Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Graduation again already!?

This picture is amazing. I took a picture of Josh just as he was shaking hands with Tommy Hay and accross the way the French Teacher at the Junior High...can't remember his name off hand....he was taking a pic of Josh with his telephoto lens....whom he didn't even the same instant. When he showed me his pictures I told him that was my son. He couldn't believe it either as he was just snapping random shots trying out his new long lens.....crazy!

Well, I didn't think I would do it but I decided to go to the Ruston High School graduation last night. There are always students I just loved and I want to see them graduate.... also some of them will give speeches and it is always interesting to hear what they come up with. Of course it always sorta reminds me of when Josh graduated. It was a great evening.....after graduation was the party at the Civic Center and it was a lot of fun....lots of games, prizes, and just goofing around. I got home about 2 AM and had to get up for school that next morning. It was worth it though.

The only reason I hate going to graduation is the yelling and screaming done by some of the family and friends of the graduates. I am sorry...and maybe I am an old fuddey duddy, but I just believe it is a solmn rite of passage and we need to act with some dignity. It is sad that some parents never hear their child's name read because of the prolonges yelling of folks.

Back home our graduation is still taking place in the high school auditorium and there are fewer graduates so people tend to be quiet. Screaming out just isn't when my parents came for Josh's high school graduation they were stunned and rather appalled to say the least and they still mention it whenever the subject of graduation comes up. They have gone to my neices graduation in Hermitage, PA and I guess it was respectable because I haven't heard them going on about ...."I just couldn't believe it" .....and "you should have heard". I had been to other graduations before Josh's so I knew what was coming....but call me stupid cuz each year I sorta believe people will have some how come to the realization that it is just plain rude. It also always seems curious to me the students who have all the awards...well, nobody hollers for them, but the lower the student ranks in the class the louder their cheering section. I guess there is an axim or a formula governing all of that.

Yet, I was glad to be there and see these students enter into the "real" world. I prayed as I sat there for all of them...for their safety, for them to find their way and for them to find the Lord. I know they are all hoping for success and to be able to make a way for themselves, but without the knowledge of their salvation they will always be looking....and looking. They may not even realize they are looking for something, but that is the human be trying to fill that hole so they can be whole.

I didn't hang around to chat.....but I snuck out as the last child got her diploma and left before the families gathered outside for pics. I just want to see them one more time for myself and recall the impact they had on me. So many of the kids leave a mark of some sort....they make you smile, cry, think......all in all they make me take stock of what we educators are doing and reflect on the influence we have on these kids. It is scary when you really sit and think how much depends on them getting a good start. While we are teaching them many skills, it is important to realize they are so much more. That is where praying and just loving comes in and maybe when we look back from our home in eternity that will be the real work we were appointed to do.

Tonight a bunch of us from school met at Sundown for dinner on the patio. It was the second annual gathering of this kind. We don't stay to late and it is always fun and just a time to sorta say good bye to each other before we start all over in the fall. Sometimes I forget how good the teachers I work with are. I am always in awe of their energy and dedication. They work really hard and are always looking for ideas and better ways to get their subject matter accross to their students.

Tomorrow is the last full day of school and I have a lot of stuff I want to get done...orders to do and computer work to catch up on. There will be a party for Beverly Johnson Beasley in the library at 2 pm so I will have to clean and dust before we set up around noon. She is retiring and I know she is happy about that. She is a great special education teacher and we will miss her. I know she is going to enjoy herself. long time neighbor is going to the sixth grade and Allisa is going to the High School...heavy sigh. I hate saying goodbye!!!

Monday, May 26, 2008

No more picnics.....

Jim and I are from Pennsylvania and we are not from Pittsburg of Philly, but from the wilds of PA. We come from an area where there are a lot deer, skunks, wood chucks, beavers, porcupines, foxes, and Lord only knows what else. But one creature we never saw much of was the Black Bear, but for some reason the bear population has exploded in the state of PA. I was reading on the net that PA is has some of the largest black bears known. Someone killed one during Bear season (which is way too short in my opinion)...and it was 700 lbs. That is one huge bear. I have also learned they run about 35 or 40 miles per hour sometimes. That is a scary statistic as well.

