Friday, December 22, 2006

Coal for Christmas -- jcarolek

The Christmas I was nine remains a fond memory, not because of what I got, but because of what I almost did not. Always, always, my father reminded us, “Just before Christmas, we’re as good as we can be!”

Oh, I believed. I believed I was being as good as I could be. I believed I was to be rewarded with the bicycle of my own, I believed. Well, actually, I believed I was as good as I could be when anyone was watching. I didn’t really allude myself to believe I was actually being as good as I could be. But, I spent a great deal of time and put forth a significant

Not a Christmas story, but timely, nonetheless -- jcarolek

My son was an early reader. When he began kindergarten he was already reading and he read Treasure Island, the full version, when he was six. Smart kid, to be sure. So you can understand my dilemma when he seemed completely lost in the simple telling of time. I don’t know whether the other little tykes were as confused as mine, but his teacher reported this as an area where he could benefit from some extra help (at home, you know, Mom, get off your duff and teach

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Orchestrating fun -- jcarolek

When I was ten years old, I had a birthday party. I had wanted one for as long as I could remember, but with six kids, raising a family on a government salary, Dad and Mom were not in the habit of “wasting” money on parties. But I wanted one. And so my mother told me I could have one, but I would have to do all the work to make it happen.

I busily made my plans. I made paper party hats. I made the list of games we would play. I made the list of friends

Sunday, November 19, 2006

I learned it from a monkey -- jcarolek

When I was a little girl, my parents decided to get a new pet. Yes, we had the dog (Honey) and the cat (Yata), but into our family we welcomed Impy. Impy was a squirrel monkey. Now, I suppose it is natural for a family of eight (six kids and two parents) to NEED another mouth to feed, another joker to clean up after and, well, you get the picture.

Impy was purchased from a local pet store and it was clear from the beginning that he had some “issues.”

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Gift of Warmth -- jcarolek

My children were six and eight years old the Christmas that stands out from all others. Having moved from Florida to Virginia just one year previously, we were still in the infancy stage of making new friends and creating a new life for our family. In an attempt to combine the old with the new, we had invited my mother and stepfather from Maryland and two of my brothers from Florida to spend Christmas Day with us, and had been invited to some friends' house for food and festivities Christmas afternoon.

Christmas Day had been planned to begin with our traditional attendance at the Midnight Mass at the local

Monday, November 13, 2006

ROCK ON BUD!!! -- jcarolek

When I met my father-in-law, in March of 1998, I recognized immediately that meeting him was, indeed, a privilege. At 73 years young, this man, Bud to his family and friends, was still a “doer.” Sitting still was not his forte. He had retired ten years earlier, and had not missed a beat of life since.

His garden was his primary labor of love, and I have written before on what a wonderful gardener he was. His quilting was another labor of love which kept him out of my mother-in-law’s hair during those winter months when Mother Nature made working in the garden impossible in South Carolina.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

A veteran and a red pen -- jcarolek

Once, my daughter wrote a thank you note to my great Aunt June. Aunt June was known for her “moodiness.” Had she exercised her body as much as she exercised her Last Will and Testament, which she constantly changed to reflect her latest mood, she would have probably lived another ten years, but, I digress.

Aunt June sent my daughter a slip for Christmas. As long as I can recall, Aunt June had sent young girls slips for Christmas. I never wore any that she sent me, and my daughter’s slips met much the same fate. I think Aunt June had purchased the clearance rack at a 1950’s lingerie counter

Thursday, November 9, 2006

There's bald man sitting on my couch -- jcarolek

I read a very sad and touching post today by a fellow blogger who is suffering with the loss of her beloved grandmother. She has lost her not to death, but to Alzheimer’s. We all know, theoretically, how devastating this disease can be, but the true impact is only felt when it is someone you love.

My father-in-law, Bud was from a large family – all girls except Bud. Two sisters died early, one from cancer, one in early childhood. When I met the family, nine years ago, the remaining siblings included Bud and four sisters. All were sharp of mind and sharp of appearance.

