Monday, October 21, 2019

Sometimes Life Sucks

Through my many years in education, I learned quickly that the school secretary was probably the most important position in a school. I was fortunate as a teacher and as a principal, to have many good secretaries (or as they now call them, admin assistants, which is probably a better term). When I became a principal, I realized how very important this position is. From 1994 until I left Gilbert El in 2010, I had the most amazing person to work with, Barb OFallon. Yesterday morning, I received a call that changed my world. Barb passed away during the night and I could not have been more stunned or heartbroken. She was with me through many good times and some not so good. She kept me in line and made me stay with the budget--not easy for me. If I needed something late at night or on a weekend, she would go in with me. The most important aspect for me was how people were treated and Barb did that with "perfection" smiling and hugging everyone no matter who they were. Today I went to Gilbert El and saw all of the flowers on her desk. She cannot be replaced ever. She loved her family with everything she had and she loved her job. I will be forever blessed to have had her in my life and to call her my friend. I loved Barb so much and I am so devastated by this news. She was truly one of a kind and I will always love that we worked together and I can always call her my friend. Her kids all went through Gilbert El and Steve is one of a kind. I will forever miss you, Barb! Sometimes life "sucks" and this is one of those times.

I am going to write more later as I have been asked to speak at the services.  My heart is truly broken.  And for my teacher friends who say don't  use the "s" word--sucks, I am using it today!!!

Friday, October 4, 2019


I have really been remiss on my writing on my blog.  Today I decided that I need to write more often about "things" instead of relying on Facebook. When I look back on my blog, I love reading about things that have happened.

Dave isn't much of a Mexican food fan so I have had to "train" him so to speak.  A few weeks ago, I made a big pot of beans and froze them in several packages.  Cameron will eat beans every day so I knew this wouldn't be a problem.

I was trying to figure out what to fix for dinner tonight and I realized that I had never made "gorditas" for Dave.  Mary taught me to make these and they were always popular with enchilada sauce and bean tostadas.  So I took some beans out of the freezer and decided that would be our dinner.

As I was fixing them, I had a moment that made me realize that there are signs out there all of the time.  I didn't even think about this when I decided to fix them.  My mom went into hospice Sept. 6, 2002.  She loved gorditas and so Mary made a lot of enchilada sauce. So during that time, I made gorditas several nights with Mary's sauce for my mom.  Thinking back, it was 17 years ago that I was making them for her.  I believe it was a sign from her that I thought about making them.  I don't know for sure, but it is my belief that we get messages.

They were delicious.  I am not sure Dave really liked them that much, but he will.  I made some cheese tacos, which he loves.  He has gotten to like the Mexican food I make more and more.   So it is definitely a work in progress.

I think there are about six left.  I am sure they will be gone tomorrow morning as Patrick and Cameron will probably eat them with just cheese.  

No matter what, it touched my heart.   And I am going to try to write more as it is important to me and it "documents" my life, which could be important to some people some day!!!!

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Summer, 2019 Post 1

I am not sure why I haven't written much this year.  Writing is very therapeutic and fun for me and this past year has been wonderful for the most part.  Never in my life did I ever dream that I would find a partner in my life like Dave and that we would have the life that we have grown together.  Not only did I have to get adjusted to living with a man, but it has been 24/7 since we are both retired.  This summer it has been really that way because being in Montana meant that I didn't have any board duties to attend.  Although we have many couple of friends there because Dave has so many friends, I don't have "my own" friend.  Fortunately, we had visitors throughout the summer.

Our main goal for the summer was to get the house that Dave grew up in and his brother was living in, cleaned out, fixed up, purchased and rented.  This was a major project and Dave worked incredibly hard all summer.  We were fortunate to find a good estate sale company who basically either sold everything or was able to get rid of a lot.  But there was still a lot of work that had to be done.  Dave was only able to golf once a week because of all we had to do.

He bought the side of the house that we live in when he moved back to Butte in 2016.  His dad and uncle built the house in the early 50's and it was in an area of Butte called McQueen.  Dave and his family lived on the other side that we just bought and his cousins lived on our side.  Each side has about 3000 square feet which includes the basement.  When they were growing up the basement area was open so that the kids could ride bikes and play down there when the weather was bad.

