Thursday, April 29, 2010

"My Guy"

I'm feeling about a quart low today,  mostly it relates to "My Guy".  As I told you  last month, the Big Guy and I have been married for 44 years.  From that you can gather that neither one of us is, by any stretch of the imagination, "young".  And my guy is about to become older.

May 3, this Monday, is the Big Guy's birthday.  Not just any old birthday either!  Oh no!  This is a biggie, a real big biggie.  He will be...(gulp)....65!  65!!  Oh. My. God.  How is that possible?  65 years old.  That used to be everyone's idea of old.  Once you reached 65 you were made to retire.  They put you out to pasture.  Get the gold watch and vacate the building.  You could begin to collect on all those years you paid into Social Security.  Medicare was available.  If you got a pension, that was when you would start to receive it.  You were so far over the hill that there wasn't any way back up.  Too old to be useful.  Too old for anything!  65 was the official beginning of "old age". 

I met the Big Guy when he was 18 years old (I was 17).   I knew fairly soon after we met that he was "my guy".  [In fact, when I came home after our first official "date", I told my mother, "That's the man I'm going to marry."  She didn't believe me, but eventually she did!]   Anyway 18 was a loooong time ago.  So sometimes it seems like I've known him my whole life.  Other times I'm not sure I have a clue about who he "is".  All I know is that we're still here and together and Sunday, he will be officially OLD!  I will be married to an old man!!! 

Now I would like to point out, that I am the only one having trouble with this, not him.  Mikey takes things like this in stride.  I'm sure that he never feels "old".   (Well, why would he?   His family seems to live forever!)   But me?  I'm not so tolerant of the march of time.  If he will be 65 on Sunday, that means that I (carefree, happy,  childlike, little sprite that I am) will be 65 in about one year  and 2 months from now.    AAAAAAAAAACCCKKK!  

[No. No.  Can't talk about that.  Rewind, Rewind!!!]

OK, back to the Big Guy.  Of course, he doesn't even have the decency to look his age.  People consistently guess his age to be 10 years younger than he is.  That's hardly fair.  He's my elder by 14 months, yet when we are out together, I look like I'm with my younger ....ahhh....friend! 

Of course, 65 is no longer considered the beginning of the end by much of anyone.   The Big Guy is still working a full-time job, at nights no less!  He has no plan to retire any time soon that I know of.  He is healthy. He's a little too round and doesn't do anything to stay fit.   Nevertheless, he doesn't need to take ANY medication of ANY sort!  His BP, Cholesterol, and all those things are FINE!    Does that sound like an old man to you??  (Me either.) 

So for My Guy, 65 is just another birthday.  As it should be.  He's my guy and I'm really glad that he is still around.  So, Happy Birthday Mikey!   May you live long and prosper!  

(Uhhhm....and if you could share just a few of those longevity genes with me, that would be pretty nifty.)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

"My Wish Came True"

Have you noticed?  There is a veritable flood a new babies just about everywhere you supermarkets, in libraries, in line at the post office, and most especially here in Blog World....they're everywhere!  And if it isn't new babies, its pregnant mommies-to-be.  Lots of be-here-soon babies.  

Even though its been a LOT of years since I had a new baby of my own, I do remember being pregnant.  I was one of the really lucky expectant moms.  Not too many queasy, nauseated mornings and those I did have were easily alleviated with a few saltines.  I was underweight when I became pregnant (98 lbs.....hey, I was only 19 and 5'2", I just hadn't had my final growth spurt yet!)  Anyway, my total weight gain was reasonable, my blood pressure stayed pretty much where it belonged, my complexion cleared up, and I felt beautiful!  Really! 

I don't remember hearing a lot about all the things that could go wrong.  I anticipated a "normal" pregnancy and that's what I got.  (God is no dummy, He knew I wasn't equipped for anything more challenging!)  Even labor and delivery were textbook easy! Although "easy" isn't a word I would have used at the time. (Dang, childbirth without much in the way of meds HURTS!) 

Now this was before Lamaze or any other kind of childbirth class.  No breathing, no panting, no duomas, no underwater births.  Birthing Coach???  What was that?  A vehicle of some kind??  Daddies did not come into the Delivery Room!  Ever!  (Not that I wanted him to!!)  Basically, you went to the hospital, did what they told you, screamed for a while, and then got your baby a few hours later!  Not exactly enlightened!!

Spinal anesthesia was in use at the time, but I was never offered that option, which was ok with me, because I remembered my mom's less than wonderful experience with a spinal when Little Sis was born.   I had never heard of an epidural (I don't think anyone else had either!)  So that left "Twilight", which as far as I was concerned was totally useless.  It was "supposed" to relax me so I wouldn't really feel too much.  HAH!  Even now, all these years later, I can remember the whole thing -- vividly. I should have known better than to go to a male OB/Gyn!

