Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Deleware News Family Update

Those of you who grew up in a small town remember those columns where people reported their daily events..."Billy Bo and Mo were over at Johnson's house for coffee on Tuesday evening". Well, that was actually my first job,(at age 11)  although it was quickly taken over by my mother. She would call the area people and ask "if they had any news" for the paper. It gave her a little income and she felt great responsibility to get the information right.
So, in honor of my mother, with pictures, I bring you the *Deleware News Update
* we lived in Deleware township in Grant County Minnesota

Members of the Howard and Esther Wagner family gathered Tuesday evening in Fargo on the occassion of the visit of TJ from the West. Family members were also able to talk with other family in Alaska via skype. Later they gathered with more family for a fine meal at the local Mexican chain restaurant. Three generations were represented. They also greatly missed other family members who were not in attendance.

Two of my neices who are cousins but really more like sisters

 My sister in law LW with her two girls, plus another neice and the proud Aunti in the back. Also Marly the dog my grand-dog-nephew.
Family members in this three generation picture include my brothers wife and three children, two of my great nephews and their soon to be wives
and my daughter.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A great week in Paradise

This week we weren't running all over, we actually got to just "CHILL" (one of Anna's favorite words) and enjoy our lovely cabin on Lake Lida. We even were able to have a pontoon cruise (finally!) even though we were only on slo-mo speed. Maybe David will learn to shift one of these days!

 My second son Meister graduated from SKILLS training and now has his criminal justice degree. It's the same degree that Ben has, but he didn't go through graduation ceremonies. We were able to attend Meister's ceremony on Friday with Ben sitting by our side narrating. I think it's the only way to attend these type of things.
Today (July 24) is our 29th wedding anniversary.
I can't think of another place in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD
I would rather be with David at the cabin on Lake Lida.
To quote the song that was sung in our wedding
"You're my castle, you're my cabin and my
instant pleasure dome
I need you in my house because
You're My Home"
(Billy Joel)
Yes David, I would marry you all over again
-you'd still have to do all the cooking tho'

Counting our Blessings

Anna's godmother JK flew up for the weekend to spread her big heart and love with our family. She graduated with David from school in England and she's been a part of David's life since 9th grade. She's an excellent godmother and we were so pleased to have her visit.
 JK had Mr Brown as a Chemistry Teacher (David's dad Charlie) and she told us she always found him "sorta hot!"Here are the teacher and student both lookin' REAL GOOD!

 David loves his dramasister JK. They talk and talk and talk and argue politics and ideas (the liberal vs the conservative). She's probably the only person who we know that could convince us that maybe, just maybe, the Tea Party isn't filled with id..ah, people that we wouldn't associate with ;-) We love you girl, come on back anytime!

Friday, July 22, 2011


This is the Sasso-Lundin-Brown family. We've gone through a lot together over the past five years. Today we are celebrate the graduation of Meister (left) who graduated from Skills Testing for his Criminal Justice degree. The same degree that Ben received in May, except he choose not to attend the ceremonies. So today, I got to watch a graduation ceremony WITH my son sitting next to me while I watched my second son cross the stage. Pretty cool!
This one's for'd be proud of your boy!

Monday, July 18, 2011

MinnesotAAHHHH! The Joy of Loons *(birds, not people)

Sunday evening I spent a long time watching the lake and the loon family that lives in our bay. There is one baby and the parents were taking great care in teaching their youngin' how to properly swim and hide from danger. There is great peace in watching the loons. At the end of evening, we were treated with the most beautiful unique sunset. My daughter tells me that I put too many pictures of sunsets on this blog. I told her "naah, it's not possible to see too many sunsets on Lake Lida.

(I also told her it is my blog and I can print what I want to!!)

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the LOON, here's some info I stole from the internet.

Listen. That eerie sound you hear is not a ghost haunting a northern lake. It's the call of the common loon. This bird, whose ancestors roamed the earth 65 million years ago, can be found on many states lakes in the summer. They come to breed and raise their young. Come fall, they head to the ocean coasts to overwinter.

Because the loon's legs are so far back on its body and because its body is so long, loons have trouble taking-off. Have you ever seen a loon "running" across a lake? A loon has to run across the water for up to ¼ mile beating its wings in order to get enough lift to take off. This need for a long runway means that loons need a certain size lake in order to take off. You'll rarely find a loon in lakes under 9 or 10 acres.

Loons are fast in the water, but have trouble walking on land. They don't spend much time on land, except to nest. Their nests are made of weeds and grass and are usually located in grass along the lake shoreline. A loon may use the same nest year after year. Two olive-brown eggs are laid. Crows, ravens, gulls, skunks, mink and raccoons (especially raccoons) eat the eggs. Both male and female loons take turns sitting on the eggs. The eggs hatch in about one month. Soon after birth the chicks are in the water swimming with their parents. Swimming in the cold water is hard on the chicks, so from time to time they hitch a ride on their parent's back. This also protects them from predators like snapping turtles and muskies.

