"You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation.

You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."
Dr. Adrian Rogers 1931-2005

Saturday, February 26, 2011

American History 1967

Amazing photo of Mom as she is given the Silver Star and Purple Heart Medals posthumously awarded to Dad( KIA-Vietnam 8 April 1967) date of photo 2 Aug. 1967. Baby,Jennifer; Children L-R Peter, John, David, Liz, Cathy. (Col. David G Sherrard).

Nearly 44 years has passed since this photo. Today marks one week since mom passed away, and I am looking at this photo in tears thinking of how incredibly strong she was, and she was only 29!

Yours truly is the baby in this photo. The next youngest retired as a Lt. Col. US Army, and there are two that are now grandparents (the twins-Dave and Liz). When I think of my life and what I have been blessed to experience, I thank God, that I grew up in this nation~

As I wait for my oldest son to return from Afghanistan I am still thankful that I am an American!

*For me this photo has always been in the back of my mind. As an adult I realize that our nation has ceremonies like this often, and that another generation will understand my childhood, my adulthood, and I wish I could tell them you are not alone~ we understand.

Jennifer
born 2 months after Dad was killed

Missing My Goof Troop

I am still in Indiana helping my brother with a few things. I confess I am missing my goof troop more and more as each day passes. I leave them notes on Facebook and text lots but truth is I lead a simple life where I am home 24-7. This trip has been a life~changer for me in many ways, but also made me really hone in on the blessings I have.

While I pass the time far away from all of my cuties, I am going to share with you 'lifted' photos of all of us from Facebook...these are the profile photos

This one is mine...

Here is Third's with a friend of his.

This is First's he is bottom row center

Here is Second...

Here is Fourth's...

Here is my love with 2 babies from church...boy I miss him.

I miss my family~even saying that I know that my trip back east has not been in vain. I am forever changed and although I take sadness with me, I also take strength and well so much more.

Jennifer



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Not too Much...

Last Friday there was 2 foot of snow on the ground, so 7 inches of snow is pretty mild. My brave brother(and all of Fort Wayne) ventured out in the weather. This is my view as passenger... I promise you in New Mexico, I would have considered the roads far too dangerous~lol.

Corner of shopping plaza. Slushy, mucky snow~

The kids car is under this. I drove the only vehicle we had that has front wheel drive, and I am very glad with this weather. I have a new appreciation of those of you that deal with snow and for that matter rain on a regular basis.


Now to be honest, UJ has a pretty convenient mode of transportation. My only problem was I had a bit of a climb up to the passenger seat.

I believe I will be good until the day I head home~to stay inside and drink tea and eat warm soups!!

Snow!!

I am looking out Mom's sliding glass window at 7 inches of snow! I will take photos as it is beautiful and shocking all at the same time. I have been here with my brother UJ helping with a few things. I will be in the east for a few more days or so.

I have grown so much in the past few weeks with Mom, her death and the events following it. I realized on the drive from New Mexico that things would never be the same, but I had no idea that the changes would be so powerful. I'd like to think that this period has been a final gift from mom because it has been as a result of her death that my life and how I view things has now crossed into new level.

I am planning on venturing out of mom's house today...as this has been my camp for 9 days and aside from walking to get something out of the car, I have not even gone outside. I look forward to this afternoon to walk and experience a snow day in Indiana as it is far different than a snow day in New Mexico. In New Mexico there is no need to have an outing, in Indiana, there seems to be no notice that snow fell as cars are driving about, people are walking dogs and the likes. Funny how amazing our nation is and our people as each region is so different, yet as we are seeing in Wisconsin we are not. The tides are turning for our nation...and during this week for me that has been comforting too.


* as with the past several posts...I have not edited anything, as to keep a journal without rethinking any ramblings etc!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Rest In Peace Mom

Mom is at peace.
She died today around 1:20pm.
We were able to give her what we kids kind of described as an Irish Wake last night. We all gathered in the family room so mom could hear us and talked, ate and reminisced long into the night. I'd like to believe that she was waiting for the gathering and then was able to let go...thank you so much Mom for all you have done for us all.

Frances DeSales
April 14, 1938 - February 19, 2011
Mom and Dad's wedding day August 27, 1960

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dear Mom

When I came in this world it was mom and I as dad was killed in Vietnam just two months before. So mom had me by herself. She told me the story about having me. She was still living at Fort Benning and her doctor was Army. When she went into labor they gave her a private area where she would not have to see the dads and moms together. The compassion of the staff at Martin Army Hospital was incredible, and none less than we see throughout our military services today.

It was most likely something that few can understand unless they have walked this path, as it is so hard to appreciate that she had to grieve while caring for my five older siblings ages 5, 4, 4, 3 and 2 while pregnant with me. All of her family was in Ohio and dad's was in Oklahoma.