My parents live right on the edge of the forest. They are the last house on a particular street and on a dead end....sorry Chuck....(my dad hates that phrase, "dead end"). Behind them is "the woods" or as Josh called them "Nama and Papa's Woods".

Out of those woods bears are lumbering and not only just walking around they are climbing poles to reach decks searching for food. Now I know most of the time.....key word here is MOST.....bears don't bother anyone, but lately they are getting bolder and bolder. I remember seeing a tv program where some bears broke into a person's house and turned over their refrigerator. They were searching for food. I don't think it was in Pennsylvania, but still!

My parents are careful about not putting their garbage cans out over night, they don't leave any food on the counter tops and they shut the kitchen windows before going to bed....but still the bears come around. I am worried they may try to get inside at some point. The program I saw when they actually broke into a house it was winter and the house was closed up but they figured out a way in. I remember being so freaked out when I saw what they did to the inside of the house...especially the kitchen.

There are honey farmers (and other farmers)having trouble with the bears....they are not allowed to shoot a bear on their property. One guy a couple years ago did just that and paid a fine of around $2,000 for trying to protect his lively hood. That seems nuts to me.
During the short bear hunting season in Dec. (when they are all looking for a place to snooze for several months)those who get a license are able to shoot one bear. People have trouble finding the bears at that time of the year. I am thinking maybe they ought to change bear season to May or June when they are wide awake and HUNGRY.

My parents tell me the game warden really doesn't help. He is there to protect the animals from people....not the other way around. He will tell them to be careful and put all their food up......good grief they do that and it isn't helping. The other day there was a big black bear down town in a tree lined neighborhood with side walks. That is just unbelievable.

I guess I wouldn't be so freaked out about all of this, but a bear was seen with a deer fawn hanging out of it's mouth. Bears are not suppose to be meat eaters ....or at least it was not my understanding that they they must really be hungry! The towns are the same size they have always been....there is NO urban sprawl. Why the population is suddenly out of control?

Gone are the days of going up on the hill with a packed lunch like my sisters and I used to do. I remember a hawk swooping down to snatch my balony sandwhich and that freaked me out as I was sitting atop one of the huge rocks up on the hill. I will probably never see those rocks I used to love to scale again because there are caves underneath them and probably great places for bears to take a snooze.

This summer when I go "home" I will be careful, but I sure wish the game warden would trap these bears that are far too bold and take them to some area that is desolate. My cousin wrote me an email tonight and said they were doing just that....and they were taking them from other parts of PA that are more populated and setting them free in my parents back yard. I might have to have a little heart to hear with the game warden...I have already written a letter to a state official

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Music, sweet music...

Pic caption - Jim "jammin'"with some guys in Coudersport, PA last summer. Jim is a bit rusty, but I think if he did this sort of thing more often he would really get his groove back. The guy playing guitar behind Jim is high school buddy, Joel Anderson....the drummer is my high school friend, Lynn March Farber's son, Brian. Brian is a grad of Berklee School of Music in Boston. He is really a good drummer....and Howard Foster...with his Saxaphone on the far right. He and Jim go way back, also. His kids and I were friends in high school. The guy on the stool is the owner of this hotel. I can't remember his name right now...but I think he moved to PA from California. Found it a great place to retire and loves the beauty that surrounds those who live in the PA mountains.

Pic caption -Clay Johnson, singer for the Equinox Jazz Band sang so many of our favorites.... we loved hearing him sing, "I Wish You Love", "On the Street Where You Live", "Moon Dance", "How Sweet it is to be Loved By You", and "I Wanna Be Around". ...and of course Jeremy, Hoppy and the guys were right on it when it came to accompaniment

Jeremy Davis, Nick Wlodarczyk, and Brad Black playing "Jazz Straight, No Chaser" at the Dixie Theater in Ruston, LA Friday, May 23, 2008.

Jim and I went to see the Equinox Jazz Band at the Dixie Theater on Friday night. It was really a fun time. Since band leader, Jeremy Davis has moved to Savannah, GA and doesn't get back often, so it was really a treat. There were a lot of familar faces at the Dixie and it was great to talk to friends during the break. I always love to chat with Jonathan Lynch. He is a great drummer, guitarist and bass player who has had the honor of playing with Equinox a couple times. He told us that Hoppy, the arranger for Equinox used to arrange for Disney and did a lot of movies. I checked this out on the Internet just to see which movies he worked on and found several. Jim loves his arrangements.

