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Archive for the ‘attitude’ Category

Tempting

I belong to the local Nextdoor community on Facebook. I check it every day, not because I’m looking for anything specific but because sometimes there is interesting information posted. For example, on Saturday I will be attending a free learn to crochet workshop, at the local library, which was organized by a woman in the group who wanted to learn to crochet. I did crochet years ago but haven’t in maybe fifteen so ¬†I am going.

The other day, I came across a posting that made me chuckle and I figured that the poster didn’t realize that what they posted was funny.

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I was tempted to reply and inquire about the free toddler! I didn’t because I didn’t want them to think I was putting them down in any way. But it did cross my mine and made me chuckle.

The next day I found this:

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I really laughed out loud at this one because someone else had followed through with replying to the post. I figured I wanted to meet this woman. I might, one day. In fact, I will look for her at the crochet workshop in case she attends on Saturday. I also waited to see if the original poster would reply and wondered if she would be angry.

I didn’t have to wait long.

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This one really cracked me up.

Being the grandmother of a toddler, I also found this a tempting post. Maybe we should list Spencer! ūüėČ

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No, he was not the best father.  But he was my father.  I have just as many good memories of him as I have bad ones.  The bad memories are probably stronger because the emotions are fresher and very powerful.  But there were good times, too.

He became a father with no role model to follow as his father was not in the picture, ever except to impregnate his mother.¬†¬† As soon as he could work he became the provider for his mother.¬† He was six years old at the time.¬† By the time he was in his early teen years, he was sent over the border to Texas to earn American dollars to send to his mother, and by then there were siblings, too.¬† Not only did he have to leave his family behind, he also had to leave his name behind, his very person.¬† Instead, he used the legal documents of a dead cousin that had been near his age.¬† So he became someone else, yet he remained the provider.¬† When he married and started his own family, he still provided for his mother AND for his children.¬† He worked long, hard hours to support us.¬† We didn’t have everything we wanted but there was always enough food on the table, a roof over our heads, and clothes on our backs.¬† And in the three months of the year when he did not work seven days a week, he was the loving and playful father that took us places and did things with us.¬† Those were the good days. Those are the days to remember.¬† Those are the days he was a young, loving, productive father.

Then came the bad days.  Unable to work and provide for us, he turned to the prescription pain medicine and the booze.  Basically, he became lost.  He was no longer that loving father to any of us.  He was no longer the husband that he had been.  He was no longer the man he had been for most of his life.  He felt it.  It destroyed him.  He became angry and violent and hatefull, and even hate filled.

That’s who a lot of people remember.¬† And they are right to.¬† I will not take that from them.

But there were other parts to him, before he was used up and spit out by the company that he worked for.  And even after that, there were glimmers of the father that I remember from my childhood, the loving one.

So I understand the mixed feelings.¬† I just don’t understand the ones that choose to forget the good parts.¬† I don’t understand the stone throwing.

Just as in all people, and in all stories, there was good and bad.

Who will I remember?¬† I think I will choose to remember the loving father.¬† I won’t forget the hate filled one who became so empty, for there are lessons to be learned from that person, too.¬† But for now, in these final days, I will remember the father who pushed us on the swings and taught us how to ride a bicycle, running alongside us and holding us up.¬† I’ll remember how he taught me to dance as I stood on his feet letting him lead me around the room in his strong and loving arms.¬† That was all a long time ago but for now, those are the memories that I will allow myself.

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Earlier today, I read about a friend of mine who took a fall.¬† She’s a little banged up and a lot embarrassed.¬† It reminded her about a time that I took a fall.¬† I’ve actually posted this before.¬† It’s one of my Christmas stories.¬† Although I have lost most of my old writing, due to technology failing me this year, I was able to piece this together.

