Ghosts of birthdays Past — 2012

 I have always thought that the -9’s are the toughest: 39, facing 40; 49, facing 50…etc.  This blog, from my 59th birthday, when I should have been singing the bridge song, I was bummed to the core.  I had just noticed that decades were only lasting about, oh a year, maybe two…

First posted February 23, 2012 

birthday…

Posted in Uncategorized ¶ Leave a comment ¶ Edit

nothin’ to it, ya know?  add just one (1) and what’s the difference…really?  i’ve been doin’ it for years now…one more and grateful for it…glad to have my health…there’s a little bitta sag goin’ on, but i look goood for my age…lotsa people would want to be in my shape (so they tell me at walmart, driving the little scooters)…wouldn’t change a thing…glad to be so Wise…doesn’t Bother me AT ALL…

>sob<

My friend, Karen

My friend, Karen, lived across the street from us when we lived in Melody Hill from 1963-67 (a long stretch in one place for my family).  I remember summers when we stayed overnight constantly, going from my house to hers.  We skated and skateboarded, and built a skateboard-for-2 using four skates and some plywood.  We built a fort in the field out back and ran screaming when we saw mice.  We experienced the Beatles invasion together.  We took in a stray cat and named her Jo-Kar (joker) and when she had kittens my parents had a conniption. We never missed an episode of  Peyton Place when it was on three times a week.  We crushed on the Men from U.N.C.L.E.  We were still innocent and imaginative and we spent hours just talking.  I am so grateful to have had a best friend like her.  We moved to California in 1967 and it was heart wrenching to leave.

Karen’s father died last Saturday at the ripe old age of 92.  Her mother is still living.  I went over to the funeral home and we hugged and hugged, cried a little, but smiled, too.

No matter how life moves you in different directions, the bond you form at an early age is enduring.  Karen and I have seen each other a few times over the years, but FB got us back together.  She lives in Florida now and one of these years we’re going to swing by and visit.

I’m sorry for the circumstances, but seeing her today was like a gift.

Peace

 

Time’s a-flyin’…

Having Casey home in winter has made it much less onerous, maybe even tolerable.  Before his retirement he worked long hours clearing the highways during snow and ice season.  We got bigger paychecks for it, so I didn’t complain, but got accustomed to spending winter days holed up in the house alone. Now he’s holed up here with me and I don’t have to talk to myself…of course, I still do..

He’s been working like a fiend upstairs, putting up beadboard, painting walls, and the cleaning that goes along with it all.  I thought it would take him longer, but he finished up yesterday.   It looks immensely better and tremendously brighter and cleaner…

These days we really don’t use the upper rooms except for guests and storage, so it will be a while before I actually pull this room back together. I think I might be selling some more furniture….  As long as it’s all habitable for Camp Sonnystone, it will be fine.

One rainy day last week, I was staring morosely outside and this caught my eye…

It’s a bad picture because I took it from my front door through the glass and then through the screen on the front porch, and it was pouring rain outside.  I believe it’s a young Cooper Hawk.  He looked dazed and was just standing there looking around.  Then he tried to spread his left wing and pulled it back in very quickly.  He walked around with a limp and pecked around.  I figured he was hurt, but would be able to fix himself, but I kept an eye on him.  It took him about 30 minutes before he finally flew to a low branch on a tree nearby, but he didn’t stay up there long and was back down on the ground about 15 minutes later.  Finally  a couple of hours after I first spotted him,  he was gone…  You never know what a storm will blow in…

The lack of sunshine around the Acres is killing me.  This year’s been particularly gloomy and I’d normally be whining to get on the road, but the genealogy obsession is making time fly…

I’m researching and compiling and writing so much that my carpal tunnel is flaring up.  (anybody use an ergonomic mouse they can recommend?)

Becoming reacquainted with American history from the vantage point of my age has been eye-opening.  High school Textbooks covered decades with a couple of paragraphs, it seems to me.  I don’t remember being all that excited about George Washington or the Revolutionary War.  It seemed very remote and not at all glamorous, and the whole wooden teeth thing turned me off of George.

Now I’m researching ancestors that lived in that time and as I read the names of Revolutionary War muster rolls it’s not so far away.  My fam is from Maryland, so I’ve learned all about the Maryland 400, who Gen. Washington praised for saving his a** at the Battle of Long Island.  My ancestor was not in that battle, but he was most likely in another Maryland regiment.

See?  I’m all about the ancestry thing right now… I have made some new blogger friends that share my genealogy fetish, but I don’t mean to leave all you Sonnystoners out of the fun.  Drop on by!

All My Ancestors

Peace

Weekly Gibberish

The Big News from Sonnystone this week is that Nothing Happened…

As the Polar Vortex bore down on us, we turned on the furnace to amend our fireplaces and stayed quite toasty.  Feeling a cold coming on, i looked around for some medicine, only to find that I was out of my usual Allegra.  There was a bottle of Claritin that had been prescribed a while back and it was only a little past expiration, so I downed one.  Accustomed to my 12-hour Allegra, which only works for 8 hours, I had no qualms taking another Claritin about 10 hours later.  The next 24 hours were spent nearly comatose, waking only to feel nauseous and afraid that I was having some Silent Event that I should worry about at my age and not toss off to od-ing on Claritin…  I got up for a couple of hours and sat in front of the computer, then worried that I might be losing my mind and went back to bed.

