....and the winner is?
Happy New Year....
About two weeks late..but still about a year to go...

Cheers everyone!
I already need a drink! G&T please!


Did they catch BIN LADEN yet?
I feel it's imminent!

So... to all my "LITTLE PAKI" friends. Stand back and watch us do our stuff!

Current Mood: exanimate
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Before the parade passes by....

I went to the Fiesta Bowl Parade this Saturday morning. I thought it was fantastic watching all the participants enjoying themselves. Marching in step towards what must have been an exciting quest with their friends. The day meant something to them far more that it was meaing to me. I did enjoy watching but thought how much more fun it must be riding, marching, or just walking along in step with your friends to the end of the rout. Waving at all the screaming children and others standing along the side of the roadway not going anywhere at all, just waving back with an occational whoopie shout to someone they knew or wanted to notice them.
My goodness 2008. Frightening thought. I can't beleive it's here. Reality is a stark and scary thing. This past year things have been kind of a warped, topsy-turvy ride for me. The past year has been a phantom that never quite materialized. So much was suppose to happen and so much like the phantom just stayed out of reach, beyond my grasp.

So I would like to make a resolution here that states that I want to become more devoted to my goals and not let things pass before my eyes like a parade that I'm not in. What are my goals? Well...they're my goals....

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Creator of The Magic Kingdom, "The Happiest Place on Earth"

Walt Disney, Dec 5 1901--Dec 15, 1966

I wanted to take just a moment to reflect on a few things today. December 15th is always a sad day to me from early childhood. In 1966 the death of Walt Disney on this date always meant to me that things will never stay the same. Having the knowledge that some things are always in a state of confusion and flux. Nothing stays the same or last forever.

Tree in Mom and Pops backyard taken during my last holiday visit home.

The inocense that I had once held. That's gone... Wonderful memories of picking up the autumn leaves and fresh fallen pecans in my Grandmothrs back yard is one of those good memories that will stay with me all my days. I had no idea what the feeling was at the time, but my psyche was recording that moment at full force. Searching through those fallen red and brown leaves for the pecans my Grandmother would be putting into some of her tastiest Chistmas time creations.... That's one of those memories that is as fresh now as if it were yesterday.

Barely more than a week before Christmas and I spent some time this morning recalling some memories of many seasons past. I remember heading out to the stores with Pop searching for a few Gifts for Mom and others. I've got some great memories of my first best friend, My Dad. With Dad driving, we'd go all over town. Sitting in the car looking out at the snowflakes melting on the window while we headed to the stores. Watching the wheels of the other cars spinning in the slushy snow on a cold wet December day in Oklahoma City.

Regretful ones,
I remember once discovering some gifts hid under my parents bed. When no one was looking I'd drag them out open them up and play with them. I was so excited about the gifts (that I knew were for me) who else? But this memory is bitter sweet. For it was at that moment that one December day that I think I lost some of what we sould all charrish more than anything about ourselves. Innocence. The very first gift from God and one that seems at times so easy to just toss aside. If I could only go back and put that Ernie handpuppet back in his box and not have that feeling of deceit and cunning that emerged from somewhere within. Where did that come from? And why? Who knows. I couldn't have been more than 6 years old. But it was a moment I'd gladly toss back into the abyss if I could. But who wouldn't want that chance?

Many great memories of happy times with the family rush over me this time every year. I love this chance every year to remember these things. I love so far away from family that at times it's all I have to get through the holidays. Mom called me yesterday to tell me she's sending me some of her Peanut Brittle she'd just made. Another great memory that thankfully keeps repeating and getting better every year. I so look forward to these things at this time of the year. Small family traditions and habits that make me feel so good.

Though not a memory of my own. I steal this moment from what must be a really nice one from my big brother Lee. He gets a visit from the Jolly one.

