Thursday, May 29, 2014

What Would You Do?

After several mornings of the rising sun shining through that small hole in the blinds directly in my eyes I decided a drapery might be pleasant in the bedroom.  I mulled the drapery over in my mind for a few days.   Sister came to visit and the early morning  light in the living room awoke her.  That caused me to think about drapes for the living area.  Or would we rather have a sun sail over the patio instead of drapes?  Decisions, decisions.

I felt like a song from the sixties or seventies, looking at life from both sides now.  Finally decided to go with the drapes.  The research and search for the drapes took quite some time, well, in my book some time.  Finally good old JCPenney provided a sale on drapery stuff.  I took advantage of a coupon, free shipping and a 15% rebate from the Ebates company.  The first three drapery choices were out of stock.  I settled on one design and ordered 8 panels, 2 rods and one set of hold backs.  The items arrived while I was in the Dallas area.


Upon return home, I quickly retrieved the items from the business office of the apartments.  The color of the drape was good but it was chenille fabric.  I am not a chenille fabric person so a return to the local store was necessary to avoid shipping charges.  No problem, I printed the receipt and off we went in Icie for a day of errands.

We took the WW I thank you from France for service rendered by Husband's uncle to a frame shop.  The document would be preserved for posterity.  The uncle, Harold,  never left the US.  He died of the flu before ever being deployed overseas.  Anyway, he died while serving in the military during the War to end all wars.  And France sent a lovely document acknowledging the loss of his life in service.  It matters not that he never went there any more than the War to end all wars didn't end wars.  It was the thought that France cared enough to be thankful.

Oops, my mind drifted a little off subject.  Or maybe not.  Drapes were returned, refunds made and we made it home safely.  I again shopped on line as no stores stock the 108" panels I need.  Purchases were made but the 15% rebate was down to 3%.  Bummer, $45 lost in the transaction.  I picked up the refund ticked and realized the Penney's employee had accidentally refunded all monies.  That included two rods and the hold backs.  That was another $100+.  The refund also cost me the 15% on the items I was not returning.  Additional bummer.

Yes, I could keep the stuff and just consider it Penney's loss.  That would make up for the $60 rebate I was losing.  What would you do?  Just keep the stuff and consider Penney's cost of business for making the error.  No, I could not.  Not wired that way.  I contacted Penney's about the error.  A few emails and phone calls later the error was corrected.  I cannot even count the number of times the person with whom I dealt said thanks for being honest.  She is mailing me the receipt for paying for the not returned stuff.

If the person writes thanks on the receipt, guess I could frame it.  It could then hang next to the "Thanks for giving your life for our freedom" document.  Dying during war and just doing the right thing are not quite in the same league.  Well, whatever.  And that's all I have to say about that.

 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

We're Okay

For those of you, Charlie, that were concerned about our well being, we're okay.  Thanks for caring by the way.  I spent most of the week of May 19 with my younger sister.  We were making more stuff for her home.  The project started last summer during the middle of the rehab following Mom's hip replacement.  Sis and I decided we needed something to distract our minds from the whole hip replacement, rehab and moving of our 95 year old Mom.

Does it match the paper?  Not quite sure.
We visited several fabric stores that specialized in drape, home decor and upholstery fabrics.  It was really fun to see all the new fabrics, trims and styles.  Sis had one window that had been a challenge for the entire time they had lived in their home.  At a store named Cutting Corners we discovered the perfect solution.  Swatches were taken and even some fabric was purchased to take home to get the effect.  Sis made a decision about the style and fabric.

The ensuing months were crazy for Sis.  When the drape and window treatment finally made it to the top of her list, the fabric was missing from the store.  Later, she discovered the trim was 3 yards short of her needs.  Let it suffice to say she dealt with the issues in a calm and professional way.  Well, when she was talking to the store owner.  That trauma is now all behind her.  Last week we completed the last of the window treatments and table covers.  Sis still has enough fabric to make some accent pillows.  Here are some shots of what we did last week.

