Archive | February 2009

Stories from my father

In my last post (which may very well go private very soon… I think I told too much), I touched breifly on a story my father told me this morning, about my ear problems.

Growing up, I knew my grandfather told wonderful stories. He told me how I was part cowboy and part black foot indian and I could tell, because just look at the bottom of my mother’s feet. I did, and they were black! (I was very young, very gullible, and she went barefoot most of the time). We got back from Kentucky that summer, and in the fall in my second grade class, they asked all of us if we had any American Indian heritage. I proudly raised my hand. “I’m half black-foot indian!” I declared.

My mother started getting baffling mail from the tribe. Then a phone call, where they talked about her not honoring her heritage (her father sailed from Scotland, her mother’s family the same)… Until she talked to the school office, she had no idea why these people were harassing her.

It makes for an amusing story now. It’s in the chronicles of family history now.

My father’s stories, however, were a little more sly. He told me how he swam across a frozen river once, and how he had to walk uphill to school– both ways. Listening to my father requires paying attention, because he also told stories, real stories, of growing up. The difference is in the wittiness. The true stories are still gripping, but they don’t really require you to puzzle out what he’s saying.  And yes, I was way too old when I figured out the sly part.

One of the witticisms that I caught as a teenage was the CGU2L. He talked about them as if they were a bomber that he flew in during WWII. Say it out loud… CGU2L. If you don’t get it yet, don’t worry. It took me a while too. C… G…U…2….L.  It’s a weird spelling of the word Sea Gull. I used to giggle as a teen when he’d say it at the beach and my friends would be confounded but unwilling to admit to it.

As much as I remember my mother reading stories to me growing up, I remember my father telling stories.  I’m able to honor both of them. I am my mother’s little book worm, and I have a knack for telling stories.

I love hearing my father’s stories. Stories of his early life, World War II stories, stories of being married and broke with my mom. I also love the fables he tells… Like the ship trapped in my ear, doomed to cause me pain everytime I move my head.

And yes. I’ve decided that I’m going to be stealing some of his stories in part or in all. If I ever get them published, I’ll make sure that his name is on the book as well.

Stories & Itty Bitty White Lies

So we’ve all been sick lately. Ray had Strep Throat, which made for a terrible weekend for him. High fevers, trouble swallowing… the whole she-bang. I’d been having problems with my ear, and feared I had given this terrible sickness to him but I didn’t have time to go to the doctors myself. Brian did, and discovered that he had the beginnings of Strep as well. (I finally made it to the doctor’s yesterday… By God’s grace no strep– ear infection with fluid build-up was my diagnosis).

SO. Most people who know me know that I have a general rule that I don’t lie. It bites you in the butt, makes it very hard to keep things straight, and quite frankly it’s not worth the loss of trust. I write fiction, tell stories… But as a general rule, no lying.

The story-telling comes naturally. I talked with Dad this morning, and told him about my ear and he told me a lovely story of why fluid build-up in my ears hurts like the dickens. Apparently, there is a ship in my ear, and when I shake it it causes waves. The masts rise and fall, nicking the top of my ear canal. And those poor mates trying to swab the decks are forced to run after loose cannons– every once in a while one will get away and explode– which causes the exploding pain only once in a while.  Very clearly a story, although it’s one I really really like! (I may steal it from you Dad, and make a children’s story about it!)

Yesterday was a long day for me. Went to work, hustled and bustled. Had to leave a bit early, because Auntie Gacca’s doctor office asked for her to come in early. Since she had watched Ray while he was still contagious for me– no brainer. But I hadn’t eaten except a couple of bites all day long. So. Took her to her doctor’s office, took her back home to a neighboring town, and went to see my doctor. AN HOUR AND A HALF WAIT. But, I got what I needed and it was now 7:30pm. I had a long drive home, had to take Gacca home still, and, well… I was hungry. So we hit the drive through.

Now, here comes the itty bitty white lie. When I got home, I told Brian that no, I didn’t eat at McD’s. I only got a sweet tea. Heh. AND OF COURSE I GOT CAUGHT IN THE LIE WHICH IS WHY I NORMALLY DON’T LIE!  Apparently, I dropped a couple of french fries while driving. SIGH.

SO. Why even bother? I’ll tell you. I only really do this with Brian. Why? Because it’s easier than dealing with the guilt trip or anger or pouting. I can take the consequences with everyone else, up to and including my bosses.  The truth is, lately, I don’t know what’s going on with him. There are some things that he’s dealing with, and it seems to make him upset all the time and of course the person who gets the brunt of it is me. Why? Because I stay. I won’t leave, or tell him he’s a bad person because he’s having a bad day.

Yesterday, he barely talked to me before work. Even though we shared a car ride to his work. I was in the bath-room a lot, and he didn’t ask why (violently sick, although I still made it to work, which is why I didn’t take anything substantial for lunch). I’m guessing he assumed I was in there, smoking, avoiding taking care of my responsibilities.

