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Posts Tagged With: relationships

Random 5 for Labor Day – Ice Cream, escape artists, Apple Season and days off

Random 5 for Labor day ~ here we go!

1 ) Years ago my cousin had a summer job at an ice-cream parlor. I spent the night with her to help eat at the shoppe.  We made up every concoction possible, ate gobs of ice cream, butterscotch, hot fudge, nuts and whipped cream.  I recently realized that I don’t crave ice cream ~ pretty sure that gluttonous memory is why.

hard decisions of our childhood

Remember?

2 )  Labor Day.  The end of summer as we know it ~ and leaves here are already turning.   But wait – here’s the BEST news – Honey-Crisp apples are nearly ready!!  Oh the joy cannot be contained!  You can still buy some of last year’s apples for $5.00/lb — but soon the orchards near me will sell FRESH apples (bumper Michigan crop this year!) -I can get a dozen for ~$7.00 and youngest boy and I will gobble them down like iced cream!

cropped-apples.jpg

3 ) Speaking of youngest boy, he has a  girlfriend and the girlfriend has a dog named Morty.  I like her already. And isn’t that the greatest name?  Apparently Morty likes busting free from the confines of the kennel; the kid has since nicknamed him “The great Mordini.”  Ha ha ha.

puppy-basset-hound

who can resist? Not I.

4 )  I love Fall.  Apples. Leaves. Bright sunny days. Cool, crisp nights.   I. Love. Fall! ❤

pumpkins.jpg

 

5) Hubbs and I both took tomorrow off !  I’m planning on sleeping in followed by coffee & a lazy brunch then a massage and whatever else I feel like doing – or not !!  Whoo Hoo!

otter day off

No stress, no dress code!

 

What’s your Random 5 looking like today? Ever over-do it on a food you love?  What happened?  Are you seeing signs of Fall where you are?  What’s the last kind thing you did for yourself?   Happy Labor Day everyone!

 

 

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Categories: Attitude, Confidence at any age, Determination, Family, Food, Friendship, Fun, Holidays, Joy, Life, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

A good day

kid quotes

We’ve all had times like that.  Sometimes they run together.

One day recently the rat  sauntered into my office like he owned the place, stinking up my aura with his 2-pack-a-day habit.  Asking if I was busy (and not listening to my answer of yes, very), he took a seat before I could stop him. Not like it would have mattered. I bit my tongue as he prattled on about his life, his health, his adventures, his stresses, himself, him, him, and his other favorite topic, him.   When he pushed me for information and updates, I diverted back to his favorite topic: him.   Soon, he tired of my lack of involvement, and said with a pout, “Well I felt I owed you a visit.”   My wax museum half-smile and a squinty-eyed look was the last he saw of me before slinking away to look for crumbs and colleagues.

Before that day and since co-workers have asked … “so … what have you heard from him?”  And my answer is always the same. “Not much and that is just fine with me!”

See here’s the thing: the experience you have with someone is yours alone.  Unfortunately some save their best for everyone else – and their snarky comments, nasty treatment and *ahem* b.s. is saved for you and you alone. I know this is someone who didn’t work .. but worked hard – overtime, really  – at appearing fun-loving and well-connected.  And if you spend any time at all – any – trying to convince others that the person they know as a certain way is otherwise, you’ll come off looking like a maniac. Trust me on this.

But I know the truth.  And here’s the thing with me.  Once I know who you are … really are … I’ll accept you. If I know your spirit is good, that you are kind and hard-working and do you best to be a good person, I’m in.  100%.  To the contrary, it doesn’t matter how much veneer someone slaps on the wagon, I can recognize a Charlatan driving it from a mile away.

But hey, I didn’t bite, so in hindsight,  it was a good day!  🙂

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Can you relate to this story? Who do you know is one way with you but another with everyone else? How did you cope with it? Were you able to excise yourself from the situation?

