Thursday, May 8, 2014

MOTHER'S DAY

Tuesday May 6, 2014 was the 9th anniversary of my Blog.  When I first started writing it was in the days of AOL Journals.  That went by the wayside and most of us switched to Blogger.  Since most of us have moved to Facebook, I'm not very faithful about posting in my Blog.  But I also won't give it up entirely because life changes and who knows...maybe one day I'll be faithful to my Blog again. 

Now as we near Mother's Day weekend....I'm posting about the two grand mother's that I was blessed with.

My two grandma's were completely different. My mom's mother was a farmer's wife living in eastern Washington. She always wore an apron and I can remember the smell of baking at their house....cookies, breads, pies, etc. My mom & I would ride the train from Tacoma to Sunnyside and after a few days mom would come back home but I would stay on with my grandparents for another couple weeks. Grandma would bring me back home on the train & I remember the conductor coming down the aisle of the train with a basket of Cracker Jack's and grandma would open her purse, find a nickle and hand it to me so I could buy one. My dad's mother lived here in Tacoma. From a young woman she worked...she was a telegraph operator for the Milwaukee RR. She worked the night shift and often during the summer she would take me to work with her. It was exciting to be in this little shack between two sets of train tracks in the middle of the night with grandma. She would have packed a lunch for us & I can remember the two thermos bottles she'd have. One with coffee and one with milk. Several times each night she would get her lantern and we would walk down the tracks to turn a switch. She smoked cigarettes and mostly wore slacks..unlike my other grandma. And she wasn't much of a baker...she always had store bought cookies, usually Fig Newtons and she loved 7-Up. I can remember being at her house and for lunch she'd make sandwiches and we'd drink 7-up out of the bottle with a green straw. And she made the best peanut butter fudge in the world. I've never been able to find any that compared with hers. There was a bedroom upstairs at her house where I slept when I spent the night with her. She let me play with her doll, Mary. The one she was given as a little girl. It was made in Germany in the late 1890's, has a kidskin body, porcelain face and hands and is stuffed with sawdust. When I look at that beautiful doll, I can't imagine how she could ever let a young girl play with it. But Mary survived and I still have her. I'm blessed to have such wonderful memories of my two, very different grandmothers and I miss them. And absolutely I miss my dear mom as Mother's Day approaches.

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms, step moms, foster moms and dads who had to be both dad and mom. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

November 22, 1963

In November of 1963 I was a single mom, with a daughter about to turn 2 years old (Dec 4th) and working grave yard shift at the phone company as a long distance operator. The babysitter ( Karen) was a young gal, married to a fellow in the Air Force. She lived with me for her room and board to watch Julie since I was working that crazy shift. Any I came home the morning of November 22nd and got a bite to eat, got Julie up, dressed her, fed her breakfast and played with her for awhile...then went to bed. I woke up a few hours later to the sound of uncontrollable sobbing. I remember thinking oh my, what's happened...has Julie been hurt or perhaps the little son of Karen's. I staggered out of bed to find the TV on and Karen sitting on the floor absolutely inconsolable....Julie and Karen's little boy were both crying too because Karen was so upset. I dropped down to the floor and kept asking Karen "what's wrong, what's wrong?" All she could do is point to the TV. I looked over and watched for a couple minutes and realized that a horrible event had taken place that day. I later tried to go back to bed and get some more sleep...I probably didn't sleep more that day but I do remember going to work again that night. It was horrible, everyone was crying. It was so difficult to do what we had to do that night. The supervisor called extra people in so we could get through the night. I remember I could take a few calls, check a few tickets and then I'd break down and have to leave my position. All of us were in the same boat. Everywhere you looked in that huge telephone building, here in Tacoma on South 9th and Fawcett......you would see people crying. It was a time in our history that I will never forget. 
             

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

FALL

I love fall, all the beautiful colors and the crispness in the air (at least we have that here in the Pacific Northwest).  However, I don't like what comes after fall......WINTER.  I wish we could just skip winter and go right into spring, summer and then fall again.  I have to confess there is one part of fall I don't care for and that's the 20 ga-zillion leaves that fall from the very large oak trees across the street from my house.  My house faces the south and there a 'T' intersection right in front of the house and for some reason all of that causes all those leaves to end up in my carport.  I do have a leaf blower but they still have to be picked up and deposited into the yard waste bin. I spend many hours each fall on 'Leaf Duty.'   I came out of my local Target this last Sunday afternoon and the fall colors and the blue sky stopped me in my tracks.  Such beauty~
Then I was out in the front and noticed the fall colors right here in my neighborhood.
This bright orange/red Japanese Maple is in the yard next door to me.  I have a couple of them in my yard but they are a different variety and have already shed their leaves. 
This tree is in the yard across from me....so pretty but a totally different color.  As winter approaches all the trees (except our Douglas Fir trees) will be bare.  They'll go dormant and settle down for their long winter's nap and then wake again in the spring.   I have two small lilac trees that haven't bloomed yet.  I hope as spring approaches I'll begin to see at least a few buds of flowers on each one of them.  

I hope where ever you are...you're able to see a little change in the season.  It's truly an amazing sight!   And don't forget to; 


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

REMEMBERING 9-11-2001






Mary Teresa Caulfield......





