Friday, August 31, 2007

Just an ordinary Thursday@ work.....

I just love an English accent...

Most of the time.

Phone rings.

Me: Hello, Scenic Route. How can I help you?

Her: Ellllooo... And I sooo love the American accents! How you don’t say the T in WaTer. You say waadder. …

And... is your company pronounced Scenic Rowt or Scenic Root? The way you just pronounced it..are you , by chance from Texas??

Me: Uh, no. I guess you could say either “Scenic Root” Like Route 66 or “Scenic Rowt” like Route. I say Scenic Route….

Her: you Americans are funny….

Me: (thinking - not saying...) ha ha ha - do you have a point with this?

We spoke for a while longer and the more she talked the more I pictured a rather snooty, nose in the air kind of person whose mouth is in a perpetual downward turn. Eyes half closed..,,you know what I’m talking about …

Anyway, at the end of the call…

Her: Well, I’m Sarah……(pause) ......with an H”…..

Me: Funny, in America…we spell Sarah with an “S” …..

Hahhahahahahahhahhahahahhahahahahahahahahahahahhahahaha!

I TOTALLY crack me up….!!

Ahhhh.. I love my job.... Is it Friday yet??????????????
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Thursday, August 30, 2007

40 years ago today....

...I got married.

At 17.

Starter marriage.

Can you even imagine? But, I thought it was what I was supposed to do.

Back then (I can't believe I just said that ! ) but back then, it was my dream to "get married, have kids, be a Mom, and live happily-ever-after."

And... I was raised Catholic. Which is not a bad thing mind you, however, I wanted to have....ahem...umm..sex.

So I got married.

Boy, I can't imagine my granddaughter, now on her way to being 17 in March, getting married.

But, there was no stopping me. My sisters tried. Daddy tried. But I was head-strong, listening to the Carpenter's sing "We've only just begun...White Lace & Promises" and I wanted that.

Happy ever after. "white lace & promises.."

It wasn't.

Wasn't white lace - it was ecru. Bought off the rack. At Sears!

And it wasn't promises kept.

And it wasn't happy ever after.

But, it contributed to who I am today.

Stronger. Smarter.
Much smarter. Mom to 4. A good person.

And...funny..."what doesn't kill ya...makes ya funny!!"

And, finally, Happy...happily ever after.

Now, we're planning another wedding. For my son. Who is older than 17. 33 to be exact. She is 27. I think they may have a good shot of "happily ever after." They know what that looks like. Both her parents and Randy & I are...happily ever after.

So listen to the Carpenters, remember what make us stronger. Funnier. And, celebrate who you have become.

I know I am. (can you believe that hair??? )
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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ireland...2012...

Yep, Ireland. In 2012.

I’m going to Ireland.

That’s five years. Should be able to save that much by then.

As I was reminded by a good blogger-friend, Bonnie-Rose, one must have a goal in mind to strive toward.

To try to reach your goal willy-nilly is silly.... (or stupid,.. but silly “went” with willy-nilly better)

We all know that – it’s the doing that I have always had troubles with.

Why is it we often know what best for us and what’ll make us feel better, but we just don’t do it?

Like, when you have the flu or a bad cold. You KNOW you’ll feel better if you shower, brush your teeth, put on comfy jammies, toasty socks, and lay down in bed.

Not look crummy, feel crummy and watch TV on the uncomfortable couch all day and feel sorry for yourself – but do we do that?

Nope.

Well, maybe you do, but I don’t.

Not all the time anyway. I just whine and moan and feel crummy. And uncomfortable. And I don’t really sleep. And I really NEED to sleep.

So, anyway, I am going to Ireland in 5 years. I will make a “dream board” with all I can find on Ireland: beautiful photos, bed & breakfasts, smiling Irish faces, and, of course, the costs.

I once heard someone say to try to reach your goal without some sort of direction is like having a pilot fly you to your destination without maps or instruments, because, hey , he’s been there before… …

I'd rather him use a map. I 'd rather have a map, too.

HEY, I could put a map of Ireland on my board...

So, map out your dreams. Place them in front of you where you can see them on a daily basis.

And DREAM BIG!
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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

What I know for certain....



I just love that part of Oprah’s magazine – usually the very last page and she’s SO certain!

I USED to be that certain – about some things. Only to find out I changed my mind. (notice I didn’t say I was “wrong”)

So how certain is certain?
And, does “certain “change with time….
And then does it become “certain – part 2”
Hmmmmmm

Take towels.
They are to be folded in half, long corner to long corner, then half again, then into thirds. Period. End of story. If someone helps me fold my towels and does it differently, I un-fold and re-fold- (without their knowledge of course).
I know, the “argument” is that folded the other way, one can just lay them across the towel bar and not have to un-fold and re-fold.
But I solved that one - had Randy put in pegs instead of a towel bar after the last renovation..
HA!

