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Saturday, February 25, 2017

Catching Up

It's been a long time since I came on here, and bared my soul.  It's a vulnerable thing, you know?  Who sees?  Who reads?  Are they judging me?  Or DO they find the comradery of a kindred spirit?  Can they, or do they even relate?

So.  I'll be 50 this year.  The crows are circling more frequently (small joke directed at my previous post), to the point I can hear the wings as they soar overhead.  Ever so softly.

I've entered a new phase of my life.  My eldest daughter was married May 28, 2016.   In our home parish.  They were engaged over a year.  We gave her a beautiful wedding.  She and Michael married, and promptly moved away from us.  To another city.  Nearly 3 hours away.  Close enough to visit.  But not 2 blocks away, as I would have preferred.  I miss her.  I am still in tears when I think of her.  At nearly 24, she's still my baby.

After only 5 months of marriage, they've bought a pretty brick home on an acre of land.  She's happy.  Her husband is a decent, sweetheart of a guy who loves her dearly.   We are pleased with her choice, thank you God.  And I'm proud to say, she is 10 weeks pregnant.  I'm going to be a Granny!!!

Robyn, my younger daughter, is on her fourth year in Special Olympics.  We finally got the diagnosis for her... she's on the autism spectrum.  Which...  we pretty well knew.  But now it's official.  Legally blind.  Autism.  And puberty.  Jesus help me.  There is no spinning vortex of evil quite like the fun filled combination of autism and puberty!!!

I will continue this later.  Hubby is breathing all over me to know what I'm writing.  And doggies demanding attention.  I have chores to do, a Mardi Gras cake to pick up, and chicken wings to buy, clean, and prepare.  Our last blowout before Lent.

Happy Saturday!!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Riding Wild Horses

Disclaimer:  I probably should not drink and blog, while depressed.  Ah well, it is what it is.   You have been warned....

Lately has brought back a flood of memories of my very dear friend Stephanie..  who left this world too soon.  Which, though painful and depressing as hell..   all this emotion is actually quite welcome since I as a result I was given some old pictures of her.  God.. what a precious gift.  Pics from 1992.. the year I started at the answering service and I was put at the computer next to her.. and there she was sitting.. in her U2 concert shirt.. and then began the friendship.  

I have already cried my eyes out..  now I am immersing myself in the wonders of U2.   Our favourite band in the world.  My first U2 concert was with her.   November 1997.  6th row on the floor in front of the stage.  Standing on top of metal folding chairs, (the chairs were chained together) AND it was raining.  :)  It was awesome!!!

I remember when she first passed away in 2005.. I couldn't listen to U2 for about two years.  Even now, ten years later, there are still songs I can't listen to without weeping.

Stephanie and I had a song.  Okay well actually we had two of them.  The other one was Sinead O'Connor's "Nothing Compares 2 U".  (that's a whole 'nother story)...  But.. "Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses" was "our" main song.

Why was this our song?  She said it always made her think of me.   I told her "things" I know that I "wasn't supposed to".   1992-93 was a major pivotal time of my life.. I was scared, and "didn't know what I wanted".  She was my trusted confidant.  I held nothing back.  She was a good listener, and she never judged.  I was "dangerous, because I was honest".  I trusted too easily..  She was forever trying to lovingly toughen me up.  God love her.

I was pregnant.  Not under good circumstances.  I was that "accident waiting to happen."  I always joke she delivered my baby.  Best ever Aunt who wasn't really an aunt. :)

I would have "lied, if she'd asked me to".  (She loved me enough she would never do that)  But at that age, we were young enough and snotty and spirited enough.. you never knew with us..

Steph's been gone almost ten years.   This November 18th..  

I go to were she's buried... still the grave is unmarked..  so I mark it myself with things I bring her.   

So now it's me driving there, to the cemetery.. "in the dirty rain... to the place where the wind calls her name."  

"Under the trees"  ironically next to a river...  it's actually beautiful where she was put to rest.  I hear her in the wind in the trees.  I feel her in the breeze.  She's everywhere, but she meets me there.  💜  She knows.. she's on the other side of that veil.  Almost like on the other side of a mirror.. I can't see her.. but I know she is there.  I know she watches out for me still.  Still being my friend.  

"Hallelujah...Heavens door..."

