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Showing posts from September, 2016

Elections and Kindergarten

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Elections are hard on everyone it seems. They challenge our beliefs in democratic ideals and certainly make us pay close attention to basic rules of civility. All those things we learned in kindergarten just go out the window. Sometimes in the midst of it all we forget about simply being nice and accepting that other do not share our beliefs and never will.
My 8 year old grandson evidently was paying attention in kindergarten when he was taught those 16 rules written by Robert Fulghum all those years ago because he called me on one this summer.

We have a new car and I have claimed it for my own for this one summer. My husband drives the big car back and forth to the golf course and I scoot around in the little car with grandchildren in the back seat. The big car will stay in Tucson when we return next spring.

Brayden asked me why I didn't share the new car with his grandfather. That is what his dad would do. 

I was very quiet for a few seconds as I channeled the "Finding Nemo&quo…

On Shopping!

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Once every summer one or the other or all of my grandchildren get a special day with me. Grandma deserves it so there you have the reason.

It is not easy on my grandchildren. Several years ago the oldest little one went home, melted down and had a bad case of stomach problems! I take the blame but I still remember how much fun it was...for me!

It is all about me and everyone knows that.

So....yesterday I took Shay shopping for school shoes. She is four. Here is how the day went.


See what I mean!

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The Trouble With "Stupid"

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English: Albert Einstein Fran├žais : Portrait d'Albert Einstein (Photo credit: Wikipedia) "Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by it's ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." Albert Einstein When I was a young woman I happened to be in the Smithsonian when it was celebrating Albert Einstein's 100 birthday. It was 1979.  As I stood before the exhibits, I wondered how such a smart man could have struggled so with school. I was a teacher and I began to wonder about how I taught and what I was missing.

I am always inspired by such an awesome intellect. While I have no idea how physics works, I do know that Einstein's did spend time thinking about things that I understood. One website described him as "humble, likeable, kind, played violin and could talk to anyone. " ...and he was very quotable. He said:
Imagination is more important than knowledge. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosit…

How Do You Feel About Bragging?

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I noticed on twitter that the #beautifulblog gets a lot of traffic. Should I use that to promote MYSELF? Would I be bragging? Yesterday I found a beautiful blog called Nature Whisper. This young blogger gave tips on making Chocolate Ball and included images that took my breath away. When I used twitter to support her, I led with #BeautifulBlog. I'm not as good at using that media as I could be and I wondered if the hashtag went out there into the web without a notice. Today I checked and #BeautifulBlog turns out to be a well used hashtag by lifestyle bloggers.

I don't usually tweet myself up but once in awhile it seem appropriate and when I do that I often include a # to get more attention. Does it help...I have no idea.
It occurred to me that I think my blog is beautiful! Call me a bragger if you want but if I won't vote for myself, why should anyone else. Still, for some reason, it just doesn't seem right to brag does it?
What do you think? Do you promote your blog o…

"I want to do what your doing," she said.

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Earlier this summer I wrote about the most important investment my husband I had ever made. It turned out it was not about money or mutual funds or retirement plans...not that we didn't take advantage of all those things... but that was not it. It was the investment we made in the lives of our children.

You need to understand that I was told from the time that I could understand what "work" really was that I needed to get an education or I would end up having no choices. My father said going to college was the only way to avoid doing the things I might hate.

That guidance somehow changed the way I saw the world. Education became my bell-weather for so many judgements made for myself and my family.

Today one of my grandchildren checked into her dorm room at a college here in Oregon. She is bright and strong willed. As we were shopping for school clothes the other day she said that her goal was to be like us. She wanted to have the money to travel and see "everything…

Voices Inside My Head

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I am taking a class on nutrition right now...it seems that my blood sugar is going up a little each year. My doctor suggested that I go because she knows that I think I know everything and doesn't have the time to argue with me.

I thought I would hate going to school. But, as it turns out, I kind of like it! For one thing I am glad that I am as healthy as I am. And the instructor is good and asks us some very interesting questions not related to eating. She has me thinking that what goes on inside of our head has as much to do with our general health as a lot of the food choices we make. Interesting huh?

So the other day she asked me to pay attention to what effect walking has on my writing. Could there possibly be a cause and effect between being VERY active and how my brain works. Maybe.

For many years I woke in the morning with the first sentence of a story running through my mind. I had no idea where the story would go and I never found out because life got in the way. Now I …

The Obituaries Asks "How remarkable are you?"

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I originally posted this article in 2012 and then forgot all about it. I think it asks a question that we need the think about. How remarkable must you be before your family or friends will pay to see your life in print? I am not a reader of the obituaries. However, my husband needs to keep me up to date on the news and sometimes the obituaries catch his interest. No matter how much I beg, he will continue reading like he did not hear me (which is entirely possible). I will admit I like to listen to him.

As for the obituaries, I am amazed at the lives that people have led. This morning it was a Russian woman. She was a refugee during WWII as a small child. She was thrown on a plane with another family and raised by the family as their own. She graduated in cybernetics from university and later worked inside the Kremlin in the archives. She was acquainted with the leaders of Russia at that time. She had lived in the United States for 20 years. Her obituary said that she believed that w…

When Mom and Dad Grow-up and Leave Home

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When one of my older grandsons was a small boy he would talk about how his grandfather and I would have to go to work like his mom and dad when we grew up. He was a little boy when we retired and did not remember us ever going to work.

He had jobs picked out for us too. I was going to go to work at the "Untangling Store". I don't remember what grandpa was going to do. But for Ethan our lives were all planned.

That was 20 years ago. He is a Marine now and has been stationed in Australia for over 6 months. His mother and father are both retired. His mother has moved on to a new job and his dad is doing what he loves.

His sister is leaving for college and that family will officially be empty nesters. The time has come for their parents to grow up and leave home too.

I wonder how those children will feel when no one is home at Christmas or even for their birthday. It seems that young people don't really want to create a world without mom and dad. It is only right that t…

Are You a Good Listener?

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A very good listener. (Black Norwegian Elkhound Photo credit: Wikipedia) I think that learning to listen is one of the hardest skills to learn. In fact, I wonder if you can actually do that.

Could it be that some people are born naturally interested in what other have to say? Are they born with an inner calm that lets they hear what is going on around them?

Sometimes it seems to me that we are shouting so we can be heard over what others are saying. Impatience or disinterest will not let us wait until it is our turn or even on some occasions, to a later day.

I often say jokingly that "It is all about me!" When that is true I simply don't listen at all.

So, how good of a listener are you? Tell me one thing that you learned about another person this last week. I will listen because I truly am interested. :)

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Are You Sucking the Joy Out of Your Children Leaving the Nest?

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This post is worth revisiting. September is here and children have or are leaving the nest for the first time. Are you celebrating their rite of passage or are you making it all about you. Read this and let me know.

I know I have written about almost every issue that Boomer parents deal with. Boomerang kids, downsizing, grandparenting and wrinkles...but I do not believe I have ever taken the time to say what I really think about Empty Nest Syndrome. Boomers going into a deep funk when their children grow up and leave the nest is something I have a hard time buying into.

It took a conversation with my daughter who will become a mother with grown children before long to make me face how I really felt. When I mentioned the fact that parents her age are having a hard time letting their children go, she just wrinkled her nose. She couldn't imagine. We share the life experience of leaving home to attend college. It was a wonderful time in our lives. I believe that neither of us would wa…

Meat and Potatoes vs Sweet and Savory

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Most people over a certain age were raised on basic seasonal food. Potatoes and gravy with garden vegetable in the summer and canned in the winter. Salty was salty and sweet was sweet. It reflected the life we lived.

The small changes from year to year and season to season were barely noticeable. If you are like me, you remember the first time you used oregano in the pasta sauce or ate your first bite of

pizza. It was revolutionary and many decided that they were never going down that path. And so they didn't.

As for dessert, the idea of adding a small wedge of cheese to the top of apple pie seems almost evil...I mean who did that?

In our lives we were very narrow too. Cultures did not mix and food from another's world seemed strange and not so good.

As I look back on that world compared to the one I live in now I am amazed at how the foods we ate then and the foods we eat now reflect where we have been, who we know and what we think.

I have come to love sweet and salty or so…

On Sharing With Ants, etc.

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I suppose I wrote last year about sharing my life and my house with ants. If I didn't well here is the way it is. Ants crawl everywhere and are impervious to almost every formula to rid the house of them.

They mock me at every chance. A stray crumb can become a big reminder that they have no respect for the clean kitchen. If I drop ONE they are just waiting to gather around and do a big crumb dance before toting it back to the ant hill where they will spread the word and a thousand more will come in search of more.

They don't like mint very much so I spray a mixture of essential mint oil on the counters and let it dry. That does keep them at bay but, because I don't use mint perfume, they crawl up my arms at the speed of lights and wander willy nilly around my neck. Just telling about it makes me itch.

Yet, I somehow find the little creatures charming. They form a line to and from the nest. They kiss every ant they pass going back and forth passing the secret of the crumb…