And toilet paper.
For YEARS I was BENT on it rolling from the bottom up. I was SO, if you’ll pardon the expression, anal, that I used to change it in public bathrooms.

Oh, yes I did.
For years.
Then I moved into my little house and it had this neat-o built-in toilet paper holder! Well, isn’t that cute.
The first roll I put on with the roll rolling from the bottom up didn’t work too well. Kept breaking after 2 sheets. Don’t you HATE that in restrooms? Who uses just 2 sheets? Ewwwwwe…..

Anyhow, I finally, absolutely grudgingly, changed it to roll from the top over.
Good.

It took a while and some deep therapy, but I finally accepted it as the “downfall” of older homes.
So, yesterday, I got home only to see the WHOLE roll had un-rolled into a huge pile of paper just below the roll –

So, at this point, the only thing I am “certain” of is ………

I’m not certain about anything.

Little know fact: Used furniture folks always look “wear & tear” at the left side of a sofa – know why?
The majority of people sit on the left side of their sofa!

Do you??

Have a great day and try not to hurt your brain thinking too hard – take it from me- it gives you a head-ache!
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Total eclipse of the sun...uh...moon

So, apparently Lulu listens to the news. I figure that's the only way she knew about the eclipse this morning.

And, apparently, she thought I'd like to see it..in all it's various phases.

Therefore, it was necessary, no her JOB to wake me , oh, about every hour or so once it started to go outside and look at it.

And we did. I have to admit, it was quite something to see. I didn't even need my Pyrex Amber Gold cake pan to look through it to the eclipse!

No, wait..that's so you don't burn your eyes in a solar eclipse. I remember odd tid-bits of high school science anyway.

Yes, we enjoyed the sight, tried to sleep in-between the phases, but we caught it all. Thanks Lulu.

And, I hear, there won't be another until February of 2008.

Shhhhh! Don't tell Lulu!

So, set your alarms, or your pups, and see the sights. Don't miss a thing. It'll be a while until this opportunity comes a knockin' again!
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Sunday, August 26, 2007

..an open letter to my lovely granddaughter

Ok, so this is not going to be the "what the hell were you thinking?" letter it probably should be. Not the "I'm so disappointed in you" letter - if I can help it. Which I make no promises.

What I hope this letter will do is to give you food for thought. Pondering. Maybe even praying. Because I know that's what a lot of us are doing this morning.

Staying out all night may seem like a "right of passage".

I even did it once with my best friend, Rosie. I think I was 15. Rosie told her Mom that she was sleeping over & I told Daddy I was at her house, sleeping over.

We were not.

I don't even remember what we did, but I know it involved parties neither parent would have allowed us to go to...and for good reason.

And I remember sitting in a Dunkin' Donut shop, being soo very sleepy but too afraid or too stubborn to go home.

The thing I remember so vividly is my Daddy's face - your Grandfather - when he looked into my eyes. I think it was the first (but, unfortunately, not the last) time I saw him cry for something I had done.

He didn't say the words...he didn't have to. I knew I had disappointed him. I had disappointed myself.

But that's not what got me, what has stayed with me all these years.

I had hurt him. I had instilled in him the fear only a parent can experience. It still brings a lump to my throat and a feeling of shame.

How could I have done this to him - the fatherI loved so much?

I will see that hurt and feel that pain until I pass. And it is not comfortable.

But why should it be? I need to carry that image, that pain and despair I gave him.

That fear that I might be hurt, or worse, out there with him not knowing if something horrific had happened to me, then finding out it wasn't by "happenstance" that I was that position.

I had chosen that lie. Put myself out there.

Why am I telling you this when even my dear sisters probably don't know or remember?

Because I love you. I am proud of you. You are the most beautiful, bright, kind, and sweet teenager I know.

And because I want to save you from a lifetime of regret and hurt.

I know I'll never be able to keep you from all harm- but I will try to the best of my love and ability to save you from self-inflicted hurt.

I love you.

And so do your parents. And Emily looks up to you. And Brian wants to protect you as big brothers do.

Let them.

Let all of us love you and keep you from harm.

If you can't talk to us, write.

That's why I blog. Silly as it may seem. I can write what I cannot say. What I feel.

Just try something. Pray. Read. Listen. And think. And then pray some more. HE listens. And answers.

Know I'll be thinking about you.

I love you tonzzzzzzzzzzzz!

Grammie
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Saturday, August 25, 2007

Rachael's Bridal Shower

Today my future "new Daughter" had her bridal shower at her Mother's home. It was lovely. Lots of friends and family that care about and love Rachael. Lots of pretty presents.

Chocolate. Lots of chocolate...with the occasional piece of fruit, you know, for health reasons.....
and a yummy punch. I think that's what I love and remember so vividly about showers! The PUNCH.

