Archive for August, 2010

My Cousin Linda

Tonight, I communicated with my cousin Linda via e-mail.

Linda was born nine months before me. In our early years, we were always together. Her Mom would give would give us spoons to play in the yard with. To my mother’s horror and to her mother’s giggles, we used them to eat dirt. We were inseparable.

Then one day, an awful thing happened. Her parents, my Aunt Dot and Uncle Billy took her away from me to Texas.

Because they loved home so much, they came back often and we spent as many of those days together as possible. Every step she took, I was in her shadow. I thought she was the smartest girl in the world.

Our favorite memory is of one night when our grandparent’s house was filled to the brim with aunts, uncles, and cousins. We were told we were going to sleep in the back of their station wagon. Well throw us in that briar patch. We could talk as late as we wanted without anybody knowing. I saw my first shooting star that night, and yes I thought, “Was that? No. Yes it was.” Good thing Linda saw it to.

For several years during my teens, my family went to Texas during Spring Break. We would visit the zoos, museums, and shopping centers in Dallas and Fort Worth.

For me, the best part of the trip was being with Linda.

After school and marriage, we drifted apart mainly because we were then paying the bills and there was little left for luxuries like vacations. Sure we loved each other the same. We just had different priorities during that time.

The next time we were together, I had teenagers.  The first night they were at my house, we put everybody to bed, went outside and talked until 4 a.m. The kids thought that was cool.

During the next few years, our favorite Thanksgivings, included a trip to her house and maybe seeing a movie that night. The next day, our families and extended family that I love would show up at her home and bring our Thanksgiving meal. We would eat and talk and laugh and take photos.

Afterwards we would load up my family and hers and head to Texas Stadium and watch “America’s team” play.

On Friday it was shopping and eating.

Saturday it was pack up and head home.

During those visits, Linda and I were transported back to our teen years and our husbands became the only parents in the bunch.

We wanted to relive every fun thing we did as kids. We even made them take us to a parking lot outside of town just so we could ride the shuttle to downtown. (a sign it didn’t take much to make us happy back then).

Now she lives in Arizona and me in Alabama. We mostly e-mail and facebook, not even often at that.

Right now, she is at their lake house and children are running around and making memories of their own.

That makes me happy, but I miss my cousin Linda.

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Bloom Even in August

     At my house it is the hot Dog Days of Summer. This is the time of the year when the temperature is in the high 90s during the day and we only breathe in the air because we have to. We know what the words, high humidity means.
     Wikipedia, describes Dog Days as: the hottest, most sultry days of summer and can also be defined as a time period that is very hot or stagnant, or marked by a dull lack of progress.
   I go out only to run to my car, retrieve the mail and to give a drink of water to the plants that are hardy enough to fight for life.
     When I do got out, I come back in and immediately remove my wet clothing and replace them with the coolest thing I can find.
     I keep my drapes/blinds closed all the time. I hate to keep them closed because I like to look outside even as I walk by and see the birds, squirrels, and flowers.
    As I pulled back a tiny corner of fabric to peep out this morning, the Ginger Lilies look parched and are bent over to the ground as if looking for any drop of moisture.
     Yet there are white blooms turned upward giving off their strong gardenia-like fragrance.
     I begin to ponder this sight.
     If this is the life of the lily, how much more it should be of us. When we are parched and in need of nourishment ourselves, feeling half dead, we can still bloom and give off a strong sweet smelling fragrance when we turn our face upward.

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Four Letter Word


My friend Becky and I decided that we would go down to the Senior Center and exercise. It would be good for me since I need to be more concerned about my muscles and weight, of course.

Becky is very healthy and fit because she does exercise regularly and watches what she eats.

Me, I just watch for food that looks good and gobble it down. Just so you know, I haven’t seen much that I don’t like except for sushi and oysters.

Wayne said we weren’t old enough to go to the senior center.

Becky said, “And that’s why we love him.”

We went down to sign up. We were given a tour and papers to fill out and a form for our doctor to sign.

With everything all filed out and signed, their ducks were in a row and we attended an orientation class to learn how to use the machines. Who ever remembers all that stuff anyway. The first day I just pushed the quick start button and held on for dear life.

The people who work there and those who come for exercise are very helpful. After a few weeks I have expanded my knowledge of machinery and can even get the machines to check my heart as I huff and puff.

My kids loved exercise when they were teens. They still do. I never did understand that.

I grew up during the time that exercise for southern girls was a four-letter-word. You know a “very bad thing.” It made you sweat and no self respecting southern girl was ever supposed to sweat.

Well, I am going to the center to exercise several times a week now and hopefully all this hard work will pay off soon.

I have found that the Senior Center is a really nice place. The people are friendly and they have many interesting classes such as quilting, computers, painting, sewing, line dancing, foreign languages, and there is even a room full of pool tables for the guys.

I am enjoying myself.

Hey, and after exercise they sell a really nice lunch.

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