Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Wanted to let you all know about my latest, most secure purchase.  This phone doesn't have APPS, Internet, Camera, Texting ability or Caller ID.  But in giving up all those "luxuries" I'm not worried that my personal information is being collected, stored and used by outside agencies.  All those fancee-smacee phones and their free APPS, actually come at a very high price:  Privacy.  No information that is sent, received, or stored on blackberries and I-phones is secure. Addresses, photos, text messages,  pictures, websites visited, etc. are all up for grabs.   My bagphone might not be stylish, but my personal information is more secure.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


When we went out to lunch at Olive Garden, we discovered that we had brought along one serious, little eater with us.  He didn't want to wait for the bread sticks, salad, or entree.  His little bowl was empty and so was his supply of patience.  Thank goodness we were prepared with a fruit cup that served as his appetizer.  Didn't realize that this fair-haired little guy would so love Italian food, but that really shouldn't surprise anyone in our family, as we are all pasta lovers.  Any form of pasta pleased our little guy; from gnocchi to lasagna he enjoyed it all.  Italian green beans, kidney beans, cheese and a bit more of peaches topped off his lunch.  People stopped and spoke to him and even though he smiled around mouthfuls of lunch, nothing stopped his eating.  Finally, I was instructed by his mom to stop feeding him, because he really had eaten enough for his little tummy.  He didn't fuss when the dishes disappeared, the bib was removed and his spoon was cleaned. 

Our lunch involved wonderful company, delicious food, and pleasant conversation that was seasoned with smiles and laughter. Who could ask for a better lunch?  Not us, and surely not our little guy who enjoyed the experience.

Fruit Cup brought from home:      $    .35
Dinner at Olive Garden:               $35.00
Stress free time with loved ones:  PRICELESS

Monday, July 26, 2010


When we traveled to an unfamiliar area to a medical facility, we utilized GPS, google maps and written directions.  Finally, my hubby parked and we approached the building, only to find signs posted all around the parking lot.  All of this made me consider the other situations that we encounter every day, that don't necessarily have their own awareness signs.  What kind of sign might be helpful?

With that thought in mind, here are some unmarked areas in which one should remain on high alert:


  • Forget speed reduction in the streets surrounding the school, think about the peer pressure those poor kids suffer through every day. Shouldn't there be signs to alert the parents of the "acceptable" mode of dress to be considered cool, acceptable, etc.?   Who wants their child considered an outcast, when the solution could be as simple as tucking in a shirt or wearing plaids with other patterns?  This sign would be one of the scrolling kind, since what is "in" one day isn't the next.  Stay alert for updates.

  • How about a sign to let the parents know how to que in the drop off/pickup lanes:  Honking horns not allowed and please turn off your loud, smelly diesel engines. 

  • We all have our own musical entertainment systems, so we don't mind NOT hearing your favorite singer:  Bass is PART of your musical pleasure, but when your stereo's bass is vibrating my car windows, turn it down.  We are not amused or impressed. 

  • If you are an older sibling assigned to the task: We realize that you love edgy music, so turn it down, because really we don't need to hear all the foul language you find musical.


  • When you leave a cart in the middle of the aisle, so you can visit with someone else, YOU ARE BLOCKING TRAFFIC.  Do you really need a sign that says:  Some people actually need to complete their shopping trip in a timely manner, so MOVE IT.

  • Everyone understands that sometimes children can get cranky shopping, but when the child goes into a full-blown hizzie-fit, please handle it.   There's a HUGE difference between a tired, hungry baby and a child who pitches a fit for a desired purchase.  You all know what I'm talking about.  If you don't handle hizzie-fits when that child is young, you are creating a self-centered, self-absorbed adult who will be miserable and make sure everyone else pays for their misery.  There are many parents who have chosen to use the shopping experience as a teaching moment.In fact, I heard a father addressing his child as they exited the grocery store, "When you whine, that doesn't mean that you will get your way.  In fact, quite the opposite will probably happen."  For those who don't understand the significance of day-to-day behavior here's your sign:  HELPING YOUR CHILD BECOME A HAPPY ADULT, MIGHT MEAN YOU STAND YOUR GROUND, NOW.

