New Year

Once again I am late writing.  I wonder why I forgot this evening.  I noted it this morning on my list.  The list I didn’t get to after I got home from work.

Lists.  Obsessive compulsive list making.  My son has it, too.  I like making lists.  I write them, organize them. Rewrite them.  I am afraid to toss some of them.  Grocery lists and simple chore lists are easy to toss.  But, some lists.  They reveal my dreams and goals and fears.

With the new year approaching, it is time for another review of my progress.  How am I doing at becoming a better human being?  Am I gaining ground?  Sometimes it seems as if I am fighting a losing battle.  Perhaps no battle is really lost until it ends.  I have not stopped fighting.

I had several things preoccupying my mind at work today.  He had a doctor’s appointment and I was a little concerned about the issue.  Thanks to Him, all is just fine.  I have some deadlines for projects looming and am scrambling to get them done and keep up with the daily issues.

But, after work, my real concern was getting some supper cooked.  I wanted to make him cheeseburgers.  I did.  Toasted buns, our favorite steak seasoning on the meat, homemade dill pickles, Velvetta cheese.  I don’t even know if he liked them.  He didn’t say.  But, I enjoyed making them for him.

I like for him to tell me when I please him, even though I only half believe him.  I accuse him of just being polite.  Yes.  He can be very polite to me.  But, sometimes…………….

I am better in many ways.  My grief is improving.  I did have a few days of feeling like doom was impending.  But, it seems to have passed.  I think my house is fairly organized.  I am getting the essentials done in a timely fashion.  Things don’t pile up as much.

The new year approaches.  Yes. I will have some goals.  Nothing new.  Just continuing to improve to a new level of performance.  Becoming a better being.  I hope.

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Christmas is Here!

Christmas is a time to remember Christ.  A time to remember our loved ones gone before us to meet Him.  A time to gather with our loved ones present and create bonds of love that strengthen throughout the trials the rest of the year brings.  A time to pause and see beauty of baubles on trees and lights on eaves.  A time to believe in goodness and magic and possibilities.  A time to give tokens of love and graciously receive tokens given to us.  A time to grow our compassion for an even greater year ahead.  Always looking upward to the Heavenly Star for guidance and comfort.

A Christmas colored picture to remind me.  Red for His shed blood gifted for me.  White for His perfect peace bestowed on the believer.  Green for His provision of everlasting life.  Merry Christmas to all and may His perfect peace and gift of everlasting life be yours.

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In the way of living

How often I have let life get in the way of living….too often I don’t make the plans I should make to create the life and legacy I want to have.

This weekly confessional has done more to get me going in the right direction than I ever could have imagined.  Especially, since it isn’t the type of blog I intended.  But, it is what is has become.  A telling of the days passing.

For this evening, I had forgotten it was Monday, I suppose.  He reminded me I needed to write.  Suddenly I was flooded with things to consider.

I wanted to write about my friend losing her mother the other day.  The funeral is upcoming.

I wanted to write about how wonderful the sound of my brother’s voice is on the other end of the phone line.

I wanted to write about the thrill of getting a text from my son asking a simple question.  Just seeing his name on my phone…..

I wanted to write about coordinating Christmas gift buying over the phone with my daughter and her beloved.

I wanted to write about missing the deer stand.  Haven’t made it to the woods in weeks.

I wanted to write about the unexpected places and circumstances that create treasured relationships.

I wanted to explain why I want to live to be an old woman who is vibrant and healthy and self-reliant.

So, here goes the “reader’s digest” version of what should be many different posts.

I hated hearing my friend express regret.  Feeling she didn’t do enough to take care of her mother.  Been in that exact place myself.  I just had to forgive myself and give myself compassion.

I loved discussing with my brother how to manage a salt-free turkey breast for a dear aunt’s dietary needs.  Sharing a suggestion for seasoning it.  Hearing his plans. Looking forward to seeing him in a few days.  Trying to not consider how long it has been since we were together.

I believe my son is way more awesome than a rock star.  He is awesome coolness to the max!  The life he is leading is proof that I have done something right in my life.  Of course, I did not do it alone.  But, nevertheless, I take credit for what part I did play in his upbringing.

I know my daughter is the most perfect woman on the planet. Ever. And, I believe her honey knows it, too.  She is another proof of my personal success in my most important job ever:  being a mother.  My parenting partners and I did a great job with both of them.  He and I give praise and gratitude to Him.

I have needed to do some things instead of sitting in the deer stand.  At least, it seemed they were important at the time.  And, of course, some were.  At least one time, it was just too cold for me to deal with that morning.

I have a friend at work.  She challenges me to reach out of my safety zone and ask for the things I need that I can’t do for myself and also to give myself the care I should for my own sake.  She listens deeply to what I am saying and helps me hear myself.