In the late 1970's, the Anaconda company bought out all of the houses there and then sold them back to the families for $1.  The Uggetti's moved the house to the present location which is the old family dairy farm.  That is when they closed off the basement so that there are two separate houses.  

The location is absolutely beautiful and I love sitting on the deck and looking out on the Rockies and Our Lady of the Rockies.  I love going for a walk in the back up the hill. We have a little over 5 acres and he and his cousins own and additional 6 acres up the mountain behind us.  The pugs love being off the leash and getting to roam around.

We found a wonderful renter and she is going to help us with the snow in the winter.  

I love spending time there and we truly had a great summer.  Didn't get to do much traveling because of all of the work on the other house, but it was nice to be away from Arizona during the heat.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Music to my ears

I have had a hard time writing for the last several months.   This has happened to me over the years depending on what is going on in my life.  It should be that I can write things out when they are bothering me, but that isn't the way it is for me.

However, tonight things are a bit different.  After several months of worrying so much about Patrick, he came to Butte.  There was time a few months ago that I did not feel he would live much longer.  So much has happened and he came to Butte today.  We went to a couple of casinos and then to a wonderful dinner at this amazing Italian restaurant.   When we got home, I did a few things and then went to take my nightly bath (since I can't swim here).  While I was in the bathtub, I could hear Dave and Patrick talking the whole time.  Not sure what they talked about, but it was absolutely "music to my ears."  

Friday, March 15, 2019

St. Patrick's Weekend in Butte

For some reason I haven't been able to write lately.  This has happened to me through the years and I never know what it is.  There are other times when I can write something every day.

Since my last blog post, so much has happened and most has been extremely wonderful and that is why I can't figure this out.  Anyway, I hope I am over it and can continue to write about the adventures that Dave and I have had and will continue to have.

One of his best friends, Craig, lives in Eureka, Montana.  We visited them last summer.  His daughter teaches in Tempe and wanted to come to Butte for St. Patrick's Day.  So we planned a trip for this weekend.  We flew into Missoula and Craig and Connie picked us up and we drove to Butte.

I can't believe all of the snow.  It is absolutely beautiful, but there is so much. Although it has warmed up (by Butte standards), it is still really cold.  But the beauty is unbelievable.

We have a lot planned for the weekend and I will hopefully be writing about it.  

Here are a few pictures from yesterday around our house:

And of course, we had to go have a couple of "dirty girls."  I had to introduce them to Chelsea and Connie.  They are on sale all weekend.


Sunday, October 21, 2018

A Very Special Lady--Jeanne O'Neill

We got home today from our cruise.  There was an incredible thank you note from Dave's cousins, Chuck and Maura, which has made me cry a lot tonight.   I met Jeanne when I was in Butte at Easter and totally connected with her.  I thought I was looking at my Aunt Teresa with her beautiful white hair and her saying her prayers.  I hugged her several times that evening as she reminded me so much of Teresa and my Irish roots.

I have felt a very special connection to so many of Dave's relatives as they are so much like our family.   However, Chuck and Maura will always hold a very special place in my heart.  Chuck was the best man at our wedding and it was so important to both of us that they came to Gilbert last May.

Maura and I talked about the similarities in our families.   When her mom died in September and she let us know, I knew that a very special lady had left this earth.  However, she left a legacy that I can relate to so much.   Although she reminded me so much of Teresa, she was a lot like my mom.   Maura told Dave that as she was saying her last words to her kids, she reminded the to always vote Democratic.  My mom would have loved that!!

Maura included the information from the funeral in the note she sent us.  Here is a picture of what was written.  I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!

It is so much what we would have said, but didn't.   "Everything I need to know I learned from my Mother."

Vote democrat, eat like a bird and exercise, listen to and care for other and love will come back to you in a million ways, turn to God in all things, pray the rosary and go to Mass, love your husband and treat him well, bring ranch dressing to all gatherings, plant a beautiful garden, celebrate with ice cream, hang sheets in the sun, watch PBS and learn, honor your roots and write down your memories, be able to laugh at yourself, set a nice table and never place a carton of milk on it, give donations as gifts, feel good and help others, stay involved and growing, Love your children and let them live their own lives, have tea ready for guests and serve it with ceremony, enjoy nature and books at all times, save old paper, cut into squares and reuse as notepads, no bake cookies are the best, don't be afraid to fight for what you believe in, stop, smell the earth and savor the moment, afternoon tea with apples slices is the best pick me up, when stressed, take a walk, take the high road, be grateful for friends along your journey...treasure others and they will treasure you.