~thanks for the memories~
------- and here's to creating many new ones that are just as cherrished...
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Christmas Time 1935
My Dad was barely a few months old at the time. Grandmother had written her Sister Helen in Phoenix

Duncan Oklahoma
Dec-20th 1935

Dear Teh-----
When you get our
Package & open it I guess
you will find part of the
names missing... I
was washing dishes &
just thought I didn't remember
writting Le or Teh's names.
I have don things in
such a rush and at
the last minute had
a sick baby--- every time
he has a cold he has
the asthma & it makes it
tough. He acts like he
can't hardly breathe out.
I had the doctor
yesterday & he gave him
a shot for the asthma.
also for pneumonia
just to play safe-- I
think he is feeling
better this morning
so--I am sorry I forgot
the names anyway.
Mary M. thought the
cousage looked like
Leora & thought the vanity
nice for Teh-- I put
Geo & Virginia's gift in
with yours as I wasn't
sure of thier correct
address-- the hoes are
for Mother--- I didn't
have the cards when
I did up the packages.
&I guess thats why
I forgot to put them
in later. Mary M's School
is out today--they
have exchange of gifts--
then at 4:30 the Shubert
Music Club has their
Christmas Party & exchange
of gifts -- then tonight
Mrs Bullard wants
Mary M to play a piece
at a Christmas Party
& they willl have a
Christmas Tree there so
her day is pretty
full today--- Well I
must close-- hope you
all have a Merry X-mas
& Happy New Year-- So
glad Flo can be with
you--Wish I could.

I don't believe Flo's gift
was tagged either--
hers was the perfume
bottle with shshe & hank-

Lots of love

Just a simple letter to the family at Christmas time.
These things don't really happen as much as they use to.
In today's electronic world the charm of a letter means
a lot more to me than an email. Now days the only thing
that comes in the mail is bills and trash. not a lot of love
there anymore.

Merry Christmas anyways...

Current Mood: calm
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Rain rain....don't go away...
Wow it's raining again...Yeips!

Staying home today sick in bed I awoke to the rain pounding outside the window. I had no idea this was comming again. Two weekends in a row, that's great! I'm heading back to the covers and just chill to the sounds. So relaxing.....except the occational ambulance shreeking by...I wonder how many car accidents there were today? So glad I missed all that action.
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Wheew this was a lot of research...

I was up late reading some very old letters last night. This morning I sat down at the computer and found this biography on line of my Great Great Grandmother Elizabeth Bahr (Mrs H.S. Converse) brother William D. Bahr.

Well, I had fun trying to decipher the generations and just where each name fell in the grand scheme of things. I wrote more about it all

William and Mary

one of the well-known and progressive farmers of Sullivan county, where he has lived during his entire life as one of its most respected citizens, was born May 13, 1849, a son of Daniel and Mary (Graifly) Bahr, of Berks county, Pennsylvania. His
education was obtained in the common schools of Cherry township, after which he made his home with his parents until twenty-five years of age, when he was married and took up his residence on the place where he now lives. This property he purchased from his father and at that time it was but partially cleared.He at once began making improvements and in the course of a few years had the property under excellent cultivation, had built himself a comfortable home and to-day is classed among the well-to-do and up-to-date farmers of his
locality. He held the office of school director for six years, and has always taken a great interest in the cause of
education as well as other questions of the day affecting the growth and welfare of the community. He is a
member of Dushore Lodge, I. O. O. F., at Dushore; belongs to the Evangelical church, and in political belief is a Republican.

Mr. Bahr was united in marriage February 6, 1873, to Miss Mary A. Zaner, who was born in Cherry township, November 9, 1853, a daughter of A. H. Zaner, of Dushore, whose sketch will be found on another page. Three children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Bahr: Clayton A., who married Miss Carrie Bradley and is farming in Cherry township; Warden and Sherman Z., who are at their parental home.

Daniel Bahr, the father of our subject, came to Sullivan county with his parents when eight years of age. They settled in Cherry township, where his mother died in 1863, aged thirty-two years. His father remained in Cherry township until 1892, when he went to Bradford county, to reside with his son Lewis. He was a well-known citizen of this county and was school director for two terms.He was twice married, and by his first wife had seven children, as follows: William D., subject of this sketch; Wesley, deceased; Elizabeth, now Mrs. Henry Converse, and living in Great Bend, Kansas; Ada, who married George Dieffenbach, and is deceased; Celestia, deceased;


Lewis M. Bahr ran this store for more that 50 years
in Hollenback PA,North-east of Muncie Indiana. He opened it in 1884.
He was the Brother of my Great Great Grandmother Elizebeth Bahr (Mrs. H.S. Converse)From Dushore PA.

Lewis M. Bahr, taken April 13, 1934 for The Daily Review , Towanda PA. Newspaper hales my Great Great Grandmothers brother as an Unusual Man. He'd ran the store for more than 50 years buying it in 1884 after the owner had died. In those days Hollenback PA was a busy place, timber mills, saw mills etc. Later farmers and such. He was postmaster for 20 years. And Justice of the Pease for 18 years. Called a square dealing arbiter of local disputes. His decisions were accepted as fair and final.

