There's rosemary, that's for remembrance.
William Shakespeare: Hamlet, Prince of Denmark

Monday, July 30, 2007

Turn right at Idaho

My friend Molly emailed this morning…..What? No Sunday blog? What's up with that? Hope you are doing okay? Would love to call but I never know if Steve is doing conference calls or working from home via the phone. Love Molly

We needed tomatoes yesterday to make a salad. Rather than drive the 6 miles to Yokes or WWW, we drove a mile and a half to the Pack River General Store. It’s a one room we-have-everything-you-need-for-a-price-laundry-showers-and–one-gas-pump-too kind of store. It sits right on the Pack River, fronts Rapid Lightening Creek Road and is a throw back to several generations.

We loaded up the dogs and decided to take a little ride up Rapid Lightening Creek Road after our tomato purchase.

It has been two years since we needed to drive up that road and Upper Gold Creek Road that sits at the top of Rapid Lightening. Our friends Barb and John used to live on RLC and Cliff and Lou lived on Gold Creek, the downward slope of Upper Gold Creek. It is a beyond beautiful drive. Trees, mountains, creeks, falls, valleys and fields abound in the glory that is summer in Idaho. Those were secondary to the drive.

In the early summer of 1989 we went to Steve’s 25th high school reunion in Anaheim, California. Steve met up with his old childhood friend Cliff. There was a lot of reminiscing and belly laughs and at the end of the evening Cliff invited us to visit him and his wife in Sandpoint, Idaho. It was a sincere invitation.

Late that same summer, Steve had a consultation in Spokane, Washington. Spokane is the closest airport to Sandpoint and Steve drove up to see Cliff. Not only were Cliff and his wife Lou in Sandpoint, his children, his parents Cliff Sr. and Nancy Sr., brother Jerry and his wife and children, his sister Nancy and her husband David, and various in-laws, cousins and extended family lived there too. John, another childhood friend, had migrated to Sandpoint and through a set of strange circumstances had just “hooked up” with Barb from California as well. Steve came home in love with another woman named, Idaho.

In October of ’89 Steve and I came up for a visit and within a week we had purchased our 16 acres and building plans were in progress. You can read more about the evolution from that point on in my sidebar under stuff about me...big adventure.

There were a lot of trips to Sandpoint after that momentous year. We spent a few holidays with these friends and gradually we became part of the family.

After we moved here full time in 1998, almost every holiday was spent with all of these special folks. Easter had egg decorating contests; not with dye but with fabric, lace, buttons and doo-dads. The elder Cliff was always the judge. The 4th of July meant a parade then a Bar-B-Q then fireworks. A few of those 4th’s were spent around a fire ring with jackets and blankets, but the fountains and crackers went off as planned using a propane torch to light them. Parades are popular up here and we all would congregate in front of Ricardo’s Pizza and bring chairs, cameras and our loudest cheering voices.

Thanksgivings were food glorious with everyone sitting around a plywood panel perched on top of sawhorses talking and joking. Christmas was filled with homemade gifts; very little was store bought and every gift special to the person not assembly-line-one-fits-all.

Were it not for this family of friends, the hole in my heart from leaving my children behind in California after the big move would have turned into a volcanic crater with molten ash and tears.

Then everything changed.

The elders sold their compound in back of the Pack River General Store (they had built the store and had sold it but kept the 200+ acres with their home behind it).

David died, then John died, then Jerry died, then Cliff did something so unspeakable that Lou left him, Barb moved to Spokane, Nancy’s house was on the market. All of those drives up those roads ceased in a matter of months.

The drive yesterday made me cry. Steve didn’t understand. I felt such a huge surge of loss I didn’t think I would ever catch my breath. It had sort of floated out the window on Gold Creek. Damn all of them for dying, damn Cliff for being so selfishly stupid, damn all of them for taking away the only real reason I wanted to move to Idaho. Yes, I love this land and my two friends, Gina and Molly. Yes, I love the Library and being a Trustee, yes I have fond memories of the minutia that made me first fall into wanting to be a nature faerie. Where else could you find a long bridge that spans a clean lake filled with healthy fish, population of a little over 5,000, The Bohemian Trader with all things needed to survive Idaho, Yokes Pac n Save that was really just a warehouse, Dead Harold’s Market so named because Harold had been murdered there, The Panida and not having to lock anything ever including your car in town?

