and worked away from home most of the summer and we had several home repairs last summer while Jeff was gone for Air Force Duty and the LCMS National Convention. Matthew and Mary traveled without mom and dad, and most of us were able to visit Florida for a week or so. Time flew by, just as my mother predicted.  She tells me as the kids get older the years go by faster. She is right!

Our trip to Wisconsin was very nice.  We had no problems or long delays travelling.  We arrived in the evening on Monday and had a nice meal together. Watched some TV and played a game of Scrabble. Scrabble is very important activity when we go to Uncle Bill and Aunt Bobbie's.  Tuesday we went bowling with many of the Jeff's cousins and their families.  It was fun and I bowled over 100 each game, but never reached my average.  Better now than after league starts again!  Jeff had a great second game~222! Shopped at a local mall,  headed home for a pizza dinner,  followed by games of Scattergories and Catch Phrase. The movie Elf was on for our enjoyment as well.  The boys played some Wii games too.   Before going to bed, we played some more scrabble and had a magnificent game! There were some really great words.  Wednesday Bobbie made some German pancakes that were very tasty.  It reminded me of french toast.  We went over to the church/school gymnasium and played some basketball and kickball.    We were on the road by three and met Jim and family in Milwaukee to see Miller Park.  It was nice to spend some more time together.  Jeff wanted to stop in Chicago for pizza and took us to Connie's Pizza, a place he used to eat at with his family. It was very good deep dish pizza and the little pizza bones appetizer were good too!

As tired as we were, our new phones were waiting for us!  It was fun to open up and activate them even at one in the morning.  Over the past few days we have been getting our phone numbers from one phone to another.  My old phone was pink, my new one is teal!  Nice to have a change.  I have a mini keyboard so my texting should make more sense, The girls love their new phones and help the rest of us with learning about our phones.

Yesterday I got my Prius back. After a week of diagnosing, there is nothing wrong with my car. While I am glad to know the car is fine, I wonder why I smelled the gas smell so bad.  Will drive it and see how it works over the next few weeks. Mary went shopping with Brandon, Matthew went shopping with me and Sarah was happy she could watch a Lady Dutch basketball game on the computer, especially since they won!  Go Dutch!  We also hosted a youth party/meeting last night.  It went well and we have an event planned for Sunday.  They are going to see the new Narnia movie.

That brings us to today. I had a nice day at work with my little princess. Mary and Brandon went to see the "Rat Pack" New Year's show in Grand Rapids, a gift from us.  It should be coming to a close soon. Hope they had a great time! The rest of us are watching the Red Wings, college football and will see the New Year in together.  I will be making some pizza rolls for a late night snack! Jeff and Sarah have already had a Margarita!  Two hours and counting!



 What will 2011 hold for the Wilhelm's?
Short term:
  1. College Football
  2. Getting ready for church. Mary will play her cello on Sunday and I am playing the clavinova.
  3. Bulkoogi Fest- Making our favorite Korean meal before the kids go back to college.
  4. Hope to visit the Grand Rapids museum and see the Human Body Exhibit.
Long term:
  1. Job Hunt continues. I love my patient and will continue to care for her, but I really want to use more of my skills.  
  2. Jeff will retire from the Air Force after twenty eight years of service. So proud of him!
  3. More excellent concerts at GHS and Unversity of Michigan.  
  4. Losing weight? Let's hope I can do it this year!
Oh and Happy Anniversary to Kathy and Lee and a Happy Birthday to Hannah!

That is it for another year of my Blog.  Next post in 2011, the year of the Rabbit!. 

Gracie

Pictures from the Trip on the Photo Album!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Happy Days!

Christmas Day at our house was a very fun-filled day.   Sarah was the "bugler" and made sure we were all up by 0930 to open gifts.   First though some of us had breakfast and then we all helped Mary finish a crossword puzzle in the paper. Everyone liked their gifts very much! Thank you!  I realized this year, at 47 years old, that I now enjoy giving and watching others open gifts more than actually opening one myself! I still enjoy getting gifts, don't get me wrong, but the giving seems to be so satisfying!

Once the gifts were all opened we announced to the kids that we would upgrading everyone's phone and signing up for a one year contract.  That brought some real excitement to the house!  They have been wanting new phones for a while now. We spent time looking online at all the phones available to us, and decided we would try to find an alltell store open on Sunday and get them. Hooray!

Christmas Dinner was standing rib roast, real mashed potatoes, corn and pumpkin pie.  It all turned out tasty and  we had no leftovers of the meat, but plenty of corn and potatoes.  Didn't estimate too well.  Perhaps I will need to make a casserole to use up the potatoes!

Matthew played Wii games most of the day, Sarah watched her new DVD's and Mary read one of her new books and helped me with dinner.  I loaded up the pictures on the computer and have tried to keep my blog and photo album up to date. Jeff took a much needed afternoon nap and then worked at the office to get ready for Sunday church.  Overall, it was a lovely Christmas Day.  Happy Birthday Jesus!

Service on Sunday was very nice.  The orchestra did an outstanding job with their anthems! I am very proud of them.   Lunch was at home, taco salad!  I called All Tell to see where the closest store would be to get phones. There are no stores in our area anymore.  All Tell is being bought by Verizon and we are in the limbo area. Can't even find a store on the way to Wisconsin! So, the nice All Tell lady helped us over the phone and they have been ordered.  The phones should arrive this week. Yay!

The family did some shopping this afternoon and came home with some great stuff!  Jeff got a weather station, complete with an anomometer!  I got shoes and slippers that I needed.  Sarah got a new DVD player and a hand mixer. Mary bought some clothes and jewelry and Matthew got himself another Wii game.  Will I ever get to watch my new TV??  That was Jeff and My present to each other! No worries, we have plenty of time to watch TV and it is fun to watch Matthew play his games. Dinner was at Pizza Hut and then I finished up the laundry and took a snooze (otherwise I would not be awake to type this).  Mary spent some time at Brandon's house.

We will be heading to Uncle Bill and Aunt Bobbie's later today.  It will be nice to see some family and travel a little bit.  Before we leave I will still need to accomplish the following
  1. Dog to his hotel. 
  2. Trip to the bank and post office
  3. Call about my car.
Yes, my car is being repaired.  A month or so ago, the check engine light would go on occasionally, so we had  the car looked at and also had an oil change and tire rotation. Well, something happened because the mileage  report shows less miles to the gallon and I smell gas inside my car first thing in the morning.  We took the car back last Wednesday and haven't heard a thing since.  Not good.  Suppose I can call about the car from a car while travelling!

Later this week, we are having a youth dessert potluck at our house.   Trying to plan activities for 2011.  Remember when Y2K came around?  Many thought there would be all kinds of trouble. Now it is 11 years later and all is well with the computers, clocks and the like. I hope that it will be a year of turn arounds, economically, especially here in Montcalm County, MI and also a turn around for our government and country to serve in a God pleasing way.

Time will fly by this week and before I know it Mary and Sarah will be back at college and we will be back to the normal grind. Sure is nice to have a break to enjoy family and friends and celebrate the best gift of all, our Savior, Jesus!

 Gracie

PS Happy Birthday Ken!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

MERRY CHRISTMAS

We had a very nice Christmas Eve Service after a day and a half of constant activities to get ready. Cookie baking and decorating, laundry, gift wrapping and still having fun together!  I worked four hours Christmas Eve Day and had a nice day and got a lot done! Sarah's friend, Justin spent the day with us and we had a nice  time together.  He is back from Costa Rica, where he is studying abroad.  

Our Service was very nice.  The Chime Team did well and I was pleased with the orchestra too. They played for three of the hymns. It was nice to have Mary playing her cello and Matthew even played his trumpet! Good sermon and some nice videos too!  I was able to sing 2 of 3 verses of Silent Night this year.  I usually  get through one. Memories of my dad come flooding back and I tear up virtually every time.  Then I say to myself, Dad would want you to sing.  Be happy! Jesus is Born!

As per tradition from my family years ago, we had hot dogs for dinner after church with cheese balls and Christmas cookies.  Watched some college football and Christmas movies.  Mary went to church with Brandon and his family at the midnight service.  Now we are all pretty tired and going off to sleep.

I have posted lots of pictures of our activities over the past few days. Enjoy and have a wonderful Christmas!