We are so so blessed to live in an area that offers such a variety of entertainment...and such a great quality. We have heard all sorts of music at LA Tech and seen dance companies such as Alvin Ailey. I loved Bow Fire and Tommy Emmanuel. We have seen plays and musicals at Tech. Christ Community Church has a great "Desert Fest " each year. And I try not to miss the skits done at orientation at Tech. The Peach Festival gives us more opportunity to hear some great musicians at Railroad Park. Plus we always enjoy Johnny O'Neil on occasion and other local favorites.

We didn't grow up in a town with these sorts of entertainment....although to the credit of our little home town in PA, there is still music on the square one night a week in the summer months weather permitting (which Jim would undoubtedly contribute if we lived there) and there are great high school musicals and coral programs. I remember my sister staring in Our Town and Portrait of Jenny when she was in high school. I don't think such classics are still done, but musicals are done once a year. My parents rave on about how wonderful they we were not totally without the influence of talent in the hills of PA.

Well, I had better hit the hay as tomorrow we are going to get up early and head for Longview for a little visit. Sophie will be tagging along and it will be her longest time in the car to date. She brace herself and get ready for the 23 hour trip to PA. Gatsby did it last summer....that gives me encouragement. We always see a lot of people with their fuzzy friends so we won't be alone. We will stay in LaGrange, KY and eat where we always eat....Irish Rover II. It is authentic Irish grub and I always sample the potato soup....Yummmmm I can't wait!!!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

What is a Conservative?

I saw this on TV the other night and thought it was pretty good. Jim and I watch Glenn Beck most evenings....for a little bit anyway.....and he did this the other night. Here is what he said a conservative was:

GLENN: Ken, here it is. To be a conservative is, in my definition, is somebody that believes in the power of the individual, somebody that believes, please let me make my decisions, that I have a right to succeed and not be penalized for it. I have a right to fail and have no one run to me if I don't want them to run to me. A conservative believes I have a right to manage my family, I have a right to discipline my family in the way I see fit, as long as it is not criminal. A conservative believes I have the right to worship God, I have a right to worship the God of my understanding, and I do not have the right to jam my version of God down anybody else's throat or my version of no God down any body's throat. A conservative believes live and let live. That's what a conservative believes. A conservative believes in the smallest amount of government, the smallest government you can get without anarchy. That's what a conservative believes.

I actually thing that is more the definition of a libertarian.....but I know that is not the definition of a liberal. Liberals always think they know best and they should REGULATE everything under the sun!!!

I just thought this was pretty good and a pretty good explanation. When I was in Cuba the people said they thought the government would take care of them and they wanted the womb to the tomb care, but then they found out that you couldn't trust the government and those in power were corrupt. Yes, they learned that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely!

Monday, May 19, 2008

I've got nothing ....

Sophie is a blitzer...blitzing is something Bichons do. They do it a couple times a day for about five solid minutes and then they go to asleep. Here is a picture of her doing her blitz things... notice the nutty look in her eyes. These are tenacious critters! Her feet are not touching the floor in the second pic.

Tomorrow is my yearly trip to the DayLight Donuts to get about five dozen donuts for my library aides. Those kids can put away some donuts! I have a total of 28 library aides so I figure if I get enough for some of the kids to have three and most to have about two. It usually works out well. I don't mind doing it, but I hate getting up so early...... I went to Walmart for the Sunny D. That was the concensus.

Well, I am yawning and I know I better go to B-E-D right now so I can get up extra early..... I really don't have anything to say....just thought you all might like a Blitz photo. Night night!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

A 68 Degree Saturday

68 degrees out there as I sit with my laptop and Sophie begging to sit in its place. She never wants to sit on my lap unless the laptop is there. Just like a little kid. She makes a little wimper and sighs heavily when I will not give in. I keep thinking she is lonely and needs a buddie...maybe another white fuzzy pup, but then I read the Bichon list serve and the dog owners complain about how their two dogs always want the same toy at the same time and no matter if they have the exact same toy they still want the same one. This all sounds way too much like little kids. What is the deal with that....when I say little kids I am going all the way to age 14 cuz I have witnessed this first hand with older kids, too. Sophie seems to have plugged in to "human nature" somehow.....the fallen nature extends even to furry friends....hmmmm fallen furry friends.

