Doppelganger….

Just thought I’d share this event that recently happened.  I had just returned home after staying with my Mom while she convalesced after out patient surgery.  Steven took me out to lunch at our favorite burger joint.  We were so involved in each other, catching up and sharing our week apart while standing in line waiting to order.  So oblivious to our surroundings, just concentrating on each other.

There was a younger couple in front of us.  The woman had turned around and looked at us, I just thought she was looking out the window behind us at the beautiful spring day  (one of the few without raindrops hehehe).  Then the gentleman turned to look behind too, I was even more convinced that they were commenting to each other about the view.  They ordered and went outside to the tables to wait and we stepped forward and ordered too.  We also moved out into the beautiful day to await our lunch.

We sat down at a table nearby the couple.  We continued to catch up, hold hands, and laugh at anecdotes from the past week.  This time I noticed that the couple kept turning to look AT ME.  I smiled and kept visiting, trying very hard to get the milkshake to move up the straw so I could taste it. lol  The couple continued to glance back at me and we laughed with them when they delivered their food to our table.  Still not understanding why they were gravitating towards us, we waited for our food.

As our order was delivered to our table, the gentleman got up and came over.  He had tears in his eyes and was struggling to speak through his constricted throat.  Of course we waited till he could compose himself enough to speak.  He kept apologizing for interrupting our lunch, we told him that wasn’t a problem at all, what could we do to help?  The food would wait.  He then proceeded to ask where we lived and did we know Mrs.  ……?  We said we were sorry that we hadn’t had the pleasure of meeting this person and that we lived in Santa Rosa, not Healdsburg where we were having lunch.

He just kept looking at my face and the tears kept falling.  Finally he told me that he was so emotional because his Mother in law had just passed away 3 days ago and they were in town for the funeral.  They had stopped in to grab something to eat before they headed back to the reception.  When they turned around to the sound of my voice, they had just about collapsed.  Not only was my voice and laugh so remarkably similar to their Mother/ Mother in law, I was a doppelganger, spitting image of her!  He just had to come over and make sure that I was real and it wasn’t a trick!  The two of them visited with us for a while, recalling how wonderful a person she had been.

He touched my hand and held it to make sure I was real.  I thanked them for sharing with us and told them I was glad that we had met.  They were sure it was a sign that she was happy and in a wonderful place now.  We reassured them that they most definitely were correct in that assumption!  We reassured them that they had not bothered us, quite the contrary.  We have not forgotten this event, it brings a smile to our hearts that some sort of powerful spirit moved through me to bring peace and closure for a grieving Daughter/Son in law on the very day they laid her to rest!  Amazing Grace…..Cyn

Posted in Family, Inspirational, journeys | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Thank You!…..

All the very nice comments sent to my email by wordpress have drawn me back to write.  Time has flown by these last couple months.  The old adage is true, “The older you get, the faster time flies”.  Never realizing that we (Steven and I) were truly the grownups now, we have had to really take a look at what is important these days.  Our parents don’t take care of us anymore – we take care of them; our children need us now more than ever – daycare for grandchildren, looking after our “grand-canines”  when needed: our nieces/nephew/children are moving on and multiplying – we’d love to share in those events! ; especially, it is time to slow down and seriously enjoy our time together!  We have been taking care of everyone but ourselves. lol.

I recently tried to quit working, I truly didn’t think I would be missed. lol.  Our grandchildren needed me for the summer and holy cow the costs of summer care was totally out of line with the wages this damn state/county dishes out.  (Heck, I won’t go there!  very sore spot lol)  So, I tried to quit, resignation not accepted!  I only work 12-18 hours for pete’s sake.  My boss asked me what it would take for me to stay and I told her.  She made it happen, lol.  So, I am still working, but only 12 hours, no weekends or holidays.  My days are free to be with the grandkids and 3 nights a week I get my job done instead.

Our daughter, who had surgery in December ( I think I told you about that) to battle cancer, had a frightening scare that it had metastasized in late April/May.  So with breath held we all prayed, begged, promised anything to the powers that be for this to be a false positive!  I can breath now, our prayers were answered!  I am sure it paid off to have so many “Angels” watching over her too.  My Pop would definitely say it was way too early for one of his grandchildren to join him yet, lol.

My mom had minor surgery again, Steven’s mom is losing her battle with breast/bone cancer and Myasthenia gravis.  So you see, your kind words over the last month or so have been a balm, thank you from the bottom of my heart.  I am now honored to be the “Pushu-Pullme” that I so loved in Dr. Doolittle, and realize that this is our roll to fulfill at this time in our lives.  Our parents carried that load for us when we were younger, now it is our time.

I have not been idle though, Kacie’s Christmas Stocking is 2/3’s done, I started a new afghan, my yard is happy and healthy and rewarding me with so much in return, and the grandkids will be keeping me company whenever needed!  Who could ask for more?  Steven and I are well and truly blessed in all the ways that are important!  Those are the only blessings we need to thrive.