Lewis; and Daniel, who resides in Sylvania. His second wife was Miss Margaret Zaner, who died in 1885, aged thirty-six years, leaving one child, George I.

The paternal grandparents of our subject were John and Mary A. (Reeser) Bahr, of Berks county, Pennsylvania, where they lived until 1834, when they came to Sullivan county, locating in Cherry township.Mr. Bahr accumulated a large property and was an influential man. He died October 27, 1855, at the age of seventy-two years, four months and twenty-four days, his wife surviving him for thirteen years, dying June 3, 1868, and reaching the good old age of eighty-one years, five months and eighteen days.They were members of the Evangelical church.


This biography was writen at a web page. I found on line. After sitting up half the night reading letters written by my Great Great Grandmother Elizabeth Bahr (Mrs. H.S. Converse) Mother to my Great Grandmother Ida May Converse (Mrs. George Washington Dunn) Mother to my Grandmother Muriel A. Dunn (Mrs Daniel Thompson) Mother to my Father Donald Thompson.

Left to right, Ida Converse( Dunn), 1918 , Muriel A. Dunn (Thompson), 1916, and Donald Thompson around 1944?

What I was reading were letters written in 1893 and 1898 the year my Grandmother was born. The letters were addressed from Mrs. H.S. Converse to her daughter Ida M Converse then living in Great Bend Kansas.

These letters always amaze me. What great handwriting the people had years ago. I wish I could write as well as they did.

Now I suppose if I read this correctly William D. Bahr was brother to my Great Great Grandmother Elizabeth Bahr.

Mr and Mrs H.S. Converse
Elizabeth Bahr Converse, and Henry Steven Converse.

Their Father Daniel Bahr was my Great Great Great Grandfather. And the names listed at the bottom of the biography, John and Mary A.(Reeser) Bahr were my Great Great Great Great Grandparents. who here described, were from Berks County PA and in 1834 moved to Sullivan County PA. Cherry Township. John Bahr was born 1783, Died 1855. His wife Mary was born 1787 and died in 1868.

It's amazing reading, Sitting here learning all this. It makes a
person just want to know more and more about their family history.

What do you think about all of this?

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Thankful for the memories...

Wow! Where did the year go? 2007? Was it ever here?

Sent by My Grandmother to her Sisters Nov 25, 1973

Just finished a letter to Flo & Eugene after comming from Sunday School and Church 4 of us went out to eat--- I was so full I wanted to just take a nap but, I said no. You go and write some letters to your dear ones.-- We ate at The Chisholm Hotel, they have nice meals on Sunday--- A salad bar and also on the main menue a lovely dinner. I had ham Sweet Potatos, green beans, harvard beets, butterd roll. coffee and a desert...

My little brother Jimmy and Me at Grandma's house.

Last week was a very busy week. Tues. I went to club, Wed I started doing a lot of things getting ready for Thanksgiving. Had Dan Jr for dinner Wed noon. Then Dan and Tim ate with me Wed evening as Ann was to spend the night in Lawton She worked Thurs morning so she could get off the rest of the week. Well, Don and Charlene and 2 little ones came in Wed evening but the stoped and got hamburgers before comming in. So they all visited until 10:30PM.... Danny spent the night with Timmy-- but they came back for breakfast Thursday morning. I was busy preparing dinner, turkey in the oven. That's always a big chore for me... Charlene made the dressing. I just got the pepperidge herb dressing and made a lot of gravy, and had green beans. harvard beets, sweet potatoes, cream potatoes to please everybody. I made a carrot cake for desert. Some with ice cream and some didn't. I made a salad plate of celery and caarrot sticks, ripe olives , stuffed olives, radishes and pickles. Also cranberry sauce, hot rolls, coffee and iced tea. Dinner was at 1:30PM. Ann came in from Lawton around 1 o'clock. So, Dan, Ann, Tim---Don, Charlene, Danny and Jimmy and Me. 8 of us.

