Thursday, July 2, 2009

It's been two years

Just finished another very long day at the newspaper.
I love it, though. There is so much to write about, so many people to get to know and a lot of history to learn. It's good for me to be busy this time of year.
I am working the Fourth of July weekend ...
I can't believe it's JULY already.
The anniversary of Jeff's death is July 5. I have felt my sadness for days. It rises to the top, like vomit.
I try to think of other things, focus on my job, my relationship with Max (a very sweet and loving man), visiting my children and grandchild, etc. But without warning a miasma breezes over me, a jolt of shock pushes my adrenaline trigger, a dose of recall, I practically gag on it ... I'm right back at Jeff's bedside holding his hands, stroking his cheek, kissing his face and hands as he breathed unevenly for hours. The moment he left me. The second he died.
I still cannot grasp that he has GONE away. Sometimes I feel like I was never with him at all. That the years of loving him were just dreams; a parallel existence. I can so easily recall his voice, his happy face, his "Hello, Love!", holding his hand; rubbing his back; his laugh; his dry wit; his scent; how he stood with his one foot pointed out when he shaved or buttoned a shirt or stirred a pot on the stove; how he sounded when he read to me at night and how it would lull me to sleep -- a secure, peaceful sleep.
I am thankful for all of that. I am grateful for the way he changed my life. He made me strong and confident. He loved me so well, I can love again ... only I know I won't love like I did when Jeff was here with me.
I am eager to go home to Pennsylvania. I want to feel him around me. Maybe I can figure out a way to touch him just one more time.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Summer is here ...

So far, it's been a rainy Spring in Eatonton, Georgia.
Max and I dug a hole in the backyard for a post for a bird feeder; we dug down about 12 inches, maybe more, and the ground was wet all the way down. I know we were in a scary drought just one year ago, but I would like the sun to come out and stay out for a while now.
I love to work in my yard ... but there is so much to do, I don't always know where to start. Plus, there are things to do inside the house.
But I love the early morning ... to hear the birds singing; the courthouse clock striking the hour; the church carillon playing hymns ... so peaceful for me. I love living in town..I'm a city girl at heart. I dream of living in the country where I can hear more birds and see a lot of stars at night ... and maybe I would do just fine with that. But the buzz of small town life is unique ... a treasure really as it's so American.
Today is the Putnam County Dairy Festival...and thousands of people will be in town...with most of the activity taking place just two blocks from our house, which is at the corner of Walnut and Washington.
The end of the parade will pass right by our house this morning, and Max and I want to sit on chairs on the little side porch and watch it go by! I hope there is music .... Of course there will be the Dairy Festival Queen (I keep calling her the Dairy Queen, but then I think of ice cream sundaes). This is her day ... She was picked about a month ago, and today she rides the float in the parade. Ta. Da. I've been told by long-timers that this is the extent of her royal duties.
Of course, she'll go down in local history at the Queen of the 50th Putnam County Dairy Festival. Pretty cool ... something to tell her children and grandchildren.
When I lived in York, PA, our house was across the street from the fairgrounds ... lots of happy things and celebrations going on across the street all summer long. Fourth of July was the biggie...lots of fireworks, and picnics and company...I absolutely loved it. I miss it. Especially working with Jeff to prepare for it and celebrating it with him there. Such sweet and happy memories. I yearn to see Jeff again at times like this and my heart beats with an ache.
Today, however, my new husband Max and I will make some new memories of our own. Sitting on the porch, watching the Dairy Festival Parade go by.
God is so good ... and our lives really do go on in such unexpected ways when we trust and obey!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Easter Weekend and Barbie

I spent Easter weekend in Alabama with my daughter and her family. I had such a nice time! It was great to be together with Ann-Marie and her husband Brannon and their little girl Mary Ellen. My other daughter Molly came, too. We drove from Atlanta together. My hubby stayed home, still recuperating from back surgery.
I missed him, but it was so special to be with Mary Ellen when she went on her first Easter egg hunt; and then be up on Sunday morning when she found her basket. OOOOH, she said very liltingly and sweet. Then she tried to eat a bag of M&Ms...the actual bag. Didn't taste so good so she stopped and went on to the next item in her basket.
I bought her a Barbie doll. Of course. Barbie is my BFF and Mary Ellen needs to learn all the wonderful things about Barbie. I got my first Barbie when I was 7 years old, and the shiny vinyl suitcase in which I carried her and all of her outfits and plastic accessories. So cool. there any other girl toy that can span three generations? I think not. My pretty pony, strawberry shortcake, smurfs...they're gone...but Barbie is eternal.
Maybe she has Jesus in her heart.
That would be a cool Barbie...Christian Barbie. She could wear a cross necklace, a Jesus T-shirt and carry a Bible protected in a Bible case or a leather bound one with her name engraved in gold. Her pink plastic Corvette would have Jesus bumper stickers. She would come with a Christian rock CD and when the music played she would raise her hands in the air toward Heaven. She wouldn't be available to play with on Sundays and Wednesday nights...and Skipper could go to AWANA. Ken wouldn't be around much because Barbie practices abstinence and wears a purity ring. They would only date in groups, so Midge and Poindexter would need to come along. Perfect.
I like this idea...
Think I should e-mail Matel ...
Many Blessings!
Happy Easter....Jesus Christ is risen from the dead. He's alive!