I wish, sometimes, that he could see the world through my eyes. That he could see the beauty and the joy and just let the other stuff fall away for a while. YES, I know that things are bad. I know that money is tight, and that yesterday was a horrible day at work and we have even more horrible things to come. But on the way home to pick up Gacca for her doctor’s appointment I saw the most beautiful sight. God had hung one of his paintings in the sky for me and I composed a (very bad) poem to him which I kept saying louder and louder about Belief.

Many people don’t get this about me. I am outwardly a very optimistic, rose colored glasses kind of girl. I know that things are bad right now. I KNOW that they might get worse and it breaks my heart. But I also believe deep down inside that there is a plan for us. There is beauty and joy even in the darkest times of life. Yes, it is hard. But someone has to be the cheer-leader. Someone has to try and make a happy home.

So what if that home has a little dust or a dirty dish or two? I never let the dishes over-flow (I can’t, no dishwasher and no counter space and a two year old with a five year old’s reach).  Complete filth does bother me, but a little dust, a little mess… not so much. Yes, I tend to nest. But that’s the way I am…. I love people for who they are.

Love me the same way.


Quick Bits

Just a really quick update on various things before I get to work.

Yes, I said work. I am working 2 days a week, sometimes 3. It gets me out of the house and stretches that unemployment further. Plus, I do like my job (most days LOL).

Ray got his hair cut on Saturday. He looks like a real boy now… No more baby. No more Rocker Baby hair for him either. It is a proper little boy hair cut and he looks adorable– just not like my baby any more. AND MOMMA MISSES HIS CURLS!

Found out that the course of my writing is apparently one of the toughest to break into. However, as I’ve mentioned before… Money is not the point. (I keep telling myself that over and over, maybe some day I’ll believe it). It’s the enjoyment that I get out of it, and the bonding with Ray. And maybe I’ll share it soon. We’ll see.

Anyhoo– Time to punch the clock. OUCH!


Mommyhood Changes Everything


 I always figured that I’d write the books I loved to read: romance, fantasy, chick lit, that sort of thing.  I’ve always been eclectic about both my reading and my writing, so this particular writer fantasy  suited me. Of course, I haven’t published that “breakout” novel, hit the bestseller list, or any of the things that go along with the fantasy.  Kind of like the kids (both young and old) who play air guitar along with their favorite songs.

Still, I wrote. Some bad, some good, almost none of it published.  But that was ok.

Since I’ve had Ray and entered the ranks of Mommyhood, my writing has changed. No big suprise there, as  Mommyhood changes everything. I just didn’t realize that it could take me back to the beginning.

When I was much, much younger– 18-19-20, I used to write children’s stories. I babysat alot, and the kiddies loved them and well, it was fun. So I told stories. Most were off the cuff, but some of them I wrote down.

Since Ray, I started writing poetry. A lot of it geared straight at him. And I love it. I love taking the experience of listening to the rain falling on the window and immortalizing it. It’s pretty cool.

And now there are the ones that I make up, all on my own, just for him. I don’t write my large, sweeping stories any longer. But that’s ok.  I’m enjoying what I’m doing again, having fun with words.


If you’re lucky maybe someday I’ll tell you the story of Franken Baby.


Alternate Super Bowl Party

So. Yesterday was the big day. SUPERBOWL SUNDAY. The one day that men all over the country get their football on with serious parties. Bri and I were invited to one, along with the Amazing Baby Ray, but I chose to bow out.

Saturday night I had had enough. I was done. Friday had been stressful, Saturday I had a ton of dental work done and of course I had been stressed about that as well. The last thing I wanted to do was go someplace that was not baby proofed and could never be completely Baby Ray Proofed– because of things like a glass coffee table. I knew exactly what would happen– I’d spend hours running after Ray and start resenting the heck out of Bri and everyone else at the party.

So. I swallowed my fear and told Brian. I don’t want to go. I’ve had too much stress, I need a day of no-stress. He made sure I understood that I’d have to have Ray, and I said of course! That had been my plan all along. And we had a blast people!

It started out with church, where I was able to find my voice and speak up. I don’t think the person understands (still) what I was getting at. That there are a million ways that we do God’s work everyday. Just because we don’t do it under the auspices of the church doesn’t mean that it doesn’t do good. But that’s ok. Then, I played the organ (the beast) for prelude, since Phyllis asked so nicely. Besides, she was back taking care of Ray so I figured it was worth it.

After lunch, and nap time, Ray and I watched “Peter Pan”. He loves it! Then we ran around the house, screaming like loons, before donning shoes and socks and going for a walk around the block. He loves our walks. And, I have to admit, now that he will hold hands I find them much more enjoyable myself. He loves picking up sticks, saying “hi” and “Bye” to people, heck he even broke out into song at one point. (Couldn’t understand a word he was singing, but BOY could you understand the happiness!). After we got back, we painted, had some dinner, watched “Aladdin” as we played with blocks and cars and all sorts of fun things.

So. Thank you Superbowl!

Who would have thunk it? The only thing I missed was the food. I’ll admit it. I’m a foodie. SIGH. But Potluck Sunday comes in just a couple of weeks so hey! Not so bad after all.