Memories, “Rhymes & Reasons”

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While out on yard sale patrol, a good friend and I came upon these long lost, but not so forgotten memory makers from days gone by.
I better stipulate right here, that I am one nostalgic old hippie. I love life today, look forward to all the future has to offer and I do so because I celebrate the past.
One thing I have learned throughout the years is that in addition to the visual, the melodic sound of yesteryear provides a much needed music to the soul.
So, needless to say when I see an old radio/record player or better yet 8track on somebodies curbside, I have an overwhelming need to hear the sound of music once again.
On the larger of the two console’s I enjoyed listening to the owner’s own Xanadu of memories on vinyl.
The smaller stereo encased within an 8track, which for me brings back many a memory indeed, not only of the era but of those lost but never forgotten.
After a wonderful day of restoration, I sit basking in the glory of a well worn much much beloved Carole King record, helping me to remember that is in memory we are able to find “Rhymes & Reasons”.

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Oh Brother, I Know Where Art Thou

daylily at home
Not too long ago one of my brothers died.
There are four of us kids total, two girls, two boys with one less temporarily.

I’ve been writing about my brother in the last couple of posts.
I will most likely continue to write about my brother for sometime to come.

I believe very strongly that love is never broken. I believe just as much that our loved ones who loved us so, would want us to live, learn and grow in love from their living into death.

This is just the start of acknowledgement to what I learned from my brother;

1. Hate less and love more. For me Christ is love and because I know my brother is now with Jesus, I get much comfort from this.

2. Waste no time getting caught up in petty behavior, whether it be your own or anothers, just don’t do it! It’s usually hurtful to all and so not productive!!!!

3. Say what you mean and mean what you say (I just love this one, because I hate manipulation but have been known to do it).

4. Do not live as if in fear. The worst that can happen is that you try and fail. I think in my brother’s book, it was better to have the guts to fail than to never try at all. My brother was one courageous man and lived life as an adventure.

5. Your family may not be close at hand but love them, praise them, correct them (on occasion) as if they are. Your family is everything Christ has gifted you.

6. For my brother this was his first and foremost lesson for those of us who loved him so. My brother loved his spouse more than life itself. He lived a life where his love for another came before any of his own needs.

Thank you Mike for all you were and all you continue to be.

“windows are not made for looking out but more for looking in.”

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When I was a child I had my Dottie She was my salvation. I loved her, I adored her and I miss her to this day. Dorothy Kathryn Jenkins (Mobley) was my grandmother. God really broke the mold with Dot. … Continue reading

If I Knew Then, What I Now Know

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If I knew then that my sister and brothers would many years later find so much humor in the fact that my mama dressed me funny (even in pajamas),
I would most definitely find a smaller pair to wear, just so we could share a belly laugh together as only siblings can do.

If I knew then that aluminum Christmas trees were only a novelty,
I would have stocked up. I did so love to lay in front of that tree with the color wheel turning. I would stare at the ceiling for hours on end, probably a precursor to a few little trips (if you know what I mean and if your old and lived through the 70’s, you should) I took a not so many years later.

If I knew then that my father would grow old and tired,
I would not have wasted so much time being angry with him and more time celebrating the man he was.

If I knew then my mother did love me as only a mother can,
I for sure would have not held onto childhood hurts that only ended up hurting her too.

It wasn’t until some years later I realized my family is everything I am.
They are a gift that I have many times over been afraid to love fully.

I wish I knew then what I now know.

Bitch Slapped Into Reality II

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Because I’m now a card carrying, senior discount taking, don’t mess with an old lady, member of the AARP. I reserve the right to re-tweek just a little, a previous post in which I allowed myself to poke a little fun at all us oldie’s but still goodie’s.

So, suck up the neck, pull on the depends and try not to pee yourself if you do get your giggle on, cuz here goes nothin;

As a still vibrant on the inside, used to be cute on the outside, 57yr old woman I just gotta say growing older aint for no stinkin sissy’s to be sure.

For me every birthday has been a celebration of life.
I love that I get the opportunity to age, learn and hopefully mature (debateable in my case). I am grateful to be older (again debatable as to any wiser.)

After all I have soooo many more life experiences I get to share (whether they like it or not) with my family and friends. So many more memories made together with those I love (and in some cases love to terrorize).
So, why in the heck does this neck of mine betray me at the supposed to be precious “kodak” moments.

Why am I developing and oversensitive fear that I may actually have to acknowledge someone, with the now tsunami porportioned “wave” capability of my lower arm?

Geez, I want to be able to gesture a big hidy-ho to all the other gray haired beauties, while we’re hitting senior Tuesday at the Goodwill.
But at the same time I avoid at all costs raising the arm that when in “wave” motion has the potential to “bitch slap” us all right back into our senior reality, like it or not!!!!

