Monday, June 23, 2014

Final Arrangements for Barb AND Joe 
Services for both Mom and Dad will start at Fort Snelling National Cemetery Friday June 28th at 11:15 a.m.
After the internment we will gather at Steve VandeWaters Home; Food and coffee will be served but feel free to bring a dish to pass and BYO alcohol. 
We will eat and share stories and play music.
Steve VandeWaters
693 Butternut Ave 
St Paul MN 
On Saturday June 28th at 2p.m. we will continue to honor Mom and Dad with a "launch" on the Great Lake Superior at the Friendly Valley Beach just North of Washburn WI. (from Washburn, take hwy13 north approx. 5 miles, turn right on Friendly Valley Road, cant miss beach)
We will gather following the launch at the Humbe Be in Washburn
Humble Be
325 Washington Ave
Washburn WI 54891
Again, some food and coffee will be served. Bring a dish to pass if you wish and BYO alcohol.
We will play more music, tell more stories and eat some more. 
All are welcome. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Honoring Mom and Dad

I am trying to realize my Moms vision to honor my Dad. When I asked her what she would like for just herself she said nothing. She wanted people to tell stories and play music so I will do the best I can to honor them together in the way my Mom thought my Dad should be honored and we will play music and tell stories. And of course. Eat.
I will have more specific details finalized for the Memorials by Monday. For now, this is what I know.
Service at Fort Snelling June 27th at 11:15am. Meet at gate 5. Gathering at Steve Vandewaters home in St Paul immediately following.
On Saturday June 28th, we will travel to Ashland WI area for a "launch" on Lake Superior and gather after at the "Humble Be" in Ashland.
There will be food, coffee and soft drinks served but please bring a dish to pass at one or the other events if you wish. BYO for alcohol.
Specific times and addresses will be provided soon.
Thank you.

Jayne Spado

Monday, March 31, 2014

Joe Spado Memorial Information SAVE THE DATES JUNE 27 & JUNE 28, 2014

FRIDAY, JUNE 27, 2014

Joe’s time here on earth ended December 2, 2013. He entered the spirit world at the start of a very cold, long winter. The family decided that we would wait to give family and friends a chance to give him a proper send off, to have time together to reflect and remember him.  Plans are for a ceremony at Fort Snelling Cememtery, Minneapolis, MN  at 11 am on June 27th, where he will be memorialize with the full military honors he has earned.
Luncheon will be served after at Steve VandeWater's home, 693 Butternut Ave, St. Paul.(about 8 miles from the cemetery)Deli meat, cheese and vegie trays will be provided Pot luck offerings will be accepted. 


The plans for Saturday, June 28th is to escort Joe’s ashes up to Lake Superior, where we will launch some of the “captain” in a miniature canoe out into the lake. Joe always told us that when he got too old and sick that we should just put him in a canoe and send him out into the lake he loved so much. To honor that wish we decided to make this symbolic gesture. Joe will be driven up by motorcycle escorted by more motorcycles and vehicles. The tentative destination will be Maslowski Beach on Chequamegon Bay, just off Hwy 2 in Ashland, WI. After the launching a memorial service will take place in Washburn, WI at Humble Be ( where food will be served, music will be made and we will all have a chance to remember Joe. I will get more information out for people who wish to stay in the Ashland/Washburn/Bayfield area as well as times for departure from River Falls, WI (base) to head north. It is approx a 4 hour ride. If I don’t get your questions answered please feel free to call or email me. My cell is 715-209-6599 and email is

Camping and crashing is available at my house in River Falls for Friday night or any time you need to. I have a couple tents and plenty of back yard and floor or couch space available.

looking forward to seeing you

more info will be coming, promise!
Barb and family

Sunday, December 15, 2013

DEAR JOE 5-10-49 to 12/2/13


Dear Joe,
 Still can't believe you are gone. For a while it was easy to think that you were off on a trip/adventure, but then you would have called. Even if you were in a spot with no service, you would drive as long as it took to get a signal and call me. I still carry the stupid phone around, just in case, but it rings and it's not you.
 Jayne and I arrived back in River Falls with you around 11:30pm on Tuesday. The sacred fire was burning for you. Your friends were here to tend it 24 hours a day. Steve parked his RV at the house so they could take turns resting and warming up. He was here most of the days, only leaving to check his shop and mother. People brought wood, food, drinks, paper goods, tobacco and of course, their love and Joe Spado stories. It began raining and then got cold enough to snow and blow and still someone was there, at the fire to honor you. It was wet and very cold and still there was always someone at the fire. Jayne and Ben spent all night at the fire on the coldest of nights. I got up around 5 to take over and sent them in to sleep in our bed where the electric blanket was blasting.
 I kept thinking how much you would have loved to see all the activity around the house, kids all over the place, people stopping by, people drinking coffee, crying, hugging, eating.
 Jan and Ron came for the weekend, leaving Florida at 85 to be here in the sub zero. Sonya just left for Colorado after being here for 10 days.
 The mail, posts, emails that have arrived all have such beautiful things to say about you. I know that because of your PTSD you felt that you did not deserve the praise, but Honey you did! There are so many lives that have been touched by you and they are all the better for having known you.
 Loosing you has been so hard on the kids, especially Anna. I will tell you more about that in another letter.
 I am very tired, hope you visit me in my dreams. So much to tell you, I will write again soon.
 Give Maggie a big hug for me, I am glad you are together again.
Love you,
Me xoxoxoxoxox

Friday, November 22, 2013

Doggy Bag Please

Haiku My Heart
November 22, 2013
 Join the fun and fellowship. See more Haiku at Friday's regular feature at Rebecca's Blog, recuerda mi corazon.

