Thursday, March 6, 2014

CITY GIRL - scrool down to read


This 2014 winter reminds me of the old time winters back in the late 40s and in the 1950's. Winter consisted of continuous snow days and was taken with a grain of salt. It was winter, and that meant snow. No one was ever disappointed.

     I lived in the city as a child and teenager, walking was a given. Kids walked everywhere, school, home for lunch, back from lunch, back to school, to the store, dentist, doctor.  If parents didn't want their kids to go, they made them stay home and the next day wrote an excuse to the teacher that their child was  sick. The adults walked also, everything a person needed was in walking distance when living in the city.
   My friends and I played in the snow constantly. We made snow angels, built snowmen, went sled riding. had snow ball battles and built forts out of snow. I never went skiing or ice-skating. It was never mentioned or it wasn't popular with my group.

  In order for the cars to go in the snow, ice, or both, snow tires always had to be used. All the cars were rear wheel driven during those years. When it was really bad, metal chains had to be put on all four tires.   The chains had to be straight on the ground, then back the car on top of the chains, when that was done, the chains had to be connected to the two ends that were loose around the wheel.
 In the glove compartment of the car was a box of monkey links. Every car had to have this box because if the chain busted it would continually hit against the inside of the wheel well and that could cause a hole.

    If a chain would break you would have to see what chain it was and position the tire so you could connect the two broken pieces with the monkey link than the weight of the car would compress the chain together and you could be on your way. One thing you never wanted to do was drive on dry pavement with chains still on the tires, - they broke instantly. I can still remember seeing the cardboard  box in the trunk with the rusty old chains inside.

   They were truly a pain in the arse to use, but cars didn't have front wheel, all wheel, or four wheel drive back then, only Jeeps.  Today the mail trucks, and fire trucks still use chains when they need them, They never know where they will end up going and even with four wheel drive, they still need chains in some situations.
     I miss my Jeep, I could go anywhere driving and feel absolutely safe. Now I have a front wheel drive with winter tires. No, I do not feel safe in it and I hope someday I will again be driving a Jeep.
    I loved being a city girl, and it was very difficult for me to adjust to not being able to walk to where I needed to go once I married. We lived in Port Vue, which is on a hill. In order to go to the store or visit the doctor's office, a person had to have a car to drive. We remained a one car family until we built our home in Springdale Township. With kids growing up and going here and there
we needed two cars and have had two ever since.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A Day of Purpose

  People stare at me everywhere I go, it's not because I'm pretty, and it's not because I'm dressed in the latest style. Why? It's because I have a 10 cc incision hernia that makes me look dreadfully fat and at the same time pregnant and lopsided.  I have accepted it. They can't operate because it would be risky and I have gone to more then one doctor.
  If I were younger this would bother the hell out of me. But at my age I could care less, I'm not looking to impress anyone. I work at a place where they accept me as I am and for who I am. I love these people, they are real - - -
   If I were still working where I worked last, I could not say this, as they dressed for show and yes, so did I, I loved looking my best and I loved clothes. I could start a clothing shop in my home as of this morning with all the clothes I have that are in style but I no longer fit into..
   Which is why I am writing this because, today we spent time up in my so called clothes closet, which is actually a spare bedroom filled with clothes on racks and in bushel baskets (yes, I'm ashamed to say, I was materialistic). Why do I still have them you ask? Like with most, I thought I would lose the weight and get back into them and my husband kept thinking that way even when I realized it was not going to happen.
   Today was de-clutter day, and boy did I ever. It felt so good to fill up big plastic bags with clothes to give to 2 different places and three bags of sweaters. Yep, a lot still had price tags on them, and anyone who knew me back when, can remember me always wearing long sleeve white shirts - they were still in good shape from the cleaners wrapped in plastic.
Now  I have a nice clean room to decorate but next stop is the computer room Yi Yi Yi, Yi Yi