OOOOOOhhhhh, now that I have started typing again…..  look for me with more of my soirees into whatever strikes my fancy, lol…… Cyn

Posted in Family, journeys | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Owlisheous…..

owlafghandone1

owlafghandone2

This was so much fun to crochet!  I really thought it would be a bit larger with the amount of yarn I used!  Oh well, it is the perfect size for an adult lap blanket.  I thought that if it was completed in pastels, it might make a baby blanket.  But, on second thought, the buttons would be a very loud NO NO.

This pattern never became repetitive to me and I usually loose interest halfway through and have to concentrate my efforts to finish.  I think the many varied styles of squares and edges contributed to holding my interest throughout.  The bonus is that it is a dense heavy blanket, warmth will not be an issue.

So, back to cross stitching the stocking!  I fell a bit behind and need to make up for it.  If I can get ahead again I will reward myself with starting a new afghan!  Cyn

Posted in Needlecrafting | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Bucket Check…..

Okay, I thought as I got older I would have MORE free time, not less.  I am busier today than I was while raising 3 young children, daycare for 5 under age of 5 kids, and working nights!  Seriously!  I am so tired most of the time that the minute I sit down, it is lights out!  I keep rationalizing that this will pass and I will have more free time for fun creative adventures, gardening, or curling up with a good book (any book at this point).  Nope, nada, whoo hoo this woman is delusional.

I am serious about this too.  I am so busy that my family is calling months in advance to schedule (carve out really, lol) time to get together.  The calendar on my phone even has dates for the movies, let alone dentist appointments.  This is such unfamiliar territory for me.  Sometimes I think I may have to send myself text reminder to use the bathroom. Lol.

One of the weekends my daughter, Colleen, nailed me down for at Thanksgiving has just come and gone.  We spent the most wonderfully fun, awesomely exhausting, and top-notch quality of time together.  We spent 3 days in Disneyland!  The weather was perfect, except for a 3 hour spring shower.  Warm, but not too warm; busy, but not too crowded; with enough time to visit, laugh, play like kids, and cram as much into each day as we possibly could.

Col&IDisneyland

I learned how to navigate the Fast-Pass, as Disney hadn’t had this jewel 20 years ago.  A wonderful time saver and saved this old body from stiffening up while waiting in long lines.  Attended my first Main Street Electrical Light Parade.  It was too windy for fireworks, but that was fine with me I was on sensory overload anyway.

The highlight of this trip was meeting my matinee idol!  Most young girls went crazy for Mark Hamel or Harrison Ford when I was in high school.  No, not me, it was love at first sight when the Wookie came on the screen!  I went to see the Original Star Wars 4 or 5 times just to see Chewbacca in May of 1977.  When the trilogy ended, I didn’t think we’d ever see Chewbacca on screen again.  This was way before videos were to make an appearance.  Suffice it to say, I love the character Chewbacca.

My daughter got us in line to take a picture with him.  That was exciting just in itself.  While I was busy talking to other Star Wars enthusiasts, she sneakily made arrangements with the staff.  Letting them know about my infatuation with the Wookie.  They were all prepared for me to be surprised.  Colleen just drifted back and watched……

Me&Chewbacca1

Me&Chewbacca3

Me&Chewbacca5

Me&Chewbacca6

Me&Chewbacca7

Thank you, Col!  I can now cross this off my bucket list.  Although I wouldn’t mind getting another hug if the chance arises, lol.  Thank you also to the cast at Disneyland!  You didn’t have to spend those 20 minutes or so with me taking these pictures and indulging this starstruck old lady.  It truly was a dream come true and I have the pictures to prove it!

Colleen told me after we had left and I had stopped crying, that they hardly ever get requests of this kind.  I mean from adults who have admired the characters for so long.  Usually it is for a small child, who ends up screaming and not wanting to go near.  Well, I really appreciated the time, indulgence, and warm welcome from the cast.  I am pleased that my reactions gave them something to smile and talk about later.

Whew, my Steven has a lot to live up to, lol   I am so glad Colleen scheduled our trip into my calendar!…..Cyn

Posted in Family, Memories | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just a Little Honey…..

We are drowning in Northern California.  It has not stopped raining for more than a day at a time since early October.  Now if we were in Ireland, this would be so completely normal.  But, here in Sonoma County our roadways are falling apart, roadways are sliding down hills, and there are quite a few roads that won’t open for quite a while.  Here along the Northern Coast of California, we are used to cold, rainy, wet months.  This year we broke records, we had one of the wettest October’s since 1921. The rain has just not abated.  These past two summers we had severe fires which caused so much devastation and evacuations.  This winter, the evacuations and devastation has continued from the deluge of water we have received.  Be careful what you wish for……..

We are having to release water from reservoirs and just maybe Shasta Damn will finally fill after years of drought.  The snow pack is phenomenal this year, which all leads to more water as spring melt offs start.  As with most things, there is some good with some bad.  Right now I would like to seek out the positive.  Spring showers bring May flowers as the saying goes.

The first flower to bloom for us is the Hellebore, or Lenten Rose.  The daffodil is not very far behind most years.  The sun parted the clouds just in time for me to take a picture!  Then it was gone again.

hellebore

Hellebore

This year we have an early bloomer, I am not sure if this is due to the water table or the fact that it has slowly crept out into the full sun.  I am of the mind that it is a combination of both factors.  In Ireland, they had been at the end of their bloom in early May.  So, I guess they could be right on time, lol.