Although I know I probably could make punch for, oh let's say, a special event, like, uh, it's THURSDAY.. seems I don't. So silly.

Anyway, good punch.

And good wishes. For a new life together. A wedding in two weeks. That's all it is and they will be happily on their way.
(I can just see the videotographer asking Jeff, "well, now that you're married, what's next??" And Jeff replying, "We're going to Disneyland!!") ...because they are....!!!

Anyway, back to the shower. Lots of gift cards which I think is so practical now. With them both having lived on their own for a while, they really don't need another toaster. And even if they did, they can now get the very one they want, not what someone else thinks would be good.

But I can never leave well enough alone, so in addition to the gifts cards Grandma Evelyn and I got them, we concocted a "Marriage First Aid Kit" for her. Randy helped with the signage. Too fun.

While checking out at the dollar store register, the girl asked, "What are you doing with such an odd selection of items?"

Which I thought was an odd question from someone working at a dollar store that carries only the finest of odd items...

Anyway, I told her and she thought it was funny. Or she said she thought it was funny. Maybe she was just humoring me. Hmmm...

OK, so I thought I'd put in the blog today what the "First Aid Manual" said: Or read: Manuals don't actually speak..although this one sort of did to me....I'm rambling again, huh?
OK
So here it is. Picture the odd assortment of items when you read this:

A magnifying glass
….to remind you to “magnify” the good in each other…

Tea bags
…to remind you that when in hot water, you become stronger.

Cotton balls
…to remind you to be that “soft place to fall” for each other.

A ruler
…to keep you on the “straight & narrow”. And that there are 2 rulers in each home! (we gave her 2 wooden rulers, hahaha)

A compass
…to become each other’s “true north”.

Glue
…to remind you to “stick together”.

Hershey Kisses & make-up
…to remind you to “kiss” and “make-up”.

Rain ponchos
…to help you weather the storms.

Garlic
…to “spice” up your life.

Rock salt
…to remind you to take thing “with a grain of salt".

Snuggle
..to remind you to “snuggle” often.

Kleenex
..to remind you to “dry” each other’s tears.

A laugh sign
..to remind you the most important thing in a marriage is to “laugh”.

Clips

..to help you “keep things together”.

A sewing kit
..to remind you that you have all it takes to “mend” your love.

SweetTarts
…to remind you that everyone can be both “Sweet AND Tart”.

So, there you have it. A new life. A first aid kit. A trip to Disneyland.

Does it get any better than this???

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Friday, August 24, 2007

Was I ever that small??

This photo was taken of ME on "the ranch". We didn't own the ranch or the horse - probably not the camera -my Dad worked the ranch. In Tucson, Arizona.

My Dad decided Chicago was no longer for him; he wanted to move the family to California.

Ah, yes, beautiful, sunny California!

I don't think it was a coincidence that we were moving at about the same time as Lucy, Ricky, Fred & Ethel were moving to California, either.

Only they made it all the way. Daddy's car broke down in Arizona. Not quite California....

But he needed to stay and take some odd jobs in order to have the money to fix the car. And "odd jobs" they were. Ranch hand, caretaker of a convent, carpenter, roofer, ceramics factory worker, you name it.

He even worked for the infamous mobster Joe Bonnano Sr. ! No, not as a hit man, silly! As a carpenter. And for the famed Arizona artist, Ted De Grazia. It is reported that Mr. De Grazia tried to give my Dad one of his painting, and Daddy refused it -saying it really wasn't his style.

We never knew Daddy was in the "in crowd"!

I'm certain he probably made enough money to actually finish the trip, however, we stayed in Arizona until my brother and sister graduated from High School.

Then, when they were both married, the rest of us finally made it to sunny California! Only, it wasn't all that sunny, especially for my sister, Gerri, who, by that time was a real cowgirl. And missed her mountains. And her horses and her dessert. So, one by one, we moved back to Arizona. We now consider that where we're "from". Three of them still live there.

Times were hard. Mother was sick most of the time. Depression. Can you blame her? Born and raised in Chicago, transplanted to the Arizona dessert before swimming pools and golf courses were the "norm".

We had rattle snakes and coyotes. Tarantulas and Gila monsters. Black widows and scorpions. Ick.

But we raised rabbits and chicks, not for any other reason than that's what my Dad wanted to do. We felt they were the best of times. I'm not so sure I look back now. Very hard for Mother.....which made it hard on Daddy.

The "ranch" is gone. A very large and very expensive development now sits where we walked and played in the corrals. But, a few years ago, while visiting my brother, he, Randy and I drove by the old house. It was still there.

Only MUCH smaller that we had remembered it to be. And, now sort of in the middle of a bustling Tucson, not out in the "middle of nowhere" were it once was...

