Founded December 17,1912    Ceased Publication Thursday February 1, 1951

Book 1 Volume 22


Original Volume 22 republished using KompoZer

At this time, I think it would be wise to make some kind of a statement as to the motives, as well as the purpose behind this web page.

            Recently son, George, and grandsons Andy, and Jason, encouraged me to turn this from a letter into a web page. A web page offers a vast new opportunity to also display pictures along with text. They set it up and instructed me how to put it on line every week. Bear in mind, for this old geezer, this represents rocket science.

I do have an agenda. I try to write an upbeat page, with a bit of humor and not get too confrontational in my opinions, well, now! I do have some very firm opinions that have a way of working their way into these letters. I  am also very much pro computer and try to do as much as I can to encourage their use.

I hope to reach out to former Palmertonians, as well as other friends and relatives, with whom I would like to maintain contact. We may not agree on everything, however, my intentions are honorable.

I suppose the on going saga of the adventures of Queen and Bobby is about as fascinating as watching paint dry or grass growing. We don’t lead a very fast paced life. However, with us what you see is what you get. I really must say though that there is a lot of love in this house.

 If anyone is offended by my content, I am sorry, but at 77 years of age, I am doing something I enjoy very much. I am not about to change my ways now. As our late son Jack said, " I am me and you are you." Phrased more succinctly, "Tough beans". There is always the delete key. Ha!!


            Our Butternut           


April 17, 2004 7:11 AM 43 deg at LVIA and 42.8 in the bus stop

Dear Folks,
It is a new beginning to a new week of these things. It is a grand day today. It certainly looks like a beauty of a day on hand. I haven’t been out yet but will do so soon.

I took some pictures outdoors this morning. That Macro setting on the camera is nice. Queen held some of the flowers and I focused and shot the pictures. The picture in the bottom right is a Dogwood bud beginning to swell up.

                        daffodil            narcisis        narcicis 2        buds

<Later> Golly but it was nice outdoors this morning! We went up to Walmart this morning for a look around. The stores seem crowded today. Then we came back and stopped at Shea’s and Spillane’s. We were looking for a card and some stick cinnamon. I have been reading from some authoritative diabetes sites and many are touting the efficacy of cinnamon in treating type 2 diabetes. So for lunch, it was some more tea, brewed three sticks of cinnamon in it. It really is good tasting, but I certainly am no tea lover.
I also got the parts I needed for my hose repair at Shea’s. Walmart didn’t have anything even close to it. You can’t beat Shea’s for so many things and one need buy just one of them, not a pack of several. They are a damn good store. Sometimes, the slight extra cost is well worth it.
Walmart does offer a variety of products. We needed a carafe for an obscure brand of coffee pot. They had it. No small store can afford to stock all that stuff.

Yesterday while Mary and Jim were here, Tommy stopped over and we had another try at the satellite dish adjustments. Earlier we had gone up to Radio Shack and bought a replacement LAN for mounting at the dish proper. Nothing doing. Finally, they took the dish down and re-installed it on the pole where it had previously been located. Well that didn’t work either. Now we are really stuck.

Once again I read all of my favorite columns in the Times News today. Apparently I had it wrong about the story on the Palmerton Press by Pattie. It should be out this week.

One of my biggest problems is hearing people properly and understanding correctly. 

computer screen

As usual I always read my favorites. Always Pattie’s column however I am increasingly impressed with the writings of the Reverend Doris Bray. She is a good writer and seems to be improving all the time.


Sunday, April 18, 2004 7:11 AM 50 deg at LVIA and 51.8 in the bus stop

Gee whiz it looks like a wonderful day outside. As soon as the coffee is ready Butternut and I will be going out.
It is very nice out there this morning. I opened the glider and sat up there with my coffee. What a wonderful way to clear one’s head and get a proper perspective on life.
Here is a nice site with a lot of interesting stuff on it. The trains particularly caught my attention. http://www.calsgallery.com/ 
After my nap, I changed my bed for tomorrows big wash for Queen. I hope it doesn’t get too hot to soon. she has a lot of problems with the heat.
Queen and I were sitting up on the glider this afternoon enjoying the warm weather. It is about 86 degrees this afternoon.

Mike and Jean came out and they are preparing their back porch for the upcoming summer season putting out the chairs. It will be nice to be able once again get back to the “talk over the fence” summer season. 

