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Sunday, March 27, 2011


Becky was born in St. Mary’s Hospital in Kansas City, MO. It was an eventful year for everyone in the area……the summer of 1954 was one of the hottest summers on record. The temperatures were over 100* for something like 13 days, peaking at 112* to 113* in the worst of it. This was in the days when home air-conditioners were rare.

Becky had a problem of sleeping and the only relief for all of us was a little ride around the neighborhood to cool off. Gas was cheap and we didn’t even own a fan. This was in the days where if you couldn’t pay for it…….you didn’t have it. It is the story of the 50’s for a lot of us.

Becky took a lot of our attention as new babies do. When they wheeled me to the pick-up area where daddy and George were, I’ll never forget the look on George’s face. When he saw what was in my arms the look on his face was undeniable. He was 3 years old and liked being the only kid in our family. The following days only compounded his opinion and the painful realization that “baby” wasn’t going anywhere. It wasn’t a “stop-over” as he’d hoped….she was there to stay.

The parents with more than one child in the family have undoubtedly been introduced to the same problems. In spite of getting off to a rocky start they began getting used to each other. Becky learned fast with an older brother to follow after.

The years spun away and Becky was always in a hurry to do the “next thing” whatever it might be. She had an imagination and lots of energy. She grew into a pretty girl…..always active in school things. She had a competitive personality and loved achieving goals.

Throughout her life she’s had lots of medical problems and if anything could go wrong with her surgeries or her teeth, it did. She’s had a lot of hills to climb but she became very good at climbing. Always optimistic she has had a good life and anything she puts her effort to is a win, win situation..

No one, can make a party out of any situation like Becky can. She loves to have fun and the rest of us like to go along to share in the outcome. An avid reader and decorating her surroundings keep her happy.

Happy birthday, Becky, I’m proud of the woman you are. Follow your dreams and they’ll take you even beyond expectations you may have. One thing for sure we’re never bored when we are in your company. Lucky me to be your mother.

Essentially Esther

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Elizabeth Taylor died today. I was sorry to learn she is no longer with us. You can say a lot about Elizabeth Taylor but you can never say she was boring. I felt a certain kinship with her since she and I shared the same birth year and her birthday was three months before mine.

She was a star at such a young age she never had a normal childhood but she certainly had a lot of opportunities not given to many. You can like her or hate her but I always found her interesting. There are few stars left of her era and none of which compare to her.

We couldn’t expect an Elizabeth Taylor to come home from her job of the day, throw on an apron and cook supper for a family. It would seem odd for her to drive a station-wagon full of kids to a Scout outing, seeing her pulling clothes from the dryer to fold or hang. And that wouldn’t make me happy to see her do all those things.

Because of that, I enjoyed her elegant self. It didn’t matter that I was drying the clothes, hauling kids here and there, cooking, packing lunches and then dash off to a job. My life was good for me and I enjoyed seeing her live the exciting life she did.

When I was very young I loved stories about princesses and their castles….the handsome prince who would find her and they would live happily ever after. One day I was telling my mother when I grew up I wanted to live in a castle. She chuckled and said I wouldn’t like it. When I asked why, she said there was no plumbing, the castles were drafty and cold and cooking was done in huge fire-places which would be hard to do. I wanted to live like the storybooks and the reality of it was beyond my comprehension.

The many years since that conversation with my mother I found the wisdom of what she said. I am convinced that ordinary people who play out their lives in a family circle and friends live fulfilling lives. Once fame and fortune lands on an individual their life becomes complicated to the extent they have to fight for privacy. The fun they once had out in public becomes difficult if not impossible.

It is enough for me to enjoy things I can never own, be, or know. Just let me be a face in the crowd and I’m happy. Why? Because I can just be…me.

After all the years that have passed I have come to know my mother was right….