Progress. Yes, it's good.

But the slower pace, ahhhh, sometimes that sounds so good.

When we thought our house was big, when we didn't care if Daddy owned the ranch or not, and when photos were a once-in-a-while-special thing.

It's good they took a few pictures, though. For no other reason than they spark so much "re-memberies"

Remember the good times and minimize the bad - you'll be better for it!
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Thursday, August 23, 2007

The sounds of summer...


I love sounds. I think sounds can transport you to places you've really never even been.

Like down south. The deep south. Southern beauty. Southern states.

Sweet home Alabama....where the skies are blue...la lalalala...

Where am I going with all of this?

Well, I have wanted a screen door for the back of the house for some time now.

Not the nice kind that can presto-change-o into a winter-proof-double-insulated- storm door with the flip of a thing-a-ma-jig...

No. Not that kind.

Not the kind with the air-swishy-do-not-slam-thingy either.

I want one that bangs.

Just wood and screen. Metal screen. On hinges. With one of those hook-eye locks. You know what I mean... where you can hear when the kids run out... or a neighbor drops by for coffee? Or some sweeeet tea?

The kind every southern-based movie I ever saw had - to the porch - or at least a wide set of stairs to sit on.

Sunday night. The dishes were done. You can still smell dinner and pie...

Hearing the bugs, whatever kind they have in the south that make noise. And light up!!

But not ickybugs. (you can tell I was raised in Arizona- where the bugs are definitely NOT cute or lit )

And rain birds. Not a "timed" sprinkler system that goes on even when you have a deluge of rain.

The kind that make that sound....chchchchcchhch shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.... chchchchcchhch shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

The clanging of home-made wind-chimes. The ones made out of metal bowls, metal cups and forks and spoons, all clanging in the breeze.

Those are the sounds of summer in my mind. And I really don't know where that came from, other than the movies. Or in books I read.

While we may have had a screen door like that in Arizona, it surely wouldn't have been banging open and shut in 110 degree heat with the cooler on!

And we never watered the desert. Not once.

Not to mention bugs that could really do some damage if they ever bit you.

Ewwwwwww.

Anyway, is it the romanticized notion of "blissful " summer days that my mind goes to?

It must be.

Although I have not had bad summers, I just haven't yet had the one with my bangin' screen door or my rain-bird.

Not yet, anyway.

But there's always NEXT summer!

Here's wishing you bangin' doors and blissful summer sounds!
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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Kindergarten Cowboy....

My brother. My big brother. My hero. Oldest in the family. Patriarch of the Sullivan clan. Student. Marine. Bull rider. Agriculture Extension Agent. Husband. Father. Professor. Traveler. Grandfather............

Kindergarten teacher....

What??

Yep, that's my big brother.

Surprised? Yes. No. Well, maybe.

He's the greatest. In everything he has done. Why should I not be certain he's the greatest kindergarten teacher?

Was it his first day, when he told 15 teeny-tiny 5-year olds to "line up" and they stared blankly at him. Line up? Uh, what's that??

Or maybe his first time having "cafeteria duty".

"Do you know 5-year olds can't open ketchup packets??"

Well. .... umm... yes..

"Do you know by the time I opened all the ketchup packets, I had only 8 minutes to eat MY lunch??"

Well, ummmm, OK.........

"I leave at 6:30 in the morning, come home at 4 o'clock and just fall in to the chair....."

OK......??

Then he said he "hoped they hired a full time kindergarten teacher soon. The sooner, the better ....... for the kids sake......before they become too attached...."

Uh huh. Right.

"Before I become too attached."

Yep, that's my brother. My big brother. My hero......

Kindergarten Cowboy..
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Best man?? Best Dog???


Wait a minute!!! ……………..

What’s that I hear???????..................right now, this moment in time, EVERY child of mine is happy!

Yippee!!!!!!

That may not seem like a biggie for anyone but me, however, with 4 children and the usual melodramas in everyone’s life, it’s kinda neat to have all of them safe, healthy and with the people they love and who love them back.

Good grand kids. No, make that great grand kids. (hmmm.... I may be a bit biased here….)

Really, what more could a Mom ask for?

OK, besides being able to cross my legs in the summer………

The past few months have been worrisome.

Andy, my biker son, who, for the first 7 years of his life was known around the neighborhood as “DammitAndy!!” was in a bad crash and I learned what "that" phone call in the late hours of the night felt like.

Totaled his bike.

Almost totaled his body.

But he’s here, and has a brand. new. Harley-Davidson …DammitAndy!

Brandi’s city of Newark was rattled with senseless killings in, of all places, a school yard. But she’s in a good neighborhood, is careful and alert and has family in the Newark Police Force that watches over and loves her little family.

God has always watched over her – even in the most perilous of times.

