Thursday, May 27, 2010

Sister get-away

I have recently returned from a wonderful vacation; sister time in WA. I only have one sister and we are very close. We talk the same, laugh the same, think the same (for the most part), like the same things; so anything we choose to do is a winner.
We LOVE the ocean and we LOVE seafood. We enjoyed both on our two days at Ocean Shores. As you can see, we had beautiful weather, although the water was a little cold, but we always have to run in the water and let the waves chase us back. We thought it would be fun to feed the seagulls, but then got pretty freaked out by the way they swarmed us. We find ourselves squealing and diving for safety inside the car. Remember that movie The Birds? Still freaks me out.
We shopped at the gift shops where I found a new pair of sweats and sweatshirt, to replace the ratty ones that I've worn to death, which I bought there years ago. My purple sweatshirt is literally falling apart, so I was excited to finally replace it, but do you think I could throw that old one away? Nope! Still wearin it.
I hunted for my favorite vanilla perfume I bought there many years ago. I've looked around here at every store I walk into, looked online, but have been unsuccessful in finding my favorite. I found the same gift shop I remember buying it at the first time, but they didn't have it anymore. However, I found a comparable replacement. I'm SO happy. I'm not into the strong floral scents, but love the subtle food scents, especially vanilla.
My sister Cheryl and I talked a mile a minute for 5 days straight. We couldn't get enough of each other. We did take breaks to read our books or watch a movie, talking every so often. Cheryl had prepared my very own suite upstairs in her house, which not only had a TV, but a couch, a loveseat by the bed with a reading light, and also a goodie basket on the coffee table, complete with all the things I love: Fritos (my #1 favorite chip snack, a must-have daily), chocolate (of course, another must-have), gum (always chewing it), memo pad, candy, Kleenex, chap stick and lip gloss. She's the best hostess ever.
Cheryl's husband of two years is an awesome guy who adores my sister, so I love him all the more. He took us out to dinner, made morning runs for their lattes, always getting me a hot chocolate with almond flavoring (yum), would shut himself in the bedroom when he sensed we needed some alone time, and was just a gem.
I was able to sneek in a visit with my brother one day too.
It was the most relaxing, enjoyable vacation ever. I only had myself to worry about. Should I feel guilty about that? I can't tell you how many people questioned me about going on a vacation by myself, surprised that I would do it. What's wrong with that? It felt good.
It's always nice to get home though, especially to my own bed. But I must admit, that after only being home for 2 days, I can't help but dream and start planning our next sister get-away.

Monday, May 17, 2010

I am a sponge.

The phone rings; CONSTANTLY. I find myself cringing, yet politely answering, and then try to meet each request that's made of me. Even though I'm better at delegating, the weight I feel can not be passed on. I feel like a sponge, trying to absorb everything that comes my way and offer everything of myself that I can, like I'm supposed to, but I admit, I don't always like it. This sponge is in need of a good wringing out and some airing out/drying time. I think my upcoming trip to WA to see my sister is very timely and will be just what I need. I'm not asking for sympathy here, just a place to write down my feelings and thoughts. That's therapy in itself.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Energy Source

Some people have to have their coffee, diet Cokes, or ingest some other form of an energy source in order to get motivated and moving for the day. Today for me, it was the neighborhood noises that I welcomed this morning: birds chirpping, lawn mowers running, neighbors chatting with each other, children playing, sprinkler systems being checked out, etc. The sunshine brought everyone out of hibernation today and I loved it. I felt a burst of energy that lasted the entire day. With windows open so I could feel a nice breeze and hear all the neighborhood sounds, I scurried through the house, cleaning anything and everything. It felt great and was very rejuvenating. Sunshine, people, and hard work, made for a happy day today.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Temple time

Great night at the temple tonight, especially at the end of the evening as I watched people I didn't know personally, greet each other with love and affection. I thought of my own family; immediate and extended; then of friends and others who mean so much to me in my life, and I just had such a warm, wonderful feeling. We have been blessed in so many ways and we've been given wonderful people in our lives who touch us for good and just make whatever dark days we may have, a lot brighter.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