Damn all of them for taking away what was my Idaho life. Selfish, I know but I don't care.

I don’t go into town much anymore. The traffic is horrible and parking a joke. Yoke’s is a fancy schmancy market, WWW has taken over everything it seems and I just kind of want to stay at home in my own forest with my wildlife and the kittens and Steve and our pets. We can’t afford many visits to California to see the kids at the moment, so I am planted here.

Steve says he thinks I have a list of worries. When one is gone, checked off, I put another on the list. What’s the latest worry that has soared right to the top of the list? That Steve will be traveling and I will die on the forest floor alone with no one to find me except for the Bambi’s and that only a few friends are left in Idaho to miss me. I’m not going up Rapid Lightening Creek Road, Upper Gold Creek Road or Gold Creek Road ever again.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

3 Pictures and a secret.

This is my old washer, known as POS. See all the fancy push buttons? See all the cycles I had to choose from when washing clothes? See all the potential for screwing up? Not me screwing up, the POS screwing up. And it did all the time.
My brand new washer. Dials. See the dials? Sweet, simple, and it was so cheap it almost clucks when it spins. Love it! I'm gonna call it Cutie.

One kitten came out to greet me this morning. The others went back under the car when they saw the flash from the camera. SweetPea was MIA; probably out hunting. She...Ms. Pea...goes in for the surgery next Wednesday. I called all of the local shelters yesterday trying to place the kittens with zero luck. All are full but one is fostering kittens. That shelter may have one opening next week, so if I can capture one kitten then I am 1/4 of the way to my goal of homes for these darlings.
The secret: I was talking to my sweet daughter this morning and this is what she said: "I read in your blog that SweetPea came back home." She is reading my blog! I wonder if she knows she said that? Love you Christine!
I was talking briefly (as almost all conversations are) with my youngest son. He flat out told me he was reading my blog and he was proud of me. He is reading my blog! Love you Bert.
Two down one to go! kiss, kiss my darlings.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Somewhere in time...

This is my Uncle Augustine. I don't know where he was when this pix was taken, how old he was or when he was born because I can't find the genealogical chart my cousin sent me (Gerri I am so sorry if you read this). He was my mother's older brother. My mom was born in 1917 but again, I don't know how much older he was. I love the way his shoes seem to meld into his socks, and the pants are what, knickerbockers? I am amazed at the horse and buggy; to see that captured in a picture is just, well, I don't have a word for the feeling. See the man at the top of the stairs? I wonder if that is my grandfather. Glorious picture I think.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Maybe a little Italian, but I'm not sure.

This couple are the Celinos. They were the parents of my godmother, Lucy. Neither one of them spoke English but Mrs. Celino (never knew their first names and wouldn't have called them by those names anyway unless I wanted to get smacked) would bark out orders in Italian to the kids at a gathering and expect all of us...none spoke understand everything she was saying. When we didn't respond she would call us "stupido" and raise her hand and take a deep breath and exhale with a protracted ahhhhhhiee. I think the Teflon Don would have looked like Mr. Celino had he lived. I think he is quite a handsome man.

Photo taken at Lexington Photographer, Baltimore, Md. It is hard to see the detail in the photo. I took a magnifier and the layers of lace on this dress and the embroidery is magnificent. I love the sagging stockings and the beautiful summer hat on the chair, the elegant little tie shoes and the look on her face that might say....I am standing still, Mama.

If EVER there was the map of Italy on faces, well, here it is. Twins? Names? Place...only the photographer, Lexington Photographer in Baltimore, Md. More of my mom's stuff. This picture does not even come close to showing the detail on the clothing; lace, buttons, handwork, fine fabric, gold around their necks, earrings in her ears, highly polished shoes and more. Do you think this was where "You talkin to me?" came from....said in fear by the boy and insolence by the girl.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Ticked off and I'm not gonna take it anymore....oh, that's way too strong.

I am apologizing again for not reading blogs last night. I was on a mission, a research mission.

I have made three really bad purchase decisions in my life; a Corvette, a waterbed and now a washing machine.

The Vette was an 89. Red. Fast. Beautiful. I wanted it. I bought it. The E brake came off in my hand, the back window slid off, a gasket continually blew and all of this happened in the first year I had it. I lost my a## when I traded it in on my cute little MR2.

