Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Mending Fences

I recently had the opportunity to spend some time visiting my children in Nebraska and decided that while I was there I would try and reach out to my son who lives in Iowa and that I haven't seen or talked to since last July.

Out of the blue, he sent me a text at Easter saying " damn you're good! I've looked everywhere and still haven't found my Easter basket!" This was the first communication I had received in almost a year and since I was reading it while driving, I damn near ran my car off the road! Of course, I responded and this opened the lines of text communication between us.

I let him know I would be coming down there in May and asked if he would be available so I could see him? I got an email back that he was now the bar manager of the country club and also in charge of the tournaments and his schedule was pretty busy so he didn't know if he would be able to get any time off. Said he usually works 7 days a week- so in other words- if I wanted to see him I would need to go where he was.

So that is how one fine morning while down there, we found ourselves packed into my daughters van headed out to see him. Of course we didn't know we would run into not one but two bridges out for repair and no detour directions. Thank God this is small town USA. We did manage to find our way to the country club and at first things were a little strained but by the time we left my son was laughing and joking and I did get a hug from him.

Did we get everything resolved? No. Will we? Hopefully sometime in the future. For now, I am just glad I had the chance to see him, talk to him and hug him. Baby steps for now. At least we are talking again.

What a truly great trip I had! All three of my children together and my grandchildren. Doesn't get any better than that! Wish I could do this more often!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009



Around our house all you need is a little imagination and just look at what you can be!! The leader of your own planet.

Meet Sadie Lou Woo from Wooville. She dropped in for a visit last weekend to let us know that her people are friendly and wish only to learn from us humans not to harm us. Everyone on Wooville are small like her and wear rose colored glasses because the world looks so much better when looked at through them. They love chocolate, strawberry milk and cookies for breakfast.

Meet the Diva Darlings!!

They just outran the paparazzi again. It's a tough job but someone has to do it. They are loved by America but especially Grandparetns in Wisconsin and can't go anywhere without being followed by cameras. Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie have nothing on these 3. Britany Spears look out cuz one of these days every one will be shouting their names and you will be forgotten. They love music and will dance til they get dizzy and fall down. They also talk non stop and NEVER run out of energy!

MR. COOL......

Tegan is now 9 and thinks he is way too cool to play with his cousins but you can see that he really wants to. He isn't sure he wants me to be taking his picture and definitely isn't going to be smiling for it. He's now into Nintendo DS, Ipods and soccer but still likes playing Webkinz with his Grandma.


How often do you have this much trouble all in one place?

The littlest one is scoping the place out trying to figure out where she can head out to as soon as I get done taking the picture (notice she's looking off to the side?)


Looks like they really love each other doesn't it? For the most part you'd be right, but they're sisters and sisters fight, just ask mine. They love each other and they get along most of the time but once in a while they can go at it like cats and dogs. And it isn't always the oldest or the biggest that comes out on top! But five minutes later, they are sharing a piece of candy, hugging each other, or laying next to each other watching a movie. They are so incredible!

So there you have it, a little of this, that, and the other thing.

A Sad Farewell- Brandy

This week my sister and her family lost a very important part of their family. Their beloved dog Brandy passed away after being with them for many years.

She was a black lab and when they got her she decided she would become Wally's dog. Didn't matter what anyone else thought, she had made the decision and that's all there was to it. She tolerated the rest of the family but it was Wally she really lusted after. She slept with Lisa and Wally most of the time. Except when there was a storm and then you could find her either under the bed or in the closet. She was a big sacredy cat when it came to storms. She watched both my nieces grow up and maybe kept their boyfriends in line just a little. She never once tried to eat Pepper (the rabbit) when Allison brought her home although she may have chased her around the house a few times (the rabbit not Allison). Brandy recently acquired a new sister, Chloe (another dog, I think she is a yellow lab). This seemed to be OK with Brandy. Maybe she knew she was getting old and the family needed someone younger to run around with but whatever the reason, they got along. She shared her family, her bed and her love with her new sister, making sure she felt like she belonged. Brandy didn't move as fast as she used to lately but she still loved her family as much as always. It was a sad day in that house when she was laid to rest and she will be missed by all, including Pepper and Chloe.

My niece has a dog Hammie, my daughter has 2 dogs Lucy and Toby and a cat Charlie, my other daughter a dog Buddy. My sister has a cat and a dog Cooper. My point here is that animals are precious and beautiful and love us unconditionally. They only ask that we feed them and pet them and give them a little loving in return and maybe let them outside to go potty once in awhile.
Where else can we get so much love just by walking in the door? Who else is that happy to see us at the end of the day, everyday? As long as you pet them or scratch their tummies they are in heaven and think you are the next best thing since sliced bread! You can't beat that, right?

They become so much a part of the family that when we lose a pet we feel like we have lost a family member and in a way we have. We miss them and think about them and remember them.

