Saturday, February 27, 2010

Good intentions, beautiful day, 9th Saturday of the year.....

I had all intentions of getting up early this morning to meet the 7am group but wasn't sleepy and was up until well after 1am. I did get to my BS this afternoon and her boys were so cute. I had to get some updated pictures. They are both growing up so fast.
I started to cut the little one out of the second picture but I couldn't cut those pretty eyes out. The good news is this study and a letter to my sweet aunt made my time for this month - nothing toward the debit I have but hey - I can celebrate if I want to. Eileen called before I left for the study. She was sitting on the beach wearing a light jacket, said the wind wasn't blowing at all and it was wonderful. She wants to move down to their little house when her hubby retires which may be sooner than later. He just isn't sure so they are thinking about trying it out if he has his knee surgery and they can be there a month together while he recovers to see how it goes. It would be a big move for them but she has wanted this for so long I can't help but hope she gets her dream. She is getting closer to the congregation there and even though I would miss her, it would make me happy knowing she is happy. I also spoke briefly with Roseanna - she had a good day in service and got her hair cut today! We were both so ready to get our hair cut! She was telling me they had a fun girls night this week so I know that made Bri happy. Then I received a few pictures and text messages from Fran - they are working on a big surprise for this coming weekend (shhh not going to say) and were going through old pictures. She sent me one of Kurt and her youngest daughter from their trip to CA years ago - they both look so young! They WERE YOUNG!!!! She also sent one of Page, Wen and Chris from Kurt's graduation party but it was even more blurred than this one. We are both getting excited about being together in a few weeks! I can't wait! We agreed there is nothing like good memories and we plan to make some of our own. Big D and I have fallen in love with Manchester's Grill and like that we can call for take out orders. Big D is going to pick up a bottel of Chardonnay (at Food Lion - costs an arm and a leg at the restaurant) and our dinner. Okay - it isn't the best wine but I knew better than ask him to buy me Kendall Jackson - he would have freaked out!!! He is trying a Shrimp Pasta tonight but I'm sticking with one we have both tried and liked that has chicken and Italian sausages. Yum.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Still winter, still cold but bright sunshine all day....

After having a cold rainy Wednesday all day and then Thursday starting out the same way, I am so happy to be able to say Whoo Hoo! Finally - a bright sunny day ALL day! The wind blew hard and cut through you like a knife but it was worth it to be in the sun. We started out walking from door to door but finally gave that up and resorted to driving to each house. I worked with a young couple today that I absolutely adore. They are both wonderful and so much fun to be with and around. We enjoyed watching them interact as they walked to the door and one really funny thing was when the wind blew the house to house record out of Rie's hand and she was running all over the yard trying to catch it, jumped a creek and went into the woods to finally pluck it from a tree branch it had landed on. We were laughing so hard and enjoying her youth and exuberance to the Nth degree. If you look back you will realize she is also the one jumping on the snowboard! I like my new hair cut and it held up pretty good in the wind today. I washed it before the meeting last night and used a curling iron in a few places and was
pleased. Big D took a picture of the back and I tried to get a few of the sides. I really think I'm going to like it but we'll see after it grows a little. I left quite a bit of length in the back and on the sides. After my shower last night I realized we were almost out of our wonderful soaps. I like to buy large Hand or French Milled Soaps as I have found they last so much longer, create more creamy suds and are more cost effective than the cheaper brands. Yep - I'm a Soap Snob! You can find some great soaps at places like TJ Maxx and a few other stores like it. I don't like strong fragrances but just opened one of my favorites. I love the fragrance of Pear Soap. My dear friend Ann had a wonderful shop and I became addicted to a Pear Soap she carried. Yum. She also got me hooked on the homemade soaps they sell at Whole Foods that I buy now in blocks for the kitchen. I miss her shops (she had two in different locations) and I know there are times she probably does too but at least she has the satisfaction of knowing she was able to have a dream come true and how many people can say that? Ann is so talented in so many ways. I love reading her Blog and following the adventures of her lovely little family. I hope she will be able to continue feeding the strong hunger she has to express herself. She has a talent for making the simplest acts special - from turning lunch for her kids into an adventure to helping them feel free to express their own creations and talents. I can't wait to see her next entry. Miss you Ann.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Still winter, still cold but the sun has come out!!!!

Yep - went back to sleep but gave up after an hour. Had to run over to a dear friend's house this morning to help her with something. I love this house - it represents so many good memories to me from when my children were really small but it also represents one of the strongest women in my life. One I have turned to so many times over these past 42+ years for advice, comfort and just plain old good conversation. The house has changed many times over the past 30 years but it still has the flavor to me it has always had - the flavor of a home full of life. I decided since I was going to already be out I would go ahead and run my errands - so I dressed quickly, put my BeBe hat on and started out. After leaving my friend's house, I went for my pedicure. I decided to not get my nails polished since I'll have them polished all throughout the warm months. I can't tell you how long my nails had gotten or how rough my heels were. When she asked, "do you want them cut?", everyone near us laughed including us. That's bad! Then I went over to Saundra's to get my hair cut. Saundra looks so good. She is so trim and had on a bright green sweater with nice black slacks. We looked at some pictures and decided on what to do and in no time at all - I have a new style! Wow - it only takes one day between needing a hair cut and NEEDING a hair cut! I was two days past the second one and we both laughed about how my hair grows and lays on my gnarly head that is flat as a flitter in the back. Hmmm - I decided I needed to look that term up - I've used it all my life but never knew what it meant. Flat as a Flitter: It is a Southernism, which means very, very flat; In Southern Indiana, Flitters are flat dumplings so "Flat as a Flitter" simply means as flat as a noodle, because that's how flat flitters are. Works for me!