The water bed was a trendy thing to buy. I wanted one. I wanted one. I bought it. It was the worst sleep of my life. I hated the damn thing. Kept it for a year and then gave it to my oldest son. He still has the frame with a regular mattress set in it.

Three years ago I needed a new washer. The newest thing on the market was a brand that starts with May and ends with Tag but I don't think I should put the brand name in this post; might get me in trouble. It was a Neptune but I really can't post the model type. It had paddles instead of an agitator. It was supposed to do a whiz bang wash job, better spin thus saving on drying time, could launch rockets into space and bring a man home from the moon. I wanted one. I wanted one. I bought one.

It is a piece of crap. I hated it after the second load of wash. It does not wash well, the capacity is fraudulently advertised....yes it has a large tub, but you can only load it half way up....when it spins it turns my clothes into pretzels and actually can knot a pair of pants legs. Yesterday was the last straw. It kept going off balance with a load of two sheets. Two. No pillowcases, no wash cloths, no dish towels, just 2 sheets. I eventually wrung them out and hung them to dry.

I ranted like a fish woman (you know, like in a fish market yelling "Buy the mackerel today or I'll hit you in the head with a fish"). If I was married to anyone other than Steve I would have been told to deal with the situation. When I screamed "I am finished with this POS. I am researching a new washer, I am going to buy a new washer TOMORROW. I don't care how much money I wasted on this POS, I am getting a new washer and that's it!" He said "OK, honey."

So, I have done my research. I am going to Sears this afternoon and getting a new washer with an agitator, dials, no little clicky push button thingies, very few choices in wash types and load, warm cold, big, middle, small, agitate the clothes to death or be gentle.....and that's IT. Oh, and don't ever buy a Maytag Neptune washer. While doing my research I found out that the class action lawsuit about this exact washer had been settled earlier this year.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Guess who came to dinner? Pix below the post.

Yup, my wild child is home; with 4 babies in tow. She is dirty and acted like I was nuts when I cried louder than when I thought she was gone forever.

She's not talking. Neither are the babies. If I push the issue, she walks away. Little snot.

Steve and I were talking about our pets and how blessed we have been to have the particular ones that we have had. We have accumulated a laundry list of unwanteds over the years. The first baby we brought home was Babie; so named because my kids teased me and called her mommy's new baby. Babie was the result of a kitty mill. While Babie was at the vet's getting "fixed" we brought home Magic who was a lab kitten at Loma Linda Medical Center. He wouldn't have worked in what ever experiment they were going use him for because his momma had mastitis and couldn't feed him. One of the neurosurgeons I worked with asked me if I had room for a 4 week old kitten that would need a faux kitty mommy and I said yes! Magic was forever Babie's baby, not mine.

Then came Mr. Butterbur Goldberry the Dog (can anyone guess where the name came from). He was a 6 month old pedigreed Lasha Apso that was HUGE and had a jaw deformity. He never took to me and at one time the vet suggested we put him down because he had several episodes of biting me, once on the lip. Ah, that would be a no. He spent almost 2 years walking around with a leash attached to his collar. As soon as the leash came off, he would potty in the hallway. It was an attractive leash. Then Cicero was rescued from death row at the animal shelter. He was almost a year old and not "placement material." He was nicely placed in our family.

Miss Drake was my son's cat. He wanted a kitten as his college graduation gift. No, he didn't want a computer or a trip to Hawaii, he wanted a kitten. After my son moved back home with Drake in his arms, she fit in perfectly as the Queen of the pets and became "our" cat after my son married.

When Magic died at 14 we felt like there was an enormous hole in our family. When a co-worker announced her registered Siamese had gotten "that way" from an alley cat and she was going to have the babies aborted I told her if there was a male kitten I would take it. If no males then I would take a female. She let the pregnancy go to term and we not only took Fuzz (named in utero) but Mimi Louise as well as she was going to the animal shelter.

We lost Babie, Cicero and Goldberry in Idaho.....all of them to very old age and serious illness.

Enter Charlie, absolutely the undisputed doggie love of our lives. We got him from the local shelter when he was almost 8 years old. We had 8 glorious years with Charlie. He had experienced some pretty significant spinal problems in 2004, but they were under control and he was comfortable and able to walk and move around quite well. Then the accident happened (Charlie and Violet were in the back seat). Charlie deteriorated rapidly after that and we finally got past our selfish need for him and let him rest. Then there is Schitzo Violet a gift from our daughter. Violet was discovered in a pet grooming shop; the result of another promiscuous animal.

