March 4, 2014
My Dad told my husband and I this from his hospital bed. He was not being pessimistic in any way = he was simply reminding us that we should take action. Live for now . Do – Do – Do …don’t wait until the “right time” – there will never be a right time…..If you’ve been thinking about doing something for awhile now…it’s already getting too late – do it.
This from a man who was never big on giving advice…but when you are near the end – your clarity is, well….CLEAR,
Do. Follow your dreams. Go for it. The time is NOW.
February 10, 2014
Yesterday I had my annual “Ladies Only” Valentine Party. Well, I say annual because I held it rather successfully for 17 years, but then it took a 4 year hiatus due to the fact that people went back to work/kids were at that age where we were all attending various hockey games and swim meets/concerts etc. No one could seem to get together. I tried it again this year, a brunch – the way it was in the old days…..and WOW! 25 fabulous, red and/or pink clad ladies filled my home, much to my extreme pleasure. The champagne and OJ flowed – the quiches were hot – bagels, cream cheese and smoked salmon graced the table as well as croissants and jams – and there was a far more interesting cheese plate than in days long past!
This all began about 22 years ago when my son was 18 months old and I was in a “Mom and Tots” playgroup. We all have toddlers and babies then and had been married just long enough to no longer be going out for Valentine’s Day. So, I came up with the idea of treating my friends to a Valentine Brunch…..”Ladies Only” (read – no kids! – although my dear friend, Ann’s baby Kristen was happily there….Hey Kristen – the only kid – EVER!). I wanted my friends to have the chance to wipe off the drool and spit up, swipe on some lipstick and dress up a bit, and also to have a well-earned glass of champagne and be served a brunch. That’s right – I said served - because back then, it was a small enough group to be a sit-down affair. A couple of years passed and I was in Pre-School too – so now I had another group of lovely ladies to treat.Now, because I still wanted to do the sit-down I was in a quandary until my friend Kathi suggested …are you ready for this? TWO sittings, in order to accommodate everyone. Sounded good/worked well/ I had the energy back then.
Quickly – word began to spread among the ladies I knew about this Valentine Party, with its champagne (always a draw!), food and wild decorations (I used to change the curtains and placemats/tablecloths in my kitchen every season, for goodness sake). Pink tulle hung in every doorway and hearts were everywhere hanging or on display – and I still do that! Plus there were those famous Loot Bags; because I believe that loot bags should not be just for children at birthday parties! In the early days the loot bags contained fancy panties (oh yeah – you try going into a store and imagine all of your friends’ derriere sizes!) but over time this became impossible with the number of, well,,,,derrieres (it’s now candies)!
Of course, I don’t get to visit with everyone….25 is a lot of ladies. But the whole reason I started this and continue this event is because I want to treat these wonderful women.I wanted then to have the chance to meet with and exchange thoughts and ideas with other women…women they’ve never met.
This is my Valentine gift to them all – not to mention that it’s a wonderful way to break up winter. January….you’re getting over the holiday season – but by mid-February it’s nice to have a dalliance with the knowledge that spring is soon to arrive.
So – a wonderful time was had by all…..plus my house is now super clean (thanks to my wonderful husband) to boot!
Happy Valentine’s Day to my wonderful Ladies!
February 7, 2014
Yawning, tearing eyes - it’s 9:45 and I am ready for bed.
I crawl into bed and pull the duvet up under my chin – fluff my pillow and ahhhhhh – cozy! Any minute now, I’ll feel that deliciously heavy, sinking feeling of drifting off to sleep.
10:15 – I hear my son come in the door. Hey – why am I still awake?
10:45 – I know you’re not supposed to look at the clock but – what time is it?
-What is the last name of my daughter’s new friend again?
- My eyelid itches a bit. Why do I even have dry skin on my eyelids? My husband said he noticed it in the folds. When did I get fold on my eyelids?
- I have to make Valentine cookies next week. Should I frost them? How hard is it to “flood” a frosting on a cookie?
- Why am I still awake?
11:15 – My pharmacist suggested to me that I take a Gravol now and again to help when I can’t sleep; so downstairs I go to take one.
11:20 – (back in bed) Ok – pretty soon, I’ll be drifting off to sleep.
Midnight – I am not asleep…but I am too tired to read and too tired to get up.
12:15 – That’s it! I’m getting up and trying the warm milk thing that my husband suggested as he fell asleep (head not even hitting the pillow yet).
12:20 – Sitting in family room with my son, watching a bit of TV and sipping on my warm milk (which by the way – really doesn’t taste that good). My son informs me that studies have now shown that the warm milk “treatment” is just a placebo. I smile and tell him “I’m desperate.”
