Saturday, July 29, 2017

Jerry Lynn Scoggins - July 29, 1947

This is another one of those that is hard to write, because Jerry is a complicated, but oh so simple person. Jerry is ten years older than me, so he was gone from home by the time I can really remember  details of us growing up.

I do remember a few details growing up - mainly him trying to teach me to drive. At this very young age, we did not realize how bad my eyes were. He would tell me to watch the road, and I would tell him I was (while my head was turned toward the ditch. My right eye was very dominant.)

My first airplane ride was when I was a Junior in high school. I got to fly to Houston for a weekend visit while he was living there. 

After he retired and finished college, he relocated to Gunter part time. Then the wanderlust kicked in and he started going to Asia. He spent the next years roaming around different parts of China, Thailand, Cambodia, and many cities that I can't pronounce or spell. He has always enjoyed traveling, which is something that we all enjoy. He has many stories of his traveling adventures that he should really write down.

The negative influence of living abroad ten years is that he lost his ability to drive fast and furious (as he did in Houston). He is known to be putting around going down 289 on the shoulder of the road. 

He has a few "quirks" that makes us laugh. One of the funniest is that he gets up during the middle of the night and eats a snack. He has no idea he is doing this. Diana finds crumbs where he has been in the sweets. Even though he eats pretty healthy - sweets are his weakness. He says he loses all self-control with sweets at night. 

Jerry does not like any part of cold weather. He says it hurts his body. That is one of the reasons he loved Asia. He is in his element on a warm sunny beach. This year we are hoping that was his last long season abroad. He is planning on spending the trip in South Texas this winter. He has done this in the past and it was a pretty good compromise for not going abroad. He has a brand new truck and camper, but has never had the camper hooked to the truck. He sees no need to practice. Some Sunday morning, he is going to hook them together and creep to south Texas on the back roads. 

He was gone while our kids were little and never really experienced their childhood. However, he has been much more involved with our grandchildren.  Marlow learned "Bub" really fast and knows that she can convince him to go see the geese or "bull".  Diana had to get onto him, because he was calling the horse the "bull" just to please Marlow. During the fourth, he did put his time in helping with the grandchildren. Bub and the rhino were great entertainment for the children.

Today is his 70th birthday. We will have a simple birthday meal to celebrate this occasion.
Happy Birthday, Jerry!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Diana Scoggins Ferguson - July 25, 1956

Happy birthday to my twin sister, (who just happened to be born 12 months before me), my best friend, my traveling buddy, and my partner in crime. I am so blessed to call you all the above. Although Mother had thoughts about having two of us girls so close together, God knew what He was doing. Diana is a good Christian Southern girl that made even Bennie Scoggins proud.

I find it easier to just list qualities and characteristics about my loved ones So these are in no certain order but just a few things about Diana.
  • She cooks, cleans, cans, and quilts. She is a great homemaker with a house that always welcomes family, friends, and Bible study groups.
  • She loves and cares greatly for her family. She is truly the Matriarch of the Ferguson clan. She is a great "Nana" to all her grandchildren.
  • She is a great Christian woman with a heart for God. She leads our Women's Ministry at the church. and leads one of the Bible studies.  She is one of the most faithful followers that you will find. She has carried on the work of many of our ancestors that were instrumental in Baptist churches. She stayed on course to the faith. 
  • She loves God's nature and to travel to witness the beauty of His creation. I am fortune to get to go on  three ladies' trips a year plus some family trips to discover new places and things. She is a great traveling partner. Even the few trips that she has been sea sick on or rough airplane rides that upset her stomach - she is always a trooper - ready to do it again.
  • She truly is a trooper. All you have to see to believe this is see her driving the big red truck pulling their fifth-wheel down the road. Whatever the challenge is - she is ready for it.
  • Diana is prim-and-proper. She may have Daddy's looks and features, but there is no doubt that she has Mother's grace and style. 
  • She was my "boss", two times in my working days. When we 18 and 19, we went to Gainesville to open a clothes store. She was the manager - my boss. I joked that I was the "maintainance" man that did all the dirty work. Years later she was my boss again - Principal of Gunter Middle School. I may be prejudice, but of all the principals I taught under- she was the best. As a Principal her main concern was always - what was best for the student!
But there is so much more than just this. She is my best friend. She gets "me".  WE enjoy a good strong Diet Coke like no other, and she knows her Diet Cokes. We think a lot alike,  and we have the same taste in many things. Where you see one of us, the other is not far behind. Retirement life is so much fun, because I know I have someone that is up for the challenge or the meal of the day.