Are you the patient or am I? -- jcarolek

When my son was one month shy of 17, he had a head-on collision, caused by an epileptic seizure. We did not know he had epilepsy at the time, and, oddly enough, according to the neurologists, his epilepsy was a typical childhood “form” which is essentially “outgrown” as an adult. He just happened to have a grand mal seizure before he “outgrew” it. I am not an expert on epilepsy, but my brother Ted was diagnosed with it at the age of 23 and my sister-in-law, my son’s aunt, was diagnosed with it at age 18. Both apparently had it as children, but, again, nobody knew until their first grand mal seizure. This, however, is not germane to the story I wish to relate, save the fact that this head-on collision resulted in Stephen being airlifted

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Gripped by Fear -- jcarolek

I was the second born in a family of six children. My sister was 14 months my elder and generally stood head and shoulders above me all my life. I was thankful for my four younger brothers, who were my slaves, audience, congregation, students, depending on my mood and theirs. At times I must wonder what my parents were thinking, leaving my sister “in charge” of us beginning at a very early age. As they went out the door to whatever important thing took them from the bedlam they had created in their bedroom, my father would always say,

“What Jeannie says, goes. If you don’t like it, do it and complain about it later.”

Well, as I have mentioned earlier, Jeannie was not fond

Saturday, November 4, 2006

And about my feet -- jcarolek

In my recent post I bemoaned the size of my forehead, which is gigantic. As I finished off that entry, it occurred to me that the other physical oddity which kept me from joining the ranks of the beautiful, and the popular, was the size of my feet.

Yes, indeedy….I had tiny ones. So you see, while I was blessed with the gift of a huge brain, evidenced by that gigantic forehead, I was unable to stand on my own two feet! Well, not really, but they were really small. Now I could have understood this had I come from small-footed parents,

Friday, November 3, 2006

And today I follow the sun -- jcarolek

On my morning walk I took my camera.
Fall is offering great beauty which I dare not miss.
Today my eye was caught by the elusive sun.
I could see him shining on the leaves, but where was he?
On my way back home, I saw his sparkle and caught his pinpoint of light.
As I drew closer to home, I saw him as he danced in the woods, ducking in and out of the trees,
so colorfully adorned in their fall leaves.
I felt his pull even as I watched him rise. And I followed.
And when at last, I topped the hill,
I saw that weak fall sun,
Had taken just a moment out of his busy day,
To bring light to my home.
Please, enjoy my sun, which I share with you.

Living up to my forehead -- jcarolek

Funny what our parents tell us to help us deal with the oddities with which we are afflicted. I was born cross-eyed, with severe vision problems. I had surgery at eight months old and began wearing glasses when I was 10 months old. I’ve worn glasses all my life. I’ve been called four-eyes, and other equally imaginative names.

I started talking at eight months old and had a lisp. I carried that lisp with me until I was 15 years old. Now, these “defects” might have been what most would consider

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Back and Forth and a Path -- jcarolek

The first day of each month is a time I set aside for reflection and to look ahead at the possibilities.

October was a full month. My best friend married and I was her matron of dubious honor. My loved one made baby steps back along the familiar path of recovery, though the steps this time are more carefully taken. My daughter successfully established her floral design business in Napa, CA. My son, with his girlfriend and his best friend from childhood successfully established their data archiving business,

A rubber, you say? -- jcarolek

When I was thirteen I returned to the United States, having lived for three years in Cheltenham, England. I brought with me my full blown British accent, acquired within a few short months of living in the ‘hood.

Naturally, at thirteen, I was desperate fit in with my peers, so I found it objectionable that my accent made me different. My brother Tim and I shared a desire to rid ourselves as quickly as humanly possible of the accent which had dubbed us both, “English Muffin” by our new

Sheep's Brains and Snails -- jcarolek

Now, on the subject of different words which, as a famous man once noted result in “two countries separated by a common language,” I can also attest to the fact that as a youngster, my new American friends were quite appalled when I spoke of some of my favorite dishes, served regularly in England for lunch at school.

Of particular note was a dish we called Faggots.
What, I hear you cry, could that possibly be?
Well, what it LOOKED like was meatballs in gravy.
What we were TOLD it was, was SHEEP’S BRAINS……

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

This is not intended as a Sad Post

One day, when my son was a month shy of 17, I answered a knock on my front door and was greeted with a Sheriff’s Deputy and a good friend of mine. Both looked very alarmed. I was informed my son had been in a head-on collision, was unconscious and had sustained undetermined injuries. He was being life-flighted to the Norfolk General Hospital Trauma Unit.

He had been driving

We Played Together -- jcarolek

When I was in eighth grade I auditioned for and landed the role of Mother Abyss in our school's production of the “Sound of Music.” My solo was, “Climb Every Mountain.” I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the experience. I learned to build sets, and learned my lines. I learned the lines of the actors with whom I was performing as

So, you have a Linus, do you? -- jcarolek

I did. My little guy Stephen was a thumb sucking, blanket carrying little guy. I received lots of advice.