Gracie and family

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Mistaken Identities

Sammy got the Christmas presents mixed up.  We came from a nice meal at Applebee's and found a gift opened under the tree!  If he had taken time to read the tags, he had a present just behind it and one to the side! So one of Jeff's and my present has torn open. Luckily the gift was one with two ornaments!  Perfect for just before Christmas.  Guess we had better watch him the next few days or we won't have any gifts to open on Saturday! I am getting excited!  Christmas is coming!

Yesterday was fun-filled. I had lunch with Jeff and the Mt Calvary Staff.  The food was good and the fellowship awesome.  Then I came home and took the kids shopping.  They all got some new clothes to wear for Christmas and we got some groceries too.  Mary and I quickly made up some Chicken Crescents for dinner.  By then, it was a little late to start making cookies.  So we played a little Wii and watched TV.  Really need to bake tomorrow!

Monday's trip to pick up Mary and Brandon went well. The roads were good all the way there and back. Mary's room has a new look, she has her bed lofted now with her dresser and desk underneath.  There is more room now and her couch is better situated. Sarah's friend, Kyle, met us there and then we all walked to Cottage Inn and had a delicious meal.  I finally got my cannoli and shared it with Sarah and Kyle. Brandon and Mary had Tiramisu.  We were all packed up and back on the road by 8 pm.  It sure is nice to have everyone home.  Mary and I made cookie dough after dinner! We tried to watch the eclipse through the night.  At 1 am, the sky was clear and the moon was full. By 1:30 pm the clouds were moving in and the moon only partially visible.  I did see just the beginning of the eclipse, but the rest of the night went downhill.  Mary went out around 2 am and the clouds were thick and no moon at all. :( My alarm went off at 0315 for the "peak" of the eclipse and I decided with clouds and cold, it was better to go back to sleep in my warm house. 

So tomorrow I will start the laundry, bake cookies, make a trip to Grand Rapids and finish wrapping gifts.   Better put extra tape on it so Sammy doesn't unwrap anymore!

That's all!

Gracie

Monday, December 20, 2010

Time Enough to Breathe

We are in the thick of the homestretch to Christmas. I haven't really been too stressed yet, but that time could be coming.  I have a day by day things to do list I am living by right now.   So far I am on target.  Christmas cards should go out today, and  I am waiting for the rest of my gifts to arrive by mail. Still need to have a gift wrapping marathon and bake cookies with my girls.

Sarah arrived home safely on Friday and is glad to be done with tests, papers, rehab papers and the semester!  Now she can relax and enjoy the season with family!  Matthew is glad to be done with school for a few weeks too.   He was getting pretty grumpy with the homework, but now he has Sarah home and they like playing Wii games together.

Yesterday was a busy but great day at church.  Good Sunday School lesson, Choir sang nicely, good Sermon and Sarah sang "All is Well" just beautifully!  Moved a lot of people to tears of joy, myself included! Jeff and Matthew went sledding at a nearby park in the afternoon.  Another family from church was there, and they had a lot of fun together.  Too bad more people didn't come out and enjoy the snow.  I was tired and stayed home with Sarah. We both ended up taking a needed nap! 

Last night was the last night of bowling...Jeff and I made white chocolate covered pretzels for the potluck party.  We had fun making them and they turned out pretty good.  Our team received the top prize money and a flimsy magnet for the fridge that says league champions!  I bowled over average  on the first game, but not enough to win the prize money.  Then we had a 9 pin no-tap game where I got a 188 scratch game and 279 with handicap!  I almost won the prize money, but one lady ended up with a 296. Oh well still a personal best for me...no-tap's are great!  A 9 pin no-tap records a strike if you hit 9 pins down on your first ball.  Woohoo!  My last game was horrible, but no worries, it didn't count toward anything!  Jeff had a good night too, but like me didn't win any personal prize money.

Finally, Sarah and I will be driving to Ann Arbor this afternoon to pick up Mary and Brandon.  We were going to pick them up tomorrow, but my personal weatherman advised us to get them home today if possible. We are expecting 4 inches of snow tomorrow! So, we will have dinner at the Cottage together, load up and head back to Greenville tonight!   It will be nice to have everyone home.

That means that tomorrow is cookie baking day and make sure the gifts get out day!  Busy Busy Busy!

I do take time enough to breathe!

Gracie

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Brrrrr!

It has been very cold here this week. No snow since Monday though.  I ended up cancelling kids choir and chime team.  There is plenty of snow to keep me wearing boots outside.  Not sure what the forecast is (how crazy is that?) and when we will get more snow. Just hope that Sarah makes it home safe tomorrow! Yay!  Hope that I have good weather next week when I go to Ann Arbor to pick up Mary and Brandon.

Attended Matthew's Choir Concert Monday evening and enjoyed it as always.  They announced another SNOW DAY that evening.  Matthew loves to have snow days, but they don't help with keeping up with school work.

Tuesday I attended the Chirstmas service for the circuit pastors their wives and the church secretaries.  It was very nice.  The ladies had a fun little quiz. Match the language with it's Merry Christmas.  I got 15 right out of about 20 I think.   Froehliche Weinachten!  Kurisumasu Omedeto Gozaimasu! Those are two that I will always remember.  Lunch at Winter Inn was very good. Got almost all of my Christmas shopping done, only a few things left to get.  The big job of  the day was reorganizing my music!  I think it took four or five hours!  It is so much better.  I have a nice new black and white box that I have stuff in next to the piano.  Looks nice!

I worked on Wednesday and had a tiring day.  Hailey was so busy getting into everything, but she had time to hug and cuddle with me too! Good for her to be busy, right?  She is a sweetheart!  They have a new large dog, a Mastiff...she is a gentle giant.  I like her so much.  She is good with all of the kids.



Choir rehearsal was short and productive.   I will be directing this Sunday.  Sarah is singing a solo as well. I can't wait. She sings so beautifully.  Was able to hear the last half of the Orchestra/Band concert afterward. It was nice too.  Kind of weird not seeing Mary up there.

This morning I have baked some cupcakes for the quilter's lunch, caught up with email, and talked with Sarah on the phone. That is always a treat!  Hope to wrap gifts this afternoon before a get together down the street and then a orchestra rehearsal.

Work tomorrow.  Then Sarah Home! Better get frosting!

Gracie

Monday, December 13, 2010

It's Snow Day #1!

A Winning Season! Even though we had 5 inches of snow fall and frigid temperatures, our bowling league had position night and we were bowling for first place.  We won three points and took first place for the fall season!  Next week is "party night".  We pay to bowl but the scores don't count.  We also enjoy snacks together.  My scores were all over average last night with my high game in the 150's!

Today Matthew has no school.  He was happy to hear that last night already!  So he has a  whole day to catch up with his homework after missing school to perform with the Village Green. Tonight is supposed to be the GHS Choir Concert.  We will find out if it has been cancelled, since lots of times if school is cancelled, so are the extra activities.  I hope they don't, I look forward to that performance every year.  Last year Mary's orchestra concert was cancelled due to weather.

I am getting close to finishing my Christmas shopping, and I am pretty happy with my selections.  Should hear something from the hospital I interviewed at this week.  Three possible answers 1-Second Interview 2- We would love to have you! 3-Thanks but no thanks.  Will let you know what happens.  The girls have finals this week and then Sarah comes home this weekend and I will pick up Mary  and Brandon early next week.  Hope there isn't too much snow!

So what is on the docket today?
  • Finish the Laundry
  • Start Christmas Cards
  • More shopping for gifts.  
  • Kids Choir and Chime team, depending on the weather
  • GHS Choir Concert (hopefully)
  • Wrap gifts
That is all for now...better get to that list!

Gracie

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Snowy Conditions

It has been snowing for probably close to 7 hours now and we have several inches of wet slippery snow on the ground.  Looking at the radar, there is still more coming.  It started around 6 pm and was really coming down when Matthew and I came out of wal-mart at 9 last night.  The head elder will be calling early this morning (about 5 hours from now) to see if the roads are too dangerous for travelling to church. It was pretty slippery driving home.  Matthew is doing a pretty good job maneuvering on the roads.

Matthew had a good time at his lock in, enjoying a great pizza buffet, playing laser tag, driving indoor go-karts, bumper cars,and playing arcade games.  Guess they stopped at Denny's for breakfast and he had all you can eat pancakes for $4.  Slept all morning, of course. Then he worked hard at cleaning the house. Inside chores and then hung the wreath and plugged in the Christmas lights.  Jeff helped him with some other lights in some bushes and put out the nativity set before the snow hit.  Good thing!