Dear God, that "door" she "opened"... "I just can't close".... even after ten years... because I want her back.  
Yes I am selfish.  And I. Don't. Care.  
Losing someone is NOT something you "get over".  It's not a cold.

Our "gypsy hearts"...   and I can't help but "look back".  Depression.. 

 "the deeper I spin.."

Who's going to take the place of her?  No one.  No one ever can.  She is still with me.  I feel her.

"You're dangerous 'cause you're honest
You're dangerous, you don't know what you want
Well you left my heart empty as a vacant lot
For any spirit to haunt

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey

You're an accident waiting to happen
You're a piece of glass left there on the beach
Well you tell me things I know you're not supposed to
Then you leave me just out of reach

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey sha la la

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna fall at the foot of thee

Well you stole it 'cause I needed the cash
And you killed it 'cause I wanted revenge
Well you lied to me 'cause I asked you to
Baby, can we still be friends

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey sha la la

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna fall at the foot of thee

Oh, the deeper I spin
Oh, the hunter will sin for your ivory skin
Took a drive in the dirty rain
To a place where the wind calls your name
Under the trees the river laughing at you and me
Hallelujah, heavens white rose
The doors you open
I just can't close

Don't turn around, don't turn around again
Don't turn around, your gypsy heart
Don't turn around, don't turn around again
Don't turn around, and don't look back
Come on now love, don't you look back

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna taste your salt water kisses
Who's gonna take the place of me

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna tame the heart of thee"

~Bono, U2

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Waiting For The Crows

I remember years ago I was watching an episode of 'Dharma & Greg'.   Abby's cycle had stopped, and, given her age, (40's presumably), she mistakenly thought she'd started menopause.  "I'm a crone!", she told Dharma as they happily hugged.  

My Southern ears didn't hear "crone".  I heard crow

Okay so in my mind,  crows make me think sunflowers.... and that makes me think of late summer...  leading into Autumn...  and a woman ending the summer of her life ..... and entering the Autumn....   Okay... don't judge me...  this made sense in my head.

So,  given I am but a short time before qualifying for AARP, (gulp), I can say with complete confidence that my baby-makin' days are over.  That's fine.  Yes I still have days I weep for the children I didn't get ..... (I dearly, DEARLY adore my two darling girls,  but yes I really would have preferred a whole houseful.) ...... But I digress.  I have grandbabies (hopefully one day) to look forward to... .....not that I am in any rush...  but one day I want to be a spoilin', cookie-bakin' grandma.  Yep.  Sounds good to me.  

My youngest child will be 15 this year.  I am on the verge of entering a new phase of my life...  gone is the maiden...   the child-bearing years ending....   please, God.......please let this be soon, I am tired of the Full Moon Rising.. .(if you get my meaning)...   and I'm ready for the next phase of my life to start.   

One night under a beautiful sky... I'm standing out in the yard, ......arms reaching Heavenward,....... looking longing into the Universe...  suddenly my reverie is interrupted by my eldest.  
"Momma, what are you doing?"
Me: (dreamily)  "Waiting for the crows to start circling.".

She looks at me..... expressionless...... 
and she turns and walks back into the house without a word.

'Moms being weird again.'

Later that evening I'm online...  reading about moon-times, herbal teas, and so forth...  when I see ......
it's NOT the 'crow' phase. 

  It's CRONE.

Well.  Don't I just feel like a duck.  

Fine.  Whatever.  I mispronounce things all the time.  Partially because my Southern tongue can't say non Southern words or expressions very well...  but it's mostly because I'm a hayseed.  Yeah, I admit it.  Anyway.

The Crone phase sounds lovely.  The Crone is the wise older woman of the tribe.  She's been there.  She's like the 'Wise Old Rafiki' like on the Lion King.   But.. without being a monkey.  :)   

I'm ready.  I know... in God's time... not mine.   

But if you see any crows..  point 'em in my direction.  :)

Just in case.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Spiritual Warfare? Things That Go Bump... Anytime...

I admit I am reluctant to post this entry.  It's been a while, and this will be nothing like previous entries.  In a nutshell, I believe that there is something/someone in our home.  No. I'm not crazy.  I never bring this up though...  I don't appreciate being made to feel crazy when I know in my heart that there is something there... and it's most certainly not my imagination.  It's been witnessed by others as well.

