Friday, May 5, 2017

An addition to the family

This week I got a message from my cousin Karen, she had been contacted by a man who from Ancestry DNA testing showed he is her cousin. A first cousin to many of my first cousins. So how is he related, where did he come from, how is he.....I had a lot of questions going through my head.

My Dad, Harry "Buck" Wass had been married previously before meeting and marrying my Mom, Marian McCay. Dad's first wife was Carol Thomas (not sure if that is the name she went by, but that is what I knew her as). He had a son with her Rickard Wass that I have know about all my life, only got to see once or twice, he spent a few weeks here in the summer when we were kids, was offered to live with us but he chose to stay with his Mother.

So the man that called Karen is my 1/2 brothers brother....well it looks like the man is also my half brother. Would like some more testing to prove, but after looking at pictures and taking to him, it does appear that his Dad is also my Dad.

I am excited to meet Mike, and his family, hoping to get together in the next few months. One thing that is interesting is the patch of gray hair, Dad had a patch, Brian has a patch, Garrett has a patch. I would think this is a pretty much genetic thing....wondering why I do not have a patch of gray hair...oh yea maybe if I did not color my hair I would see it.  hehe!!

So look for pictures in the near future of meeting Mike, looking forward to a new page in the book of my life.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Cancer Sucks

Too many friends and Family in my life have suffered with Cancer. I am just saying, I do not like it! I hate it. Being a nurse and working with Hospice a few years in my life I have seen more that the average person...I guess.
The person who got and lost their battle with cancer that I was the closest to was my Mom, and awesome lady who died on her 62 birthday due to a "female" cancer, never really found out what type it was because she was inoperable because the tumor was so big by the time she decided that I could drag her butt to the doctor.
Anyway, lost another sweet family member to cancer this week, my uncle Ralph. Ralph was interesting to be around because he was a Mule packer in the Grand Canyon and in Grant Grove/Sequoia area. He surely loved what he did and continued to lead packing trips long after he retired. He fought prostate cancer for quite a few years and in the last year it spread to his liver and other parts of the body. Ralph was the baby of my Dad's family, the Wass family. He was loved so much by all of his family but especially his brothers and sisters.
Ralph loved his wife Pat VERY much, together since she was 15 years old. Ralph loved and took great pride in his 3 kids and many grandkids, even nieces and nephews.
My Dad was quite a bit older than Ralph so Ralph was kind of like a son to him. Often Pat and Ralph and family would stay with us when they came to Mariposa, for the farm family reunion, or just to visit.
I will always remember when my Daughter in law died, I was with my Son all the way across the united states, and Ralph encouraged Tanya (his daughter) to come to the funeral, I think Ralph may have even helped pay for the plane ticket. It meant the world to me and to my son when Tanya and her grown son walked into the church during the funeral. It is a day I will never forget, I was so thankful they were there - when other family could not make the trip due to work and other obligations.
Ralph's memorial will be on my Birthday, I am not sad about that, but will always remember him on my birthday from now on, and keep a very special man with me. I know he is with my Dad and family. Hope there are a lot of horses and Mules in heaven for you to care for and ride dear Uncle.

Monday, March 7, 2016

the big day

Well we did it!! Paid off the last of Tom's truck. Paid $7,200 in 2 months. I am proud of us. We still have a long way to go, next step is fully funded emergency fund of 6 months in the bank, then attack the mortgage. Goal is to have the house paid off as soon as possible, baby steps.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Financial Goals

My sweetie and I have not always seen eye to eye on financial needs, wants, or goals. A few months ago I read Rave Ramsey's book, "Total Money Makeover", Tom and I watched a few you tube videos together and decided when we could we would take the class, "Financial Peace University", given by many churches - a nine week class, we bought the kit and we have now been to 5 of the classes. I really have to say if you have not been as good with money as you would like to be, if you have debt, if you never were taught by your parents how to save and manage money you really should think about taking the class.

Tom and I do not have that much debt in our lives currently, we had a pretty good amount a few years ago after we finished the cabin (on top of the morgage), but we have worked pretty hard on our own have had that paid off for a few years. When we started the class our total debt not including our house was $7,200 - I am very happy to say it looks like we will have that paid off about the time we finish the class.