Jeff and I enjoyed a Barbershop Christmas Concert in Grand Rapids this afternoon. The Grand Rapids Sweet Adelines performed along with a few quartets.  They were really good! The Men's Barbershop group, I think the Great Lakes Chorus did a nice job as well.  There were two quartets that sang. Then the groups came together sang some song together and we had a little sing-a-long too! Sure glad we went to the afternoon show, I am sure the traffic was horrible for the 7pm show!

Mary surprised us with a text with pictures from the Big Chill hockey game. Michigan played Michigan State in Ann Arbor outside at the Big House!  The Wolverines won 5-0!  GO BLUE!  Hoped she stayed warm. Mary caroled around campus with the Women's Glee and had a fun time.

Sarah was busy baking when she wasn't working on her reports. She made pancakes, muffins and cupcakes!  Took time out for some fun and participated in a snowball fight with the neighbors.  Guess they all had her cupcakes afterward.  Sarah said they were delicious.

Got some laundry and shopping done today.  We will see what we can accomplish tomorrow.

Goodnight from the snowglobe!

Gracie

I have posted a few Village Green songs on the blog as you might have noticed.  Remember to pause my playlist first before playing my videos. Now, if you watch the videos on you tube (click on the little you tube square), click on subscribe or on WeatherNurse (my user name) first then subscribe and you will be notified when I upload another video. Sure hope this makes sense.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Some Good~Some Not So Good

GOOD
  1. My day at work was a good one. Hailey is doing much better and is playing and hugging.  Her new favorite thing to do is "watch" TV.  She loves to see the colors and lights.
  2. Sarah reported that she received 100% on another rehab care plan!  Woohoo! She also had a group presentation this afternoon that went "pretty well".  Two more rehab plans to go!
  3. Matthew enjoyed his Village Green Christmas Party and is now on his way to the lock-in with a local church at Craig's Cruisers.  We pick him up around 0600.
  4. Mary is signed up for her winter semester classes.  She will be taking German, Intro to Literary Studies and a technical theatre class.  She is very excited.  In addition she will receive two credit hours, one for Women's Glee Club and one for playing in a Chamber Group.  I am so glad that she will be playing Liam again!
  5. Figured out how to post my you tube videos on the blog.  I am going to try to figure out how to post them like the girls did, on the links column to the right.
NOT SO GOOD
  1. My efforts for some great Christmas gifts are faltering.  Lost items on eBay, Conflicting information on another idea, and one gift turned out it to be a dream!  Better get my thinking cap back on!
  2. Supposed to go to a Christmas Barbershop Choir Concert tomorrow afternoon. Ordered tickets over the phone on Monday and they still haven't arrived.  
  3. Winter Storm Watch right now and Jeff is concerned that Church may have to be cancelled on Sunday due to hazardous driving conditions.  Will keep you updated
That is all for now...Have a great weekend!

Gracie

Village Green Singers~"Need A Little Christmas"

Just a Quick Update...

Lunch with the quilter's was delicious.  Kentucky Fried Chicken, I brought chicken noodle soup and cookies for dessert.  It is always nice to have a nice lunch together.

We spent about 5 hours in Grand Rapids this afternoon.  First was Jeff's appointment for another opinion about his neck.  It was a good visit and we are all on the same page.  No symptoms..no surgery.  This doctor was very good about educating us about the whole situation.  We are very thankful.

Then we went shopping for an office desk chair for Jeff.  Not a lot out there worth anything.  We just couldn't find anything that was tall enough with good lumbar support and adjustable arm rests. We had fun together and bought a few things along the way.

Tonight was the annual Grand Rapids Symphony Christmas Pops Concert. It was fabulous as always!  We were part of the world premiere of a new song.  No one has ever heard it until tonight at our theatre!  How cool is that?  It was an awesome song.  Just read on facebook, that Greenville Performing Arts Center at GHS is the only other venue that the Symphony plays at other than DeVos Hall.  I think that is pretty awesome.  We are so blessed!

I am working tomorrow and I had better get better sleep tonight.  I have been going to bed too late.  It should be a pretty busy day too.
  1. Work 9-5
  2. Matthew has school with choir performances for the elemenatary schools.
  3. Village Green Christmas Party and then the Lock In at Craigs Cruisers.
  4. I need to buckle down and get the laundry done along with other unfinished chores.
  5. Barbershop Christmas Concert on Saturday afternoon.
Whew...

Night!

Gracie

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Day!

Sarah sent me this picture yesterday by text while I was at work.   Couldn't wait to share it with everyone!  The comments from the teacher says it all!  This is her grade sheet from her rehabilitaion plan for ACL injuries (knee).  We are very proud of her!  She said all of her hard work paid off, including locking herself in her room and taking it in the car while she was home for Thanksgiving.  

Sarah is also experiencing a winter wonderland. Tons of snow has fallen, her car is "buried" and her house is chilly, which is a challenge for her and her Raynaud's Syndrome.  She is doing all she can to stay warm inside and outside!

Mary is happy to almost finished with her first sememster of college.  Things are winding down and then next week is finals. Tomorrow she will be choosing her classes for the winter semester.  She is happy with her new job in the law quad, washing dishes, setting up for meals and cleaning the kitchen. I will be picking her and her friend up on December 21st. 

Matthew is busy singing with Village Green performances, One Act rehearsals and homework. This Friday he is going to a "lock-in" with another church to Craigs Cruisers.   He is very excited about it!

Today promises to busy...lunch with the quilters, a trip to Grand Rapids then to the Grand Rapids Symphony Christmas Pops concert tonight in Greenville.  So glad they make the trip here once a year! Better get running~!

Gracie

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Super Sunday-Monday- Tuesday

Super Sunday started with a great Sunday School lesson about Zechariah, Elizabeth and Mary.  Of course I included my favorite parts of the story "John leaped in the womb" when Mary arrived for her visit.  The class had a chance to leap too...we had a jumping contest, even I participated.  My other favorite part is "His Name is John". The kids made a Christmas Countdown Chain with a word from the story on each link.  That way they can remember the story each day.  Church was very nice and the kids choir did an exceptional job with one of their favorite songs, "Soon and Very Soon"!  Had lunch at church with the Sunday School and then right back to the sanctuary for Sunday School Christmas Rehearsal until almost 1:30 pm.   Downstairs in the fellowship hall there was the Voter's Meeting.



Then we were off to the Cass Street Friends Holiday Party at Greenville Floral.  It was very nice with cookies, punch and the making of wreaths.  Jeff and Matthew worked together and made a very nice wreath. Matthew even learned to make a bow! The store was decorated nicely, had snow flying outside and spent time looking at the antiques in the shop, upstairs and downstairs.  Matthew was especially taken with the pump organ that he played  and the water fall that could go in a garden. When we were leaving around 3pm, we heard that there was a bad accident at the intersection at our house. When we arrived home, sure enough our street was blocked and there were police and an ambulance there.  Looks like one car was speeding and another that failed to yield.  Whatever happened one car was pushed into the street sign which is now bent over. One person was put on a board and taken to the hospital.  I was home long enough to change my clothes, collect my jingle bells and head back to church for the Advent By Candlelight event.  The kids choir sang very nice as was the devotion too.  Then there were treats and gifts for all.

Now you might say enough is enough! But I still had to bowl 3 games, or at least try. No matter how I tried, exhaustion took over and I bowled poorly, not even reaching my average all night.  Miraculously we won a game and lost total only by four pins!  Norma reported to me today that we are still in first place.  Can you say Divine Intervention??? Hahahahahaha.  I understand that the lane conditions were less than acceptable.  I can't tell the difference, but the rest of my team can.  We still had our meal togeher afterwards and then collapsed when I got home.

Monday I spent some time on the computer trying to "win" a Christmas gift on eBay.  I lost.  Jeff and I went for a walk out in the cold air and tried to get me some exercise.  We attended the Lions Dinner at our church Monday evening and enjoyed watching Matthew perform with the Village Green.  Took some nice video that I am in the process of posting on my new YouTube account.  Search Village Green Singers.  Spent more time on the computer afterward trying to figure out how to get the pictures posted.  Stayed up way too late.