 

go away

Categories: Determination, Faith, Growth, Life, Opinion, Personal, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

The desire to be whole again

Next week I’m stepping away from all that is my world and returning to my childhood home: the farm I grew up on in rural Saskatchewan, Canada. The farm-house where I lived from birth till 19.  The yard where I played and coulees where all our adventures were carried out.  Mom’s still there, my brother and his wife are just across the way and sissy is up the hill.  Cows, farm dogs, wind, a wide open sky and conversations that meander in and out and go on forever.

an Aerial view of the family farm .. an Emjayandthem(C) photo

an aerial view of the family farm .. House and Homestead top left, barns and corrals lower right. An Emjayandthem(C) photo

A family wedding is the cause for celebration and I’ll be Mom’s date!   She with her Oxygen and a twinkle in her eye.  I teased her that we’ll “Thelma & Louise-it,” without the driving off the cliff part.  She snorted.  But when I told her that if we see Brad Pitt hitch-hiking I’m pulling over, she laughed out loud.  God, I love her.

themaand louise

Up to no good. Google.images.com

To say things there are familiar would be an understatement. The truth is, time has a way of standing still in your childhood home. And it’s comforting to know that some things still remain.

The kitchen radio, on from sun up to sundown, with farm reports and cattle prices, corny jokes and auction announcements.

The bedspread from the Sears catalogue, the same one that’s been on my bed since I was in college.  Cheery and clean, waiting for me.

Mixing bowls nestled where they’ve always been, tin foil in the 2nd drawer, and a toaster you have to jiggle the cord for.  A big can of coffee sits on the floor near the fridge, just under that east window.  Ivory soap in the dish by the sink, the same one where Dad stood as he cleaned up at night.  I swear I can still see him standing there sometimes.

... Dad's

… Dad’s “shop” .. where I still expect to hear him whistling … An Emjayandthem (C) photo

Books in bookshelves, pictures on walls, throw pillows arranged just so.

And at night?

Quiet.  Dark.  No streetlights, no cars rushing by, nothing.  Just quiet.

Big deep skies with stars that go on forever and, if I’m lucky, the Northern lights will visit me, too.

image from canada-maps.org

image from canada-maps.org

In the morning, I’ll be up with the birds and outside as daylight arrives.  I’ll visit the cows and play with the kitties, feel the wind blowing, and the farm dog will tag along with me.  My soul will sing and my smiles will not be contained.

Laddy and Stevie... family farm; an Emjayandthem photo (C)

Laddy and Stevie… family farm; an Emjayandthem photo (C)

I know things have changed, she’s had some setbacks, but her spirit is as strong as ever. She’s loyal as ever to her Riders football team, debates the news, and is a voracious reader. Talking about my visit and our plans, she said with such longing,  “It’s going to go by so fast.”

me & mom MD 2014

Me & Mom, Mothers Day 2014. An Emjayandthem (C) photo

I know.

I know.

That’s why I already feel the pinch because to stop everything and spend eight days together, every day, every meal, every night, and roll in those moments when it’s just the two of us, let me tell you what: I love it.  I love that we get to laugh and talk and tell stories and secrets and be girlfriends for a while.  Yes I’ll get out of her hair and take a walk and stretch my legs and when I come back in there she’ll be .. waiting for me.  Bright eyed. Ready to pick up right where we left off.

And I’ll thank God for the opportunity to love the life I have but still be so very lucky that I can touch wood, kiss her face and feel whole again.

“The desire to go home that is a desire to be whole, to know where you are, to be the point of intersection of all the lines drawn through all the stars, to be the constellation-maker and the center of the world, that center called love. To awaken from sleep, to rest from awakening, to tame the animal, to let the soul go wild, to shelter in darkness and blaze with light, to cease to speak and be perfectly understood.”  ― Rebecca Solnit

 

Can you go back to your childhood home?  What’s the experience like for you?  Have you ever spent an entire week just hanging out with one of your parents? If not, I recommend it ~ you might be amazed what you’ll learn!

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Categories: Attitude, Confidence at any age, Faith, Family, Friendship, Fun, Gratitude, Growth, Home, Joy, Life, Opinion, Personal, Quotes, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Coffee cups and personalities

I remember my very first cup of coffee ~ my cousin and I were at the local town Hall, and the Kool-Aid was all gone so we opted for some coffee. I thought it was gross, until she taught me how to make “kid coffee” – sugar, more sugar and copious amounts of cream.   Pretty sure we raced around that hall with our hair on fire after that.

As I grew up, I ditched the sugar and cream and switched to 2% milk.

Putting away Hubbs’ and my favored coffee cups this weekend, I just had to laugh.

I’ve written about this before, how we use the same 4-6 cups but have 20 in the cupboard.  Anyways … his are large and strong, robust and hearty.  Mine could be described as petite and sturdy, practical and feminine.  His favorite says, in bold capital letters, “FOX NEWS” while mine has kitties, flowers and butterflies.  Like there was any doubt whose is whose.

