Re-Define Neccesity

I am thankful.  I have more than I need.  I have more than enough.  My home is filled with stuff, my cupboards with food, my car with gas.  I have love, I have family, warmth, friends, joy.

I have employment, enough to live, not enough to immerse myself in conspicuous consumption. 

During my youth I embraced minimal living, reveled in it.  As I grew, I forgot the beauty of less, fell more and more into the trap of gain for the sake of having.

At this stage of my life, I am returning to the basics of life.  And I delight in this.  I am remembering gardening, canning, raising chickens, and glory in the prospects of the fantastic freedom of recreating my life in a simple, less hectic fashion.

 For Thanksgiving, redefine your necessity.  Give thanks.

Shelly Shines

We have a niece, us sisters, daughter of Sandy.  I have watched, from afar, her growing from a child into a magnificent woman.  Shelly literally shines.  She is a faithful woman, and her feet seemingly (to my eyes) walk just a little above the ground, she floats just a bit due to the lightness and beauty of her spirit.

Shelly is strength.  She moved across country on her own to follow her dreams, reenergize her life, and she succeeded with glory.  She Succeeds!

Shelly helped me to remember my love for my Mother.  She does not know this until now.  She loved my Mom so much. with a beautiful and pure delight.  I watched her love, admired it, and came to know Mom

through new, mature, eyes.  Thank you Shelly, for that grace.

She is a worker, succesful in her career with the Marion Police Department, a mother, raising 2 sturdy, strong, smart, energetic sons.  A wife, married to a husband who loves her in return, a partner to her.  A daughter, beloved.

Do not misunderstand me, Shelly is also feisty!  She is fierce in standing for her beliefs, defending her family and those she loves. Determined, funny, laughing, passionate, truly alive!

Lately, with her admirable strength, faith, love, and grace, she has had 2 succesful surgeries to remove cancer from her body.  She has documented this, explained this and is surviving this.

Again, I have watched, and seen the outpouring of love coming back to her from her many friends.  She is loved.  Understandably.

I am happy to continue to watch her grow, to see her in turn become a grandmother, her in turn become that woman beloved by generations to come.

Bless you Shelly, thank you for being!

 

Memories

Today, I sit at my laptop, logged into by remote to my office computer, my i-phone and kindle charging on my desk.

Life was so different while we were growing up.

We had a party line for our phone, when we had a phone; party lines are a great way to keep up on the neighborhood doings.   I remember many lovely conversations, overheard as a child.  My hand covered the mouthpiece, muting my giggles.  Children, (and nosy neighbors) learned how to quietly pick up the phone, and quietly replace the receiver in its cradle.   If I did not know what time it was, I would simply pick up the phone, dial O and ask the nice operator.

I remember a old gray washtub, that  Mom would bring  into the kitchen and fill with hot water for our baths. a privacy blanket over the door, (as the youngest, I was able to bathe first) and going out to the milk house in the cold of a winter night to stand under the cold hose there for a shower, with  a little blue kerosene heater to keep us warm, or in the summer, a hose thrown over the clothesline, and showering with our swim suits on.

Mom worked hard to keep our home comfortable.   Aluminum foil placed over the windows on sunny summer days to reflect the hot sun away, and the bowls of ice  placed in front of the fans for our air conditioning.  In the winter Mom would fill mason jars with hot water,  wrap them in towels, then we would place them at our feet in bed at night to warm us into sleep.

Flashing back to a time I can only imagine, Mom, 16. just a child herself, newly married, and spending her first wedded year living with a mother in law who scared the beejeez out of her, and then, when dad came home from the service, moving out to a lonely farm in the back 40 acres of Iowa.  No running water, no indoor utilities, only a wood stove for heat, pregnant, and working the farm.  Mom persevered, as she always did.

She spent her years out there, working hard, bearing children, bringing more children home to us, and raising us all in a tumble up fashion.