This morning I got up and ready for my job interview.   I think it went pretty well and the unit was very nice and the people friendly.  Lots of opportunity for personal growth.   I was there two hours some answering questions and some touring the unit and the hospital. I should hear something next week. Met my buddies for lunch then came home and took a little nap.   Matthew came home from play rehearsal and we headed to Wal-Mart for some shopping.  Cashed in some McDonald's coupons for dinner and then headed back to GHS for the boys Basketball game.  Jackets won!  Now, I have caught up with the Blog and emails, it is time to wind down for the night.  Guess Laundry is going to have to wait a few days.   I work tomorrow,

Thursday I bring a side dish to our Quilter's Lunch and then go to the doctor with Jeff for another opinion about his neck problems.  He is feeling fine, but feel it is better to get another opinion while you feel ok instead of making quick decisions when you are in pain.  Thursday night we have tickets to the GR Symphony  Christmas Pops Concert at Greenville Performing Arts Center at GHS.  It is always a great show, and they usually bring snow!

Have a great day!  Hoping to get more pictures posted very soon!

Gracie

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Finally Feeling Better

Praise the Lord~my cold is gone, I am back to work, shopping and keeping up with life's events.
  • Hanging of the Greens was very nice.  I was very proud of the MCLC Orchestra. We played for service, getting music minutes before it started.  This was an informal service and now our sanctuary is beautiful with the tree, lights and banners.
  • I have gotten a lot of shopping done and the rest of my list planned.  Shopping online is fun, lots of things to look at, compare prices, and even get free shipping on some orders!  Execution of the Christmas plan is in progress. Need to stay focused on the real reason for the season!  I am pretty excited!
  • First day back to work was fine. Hailey is happy and smiley!  Got lots of hugs and cuddles. I walked downtown after work and watched the Greenville Christmas Parade. It was cold, but not as bad as last year.  Got some video of the GHS Band, friends, and even some animals, a search dog team and horses. I posted one on facebook.
  • All of us had dinner at El Rancho and then attended the first Girl's Basketball game at GHS.  We lost in the end, but it was a very close game.
  • I woke up with a very bad headache, took medicince and went back to bed until almost noon. Felt better and enjoyed Wii games with Matthew,watching Harry Potter and  college football. There have been some really crazy close and OT games lately.  Glad to see that Washington won tonight. Now I am watching the Oklahoma vs Nebraska game.  For now it is tied, but it can go either way.  Come on Sooners beat those Cornhuskers!
  • We attended a wedding today as well.  It was very nice, I especially like the red color scheme.  
  • Tomorrow is going to be a BUSY Sunday. First, Sunday School (need to plan), Kid's Choir Sings for church and then there is a voter's meeting and Sunday School Program Practice. There is a neighborhood get together at a local florist before I am back at church for the ladies "Advent By Candlelight".  The kids' choir will sing and I am playing for the devotion portion.  Hope I have enough energy for bowling.  We are still ahead by 3 points, so we need to keep bowling well. My Wii bowling has been good, so maybe that will help me tomorrow night.
  • Matthew had a Village Green performance at a bank in the neighboring town of Lowell. All went well and they will be performing for many community events over the next few weeks. They will sing for the Lion's Club, Monday at our church.
  • This week is shaping up for fun too: One Act Play rehearsals start for Matthew. I have a job interview on Tuesday, and work on Wednesday and Friday. Thursday we are going to the GR Symphony Christmas Pops here in Greenville.  Friday Matthew will be going to a lock in with a Greenville Church youth group to one of his favorite places, Craigs Cruisers.  Whew!
Better get planning for Sunday School!

Gracie

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

First Snow

What a nice way to start December, with our first "real" snowfall!  It is so beautiful and there is now a white blanket of snow covering Greenville, MI.  Sarah has reported snow, of course, since Holland is in the snow belt of West Michigan.  Mary just sent me a picture from the University of Michigan getting their first snow too! Jeff was right~Winter is here! Guess I had better get the snow boots, hats and gloves out! Even Sammy wanted to go out several times this morning and sniffed the air among other things!

Doctor reports:
  • Matthew's check up went so well, he doesn't have to go back for six months! Praise the Lord!  We will have to wait for lab results to make sure that it is all normal.  No reason to think otherwise.
  • I went to the doctor's office and saw a PA yesterday.  My lungs are clear. Got antibiotics for the begininng of a sinus infection.  Feeling better today and my voice is almost back to normal!
  • Our cars are in the hospital.  The Prius is getting an oil change, tire rotation, and a once over to see why our check engine light comes on intermittantly.  The Camry needs a new part and both should be ready today! Jeff has a loaner car and Matthew continues to drive the van.  It will be his first time driving in the snow. Luckily there isn't much on the roads.
The TV shuffle is completed.  The little TV in our room moved to Sarah's room.  The old monster TV from the den moved upstairs to our room and our new 42" TV is in the den.  Wow! It is so awesome.  Matthew even played one video game before bed.  It was a long process to get everything in place, but it sure is nice.
  

Tonight is our Hanging of the Greens advent service.  The orchestra is playing the music and by the end of the evening, our church will be all decorated for Christmas!  I need to finish decorating our own house. Not too much to do.  

Well, that is all for now.  Have a great December 1st.

Gracie

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It is Here!

Not too long after I signed off the last entry, the TV arrived!  Woohoo!  Can't wait to watch it, hopefully tonight. See how busy we are.  I have also posted a picture of Sammy in Matthew's milk jug igloo. Enjoy!
Sammy was a great model today!

Grace

Anxiously Waiting....

Our 42" HDTV is supposed to arrive today!  I tracked the package and it left Lansing early this morning. We ordered other items the same day and everything is here but the TV.  I sure hope it comes before the  doctors appointments this afternoon.  What would they do with the package if we are not home???

Have got a pretty good handle on what needs to get done as far as Christmas shopping.  I can get a lot done on the computer!  Who wants to fight all those crowds anyway?  I am almost done with Christmas decorating the house and my music for church is all planned. Guess I need to practice the music now. Kids Choir and Chimes went really well last night.  Orchestra plays tomorrow.

Today is also doctor day. I have been coughing for days and just feel worn down, with no energy.  Matthew has his routine check up after his appendix was found to have a small tumor in it after it was removed.  He will have these check ups for a few years to make sure there aren't anymore little tumors developing.  The outlook is excellent, especially since his tumor was very small! Praise the Lord!

I will see how I feel before going to Sunday School practice this evening.  Suppose I could take a rest.  Wonder how many kids will come?  So many are getting sick this week.  It took me over an hour to get through to the doctor's office and another while to wait my turn to talk to someone.

Jeff informed me this morning that winter arrives tonight, looks like colder temps will be here to stay and maybe even some snow!

I suppose that you can expect some pictures of our new toy later!

Grace

P.S. My patient is home, but still sick.  I won't be at work tomorrow.  Want to be close to 100% when I am at work.  Thanks for the prayers.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Back to the Grind...

First of all, thank you for all of your prayers.  Hailey is doing much better.  I guess her pneumonia is viral so she if off antibiotics.  Hopes to be home soon.  I am supposed to work on Wednesday and Friday, however, I am sick  now.  Started with aches, sore throat and then morphed into a productive cough, congestion and feeling really tired.  Hard to sleep when I don't feel well.  Oh and I have laryngitis, no singing in church for me this morning!

Church service was nice, the orchestra played very well and we had a congregational potluck lunch.  I got up early and made yams and stuffing.  The yams are all gone and I brought some stuffing home.  Mary got back to University of Michigan safely around 6 pm after having lots of fun at home.  She helped Matthew with staining the wood of a bench that he made.  They worked together on using the wood burning kit to engrave our name and decorations on the top. They also worked on Matthew's ongoing project of building an igloo out of milk cartons. Sarah finished her homework and had time to play Band Hero on the Wii with Mary before she left and watched some TV with Matthew and me. She left when we went bowling and arrived home safely. We bowled pretty well tonight (each of us had a sad game) but ended up losing all four points.  Luckily we are still in first place, but not by much.

Besides attending the Baby Shower on Saturday, we also put up the Christmas Tree and had dinner at the Outback.  Good Steak and a Bloomin' Onion.  We watched a lot of college football and were saddened by the loss of Michigan and Florida, but happy to have a win for the Sooners!  We watched the Nevada/Boise State game; Boy! what an exciting finish.



Here's what is coming up:
  • Monday~Oil Change/Tires Rotated on the Prius; Kids Choir and Chimes; Widdle Down my "To Do List"; Doctor's appointment for me? Matthew begins the One Act Show as part of stage management.
  • Tuesday~Our New TV is supposed to arrive!  Matthew has a doctor's appointment in Grand Rapids. Sunday School Program Rehearsal.
  • Wednesday~Work; Advent Soup and Service: Hanging of the Greens.  Orchestra will be playing. Choir
  • Thursday~Quilting; Laundry, I suppose and catch up day, if that is possible.
  • Friday~ Work; Hymn...Shopping???
That is plenty to keep us busy!  Hope your week is a good one!