Penelope. What can I say about Penelope? She was the street bag lady, snooping into garbage for snacks, laying on a snow berm in winter to sleep, in knapweed during the summer. She was destined to be shot in the forest because she was inconvenient. She is now conveniently an indoor/outdoor dog that sleeps on a sheepskin pad next to my side of the bed.

The last cat to let us live with her was Sophie. She was the cat living, in-the-closet-full-of-fleas-and- scared-of-her-shadow-which-was-rather-large, at my brother in laws.

And now we have SweetPea. We do have a plan; SweetPea to the vet's to get fixed, babies to the no kill shelter to find homes because they would not survive a winter up here and I will try my best to integrate SweetPea into a family of 3 females and 1 male cat and 2 female dogs all of whom are testy on their best days.

None of these animals were/are animals. We feel they are an integral part of our family, our friends, our children in a sense, our dear companions and deserving of at least a second chance if not more.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Almost 40 hours

I haven't seen SweetPea and the babies since Wednesday night. It will be 40 hours soon. Sounds silly I guess but I am worried about them and even more worried that I will never see them again.

We had a really big, bad storm pass through Thursday at 2:30 in the morning. It lasted for hours, pounded the house with thunder and lit up the forest with lightening; hail rained down and sounded like rocks on the roof. Penelope tried to get up on the bed but thankfully her butt is loaded and she didn't succeed. The kitties were all hiding and all I could do was lay awake until it passed close to 6 AM.

I have a routine with Pea. I go out in the morning at about 10 and play with her, hold her and tell her I love her. We had hatched a plan where she could eventually come inside to live and I promised her I would find good homes for her babies. She is still a baby, she needed a mommy and who am I kidding, I want her. If she is a year old I would be surprised.

I would go out again at dusk when the babies had napped all day long and were more receptive to the big human that talked baby talk and fed them. I was able to sit within 2 or 3 feet of all 4 babies and watch them gobble their can of kitten tuna. I bought a Furpie and we had started playing and socializing a little bit. I "borrowed" Steve's laser pointer and they danced around trying to catch the light. After our dusk play date I would go inside and watch them from Steve's office window as they jumped and ran in the wild daisies.

No SweetPea or babies yesterday morning. OK, I left the tuna on their plates thinking they were out napping in the coolness that had come after the storm. I went out at noon. The food looked untouched. I went out at 2, 3, 4, 6 and finally at dusk I picked up the bee covered food and took it inside. I got the flashlight and walked into forest a bit, but came in after knowing if I did find anything bad I would not be able to stand the sight.

I am not exaggerating when I say that our forest is alive with danger for small animals. Squirrels were in danger because of SweetPea as were the Pine Siskins. We have not seen the bears for a while but it has been hot and the berries are shriveled and dying I have read. We have mountain lions and a den of thriving coyotes a few miles down the road because the idiot people whose property the den is on put their food garbage by the mouth of the den for the "poor skinny creatures." We have voles, raccoons, porcupines, skunks and anything else that naturally lives on the acreage we call home.

I know I am a silly old woman who has placed cats and dogs and Bambi's and squirrels in the pockets of my heart where little children used to come for comfort. But, you know what, they have been magic for me, kept me sane and are the best company anyone could ask for. I love them and they in return act like they tolerate my affection and allow me to think they love me too.

So, I am off to go check for the third time this morning. Of course I am crying. Of course I don't have much hope that when I next go out SweetPea will come sauntering out like she was always there and I-just-came-at-the-wrong-time-silly-human. But, maybe later today or tomorrow I can announce that my wild child and her babies are back.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

A Thankless Job.

Steve is gone until Friday, so the job of mowing the lawn is mine. I checked the weather for the week and it is going to be hot every day. I figured I just might as well get this over with. I gathered my equipment:

The riding mower (AKA my Rig) is my friend. Steve says I scare him when I am on it. I do speed a bit I admit. But I make really nice patterns in the grass, only use the cruise on straight paths and try to stay off the rocks. Steve wants me to wear my bike helmet when I mow. No.

I use the walk behind to mow all around the perimeter and along the garden paths. It is a PIA to use this mower because the yard is full of mole and gopher holes and is uneven. I used the wheelbarrow to collect all of the pine cones and the lawn chairs. I have been known to just mow over the pine cones, but they make a horrible noise that sounds like I am killing my rig. I have also just reached out to throw the chairs out of the way as I mow, but that is really not a good idea.