Still winter, still cold, still dark, still no sleep.....

Well it is still winter here in the South. Got sick to my stomach Tuesday night and woke up Wednesday morning still feeling yucky. It didn't help that it rained pretty much all day so I stayed in and took care of some paperwork. I got to bed at a decent hour last night but woke up around 5:15am and have been awake ever since. I got up and looked outside awhile ago and yep - it did snow some last night. You can see it on the rooftops and little patches and it is calling for a little more today. Shouldn't be enough to cause traffic issues I don't think but it is going to be cold tomorrow and we "might" see some sunshine Saturday. That would be nice. Think I'll climb back in bed and see if I can sleep a few more hours - have a lot to do today.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Spring and being yourself...

I was reading someone's Blog who asked us to all send her a few comments on what we were looking forward to most about Spring. I wrote: Spring means the warmth of the sun on my face as I breathe in the fresh air of new leaves and growth breaking forth on trees and through the earth which smells so rich at this time of year. It means re-birth and something to remind me of how precious each day is to me at this time. Thank you for helping me put into words what I'm looking forward to in Spring. Wow - I needed that. Someone to encourage me to Stop - Think - Feel about what I feel and why? We race through each day with so much on our minds we forget to do that sometimes. It was a nice Sunny afternoon (after getting off to a very rocky, dark, day with me almost not getting out due to sleep deprivation) and I was so happy to have the feeling of the warm sun on my skin while we were laughing and talking in the car. I love my close friends - there is such an open flow of communication between us. One of my friends is always telling me I am always the same no matter who I talk to. It reminded me of another Blog I follow that talked about that very thing. Check it out for yourself - it is on the Crazy Sexy Life (Cancer) web site or cut and paste this in your browser. I have often felt I should try harder to curtail my personality and verbage (in other words - stop being so mouthy or wordy) so it makes me feel good to know there are some who appreciate this - (hmmm - what word am I looking for here - trait, characteristic - yeah - that's pretty safe for a description) of mine. There are times I do need to do some check and balance on my verbage but for the most part I decided many years ago - what you see is pretty much what you are going to get. It is funny though - most people find it hard to believe how quiet I can truly be. I do crave down-time without much conversation and thankfully, my Big D is of one accord with me on that and always has been so it works. And that is a good thing.....

Another Page!!! No - not a book!

We have another Page to love but this one's name is spelled Paige so it will be easier to determine who we are talking about. Ruth from Florida called Sunday while Roseanne and I were sitting in the sun having our "high tea" to break the news that her beautiful son and daughter-in-law had finally delivered their little girl.Isn't she beautiful? How could she not be with such beautiful parents. I know Ruth will enjoy this granddaughter just as much as she has her other one who is now a teenager. (Check out the girl riding a horse in a previous entry.) Nothing like another little girl to make me smile. hummmmm - Wish I was holding her close and smelling her new baby smell while rocking right now - is there any better feeling in the world? Makes me miss all my babies who aren't really babies any longer. I think this something most Southern born and bred women have in common - that intense love of babies. My mother-in-law loved her some babies which was great because it enabled Big D to not only be used to babies but to know how to enjoy them. I'll never forget the day we brought our first baby home from the hospital - he walked in the door, went straight to the bathroom, washed his hands and arms real good, walked straight to the cradle (we had a wonderful wooden cradle), picked her up and sat holding her for hours. I loved that he was always as aware of our babies when we were out as I was. His Dad enjoyed babies too and would stop by when they were little just to see them for a few minutes. Now that I think about it, his older brother and my Dad would stop by like that too. And life goes on.......

Monday, February 22, 2010

Rain, Dentist and 8th Monday of the year 2010

Woke up at 3:45AM and didn't get back to sleep until around 5:30am - Bummer. Woke to a very gray and cloudy day with a drizzle starting by the time we reached the first door and then rain. I hate that since Eileen came out with us this morning and she has been having such a hard time getting out. The fun part was riding in ShelaB's new SUV - so something good did come out of that wreck she and Ger were in other than hurt backs and sore muscles. We finally gave up, ran by the house to pick up my laptop and printer and met everyone back at the KH for letters and telephone calls. This is where I got a big disappointment about a purchase I made this weekend. While I was upgrading my cell phone (I love it - simple but perfect) I picked up something I have been wanting for awhile - a way to have broadband on my laptop when I'm at the KH writing letters (to look up addresses), at the beach during vacations (2-4 times a year) and when/if I ever get back down to GA to visit Page without having a monthly fee. I thought I had finally hit on a great plan until I locked into something today that is probably going to require me returning everything and then re-purchasing it with a different plan which I'm hoping will make them come to their senses and "just do it". I think the secret will be to actually go back to the store and let them do it from there. So maybe I will not get down about it just yet. Eileen left us at 11:30 to go home and I definitly didn't blame her - it was so dark all day. We quit a little early and I came home, brushed my teeth and went for my regular cleaning and check-up. I had been out in the rain all morning with the hood of my raincoat over my hair and when I check in at the desk - they take a picture of me for my records. HELLO? So I took out my handy dandy little camera and took their pictures. LOL I really just wanted to get Wayne's picture. He has been working a 3 day a week schedule and Big D told me several weeks ago he found out he has gone to 2 days a week. I called him a "slacker" today and we both laughed. We hit it off the first time I went to him and have become pretty good friends considering we only see each other at least twice a year. :-)I usually have a joke for him but forgot to tell it to him today. Oh well - in 5 months I guess (yeah - like I'll remember that)! I also took a picture of the hygenist who did my cleaning today but decided to just stop with her and Wayne - actually he is my only constant in that office anyway. One of the truly great doctors who actually treats you the way he would want to be treated - a real gem. Big D called and wanted KFC for dinner so that's what we had. It was good but definitely not on my list of healthy foods - which isn't to say I have been doing that great in that department either. Yesterday, Roseanne and I were going to go to the movies after our meetings but it was SO pretty - in the 60's and sunny - that we decided to spend the time outside. We went to the little Cafe in Barnes and Nobles and ordered and split little mid afternoon (high tea?) meal of soup, sandwich, decadent cheesecake and fruit drinks and sat at the tables outside. The sun was warm, the air was cool and people were out and about all around us walking with their kids and animals. We were so glad we didn't spend that time in a dark theater. When we are in the theatre, we can't really talk and get caught up so it was exactly what the doctor ordered!! An afternoon with my dear Roseanne! What could be nicer? At least they are calling for warm weather tomorrow but partly cloudy and then it is going to be cold again. But I think I do feel me some Spring in the near future and that is a good thing. Don't want to wish my year away - we are already in the 8th Monday of the year so I think I will just enjoy this moment now. Going to try to stay awake to watch a little TV and get to bed early for a long day tomorrow.

Friday, February 19, 2010


"Censorship is the suppression of speech or deletion of communicative material which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient to the government or media organizations (or even individuals) as determined by a censor." Hmmm - I've always thought that was an interesting word and concept. I have heard it most of my life - normally in connection with the government or another authority deciding what could be made public and what couldn't. A good example is certain literature. During World War 2, many nations censored our literature and a few countries still do. Freedom of speech is something people born in this country take for granted - especially when it comes to stating our opinion on something that isn't popular with the majority of people. It was during the late 50's and through-out the 60's that young people decided they were going to exercise their freedom of speech and do away with censorship. Some good and bad things came out of that but if you were being molded during that time period as I was, it is very hard at times to accept the concept of censorship.
Looking back in history - a book I have taken for granted my entire life was censored as far as it's being accessible to the "common man" for so many years. That book is the Bible. There are still some places where it is still censored which would come as a surprise to many people who are not only aware of but can not even comprehend such a thing.
Other cases of censorship may come as a result of someone choosing not to report something to the general public as it might cause more more harm than good. For example a reporter may learn of something that might make him a superstar in his profession but when the information would cause an individual harm or anxiety, that reporter may choose to censor himself and not print the information as he may have desired to do.
In the first century, many Christians were put to death for carrying out the commission given to all Christians to continue preaching about Christ even though that work had been censored by the authorities of that day. Many are facing physical persecution and imprisonment even today for doing the very same thing in several countries.
So censorship can come in two forms - one imposed by another authority or one that is self-imposed because of a request or because it is deemed the information is more harmful than good. Freedom to share our opinions on issues and/or people, institutions, movies, plays, sports, whether to pull for Chevy or Ford in NASCAR - is something that comes as easy to us as breathing. When someone asks us to censor ourselves and what we write or talk about; it takes a few minutes to assimilate that request. Assimilate means to take in and utilize as nourishment : absorb into the system b : to take into the mind and thoroughly comprehend dissect that request.
As a minister, we try to listen and think before we speak and choose our words as wisely as we possibly can. That isn't censorship - it is putting the importance of the life-saving message before our freedom to be able to speak it. That doesn't mean it isn't hard to not speak freely of something that is very important to you - but you have to work on self-control and use your words wisely and for the good of others and not just yourself.
I will have to say once more how much I do appreciate freedom of speech - especially with those who love us and accept us for exactly who we are and what our needs are.
Tune in next time for more ramblings of an old lady.....

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Page, Bentley and Page2 - Spring time near?