Like, traveling ALONE all over Europe, speaking not one word of a foreign language. Barely speaking English……

OK- that last part’s not true – but it WAS funny!

Ahhh........I crack me up!

April graduated from college, after a 20 year hiatus to raise a family, work sometimes 3 jobs, have a SURPRISE baby in the middle of all of this (Hi Emily, sweetie!) and STILL graduated Summa Cum Laude.

I don’t even know what that means, but I’ll bet it’s REALLY good….

And Jeff. .....Ah Jeff.

We thought he was destined to stay a bachelor all of his life.

Dax the Pug and Jeff.

Jeff-n-Dax. Dax-n-Jeff. That was that.

Even though I asked the Heavens above every night when the pups and I say “goodnight to the night”, …and good night to the moon, the stars, and the neighbor chickens, Chicker and Ophelia, (anything, oh anything to have them out there long enough to go potty!) ) to help him find someone who he could be himself with, who would appreciate this kindness and WEIRD sense of humor, I thought it might never happen.

And just when I thought I would have to try to make him believe it was OK.. no, make that even good.. to be alone.. up pops Rachael.

Perfect, “gets-Jeff”, likes Dax, pretty, kind Rachael.

And, we’re planning a wedding in the mountains. Lalala.

Could Dax be the “Best Man”? In a tux??

So right now, all I hear is HAPPY.

Happy. happy, happy, happy happy. happy!

It sounds terrific!

Have you heard it lately?

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Monday, August 20, 2007

Brian and Kobe

What a great looking grandson, doncha think?

And Kobe. The pup. He's a sweetie.

Seems like just a few years ago, Brian was toddling around with bunny ears on at Easter. Now he's a grown man, in his second year of college and living in a new state!

Well, the state's not new - it's Arizona ...

But miles further then when he was living in the Denver area. I miss him. Even though I only got to see him occasionally, he was only a day's ride away. Now it seems sooo much further.

But, or however, you wanna know the best part? Or is it the worst part? He's staying with my sister while he goes to school and is helping her with the horses and dogs. Great huh.

Nice kid.

Nice sister.

But now I'm envious of the time she gets to see him. She gets to see him almost everyday.

Lucky her.

I am happy for the help he'll be able to offer her and I am happy for the guidance and friendship she'll give to him.

She's tough. He's tender.

Together, they'll get a lot accomplished.

I couldn't have asked for a better arrangement for two people so precious to me. One Aunt. One Nephew. Two dogs. Four horses. One "ranch-ette".

One great family.
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Sunday, August 19, 2007

Did I forget to tell you?????


These two raggedy looking boys are my sons. Jeff & Andy. 5 years apart in age. One now a 38 year old biker and one a 33 year old groom to be. Actually, they are both grooms-to-be. Andy's second marriage, Jeff's first.

Happy Mom!

And yet, as I saw Jeff with his fiancee his week-end, hurriedly running about wrapping up last minute details of the wedding ( 3 weeks??!) , I couldn't escape the feeling that I had , somehow, missed teaching the boys things about women.

No, not the "usual" stuff. They know about that.

But the stuff that, because of my first failed marriage coupled with my extreme, almost manic desire to prove I was strong enough, brave enough, self-sufficient enough and smart enough to handle not only life, but the lives and raising of my four children alone, I forgot to teach my boys.

For example, I saw Jeff go to the car door that he had already unlocked with the key less entry, and open it for Rachael. I had automatically open my own back seat door and hopped in as we were all headed off for more invitation supplies.

And I am the "old lady"??

Oh, guys DO open doors, huh?

Not that Randy wouldn't. I guess I was just so fiercely independent when we were dating - so "once-burned-twice-shy" about letting anyone do ANYTHING for me, especially a man, that I forgot to tell the boys this is what they should do.

My poor daughters-in-law-to-be's! Because I was so bent on proving to the world, my Daddy, my new husband, my protective sisters, AND my Mother, that I indeed was capable, I forgot to let the kids , or myself know, that it's OK to let others do things for you.

Nice things.

Because they want to.

Because other people need to do nice things. It makes them feel good, too.

Oh, and by the way, sons. It's OK to call the plumber when the toilet need fixing. Don't expect your wives to fix it with a hanger and a rubber-band like I did.

And if the transmission goes out in their car, your wives do not have to drive home backwards, 5 blocks, in reverse, because they couldn't afford a tow truck.

And if they get sick, it's OK for them to stay in bed. And maybe even cry. And eat bon-bons if they so choose. (but not for too long...)

I fear in my desire to prove to myself that I could do it all, I unfairly set expectations that would be hard to live up to.

Sons, your wives deserve it. You'll be better men for it.

Know they can do it all, but know that as a woman, it feels soooo good not to have to.

And, to my lovely daughters, let your guys open doors. Send flowers. Do the vacuuming. Take care of the baby so you can sleep. You'll both be better for it.