Penelope helped me.

Violet helped me. Is she laughing? Winking?

Here is the north yard all pretty and mowed. The grass is a bit dry. Maybe I should water.

Here is the south yard all pretty and mowed. The grass is a bit dry. Maybe I should water.

You would think that the sight of THIS would scare the damn grass from wanting to ever grow again. I hate this job, but after I am all done, it feels good. I can get it done in two hours listening to Jackson or the Commitments or Christina Aguilera on Ms. iPod. Now that I look at this picture I look like a white Stevie Wonder. The shades are the only ones I could find that fit over my glasses. I cleaned my rig, tucked it back into the until next week I can only hope the mower faerie drops by.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Wanna peek? Wanna? Come on...just for a minute.

This is the reward for my reckless behavior. My heart, my breath, my soul, my reason for.

Art, Bethany and John.

Christine and Christopher.

Gil, Sachi and my daughter in law.

The trio here and below...kiss, kiss, kiss a million times over.

Gee, guess who this is; my friend, my bud, my confidant, my love, my everything.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Good girl, not such a good girl, bad girl.

5th grade, 8th grade, some other time, in order of the pictures. One thing never changes; it's all about my hair.

As I go through more and more contemporary pictures I am constantly wondering about the girl I see in pix like these.

I think from babyhood until I was 10 or so, I was just an average kid. I liked school, got good grades, was a Girl Scout, pouted at times, said things to my mother I shouldn't have and got smacked my share of times too. I loved to skate and ride my bike. I played for hours on end with my dolls and paper dolls. I didn't have many friends because, regardless of the big mouth I have in my blog posts, I was and am shy.

Things changed after my brother was born. He was sick a lot, had asthma and I know now, is mildly autistic. My dad was on the road all of the time as a long haul truck driver and my mom ruled the house. She was engaging in reckless behavior and drug me along on those adventures.

I chose to become reckless. I became reckless. I engaged in reckless behavior. But, what was I dreaming about in those days?

In 5th grade I wanted to learn how to ice skate. The Girl Scout troop was going to get a badge in ice skating. My mom said no; the lessons were too expensive and all I would do is spend my time falling at the ice rink. My dad was on the road and so my backup yes was gone. I got over it. I worked on a cooking badge (go ahead and laugh) and was the only girl in my troop to earn one of those badges. I was writing to the Sister's of Charity. I was sure I had heard the calling. I was basically a happy kid. No dreams hit with lightening yet.

In 8th grade I finally got my first bra. I was happy for months. I loved George Phillips who lived in the neighborhood. He was older too; a freshman. He actually talked to me every once in a while. The bomb had gone off with my parents and they were still together, but......I had lied to my dad about what my mom had done. I felt like dirt on his shoes. I had heard my mom say those words.....You can have rosebud. Please. Don't take my dollboy. Reckless had started to tug at my brain. I worried about my frizzy hair and how to get out of accordion practice. I went to picnics with my friends Bea and Diane, played with my mom's makeup, stole one of her lipsticks and lied about taking the bus uptown. Oh, we went uptown, but in Bea's brother's car. I stole a bathing suit. It was green with white zig-zags. I thought I looked at least 15.

The last pix must be one of my high school yearbook photos, but for the life of me I don't know what year. I do remember the blouse. It was green and blue and a kerchief print. It zipped all the way up the front and as soon as I would leave the house the zipper went up and I would pull the back of the collar up and look "tough." But-oh-my-gawd-the-hair.

The summer before my freshman year, I met the man that would become my first husband; the man that I wanted to love me forever. I was typically heartbroken when summer ended even though I had known him for one day and that day ended with the worst kiss of my entire life (and believe me I have kissed some frogs). I saw him again the first day of second semester my freshman year at Alhambra High School. I had sex with him on our first date. Did I type date? I'm sorry, I meant I lied and told my mom I was going to Bea's and told Bea to cover for me. We "parked." Did I type I had sex? I'm sorry, he had sex I pretended. See, I was a woman already.

I did have dreams. I did think I would live them. I could have lived some of the less outrageous ones, but making a 45 record of the "Yellow Rose of Texas", or becoming a Fredrick's model; those were just not going to happen.