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Christmas 2013

  As I go into the brightly cheerful stores and when I drive by the houses so nicely decorated, I can't help but wonder how the people really are that I passed in the stores and who live in those homes.
  The young families with children running around have to be the happiest, or maybe it's the son or daughter who came home from the service to their family, it could be the family who found out that their loved ones medical tests came back all clear. Or how about the couple whose adoption papers were approved and they will have a new son or daughter to celebrate the holidays with.
    I can think of all kind of happy situations that might be happening, but then I can also think of so much sadness people must be going through at this "happy" time of year. There is the man who lost his wife a few months back, his heart is hurting and he is missing her terribly, then there is the woman who just recently lost her husband and is trying very bravely to carry on with the same traditions this holiday season for her children, even though her heart is broken. The dad who lost his job and wondering how he will feed his family for Christmas plus keep his children happy and healthy. The family who loves their son who is paralyzed from the chest down and wants to die, but they want him to want to live. People who are awaiting tests results and are afraid of what they will find out,
     So much goes on in this world of ours, but all of us are totally wrapped up in our own little world. I should not say all of us, as there are so many wonderful volunteers and organizations out there that are doing their best to make it a warm, fulfilled holiday season for the homeless, the unemployed, the people who are disabled and many more. 
     I feel sorry for people who are still carrying grudges from years ago, unable to forgive, and how could I forget the people who are alone for Christmas. Either they don't have family left, are newly divorced with out family around, or are orphaned. Maybe they are in a nursing home with no one to visit at any time not just during the holiday season.
     The fact is, this is life, the whole journey of life. Man's inhumanity to man. The third world country's are truly not thinking about the Christmas traditions right now. A lot of them are just trying to survive from being shot at, or everything including human life washed away from terrible floods. 
   Actually this can apply to right here, in our world also and does.
     Let us be thankful for what we have, and somehow be able to help people less fortunate. I know that Springdale Library has a Santa Helpers tree for a couple of family's less fortunate then some of us. If you want to pick a snowman, stop in and do so.
     Wishing you all good health, peace of mind and quiet of day.
     Let us remember the true meaning of Christmas is the birth of our Lord, Jesus.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Dino, but to some Gino

   I just turned off the television, and I'm ready to shut the laptop down and head on to bed. I glanced around the living room to make sure everything is status qu before heading upstairs when my eyes land on toys scattered by the fireplace. Toys!
My sons are grown and married, so at first it does not register why there are toys laying around on the rug, Then I realize they are my kitty Kat's toys.
    I guess Dino was bored and took all of his little toys out of his basket, I surmise he was looking for a certain little mouse he loves to play with. I had to chuckle to myself seeing him cuddled up on the rocker fast asleep and his toys on the rug, it sort of tugged at my heart. He is a bad one, this kitty Kat of mine, but I love him even though he loves to bite. He can be trying to bite my ankles one minute and then turn around and be so lovable. He definitely is Bi-Polar. I never know what to expect out of him. Out of the blue he will jump up and try to bite my arm, but yet sometimes when I am on the couch he will jump up onto my lap and sleep. I try not to move when he does this as I don't want to wake him, Ron thinks I'm crazy doing this and just shakes his head at me.
    We have always had dogs, but when our last one had to put down I knew it would not be fair to have another one. With both of us working all day and things to do on the weekend, he or she would be one lonely mutt. So I decided on a cat, even though I had never had a cat as a pet before. We got our first one at the no kill animal shelter, a beautiful long haired black cat who was so laid back and lovable. We named him Dakota and had him for many years until he got sick and had to be put down. The house felt empty after that, no kids, no animals, I hated the quiet, even the television or radio didn't help.
     One day two years ago, I went up to the mall to the pet store. In my mind I doubted that they would have any cats, but lo and behold they had 3 black and 2 gray and white. Now you think after having all black dogs and a black cat, I would go for the gray ones, right? Wrong,  two of the black ones were brothers and I knew better then to bring two home, so I asked to see the one who was with the gray ones. The guy brought him out to me and sort of just shoved him into my arms, I was taken aback at the rough way he handled him, so I start talking soothingly and petting him at the same time. We both adjusted to each other and he settled in my lap content with my petting him. 
    Of course I  brought him home. He was very scared and nervous at his new surroundings and hid under the bed for what seemed like forever. We let him be so he could get used to us and the house. He finally got brave enough to come out for food and to use the liter box, but hurried right back under the bed again. Gradually, after much coaxing I got him to come to me and he let me pet him.  He started to stay out in the open more and more till finally he felt safe I guess.  He is in no way like Dakota. Dino is afraid of his own shadow and jumps at the slightest noise, it doesn't help that my husband does not like him and hollers at him a lot, it just makes him more skittish.
       He loves my son Brian and me. When I am home alone with Dino he follows me around and has to be in the same room as I am in. I feel good that he trusts me, but I am not so sure I can trust him!
He doesn't fetch the ball and bring it back to us like Dakota did, and he is not crazy about the laser light when I try to play with him, but he does love his toys and has favorites, he will also chase his tail forever and that entertains him, Go figure!
        Hey!!   I think I just broke the writers block I have been in by writing this!! yea for me.
Wishing you a very healthy, happy and safe Thanksgiving enjoyed with your family.