I love you all tonzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz,

Mom, Ma, Mother, Mumsy (4 kids - 4 names)
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Yard sales & history lessons....

Yesterday, I got up really early to drop some papers off at Kinko's to be cut for Jeff & Rachael's wedding invitations .

So I get up , drive to Kinko's before I think anyone in their right "Saturday-morning-sleep-in-mind" would go. Kinko's is open 24 hours, right?

Nope. Not on Saturdays.

OK, a few hours to kill...

Yard sales! That's it! I could catch a few, guilt-free, and still have the day to finish the invitations. What a great plan...

The rain clouds are building as I get to the first one. Luckily, they have thought ahead enough to use a tarp to cover some of the old items I was most interested in.

Milk bottles. Washboards. Spools of thread and string.

And old letters. From the 40's. Before zip codes. Even before street numbers. Some just had the recipient's name and city & state. Some were just the envelopes.

Some still had the letters inside. Easter cards. A Mother's Day card. A few wedding invitations (!).

While reading, a feeling of not only sadness and respect came, but a feeling that I was invading their private thought and words, which is exactly what I was doing.

"Thank yous" from sympathy condolences sent. I wonder if they were sons killed in the war.....

But I continued to read. A Mother's Day card sent by a daughter who felt guilty about not going to see her on Mother' Day. Said she sent a few dollars for her Mother to buy "a permanent or a dress for yourself".

A history lesson on a Saturday morning. What a great way to start my week-end.

Hope yours is wonderful, too!
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Friday, August 17, 2007

Who might YOU be???

While getting ready to work a convention a few years ago, some of the ladies on the web board that I was monitoring started calling me “Ms. Webby”. That was nice. Kinda cute.

When they found out I would be at the convention, some wanted to be sure to meet me and put a face to the mysterious Ms. Webby.

One asked, “How will I know you??”

Hmmm........... Got me thinking........ How do I describe myself ??

I looked in the mirror and it was like”DUH!”

If Aunt Bea (from the Andy Griffith show....you know "Aint Be" ) and Rod Stewart had a “love child” - I would be it. Or her.

I told the ladies this and not to my surprise, they found me easily at the convention. Among 4,000 other women!

Hmmm…....... So, for any of you who are reading my blog, think about who ‘s love child you would be based on looks and personality.

Might surprise you…! Leave it in your comments. I’d love to “Meet” you too! Oh, by the way...meet my beautiful Grand daughter, Alyssa :-)
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I dunno.....

I don’t understand…..

On our morning walk, I noticed "a" shoe at the Main Street Park.

One shoe. Not a pair of shoes. One.

How does a child leave just one shoe?

I can understand the joy of playing and the excitement of summer and the feel of the grass and sand on your toes. I understand that.
I can even understand seeing a pair of shoes left behind – kids getting caught up in the day and walking home barefoot.

But one shoe?

Wouldn’t the child notice the limp of walking with one shoe ?

The heat of the sidewalk on just their left foot?

I don’t get it.

I must be getting old......
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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Why, oh why???????

I think people that name streets, for example, should use "creativity" in their naming process. By naming a street "1 st. Ave." or "B Street" shows a complete lack of effort. Slackers. There are great names for streets if one puts in a little effort.

I once had a friend who lived on a street called "Nevermind" I loved that! Every time someone asked her address, she's say "1487 Nevermind" they'd look at her and wait...... Wait for her to "remember" the name of her street- isn't that a hoot?

Anyway, work lately I been bothered by flies. We share a block of "quasi-rural" land with a heard of longhorn bulls. Yep. Bulls. Lots of bulls And lots of flies. Lots.

And baby bulls (bull-ets?) And boy, have the bulls been frisky this summer... heehee...but that's ANOTHER post altogether.

OK, back to the flies.

"Fly" is not a noun. Fly is a verb - to fly. One flies on an airplane. A bird flies through the air. To fly on the wings of angels!

Why, oh why, would anyone name a BUG as irritating as a fly "fly"?

Oh come on, don't give me that "Well, it FLIES??!!" routine.

Do we call snakes "slithers-ers?" Do we call beetles walkers? Do we call Roley-polies rollers?

Nooooooo..

but we call flies flies.

We have lady bugs, katydids, grasshoppers, ants, caterpillars, butterflies, spiders, cicadas, centapedes, and all sorts of perfectly good names.

Flies.

How un-creative.

Slackers.
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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

"Air" Cuts

Randy has done a lot in his life, and most of it he's been good at. Exceptional, even. Cooking, carpentry, shopping, painting, tile laying, and being a good Dad and a great Grandfather (not a GREATgrandfather...you know...)