12:45 – Back in bed. Ok, NOW I’ll be able to sleep – Gravol, warm milk – good to go!
- Why do my eyes tear so much – am I seriously aging?
- What am I going to make for dinner tomorrow night – I mean tonight? Can’t bear chicken again.
- The dog is overdue for his annual visit to the vet.
- Why is that my hair won’t hold a curl – unless of course my hairdresser does it for me? Should I get highlights?
- Did I pay that bill?
- No! I didn’t – have to do that tomorrow (I mean, today). Hope I remember.
- Need to refill my Mom’s cell phone minutes for her tomorrow (sorry – I mean, today)
- I KNOW you’re not supposed to look at the clock – but what time is it?
- OMG. I have to get up in 4 1/2 hours!
4am – I’m groggy, I have just woken up from a deep sleep (finally!) to hear the dog barking. Something he never does at this hour. I wake up my husband and tell him to go downstairs and see what’s going on. He comes back to bed and tells me he saw absolutely nothing.
Hmm – not like my dog to do that. Maybe it’s a new newspaper carrier. No – not at 4am. Maybe it’s someone walking, carrying something – like a shovel. Would he be wearing a hoodie too? Who is out there walking at 4am? Maybe it’s kids skulking around looking to break into a car…..no It’s -20C….no one’s out there.
When did I get to be so neurotic? Do not ask my children that .
4:30 – Oh great…I am going to have to get up in an hour. How will I do the day on just 3 hours of sleep?
4:45 – Well, too bad – there’s no point in trying to sleep now.
5am – I’m up. I may as well go downstairs and make coffee.
I love fresh ground coffee but I don’t want to grind it at 5am…..
You know what? This is a blog.
February 6, 2014
I stopped by my parents’ home today to visit and say hello. My father has ALS which has been a tremendous blow to our family – we never saw it coming….a man who, although 86, puts most of us to shame with how active and in-shape he has always been. Walking 2 1/2 miles daily – rain or shine – and working out at the gym three times a week for the last 60 years. But this is what Life has decided to hand out and we have no choice but to accept it. One of the incredible lessons has been the moments of insight I have had into my parents 60 year-long love affair….I have always known that they loved each other – they have never been afraid to show their devotion and affection, on a daily basis.
But…it is the intimate moments that I have accidentally witnessed. One day, while in the hospital awaiting results from a series of tests – I was sitting behind them in the waiting room and my mother suddenly said quietly “We had some really great times – didn’t we?” and my dad responded with a tired smile and nodded ” We sure did… it’s all in here” he said, pointing to his chest. I had to hold back the tears because it was not my time.
Today, while chit-chatting about life in general, my dad pointed out to my mother that the times that she holds most dear were the times when we were small children and they were a young couple – a young family just starting out. He reminisced about how they used to get together with their group of friends – other young couple with young families. Glory days – for most of those lovely, fun-loving people are long gone.
Once again – I kept the tears to myself – it is not my time.
But as I often say to my husband – where do all these wonderful times, good feelings, long evenings of hysterical laughter…where do these moments of magic go ….once we - go?
January 19, 2014
Last week, my SUV started to roar – yep, you guessed it – a hole in the muffler. On Day 2 of this development I was driving home, a bit embarrassed and self conscious about the loud sound – that is, until I came up behind Mr. Bad Driver. He was driving exceptionally slow and (seriously?!?!) looking for parking while in the middle of a very busy intersection. I couldn’t get left there, stuck in the intersection when the light turned red. So I ever-so-slightly hit the gas. my vehicle squealed on a patch of ice (of course) as I roared by, and all I could think about was that this guy probably thought “jerk!”…or maybe not. I smiled at the thought that perhaps he was thinking “woah, bad-assed mama!”
At any rate, I am definitely taking the car in to have the muffler fixed this week – but I might enjoy the odd “roar-by” until then
January 12, 2014
Lottery win…yeah – if only. Every other week I buy a lottery ticket and what gets me is how legitimately disappointed I am when don’t win; I mean I always feel so sorts-kinda-sure I’m going to win. Here’s the thing; I know for a fact that I would make a terrific semi-rich person. I say semi-rich because I never hope to win the “big” lottery; you know – those $20 million prizes….way too much money to handle. However a cool 1 – 2 million is fine. You pay off your house, you set up your kids’ education funds (and invest in the their future), set up your retirement (never used to think about that one when I was younger, Lol!), take a nice trip and get a new vehicle (ours is almost 10 years old) – then I’d help out a few friends/give some to charity. Now doesn’t that sound good? Doesn’t that sound responsible? Doesn’t that sound like the right lottery winning person?
Damn. I didn’t win again. Oh well…there’s always next week!