Nope, those young girl dreams of ice skating, becoming a nun, having George Phillips fall in love with me, I traded those in for reckless.......I did this backwards. Read this (some of you have already read Something so) and maybe you will understand.


I've got nothing. I am tired of scanning old pix, the heat has been unbearable, Steve leaves today which means I will have to do the lawn myself sometime before Friday and I may die from doing that.

I have made a few simple decisions.

1. I will keep SweetPea somehow, I just haven't mapped out the whole plan yet.

2. I will find homes for the babies, I just haven't mapped out the whole plan yet.

3. Yes, 1 & 2 are old news.

4. I think sage green is my new favorite color.

All of that said, I think I will go to City Beach today, forget my housework and just kick back with this guy. Maybe I'll be inspired.

How tall do you think this guy is? 4' 6" on his best day, maybe??

Sunday, July 15, 2007

The family from another time. 3 pics in post..4th added

The top picture(s) are of my father's first family. In the first pix my dad is on the right, next to him is his wife Ruth (Brown) and she is holding their daughter, Barbara Jean. The other folks are not identified as usual. Barbara Jean is the lovely girl in the second pix. I met Ruth Brown, I knew Barbara Jean and I had also met Ruth's mother MRS. Brown as she told me to address her. I don't know when or for how long Ruth and my dad were married, but Barbara Jean (it was never just Barbara) was already in her late teens in my first memory of her. Barbara Jean was born deaf and here is the story: Ruth came from money, she married my dad, MRS. Brown didn't like my dad, Ruth was cut off, they lost everything during the depression, moved to a ranch in Northern California where my dad found work, Ruth got pregnant, contracted German measles during her early pregnancy, Ruth begged her mother to help them, she did, they moved back to Los Angeles where Barbara Jean was born, deaf. MRS. Brown put Barbara Jean through the Spencer Tracy School for the Deaf at a great cost, and when I finally met her (I was 5 or 6 she was in her late teens possibly 19) she was speaking beautifully, was fluent in sign language and was engaged to marry a deaf man, Jim, from the school. He was an instructor in signing there.

I know the marriage did not last long, but it was long enough for Barbara Jean to have a son, Jim, Jr. Eventually Barbara Jean re-married another deaf man, Ralph Cox, and they moved to Michigan.

Below is Barbara Jean maybe 9 or 10 years later (after her re-marriage to Ralph). From left to right, Ralph holding Rose Emma their daughter, Barbara Jean, my grandmother Minnie and standing are my Dad and Jim, Jr. At the time this pix was taken Barbara Jean was diabetic, they lived in squalor, neither she or Ralph worked, they lived on welfare, Barbara Jean no longer spoke but made noises and pointed a lot. This pix was taken at my Uncle Jack's place in Michigan. Both of the children were perfectly healthy. Both Ruth Brown and her mother MRS. Brown passed away shortly after Barbara Jean married Ralph. After my dad passed away the last thing I heard about the family was Jim, Jr. was in the Navy, Barbara Jean was very ill and Rose Emma and Ralph were living with his family. She was my half sister from the family from another time.

FYI, my dad was born in 1903 and I was born in 1944. He was 41 when I was born. I do know he was still married to Ruth Brown when he met my mom which was in the early 40's. My mom had married Phil Rivers and moved to California where Phil was stationed in Long Beach.

- TaDAA...Here is the picture I wanted right from the start! This is the very first time I met Barbara Jean. So, am I maybe 5? Is she maybe 17 or 18?

Friday, July 13, 2007

Something so.....not every day can be fun in blogland

I heard a song today and it brought back lots of memories. Not every day can be fun in blogland. But, with friends it doesn't have to be.

When I was 5 I wanted to be a dancer. I would play The Hungarian Rhapsody #2 on my 78 RPM record player and dance until my heart soared and then I would dance some more.

And I was in crazy motion.....

When I was 9 I wanted to be a Sister of Charity. I prayed and prayed and hoped my heart would soar to the heavens and then I prayed some more. I loved the coronet and the way the nuns looked when they walked, almost like floating. I wanted to be a good girl.

til you calmed me down......

When I was 13 I wanted to be a doctor. I took all of the right classes my first year in high school and I thought I would heal the masses and my heart would soar higher than the clouds. Then I saw him. My heart skipped a beat and the doctor in me misdiagnosed my condition.

Some people never say the words I Love You; it's not their style....

