Friday, December 28, 2012

Arnie & Gertie's Annual Xmas Letter

I didn't watch Sweet Pea and The Cousin this week. Actually miss the little buggers.
I did, however, find some exceptional "bribes" I mean gifts from the moms on my front door step Christmas night.

Seriously, folks, I was stoked! And then as if that wasn't enough to keep me from quitting, this little trivet from Sweet Pea herself.
Doesn't she have big footsies? Now that butterfly has wings!
Love those girls, but love the parental units even more.

You know what?  Xmas isn't my gig. I'll just say it.  And when the world didn't end on the 21st,
I knew I'd have to go through with it.  As I've written many times over the years; I'm not into the whole holiday celebration;
Pre-pre-day-before-Black Friday-start at 3:00 am-sales, or giving to the poor once a year only and mostly, of course, the whole virgin birth thing. That's really a hard pill for me to swallow.
But I do enjoy friends, food and booze.
And I do look forward to Gertie & Arnie's Annual Xmas Letter.

Gertie and Arnie are distant acquatinaces of my mom-in-law.
Actually, she worked with Gertie years and years ago, ever so briefly, and has never even met Arnie
or any of their family.
Gertie is older and I do understand and respect my elders. Really I do, but why in the hell would you send out a depressing, detailed account of every damn thing that went wrong during the year to those you call "friends"?
The front page always has several xeroxed photos.

                           Men enjoying the weather?!!? Shut the front door!  Come on, Gertie!

It's better to type the letter exactly how it's written rather than summarize...

Dear family and friends,

2012 has been a challenge.  Last Christmas I fell off the kitchen bar stool and landed on the tile floor which broke my hip, shoulder and arm.  I got a trip to the hospital by ambulance where I spent 10 days.  Then they moved me to the rehab center for the next weeks for physical therapy.  And home health care for the next three weeks.  It seemed like it was never going to end. I am still using a walker due to balance problems.  Leon told me it was a tough way to avoid putting up the Christmas tree.

April 1 was my sister-in-law's 92nd birthday so we went to visit.
Arnie fell off her kitchen stool and broke his wrist, had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance.  They told us it was congestive heart failure.  Arnie said it was so he could get some attention.

One morning, we woke up to find water on the kitchen floor.  
The dishwasher decided to quit, so I called Leon and he came and replaced our diswasher.  One morning, we got up and water was running down the street. A pipe was broken in the main box and had to be replaced. Leon and a friend replaced the pipe. I nearly had a coronary when we got the water bill.

Leon's son had issues with the bank and Leon had to pay his NSF charges which set him back quite a bit.

We went to my sister's 90th birthday in September. There was over 80 people at the party and quite a celebration. I didn't take my walker so I had to stay in one spot. 

This technology is pretty cool instead of writing, I am just talking into the little microphone and it's typing everything that I am saying.
Two weeks after returning from our trip, Arnold fell in the garage and broke both wrists. He was in the hospital for several days, then he was moved to the rehab center. He didn't get good care, so we brought him home.
Now that Arnold has his casts off, being able to drive again makes it easier.
It's been a challenging year.
We are celebrating being married 66 years!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Love, Gertie and Arnie

Oh and last year, you might recall, Arnie tripped over the garden hose and fell in the backyard while chasing a squirrel. He was in a leg cast for a couple of months.

2012 is soon to be a memory for all of us, including Gertie and Arnie. 
I welcome the newness and potential of 2013. 
And I wish y'all the best.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Those Damn Hippies Had It Right

Wednesday.  Why is it I’m the only one that wants a nap? The Cousin hates the word. 
Turns and runs at the very mention of it.  Christ, I can’t even get the "n" sound out of my mouth and she’s gone.  
And Sweet Pea? Well, Sweet Pea is Sweet Pea in all her reigning glory and we all know what her most powerful artillery against napping is:
That ear-piercing cry that I’ve written about for months.  

So, The Cousin got a new toy. 
It's a "spinning egg".  She so digs it, but she digs it alone. She wants her space and I so get that. But as you can see by the hand in the right corner of picture, The Cousin and I had our work cut out for us.  Sweet Pea. Sweet Pea. Why can't you take "no" for an answer?  Actually, my very own mother used to say that to moi.  Hmmmm... 
I guess if there is such a thing as karma, then this whole bloody gig makes sense.  
It was destiny that brought Sweet Pea and me together.

This Wednesday I took some hits.
Sweet Pea bit me to communicate that she wouldn't be going in her baby play seat. 
Her teeth made direct contact with my left shoulder.  
After the bite, she looked me straight in the eyes and smiled.

The same was true with the carrots. Her new trick is to clamp down on the spoon when it's in her mouth and hold on. I end up puling that thing like it's caught in a vice and she digs it. Looks right at me and smiles big through the orange substance.
Carrot puree sprayed all over my glasses from her other new trick: blowing bubbles with food.
She loves the sound of it and she loves my reaction.

When it all goes to hell in a handbag, I get out the rig.

Initially, they are reticent to go.

But I harness them in like roped calves and they don't have a choice. 

I need fresh air. Well, actually, I need a cool, refreshing grown-up beverage, 
but fresh air will have to suffice for now.
After Work Grown-Up Beverage.

I can't write a blog this week without mentioning Sandy Hook Elementary.  Especially when I am surrounded by 2 little children who light up a room when they walk or crawl into it, just like the youngsters who lost their lives that horrible day.

But, I can't help but think that we, as a nation, are not really getting it.  You see, sadly, this is America. Why are we surprised when something this violent happens? We fund every war, involving our nation or not, with our weapons, drones, arms. Very profitable for us. Why aren't we outraged when our drones kill hundreds of children in other countries? We are a nation that advocates the death penalty as a solution to violence. We violently took this country from its native people, then violently built it with slaves...why are we surprised?

Now there were times that, you know, I wanted to pack a small handgun when I managed the park. 
Would've ended a few disputes over so-in-so's dog shitting in so-in-so's carport.  Could've also possibly deterred Ralph from crashing park parties and calling the sheriff on himself...
But seriously people! 

Now I'm not a girl that thinks the solution lies in prayer. 
And I most certainly don't think this act of violence was some God's plan as some extremists suggest.
I think the truth lies in the good old green-back dollar and I think assault weapons 
are a huge, profitable business.
I also think the NRA has its grubby little hands tightly around (and squeezing) the genitals of every political hopeful in D.C.  As Feinstein just said, "You don't need an assault weapon to kill a deer." 

Ban 'em!  It's the only solution, however, 
I wish I were as hopeful about a change or a ban as many of my friends are.
Send me some hopefulness, would y'all!? 

Somehow, I can't help but wish that if we put love before greed and power, love is what we will get.
This year my partner and I are standing up for peace. Well, in this case, lying down for peace.
And for us, it's a laugh or two but really, the truth is, it takes more than a wish, more than a prayer...  
It takes action. 
It takes action from you, from your family, from the politicians we elect (or the ones who get in due to voter machine tampering or paid off Supreme Court Justices).  It takes action from your boss, her brother, the guy selling coffee and a nutty girl like me. 
Maybe 2013 is going to be that kind of year: An Action Year! 
Taking action to speak out against violence, to get laws changed, to say, "NO" to the dudes that are profiting from mass weapon production that not only kills our children, but children world-wide. 

Those damn hippies had it right. 

Give Peas a Chance.