Back to the 68 degrees. Just too perfect. I woke up and made coffee....both the caffinated and non then finished my book, I am Scout. It was a good biography, but I read on the net there is really nothing new in this book and Mockingbird, another biography about Harper Lee was very if you have read that you can skip I am Scout.

Harper Lee never wrote another book, fiction or nonfiction. She just never figured she could top her Pulitzer Prize winning To Kill a Mockingbird...and she was probably right. Thirty years later she told someone she forgave herself for never writing again and it was obvious because she lives a serene and solitary life in her small one story brick house she shares with her sister. Her room is lined with book shelves and she spends a great deal of her time reading. I guess her success was enough to support her for her whole life. She is 82 now. I admire her for keeping to a simple life and not letting fame go to her head at all. Her book was voted best book of the 20th century....that is wild! I may have to read it again. I don't think you always appreciate things when you are young and I read it many years ago.

Jim is outside mowing...68 degrees is too hard to pass up so the Lawn Ranger is on the move. We are gonna try and see the new movie, Prince Caspian today....but other than that it is going to be a quiet weekend. I am trying to figure out what book to read next....

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Happy to see you again my friend!

Jim and I went ICU to see Dr. Dale tonight. He has been there for a week and we thought we would be seeing him at home by today, but we found out he was still there and we wanted to see him. Helen had just left for church and Joanna and Rachel were "holding down the fort" there along with a couple nurses plus his new friend, Tobii (the computer he uses with his eyes).

Dr. looked so much better than last time we saw him. We didn't realize he was so ill. But now he has a spark in his eyes and it was clear that he was enjoying learning to use his new mode of communication. It will even speak out loud to us. While it was not his sweet tenor voice, it was good to hear from him again. He has not even had training yet!! I don't know how he knew what to do. Jim and I are praying it will become second nature to him. I know it takes a lot of effort right now because it is new. We know there is a lot going on in that head of his now he will be able to share some of that with us. I know Helen will be glad to be able to "hear" from him again. Jim is not a big talker, but at least I can ask him to tell me what he is thinking about and he will give me an answer. If I couldn't ask or couldn't be told it would be hard.

Please keep these precious folks in your prayers. Doctor is probably going to come home on Friday along with Tobii. It is a slow mode of communication right now so pray it will become easier for him to master.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Slipping down an oily slope.....

I just wrote a LONG blog....reread it and deleted it. I will condense it. I was complaining about the price of gas and also the price of everything else cuz all the stuff we buy comes on trucks that use gas and so the prices of EVERYTHING is also going up. I know we are all trying to figure out why all of this happening and why we are playing the role of the fly in this reenactment of "The Spider and the Fly". I think blaming it all on George Bush is insane and we need to be looking more at our legislators for not letting us drill for the oil our country has been blessed with. Show me the OIL Uncle Sam!

But as sad as this oil crises is it pales next to the real crises in this country....the moral crises. We see it daily....those who refuse to follow simple rules and just do the right thing. I see litter along the highways and people running red lights ....Jim and I saw a car go through a red light going over the speed limit and we were thankful nobody was killed ...and I was nearly in an accident on the way to school Monday morn because someone was going about 30 miles over the speed limit. I know someone who was hit head on....the dude that hit him was in the wrong lane and had his head down text messaging someone. It looked as if there was nobody even driving his car....soooo scary. My friend's new truck was totalled. I am thankful he is ok.

There is a whole generation that believes rules are for breaking or at the least they are merely suggestions. Each year we see it getting worse...and we are all to blame. In an attempt to be compassionate and give second, third and fourth chances we send the message that consequences are a thing of the past and there will always be a way out of trouble. In our attempt ....when I say "our" I am talking about our society.....we have become soft and the result is chaos.