When I was 15 I wanted to love and be loved. I thought my heart was large enough to hold and give all of the love in the world and I could soar into womanhood. I was married the March before my 16th birthday and my first son was born in August. I was finally truly in love and my heart soared.

Some people never say the words I Love You, but like a child I'm longing to be told.

When I was 17 my daughter was born and my heart burst from her sweetness. I didn't know love was that wonderful. I was soaring.

and you've got the look of love right in your eyes....

When I was 21 I was divorced. My heart hurt, but, my children kept me strong and we soared together.

It took a little time, but you calmed me down....

When I was 25 I fell in love again and was sure my heart was telling me the truth. My youngest son was born in 1969. He filled that last place in my heart and I didn't think I could be happier. The problem with soaring is staying on track.

and I was in crazy motion...

When I was 29 I was divorced again. My heart was wounded and I thought my soaring days were over. My children kept me grounded, school filled those hard hours when someone would have been coming home from work and then I fluttered and started to soar a bit again.

If something goes wrong I'm the first to admit it....

Foolish heart, weak heart; it was addicted to this soaring. I was 25 again and my heart lied for the second time about the same love. This time I didn't hurt when it was over. I had started to build a wall around my heart that held it tight and pulled my children close. We were not going to soar again. We were going to march in place, make small advances and be content.

I'm the first to admit it but the last one to know...

When I was 38 my heart had a wall around it. It was sealed off and quiet. It was earth bound and was not going to soar again except for my children. But, it seems I didn't totally control that wall and it started to crack a little and a man found his way inside.

They've got a wall in China that's a thousand miles long. And I've got a wall around me that you can't even took a little time to get next to me.

This time was the charm. I had made oh-so-many-bad-flights, my heart had been broken, mended and healed. I thought being content was enough, but soaring was my heart's desire and so I told it to take off. At 41 I married for the last time. My heart was full, it was soaring and has never stopped.

If something goes right, well it's likely to lose me. It's apt to confuse me because it's such a beautiful site. It took a little time to get next to me.

At 62 I retired. I played The Hungarian Rhapsody #2 today. I might just take up dancing.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Ahh one anda two, turn on athe bubble machine!

It seems that when I won at the Western States Accordion Festival I got the top cute little sticker. When I participated in 1959, I got this huge cute sticker. Says a lot about budgets and winners. The little sticker was won in 1960 the last year I actively competed.

Hum, what's in the bottom case? A mystery for only the best of sleuths I think!

Oh look!. It's Rosemary's Scandalli accordion with the sticker on the case (see pix above) from when it arrived in the States from Italy! And what is on the accordion itself? Why, another cute little winner sticker!

Proof positive that it is a Scandalli. No second rate accordions for me, no sir. Lorraine you should be very afraid because if I can find major C and some sheet music.......

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

See that smile?

OK, so it might be a YES! But, front and center winning the race is my youngest son. This was a pro race in Glendale a few weeks ago. Am I proud? Oh, a little bit I guess. Sure wish I had been there. This son of mine could be a poster person for making lemonade out of lemons. He has overcome some pretty substantial issues, become a teacher, husband and father and he continues to be my heartbeat. Kiss, kiss Gil.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Stepping out from the 1800's

Are these the most wonderful pix ever? They are tin types. There's another word used as well; daguerreotypes I think (correct me if I am wrong). On the back of the bottom pix is written Amon Rocky. Quite a name. The top one only has the place where the pix was taken, Brookville, Pa. I didn't do these wonderful collectibles much good scanning them as I think light exposure will eventually ruin them. So, they will go back into their hiding place for another generation hopefully.

One of the main reasons I started this blog was to talk about my past, put down "on paper" what I knew about my parents and their families so my children would know and want to know more. As I have been going through the pictures and letters my parents saved for decades, I have thought a lot about the fact that I am looking at these memories and I have no idea what they meant to, well, anyone. I hope with all my heart Amon Rocky was happy. He looks like a proper young man. The man in the top picture has a watch chain and looks jaunty with that hat, perhaps he was wealthy. But he also looks somber. Maybe this all sounds silly, but you know, should my picture land in someone's collection of I-don't-know-what-to-do-with-all-of-this-stuff-and-who-is-this-woman, I would hope my name is on the back and they could read She was really happy in this picture.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

July in Sandpoint

Steve on the slut off to remove fallen trees from The storm of '

Why do you always have to hog the rug?

