Monday, April 30, 2007

From my Cousin Nelda


A young man learns what's most important in life from the guy next door.

It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him.

Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday." Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.

"Jack, did you hear me?"

"Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It's been so long since I thought of him. I'm sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago," Jack said.

Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence' as he put it," Mom told him.

"I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said.

"You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in your life," she said

"He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important...Mom, I'll be there for the funeral," Jack said.

As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser's funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.

The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time.

Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture....Jack stopped suddenly.

"What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked.

The box is gone," he said

"What box?" Mom asked.

"There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was 'the thing I value most,'" Jack said.

It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.

"Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him," Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom."

It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days," the note read.

Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention. "Mr. Harold Belser" it read. Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note inside.

"Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I valued most in my life." A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.

Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved:

"Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser."

"The thing he valued most time"

Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked.

"I need some time to spend with my son," he said.

"Oh, by the way, Janet, thanks for your time!"

"Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away,"

You mean the world to someone.

Always remember the compliments you received. Forget about the rude remarks.

Always tell someone how you feel about them; you will feel much better when they know and you'll both be happy.

If you have a great friend, take the time to let them know how much you appreciate them.

Send this letter to all the people you care about, if you do so, you will certainly brighten someone's day and might change their perspective on life..for the better.

" Thanks for your time"

Friday, April 27, 2007

Lady Jan says no more ka-boom!

We went to Fresno because my daughter was going to get pads for karate and learn to spar at Quan's dojo and we had Arma with us again, but something happened to prevent it.

My husband was driving and there was this noise pow! Then flop flop flop, so of course we thought we had blown a tire.

My husband pulled into a parking lot as soon as he could find one, and we all four of us lay down on the dirty hard top and looked for a blown tire--there wasn't one!

So my husband tried to drive it home, and the flop flop noise got worse and it screeched and then it got hard to brake.

My husband turned into Edward's theater and called a tow truck, and we had it towed home. We knew it had to be on the left side of the car so my husband pulled of the front tire and everything was okay with that tire, so he pulled off the back right one and there was the problem the brakes had fallen off the drum.

We just got the car back from the shop today, it cost us $450.00 for both brakes. I just had both the brakes front and back done last year and it cost me total less than that! But they had to replace the brake drum too so I guess there was part of the cost?

I'm tired of hearing things blowing up, every time something goes ka-boom it cost us money!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Lady Jan's Bragging Rights!

My daughter Sarah and her friend Janae preformed a song called
"Home sweet home"at the high school talent show

They didn't place, but I think they get a pat on the back just for preforming!
I hugged them both and told them I was proud of both of them, and I thought they did great!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Day trip'n with Lady Jan #5

We went shopping in the cute little shops in Mariposa, and then I found these pretty wisteria vine growing nearby. And this is my daughter Sarah's response to my husband telling her to smile.

On the way home back on Ben Hur road there we saw deer.

I believe the species is mule deer.

Two together I think they were a herd of does.

We thought at first that this one was a baby, but on close up I discovered it was just a doe laying down on the job of grazing. notice the mouth full of flowers?Posted by Picasa

One more view of the stone fence that the Chinese built.


And the picture below is of an old mine some one in the area dug, but no gold was found here.

there use to be wood above the mine entrance but that is long gone now.

now this little hole in the ground is nothing more than a curiosity and a danger to the unwary.Posted by Picasa

Then we went home.
the end

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Day Trip'n with Lady Jan #4

I bought this from the Mariposa Museum.

There was two house in the back one was the Mariposa news paper and the other was this counter house with the pretty arch. My daughter and my husband are cutting up.

My daughter Sarah, and her friend Arma under the arch.

Posted by Picasa

Granite cart for the stamping machine.

I found Gold! exclaimed my husband.

The Gold up close and personal, it turns out it's nothing more than a little gold paint.

The morn before we got to the museum there was a dedication ceremony for this new sign or plaque.Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 13, 2007

Day Trip'n with Lady Jan # 3

Line shaft and pulley

We finally made it to;

Mariposa, and we went to the Mariposa museum but I couldn't take pictures inside.

But I could outside the museum.

Line shaft and pulley

High pressure pump

High pressure pump
This is a pioneer device for turning a mountain into a hole, just to find a small bag full of gold.Posted by Picasa

Water Wheel

Stamp Mill

Used to crush rocks into gravel so that gold can be collected through use of mercury, and incidental adding mercury poisoning to the environment.

Posted by Picasa
Phew after all that I'm tired and hungry, so we went and got something to eat.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Day Trip'n with Lady Jan #2

Here we are at Pea Ridge Cemetery,

that is located right across the road from the stone fence that was next to the road.

This Cemetery is a pioneer cemetery, and buried here are some of the first people that settled this area (not counting the native Americans of course).

These first three tomb stones are from the Orme family.Posted by Picasa

This one you can hardly read anymore it is so badly warn, and it shows the importance of choosing the right head stone. So let that be a lesson to you people out there--if you die choose carefully your head stone material.

This nice white marble has really weathered the test of time.Posted by Picasa

This one is interesting, it has not only the date and time and name of the decedent, but it has a warning too.

Remember man (man?) while passing where you are now so once was I.

And where I am now soon you will be.

Dispare of death and follow on. Posted by Picasa

It wasn't all death and despair, there were wild flowers too!

Yellow ones.

Purple ones.

Did I say purple already?

And of course the white ones that grace the meadows eariler.Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 09, 2007

Day Trip'in with Lady Jan #1

I'm driving down Historic Ben Hur Road and I made my husband take this picture for me. This road is located North from my home town of Madera, and above Hensly lake, and just past the small town of Raymond (CA). Then hang a left and keep on driving then the road will make a sharp right hand turn, and then it's 'Ta Da' Ben Hur Road.

The grass was still green, and as we drove we saw meadow after meadow that was covered by mostly white flowers that made the meadows look like they were touch by snow. And there where also yellow, and blue and some purple flowers as well. It made the drive that much more enjoyable.

This is the gorge on Ben Hur Road.
My daughter finally inherited my fear of heights, and took one look at this gorge (which by the way looks and is a lot deeper in person), and my daughter said "AAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!"Posted by Picasa

This is the stone fence on Ben Hur Road.

Just after the rail road that crossed the US from East to West (our side) over a hundred years ago was finished the Chinese workers that build our end of the rail road were then unemployed. The Chinese soon went into the gold country many looked for work or to pan gold. And a local farmer hired the Chinese workers to build this fence. The Chinese workers got .50 cents a day for a five foot section of fence. If the worker was unable to finish his five foot section of fence he didn't get paid.

Me, my daughter Sarah, and Arma my daughter's foreign exchange student friend from Indonesia that came with us on our day trip. We are standing in front of the section of the stone fence that is right next to the road.

My husband Dave and I.Posted by Picasa
At this point my husband took over the driving, after I explained to him I wasn't seeing too good with the over the counter sunglasses I was wearing. My regular sunglasses went missing after a trip to the Salvation Army.
I miss my prescription sunglasses, I can't hardly see with out them.
And here I was driving with out them!
Scary thought ain't it?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Easter at our house

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

My daughter Sarah scolding her daddy.
This is Arma my daughters friend from Indonesia, and a foreign exchanged student.
She spent the Holiday with us while her house mom was out of town.
She's a great girl and a pleasure to have over the weekend with us.
We also took her up to Mariposa yesterday and I'll post more on that later.
Hi there! That's me in the green!Posted by Picasa
I hope everyone had a happy Easter and ate lost of chocolate bunny's and eggs.