I ran across a few picture's of Page, Page2 and Bentley from last year when the Pages got to have some time together in GA. Kurt and Leah had gone to Florida to visit a friend and it was a perfect opportunity for the two Pages to be together. Page and Bentley really showed her a wonderful time - roller skating on the Comet, Calloway Gardens which has something for everyone including bike rides, nature trails, butterfly houses and the list goes on. I love these two pictures of Page with Page and the other with Bentley. They had a very good time while they were there even though Page2 almost killed Bentley when he was pulling her on the bike w/his.
It also reminds me that Spring will not be far off - at least not as far off as it was two days ago. We have finally had a truly cold winter - the first in a long time and I'm happy about it BUT, I am not definitely looking forward to Spring! I was reading Page's blog and this made me think of her entry talking about the period of time she hated being outside because of a bad episode with poision ivy when younger. I'm happy she finally got over that fear and absolutely loves being outdoors as much as possible these days. I think she will be happy to be home tomorrow - I know Bentley and I will be glad when she is back. I spoke with him awhile ago and he was happy to hear she sounded better. He also let me know he is now on light duty and that gave me a reason to smile too. Now to just get the surgery over and move forward. Remember - if you click on the pictures - you can see them closer and you will see how handsome our Bentley really is. :-)

Oops - everyone makes a boo boo sometime...

This is so funny. Someone sent me an email with a link to Dr. Oz and his show. It seems he had done a show about High School Reunions and guess what YearBooks he had pictures of?It is so funny - these are some of our YearBooks! As a matter of fact, I have every one of these on my shelves in the hallway. They are not like this anymore - they are not hardback and not nearly as big - I miss the colorful hue of our old books but like everyone - we need to be as green as we possibly can. You can tell they got smaller as time has passed. For a period of time, I read every word in the YB but I have to admit that hasn't been the case these last few years. It makes me remember what Keith's dad asked me when I told him I wanted to be a regular pioneer. He said there were three things - support of spouse, schedule and would it rob me of my joy? The last one was a little confusing but he explained it this way. Since we have been getting the WT - CD - I have thoroughly enjoyed doing research on so many levels and would my not having as much time impact that? Well guess what? It has but the benefits I have received from the ministry just makes those nugget I'm still able to fine more important to me so it was an okay trade-off. I have the new YB and will definitely try to read as much as possible but know that I'm out almost every day doing what I have been commission to do so I'm okay. You know what? I keep trying to find something for my Family Study and I think this is going to be it until I finish reading the entire book. There - that feels better.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Baby girl better and everything going good.....

Page always sends me information for any of her "across the big pond" trips so when I got home this afternoon, I decided I wanted to "hear" her voice to assure myself she was really getting better. She was booked into The Hotel Manos Stephanie which looks very nice. I called at a time I thought would be 10:10pm but the gentleman at the desk said she was not in.
I decided to wait awhile and try her again which I did and she answered. Dinner had run long and she had gotten in shortly after I had called. The gentleman at the desk had informed her when she returned that she had received a call and the person who called said they would call back. Nice. I felt so much better because she really did sound better. She said she was glad she had gone, the meeting today was very positive and she felt great about everything. Tomorrow is more meetings but she hopes to be able to catch a ride about 45 minutes out to see some of the people she used to work with over there. She will probably kill me for putting this picture on here but I love it! I took it at the beach last November and she had just rolled out of bed, not combed her hair or anything but I love that pretty face and smile! I have another one of her she sent me and her Daddy when he was in the hospital for his final surgery. She had turned the shower on and turned around and all but scared herself by what she saw in the mirrow. She took the picture with her phone and sent it to me with the note - where are the squirrels? Her hair was totally hilarious! It looked like a nest of squirrels were still in it and her expression looked like a deer in the headlights! Daddy used to tell her in the mornings when she would roll out of bed on weekends - "don't walk in front of the windows - you are going to kill the squirrels!" and we would die laughing. After laughing my own head off - I passed my phone to Big D and he kept saying - Oh, Oh, Oh - it hurts to laugh but he also couldn't help himself. And NO - I am NOT putting that one on here. There might be a squirrel walking by your window and I wouldn't want to kill it! :-) Overall - it looks like it was a good decision to go. We were enjoying our conversation when I suddenly remembered where I had called! Yikes! Don't even want to know how much that cost but believe me - it was worth every single Euro!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Facebook and Baby Girl in Europe Sick.....