Grace

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Please Pray...

I just got a message that my little Hailey is in the hospital with pneumonia.  How sad I am!  Please pray for a quick and full recovery.  We try to keep her out of the hospital, so she must have been pretty sick at home for her to go to the hospital over a holiday. It takes  Hailey a long time to get better. Thank you! I want to go and visit her, but I am sick with a cough and cold too.

On a happier note, we had a fun time bowling last night with the Cory's. I was able to reach over 100 each of the three games.  Everyone did  well! Kid's wanted a late night snack, so we had Arby's  that was less than delicious but edible.  Jeff watched some football and the kids and I got the Christmas Tree and some decorations up!  Did take a break to see the end of the Nevada/Boise State Game.  Wow what and overtime ending, another undefeated team falters.

Went to bed very late and woke up needing Robitussin. Found the message  about my little princess when I came down to the kitchen. My phone was beeping.

Planning on attending a baby shower later today and of course watch some football.  Hope I am feeling well enough to go.  I don't think I have a fever so it should be fine, even if for a short time. Mary is going to watch the Michigan/Ohio State game with Brandon and Sarah has lots of homework.  Matt and Jeff will be at the "shower" too and visit with all the guys.

Well, I am going to try and get some rest now.  Thanks for all of your prayers.

Gracie

Friday, November 26, 2010

So Far-So Fun!

Thanksgiving was a nice day for all of us.  After I finished the pies, we headed to the theatre and saw "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1". It was very good, but the storyline is more complex then the first few movies.  Glad I had Matthew next to me to help me through my confusion.

Dinner took place at 6:30 pm and we had Turkey, mashed and sweet potatoes, rolls, corn, carrots, stuffing and pumpkin pie. No one could complain that they didn't get enough food.  Trivial Pursuit came next with Jeff as the winner!  That game is getting harder. Our version is so old!  Maybe we need some new, up to date questions.




 After some family discussion this morning, we  ordered a 42" LG HDTV!  It should arrive early next week!  Pretty exciting as we have been using our present TV for years and it was a donated TV for our use.  They buttons don't work anymore, so if the remote is missing, no TV.  We are grateful for all of the years of use we have gotten out of it.  We went to Wal-Mart for a few things and it wasn't busy at all! Course if we would have went at 0300 like Matthew wanted, who knows we might have had large crowds!

Now it is time for a Chicken Crescent Dinner. Mmmmm.  Brandon is coming to join us.  Then we are all off to the bowling alley for some family fun!  Hope I get 100!

Better finish up dinner.  Have a great one!

Gracie

Thursday, November 25, 2010

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Blessings to all of our family and friends on this Thanksgiving Day.  Our family has a LOT to give thanks for:

  • Jesus, our Savior, who loved us more than we can imagine and died on the cross so we can live forever with Him!

  • Safety~all of us are home.  Safe and sound. We had a long journey back from Ann Arbor.  Left by 1530 and crawled along hwy 23 for over an hour.  Turns out, there was an accident.  Thankful we weren't part of it! Even on the interstate, there were periods of heavy traffic. We finally arrived home at 1930. Two hours longer than expected! I was going to cook dinner before Sarah got home, but it turned out that Jeff and Sarah cooked dinner for us. Another Thanks!

  • Our Country~Home of the Brave and the Free.  No other country has  so much. We are thankful for our military for keeping us from harm's way.

  • Our Home~ with heat and food in the fridge.  Baked some muffins, next are the pies and then the bird.  Watching the parade on TV is a luxury to some. We have clothes to wear shoes/boots for our feet. Snow in the forecast. We will see!

  • Our Church~a place were we can not only worship God, but serve Him with ministry, music and fellowship.  I know that church is not the only place we can do this, but it is where we refuel each week (my dad's analogy) hearing God's Word and receiving the sacraments. 

  • Employment~in this time of economic troubles, we are thankful for our jobs.   I love caring for my patient eventhough the paperwork drives me crazy.  Jeff continues to maintain a busy schedule, preaching and teaching and lots of preparation!  His Air Force comittments keep him busy as well. Looks like he won't be travelling until 2011.  I am so proud of him!

  • Children~ Our kids are learning and excelling in school.  Sarah is just a year away from being able to step out with a career in Athletic Training. It is amazing how far she has come and hear all of her medical knowledge.  Mary is finishing up her first semester at U of M, working on campus and using her talent in singing in the Women's Glee Club.  Matthew is thriving as a junior in high school, inducted in NHS and enjoying the excitement as a crew/techie for the theatre. Proud and Thankful!

  • Health~Jeff avoided cervical neck fusion in October. God relieved his symptoms just days before the  procedure.  We are so thankful.  I also am thankful that I am healthy and my leg/foot is doing great.  I can keep up walking on campus and not lag behind! Sarah is healthy and keeping her Raynaud's in check in chilly Holland.  Mary is staying healthy at school, exercising with friends as much as possible. Matthew's blood work continues to be "normal" after his appendix was found to have a small tumor by the pathologist. He is anxious to play ball again!

  • Parents, Siblings, Nephews, Neices, Aunts, Uncles and Cousins~you are all so special to us and bring us joy, each one with your own special gifts.

  • Internet~a way to communicate with those we love!  

 Count your blessings! God's gifts are innumerable!

We ask for special prayers of safety for our brother Bob, who has deployed to Afghanistan and for Liz and the girls as they hold down the fort in Texas, waiting for his return in six months.

Enjoy the Turkey and Pie!

Gracie

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Good News in the Morning

Just a quick CONGRATULATIONS to Matthew for being chosen as part of the stage management team for the One Act play, "Complete Works of William Shakespeare."  One week off and then back to work!  

Getting a few things done this morning before heading to Ann Arbor.  Anxious to have everyone home!

Gracie

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

What Will We Do?

We go to McDonald's every Sunday after bowling league is over.  Last time we ate there, a sign informed us that the the dining room would be closed for 8 days for remodeling. Today they reopened. Matthew and I went in to look around.  Our "regular" spot for our after bowling meal has been changed.  The booth was removed and now there are the high table with stools.  I don't like that one bit! Luckily, our back up spot is still usable.  We have been sitting there since a car drove through the window and wall several months ago. So while it is nice, there will be some getting used to and who knows we may have to pick a new back up spot should our little corner is full.

The weather is colder and lots of wind.   I am glad to be back inside after going for gas in the van and shopping at Wal Mart.  First we arrived at the Admiral Gas Station on M-57.  It took at least 5 minutes to pump $3.01!  I asked the attendant and she said that means they are out of gas.  She needed to shut off all of the pumps.  What a crazy experience.  Then we spent nearly 2 hours in Wal-Mart shopping for things we need and looking at things we wanted.  Don't worry, Matthew and I were strong and didn't buy that big screen TV.  So we were off to McDonald's to explore and I got a small burger and fries, since I had not eaten dinner yet.  I had two turkey lunches. One at the preschool and one at the high school. My turkey for the preschool turned out very well.  The potatoes at the high school were stellar. Anyway I got a little something to eat and we were off again to the other Admiral gas station.  Why, you might ask??  Admiral is smart and kept their gas price at $2.75/gallon and Meijer's price is $2.89/gallon.  What would you do??  Luckily, they had plenty of gas and I pumped 40 dollars of gas quicker than the 3.01 at the first one.

Now we are home and I think I need to go put on my pjs, watch some TV and plan music for the rest of the year.  Maybe clearing off the table and the laundry can wait till tomorrow morning.

Goodnight!

Gracie

School's Out!

Matthew is happy that school is out for the next five days!  I asked him to ride along to Ann Arbor with me tomorrow, but he already planned to go bowling with his buddies.  Sounds like fun!  I have some ideas for family fun this week, wonder how many we will get done. I should have Mary and Brandon home by 6pm and Sarah will be home by 8pm.  It will be nice to have everyone home. Here are some of my ideas:
  • dinners
  • see a movie
  • bowling as a family
  • shopping?
  • put up some Christmas lights?
  • Christmas Tree Up??
I will be stopping in Lansing at my nursing office to sign a few papers on my way to Ann Arbor. Since I don't have to take a test as first thought, I don't have to leave until after lunch.  I hope that I won't have to deal with any bad weather.

Matthew brought home part of the set yesterday after school.  They finished striking and he brought home a section of the stairway of the von Trapp house. I think it is cool.  Mary still has a spider in her room from Charlotte's Web.  He interviewed today for stage manager for the One Acts coming up in a few weeks.  That is an exciting time! One Acts are awesome! This year is a comedy year and the show will be Shakespeare.

