A Ticket

I have a ticket to fly to California! I am going to see our son and his bride. And I am going to touch a tummy to feel her kick, I hope!  She seems like a half remembered dream.  I can’t get my mind wrapped around the reality of her existence.  I see the pictures of the ultrasounds. And, yet….

I have felt a shift in my perception of my world, too. I don’t know if it is the recent birthday or the slowly developing thought of her coming.  Perhaps, both? Things I thought I wanted are fading. Even the things I thought I wanted for grands is changing.  I had some preconceived ideas about what I wanted to do and how I wanted things to be when they came to our house.  I may be letting go of those ideas in favor of more meaningful ones.

I was thinking about what my grandmothers meant to me. What happened when I was with them that made the difference? What made them so golden in my memory? They listened to me. They wanted me near them always. They just paused and connected with me.

I could tell them anything. Especially my maternal grandmother. I could say whatever and she would never be shocked.  Only one time did she fuss at me.  I was mad at my mother. I was about 18.  She told me to get over myself and be respectful and compliant with my mother’s wishes.  I don’t even know what the details of the disagreement were.

Time. Not toys, games, events, tea parties and costumes. Time is what they gave me. Never too busy to sit and snuggle or hold me in their laps.  Even as a gangly teen, my one granny would hold me in her lap. Our big adventures amounted to walking to the cemetery on a dark night or watching the full moon rise over the lake.

My paternal grandmother would let me do her makeup for her. I would smear the green primer over her smooth rosy cheeks.  Then, the foundation and powder. I think that is all she used.  I was quite young when I started.  I don’t recall ever seeing her correct my work.  She likely did when I wasn’t looking.  Later, after her stroke, when she would come visit, I would help her dress.  She didn’t really need the help, but it was a few moments of intimacy we both loved.

My own children were young when my mother left this world. They have some memories of her. His mother saw them to young adulthood before she left us.  Both of them left their mark on the lives of our children.  Our daughter is so much like both of her grandmothers. Our son, too, has some ideas traced to them.  His love of fun and ability to connect to people are part of that legacy.

What legacy will I create for the California Dream? I want her to know that she is loved as much as one human being can love another. Already. Even though she is elusive in my mind, she is rock solid in my heart.

I will be on a westbound airliner, soon, little one. The love is already pouring out of my eyes and down my cheeks.

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Happy Birthday to Me!

I spent the day at home. Took a day of vacation from the 9 to 5.  I sat on the deck in the heat most of the time.  I would come in and cool off and get something to drink occasionally.  Crazy. Yes. I know.  Southeast Texas in July is hot and humid. Sweltering is a good word to describe the heat.  I needed to be outside.

I have been battling the abyss some this summer. Sitting outside detoxes my mind and spirit. I spent some time reviewing my resource notes.  I like to use my birthday to reflect and assess my situation.

I am pleased at what I found when sitting and listening to my own thoughts. I am not as down as I thought I was.  I have had a few days of aggravation at the 9 to 5 and in dealing with some things at church.  The frustration was at my own performance and attitude rather than other people.  I complain about others when it is really myself with whom I am angry.  I think I have let go of the irritation and I am already feeling better about things.

There was a special set of events today that had a profound effect on my well-being. I got to enjoy the gazebo he put together for me.  Our son called and we had a great visit.  Our daughter called and we had a great visit.  Our daughter-in-law called and we had a great visit.

Another great thing for my birthday-I had an iPod that had become like an IV for my soul. I had my music with me any time I was not at the 9 to 5.  Then, I broke it.  I have had a difficult time since.  I stopped walking at the track. I feel down more than usual.  I was simply crushed without being able to listen to Dean Martin or Martin Denny whenever I wanted.  But, he presented a small package to me last evening.  A new iPod!! I am so grateful!

Now I have to figure out how to make it work again. Our daughter advised me on what to do. I want to wait until I have a clear head to fool with it.  But, I have hope for music again.  I did not realize how critical music is for me until I had it at will then lost it.

I found another gift today. As I was sitting outside, I noticed a tell-tale purple petal on the ground near the porch.  The banana tree has baby bananas!  Year before last, we ate a couple from our tree that produced late in the season.  They were very small. They had a pleasant and less sweet taste than the store-bought variety.  These have developed in time to perhaps have a full hand of them to eat later this summer.

Our daughter had sent books and movies from my Pinterest wish board earlier this month. A card and perfect gift from him.  Calls from my beloved children. Time at home feeling Texas summer to my bones.  No cake or candles. No happy birthday song. None needed.  Happy Birthday number 51 to me!  Thank you to the family for making it wonderful. Thank you to Him for making it wonderful. Thank you to him for being wonderful.