In the summers she raised a garden, canned, worked the fields, put up hay, picked corn, had babies (well she had us in the summer, fall winter, and spring really)

Remember, she was still a child herself through much of this; she raised herself while raising us, and she lived, she persevered…

Flashing to another memories, this one I own.  Sitting outside of a church under a shady tree, our bible school teacher is telling us about Jesus, showing us a picture of him, tiny, standing atop a green leaf, explaining that he is everywhere, even in a blade of grass.

I have had this view of God and Heaven since that time, everywhere all at once, in us, outside of us.

And that is the vision I have of our Mother, everywhere, inside of us, our hearts, and outside of us as well, a bigger view: Mother as part of Heaven, as part of the universe, on a greater adventure than even her life here, Mother now with Linda, her sisters and brother, her Mother, her soul spirit, all together,

Mom is planning her garden now, carnations, lilies, gladioli, and tomatoes.  I am pretty sure a fluffy white kitten has found her way to that garden spot, and sits on Mom’s lap, while she herself sits under a tree, in a comfortable wooden rocker, at her ease, in her glory.  Still living, still persevering.

Saddness

The world lost yet another talented spirit at the age of 27.  Amy Winehouse found dead in her apartment from unknown causes.  I will miss her amazing talent and mourn her loss!  Rest in the peace you deserve Amy!

My Grandma Schumacher

In the summers I stayed at my Grandma’s and Grampa’s home  (my father’s parents) for a week with my female cousins.  Honestly, for the most part I hated it, except for a few things.  I was homesick, and more than likely a little snot, and Grandma responded in kind with impatience.  My hair snarled and she cranked at my tears when she combed it.  Did not know my cousins well, never did get to know them.

Here is what I did like…

She had a wonderful wrap around screened in porch on her house and a spiked wrought iron fence around her yard.

My grandpa’s lap

the lonely yet exotic sound of the trains going past at night, while I sat by the window.

My dreams of flying high in the air, and looking at the world below.

And one time, one time only, Grandma unbending, sitting in her rocker, singing.

My best memories are the ones I keep.

It’s a Beautiful World

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My My My

 

Cheri is cherishable

I cherish you my sister Cheri, although I never let you know.

You are the woman who helped to raise me, you moved through life, guiding me, tending to my needs, loving me, with little or no feedback or appreciation given.

When I was a little girl, I believed you  the most beautiful and elegant and successful woman in creation.  I still do, although, I think, being you that you would scoff at such an assessment.

You left home when I was still so young, 17 years to my seven, married to Clyde, and bore him two sons, who in turn presented you with grandchildren of your own.  Clyde was, in my small opinion, a piece of work.  He treated you poorly, not at all up to the standards you deserved.  And I consider you successful, simply because you persevered, and Cheri, you never say a bad word about him.  Myself, I have not that type of forbearance. 

And you married John, who helped you raise you boys, who again, you say nothing but good about…when did you learn to be so very forgiving and kind?

You lived through poverty, money, moving, break ups, happiness, sadness, and always…even when you were pretty much all alone out in Colorado, you survived.  Quietly, struggling, living on your own, taking care of you own wonderful self.

You gave up your life there to return home to help our sister Linda while she was passing from cancer.  You work hard, without stop at jobs that would give a weaker woman pause.  And you did those jobs well and faithfully.

You are funny, kind, and have many strong opinions.  I admire that about you.  You  cut through nonsense, and get right to the point of the conversation.

You love animals, and care for your dog with joy, he in turn is devoted to you.  You have our mother’s love of plants, and I remember  gladioli you would buy from the farmers market to place in your home.

Your boys, raised by you, are amazing.  They are both successful and determined men.  They have themselves created loving families that they care for.  They were raised  patriotic, intense and talented.  Congratulations.

As with all of my siblings, I see you seldom, not as much as I could.  But know this, I love you.

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Tilly Evan Jones

“I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable and beautiful and afraid of nothing as though I had wings.” ~Mary Oliver

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Lost Creek

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