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When my kids were in their teens, they became followers of The Princess Bride cult! They discovered the movie and watched it over and over and over again. We bought the VHS tape then the DVD. My daughter now owns it on Blu Ray. It got to the point where they could recite the dialog as the movie played. When they had friends over, they watched the movie. In the hundreds of times they watched it, I never sat down to watch it with them. I would me in ear shot and most of the time I could see them, especially when it was a mixed gender group of friends watching it, but I always gave them room and never sat down to watch it. Every time they watched it, I would remind myself to sit down and watch it some day when they were out of the house but it never happened.

Then this weekend linkup was announced and I figured it was my chance to watch, at least I would have an excuse, and it is on Netflix so no money involved. Yay. So I watched it last week. Did I like it? Well, I kept meaning to watch it again so I could write a good post about it but I guess I didn’t like it enough to watch it a second time. Why? Well, something you don’t know about me is that I don’t find a lot of “humor” funny. I don’t like slapstick. I don’t like the ridiculous being passed as humor. I don’t like “jokes” about bodily functions. Yeah, I’m kind of a dud that way. So I didn’t find a lot of humor in it. Yes, there was some humor that I thought was truly funny. And even though I grew up in the times of the women’s liberation movement and hated it, having been brought up in a very traditional hispanic family and believing that the woman’s place is indeed in the home and all that. Somehow along the way, from the 1970’s to now, I grew up and realized that I was wrong. So it kind of bothered me that it was all men made out to be the heroes and it also bothered me that Buttercup expected everything to be done for her as if she were a fragile flower. I didn’t like the “As you wish” attitude.

What did I like? I loved that it was a grandparent reading to a grandson. The family aspect of it was wonderful. The reading being passed on from one generation to another was very authentic to me. It showed the value of generations of a family interacting with one another and it showed how storytelling and reading are valuable. And even though the grandson was at the age where he did not at first value the reading or the grandfather, by then end, he valued both and looked forward to more visits from the grandfather and, presumably, more storytelling. I love storytelling and I have a lot of stories that I’ve told my kids and students. I love how at first they aren’t too interested but as soon as the story gets going, they are hooked! That part was very real to me. I’ve had it happen.

If I were rewriting it (and I will admit that I have not read the book) I would write it as the grandfather telling/reading the story to both a grandson and a granddaughter. I would write in some kind of dialog about the gender roles and maybe, by the end of the story, each of the grandchildren might see some valid points in the other one’s views. Oh, and I would clean up the language so it would be more understandable, a little more modern. I think that would add to the story.

Will I watch it again? Yeah. I will. Not sure when but maybe the next time we have a cold, rainy weekend and I don’t have grandchild duty, I’ll put it on and give it another look. Then maybe I will write about it once again.

Do I recommend it? Yup! I hear the book is absolutely wonderful, too. Maybe I’ll pick up the book one day.

If you’d like to read more blog posts about The Princess Bride (book and movie), check out the linkup!

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The other night, Anderson’s school had a fundraiser that I volunteered to work. It was a silent auction and a spaghetti dinner. I had to be there at 4:30 for monitoring the silent auction tables. Tina and the boys didn’t come until about 6. When they arrived, Spencer was having a very clingy time. He didn’t want to walk around or sit in the stroller. He wanted to be held in someone’s arms. I thought maybe if I took him for a walk into the gym next door, his mom and dad could eat their dinner and Spencer might want to walk around.

Before they had arrived, I noticed that the lady making balloon animals was doing it for free. The most popular balloon was a sword. All the kids were getting them and running around playing with them. So when I took Spencer to the gym we got in line to get him and his brother a balloon sword. Although we had to stand in line for about twenty minutes, with me holding Spencer (he’s about 38 pounds), it was the best thing that night! When it was our turn, I asked for two balloon swords so we could take one to Anderson. We walked into the cafeteria with the two balloons just as they were walking out so it was perfect!

From that moment on, Spencer stopped being clingy. He got out of my arms and ran with Anderson…and ran…and ran…and laughed and had a great time. THAT made me smile. Watching the boys having a great time and Spencer getting over his clingyness…that was the best!

I don’t usually post pictures of the boys on here, or blurry pictures, but I wanted to share this one with you. The blurriness is evidence of all the fun they had because they didn’t slow down a bit, even for a picture!

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Come on over to Trent’s World and share YOUR weekly smile. Was it a book or a song? Was it some memory? Was it a person? A child? Come tell us about your smile this week!

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Originally published on this blog on October 17, 2007, this is my post for the first #ThrowbackThursday Link Party which asks bloggers to post a blog post that is more than 30 days old. Go check it out!

When I was a little girl, my mother would take us to all the parades in town.  My mom didn’t drive so we’d all walk together, all seven of us kids and our mom.  Downtown was about two miles away but we didn’t mind because we all loved parades.  Sometimes there were programs at the civic auditorium after the parade.  Those programs were always even more fun than the parades plus we’d get to sit down instead of having to stand up out in the cold.

One of my favorites was the Christmas parade.  It was the longest and the most fun and Santa Claus always gave out candy at the end of the parade.  After the parade, my family would go to the civic auditorium for the show they always put on after the parade.  There was music and little skits and at the end we got presents.  My mom would get tickets for the show and the presents ahead of time.  My dad didn’t make a lot of money working at the cannery and there were nine of us so we got to be one of the families that got to go to the special program and get the presents.

What was it about parades that made me eager to go?  I think it was mostly because it seemed to me that everyone was happy at the parades and I liked to be around happy people.  There were clowns, too.  I loved clowns and balloons and crowds.  Sometimes, if my mom had extra money, we might get a treat to share.  Usually, if we did get a treat, it was popcorn or caramel corn.  She’d get two of whatever she could afford and we’d all share.