Those cups reflect our partnership and our personalities.

Our boys often say that they always know where they stand with us – we both paint a clear picture, although our methodologies are different.    We both are strategic and forward-thinking, but one is competitive while the other is contemplative.

They’ve nicknamed Dad “Clint” and me “Kitty.” (that 70s show)

clint-eastwood-21

Go ahead … drink my coffee. Google.images.com

kitty-forman

What do your coffee (or tea) cups say about you?  What makes one a favorite over another?  And why do we keep so many anyways?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Attitude, Blogging, Family, Food, Fun, Home, Humor, Life, Men, Personal, Self Discovery | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Random Friday 5 – New Friendships, Old Favorites, Love and Night Life

It’s Friday! It’s time for 5 random thoughts from my ever-swirling mind.

1. I love the smell of Noxzema.   Growing up, that’s what we girls used to wash our faces at night – and that menthol clean smell still means clean to me.  I’ve bought the expensive tubes and creams and gels and every last bit of it sits – and rots – on my shelf.  

noxzema

Google.Images.com

2. This week I initiated FB friend requests to a few long-time blogging pals.  You know who you are. Please know this.  My ❤ swelled when you said “yes.”  There’s a lot of things I blog about that I don’t post on FB, so for me to take a risk and invite you in, means I trust you.  My little writing hobby that started 4 years ago blossomed into friendships with some amazing people whose input I truly value.  People I hope to meet one day. My heart grins just thinking about it!

add as a friend

Google.images.com

3. Yesterday morning, around 4:30 a.m.,  a thunderstorm rolled through.  I did a tuck and roll and all was right with my world.  Am I the only one who finds a T-storm an invitation to dive deep into slumber-land?

raindrops

I love this sound! Google.images.com

4.  Hubbs and I celebrated our wedding anniversary this week: 23 years.  Crazy. Recently, I’d made a favorite meal of his and, although he doesn’t usually do so, he announced he was going to indulge in another favorite: bread and butter on the side.  I’d already eaten and the kitchen was cleaned up and things put away. Quietly I took the (supposedly spreadable) butter out and set it on the counter.   Because who wants hard chunks of buttery goodness on a roll? No one.  A while later, he came upstairs to fix his plate, saw the butter and laughed out loud. And from the kitchen I heard this, “Thanks for the butter take-out!  There’s 23 years of loving right there!”  It was a good reminder that cards and flowers are great but often all we really need is to know that we matter to someone else.

butter

Love was in the butter. Google.images.com

5. And with that ~ I’m off. Off to a new city to meet new people and do my job.  Coffee’s poured, tunes are ready, and I am rousing up some old classics like this one:  Ray Price crooning “Night Life” with Willie Nelson accompanying him. Ray’s voice is as rich as his Polyester Fortrel suit and I love it!

What fragrances take you back to your childhood?   Made any new friends lately?  Are you scared of T-storms or do they make you want to get cozy, too?  What simple ways allow you to express your love for someone? What type of music is your favorite to drive to? 

Have a great day, peeps!

 

Categories: Attitude, Blogging, Faith, Family, Fun, Life, Personal, Products I love, Quotes, Random, Thoughts, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Random 5 .. Thursday – Spring, Alternative medicine, Narcissists and Everyday people

It’s Thursday and it’s Random.  Why today and not tomorrow? Because I am off tomorrow – whoop! Here are my 5 random thoughts this week:

1. 30 degree temperature swing from last Saturday to Tuesday.  Sunshine all around.  Smiles all around.  Neighbors coming out of houses, folks chatting at the mailboxes – yes – Spring is in the air.  Hallelujah!

:: Pinterest.com::

:: Pinterest.com::

2. Tried something new this week: Acupuncture!  Years ago I was injured in a car accident and I still have pain in my neck where I was hurt. And, when stressed, I tend to clench my teeth.  I’ve been stressed, so my neck and jaw have been aching and pain relievers don’t even touch it.  Does this work? Not sure.  How’d it feel?  Like someone was sticking me with needles!  🙂 Truth be told, some points I didn’t feel, others burned and stung (i.e. in the jaw area- d’oh) and, after all pins were in I relaxed.  Having to lie still might have been part of that, not something I’m used to doing.  That night I felt drained and slept very deeply.  Will I go back? Yes, a couple of times at least.  The jury’s still out on this one.

photolibrary_rf_photo_of_acupuncture_in_arm

That needle in the right thumb hurt like crazy; on the left? not at all. I write and mouse right-handed 🙂 Photo from WebMD.com

3. I took tomorrow off thinking I might try to do something productive around here.  Hubbs blessed me with this last night, “Why do you put so much pressure on yourself to always get things done?  Take a day off and enjoy it – sleep in- or not – and if you accomplish nothing, who cares? I don’t.”  I sure do love my #1 supporter and predict my face will be into my books! 🙂

I get this so much!