Actually it was the Delivery Room nurse who was no prize ....Oh, how I hated her after a while!  The only thing she kept saying was "Breathe through your nose,  close your mouth and just breathe through your nose."  It wasn't until a lot later, that I figured out she was just trying to get me to quit screaming!!  Quit screaming???  Can you not see what I'm doin' here???  You can't scream with your mouth closed!  I'm proud to didn't work!!   I screamed as much as I wanted to!  I think I was a world-class screamer!  (HA!)

(Short Side Story:  Dr. B. was from Germany or Austria and was very "Old World" in manner, demeanor, and speech.  It always just about cracked me up at every visit when he came into the exam room, reached over to shake my hand, ask politely how I was, and then proceed to hoist my feet into the stirrups and go on to a vaginal exam!   He was a very sweet man, but it still makes me laugh.)

Anyway, the saving grace about my labor and delivery was that the whole thing only took about nine and half hours....that's right, from first contraction felt at home around 11 pm to that final push to complete the process at 8:30 am -- 9 1/2 hours!  And that includes the hour and a half when things appeared to stall for a bit! I was in the actual delivery room for a little less than 1/2 hour.  Like I said, I was one of the very lucky ones!

Back in those days (Cripes!!  I sound like a freakin' Pioneer!  It was 1966 not 1866!!), ultrasound had not yet become available for use in pregnancy.  NOBODY knew the sex of their baby until that very last minute when you'd hear from the doctor, "It's a ____!"   That was OK, because I was convinced I knew anyway.  I was having a girl.  I wished for a girl.  I wanted a girl.  I knew nothing about boys.  If it was a boy, it was going back!!  My baby would be a girl!  That's all there is to it.  There was no other option!

I was so sure we were having a girl that we didn't even select a boys' name until a week before the baby was born...just in case.  But I knew and I was right!  Our little Rachlet was here and she looked like the Big Guy, right down to the birthmark he had on the back of his neck.  And she was the most beautiful newborn I had ever seen.  She was 6 lbs, 7 oz. and was 17 in. long (I was a long time ago!) 

After I was back in my room, I'll never forget the LPN who brought the baby to me for the first time.  She laid the baby on my tummy and started unwrapping the blanket from around her.  The nurse pulled out each hand and foot and individually counted ten fingers and ten toes.  She showed me the birthmark.  She pointed out her cute little shell ears! And then she left us alone to get acquainted.  It only took about 6 and 3/4 seconds and I was in LOVE!

She was my little girl and she was the best thing that ever happened in my whole life!  I treasure every moment we have together.  My little girl is all grown up now with her own little girl.  Still I know in my heart and my head that she has been and remains the best daughter in the whole world.  

So now, when I look around and see so many babies and expecting moms, it makes me both happy for them and a little sad for them.  Happy because together they have a wonderful journey ahead of them and a little sad because I know they'll never have what I had....the Best!

"My Wish Came True".  I hope their's do too!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

"I'm Sorry"

Regarding my previous post, sometimes I just don't think things through!  Below is my response to a comment from one of my on-line friends.  I realized after I sent it to her, that others may be feeling the same kind of thing, so this should go to all of you with my apologies!!

Oh dear! I never meant to insult anyone!! Especially not the bloggers I read faithfully! I'm not talking about you or anyone here. I swear! I came across the one I described accidentally and to that one I won't return. None of us are perfect, especially me!! Never fear I love your blog (and all the ones I follow!) and would never, ever do anything to jeopardize our friendship.

Sometimes I get carried away with my own cleverness and forget how judgemental I can sound. 

Am I forgiven?

I'm sooo sorry! Please forgive me!

"Trip, Stumble, Fall"

Have you ever been out for a leisurely walk, not really watching where you were going, when all of a sudden you trip on a crack in the sidewalk?  It can be very disruptive, interrupting your thoughts and even making you a little self-conscious.  But you keep walking and soon you forget about it.  Then, when you've gotten back into your "groove", a bigger crack causes you to stumble!  Arrgghh!  Now, you're getting upset.  Why can't somebody fix this?  The city, or the owner, or whoever is in charge....somebody ought to take the time to repair this!  Hmppff!  You become a little more aware of where you are stepping, looking ahead to prepare for the next obstacle....a hole, a rock, an incline....something that might actually cause you to fall!  And there it is, you can see it just ahead.  That's it!  That's enough!  You turn around and go home.

Well, your nice peaceful, leisurely walk has been ruined.  Just walking was no longer possible.  You had to concentrate on your steps not your journey.  The pleasure was gone when you had to worry if you would "Trip, Stumble, Fall".

Lately I have been reading a lot of random blogs, just perusing, thinking about all the different things people care about, enjoying the colors, the photos, the humor, the creativity, the stories, and the insights.  I sign up for the ones I really enjoy and look forward to their next posting.  It's fun and I love doing it.

Of course, I don't love absolutely every blog I come across.  Some just don't appeal to me at all and that's OK.  You don't have to like everything in life.  However, every so often, I'll come across one that's really interesting, or funny, or touching, or something and I will spend a goodly amount of time wandering back through their posts and getting to know the author.  I enjoy the journey some folks take me on.

Until, suddenly, unexpectedly, I trip!