    * Don’t let him suck his thumb, his teeth will be crooked
    * He shouldn’t still be dragging that blanket around at his age

Anyone who has a Linus, knows the drill.

But, everything happens in due time. I am a firm believer

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Dull, Trees, Bikes and Boys -- jcarolek

Some days I just seem to feel dull. I don’t really feel like talking to others and I can’t really seem to get the things done that I want to get done. Today was one of these days. Nothing really lousy happened, but I found myself impatient and somewhat at loose ends. Don’t get me wrong,

Saturday, October 21, 2006

An Eight Day Clock -- jcarolek

On the mantel over the fireplace in my in-laws’ living room sits an eight day clock. This clock belonged to my husband’s grandmother and she had had it for many years before she died at the age of 97. For the past twenty or so years since her passing, it has kept time on the mantel in her son’s house.

An eight day clock is just that. It is engineered to keep accurate time for eight days and then it stops. Unlike the clocks of today, the older clocks required regular winding, and so it was that every Sunday, before going to church, my father-in-law wound the clock. He took great care to wind it just tight enough,

Friday, October 20, 2006

Trust and Balls --- jcarolek

When I was a schoolgirl in my first school in England, I desperately wanted to have friends. I was American in a school full of British schoolgirls. At age 10, I had studied French for only one year to their four years of French and two years of Latin. I didn’t know the British monetary system, so I was “behind” in math. All in all, I felt like a big dummy.

As kids will do, I “proved myself” in other talents.

We didn't have time to practice -- jcarolek

The audience filed into the auditorium at the nearby community college. Most were adults, but there were a few children. Three young sisters sat in front of me, but two rows closer to the stage To my right were a couple and their two year old. Again, not directly next to me, but within earshot.

I worried that this was

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Do you Ride Horses Much? -- jcarolek

When I was twelve, I lived in Cheltenham England. I attended Charlton Park Convent school. My schoolmates were all girls. One day, as I was walking across the gym, another girl, Theresa Davis, to be specific, said to me,

“Do you ride horses much?” in her very British accent.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Good Girl -- jcarolek

Today I needed a break. I took a walk with my outdoor critters and marveled, as I always do, at their singleness of purpose and complete and total enthusiasm in our walks. I say "they" because, as you know if you have read previous entries, my adopted cat Dracula accompanies us on our walk.

There is something so natural about the way the two of them communicate. Killian, jumps about wildly,

Photo and Drawing - What do you Think? -- jcarolek

A few days ago I posted a drawing my daughter had done of her brother. She was about 15 when she did the drawing, and she drew it from a photo of her older brother, taken when he was eight. I found the photo from which she did her drawing and thought I’d repost the drawing, with the photo.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Sunglasses -- Then and Now -- jcarolek

I had one pair of sunglasses when I was a child. Only one. I was born with what was known as “crossed eyes.” Now, polite speak is “lazy eye.” But let’s just call it what it was. My parents worked hard to give me the gift of sight, which was not mine at birth. I underwent surgery on both eyes at the age of eight months and started wearing glasses at ten months.

When I was three, we moved to Cyprus.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The Rules --- jcarolek

When I lived in England I attended school at a Convent -- Charlton Park Convent, in Cheltenham England, to be specific (not that you cared, I understand.) If there is one thing the British school system excelled at, it was RULES. We had them for EVERYTHING.

A short list is provided here for

Friday, October 13, 2006

Night Noises -- jcarolek

When I was ten we moved to England. I had just completed fourth grade in the US and was excited and nervous about starting school in a new country. Upon arrival, I was tested and did poorly on the math, French and Latin portions of the entrance test. What??? I was great at math…how could this be? Well, back in 1968 the British monetary system was still base 12, rather than base 10 (decimal) used in the US. So, I needed to learn how to count monetarily in base 12.

The long and short of it was that I was put back

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Of care free days so long -- jcarolek

Softly the warm breeze,
Murmurs through the trees.
Bringing on its journey,
Smells of flowers and honey.

Images come to mind
Of a summer hard to find
Just once again.

Of carefree days, so long

Fornication and Gum -- Lessons Learned -- jcarolek

When I was 15 I had a “long distance” boyfriend. OK, so, in those days, long distance was 40 minutes away by car, but it meant we spent a LOT of time talking on the phone…not long distance, or I would have been killed. I had some interesting experiences while engaged in these “important” phone calls.