I get this so much!

4. I work with a narcissist.  It took me the longest time to understand just exactly what this is. If you’ve not experienced it, be thankful.  Here are a few traits that I’ve witnessed: (a) believes he or she is special and entitled to special privileges (translate: not for you), (b) requires copious amounts of admiration and will get it any way he/she can, (c) will exploit anyone – will step on anybody to meet his/her needs (translate: the bus will back over you many times), (d) has no issues lying or stretching the truth, especially if the new version benefits him or her, (e) lack of empathy for anyone but themselves – example: if they suffer a loss, the world will know.  If you do, meh.  (f) reverse envy – assumes everyone wants to be him/her.   Over the years I have learned how to manage my interactions with this person but doing so has come with a price.  See #2 and #3.

Amen said the choir! Google.images.com

Google.images.com

5.  Despite our differences, I do try to come at all relationships with this thought:  we are all people. We all have something to contribute.  We are all everyday people.

 

How about you?  Would you ever try acupuncture or another alternative treatment?  Do you feel the need to “work” on your day off?  Have you any Narcissists in your life?  What do you learn from the most difficult personalities around you?  Are you grooving to Sly now? 🙂

Happy Thursday, peeps.

Categories: Attitude, Blogging, Confidence at any age, Family, fear, Fun, Growth, Home, Life, Life Lessons, News, Patriotic, Quotes, Random, Rants, Relationships, Wisdom, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Two-Five Randoms for a Tuesday

image from taxgreegold.co.uk

Sometimes I’ll re-read some of my earlier posts just to see where I might have changed or evolved. This post, from January 2011, rings loud & clear for me still today.

