Saturday, October 31, 2009

HALLOWEEN NIGHT 2009

It was a dark red Halloween night.
Halloween3 2009
David 2009
Bwaaaahhhhha!  The hauntings began at 7 p.m. sharp with this frightening evil warrior who came calling, demanding candy and other treats, and in return, my house would receive the protection from others who looked like him but were not nearly as…nice!




David D. 2009
  Next came this evil-looking, Mountain Dew-consuming bumble bee who was demanding sweet drinks, looking all innocent but ready to pounce at any second and join the evil warrior’s cause.




Halloween 2009
Probably the most unsettling visitor of the night was the Tin Man, the most evil of all evil.  You would never know by looking at the big blue eyes and the baby face, the innocent lips, that this creature was out to knock the very foundation out from under you, change your world, warp your sense of time with the clock imbedded in her belly!



Halloween2 2009
Next this vampire disguised as a young boy, and his bride, came calling, pretending to smile, stealing our very hearts with the ploy of entering our home under the pretenses of seeking sweet candy treats.


Halloween 4 2009
Just about the time we thought it was over, just about the time we knew we could take no more evil, this ballerina appeared, playing us like the idiots we were, making off with the last of the candy!




Halloween5 2009
The evil princess was surprised, a little taken aback, when the Wicked Witch of Here appeared on her broom and swept down demanding hugs in exchange for being allowed to leave the dark, scary dungeon!
And as quickly as Halloween night, lit with scary, cold Harvest Moon light, clouds skirting over the moon, giving the earth the appearance of evil, began, it ended.  The dungeon once again became Gramma’s house, the tree branches that resembled skeleton fingers in the moonlight once again were only trees, and the hauntings ended…a prelude to winter, the hope of the Holiday Season now filling our souls, and the promise of another Halloween in another year!  HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Friday, October 30, 2009

THE VERY BEST ME

Today began an incredible journey. The day started out pretty typical for a late Fall day. The sky was dark with rolling clouds, lightning sometimes lighting the sky in the early morning before God let the daylight through, long, jagged, skeleton-like fingers of supercharged bolts cutting through the sky.

I was restless, but I didn't really understand why. The Summer was beautiful. I turned the brightest luminescent green, and my veins sparkled with the juice that gave me life. There were thousands of us waving in the breeze, enjoying the cool Summer of our youths. We made the ash tree smile. We grinned down at the mimosa blossoms below us, and they stretched their pink, delicate tendrils upward to greet us every morning.

"This," I thought to myself, "must be the Very Best Me...today, hanging up here, balancing on top of the world, holding on for dear life through the storms, sighing in the cool breezes, me, the beautiful Very Best Me!"

But it seems I was wrong thinking that luminescent green beauty was my definition.

My defining moment was when the life coursing through me slowed, and I grew old, wrinkled and brown. My defining moment was today, this Fall day, this dark, boiling, rolling Fall day when the wind whipped me loose from my mooring, and I fluttered gently to the ground, too gently for the ferocity of the wind that claimed me.

My family and friends rallied around me, and we all laughed as we piled high, waved as some of us caught the crest of the wave of the wind and sailed off to new vistas. We had lived together, sang together, wept together, seen births, seen deaths, heard children laugh below us, and opened our souls to the world, and now we were slipping into the next world, prepared to become whatever our very souls were dictating, sighing contentedly. We were ready to walk new paths, become new life.

This, I know, is what I lived for. This is The Very Best Me. I tip my hat to you, know I will see you at a future time, in a new form, in a new place. I will see you young and new and will love you as we grow old, and I will cradle you in my heart forever. My heart will always beat for you. I heart you with all my soul!

Love,

A Leaf

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Sale

I KNOW THAT THESE POSTS ARE STARTING TO SOUND LIKE A BROKEN RECORD, BUT AS THE RED BARON WOULD SAY, IT WAS A BRIGHT AND GORGEOUS DAY, NOT THE KIND OF DAY TO BE SITTING AROUND AT HOME AND WASTING, SO MY DAUGHTER AND I GASSED UP MYRTLE, THE GREEN FORD FOCUS, AND DROVE WEST, TO THE NEAREST MALL. 