"Oops, what happened?" 

"Their not my problem."*

 I look back over the last sentence I read (above) and realize it is the wrong tense, or the wrong word, or its misspelled, or something.  Well, we all make mistakes occasionally, right?  I keep reading.  Just when I'm getting back into the "groove", I stumble!  "Whoa!  What was that?" 

"We ate at a new restrant last night.  It was a pretty nice restrant."

A spelling misstep, worse this time, jumps out at me, and for good measure, it is repeated in the next sentence!!  "Hmmm, that's annoying.  Don't all writers check their work before they publish it?"  Well, evidently not!

Okay, I'm still enjoying the content mostly, so I go back and keep reading, but I'm wary, sort of scanning ahead, waiting to find the next obstacle.  "Aha!  And there it is!" 

"I've went to this pityful camp three times now."

That stops me cold.  Nooo, it doesn't really say that, right?  Wrong!  I've read it three times now.  That's what it says!  I'm hoping it isn't ignorance, that its just laziness.  In general, the blog (which shall remain nameless!) is interesting, kind of cute, and doesn't seem like the writer is a bit dim-witted.  But, Oh Howdy, I just can't take any more.  I have tripped.  I have stumbled.  And I have fallen.  I am gone!

This one was the worst I've ever seen, but there have been others.  Many writers don't seem to even try to proofread their work.  When I'm writing, I do thoughtless things too, but I try to catch them and correct them before I publish.  I'm not always 100% successful, but I try.

If a writer can't take the time and make the effort to fix their mistakes, I can't take the time or make the effort to read what they write!  It's as simple as that.

"Trip, Stumble, Fall"??  No thanks.  Not interested.  Bye!

*I swear I did NOT make these up!  They are real mistakes from a real blog (which shall remain nameless, for obvious reasons!!)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

"The Counting Song"

I have been feeling conspicuously uninspired lately. Nothing interesting to write about has popped into my little brain. So many of you are faithful readers and stop by everyday! But I just don't have it in me to write unless I have something at least mildly interesting to write about. It's a dilemma! So for today, I'll do a list!! Ten More Things I just Don't Get!!
10.  Fake Friends....You know the kind, they're only your friends if you can do them some good! 

9.  Food (sometimes)....I've never been a big eater and I've never been one to turn to food to cheer me or comfort me.  I get no joy from cooking.  I eat most of the time because I have to.  I enjoy a good meal, but sometimes  finding something to eat is just a big old pain in the neck!

  8.  Reality TV....The very concept makes me shudder!  I have NEVER watched any of them....not Survivor, not American Idol, not race/scavenger hunt thing, not the dance thing, none of them.  The Big Guy and I are probably the only two people anywhere who can truthfully say that!

7.  Guys, for the Love of God, Pull Up Your Pants!!  .... with or without visible skin!  None of it is good, really!  Come on, surely these idiots must realize how stupid they look??  How can they not know??  Are there no standards left ANYWHERE??  Walking around with your pants around your knees and your underwear flaunted is supposed to be sexy?????  Oh please, don't these people ever see a mirror??

6.  Library Book Repeats .... Why oh why, do I almost invariably check out 10+ books and realize after I'm home, that I've already read at least one of them! 

5.  Mid-size Paperbacks....It used to just be a choice between hard covers and paperbacks....very easily distinguished from one another and priced accordingly.  When did all these oddball large- sized paperbacks with higher prices come into play?  They aren't easier to read, they're not lighter than a paperback, and they're certainly not a bargain price!  There is no advantage to buying as far as I can tell.  Seems like publishers just want to line their coffers with a few more of our dollars.  I get extremely tired of being thought of as oblivious, undiscerning, gullible, and downright stupid by companies just looking for more money!  I know costs rise, but can't they just say, "Sorry folks, we have to raise prices because of costs."  Instead they try to trick us into believing that something is better when it is clearly NOT!

4.  Matronly Clothes....Ok, I am short, 5'2".  The only clothes that fit me without major alterations are items made for the "petite" female.  However, I am not 16, nor am I 80 years old!  Why can't clothes designers understand that small and short does not mean TEENAGE! (I won't even talk about "slutty"!)  And ever more importantly, not teenage does not mean dowdy, matronly, "old lady" clothes.  Please give us a few more options here!

3.  And speaking of Alterations....A man buying a suit or a pair of pants can often get alterations done at the store of purchase with NO EXTRA CHARGE!  This is true even at most mid-level department stores.  Whereas for women, most stores don't even offer alterations to women until you get into the very top-end stores, and not always even then, and extremely rarely without charge.   Equality for Women?.....yeah, right!

2. Package Warnings....Why do all cigarette packages and advertising, have to have printed warnings about the potential dangers, yet alcohol is not subject to the same type of warnings??  Alcohol is significantly addictive, destructive and dangerous too.  Why is there no warning like, "Warning: Use may lead to drunk driving, abusive behaviors, and impaired judgment that may result in death of human beings or animals!" 