25 Randoms about Emjayandthem:

  1. Old people make me smile. I love it when an old fella stops me in the grocery store to tell me a joke .. I know that this moment was his one moment of the day to tell someone his little story. His wife is sick of hearing the same joke over and over so he maybe he makes up a reason to go to the store and find someone else to tell his story to … people just want to be heard, and I love it when they choose me.
  2. Our boys make my heart sing; seeing them fill the doorway, leaving me voice messages that say “love ya mom” and being warmly embraced by either one of them (who both tower over me by about 20 feet) make my heart melt. Every time.
  3. I’m patriotic. “The Star Spangled Banner” and “America the Beautiful” make me cry. Every time. “O Canada” (except for the French parts which I’ve forgotten) does as well. I came to the U.S. with $178 and a guitar and I’m so grateful for what I’ve been able to learn, who I’ve met, and the life we’ve created. Being a dual citizen, how cool is that?
  4. Black licorice is still my favorite candy.
  5. The hubbs makes me laugh. There’s something sexy about a man who can laugh with you and at you. He’s also a very good listener. We don’t always agree, and sometimes he can be a bonehead (so can I) but he’s perfect for me.   He’s the kind of man your mother would wish on you … and mine did.
  6. I like the wind and the feel of it on my face:  it reminds me of my childhood home on the prairies. I could never live in the woods as I get claustrophobic if I can’t see the horizon. You?
  7. I love to cook. I can’t cook anything fancy; I cook like my Grandmother – good, hearty, soul-filling food and lots of it. When I cook, I pay tribute to my mom, my Aunt Irene and my Grandma F.– the 3 greatest cooks I know.
  8. I am not a camper.  I like being at a campsite, sitting by the fire and looking at the stars … but I’ll sleep in the RV, not a tent, thanks!
  9. The Library is one of my favorite places to be.  I love the quiet, the smells of the books and all the nooks and crannies in which to tuck away and read. My mom got me a library card when I was 5 and I’ve had one ever since! Not sure I’ll ever have an e-Reader.
  10. If I’m upset, I get quiet. If I’m bored, I get quiet and…  I get bored easily.
  11. I don’t believe being related gives you the right to be hurtful. My parents always told us “don’t save your best manners for strangers.” There’s nothing admirable about being brutally honest if all someone remembers about you is …..that you were brutal. However, if you’re acting like a fool, and I’m invested in you, I will find a way to tell you. If I don’t care, I won’t say a word.. I’ll just sit back and watch the show.
  12. I feel great satisfaction when the laundry is clean, folded and put away.  That has happened less than 5 times in my life.
  13. I love music. Playing it, listening to it, recording it, researching it, sharing it. An old friend reminded me of a “mixed tape” I made him in the 80s, and how he still has it, and it made me grin because now I use CDs … same difference. Maybe I was a DJ in another life.
  14. I’ve learned that, as a family, you should eat supper together every chance you can; kids tell you an astounding amount when they’re eating.  (Hubbs calls it dinner, I call it supper….. oh well!)
  15. I really enjoy conversations, especially  juicy ones with new people. Or new topics with old friends. But stupid ones? see #10.
  16. I struggle with the lack of sun during our Michigan winters.  Living near Lake Michigan, we get a lot of cloud cover.  I don’t mind the cold .. but I miss the sun. Ever notice, in late-January, when it’s cold and windy and rotten outside, but if the sun pops out everyone suddenly have a little bounce in their step? That’s me.
  17. Most of what I learned in college has very little to do with what I do in my job.
  18. I absolutely cringe when we’re out with friends and verbal spouse bashery begins. Even in a “teasing” fashion I get embarrassed .. please stop.
  19. My eyes used to be blue, but are now green. How does that happen?
  20. The last really compelling book I read was “Gone Girl.” I have to pace myself with reading because I’ll get so involved in it that nothing else gets done. Nothing.
  21. I love going to the airport!! To watch reunions and to fly home to see my Mom. Somehow I end up next the person … who needs to tell their story; I’ve heard some doozies along the way.
  22. Breakfast is my favorite meal and even better if someone else is cooking it.   3 of my favorite scents occur at breakfast: coffee, toast and bacon.
  23. The best day is when we have a house full of family, something yummy on the grill, drinks, music playing, and laughs together. If there were a candle for that this would be called “home.” 🙂
  24. I didn’t know until they arrived that grandchildren could bring as much joy as they do .. but they do in spades.  I adore my boys but grandchildren have made me slow down, choose my words more carefully and appreciate … everything.   One word: delicious!
  25. My favorite quote of all time is this one: “To thine own self be true.” Know who you are and own it. And if you don’t know who you are and what you stand for, it’s time to find out.
..:: read it ... learn it ... live it ::..

..:: read it … learn it … live it ::..

How about you?  What are some of your “randoms?” 

 

Categories: Animals, Attitude, Beauty, Blogging, Confidence at any age, Faith, Family, Food, Fun, Growth, Joy, Life, Love, Men, music, News, Personal, Quotes, Seasons, Self Discovery, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Xnay to the Reach Out

It started earlier this year and peaked in summer.

A saying had crept into emails, conversations and conference calls.  Crept in like some kind of invasive species being harbored by the innocent.

“I’ll reach out.”  “We reached out.” “Let’s reach out.”

One crazily busy day I took notes and counted 20 occurrences … before noon.  I shuddered … we were in deep.

Conference calls were especially prone to it. Example

Call Leader Q: “What’s the status on X?

Someone, anyone A: “We’ve reached out to (any name/any department) but there’s no update available at this time.”

Call Leader Q: “What are your next steps?

Someone, anyone A: “We/I will  reach out again then we’ll reach back to you with an update.”

“Reach out.”

It officially had become the catch phrase for saying you’d done nothing at all.

It was the new cover.

Think about it .. it sounds so gentle that no one’s ever going to challenge it.  Let alone .. follow-up on it.

Oh good gravy.

It’s overdone, misused and now .. meaningless.

The funniest instance happened during a regularly scheduled call at a regularly scheduled time with regularly scheduled participants and a regular percentage therein who  regularly … were never heard from.

One such person was called upon.

A scuffling of papers and scraping sounds ensued.

The reply, “Uh .. sorry I was multi-tasking, could you repeat the question?”  Followed by a mumbled promise to reach out.

I reached out to ensure the phone’s mute button was fully engaged before I LOST it.  Lost it.  Laughed so hard I cried.  In my office. Pounding my desk.  Feeling like the only sane person in the asylum.   That’s when I knew I had to do something.  I couldn’t trust myself not to blurt out “Oh good gravy” on a call.

