Joyful, Joyeux, Joy…

…can’t get enough of these great words beginning with J. My weekend was filled with many joyful moments. It was my birthday weekend and I celebrated with friends and family.

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That one card I received pictured top left was hilarious. “It’s Birthday!, Blow out candles and make wish for good thing! Won’t get but is fun tradition anyway. Wishing you to have Happy Birthday”

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Still going on the Russian theme I received this fabulous apron and kitchen towel from my daughter in law’s mother. Thank you Pat! So sweet that she thought of me when she saw these Matryoshka themed gifts. Things like this from my heritage give me joy.

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I was overloaded with gifts including a tasty meal out from our dear friends, Dave and Beth. This Gusla with the beautiful painted Russian Fairy Tale scene was part of the things Beth brought for me or someone in my family to enjoy. It’s a great instrument that is simple to play with cards that slip under the strings showing you the strings to strum playing the tune. I played Happy Birthday to Me on my birthday morning feeling quite accomplished!

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On Sunday afternoon we drove to downtown Seattle for dinner and live Irish music at Fado, an Irish pub with our oldest, youngest and their fabulous spouses. Our middle son lives 6 hours away so he couldn’t join us but he sent along a card. The company and music was fabulous. I received such wonderful written notes from each of our children that really brought me so much joy.

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The food was good, too. A little Irish and a little Russian made for a nice meeting of two cultures!

And I’ll end this post with my ABC Bible Verse Card for the letter J!

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Knowing I have a God who does not change and who is faithful brings me a lot of joy and peace.

Linking up with ABC Wednesday with thanks to Mrs. Nesbitt and her ABC team who keep things going each week.

Saturday I turn 64!

img818My life started when I was little in East Los Angeles.

img817I was a real swinger.

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Black and Whites1I started out a brunette and then became a blond and then switched back to brunette. Now I’m suppose to be gray, but funny thing, I’m still a brunette and I owe all the credit to my fine hairdresser, Sherri Bell.

img331Kindergarten at Montebello Gardens Primary School. This school only went to the 3rd grade at this time. Starting in the 4th grade we were bused up to Montebello (over the Rio Hondo river) to Fremont Elementary. Montebello Gardens (not a garden by any stretch of the imagination) is part of Pico Rivera. (Top Row Left with my Buster Brown “do”)

img332Mrs. Nicolaus my 1st and 2nd grade teacher was one of a handful of my teachers that I knew was fond of me. I was a voracious reader and she recommended that I be skipped from 2nd grade to 3rd grade. (Top Row left with my curly “do”)

img333The majority of the children I went to school with in my primary school days were Mexican/American. Of course now the politically correct title is Hispanic. My growing up experiences were not in the era of political correctness. (Top Row right with my Buster Brown askew)

I tried to count the candles on this cake to see what birthday it was. It looks like 7 but I’m not sure. This was at our house in Montebello Gardens/Pico Rivera, 4635 Oak Street. It’s funny how the old addresses stick in my head. My sister Kathy on the right with my cousin Jim Loscutoff. On the left is my brother Fred and my sister Vera.

img645Since my brother Tim looks like he’s 1 in this photo I’m 8 years old.

I know this is later than the photo above since my brother Steve is sitting in the highchair and my cousin Tanya is sitting at the table. My best guess is that this is 1960 since my brother Steve was born in December of 1959 (my 9th birthday). My cousin Valia, cousin Vera, cousin John, and cousin Walter blurred along with my brother Fred blurred.  Looks like a store bought cake for this year…

When I was in the 5th grade we moved across the river into Montebello and I was able to walk to school. During my 4th grade year I was bused. Speaking of 4th grade, I talked too much and my handwriting was messy. Funny how the criticisms stick with you all your life. My 5th grade teacher gave me the distinct impression that she did not like me at all. She made me stand up once in class to chastise me and I remember thinking in my head “I may be standing up on the outside but I’m sitting down on the inside!”  My 6th grade teacher was a gem who encouraged me with his kindness.  I worked in the cafeteria in the 6th grade and got free lunches. The cafeteria ladies were another group of adults who encouraged me.

img369High School Song Leader Squad. I hope to see some of these gals in April.

Junior High1Graduation from Junior High and graduation from High School with my dear maternal babushka.

Pictures15Graduation from college with my Dear and with my brother Fred.

img080Honeymoon with my Dear, December 1974.

P1050481This year it’s time to sing that great Beatles tune, “When I’m Sixty Four” and appropriately this photo of me is taken in jolly old England and I still have an attitude!

“When I’m Sixty Four”

When I get older losing my hair
Many years from now
Will you still be sending me a valentine
Birthday greetings, bottle of wine?
If I’d been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door?
Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four? You’ll be older too
And if you say the word
I could stay with you I could be handy, mending a fuse
When your lights have gone
You can knit a sweater by the fireside
Sunday mornings go for a ride
Doing the garden, digging the weeds
Who could ask for more?
Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four? Every summer we can rent a cottage in the Isle of Wight
If it’s not too dear
We shall scrimp and save
Grandchildren on your knee
Vera, Chuck & Dave Send me a postcard, drop me a line
Stating point of view
Indicate precisely what you mean to say
Yours sincerely, wasting away
Give me your answer, fill in a form
Mine for evermore
Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four?
Ho!

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Tonight (Friday) we are going out to dinner with some wonderful friends of ours and on Saturday (my actual birthday) I’ll be going to the Sounders Soccer game with Josh and Laura. We’ll celebrate my birthday and Katie and Andrew’s anniversary on Sunday. We are being threatened with a mighty storm on my birthday…what does the weekend hold for you?
Thank you Lord for saving me and leading me all these years!