We feel the class is awesome, would be helpful for many people. I have never done a zero balance budget - where you figure out where every last dollar will go, and as Dave says, "tell your money where to go". We have been able to find money we did not realize we had. The program is sound gospel principles, and we have prayed a lot to ask God how we should manage his money. Our next step will be to work on our emergency fund, then pay off our home as quickly as we can, to invest and prepare for retirement. Our only regret is we did not do it sooner.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

I think the drought is over

What a great Winter so far, we have gotten quite a bit of rain. We got a beautiful snow for Christmas eve, and last night we got snow - a very wet sloppy snow - but I will take it.

After the last few years of no rain, no winter, no real COLD, I do not think I will ever complain about rain or snow again.

Without the rain we have had not enough water in California, the wild grasses did not come back last year, and what we did have in the pastures as I drive to Merced has been eaten down so badly.

I am thankful for winter, I am thankful for rain.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Life is short

My dear cousin Missy's husband  (Mike) was in a horrible motorcycle accident this morning on his way to work. I just want to say we never know from day to day what is going  to happen and how many days we have here on this earth.

Kiss your loved ones, remember people are more important that things, be nice to those we live with, say i love you often to those who mean the most in your life, say your prayers/ ask for safety. Bad things happen to good people.

Hang in the Mike, you are in my prayers.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

I confess, I think I have a addiction

A few years ago, about 30 or so, I wanted to make a quilt, I wanted to try to be a quilter. I had made one quilt for my son when he as about 2 years old and going into a "big boy bed" I bought some calico fabric and a flat sheet and made a 9 patch quilt, put sashing on it and tied it with yarn.

At the time I have a very cheap Singer from the 80's - it was about $80 and a piece of plastic JUNK!! I used that machine around my home(s) - we were military when the kids were little, it made curtains, a few garments, and mended quite a bit. I did not love to sew at that time, it was just something I needed to do to make a house a home and to save a little money. Not that many years ago fabric was cheaper than buying pre-made clothing. I had taken sewing in 4H, in home economics in high school. I understood a little about sewing, enough to get buy if I had to.

Then time passed and I decided I would like to really quilt, I bought a Singer vintage sewing machine in a cabinet, it only did straight stitch and reverse. I made my first few real quilts with it. I should say I pieced my first few real quilts with it. I sewed the quilt sandwich by hand. It would take me forever to make a quilt. I never mastered the art of quilting by hand, my stitches were to big, too far apart.

I upgraded to a new mid priced Pfaff sewing machine. My maternal Grandmother had bought a Pfaff in the 50's and my Mom inherited it, it was a tank, sewed through blue jean quilts, baby quilts (mom's were pretty hardy - used fabric she had, made due) My kids had learned to sew on that machine. Now it is passed on to my Niece Amanda - hope she will continue to get many more years of joy out of it.

Threw the years I have become a better quilter, bought very nice machines, fell more in love with the old machines. I have gotten to have quite a collection of sewing machines and of fabric, have made many quilts for charity, for entering in the fair, for baby showers, for weddings, for Christmas gifts and for birthdays, or just to make someone's day. A homemade gift is the best kind. I hope I have made things that my friends and family will cherish long after I am gone. My Mother was a great example of that, at her funeral people started telling of all the afghans, quilts, and painted projects that they had that she had made - it was amazing, almost everyone in the very full building had something Mom had made.

What I have learned lately is I LOVE sewing machines!! I think I should have opened up a repair shop for them, who knows maybe someday I will. Attached are some pictures of machines I have (or similar photos of them) and of quilts and friends who I have taught to quilt (and they teach me too). I am glad I have a hubby to gets my addiction and even encourages it.
my Christmas gift this year from Tom - can't wait to see it!!

Cathy's birthday

Shelby's 2nd birthday

Pat and Ralph's 50th wedding anniversary signature quilt

the big machine and frame

Shirley and Rodney's 50th Wedding Anniversary signature  quilt

Danielle's Christmas a few years ago

Jelly roll quilt - one of my favorite things to do

My mantra (but I am currently off the DCs)

one of my many babies!!