Gravy Goes With Everything

My earliest memory of Pauline was of her standing on top of a chair, screaming as a mouse ran across the floor. This would not have been the usual, stoic, keep-it-together mom that was obvious to me later in life. I do not remember other episodes of this woman being hysterical, losing it to furry critters or when life was a bit topsy-turvey. I seldom saw my mother sweat, but perhaps growing up the youngest girl in a family ofRead more

On Being Gracious

Many years ago, a friend and I were talking about how hard it was for us to accept compliments from others – saying things like, “Oh, you didn’t have to!” or “This old rag?” or “I’m really not that awesome” in response to kindness. This past Sunday, our church’s pastor talked about how it can be difficult for us to be gracious in receiving and that “we should never deny someone the opportunity to be a blessing” with their wordsRead more

She’s Ninety Freakin’ Nine!

That’s what Natasha exclaimed on Saturday morning. We were talking about mom. Monday, August 6th, is Pauline’s birthday. She will be 99 years old. Ninety Freakin’ Nine. Although mom’s health might be considered “poor,” the fact that she is still on the planet is amazing to me. My cute, little energizer bunny has outlived her husband, all of her siblings, all of her friends, and most people who were born in the year 1919. She has lived to this dayRead more

SoCS: This Door

This door I walk through every week It is her petite figure I seek Sleeping in a brown broda chair Wrinkly forehead under gray hair I say, “Hello, mom, how are you?” She says, “Who are you?” I tell her my name is Mary but she seems a bit wary It goes back and forth most days This unknowing haze Am I sister or daughter? Is it March or October? This door leads to Pauline The Energizer Bunny machine StillRead more

Parental Admiration

Weekly Photo Challenge: Show us someone or something you admire (and tell us about them, too)! Hands down, I admire my parents the most. Evan and Pauline. They met and and began dating while both were working at the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company (A&P grocery store) in the early 1950’s. Evan was a manager and Pauline a bookkeeper. When my father was transferred to a store in the small burg of Waupaca, he decided that my mother should followRead more

Pauline’s Dream Revised

Back in August, 2014, I wrote a poem called Pauline’s Dream. You can read it HERE. For the Day 5 poetry challenge of Fog/Elegy/Metaphor, I chose to rewrite this poem and the words, but tell the same story. For those of you who are not regular readers, my mom is 95 and suffers from the effects of dementia. When Ben suggested fog as a mental state, this was a natural response. This is the place of my dreams, but itRead more

A Memory With Mom: Unwanted

Author Andra Watkins has released her latest book, Not Without My Father: One Woman’s 444-mile Walk of the Natchez Trace, and is asking her fans, friends and followers to “make a memory.” You can read reviews of Andra’s book here and you can find details on how to make your own memory on her website, AndraWatkins.com. In a recent reply to a comment I posted on her site, Andra tells me that she wants to make a memory by celebrating mom’s daily enjoymentRead more

Pauline’s Dream

In my dreams, I envision a place. This is the place of my dreams, but it is not I do not want to be here, in the countryside Green pastures are of no use to me My dreams they are of family Wanting to be with family Walking barefoot through the garden Watching the men spread asphalt in the alley The smell of wine coming from the basement The smell of a German mother’s cooking emanating from the kitchen MyRead more