Powerful words from a wonderful lady that I feel blessed to have met.   Thank you for sharing her with me for such a very short time!

And then Maura's beautiful words to Dave and I is really what meant the most to me.   And that is why the tears........

Dear Sheila and Dave,

Thank you for your remembrance of Mom through the Butte Education Foundation.  Like you,  she was such a proponent of education.

Sheila, she loved  you the moment she met you and was so thrilled that you married Dave.  She felt it was a true love story.

Times like this we realize how lucky we were to have such amazing women in our lives and we can only hope to follow the guidance they laid down for us.

My hope is that I can continue to be guided by the incredible ladies I had in my life for many years and for the guidance of this wonderful lady I only met a few months ago.

Jeanne O'Neill inspired me and I am so grateful to be a member of the Uggetti Family and their extended one in Butte.   

In the words of my favorite author, Carmen Agra Deedy, "those we love are never really gone, as long as their stories are told."  And Jeanne, I am honoring my roots and writing down my memories!

What an incredible legacy and I am so blessed to be a part of it!  And Jeanne, I love Dave and I treat him well.  Thank you!


Friday, September 28, 2018

Gilbert Community Excellence Awards

What an honor last night at the Gilbert Community Excellence Awards!  I have attended these event several times through the years.  The past two years I had the privilege of being able to present the awards to the Gilbert honorees.  However, this year was incredibly special to me.  GPS decided to name the awards for three people.  The teacher of the year is now named the Wally Delecki Teacher of the Year. I can't think of anyone who should be honored more than Wally.  Classified staff is named after Sharon Orr, one of the most incredible classified staff members ever in GPS and a dear friend.  But for me to be included, was so touching.  The volunteer of the year is now named the Sheila Rogers Uggetti award.  I am humbled by this.

As always, the evening was incredible and many community members were honored for their service in so many areas.  It was so nice for me to have Dave go with me.  He continues to be impressed with the Gilbert community.

Sponsored by APS, this formal evening is filled with celebration as attendees honor those in the community who have excelled in the areas of business, education and community involvement. A partnership between the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, Gilbert Public Schools, Higley Unified School District, Chandler-Gilbert Community College, the Town of Gilbert and the Republic Media, the evening is truly a community event!

This event features Gilbert's Culinary Showcase with samplings provided by some of your local, favorite restaurants. A cash bar will be available for the purchase of soda, beer, and wine. Culinary showcase participants include Buffalo Wild Wings, Sushi Brokers, Dragon Wok Fine Chinese Restaurant, Zappone's Italian Bistro, Arizona BBQ, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Wildflower Bread Company,The Nitro Live Icecreamery and Garage East.

**Please note, the event will not include an intermission this year. The Culinary Showcase will only be open from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM. Please take this opportunity to enjoy dinner and dessert samplings. The coffee station and cash bar will be open throughout the program. 

2018 Award Recipients

Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Sue Gaumont, Educator of the Year Award
Julie Wright, Staff Member of the Year Award

Gilbert Chamber of Commerce
Newman Realty, Spirit of Business Award
Former Mayor Cynthia Dunham, Visionary Award
Jan Newton, Nothing Bundt Cakes, The Leon Uhlhorn Chairman's Award

Gilbert Public Schools
Vicki Willems, The Dr. Wally Delecki Educator of the Year Award
Sherry Hornby, The Mrs. Sharon Orr Support Staff of the Year Award
Dawn Romero, The Mrs. Sheila Rogers Uggetti Volunteer of the Year Award

Higley Unified School District
Sarah Beimfohr, Educator of the Year Award
Angie Marqueling, Support Staff of the Year Award
Bob Lilienthal with Plato & Socrates, Volunteer of the Year Award

The Gilbert Republic
Nationwide Realty Investors-Rivulon Project, Beautification Award
Paul Norbut, The Geneva Clay Community Volunteer Award

Town of Gilbert
James Nelson, Tim Dorn Public Safety Award
Larry Taylor, Mayor’s Municipal Employee of the Year Award
Jim Frazier, Municipal Volunteer of the Year Award