My sister-in-law, Debbie was born 3 months prematurely. She was so little that she could fit in a shoe box, and she was immediately dubbed, Little Dab O’ Debbie. While very small, Debbie was healthy and grew strong. Before very long, she was a healthy full sized baby and the initial concerns for her life were behind the family. Debbie remained small all of her life, growing up to be only 5′ 2″ tall. While that isn’t terribly short…maybe that is my opinion, in that I am the same height…it did put her the second shortest of her sisters and brothers.

On June 8, 1974, Debbie would marry the love of her life, Lynn Cook. It was at this point that her height…or the lack thereof…became really noticeable. Lynn is 6′ 6″ tall. It really became the tall and the short of it. Even when their daughters were born we knew that it was unlikely that Debbie would be taller than her girls for very long. And sure enough, Machelle and Susan are close to 6′ tall. Her oldest grandson, Weston is already taller than she is, and I’m sure Easton won’t be shorter for long. I suppose it is possible that her granddaughters, Jala and Kaytlyn could be her height or shorter, it is very unlikely. No, I think Debbie will find that before long, she will be Little Dab O’ Grandma…just like she could have been Little Dab O’ Mom, had her girls thought to call her that.

While Debbie is short, she has been a big help to her parents whenever she is down to visit them. They have had health problems over the last few years, and while she is unable to do very much heavy work, since injuring her back a number of years back, she cooks many meals and freezes them for her parents, so that all they have to do is thaw them and heat them up. That is a huge help for her dad who has been the main caregiver for her mom since she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease a number of years ago. It is an exhausting job for him, and those meals make his life a little easier after a hard day. I am so thankful that we have our Little Dab O’ Debbie, she is a blessing in so many ways. Happy Birthday Debbie!! We love you!!

Since Bob and I bowled from the time Amy was two years old, it just naturally followed the our girls would bowl on a league as kids. They started bowling when they were 5 years old. At that time, the league they were on needed a coach, so since I was there all the time anyway, I was elected. I took a class for 3 hours on a Saturday morning, and the deal was sealed.

We had some interesting moments during those early years. Corrie, had been bowling about a year when Amy started, and of course, she was an expert. One day she was bowling and doing ok, when she went up for her turn and threw her ball. It went into the gutter before it even got to the dots, much less the arrows on the lane. But, that didn’t make any difference to Corrie. She turned around and put her hands on her hips, looked me square in the eye, and said, “That should have been a strike!!” Do you think she was around bowlers much? Corrie would learn what really should have been a strike as time went on, but we laughed about that first use of bowling terminology for quite some time.

Amy had a little bit different experience however. She was pretty little at 5 years old, and isn’t very big now, but that’s another story. Her bowling ball weighed 6 pounds. The combination of the light ball and the little girl made it difficult for her ball to do what a bowling ball should do. It would fall in the gutter half way down the lane, and stop. Someone would have to go get it and bring it back for another try. It was frustrating to her. One day, another coach who was helping, decided on the solution. He picked Amy up…ball and all, walked down the lane until she was about a foot in front of the pins, set her down and said, “Now hit ’em!” And she did. Amy would continue to struggle with the ball speed for some time, even having the pins stop the ball, but today she has made up for it. She throws one of the fastest bowling balls around.

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