Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Um, Where Were The Grown-Ups? Part I

*Disclaimer* Under no circumstances should the "grown-ups" in my family read this...you guys don't come off so good...
This blog has a few purposes. It has not turned out as I originally intended it to be, that is, a place for me to offer up overtly opinionated rants about the things that bug me or excite me or even bore me without anyone disagreeing or rolling their eyes and walking away. Blogging promised a captive audience, which I rarely get in my real life. Yes, I realize that all you have to do is hop to the next blog, but I will never know and can blissfully assume that you stayed through the whole of my well thought out and articulately conveyed tirade, nodding in approval the whole way with a shout of "Yeah, you got that right, NatureGirl!" at the end. But it has not turned out that way. Sure, there have been a few rants about this or that but mostly this has become my journal. A bit of a family history of sorts. My place to organize a random thought or two, to practice writing and to improve my typing skills. Although today that is difficult. I still have 4 stitches in my left pinky finger and cannot type with it. Which would be a huge nuisance if we used the letter "a" often!
So in keeping with the family history idea, I thought perhaps I could find a few old stories collecting dust in the attic, brush off the cobwebs and share. Trust me, these will not be interesting to anyone but my immediate family, but perhaps my posterity will get a kick out of tales from the dark ages before internet, ipods and cable television. A bygone era where children didn't wear sunscreen or shoes and were forced outside by their mothers early in the day and not let back in the house until the street lights came on. It was pure torture.
My family was in construction. For quite a few years, the WHOLE family. Papa, Dad, Mom, Aunties and Uncles. All living side by side in a row of houses on the same street. Except for Mr. Toy, the mailman, who lived in the middle of the row. There are 7 grandchildren (cousins) with only 8 years between the oldest and the youngest. Using our grandfather's last name we called ourselves the 7 C's. Yes, we were just clever like that, and boy did we have adventures. Our grandmother passed away last fall and we were all together for the first time in many years at the memorial. Sharing stories was wonderful, but the common thread throughout seemed to be, "Um, where were the grown-ups?" We were free-range children.
The one incident I will share now involved only me and my cousin DYT (not her real name just initials to protect the guilty...most of this stuff really was her idea). We often roamed the neighborhood, making forts in the nearby fields and rollerskating on the newly poured foundations of houses just going up. This particular day we were playing in the nearly finished racquetball club going in down the street. When everyone was done for the day they packed up, shut off the lights and locked all the doors. No one noticed two little girls INSIDE one of the courts. Now, if you have ever played racquetball you might note here that the doors of a court are smooth, including a recessed handle, and now it is pitch black, making it impossible to find said door! I do not know how long we screamed and searched for the way out. Truth be told I do not even remember being rescued, perhaps I blacked out. I cannot even remember if we got in trouble. All I know is that when that story is told, the only question anyone asks is, "Um, where were the grown-ups?"
Quote of the Day: "Youth is a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children."
~George Bernard Shaw

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Sedeo Ergo Sum

Today, I sit. Why? you ask...
  • Weatherman predicted thunderstorms and wind, but it is currently sunny and 68. So today, I sit.
  • Good books are plentiful and I have a current library card. Oh yeah, I sit.
  • The leaves on the big tree in the front yard emerged today and I can hear the birds gathering home from their winter vacation. Of course, I sit.
  • Finding stillness is essential as the seasons change...for good health and peace of mind. Quietly, I sit.
  • I nearly sliced the tip of my finger off yesterday requiring 4 stitches, so I am feeling stupid and in pain. Therefore, I sit.
  • I am skilled at ignoring the call of dishes, laundry and dust. Happily, I sit.
  • All too soon I will be driven from the front porch by oppressive heat. Today, I bask.
  • Time stands still in the clouds and trees and the song of Mother Nature. For a moment we are one. If I just sit.
  • The "to do" list is put away. Tomorrow will come. Today is now, so I sit.
Quote of the Day: "Sitting quietly, doing nothing, Spring comes, and the grass grows by itself."
--Zen Proverb

Thursday, April 8, 2010

What Newton Learned From The Twinkie That Fell On His Head

Ok, so here goes. Confession time (yes, again). I am not perfect. There. I said it. Ya, I know. No one is surprised. Especially those of you who know me in "real" life. But just to illustrate and to make sure, dear readers, that there is no doubt as to my lack of perfectionness, I share a little story.
Last week was spring break for our kids. We went on a little family vacation and arrived home late on Sunday evening. Mondays are usually busy with trying to get back on track after the weekend, grocery shopping, house cleaning etc. Side note: Why the heck does the house look ten times worse on Monday mornings than any other day of the week? Explain that little entropic phenomenon will ya! This Monday was further complicated by vacation recovery and the fact that I had a large church group outing to oversee the following morning at 5:45 am. Yes. Long story ever so slightly shorter...I forgot to take a promised and expected dinner into a friend who had just had back surgery. Hopefully she is not reading this and if she is, sorry again!
Tuesday left me in the dust before I even knew it had come, so on Wednesday afternoon I settled in the kitchen to do a little overdue baking. A couple "thank you" loaves of bread for some do-gooders in my life, and a beautiful chocolate cake (suggested by my lovely niece here) for Miss M and her aching back! You know what they say about best laid plans, right?
The cake turned out smelling and looking yummy. At first. I managed to slice the cake neatly into two layers but my filling was too runny SO I tried to scrape it off the bottom layer BUT it made a mess all over the plate SO I tried to transfer the cake onto a clean plate BUT it broke into a million pieces SO I just tried to smush them together to LOOK like a layer of cake and THEN spread the new filling on. I plopped the top layer on and went to get the frosting from the fridge. This was not the thick creamy type of frosting that would stay put in a bowl it was more of a whipped light type SO when I opened the fridge the bowl fell to the floor proving Newton's lesser known fourth law of motion which states that frosting dropped from a height of greater than 3 feet will in fact stay in motion until it hits every surface of one's kitchen including the undersides of one desk and every stool and chair.
I do not think that I need to tell you Miss M will be getting a box of Twinkies.
Quote of the Day: ""I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown... which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments."

---Jim Morrison