Double this view for the number
of things we made.
Day One:  Sis makes valences for two windows.  This pix is showing only one.  Did I mention the curtain rods kept sagging?  Wooden dowels, tape and non slip material finally over came that issue.  I recovered the window seat cushions.  The fabric for the seat cushions had a pattern.  The fabric was a roll end with cut off of both ends leaving one third  about 10" shorter than the other two thirds.  I did more work with a pencil figuring dimensions and placement than I did sewing the cord edged pillow covers.  In the end I managed to keep enough fabric for a couple of pillows for the bed and cover the two pillows without piecing anything!

Day Two:  Mom day.  Went to training on a new program for Mom.  Spent time with Mom at the apartment filling bird feeders and greasing the poles to keep ants out of the stuff.  Took Mom out for meal.  Then we shopped for trims, etc. for the tiebacks for the new dining drapes.  Mom looked around JoAnns fabrics in a very wistful manner.  A store that had meant so much fun for her in years passed held only sad reminders of what she could no longer do.  Back at Sis's home, we settled for a glass of wine and relaxed for a while.

You have to look closely to see the tassel!
Day Three:  Tassels.  Yes, two tassels took a large part of our day.  Figuring out how to reattach a different cord was challenging.  Especially since the hole was only big enough for about one and a half cord!  The tassels started out looking like a hula dancer.  Each addition or trial addition changed the location of the tassel to different parts of the world.

One addition made it look like a voodoo doll, another added what appeared to be dread locks.  Each addition sent us into gales of laughter.  Finally by the end of the day there were two elegant tassels, drapes massaged into soft folds and two sisters with more good memories.

Day Four:  This had to be a get it done day as Sis was leaving town the next morning.  One table runner and two scarves needed to be fashioned from the remaining fabrics.  The kitchen dining runner needed to be cut in a manner that had the main thistle centered on both sides.  And it needed beaded trim sewn into the pointed ends.  Cutting took time but not as much as the figuring where and how to cut.  As with the pillows on day one there was enough fabric left for a couple of accent pillows.  And with careful work, matching beads at each point.

The two table squares for the formal dining were a whole different story.  The original plan was for the black fabric to be lined with the accent fabric as done on the drapes.  The accent fabric was several inches short of the amount needed.  The bead trim for the black scarf was in three pieces.  Sis decided to have two separate scarves.  I cut the black material and Sis began the work of making a shirttail hem in the very thick velvet material.  She said a few words as her machine was not happy sewing the thick material.  She, also, had to piece the beaded trim that was in three pieces.  Zigzagging the ends together was yet another challenge.  She completed the task.

Scarves scrunched in formal dining area.
Meanwhile I was working on getting the largest possible square scarf out of the 40 x 54 piece of material.  Measure twice cut once is a carpenter's and seamstress rule.  I did that but to no avail as I measured the wrong number.  That did not do much more that just make me have to sew an additional couple of seams.  The 20" fabric was cut into 5 strips, sewn to the 40" square, pressed back over itself and topped with a trim.  Used a decorative stitch that looked good on the back without showing on the front.  Notched corners finished and that was done.  It took two sewing machine needles to work this metallic material and trim.  Sharp needles were critical for this project.

Since Sis's machine did not like the velvet material, I applied the trim.  I broke one needle and severely bent a second working with the heavy material and heavily corded trim.  By the end of the evening, Sis was thrilled to have the scarves on the table, drapes in place, valences and cushions all
made!



It was really fun working on these projects with my Sissy.  After living so far apart for so many years it is a joy to have time with her.  Now to get some time in with my other two sisters!


Monday, May 26, 2014

Patriotism


This photo of Yorktown Battlefield is courtesy of TripAdvisor

In 1992 my husband and I spent our 25th wedding anniversary in Williamsburg, VA.  We toured all of Colonial Williamsburg, watched the militia marching, visited the Governor's mansion, we did Williamsburg.  Then we expanded our adventures to Jamestown and a day trip to D.C.   We visited a planters home and the museum at the Yorktown Battlefield.  In the museum was a replica of one of the ships used by Cornwall.  Around the corner was a simple little tent.  The tent was enclosed in glass for protection as it was over 200 years old.  It was George Washington's tent.

