Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Mothering my way

Late last year I wrote about the "purple flowers" incident, when I did not get flowers for Lauren for Advent. This time I made sure I got them for Lent. My dilemma was what to do for January. The weather had been so bad that I left her Christmas flowers on her grave way past Epiphany, and then a third of the month was gone. 

I went to the store to get her flowers and decided that I would get pink roses and Valentine's stuff since Lent begins on Valentine's Day this year (thanks, Year B).  I will keep the Valentine's stuff on there and then switch to my purple Lent flowers for March. (I better get to the store for Easter Lilies pretty soon, I guess.) 

It seems a trifle to other people I am sure, when I worry about what is on her grave. But for me it is really important. One of her friends once told me that this was my way of "mothering" her. I guess that is right. The thought of her grave having no flowers on it to show our love and how much we miss her is really distressing to me. So as long as I am physically and mentally able, I will go there and "mother" her in this way. 

I will also try to "mother" (honor) her by being a good wife to her father, a good mother to her brother, a good mother-in-law to her sister-in-law and a good grandmother to her nieces. I'll try to be there when her scholarship recipients are honored, so that she can be remembered. 

New pink flowers for Valentine's Day took the place of the old Christmas ones. As my daughter-in-law said, "Days are long, but years are fast." One day when I can no longer bring her flowers, I hope I will be with her instead. 

Prayer request: Three teenagers were killed over the weekend in my home county in South Carolina. I would ask for prayers for their families and friends, and most especially their parents. 
Prayers for Charner, Krislyn and Hunter. 

Eternal rest, grant unto them, O Lord
and let perpetual light shine upon them.

May they rest in peace. Amen.

May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

It must be nice to always be right

I guess I am having my own "pity party" today or something.

For the last couple of days, I've been called out and corrected by people who are 25, 30 and 40 years younger than me.

Seems here lately everything I say or do is wrong. I am the oldest person in my office, yet I have nothing to offer or contribute to this place these days. It is quite disconcerting sometimes to realize I had lived a whole life before some of these people were even born. It doesn't seem to matter though.

I try to contribute in meetings or other discussions, only to get shot down or interrupted like what I have to say is not important. Maybe it's NOT important any more.

If you are older, you are disposable in this society.  I am passe', I guess.

These are the kind of days I wish my daughter was still here. I think at 32, she would be a mature young woman who could maybe help me navigate this new place I find myself in. I miss having a mother and a daughter, really.

I think I will follow that old adage I once learned: "My tongue within my lips I rein, for who talks much must talk in vain."

End of rant.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Another sweet gift

My daughter-in-law Anna is a very thoughtful young lady. She does a great job of including us (even though we are a little distance from them) in all of the girls' activities, etc.  We visit with each other as often as we can but, thank goodness for FaceTime and texts.

We are able to enjoy their little stages as if we lived next door. It means a lot to their Grandpa and me to be included in their lives. As I have stated in the past, these little girls are medicine to our hearts and salves to our souls. I just hope that I was half as good a daughter-in-law to my in-laws as Anna is turning out to be to us. She is a great wife to our son, and a wonderful mother to her girls. Motherhood has come quite naturally to Anna and she really loves it, I can tell.

In the past she has given us little homemade gifts from the girls. Those gifts mean more to me than she will ever know.  I have everything I could ever need materially speaking, and these little things are more precious to me than gold.

I don't think she is making a special effort in this because we lost Lauren, I just believe it is her own sweet nature. She has two wonderful parents and family who molded her into the great young woman she is today. But she is not insensitive to our loss; she has been a good listener to our son when he shares his grief with her, as she has with us. I truly believe Lauren would have loved her sister-in-law and her little nieces. I know she would be as proud of her brother and the great husband and father he has become as we are.

This year for Christmas, she gave us a wooden plaque from the girls that she painted and put the word "Love" on using the girls handprint and footprints. The "o" in love is made by Rosemary's little hand and the "v" is made, most appropriately I might add, by Vivian's little feet.

It hangs proudly in our den, where we spend most of our time. Thank you Anna for your lovely present and your lovely presence in our family.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

I’m in awe of my friends from Minnesota

We’ve been snowed in for a couple of days. It will melt over the next couple of days, but just being inside this long has made me stir crazy. It is beautiful outside, but super cold for Mississippi. I think of my friends from Minnesota and Saskatchewan and wonder just how they do it? We fuss like there’s no tomorrow if it gets cold for more than a day, yet they live with this and worse for months on end! Helps put things into perspective. Thank you, Lord for this lovely place where we live, and I pray for all the folks who DON’T have what they need to survive in this weather. Help me to be a little more thankful and a little less spoiled!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Year B is riding the struggle bus

I am on the struggle bus this week. Last weekend I ran to Birmingham for an overnight trip to check on our condo, which is now getting ready to be put on the market. Our tenants, who were international students from Saudi Arabia, moved back to their country. We decided to sell instead of rent again. They have been renting for four years, and we feel like we are ready to get rid of the condo now.

