Monday, July 24, 2006
While my sister, Linda, was visiting we talked about how too many possessions can be a problem in our lives. Especially when you know you have something, but can't find it. We both agreed that we need to simplify our lives and pare down. I have been on that mission since I retired four+ years ago. I've done well to not buy as much and bring it into the house. I've also cleaned and organized and tried to find a place for everything. I still have a long way to go, since I've been a collector for years. Linda and I wanted a sign that said "Simplify" just as a reminder. I know you can buy a wooden sign like that at a lot of stores that sell crafts. But I told her that if we really were true to the concept we would make our own sign. So we foraged through some left over wood scraps from the addition and found a rectangular piece for both of us. But leave it to us not to do it simple. We looked up the phrase "Lighten up"and translated it into French....Eclairassez. We put this on our sign with a stenciled fleur-de-lis on each side. Eclairassez can mean lighten up your possessions, but it can also mean lighten up your spirit, don't take life so seriously. Or, as we laughed, it could mean "Eat more eclairs!!"
Happy 40th Birthday to Don's brother, Tiger! We celebrated his milestone at Charlotte and Don's house at Treasure Lake in DuBois. After a delicious meal of grilled chicken, salad, and potatoes Charlotte brought out chocolate cupcakes with small black candles in the shape of letters which spelled "over the hill". Tiger got a kick out of them and the baseball cap which had a flashing red light, a horn, and some buttons that said "slow moving". Charlotte really knows how to make a day special with her thoughtfullness. Her ability to give to others makes her very high thought of by everyone who knows her. It's always fun to be around her and her husband, Don because of the laughter and happy times. We are so lucky to have them as family.
Sunday, July 23, 2006
What a cold, rainy, miserable day it was on Saturday, the second day of the Zippo-Case Swap meet. My sister, Linda, and I were grateful on Friday to have a good spot near the outside of the huge tent and happy for the breeze which kept the high temperatures from annoying us. But the next day the torrential downpours forced us to move our table nearer to the center of the tent. The long rain caused puddling and people were walking through inches of water. Linda had brought some knives and lighters to sell and luckily just the right buyer came along in the afternoon. It was probably our first, and our last, swap meet.
Friday, July 14, 2006
This random word was suggested to journal about by the Muse Newsletter. I can't but smile when I think of the word jitterbug. There are many images that come to mind from my teenage years. I grew up in the 50's and 60's and dancing was one of my favorite activities. I recall rushing home from junior high in time to go to my friend Carole's house in time for American Bandstand. For an hour and a half we would watch the latest dances and imitate them. On the weekends I went to The Stable (YWCA) to dance with the boys who would brave walking all the way across the gym to ask me to dance. I can picture in my mind the time I went with friends to Alleghany State Park and danced to "SPlish, Splash" in their rec building. But my favorite of all my jitterbug memories was when I danced with my mother in our basement during one of the famous parties she would throw. That memory brings a tear to my eye, since I lost my mother over 5 years ago. I will always associate jitterbugging with pleasant times.
Ryan just recently met Jenny, the girl of his dreams. The words "love at first sight" were written for these two. Introduced through friends they immediately were attracted to each other. Everything about them seemed to click--their interests, their goals, their sense of humor. They knew from the start that it was meant to be. When Ryan brought Jenny to Bradford to "meet the parents" he also took her to his favorite haunt, Rimrock, to purpose. He choose a beautiful rectangular cut diamond which Jenny loved. Now they are busy planning a wedding in Tennessee for October 21.
I have been blessed to have two of the most remarkable sisters in the world. The joy we get by just being together is indescribable. We call our vists the "sister fix" because it cures all our woes. Let me tell you about their best qualities.