But, or however, he never ceases to amaze me. This time it was with the pups. Braxton seems to need a touch-up between "beauty" appointments. Lulu, on the other hand, doesn't. Really. She only needs a trim once or twice a year. But Braxie's hair grows. Into his eyes. Thus, the cut.

If any of you know anything about Lulu, you'll know whatever Braxton , or anyone else, has or wants, she wants AND needs to have. Toys. Cookies. Mom's lap. Carrots. Socks.

Period. End of story.

I'm always afraid if I get stopped for a traffic ticket, she'll want one too.

Back to Randy. He gives Braxie his trim. Lulu whines. Is she worried that he's being hurt?? No... Is she concerned he'll fall off the table?? No... She wants a hair cut too.

So Randy gives her "air" cuts.

First he cuts Braxton's hair, then 'air cuts' Lulu's, then back to Braxie. Back and forth, until Braxton's done. Then both pups get treats for looking SOOO Beautiful & SOOO Handsome!

What a life...

Are we lucky or what?? :-)
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Monday, August 13, 2007

Oh Dear!! ! ! ! !

I think Lulu may need glasses.
She may be getting to that age where her eyes don’t see things as clearly as they should. If you have been reading my posts, you know I
have the same problem; I, however, only need to wear my glasses when I want to see.

Like this morning. I did finally wear my glasses on our morning walk and really did see things clearly. Kinda neat actually.

But not so Lulu. She spotted something moving down the street, in the wind, and went into her crazy-attack-dog-killer mode. Pulled the harness and almost pulled me down with it! (a not easy feat since she weighs 11 lbs. and I weigh, well......., more than that…)

When we finally reached the elusive prey, we discovered it was an errant brown “poopie-bag” from the park that been caught up in the breeze.

Lulu sniffed it. Looked up at me as if to say “OK, well, never mind” and walked off.....

Reminds me of the time, one of those late-night-potty-breaks, not wanting to switch on the light, washing my hands only to discover what I “saw” as a 3-lb. spider that told me in no uncertain terms I had but “10 seconds to get out” and leave him alone.

Well, remember, this is the middle of the night. I am terrified of bugs…don’t want to wake anyone up…DO NOT SCREAM! .. be brave…be strong….Ewwww….! ! ! ! !

So I took off my flip-flop of a slipper and proceeded to beat the living crap out of the unfriendly invader – only to have dear hubby switch on the light and say…

“Congratulations. You just killed the chip in the sink”

Well. it looked like a spider to me...Nevermind.

Gotta remember those glasses
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Sunday, August 12, 2007

Sunday evening at the park...

What would be better to do on a hot Sunday evening in August? Go to the park for a free concert presented by the United States Air Force Band.

At our little postage-stamp-sized historic Main Street park, we enjoyed an evening of great music. Everything from the big-band 40's music to Corrine Bailey Rae. Now that's variety!

People with their lawn chairs, some just sitting on the cool grass.

Little barefoot boys with buzz haircuts playing on the swings -little girls making sand castles in the playground sand.

Folks of all ages, grandparents with grand kids, young people, middle aged people, and I'm certain, veterans from all the wars.

Some saluting the band members. Others giving a standing ovation when the singer sang "America the Beautiful".

It was like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting. And it was right here! Wow...

And to think I almost missed it. I really do need to wear my glasses when I walk the pups.

The banner advertising this even has been there all week - hanging on the chain link fencing that goes around part of the park.

First, I thought it was last week. No.

Then I thought it said "12 - 7pm" which I thought was a long, hot time to be playing music in the park.

When I didn't hear music at about 12:30, I told Randy it must be next week.

What the banner DID say was "the 12th at 7pm."

Kind of got suspicious when lots of people were walking by the house with lawn chairs.....

Duh

However, (I love however, instead of but...) we had a great time. The sun was setting and the breeze was blowing. We didn't have to drive, or park, or haul, because we're about 2 houses down from the park! It was wonderful.

Now I can't wait until fall so we can go to the Pumpkin Festival in the Historic Sandy Community Gardens!

What a life....Hmmmmmmm.......
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Seriously......

I want a chair like this. One of these old, metal lawn chairs. I didn’t know too much about them until I stared doing a little web research. Found out a common name for them is CandyBouncer. Also found this:

“ After World War II, normalcy and rebuilding family life were the goals of most Americans. Buying houses, starting families, and creating safe, comfortable homes were priorities. As the original lawn chair, CandyBouncers were a part of that generation's migration to outdoor living. Designed to float on grass instead of sticking in the sod, CandyBouncers were the first "Motel Chairs," found around pools and lawns of the glamorous American motels that sprouted up along newfangled highways about 1945.”

One of my neighbors on another block has one. It’s out in their “very well lived in yard” (translation: messy) amongst the cardboard boxes, toys, and broken lawn mowers. Sad green, rusty CandyBouncer propped up on it’s side.