Hospital dinner

Edible, contemptible

Dog food on a plate

Really, you can’t make this up. Uncanny might be the word, (Yes, pun intended), to describe the reality of this. Let me explain. I’m admitted to the Minneapolis VA hospital last month. I actually had two three day visits there. I was settled into my room and playing a waiting game.

Doctors were waiting for the outcome from blood tests and to see what my pulse rate was going to do as it had shot upward drastically and they were medicating like crazy to get it to go down to what they considered an acceptable level.

It was close to mealtime and Mrs. Spadoman was in the room waiting with me. We gave up on getting any further results of medical tests this particular day. We were content to just wait on dinner before we started another cribbage game.

Can you believe it?

You expect me to eat this?

Dog food looks better

Mrs. Spadoman was paging through a magazine that she had found in one of the waiting rooms. A Good-Housekeeping or Redbook I think it was. In her usual way, humor-wise, she showed me an advert for some new kind of dog food and quipped, “This is what you’ll be getting for dinner when it comes.”

I looked at the photo and it did indeed look like some kind of beef stew. I think the ad was actually touting the dog food as close to being like people  food as it possibly can be. We discussed the topic for a few minutes and made jokes about it.

Then, as if on cue, my tray arrived. I saw the small carton of milk, the ½ Cup serving of canned fruit and the salad, the napkin and silverware along with condiments scattered across the tray. In the center of the tray was the plastic insulated cover with the entre’ on a plate underneath. I lifted the lid and looked at the slice of bread, the vegetable medley of potatoes and carrots.

Then we looked at the dinner portion of what was being served that night.

Which one should I choose?

Flatulence personified?

Or plain horse meat stew?

We laughed until our eyes were watering. Mrs. Spadoman found the magazine ad and placed the dog food photo up close to the edge of the plate. The photograph immediately below this paragraph is what was on my plate.

The similarity of what was on my plate and that magazine photograph was unbelievable

I must tell you, care at the Minneapolis VA hospital has always been top notch. I’ve been going there since the mid 1990’s. The food hasn’t always been the best, but having experienced the food service in other VA and private hospitals over the past 25 years, none of them are what I would call excellent cuisine. But this experience was over the top and had us laughing well into the next month. 

In other news, today, November 22, 2013, marks the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. An event in American history that will always be remembered as one of the greatest tragedies in the history of the United States.

A modicum of Bon Appe’tit, with a large helping of Peace

Friday, November 8, 2013

Haiku My Heart

Haiku My Heart
November 8, 2013

Another week gone

I did not post for haiku

Well, maybe I did

I've been extremely busy this week. Four appointments at the VA and then did duty to take all four Grandkids to the dentist today. I do have a few posts and stories I've been working on and hopefully will get something of interest going here soon.

See more, (and better) Haiku at Rebecca's recuerda mi coraz√≥n 

Peace to All

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

First of the Year

November 6, 2013. A Wednesday. Although there were a few flakes of the white stuff last week intertwined amongst the blustery drizzle and rain, the actual noticeable, measurable snowfall was evident this morning upon awakening. The grass was coated with white. Green and brown blades and piles of leaves still poked through, but for all intensive purposes, it was this Winter season's first snowfall.

I'm going to jot this date down and count the days until I hear the first Thunderbeing's voices next Spring. Maybe I should make a prediction. I will. I'll say it will be April 16th, 2014. That would be 161 days. Just about 20 days shorter than six months, or one half of a year, that is Winter.  Of course, I'm guessing. It may be longer or shorter than 161 days, but it gives you an idea of how long this season lasts up here in the Northland. It encompasses large parts of three actual seasons. Fall, Winter and Spring.

My point being...? There is no point. It's here. A seasonal change that can be seen, measured, and now must be dealt with. The Radio Flyer little red wagon still sits outside, on its side, next to the swings. The Weber didn't get covered after we used it last night. I had to scrape the ice from the rain that froze before it started snowing on the windshield of my truck. Well, Mrs. Spadoman actually went out and scraped it for me because she knows I like to run over to the Dish and the Spoon Coffee Shop to chit chat a bit with whoever comes in that deems me interesting enough to sit down and have a conversation with. And I will, as soon as I finish this and post it.

Grandfather Sun gleams from the sky, a little farther to the South than a few months ago. More sunshine on parts of my house as the leaves on the deciduous trees are gone. Forecast to be near 40 degrees Fahrenheit today, so this snow will be completely gone before dark. But it was marked and calculated and proclaimed:

The First Snowfall of the 2013-2014 Winter Season.