Don (my Dad) and Jimmy
(My Little Brother) Thanksgiving Day,1973

Afterwards, Dan, Ann and Tim went to the City where they were invited to have Thanksgiving dinner with Ann's Sister and Family. That evening. Don was off work Wednesday evening thru Monday. But, Don went back to work Friday at 3:00PM and Charlene at 11:PM, So they lieft around 9:15 AM.
I had a hair appointment at 9:30AM, then afterwards I went to laundry, three loads, dried them all in two loads. Then, got them all put away. All but a big table cloth, pillow cases sheets to iron. Did those Saturday morning. I got that all done in time as Sat it rained , hailed then rained all day. I didn't even get out all day. I did sleep until 10:AM. Felt so good just to lay there. So nice and quiet. Can't do that when children are in the house. they get up to play the piano.. Oh me! two at a time.....

You can see the piano in the photo of Jimmy and me. While we had fun pounding upon the keys neither of us ever learned to play. I took lessons..came to naught. I find it very funny now that I read this letter. I love hearing my Grandmothers perspective on the events that season. I remember this Thanksgiving very well. My Grandmoters Carrot Cake was simply the best.

I hope I can spend next Thanksgiving with my family.

I hope everyone has as pleasant memories as these...
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Now I don't usually care to put things like this in my blog...but I read on CNN.COM how Zsa Zsa now almost 90 years young, but suffering from an accident she now has to have some kind of surgury to fight an infection in her legs. I just wish her the very best. What a dear (albeit, scrappy)lady. I just have to take a moment to wish her well. and a speedy recovery.

Here for your great enjoyment, is one of the most hillarious bits she did with David Letterman. Please watch for a hearty laugh. I was left rolling on the floor and laughing out so very loud.

Cheers and happy Humpday!

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In 2003 I was able to spend some time with this wonderful lady. I just feel so certain that when she passed she went

Straight to heaven
God Bless you Tammy Faye
You will always be remembered for your accepting and unconditional love and the sweetest
singing soul.

Thank you for your love.

I must add that when thinking about Tammy that I'm left with the thought of how wonderful she is feeling now that she's in Heaven singing like never before.... and maybe just maybe when Saint Peters on smoke break she's giving maybe just a slight kick in the arse to a certain Rev. Fawell.. maybe...
See you again Tammy. I can wait a while..but until then. Much love....

Current Mood: thoughtful
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My high regard for JFK has never been higher than when I heard this speach he gave on April 27th 1961. It seams he could be talking about 2007 instead of 1961. Amazing speach. Have a listen and then check out the article posted on CNN.COM today. Where are todays JFK'S?
John F. Kennedy's Speech on Secret Societies

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- A newly disclosed effort to keep Vice President Dick Cheney's visitor records secret is the latest White House push to make sure the public doesn't learn who has been meeting with top officials in the Bush administration.

Over the past year, lawyers for President Bush and Cheney have directed the Secret Service to maintain the confidentiality of visitor entry and exit logs, declaring them to be presidential records, exempt from a law requiring their disclosure to whoever asks to see them.

The drive to keep the logs secret, the administration says, is essential to assuring that the president and vice president receive candid advice to carry out their duties.

Cabinet officers often don't want to give up their meeting calendars to journalists. They have no choice under the Freedom of Information Act, which provides public access to some records kept by federal agencies.

But the FOIA disclosure law, which doesn't apply to Congress, also doesn't apply to presidential records.

The Bush administration has exploited that difference, triggering a battle in the courts.

The administration is seeking dismissal of two lawsuits by a private group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, demanding Secret Service visitor logs.

In trying to get the cases thrown out, the Justice Department has filed documents in court outlining a behind-the-scenes debate over whether Secret Service records are subject to public disclosure. The discussions date back at least to the administration of President Bush's father and involve the Justice Department and the National Archives as well as the White House and the Secret Service.

The government's court filings show that the Bush White House focused on the issue in the months before Election Day 2004.

Discussions moved into high gear when the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal prompted news organizations and private groups to demand that the administration turn over Secret Service records of visitors to the White House complex and the vice president's residence.

There was precedent for the demands.

During the Clinton administration, Republican-controlled congressional committees obtained Secret Service visitor logs while conducting investigations of the president and first lady.

Christopher Lehane, a former special assistant counsel to President Clinton and press secretary to then-Vice President Al Gore, points out the political implications of the Bush administration campaign to close off access to the records.

"The question it raises is 'what are these guys hiding?"' said Lehane, now a Democratic consultant. "They can live with it because they've only got a year or so left, but it doesn't do a lot for public confidence in open government."