Mary has a new job washing dishes in the law club.  Her wage is better and it is not too far to walk.  The first semester is nearing the end and she is anxious to choose her classes for the winter semester, but must wait until December 10th.  Oh the joys of being a freshman again!

Sarah and her friends went to the town home office today and are on the list to sign a lease next week.  How exciting for her!  I can't believe that she will be a senior in college next year! Whew!  She is doing a great job.

That about does it..

Gracie

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Wonderful Weekend!

Even though it has been a very busy weekend, it has been wonderful!  Last time I updates this blog I was getting ready for lunch and my trip to Ann Arbor.  Lunch was delicious and the Thrivent meeting was short and to the point. Perfect! After I got home I did clean up the dog yard as best as I could so Matthew could rake and mow. We hope that will help Sammy stop draggin in yucky stuff into the house. Found out later that there was a whole lot more buried under leaves and long grass. Big thanks to my guys for getting it all cleaned up! The yard looks great. All the leaves are raked up and in the street waiting for the leaf sucker on Wednesday!

I was on my way to Ann Arbor by 2:30pm and had quite a nice ride in.  I was there by a little after 4 pm and Mary met me outside her dorm waiting  to let me in!  It is always nice to see her and spend time together. Had another delicious chinese meal with the Cory family, all ten of us!  So much fun!! After dinner we visited together in a lounge in the East Quad.  Mary got ready and looked gorgeous as usual.  Had a nice walk through campus to the Hill Auditorium and got seated for the concert.  WOW!  The concert was awesome, as always.  I just love the sound of a 4 part men's chorus.   Brandon looked very handsome and confident on stage singing.  So glad I was able to attend.  There is a new video on the family photo album of the men filing in.  They are so cool. Be sure click on the video tab of the photo album and watch.  I left Ann Arbor at 11pm and arrived home before 1:30 am without having to ride with the windows open or stop for food and drink.  Thank you Harry Belafonte for singing such fun songs that keep me going!  I listened to Christmas music too! They start earlier every year!

Sunday morning came too soon and I forced myself out of bed and got to church by 0830 for chime rehearsal. Rehearsal went well, and we played well for church too! Great job ladies! My played a little organ for the prelude and for the most part it went over fine.  Thanks mom for  your help setting things up over the phone! I got through the rest of the service on the clavinova and choir sang well too. Matthew did a great job turning pages for me! Look how much I have to be thankful for!

Jeff and I attended two other services this afternoon and evening.  First we went to St Paul's Lutheran church for the dedication of their new facility.  It is very nice and the service was well attended. There was a reception afterward with good food, dessert and entertainment by the Crusaders and The Hansen family.  At 6 pm we went to St Paul's Episcopal Church for the community Thanksgiving service. The church is beautiful and very friendly welcome. Although attendance was not what it should be, the service was very nice with a good message.  Of course there were more goodies and fellowship afterwards. So nice to meet new people and talk with friends, including our neighbors!

The Sound of Music ended on Saturday with another large house of people. Matthew stayed for another hour and a half to strike the set (disassemble).  The set is so big, they couldn't finish, so they will continue to breakdown the rest of the vonTrapp home this week.  He is happy that there is only two days of school this week.

Sarah and Mary will be coming home for Thanksgiving, just in time for some snowfall! It will be nice to have them home.  I will be going to pick up the Wolverines and Brandon's dad will take them back on Sunday.

Well, I am getting really tired.  Need to sleep.  Have a great week.

Gracie

PS: Looks like Mary posted a video on her youtube link from the concert last night. Enjoy.  Be sure to pause my music first! Then look for Mary's videos on the links to the right.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Quick Report

I would be remiss if I didn't report on last night's show, The Sound of Music.  I reported to duty at 1830 and there were people already there to buy tickets!  Jeff and I jumped right in and started working!  The line continued for over an hour!  I sold the last ticket at 1940, they had to hold the show to get everyone seated. It was a full house, we sold out!  Record ticket sales for the auditorium.   Tonight is the final show.  It has been a great run!

I will be back at the  Hill Auditorium  for the UM Men's Glee Club Concert.  They do such a spectacular show, I am excited to attend.  The long drive is worth it!

For now, I am going to fold the last load of laundry, pick up Sammy's yard and get ready for lunch with Jeff.  He is recerting in CPR this morning at church.  There is a craft show in our fellowship hall with some really nice things, including a U.P. Michigan Pasty for lunch.  I don't really like them, but Jeff is going to take some home for dinner tonight.  When I go back to pick up Jeff from CPR I may do a little shopping and practice the clavinova and maybe the organ for church tomorrow. So much to do!

Better go!

Grace

Friday, November 19, 2010

I Might Not Have Caught a Deer But...

I reported earlier this week, that Monday was opening day for deer season.  My nurse buddy, Marcella, is also a hunter. She went hunting on Monday and got TWO deer!  Both eight point bucks! I heard she got them within an hour too! That doesn't happen very often.  Kudos to my friend, enjoy the venison! Guess it is all in the freezer already!  WooHoo!

Marcella's Friend and Sister in Christ

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Let the Craziness Begin!

I am feeling a little overwhelmed, run down and excited about the events coming up! So I think I will keep this entry a little simple, so it doesn't take too long!

  • YESTERDAY: was work, a quick dinner, choir,  then caught the last 90 minutes of the Final Rehearsal of GHS Sound of Music. Got some pretty good pictures and a video snipet that are posted on our Family Album.  Keep a look out for Matthew in the pictures after the show!
  • TODAY: finish the laundry, shower, grocery shopping, bank and post office, go through the mail, cook dinner and report to the high school auditorium to sell flowers at the show! Guess I will be home late!
  • TOMORROW: I work (a little earlier), dinner and then sell tickets for the show, then watch the show with Jeff!  It will be very nice. Late night!
  • SATURDAY: Thrivent lunch at Winter Inn (Mmmm) before leaving for Ann Arbor for the University of Michigan Men's Glee Club Concert. I will arrive in the mid-afternoon to spend time with Mary.  I am excited about the concert, the Men's Glee Club is stellar! Go Blue!
  • SUNDAY: Church...Chime rehearsal at 0830, Sunday School, Play for church and for the choir, the Sunday School Christmas Program rehearses afterward!  I will be exhausted after driving home late from Ann Arbor! No bowling since we pre-bowled, but there is a dedication of a new church and then attend the community Thanksgiving Service at another church.  It was very nice last year.
  • MONDAY: Day "off".  Maybe I can catch up! Yeah right!
  • TUESDAY: Might be cooking a turkey for the preschool, and preparing for our own Thanksgiving!
  • WEDNESDAY:  Leave by 10 am to go to my Nursing Company and complete some paperwork.  Then continue to Ann Arbor to pick up the Wolverines!  Hooray!  Sarah comes home too! Yay!
  • TURKEY DAY:  I am Thankful for ALL of my FAMILY and FRIENDS.  Time to spend with all my kids and wonderful husband.  Wonder what we will do?  I am sure the kids will want to see the new Harry Potter movie!
So between now and Thanksgiving, I will try to blog, but won't make any promises.  Keep your eyes open for new pictures  in the Family Photo Album.

Off to the basement!

Gracie

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Yummy

I have had some good meals the past few days.
  1. Yesterday our family went to the Golden Corral for "Honor the Veterans" day.  Jeff got a free buffet! The line was out the door, but the the line moved quickly. We met some nice people in line and then shared a table with another military couple. It was a nice evening of visiting! Not surprising though, since military families have friends wherever they go! The food was very good and they selection even bigger than I remember!  I really enjoyed the fajita meat, the salad bar,  chinese bar and of course the hot soft yeast rolls!  We all had our fill and got home by 10 pm.  
  2. Today I had my favorite sandwich with my favorite ranch at Jimmy's Pub and Grub!  It was delicious as always.  Mary was jealous when she found out, and wants to go there over Thanksgiving break.
Today was press review for the Sound of Music.  I got the times all mixed up and missed it.  I called the theatre and they informed me that I can take pictures tomorrow night too.  I am supposed to be at Choir rehearsal too, I will see if I can leave a little early or just leave before Praise Team. Matthew said the mountain wouldn't be done until tomorrow, but no one believed him since press review was today.  Guess who was right?  Matthew, of course! So I couldn't have gotten pics of the mountain anyway!  Guess all things do turn out for good, since I got some laundry done today!  Wow!  I will be volunteering at the show on Thursday and Friday nights. Jeff and I will be seeing the show Friday after selling tickets.