As I sit here in her chair by her bedside, I reflect on those days, and the courage and strength that she had, and quietly brush my tears away, muffle a sob, and am so thankful that I can be here for her to go on with the next step in her journey, like she was on the beginning of mine.

She was given a life that no one would choose and made the very best of it. She prized raising the children as the most independent of people, so that we too, would be able to overcome anything tossed our way. She has lived all over the country and has children that now live all over the country.

Mom is an incredible woman who has three diplomas gracing the walls of the room I am in-One from Sienna Heights for her bachelors i and then she has two masters from Bowling Green State University and the University of Toledo. She has raised her children to love knowledge and learning and that love has crossed even to the next generation.

Mom had seven siblings and has been known as Dee her whole life. She is the baby of the family and her oldest siblings were married when she was born. She has a nephew that is several months older than her!

I cannot describe the life she has led, the courage she has shown, and the strength without mentioning that she has done it all with the grace and elegance of a southern lady. She taught us that we should carry ourselves in a manner that would be acceptable if we were to meet the president or a dignitary.

I love that she has so many children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren to carry on her legacy. Caroline, Cathy, Dave, Liz, John, Pete, Jenny(me) and Anna have become the people we are today, not because of anyone other than Mom. Grandchildren are plentiful Tony, Katie, David, Ann, Ashley, Carson, Peter, Parker, Danielle, Cameron, Mariella, Bill, Ruben, Trey, Caliana, and the great grand babies are quickly filling in the line with Parker, Lily, David, Sam, Kayd and any day now Zoey. With each generation we see a hint of mom thanks to her amazing freckles. Mom you get so angry when I tell you how much I love your freckles, but I do, as they symbolize comfort, love and you. I am so glad that my sweet Fourth carries your name as well as another grand~daughter.

Every day I am reminded me of all I have learned from you, and often as I am busy I look at my hands a take a double take, as I have your hands. I am filled with joy that you will soon see our Precious Jesus, as He is waiting for His faithful servant. I pray you know that none could imagine any other life than you have given us, as we are exactly who we are because of you.

Mom~ thanks for giving all you had for us...we love you.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Praying

for peace for my mom.
Hardest prayer to ask for as life has made me s selfish.

Typing through heavy tears...
Praying to shed no tears in her presence.

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.


I love you Mom.
Jenny

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Response to Comments...

Oops...

I cannot post comments! They go to spam.

Yes on the farm we have heat as we use a woodstove. With no infrastructure we would be fine and are prepared for as much as we can. When the pipes froze we were able to repair and rely on storage as that is who we are.

I am traveling north to see my mom. I am praying she is well yet, I am traveling in the middle of blizzards to get there.

Lost a hubcap in Amarillo last night the roads were full of snow as high as my window in some places and I was tunneled where I needed to go by some amazing road crews.

Bought socks that are not footies which is all I wear in New Mexico, and sweatshirts, fleece pjs, and another set of gloves as well as some ugg style type boots(if I misspelled ugg...I am far from fashion:).

Decided to stop as the roads that were melting this afternoon, look a tad icy, so one more night until I get to see my mom.

Take care to you all and woohoo, soon our soldier should be home (in the states).
Jennifer

Brr

Dear New Mexico,

I am sorry I complained.
I miss you already.

I forgot what cold really was.
And snow.
Holy Toledo the drifts in the roads...really?
People drive in this?

I am tough.
I can do it.
I deal with rattlesnakes.

Yep, that will get me through my drive.
Oh and Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois and Indiana~
Please think about turning the temperature up.

Thanks...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Not Again

Snow.
Woke up to snow again.
It had all melted and now this.
I am heading east ...in snow.

Dear Winter
I need a bit of summer.
I am breaking down and buying some real socks for my journey east.
And winter gloves.
But I need a bit of a break, my blood is not as mighty as those used to snow.

Snow.
I pray in July when temps are over 115 F that I remember how I felt today and this week.

Dear Mom

I am heading east tomorrow-praying for safe travels and that I am able to say I love you once more. For all you have done for me, there are not enough words. I love that my love of reading and of writing comes from you. I love that I am so creative as I learned that from you as well. I see you when I look upon my hands as they seem to be your hands (minus the freckles).

I love your freckles and select all things with freckles to surround me~even farm animals.

I love remembering how you would read to us when we were kids.

I love you for your children who have made my life a goofy, fun filled life as they are as you are~ and as I am. Thanks to them all and the ones that were of the yours mine and ours that became a part of us all...Caroline, Cathy, David, Liz, John, Pete, and Anna...

Thank you for giving your all~even when you had to do so alone as Dad died so young.

I love you forever...
I love you always.

Jenny

Thank you so much for life, as I have had an incredible one because of you. My next words of thanks are from Bill and the children who, because of you have life and have me in their lives. Oh I love you and pray you have a chance at least to hear these words. All is well and home is not here but with Him, and He is waiting for His faithful servants.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I am going to the "Big City" today...

well the big city for me, considering I live in the sticks!