So Brandy this post is for you. All of you out there with animals- go out and pet and hug them in remembrance of Brandy.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

To Moms Everywhere

Kids answers to some hard questions

Why did God make mothers?
1.-She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2.-Think about it, it was the best way to get more people.
3.-Mostly to clean the house.
4.-To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1.- He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2.- Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3.- God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1.- We're related.
2.- God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1- God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2.-They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string. I think.

What kind of little girl was your mom?
1.- My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2.- I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3.- They say she used to be nice.

How did your mom meet your dad?
1.- Mom was working in a store and dad was shoplifting.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1.- His last name.
2.- She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer? Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores.

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1.- My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.
2.- She got too old to do anything else with him.
3.- My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

What makes a real woman?
1.- It means you have to be really bossy without looking bossy.

Who's the boss at your house?
1.- Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dads such a goofball.
2.- Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3.- I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1.- Moms work at work and work at home, and dads just got to work at work.
2.- Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3.- Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you gotta ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1.- Mothers don't do spare time.
2.-To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What's the difference between moms and grandmas?
1.- About 30 years.
2.- You can always count on grandmothers for candy. Sometimes moms don't even have bread on them!

Describe the world's greatest mom?
1.- She would make broccoli taste like ice cream!
2.- The greatest mom in the world wouldn't make me kiss my fat aunts!
3.- She'd always be smiling and keep her opinions to herself.

Is anything about your mom perfect?
1.- Her teeth are perfect, but she bought them from the dentist.
2.- Her casserole recipes. But we hate them.
3.- Just her children

What would it take to make your mom perfect?
1.- On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2.- Diet. You know, her hair. I'd dye-it, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1.- She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.
2.- I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it and not me.

Out of the mouths of children come the most honest of answers.


Thursday, May 7, 2009

Joys of Parenthood- Round 2

Carla had to go out of town for work and asked us to watch Tegan while she was gone. This is nothing new for us or him. However this time it meant he had to stay over night on a school night. Interesting!

Normally Tegan comes over and spends a few hours with us, maybe eats supper, plays ball with Grandpa, watches TV and then goes home with his mom. Occasionally we will babysit (what an oxymoron as he is definitely not a baby to be sat with-he's 9 years old) him and he will spend the night but this is usually on a weekend and there are no rules.

Now it's been a long time since I've had to worry about making sure homework gets done, baths are taken, teeth are brushed and kids are in bed at a decent hour so they can get up in time for school and not be cranky butts. I had a hair appointment after work so when I got home I asked Grandpa what they had for supper? Here's what he fed the child- chips, jelly sandwich and strawberry milk. Not the most nutritious supper but it was OK I guess. Made sure he had his homework done before he watched anymore TV and then asked him to take a shower.

I came out of the den about 8:45 pm and he and Grandpa are still watching TV!! "Grandpa, why isn't this child in bed, he has school tomorrow?" Grandpa says, "He's going right after this is over."

Next morning Grandpa goes to work and I get up and get ready for work. About 6:20 I start to wake Tegan up. This is where I remember what being a mom is all about. "Tegan, time to get up buddy."

Tegan: "MMMMmmmmm" as he rolls over and burrows further under the covers.

Me: " Come on, you have to get up, Grandma has to go to work."

Teagn: "Yeah" and continues to lay there.

Me: " Tegan, don't make me drag you out of that bed and dress you myself! Get up and get your clothes on." Then I went back to getting ready for work, hoping he was getting out of bed.

The next thing I know Tegan is in the living room turning on the TV,watching cartoons (typical kid) and asking me for breakfast. SHIT! I don't think we have any cereal he will eat. We have adult stuff like Raisin Bran which I know he won't touch but I ask anyway. He turns up his nose and rejects it. I ask about toasts and jelly and he says sure so I open up the fridge to get the bread and find they ate the last of that the night before- no toast for Tegan. I get on the phone and call grandpa at work and inform him that when he comes home (when I leave for work he is trading off with me) he needs to bring something for Tegan for breakfast. OK no problem he says.

All goes well after that (at least I think it does) and I come home that night to find Tegan and Grandpa flying a kite in the backyard. Carla is home already and Tegan is happy to see her. I asked Grandpa what he brought for breakfast and he tells me cookies. COOKIES! What kind of breakfast is that? Grandpa said he gave him milk with them so he had the food groups and it didn't hurt him so No harm, No fail.

We sent Tegan home with his mom who is much better equipped to parent him. After all its been many years since our last child has been school age and in need of that kind of parenting. I guess we did all right though in the parenting department for one day- we managed to feed, bathe, clothe and get him to school on time without major mishap. I am much better suited to handling my BIG kid and making sure he has everything he needs. Grand parenting is for seeing the kids for a few hours and sending them back home with their parents.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Deer Friends

I love animals and nature and all that goes with it as much as anyone. I have several bird
feeders in my backyard and love to watch the Goldfinch come in and eat. When we are up north it is fun to sit outside and watch the loons swimming around the lake and calling out to each other and I have been known to stop dead in my tracks to pet a cute puppy.