We bought our home and moved in on Memorial day weekend 1997.  The home was built in the mid 70s, in a subdivision.  Ranch style... no upstairs.. no basement...  good sized fenced in yard.  The previous owners had lived here for 8 years before selling the house to us.
Any owners prior to them I am unaware of, but I know others did own it before them.

Many years ago, this was all woods and farmland.  There was a nearby plantation, and this may or may not have been part of the outlying property.  We are also one mile North of a main train line...  and there is Civil War history here near us.  Camp Milton was about five miles away, and I've heard that just a half mile away was another smaller Civil War camp.
As far as the previous owners...    they were Indonesian.  I don't know what their religion was... but I recall seeing a shrine in the den (converted from a single car garage) with little elephants and tons of incense.  I remember being impressed by the amount of ash marks on the walls from all the incense that had been burned.   We met them at closing. They seemed nice.  Two sons.

Almost immediately after we moved in, I had the odd feeling of being watched.  One night, late, the television in the den came on by itself. Hubby was not home... he was working late.  My only child at the time, who was then a toddler, was asleep in her bed.  As I reached to turn the television off, the volume started turning up.  On its own.  Right in front of me. LOUD.  It was icy cold (fear?... because this is Florida and it was early summer)... and my heart was pounding.  I ran as fast as I could back to bed. I didn't sleep a wink the rest of the night.

Talking to my new neighbours, I learned that the previous owners had the grandfather living with them.  He passed away in that very den.  He was hard of hearing... but he liked tv and always turned it up loud so he could hear it.   When he passed, his family had him cremated.  And scattered his ashes all over the yard.   Something no one mentioned when we bought the house.  Probably not looked upon as a positive selling point.
*rolls eyes*

Almost 18 years later, we've gotten used to having someone else here.  He isn't hurting anything.  And somehow along the way we have had two others join in.  Why?  No idea. Maybe they were there all along but we just didn't know.   Who knows?  How do I know they're there?   We have had three different people... separate situations...  unaware of the other...  and don't know each other...  ask us about them.   They have even described them exactly the same.   I have never seen them.  I don't understand why some people have but most don't.  I cannot explain that.  But I know that there are three here.   The older grandfather who basically came with the house.  There is also a maybe 14 or 15 year old girl in old style dress...perhaps Civil war era... and a tall smiley man with long dark hair.   No clue who he is... or where he came from.  He has been around for years... and apparently likes me.  He watches me cook.   I am not sure how I feel about that.  Part of me is weirded out.  Part of me is curious.  It's very conflicting.

However.  Since there has never been a problem, and it's been, for the most part, uneventful, we have just accepted it and didn't worry about it.

Now things have changed.   Almost a week before Christmas, our brother in law passed away.  Around that time is when the knocking started.

I was sitting at the dining room table.  Youngest daughter was in her room.  Eldest daughter and hubby were both at work.  There was a distinct knock on the window pane in our front room next to the front door.  Literally, several knocks in succession...  like a friend would do.. except... everyone we know would either knock on the door or ring the doorbell.

I got up to peer through the window to see who knocked. Almost immediately there was another knock... same distinct succession of knocks...  directly behind me.  I felt the hair on the back of my neck stand up... and my heart was about to pound out of my chest.  I turned...  and it knocked again.. very deliberately...  on our home school bookshelf.  I nearly stroked out.  It dawned on me that I was being played with.  "Stop that.  You're not funny." I tell my unseen visitor.

The day after Christmas is when we discovered that we had a leak.  In the pipe behind the stove...  which backs up to a wall.. and on the other side is the home school bookshelf.   The knocks have continued every day.  Sometimes they're very loud.  We moved the bookshelf to a different wall...  it's still in the front room, but now is backed up to the wall which... on the other the den.  The knocking is on that wall now, next to the bookshelf.   Even our dogs will sit quietly and stare in that direction.  No barking or growling... but they know that there is something there.

It's been about three weeks since the knocking started.  We are still waiting for the insurance company to decide what they will cover, but that pipe is "off" so no more leak.   The knocking sound cannot be pipes since (a) that pipe was dealt with, and (b), the wall that the knocking has moved to has no pipes in it, and (c), there are certainly no pipes in the window pane.