I ran over on Friday to check out the condo (code for "to see the grand babies") and came back the next day. I started trying to put my house back in order from the holidays on Saturday evening, and got up Sunday to play at our 8 am mass, go to the grocery and then came home to take down Christmas decorations and put them away, which took me until the evening. I have to say, I am sore all over and worn out.

Last Sunday we celebrated Epiphany, even though it was technically the day before (thanks, Bishops). I get to mass to set up my music, and someone is trying to figure out the readings and set up the book.  Father is not yet there to clear up the confusion.

They are complaining that they can't find them. I say, "It's Epiphany." (And, I don't play for the mass every Sunday of my life, so I wouldn't know).

She says, "I think it is the 2nd Sunday after Christmas." I said, "Yes, but we are celebrating Epiphany today. The Bishops have decided to celebrate it today instead of yesterday. It's Year B, so look up Epiphany and you will find the readings listed in the missal today."

She finally finds them and some guy who gets to church early every week, and who was obviously eavesdropping, says, "Epiphany is January 6. Today is January 7."  SIGH...

Year B is going to wear me out. I just know it. We already had the debacle of Christmas Eve being the 4th Sunday of Advent, and whether or not Jan. 1 was a holy day of obligation this year. Now I find out Ash Wednesday is on Valentine's Day and Easter is on April Fool's. Go away, Year B.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

We just saw our kids off on their way back to Birmingham after a wonderful late Christmas celebration. We had our family celebration over the New Year's weekend, due to Christmas Day being on Monday this year. We decided to make our Christmas the long weekend.

The girls loved their bike and trike, and all the lovely little things they got. Anna gave us a little homemade gift: A wooden plaque that spells out the word "Love" with Rosie's hand print as the O and Vivian's feet prints as the "V." It is so precious! I am looking for a place to hang it up right now. She is such a thoughtful young woman, and makes those precious gifts that mean so much to me as their grandmother. My son truly lucked out when he found our Anna.

During mass this past Sunday, the girls wanted to be with Mimi and Grandpa, who just happen to be the church musicians. At one point, Vivian was very unhappy in her pew, and managed to climb on my lap while I was playing a song. She just sat there leaning her head on my shoulder, and I played on. Rosie went up with the other kids when Father Thi called them to the altar, and gave me the thumbs up to let me know she was ok. She ended up letting me hold her while we sang a song, so she helped us sing at the front of the church. I like that they are involved in the music. They both seem to be fascinated with my piano at home, so I hope they will follow in our footsteps and be singers and players.

We rang in the New Year with Aaron and Anna, and after lunch today, they packed up to go home. Rosie asked to "hold me" (for me to pick her up) and she said, "I'm going to miss you, Mimi!" If only she knew what she does for her Mimi's heart!

Here are some of our weekend pictures!

Saturday, December 23, 2017

A special Christmas gift for me

Our sweet girls
We are visiting my brother in South Carolina so we stopped off to spend the night with the kids on the way over here. We went to the girls' day care so that we could see them at pick up time when their parents came to get them. Vivian, our 17-month-old, was a bit confused to see Mimi in her classroom suddenly, and being the independent little girl she is, she let her Grandpa and me give her a hug and quickly got down to run around in the day care and show us how she knew her way around.

We made our way to Rosie's room where she was playing with some kids. Rosie (our 3-year-old) spotted me looking for her through the window and yelled at the top of her little lungs, "THAT"S MY MIMI!!!" We came in and she ran as fast as she could to jump into my arms. She just hugged me and hugged me. She got down to run to her Grandpa and then ran back to hug me again.

She asked if I could ride with her in the car, so I went with her and my son to "The Pancake Store" (Cracker Barrel) where we were eating that evening. After a wonderful time of dinner and fellowship we went home to get the girls ready for bath time and bed time. As we came into the house, I was on the couch when Rosie came over and hugged me. She said, "I'm so glad you are here, Mimi. I'm so glad you came to see me."

Her sweet, innocent little heart just gave me the best Christmas gift I have ever gotten or will probably ever get. Rosie had no idea what she gave me. But I will never forget it. So, Merry Christmas to everyone, and I hope you get as wonderful a gift as I received this year.