*honest, but not hurtful *No worried about keeping tabs or taking turns, but doesn't take advantage of you or take you for granted *sincerely shares in your successes without being competitive *accepting of your faults and insecurities *loves you for your actions as well as your intentions *loyal *loves you no matter what * can laugh with you and not just at you *trustworthy with even the things you hold closest *no matter how much time passes or how far away you live you can call or visit and it seems like you've never been apart *you can be in the same car and be ok with silence *forgiving *someone you can laugh with. someone you can cry with. *listens, not just with their ears, but with their hearts and then remembers.
What a hot time to be roofing. Don got up early today to start before the heat of the day would drive him indoors. The roof of the addition and the back of the house are almost finished now. Don's "thing-to-do" list is extremely long. He will do most of the work on the addition family room himself including plumbing for the powder room and heat and electricity. It is good that he is so versatile and talented. He often claims that he had to learn how to do everything from scratch as he didn't have anyone to teach him. He learned well!
Thursday, July 13, 2006
I was looking for a picture of me to add to my profile and realized that because I am a usually the photographer that I have very few pictures of myself. I've colored my hair red which I love and wish I had done many years ago. This picture is pre-red, about 5 years ago. This was taken on the porch of a restaurant when we celbrated by retirement from teaching. Things to know about me:
1. I love my family. I love to be with them, talk to them, interact with them.
2. I love the arts. Any artistic endeavor or musical selection will tickle my fancy.
3. I loved teaching. I put all my creative effort into being the best teacher I could be.
4. Simple things make me the happiest. Sometimes the way the sun shines through the window and illuminates the arrangement of my French tray that I made myself with menus from my trip to Provence, a vase of yellow tulips, and a marble apple make me smile.
5. I like to keep busy. Every day is filled with "doing". I get up each day to exercise, meet my friends for tea, do housekeeping chores and use the computer.
6. I love to read. I'm a voracious reader and will read all genres. I love best sellers and self help books. I am currently listening to a book on tape called..simplify your life.
I am looking for as much joy in my life as I can find. It doesn't take a lot to put a smile on my face and my joy last night occured as I was winding down for bedtime. I turned on PBS and to my surprise there was a Bruce Springtein concert on. Now I never was a Bruce fan before. His gravely voice and sometimes guttural muttering didn't appeal to me. But one day on CMT I caught some of his special called The Seeger Sessions. Bruce and company went to a house in the country and proceeded to create this acoustic folk album in just a few days. The songs were familiar, such as Erie Canal and We Shall Overcome. But there were new (to me) songs like Pay Me My Money Down. The music was so well done with solos from the band that just were fantastic. I liked it so much that I immediately ordered the Cd/dvd from amazon. So when I saw the special on tv last night I just had to watch it. How full of joy was my heart to see this amazing concert. What I really loved about it was that Bruce and the band did not copy the identical album played in the same way, but added many variations to the music. And he took time to give a little background about each song and added new ones. I thoroughly enjoyed the program even though it took me way past my bedtime. What a joy!
Sunday, July 09, 2006
Saturday, July 08, 2006
What a super vacation Don and I had! The fourth of July weekend at my sister's Lake house near Roanoke, Virginia was a time for family to be together. My son, Chris, and his two boys, Danny and Scott, were there along with his girlfriend, Suzy and her daughter, Kelly. My younger son Ryan came over from Tennessee with his new fiance, Jenny. Diane's family...daughter Becky and son in law, Jeff, son Josh and wife Caron, husband Jeff were there. My sister Linda also came from Virginia. My dad, who is 87, was there also. It was very hot, almost 100, but we had the lake to swim in and a nice cool house to be in. The boys played pool and poker and the girls enjoyed chatting and being together. My sore back caused a lot of pain so I was lowkey all weekend. On the fourth we traveled over to Tennessee to visit with Ryan and Jen for a few days. It was great to be with them. They make a darlling couple and I went with Jenny to see her wedding dress. We also picked out the centerpieces for their reception. They will be glass pillar candle holders with a ring of fall berries around them. How beautiful they will look on the tables. I was so happy to be a small part of their planning. I also saw their wedding rings. I know they will be a very happy couple.