Friday, November 8, 2013


  This morning I read where another one of my pink sisters passed away. She's a dear soul who was diagnosed after my second diagnoses. We became friends through one of the support groups I belong to on line.
  Yes, I'm SCARED - Yesterday I was so positive and today I am full of doubt. Lori was so hopeful and positive. She tried the natural way of treatment first and when that didn't work went with the chemo. So many of my sisters are losing their battle after fighting so hard. Young women that have young children, Lori who is in her early fifties with young adult children.
  I can't help but ask WHY!  They need money for research that they don't have, which ties their hands from doing more - they have money for all other kind of research that is truly not life threatening why not put that money towards a cure for cancer instead?
   I know I have faith, but when reading of the loss of a sister all of my doubts resurface, all of my anxieties awaken because Lori was like the rest of us. She wanted to live for her family and to see them grow, for grandchildren, for life it self and she didn't - - -  -
  Venting my frustrations and fears out loud and praying, praying hard for faith once more to be mine and to realize that I have to have the serenity to accept the things I cannot change and to change the things I can, I have to keep saying this like a mantra till it is embedded in my head.
   May God bless Lori's family with strength to get through this terrible terrible time - Rest in peace my friend - you will be missed by so many

Sunday, November 3, 2013



Why do I write this stuff ?  Better yet, why do I share it?
Other people would never admit on paper to these feelings or voice their opinion. But, here I am doing it - - - why am I even thinking this way when ever I hardly have a following, my kids don't read it, my family either. So basically I am writing it for myself and to share my feelings with my great grandchildren, my great, great grandchildren. They will either think I am an old coot, or a wacko Italian lady. But hopefully they will realize how very important my family is to me and feel the love I have for all of them. 

     I came upon a very interesting article today. It was in the USA Weekend insert of the Sunday paper. The article hit home with me because it proved that I am not asking for the impossible.  For years I have suggested to do this, but there is always a problem or reason why it could not happen.
    Now, I'm not making light of the fact that  everyone is busy in this fast pace world of ours, and it is hard to get 5 families together at one time, but after reading : Kids. Parents. Grandparents. I see that it can work out ! If everyone really wants it to happen, then it can.
     O Happy Day!, What a wonderful feeling to know other people feel like me. That I am not a wacko, crazy mother, mother-in-law, friend or what ever else people have thought of me.
    This is what I have hoped for, and still hope for. What I would love for our family to do, and by reading this article today, I see that other families work at making it happen.  
    Here is what the article said that made me so jubilant:
More and more families want to travel together, key word here is "WANT TO."
    It went on to say, "and not just with dad, mom and the kids. Retirees and working Baby Boomers want to gather the group, bringing along adult children and grandchildren"  Why?
Because these special times together create powerful bonds that money can't buy. "
    Halleluiah! The guilt that has left my shoulders is immense. All these years I was told that most families do not want to. I, even after hearing this, said I don't care if other families don't, I would like our family to. It went in one ear and out the other.
       Though in  the early years there were good vacations, times when the grand parents, the parents and two siblings plus a fiancĂ©' went, but not all of the siblings.
       There was the trip to New Hampshire for a week that  I remember. The laughter was abundant looking for "Elk" we never found. How many hours it took us to get out of Pennsylvania was hysterical to us. We wished the others were there to enjoy it with us too.
      There are other moments that stand out in memory but I won't bore you with the details, the fact is - that it happened with a mixed age group and everyone had fun.
       A year ago two families went with us for an extended weekend to the lake. It was lovely even though I could not get around very good, and went to bed earlier than anyone else. I was probably a bump on the log to them, but I enjoyed and hope they enjoyed being able to enjoy nature with extended family.
      I have to say that my real dream did happen years ago, we were all together for one week. The grandkids were so little that they probably don't remember one bit of it.
      It was the happiest of times. Having all the grandchildren playing together,  what I remember the most is the laughter, playing Frisbee on the beach, flying kites or trying to fly them. Relaxed, carefree times. But, that was a long time ago, at least 9 years ago.
      Those were the years that I was able to enjoy doing the things everyone else did, those were the times I wanted everyone to be together so we could all enjoy doing. Hike, bike ride, go far out in the ocean, take boat rides, do fun stuff.
    I know I can't have all that I want. I know that I'm blessed to have my family close by, and I am very thankful. But does that mean I can't spend a week of quality time with them, making memories with the grandchildren, getting to know them on a day to day bases, them getting to know their grandparents?   Having breakfast together, time to talk without having to rush here or there?
   I never went on a vacation with  my grandparents, but I stayed with them for a week, and with my one grandmother a year because my mother was seriously ill. I got to know them and they me, and we had fun together and grew closer.
   There were a few camping weekends my husband and I went on with two families. That's how they celebrated their dad's birthday and he loved it, but that stopped years ago too, when no one went the extra mile to continue to make it work.
     Is it playing favorites to say that one family will always take the time for us, will go away with us?  They try to work with the others to get them to go to?  I don't think its playing favorites, I think it shows that one family cares enough to work on making it happen.
      I am aware that there are other families that don't care to go with their kids on vacation, or that the kids don't want to go on vacation with their parents, That it is not important for them to be together, or maybe the kids parent's have died and there is no opportunity for them to go together.
       If they are happy with that, fine. But just because they are,  does not mean everyone is.
         Maybe it is more important to me these last seven years because of my health, maybe I'm trying to make lasting memories,
maybe I want to share more of my time with those I love in any way I can, even though they have their own lives. 
If a telephone call can soothe the soul, can you imagine what a week together with family would do?

Will I publish this? Should I publish this? That is the question


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Silverware Drawer

   Putting away my silverware this morning brought back childhood memories of yore.
I remember having to put the silverware in the drawer one on top of the other, perfectly, and it stayed that way!
    I can still see it in my mind, the times I would get a spoon or fork out of the drawer, it was always so picture perfect.
   My mom's bowls, glasses and cups were always put perfectly in the cupboards, that it looked like a picture out of  magazine.  Even her pots and pans. Mom was short and it was hard for her to reach the shelves in the cupboards, but somehow she always managed to do so.
   I wish I could be more like my mother I thought this morning. So while putting the silverware away, I did it the way my parents did, and it looks great. It will stay that way until this evening, then it will go back to looking sloppy, they will be all be in the correct slots ,but haphazardly for sure. Why.? because we are always in a rush to get things done. Same goes for the rest of the cupboards.    
  Back when I was a child, my mom didn't work and therefore had the time to do everything perfectly, even after I married and had children, hers were always perfect. She had two children 8 years apart, which had to help her keep things so neat. My way of thinking anyhow.
   I went to lunch with a few school friends a while back and the one asked me if I kept my clothing drawers as neat as my mom did, she remembered staying over and seeing how neat my socks, etc., were put in the drawers. I had to tell her no, not even close.
   Me, I had 4 young boys growing up close together in age, and I worked. My cupboards looked like someone had ransacked them looking for a treasure. True, I have two dining room cupboards where everything is neat as a pin, but that's it. Don't open a kitchen cupboard door unless your hand is out ready to catch a pot lid!  I am pretty good with my dishes and bowls in the dry sink, but the one that is used the most is a mess.  I grab the first bowl that is handy and I use that, I don't take the time to get a nice bowl, and I have to say I have some nice bowls, old fashion ones that I love, but never use. I can't say the same for my husband. When he cooks, which is pretty often, he does take time to use the nice old fashion ones and they look great on the table. He has his mom's artistic touch and patience.
    Even today, with the kids grown and out of the house I still do not take the time, maybe because I still work part time, and my health has not been that great. Thank goodness for my husband who makes the dining room table look so inviting when we have dinner - -
   What about you out there? Tell me about your cupboards please.

Dee's shared items


This time of year makes me think of all of those things I have to be thankful for - - - -
my husband
my children
my grandchildren
my health
my freedom
always thankful for friends made