When I finally woke up (36 hours after taking the fateful pill), it was like a New Dawn.  I felt so refreshed, no cold symptoms, either.  If you have to give up a few days to sleep, crashing through a Winter Freeze is the time to do it.

It seems to me that January went by quickly, but I might be in the minority there.  February always seems longer than its 28 allotted days.  The taxes are begging to be filed, if I can pull myself away, and it is Birthday Month, so I expect to barely turn around and it will be time to leave for Florida in March.

In the meantime, I’ll be immersed, obsessed with the Ancestry.  I changed the link to All My Ancestors if you’d like to visit.  Between the research and the writing, that’s all I’m up to these days.

I gave up on the Photo Synthesis Picture a day… Engrossed in the ancestors and Stuck inside the house, I quickly tired of taking pictures of my walls.   I may have underestimated the Power of Genealogy Addiction..

Peace

Weekly Wrap-up

What a full week!  Last Sunday Michael got called out to work from 3pm to 7am clearing the roads during a little snow-spurt we had.  Jessica had left for Wabash, IN where she would be working until Wednesday, so Olivia and Samantha came over for a sleepover.  They were able to sled down the Great Sonnystone Mountain both days.  Little one (with her sock mittens) had to be pulled up the hill and Grandpa was worn out…

We had 2 Birthdays this week!  Eliza is now 8 years old!!  Emma is, gulp, 13!!

I started working on my Ancestry in earnest, starting with a Prologue to my new blog, All My Ancestors… I don’t have a schedule for posting over there, but I will let you know here at The News when I do.

Casey put down new flooring in the bathroom.  I didn’t take a before and after picture — did I hear you say, too quickly, that’s okay?  It looks great and is much warmer.

Then, out of the blue, just a couple of hours ago, I found the draft of Grandmother’s story!!!  I won’t even get into where I found it, but it is there, all 3,242 words of it!  I read it over in disbelief!  However….

As I’ve been poking around the family tree, I found out more about Grandmother Mayne that may or may not disprove my theory of her “lost years”.  No matter…it’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

I’ve been pretty faithful to my photo-a-day project over at Photo Synthesis, too.  If you’re sitting around trying to stay warm reading blogs, you should check it out…  I’m just sitting around trying to stay warm writing them..!

Peace

 

 

RIP Mary Oliver, and Thanks…

Versifier, rhymester, sonneteer, lyricist are all synonyms for Poet, a person who writes poems.

The second meaning of the word Poet is “a person possessing special powers of imagination or expression” and that defines Mary Oliver, who passed away Thursday at 83.  She published 30plus poetry collections, won the Pulitzer Prize, the Guggenheim Fellowship, National Book Awards, and was undeniably the country’s best-selling poet.  Even if you’re not a poetry-lover, you have probably still seen the popular last lines of her poem “The Summer Day” in all of your inspirational pinterest boards:

Though I now own 6 volumes of her poetry, I didn’t discover her until the 90’s (the Summer Day line was written in 1963)  when I bought “New and Collected Poems”.   There was a poem in that book that stopped me in my tracks, that made me re-read and look to heaven with gratitude for the Word that I needed so much at that time…and I have needed it again and again.   It still reminds me of where I was and how I got away. It will always encourage me to keep on keeping on the journey of my soul.

THE JOURNEY (MARY OLIVER)

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice—
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do—
determined to save
the only life you could save.

 

I could only hope that my writing could touch the hearts of others in the way she touched mine,  but perhaps someone reading this today will hear her words speak to them and determine to save the only life you can save…

Peace

 

Weekly Update

It’s been a busy week here at the Acres.  Casey has taken on a painting project and I’m tripping over him as I meander through the house.  He’s painting all of the trim, the same color but semi-gloss instead of satin, showcasing the filth just before he covers it.

The Camp Sonnystone Height Chart will Never be covered…

As for me, I’m walking on air, so excited about my new winter projects…

I came this close to buying a new Nikon.  Before I hit the checkout button, I got out my old D60 and made sure that it was still working like crap.  It was, but I felt such a nostalgia for the old girl.  We had so many adventures together, and I have neglected her for years? now.  Feeling guilty, I got out the q-tips and cleaned, pulling out veritable furballs.  I reset it, bought it a new battery and lens covers and it’s working like a charm now, though that didn’t add the pixels that make the phone camera pictures look so lush.  What it’s got going for it is its superiority at long shots, especially birds…

So it was, that I took on a Photo Project:  a picture a day using a list of prompts…  I will use whichever camera works best for the subject, just get back into the picture-taking groove…   You can follow me over at Photo Synthesis — clever, eh? — and I may occasionally publicize that blog, as well.

Right after I cleaned up the camera and started the blog, I Finally bought into Ancestry dot com and damn!  I’m glad I waited until I had Time on my hands, because I am now Obsessed with it!  I am so excited to share what I have learned already, but let’s just say that you should probably be calling me Lady Jo…no curtsying, but all men should bow…oh, wait, that’s the way it’s always been.

That project will be yet Another Blog,  All My Grandparents, and I will keep you informed regarding its launch.  Currently I am organizing the individual trees and double-checking the info.  I got too many branches going at one time and it’s become a little confusing.

I love it, though I’m just sitting here growing my ass in front of this computer screen and I need to get up and Move Around…  I really wish Casey hadn’t bought me that bath scale.  If you put it on a certain spot inside my closet it will shave 10 lbs off the number it shows when it’s sitting on the bathroom floor…  Where would you keep it?  I’m thinking he should just hide it from me…

 

Peace

 

%d bloggers like this: