Friday, August 28, 2015

Stashing the Stuff

There have been many things we learned in the past few months regarding Festas.
 It is not just as simple as,
 Junior Queen!
Pretty dress and crown!
Custom made cape! 
 The most recent revelation is where to stash all the stuff?
This location in our entryway worked for a time, but really limits visitors.
I wanted to try and hang the cape up in my front closet, but it is too stinkin' wide!
 So...the cape is wrapped and under LPP's bed.
But what to do with the American, Portuguese and Pismo flags...
the statues, the crowns, the parade dresses AND hoops, the after parade dresses, sashes and sign.
There is a lot of STUFF
I decided that I could take my sewing machine down and add some hooks and hangers in the front closet.
Everything Festa related is in here and ready to go as we attend parades.  
I even laminated my master list to check items off  as they get loaded in the car.
I have a fix-it box with pins, thread, glue gun as well as a hair box with bands,  bobby pins and hair spray ready.
This way I won't have to pack that stuff each and every time we go.
It should work.
I hope it works.
I'll let you know next week!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Next Chapter

We are moving our girl into her dorm this week. 
 She went on a camping trip with other incoming freshmen, so she will be in her dorm room a couple nights before we arrive with the rest of her loot and officially move her in. 
 I shared this from another college with LPP and she said she is now planning on taking the sheets off of her bed so that I can have the closure of making her college dorm bed. 
Makes me weepy.


 I thought I'd share some pics of the campus. 
I did not take these...they are just on Google. 
It is stunning. 
And peaceful and comforting.
She loves it and it feels like home.
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 Such an exciting time for her.
Proud, selfishly sad, happy, thrilled am I.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Be Careful What You Ask For

Be careful what you post on Facebook. 
It may just grow into something you didn't see coming.
A friend did that last week. 
 Diane and an her husband lived in the mountains as caretakers to a youth camp on a lake until Bruce's untimely death two years ago.
 When they lived in the mountains, and there was a forest fire, Diane did what she knew.
She baked..
...and cooked
...and helped feed firefighters.
Although she is a valley dweller now, her heart is in the mountains with the fire fighters. 
 She wanted to help. 
She innocently asked if any of her friends would like to help by baking cookies for the fire fighters.  Yes, we would.
She found out where she could take items and what was needed.
Pretty soon, she had gobs of goodies promised. 
 SPF and I made Peanut Krispies
(I used my Krispy Kritter recipe without the chocolate. I also added whole peanuts for more protein) and prepared individual bags of dried fruit.  
As I delivered my offerings to Diane yesterday, she received a phone call. 
From a news station in Fresno.
 It seems her Daddy was so proud of her efforts that he shared it.
Diane begrudgingly agreed that they could come to her house and interview her. 
Begrudgingly, because she did not do any of this for attention on herself.
She simply wanted to help.
The sheer number of people who felt the same way was overwhelming.
And humbling.
This woman has amazing friends and lots of them.
It is a true testament to her nature and I KNOW that Bruce is smiling down on her.
You can see the interview here.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Sunday Truism

Seems that I let the weekend pass without posting my Sunday Truism for the day.
Here you go.

Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.
   For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.
Matthew 7:13-14


When in doubt, take the high road.
~Every Grandma and Mama with an ounce of sense.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

These Three Friends

Back in May when we were asked if our youngest would like to be nominated for Pismo Beach's Junior Queen, I will be honest, I was not fully on board. 
It was not great timing for our family...with my mother in law's
It was a bit overwhelming.
 But I knew how important this tradition was and I truly was honored that our daughter was asked to be included. 
 Once we made the commitment to proceed, attendants were asked.
These two girls were at the top of the list for several reasons. 
They have been friends since kindergarten.
 They are polite and well mannered. 
 They get along and are a bit nutty. 
The perfect fit for us!
  Our first jaunt together was to the Garment District for dresses.
The second adventure we had was to the beach.
It was on this trip that I learned a lot. 
I learned that these girls really get along well. 
Often times, three can be tricky.
From time to time, two would be talking or walking together and the third was chatting with me or something.
What I noticed, though was that it was never the same two together.
There was never one feeling left out.
 It was natural and easy to be around.
And did I mention they are nutty?
We stayed, with the girls, at friends' house last weekend and I must say that Mr. and Mrs. M. treated ALL of us like the queen! 
 Dinner and breakfast were prepared for us before the various events. 
The girls were given their own room in which they could relax, play or sleep.
It was wonderful.  
 The view was not bad either.
Prior to their first "official"  event, we had a photo shoot.
This was on the way to eating steaks at the Portuguese Grounds.
It is amazing what this group does for the community.
Saturday they served a steak lunch.
To anyone.
For a donation...or not.
Doesn't matter.
Impromptu clapping games and much laughter occurred before the food was served. 
Strangers smiled and complimented them as they passed.

Then it was on to practicing for the Grand March.
The Grand March is a choreographed, (kind of) follow the leader dance that includes last year's queens as well as this year's and their courts.
Kids from 9ish through high school.
While we did not choose to have a court, we did have the three sweetest boys come who would be escorts for the evening. 
Two boys from school and one cousin. 
The city was supposed to have met us there to open the Veteran's Hall doors...but they were a no show for more than an hour. 
 Everyone was patient and made the best of it.

When everyone started to melt and the key still had not arrived, practice began outside.
At first it appeared akin to herding cats.
 But after a bit, order began to take shape.


The key finally arrived and a quick run through inside helped. 
 That evening proved to be more fun that I imagined. 
The only other Grand March I had been to was this one where I was fretting over my son.
The wariness of holding a boy's arm was quickly forgotten and the girls had a ball.
Just look at those faces!
  I must say that as soon as it was over, we all hightailed it to the cool air outside for a bit.
 These three friends.
They make me happy.
I will post pictures from the parade on Sunday soon.
But for now we will skip to Monday's fun.
This Festa does things a bit differently than others with their timeline. 
The Grand March is typically held on Sunday night AFTER the parade.
 But there are so many folks who travel quite a distance for this Festa AND school begins so much earlier than in years past, the Grand March is the night prior to the parade, allowing for families to travel home Sunday afternoon if they need.
We decided that as Queen, our girl would miss school on Monday in order to make an appearance at the final lunch.
Her attendants' parents made the same decision.
At this point, the girls are getting tired.
We parents are getting tired.
But no one would have known that by looking at them.
And they all announced that the stew served was amazing!
Hubby and I presented these sweet necklaces to each girl before the festivities began.

 I pray this will always be the case.


Saturday, August 22, 2015

A Visit that Came Too Quickly

These two came to visit me yesterday. 
Aren't they adorable? 
They are two of my favorite people.
I guess I will forgive them for growing up so quickly and leaving for college this weekend.
I'm still working on forgiving the one on the left for the same thing.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Helping our Firefighters

Watching the news recently has been bleak. 
The fires that are encompassing much of the western states is frightening.
  Firefighters from other countries are here to battle with us as well as our own military.
 Washington is asking for and accepting firefighting help from local citizens for the first time in history and entire towns are being evacuated. 
 Homes that have been in families for generations are being threatened.
Rough Fire at Hume Lake from my brother-in-law.
Combine the facts that underbrush and dead trees have not been allowed to be cleared out with the severe drought we are enduring and we now have a recipe for disaster.
 That disaster is growing by the minute.
People are dying.
What can we do? 
Pray for the strength and safety of our firefighters.
 Pray for rain.
Pray for the proper management of our forests in the future.
Pray constantly.
The Wildland Firefighter Foundation is another way we can help.
This non profit organization offers financial aid to injured wildland fire fighters and their families.
  It may come in the form of  assistance with therapy after a severe injury.
 It may come to family members in the form of a plane ticket to the bedside of their loved one.
The children of a fallen firefighter may receive a Christmas sponsorship. 
Unless we are in the direct path of a raging fire, it is easy to forget those who are risking their lives on our behalf.
 Let's not.
Let's help.