We listened to music on the phone….no joke…he’d put his favorite album on and

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Pitching A Fit and The White Bishop -- jcarolek

Pitching a fit was one of my earliest talents. I had lots of reasons to pitch them. I was number two in line behind my sister, “Miss Perfect,” about whom I have previously written. I was number two in line ahead of four brothers. Each and every day posed a new opportunity for me to pitch a fit. If it wasn’t my sister's picking on me, it was my brothers not doing what I told them to do (basically, not responding to my picking on them.)

I never shied away from an opportunity.

Boomerang Parties -- jcarolek

When my son was 21 he decided he wanted to go into the military. He wanted to work in cryptanalysis and the military offered the best training for his interests. He went through the normal application process, including the testing which resulted in his being able to “choose whatever field he wanted.” A sidebar to this story…when he took the test, he called to tell me the results. He had been “stumped” by some of the questions geared toward auto mechanics, and was

Friday, October 6, 2006

A side of tongue -- jcarolek

Today I went to lunch with a friend. We spoke of the weather (lots of rain, wind and general blustery commotion), the pond (lacking water since the dam broke, rebuilding, etc.) and family. We meet a couple of times a week for lunch and it is always nice.

Today, as always, the food was excellent.

Thursday, October 5, 2006

Half a Photograph -- jcarolek

The day I turned twenty-nine was the last day I enjoyed the company of my brother Ted. Teddy, as he had been called throughout our childhood, was my brother, four years my junior, and next to the youngest of my siblings. His freckled face and huge dimples gave him the face that people mirrored with a grin, every time they saw him. Even at just shy of twenty-five, Ted, now all grown up, possessed the nature that drew people to him. His grin was contagious.

Ted left my house that night,

The Shrimp, The Gull, and He-Man -- jcarolek

Another true story, from the tales of my former life

During my first marriage I lived in Tallahassee, FL. Weekends were made for fishing and we generally headed off to Apalachicola, or took a longer drive to St. George Island where I loved to surf fish.

One Saturday I was surf fishing

Friday, September 29, 2006

The Artist -- jcarolek

My grandfather was the 20th Century man. Born in 1904 in Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, he was the eldest of five children. He was somewhat sickly, took a little longer to get through school than was normal, lost his mother at age 16 and was required to help raise his younger siblings. His father worked long hours at the mill. Larry, my granddad, took over as the other parent.

Larry did graduate and went on to attend

Chainsaw, Wench, and Bark -- jcarolek

Chainsaw lesson 101

  • Judy lives in a house in the woods on a pond
  • Judy wants to see the pond from the house.
  • Judy decides to cut down some trees.
  • Judy takes the electric chain saw and starts her work

BUZZZZZ --- Down goes the first tree
BUZZZZZ --- Down goes the second tree
BUZZZZZ --- Down goes the third tree
BUZZZZZ --- Down goes the fourth tree..well, almost..

  • Tree number four gets hung up in the other trees in the woods, only falls part way
  • Judy surveys the situation
  • The tree branches in two a few feet up
  • Judy decides to cut through each branch, then the tree will fall all the way

BUZZZZZ --- down goes the first branch
BUZZZZZ --- down goes the second branch
WHACK!!! --- Up goes the bottom of the tree trunk, hits Judy SMACK in the mouth
BOOOOOM!!! --- Goes Judy, to the ground
THUMP!!! --- Goes the chainsaw to the ground

OUCH, OUCH, OUCH!!!! Judy comes to, on the ground
EWWWWW!!! Blood everywhere, in mouth, bad taste, BIG PAIN

Judy gets up
Judy picks up chainsaw
Judy puts chainsaw away
Judy goes into the kitchen
John looks at Judy
John says, “what did you do?”

Judy ignores John
Judy goes to bathroom
Judy examines damage
Judy has BIG hole in face
Judy has much crap in hole in face
Judy cleans out crap as much as possible

John suggests emergency room – stitches

Judy decides not enough time to deal with stitches

Judy holds paper towel with ice on hole in face.

Bleeding stops in about 3 hours
Huge, ugly black “thing” still in hole in face
On closer inspection, “thing” is hunk of bark from bad tree

One week later
Inside hole is healed
Outside hole is healed
Big Bark Bandaid left nicer scar than stitches would have

Two months later
Feeling has returned to lip
Scar is barely noticeable
Judy still cuts trees

But Judy makes sure she cut ALL THE WAY through the trunk BEFORE cutting off the upper part!