  • Unload your cart and then put the divider after your items, because sometimes the person behind you can't reach those elusive markers.  You don't have to do that, but it is nice to walk up to a check out counter and find your place ready for you.  So a little reminder sign:  Be nice and put the divider after your last item, as you probably can reach that divider easier than someone behind you.

  • Smile and be courteous to all the people who work in the store, even if you aren't greeted with as much warmth as you'd like.  You'd be surprised how quickly a warm, genuine smile can melt an icy attitude of a checker.  You never know what has just occurred to that person and you might just be the highlight of their day.  Kind of scary, huh?  Well, with that in mind, here's your sign:  Be as nice as you can muster and share a smile.  Smiles are free and you'll feel better.


  • For all relationships, there are basic signs that say it all: CAUTION, HANDLE WITH CARE and of course FRAGILE.  There are also unique signs for our situations, such as CHILDREN AT PLAY, YIELD TO RIGHT OF WAY, and DO NOT DISTURB.  Think about your relationships and all the signs that direct you into positive behavior.

I am reminded of an old song, "Signs, Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs" which was a negative view of signs, but I find comfort in signs keeping me away from conflicts, dangers and social missteps.  How about you?

Sunday, July 25, 2010


An orange plastic bin with just the right amount of blocks is the perfect place to play.  Life's simpliest activities can bring the biggest happiness.
Playing in the box with the blocks is so much fun.

Monday, July 19, 2010


If someone would have told me over three decades ago that I would be a grandmother of a loving, beautiful little boy I would have shaken my head in disbelief. Heck, I thought I knew what the future held for me and my future husband when I walked down the aisle to become his wife. I knew that I would have an easy-breezy life; no economic worries; no life-threatening medical issues for anyone I love; steady employment for my husband and white picket fences to help corral our three children. We would have only happy days with rainbows and unicorns. Those were my thoughts and I was clean and sober when I believed all those dreams were mine to claim. After all, I had survived incredible difficult trials and tribulations throughout my earlier years, so it was owed to me.

Our wedding was planned using a very tiny budget, since we were on our own for the most part. My wedding dress was on sale, we kept the guest list short and we served cake, coffee and punch at the reception. We couldn't afford dinner for our guests, a dance, or any other fancy trappings that seem to be part of everyone's weddings/receptions these days. Simple wedding ceremony; a friend to take pictures; quick reception and then we left for a one night "honeymoon" in Corpus Christi. Our Honeymoon room was a gift from my mom and step-dad which helped our budget, also.

In spite of the simplicity of the ceremony, reception and honeymoon we have worked together for the last thirty-one years to battle all the broken hopes and dreams we have endured. Each goal we have mastered, has strengthened our bond as a team. At times, life has been relentless trying to break us, but it is then that we have bolstered each other. When one of has felt weak, the other one has carried the load, until both of us reach inward for the last bit of strength needed to "make it to the finish line."

We now celebrate each other, while sometimes driving each a bit crazy. We tease each other; help each other achieve goals; celebrate each other; frustrate each other over silliness; encourage each other through life's trials; protect each other from the storm; hold each other and love each other like no one else has ever done.

Those two young, naive, know-it-all people didn't marry their best friends. Best friends came out of the union created on that hot summer day so many decades ago. Who would have thought that God's plans would strengthen our relationship, producing two dedicated people who would do anything to make life easier for the other one?

Thank you, God for giving me the man, love and life I have.

This blog is dedicated to the man who has had my back on more occasion than I could ever count. Happy anniversary, Husband. I love you more than you'll ever know.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Time and circumstances have brought the X factor into our lives. Daily situations are complicated enough, but now whenever we include our daughter and her son in our lives we have to deal with the X factor. X has to be considered before we can plan on seeing our Grandlove. X has to be consulted before out of town visits with us can be co-ordinated. X is all powerful, as X can demand more parental involvement at a whim. So, we are careful to keep X happy, non-threatening, and co-operative.

