“Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone.” That’s one line from an old song written in 1970. And like a lot of songs, it’s the only line I remember.
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This one line brings one person in particular to my mind. My mother.
On Christmas in the year 1970 my dad had just returned home from a one week stay at the hospital following his diagnosis of leukemia. He was dismissed Christmas Eve. Christmas morning was not the typical Christmas, as you might imagine. Not a lot of jolly old St Nicholas. But we were genuinely glad to be together. Just the four of us, Mom and Dad, Sharon and myself. We didn’t know what the future held but we sure loved having Daddy there with us on that day.
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Yesterday I took myself out for a little Christmas shopping. The Friday before Christmas. I just had one last person to buy for, but he’s an important one. Yes. The husband.
Recently I read a story that pulled the curtains back from a window into the life of a mom and her difficulties with her young son. His behavior is so poor that kids avoid him. Classmates say their parents forbid them from playing with him anymore. He comes home from school and says he was told he is “bad.” He has been removed from that kindergarten now. His mom and dad are struggling to help him.
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South of Manhattan Kansas on Manhattan Ave there is a bridge over Wildcat Creek. Cross the bridge and you have arrived on what is commonly referred to as Hunter’s Island. Wildcat Creek and the Kansas river border this land. Some of the most fertile ground around can be found on Hunter’s Island. The hubby tells me it’s only a true island when it is surrounded by flooding. Which happens a lot.
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His name was Charlie and his wife was Myrna. Charlie worked with my dad for the county road maintenance department.
Charlie and Myrna were deaf. Myrna was profoundly deaf and couldn’t verbalize much more than grunting type noises. Charlie was equally deaf but not totally mute. Plus he read lips fairly well. He gave serious attempts to communicate verbally and sometimes he was successful. If he became irritated enough the words “chicken shit” left his lips quite clearly. And without fail if you asked “How are you?”, he would say loudly “Old man 95” and start walking all bent over to fully answer the question.
Continue reading “Volume off. Love loud.”
Our first….home?…. I use that term loosely, was a tiny apartment that was part of a four-plex of red brick apartments. The location was in the armpit of Wichita. Not far from the hospital where I went to school. And the most deciding factor for living there? It was cheap. We were poor. Continue reading “Where do you dwell?”
Unless you are blind, you are fully aware that my husband and I do not have athletic looking bodies. No one looks at us and concludes that we must work out many hours each day.
We don’t look like we would be hikers. We look like walking to the fridge is our exercise of choice. (oddly enough, as I typed those words, the hubby strolled by from the fridge with a nice bowl of ice cream in his hand) Continue reading “Would you like some whine with that cane?”
How well I recall the day I learned my family was poor. The news didn’t come from my parents. I often heard them having lively conversations about finances early in the morning while they were eating breakfast. While I was exercising my sloth-like tendency to sleep late. I heard them, but it was never serious enough to fully awaken me.
No, reality hit one day in the third floor library of the junior high building in my hometown. Probably my eighth grade year, during study hall. Continue reading “The beauty of enough”
Since Mom’s death in 1993 I’ve been the family member most involved in my developmentally disabled/intellectually challenged oldest sister’s care. Sharon has been so blessed with wonderful care where she lives in a group home. (THANK YOU GOD!!!!).
Today I participated in a phone conference call to analyze and evaluate the care she is receiving. My input was limited and really I didn’t need to say much. They asked Sharon questions and she answered. And I listened to it all. Continue reading “Unpredictable, innocent humor….oh, my sister”
One of my favorite Christmas gifts ever was from my sister Lois. I was eight or nine years old, she was 16 years older than me and, in my little girl eyes, quite wealthy. She was a Medical Technologist and worked in a hospital laboratory in a big old hospital. 😜💲💲💲 What was this magnificent gift, you ask? A Scrabble board game. I was ecstatic. Seriously!!
Continue reading “One Word. Two Words. Three Words.”
Tyler State Park. Our final campground in Texas. This picture was taken on a hiking trail near our campsite.
There’s no end to Texas. I’m certain of that. It is vast and so diverse topographically.
Our stay in Texas was initially going to be 6-8 weeks. Due to various circumstances we were only there a bit shy of 4 weeks. But even if we’d spent all 8 weeks touring Texas we could never have seen it all. We shall return. I want to see more. Continue reading “Texas, the final chapter. For now.”
Texas in the spring. This was our first experience with camping in Texas, and oh my it’s been so very nice. Bluebonnets rule the fields. And sometimes Indian paintbrush rule the fields: Continue reading “Hills. And flowers. And friends. And adventure.”
Fort Worth has never been a place I dreamed of going. On this particular extended trip to Texas, I assumed it would just be our first stop on the way to somewhere better.
I was wrong! Continue reading “Does Ft Worth ever cross YOUR mind?”
For the last several springs and summers we’ve taken frequent camping trips to local lakes. And the Mr. worked remotely from our RV. While he worked, I did, uh, very little. Mainly spent time outdoors in exquisitely beautiful surroundings, hanging out with the Creator. Continue reading “Where’s your sense of adventure? Stay tuned.”
Rarely do I prepare a recipe for the first time and have the Mr say, “That was restaurant quality”. But this evening, it happened. I suppose his response could have been triggered by the fact that he’d not eaten one bite of food since an early breakfast this morning. Starvation can make any entree more palatable. But we both found it quite tasty. And you know I didn’t go all day without eating. That never happens. Continue reading “Emergency recipe post”
A couple months into this new experience. Hearing aids.
My goal was better hearing. Being able to be more “present” in conversations instead of constantly thinking to myself “what did they say?”.
Mission accomplished. I love them.
There has been, however, one result that I didn’t expect. I can hear myself better. Continue reading “Hmmmm. Did not expect this.”
The year was 2006, the month was March. I’d been longing to be a grandma for oh so long. Prayers were prayed, decisions were made to adopt, and we traveled to Guatemala with our daughter and son-in-love and Grandma Cindy to meet the baby who would be our very first grandchild.
We met him, we held him, we watched him react with his new mommy and daddy. And we fell in love. My grandma heart was fully activated. Continue reading “Lullaby voice. Just see what happens.”
Every now and then I’ll be doing something and a long-forgotten memory floods my mind. You, too? Often, it’s something I’d just as well leave forgotten. You, too?
But sometimes, a memory takes me back to an experience that was fun and so worth remembering. A memory that wraps around me like a warm hug. Such a good feeling. Continue reading “The Man.”
“Wearing a face that she keeps in a jar by the door.” Words from an old Beatles song. I’m old enough to have listened to it when it first came out many, many, many years ago. About the same time I started wearing makeup. About the same time teenage acne made its unwelcome appearance on my young face. About the same time my confidence and self image plummeted. The face in the jar by the door became my routine, my shield against insecurity. I really never used very much makeup, honestly just enough to feel comfortable with the girl in the mirror. Not always a successful endeavor. Continue reading “For Real”