Friday, April 3, 2009

What's happened to my neck? And my faith?

"I Feel Bad About My Neck" is a funny book by Nora Ephron about aging. Not aging in the sense that one is already aged and continues to do so, but in the sense that one has become aware she has crossed the line in the sand and is truly growing old. Not older. Old.

In recent photographs of myself, first thing I notice is my neck. When did it get those lines in it? When did it start to look like my grandkids' stacking rings?

I have tried to de-wrinkle it, but to do that, I have to make a face like a lizard. Doesn't do much for the rest of my face, you know.

I have a puggy nose, thanks to my Irish ancestors. (We not only love to eat potatoes, but our facial features look like spuds.) Anyway, to make my nose look less upturned, or in truth so it doesn't look like you can drive a truck up my nostrils, I usually try to put my chin down in photos. Now when I do that, my nose continues to look less ... well, opened up ... but I produce a double-chin and my neck collapses in folds. I've tried having photos taken with me slightly below the camera so I am looking up. It helps, but it looks like I'm trying really hard, which I am.

Funny, when I talk to people face-to-face, I rarely think about what I look like. I just go on and on. My chin might double, my nostrils might flair, my nose might tip up, and my neck might fold. I don't think about it. I'm too busy talking, telling my story, my point of view, relating to a sister, or connecting with a stranger.

I've had photos taken while I was in a conversation. How candid I am when I speak; how candid are the photos. I look like I'm choking or having a seizure or rolling my eyes in disgust or saying "Duh. Doit ta doit ta doit" or asking the listener if there is something up my nose. I do not look like I'm worth listening to. I look like something is wrong.

What feels wrong is getting old. As a Christian, I should be happy about having one foot in the grave. It means I'll soon be in Heaven with Jesus. The apostle Paul writes a lot about approaching the end of his life and his longing to live in eternity with Jesus. He even had a look-see at Heaven during his earthly life. His life -- his ministry -- was coming to an end and he was ready to move on. (He was killed, by the way. He didn't die peacefully in his sleep, aided by lots of morphine.) I read what he writes and I want to share his aging eagerness.

But I want to look good in the process. How awful is that?

Monday, March 30, 2009


I have to make this quick...Jeopardy is on soon.
I love Jeopardy, although Alex Trebek makes me nervous.
Max says I should audition for the show, he thinks I know a lot. I think I know a lot, too, ... but that's a problem with me, it's not a virtue that would win me millions of dollars...then again, I haven't tried.
Anyway, watching at home, I shout out the answers .. or rather the questions... and that's another problem. I'd never remember to answer in the form of a question. If I did, I'd get the wrong W. I'd say Who instead of What. Who is Mount Everest. What is Leonard Bernstein. Then I'd freeze from humiliation.
And how do the contestants end up with those weird little stories they share during the first-round break? Rarely are they funny. I end up laughing just to be polite...and they can't even hear me! Besides, it's taped!
I really am an idiot in real life. That would be my vignette. Alex: Judy, we've had hundreds of very smart and wise people on this show. But it says here, Judy, that you are actually an idiot.
Judy: (Polite laugh) Yes, ahem. I am a complete dumkopff. See, I don't know even how to spell it. THAT's Who a moron I am!

OK ...

Have to go!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

New day, new Blog

Hello all y'all!
I've started a new blogspot because I didn't know how to change my old one,, under my new e-mail address.
My daughter, a dedicated blogger, asked why I stopped blogging; and she suggested I start a new one. Makes sense, I think, because things are new for me. Again.
I'm remarried to Max and my last name has changed.
I also have a new job. I am editor of The Eatonton Messenger, a 5,000-weekly, in Putnam County, Georgia. I start officially tomorrow, Monday, March 30. I have been in the office for the past few days, however. Getting the feel for things. Trying to get organized.
I'm a little scared, but it's a good scared. I'm scared enough to rely on the Lord to guide me. And that's always a good thing. Just when I think I know it all, and act like it ... BAM! ... something comes flying out of left field and smacks me along side my head.
Well, I'm going to keep this short for now. The weather is awful, Tstorms, lightning, etc. And my PC screen has jumped a few times. So I have to disconnect.
Thanks for "tuning in" and I will be back!

In the name of Jesus, who does so much more than we could possibly hope, dream or imagine!