1.  Garbage Bins....Why can't the crews of the Garbage trucks manage to put the bins back where they found them, not laying open in the street 3 houses down from they are supposed to go??  It is flat out rude and insulting.  Most of the time, they don't even try!  That just annoys me to no end....seriously!

End of rant for tonight!!  I feel better already!   :)

P.S.....Hmmm, in reading over this post, I am getting the feeling that I may have ranted about the things before.  Oops!  I'm sorry if they are repeats.  If they are repeats, it just proves that I still don't "get" them!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

"Bits and Pieces" (ad infinitum)

This is just a little bit of this and piece or two of that, adding up to nothing very significant!  The first  part is really just a test to check out how this new template sets up postings.

*** I saw the Easter bunny again today!  It had been several days since I saw him last.  I was afraid that the recent visit by the landscapers had scared him (her??) off.  (They are awfully loud!)  But he's still here, making himself at home.   Yay!   When first he appeared in the yard today, he seemed very cautious, looking around and sniffing the air.  We passed muster I guess, because before long he had stretched himself out up on the deck, back legs extended to the side, looking the very picture of "just lounging around".  He is a fairly small, brown bunny, with little ears that perch right on top of his head, a real cutie as bunnies go!!  As we can see the deck from our back windows, we have a ringside seat for whenever he comes to visit!  Soooo cute!!

*** Birthdays in our family never seem to celebrated just for one day, we regularly have "extended" birthdays.  Right now we are still celebrating M-t-G's extended birthday.  You may recall we had her family party on Easter Sunday, her actual birthday the following Wednesday, that Friday was cupcakes for her class and again for her softball team (with singing twice), her Daddy (T.A.) returned from Finland on Monday and Tuesday was the at home celebration, and tomorrow, fully 9 days after her actual birthday, she is having her "kids" party.  She and 5 or 6 (I think) of her friends are going to the Pottery studio where they will each make something that strikes their fancy with ice cream afterwards.  And then, at last I think, that's it till next year!   Just to clarify, extended birthdays are not because we are obsessed with birthdays!  It's just that trying to juggle schedules in this family to try to get everything done all at once seems to be beyond us.  So we do this instead.  And, actually, when all is said and done, no one ever feels left out and we pretty much all get a birthday that seems to go on forever!  It's kinda neat when it's your turn!  So M-t-G's 9th birthday will soon be over, and well before her 10th birthday is due!!!

*** I'm sure everyone has seen the news about the volcano erupting in Iceland and the voluminous cloud of ash and "stuff" that is now floating over England, and most of western Europe.  According to the experts, the volcano could go on erupting for several more days continuing to spew out more ash and "stuff".  One article I saw said that this particular volcano has periodically had lengthy eruptions, once spreading over an entire year!!  Yikes!!  The most immediate problem being caused by this is the closing of air space to airplanes in the affected areas.  That means flights are being cancelled all over the place.  People are camping out in the airports with no way of getting to where they were going for the duration, at least not by air.  A couple of things struck me:  first, I have never really thought of Iceland as much of anything but a lot of cold and ice....not what you get typically associate with volcanos;  secondly, a lot of those folks stranded in airports and such were on business trips and they missed deadlines, meetings, and opportunities. There were many who had completed the initial part of their trip, but  now can't get home.  But the ones I really felt badly for are the people who missed a wedding, or a funeral, or a graduation, or a reunion.  How sad!   Modern air travel has become such an integral part of life that  you just kind of take it for granted (except for the few, like me, who stay off airplanes on general principles).  Nevertheless, when the air space is closed, there's not a thing to do but wait till it opens up again!  And if, by some horrible possibility, this volcano keeps erupting for a YEAR again, well, I cannot even imagine what chaos this would cause.  And there's not much we could do about it!  Somewhere Mother Nature (or whomever) is sitting and laughing....she wins again!

***  The whole idea of a new fun design for my musings was originally so that maybe somewhere in the  process I could end up getting my own "button" that readers could "grab" and possibly extend my audience a bit....not that I don't love the readers I've got, I do.....but wouldn't it be fun to have a few more new friends??  Well, as you can tell, the button hasn't evolved yet, but other things have happened.  Things that I really had no intention of happening!  For instance, somewhere along the way, all of the bloggers that I follow have disappeared from my page....sigh!  Believe me it was not intentional!  I'm proud to display the blogs I enjoy and hope it sends a few new readers their way.  I will be putting them back under "Other People's Opinions", but I can only add one at a time.  Its a slightly tedious operation, but never fear, all of you will be back where you belong very soon.  I apologize and don't want you to think I don't love you anymore!!  Now, does anybody know how to make a "button"??

And, as the saying goes, "that's all she wrote"!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

"Down in the Depths (on the Ninetieth Floor)"

Composer and Lyricist Cole Porter wrote an enormous volume of songs over the course of his (too brief) life.  Like many other composers, he wrote lots of love songs with haunting melodies and beautiful lyrics.  What sets him apart, though, are his witty, clever, funny songs with lyrics that were unbelievably wonderful.  He generally gave his songs, titles that were spot on as well.  If you're not familiar with him or his work, you are either under 35 or totally and complete ignorant of music.

