June 2020

After some very warm days, the temperature this morning in the 50’s feels a bit chilly. We had several in the 80’s, it came suddenly, and we weren’t used to it. We are having rain; here it is just a little at a time. Some places are getting lots at a time, not very far from here, either. That’s just how thunderstorms are, unpredictable. I had hoped to mow the yard last evening, but it rained too much, with the ground as saturated as it is.

Things are running fairly smooth at the plant as of now (knock on wood). Milk production dropped with the heat that hit, which was timely in a way. Roy is having heart problems and is off work, he has to wait over a week to see a specialist. Austin is taking a vacation for a few days, so it worked out really well, considering all. Orders are slowly picking up, Vera & Susie are also gone for a week, it is working out alright.

We had the pleasure of having our sales team from Rhode Island, Jeff & Angie DiMeo, here for 3 days. They watched the make procedures, finding out what all is involved in making it, not just selling it. Junior gave them the opportunity to find out what is involved in making the 4 Alarm Cheddar they enjoy. I think they will appreciate it even more now. From being along to weigh out the ingredients, where the person doing it wears a respirator (the rest of us coughed and sneezed, throats burned) to being in the make room when they mix them in, there again most of them wearing respirators. Jeff was given the privilege of a fresh curd, wiped on the side of the vat to get even more flavor on. He manfully ate it, when asked how he feels a little later, he said he wants to cry. While the cheese makers like the cheese, it is the worst one to make, it is potent before it’s pressed in the cheese and neutralized a bit.

Jeff and Angie also had a presentation for the employees, showing them where the cheese actually goes, how it is received, helping them to understand how important their job really is. We provided lunch for everyone, making it worthwhile for their time. Rufus helped me, we did meatloaf, Prairie Breeze mac n cheese, lettuce salad and ice cream novelties. Discussions were had with Jeff & Angie on how to improve some things, where to go from here, what do we need to change, etc. It’s always good to review things, see if and where we need to make changes.

We are now using the new offices in the new building! How nice to not be crowded 2 to a room. It’s upstairs, quiet. I haven’t been in mine very much yet, still helping out with things all over, some in the old building. We are figuring out how to adjust things, who does what, how we move the paperwork, now that it isn’t all in the same building.

This past weekend we had company, daughter Jane Marie and her family came. The have 8 children, we made floor beds for the boys, little Michael in the crib, the 2 girls slept in the 2nd guest bed. I pushed the bed against the wall so Janita (almost 3) doesn’t fall out, but the one night she insisted on sleeping on the other side, and sure enough, fell out of bed, hitting the nightstand. She had a big brush burn from it. They were here Saturday, Sunday and Monday. On Sunday afternoon around 2:30, daughter Rose and her family also came, surprising all of us! We had planned a Monday evening family cookout as Junior’s had family from New York at their house for the weekend and couldn’t be along. We enjoyed our time together and were glad Dennis and Rose also came, as the last time we were all together was in November 2017. We took pictures of the grandchildren, there were 5 more since the last time. We aren’t used to having children around, and all the noise. Also, when all were together, it made quite a ruckus, the siblings giving each other a hard time, remember this, remember that. Rose and Mark almost always end up having a water splat. One will take what’s left in the glass and throw it across the table at the other, of course it has to be repaid. And almost always, Mark will say, “I didn’t know there was so much in yet”. (and what are they teaching the children as the children get older? I noticed 2 little girls watching wide-eyed) It was all very enjoyable, but we do admit, we are glad they don’t always live here! I don’t have everything put away yet, there are fingerprints on the windows. But I am very thankful for the privilege of having grandchildren to make fingerprints.

We planned to be in Wisconsin this past weekend. It seemed like we should wait, since we just saw them, but we weren’t there since January a couple days when baby Clifton was born, and Rose and Dennis will be on a jobsite in Montana most of the summer. We started out Friday evening, but had the misfortune to hit a deer, and spent the night in the minivan. It got down to 48 degrees by morning, it was cold! We didn’t have any blankets, put extra clothes on, but by morning we were stiff and cold. We walked a mile to a service station where we got breakfast, by the time we got back we were well-warmed. Galen came to pick us up, we slept in the afternoon. Now we need to go van shopping. We planned to replace it later this year, it was starting to have issues.

We are again having church services, it’s good to see people. We aren’t shaking hands, which seems so rude. This too shall pass. It’s also a way to keep up on the happenings in the community.

I went with my Dad to the Dr. on Tuesday; he needs to go back today. He has COPD, is filling up with fluid. He has been in the hospital a few times to try to get more off, we would like to keep him out if possible. He has an open would that oozes, the Dr. put him on stronger water pills a couple days and wants to check it again. His health is declining rather rapidly. 20 years ago, he had his right leg removed due to atherosclerosis. He tried a prosthesis, but it rubbed on his stump, and they had to remove the leg above the knee, so he has been on crutches ever since. Now he is losing strength in his arms, his leg hurts, he can hardly use crutches anymore. He needs help with some things. He was always independent, so it’s a pill for him to need help, be so handicapped. Mom’s health isn’t so well, either, they need someone to help him in the wheelchair, push him in to the Drs. office, etc. He turned 79 last month.

We enjoyed a family gathering on Mother’s Day with my family. My brother made chicken barbeque. Mmmm. There are 9 of us siblings. My Mom passed away in 1976 at the age of 33. She had lung cancer; we didn’t know it very long. She passed away from a blood clot moving through her heart, taking her instantly. There were 7 of us, I was the oldest, at 12 years old, the youngest was 4 months old. Dad remarried to Mom’s youngest sister, and they had 2 together. I think there are 50 grandchildren, and 46 great-grandchildren.

Have a safe and happy summer.                                                                

Jane Musser

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