Once we get the repairs done and things looking normal again, I am going to call our priest and have our house blessed.  I am not sure what else to do.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

An Unexpected Visit

My close-as-a-sister friend Stephanie passed away almost nine years ago.  I miss her all the time.  I've had reminders.. dreams.. so forth pop up here and there a few times..  two very vivid dreams I am convinced were visitations.   One was basically to let me know she was okay.  The other was because I was in a state of distress over her being in an unmarked grave.  (don't EVEN get me started on her husband NOT putting a marker on her grave).   At any rate.   It's been a few years... and low and behold.. she just, in a way, popped in on me.   And I am in tears...   joyful, thankful tears.. and missing her.

My eldest daughter, who is 21, came up and hugged me.  We were standing there, arms around each other, and she pulled back and said, "Well, that was weird".   
Me:  "What?"  Listening as I walked back into the kitchen to check the dinner I was cooking.
Her:  "You know how sometimes you get a strange smell out of nowhere.. just like.. a quick whiff.. and it takes you back to a place or time?"
"Me: "Yes!!  Where did it take you?
Her:  *looks at me seriously*  "Back to Stephanie's wedding."

I consider.  She was only two months shy of turning seven at her wedding.  I was seven months pregnant with Robyn.   I look up on the counter at the crunchy snacks I just made.. and I laugh and say that "Well, it makes sense.   If Steph was here, she'd be sitting her butt up to this counter, eating these crunchy things I just made, and chattering excitedly about U2's upcoming album and tour."

Amy looks at me.  Moves her hands to indicate the earbuds she has on.  "Mom, I'm listening to their new album now."


I walked into the den, where my hubby is watching a movie.  I told him what happened.  Him:  "That was Steph."   I'm glad he gets it.  Enough people think you're weird when you mention anything remotely like this.   To be honest I'm surprised I even blog about it.. but I have.. this is like, the third time.  I 'have' to share it though.  I do.  I can't NOT share it.  

So I am getting overwhelmed with emotions and I start crying.. and Amy looks wounded and is going, "I'm sorry Momma, I didn't mean to make you cry."  And goes to hug me.  And I'm hugging her back, and thanking her.  She didn't have to share that with me, but I am so profoundly grateful that she did.   Stephanie popped in to say hello, more or less.   As I'm hugging my daughter and crying, I blurt out, "She didn't forget me.  She still loves me.  My buddy still loves me."   Why would I come out with that?  I don't know.   But I DO know that my beloved friend is still around.  

What a precious gift.  I never saw it coming.  I am so thankful.   

Today, the Church celebrates Exaltation of the Holy Cross.  What does this have to do with this?  I don't know.  But mass was awesome today, confession was awesome, to say the least.  I knew in advance what I was going to say, then had this rush of emotion and things I didn't plan to say came out of nowhere and pouring out of me... which was painful and beautiful and freeing.. and now this..  no.. I just don't believe in coincidences any more.  I used to.  God knows the whole story and sees the big picture.  Me?  I just have to have faith. ♥  Here I am Lord.   Thy Holy will be done!

Stephanie:  This November 18th will be the 9th anniversary of your passing.  It was a Friday, at your moms house.   I have missed you so badly.. you know this.   Missing you, and praying for you.   Love you Heifer Girl.  My U2 buddy.  My sister in crime.  I can't wait to see you again one day.  ♥

Friday, August 15, 2014

Tuna on a Solemnity.. D'oh! And Why I'm Sticking to Meatless Fridays the Rest of the Year. :)

I cook every single solitary day.  Well.  Nearly.   And as Catholic converts who are rather traditionally minded, we do the 'meatless Fridays'.  It was not always that way.   We've only been meatless maybe three years or so.  One of the things, like many other things, that we've been led to doing.

So here I am.  It's Friday.  A Holy Day of Obligation since today is the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Mother.. we of course attended mass this morning, and we come home and BECAUSE it's Friday we have tea and bagels with cream cheese.. (no meat) and I go about making a big bowl of tuna egg salad BECAUSE it's a Friday...  and then, there's hubby.. giving bits of beef jerky to our two dogs for a treat.   Even the dogs are denied meat on Fridays.  And there he is.. and suddenly it hits me.