Saturday I will be heading off to Ann Arbor for the Men's Glee Club Concert after a Thrivent Lunch at Winter Inn (another good meal).  They have great burgers!  I can't wait for the show, the men always do a superb job!

Better get that last load of laundry done, work tomorrow and Friday. Quilting on Thursday!  I am a busy little bee or should I say Yellow Jacket!

Gracie

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bowling Bowling Bowling

Our team bowled six games today.  Three at 4 pm for next week, then three more for our regular night of bowling at 6:30 pm.  I had a pretty good night - 125, 125 and 135!  My second set of games started poorly with an 83 but came back and  got a 124 and 141.   Jeff had been bowling well all season.  Both of his series were over 500! So we won't bowl next week.  Randy and Norma will be on vacation and Jeff and I will attend a special afternoon Thanksgiving service. We have a bye week next week, so we hope our scores will be higher than our team average.  We won 3 tonight and should take 3 next week too.


No school tomorrow!  It is deer season opening day (for rifles).  We can all sleep in! Hooray!  Matthew has Sound of Music Rehearsal from ~1-5 pm.  I cancelled music rehearsals and will need to work on laundry, of course, since I put it off all weekend!  Jeff gets a free meal at Golden Corral tomorrow, so we will go to Grand Rapids for one of our meals.

 That's all folks!  Enjoy your week!

Gracie

UMWGC Concert = Success!

We had a delightful time with the Cory's travelling to and from Ann Arbor for Mary's Concert.  Upon our arrival in Ann Arbor we met up with Brandon and we all ate a delicious Chinese dinner before heading to Hill Auditorium.  I am not sure if I mentioned this before, but Hill Auditorium is one of two halls with perfect acoustics.  The other is Carnegie Hall. Brandon picked out some great seats.


Mary was simply beautiful! She looked very happy and confident singing all of the songs.  She even sang in Russian!  I had hoped to record at least some of the songs, but they made an annoucement before the concert that videos are strictly prohibited. :(  After the concert we visited downstairs and took some pictures. We stopped by Mary's room so Jeff could see where Mary is living.  We left Ann Arbor around 10:30 pm.  I think we were all pretty tired but conversations continued to keep us smiling and laughing. The two hours went by pretty quick.   I look forward to returning next week for the Men's Glee Concert.

For now, it is really late and I had better get some sleep. Need to be at church at 0830.  I am teaching, accompanying a trio and singing with the Praise Team.  Then there is six games of bowling in the afternoon and evening. No school on Monday...fun fun fun!


Gracie

Check  out the photo album for more pictures

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Caught Up?

I finally got got up on the computer work that was piling up.  What a good feeling!  Matthew helped me clean up the house and I even decided to try and upload videos on our Wilhelm Family Photo website. First you have to click on the Family Photo link on the right. Then you should click on the videos tab.  I have uploaded movies of Matthew's Fall Village Green Performances. Once they load up, I will try to put up the video from Nykerk at Hope last weekend. If this works out well, you can expect some video from Mary's Women's Glee Club Concert!  Another good way to see some videos is on you tube.  I searched Nykerk and found songs from this year, last year and even several years ago!  I suggest you watch Nykerk on you tube because their quality is much better and you can get a better feeling of how it sounds and looks! It is awesome! You can watch UM Glee Clubs too!
www.youtube.com

Tomorrow I really need to do some laundry done, buy some groceries, practice the piano and be ready for Sunday School before we leave for Ann Arbor at 3 pm.  I have another project that I would like to get done, just don't know if I will have the time.  Matthew will be staying home tomorrow, as there is tech rehearsal for the school musical. He can't miss!

Sunday is our first Sunday School Christmas program rehearsal after church.  Then we prebowl at 4 pm for the next week, and bowl for real at 6:30 pm.  I will be bowled out!

No School on Monday! It is the opening day for deer season with rifles.  Bow hunting has been ongoing for the past month.  Crazy hey!  We will be going to the closest Golden Corral for a Veteran's Free Meal!  Maybe Jeff should wear his uniform! LOL!

Better check on those videos.  Enjoy the videos on shutterfly!

Grace

Thursday, November 11, 2010

What is a Veteran?

Veteran: 1) a person who has had long service or experience in a particular occupation or field. 2) a person who has served or is serving in the armed forces.


Happy Veterans Day to all those who served and served their country.  We especially give honor to Jeff Wilhelm, Bob Scherer and Lori Wilhelm who all serve in the United States Air Force. Matthew has shown a little interest in the USAF Academy.  He may look into what is involved to apply there.

Many restaurants have offered "specials" to the Veterans today, so we decided to eat out.  Applebee's offered a free meal to the Veteran, so that was out destination until we arrived and the line was out the door. I guess it was a 45 minute wait.  Matthew had to be at the high school in 30 minutes, so we scrapped that idea and tried Big Boy.  The hostess asked someone if there was a military "deal" tonight and although there wasn't any advertising they assured us that the veteran would get a discount.  Tonight was Build a Burger bar and Jeff was going to get half off.  Ok!  Soon after we sat down and began to eat, our waitress informed us that she talked to the main manager and that you could only get the discount if you were wearing your uniform! Forget that you showed your military ID.  Sorry.  Oh we will give you half off dessert! Great, thanks.  Let's think about this a minute, will all veterans have uniforms to wear??? Don't you think it would be easier to fake a uniform than a Military ID?  Big Boy failed. We won't hurry back there for a while. In the end, the waitress never asked what we wanted for dessert and just gave us the bill, so we didn't get discount dessert either. (to be continued...)

The BIG EVENT of the evening was Matthew's induction into the National Honor Society.  It was a very nice program and Matthew looked very handsome. He received his certificate and a NHS pin. We are very proud. After the ceremony, I went down to the stage and wanted to look into the pit that is now open for next weeks musical, Sound of Music.  Matthew arranged that he would take us down into the pit and show us around backstage.  He was even going to let me stick my head up from the pit, but I said just being there was a treat. He also showed us the scenery he has been working on. It was a lot of fun to have Matthew show us around the place he loves to spend time and show us what he has been building the past few months. I am excited about seeing the show!  It was a nice evening!

(continued..)  We decided to try Applebee's again at 8 pm. This time it was only a 15 minute wait.  Jeff got fried shrimp, at least a dozen, and Matthew and I shared a basket of chicken tenders.  Jeff and I each had a frozen drink too.  It was all very tasty and they didn't take back their offer like Big Boy.  We even got a little pin with a flag in the shape of an Apple! Hooray!

I spoke with my nursing office and cleared the air and talked things through. I feel a little better and will be at work tomorrow.  As frustrated as I get, I can't think of anything else I'd want to be other than a nurse.

My latest quilt is turning our very nice. I like it a lot. The other quilter's are working on other projects, including a greenville theme quilt for a craft show at our church next weekend. I think it is quite nice.

Saturday the Cory's will be riding along with us to Ann Arbor to attend Mary's concert. We will have dinner with Brandon and then enjoy seeing and hearing her sing!  Can't wait!  One week later, it will be the Men's concert and I will enjoy that one as well.

Lastly, I am a little worried about Sammy.  He has been hiding in places he rarely goes.  We have found him sleeping in Sarah's room upstairs and in Jeff's office next to the desk.  Today the doorbell rang and he didn't even get up or bark.  That is really not normal for him.  He did play with us this afternoon and has been eating his food and drinking water.  Will keep you updated.

Better get off to bed.  Staying up too late and tired the next morning.  Have a good rest of the week.

Gracie

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

What a Day!

I woke up hoping for a productive and great day!  I knew my favorite episode of Matlock was going to be on, so I fired up the computer and got ready to enjoy my show and catch up on Facebook and email. Not 30 minutes into the show, Jeff let Sammy in from outside and then my morning went sour!  The dog stepped in his own "stuff" and tracked it into the house! So out came the cleaning supplies for the carpet, kitchen floor and even the dog!  I had it cleaned up, including the backyard, by 3pm.

In the meantime, I did enjoy a nice lunch with my "golf buddies"at Mancinos.  I ordered a French Dip sandwich and was it ever good!  I brought half it home and will take it to work tomorrow instead of PB. We had fun talking about bowling! We will prebowl next week for the following week since Randy and Norma will be travelling to TN for Thanksgiving.  Hope we can stay in first place.