I ONLY NEED TO MAKE ONE STATEMENT HERE, AND YOU’RE GOING TO UNDERSTAND THIS POST COMPLETELY:  BATH AND BODY WORKS WAS HAVING A BIG SALE!!

THE END.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Taking a Drive

IT WAS A GORGEOUS DAY!  THE SUN WAS SHINING AND THE TEMPERATURE WAS COOL.  IT’S ALMOST HALLOWEEN, AND THE HALLOWEEN SEASON IS IN FULL SWING. 

I NEEDED TO GET A FEW THINGS OUT OF THE HOUSE IN MY OLD HOMETOWN AND NEEDED TO VISIT WITH MY BROTHER A BIT, SO DON AND I TOOK OFF AND MADE THE TRIP TO FAIRFIELD.  THANKFULLY I THOUGHT TO GRAB THE CAMERA ON MY WAY OUT THE DOOR AND CAPTURED SOME BEAUTIFUL FALL COLORS.  I TOOK 56 PHOTOS, THIS ONE IS BY FAR MY FAVORITE.

Fall

HAPPY FALL YA’ALL!

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Day The Grandkids Became Thieves

Last Saturday I gathered up children and grandchildren, and we took a trip to the corn maze and pumpking patch.  The sun was playing peek-a-boo, and we were not really dressed for the cool Fall day.  We have had a slightly more seasonable autumn than we are used to.  Eventually our hunger took over and we were forced to the big barn and a big catered meal in front of an oversized fireplace.  

There were stone benches in front of the fireplace, rocking chairs, all the comforts of the farm, and my 3 grandchildren cozied right up, all 3 huddled together, little cousins, very much a part of a great big world, but very much family, melded together by genes.

Their parents were there, also huddled together, family, laughing and talking.  I had been off cleaning up our trash and approached from behind this cozy scene.  I stood there smiling, until I realized that my grandson was consuming potato chips, and not just any potato chips, but straight from a strange woman's bag seated next to him on a bench with her family.  Suddenly, pandemonium  ensued when a little girl began wailing, and I looked at my youngest granddaughter making off with the little girl's boots she had taken off when she snuggled up against her grandmother whose chips were being eaten by her cousin.  It was tempting at that point to empty my oldest granddaughter's purse, since apparently some hidden gene had taken over my angels, but really, I didn't even want to know what I might find.

I made the sign of the cross, said a little prayer, apologized, glared and took the hands of 3 children who were eyeing their next treasure laying loose.  

A Look Outside My Window

Today I was so caught up in work that I forgot to look outside the window.  The only picture I was seeing was the one in front of me:  A computer monitor full of medical words.  The only pleasure I was getting was the feeling of the sun occasionally on my shoulder.  Then, when all else failed, when it all seemed hopeless and useless, I did what we should always do…I looked up.  And this is what I saw:

IMG_8503

And I saw this:

IMG_8499

Color me happy!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Isn’t This A Perfect Day?

Last night I was pretty stressed out, then I read a post by my pal, Ginny, on Facebook about baths.  I am embarrassed to say that it had been awhile since I had allowed myself to enjoy a bath at home at the end of a long, stressful day, so here is my prescription for anyone stressing out:

1.  Set the mood.  Light some candles in the bathroom.  Do not make the mistake of doing that too soon.  At least make sure everyone is done in the bathroom, especially your grandkids, before setting them on the side of the bathtub.  They will get knocked off and broken which totally wrecks the mood by the time you make sure all the glass is out of the tub and the wax is scraped up. 

2.  Run the water.  Make it as hot as you can tolerate.  Make it deep, too.  Put something nice in the water.  In a pinch, grab the children’s J&J baby wash, any scent, squirt a few drops to make some bubbles.

3.  Wine.  If this bath is a spur of the moment one, you might have to really compromise on the wine.  For example, my wine for last night’s bath sabbatical was a bottle of classy red Route 66.  It is only to be used as a calming elixir, anyway, and considering stress is a symptom, like a cough, and you take cough syrup to correct it, it really doesn’t matter how expensive or tasty that wine really is.

