Saturday, May 31, 2008

I've finally found something I'm good for!

Today we drained our waterbed mattress in preparation for taking the waterbed apart, clearing it out of our bedroom, and putting in a regular bed next week.

If you've had a waterbed, you know that draining the mattress, especially the ones with the foam dampers inside that make the mattress nearly waveless, can be a tough job. We got the siphon to work and emptied water into the bathtub, which worked well, and we piled books on the mattress to help persuade the water to go out.

However, those foam inserts don't give up the water easily, so when the siphon quit running, we rolled up the mattress in an effort to squeeze more water out, and then I lay on the foot of the mattress in an effort to force water to the spout. And it worked. So I guess I learned that I can lie on a waterbed mattress and help remove more water after the siphon has quit.

I'd have taken a picture, but I didn't want to be vain about my special talent.

We got the mattress rolled up and got it out of the bedroom by using a 4-wheel furniture dolly that I made several years ago and a handtruck that can be folded into a 4-wheel version. See photo. No, that's not me draped over the two dollies -- but I can tell you that, by the time the whole job of dismantling and moving the waterbed was done, that's about how I felt.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Poll results:

Which of the girls in the picture is my mother in her youth?

Left: 6
Center : 1 and a question
Right: 1

Answer: Left

(1) I only know of two of these pictures. In both, someone wrote the names on the folder space under the photo, listing Mom's sister Dorothy first. However, the picture that was in Mom's possession had an arrow pointing from her name (Jeannette) to the girl on the left. We accept that as good evidence.

(2) Mom was the middle child. It's obvious in the picture that she's in the middle, height-wise, which should be a pretty decent indication, though I know it's not perfect.

(3) Anyone who knows Michelle very well has seen that look -- piercing eyes, lips pursed just so. This photo has to be of Michelle's grandmother!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Be sure to participate in the poll in the post below!

Here are a couple of photos from my mother's funeral services. Since she was an artist, we opted to display six of her paintings, four in the chapel and two in the foyer.

My brother Andy, my sister Elizabeth, and me with a self portrait that Mom did from an old photograph.

Graveside service. We had the chaplain from the care center where Mom lived for almost a year conduct the funeral and graveside services for us. She was an MK, raised in India, so had a great appreciation for some of the aspects of our family history. She is also a very caring person and was kind, helpful, and encouraging to Mom during those final months.

One interesting thing was that, when we arrived for the funeral service at the mortuary, the lights were out! Fortunately, because of a music glitch in tests the night before, my brother had recorded the music for the service on a CD and a battery-powered player was available. We all agreed that, given all the missionary connections, it was appropriate to have, or at least begin, the service without electricity. However, the lights did come on -- at the moment in the reading of the eulogy when it was reported that Dad and Mom had married! How appropriate!
You can visit a memorial site and see some photos of my mom (and dad) in earlier days. You can also read the guestbook and leave a message if you desire. Go to Making Everlasting Memories.

The funeral services took place today and all went well. I hope to post some photos tomorrow.

Here is an early photo of my mother with her two sisters. Vote on which one you think is my mother:

Left, center, or right

Thursday, May 08, 2008

This picture of my mother was taken on Mother's Day two years ago.

Mother's Day this year will find her in heaven. Mom died today about 5:45 Phoenix time after battling infections that ravaged her body following gall bladder surgery more than three weeks ago.

My brother, Andy, and sister, Elizabeth, were with her when she departed. At the moment of her death a CD player was softly sounding out the hymn, "He Hideth My Soul."

I'm grateful that I was able to fly to Phoenix last week and be with her for a few days. She was only truly responsive on my first evening there, though she also showed signs of recognition and responded in more limited ways on two or three other occasions.

Two of the best answers were when I asked, "Is everything all right between you and Jesus?" and "Is Jesus with you right now?" To both questions she looked me in the eye and nodded her head.

Her granddaughter Michelle wrote her a note in which she said, "It seems it's time to say goodbye, Grandma, but only for a little while." We're glad for the hope of eternity that we have through Jesus.
Go to EFM's website to see news and pictures of a fire in our new bilingual academy in Jalapa, Guatemala.