Lazy Rainy Day

November 27th, 2011

I met James, Susan, and Mom at Sacred Heart Church. I was lector for the first Sunday of Advent. We came back, ate lunch, and worked on going through piles of papers on Mombo’s desk. I stopped by Jay’s in the a.m. to have him check the tire from yesterday. No major damage but he wants me to get studs and lug nuts replaced. Another Saturday morning shot, I guess. Tonight–maybe a movie that Mom has recorded. The rain continues. Back to school tomorrow.

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Log Day becomes Grog Day

November 26th, 2011

Up at 8 to go to Greystone to help cut wood for their Log Day. Ended up on Blue Bank Road loading logs into Joe-Ben after they were cut by James, Mingus, and Drew. Unloaded that truckload, and then helped Mombo get ready so that she could visit at Greystone and “inspect.” She enjoyed talking to Henry, James and Susan’s German friend from THE PLANET. We ate lentil soup at noon. Ian and Robin arrived and took over for me so that I could get Mombo back to the Hall.

I then headed off to Kelley Ridge to meet Caitlan and Kyle. Ian and Robin were going to join us later to decorate the tree. On the way Joe-Ben started making a funny sound. I pulled over and checked my tires and underneath the truck. I thought maybe the load I had carried had caused some damage. I could not see anything wrong. I limped along, trying to make it to Kelley Ridge where Caitlan and Kyle were waiting. In front of Darryl Bolton’s house, my tire fell off and rolled down the road. I brought the truck to a scrapingly loud halt, ran down the road and retrieved my tire out of the ditch, hoisted it into the back of the truck, and went up to Darryl’s house. His daughter Patricia was home, and she called him from the barn. Caitlan and Kyle came, and shortly after, Ian and Robin arrived from the other direction. In the time it took me to get ahold of my roadside assistance people, they had jacked the truck up, taken lug nuts off the other tires, and put the runaway tire back on. Thank God for kids and neighbors. The tree trimming turned into a trip into town for lug nuts from Ace Hardware and wings and beers at Madison Gardens.

I think I was kind of in shock for the rest of the night–hence my grogginess and the beers (grog, as Wayne called it) gave birth to the title. Thank you, Lord Michael the Archangel! (And Jayne, my guardian angel, too).

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Day After: Pie Day

November 26th, 2011

I don’t like the term “Black Friday.” Too ominous. Cooked some more: baked turnips, pumpkin butter, gooseberry pie, pecan pie. Mom and I worked on cleaning out her desk. Made dvd of VIETNAM HD for James. I’ll never be able to watch it. Jerome, Janet, and Juliana came to hike on their land. Greystone crew came down after their council meeting to watch dvds made by Rita and eat Pie. Friday is Pie-day. Mombo had another good day. Gratitude=my attitude. Missing my kids, especially my boys.

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Thanksgiving

November 25th, 2011

Well, maybe it was 6:30. Potatoes peeled. Card table and chairs out of the closet and table clothes on. I brined the turkeys. Pretty good. Maybe a little salty. Caitlan made roasted broccoli and cauliflower, butternut squash ice cream pie with gingersnap crust and her home-cooked pumpkin pie. Also a spicy pumpkin buttered rum drink that was yum. Rachel arrived early to help. Thank goodness–I couldn’t get the cleaning done yesterday because the satellite tv man came to hook up Mombo’s new tv in her bedroom. Jerusha, Alyx, and Kyle (Dave) set the table, and Bub arrived early to carve the turkey. 24 people around one table. Grace said by Kyle (Miller) and Rachel. Weather was beautiful. People hung around just to talk. Some men went to the shooting range. John and Dana called from California. They are having a wonderful time with Dana’s brother and family. Mom had a very good day. I am thankful.

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Time to Blog Again

November 24th, 2011

I need to do this because I am my mother’s daughter. What if I forget everything? I’ll try harder to write a bit every day. Just a bit. Who’s it for? For my kids. And for me when I can’t remember any more.

Today is the day before Thanksgiving. I left Kelley Ridge around noon after having met with the contractor and tub man about the downstairs bathroom. I will have a clawfoot tub that is red and white from 1916. Awesome.

Made in to the Valley in time to make dressing with Mombo and stuff two turkeys. Will potato in the morning at six when I put the turkeys in the oven. Caitlan and Kyle arrived and we cooked together. Loved it. Three generations cooking in the Hall.

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Bruce

January 21st, 2011

Bruce

I loved Bruce.
He loved me.
He even proposed to me once. . . .
In his younger days.
But I have felt
And I daresay
I’m not the only one
Who has felt
Some regret
Some guilt
Some disappointment
In myself
At the way I spent time. . .
Or did not spend time. . .
With him.
And I carried this
Like a stone
In here
In my heart.

There is one thing I know
For sure.
Bruce is in a place
Or state of being
In which
He looks on us
With compassion
And love. . .
In which
He is at peace.
I know this as surely
As I am here
Because he let me know
And he wants me
To tell us all
That we should
Take that stone,
Or lead weight,
Or geode,
Or whatever it might be,
And tie
A stout piece of twine
Around it
And then tie
The other end
Of that piece of twine
To a helium-filled balloon,
Or to the leg of a red-tailed hawk,
Or to a kite in Jacobson Park,
Or to a rocket shooting off this planet,
And let it go.
Let it go.
So that in its place
There is compassion
And peace
And love.
So that in its place
There is Bruce.

