Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Casey's Birthday

Dear Mom,

Last Friday was your grandson’s birthday. My first born. Casey. I posted on Facebook that he was three weeks overdo, the doctor induced labor on a Thursday and 42 ½ hours later—on Saturday, he was born. On his dad’s birthday. That joke became a reality. I suppose one couldn’t give a better gift.

Casey’s dad has a reputation for being late, so it wasn’t surprising the little stinker inside my belly refused to pop out. Stubbornness swims in the family gene pool (myself included) so he had no chance escaping that one.

Before Casey could walk, he went from rolling over (skipped crawling) to getting around on his knees—fast too. He zipped around everywhere on his knees. My family thought it was hilarious. We all joked, calling him Neil. My stepmother voiced concern that something was wrong with him and that I needed to make him walk. Being as stubborn, I ignored her advice. Casey eventually walked. On his terms.

I quickly learned that children think for themselves and sometimes have their own agenda.

Like the time Casey was around two. I had some errands to run so I had his outfit all picked out. He refused to wear it. I explained how stripes and checks don’t go together. What would people think of me dressing my child in mismatched clothes? Casey stomped his foot, shook his head no and wouldn’t listen to my common sense on fashion. We argued with what seemed like hours until I finally caved, feeling ridiculous arguing with a two year old. What am I doing? Who cares what he wears? I entered the store—Casey in his crazy clothes—wondering whether people noticed. Surprise. I wasn’t arrested by the fashion police.

Casey’s hard-headedness has gotten him into trouble a time or two, but overall it has proved to be an asset. His determination to do something with his artistic talents have been successful. Twenty seven years later, his clothing choice still worries me, but then fashion isn’t my strong suit either. And he definitely makes up for it in other ways.

(Casey’s website: http://www.threeleggedlegs.com)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Smeagol Likes to Help

Dear Mom,

The other day I was getting my Bunco gifts together and who has to get in on the action? Smeagol. He’s so cute, I could hardly get upset with him.

He follows me everywhere and wants to help with everything. Not that he really is a lot of help. When I’m reading or writing (with a pen), he’s climbing on my lap, trying to get right on top of the paper or the book. When I’m typing on the computer, he wants to walk on the keyboard. When I’m throwing laundry into the dryer, he likes getting in there.

If my husband is fixing something in the cabinet with the receiver equipment for the television, Smeagol’s right there.

Or when I'm in the kitchen.

Smeagol plays around in the sink when he follows us into the bathroom.

If he were quiet (like most cats) it wouldn’t be so bad. No matter where he goes or what he’s doing, he meows, meows, meows. I recognize his “I’m hungry meow.” Or his “Let me out on the back screened porch meow.” (Although that is usually followed with him running ahead of me so I will follow.) Most of the meows must be his begging for attention. Right now he is rubbing his face into mine—his way of kissing me—that beats when he bites me on the ankle for attention.

And like all of us who have pets, well… you just can’t help loving them no matter what they do.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Singing HU

Dear Mom,

I took my stepdaughter, Robyn to the Community HU at our (spiritual) center on Sunday. It was her choice, although I suggested it. I don’t care one way or the other what folks believe, or what they do or use to help better their lives. I just know singing HU (which is a love song to God) works for me and feel it can work for anyone regardless of their religious/spiritual beliefs.

This next story I always tell causes my kids’ eyes to roll. One night when I was a single mom, all three kids were pretty young when a big storm blew in the middle of the night. First Casey came into my room, “I’m scared, can I sleep with you?”


A bolt of lightening lit up the bedroom and thunder shook the walls of the house. Jessica stood by my bed, “I’m scared.”

“Come on in.” I flipped open the covers. I had a double bed, and now it was full. I wondered where I’d put Rita, as I was sure she was next. Lightening continued to flash while the thunder roared.

I woke up the next morning, crawled over little body parts to go find Rita. Awake in her bed, I asked, “So how come you didn’t come into my bed? Didn’t you hear that storm? Weren’t you scared?”

She smiled and looked up at me, “I just sang HU.”

That still amazes me. Rita’s the youngest and was only 5 years old then. She’s 23 now. None of my kids follow my spiritual path, but that’s okay. Like me, we find our own way and what works for us.

But singing HU is one of my best tools.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Where'd the Summer Go?

Dear Mom,

I love gardening, but I didn’t do too much this summer. It had been hot and humid or rainy. I had more desire to write than do anything else. I also decided that I would save all my gardening energy for the fall as I needed to split and transplant my hostas. Usually exhausted by this time of year from working in the yard I never get around to doing that task . But wait, it can’t be time yet. Can it?

The cooler weather makes it perfect and so I started digging up the hosta. The first day I dug up two and after splitting them, I ended up with 24 to replant. Digging the hole is the hardest part in my yard so the smaller the plant, smaller the hole. Beat after doing two, I meandered back inside. Along the way I counted how many I had left. I stopped counting after 50 so as not to overwhelm myself. Even at two a day, I’ll never finish before the ground turns hard.

Where’d my pen go?