Wednesday, February 3, 2016

love letters.

Being loved is a fulfilling emotion especially if the person you love returns the love. We all know romantic love or know about it , but the love I am writing about is not romantic. It  is a different sort of love. For me the moment of feeling love and the returning that love came often and the postman brought it.

My childhood was spent away from a close nuclear family. My mother had been advised to move from Pennsylvania's climate,and my father was lucky enough get a job in Nebraska. So they moved and at age five I was no longer part of the pack of family made of numerous cousins. I always thought they were the fortunate ones as they lived with or near my two grandmothers. Now years later I realize perhaps I was the truly lucky one as I knew them in way  the other cousins could  not do.

My  grand mothers wrote me letters. They talked family, weather, birds, activities and all the mundane things that  a conversation might have held.They did not use the word love often but the action of those weekly letters( one from Ohio and one from Pennsylvania) kept me connected to them.They reached out to be part of my life, and I  returned the love by writing a letter back.

Letters came and went until they were no longer able to write. Each letter brought the woman who wrote tome. I could picture Grandma Flossie sitting by her window watching cardinals as she wrote , and  I could see Grandma Janie sitting with her tea and custard close by as  she penned her letter. The visions brought these letters gave me a base that an only child of older parents with no close family needed.

I learned about them. Flossie loved cardinals and baking. Janie  was a saver  and crocheter, Both were deeply  faithful within their different faiths, and to both family was first and foremost. From family stories , I knew that had tempers,but their letters never betrayed that,  though I imagine both had mellowed by the time the letters began.

Reading those letters I felt loved  for no good reason except  that I existed. I tried to send back that emotion as I wrote of school, pets ,minor bumps in my life,  the weather and my parents. What was said  was not important but the act of communication was. The letters marked my life and now years after their passing  A cardinal in my yard or earl grey tea steaming in a cup creates memories of being loved and loved in return which is why still today a handwritten letter in my mailbox is a blessing.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

For some reason, I have not been writing. Lazy? Busy? Blocked?  No real reason that i can point too. I just have not written. But then Sunday my writing began to flow, and one of my works in progress gained not only works but a solid direction. I posted it on my facebook page the story teller. I sort of like it and I hope I am not being kennel blind.

But today was a break through day for me. Perla my ESL student for whom I para asked to read to her in English and then to summarize it. Woozer! She is doing well in class, and now i know she comprehends instructions and material for the most part. Now, we have to make her speak more often but she is getting braver.I  am so proud of her and her work ethic. Tomorrow is final Friday a monthly event in which those students who have no grade below c may spend the last hour of the day in the gym, playing games or just talking with friends. Unfortunately her best pal may not be in that group this time. but we will see.

The  second trimester is coming to an end. The seventh grade is antsy and spring break is not until the end of March. I admire the patience of the teachers at working with wiggling , giggling children. Still as a para I am learning or relearning much of the science and math. They are doing simple chemistry and geometry. Far beyond the subject matter taught during my seventh grade year.

Enough. I will write sooner.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

1/2/2016 can I keep this up?

So it is the second day of a new year and I am doing the second blog of 2016. Two in a row and I hope to keep it up. Wish me luck whoever reads these random blogs.

The sun is shining and it is warm. I could venture out  to pick up meds and photos. Yet I have to go out to mass tomorrow and to a meeting at  three so I am trying to decide if I should go out two days in a row or just relax this next to last day of winter break. I really think the relax choice may be my option though I could go to  the Saturday mass at 5PM. Choices!!!

Do you ever get to the point when of two choices they both look  equally good? I rather think everyone has been there once twice in a lifetime. Still it seems this happens more often now as I only have to please myself when it comes to choices. My children are grown,I am single and so what I decide to do affects only me. Life is less complicated  schedule wise but a bit more thoughtful about such choices.

It  does not matter what I decide as it affects only my life. One thing always comes to mind when faced with a choice about going out. My mom ingrained in me the idea that a "lady" only goes to town one or two days a week and one was better. She also believed  a"lady" was only in  the newspaper at her birth, her marriage, and her death. I do not follow these and the newspaper is almost  a lost cause as I have had bylines in three papers. Still I find myself trying to schedule things so except for work I am not out every day. Does anyone else find these childhood induced ideas coming forward at the oddest times?