Later today we were sitting by the bus stop and Butternut had to make his presence known. He is definitely Mom’s dog.

fred 1                    Mom and Fred

I took some pictures of Queen’s spring flowerbed once again, as new things come out.

flowers 1                rhododendron

These are Queen’s original Windflowers as well as the now flowering PMJ rhododendron.

It got this bit of memorabilia from Dave Engler.

Subject: - Costenbaders

 Bob:  For your information (if you're interested) - I received this picture and note from one of my nephews, Glenn Engler, son of Winfield and Regina (Bierman) Engler from Glen Rock, Pa.  This forward is my reply to him re the sign.


I suspect his surmise is true. I think the Pyrofax gas business was the store in question. It was out at 8th street and Delaware Avenue. This has to be old because there is no prefix 826 before the phone number.

Monday, April 19, 2004 7:13 AM 45 deg at LVIA and 48.5 in the bus stop
This morning the weight was 204 and the glucose level was 152. This morning before we did anything else Queen and I went for a walk before it got too hot. We walked our usual walked up to 1st street across and down to 5th Street and home.
Queen was busy with the “dreaded sheet day” so she had a big wash today. I decided not to go to the Ironworks and instead work out side. There is a lot to do.         

Well it has been a busy morning. I decided to see if I could salvage the wooden wire or cable reel we bought from the telephone company quite a few years ago. I went to the lumberyard and got six 4x4 pressure treated pieces of wood that I intended to use as legs. The center part of the reel the wood has rotted so badly that the top began is sag badly and is in eminent danger of collapse necessitating attempts at repair. The problem that I encountered was that the top is in much worse shape than it looked and crumbled badly when I went to work on it. I suspect it is a lost cause.

We decided to go to K- Mart where Queen saw a picture of a potting table in this weeks advertisement for sale. We went down, looked at it and bought it. A young man helped put the good-sized box in the back seat of the Chevy Corsica. Golly he just got it in. We got it home and out of the car. I walked it up to the bus stop and we put it inside. It is too hot for anymore outside work. Tomorrow if it is cooler I can call upon the Fudge Institute wrecking crew to smash the old reel apart and after it has been disposed of assemble the new potting table. This was enough for today.

This afternoon about 3 PM, we went up to Towamensing Cemetery for internment of David Horn’s sister, Betty Meinhart.

Golly but it was very windy up there on that hill. The cemetery people had erected a sturdy windbreak that helped a lot. Queen was concerned that she might not be able to attend with the very warm weather but we waited in the car until it was about time to get underway.

funeral 1                   casket                casket 2

prayer book
This picture rather says it all.

There was a man and a woman minister in attendance. I presume they were Lutheran. It was an appropriate service that was nicely and tastefully done.  I told Dave it doesn’t get any easier with the passing of friends and relatives. On a much happier note, tonight being washday, we dined as usual in God’s restaurant. We had spaghetti and it was wonderful. It is the ultimate comfort food. I even saved a bit for lunch tomorrow.
Much to my chagrin I still didn’t hear anything from Dr. Kolecki about the results of my test. Tomorrow it will be a week since the stress test and since Tuesday is his day to be in Palmerton I hope something will be forthcoming.
I would like to knock down that old wreck of a table and get started on the new potting table. There is a whole lot to do outdoors before summertime. In addition I must get some mushroom soil and put Turf Builder the on the yard. We shall see.


Tuesday, April 20, 2004 7:19 AM 61 deg at LVIA and 57.5 in the bus stop
This morning my blood glucose was 136 and the weight 204. The first thing we did this morning after Queen came downstairs was to go for a walk. It is cooler and much more comfortable this morning. A jacket felt comfortable.

 As we got to 1st street I stopped and took some pictures of the new assisted living complex being built by the Palmerton Hospital .

Village 1               Village 2

It is an imposing structure.

Then we walked on down to 5th street and on the way back as we neared Dr. Leshock’s house Dr. Nicholson beeped at us on his way to the hospital on his morning rounds just as I was taking these pictures.

forsythia 1             forsythia 2

The Leshock’s forsythia

It is unfortunate that I didn’t have full sun to augment the colors with all these pictures.

I shall have to get started outdoors soon. There is much to accomplish. I did get the top of the old wire reel smashed flat. A few shots with the sledge hammer made short work of it. It was almost completely rotted. I took some of the biggest chunks up to the alley and put it in a big garbage pail. More of the smaller bits are in  garbage bags. In the meantime Queen was weeding and cleaning the lower planter boxes next to the street. We both called it quits after a time. We did enough.

