Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Precious Memories

Anna Ilene Panici, beloved wife, loving mother, devoted grandmother and great-grandmother, our “Gigi” had her faith become sight as she entered the arms of her Savior on December 23, 2010. She came into this world on May 28, 1924 as the precious daughter of Earl Tison and Rachael Sweezey Tison in Jackson, Michigan.

She spent her childhood in Jackson until she joined the Navy as a WAVE during WWII and was stationed at Norfolk Naval Air Station in Virginia. She was assigned the duty of driving visiting dignitaries and had the distinct privilege of driving Admiral “Bull” Halsey. She would always tell you that the biggest highlight of her naval “career” was meeting the love of her life, Edmond, at Norfolk. After meeting in January 1946 and having only 2 dates, they were married on April 14, 1946. Their life together included living in a few different places but the bulk of the years were spent in Laverne, Ca; Anchorage, AK; and finally Bellingham and Lynden, WA. After retirement, they traveled many years in their 5th wheel and together experienced all 50 states in the Union. Ilene was an amazing cook and spent countless hours loving others through hospitality. They lived a devoted 64 years together until she went home to be with the Lord. Their marriage was a shining example to many. She is deeply missed, but our hearts rejoice and are comforted knowing she is with her Lord and Savior.

She was preceded in death by her brother Earl Tison and her step-brother Carl Huntoon. Ilene is survived by her husband Edmond, her two sons, Rick (Lura) Panici of Yerington, Nevada; Ken Panici of Kalama, Washington and her daughter Jo Anne (Mitch) Alden also of Kalama, Washington. She is also survived by her granddaughter Chessa (Chad) Honey of Lynden and their children Mitchell, Isabelle, William, Shelley and JD, who have taken loving care of their Gigi and Papa for the last 11 years. She is also survived by grandson’s Sam Panici of Okanawa, Japan; Nick Panici of Houston, Texas and Michael (Mackenzie) Panici and their children of Victorville, California.

In honor of Ilene, memorials may be given to Wycliffe Bible Translators  (,
the Lighthouse Mission or Whatcom Hospice. You may share your thoughts and memories of Ilene at Arrangements are by Moles Good Steward Funerals- Lynden.

Thursday, December 23, 2010


….from the body, my sweet Gigi is present with her Lord and Savior. At 5:30 this morning, surrounded by family, and hand in hand with the man she has faithfully loved for 64 years, my dear Gigi stepped into eternity. Her faith has become sight, she sorrows no more.

Monday, December 20, 2010

A Christmas Tea

Isabelle and Shelley were able to host a Christmas tea for a few of their sweet friends a couple weeks ago.  The girls and I had a precious time planning and preparing together for this special afternoon.  There was lots of tea drinking, sweet chatter and giggling ..... an event to remember!
I am thankful that even in the midst of difficult times we can purpose to create moments of joy ...this was one of those moments.  


Monday, December 13, 2010

Football Fans and a New Room....

I love traditions! Every Sunday in the fall/winter, with the rare exception, we have a favorite afternoon tradition....FOOTBALL! Over the years we have enjoyed having this special time together become an exciting weekly event. We don our Seahawks gear, eat really nummy football football food (in the living room, of course) and enjoy watching the or lose, we are loyal fans!!! Our menu varies from all hors' d' oeuvres like... hot wings, sweet wings, cheese sticks, poppers, nachos, 'lil steak sandwiches with sautéed peppers and onions... grilled kielbasa with potatoes and onions...or maybe a homemade sub sandwich on a delicious kalamata olive bread with various nummy cheeses, pastrami, ham, turkey and roast beef with a garlic ceaser salad! The kids love the fact that we eat in the living room, and I love the fact that we are making memories!

Mitchell enjoyed the opportunity to play on the freshman football team for our local high school. It is neat that even though we home school, the children can be involved in the sports programs of our local schools. He had a great time, learned and played a lot, and looks forward to playing again next year.

So....last year we decided it was time to build an extra room for Mitchell in the garage. Our home has a total of 2500 sq. feet. We have about 1800 sq. ft. and 3 bedrooms that the 7 of us share, and Papa & Gigi have a portion of our home that is 750 sq. ft., their "studio apartment"... you could say. It is really what would probably be our family room but works excellent for them as it has a large bathroom and its own heat source. One of our bedrooms is very small, about 125 sq. ft, and Mitchell and Will have shared that room since we moved here 4 years ago. The girls have another room and then of course Chad and I and JD (and his crib) shared the largest bedroom. Well, last winter we knew it was soon to be time for JD to be in a big boy bed...he was 3 you know… so we started considering our options for Mitchell. My dear friend Michele had the great idea of building Mitchell a room in our large garage. The garage is roughly 1000 sq ft. and since we have a barn and another out building, we could use some of the garage space for a room! What a great come we didn't think of that!! Anyway....last winter the construction began! Unfortunately I did not take enough photos during construction but Chad did a fantastic job from the ground up; and this June, Mitchell moved into his new room! Since we are devoted Seahawks fans, it was only logical to go all out and make his room a Seahawks man cave! We took his jersey to Sherwin-Williams and they were able to match the paint colors...they did an awesome job! Unfortunately the foosball table didn't fit in there as he had hoped, but the dart board lends to lots of fun. He still hopes for a mini-fridge in there someday soon.....we will see!!! Mitchell and JD are both loving the transition to their rooms and Chad is happy to have another project done and completed!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Fall.....a little late

I know we are well into the Christmas season but my heart is still back in Fall!  Summer is by far my favorite time of year but Fall is quickly becoming a close second.  Truly these photos could be probably 3 or 4 blog posts but I am fitting them all into one.  We love watching the change of colors on our big trees and the beauty of the leaves on the blueberry fields that surround our home.  There are some fun photos of our pumpkin carving and the Thanksgiving table.  I will post about football next....and Mitchell's "new" room!