As I stood within an arm's reach of Washington's tent used throughout the Revolutionary War my heart began to pound.  My eyes spilled tears down my cheeks.  My body was covered in goosebumbs.  My body trembled.  The tent was a connection to the beginning of these United States.  Like a touchstone, the tent touched a patriotic chord that had been silent.  To think that the Father of our Nation had lived, planned and entertained within the now delicate fabric walls overwhelmed my senses.

With my husband nearby I stood in silence conjuring ghosts of General Washington, his staff, aides and others doing the business of war.  Doing the business of freedom in such an humble piece of material, ropes and stakes.  This tent seemed an unlikely housing for the fashioning of the cornerstone for this nation.  It was and is.  

Never before nor since have I been so filled with awe for the accomplishments of those early revolutionaries. Nor have I ever been so pleased and honored to be a citizen of these United States of America.  My patriotism does not run to the America love it or leave it mentality while dressed spectacularly in red, white and blue sequins.  I am more of a patriot that believes a great nation of humble beginnings needs to remain humble to remain great.  I thank God for the many blessings bestowed on these United States.  May we continue to prove worthy of the blessings and thankful to the persons willing to sacrifice safety, health and life for these United States.

For more spins on patriotism visit Gretchen and Ginny at The Spin Cycle.

Second Blooming

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Graduation

Every Friday at high school pep rallies or for any functions where all classes were gathered in the gym or auditorium the chants would begin.  Each class had its own chant.  The chant was all about the year you would graduate.  I have not a clue what the other classes shouted those many years ago.  Our chant is indelibly written in my memory. 

We're the Greatest Class Alive, Senior Class of '65.

The Greatest Class Alive was just beginning the summer vacation before our senior year back in 1964.  Fifty years ago.  Five Oh years ago.  Universities were attended, jobs were worked and wars were fought since that long ago graduation.  Vietnam took too many of the members of the class of '65.   Marriages, divorces, children, grandchildren and even a few with great grandchildren are now part of the Greatest Class Alive's resume.

There were only 14 students that graduated from Allen High in 1965.   One of the fourteen was shot down over North Vietnam.  He survived, served 20 years in the military and now lives south of Austin.  Another of the 14 went on to become the police chief of Allen.  Allen now has 1,400 graduates from the high school.  Two of the fourteen of the '65 graduates have passed away.  The valedictorian owns a consulting firm for municipalities.  Most of the fourteen attended and graduated from colleges or universities, East Texas, Texas A & M, SMU, North Texas, Baylor are a few of the names.  One or two became a hair dressers, another a teacher while a couple of us just did what came along the way of life.

The graduates of a nearby high school that I attended my freshman and sophomore years had a party in 2012.  The theme of the party was Class of 65 turns 65.  That was the big school in which we would do the chant.  I did not go to the party though it surely looked fun.  That was the year Hubby and I each had a new knee put in and he had another pulmonary embolism.  Just seemed wise not to make a 400 mile trip at that time.

The high school graduation was the last graduation for me personally.  I have witnessed friends, nieces, nephews, son and daughter in law.  Son refused to do his walk for his Master degree, too much attention and over too quickly.  I surely hold respect for persons who continued a formal education.  The self discipline to just hang tough through the studies, the hours, the work and the experience of college.

For decades I regretted not having a college education.  A few years ago I graduated from the regrets.  I took ownership for being the reason I have only 3 hours of higher education.  I accepted and rejoiced in my choices.  With probably three fourths of my life behind me I am still part of the Greatest Class Alive, Class of '65.

For more takes on graduation, join Ginny and Gretchen at The Spin Cycle.  And Congratulations to all the members of the class of 2014 no matter the degree or life lesson.