I have enjoyed being on FaceBook but started realizing a few weeks ago how much time I spent on it in a day. In other words - just like chocolate, sweets and so many other vices in my life, my OCDC kicked in and I was hooked. It has died down some since Jes is no longer in DR but I still find myself checking it multiple times a day. I made some new friends and re-connected with some old. I had some rude awakenings I would have preferred to never had from some people but for the most part, it has been a positive experience for me - perhaps because I know how to "hide" or block out the things I know are bad. I de-activated my account quite awhile back but when I found out Jes would be in DR, I re-activated it. I'll see how it goes and if I miss it, will go back but in a more sane and less time consuming way. It has changed so like Roseanne, I don't think I will miss it that much. We'll see. Roseanne told me this morning she was dropping it so after thinking about it - I came in from service, checked the new emails I had gotten including tons of messages from someone who wanted to be my friend that I really don't think I have ever seen before and that was the clincher - I de-activated it. WOW - it has been interesting. I told everyone I was signing off for awhile so I guess that's it for now. Maybe I can finish getting our books in order now that I'm not as distracted. Page called me yesterday to let us know that she was still sick but felt a tiny bit better and was going to Europe after all. She is the only one from the States that is being sent to represent all the branches in the States and it will also give her the opportunity to re-connect with some old work-mates over there. The President of the company basically wanted this to happen so I'm not surprised she pulled herself together to go but worried? You bet. As I mentioned previously, it is hard for me having one of my babies sick living so far away but especially Page since she isn't married and lives alone. She is a very strong woman and I'm proud of her but still worry - I'm a Mama - it comes with the territory. I know I would feel much better if Chantal was still with the company but she isn't. They did have some wonderful adventures together before she left. I may be remembering incorrectly but I think the picture of the windmill was taken from Chantal's window? I'll have to ask Page. I got up early and kept checking my email up until time to leave for service to see that she had arrived. Since she isn't part of Global Training based out of Europe any longer (based out of GA now) she no longer carries an international cell phone. They are 6 hours ahead of us but it turns out her flight out of NY was delayed for 3 hours, then the taxi that had been ordered to pick her up wasn't there since the flight wasn't there and it took her awhile to get to the hotel. I came home at lunch to check again and there was the email letting me know she was there and okay. I had sent an email before I left letting her know I had called Bentley to ask him to let me know if he heard from her first and she emailed me a second time asking me to let Bentley know since she would be in bed by the time he gets home from work that she was there. I called him and we had a nice long chat about his upcoming procedure and how it went on his job today. They are supposed to be making it possible for him to have light duty until everything is taken care of. Page was entertained somewhat during her wait in NY. There was a woman with quadruplets who were 3 months old. She had 3 women helping her and Page decided that as bad as she felt, she was still in better shape than that woman taking her children half-way around the world. She thinks they were going to Jordan - evidently, they thought she was Arabic. My exotic beautiful daughter. When we chatted around noon (our time) he gotten a hot bath and was waiting for Raph to pick her up for dinner. I know they had fun - she was going to try to get to sleep early and try to get as much rest as possible before everything starts tomorrow. The funny thing is, it is already almost 4:30am there. When we found out she was going, Daddy and I both understood why she pushed herself to go - we admitted would probably have gone also under the same circumstances. I hope she feels better tomorrow though and the rest of her trip is positive and productive. Good night.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


Wow - time does fly doesn't it. It seems like just yesterday we were driving down to Kittrell to bury Daddy but it was 30 years ago. That means Page was 8, Kurt was 4, I was 33, and Big D was 35. We were all feeling a little lost that day. Memories - opening his drawer and smelling his Juicy Fruit chewing gum. Opening his closet and smelling his clothes every day after he died for a long time. Scrubbing his head real good sometimes when he was washing his hair. Rubbing his feet at the end of the day with alcohol. Cutting the hairs in his ears when he got older and hated having to ask for help with that one cause it meant he was getting older. I think I inherited his love of having someone rub parts of my body (ergo - love massages)!
I still miss him - so many things I have wanted to share with him over the years that I know he would have enjoyed hearing. I also think he would have loved seeing how many grandchildren and great-grandchildren came from his loins. He always loved being one of the few who had so many children at school functions and he bragged about his smart beautiful girls to anyone who would listen. He always wanted what was best for us and was proud of all our accomplishments.
I sent this to everyone on my family and close friends list. I just wanted them to all remember him today too. He would have liked that also.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Miscellany ...

