Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The one where we almost bought a building

God experience:
                Recently it seemed as if Mr. Pale and I were destined to become property owners.  Mr. Pale currently rents the building where the lock shop is doing business.  He wants to move badly, to own his own piece of property.  And so he found a building for sale, good location, good structure, good price, etc.  When he asked my opinion I said if God wants us to have it then everything will fall into place and it will happen.  In private I began praying to God…Lord, if it be your will for us to have this property then open the doors that need to be opened and close the doors we don’t need to walk through.  Every day I prayed those words:  open and close those doors, Lord! 

                At first things seemed to be going our way.  Through our respective realtors, the seller agreed to owner finance us, and agreed to repair the old, leaky roof and make any other repairs we named.  Mr. Pale and I got a small personal loan from our bank, borrowed against our two paid-for vehicles, representing “earnest” money and we signed an official offer.  At every step I’m praying for God to close doors that we don’t need to walk through.  But I’m also letting God know that I believe he has our backs and that he will not allow us to come to harm in this venture. 

                After we had gone through the steps of making the official offer and getting the bank loan THEN the seller started balking.  For whatever reason, now he was not willing to repair the roof, he wanted a large balloon payment at the end of the agreed upon lease period ($60,000) and on and on.  He back pedaled but hard.  Mr. Pale said forget it, we’ll stay where we are for now, and I said thank you, Lord.  (Actually Mr. Pale used more colorful language but I’ll leave it to your imagination, dear reader, to guess what he said.) 

                Here’s the thing…every time I follow God (or at least try to do my best because, as a human, that’s all I can do) life gets easier, better, more simple.  I am not saying I do not still have struggles.  No, of course I do!  I’m simply saying my reliance on God sustains me and gives me hope. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Hair post: Length

What a difference a year makes!

August last year:

August THIS year:

You'll have to excuse the bad lighting, as the bathroom at work wasn't really designed for photo shoots.  :- )   You can see my length and that's what matters.  Armpit length?  --Pretty sure. 

The one where Robin Williams killed himself

Dear Bill,
                There are people we think will live forever; Robin Williams was one of those people to me.  And so when those icons fall it strikes us hard.  We try to find out the whys, we speculate that the suicide could have been prevented IF ONLY… The truth is that the general population really does not understand depression.  It’s sort of like cancer—you can’t understand it if you haven’t gone through that experience.  I’m a bit ashamed to admit I used to think people who committed suicide were cowards who took the easy way out.  Now I know better.  After watching Sweetie shed tears of anguish from the pain caused by degenerative disc disease, I can imagine a body wanting to end that pain for good.  I can imagine coming to a point mentally, physically and emotionally where you just want it all to go away. Walk a mile. 

             About the goings-on in Ferguson/St. Louis…I haven’t said, typed, uttered or mumbled one word of opinion regarding the killings or the protests or the looting—until now.  The town of Ferguson, according to Google Maps, is exactly 129 miles from Cape Girardeau, a 2 hour-4 minute drive away from here.  And yet with all of the blood-shed and violence you’d think it was some place…well, some place other than Missouri.  I do not have a problem with (peaceful) protests in general; it’s a noble thing for folks to stand up for what they believe in.  What I do have a problem with are those idiots who take advantage of the situation to loot and steal and cause mayhem for their own sick jollies.  The point I wish everyone would keep in mind is that there are only two people who know what happened on Saturday, August the 9th and one of them is dead.

                Sugar Cookie has moved up to the 2 year old classroom at school.  Now she and her mates get to have recess on the “big kid” playground (although still separate from the older children), which means more room to run around like banshees.  Her vocabulary is increasing and she actually strings together sentences now.  I’ve gone through this before, raising my daughter, and yet it fascinates me, this blossoming of a drooling baby into an actual thinking, speaking, reasoning human being.  I look back at her baby pictures and often don’t even recognize the little girl she is today.  So many changes in only two years’ time…  What’s that old saying?  Change is the only constant in life.  *nods*  Death is a form of change, too, isn’t it now. 
Much love always.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Dear Bill: It's August

4 August 2014

 Dear Bill,
I’d ask how you are doing but, since you’re dead I think I know.  Hahahahahahahahaha…oh, ahem, sorry, bad joke.  But since you and I had the same off-beat, sarcastic, inappropriate sense of humor I’m pretty sure you’re not offended. 

Summer is about halfway done, thank god.  I think you disliked the hot temperatures, high humidity, and irritating bugs almost as much as me.  (I hope there’s fishing where you are.)  All of the area schools, including the university, will be starting a new year soon, in just a couple of weeks.  Remember how about the only thing we enjoy of the summer is that most of the college students return home, leaving the campus nice and peaceful?  --And how much we dread their return in the fall?  But then you didn’t have to worry about that once you retired, did you…  I guess it’s a good thing you had almost 10 years to enjoy retirement, although a decade doesn’t sound like enough time to me.  Don didn’t even get to retire, remember?  I heard he had the application for retirement on his desk when he was admitted to the hospital, never to come back out alive.  In that light, yeah, I’d be happy with a decade.  Damn cancer.

