The rest of the story….

Percival and Augusta**.    Long ago they lived across the street from my family in a small super-modest old home with peeling paint and many many many cats.  And one little dog.   There was a front porch.  There was a back porch.  There’s no trace left of where Percival and Augusta spent their sad life.  But my mind will never lose the image of that home and the couple who lived there. Continue reading “The rest of the story….”

Through

I was the last chance.

My folks were the parents of three teenage daughters when, out of the blue (or pink?) I came along. Another stinking girl. I have mental pictures of my dad, age 47, going from the hope of hearing “it’s a boy!!” to “oh, well”.

I was the last chance for him to have a boy to hang out with and enjoy time together. A son, a kindred spirit, a little Benton. He had three teenage girls. Just wrap your brain around that fact for one moment. At least once a month you KNOW my dad wished he had sons.

Continue reading “Through”

Rising numbers. Rrrrrrip.

My collection of numbers has become pretty large. Too many birthdays has added a ton of numbers to my age. And I seem to have an uncanny ability to add numbers to my weight. Though it’s tempting to blame COVID19 and the whole stay-at-home scene on the weight dealio, that would be a lie.

All these numbers have resulted in gravitational effects and odd changes to my already unfortunate configuration of body parts.

Continue reading “Rising numbers. Rrrrrrip.”

Dear Younger Me

My breath was taken away and tears came to my eyes. Not gonna lie, they even rolled down my cheeks.

A friend of mine shared a photo with me. She’d found it in an old yearbook of her mom’s.

Me. Age fifteen. The one school picture that never made it to a frame on the top of the piano with the other pictures of me and my sisters. I had totally forgotten about this particular photograph. I doubt there are prints of it anywhere, except of course the old yearbook.

Continue reading “Dear Younger Me”

Bunny, Bird, and Boo

Let me just preface this post with this statement: I love animals. Yes, I do. Now just plant that fact in your brain while you read the rest of this.

Our oldest daughter went off to college many years ago at Kansas State University and began dorm life. Our youngest daughter was four years younger, just a high school sophomore at the time.

Continue reading “Bunny, Bird, and Boo”

Mixed values; unexpected ho-hums

Got some time on my hands. You too? I refuse to use the C word or the P word though. If you’re reading this in say, 2030, and you have no clue what C and P words are, then you indeed are most fortunate. Be deeply thankful. And just go ahead and search for “historic events in the year 2020” if curiosity has the best of ya.

So while roaming about the house during the past week or so, organizing, cleaning, avoiding stir craziness, I came across a few items with stories to tell.

Continue reading “Mixed values; unexpected ho-hums”

Talking to myself and feeling (fill in the blank)

If you’re my age, and if you’re a girl (well, OLD girl), you probably once loved listening to the smooth voice of Karen Carpenter. The Carpenters. One of their most popular songs was Rainy Days and Mondays. “Talking to myself and feeling old” “Sometimes I’d like to quit, nothing ever seems to fit”. Such upbeat lyrics. NOT. Sadly, the line about “nothing ever seems to fit, like to quit” ? Karen died from anorexia at a young age.

I talk to myself and you probably do, too. Please tell me you do. 🙂

Continue reading “Talking to myself and feeling (fill in the blank)”

Food nostalgia and a recipe

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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Looking through windows

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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On an Island south of Manhattan. The little Manhattan

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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The beauty of enough

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”

Unpredictable, innocent humor….oh, my sister

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 Word. Two Words. Three Words.

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.”

Lullaby voice. Just see what happens.

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.”

Unfortunate LOL. And 911 Humor.

Have you ever found yourself laughing in a totally inappropriate setting for laughter to occur? Like loud laughter with potential snorting? And nothing you try can stop your laughter. With tears streaming. You might manage to stop but then right away have a trigger that starts it up all over again.  The struggle is real. Continue reading “Unfortunate LOL. And 911 Humor.”

A Father’s love

Once upon a time in the land of my childhood, there was an alley running between our property and the neighbor’s property.  You don’t see too many alleys anymore, especially in big cities,  but in our small town they were a significant part of life.  Kids could congregate there, learn to ride bikes without traffic, play with their friends.  And trash was collected in large steel drums generally placed near the alleyway.  Periodically you could light a match and revel in the pleasure of watching your trash burn.

Not gonna lie, I miss burning the trash. Continue reading “A Father’s love”

The fluff of stuff. And the power of a photograph.

A few months ago I was in my mom-in-law’s house with her.  My eye caught sight of a vase I’d not seen before and I said, “Wow, that is gorgeous. I love it!”.  To which she immediately and without hesitation emphatically said, “Take it. It’s yours. I do not need all this stuff.”  And she waved her hands around the room.

So, I took it home.  Continue reading “The fluff of stuff. And the power of a photograph.”