Miscellany: 1.A collection of various items, parts, or ingredients. We have a "friend" living under our house this winter. We "think" it might be a black cat we keep seeing in our yard. Our next door neighbor came over to see if we had seen her black and white cat and we mentioned the black one (there are really two of them but we have only seen one lately)and the fact we think it lives under our house (the old part - my office and the bathroom). She thinks they get under her house too and I think she puts food out for them. I want to think they belong to someone stupid and that they weren't just put out. I can't bring outside cats in around Miya - she has never been exposed to feline leukemia and I want to keep it that way. We have lost one cat to that and hope to never repeat that in my lifetime. Today as I was looking out back at how bad our back yard really does look now - I saw the bigger one. She has made a nest in those leaves but at least I know she/he can go under the house for shelter and probably a little heat. I tried to get a picture but it is quite blurry. I noticed her yesterday and she is totally black - you can hardly see her eyes she is so dark.
I was also thinking about I.T. today. It still seems unreal to me that he is gone. I know Mae and her children have very hard days but hopefully time will lessen their feelings of pain and loss. This picture was taken 2 years ago - I loved that little twinkle in his eyes when he would look at you. There is still a hole in my heart where he lived for so many years. His son and his family are down at the beach this weekend. His son married one of my beautiful spiritual daughters and she sent me a picture over the phone with the question - Ever See Snow At The Beach? Still one of my favorite views in the world crammed slap dabbed full of wonderful memories of the past 40 years in all 4 seasons. I hope they are having fun. Our snow we got during the night last night is all but gone which is okay with me. I'm still sitting here in my gown and sweat pants just typing away in my "journal". I know Page - I need to get off the computer and get busy on this house. But it truly is like your Gma used to say - you will always have dishes to wash, clothes to iron and floors to sweep but you have to make an effort to live life every day. She was a wise woman in many ways your Dad's Mom was. I loved her dearly. And of course you know how much she loved you. She always made me feel like I had given her a wonderful gift in having you and your brother and being so willing to share you guys with her. She could also kick some serious buttocks playing Scrabble - never know she had a 3rd grade education when it came to that game. :-) I sent Kurt a cartoon from the newspaper the other day. It made me remember how he used to tell me and Daddy that he might move out of our house when he grew up but that he would "never" move far away from us. HELLO! Daddy and I were talking earlier after I called Page to see how she was feeling. I mentioned I hated her being so far away AND sick and he commented that at least we can be proud of the fact they are both productive and strong which is more than a lot of our friends and family can do. What more could you ask for? We aren't going to go there right now - besides, I always promised I would never try to guilt or manipulate my children and loved ones in any way and I plan to hold to that to the best of my ability. If anything, I think sometimes I may over-do it and later wonder if perhaps I should have said something or expressed an opinion. Oh well - it is better to wonder that than to regret that you did put your nose where it wasn't wanted - right? I almost forgot - I had a moment at the meeting Thursday night. If you know me, you know what a Klutz I have always been; falling down stairs, falling up stairs, walking into doors, walking into walls, and many other embarrassing moments. As a result, it is hard for me to be embarrassed because I tend to laugh at myself louder than anyone else. I had a coughing spell at the KH and decided to walk back to the lobby to get a drink of water. As I opened the door to the lobby, I felt something on my shin and as the doors closed behind me, I felt something around my ankles. Upon looking down, I said in a surprised voice - My Slip Fell Off!!! Okay - I was already laughing and when I looked across the lobby and saw Keith about to fall out, I laughed harder. The hard part was when two brothers rushed to my "assistance". They not only "helped" me step out of my slip but we "all bent down together" to pick it up. So I said - "Wow, I must have lost a lot more weight than I thought!" NOT - haven't lost a pound. As a matter of fact, have gained 5 pounds since they put me on BP medicine. Yep - thought I would celebrate. I know - I have to get back on track and be Pro-Active - that will be tomorrow. I called Roseanne because I noticed Norah Jones was going to be in Durham so we agreed we wanted to go and then I remembered - we will be a the beach that week! Oh well - 3 hour show - week at beach. That was a no-brainer. I did want to share Roseanne's beautiful granddaughter Rose. Look at those eyes and that beautiful smile. Bri waited a long time for this little girl and I know she and her dear hubby are enjoying every single moment they have with her. I sneaked this picture off FaceBook. I can't believe I'm on FaceBook. I have made three new friends (friends/relatives of existing friends)and love catching up with people I had "lost" and seeing people's pictures. I have to be careful though - it can become addictive and I am a little OCDC at times. :-) I also have a few people I had to "hide" as I'm sure most people aren't interested (at least I'm not)in their personal agendas. I only have one more thing to share in this Miscellany -Daddy cooked some ribs tonight and I'm in the mood for ribs! Yum! He also wanted me to take a picture of a few left-over eggs he deviled (he made potato salad to go with the ribs). He wanted the kids to see his with the jalapeno on it. Crazy man - guess he will be sitting low in the bowl tomorrow morning - so what's new! Okay - that is all the Miscellany I have for today. Until next time...

More cold, more snow, baby girl sick......

I think I'm being honest when I say Kurt and his family have had it with the snow. Too much of a good thing is just that - too much! Last weekend, Kurt had to stay at work to shovel people out while Leah and Page2 stayed at home keeping the home fires literally burning and shoveling the driveway. Yep - they are both DONE! On top of that, Leah was taking Page2 to her Mom's yesterday(school out again) so she could get to work and was on a nice stretch of road in a nice development and BAM - almost went into a ditch and got stuck in a snowbank. You can see where Kurt is trying to dig it out. That means she was late to work again and he had to leave work to come get her out. They have dug out so many times and then they would get more on top of what was there. Their landlord could see they were "snowed under" (sorry I - couldn't help myself) and had their driveway scraped and yet it snowed again this weekend. Not as much but Leah just called to say they were on their way over to shovel the road and driveway to her Abuela's house so she can keep Page when/if school is open on this coming week. They have had some fun with it too though. Leah's brother has a big truck and has helped them get to work at times. He also took time to have some fun with Page. There is this really big hill cut into the mountain right behind their house and they decided to sled down it.

The one above is Page coming down the hill by herself. Don't forget to click on picture to see it clearer.