I was sitting on the porch reading the paper when Tommy called on the phone for me to get my fanny down to the gap. The re-seeding of the west side of the gap was in progress with a crop duster biplane. Golly, but I had quite a time. Queen and I took the car over to the “Tanks” area and I set up to shoot some pictures. The plane was just departing the area and when I took a shot, poof the batteries went flat. The emergency mercury batteries in the car were also flat. The one picture that I did get from there was an excellent picture of the Devil’s pulpit area. Sheez!!!

Devils pulpit

Back to the house we went. I replaced the batteries with a freshly recharged set and we were ready to go. We went out the door with no car keys. In factwe had no house keys either. I had to go to the emergency house key. There they were lying on the table. At that point I told Queen the Hell with it. She said no lets go. This time I drove down to the Gap and parked where the fishermen park.

plane 1            plane 2          plane 3              plane 4

He flew directly overhead on the way to another pass.  Finally, I was successful "Sheez", what a time that was!
Golly finally this afternoon there was some good news. Dr. Kolecki called with the results of the stress test. He said as far as he can determine I am OK. I was admonished to be careful for any overt signs of problems and if any occur not to tough it out but seek attention. I do not need to curtail my activities but to be prudent in my actions, whatever that means. I guess as Fritz always says, tongue in cheek, moderation in all things. Ha! He said the test went well. The scans he thought shows some tentative indications of scarring but as of now he considers them as probably false readings and overreacting of the scan and not of pertinent consequence in light of my current history of no apparent problems. They will send me copies of the test. I am to see him before summer. So I do feel better about that.

I got this from Charlotte Rehrig. It is good.

 A lady goes to her priest one day and tells  him, "Father, I have a problem.  I have two female parrots, but they only know how to say one thing."
 "What do they say?" the priest asks.
 They say, "Hi,  we're hookers! Do you want  to have some fun?"
"That's obscene!" the priest exclaimed, then he  thought for a moment.

 "You know, I have two male talking parrots,  that I have taught to pray and read the Bible.
 Bring your two parrots over to my house, and  we'll put them in the cage with Francis and Job.
 My parrots can teach your parrots to praise and worship, and your parrots are sure to stop saying
 that phrase in no time."

 "Thank you," the  woman said , "this may be the solution."
 The next day, she brought her female parrots to the priest's house. As he ushered her in, she saw
 that his two male parrots were inside their cage holding rosary beads and praying.

 Impressed, she walked over and placed her parrots in with them.

 After a few minutes, the female parrots cried  out in unison: "Hi, we're hookers!  Do you
 want to have some fun?"

 There was stunned silence.
 Shocked, one male parrot looked over at the other male parrot and exclaimed,

 "Put the beads away, Frank. Our prayers have been answered!"


Wednesday, April 21, 2004 7:13 AM 52 deg. at LVIA and 42.5 in the bus stop

This morning the blood glucose was 138 and the weight 204.It is a damp day outside this morning. It isn’t raining now but it sure looks threatening. I will be heading out to look as soon as my jump start for my heart is ready. It is my trusty 8 O’clock coffee.

Well instead of my sitting outside we decided to go for a walk first thing this morning. It is a gray dull looking morning.

Here is an excerpt from the Wall street Journal’s computer guru Walt Mossberg.

“One of the best ways to share and preserve your digital photos is also one of the least-known. Few people are aware that you can turn your digital images into a custom-made, inexpensive, professional-looking bound book that is produced overnight.

            Now, My Publisher is launching a new, even lower-price version of the custom photo book that it hopes will make the product much more popular. Starting today, the company will be offering smaller soft-cover photo books, still printed on thick glossy paper and still professionally bound.These 6-by-8-inch books cost about a third of the price of the 8-by-12-inch hard-back books, and will hold twice as many pages -- $9.95 for 20 pages and 49cents for each additional page. Each book also carries a $4.95 shipping charge; the hard-cover books cost $7.95 to ship.”


We have quite a pile of refuse for the garbage men this week. I went downtown this morning and got gas for the car. While I was away Queen cleaned a lot of the bits and pieces of the table ready to go to the alley. Now we have most of the old top of the “table” taken up to the alley.

While we were working outside the biplane was busy still reseeding the mountain. They must be almost done by now.

plane 5

This from Tommy

 An elderly lady phoned the telephone company to report that her telephone failed to ring when her friends called - and that on the few occasions when it did ring, her pet dog always barked right before the phone rang.

 The telephone repairman proceeded to the scene, curious to see this psychic dog or senile elderly lady.