Diana gave me a book 13 years ago with great "classic" pictures of us that is worth sharing portions of it, because it sums our relationship so well.

Crazy About My Sister... And Glad You are Mine

I am crazy about my sister, because

  • she has stuck by me through thick and thin.
  • she and I have always been great at sharing. (food, gum, cokes, etc..)
  • we know how to make each other laugh.
  • of all the wonderful talks we had as little girls ( and the many games of riddle, riddle marie)
  • we both savor life's simple pleasures.
  • she has a wonderful sense of family values.
  • we were always such angels together.
  • because of her zest for life.
  • we both love the holidays.
  • we both picked up a few "quirks" from our mother.
  • we have survived ups and downs together.
  • she sees past my faults.
  • of our shared memories that will last a lifetime.
  • God knew that we needed each other.

Diana's family

I was tempted to put one of those really cute pictures here, but she has always threatened me with paybacks. So here is one of her and her family that she will be ok with.

Love you and I can't imagine life without you,

Friday, July 7, 2017

July 4th - The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

     This is one of the few times that we have all our family in and out for more than two days. This year it was for two weeks that we got to hang out with the family. Greg and Isabel came first, then Lisa brought Anja to us, but Lisa went back to Tennessee for work. Jenna, Marlow, and Jackson came next, then the rest of the kids came in and out for the two weeks. Basically for 8 of the 14 days I had two babies attached to me. The joys of little children is indescribable, especially with 5 babies under 3 years of age.
The Girls

   Not only did we entertain babies, we did our normal cooking and gardening.
Chad and the Jeep
Highlights were -

  • Taking the babies to McCalisters (3 times) and other lunch spots. People would think that they were all Jenna's babies. 
  • The various friends and family that came to visit and hang out with us. 
  • Great firework shows.
  • Swim time and Uber time on the Rhino with Jerry ("Bub" to Marlow)
  • The cousins together picking on each other is always a favorite.
  • The Willys Jeep
  • We celebrated Isabel's first birthday before they went home (with a three-song concert by David Dunn). 
  • Diana and I got to hangout with just Chad in Plano the last day, before he left town. 

The Group
     God blessed us with cooler than normal temperatures with even a couple of showers.

The Shooters

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Canada! Oh, Canada!

Diana, Cheyrl, and I went on our summer girls' trip. We went to the Montreal and Quebec City area. We did walking tours of both cities. We absolutely fell in love with Quebec City. The city is so rich in history.

Money exchanging proved to be no problem. Because of previous trips and experiences, the Canadian one-dollar and two-dollar coins (loonies and toonies) were a breeze.

However, we did find it interesting and sometimes challenging to speak to people in the different areas. French and English languages are not too similar! The most difficulty proved to be putting gas in the rental car. Sounds like it would be easy, but trying to read those pumps and follow their directions (in French) forced us to sometimes make new friends at the pump.

Some of the Montreal highlights included:  Rue St. Paul Street, Notre Dame Basilica, and the Old Port.

Quebec City highlights included:  Our Lady of the Cape Shrine, the Chateau Frontenac, The Wall, Montmorency Falls, Saint Anne-de-Beaupre,  and the Funicular Elevator (which takes you from the Lower to the Upper part of Old City Quebec).

We had several authentic French meals. I did have to watch to make sure that I was not eating mystery meat. Pastries were my favorite, and Cheyrl and us did get our ice creams several places. Ice is scare in restaurants just like when we were in France. McDonalds was our go-to place for dollar Diet Cokes (which with the Canadian exchange rate was 75 cents US money) and free Wi-Fi, even though most of the time it was slow.

Diana and I were off the grid, so we had to save up our Google questions until we could get to a Wi-Fi establishment. I did keep a translator app on my phone that entertained me for hours as we were driving. I would read billboards and signs, then translate them. 

(Some of this was copied from Di's post and pictures may come later.)