This is where Page and her Uncle ended up when they came down together. He told Leah he had his feet dug in the whole way. The next picture will show you where they almost ended up. Yep - in the CREEK!
And the next one is showing how Page felt about her Uncle almost dumping her in the CREEK!
But doesn't the driveway look much better! :-) So they had some fun along with all the hard work. Poor Kurt didn't haven't as much fun - he had to shovel people out constantly and work on furnaces most of the time.
The funny thing is most of the snow this weekend was from us down into the deep South including GA. I talked to Page1 last night and bless her heart, she is sick as a dawg. This isn't a good thing on many levels. She is supposed to fly out to Europe Monday morning and there is no way she can fly being as sick as she is. It makes her feel so bad because people went the extra mile (and extra $$$) to get her in this class. I did speak to her briefly this morning and she didn't have a fever. We'll see. I don't think they got enough snow to keep the flight from taking off so she will have to decide by tomorrow what to do. It didn't help that she started feeling sick early in the day but the spent most of the afternoon with Bentley's medical appointments and tests. It looks like surgery will be needed before it was anticipated. He is also going to have to get some things changed with his job. I hate when my baby girl is sick so far away from me. But I'm grateful she has someone to take care of her and someone else to snuggle. CoCo - go snuggle Page! LOLOL

Friday, February 12, 2010

Daddy, has it really been 30 years?

Wow - one of these days I am definitely going to fix my scanner so I can have pictures that can be uploaded to this journal that are important to me. Daddy died 30 years ago tonight and it was on a Tuesday night. That means I was only 33 years old. I had seen him on Friday afternoon and then it snowed really big time that weekend. We got our old Cadillac that Monday so I drove by to show it to him and Mama but he didn't feel like coming out to see it. He had a pretty rough weekend that weekend being trapped in the house and all and there were some other things going on that don't require mentioning.
Then on Tuesday, the kids and I stopped by on our way to the Book Study - there was still snow and ice on the ground but the roads were passable and it was very cold. As usual, as soon as I hit Mama's front door, I made a bee-line for her little bathroom. She used to say " For goodness sake - there must be a switch because not a one of you ever comes into this house without making a bee-line for the bathroom!" :-) A sweet memory of that night Mama and I used to talk about was that as soon as we walked into the house, Kurt said - "I like your hair Grandma!" We both laughed because she had just brushed it out to be fixed the next day - back then people got their hair fixed and teased and it lasted a week.
While I was in the bathroom, I heard Daddy get up and go into the kitchen where Mama fixed him a snack. My son who was only 4 at the time and called him Grandpa (he is the only one who called him that) was just chatting away and I heard Daddy's voice talking back to him and Mama. My daughter had slipped into the bathroom with me and by the time we got out, Daddy had gone back into the bedroom to lay down and Mama said she thought he would feel fine by the next day.
On the way home that night, I tooted the horn as usual, got the kids in bed and put on my nightgown, long robe, socks and Mama's old corduroy bedroom shoes. Just about the time I sat down on the couch, the phone rang and it was Mama. She didn't think Daddy was breathing. As a rule, we left our keys in our cars back then but that one stupid night, I had put the keys in my pocket book. I remember I emptied my pocket book upside down, grabbed the keys and my wallet, threw my coat on over my robe and took off. I heard Dwight talking to Mama about calling 911 as I flew out the door.
It has taken me many years to realize I can't fix everything. In our family, I don't know if I took on the role of "fixer" and/or arbitrator or it was placed upon my shoulders but I've worked hard to relinquish that role these past 14 years since Mama died. My heart races even now when I remember exactly what I was feeling and thinking along the lines of -"Okay, take it easy now and be careful because there is still ice; OK - you made it out of the driveway now gun it; OK, slow down now for the light and the road will be better after that; now gun it but be very careful; Thank goodness there isn't any traffic but there is still ice so stay in control; Oh Jehovah - please, please, please help me be what I need to be no matter what I find. Stop it! Please help me stay calm so I can be of help."
Bascially though, I think I felt that if I could just get there, it would be okay somehow. As a rule I am still pretty good in a crisis. I have learned how to slow down my breathing and concentrate on listening so that I can think clearly and try to contribute to and/or support resolutions to problems rather than adding to them. I also know better than to "lose it" because then no one will listen to you or more importantly, they will not share any information with you.
I flew in Mama's yard covered with ice and flew up onto the porch - I don't remember hitting the steps but I must have hit a few of them. Mama started crying a little when she saw me and I remember very calmly telling her, "Sit down Mama, it's going to be okay". You know how in the movies, you walk in and the person isn't moving and doesn't respond so you put your fingers on their neck or their wrists to find a pulse? Well forget that! The only pulse you will hear is your own heart beating so loudly in your own ears you can't hear anything else. Daddy looked like he always did but he didn't respond which was totally not normal for him. It was at that very moment that I realized there was absolutely nothing I could do to fix this. I almost lost it but I knew it would really upset Mama and then the police got there within minutes the Ambulance arrived. One of the paramedics was a friend of my older brother-in-law and knew who we were right away. They asked me to leave the bedroom while they put Daddy on the floor to try and revive him. I went in to be with Mama who started crying and that scared me because she'd had a mini-stroke several years before so I calmed her down and about that time, the police who was standing in the doorway watching them work on Daddy said they got a little signal on their machine and that calmed her a little but he told me not to get our hopes up too much. (I have often wondered if our friend decided to give us time to pull it together by taking Daddy to the hospital - if so , he did a good thing.)
About that time there was a knock on the door and this tall, handsome, elderly gentleman in his PJ's, coat and nice hat came in and said, "Hello, I'm your Mother's neighbor from next door and want to offer any help you may need right now." I will never forget his gentlemanly kindness at that time. Mama got up and went into the kitchen to make a pot of coffee and I asked him to be with her while I called all my sisters. Then I went into my old mode of taking care of business and before they got Daddy ready to transport to the hospital I had called all my sisters and several nieces and nephews locally and most of them got to the house around the time I left to ride in the ambulance with Daddy while my brother-in-law and Big D followed us to the hospital. I grabbed Daddy's wallet as we went out - they had taken his pajama top off and we all got to see him as they rolled him out and we all noted later how handsome and healthy he looked. I can't tell you how much he just looked like he was sleeping so that made the reality harder to grasp.
When we got to the hospital, I insisted on going back with Daddy but once again, I was reminded that I was not in control and escorted to the desk. I opened Daddy's wallet to give the receptionist his health insurance information, it fell open to the first group picture we had made as sisters and that was it! I lost it totally! She basically took the wallet, got the information, gave the wallet to BigD and then escorted us to a private waiting room. I got myself under control again and not too long after, our doctor who met him at the hospital (we had called - it was different back then - believe me) came out to give me the really bad news. He said Daddy never woke up and didn't suffer in any way. It appeared his heart had just stopped beating.
Since he died at home and had not been sick, an autopsy was performed. The next day was very busy with getting everything ready for his funeral to be held the next day. In some ways it was a blur but then I can remember most of the details as if it were yesterday. We all felt like we had been kicked in the chest by a mule - wake up, make the bed, brush your teeth, then say - what now? Oh - I know. I'm going to Mama's. Then we would sit and talk and around noon Mama would say, it's time for lunch and get up and start making biscuits. And one day followed another and another and another and another. My first thought the day after Daddy died was - "Who will take care of me now if I need it?" You never stop thinking of your Daddy (and Mommy) as the ones who would "always" take care of you no matter what.
My kids know most of this and even a few more details that I didn't want to put in a public forum but I wanted to write it in my "journal" since we plan to print it out one day so that my granddaughter will have the memory also. Life is precious and can change forever between the hours of 8:45pm and 10:00pm. At 8:45pm, my Dad was talking to my son and Mama and at 10pm he wasn't breathing. Don't take one minute for granted - live every moment to the fullest - even if it is just reading a book you wanted to read or taking care of chores that need taking care of - do it in the moment. Uh Oh - there goes my daughter's Word for the Year 2010 - Present - live in the present. Sometimes it takes remembering something from the past to make you actually feel the Present. Love you Daddy

