Archive for October, 2013

Sunday morning!

Sunday, October 20th, 2013

I’ll always remember a song called Sunday mornin’ comin’ down… Originally by Johnny Cash and then picked up by Kris Kristofferson (maybe written by Kris???) anyhow… Sunday has always been special for so many ways. It’s a day when you wake up from Saturday night and realize God is waiting…. and so you slouch or drag off to church and there find? a singing priest? yes at Donna’s church in LaGrange, Father Patrick (grandfather from the shores of Ireland)…Singing from Fiddler on the Roof, “If I were a rich man”… it’s tithing Sunday (the final in a three week request for time, talent and treasure.) Fortunately Donna’s church here in Lagrange has no building debt as many churches do, and the roof was replaced courtesy of the insurance company for hail damage… of course, as Father was quick to remind the parishioners, we paid the insurance premiums.) So I sat there, 11am Sunday and drank in the smell of candles and listened to the too slow organ and the somewhat cranky guitar and thanked God for giving us Sunday morning. Then I had to stop and pick up a chicken. Was your Sunday one that you expected a roasted chicken? I seem to remember that ours was. Always a roasted chicken for Sunday dinner. I’m making a boiled chicken soup. I still smell of cut up vegetables (the scraps of carrot and celery went to the bunny who resides in the front yard…. escaped from some neighbor’s pen? we feed the bunny). Meatloaf was reserved for Tuesday or Wednesday. And Football … my dears, Sunday afternoon this time of year is reserved for football. I was naughty this morning and greeted one of the ushers with “Ah! your’re wearing an Auburn sweatshirt? do you want to go there? yes! He answered, I advised him I think Auburn is a fine school, but “I’m a Hurricane,” I said flashing him the “U”… As I said, naughty. So, with a chicken in the pot (I’m making chicken soup as Mom might enjoy that… with lots of vegetables.) And I’m off to watch Sunday afternoon football with Tom Brady and his pals and other teams too. God bless you.

sarah, donna, susie…

Friday, October 18th, 2013

Remember when a relative visited and got confused over who’s who; or your Mom got angry at you and when she called you were “sarah, donna, susie”… And the guilty party tried to hide behind the other sisters and give Mom the old, “Not me… she did it” in hopes Mom will make a mistake and get the wrong wrong-doer. Well it’s happening here. I’ve been “Donna-Susie” since I arrived, but this morning, Donna is Sarah. Mom wants something she says, “Donna-Susie” (that’s me) or “Sarah” (that’s Donna). Donna and I laugh and just say “yes Mom!” So I’ve now started calling Donna Sarah too. I’m not sure Mom has to call me anything, and I always answer, “I’m here, Mom” and I’m pretty certain that I’m Susie. I once read a story by a New York Madison Avenue business woman who took a leave to take care of her elderly Mom and she said that she was able to sleep next to her Mom’s bed, and care for her, and within a week she was shuffling all around the nursing home in pajamas, robe, and slippers. Mom has not been sleeping at all between midnight and 6am so I’ve been grabbing 3 hours of sleep say between 6am and 9am then I wake up. Mom and I are getting a bit zombie-like from lack of sleep, but I am able to shake off the brain fluff and function. When I wake up I quickly shower and put on clothes, underwear, shorts, tee shirt, socks, slippers before 11:30 when I turn on Mother Angelica’s Rosary and start Mom’s breakfast. By noon, Mom is in her chair eating breakfast and we are watching the Mass on TV. I have my notebook open with pen in hand to catch a bit of wisdom from the homily about the Saint of the day or a point about the Gospel, like when Jesus commissioned the 72 and he wanted no one to carry purse, things, or anything, and the point is that Jesus wants us to know that it is not by our good looks, the clothes we wear, the things and money we have, or what we do that gets the word out. It is the Word itself that moves people. The things we carry are just distractions. Leave everything. Keep focus on the gospel. So today (Friday) after a full night’s sleep (praise God) interrupted only several times by Mom’s need to go to the toilet, (we pause as we walk to the toilet a lot to remember what we are doing in the middle of the night, to catch breath, and sometimes to put her hand on her chest and just stand thee) (”yawn,” said Susie) anyhow… on this day, I discovered I was watching Mass still in my night shirt and bear feet. I can’t find my slippers let alone socks. I need a shower and it’s 12:30 in the afternoon! The cat sleeps up against my thigh, Father Anthony Mary prays on the TV, Mom is eating oatmeal with cooked apple that I made for her, and as best as we can do it, all is well. God bless you

sleeping well thank you… now how about Susie???