.............a wife, mother, daughter, sister and an aunt was among those who lost their lives in the North Tower of the World Trade Center that sunny and clear morning, September 11, 2001. She was an executive assistant working in her
office at Marsh & Mc Lennan, an insurance company.




On September 11, 2002 one of my co-workers went by the 'Y' before she came into the office. As she entered the 'Y' there was a table that held business size cards of tributes to the victims of 09-11-01. Julia gathered up enough of them for those of us already at work and when she came in , she stopped at each desk to let us choose a card. I chose Mary Teresa Caulfield because she was very close to my age.




Mary Teresa you would be 70 years old now, you would be retired and no doubt would have taken that dream vacation with your husband, James. Maybe even grandchildren have been born, that will never know you. But all those dreams were cut short in an instant by a senseless act of a few. A senseless act of hatred, that most of the people in this world still can't understand.



I still have that little green card with your name and the fact that you were confirmed dead in the World Trade Center that day~that horrible day, September 11, 2001.



To the family and friends of Mary Teresa...please know that as long was I live, I will keep this card with me. I pray that God continues to comfort you and bring you peace as the years go by.



May we never forget those who left us that day and may we never forget those few who brought about this horrible event.


                                           

Thursday, January 31, 2013

It's been awhile.....

.........since I last posted an entry.  The Christmas decorations have been put away, we've all experienced the start of a New Year, I've had another birthday and now here we are at the beginning of February 2013.

Christmas Day I woke up sick and that continued on into January with a really bad case of bronchitis and on top of that a doozey of a common cold.  I was very miserable for several weeks, even with two different anti-biotics and a couple weeks of a prednisone taper.  I'm feeling much, much better but still have a nasty cough.  I am soooooo glad I was never a smoker, I can't imagine how bad the cough would be if I had been.  

 During the time I was so sick, the mobile park where I live experienced a 36 hour power outage from a blown transformer.  It was miserable at times but thankfully Bob was here and kept the woodstove burning.  I felt bad that I couldn't help out with making comfortable the residents that had no other source of heat but I sure didn't want to expose them to my 'bugs.'   The power company brought in a big generator and plugged in the Clubhouse where they had meals prepared and people could camp out until the power was restored.

My doctor gave me the 'all clear' to leave town so Bob & I are tentatively planning to leave here on Thursday February 7th for the sunny southland.  Our first stop will be Yuma, Arizona where we'll camp out while we go back and forth across the border to Los Algodones, Mexico for dental work.  We have information on a female dentist from several couples who have been going to her for many years.   I need two very old crowns replaced and he needs at least one.  Here, with dental insurance (at $33 a month) a crown costs me over $600 each.  Down there a crown is $150.00 ~ a big difference.   I also plan on getting my eyes checked and new glasses if I need them.  Medicare does not pay for glasses.

After we're through in the Yuma area we'll travel over to San Diego where I hope to visit a friend of mine from grade school & high school and also Bob's cousin and her husband.  Then we'll go north to La Crescenta, CA where his #3 daughter and her family now live for a couple weeks visit.  After that we'll head to the coast, visiting his 94 year old aunt in Atascadero, CA.  And then slowly back the coast and home.

There's lot's of projects on the books for this Spring & Summer and I absolutley want to be home when my daffodils and tulips bloom. 

Are you glad January is over?  I am...it always seems like it's the longest month of the whole year.  Maybe it's because the days are so short. 

I leave you with a picture of past daffodils....Remember Spring is just around the corner and the long gloomy days of winter will then be over. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Monday, November 26, 2012

IRONING


"Ironing~~~it's an art, and I think it's dying out.  It takes half a brain to do it, and the other half is free to roam."   Butler Christopher Ely, who has worked for Brooke Astor and Buckingham Palace.

Back in the 1950's when I was growing up, my mom felt it was very important for me to learn to iron.  My task was to iron the handkerchiefs, pillow cases and the tops of all the sheets. (She liked the sheets folded a certain way and the tops to be smooth).  Basically I started out ironing anything that was flat. 

After these items were washed and dried, the clothes, etc. were then sprinkled with the water filled sprinkle bottle and then rolled up and placed in the 'ironing' basket.  If left like this too long, they would be covered with mildew and had to be washed again and I was usually in trouble.

As I got older, I moved on to more complicated ironing tasks, like my blouses, mom's house dresses, aprons, dad's shirts and slacks.  By the time I got into high school I was the ironing queen of the house. Mom pretty much left it all to me.  

Now one would think, that after having to iron as a kid I would hate ironing today.  But I don't....I don't iron sheets or pillowcases and of course hankies have gone by the wayside.  But I do still press my blouses and slacks.  I like creases in the sleeves and flat fronts on my blouses. And I usually time my ironing for when a good movie is on TV. Then I set up 'shop' in front of the TV and iron away.

I've also discovered that my trusty ironing board has other uses. It can become a sideboard if you have a bunch of people over for dinner and there's nothing else that works better as a work table for wrapping presents, than the ironing board.

Remember~The ironing board is portable, it can be set up almost anywhere and is just the right height. 

So go ahead, call me crazy but I love to iron !


My first attempt at ironing in December 1943 just weeks before my 2nd birthday.