Essentially Esther

Monday, March 14, 2011


The USPA had a Meet in The Firm Gym in West Plaines Saturday. Rodney Wood was the organizer and did a great job of getting it all together. Lifters came from around the State as well as some from near our borders.

The participants were in good number and three women also made up the roster. Many broke their own personal records and it was a good day of lifting. The young man we are sponsoring with proceeds from The Rocky Memorial Fund did very well in all three of the events. Later Becky and I had a chance to visit with him and his father. Very nice people and would make Rocky proud.

I forgot my camera but thanks to others I have a couple pictures that I can ad here to give you the idea. It was a good turnout and we look forward to the next Meet in Blue Springs June 25th. Becky and I plan going if at all possible. I believe this one is to be an APA event.

Rodney made a nice talk about Rocky after the awards were handed out and most of the guys attending had lifted with Rocky in the past. It’s always good to see the faces of those we know from other events around the State.

Hoping you have a good week.

Essentially Esther

Sunday, March 06, 2011


What does it take to make you happy? Is happiness something we take in and keep or does it ebb and flow? What is the definition of happiness? Abe Lincoln once said people are as happy as they make up their minds to be. If that is so do some of us consciously decide we don’t want to be happy? We know that isn’t so.

I can’t speak for anyone else. I only know what makes me happy. It seems to grow from a core value of contentment. Contentment coming from trust in something bigger than myself. Some of the people I know have had a lifetime of tragedy in everything from sickness to job loss. Every time they almost get up something else happens to knock them down again. We all know people like that. Through no fault of their own they are dragged down time after time.

Some people grow stronger with adversity while others fold up and quit trying. Perhaps that is you and perhaps it is me. Day in and day out we have opportunities to one way or the other……how do we face up to them? It seems to me a lot of bad things happen to good people while a lot of good things happen to bad people. There is something won or lost with every day we live……and once gone, it is gone forever.

It’s important to make good choices and then if we get lost on the way it should become a tool in how to prevent it happening again. Some things are not meant to get better no matter how much we may try. The key idea is to try our best and what we can’t overcome is meant for us to carry until we can. Down the road somewhere, sometime there is a reason.

The happiest people I know are ones who have pretty much gone through Hell and back. For one thing it sure gives fresh appreciation for what is left of the foray. No matter if it is a war injury or an accident on the job, a child born with handicaps, or whatever the reason may be there is always some good to fall back on. We never know what some folks we meet have traveled through or overcome.

For me, the small everyday things bring happiness. Watching the birds at the feeders, the beauty of God’s handiwork when I step outside or visiting with family and friends which is what the blogger world provides for me. The freedom old age brings. I’m content with what I have, who I am and where I am.

Most seniors I know are living alone, many with family far away and they are proud to be able to fend for themselves. God is a constant companion for it is He who provides the will to continue on, lift a helping hand and provide the happiness I’ve been talking about. He made us to be happy through thick and thin. I’m a living example of His indulgence.

Essentially Esther

Wednesday, March 02, 2011


Fifty-four years ago, precisely at 9:15 PM John was born. I suppose at birthday time every year, for the person celebrating, is a memory known only by the mother and father. At least in most cases. As a mother I’m thinking back to the first time I saw you. But today you can only go back to the first memories of your childhood. There is a time-warp which you can never reclaim.

Boys have to suffer through their mother’s recollections of their arrival with knowledge only she can draw to. This is an area that cannot be questioned, corrected or hurried though. No! It may be their birthday but the birthing part goes to Mom. It doesn’t matter if they’ve heard the ordeal until it can be recited. The hesitation, the brief moments of calm while Mom muses over her recollections…….a little sigh and then the story begins again.

Skipping back over the years I am proud of the man you have become. No matter the situation of good times and bad you have made good choices. I imagine you have inspired a lot of people….. for your friendships and family values run deep.

And so, John, thanks for the many happy times we remember and may you continue to prosper in your ambitions and abilities. Happy birthday from your biggest fan.

Essentially Esther