Obviously unloved, right? I knew you’d agree.

Maybe I should go up there, knock on the door and…
Ooohh .. Daja Vu all over again!

OK, so it was in Tucson. The big house on Stone Avenue. (I always remembered it big….) And I was about 7 or 8 years old. Summer day, washing my doll clothes outside with sudsy water in a wash tub borrowed from my Mother. Shade trees all around.

Up walks this little beagle pup, panting and thirsty. Thirsty enough to start drinking the sudsy water out of the tub. Wash-day priorities aside, I dumped the suds, filled it with cool, clean water and let the pup drink and drink and drink. She smiled and played a little then ran off. Gee, ….I always wanted a dog…..

I thought that was the end of it. Nooooo. The next day, she was back, looking a little bedraggled and hot. I gave her another drink and decided to watch which way she went home.

I followed. She started whining at the door and I heard a woman yell “Shut up!”

The pup looked back at me with those big, chocolate, sad eyes. My 7 year old Irish got the best of me and I went up and knocked on the door. When the woman answered, I told her the dog was thirsty and I had given her water. Through the smoke of her dangling cigarette, hair up in curlers, she looked a little amused. And mean. And large.

Then I told her, “If you won’t take care of this dog, I WILL!”
She said, “So take her kid. I don’t want her.” And slammed the door.

I had a DOG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Uh, oh….I had a DOG…… and a Mother who didn’t share my or my Daddy’s love for strays.

Soon, enough, Daddy convinced Mother to let me keep the dog. Taffy. I had named her. She was mine.

So, back the chair. Obviously unloved. Obviously neglected. Obviously.

Maybe I should knock on her door and tell her if she doesn’t want to take care of it….

I WILL.

What should I name it?????
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Saturday, August 11, 2007

“They call me MR. TIBBS”……Or what’s in a name…

I loved that line when Sidney Poitier used it in the movies. And I’ll bet they got his name right then, huh?
Names are funny things. There’re personal. About as personal as you can get –publicly.

Some people don’t mind if you mispronounce their name. I used to be that way. I’d cringe but wouldn’t say anything. After all, it’s really not all that common – Colleen – or it wasn’t back then. Actually, my daughter recently tried to buy me one of those cute little personalized candles in the pretty little decorated flower pots from Hallmark. I ended up with one that says, in their pretty calligraphy, “They didn’t have your name”……

Anyway, back to Mr. Tibbs. At work I answered the phone with my usual chipper voice, “Hello! This is Colleen! How may I help you?”

Silence on the other end.

“How do you spell that?”

“C-o-l-l-e-e-n”

“Oh, so it’s COOlleen

“No, actually it’s pronounced ‘Colleen – with a soft o”

“No. It’s COOlleen

“What?”

“You’re pronouncing it wrong. Or spelling it wrong.”

“What??”

“It’s PRONOUNCED COOlleen.. …(…Like I was having trouble hearing him…)

“You know, I’ve been PRONOUNCING it this way for 57 years. I’m pretty sure I’m right about this one.”

“Whatever”

“And who am I speaking to?”

“Mark”

“Oh, hi MERK! How can I help you???”

….whatever….

Signed, CWASO - (Colleen With A Soft "O" )
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Friday, August 10, 2007

What a cute covey of quail !

Yes, that's what I thought as Braxton, Lulu and I were finishing up our morning walk. We had already said "hello!" to the Pygmy goat -which reminds me - I need to find out it's name so I don't sound so silly saying "Good morning.......uh..goat" .....

Anyway, we were finishing the walk and nearing home, stopping at the somewhat busy street (like a car every 5 minutes or so) when I spotted a whole covey of quail! Ohhh! They are so fun to watch. They actually sort of waddle!

Only these I think were older- no babies with them- I think it may have been a senior citizen's field trip - some had that middle-age spread going on. And some were slow - looking like an old man with a walker.

Then I saw it. A car barreling down the street. He was driving east - towards the sun- which at this time of the morning is brightly coming over the Wasatch mountains. I just knew he didn't see them. Sunshine blindness and all.

I figured he'd probably see me though. I'm wearing a bright green LARGE shirt and neon pink Crocks. So I risk it all, holding the dogs back with one hand, getting into the semi-squat position with one hand raised in the universal "STOP!" sign while the quail slowly meandered across the wide street.

Now, mind you, I am not an expert on birds, but I swear they were looking a little indignant, heads held high - continuing their slow pace. The driver saw me - looked at me like, oh I don't know.... a "WHAT?? ARE YOU CRAZY ?" kind of look and stopped. Just long enough for the quail to reach the other side of the wide street and.............

FLY AWAY!

Are you kidding me?? All the time I'm risking life and limb and pink Crocks you all could have just FLOWN AWAY?

Oh well. gotta love nature......
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