Sunday, January 31, 2010


There are two things in life: Basketball and more basketball!

With four busy grandsons, this is our family motto for the month of January... and a fitting photo to end the first month of my year long project.  Though I don't always get them uploaded daily, I've made it 31 days with more than a photo a day  (even though Nathan continues to try his best to avoid Grandma's camera!) 

Saturday, January 30, 2010


To be able to find joy in another's joy, that is the secret of happiness.
George Bernanos

Simple joy stands in red and white on a stand in Joe's office...wearing a Santa hat!
A gift from a prayer partner in 2009, you can't help but smile when you look at him...
because nothing brings a smile to Joe's face like his grandkids....or his Sooners!
Boomer Sooner, Grandpa Joe!

Friday, January 29, 2010


I have begun to appreciate the generational patterns
 that ripple out from our lives.
 Ann Cassidy

(Not a photo of the day.....just a photo for fun!)

Nutty as a fruitcake...

Stealing away a few hours on a sunny winter Friday, we made a trip
to the Beatrice Bakery...home of the best little fruitcake in America?
Now Johnny Carson told us that there was really only one fruitcake
in the world, and that people kept sending it to each other....but
as of this Friday afternoon, I can tell you that there are indeed many,
many fruitcakes....and some of them are actually good!  (or so Joe tells
me!)  We left there a short 30 minutes later, several fruitcakes in hand,
munching on chocolate covered raspberries and pears and cranberries...
much wiser in the ways of fruitcakes....and now in search of the best little
chocolate store in America.... for me!

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Happiness walks on busy feet
Kittie Turmell

It takes so little to make Gus happy.  The kids all know the two little words that make him the happiest...............................
Truck Ride?
Today, he was just as happy when I said "honda ride?"  He barked and danced around and planted himself in the passenger seat, soaked in sunshine...leaving nose prints on my clean window... and turning around often to lick my hand and tell me "thanks for the ride!"  Happiness rode beside me today....all the way into town and back!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Our hero....

If I could choose from all the Grandpas in the world
 there's no doubt I would still choose you.
Kimberly Rinehart

There's something special about this Grandpa...
and there are 9 (soon to be 10) little kids that agree!
Grandpa are a hero, whether you know it or  not.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Be a Star....

These gems have life in them: their colors speak, say what words fail of.
 George Eliot

What better way to spend a winters day than making spirit gifts
for a great group of kids!  These colors do speak....they shout out...
"Go Club Kicks!"

Monday, January 25, 2010

Snow angel...

For every snowman you've built that's melted away,
you've added a snow angel to heaven that day
D.M. Baribault

Wish we could feel sad to find snowman parts in the grass...but we'll happily send this little fellow along to snowman heaven in exchange for some sunshine !

Sunday, January 24, 2010


It's hard to be humble when you can jump, stunt, and tumble!

Way to go, Club Kicks....first place in all levels!

Flying is the second best thrill to cheerleaders; being caught is the first.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


The only difference between a good shot and a bad shot is if it goes in or not!
 Charles Barkley

Four grandsons + four basketball teams+four different locations +
one free Saturday afternoon in January + Grandma and her camera
+Grandpa getting her to all of them in time =
one great time had by all!
(and some fantastic pictures for the parents!)
Good job, each and everyone of you!

Friday, January 22, 2010


I made myself a snowball as perfect as could be.
 I thought I'd keep it as a pet and let it sleep with me.
I made it some pajamas and a pillow for its head.
Then last night it ran away, but wet the bed!
Shel Silverstein

On this day in January, we seem to have an abundance of snowballs!
Any of you kids ready for a snowball fight?!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Something Squirrelly!

Sam is back...and he brought his family with him!    Staying at the Winter Inn outside our dining room  window, he seems to have rented a room for him and his famly of six!  Today he was spotted racing over the snow packed shrubs, jumping from wire to wire, chasing his tail and searching for crumbs in the bird feeder.  He also seems to find some joy in irritating Gus by creeping up on the deck when no one is paying attention, in search of seeds and walnut shells.  We had so much fun watching them out the window today, that for a  few seconds Joe almost forgot about running for the Red Ryder in the garage!  (be careful, Sam...the bird feeders are SO off limits for you and your little family!)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Thin ice...

If you are going to walk on thin ice, you might as well dance!

Awoke to find our world covered in thin ice...again.  It certainly makes for some fancy dancing...and sliding...and occasionally falling! 

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Tooth(less) grins!