Christmas of 1994 the kids went to their dad’s house on December 23rd and he was to return them by 10 AM on Christmas Day.¬† That year was a particularly bad one, financially, so there was very little money to spend on Christmas gifts.¬† All three of the kids wanted a computer and I had found a man, through the Penny Saver, that would build one for me and not charge an arm and a leg and he would build it to the specifications needed by/for the kids.¬† He took a payment to get the parts and then the rest when he delivered it on Christmas Eve.¬† I had checked with him and everything was on schedule.¬† I was glad because although this was a gift for all three of them, it was primarily for Tony, the oldest who needed it for school.¬† I had managed to get a couple of computer games at discount that I would give him for Christmas.

Tina wanted a bird.¬† I had found her a bird cage at a yard sale about a month before Christmas and I had it stashed in the garage.¬† I just had to get the bird.¬† I planned on getting it at the local swap meet on Christmas Eve while the kids were at their dad’s.

Everything was on target that Christmas Eve.  I got up early and was at the swap meet when they opened at 7 in the morning. I knew exactly where the pet stand was and I got there in time to get a beautiful lavender colored parakeet!  It was the most beautiful bird I had ever seen.  I was so happy to have gotten it and it was only $4!  On my way out to the car I stopped and picked up a couple of small things the kids could use and got them at bargain prices as the vendors wanted to unload them quickly so they could go home.  I made my way home and set up the cage and put the parakeet into it.

Just as I finished with the birdie, the phone rang.¬† It was bad news.¬† The man that was building the computer for me was calling to say that the fan he had ordered for the computer did not work and he’d have to wait til the 26th to get another.¬† The kids would not have their computer on Christmas.¬† I was bummed but I figured I would make the best of it and was glad Ihad managed to get a deal on the bird and the few¬† things I had picked up at the swap meet.

I went to the grocery store to get what I needed for Christmas dinner and to see if I could pick up some stocking stuffers for the kids.¬† I was in the store for a long time and when I came out, it was raining.¬† I pushed the cart full of groceries toward the car and as I got within 15 feet of the car, I slipped in a puddle.¬† I fall flat on my back in the middle of the parking lot, in the rain, with all my groceries scattered around me.¬† I couldn’t get up and cars went around me.¬† It took about seven or eight cars going around me before¬† a man came running over to me and helped me get up and got me to the car. Then he picked up my groceries and got them in my car.¬† He actually offered to drive me home but I thanked him and said I could make it on my own.¬† I was too embarrassed to have him fuss over me or drive me home.¬† I had prior back and knee injuries so this was not good.¬† It took about a half hour of sitting in the car crying before I felt I could drive home.¬† By then the soreness was setting in and I knew I had to get home before the pain got so bad that I would not be able to drive myself home.¬† I had no one to call to come get me so if I couldn’t drive home, I would be stuck in the grocery store parking lot.

Once home I put the perishables away and took a pain pill and went to bed.¬† I slept for a very short time and wakened when I heard a loud crash!¬† I ran to see what it was and got to the living room in time to see¬† my daughter’s cat running past me with the bird in his mouth!¬† He had somehow gotten out of the bedroom where he had been stashed til he could be introduced to the bird.¬† The loud crash was the cat, Noisemaker, knocking down the cage.¬† I chased the cat all over the house until he let go of the bird.¬† It was clear that the bird’s neck had been broken.¬† Filled with anger and frustration,¬† I threw a shoe at the cat and sat and cried again, holding the dead bird in my hands.

I ended up going to bed and crying myself to sleep after taking care of the bird mess in the living room.¬† I didn’t even eat lunch or dinner.¬† I just slept.

When the kids got to the house the next morning, I answered the door with tears in my eyes and the only thing I could say to Tina was “Your stupid animal killed your Christmas present!”

The kids kind of rolled with the punches that day and enjoyed themselves and the gifts they had.  The day was fine and on the 26th, their computer was delivered and we went back to the swap meet and had my daughter pick out another bird.  They also had some Christmas money sent by relatives so they enjoyed the after Christmas bargains at the swap meet.