I also love flowers and shrubs and have spent a lot of time and energy making sure my yard blooms with color each spring. Carla (my daughter that works in a greenhouse) brings me a lot of plants that otherwise would be thrown out because they are old. I bring them back to life (sometimes), plant them. nurture them and watch them grow into the most beautiful plants. I also have started flowers from bulbs and seeds over the years and now have a really nice yard that usually is quite pretty when spring is here.

This year I have a problem!
You see this year, Bambi, (you all remember Bambi don't you?) decided she wanted to eat my beautiful flowers for her evening snack! She crept out of the woods while we slept and the little B****! ate them right off at the ground just as they were beginning to open! Yum! Yum! She said that was sooo good! Than off she scampered back into the woods, leaving her hoof prints behind as evidence.

Now if this wasn't bad enough, she actually had the gall to come back after the plants had recovered enough to start growing back and do it all over again!!!!! So definitely not going to have anything that looks like this this year thanks to good ole Bambi. I am so pissed it isn't even funny!!!!

If any of you remember the movie Bambi, she had a friend named Flower who was a skunk. Now I wouldn't be opposed to her eating her friend Flower because this would be no loss to anyone, Right? Who wants to smell this Flower???

But if that doesn't work guess the next step is to get out good old Betsy and sit out on the deck every night just waiting for Bambi to come for her midnight snack of tulips and then "Bam!" I'll be eating Bambi for a snack.

Disclaimer: No animals were harmed in the writing of this post and I actually don't know how to shoot a gun and wouldn't kill Bambi even if I did so don't worry. But I am mad as hell at her!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

I've Got A Secret

I actually have a third child! I know you're all surprised right? I haven't talked about her
before so how could you know she existed?

I've posted about the daughter who is engaged and getting married.
(That's my first born by the way) and I've done a couple of posts about
my son who I am currently estranged from (that's my baby by the way). The child I have never devoted an entire post to is my middle child, Bear, so you didn't know she existed. Until now that is........

It isn't that I forgot I have another child, I think about her almost everyday and I email her at least 2-3 times a week. And up until this past week, we talked on the phone at least a couple times a week. What happened this past week you ask? Well, to add to the feelings that I have forgotten her, all of a sudden her phone calls (yes just hers and no one elses) would not ring through on my cell phone. Sounds like a conspiracy to me what do you think? I am happy to report this problem has now been fixed and her calls are now ringing through.

You can see how much George and I love her - we didn't even try to break the headlock she had us in when this picture was taken. Just kidding. Bear (this is my pet name for her and has been for as long as I can remember), is a middle child and as such often gets overshadowed by older and younger siblings. I know because I too am a middle child. Sometimes we have to make a little noise to remind people we're around.

What she doesn't realize is how special a middle child is and what they teach a parent. Bear, you had to learn patience at an early age because your older sister demanded my attention at times and you had to wait. You wore hand me downs quite often ( but not always because I sewed and made new things for you)and never complained. You never got to do anything FIRST (that was always your sister's right) but you did get to do things at an earlier age because we learned from your sister. You taught us it was OK to cross the street by yourself before you graduated from high school and that nothing would happen. You helped me understand the world wouldn't collapse if I let you go to bed with a dirty face and hands. You made me realize that if a dog would lick your face you wouldn't get sick. I learned to take one day at a time with you my middle child and realized that being a parent could be fun.

Bear has grown into a strong, independent, beautiful young woman. (I like to think I had a little something to do with that). She still calls her Mommy when she needs advice or comfort though. She has a heart as big as Texas and would do anything for anyone in need. She loves children, especially her nieces and nephews and can often be found doing things with them or taking them for a weekend just to spend time with them. To all the little kids in our family she is known as Tah Tah. If you ask them about her using her real name they do not know who you are talking about, but use the name Tah Tah and you will hear shouts of joy from any child in our family.

Bear recently became a dog owner (or he became her owner- not quite sure on this one yet) to Buddy. He has made a big difference in her life these past few months. He does have an alcohol problem that we are trying to address before it gets worse. Seems he likes his beer and whenever Bear takes him somewhere there is beer, he expects to have some. He has been known to overindulge once in a while. Other than that, he is a great companion for her.

Last summer Bear caught her first BIG fish while up at the cottage. She was ecstatic and after naming him, capturing him on film and blogging about him, she ate him! She has now been bitten by the fishing bug and I can't wait to get her back up there this year to have her try again!

So Bear, even if I don't say it often, or don't devote a whole blog to you (or more than one), and you think I have forgotten you, just remember- without you, our family would not be complete. There has to be a Beginning a Middle and an End. So you are vitally important to our family being what it is.

My secret is out now and you all know I have not 1, not 2, but 3 children so I can never forget to talk about them all again.
From now on, No More Secrets.