He climbed a nearby telephone pole, hooked in his test set, and dialed the subscriber's house.

  The phone didn't ring right away, but then the dog barked loudly and the telephone began to ring. Climbing down from the pole, the telephone repairman found:

 1. The dog was tied to the telephone system's ground post via an iron chain and collar.

 2. The dog was receiving 90 volts of signaling current when the phone number was called.

3. After several such jolts, the dog would start barking and then urinate on the ground.

4. The wet ground would complete the circuit, thus causing the phone to ring.

 Which goes to show that some problems really can be fixed (or at least found) just by just pissing on them.

Tonight for supper Queen had meatloaf, baked potatoes, string beans, raw carrots, cherry tomatoes, and cottage cheese. It was excellent as usual. 

For all of you “thrifty souls” out there [read cheap] here is a listing of free ISP sites enabling one to getonline either free or very inexpensively. Look for yourselves. http://www.all-free-isp.com/index.php

This evening Tommy came over and we assembled the K-Mart potting bench. We had to follow directions but it went surprisingly well. Actually no profane language was even needed. This is a good sign. The directions were all right but not as good as we would have wanted. However we got it together.

bench 1            bench 2

Maybe”Martha” will be putting them together soon.

Queen is busy at her computer this evening reading her mail and looking for recipes which she prints on the network printer.

Earlier today I got a response from grandson Andy who after examining my screen print that I sent him told me exactly what I was doing wrong. Boy that is nice.

Thursday, April 22, 2004 7:23 AM 52 deg at LVIA and 53 deg in the bus stop

It is a cloudy day this morning. Showers and thundershowers are predicted for later in the day.
This morning the blood glucose was 131 and the weight 204. This morning we go to the dermatologist in Treichlers for Queen’s follow up check-up.
Queen suggested that we go for a walk this morning so we took our usual walk. We spoke with Mrs. Leshock this morning while she was cleaning their property much as Queen does. Marline Bollinger drove by and hailed us as we were on our walk. She plans to get back into the walking regime soon. It is great being out for our walk. It is very unusual not to see someone to talk to in our travels.That is indeed one of the joys of a small town. Everyone knows everyone else.
I recall when we were visiting Queen’s sister Grace in Huntington, West Virginia. We always went for a walk in Ritter Park about a block from Grace’s home. We didn’t know a soul there but if you walked there regularly we soon met other regular walkers who were always congenial. We both noticed that many walkers seen to be that way

Ritter Park is indeed a magnificent park for walking and jogging. It is composed of shale like surface that drains quickly after the heaviest rains. There are lots of joggers as well as us casual walkers. There are plenty of benches to rest or just sit and enjoy. Whole families often picnic there at the available fire pits and other cooking facilities.

The Huntington city’s citizens know they have a good thing. The main park walking area encompasses a not perfect circle of about a mile. The entire park complex actually follows a small stream the goes the length of the city out several miles. Out at the extreme western end is the Chesapeake and Ohio Steam locomotive also seen below.

Ritter Park        Ritter Park 2        Ritter Park 3       Ritter Park 4

We are back from out doctor’s trip and all went well. She had a few more blemishes frozen and removed but does not have to return.

After lunch we went to Walmart. Queen had to get some special sunscreen and moisturizer that Dr. Robbins suggested she use as well as pick up a prescription at Rite Aid before our afternoon rest period.


Friday, April 23, 2004 7:32 AM 55 deg at LVIA and 56.3 in the bus stop

This morning the blood glucose was 143 and the weight 204. I was out with Butternut and although it must have rained during the night, it was not doing so then. This morning we plan to do our food shopping.
This is from Lee Bollinger,

 Jenny's husband, Charley, was a male chauvinist. Even though they both worked full-time, he never helped around the house. Housework was woman's work! But one evening Jenny arrived home from work to find the children bathed, one load of clothes in the washer and another in the dryer, dinner on the stove, and the table set. She was astonished--something's up.

It turns out that Charley had read an article that said wives who worked full-time and had to do their own housework were too tired to have sex. The night went well and the next day she told her office friends all about it. "We had a great dinner. Charley even cleaned up. He helped the kids do their homework, folded all the laundry and put everything away. I really enjoyed the evening."

"But what about afterward?" asked her friends.

"Oh, that was perfect too. Charley was too tired! " God is good!!

These pictures are  from the New York Times

Statue of Liberty                NYC

Well I had best end this for the week.

Please Love one another, Mom and Bob [Queen and Bobby]

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