And now you know the saga of the CHAINSAW, THE WENCH and THE BARK

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Stew, you say???? --- jcarolek

Another story from the “my former life” series.

When I was a newlywed, living in a trailer park in Tallahassee, FL, we owned one car. My husband drove it to work and I, working as a seamstress at the time, took the bus to the mall where I made custom clothing. My husband and I worked different shifts…I worked days and he worked nights.

Those were the days…we were in love…I was pregnant

Standing Tall -- jcarolek

My son was always small. He was the shortest in his class in grade school, the shortest in the school in middle school, and high school, until his junior year. He was never picked on for his size, rather, he was treated as somewhat of a “mascot.”

To say he was happy with his stature would be to lie. He wanted to be tall,

Queen of Stale News -- jcarolek

Do you have a “Queen of Stale News?”

When my daughter was about three, she LOVED company. It didn’t matter who or why they had come to the door, once in the house, they were regaled with ALL the important things this little child with a big vocabulary could remember…she reeled off her list, as if she were the news announcer on the T.V.

One day, my brother Tim, having visited only

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

A Jarring Exercise == jcarolek

Today I will take yet another jar of coins to the bank. The jar is heavy; it is one of more than twenty such jars. My bank offers a cool money counting machine that takes my coins and produces a receipt, which I then take to the teller for deposit into my account. I have been taking these jars to perform this activity every day for the past few days.

Yesterday, as I lifted the heavy pickle jar

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Nursery Rhymes and Harmony -- jcarolek

Every child I know learned nursery rhymes, most of them little jingles or chants that young voices could accommodate nicely, allowing the expression of joy in a somewhat controlled manner. In early blogs, I have written about the music gifted to me and my siblings by my father for whom music defines life. So it was, at age 14, as I prepared my song for the school talent show, that I learned the "song"

For every thing -- jcarolek

Today I was practicing with the rest of the choir for my best friend's upcoming wedding. One song she has requested is the Parable..the one from which the Byrds made their hit, Turn, Turn, Turn. The words hit me today, in a way I least expected and I could not sing. I could still play, but the tears, choking off my voice and running down my face made it impossible to sing. Why is it that sometimes a song,

Monday, September 18, 2006

The I Hate Jeannie Club -- jcarolek

I was born number two child, number two daughter, 14 months after my sister. In quick succession followed four boys. My parents had six children in seven years. My sister was the bane of my existence.
  • She got to do everything first,
  • she was the "pretty" one,
  • she was the bossy one,
  • she was "miss perfect"

My brothers copied me. Everything I did,

The transformation -- jcarolek

At 21 years old, my daughter knew what was what and what she wanted. She had landed a great job (by her standards, not mine) in Charlottesville, VA. She wanted to find a place to live, where she could have her cat and maybe a dog. She wanted some room, some space. One day in January, she told me she'd found a cabin she could rent for, well, a reasonable monthly rent. I was happy for her.

Iron Rules

I remember when I was a little girl...very little...I couldn't wait to be ALLOWED to iron, just like my older sister. I was 5, she was 6. Yes, my mother believed in teaching her youngsters ALL the necessary skills, at an early age.

Age 6 - Daddy's handkerchiefs

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Growing Up and The Best Christmas Gift

For my father's Christmas present a few years ago, he was 70, I gave him a homemade gift. I compiled a notebook of songs, with guitar chords. For the cover, I made a collage of photos taken at the family reunion four months earlier. I slipped into the front of the song book two things. A CD I recorded with my two children of my father's favorite songs, and a "poem" which I hoped

Saturday, September 16, 2006

When the Gardener is no more...

On August 30, 2006, my favorite Gardener passed away. At 81 he worked the red South Carolina soil, producing more vegetables, grapes, apples, figs, and peaches than anyone I have ever seen! His garden covered about one acre and he worked it by hand...a dawn until dusk kind of guy. He battled the fire-ants who challenged his every move!

Every visit to SC was a visit to my idea of culinary heaven! My mother-in-law is a fabulous (southern) cook and the corn, field peas, beans, greens of all kinds, okra, tomatos, sweet potatoes, Irish potatoes, cabbage, grapes, apples, figs, peaches, onions, cucumbers, melons, peppers (should I go on) were always served in plentiful portions!

Bud (my FIL) produced so much from his garden that he had a regular stream of customers, ready to buy the surplus bounty he had picked. It was a standing joke that my MIL was the "receptionist, and chief order taker!" She grumbled about this. My husband grumbled about not being able to pull into their driveway, for all the customers' cars.