One of my favorite of his song titles is a little ditty entitled, "Down in the Depths (on the Ninetieth Floor)".  Isn't that a great mental image?  Without knowing the song at all, you can get a pretty clear picture of what this song might be about just from the title.  The man had genius!

Although I love Cole Porter music, today it's the title that fits my mood more than the lyrics or melody.  Yep, I'm feeling like "I'm Down in the Depths (on the Ninetieth Floor)".  Don't get much lower than that!  I think I'll go listen to some Porter music.  I think I'd really enjoy someone serenading me with "You're the Top"! 

It's been that kind of day, ya! know?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

"I'm Changin' All Those Changes"

As you can see, "I'm Changing All Those Changes"! I seem to have become obsessed interested in getting my blog design sorted out. It isn't really too hard. (HAH!) Actually, it is fun in a "creative for the non-creative" sort of way.

So what do you think about this one?? A contender or an also-ran?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

"Whistle While You Work"

Maybe if I was able to whistle, my work would have turned out better. But it probably wouldn't have helped at all. 

I was sitting around having a boring evening, I didn't have a good book at hand, I was tired of computer games, and so I started looking around Blogger at some of the features I haven't dealt with before.  I have mentioned before one or two....thousand (!) times, I'm no techie whizz when it comes to computer stuff.  So I should have known better, but well, I didn't.

Blogger in Draft has some nifty stuff available for designing your blog so that is more interesting and personal than the basic choices they offer.  So I played around.  I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that my good friend, C. Beth, was reworking my blog design and that the whole thing was a work in progress.  She did a bunch of design work, but it wasn't quite done.  (Beth has toddlers, free time is not something she has a bunch of!!)  That was okay, I was in no hurry.

So there I was tonight fooling around with the designs and  somehow I managed to lose all the design elements of my original design!  What I was left with in what you see.  I'm not certain how that loss will affect the work Beth has done, but I'm afraid that she will have to do more stuff in order to finalize things.  I really can't ask that of her, so I'm going to live with what I've got for awhile.  Its not too bad, do you think?

Next time I get bored, maybe I'll just go practice whistling instead, it might keep me out of trouble.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


I buy People magazine sporadically throughout the year.  I am intrqued by the lifestyle that celebrities live and I love to see the beautiful clothes and jewelry they wear for all their special occasions.  Having your life on display is one of the drawbacks of "Fame" I guess.  I like seeing photos of their babies or their homes.  But looking at the photos and reading the short little articles does not make me feel that I know them.  It doesn't give me any real insight about who they are or whether they are "good" people or "bad" people.  For instance, a couple of years ago when Brittney Spears appeared to be heading for a full-scale breakdown (according to the photos), during the same period of time, she was also reported to be working on a movie or a recording.  Which was true??  I have no idea.  But I do know that those two situations are pretty much mutually exclusive. 

I may admire or disdain someone's talent (or lack thereof) but that gives me no right to judge them or their relationships, families, or actions.  I don't know the whole story.  I wasn't there.  I have no idea what they are really like.  No photograph can accomplish that. 

I find it ridiculous to read some of the letters to the editor of People or comments on FaceBook in which the reader will pronouce that "So and so totally deserves to be  happy." or "You can just tell, they are so in love!"  or "She is such a good person."  or  even "They are scum and shouldn't be allowed to (whatever)."  How do they know?

If these readers are basing their judgement on the photos or press releases as it appears they are, then the readers are delusional. 
No matter how pretty, or "hot", or desirable these celebrities might appear, seeing pretty pictures is no more getting to know someone than reading the phone book!

The best you can get out of the "tabloid" publications is the knowledge that so and so was actually in attendance at the Oscars, or the beach, or somewhere.  That's about all you can say is really true.  If they "look" happy, or "in love", all that says is they can put a good face on.  But why wouldn't they?  They are celebrities and all celebrities are partially actors in a way.  They have a public face and a private one, just like everyone else.  How would we know which we're seeing??

Read the magazine, enjoy the photos, oooh and ahhh at the pretty dresses, but please, don't pretend that you "know" these people or understand them.  You don't.  For the most part, all you know is their "fame"!

Monday, April 5, 2010

"Bits and Pieces" (ad infinitum)

*** The Easter Bunny has come to live in our backyard!  At least, I think its the Easter Bunny.  He showed up just three days before Easter.  Our back yard is fully fenced, so the only way he could have gotten in is by digging under the fence somewhere.  I haven't done a tour around the fence to see if there is a little pair of pants snagged on a nail, like in the Beatrix Potter story!  We have never had a bunny resident before.  So why, all of a sudden, do we have one now?   He's a very cute little bunny with long bunny ears, and a twitchy nose.  He is very easily startled and can move pretty fast for a bunny. 