It’s the wonderful Honeybush!  Our plants are just loaded with blooms this year.  It is truly a stunning bloom.  Here take a look…..

honeybushbloom2

honeybushbloom1

A beautiful burgundy pink flower.  I can’t quite let myself cut one for the house, they are so beautiful where they are.  Just what the doctor ordered, serene beauty to soothe what ails you!  Being that I can’t decide which season I love best, Fall or Spring, I will soak up every blooming event that transpires through out this season.  They are just starting and I won’t want to miss a moment.

Something to look forward to everyday…… Cyn

 

Posted in Gardening, Nature inspired | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Owlstanding…..

testowl

Okay, here’s the deal……

I was desperate to see how these owls looked all assembled.  So, I followed the directions and here is my first one.  I was not very happy with it.  It is not the white background, as you know I was worried about it.  I had tried a different neutral color and all you focused on was the white eyes, eerie too.  So, white it was going to be.

The first thing that bothered me was that the ears flopped down and I worried they would get snagged on everything.  Secondly, the eyes were also just tacked on and they were constantly rotating slightly.  They also would probably be snagged easily too.  Thirdly, once you had attached the beak and eyes the back side of your square was messy.  I wasn’t thrilled with that at all. The buttons are the size specified, but they look much smaller than the pictured ones.  This was very minor in my mind and I love the buttons so, we will overlook them.

So, I took this particular square back apart.  I unraveled the last two rows of the white. While I re-crocheted the first of the rows back on I slipped a loop of the back of the ear into the chain one corner of the first corner and repeated that to the other ear when I came around to it on the other side.  This held the ears in place and my snagging worries were fixed.  I finished the last row of white and moved on to my second issue to fix.

Since the beak was perfect as it was, I moved onto reattaching the eyes.  The directions did ask you to leave a 6″ strand at each end of the eyes, but this time I left a 10-12″ strand at the end only. I wove the other strand in and out of the way.  Threading that 10-12″strand onto a large eyed needle, the button was secured in place first.  I decided to slip stitch the edges of the eye all the way around the outer edge.  By knotting off and pulling the ends back under the eye I had cured the unsightly mess in the back of the square!

Shizam……..

2owlsfinished

Now I am off and running.  This version I can live with.  Only 7 more owl squares to finish and I am on my way to assembling this beauty!  Back to crocheting……..Cyn

Posted in Needlecrafting | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Puzzle this…..

Avoiding plopping down in front of the television has been a long time goal of ours.  We only have cable for Steven’s Mom, she watches sun up to sun down.  We vary rarely turn the cable part of our television on.  There are the rare Seattle Seahawk games, Rafa Nadal tennis matches, and NCAA Basketball I admit.  The only problem is that the television limits what you can accomplish during the time you choose to watch.

I have long been a book on tape enthusiast.  To say that I love to listen to programs is an understatement.  Our son, Shamus, encouraged me to buy the Sirius Radio equipment and subscription 2 years ago.  It is one of the best investments we have made.  Instead of being held captive by the televised sporting events, I take the sporting event where ever I am going!  It’s fantastic!  Whether I am gardening, cooking, sewing, or just plain lounging in the yard, we have all our sporting events with us.  Oh, and the music is also wonderful!

Over the last few weeks, we have started to watch our grandchildren afterschool 3 days a week and on the weekends.  Their Dad was finally able to secure a good full time job.  With both of their parents working the same schedule, we are filling in the gaps when needed.  Our grandchildren are televisionaholics!  Seriously, this inability to entertain themselves without the benefit of a video, movie, or a television show is frustrating.

When the weather is nice, we send them out to ride bikes up and down our lane, but otherwise it is a struggle to keep them busy.  Exhaustingly so.  Through out the winter/spring seasons growing up we never struggled to find a solitary pursuit.  Reading, needlework, sewing, solitaire, and baking were always waiting for me to pick up where I had left off.  Oooooh, let’s not forget PUZZLES.  A puzzle could fill up all the spare time, in a hot minute the day was gone.  My whole family loved puzzles. I spent many wonderful hours with my Grandma, Mom, and sisters doing puzzles.

I bought some fun 150 to 300 piece puzzles for our grandchildren to try.  They are 10 and 11 years old, way past the time I started assembling puzzles.  Too funny, they both said that they were too complicated and “complex” my grandson said.  Steven and I laughed and said “that’s the point, to solve the puzzle”.  They were just not entertaining enough.  So, I have pulled one out that Steven bought me for Christmas.

lombardstreetbox

I know once I get it started they will be wanting to help.   I think I will start one of theirs on the kitchen table for them to take over.

puzzleframe

The trick is to pace myself, I don’t want it to go too fast.  If only that will happen, lol.  I have a spare in the wings…..

leafpuzzle

The weather is cold and damp again, with rain on the horizon.  This was the perfect time to get a puzzle going.  Just like Pinterest, I will have to make sure I limit my time or the day will be gone before I know it…….Cyn

Posted in Family | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments