Thursday, October 14, 2010

Twist on the bucket list

Great idea by a friend of mine, an "I Want to Do This List". It started me thinking about what I really want to do in the time I have remaining so I thought some and a bit more and this is what I want to do (as of today, subject to change on a whim.)

Not listed in order of importance:

1. Make a slipcover for a chair that actually improves the look of the chair.
2. Make a large braided rug for my kitchen (yeah, I'm laughing about this goal even as I type it).
3. Learn to modulate my voice. I'm generally on loud and meanacing and I don't even realize it. I think all the loud music of my younger days has taken it toll.
4. Speak French again.
5. Take a long road trip from Ohio to the western lands (with or without co-pilots). Maybe I'll take the dog.
6. Gather all the pictures I have and put them in some type of holder or album. They are lodged in boxes all over my house.
7. Visit New York City.
8. Go back to Mississppi.
9. Write letters to my children.
10. Go back to school and learn something that will make me enough money to take care of myself.
11. Have a successful organic garden.

Pretty lackluster list. Having never been an adrenaline junky my list lacks such typical notations such as, "sky dive", "ride in a hot air balloon", "snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef" and the like. Nope pretty much the museum and library type of person.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

So, another shot at bloggery...

I haven't blogged in quite some time. I started to get burned out talking about myself and my family. I felt like I really didn't have anything to pass along. I felt presumptuous. What does it matter what is going on in my brain?! Lately though, I began to think of blogging as cathartic. So, I'll give it another whirl.

This past weekend I had the wonderful pleasure to see a dear "niece" get married to her love. I adore her parents and her aunts and uncles and her grandma. In fact, they have been a part of my life for 40+ years. I hadn't seen them in about 8 years. I didn't realize until we had gathered how much I longed to see them. I get teary-eyed thinking about it. I can't put into words how I felt when I saw each one again. I was elated and embarassed and angry with myself all at one time. But what a grand reunion. Each one so marvelous in his/her own right with really interesting talents and personalities.

I also got to see once again the dear woman I love like a mother. I learned so much from her and her family as I grew up. From her I learned compassion and sympathy and generosity. I learned what it is to love someone and how to have a sense of humour doing it. I learned that people can be trusted. She was a spunky, vivacious, cheerful woman and now she is growing old. She's been quieted by her feeble body, changed by stroke and illness. She speaks with her eyes and her hands and I just love her. I was so sad to see her in that state but as I spent time with her she came through loud and clear. Her life is different but her family loves her and she is just as fiesty as ever. I just love her.

The wedding was beautiful. The ceremony simple but heartfelt; the reception loud with laughter and music. As I watched the bride and her new husband just starting out on the journey I was struck with a thought. Her parents and I had lived our lives, not over hopefully for awhile, but the greatest portion was behind us now. The love had been passed to the next generation. I felt a bit of sorrow about this since I still feel about 17. Of course a quick glance in the mirror dispels that notion and it takes a bit of time in the morning to get all the joints working in unison. I felt contentment too. I've done the best I've known how to do. I absolutely cherish my children and the lives they are building. I think longingly about my husband, now gone 10 years, our time was too short.

I been sad too. I've let the anxiety of uncertainty dictate quite a bit of my life. Somehow, I've let anxiousness decide more than it should. Can a life lived so conservatively be fulfilling? I don't know. I've done the best I think I could have in the circumstances I've lived.

So what about the next day, week, years (I hope). I think it's time for my last hurrah and I'm more than a little nervous about it. I want to go out with a bang, not a whimper.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Smack upside the head

Well, I knew it was coming and I've been waiting for one for years...Sam's got a concussion.
#1 is 26 and began sports at 4, just a couple of broken bones and some various sprains, bruises and lumps. #2 began playing sports at 4 and had some broken bones, avulsions, weird calcifying things, sprains, etc. # 3 began playing sports at 5 and has had some similar experiences until his last game of his last year in high school...CONCUSSION, brain smack, crack on the noggin.

We were joking in the stands, "wow, someone got lit up, you can hear the helmets cracking up here." Little did I know it was my own #3 getting "lit up". He then proceeded to play the rest of that quarter and the second quarter too. Finally, the score was too high and all the starters were pulled. He was the joker that kept getting the offsides call - he forgot what the count was. He tried to run out with the kick-off team - didn't do that all season. He ran out to the field to play his position but - someone was already out there taking his place. If he wasn't so peculiar in the first place maybe someone would have noticed a change in his behavior but he's such a great, big goof...didn't notice.

He kept getting weirder as the evening wore on and I took him to the "bump and bruise" clinic and sure enough concussion.

Now he sprawls out on the couch and sleeps - wait a minute, that's what he usually does. So he gets dizzy when he tries to do a physics problem, who doesn't. So, he's really, really tired, who isn't? And he has a real bad headache...all I can say, get used to it, real life can be a real live headache.

So, he's a bit loopy. I feel kinda bad because the first thing I thought when I heard it was a concussion was, "shoot, he got a "B" in physics and pre-cal; this isn't going to help the next quarter grades." He'll be smarting off before long so I'm going to enjoy while it lasts.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Lots of Lovely Leaves

Everyone agrees; autumn is beautiful. The colors are extraordinary, the temperatures delightful, the color of the sky clear and true and the smell of leaf smoke tantalizing. Why, oh why then can't we just leave the fallen leaves where they land?