I am going to cross (the) Delaware!

I also am going to take in some historic sights, such as this incredible home that needs someone (like me) to give it a bit of TLC.

I would love to hit this place, as I love 'antiquing' and I have discovered that antiques are often less expensive than buying new, and they last longer (hence being antiques)!

I may pass the "bee~hive" it may be called something else, but I call it this. Since I have been here it mostly has been vacant, although someone tried to make a go of a coffeehouse. Truth be told, I would love this as a house if it were in the country!

I won't need to take the train for my trip, although I will cross the same line of tracks in two places on my trip.

I will pass Fire Station No. 1~cool isn't it?

I can look south, although I will not see my home as I live too far away.

I will go here~Lowe's Grocery Store. Here in town we say Lowe's the grocery store as we have the other Lowe's too!

Will I have lunch? Maybe, as the Brown Bag makes tasty vittles.

There will be times that the mountains will be on my left, as well as on my right. Neat to get a view as I drive, isn't it? The mountains always take my breath away.

I will take time for a bit of culture and check out the local artist and their sculptures!

I will be heading this direction...although not to the Space Center. See the vegetation? That is typical New Mexico vegetation without water!


While out and about, I may go to the Other Place...

Or I may go to Western Auto and ponder if folks back East have an Eastern Auto?

Thanks for going with me on my trip into town. I love living in the southwest. I always am amazed when one is hateful or negative about my community as I wonder~ don't they see the incredible beauty? Can't they see the charm? Can't they see it as the blessing it is? Sometimes I believe people see their homes and their lives based on the expectations that they have learned because of television and never stop to really smell the roses.

Hasta luego!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Is the grass greener?


I labeled this photo "even chickens use the paths"
When we bought the farm it was not anything but an old house engulfed in Mesquite and desert vegetation. We had no idea that it had a fenced back yard behind the house until we began to remove the Mesquite...and this is a chore. All of the work on the farm is done manually, because we have manual labor and no machines to facilitate the work. So my teens have become fit in times where fit is something hard to maintain.

I have a dream for this farm. Many people have laughed at the notion of a farm in New Mexico because this is Ranch country and heaven forbid someone would rock the boat. But it is a farm I wanted. Simple, with a few animals, a garden and some trees. Eventually I would like it to be a place people come to learn skills of old that have been forgotten as we advance further into the 21st century.

I think often about this plan and its simple implementation. The rocks lining that path were each picked up by the teens and I. We have made many trips to gather rocks, because here on the farm sand, white sand from White Sands, dirt, and more dirt seem to be the only other thing besides the Mesquite, so to fancy things up, it requires sweat~equity. I laugh when I reflect on how quick I thought I could have the farm done to my satisfaction...as it was naive to think it could be done in 18 months.

This farm that we have called home now for 3 years is more than a farm or a ranch for that matter. It is a dream. Plain and simple it is a dream to take something that someone saw no value in, and make it my perfect home. I am fairly certain I am close, and confess that there is no place, no home, no country that the grass is greener than this farm, and for that I am ever so grateful.


My Comments and Blog

For some reason no matter what if I publish comments they go to the spam section~ no idea why. I also cannot change or add background design as I keep getting notice that I am not updated, which once again I have no idea what this means or how to fix it.

I am thankful for your comments and appreciate them and see them!! It is sometimes that blogger drives me a bit batty. I also cannot remove my email thing, even though that does not seem to work either.

I hope you all will understand as I do not wish to change to a different blog host etc.

Jennifer

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Well here you go...snow in southern southern southern New Mexico

I went to town today. I confess that I have not driven in snow in a long time and was shocked to see the snow last more than 24 hours, and second this much snow! Now to all of you who deal with snow every year, this may not seem like too much of a deal to you, but to give you some perspective, we usually start planting outdoors in a few weeks. My best garden ever~ with the zillions of sunflowers~was planted February 8th~no kidding!

I have snowburn! I got my snowburn while out making hay paths for our birds, as they do not know what to make of this storm. We have not lost any animals as of yet, although the combs of some roosters and hens looked pretty bad.

On to my sharing of the Great Blizzard of 2011:

Mountains east of Alamogordo New Mexico!!


Just off my dirt road on to pavement(well snowment) this early afternoon.


A town shot of the mountain chain.

Because I think she is such a sweet lamb~

I have looked at this fence every time I drive home...and I never really noticed how neat it looks with the few slats missing.
Poor cactus is wondering what is going on!
One of the turns heading home
This is someones house on New York Street, almost seems like it should be in New York!

By the way, it is not the snow that has been the worst part of the storm. We actually had temps very cold for us...-4 is what I think, but it may have been colder. Feels like minus 300 as my toes are no longer used to or able to adapt to the Arctic air!

ps...I am thinking that very soon we will have our soldier back in the states, and that is news that warms my heart!