When I see the rude behavior around me each day....I remember how my teachers not only taught me subjects such as English and History and Science.....but they were concerned about our manners. We were even corrected when we didn't put our left hands on our laps at lunch.... now that sort of correction is considered to be crazy. In the north we may not have used the "Yes Mam and No Sir" we associate with southern manners, but we were taught to say please and thank you make proper introductions and to open doors for people whose hands are full....or carry something for someone who needs help. It is something you just helped out if you could. It was just a little thing and we were expected to be civil by adults....but now days if we expect or encourage manners we are belittled and even looked at as people who are over stepping boundaries. I guess it is the right to be rude. oil prices are terrible, but when we live in a society where everyone is just interested in themselves and not able to follow simple rules or show civility toward each oil such a big deal when social chaos is becoming more and more accepted. Being around teens daily I see this more than most. Granted 13 and 14 year olds have never been our society's paragons of virtue, but there has been a marked change in the last ten years that is very alarming and I am wondering what the next ten years will bring....but we will hear about the oil deficit far more than the manner deficit.

Thanks.... a body has to vent now and then or they will break out in the shingles or something.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day Murmerings....

Was a lovely day....Josh, Randi and Gatsby were here and it was just great to see them as usual...also Randi's Mom and Dad were in for the weekend and that was an extra treat. Gatsby still hasn't warmed to Sophie, but that is ok. It is what it is...but I do think it was a tiny bit better. Gatsby is a sweet little doggie who just doesn't care for dogs. I guess he is like those people who go off to live with the gorillas....just not crazy about their own kind. Maybe Gatsby is secretly studying humans. He does tend to stare.

Randi and Josh brought me four little demitasse cups she found at an antique store and two pieces or original kitchen art by with a tea cup and one with a coffee cup with treats on the side. I am working on the perfect spot to hang them. They are so bright and lively and will look good no matter where I put them.

We were invited to Randi's Grandparents' for lunch and it was just delicious. The twice baked potatoes were soooo yummy and the salad, the roast beef...and both Jims' favorite cake....carrot cake. We are so blessed to be included in their family get togethers. It makes it easier to be so far away from family....I still miss my own Mom, but it doessn't hurt as much as it used to.

Ross, Randi's brother, has a puppy...a Brittany Spaniel, Merlot, and her parents' dog, Winslow met Sophie this weekend. Jim and I took Sophie over to race around their fenced in back yard. It was fine...all three dogs tongues were lolling after their romp. I should have taken my camera and posted a little video...sorry. Sophie was the little one, but she held her own pretty well. The two larger dogs were polite and seemed to a bit less rough with her as they were with each other.....I am sure she appreciated the consideration.

We came home after lunch today and got a chance to see Randi's pics of Montreal...really great pictures. They had a great time even if it was a little cold. I had been there in 1975...33 years ago.... and it was fun to see the pics of the city. I think it might be fun to go back.

I am alwayss surprised by the fact there is a dark side to Mother's Day. For the most part it is a happy day, but I, like most folks, tend get reflective. I am 23 hours away from my Mom and don't get to partake in the Mother/Daughter banquets that are the popular in our little town in Pa. Those missed banquets are many....also, Mother's Day make me think of my mother in law who has been gone about four years. Jim doesen't say too much, but I know Mother's Day is different for him now. It makes me think of my grandmothers who have both been gone over 20 years....and also some of my high school friends who have lost their moms....and others who have meant a lot to me. My Mother's only sis is someone I think of on this day and her daughter ,cousin Kel, and I know Mother's Day is hard for her and also for my step-sis and brother who lost their Mom when they were just kids.....and for Randi's mom, Karen, who lost her mother far too young....and for Randi who misses her Nana....she was a little girl when her mom lost her mother...and also for Randi's grandmother who mentioned how she missed her mother. I thought it was so sweet she had put out some of ther mother's chicken collection at our lunch on this special day. How proud they both would be of Randi and Ross. I wish Jim's Mom could see Josh and his bride. At least she had met Randi and thought she was just lovely.