A tooth fell out, and left a space... so big my tongue could touch my face!
 And every time I smile, I show a space where something used to grow!
 I miss my tooth as you can guess... but then, I have to brush one less!
(author unknown)

Monday, January 18, 2010

Jack Frost....

Jack Frost was in the garden; I saw him there at dawn;
He was dancing round the bushes And prancing on the lawn.
 He had a cloak of silver, A hat all shimm 'ring white,
A wand of glittering star-dust, And shoes of sunbeam light.
John P. Smeeton

Celebrating one of the worst winters we can remember, Jack Frost stands tall and proud in the front yard!   Though he's lost his toothless grin, he's a "welcome home" sight that greets us each evening!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Courage. Honor. Committment.

"I can imagine a no more rewarding career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
"I served in the United States Navy"
President John F. Kennedy, August 1, 1963

Off to Fallon, Uncle Kevin is on yet another adventure!  This time he hopes to see some snow...we'd be glad to pack some up and send it to him!  Be safe...and have fun!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Life tastes good!

Gus, on a winters day...tasting snowflakes!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Woot! Woot!

Way to go, Mr. T.....for making the A team!

There's a special young man who made the A team..and for the next 5 Saturday mornings, you'll find him playing basketball at 8:30 in the morning.
Way to go, T!
We're so proud of you!

(not a photo of the day, yet!)

White glove test...

Mother Nature seems to be giving us the white glove test!  Woke to more freezing fog, highlighting the cobwebs I didn't know I had!  It was a pretty sight...looked like a haunted, frosted world!  Sometimes the photo of the day isn't such a pretty sight to see!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Find something to celebrate.
 Then find more.
Celebrate with others.
 Celebrate every single day!

On this sunny Thursday, we celebrated loosing her first tooth with giggles and Eileen's chocolate chocolate chip  cookies with peanut butter frosting.  Good times!


I want to sing like birds sing.   Not worrying who hears or what they think.
Jelaluddin Rumi

One of several memorable photos of this day!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wrinkle Proof.....

Life is like a hot bath. It feels good while you're in it,
but the longer you stay, the more wrinkled you get!
(author unknown)

Thought most of you would enjoy my favorite time of day photo...without me in it!
Not sure if the world is ready for the real thing...but I am. 
I'm off for a soak in the tub....
and a conversation with some rubber duckies
 that have been  sitting  on a shelf in my bathroom!
At my age, I wear my wrinkles proudly...
they're like badges of honor...or courage...or foolishness!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Frost in the air...

Sing a song of winter....frost is in the air!

Finding a moment to photograph today was easy...getting Gus to sit still for it wasn't!  Gus loves snow...he runs in it, and jumps in it...and then lays down and rolls over in it.  This is Gus...fresh from a roll in the frost that was falling from the trees this morning. Grandpa thinks he loves it so much because it gets him clean withouth taking a bath!  And all the grandkids know how much Gus dislikes his bath!  Guess we can blame the snowfall on Gus this's his way of taking his bath without getting too wet!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Snow in January...

Kindness is like snow - it beautifies everything it covers!

Like your faithful snowman...
a winter wonderland awaits you...
Grandkids welcome...
bring your own sled...
free hot chocolate!
(love ya all!)

Sunday, January 10, 2010


The most important thing you leave behind is the stuff that turns into treasures when children find it!
Brian Andreas

One of the many treasures that fill my life...
memories I collect to brighten the days!

(she's a gift from two of those special grandchildren
and their own patriotic guardian angel!)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A good cup of coffee...

There seems to be the basic need of the human heart in nearly every great city----a good cup of coffee!
Alexander King

A  Grande Non-Fat  Latte...served up hot, frothy and fast. 
A basic need indeed....courtesy of Grandpa Joe on this -10 degree morning!
Makes going to work seem not so bad at all!

Friday, January 8, 2010

A candle in the darkness...

Love is a candle in the darkness. With its light you will find your way.
(Author Unknown)

In the depths of winter, you'll always find a candle burning here. 
 A flicker in the darkness, a tiny touch that says "welcome home" like no other.  
  Today's aroma...Sugar Shack's Island Coconut! 
Tomorrow, a fresh jar for the New Year... a Bayberry sits ready...for it is said that...
"A bayberry candle burned to the socket, will bring joy to the heart and gold to the pocket!"

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Happy Birthday, Cameron!

Today's the day we get to say we're happy you were born!

Happy 8th Birthday, Cameron!
Thanks for the pizza and chocolate pie with candles...
thank you....thank you very much!
(and you do a great Elvis impersonation!)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A Pair..