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Portland, P.I., Day Four

October 24th, 2010

Today was winery day. First we had a wonderful lunch at a Bistro on the way there. It ws the first time I had clam chowder with the clams in shell. Delicious! Brendan was our chauffeur, and Kara and I had wine tastings at three of the many wineries near Portland–Erath, Sokol-Blosser, and Argyle. It was an absolutely beautiful day. We sat outside gazing over the hills of vineyards. At one winery we had Oregorgonzola and crackers. I couldn’t take any wine back with me on the place, but I would have if I had had the room. I really enjoyed it. I did buy a bottle for BCA&KN. I am enjoying reading one of the books I bought at Powell’s. It is by the girl who has a blog called Orangette, and it is all about food (with recipes) but also about family,loss, renewal. It is fun to read, and I want to try the recipes.

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Portland, P.I., Day Three

October 24th, 2010

Today is Monday. Kara had to go to work, so Brendan and I spent the day together. First we ate VooDoo Doughnuts for breakfast. Then we went into the city and walked around. We ended up at for lunch at Sushi Sakara. It was an automated sushi bar with a conveyor belt. As the sushi traveled by, you could take them off the conveyor belt. I ate a LOT! The calamari was really good. He made a special batch for us. Then we drove up a little mountain to the Japanese Gardens. It was so very beautiful and serene. I was so happy walking with my wonderful son through the lush green gardens, taking pictures and just being. I bought myself some hummingbird earrings and a little jade turtle for Brendan to keep at his desk. We also went to Pittock Mansion, a beautiful home which has been restored by the city. I especially like the stove and the showers. The rose gardens were pretty, and you could see the whole city from the grounds. We had a beautiful day to walk around. I think the rain is behind us. Brendan cooked for me tonight. We walked to the grocery store, and he cooked some delicious mashed potatoes and broccoli with cheese. Yummy. I have a good cook son.

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Portland, P.I., Day Two

October 24th, 2010

Sunday. We had been to church last evening, so this morning we got up and went to the Farmers’ Market. We bought apples and frozen meat. We even got yak summer sausage. Then BCA&KN introduced me to tamales for breakfast and now I am hooked. They served us right out of their steaming pans. We walked back to the condo and ate them with extra sour cream. YUM! I want them every Sunday! We went into Portland on the mass transit for the afternoon. Brendan and Kara both showed me their work buildings. We walked around the Saturday Market that is open on Sunday, and I bought a scarf. I got to go to Stumptown for coffee. Again, I am hooked. I have never tasted coffee so smooth and non-acidic. And the cream made such a pretty design on top. Brendan had hot chocolate. I was also introduced to Powell’s, the biggest bookstore ever. I got lost, but I finally found my way out, and even though I promised myself not to buy books, I did. I made BCA&KN promise to bring back whatever I could not fit into my duffle when they come in December. We tried to go to VooDoo Doughnuts, but the line was too long, so no treats. In the evening, we went to the Noble Rot restaurant that looks out over the city of Portland to meet Kara’s parents, Denise and Mike, and sister, Laura, for dinner. It was a wonderful meal with wonderful people, and I was so happy to meet them. My drink before dinner was called Park Service, and it was made with marionberries. Kind of sour, but good. After dinner, before we took Laura home, we did pick up VooDoo doughnuts for breakfast. YAY!

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Portland, P. I., Day One

October 9th, 2010

I flew away before dawn and was able to see the sun rise over the wing of an American Airlines jet. Breathtaking. Bless Caitlan for getting me to the airport at that early hour.
Note to self: When traveling alone, always check a bag.
Note to self 2: When not checking a bag, make sure your carry-on has wheels.
Landed in Dallas for a quick plane change and then on to Portland to see Brendan and Kara.
Snapshot #1: Elderly gentleman meeting someone for the first time at the boarding gate and saying, “How do you do? So pleased to meet you.” No one says “How do you do?” any more.
Note to self: Vow to say “How do you do?” more.
Snapshot #2: Middle age-ish couple standing in line at boarding gate doing USA TODAY crossword puzzle together while waiting.
I sat with a lady from Klamath Falls on the first flight. She was flying into Reno and driving. I know I’ve heard of Klamath Falls, but I don’t know where. According to her, it is remote. I can relate. In the big scheme of things. Well, at least in the USA scheme of things.
On the second flight I sat with a young man who has followed his girlfriend to Portland from California. A musician. He said he’s learning to like Portland very much.
Brendan and Kara met me at the point where I exited security. I don’t know why, but they didn’t check my little plastic bag of 3-oz. bottles in Louisville. They brought me to their very cute apartment (condo). I got a tour of downtown, especially Ladd’s Addition which had random island of roses that make roundabouts. We went to Mass there at St. Phillip Neri Church, but we were a little late because the church we thought we were going to turned out to be a Maronite rite church that did not have a Saturday night Mass. We ate at food carts (it is purported that there are over 400 in Portland). I had a chicken potpie whiffie (fried pie). I also shared Brendan’s pear/walnut/gorgonzola crepe and Kara’s poutine (gravy) covered fries with cheese curds. They had tickets to the taping of a radio broadcast LIVE WIRE at the historic Aladdin theatre. It was so fun. David Rakoff and Paul Provenza were guests. What a thrill since I have known them only as voices on the radio! Also some interesting female musician guests, an on-the-spot poet, and a haiku contest that none of us won. Exhausted, but very happy, I fell asleep on their couch.

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