Another thing I liked about parades was the music.  I loved to hear the bands coming down the street and leaving, going away from us.  But the one thing I didn’t like about parades was also the music.  When the bands were right in front of us, the big round drums that the boys carried in front of them, hanging from their backs, those drums made loud booming sounds and when they boomed, the boom was in my stomach.  It made me feel like my stomach was the drum and someone was beating on my stomach.  It made me want to cry.  I remember I’d try to hide behind my mother when the drums got close enough for my stomach to boom.  My sisters would cover their ears but that wouldn’t help me.  It wasn’t my ears that were booming.  I couldn’t explain to my mother why I didn’t like it when the bands got right in front of us.  She couldn’t understand why covering my ears didn’t make me feel better.

I wish there were still parades in towns where everyone could go and see each other and eat popcorn and caramel corn and watch the bands go by and the clowns and balloons.  If there were, I could just walk toward the back of the crowds when those great big booms came to my stomach.  That just might help enough.

tbt-option-2

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Tina picked me up the other day. We were going to the store for a quick errand. As soon as I got in the car, she exclaimed, ” Henry died!” I asked her who had died afraid she was talking about Henry, the maintenance guy here in the mobile home park. She said, “Henry! Our spider. Our pet spider!” Big sigh of relief but then I asked her about the spider.

She went on to tell me in detail about how a spider appeared in their bathroom back in about May or June. It was a little spider and they just left it alone. One day one of the boys accidentally displaced it and Chris picked it up and put in ton the shower curtain. She talked about how the spider slowly found its way from the shower curtain to a corner on their tub organizing tray. Henry lived there since then. Chris even would feed it bugs every few days…bugs he would pick off of his plants.

Yup, I was smiling and on the verge of laughing out loud.

She went on and on, talking about how sad it was; how upsetting; how she wanted to go out and find another spider to bring inside and make into a pet. I reminded her that spiders have a short-ish life cycle. She agreed but still kept trying to figure out why it died. I counted out the months for her…it was at least seven months old since they noticed it.

Well, she kept talking about Henry until we got to the store ten minutes later. That was the longest she had talked about any one subject in a long, long time so I didn’t have the heart to ask her when she got so friendly with spiders. It wasn’t all that long ago that the tiniest of spiders would make her scream and cry. It wasn’t that long ago since the “I hate spiders!” incident (which if you really want to smile, you’ll go read it).

That was my smile for the week. Even now, telling you about it, I’m smiling!

When you’re done smiling, go on over to Trent’s blog and read about the Weekly Smile blog hop, think of a smile you would like to share with us and write it up and enter it on the linky for this week’s blog hop. You have the whole week, until next Tuesday night to do it!

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This morning, as I was wondering what I could share for Trent’s Weekly Smile blog hop, I thought I would have to wait a day or two until something good happened to smile about. It has been that kind of week.

I was over at my daughter’s house, watching the boys (they were asleep, they’re sick again), Frida jumped up and started rubbing against me. THAT made me smile! Some of you might remember that I got a new cat, Frida, last August. In November I realized that the reason I never seemed to be free of congestion and sneezing was because of Frida’s long coat of hair! I wanted to find a home for her so I kept her until I could find a place for her. Then last week, when I was in Seattle, my daughter came to my house to check on the kitty and Frida would not let her walk away from her. She would follow her and bump her head against her and “talk” to her. So my daughter got the cat carrier and took her home with her. Now she lives there with the other cats at my daughter’s house. She has fit right in and I am no longer congested or sneezing constantly. So when she came up and cuddled with me, it made me smile. I hadn’t seen her since I left to Seattle two weeks ago and I thought she might either be mad at me or have forgotten me. But no! She isn’t and hasn’t!

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Frida

What has made you smile this week? Why not tell us about it? Check out the #WeeklySmile and join us!

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I was lucky to have smiled a lot this past week! Some of the things that made me smile were text messages that I either sent or received.

The day we had snow here, my daughter and I went out early to get some errands done before the weather got worse. We got gas, ate breakfast, went to Costco, the finished up at Kohl’s. I didn’t have to do any of those things (except eat breakfast). They were all her errands. She wanted company so I followed along. I didn’t have anything to look for or at so I meandered until I found a very nice place to wait for her. Here’s the text message I sent her so she would know where to find me at Kohl’s:

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Then, when I was gone to Seattle, I got this message from my daughter that made me smile and go “Awww”:

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And yesterday, on the way back from Seattle, I got this message from her:

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It’s good to feel wanted! Of course, when I walked in the door to see them, he smiled at me but he wouldn’t come to me. Anderson, however, not only came to me right away but he also said, “I missed you too, Nana. Every day I missed you and I wanted you. I wanted a sleep over with you!”

What made YOU smile this past week? Share your smiles! Check out Trent’s blog and join the weekly link-up to share your smiles and enjoy other smiles!

 

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I was happy for her. I was also sad that she was leaving but I knew that she was headed for new things, new places, new people. A fresh start. How many times had I wished that I could get a new start, only to continue the same daily struggles? No, not her. Not my girl. I prayed she would never live a life like mine where she was my only happiness. She was headed for college; a bright future. I was sure of that. Even the heavens were smiling on her as she boarded that bus bound for Happiness!

Word Count: 100

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Friday Fictioneers is a weekly blog hop hosted by Rochelle. She posts a photo prompt then challenges readers to write a 100 word story inspired by the prompt. It’s a fun challenge. Give it a try! Check here for the info then write your story and post it, link up and enjoy the other stories!

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