I paid attention to my words.

I steadfastly avoided the term.

I shared my feelings with my team and challenged all of us to use action words that actually meant something.  Words like: called, wrote, stopped by, checked in on, held a meeting with, followed up with, etc.  And, I also made sure everyone knew that if they were called upon and found they’d missed a step, they could admit it and we’d could go on.   The last thing I wanted was a team giving me mumbled promises about reaching out.

It’s taken time but there’s been a shift. Or maybe I’m desensitized. Not sure.

By all means reach out – but can we save it for charity, compassion, kindness, and … the Four Tops?

 

What particular office vernacular makes you cringe?  How are you at “touching base,” developing “synergies,” picking “low hanging fruit,” and “brainstorming?”

 

 

 

 

Categories: Attitude, Determination, Growth, Joy, Life, Opinion, Personal, Thoughts, Work, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

On being loved and cared for

Here’s the thing about Facebook: you can re-connect with people who once upon a time were your schoolmates, pals, neighbors or cousins.  You can also connect with new ones.  This story is about the new ones.

Hubb’s Aunt kept telling me, “You should connect with Jerry, that’s me and your late-mother-in-law’s cousin. He writes daily posts that are so uplifting and hilarious. You would really enjoy him, Marilyn.”

And so I did.

And I found myself looking forward to his daily words celebrating sunshine and lollipops and looking for the good in every sunrise.  Of being thankful. Of praising our Creator.

And then he got sick.

And as a man I’ve never met recovers in a hospital bed a whole group of us rallied around him.

Posts appear on his “wall” about someone taking time to enjoy coffee on their deck that morning.

About reveling in the glory of a morning songbird’s trill.

Posts about finding sunshine and lollipops in unlikely places.

Posts about being thankful.  Posts of prayer – for him and his family.

Posts that he’s now able to read from his hospital bed when he’s allowed to peruse his Kindle.

And in his own way, that community he created, rallied together like a virtual church pot-luck.

Connections.

That’s what being loved and cared for is all about, isn’t it?

“You and I are being guided, of this I’m certain. I no longer doubt that the Universe is constantly looking for ways to communicate with us and lovingly guide us to our highest good, our purpose, and our happiness. But we must pay attention – we must be open to listen with our hearts and to trust the synchronicities, chance encounters, songs on the radio, and random thoughts that gently cross our paths, knowing with bold assurance that we are always being loved and cared for. If you pay attention, you will soon come to realize that there’s a loving intelligence that seeks your highest good and happiness. Listen. Listen and trust that you are being guided. Listen as if the Universe itself were about to reveal the most wonderful secret; because it is.” – Frankie Perez

thankful morning

Categories: Attitude, Beauty, Faith, Family, Growth, Joy, Life, Life Lessons, Personal, Quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Nameless moments

Some of you know I am heading out tomorrow … off to spend a week with Mom, and our first Mother’s Day together in 29 years.   The numbers astound even me.  Of course I’ve visited many times since I left Canada at age 22 but I’ve never been there on Mother’s Day.   This is just as much for me as it is for her, I can admit that.

Stepping out of one world and through the doors to another.  Away from smart phones and conference calls, instant messaging and project meetings.  Away from traffic and busyness and into the arms of a tiny-faced lady who will hug me with everything she’s got.

I’ll step away from stewarding my team, being a wife, Mom and Nana and back to the roles of daughter, (little) sister and “that girl who used to sing and play guitar.”

I’ve got a few things ready – including a funeral outfit – because, as Sissy pointed out, “I thought you’d want to attend and you’ll surely see lots of people you know.” And she’s right.  That’s how small towns are.  Funerals, weddings, gatherings; regardless the circumstance, the timing is such that I can take Mom, pay my respects and have a visit. And some pie.

My carry-on bag is already heavy and full – full of books for Mom.  A friend pointed out airline weight limits; I just smiled and said, “Yeah, I know.”  Oh there’s a fee? Whatever, I’ll pay it.  She didn’t get it and I didn’t expect that she would.

You see, when you only see your Mother once a year, you can get defensive with anyone who tells you how to do it.

Sissy will meet me at the airport and we’ll cry. Then we’ll laugh at our sappiness and enjoy the country drive together.  We’ll stop in town to pick up a few things and it’ll take longer to check out because I’ll end up chatting with a neighbor at the till.  Yep, when you see your sister only once a year, you tend to savor little moments like those.