Friday, October 11th, 2013

Mom sleeps very well … during the day. For instance today she woke up starving for breakfast and wanted “an egg, potatoes, 2 pieces of toast… and make sure it’s hot.” “Yes Ma’mmm,” I said, and so I delivered. Within an hour she had an amazing belly ache that lasted all day and between her alternately groaning and sleeping… we had an interesting day. I have asked Mom not to groan as it makes me worry, and in the past I have tried to enforce a “no groaning ordinance” with Chuck and me… it can become a habit. I have encouraged my sister and her husband to go out and “play” while I’m here… yesterday they went sailing and had a good wind, and today was shopping in Columbus Ga (about 1 hour south with … “oh my gosh!” malls.) LaGrange is a sleepy college town with a Belks and a JC Penney. That’s it. So anyhow… I finally woke mom up for dinner and she ate but has another tummy ache. I’m praying she will sleep tonight as she did not do a great job last night. Nor do I sleep well as Mom is up and down all night… “wandering” and I’m like half awake listening and watching for when she gets up to take a walk… My sister has to be exhausted, but that’s what we do while we protect, defend, and care for the very old and the very young. Mom and I listen to EWTN television and pray a lot and I have been reading all day. So… SALPF (Say a little prayer for) a good night’s sleep! God bless you!

Full Circle

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

On June 26 I flew into Atlanta and Lee, Donna, their grandkids Abby and Nathan, and my Mom picked me up at the Atlanta airport and brought me “home” to their home in LaGrange.  Chuck picked me up July 25 and the “trip” began.  It’s all in the blog and believe me, we’re going to have to go back and read it again and look at all the photos to really believe it.  This morning we had planned to help Mark and Karla one more day by taking Mark to the doctor, but the very busy doc had to cancel the appointment… so we packed and left a very sad golden retriever herein previously called “dog.”  Her real name is Jessie and I looked into her very sad eyes and told her I loved her and “we’ll see you again” and we left.  At 6pm we arrived in La Grange at “our” best Western hotel where we get pancakes for breakfast at the I Hop… then tomorrow morning Chuck will drop me off at Donna’s about 9am so I can go with them to visit with Mom’s heart doctor down in Columbus.  And my trip with Mom and family will begin.  Chuck will head south to Tampa and then hunting, etc etc.  Life goes on and we thank God for taking care of us and bringing us safely to the end of this great circle… where we will begin again tomorrow!!!   God bless you. Susie

Orange, yellow and red and a deer

Monday, October 7th, 2013

Monday morning after a heavy rain (the remnants of storm Karen), we are still in Boone. Jessie (the dog) and I are in the office which has sliding glass doors to the porch. We can look out at trees turning yellow and red, and Jessie started to do a low growl…. There was a deer looking in the window!  She saw Jessie and maybe saw me get up to get Chuck… she ran off and her fawn followed after her. Jessie was thanked for guarding the house..  Karla teaches every day so we will be taking Mark to a “follow up” doctor’s appointment in Boone on Tuesday and then packing the van to go “home.”  I’ll be dropped in LaGrange where I’ll visit with my Mom and Chuck will be heading home to Miami (with a stop to visit Peter Skipp who is trying to sell the Tampa home). Chuck will unload and then load the van with hunting gear and head north again.  I’ll visit my Mom and family and Lee might have to have surgery to repair a mitral valve.  Life goes on, and sometimes we have to work at Peace!  I’ll pray that I bring Peace to my sister’s home. Meanwhile, we had some wonderful sunny days with Mark’s daughter Sarah visiting and lunches at cafes where we can bring “dog Jessie” culminating in a visit to Valle Crusis park yesterday where Mark and I sat side by side and painted… Well, Mark drew and I painted.  Karla and Mark planted an anniversary tree that was dug up by beavers and carried away… Trees were replanted twice.  This little tree is now strong and will be turning yellow in a week or two.  Sometimes life is like that little tree isn’t it?!  So my darlings… don’t let the beavers get you down, and if they do and they crunch up your bones and carry you off to make a dam… don’t worry, your memory or even another tree will be planted!  May our memories be good ones, and may others’ memories of us be brilliant!  God bless you.

Saints and Guardian Angels

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

I am blessed to be able to go to church for daily Mass almost daily…  Monday was the feast day of St Therese “The Little Flower.”  She was a peaceful, gentle woman who loved Jesus. She humbled herself to be very small so she would fit securely into Jesus’ heart. She believed Jesus would take her into his heart.  (blessed are the poor in spirit… the small… for they are children of God).  I ask St Therese to hold on to my sister Annette whom I firmly believe our Lord took into heaven when she died (she was 7, Sarah 12, Donna was 5 and I was 3). Is the little Annette a saint? I don’t know, but she is a tiny child of God, and she is with us in the Christ who is in our hearts. Today we celebrate the Feast of the Holy Guardian Angels.  We read from Exodus where God told the wandering Israel that he would send an angel to guide them and protect them… “Just listen to him and follow him.” I still try to listen to my guardian angel… Sometimes we say “My conscience spoke…” Why can’t that be God’s angel who is sent to protect us?  Yesterday I painted sunsets and sail boats… Karla commented, “You miss the Keys, don’t you?” Here at Mass the dog attends and sits watching the priest with a lot of love…. Yes I miss St Peters church where we might have a dog or 2 at Mass…  But here in the mountains we are at Peace and Chuck lights fires every night.  In fact I think I hear the crackle of fire right now. Why not?  Have a wonderful autumn! God bless you.