Sugar Cookie is now two years old.  I wish you had gotten to meet her, Bill.  When she was born I envisioned you telling her stories about me, most of them beginning with the words, “I remember the time that your Nana…”  I suppose she’ll have to settle for me telling her stories about you.  Toni is doing all right; I wish she would believe me when I tell her what a good mother she is to SC.  Maybe all good mothers doubt their abilities…maybe that’s what keeps us humble and on our toes. 

“Sweetie” is, well, to put it bluntly, he’s stressed.  I think it was Don who used the phrase “he’s/she’s about to have a runaway”.  If you don’t remember, it means a person is so stressed that they just want to run away from everything and everybody.  Sweetie’s got a lot on his plate right now, what with helping his mom after Forrest’s death and trying to buy a building for the business.  He probably needs a vacation, however I doubt it happens anytime soon.  He says after I retire (2017) he’s going to take me on a long trip, but that’s three years from now, Bill.  Between you and me, I worry about his health—you know how much of a toll mental stress can take on a body.  He could probably stand to talk to a therapist but you know that ain’t gonna happen.  I keep on doing what I do…just be there for him when he feels like talking. 

A new season of Poirot is on PBS.  I can never thank you enough for introducing me to this character who uses "zee leetle grey cells".  I love David Suchet's portrayal so much that doubt I will ever again be able to watch anyone else play our beloved Hercule. 

Well, I’d better stop writing and get this in the mail.  I miss knowing you’re in the world, buddy, but I feel like you’re watching over us poor saps who are still down here on earth.  Love ya.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


I think I'm done with this blog.
I began writing here four years ago and it's become a chore.
But I could simply be experiencing Summer doldrums (again)
and so I will leave the blog active for now, to be revisited
at some point in the Fall for a final decision.
All the best,

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A funeral and a birthday

Firstly, thanks to those of you who sent messages of sympathy regarding the death of my father in law--they were much appreciated.  That he made it to the age of 81 is nothing short of a miracle, in my opinion.  Father in law had endured two heart attacks in his lifetime, the second of which should have probably killed him.  I think he was simply too stubborn to know it.  <smile>  His own father dropped dead of a heart attack at age 58.  And from copies of death certificates I have obtained for family members (aunts & uncles, etc.) of father in law, heart disease runs in his family.  So yes, 81 was an achievement. 

To call father in law a character is an understatement.  This was a man who lied about his age and dropped out of high school in order to join the US Navy.   After a hitch in the Navy, he returned to Cape Girardeau, but joined the Air Force when he was unable to find work.  During his Navy years he acquired a GED.  (If memory serves, his Captain gave  him no choice but to get a GED.)  He loved to read, usually having 3 or 4 books going at the same time.  He also kept up with current events, reading the local newspaper and watching the news on television (both local and world). 

My father in law was a dapper man, always dressing well even just to grocery shop.  He ironed everything, even denim jeans and handkerchiefs.  And so when it came time to choose a coffin, my mother in law coordinated his sage green dress shirt with a green casket.  Everyone liked that touch.  Father in law loved Celtic music and there was a particular CD he kept in his vehicle that was his favorite.  Mother in law loaned the CD to the funeral home and it was played during visitation and the funeral.  Everyone told her how much they enjoyed the beautiful Celtic music rather than the usual hymns and more somber tunes. 

At the grave site there were military honors:  a 3-gun salute, a bugler from the local VFW playing "Taps", and the flag folding ceremony.  Despite being in mourning, I found the whole thing fascinating as I had only seen military honors in movies or tv shows.  Father in law is buried close to his mother and father, under a tall tree where I'm sure there are many squirrels "talking" at him (he loved to squirrel hunt).  There is a space next to him for my mother in law, when it is her time to go. 

And now for some happy talk:  Sugar Cookie turns 2 tomorrow!  Can you believe it!  I sure can't.  My daughter will take cupcakes to the school tomorrow (store bought--no time for homemade) but the family won't have cake until the weekend.  No huge celebration planned; after all, she is only two.  I really can't understand the parents/grandparents who throw lavish, expensive parties for little ones who don't even comprehend what's happening.  Also, SC should soon be moving up to the next grade, probably sometime in August, I bet.  Which means getting used to new teachers and new routines.  Hope all of you are enjoying your summer.  Me, I am counting down the days until my beloved Autumn arrives. 

Monday, June 23, 2014

Death in the family

My father in law died this morning.  He has not been well for quite some time, so this is not unexpected.  Still...death always catches us off guard, doesn't it.  I thank God for the time we had with him and rest in the hope that we will all be together again some day.