White House spokesman Tony Fratto said Thursday, "I can't comment on a case in litigation, and I can't speak to the decisions made by other administrations."

The Bush administration says it is standing on principle.

"It is important that the president be able to receive candid advice from his staff and other members of the administration," Fratto said. "To ensure that he receives candid advice, it is essential as a general matter that the advice remains confidential."

In a declaration filed in court a week ago, Cheney's deputy chief of staff, Claire O'Donnell, stated that "systematic public release of the information regarding when and with whom the vice president and vice presidential personnel conduct meetings would impinge on the ability of the OVP (office of the vice president) to gather information in confidence and perform its essential functions, including assisting the vice president in his critical roles of advising and assisting the president."

In May 2006, the Secret Service and the White House signed a memorandum of understanding designating visitor records as presidential.

They are "not the records of an 'agency' subject to the Freedom of Information Act," says the agreement that was not disclosed until months later, in late 2006. The records are "at all times under the exclusive legal custody and control of the White House."

Four months after the memorandum of agreement, Cheney's counsel wrote the Secret Service, stating that visitor records for the vice president's personal residence "are and shall remain subject to the exclusive ownership, custody and control of OVP."

The September 13, 2006, date on the Cheney letter coincides with requests by The Washington Post seeking records on the vice president's visitors under the Freedom of Information Act.

The law enforcement agency "shall not retain any copy of these documents and information upon return to OVP," stated the letter to the Secret Service's chief counsel.

"If any documents remain in your possession, please return them to OVP as soon as possible," the letter added.

The Justice Department filed the Cheney letter last Friday in one of the lawsuits brought by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, which is invoking the FOIA law in seeking the identities of conservative religious leaders who visited the White House complex and the vice president's residence. The group, which represents Valerie Plame and her husband in their lawsuit against Cheney and other key administration figures in the leak of Plame's CIA identity, also is seeking White House visitor logs in the Abramoff scandal.

According to government documents, the Secret Service routinely destroyed five of eight categories of information relating to visitors to Cheney's residence. Of the records it retained, the Secret Service regularly turned over handwritten visitor logs to Cheney's office.

The Secret Service stopped the destruction in June 2006 because of lawsuits by various groups, according to the court papers. The law enforcement agency also is retaining copies of the material, contrary to the directive in the September 2006 letter from Cheney's counsel.

The court filings by the government show that:

# On three occasions late in the administration of the first President Bush and during the first term of President Clinton, the Secret Service proposed treating copies of White House visitor documents as non-presidential records. In its court filings, the current Bush administration opposes releasing details of the Secret Service proposals, saying this "poses a substantial risk of creating public confusion" because the proposals were never adopted.

# In January 2001, as Clinton prepared to leave office, White House lawyers proposed the transfer of visitor records from the Secret Service to the White House. The proposal was entitled "Disposition of certain presidential records created by the USSS," or the Secret Service. The records are now at the Clinton library in Little Rock, Ark., the National Archives confirmed Thursday.

# In September 2004, a lawyer for the Bush White House and a special assistant to the director of the Secret Service proposed "informal views on one way to address the disposition" of visitor records, according to court documents. The unnamed associate White House counsel and the Secret Service assistant jointly authored a July 29, 2004, document bearing the same title as the Clinton administration document from 3 1/2 years earlier.

# In July 2005, the Secret Service gave a presentation on the issue to the White House counsel's office, the Justice Department and the National Archives.

# On May 11, 2006, the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel provided a legal opinion on the issue, which is among the many documents the government is refusing to disclose. Six days later, the White House and the Secret Service signed the agreement designating the records as presidential.

Presidential records are released starting five years after a president leaves office. Under the Presidential Records Act of 1978, non-classified material is disclosed first, with classified documents and advice to the president released later after review by federal agencies, the White House and the former president.

Under an executive order President Bush signed in 2001, the archivist of the United States cannot unilaterally release the records without the permission of the current president, former presidents and their representatives.

"The scary thing about this move by the vice president's office is the power grab part of it," said Tom Blanton, head of the National Security Archive, a private group which uses the FOIA law to pierce government secrecy.

"We're looking at a huge problem if the White House can reach into any agency and say certain records have something to do with the White House and they are presidential from now on," Blanton said. "This White House has been infinitely creative in finding new ways and new forms of government secrecy."
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