I can’t believe I haven’t had time/energy/urge to get back to this site since before Christmas. So many changes I didn’t get adjusted to one before another one struck. Struck? Felt like it! The one amazingly restful time was when my husband and I finally, after forty years of marriage, went on our honeymoon in Hawaii on Oahu in February. I’m in love, with both Dave and Hawaii.
We came home from there and started the packing and the house-hunting which became apartment-hunting. We moved in to our hopefully “forever home” in April right after two of our daughters moved and right before one son moved. I forgot to say the year started out with moving my mother from our home to an assisted living facility where she gets the help she needs that we were no longer able to give her. I have guilt, which is foolish but oh, so human. See, I’m not an alien!
Five of my grandchildren have birthdays in April and one has his birthday in May. Throw in Mother’s Day and we had a lot of parties going on. I love love love the family time. My body can’t keep up. Party one day, sleep for three. 🙂 This month my oldest daughter had her birthday party at a cool place with a live band doing ‘eighties music. The beat had me chair-dancing (sitting in it, not standing on it or dancing with it) until I was close to catatonic. Though completely exhausted I was still somehow refreshed. Music is good for the soul.
Tomorrow we go another round. Father’s Day gathering, with 3 of the 4 fathers and families in attendance. It is the most wonderful group of men I have ever known. We are springing my mother from the ‘home’ and including her in the feasting and fellowship and fine weather (too hot for me!). Next up is a graduation party for my oldest granddaughter, and we’ll be through with the June celebrations as we will have run out of weekends.
The 4th of July and another family birthday are in guess which month? You got it! And the year goes a bit more peacefully (only one or two events per month) until November. I’m sure we’ll have invented a few more occasions or borrowed some from other countries so the mad whirlwind life will continue to roar through like a hurricane with a happy ending, leaving me full and content. I may still be unpacking then. We shall see.
To all the fathers who read this and even to those who don’t, Happy Father Day.
Life happens. Ready or not hear it comes. This past year has been a doozy in the realm(s) of family dynamics, emotional stressors, and physical and mental weaknesses. I’m not better than a year ago, or still the same. I’ve declined a bit. And then, a few days before a great family weekend, I get sick. Laryngitis presented as the first symptom, followed by days of chills and fever, disorientation and the blahs.
I hate the blahs. There they are, in my face. For ‘blahs’ they certainly are mobile. No matter which way I turn my head, there they are, blocking my view of the good stuff, the fun stuff, the merry-go-round full of people laughing and having a great time together. Humbug. I hate merry-go-rounds.
The great family weekend was a great family weekend. Twenty-two adults and children in a great house in a great area. I loved the noise of them playing and cooking together. I loved the quick wits. I loved when I got to go into a cool bedroom and sleep while twenty-one people went into town. I loved when they came back and watched a movie while I went back into that bedroom with two sleeping young ones. When I was back at home I hit the bed and slept most of the next thirty-six hours.
Getting rested up has brought more of the events and activities back into my poor stuffy head, and will probably be a complete picture after Christmas, which I may have slept through… HUMBUG!
Enjoy the holidays. Take pictures. Good-night.
Magic, wonder, excitement, feet thunder
Down the hall, you hear me call,
Hey, get up! It’s Christmas!
As I grow tallish I get to polish
The forks and spoons, sing Christmas tunes
Help set the table now that I’m able.
Hey, come eat! It’s Christmas!
Later in high school trying to be cool
Caroling in snow. Does anyone know?
Hope they don’t hear me, please don’t come near me
I’m out here to sing! It’s Christmas!
Magic, wonder, excitement, feet thunder
Down the hall, I hear you call,
Hey, get up! It’s Christmas!
Another month is fading out, sunshine giving more room for cloudy days and the sound of rain barely heard over the whir of the fan in the humid darkness. No longer summer but not yet fall, the trees hang quietly dripping the last of the night’s rain in preparation for the next dark clouds blowing across the middle of the day to lash the window with blurring streams.
The green remains in the leaves which in turn remain on the trees, keeping them clothed for a little while longer. Soon enough the autumn which in other places hails the brightest of colors, the crispest of mornings, the frost on the ground, and the smell of raked up piles burning to ash. Here, quieter colors tempered by quieter growth tempered by duller light, soggy mornings, soggy coats, and the smell of soggy mold.
Not always. Today can be confused with always. Today, the humidity is weighing me down.
I’m an August baby. We are wonderful people, generally speaking, and can light up a room like sunshine pouring in through the windows even in the cloudiest weather, provided there are people around us.
It might be just me and not every August person, but when there is no one around and the clouds stay too long, my mood grows dark and brooding like a coming storm. Maybe I should be like a flower, feeding and basking in the rain, finding strength and beauty in the gray world in which they live. I’m not a flower, though. I love the first day of rain, especially as it is watering the yellowing lawn, and revitalizing the plants and shrubs. The second day of dreary weather darkens my soul. I feel I’m being pulled down toward a drain where the rushing water sucks at my life, covering me until I can’t breathe.
When the sun returns, as it will, I slowly return to a more ‘normal’ state of mind. I love the sunshine, so answer this. Why do I not love the heat? My body is revolted by it. Tremors and fever are the result of exposure to heat, along with nausea and exhaustion. Summer means long hours in my air-conditioned bedroom. It means being unable to be involved in every family activity. It means the very thing I love causes the thing that I hate, and that hates me.
I’m going to fight back. I’m going to buy a cooling vest. I will go to Hawaii next year. I will love the sunshine, I will snorkel, I will look weird in the vest, and I will survive the heat. It will be glorious.
I think I’ll get that vest very soon. This August baby is going to rock the rest of the summer.
Bright sun blinds and reveals At one and the same time Glaring off a windshield Coloring a rose sublime.
Hear the sounds in the heat Of children laughing, playing Of water cooling and flowing, Green garden hoses spraying.
Breathe in the blooming flowers Smell the newly mown lawn. Taste and see and feel Before July is gone.
Ball games, picnics, and fireworks, Lakes and pools and streams Willows swaying in the wind And dancing in our dreams.
The hot and restless nights Whirring from the fan Smiling at the memories Of when this day began.
Denise A. Carr
This is the year I’m going to finish the book I have yet to start. I’m going to learn a new language, get back to my pen pal, finish a wonderful series of books, and take the final April birthday grandchild out for their birthday meal before it’s time for the September grandchild’s outing.
So many things undone, so much physical and mental downtime. Dear pen pal, I wrote you one letter on the stationery I’d finally found. During a mental white-out I threw away what I thought was a small bag of trash, forgetting I’d already thrown away that bag. What I really disposed of was a small bag of stationery and greeting cards, and one new prescription.
Don’t cry for me, fellow humans. I cry for myself rarely, as I usually can’t remember about what I was going to cry. And now the end of July approaches, more than half a year behind me, but still months ahead of me. I will start the book I want to write. I will get back to that foreign language. I will write my pen pal again, on notebook paper if that is what presents itself to me. Hear me, April Boy? How is next Saturday for dinner?
I am a third of the way through the fourth book of the series. It’s slow going when reading aloud, but my mother and I will finish the fifth book by the end of the year!
If for any reason I fail to accomplish any of the above goals, I will make new goals. Life will always have other plans to push mine to the back burner, where – if the heat’s on – they can simmer gently until it is time to set the world on fire. Or something like that.
One more thing. I will keep on blogging.
Today I sit leaning back in the recliner
Dreaming of strength
Remembering better times
And seeing myself through the eyes of others.
In my mind I see me young and slim,
Independent, intelligent, indestructible.
Was I living in my mind even then?
Was it ever true? Was I shy,
Needy and broken?
Did I accomplish, did I grow,
Or did I hide inside of myself?
Ah, well, that is the past,
This is now and now is the time
I am standing strong and tall
In my mind.
So many gray days, no blue peeping between the clouds, and then – a day of light, fluffy white clouds drifting through a blue sky and my desperate dreams of primroses and crocuses become a reality. I love planning the planting, eager to weed out the weeds and feel the soil move as I prepare it for bright and varied colors and kinds.
Though I can do so little to make this happen I will enjoy doing what I am able to do. I will enjoy teaching my grandchildren to do things for me, and it will still be my garden. I think of myself as author, producer and director. But what if it rains every weekend until June? It won’t. It can’t. After rain there is always sunshine and clouds for dreaming and trees adding leaves. It’s spring and my garden will grow and it will be watered and fed, and after the rains I will sit on the back porch and saturate my soul with sunshine and flowers.
After the rain.
It is so hard to look out at the gray rainy weather and dream. This is the day for dismal thoughts and dreary outlooks. At least it’s not a monsoon, and I’m not out in the wind. There’s the Pollyanna side. I don’t feel at all Pollyanna-ish about it. I’m ready to shop for plants and flowering shrubs full of life and color, but not in this weather. It takes the light out of the day and brings an early nightfall and I sleep when I should be lit up with the joy of writing.
Ah, I just had a gray memory that was also bright. My grandma’s eyes changed from gray to blue-gray to bright sparkling blue depending on emotional state or the color of her clothes. I had bought a gray coat that I loved. Grandma loved it, too, so I gave it to her, not because I am such a wonderful person, but because I loved Grandma more the coat. One other neat thing happened when we transferred ownership of the coat: I discovered I was as small as my little Grandma! Unfortunately, it didn’t last, but it was a sweet gray time.