This blog will allow family and friends to keep up with us. If you would like you can leave a comment at the end of each post. We enjoy reading the comments. Thanks for following us as we travel the states.
Yesterday I attended the funeral of my cousin Ray Leake. He had been diagnosed with bladder cancer and underwent surgery December 11th to have his bladder removed. Unfortunately the cancer had spread to the lymphnodes and chemo wouldn't help much. Ray decided to go home and enjoy what little time he had left with his family. Sadly, the amount of time he had left wasn't very long. He passed away Sunday, January 17th and was laid to rest yesterday in Oxford, Mississippi. It was a very sad day. He was a very kind and gentle soul who loved his family very much. We take comfort in the fact that he is no longer in pain. Rest in peace cousin Ray we love you.
Cancer is such a mean and ugly disease. I wish there were a cure for every kind of cancer so no one would have to suffer from it or lose loved ones.
Happy New Year to all of family and friends out there. Hope everyone had a safe New Year's holiday. John worked at the mall New Year's Eve and then 10 hours New Year's Day. He finally had a day off on Saturday.
On New Year's Eve I drove mom and dad to Oxford, MS to visit my cousin Ray who has been diagnosed with stage four bladder cancer. Last month he underwent surgery to remove the bladder but unfortunately the cancer had already spread. He has decided not to proceed with chemo or any type of further treatment. After being released from the hospital hospice home services is seeing to his care. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ray and his family during this difficult time.
Yesterday John and I visited with his niece Amanda who is visiting from Florida. It has been almost four years since we have seen her.
John with his nieces Mary Beth and Amanda.
Mary Beth, me and Amanda.
John's great-niece Brooke with Amanda.
Brooke with her mom, Mary Beth.
The warm weather we had at Christmas time has gone and has been replaced with much cooler temperatures. The high for tomorrow is forecasted to be 49 degrees.
Our granddaughter Shelby got a drum set for Christmas. She is enjoying that noise maker.
Merry Christmas to all our family and friends. I realized yesterday that I haven't posted a blog since Thanksgiving. John has been busy working at the Renaissance Mall and volunteering at the Natchez Trace Parkway. I have been volunteering at the Natchez Trace Parkway helping to get the visitor center back up and running. It has been closed for over two years so there has been lots to do. Hopefully it will be ready to open right after the New Year's holiday.
We have had unseasonably warm weather here this week. Lots of bad storms throughout the state. There were some deaths reported in North Mississippi. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those who were victims of the storms. Yesterday it was 80 degrees and stormy. Last night we gathered at Mom and Dad's (Bob and Marcy) for their annual Christmas Eve party.
Granddaughters Ava and Shelby and our daughter-in-law Kelsey.
Ava and Shelby.
Mom and Dad.
Shelby is almost two years old so this year she knows about opening presents.
Shelby playing with her new trike.
Ava surrounded by lots of wrapping paper.
Annie, Terry and John.
Today we had temperatures in the upper 70s and thunder, lightening and some rain. We enjoyed Christmas dinner with Mom and Dad and Annie and Terry. After dinner we played a game of Rummikub.
Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Mom Hatch came for a visit Thanksgiving Day but ended up in the emergency room. We had just finished with dinner when she suddenly doubled over and grimaced in pain grabbing her back. After lifting her shirt we found a red spot about the size of a fifty cent piece. Lucky for us the ER wasn't very busy at the time and she didn't have to wait long to be seen. The doctor diagnosed her with shingles. Ouch!
Here is Mom Hatch smiling while she wasn't hurting.
On Saturday our grandbabies spent the day with us. Pepaw cooked them a big breakfast.
Ava and Shelby enjoying their breakfast.
Ava and Shelby sharing a seat to watch cartoons.
I think they enjoyed their day with us. They sure are full of energy. They sure are getting big.
Hello out there. It has been quite a while since I last posted. We are alive and doing well. John has been busy working part-time at the Renaissance Mall again. Since we have been home Ava has celebrated her fourth birthday. It is hard to believe she is four already.
Ava letting everyone know how old she is.
Ice Cream cake. It was yummy.
She blew out all the candles on the first try.
John and Ava.
John, Ava and me.
Me and Shelby. She is always laughing.
Ava excited over a birthday gift.
Ava and Shelby.
Kelsey and Shelby.
Ava with her new bicycle. I think she had a great birthday.
The first week of November our boss John Schweitzer from Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge and his mother, Marylu were on a two week trip and stopped off in Mississippi for a visit. Eventhough he was only here for a couple of days, we were able to join him for some sightseeing. We had a great time and it was so nice to meet his mom.
John Schweitzer, John, Marylu Schweitzer and me.
Of course we visited Mississippi Wildlife Refuges with him. That was very interesting. I never knew we had that many refuges so close by.
Of course all that sightseeing makes you hungry so we had to find a good place to eat. We ended up at a place called Crystal Cafe Grill in Greenwood, Mississippi. The locals recommend this place. The food was tasty and the service was very good.
We couldn't let John leave without stopping by Bop's. He had never had a concrete before so that was a definite stop.
John Schweitzer with this Snappy Turtle Concete. I think he was happy.
Before we arrived in Mississippi John had inquired about volunteer positions at the Natchez Trace Parkway in Ridgeland, Mississippi. After arriving back in Mississippi we met with the volunteer coordinator and this week we began our volunteer jobs. The location of our site is ideal for us. We will be volunteering 24 hours each a week. John will be working with the maintenance crew and I will be working in the office and visitor center. The visitor center has been closed for a couple of years due to foundation and plumbing problems. It will be great to have the center up and running again.