I guess I am trying to point out that we celebrate our Mothers, those who are here and we celebrate and remember those have gone ahead...and that makes Mother's Day somewhat bitter sweet, but when we focus on what those who are gone have left behind in the way of a legacy, we are thankful and the bitterness/sadness tends to fade and leave us with a sweet comfort.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Dance Fever

When Josh was four I decided he was going to be a famous tap dancer.....I loved watching Gregory Hines and Gene Kelly heck, I had this little boy who was pretty good at doing Michael Jackson's Thriller dance and I thought if I just start him early he will be able to dance his way to Broadway by the time he is 16......after all sister, Elizabeth was a fantastic dancer and I figured it must be in the genes. Jim had taken ball room dancing when he was about 10 years old and he learned to waltz, fox trot, and basic box step. (I don't think he learned the samba or anything that is too hippy dippy.) Mom and I always fight over Jim when the band plays a jitter bug. He wouldn't admit it, but he really is a natural. If he was a star I would sign him up on Dancing with the Stars.

But alas....Josh's heart was never in dance class and although he loved he got to jump on the trampoline after the dance lesson was over, he just never really cared whether he went or not. I rationalized it this way... if he doesn't turn into a dancer it will help him with coordination. After all I was reading about Roosevelt Greer taking dance to help him with football. Josh was good at remembering the routine and I remember two little girls watching every move he made and doing whatever he did. We thought it was and indication of talent....a future choreographer maybe? hahaha...

Josh has been successful blocking this trauma from his mind and I guess he might need therapy some day and bring all these repressed memories forward and purge them...or maybe he should just consider this a blessing and leave it alone. It also may explain the fact that he doesn't dance at all. It makes me sad he never gets to "cut loose" or "cut a rug". I used to love to dance until I was truly pooped out and it was a lot of fun. Although the way we danced was a bit different than the way kids danced at his school dances and I think the gyrations he observed just didn't look like anything he cared to tackle. I think he would "slow" dance now and again, but for the most part he has been avoiding dancing ever since.....But maybe it all goes back to dance class.

Speaking of the Thriller you know it? Look it up on YouTube. I don't know why I like to watch it so much....there is one video that shows all the guys in a Korean prison doing it. Nuts! There is the Penn State Band doing it and just a bunch of different people attempting this. In that movie 13 going on 30 Jennifer Garner does the dance and it is just fun to watch.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Mom's 77th

Mom and Dad on the day before Mom's birthday.....she is 77 and he is coming up on 81! They sure don't look like it.

Hannah, Ross, Lauren and Paulie in the middle. Ross is nearly 16! He is nearly 10 years younger than Josh. (Josh wishes he could have been there, too) The grands are changing so fast! It is nuts how fast time flies by! Seems like they were all tiny little people.....I can't take it! Maura wasn't there either, but she is in college and had some tests and it was understandable as well.

Marcia, Lori, Julie
Mom & Dad

My family gathered together for Mom's 77th birthday and as usual I was here and they were there. I know she understands that it is very hard for me especially at this time of year, to come north. I wish she had been born in June or July....July 4th would have been perfect for me. hahaa.. It is a looooonnnnnngggggg drive (23 hours) and there is no airport real close to where we are from, so we would still have to rent a car and drive a couple hours if we flew.

They went to a nice restaurant (The Old Library in Olean, NY) and had a great time. There were several friends of the family that joined in, too. I know Mom enjoyed it so much. When we were little kids there was never much made of her she is past due. We are thankful she is in such great health and still going to the fitness center two to three times a week. After going through the whole breast cancer scare several years ago we are especially thankful....also Mother's Day takes on a new meaning to me since she beat the "big C".

Anyway, it won't be too long before see Mom. We will take the new pup and travel to the upper woodlands of PA....and it will be great to be home again and to smell the grass...which is skinny and soft and smell the woods and have to wear a jacket after the sun goes down ..... there is no place like home especially in the summer time!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Eeny Meeny Mieny Mo.....


& After

I was the sort of kid who had calluses so thick I could walk on rough stones and hardly notice. I ran around barefoot for most of the summer months and never ever thought much about how my "toney nails" looked. (I think one of us said that when we were little kids and we just kept it even after we knew it was the wrong way to toe nails.) I cut them when they needed cut, but I was either barefoot or was wearing my red ball jet sneakers. I guess I did have some flip flops from the five and dime store. They would last for the whole summer. We wore the color right off so the flip flops are going to end up white with foot imprints so deep your foot was almost on the ground. My point is that I went years without giving much attention to my feet and they looked fine. Keeping my nails short was the only thing I did other than the occasional layer of polish.