I got a call from my nursing agency questioning the order I wrote last week.  I am always nervous sending in paperwork, knowing that the office people will find something to complain about. A few days ago I got a packet of papers one of which told me that I hadn't turned in an inservice due 10/31.  When I called to inquire which one it was, they only wanted to send out a new one to replace it.  I insisted to know which one I hadn't done, and she confessed that she was new and hadn't sent the October inservice out.  So why should the nurses be made to feel like they are not completing their work!  I love taking care of Hailey, but the paperwork is driving me crazy!  As much as my patient means to me, I need to get a job that will challenge and use all the skills I have.  I keep plugging away at applications and pray that the right new job will come along soon!

Later this afternoon, we refinanced our house.  We are pretty happy that our payments will be lower.  I made manicotti for dinner and then worked several hours on Quicken, updating and clearing our purchases from the past few weeks.  What  a job!  Still not done, but I got a lot accomplished.

Ended the evening with TV and computer fun!   Tomorrow is work and choir. Better get some rest.


Gracie

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Great Weekend and Exciting Times

Our weekend turned out to be a really nice one. Mary got home in time for a taco dinner and  catching up a little before Matthew and I headed off to Holland for the Nykerk competition.   It was nice to have Mary home and listen to her stories and adventures.   So proud of her, she has been running a mile 3 days a week!  How awsome.  As the semester is coming to an end, she will be writing a play as her final for her freshmen American Family class.  She has some really cool ideas, now just has to put them on paper!

While Mary attended a surprise birthday party and Jeff was at a Habitat for Humanity concert, Matthew and I went to Holland for the popular Nykerk Cup competition. We arrived 45 minutes early and was just barely able to find a few seats together. The show started nearly 30 minutes late so they could find everyone a place to sit, besides the aisles and doorways! They even had younger people sitting on the floor in front of the judges! The show was excellent as always.  Matthew and I thought the the Class of 2013 pulled ahead in points, but in the end, the Class of 2014 were  declared the winners!  Guess we should be happy the Even Year won since Sarah will be an even year graduate, next year!  However, many of her friends are 2011 grads and were coaching the 2013 team, so we were kind of pulling for them.  You could probably find out some information on the Hope site or maybe even see and here some of the perfomances on You Tube.

Sarah is doing fine.  We had a late night snack at Burger King and then enjoyed some brownies that Sarah baked. They were delicious!  She has been super busy at school and just finished her season of high school football at Zeeland West HS.  She was sad when it came to an end.  Although the fall sports are finishing up, Sarah will continue to help the HS trainer until the end of the semester. I received report from her this morning that she got a 91% on her test from last week!  Yay Sarah!

Mary and I talked for several hours after I got home from Holland.  It was fun just to talk and watch stuff on YouTube together and have a lot of laughs.  We even stayed up to witness the time falling back from 2am to 1 am.

Church and Sunday School was great.  My lesson went better than I expected and the kids choir sang "El Shaddai" just wonderfully!  Good tone, good diction and good pitch!  Kudos, girls!  Mary and Matthew got some shopping done before we enjoyed lunch together at Applebees.  Brandon and his dad picked Mary up by 3 pm and got back to Ann Arbor safe and sound.

Bowling was great too.  Jeff bowled a 213 last night and had a 550 series!  WOW!  I had a good game of 138. Our team won 4 points last night and will remain in first place!  We had our regular McDonalds meal afterward and then enjoyed apple pie dessert at home together! Yum!

Today I still need to go grocery shopping, work on the computer and maybe even walk the trail with Jeff. Kids Choir and Chimes tonight.  This week, we look forward to Matthew's induction into the National Honor Society and Mary's UM Women's Glee Club concert on Saturday! I can't wait!

Guess that is all for now...Have a great day!

Gracie

PS: You can watch the GHS vs Muskegon Football Game by clicking on the Watch GHS Events link to the right.  Maybe you can see the snow falling!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

BRRRRR!

That is how we felt at the football game Friday night.  It was quite the game though and I am glad that we went.  I had 4 layers on including my winter coat with hat and hood, gloves and warm socks.   I was still freezing by the end of the game. Oh, I should tell you that we had SNOW flurries throughout most of the game.  Seems a little early for the white fluffy stuff to be falling from the sky.   Matthew didn't dress as warmly as he should and was  shivering at the end of the game.  I wrapped him up in our blanket for the walk home.   Matthew sat with friends and youth leader from Grace Lutheran in Coopersville.  They came to cheer on the team.  Matt's friend Mitch is on special teams, especially the kicking team.  He made a great first play of the game when we kicked it off to Muskegon and it bounced off of their player and Mitch got the ball that ended with a touchdown! It was a pretty even and exciting game until the last quarter when Muskegon pulled and head and didn't look back, winning by 3 touchdowns. I am still proud of our Jackets, they had a great season!

While Matthew was spending time with his friends at Applebee's, Jeff and I watched the "new" Karate Kid. Jeff has seen it before, but it was my first time.  I liked it a lot.  Jackie Chan is cool.  Matthew got me hooked on his shows when he was younger.  I thought Will Smith's son, Jaden, did  a good job too! 

I am off to bed, anxious to see my girls tomorrow.  Mary will be coming home in the morning and will spend time with her before Matthew and I head to Holland for the Nykerk Competition.  Mary has a party and Jeff will be getting ready for church.  Should be an exciting day.  Don't forget about Football! Better his the sack...I am pooped!

Grace

Friday, November 5, 2010

Almost the Weekend!

This weekend is going to be a busy one! Thought I had better blog a little before all the excitement begins tomorrow!

First I will spend the day with my little princess and give her good care and lots of hugs.  She sure is a cutie.  I say that a lot, but it is true! After work, Jeff, Matthew and I will be going to the second GHS football playoff game here in Greenville.  It is supposed to be very cold, so I will need to dress warm and bring a blanket or two! Greenville plays Muskegon.  Our Yellow Jackets have been playing great, so we hope that they will keep their momentum!

Saturday Mary will be coming home in the morning with her friend Brandon and his family.  She will spend most of the day with us and then attend a family party with Brandon in the evening. That works out great since Matthew and I will be going to Holland to see the annual Nykerk Competition. It is a night of competitive singing, acting and orating between the classes of 2013 and 2014. All the participants are women. The men are there as supporters/cheerleaders. Upper classemen women coach their resepective classes, even vs odd!  It proves to be a great experience.  It will be crowded, so we will have to arrive an hour early!  First come first served!  Should be home before midnight and then maybe some late night talk with my Wolverine.

Mary will be able to come to church with us on Sunday and hopefully get to have dinner together before heading back to Ann Arbor.  Won't be too long though before I see her again.  We will attend her fall concert on November 13th, as a part of the University of Michigan Women's Glee Club. A week later I will travel back for Brandon's concert with the Men's Glee Club! Of course there will be another night of bowling on Sunday evening.  We are currently tied for first place. Hope I can at least bowl my average~120!

Next week, Matthew will be inducted into the National Honor Society on Thursday, November 11th, Veteran's Day.  We will have to eat early, since many restaurants offer free meals to Veterans! The following week is GHS' Sound of Music! I will probably go to the press review on Tuesday and then work and watch the Friday Show.  Then Thanksgiving will be right around the corner!  Wow!

Here is a few updates:
  • My complex ovarian cyst is resolved!  All in the clear for now. Thanks for your prayers.
  • Mary won a $20 gift card to Espresso Royale in Ann Arbor for her very cute Halloween door. Congratulations Mary!
That is all for now...

Grace

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Did You Vote Today?

Jeff and I have casted our votes and now wait to see what will happen in the state of Michigan and our beloved country.   Our polls in Greenville were not  busy late this morning and early in the afternoon.  Many people are disgusted with the ongoing mudslinging of the candidates against each other.  I suppose some people are so mad they just won't vote.

Jeff and I picked up the Kia this afternoon and then Jeff drove it to Holland and I turned around to go to my appointment. My ultrasound went well. The cyst remains but looks like it may have shrunk a little.  Will know more next week.   Last time Jeff and I talked on the phone he was on his way back with "Matt's" van.  It will be nice to let him drive to school again.  0645 is so early!   I know why Matt is so tired in the morning.

As for tonight, I will work on some laundry and maybe do some "paperwork" on the computer.  Think I might go rake some leaves in the front yard while it is still light out.

Better bundle up, it is getting cool outside.

Gracie

PS: Mary participated in the dorm halloween "door" contest.  I think it is so cute.  She hopes to win $20 to Espresso Royale!