I still remember that and get all teary.¬† The bird-killing cat is long gone.¬† The kids are grown and gone off on their own.¬† Bad years come and go.¬† In the end, as long as we’re together, we’re okay.

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Almost Heaven

Yesterday, I started reading a book called Almost Heaven by Chris Fabry.¬† I got it for free on my Kindle a couple of weeks ago and while I was looking for a title to start my Thankfully Reading participation, something kind of “called out” to me.¬† I can’t describe it any other way.¬† It just felt that for some reason I should begin with that particular title.

I didn’t have great expectations for it but thought it might be a good read to get me started.¬† As I started reading it, I was hooked by the Prologue and couldn’t put the book down.¬† I finished reading it this morning and have been thinking about it and unable to begin another book while I process this one.

Why was I compelled to read this particular title?  What grabbed my attention so that I continued reading it, almost non-stop, until I finished it?

I don’t know.¬† I’m glad I read it.¬† I found it comforting even while it disturbed me.¬† I feel like a the tiniest of seeds has been planted inside of me as a result of reading Almost Heaven.

The book has two main characters in it.¬† First and most obvious is Billy Allman who we meet when he is just 5 or 6 and follow throughout his life until he’s in his 40’s.¬† Billy’s life is filled with tragedy.¬† It seems that just as one negative chapter of his life ends, another and worse one begins.¬† It actually made me think of the storms I have weathered and continue to do so.¬† That part kind of really hit home.¬† The second character is Malachi, an angel.¬† Billy’s Guardian Angel.¬† I know it sounds corny.¬† It wasn’t.¬† The presence of Malachi and the insight he brought into Billy’s character¬† and why things were happening to him as they were, both added significantly to the story.

I won’t try to summarize the book here.¬† Let me just say that this was the most important book I have read in recent months.¬† Why?¬† I’m not sure.¬† I just feel that the next days and weeks and months will continue to divulge the reason I was led to this book.

It’s a Christian title but it has a lot to offer to every day people, regardless of your faith or lack thereof.¬† Take a peek at it and see if it calls to you as it called to me.

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This year, through a number of circumstances, I will be alone over the Thanksgiving Day holiday weekend.¬† I have been trying to convince myself that it’s okay but the more I worked on psyching myself up to be okay with it, the more I realized that I was not going to like being alone.¬† I thought that I might volunteer at a homeless shelter or something but in the end, my daughter is going to borrow my car to go out of state so I will also be without transportation.¬† And although the Portland Metro area has an extensive public transportation system, I’m in a rural area and the bus just doesn’t go near me.¬† I would have to drive to the transportation center and leave my car and take a bus in to town.¬† In the end, my bus trip would be shorter than my drive to the transportation center.¬† I won’t have a car to drive there so that’s out.

Just as I was starting to feel a panic about being alone, I read a Facebook post that came across my Wall.¬† It seems that there is a reading event in which I can participate this weekend!¬† I’ve done similar events in the past and have really enjoyed them.¬† So I signed up to participate in Thankfully Reading, the 2010 edition.¬† This will be great!¬†¬† This type of event offers participants the opportunity to participate in a group event independently.¬† Through blog comments and FB posts and Twitter tweets, we all get to know a little about one another and about what we are reading.¬† It’s a wonderful way to make friends and get some leads for books to read in the future.

Now I am looking forward to the weekend and looking through my Kindle books to see what I want to read this weekend.¬† I’m excited!

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Attitude

On our trip to Los Angeles last week, my daughter talked about moving back there. She has been up here for a year and a half. When she left L.A., she said she just couldn’t live there any more. She’d had it. Now she wants to go back. I’m not sure she has thought it all out. She is ready to pack up and leave. I’d prefer that she waited a bit and saved some money and secure a job before she takes off. She just bought a car in November so she has to have money for the payments. Los Angeles is a very expensive place. She can count on paying anywhere from $1800 to $2500 a month for a one bedroom apartment if and when she goes. That means she has to have the income to be able to afford that! (more…)

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