We've had animals in the yard before:  squirrels, geckos, cats, even a snake one scary night when I was home alone.  I am not, however, fond of any of those creatures.  I admit it, they all scare me a little.  But a bunny??  They look so soft and cuddly and just a cute as they can be. So whether he be the Easter Bunny, or Flopsie, Mopsie, or Peter or a totally non-celebrity bunny.  He is welcome for as long as he wishes to stay!

***  I worry about my daughter.  I am a mom, so that sort of goes with the territory.  I used to think that once she was grown and out on her own, I wouldn't worry as much.  Didn't happen.  Then I thought when she was married, I wouldn't worry as much.  That didn't happen either.  After she had a child, surely I wouldn't worry so much.   HA!  That was a miscalculation of mammoth proportion. 

I am proud of her and all of her accomplishments.  She is busy nearly every minute of her day.  She is a wonderful mother, super daughter, and a great caring human being.  And just listening to all she does, makes me tired.  I don't know how she does it.  She has a full time high-level job in theater Administration (so her hours can be somewhat unpredictable and non-typical).  She is a founding member of the group working to establish the Hepatoblastoma Foundation and she is a liaison to CureSearch.  There's a knitting group that she meets with regularly to support her great love of knitting.  She's a Girl Scout leader and Cookie Mom.  She's the mother of a 9 year old. who is taking violin and plays on a softball team.  She watches over all of us in the family when anyone is sick or needs help.  She is married to another theater professional whose schedule is even worse than hers.  She is vigilently watching over the health of Miracle Maddie!  She gets tired out.  I can understand why!  Most of her days are pretty full!!  

So yeah, I worry about her.  I wish her days were easier, I wish she was less frazzled sometimes, I even sometimes wish she was still a little girl so she wouldn't have all these responsibilities and her life would be simpler.  But she's not.  And she is remarkable, somehow she makes it all happen.  Nevertheless, I worry about her.  Of course I do.  I'm her mother.

***  This past weekend was kind of busy.  It was a triple celebration of sorts.  April 2 is our wedding anniversay, April 8 is Maddie-the-Great's birthday (her 9th!), and as it does every few years, Easter fell on the Sunday in between the two.  It only makes sense to celebrate them all together.  So there were elements of three different things going on.  The Big Guy made my all time favorite dinner, his specialty, "Mikey's Beef Stuff", the lovely yellow roses from our Anniversary served as the centerpiece for the table.  And the toast before dinner included continued good wishes for our future.

As far as M-t-G (and her mom) were concerned, the first half of the day was Easter.  Church, a little Easter basket, and some new books, a pretty little springtime dress for Maddie (no hat!), then to Grammy and Poppa's and the traditional Egg Hunt, one very large Chocolate Bunny, and a basket of goodies there were NOT all candy!  I didn't color eggs this year, its just not as much fun without a kid in attendance!  However, the little plastic candy filled eggs, worked just fine.

We played a lively game of "Charoodles" and then came the dinner.  The entree was my choice for the "anniversary" part, but in truth, it is the favorite meal of our whole family. 

We were all stuffed full of wonderful food so we played another game.  This one is called "Origins".  M-t-G is getting very good at grown-up games which is terrific.  We don't have to "let" her win so much anymore.  (Besides, I'm not sure that I have even one more Chutes and Ladders left in me!!)

Finally, it was candles and Happy Birthday along with Mikey's Chocolate Malt Cheesecake for dessert, which made those with a sweet tooth (Mikey, Ratchlet and M-t-G) very happy.  Then, at long last (at least for M-t-G) the Birthday presents finally appeared.  They were all a hit! 

Everybody had a great combo celebration together (except for T.A. who is in the Netherlands for work!!)  I just love holidays with my family....even when we try to cram three things into one day!

***  Every Easter I remember my Mom and my Gram.  The Easter Bunny was always very generous at our house.  Coloring eggs, Chocolate bunnies, candy eggs, baskets full of fun stuff, a new stuffed animal, all made perfect Easter memories for a kid.  Of course, the Easter Bunny always hid the eggs. 

[Okay, if any of your youngish kids are reading over your shoulder, its time to send them to bed or to do their homework or something.]

My mom was a great believer in traditions and holidays and sentiment.  She had learned them from her mom, my Gram, even how to be an Easter Bunny!  So every year my mom hid the eggs and the baskets, and the stuffed animals.  As I got older it got harder to find the eggs.  Mom got tricky and the hiding places got sneakier.  One memorable year. Gram happened to be spending Easter with us.  Mom always knew how many eggs and things there were for me to find and she always knew right where they were hidden.  On this particular year, I don't remember how old I was, Easter morning before we went to Church (the hunt was always after), Gram saw an egg that she thought was not hidden well she moved it somewhere else a little harder to find.  She never told my mom.  When we got back from Mass, the hunt began!  I looked, I found, I climbed, I opened, I peeked under, I moved knicknacks, I checked behind cushions and pillows, I re-checked places I had already looked.  You see, I found all the baskets and "things and all of the eggs....except one.  We counted and recounted those eggs.  No doubt about it, one was missing.  Of course, the one missing was the one Gram moved.  Well, when I couldn't find it, she "fessed" up and told mom she had moved the egg.  "Great!!!  Where did you move it??  Gram???  You don't remember????? (sigh) Keep looking!" 