In the days, and now weeks since Bud passed away, his garden, so full of bounty, has stood as a testiment to his labors of love. My MIL looks out the window with a tear escaping from her eye, as she watches the "customers", now "harvesters", pick their own vegetables and fruit. They pay her for their gatherings...the same prices Bud charged. She knows Bud would want all this food to be used, not left to rot on the vine, and yet...

For me, I know the days of the "care packages", bushels of fresh produce, which Bud always insisted we carry back to Virginia with us, are gone forever. My mother-in-law will no longer make her fabulous dishes from the fruits of his labors.

Next year, the garden will sit idle. It will soon turn to weeds and be mowed like the lawn.

As the Gardener is no more, neither, then, is the Garden.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The masked face of an intruder!!!

I was working in my office when the racket began. Killian was beside herself. I came downstairs to determine the cause of the commotion and what to my wondering eyes did appear but…
the masked face of an intruder!!!
Killian was having no part of it….this guy HAD to go! (She had already endured the meter reader at 7:00 am and this was JUST NOT COOL.
But did I help? NOOOOO…I went back inside to get the camera. After the photo op, I did pull Killian in long enough

Who's the official WIZARD of Electronics in your house???

Are you the electronic WIZARD in your house? I am! Do I want to be? Not really. Can I officially claim the title? Well, only here in the Blogs....

Of course, in our house my HUSBAND is the official WIZARD of electronics. After all, he is

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

When my cats are old and gray -- jcarolek

I wonder if I'll ever see

My cats looking older than me
By all accounts they are quite old
Their years are ours times seven (I've been told)

I have three cats ten, eight and

Monday, September 11, 2006

Stories from my former life -- jcarolek

When my son was in 9th grade (freshman in highschool) he went to NYC with the high school marching band. I went on the trip as a chaperone...more stories about that later....

The trips was great. We saw Les Mis and Phantom

Friday, September 8, 2006

Stories from my former life -- Kindergartener Skips School

When my children were 5 and 7 we moved Florida to Virginia. It was Christmas time and we had lots of snow, which was a new and fun experience for the children. We also got a new puppy for the children to help they aclimate to their new home.

All went well and January came and the kids began

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

So Dam Sad

Before the dam broke, Cow Creek Mill Pond was beautiful, teaming with fish and a lovely place to spend a quite afternoon.

Then come Ernesto....and

Sunday, September 3, 2006

Stories From My Former Life -- another entry

When my children were very young, I made most of their clothes. In the evening, after putting them to bed, I would sew an outfit for my daughter or a shirt for my son, etc. I usually completed the item I started before heading to bed myself, as I was never sure how soon I'd get back to it, should

Saturday, September 2, 2006

Stories from my former life -- Jennifer LOVES Daddy

When my daughter was very young (about two) she would awaken very early every morning, climb out of her bed and come crawl into our bed (on my side). Every day my husband would complain that she favored me over him. Every day I assured him that this was not true...she would crawl in on his side one day.

Happy was I one fine morning when Jen came padding into our room and headed for Daddy's side of the bed.

Happy was I when she said, "Daddy?"

Happy was he as he reached to pick her up to help her crawl in.

UGGGGGHHHHHHH!!!! Unhappy was he when she puked on him (right in the face)!

(Happy was I that she had selected DADDY to take care of her that morning!)

HAHA...I still laugh when I think about that morning.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Top Dog? -- jcarolek

Our family has been acquiring pets over the past ten 10 years. The first to join the family was Mel, the cat who masquerades as a lion. Regal he is and regal he looks...but don't let that fool you...he's not too bright. His biggest thrill in life is sitting on the exact piece of newspaper you are trying to read! We have to throw him "decoys"...yesterday's newspaper,

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Eye tests - DMV style and other nonsense

I was born with a fairly common DEFECT politely referred to as "cross-eyed". Lots of surgery, exercises and glasses since I was 10 months old resulted in the GREAT vision I enjoy today (yuck, yuck).

Nevertheless, this has afforded me the opportunity to really enjoy life's little bits of nonsense. One of these is the trip to the DMV to get my new license.

Arriving from FL with a valid FL driver's license,

Monday, August 21, 2006

Another first husband funny -- true story

My post yesterday about my first husband and his DE accent got me thinking about some other funny episodes.

Every year, we had a big Halloween party for our friends in our local community theater group. (They love to dress up anyway.) We lived in a house in the woods with a 1/4 mile private dirt/gravel road/driveway. My then-husband,