Second Blooming


Saturday, May 17, 2014

It's Saturday Morning

It's another bright, sunny Saturday morning here in central Texas.  The Blue Jay, Mockingbirds and Mourning doves are arguing over who is next at the feeder.  Hubby has been outside enjoying the early morning by sitting next to the pool.  I have had my breakfast of second place people, store branded toasted o's and banana.  I am too cheap to by the breakfast of champions.

Yesterday we completed the move from the upstairs storage room to the rooms next to our apartment.  We could have gotten everything in one unit but for one thing, the Jeep hardtop.  After much research online a suitable device was found that will roll into the medium sized storage room.  It will hold the hardtop, both doors, the soft top and windows.  The device arrived yesterday.  I suspect Hubby will assemble the device today.  It is, after all, Go Topless day as proclaimed by the Jeep community.


That man loves him some Jeep stuff.  Especially with the top and doors off.  He has been Mr. Sad Face over not being able to take the top off.   So this newest purchase has seen his expression change.  Now just to get the whole thing put together and the top placed on it.  I purchased it on E-bay and was able to get some money back with the Ebates cash back button.  That application lets me know whenever a site offers cash back on purchases.

Our bag was red.
The worms for the composter arrived yesterday, also.  Unfortunately the 1000 worms did not have a cash back offer.  They were free shipping and a coupon for 12% discount.  The worms have joined the 20 or so we had purchased at  WalMart.  I will be starting a second level of the composter today.  It is being interesting to learn this technique for disposing of kitchen wastes instead of dumping in the trash.  Don't get me wrong, I still put plenty of waste in the trash bins, just not a lot of veggie trimmings.  As for the composter, we are not noticing any smell, just some fruit flies.

It's been fun visiting with you this morning.  Hope you will leave a comment to let me know what's happening in your lives.  I will keep you posted on the hard top removal project and the worm composter.  Life is simple for two old farts.  Oh, yes, Icie is speaking in a language I understand.  She is still having some difficulty with my speech, however.  But with an overall average of 43 MPG at this point, what's a little misunderstanding between friends?

P.S.  If you do much online shopping, just click the Ebates button on this blog.  It will take you to the site where you can sign up of the program.  I have another $60 check on the way this week.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Ageless

This weeks Spin Cycle challenge is Aging.  Ninety percent of my posts have some sort of reference to this particular subject cause I am 67 years old.  My Hubby is 73, his Mom who passed away last fall was 99 and my Mom is on the down hill side of 95.  A lot of my friends are around my age and older.  Sure there are the young women I mentored in MOPs I considered friends.  They were not folks I hung with for shopping and lunch mostly because their schedules were already full.

My childhood was full of elderly people sharing our home.  Great Aunt Lillis for about 8 years had cared for my Dad and Aunt Sissy after the death of their mom.  In her later years she would live with us from 3 to 6 months each year.  My Granny Chandler spent almost every weekend at our home after the loss of Grandaddy in the late 1940's.  She passed in 1969 so that is a lot of years around old folks.

Now I am the Grandma.  I have my share of the physical ailments associated with aging.  One adjusts with glasses, knees replaced, bladder and urethra lifts, arch supports and pain creams.  I attempt to not focus on the aches and pains.  My Son would probably differ and would say I talk about old people stuff a lot  What can I say?  He will not let me talk about my worm farm, recycling or sex in your senior years so that is about all that is left.  Of course I could read a book and have a discussion with him.  I go to sleep reading.