All kidding aside, I really do dig the fact that I’m still here. I love most of the journey (as long as they have a bathroom along the way). I’m still too cool for school and determined to live, love and learn (but not wave).

Mom

christmasmomdadjanmikemeThere are those of us who write our feelings so much better than we could ever say them.
For me, I think the written word and the silence it has to offer is so much more meaningful than the sound that accompanies verbal communication.
Not to mention that there are always those who just love to hear themselves talk. To me that form of communication has the strong possibility of cheapening the emotion.

Simply put, I hear better when there is silence. I feel better when writing in silence. I can feel my whatever the emotion may be and also do it in a more constructive way, whilst typing away my feelings, thoughts, etc.

So here goes nothing I got a little diarrhea of the finger to keyboard and I have a strong need to dump my load from ink to paper.

My mother died this morning a 6:10. I do believe she is with my sweet father Jesus, who will allow her to bask in his glory and love on her mother, father, brother, first son-In/law Mike and not to mention at least 3 grandchildren she never got to meet.

I’ve come to realize after my first husbands, my father’s and now mother’s passing that death like life is one heck of a trip.

I feel so much obligation to celebrate my loved one’s passing through our life’s interactions.

Tonight it is mom who I want/need to celebrate. I must preface by saying that I am one heck of a hard ass nut and I expect a lot of others and myself. But what I am learning is that the world really doesn’t revolve about my “hard-ass-ness”. I wish I had learned that sooner.
I judged my mother so strongly due to my own childhood hurts. What hurt the most was that I thought my mother was never happy. I wanted so much for her to be. Actually I wanted both my parents to love life because isn’t that what we all want to achieve, while here.

I wish I’d have spent less time judging her and more time relishing in her strengths and gifts.
She was so childlike. She was wonderful with small children and naptimes with mommy were special. She could weave a tale like nobody’s business and I realize now it is her I got that from.

She was a good sport, for sure. Because not only her children but also her extended family could torment her and she would just go with our flow. I remember more than one occasion involving a can of fart spray (John).

She had the voice of an angel and she knew it. Actually I think that is the only thing my mother felt good about. She had little, if any confidence except in the fact that she could sing.

She was so stinking beautiful, actually she was stunning. But she never saw what the rest of us saw. So sad and for so long I couldn’t understand that. I’m sorry mommy. I know your happy now and singing “I hope” at the top of your lungs.

Crossing the Moon River

Norma Joanne was 80yrs old when she crossed the “Moon River”. She had pneumonia for the third time and had been in a hospice for almost two weeks.

While I am so grateful I have not had to experience hospice. I am also beyond grateful it existed for my mother and those of us who loved her so.

There are no words to truly express what it is like to watch someone die. It is agony to see your love one slip in and out of consciousness.

There were so many silent prayers between others and us who knew and loved her.
I believe my mother is now in the arms of Jesus but watching the process of her inevitable crossing was only made possible through a whole lot of love.

The love we had for mom, the love she had for us and the love we have for each other. It was because of the concerned and caring staff within the hospice that we were able to wrap ourselves up in all of it.

They made sure our mother was not in pain and watched over her diligently.
We too felt their compassion for us. I could tell they saw our mother through us crazy kids and I did so want to represent her well.

Our mother loved music, “Moon River” being her favorite. We sat in that room playing the CD player and being as comforted as we hope she was by the soothing sound of Nat King Cole’s “unforgettable”. My sister and brother danced hand in hand. I will never forget that sight of mom smiling as my sister knocked over the pitcher of water sitting at the foot of her bed.
The staff allowed us to be our mother’s kids and seemed to understand when we needed to make fun of each other, laugh and cry. It was a place of love and that is how we all wanted mom to go out surrounded by love and into more of it.

In closing I just wanted to say thank you to Michelle, Janice, Ashley, Chandra, Tim, Cassie, MaryLou, Dr. Sapp all the rest of you who work so hard and care so much. Donna, thank you for being with her at the end.
I will never forget your kindness. In the words of my mother, “you’re sweethearts.”

norma

As “The Eagles” Soar

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It’s late April 2013 and this sunny day warms both my heart and soul. I’ve opened all the windows and let the fresh air breath in new life. There’s renewal in the air and I start to feel the welcome restless spirit of youth that I’m still not too old to forget.
I get way more than a little nostalgic in the spring and summer because I get to be outside. I get to play, garden, drive and just piddle around. There is only one thing that makes my outdoor love affair totally complete though and sends me into nostalgia paradise. I gotta have my tunes cranked up with Eagles soaring on the soundwaves. There is not much better than sunshine on a warm day and the sound of Eagles making like jelly and jammin.