So after I land at the farm and the hugs are exchanged, the chats and laughs will begin.   I’ll get up early and go for walks down our country road with my sister-in-law and her farm dog, Stevie. On the way back I’ll stop by Dad’s shop where I’ll find a brother or two and chat about whatever topic we fancy.  When I get back Mom will be at the table and there we’ll linger in that morning sunshine, sipping coffee and ignoring the ticking of the clock and the knowledge that I have to board again soon.

We’ll stay up late peppering the air with our opinions on world events and family nuances.  I’ll stand at her stove and cook for her and sing along to Willie, Elvis and Roy, just like we did when I was a girl. We’ll sip tea and nibble the lemon loaf she’s baked for me; she’ll fuss and I’ll let her.

We’ll gather at her house for a Mother’s Day brunch – about twenty of us – and she’ll beam at the noise and commotion that all of being together brings. We’ll miss those who can’t be there and every single one of us will feel Dad in the room.

And for seven days, I will ask those clocks to slow, just a little.

Me & Mom rocking the Casino last summer!

Me & Mom rocking the Casino last summer!

 The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you. ~Anonymous

Related:

Categories: Attitude, Faith, Family, Home, Life, Love, Mom, Quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

Thoughts on a Thursday

1. Today’s my Friday!    In a week Sissy will greet me at the Saskatoon airport and, between a mix of tears and smiles, we’ll make our way to Mom’s where I’ll remain for 7 days.  Getting ready for a trip like that means I need a bit of time at home first.   I’ll tidy up tomorrow, cook a few meals to pop in the freezer, and spend some time with my guys and grands.  Ahh .. Heaven.

Appreciate the little things in life, one day you’ll look back and realize those were the big things.Anonymous

2. Speaking of Mom, she and I talked last night and she had questions about “this Mother’s Day brunch” I’m organizing.  She’s one capable lady and wanted the details.  Who’s coming? What time?  What should we make, etc.  But it was her quiet mention of inviting a distant grandchild that touched my heart. My oldest brother’s daughter, the one she doesn’t see as much as the others.  The one with her own family and Mother to Mom’s 3 great-grandsons.  My response, “Mom, if you’d like to include them then by all means do so.”   I could hear her smiles over the phone.  It’s just food and I can make more. 🙂

A mom reads you like a book, and wherever she goes, people read you like a glowing book review.  ~Robert Brault

3.  The company I work for announced some big news this week and I know that means reorganizations and realignment in our future.  People are already jockeying and posturing and aligning.   I am in a good place and probably have as much security as could be had, given the situation.   Having said that, it’s not the news that rattles me, it’s the behavior.  Geez Louise, people, do your work, stay the course, and let it sort itself out.

“Whatever follows ‘I am’ is going to come looking for you.” – Joel Osteen

4. Speaking of family, I called my sister last night. No, not Sissy, the other one, the one I haven’t been as close to.  Yes it was awkward, but over a bit of time, she warmed up and the conversation was a bit easier.   Of course, we stayed in a safe swim lane of topics – Mom, the weather, and my sister’s life. There was no inquiry of me and mine, but that’s not new,  it’s just more.   I know the effort was probably for naught, but when I listened to Mom speak longingly of her sisters, she helped me remember  that I still have two.

It doesn’t take a whole long life to realize that what we deserve to have, we rarely get.” ― Jodi Picoult, My Sister’s Keeper

5. Totally off topic, I saw this recently and cracked up. I bet you do, too:

yep!

yep!

Happy Thursday, peeps!

 

Categories: Attitude, Faith, Family, Friendship, Growth, Home, Life, Life Lessons, Mom, Opinion, Personal, Random, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Worth it

Every so often, another writer’s post touches my heart in such a way that I think about it long after I’ve stopped reading.

This one did.

It’s one man’s story of faith.  Of love. Of moments that matter.

Moments of grace and humor and serendipity.

One man’s story.

Read it here: http://richripley.wordpress.com/2014/03/26/the-touchstones-of-our-heart/

somehow this picture belongs here.  Google.images.com

He’ll understand why bacon is here! Google.images.com

Categories: Beauty, Blogging, Faith, Family, Forgiveness, Grief, Growth, Home, Life, Men, Personal, Relationships, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

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