4.  A warm towel right out of the dryer!  must have! 

5.  Clean PJs, maybe right out of the dryer, too.

6.  Lotions and potions waiting in the bedroom for after your bath.  If you use something that smells really, really good, you can still smell it in the morning and sort of start the day out a little calmer right from the beginning! 

7.  climb in that tub and soak away the stress.  close your eyes, smell the candles burning, smell the bath bubble concoction, lay there for about an hour. 

8.  While your body is still warm, crawl into bed and finish the wine, snuggle down into the pillows and the quilt…stir slightly.

Say night-night to the stress.  say “Hope I don’t see ya tomorrow, Stress!”  Enjoy! 

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

IT'S JUST A JOB

When I was 18 and in college, I had a job as a checkout girl at a grocery store.  Every now and again, I had to double as a shelf-stocker and a bag boy.  I kept thinking how awesome it would be to graduate from college and have a REAL job.

I did.  I graduated and went to work in my field.  I had the same job for years out standing in my field.  It was part of me, helped define me.  Then I got pregnant.  My firstborn son then defined me, and a job was the farthest thing from my mind.  But when he was 6 weeks old, I trudged back, now working with an entirely new purpose.  I had to support that little being.

Another child was born, a girl, and she defined me all over again, and the defiinitions began changing.  Someone started changing all the rules of life.  When she was a year old, off I went to work again, back out standing in my field. 

For 26 years I worked hard at that job.  I was proud of it.  Proud of my company, and when, after 26 years of loyal service they fired me and outsourced my department, I found myself realizing that there are much more important things in life than a job, but wow, was I ever happy to find one!  At 52 years old, I feel unhireable, really, and my ego has gotten a boost realizing that I didn't spend half my life learning for nothing. 

But today, I started another job.  Now, it is dawning on me that I have plowed through 3 jobs in 3 months, and I feels as if the next 7 years of my life are being redifined as I march on toward retirement.  I certainly am open to change, but could use a little stability while I look ahead. 

I sure do long to be a checkout girl and a bag boy again!  Short of that, I am sure looking forward to 59-1/2 now, and sitting on my patio laughing at the hummingbirds and drinking coffee instead of fighting to stay employed! 

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Corn Maze

It isn’t Fall in the Ohio Valley, nor is it the Halloween Season, without a trip to the Lark Ranch Corn Maze.  Today the weather was crisp, the soul hungry for some family fun, and the grandkids amped up…a perfect day for a hayride to the pumpkin patch, a good meal outdoors in the barn, a pony ride, and a jump in the inflated bouncy thing.  We loaded up and headed out and about 6 hours later, tired and cold, returned home to get in our PJ and sit in front of a fire.

Corn Maze6 

Abigail, Kaylee, and David.

Corn Maz5

We got really lost in the maze.  Abigail played peek-a-boo through the corn stalks as some of us ended up on the wrong trail. 

Corn Maze8

Corn Maze7

We found each other in time to make a trip to the pumpkin patch to find our treasures.

Corn Maze3

Corn Maze2

Corn Maze

What a great day.  It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

Corn Maze4

I Need The Vortex

Today I’m waking up at home in Indiana.  I am homesick for Phoenix, I miss my cousin, and I need the vortex to fix my mood.  Here is where my mind is hanging out this morning.  IMG_8048

Take me home, country roads.

Friday, October 16, 2009

GOTTA LOVE THOSE KIDS

Yesterday I sat in the living room, working, and caught a news story that was breaking, on TV, about a 6-year-old child who had crawled into the basket of a giant helium balloon that his dad had built in the back yard to be used "to pursue his hobby as a weather chaser," ahem, okay, whatever, and apparently floated off into the far reaches of our atmosphere (at least up to 7000+ feet, anyway).