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Snow, friends and family

Well we have had a pretty good share of snow - much more than we have had in many years. I think maybe Kurt, Leah and Page2 have had more than they want up where they live but for us it has been so good - especially for younger ones who were able to get out and actually go sledding. Rie is originally from CT and loves snowboarding so she has really had fun. She is a very multi-talented young wife, mother, regular pioneer and beautiful woman. I had to share the one of her jumping - believe me - I'm sure this little hill was quite tame for her but at least she got to do a little of what she loves. The pictures people have been sharing really brought back some great memories of when we used to get more snow than we do now. I remember going out and staying until you felt like a popsicle, coming in the thaw and dry your socks and then go right back out again. Fun! Fun! We haven't had a snow like this here in quite awhile so it has been nice looking out at it. Again, I wish I had purchased those boots. I planned to wait until winter had passed so they might be on sale. Watch - as soon as I buy new boots, I'm not going to need them for years to come! But hey - at least I'll be prepared next time - right? I did miss walking in the snow this year - the crisp air on your face, the crunch under each footstep, the quietness the blanket of white brings to everything. Sadly, Kurt and his family got slammed again and might get even more. I think they are pretty much over snow!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

People you enjoy being around....

Big D and I were talking about how much we enjoy being around his niece Greene and her entire family. She lives in one of our favorite places at the Coast but comes often to see her Mom and two of her daughters who live in our area right now. Big D called his sister last night to see how she was doing (Green's Mom) and found out she was here and that yes, there was a fire in the fireplace. I had already gotten into my PJ's and bundled up because it was and is COLD, COLD, COLD. After being encouraged several times, I put on my coat and "went as I were" as Mama would say. We had a glass of wine and got caught up and enjoyed two of her three beautiful daughters. The middle daughter is the one getting married in a few months so I enjoyed listening to them talk about some of the plans and the gown she is having made by a new designer. The wedding will be on the sound and then the reception will be near a place Big D and I love and have so many wonderful memories of. She talked us into staying for dinner Chicken Picata, CousCous, Spinach Salad with fresh pears and fresh goat cheese with homemade dressing. YUM. I took a few pictures of her beautiful daughters but refuse to put a picture of someone on my Blog that I don't think is flattering (unless it is of me or someone being funny on purpose). Thanks for the great conversation and meal Greene! PS - I found a picture for Greene's oldest daughter - isn't she beautiful? I think so - and so talented! I'm so proud of and happy for her because she not only gets to enjoy her own talents, she gets to share them with others. She teaches art! I'll keep looking to see if I can find the other one who was with us that night. Fun