Personally, I believe that if X had been more plugged-in, gentle, and less angry in the previous years, this blog wouldn't exist.

Too little, too late and my inner voice is screaming, "WARNING! WARNING! Calm, co-operative manner is a cover-up for destructive agenda!"

Yes, of course I realize that my X factor comes into play, also. My main focus has always been on my Grandlove, so nothing has changed there. With me, I don't hide my emotions, feeling or opinions.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


I have always been fascinated with eyes; in fact that is the first thing I notice about people. My mother had the sweetest, deepest blue eyes that could twinkle with delight or stop me in my tracks when I had crossed the line. In fact most of my relatives had bright blue eyes, so I always looked different than cousins, aunts and uncles. There were a few of us with darker eyes, but blue was dominate in our family.

Knowing this, it shouldn't come as a surprise that I was attracted to my husband and his sparkling blue eyes. His eyes have that little bit of mischief that flash when he's not taking life very seriously. Mixing his light eyes and my dark eyes combined to produce our daughter's eyes' green-speckled hazel-tones. Her father's mischief and my icy glints were passed on to her, also. I have been on the receiving end of her flashes of mischief before she has tossed a teasing barb my way. When the Grandlove has tested his mom's tolerance with disobedience, he has been redirected by a quick, stern look from his observant mom. When she laughs, which she does very often, those eyes light up and increase the magnitude of her delight.

Tomorrow I am trusting my eyes to my doctor. He will replace my defective lens, eliminate my cataract, correct my poor vision, thus eliminating my glaucoma. This whole procedure is necessary, but at the same time it is making me quite anxious. Sight is so appreciated by me, of course as it would be to anyone, so that is a given. On the other hand, I am very flinchy when it comes to my eyes. I have a difficult time even putting eye drops in my own eyes. At an earlier time in my life, I suffered for style and wore contacts. Back when I did, there were only hard contacts, but I made myself suffer through the pain of wearing stiff, scratchy, uncomfortable foreign objects stuck to my eyeball. Eventually, the pain and discomfort outweighed my need for contacts and I returned to wearing glasses.

After I have my second eye operation, my vision should be better than it ever was. Truly, I am not enduring "messing" with my eyes for vanity reasons. It's gotten to the point that my lack of clear vision has negatively impacted my life. Night driving isn't easy for me, reading the directory on television is impossible and who knows what colors are really there, as opposed to what I am perceiving.

Until I am able to see the keyboard and computer display I won't be posting any blogs or comments. My husband scoffs at the idea of being my reading eyes until I can see better; which is fine, since I've heard him read books to our daughter when she was little. He would skip pages and get away with it, until our girl was old enough to complain, "Dad, that's not the way the story goes!" We still laugh about this part of our family history.

So, when next I post, I will be halfway through my eye opening transformation. Wish me well, pray for my patience and a complete recovery.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


During the past few weeks we are going through another change that initially caught us off guard. When the word "divorce" was mentioned and then declared as a fact in our life, we were hit with a tsunami of emotions. Disbelief, disappointment, and despair began our journey through these times.

My husband and I are both children of divorce, so naturally we carry our own personal experiences in our hearts. Not to go into too many details here about how divorce was dealt with in our childhoods, just let me say that it wasn't pleasant for either one of us. Emotions ran high, blame was thrown at each other, and feelings were hurt for many years. That is what we both experienced and that formed our knowledge basis of what was "normal" with divorce.

Before the MOVE from the house to the apartment, we were around the divorcing couple and their sweet little boy. Helpfulness, attentiveness and kindness were abundantly in evidence. The soon to be divorced couple worked as a cohesive couple, which confused us.

As the weeks have passed confusion keeps clouding my thinking. Why could this couple work together to break up and not work together to stay as a couple? No ugly words; no rolling of eyes when help was requested; no impatiences shown by either one; and the list continues.

