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….”

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”

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)”

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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Volume off. Love loud.

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.”

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”

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.”

Hmmmm. Did not expect this.

A couple months into this new experience.  Hearing aids.

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.”

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.”

For Real

“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”

Where seldom is heard… an encouraging word

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The dentist office has historically been a very unlikely place for me to receive words of encouragement. My oral cavity has been the location of a lot of drilling and bridgework and excavation…. seriously there should be tiny little orange cones in my mouth most any day of the week. Always a work zone of some sort.

Continue reading “Where seldom is heard… an encouraging word”

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.”

The worst everything.

Thanksgiving.  Time to make the list.  The “what I’m thankful for” list.

You know the drill.  Most lists have the same items on them year after year no matter who is writing the list.  “My family.  My friends.  Food.  Shelter…”

Gratitude is a good habit to practice.  One time several years ago I sat down and quickly wrote 100 things I was thankful for.  All the wonderful good things in my life I could think of.  It was good medicine for my attitude and kept me happy for, oh, maybe 10-20 hours.  Continue reading “The worst everything.”

Subliminal learning. The beauty of failure.

For the first twelve years of my education I attended the same school system.  Tiny little town, tiny little school, tiny little class sizes.  There wasn’t much mobility in family life back then, so for the most part the class members in Kindergarten went through all 12 years together and graduated high school together.  Continue reading “Subliminal learning. The beauty of failure.”

All we know.

Don’t you love looking at a baby’s face for the first time?  Looking into eyes that stare back at you like “What in the world is that thing? Put me back, please”

Prior to this newborn moment, baby was a well thought-out design of God.  Being formed in His image as God picked out hair color, eye color, size and shape…. fearfully and wonderfully thought out and created with love as the main ingredient.  And those months in the warm womb were a blissful time of just baby and God.  And mommy, of course.  But I believe God knows baby long before Mommy does.  Continue reading “All we know.”