So, when a co-worker lent me the Farewell Eagles Tour dvd, I allowed myself to regress back to the 70′s and blessed memories of people, places and times I will forever cherish.

I remember when most of the men I knew still had hair, I had a neck and when I waved at you my lower arm didn’t wave back.

I also remember when:

Not only the Eagles but The Doobie Brothers, Black Oak Arkansas, Bob Seger and Steve Miller ruled the airwaves and the 8 track tape player.

“Bitchin” was a really good thing and you couldn’t “hack it” without your really “far out” whatever it is you couldn’t live without at the time.

Mike and I hitchhiked to Newport Beach and caught a ride with a disk jockey who went by “Peyote Pete”, good times!!!!

In the early 70′s it was mocassin shoes and hip huggers that were the attire of choice for any self respecting teenage girl. I can remember shuffling from class to class in those mocassin’s. I don’t think I actually lifted a foot off the ground for an entire school year.

Lot’s of guys were then sporting those ever so attractive striped bell bottom drawers. In retrospect I must admit that one style was better left in the 70′s.

Thanks for the memories Eagles, for me you continue to soar.

I’m Jumping Into the Pool with My Smartphone In Hand

As the rest of the world has become immersed in the 21st century pool of technological paraphernalia, I’ve remained pretty darn reluctant to dip my tootsies into the water. For me the thought of owning a Smartphone was like jumping off the high dive into the depths of a non-chlorinated pool. I have been convinced that at my age and with no phone savvy, I was not capable of treading water long enough to dog paddle and then breast stroke my way to the safety of shallow water.

That is until I started observing other (slightly graying) peers, going at it with zeal on their phones. You just try carrying on a conversation with someone while they’re holding on for dear life to their phone(aka lifeline).
If your not holding and they are,they will try to text, check email and facebook while glancing up on occasion at your pathetic attempt for conversation.

It must have been all the rejection as of late or maybe just the kind of silly glazed look they get when ignoring me and in the phone zone. But I decided recently I was jumpin in the pool and going to learn to either sink or swim.

I will tell you now; I love my phone to the point of developing my own glazed look. Though I still do enjoy the occasional verbal interaction, I am now almost knee deep in the pool and my goal is to not only stay afloat but also enjoy the swim.

Just When You Thought It Was Safe To Go Back In The Water!!!!

I hate when the weatherman is right in predicting rain on my spring almost into summertime parade. It’s just a little gloomy out there today and apparently there will be showers through this weekend. But I still see some rays of sunshine and because I’m still in summertime anticipation mode I thought I would repost a summer memory from last year. Last summer was when I got my groove back and I must say it was fun trip finding it. With that I digress back to summer 2012.

This has been the summer of self discovery.  First and foremost I discovered I had completely lost my groove.  Sadly, I then discovered that I had been so worn down, worn out and worn through I didn’t even remember I had one.  Through no ones fault but my own, my get up and go had got up and left without me and with no forwarding address.

None the less, just like Stella I did get my groove back.  It wasn’t on an island paradise or tropical cruise that  it was rediscovered.  I regained my funk in the most unlikely place and with one of my favorite people.  I found the groove I didn’t even know I had lost, yet still managed to miss.

It went something like this.  My darlin little sisy took her (slightly older) sister to her favorite outdoor spa for a little R&R.  I must interject now that one of the things I love most about my sisy is her total inhibition and ability to enjoy life.  I am the overly cautious (again slightly older), uptight sister.  Not to be redundant, but just to remind you I went on this little trip grooveless and wound tighter than a clock.

As my darling sister and I sauntered from one luxurious outdoor pool to another I found myself actually starting to truly relax. I hadn’t been silly in so long and it felt so good to laugh out loud.  I could hear myself and I gotta say it was music to my tired ears.  But,then it got even better.  With a glass of red wine in hand, we sat together in one of the smaller pools.  There we were just the two wild and crazy sisters without a care.  It was like we were kids again (only with wine).  It was great to feel so free and at that point I did what I NEVER in my life would have normally done.  I like my little sisy had done on her 50th birthday did it, I pee’d in the pool!!!!! It was one of craziest things I have ever done, cause I really didn’t give a diddly, PIDDLY, doo what anyone else may think.  If the water turned blue who the heck cared.  That was the freeing part I didn’t worry about it, I just did it.

That simple, silly and maybe a little inappropriate act soothed my soul.  At 56yrs old that pee became a right of passage for me.  It allowed me to not only to retrieve my lost groove but to realize the importance of the fact I still have one!