My thoughts are turned today to my grandmothers and my mother and all the "mothering" I received from them which has shaped my life and who I am. My great-grandma Tess holds a special place in my heart because even in her very old age, she would welcome me into her home and she ALWAYS had cantalope on hand. She would cut it in half, scoop out the innards, and fill it with vanilla ice cream. She'd have one half and give me the other. It was a special treat that to this day, I always think of whenever I slice open a cantalope. It wasn't about the food though, it was that with great effort (and what to a younger person would be a simple task), she would do this for ME. She made me feel important and special. As we ate our treat, she would talk to me and listen.

I think of my Gma Jones who would wait at her living room window in great anticipation of our arrival, with a look of pure, childlike joy, when we pulled up into her driveway. She would break out into a huge open-mouthed grin, wave, and run to open the front door so she could greet each one of us with a kiss on the mouth and a tight squeeze. After we were all in the door, she would sit on the floor with us kids and talk to US, play with us, letting the grownups visit with each other. She would open up her refrigerator, which would be full of soda pop and let us choose. She would get out her fancy glasses and ice for us to pour our soda into. She would have candies and goodies. She always made our favorite food, knowing what each of our favorites were. I spent a week each summer with her (each child got their turn) and she treated me like an honored guest my entire visit. We sewed, we cooked, we went to the ocean where she rolled up her pant legs with me and ran with me into the waves, only to turn around and run AWAY from the waves as they threatened to mow us over, both of us squealing in delight. We picked cheeries from her tree each year as a family. Gma was there for me at momentous occasions and some tough times. She is my soul sister. At her passing, I inherited her wedding ring, which I cherish with all my heart.

My Gma Hunt was one of the most Christlike people I've ever known. Gpa was antagonistic towards our religion of choice, yet Gma made sure her children had the opportunities she had discovered. She was the most giving, loving human being, who gave service to anyone and everyone that she could. She did not have an easy life, yet pressed forward with faith, humor, and grace.

My mother: I can not sum up in words, what she has done for me and meant to me. I grew up with so much love from her that no matter what life threw at me, I had the knowledge that I was loved and I always had a safe place to go. I saw my Mom work hard. She found ways to help my Dad make ends meet. She took children into our home to babysit, which helped us financially and also allowed her to stay home with me and my siblings. She kept the home clean and orderly and always cooked us a hot meal. When Dad died, she was only 36 years old, with 4 children. That's when I realized how strong my mother is. While she surely grieved, she held our family together. She had to seek employment outside the home, which I'm sure broke her heart, yet even though she was absent in body more of the time, we still knew she was "there" for us. She sought help from other relatives and men to teach my brothers what they might miss from having a father in the home. She lived a steady, obedient life, never missing a beat in her religious convictions; never wavering in her faith that there is a God; one who loves us and carries us through the challenges we face in our lives. My Mom is a ROCK!

As I have now had my own children, and grandchildren, my heart has grown so big it can not contain all the love and joy I feel. Thanks to all the mothering I received and continue to receive, I can give a piece of my own heart to others.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

If I only had one day left to live...

I just read an interesting article tonight. A study was done where the question was asked: "What would you do with your time if you only had one year to live". Answers included travel, lots of travel, not staying home much, but going out and DOING; eating whatever the heart desired and eating mass quantities; purchasing things, no more "workouts", etc. The same question was asked giving you only 6 months to live and answers remained quite similar; mostly travel and indulging in food and material things. Then the question was asked giving you one DAY to live. Answers changed dramatically. Family became the focus; expressing love; giving hugs; talking and listening. THINGS did not matter anymore. I've been thinking about this a lot lately. I admit that there are THINGS that I truly do enjoy, but what's absolutely most important to me is my family and those I love. Do THEY know I feel this way?