Frequently I look to my Granny Chandler for inspiration on how to be successful in aging.  Granny remained mentally sharp up until the last few months of her life.  She could sit on the front porch steps with her knees almost to her chin as recent as the summer before her passing at 87 years old.  She would do a shuffle jig with her great grand children occasionally.  She told stories, many over and over again much to my mom's dismay.  That is what we begin to do as we age.  That may be due to lack of input of new stories.  I digress.
Granny at 67 years old on the steps

Granny never quit telling the kids to act right or, "Bloody Bones and Raw Hide 'ill come n' git you."  She wore a bun at the base of her head.  Granny never complained about young people.  Momma said just this weekend that she does not remember hearing Granny complain about getting old, or aches or pains.  Granny dipped snuff.  I have what is left of her last can of snuff, Garrett's White Label.   She would send me to the store to buy it for her when I was ten and I could drive by myself to Trab's.  Trab sold me the snuff without asking for an ID.  It was a different time and, yes, I was driving a stick shift when I was 10.

Granny made eight dozen hot rolls for Christmas of 1968.  Three days later she had a mild stroke.  Uncle Clay took her to the hospital.  A few days later in an attempt to get out of bed to catch up with Clay as he was leaving the room she fell.  Her hip was broken.  Surgery was done but she would never sit on the front steps again.  She passed away two days before her 87th birthday.  The undertaker did a fine job with one minor exception, her mouth.  It looked more like she was needing to spit some snuff than looking like her smile.  We sisters smiled at that. Granny was giving us one last bit of fun with her.  We buried her on her 87th birthday in February, 1969, less than two months after the stroke.

Granny always looked old to me.  But there was something about her that was ageless.  She was young at heart, full of love and giving.  There was something else that I never could quite figure out about her agelessness.  It has slowly come to me after something my sister reminded me about a couple of weeks ago.  It may well be the secret to an elderly person who is ageless.  It was neither wrinkle cream nor an exercise regiment.  It was not some special diet nor herbal supplement. Very simply Granny never wore a bra.  

There you have it, ladies and gentlemen.  Release the beasts breasts.  They will pull the wrinkles out of you face.  Besides that what woman does know the pleasure of no bra stay in your armpit.  Just one last word of advice, make sure your blouse is long enough!

There's that smug, no bra grin!
 I am off to start a bonfire with my bras if you care to join me.  Or maybe you will just want to hang out with Gretchen and Ginny at The Spin Cycle to read some more takes on aging.

Second Blooming


PS  Thanks, Granny, for all you ever did for me and this one more little bit of fun with you.  I will never forget your love.  I shall forever love you, your kindness, your flannel sheets and endless patience.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day 2014

Wishes abound on the internet.
Sweet cards leave moms' eyes wet.
Flowers, food and hugs are shared.
For some moms no expense is spared.

At Son's home for a Mom's Day brunch
Afterwards a Nerf war for the whole bunch.
A late afternoon call awakes my Mom.
She keeps asking who the call is from.

Son is dropped off at the airport.
Back home I work on Middle's fort.
The day ended with a movie on Vudu.
Here's wishing Happy Whatever Day to you!






Last Game of the Season

At 2:45 this afternoon we stood on the sidelines of the last soccer game of the spring season.  Middle grandson made an awesome penalty kick that scored a point.  He is awesome.  He was given the Craziest Player award by the coach during the post game awards ceremony.  Post game, end of season ceremony for 9 year old kids playing soccer is not squirting anything on each other in a fancy locker room.  It is sitting in the grass, drinking water out of gallon jugs while parents hold umbrellas over them to relieve some of the heat.  There was talk of a swim party at one of the parent's homes later.

Last game of spring soccer season.  In three weeks swim meets begin.  Son tells us they start at 7 AM and last till around 11 to 1 depending on the location.  I must assume all swim meets are held in swimming pools of the same size.  So what makes the same number of events last two hours longer?  No matter.  We have a new 10' x 10' shade tent in a tan color to absorb less Texas sun.  We have lounge chairs and coolers.  We have water bottles with the thing in the middle we freeze.  But today was the last soccer game of the spring season.  We were not sad, we were sweating.  We had left our chairs in the other car.  New problem since we have two cars again.