Heaped up lovely lumps of gold, mounding in my front yard. They look just perfect but...when they are wet I slip and bust my rear, when they are wet they destroy my lawn, when the are wet they make mold and make my allergies scream. But when they are dry...they just blow on down the road. This is the American, rural way of life. Take care of it if it stays in your yard longer than a couple of days. Otherwise, just let the wind carry it on down the road, literally.

I have 3 large maples in my front yard, lots, and lots, and lots of leaves. In about a week we will have a Butler family whine-a-thon when I demand the leaves come up. As lazy as we are we will spend about an hour trying to figure out an easier way to move the leaves from the front lawn to the back field. Seems like just raking them up would suffice but, NO, we have to have a tarp and the lawn mower mowing over little hedgerows to make leave mulch which is so thick we have to rake it anyway. After about 3 hours of leaf wrangling we give up, rake it along the fence "to keep down the weeds next spring" and call it a day. We are pathetic and I have the pathetic lawn to prove it.

Oh well, I still love autum and maybe just maybe the wind will come up and blow all on down the road.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Hmm, Serious Sunday

Serious is not something I do very well but I do have a serious side. Today though I've missed my husband. "Missed" is not the right word because that sounds like I've misplaced him, but I know precisely where he is. I can't think of another way to describe it but once someone leaves this life there is a void that remains because that space could only be filled by that individual...does that make sense.

So I will tell you why I'm "missing" Pat Butler. 1. He was the only one I could talk and talk and talk to and get no reaction, advice, criticism or feedback; he simply was acting like he was listening but he wasn't. This may seem weird to you but it worked for us; I needed to vent to understand how I was going to handle something and he could look interested but actually be going over the sports schedule, work schedule, movie schedule in his brain. 2. The kids need more cheerleaders than me. Nobody can uplift the kids better than their parents. Don't get me wrong here, we have an awesome community (read really small township) family who are really supportive but it just isn't quite the same. I wish Pat was there when we sent W off to the MTC and there when he honorably returned; I wish he could have been there when R walked off with 17 awards at her Senior night recognition and when she gave a class address at her commencement from nursing school; I wish he was here to see S on the Homecoming Court and playing football like a madman (just like he did) and I wish he could have gotten to know J the son he'd never met because he died. There are just some things no one else can do. I've tried to fill in the blank as best as I could but it still isn't the same.

I wish he was here so I could be more of a mother to the family instead of the chronically fatigued, vile spewing monster who rises at 4 a.m. to growl her way through another day. But he's not here though truly I can feel him around at times. It's weird but I know he goes on vacation with us and has a great time (he always had a great time on vacation.), he watches S from the sideline (I swear I see him pacing the out of bounds line each home game, he could never find an away game to save his life), and I know he is extremely excited for the lives W and R are living.

Oh well, we live the life we've got and our life is incredible just the way it is. Very different with very different challenges but undeniably magnificent. (I could have thrown a lot of sarcastic humor in this post but I was being serious for Sunday. Maybe I will re-write it for Maniac on Monday ;0)

Monday, September 21, 2009 wasn't my fault

Well, I love getting this kind of phone call, "Mom, I'm alright, nobody's hurt, it wasn't my fault but - I ran into the curb and popped the two tires on the passenger side of the car ("were you using your phone?" "NO" [this turns out to be not quite true] - I learn the truth because her 2 brothers were along for the ride.); I hit a monster truck but the truck didn't even have a scratch and your van door still opens; I didn't wake you up (because it was 4 flippin' o'clock in the morning and you would have skewered me) but I hit a cow, it was an angus and it was so dark I didn't see it standing in the road; I didn't get a ticket but I hydroplaned into the back of a car and you were right I needed to leave earlier, oh yeah, it was a brand new Corvette and the recent phone call of "Mom, I'm alright but I was on 75 and Wagner Ford ("Do NOT travel on that section of 75 because there is too much construction, too many drivers driving hell-bent for destruction, and there are too many police, her mother said".) and I kind of ricocheted back and forth across 3 lanes of traffic and I think my car is totalled(why didn't we get the gap insurance for the loan?") and the guy that cut me off took off and didn't stop. Thankfully, I'm used to this sort of call from my dear daughter who seems committed to the idea that no car in our home should be dent free.
Don't get me wrong, I'm really, really glad it wasn't worse but I'm 50 years old and I've been in 1 fender bender, 1 (I may have a lead foot but I do not crash into things). I'm very grateful to the people who stopped and helped her and the wonderful good Samaritan who followed the car and got the license plate information for her and called it in with a statement too.
But I'm worried that like a cat, daughter, is using up the nine lives. I hope they can fix her car because a new car is just an accident waiting to happen!

Monday, September 7, 2009


I'm so excited....I've got a play list. I love music, love, love, love it. I can appreciate almost all music except the degrading, lowbrow rap. Lots of people love music but I love music because I am unable to make music on my own.
I can't sing, I can't really read music (I know if the notes go up or down but I can't guarantee my voice will follow). I can play NO instrument, nope, nada, zippity-do-dah, not a one. Not even the kazoo.

This is why I love other people's music so much. I had a really hard time coming up with my first playlist. I just wanted 20 songs so I could do it for free. I think I will change them around all the time for the fun of it.

Yippee, now I can make music with my playlist. What a great discovery. And I got it on my blog all by myself. :0)