We looked for that darn egg all day long off and on.  We never did find it that day.  In fact, my mom finally found it about 2 months later!  Gram had put it way in the back of a drawer full of linens and things under a pile of old tablecloths or something.  It was a drawer which was rarely ever opened.  Gram was right, it was a MUCH better hiding place! 

And it was a wonderful holiday story that got told and re-told for years afterward.  It was a lesson to us all....we haven't lost an egg since!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

"Easter Parade"

One of the things I always loved best about Easter when I was a little girl, was getting a brand new outfit for Easter, complete with Easter Bonnet!  Hmmm, does anyone even get an Easter Bonnet anymore?  There wasn't exactly an "Easter Parade" in our town, but there were multiple mini-parades all over town in every church (and our town had a lot of them!).  Each congregation would stand outside and chat either before or after the service.  In had the effect of a de facto "Easter Parade".  It made no difference what the denomination, all the church-going ladies, gentlemen, boys, and girls would wear their very best  outfit to church on Easter; even if it wasn't new, it was the best they had.

I loved it.  Crisp, new white gloves, brand new shiny, shoes and socks or tights (depending on how cool it was), and a pretty dress  in soft, pastel Springtime colors, sometime even a lightweight Spring coat (again depending on the temperature). and of course, the most important of all, the hat!  I have always been one of the lucky ones.  I look good in most hats.  And I like wearing them. And Easter was the day to wear the prettiest one you could find!

At the time most women wore hats to church on Sunday, in fact, they still wore them to most places.  It was part of what made a "lady".  After Jackie Kennedy and the changes in the Catholic Church, blew the hat industry out of the water, many women still wore hats on Sunday , at least to church.

But for kids, hats were pretty much reserved for that Easter outfit.  You still see a few women and little girls who wear hats on Easter, but not so much anymore.  I was one of them for a long while, but bit by bit life got more and more casual and you can't even find pretty hats very much anymore.

I miss them and I miss the gloves and the new shoes, and the pretty new dress.  And I miss the gathering with friends at church on Easter morning for our version of the "Easter Parade!"

Have a wonderful Easter all you lovely ladies!  Whether or not you're wearing an Easter Bonnet!

Friday, April 2, 2010

"Isn't It Romantic?"

In looking back over my postings, I realize I've written about my mom and dad, my daughter, my sister, my granddaughter, assorted aunts, uncles, and cousins, as well as friends, used-to-be friends, and almost friends, plus a few random people that have flitted in and out of my life. But I have not said very much about the Big Guy.  Today is the perfect day to begin to correct that, because April 2 marks the anniversary of the day we were wed....44 years ago!   (Yowza!)

We were married when I was 19 and Mikey was a month shy of 21.  Of course at the time we didn't think it was all that young.  I can't post a photo to show how young we really were.  If you have been reading my Musings for a while, you will remember that I do not have one single solitary photograph of us, the wedding, the church, the bridal party, the flowers, the cake, the reception, my family, his family, the priest, or anything else from that day. Nothing. 
(Click here to find out why Photography)

The best I can do is tell you about it a bit.  It was a bright, sunny, but quite cold day in Chicago.  We were married in a small chapel that was part of Mikey's parish and the officiant was a friend of his.  My cousin, Sherry, was my maid-of-honor, our good friend, Dan was the best man.  I carried a bouquet of yellow roses. My dress was ivory.  My dad walked me down the aisle and our friends and family filled the little chapel. 

When I first saw Mikey that day, he was standing at the front of the chapel with the priest and the best man.  He looked scared to death.  I thought it was so sweet.  I remember thinking that he was so serious and never even smiled at me once.  I thought it was because he was nervous that everything would go well.  I knew he would always take care of me and make sure everything was right.  I was wildly in love!

It wasn't a full Mass in the big 2/3 empty church, because I didn't want  that (nearly had a breakdown in front of the dopey parish priest...not Mikey's friend!...who tried to coerce me into it anyway.)  The little chapel was perfect, small and filled to the rafters, the ceremony short but meaningful, and the whole thing seemed over in a flash and it was done.  We were married!

We did the receiving line at the chapel and then traveled to the home of my aunt, who opened her home to us for a reception.  We had cake, we had food, we had presents, we had music, we had dancing, we had laughter and even a few tears, we had family and friends, it was beyond great, it was just what I wanted! 

Long after that day (and I mean by years), I finally realized that there was one element that we hadn't even thought about.  There was no music at the chapel.  None, at all.  Dad walked me down the aisle in silence, communion was silent, no soloist, no ensemble, Mikey and I headed back down the aisle in silence after it was done.  No music at all.  It was a little eerie.

Now this is significant because, if I may remind you, Mikey and I met in college choir, we were both still active members of that choir.  The little chapel was overflowing with singers and musicians from the choir.   Our best man's girlfriend was a wonderful pianist.  There was even a piano in the chapel!  Yet, not one of us, even gave it a thought, well, at least I didn't.  Even if everyone had just hummed, it would have been better than silence!