Friday, January 1, 2016


It is here -- the new beginning. Resolutions written, new hope formed, all the things a new year promises. I am not going to write about these.Too many people do it. Too many resolutions created to last  a week or a month until the old routine creeps back into our life. For those that stick to them,I praise you. I usually just say to stay healthy, active, and connected to people and I do that normally so it is easy to keep the list.

However I did decide to do two things I think I can cope with during the year. One is the jar. Each day I deposit in the jar  the amount of money equal to the day's number. The first penny is in. The last day is 3.65 cents. Sort of a home grown Christmas fund. Another item I intend to do is to purchase a gift card each month--- visa or store  and save it to spend next December.Might be a 10 card at a store or a bigger amount visa. Another year end bonus. One daughter shops at Target for staples as they often offer gift cards with such purchases. She saves those. I think ,I may have to check into those.

Today  has always meant pork and kraut for luck during the year. Not sure about the luck but the memories of eating the lucky food with my mother are strong. If we had money, it would be a pork roast cooked lowly smothered in kraut; if not ,it might be pork and wieners. This year I forgot to get the ingredients. Hm! What to do??  Solution Ham and Kraut pizza from Gambinos in South Hutch. So that is covered.I can do this as I live alone and only my palate needs to  be pleased.

Also I have Dana Stabenow's rustic bread on its second rise.  I love this crisp crusted peasant bread. Easy to make its 24 hour first rise works well with my school day schedule---mix it up Friday morning and bake it on Saturday and it requires no kneading. Here is a link to illustrated  directions and let me say she has others just as good. The lady needs to do a cookbook.

That's all for today folks. Here are my best wishes for a great long yea 2016. Yep it is a 366 day year--cause it is leap year. Sadie Hawkins runners on your mark.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

 It is sunny and chilly outside today. Taking Boba out the side door to potty I sense the icy fingers caressing my body through a heavy sweat shirt. The warmth of the house was welcome, but
I need to brace myself and go out once again to get material for writing second semester class schedules. So that is my goal once I post this.

 To be truthful Cabin fever is setting in. I have not been out in the world since Christmas Eve and need to contact with humans  though the fur babies are company. Still ice is not my favorite footing for trips far from home tomorrow. Tomorrow I have some annual tests at the clinic so will go out then if the snow being once again predicted does as it has the past few nights fails to come.

Being home has caused me to get somethings done----freezer and fridge purged, laundry caught up, etc. Oh yes, there are still  chores to get done .  One is writing donation checks and getting them mailed off by Thursday. Not as big this  year due to gutter replacement and less income cutting into them but still feel the need to give what I can.

Not much of import here but I have blogged.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Fancy a trip to Ireland, Wales,Scotland andEngland. Follow the link. Sign on by 1/11/2016 and you can get monthly payments.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

The sky is slate. no, That is not right. Slate is darker. It is pewter but again the color is not right. Pewter has a slight glow to its surface and there is no glow to this sky. It is simply  grey  dim dull grey . That sky along with cold winds are accurate predictors of coming winter weather. Now it is raining which will be ice and/or snow. No need for the scientific weather forecasts when this type of weather sign is so evident.  All they can say is how long and how much but the sky and the wind they tell us  the major changes.

All day I have been thinking of the song A Cold Winter's Night by Sting. It is mid-evil in its tone, and while I can not find it, my mind repeats its tone and the mood of quiet survival it speaks of. Winter is a season ,at least for me, of reflection of days spent inside doing solitary tasks. It is a time of the year I hate due to ice and snow, but one I love for its beauty and the solitude offers.Fall will always be my favorite, but this time of year( the starving moon of the Lakota) is dear to me also.

The dogs are aware of a coming change. Put outside for potty time, there is little playtime as they run out and soon are at the door to come into the warmth. They find warm spots; an old fleece robe or a heat vent will do for them to flop on and to sleep. It is 3:30 now ,but as dark as it usually is at 4:30 or 5.  They are ready to hunker down for the night. Winston paces to the bedroom door and back. Zoe  goes to her kennel and lays alone. Boba finds a spot and waits for me to kennel him. It is too early, but the darkness of the day has them befuddled.

They are content in the warmth of the house and, I think ,in my presence. I ,too, am content the quiet of a grey day and the simple tasks and the lack of rush it grants me.