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Dinosaur

I think I am officially a dinosaur. Our daughter says I am not.  I feel like one.  So many things going on the world of pop culture today about which I am clueless.  I hear catch words and try to remember them long enough to write them down.  I have to write them down if I have any hope of getting to my computer to look on line for an explanation.  She says I am not a dinosaur because I am still interested to know about things even if I don’t care to participate.  I appreciate her generosity.

I have been dabbling in some additional social media sites. I am trying to figure out Twitter.  I can follow and unfollow. I can like. I can look at links. But, I don’t know how to re-tweet or initiate a tweet to someone correctly or how to tweet back at someone.

I have been working on figuring out Tumblr. I like that it is similar to Instagram but has the blog connection often lacking on Instagram. I love Instagram, of course.  Just lovely photos flowing along for the most part.

Pinterest is great and very familiar. I maneuver in it just fine. I enjoy it.  Not being one who can just pin and pin without reviewing what I have pinned, it becomes work sometimes.  I like to edit and resort and delete.  I confess I use secret boards more often than the public boards.  Just because it is a tool I like to use to sort out ideas and focus intentions.

I want to upgrade my WordPress to a dot net. I think that will be my birthday present to myself.  It was less than twenty dollars for the year last time I paid attention.  I have aspirations to create a specific logo for Raining Orchids. You know, tee shirts, hats, stationery.  Ha! Ha! Just for fun.  Additional creative flow.

Still, one of my favorite things to do when I want to be quiet and still is to color. I have one of those new adult coloring books and map pencils.  That is okay.  But what I really like is my bag of Crayola crayons and my Disney coloring book.  I bought it years ago and am slowly coloring each page in order through the book.  The bright colors, the smell of the crayons, the soothing rhythm of rubbing the wax onto the paper all work together to create magic for me.

To each his or her own. I like the technical world of social media.  And I love the innocent world of crayons and coloring books.  Just because I do.  Not going to analyze this.  Just going to savor the moments.  Dinosaur or not, I am still exploring.  Still asking questions.  Still learning. Still loving life. Not yet a fossil.

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Searching for Paradise

Incessantly seeking. Endlessly restless. Always planning and scheming. What for?

I am forever trying to manipulate my house and my personal behaviors to make less housework to keep. I am forever trying to let go of expectations and self-created problems.  I am forever asking “is this necessary?” when I look over my lists.  Seemingly my desire is to have very little “must do” and a lot of “spare time”. Searching for my paradise.

When is it all enough?

I am reading a travelogue of a fellow who went off to a very remote island in the South Pacific. It is a second such I have gotten my hands on written in the past few years. It echoes so much of what I have read by Michener and Mytinger.  James Michener wrote of the less than romantic islands riddled with death and disease and insanity.  Mytinger wrote of the natives of Melanesia between the world wars.  It too echoes Michener’s tales of despair and adventure.  I read over again the Trader Vic Cookbook that covers the Pacific, Mexico and Texas.  I love Texas being included in the exotic text of cookery.

The Hawai’ian Islands and French Polynesia are certainly lovely and have the possibilities of evoking the feeling of having found paradise. Hawaii is beyond lovely and the climate is divine.  These are not really included in the materials I gravitate toward.

What is so appealing to me about these tales of the tougher parts of the Pacific? Perhaps the definite challenge of survival and tales of adventure.  Perhaps the stripped down lifestyle. Perhaps the freedom from societal restraints.  Perhaps only the vivid blues I envision when reading them.  Who knows for sure?  Do I even need a reason?  Always trying to figure out why I think or feel whatever it is going round in my head.

I certainly over-examine many issues. Remunerate. Chew the cud.  Stew. I do get a lot done sometimes just to get past thinking about it.  Then, I find some new topic on which to stew.

If I lived on one of the islands I read about, I would probably go stir crazy. He has helped me create a little haven like one I might erect were I to be cast adrift in the Pacific. Sitting out here writing with the wind and the bird song, I am in my own paradise.  My jungle plants provide visual texture.  The bright aqua bench evokes the tropical waters.  I will add images to this haven to increase the mood of escape.

I do enjoy escape from the nine to five, the television blaring, the claustrophobic feeling of central air living with the drawn drapes and darkened rooms. And yet another part of my paradise is a bathtub full of clean, hot water to soak chin deep. A room cooled by that very same central air with a comfortable, dry, bug free bed in which to snuggle.  Satellite services bringing my television and internet connection to the rest of the world at my fingertips.  Too much food available to eat at any moment. Him somewhere on the acreage or piled up in his chair.

I don’t have ocean waves rolling and crashing outside my window. I don’t have the smell of salt air or the scream of seagulls assailing my senses. I don’t have sores festering from the bacteria that thrive in the equatorial band around the globe. Tsunamis and storm surges don’t threaten my world.  Yes. I would certainly love to visit the tropical places of my dreams.  I have seen some of it.  But, I will continue to appreciate my little bit of paradise he has helped me create right here in my own back yard.  For today, it is enough.  No need to search beyond the front gate, today.

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