 The most important gifts are not those that you can hold in your hand
Gail Pursell Elliott

A gift I held in my hand, then hung to catch the sunshine....
a gift that's so much more than it seems.
A pair of cardinals that sparkle in the morning light...
and glow in the afternoon shadows...
a pair of cardinals that lean happily on each other for support...
and surround themselves with flowers...
a pair that has mated for life...
a pair of kindred souls that live inside...and outside this home!
Thanks for this special gift on a snowy Christmas morning..
it's us.

(taken on day 6, posted on day got in the way!)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


 January life is...
 hugs from happy grandchildren....a ride to work on a snowy day....
a warm blanket and a good email from a friend....
sleeping in on days chili on a  cold winters night....
a football game that keeps you on the edge of your chair...
watching your wet dog shake the snow from his fur on your couch...
scooping snow...building snowmen....fuzzy socks at bedtime...
YMCA basketball games and Club Kicks cheer routines...
and a good cup of coffee to greet me in the morning!
There is joy to be found in January...sometimes I just need reminding!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Gus....Jan 4

A dog has no use for fancy cars, big homes, or designer clothes. A water log stick will do just fine.
A dog doesn't care if your rich or poor, clever or dull, smart or dumb.
Give him your heart and he'll give you his. How many people can you say that about?
How many people can make you feel rare and pure and special?
How many people can make you feel extraordinary?

by John Grogan from Marley & Me (2008)

After  eight trips outside, one walk down the snowpacked driveway to get the mail, chasing three squirrels from the birdfeeder and one rabbit from the shrubs, Gus lies sound asleep across my lap. He's relaxed in only the way a dog can relax....with complete trust, head propped on a blanket rolled beside me, eyes closed, but ears tipped to hear the steps of anyone passing close to his treat cupboard.  This is the only dog we know that can tell time...each night at 8 pm, he stands at attention on Joe's chest, doggie drool dripping slowly onto the face he adores, in anticipation of his nightly greenie.  It is uncanny how he knows when it becomes 8 pm...but he does.  This is a dog that sings to entertain the grandchildren....and has his own favorite songs to sing.  He went on a mini vacation over Christmas (we were afraid we wouldn't make it home from work to him)...and with the assistance of Kim and the kids, he even called to sing Jingle Bells to us on Christmas eve.  I can't imagine what our days would be without him....nor do I ever want to.  Like Marley, he's our own little "discount dog"....a Sheltie returned and offered up cheaply.  Like Marley, he's not always the best little dog.....can't stand the neighbors cats, hates bicycles in his yard, and rabbits..beware!  But what a job he does for our entire family....grandkids making us all feel extraordinary! 

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Jan 3

And still he stands.  I've taken down all the Christmas decorations..except for my favorite chubby snowman who stands on my Grandma's  table that stands in front of  the picture window.  This year, he reminds me of the snowman that still stands in our front yard, wearing Grandpa's hat.  That snowman holds memories of laughing children, a squealing Mommy as she ran from the snow balls pelting her....of a Grandpa in search of an old hat and some eyeballs...memories of a cold, snowy winter day warmed by family!  Winter is still young, kids...and there's lots of if you're interested...Grandpa is a master snowman builder...and Grandma is just waiting to take your picture!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Jan 2

Driving through lots of snow in Lincoln, came upon these chairs almost buried in snow.  Lincoln has had 26 inches of snow in the last 3 weeks, with more predicted this week.  That means Grandpa Joe has spent lots of time scooping that snow!  He loves to tell people that he wants to strap a snow shovel to the roof of his truck and start driving south until someone asks him what that is on his truck.  He says that's where we can live then!  Happy Jan 2nd!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Project 365

Taking a photo day...and seeing our life in a whole new way.  Found this cool idea at a site I love to frequent, Photojojo....a photography site full of quirky and crazy ideas..and a few crafty ideas too!  Thought it might be a great way to build our 2010 scrapbook..and preserve some memories along the way.  Though we don't get to see each of you every day, check back often for updates from the home place, antics from Gus...and craziness from Grandpa and Grandma.  Here's a toast to 2010 to start it all off....sparkling grape cider in our antique wine glasses...bubbling with laughter from the Biven bunch!

Happy New Year!

Another family Christmas....a day spent with chili, cinnamon rolls, posters, video games, sweatshirts.....and football!  A snowy... lazy... nap taking... visiting kind of day that makes for perfect Christmas memories!  Topped it all off with brownies, hugs good bye...and plans for filling the winter days of 2010!   Thanks for a great day, kids!