But suddenly I am very concerned with the appearance of my feet.....but I think as you get older they just look worse. New things are happening to them.....they crack easier. Used to be they would look fine no matter what, but no more. Sooooo today I headed off to get a pedicure. I had to wait nearly thirty minutes .... so I felt like I was there a long time. I knew it was gonna take a while since they needed a lot of attention. I have only ever had one other pedicure.....before Josh and Randi's wedding....almost three years ago. I am sitting there in a line with all these other women. A lot of them are mere girls with lovely smooth feet. What are they doing here?! They don't even have stomachs to negotiate while trying to paint their toe nails. I am just here because I can't get my feet to look as tho they belong to a 25 year old without some help.

I am just not comfortable in these places. The first thing that gets me is the SMELL. It just smells like strong chemicals in there....I kept thinking that breathing that stuff all day can't be good for the people who work in there day after day.....also, seeing someone cutting on my feet is least I didn't bleed like I did last time....and then there is the idea of all the other feet that have been in this tub before mine. All this is going on in my head at the same time my back is being pummeled with the massage chair. I am just not good at relaxing in a situation like this. I know people who love this, but sorry. I guess I would rather sit with my feet in bucket of hot water in my family room while watching a Life Time Movie.... who cares if your feet look 25 years old anyway!?

We rented two movies this weekend....Charlie Wilson's War and Becoming Jane....which I loved. Anything about Jane Austin is interesting to me.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Tree Tenacity

I was walking Sophie the Schmoof...she has a lot of nick names....and I noticed we have a couple trees that were cut down and now there is follage growing out of their stumps. What is up with that?....I is this tree who we thought was gone, gone, gone showing us that it is still here with us....smaller, but here nonetheless. There is a magnolia and a dogwood doing this. Well, they are starting to look like nice little bushes...and now I am wondering if we will get blooms. I am afraid Jim will hack them down at some point and not think one thing about it, but I am in awe of their triumph and am watching and wondering what new form they will end up taking. The magnolia had been so large and strong...a favorite climbing tree for so many and now it is so tiny and weak...but full of hope.....and life. The dogwood was never a big strong tree, but a bent tree which reminded me of little bonzais in planters....maybe now it will get a second chance to grow straight and strong.

So what is the message.....some how these treelets are speaking grace to me this Friday morning and I feel like shouting.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Happy May Day memories....

Happy May Day....when I was in third grade I made May baskets and hung them on people's doors. "Whose doors?" you ask. Well, I don't remember all the baskets I hung or who all got the way these baskets were made from construction paper cones with handles glued on to hang on my bicycle handle bars......I would put flowers that I picked....mostly daffodils and candy in these make-shift baskets and hang them on door knobs and ring the door bell and then run hop on my bike and tear out. Hahaha...didn't want the lucky recipients to know who left the daffodil in the paper cone. was fun to do this and I don't think I ever told. It was fun to have a secret. I remember taking one to my teacher and I had to ride farther away then I was used to and I feared being chased by dogs and I was even a bit afraid of not finding my way back. Looking back on this it cracks me up. Port Allegany isn't big enough to get lost! I rode to my best friend's house and left one and to friends of the family...I really felt like I was on a secret mission!

I was also thinking today of the time the first grade picked a mother to come and sit in the middle of the cafeteria...which also served as our gym after the tables were all moved aside.... Mom was sitting next to the May pole and we all danced around her holding ribbons tied to the May pole. Mom still shudders to think of that embarrassing experience. She just didn't understand why she was the only mother there and why we were dancing around her singing some May day tune...hahhaha I probably volunteered her for May Queen when nobody else wanted to freak their Mom out. Who knows, but I was thrilled to have my mother there. I wish I had a picture of my Mommie the May Queen....1961.

After a person leaves grade school May Day just isn't any big let's all change this. Next year we will have a May day event...baskets with flowers and candy for all! We will sing a little song, do a little've got the picture.