That moment when you realize, that, after having made a vat of tuna egg salad for the familys meatless Friday meal, that today is a Solemnity. Yep. Today's one of those rare Friday meat eating days. And what did I fix? TUNA! (smacks self) This will teach me to pay attention better. I hope. *sighs*
Can. 1251: Abstinence from eating meat or some other food according to the prescripts of the conference of bishops is to be observed on all Fridays, unless a solemnity should fall on a Friday. Abstinence and fasting are to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
This article is great for why we are meatless all the OTHER Fridays of the year. :)

Why I'm Sticking to Meatless Fridays | Catholic Answers

Friday, August 8, 2014

My Birthday Girls

Holy Moses!  Can it really have been since February since I last posted?    I knew it'd been a while, but sheesh!!

So let's see.  What's new?  Well, my youngest daughter, Robyn, who has autism and is in Special Olympics, is a Gold Medal State Champion in  her division for Bocce.  Oh yes, we are proud. :)   She will be competing tomorrow, (Saturday) for County Swimming.  She is going to compete in the 25 meter backstroke.  She is not a strong swimmer, but has gotten so much better by leaps and bounds.. I am so proud of  her!   Because she is legally blind, she uses prescription swim goggles... which is a good thing..  being in the middle of an Olympic sized swimming pool and not being able to see which direction to go in and where the sides are, is frightening.   We love those goggles!   Much to my amusement, she also wears them when she helps me in the kitchen slicing onions.  LOL!  She swears it cuts down on the burning eyes!

Robyn will be 14 on Tuesday.  It's interesting having a special needs child.  They are not like other kids.  I still have to fix her hair.  She has no interest in cosmetics.  Still totes around a plushie pony toy and plays with her doll house.  She tickles me to death. :)  I love how her mind works, and the things that she says just cracks me up.  She has a funny way of putting things.. we call them "Robyn-isms".   My funny, quirky girl. :)

Robyn attended a birthday of one of her friends and teammates on Monday.  I was tickled watching them interact.  This young man had turned 21.  He and Robyn have so much in common.  Like, the love of legos, and Goose Bumps. :)  Like her, he likes his toys, and they played Monopoly for a while.  Cutest. Thing. Ever.  Special Olympics has been such a Godsend for us.  Robyn now has friends who are like her, and enjoy her company, and want to hang out with her.  They do their sports together, and have real friendships.  They are SO ACCEPTING of each other.  Non judgmental.  We could all learn a lot from these kids.  

My eldest darling daughter Amy is 21 years old today.   Wow.  How did my baby grow up so fast?   She's been working at the same store for almost two years.  Artist, self taught photo editor, writer, and music lover... and ninja!  Researching her organic herbs and teas... and her restless, inquisitive mind...  love my girl!   

And, she has FINALLY rid herself of the jobless lazy bum she'd dated for a year.   Thank you God.  She's had a few total losers. The two worst were:

**Mr Control Freak, (also known as Mr Narcissistic, The Manipulator, and the Compulsive Liar)

**Mr "I'm gonna be a music star" (please first get some talent and a personality) who would not get a GED or a job.. and I feel pretty sure one day he'll be 30 and still mooching off his enabling parents.   Good grief.  

She's had more of course, but those two were the worst.  My darling daughter has had some crappy boyfriend experience at this point.   I have told her to quit doing her "fishing" with a Dixie cup.  All she's getting is tadpoles.  She's got to get out into the deeper water..  that's where the more choice fish swim. :)   Her tacklebox is put up though.  Burnt out on fishing.  One's going to have to swim into her net.    And if he's a jerk too, I say lets fry him up for supper and serve him with chips.  LOL

Amy's smart and gorgeous.  She'll go places. :)    

So my girlies are both having birthdays, and we're celebrating this weekend.  They'll see Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and a few friends. :)  I've got the cake ordered and a room reserved for dinner.  I'm looking forward to seeing them enjoy themselves.  :)

So, since it's Amy's birthday, and we're not 'officially' celebrating tonight, I do what I can to make her day special.   It's a meatless Friday, so I made a well enjoyed meatless supper.   I had some leftover fresh organic peaches, and I just blended them with some ice...  Yumm...   We'll watch a movie or play a game.  Early to bed though, for Robyn's swim competition tomorrow.   

Hubby is coming home, and Amy gets off early tomorrow.  I love my family home.  It will be a good weekend.  Thank you Lord, for these blessings!