Throughout all of this I redirect my mind to the one goal that we have all pledged to honor: The Grandlove deserves to have the very best life possible.

New times, new way of dealing with the age old problem: Divorce while keeping the spotlight of love still shining on the precious child.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Yesterday, went well with the movers, although there were some minor glitches. Stormy skies opened up for a ten minute downpour, which was shorter than we expected since we have been enduring terrific hurricane-related rainstorms. Movers were three hours early, which really didn't matter, since the whip-cracker (that would be me, of course) had pushed the packing process. Bookcases had been emptied; dresser drawers had been packed; fragile collectibles securely bubbled wrapped; bedroom furniture disassembled; and larger pieces chosen for the strong backs of the moving men.

Since we were paying by the hour and not the piece, we selected the pieces that could be quickly, expertly wrapped, loaded and then unloaded. We didn't realize that all glass fronts and shelves would be removed, before loading in the mover's trailer. That took a little more time, but it was their policy to protect from breakage. No problem, in fact we had enough time at the delivery that the mover put all the glass back in place of the display cabinet. After the time was up, cash was exchanged, receipt signed and the movers left.

Now this is where other questions begin to surface:

Will our daughter and Grandlove be able to make it on their own, financially? Will her husband help to financially support them without falling short, like so many times before? In the past, he has gotten financial support from us (you don't want to know how much, really) and now he has money to spend on a lawyer. His answer as to where he got money for the lawyer almost made me choke--I can't swallow lies, very easily. During their years together, he hasn't had funds for necessities and NOW he has money. Unbelievable! I held my tongue when he said where he got the money. His wife and son have done without and he could have acquired these funds during the years and yet he choose not to use them. That is if I believed him, but I have grown jaded, I suppose, and don't believe him or his motives.

Will there be unpleasant surprises when she receives the papers from his lawyer? My fear is that he and his "camp" will fight to have full custody of our Grandlove. Our daughter doesn't feel like this will happen. I do want to be wrong in this instance and I will be so happy if I am.

Our daughter doesn't feel like he is being insincere with being so "nicey-nicey" and helpful; I on the other hand have encountered this sort of behavior before. Surface behavior is not the true indicator of character; it's the deep motivators that actually reveal who people are.

His motivation? Helping to make transition easier for our daughter and Grandlove or building a case to secure full-time custody of the Sweet Innocence?

Call me old-fashioned; call me self-centered; call me unrealistic, I don't care. I believe THIS child should live with his mother. Yeah, I know there are exceptions, but at this point my world's view is focused on our sweet boy and his mom, which is where he belongs.

So at the end of the day, I am scared that our Grandlove's well-being is at stake. He adores his father, which is wonderful. His eyes light up when he spots his mom and then he smiles. I have seen how they interact with their son and I will tell you that his mom doesn't approach him with anger and frustration.

Little guys get into stuff that they shouldn't and do things they shouldn't. Keeping an even temper is important, because I've seen what happens when a child obeys because of fear. Fear driven obedience isn't something that is helpful for children. Love, patience and tolerance must temper the discipline for a child.

Anger and frustration have been the way our Grandlove's father has dealt with everything from dirty dishes to dirty diapers. His mother has just laughed it off and said that he takes after his dad. (What an inheritance, huh?) I fear what will happen when our Grandlove reaches the point of questioning authority (which will happen.) There are older cousins and uncles around as proof what happens when anger and frustration are the emotions constantly exhibited.

Legal paperwork will lay out the terms of the custody and visitation and we'll see how it all is laid out.

I don't sleep well because of worry concerning our Grandlove and his future. Biting my tongue, praying and trying to detach from the situation are my plans of action for now.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


The Victoria Advocate is protecting an employee of VISD and that amazes me. There is a principal who has been reassigned, because of her unprofessional way of dealing with staff and children. This person has physically abused children and crossed the line with staff members throughout the years. She will probably be promoted and have a position at the administration building.

Since I found this ad, thought maybe it would help this bully to find other employment, rather than in a school district that can't afford to move any more incompetency into the White House on Profit Drive.