Please, note, also, that I said spring soccer season.  All three grandsons will do swim meets till they leave in July for a month out of state.  Upon returning, fall soccer season practices will begin.  Labor Day weekend is usually a tournament in Houston.  And the cycle of three and four games each weekend will return.  Again we will stand or sit (if we remember our chairs) on the sidelines cheering for Reed, Brano, Jack, Garrison, etc, etc and of course the three grandsons.  Cause that is our job now, being supportive grandparents and loving them.

An update on Icie.  Gas mileage is settling in at around 43 MPG overall.  Individual trips have a notice as to the mileage for that trip.  One 8 mile trip today had 55 MPG.  We are communicating better with The Voice, who is speaking English these days.  My car is multilingual.  My car is smarter than I am.  It  knows the best route to take, it knows the proper distance to the next object when backing,  It can see backwards.  It is having trouble with its senior citizen operators remembering how to phrase commands like how to turn on the radio or find the nearest Starbucks.  But Icie will get us trained!


One other thing.  Along the right side of my blog post you will see an icon for Ebates.  I have used Ebates for a few years now.  I am not a fan of going shopping in a store.  I am not too critical about how my clothing fits.  As long as it does not fall off when I walk or split when I bend over I am happy.  Trying to shop for clothes for Hubby's 6'2" 3XL frame is expensive in the speciality shops, down right annoying in most stores.  Trying to find 12 W shoes in a style he likes is why I am so wrinkled.  Online shopping works best for us.  Today we received a check for just under $40.  Another check for around $60 is on the way.  All I had to do was be a member of Ebates and start shopping through their site.  There is no, repeat, no fee for this application.  There is even a button for your browser that will alert you if a site has cash back or other special deals while you are surfing/shopping. Of course there is an app for your smarter than me phones, too.  If you are interested just click here to get started.  Happy shopping!

Other than the cash back from my shopping trips, I have received no compensation for this recommendation at this time.  Sure if 2 million people sign up through my blog, I might get a few coins.  But since there are only about 3 people that regularly read my blog, this is just free advertising for ebates!

All you mothers and mothering persons have a wonderful Mother's Day and stay cool!  Here is a little flower for each of you.  I took the picture yesterday while on a morning walk around the complex and nearby park.


Friday, May 9, 2014

Mother's Day Gifts


This picture was taken on the front porch, steps and yard of the only house my Mom and Dad ever owned.  The picture was made in September, 2008 following a party celebrating Mom's 90th birthday.  Members of the family have been lost to death and divorce.  Members have been added by birth and marriage.  Not all the family members were present for this picture.  Besides the half person that was cut off, two grandsons and their families of 6 total were not present.  That is a lot of prodigy to come from just two people. 

Thanks to my Mother for all she did through the years for me and later my family.  She cared for me as a child, she sewed for me as I grew up.  She hauled me to countless 4-H activities.  She loves my husband, son and grandsons.  Ever summer for 8 years she and Daddy took care of our son for from 2 weeks to 6 weeks.  It took us a while to get him back in the routine after those visits.  Just this Easter season, she sent cards with just a little money to thirteen of her great and great great grandchildren.   Just because she is a giving person and wants them to know she loves and thinks of them.

From Proverbs 31, The Message:
She designs gowns and sells them,
    brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
    and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
    and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
    and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her;
    her husband joins in with words of praise:
“Many women have done wonderful things,
    but you’ve outclassed them all!”
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
    The woman to be admired and praised
    is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves!
    Festoon her life with praises!

Mom was more likely to give away anything she sold.  And she is a bit of a glass half full person.  My Mom is not perfect, but she does love her family the best she knows how.  That is all any mother can do, the best she knows how.  May God continue to bless her and us with her presence.

Texan to the core!  And a Democrat, too, she adds.
The best gift I can give my Mother on Mother's Day is to be in her presence.  This year I will not be celebrating with her.  I spent a good deal of time with her last week during the sew a thon for my younger sister.  This year for the first time since 1991 I will be with my one and only child and he is doing the cooking!  I cannot ask for a better Mother's Day gift.

For more takes on Mother's Day or to add to the fun, join Gretchen or Ginny over at The Spin Cycle.