There are many Native American stories about loons. The Ojibwa (Chippewa) Indians called the loon "Mang" or "the most handsome of birds." They thought the loons haunting cry was an omen of death. In some native legends the loon is a bird of magical powers, in others a messenger or a symbol of power.

I believe they are powerful and they always give me the message that I need to hear.

Courtesy of the website EEK Critter Corner

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Making Memories...the Summer Fun Continues

 This is my great friend GORGEOUS who walked in a Relay for Life in Mankato. We enjoyed our visit with her and the Colonel on Thursday evening. She graciously allowed me to decorate bags (foreground) in memory and honor of my family members who have battled cancer. In case you're wondering, she doesn't really have pink hair. But she's earned the right to wear a tiara full time.
 Headed to Iowa for the joyous wedding of one of our favorites, KATE THE GREAT and her wonderful husband Abe. We won the "kissing" contest in showing the newlyweds a new way to kiss. We'll glad demonstrate for you if you ask...
My precious 97 year old Aunti Ethel posing with the bird quilt she made for me. She cross stiched 48 (as in forty eight) birds of different states and then sewed it into a quilt. Am I a lucky neice or what?!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Here's to good friends

These wonderful people have been in my life for the past 37 years. I am so blessed by their love and friendship. And we look even better than we did 37 years ago.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

More Shots of Paradise...delete if can't stand the beauty ; )

 These lovely flowers were just growing by the side of Silent Lake. Their beauty wasn't silent to me.
 I know, I darn many sunset photos can I take of the lake? Well, enough to keep me full in the desert in January.
 I was out with PR friend ME and she made me the Kayak Queen of Spirit Lake (at least for last night!)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

These are some final shots from the trip. Pictured below are:
Our AIS fearless leader and his spouse wearing the ever popular Nova Scotia Sou'wester hats.

Nadine meets poutine ( a wonderful heart attack waiting to happen with fries, chili, cheese and NO calories whatsoever!)

and one of my favorite shots of the Lecks. Notice Pappa Leck's expression. I will let you fill in the blanks.

More Canada fun

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Monday, July 11, 2011

We don 't say goodbye, we say "until next time"

On this trip, I was blessed with seeing friends that I haven't seen in three years, friends that now live in korea and Canada and also my current boss who is also a friend. The conversation flowed, the laughter was frequent, the experiences were all enriching.
As you can see, a good time was had by all

One cannot visit the niagra on the lake area without tasting wines. Thanks to smart friends and Simon (pictured here) I now know about 0,1 2,3 grades of wine.

This is the niagra falls. Wow...unbelievable majesty.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad
Toronto-Niagara falls-Halifax - Pictou county-Toronto
This is where I have been a'travelling for the past eight days. Fabulous friends-fantastic places-
Canada's got a lot to offer such as....

Interesting art

Lakes (dipped my toes in lake Erie , lake Ontario and the atlantic ocean!)

Incredible sunsets and sunrises

Funky stuff to see!

Patience with the friendly skies

A hundred years ago, in a former life, I flew A LOT! It was nothing for me to travel 4 to 6 weeks Monday through Friday at certain times of the year. Needless to say, I have spent a lot of time in airports. Even now, as we fly around from north America to the middle east, we are somewhat used to waiting in airports. However, it doesn't make it any easier when it is announced that the plane is delayed. As I am on vacation and I don't have anything pressing (other than missing Lake Lida, my Angel, myAnna and my spouse...not necessarily in that order!) I am trying to be patient.
I know that it is not the fault of the person at the desk who is going to get the brunt of people's anger and rude comments. I know that being biztchy to them will not make the plane depart any sooner. I know that we ( as in humans ) cannot control the weather patterns or the acts of nature that prevent departures. I know thatif I breathe in and out I can become calmer.
So, I will play with my new toy, (my ipad) and look at the interesting people stuck in the gate here with me and I will continue to try and relax. maybe it's God's way of making sure I have one ,ore TimHortons coffee( for those of you who don't know...Canada functions by Timmys). time to go get a double double

Friday, July 8, 2011

LIKE (thumbs up)!!

Sitting here in lovely Pictou county
Nova Scotia enjoying a reunion with the original BFFs from
Kuwait who are now teaching in
Yesterday enjoyed being with my Zoebird and her family who were like family to me in Kuwait also.
teaching internationLly has given us friends all around the world and it is a real joy when we can reunite again.
I would love to share pictures but for some reason my new iPad toy won't let me post them.

someone pinch is GOOD,

Monday, July 4, 2011


Currently in Canada celebrating the 4th of july and crossing a couple items off my bucket list. Today's destination:Niagra Falls and local wineries. I will post pictures if I can focus after the wine

Friday, July 1, 2011

More Belated Graduation Pics...AIS Class of 2011

 Me in the middle pictured with two of the most important men in my life. JJS has been my friend for so long that he was at MY high school graduation in ah 1977.  We're posing pretty at Anna's Senior Tea celebration in Kuwait.
Anna Leigh Brown, pictured receiving her diploma from Deborah K Jones, US Ambassador to Kuwait. We're sure Deb gave her good words of advice.