I want to live to be an old woman, fully capable of taking care of myself and my family. I am living a long life without my mother. I want to be strong and well, though.  Not disabled and in need of care, but giving care and love and support and pots of chicken and dumplin’s.  Holding hands and catching tears as my loved ones go through the trials and the joys of this life.  I have learned how to grieve.  I will grieve again.  There are some I hope and pray never to grieve.  But, I want their grief for me to be brief and full of gladness.

Another fifty years or so should suffice.  As long as there are elders to uplift and children to tend, I will have a purpose for which to get up each morning.  And there is always him.  Needful of my care and attention.  And pots of chicken and dumplin’s.

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Busy Mondays

This has been a busy day!  Work was slightly hectic.  My own doing.  Sometimes I don’t follow my own rules to pace myself and not let “it” get to me.

But, after work, the busy-ness was terrific!  I got the tree put up and decorated.  I set up a little vignette on the table next to it.  I arranged his dining table centerpiece with the antlers and poinsettias.  I cooked up a couple of steaks and some shrimp in a lemon pepper sauce to go over them for supper.  I have been doing this fairly frequently these days.  Steaks on Mondays.  Sets the week off to a good start.  Why save steak and shrimp for weekends?  Weekends have their own rewards what with all that play time!

Life is wonderful!  Even on hectic Mondays!  I hope the rest of my week finds me as productive and uplifted as today.  Whether it does or not, I am satisfied with today.  And since today is what counts, it is enough!

Getting ready for a Happy Christmas!  Even with my heart that stands before me half way around the world, we will still make merry with the ones near to us.  My angel baby will be with us.  We will get to the see our little girls again I hope.  I have a visit to see my brother planned.  I have already attended a wonderful holiday gathering hosted by one of my dearest friends and her husband.   Happy Christmas has begun even now!

 

 

 

Gratitude

I am so very grateful for the blessings of this past holiday.  Thanksgiving Day, my daughter and her fiancé came for dinner.  We had a lovely visit and some fun on the target range.

I am grateful for technology that allows us to video chat with our children half a world away.  We plugged the computer into the big screen TV so we could see them larger than life!  My son! A TV star!

When he was a baby and we were living in California, we could only call home once a week and write letters that required an envelope, stamp, and a few days to get to the recipient.  In his young life, how things have changed!

I am grateful for the extended visit we were blessed with by my niece and her lovely family.  The girls are wonderful!  A four year old and a 9 month old.  He was especially touched by the extraordinary affection the baby had for him.  I was able to work on some of my preschool age entertaining skills.  I am still not at full speed.  Though, I did manage to improvise a princess breakfast table for the four year old.  Served in the living room to enjoy morning cartoons, naturally.

I have plans and dreams and ideas for little girls’ play.  I do have some of the toys set up in the guest room.  I want to work on that area some more.  I sense some more furniture moving may be in order.  I keep saying I need to stop that.  My body doesn’t recover from the strain as easily as it once did.

I am grateful to be included in their lives.  Each of my children and their mates, my niece and her husband and their girls.  Grateful to be able to love and enjoy them.

A friend and I had a conversation recently about bitterness.  Most folks go through difficult times, tragic times, even.  We get to choose whether we will be bitter or not.  I could be very bitter about the things that have happened to my loved ones and the losses I have suffered.  But, I want to be happy.  I want to love and be loved.  I want laughter and fun and tenderness and joy.  I want to be part of the lives of children and old folks.   I want to pass along the resilience and good humor given me by those who taught me to not be bitter.

Life is the stuff that happens in between the troubles.  Life is not the troubles.  Get out there and live and there are bound to be troubles.  Heartache, stress, fatigue, questionable situations.  But, in between, there is magic.  Love, joy, connectedness, tender sentimental moments, lazy moments of companionship, a beautiful spot in an ordinary day.

A friend once told me she was in a doctor’s office and rushing out to her next scheduled thing.  She noticed a rose in a vase on the table.  She paused and thought about me.  She reflected that I would stop and notice the rose and comment on how lovely it was.  I hold that as one of the best compliments I have ever received.  I do try to stop and appreciate beauty.  I took one of those aptitude and interests type tests in home economics in high school. I still recall the highest value I have as indicated by the test. Beauty.  My highest value.

Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  What the world counts as beauty may not catch my eye.  But, when the beholder sees beauty, whether in the face of a four year old when her mermaid hair is pulled away from her face for a moment or in the toothless grin of a happy baby, or in the twinkle of brown eyes so familiar and yet so treasured…………..oh how this old gal’s heart pitter patters!

Grateful for making my life simple and choosing to see the beauty. Raining Orchids.  The beauty of my simple life.  Yes, that is me.

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