I have little grandkids, and just the thought of that poor child being swept away from his family home and going for a horrific ride, alone and scared, and possibly poisoned from leaking helium, as the reporters eventually suggested, made my stomach hurt, and I could not stop watching.  While I was working, I was following the flight of that balloon, gasping at the right places and listening to "experts" telling us what horrors the little guy might be experiencing.  

Admittedly, there was a point where I thought, "I bet that kid isn't even in there," and when the balloon floated to the ground about a hundred miles from it's launching pad, I thought, "I bet that kid is at home hiding."  

I was a 6-year-old kid once, and that's what I would have been doing. 

So sure enough, about 3 hours after the glorified California Freeway Car Chase began, it ended on the discovery of the little boy at home.  He came slinking into the kitchen while his shaken father was on the phone. 

I listened to the chatter about the family, bringing their morality and abilities into question, and I heard reporters say that they would have been severely punished for something like that as children, and my thought was this:  They had the ARMY looking for him, for God's sake!  They had dozens and dozens of investigators and law enforcement officials combing that neighborhood. They had dogs and Black Hawk helicopters...and nobody found him.

I don't know about you, but upon the discovery that the kid was hiding in his own attic in a cardboard box and eluded discovery, did not give me any confidence in the people sworn to protect me, what about you?  

Thank God he's okay, though.  Gotta love those kids! 

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

IT'S TUESDAY...NO, WAIT, IT'S WEDNESDAY

I have been visiting in Phoenix for 2 weeks.  Everyday I have checked out The Weather Channel to see what it is doing back home because let's face it...it's a heck of a lot more fun to be sitting in a tropical enchanted land if you know your people are suffering the weather conditions back home.  

It's been pretty boring here weatherwise.  Everyday is about 85 degrees and every night is about 60 degrees.  Everyday is sunny, and the most exciting weather observation here is, "Wow, look, there's a cloud!"  Or this classic:  "The wind is blowing!  No, wait, it stopped."

Now, I am definitely not complaining about this boring weather conversation.  Back home there is either an impending tornado, flood, or ice storm, and if they could predict earthquakes, there is one of those waiting to shake, rattle, and roll at any moment, as well.  

Imagine my glee when I have seen, for the past 12 days, this on the weather radar of Southern Indiana:  Green.  Lots of green.  And not only that, I failed to disable my Thundercall option on my cell phone before flying the friendly skies to the West, so in the middle of the night I received a call warning me of flooding in my neighborhood.  HAHA!  Let me run to my bedroom window here in Arizona and see what it's doing at 3:00 a.m...oh, isn't this a surprise?  NOTHING!  The cool air is filtering through my window and the only thing going on I can tell is that a canopy of stars is apparently keeping the rain off me.

But then imagine my disappointment when I realized that karma is a bitch, and this Saturday, I have to go back there in that cold, soggy, foggy, miserably cloudy weather.  I had the foresight to put a coat in the car, so when I am picked up at the airport, I can at least make it to the car without breaking a tooth from the chattering caused by chills!  

Yes, I can hardly wait to get home!  

NATURE SPEAKS

It is sometimes so easy to let life overtake us and never actually live it.  Work becomes the norm and relaxation becomes work.  Now and then we need to find a mountain brook and soak in the peaceful sounds.  















Occasionally we have to walk the path least traveled.


Sometimes we have to find a place to stand and stand alone there.

 

And if we're really lucky we will find souls to stand there with us. 

 

If we get on the right path and find our people, learn to relax and enjoy what we've been given, we will be rewarded with unimaginable beauty around the next bend.


 





 

Monday, October 05, 2009

THE HARVEST MOON

What I did on October 4: Drove out to Nancy's place in the Arizona desert with my best friend who doubles as my cousin, set up tripods, and spent about 2 hours photographing the Harvest Moonrise. I thought that seeing the Desert Botanical Garden today was awesome...but there just isn't much that can top sitting in the middle of that big expanse of sand and sky watching that moon glide up out of the mountains while the darkness blankets you. Feeling small, feeling small. Little bity girls in a great big world of wonder protected by a canopy of stars overhead.

Thank you, ladies, for a very memorable night!