Second Blooming

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Rear View Mirrors

Little more than a decade after this
expansion, the plant closed.  Now just
a big concrete slab.
In the mid 1980's Hubby and I both worked second shift for a company named Litton Advanced Circuitry. This was a small firm owned by a corporate giant, Litton.  No, we did not make microwaves.  We manufactured circuit boards used in everything from computers for TI, IBM, HP to cruise controls for the big three auto manufacturers.  There were boards for testers for the Schlumberger Corp. that were shaped like the Starship Enterprise, not 3 D.  There were airliner safety lights for airline walkways, CAT scan boards and early gps type guidance systems for small aircraft.  NCR was a major client providing main frames for WalMart's stocking computers.  That one board was 24" x 42" x .48".  It pushed the company into bigger buildings and improved technologies.  I interfaced with the engineers and our CAM group.

Layer being processed for
multilayer circuit boards
in our facility.
The Star Trek board in inside the
round portion.
The job was more interesting in later years as I began working more closely with the engineering departments of the various firms.  But in the mid 80's the most fun was going out for a meal after work with two work friends, Bear and Anna.  We would frequent a bar and grill named Casey's that was just a couple of miles from the manufacturing plant.  It was a bar that had the best little Blarney burgers.  The booths were well worn, private and comfortable.  To look out of the booth, one had to lean around a wing similar to one on a wing back chair.

Bear, Anna and I would get off work about 30 minutes before Hubby.  I was keeping an eye out for him to arrive.  I heard the door of the bar open so I leaned out to see if it was Hubby.  Bear and Anna were telling me not to look.  I did not listen and managed to put my face directly into the crotch of a stranger.  I almost whiplashed myself pulling my head back into the booth.  For Christmas Bear gave me a rear view mirror to use when we went to Casey's.  Bear had gone to a junk yard to find the mirror.  That mirror sat in a prominent location of my homes for several years.  I smiled each time I moved it to dust remembering it and the two friends.

Anna died of a sudden heart attack in the mid 1990's.   Litton sold to Northrup Grumman a couple of years later.  After 9/11 business dropped off as more of the circuit board industry moved off shore.  In 2002 several of us were laid off or given buyout packages.  In 2006 the plant was closed.  It is now a vacant lot of concrete slabs.  We lost contact with many of our work friends, one of them was Bear.  We still had the rear view mirror on our bookshelves in the living area.  Casey's is a Mexican food place or Rent to Own or something else these days.  Life like a river moves on or dies.

In 2010 a friend was diagnosed with Paget's disease of the vulva, a type of invasive cancer.  She had extensive surgery which is the only treatment for this cancer.  I took her a homemade beef pot pie and the rear view mirror.  She and her sister laughed till they cried over the silly gift.  Last time I spoke to my friend, she still had the fun evoking rear view mirror.

Sorry for the blurr.  Hubby wanted to know why they are not longer.

Just a little of the past in the Now.
I spent last week at my sister's home working on a valence for her casual dining area.  My Mom was with us much of the time thanks to my sweet Hubby going to get her as she no longer drives.  She spent almost all of the hours with us talking about the past.  This is not new for our Mom.  She has spent so much of her life believing the things in the past were best, that the present, well, just sucks.

At 95 staring into an unknown number of years of living in assisted living in a single room Mom is even more obsessed with the past.  The last few years of life seem to be terribly difficult for so many who lived independently most of their lives.  I call her obsession with "wishing for the past" living life through a rear view mirror.

It is fun to remember friends and times past.  Those cherished memories and friends are what make us who we are.  I have a "Now" with grandsons, son, sisters, Mom, friends, family and Hubby.  There are new friends to be made, places to visit around this wonder-filled orb I call Mother Earth.  How I hope I never live my life looking constantly in the rear view mirror.  Never failing to appreciate the joy of Now.

Enjoying the Now of a lacrosse game!

For more Adventures in our world this Tuesday join in the fun over at Our World Tuesday.


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