Even now after all these years, I still cannot believe we let that happen.  Music has been crucial to our lives and we never thought about it.  Hmmppff.  If in some universe, I ever go through a wedding ceremony again, you can bet that music will be the second thing I arrange for!!  (The first will be for multiple photographers!!) 

Anyway, back to Mikey a bit.  When we were in the car riding from the church to the ceremony, I mentioned to him how sweet I thought he looked all scared and nervous at the front of the chapel.  Mikey didn't say much.  I probably went on and on about it a bit, as I am wont to do!  Finally, he broke down and admitted that he wasn't scared about the wedding or the marriage or our future; he was trying desperately to keep from throwing up!!!   It seems the guys had taken Mikey out for a bit of a bachelor party the night before the wedding.  Not having much experience with liquor (they were all underage!), they didn't have access to much in the way of booze.  Somehow they managed to scrape up several different things. Unfortunately, they finished every drop they were able to procure and some of it was just one step up from rotgut!  They ran out of mixers, so by the end they were using grape juice and root beer to mix with really bad bourbon.  My loving, shy, nervous bridegroom was, for the first time in his life, hungover!  

I was a bit upset that day, but it was a long time ago and now I think it is just hysterical!  

So it was 44 years ago today that we tied the knot.  That's a really long time.  Happy Anniversary, Bunky!

There are very few of those who came to our wedding who are still alive.  Mikey's mom and my parents are gone, the aunts and uncles and some of the cousins are gone.  My maid of honor and the best man are both gone.  We lost touch with most of the friends.  Besides Mikey and I, the only ones who are still a part of our lives are my Lil Sis (who was 7 at the time), Mikey's siblings and their kids, and our good friend, Bonnie, the aforementioned pianist!

It was a lovely wedding and I'm grateful to Mom and Dad, Aunt Pinkie, Sherry, Dan, who made it happen, and to all our friends who there to wish us well.  Most of them would probaly be pretty surprised that we are still together after all these years.  But we knew.  We were commited and we were in love.  "Isn't it romantic?"  Mikey and I have had a marriage like many do, good times, bad times, and every thing in between, we've both changed over time,  my hair is grey, Mikey doesn't have much hair.  We are proud of our daughter and our grandaughter and we are happy most of the time.  We still can make each other laugh.  We are married!

And every single April 2 for the last 44 years, Mikey has brought me yellow roses....

Oh yes, most definitely romantic!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

"Send in the Clowns"

Some people are gifted with a crazy sense of humor.  They can come up with the quick comeback, or tell a funny story so well that  milk comes out of your nose!!  They remember every joke they ever heard and have great comic timing.  And they can come up with really funny April Fool's jokes or pranks.  I am not one of those people.  I can occasionally come up with something sort of witty when I'm writing or speaking, but most of the time its a fluke, not something I can call on at a moments notice. 

When I tell a joke, I can be one of those people who after giving the punch line says, "Oh wait, wait, I forgot to tell you that she had a parrot on her head!"  (or whatever element that makes the joke).  Fortunately, I am aware of my poor memory for jokes, so I generally don't try to tell them.  I don't seem able to retain a joke for more than about a day or two at most.

 Now I do have one joke that I think is the funniest joke I've ever heard.  I remember all the elements and the punchline.  I heard this joke about 10 years ago and I don't remember anymore where I heard it or who wrote it.  But I remember the joke. Its still the funniest joke I ever heard.  Unfortunately, I can't share it with you here in a public forum.  It's just a little bit beyond the bounds of what I feel can be repeated in polite company.  Also its a joke that I think is better heard rather than just read.  But if you ever come over to my house (and I'm pretty sure you aren't offended by that type of humor), I'll be glad to tell it to you.

Some folks really come up with great pranks for April Fool's Day.  I read somewhere that Robert Redford and Paul Newman, both gifted practical jokers, would set up each other with some elaborate joke for AFD.  They alternated years and of course they escalated every year.  They did it for years!

And does anybody remember the old Dick Van Dyke Show episode where a practical joker becomes the victim of a joke to teach him a lesson?  It was hysterical.

 Facebook is full of April Fool's jokes and pranks today, some very funny.  Even Google became Topeka for the day!

Anyway, I love hearing about other peoples' clever April Fool's gags. I wish I could come up with a cute April Fool's joke or prank for you here, but I have no inspiration at all.  None.  I haven't got that kind of a gift.  So, if I ever want to include something funny I'll have to ask somebody to "send in the clowns", 'cause, trust me,  I got nothin'!!

"With a Little Help from My Friends"

You might notice some changes going on from time to time.   My good friend C. Beth is working on re-designing my blog.  It's nice to get "a little help from my friends!"  This is most definitely a work in progress. We've (well, she actually) has just started so things will be a little unsettled for a while, but when its done?  Whoo Hoo, its going to be outstanding!  In the meantime, just keep humming to your own music!!

You might also like....

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...