Why do you always have to annoy me when I want to nap alone?

Because it annoys you.

Oh, g.r.o.w. u.p.

I am grown up, are not, am too, are not, am too........and so it goes with kids.

(The shotgun is not loaded. The cracker shot is in a box in a drawer. The bears make it through occasionally this time of year but not enough to cause any problems)

Just FAI: SweetPea and the 4 kittens are still living in the pole building under the two junker cars that Steve swears are worth millions (a Monza and a Vega). I feed them canned tuna twice a day and there is a constant supply of dry food and fresh water. The last two days SweetPea has been acting aloof and not letting me pet her hardly at all. I think it is because Steve has been doing yard work, mowing and cutting limbs all over her territory. Then, Thursday night when I was going out to feed everyone he wanted to tag along because he wanted to see the babies. I talk baby talk to all of them and am quiet and try not to spook any of the kittens. My plan was to little by little move the plate I put the tuna on closer and closer to me until they were not frightened anymore. Steve arrived at the pole building and in his best baby-talk-I-am-smokey-the-bear-voice said " Hey cats, where are you. Come on out, I wanna take a look at you." End of plan A.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Nurse, I need a pain pill!

Here I am in all my nursiness in 1983. I am the redhead with the goggles. Behind me is my friend Ruth. My nursing years are still very vivid in my mind and I know I could still get and give shift report, start an IV, do a sterile dressing and many other nursie duties.

Why are we smiling so broadly? Because we are sitting on the physician's side of the station desk which was a sin, we were using the floor camera to have our pix taken which was a no-no, it was graveyard shift and we were probably exhausted.

The floor I worked on was a 52 bed unit; orthopaedics and neurology or, bones and brains as we called it. It was the floor I was working on when I met Steve, it was the floor I worked as an LVN, an RN, a nurse manager and one that I covered when I became a Clinical Case Manager. I loved my job as a bedside nurse and later when I became an RN, I never complained when assigned to total patient care. Not to sound sappy or make myself a saint, but nursing was always about the patients and not the prestige. However, when the flames of nursing hell took me down (aka burnout) I happily walked away from my profession and forgot lab values, lung sounds, ABG's and a whole lot of other critical knowledge.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Good little Catholic girl...more memories

First through fifth grade I went to All Soul's Catholic School in Alhambra. Here I am in my school uniform complete with beanie. The uniform was all blue, with ASCS embroidered on the vest. Don't my feet look big? There they are in all of their saddle oxford splendor. The pic was taken in the living room of the house we lived in on Third Street; the hassock is ivy green, the wall paper is light green with white and pink magnolias. All that is missing is my halo and prayer book because I was a good little girl then.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Butt head blogger

I can't get into anyone's blog. I don't care if it is blogger, wordpress, typepad, myspace or outer space. I give up. I am just going to turn this POC off and go eat a big bowl of ice cream.

Pix of the 4th of July parade and a special blogger, please visit.

We went to the local parade yesterday. It is times like this when living in a small town is the best. We saw old friends, cheered local businesses and cried when the pipers walked by. I hope you enjoy the pix taken with my minus 3 MP camera...POC.

We used to have a wonderful family living next door (as in acres away). We loved them and still do, a lot. They moved to town. We still talk and see them occassionally. One of the family members is an incredibly talented young woman (I can't call her a girl anymore, sniff) who has started a blog. I hope you will visit and read her amazing poems. I have told her I want a % of her first book deal! Love you, KT

Local bike club. All kinds of bicycles, three wheelers, unicycles, and recumbent are all there.

Local business Hey, Cupcake. Yummiest way to add a few pounds.

The Monday Morning Hikers. Some of these folks are decades older than me. God bless 'em.

Habitat for Humanity has done wonderful things for my community.

The Bookmobile. I am one of the Trustees at the Library. Greatest place on earth.

Rhythm Pirates playing anything that makes noise, from lids to pans. Great sound.

Panhandle Animal Shelter volunteers march, doggies in tow.

It is Bonner County/Sandpoint's Centennial this year. YEA, Bonner County/Sandpoint.

Albeini Falls Pipe & Drum Corps. Pipe music makes me cry.

Classic car with the fire breathing exhaust...very patriotic!

Horsies were represented. We have a lot of equestrian folks here.

The mayor in a vintage fire truck.

Viet Nam Vet's were represented.