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Semper Fi

I can still feel my soggy sandals from walking through the wet grass at many cemeteries. The honor and privilege have been mine/ours to visit hallowed grounds, St. Avold, Arlington National, The Military Cemetery at Luxemburg, Vimy Ridge, and The Beaches at Normandy, sadly the list is longer. Every year, I have walked behind my dress uniform clad husband to pay our respects. I have tried to stay in the moment. Steeling myself and giving a moment of thanks instead of dissolving into tears upon seeing the young ages engraved on the new stones. Those pieces of granite that reveal the same first names as our boys, give a catch in my throat and heart.

Today, instead of buying a mattress on sale or buying sneakers at some super special Memorial Day sale, we visited Tahoma National Cemetery. The weather and the importance of the moment resulted in my cold hands and feet. The dark, gray and cloudy sky filled with rain was apropos. Flags graced each of the stones. Huge flags that lined the drive waved in the slight wind. There were flowers, oh the flowers. Some very traditional and formal bouquets, some hastily bought at a grocery store along the way, some just a single bloom laid at the base of the marker. Many red, white and blue, however, some were brilliant, intense colors and hues, color that brought a feeling of love and adoration to the day.

In the wet grass, a lone unopened bottle of American beer was leaning askew against a very new head stone. Yes, the flag on the wooden dowel was placed perfectly straight in the center front of the marker. The beverage was in no way formal. It was completely unexpected. The contrast was striking.

Last year we saw a big tough guy, get out of his truck, prop open his well used webbed folding lawn chair directly in front of a marker, push his old baseball cap back farther on his head, sit down heavily and light a cigar.

The distance between good manners, proper etiquette, prim and proper attire
and Semper Fi (yes, all branches) is closer than most would like to admit.

Ps. Oh, how I love a man in uniform, especially Mr. Right.

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presents for pretty girls

Yesterday, on his lunch hour, Mr. Right bought the lastest CD from “The Canadian Tenors”.

He brought it home to surprise me. First I adore/love and always tickled pink that Mr. Right is my guy.

Oh, I love the sound of the Canadian Tenors! I love their music. I love looking at the “album” cover picture.

Everything about receiving an unexpected surprise totally makes me giddy.

ps. sooooooooo glad I had some home made cookies to offer in exchange.

just a gentle reminder that life is good.

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sables

Feeling a bit saucy today…………..I added real vanilla bean to my Sables cookies.

They are chilling as I type………………………..the moment the boyfriend comes home from work, he will pass out kisses to me and Sweet Liberty. All while eyeing the clear glass cookie jar full of fresh baked goodness.

Hey, maybe there would be a lot happier marriages if everyone baked more cookies?

Just saying

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wild curly hair & libraries

She caught my eye because she has all this fabulous red, curly, wild, untamable great hair. No, not Sweet Liberty our Golden Retriever, I’m thinking about my librarian at my favorite branch. Yup, she is all mine, always working, always ready to help me. Well, I guess she helps other people when I am not there. I complimented her on her locks. She asked if mine was naturally curly as well. I smiled. In a weird way, it was nice not to be judged, it was sweet just to fit in. Even though there were only two of us in the club, it was a curly girl’s only club. Side note: a few years back the morning I turned 40, I stopped blow drying and then curling my hair. I just washed it, scrunched it and let it dry, wild and curly. ………..Focus……..stay focused …I think today, “they” would say I was not good at paying attention and staying focused , maybe even take some type of medicine……back in the olden days they just said I never stopped moving and fidgeting. Young ladies do not fidget.
I love libraries. I love the smell and the feel and the sounds and the order and the cleanliness, the politeness and the architecture. I love that everyone seems to use good manners while visiting a library. I LOVE all the possibilities. I love having the boyfriend carry all my books to the car. He always weaves into the conversation “think you got enough this time?” love that
I loved when son number 2 was old enough to read the time on the microwave and would yell “its 10:10, we have to hurry!” Story time in Oklahoma started at 10:30 am. We never missed a Thursday. He would never go anywhere alone, except that little room with the glass door and sit with the other short people. It was 45 minutes of quiet magazine reading time for me. “Yahoo” (they say that in Oklahoma, I wanted to fit in). Heck, he was even in a television commercial to promote getting a library card, paid with a brand new book of course. He didn’t really understand what television was, however, for a shy kid, he figured out, you say what they want you to say and you get a free book. Okay, I can do that.
We kept the date the same, during those Home schooling years, Thursday was our library day. Each short person in our family was only allowed to check out 10 books at a time. My thinking here was that I could maybe manage to keep track of 20 books a week, plus the books that mom and dad checked out…..strange as it sounds, we have paid (which I still see has a GREAT bargain) more library fines since the boys went off to college than at any time put together while they were living with us! We only paid for one “lost” book over all those years. After yet another military move years later, we found said book.
Christy, which is my all time favorite curly, red haired librarian, has helped me find books or articles that I am researching. She has mentioned the wild outdoor weather we were having instead of my wild hair that day. Last summer before family came to visit, she has helped me lug 25 huge, and I mean heavy and huge coffee table books I ordered all about the Pacific Northwest, out to my car. She knows my favorite authors and favorite genres.
Our little library now has fancy schmancy computers where you check out your own books. Yes, even I order books on line and go pick them up instead of just meandering isle after isle to see if something catches my eye. More folks are checking out videos than books. You no longer even have to stamp the due date on each book. Each time I stop in, more and more people are on the computers then are browsing for books. I am sad and scared. One, I don’t embrace change. Two, libraries are one of life’s “good things”. Why does public funding seem to get smaller and smaller each go round? Less funds, means less librarians & libraries.
Last stop we made into the library, Christy commented on my great new wild sparkle sneakers. I said they were to celebrate. We were going to be grandparents in August. I thought “hip” grandmas wore things like that. She said she has FIVE grandbabies and LOVES every single moment and she too wants some “hip” grandma shoes! Hallelujah! Now, we not only have in common great curly hair, the love of books, now we get to talk grandbabies and smile the entire time while doing so. ………life is good, just in case you forgot.

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open house

Mr. Right and I attended the Griot’s Garage open house. It was a privilege and pleasure. It was one of the nicest, well thought out, luxurious office/garage/cafe/store that we have ever been to.

We felt extremely lucky to have been included. With such nice cars (in the museum setting inside the building) and everything brand new, you just “knew” you were experiencing something over the top special. So much thought was evident in every single detail. From the bathroom doors and the mailboxes outside each office, to the pavement outdoors & the opulent employee café, no detail was overlooked .

It was so great to get to see our son’s new office. It was sort of like and upscale open house at school night. Everyone’s desks were cleaned up and organized. Everyone brought their parents/grandparents. Every single person that I over heard talking was so proud of the new “digs”. Every single employee used impeccable good manners and respect. While inside his new office we gave him a color coordinated new candy jar. His wife gave him a double frame of the new baby to be and one picture of her. It was a really quiet, unique family moment. It was really good.

It was breathtaking and amazing.

That old saying, “money can’t buy class”…………well if the person has class to begin with then weaves that together with quite a bit of money………the end result is just beautiful.

http://www.inmygarage.com/?p=2487

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and I thought blue plaid ribbon was wild

I love tennis. I have loved it since I was about 11 or 12.
I loved to play. My favorite dates were almost always a tennis match.
It was a “deal maker” when I found out that husband to be played tennis.
I taught both boys, before they took “real” lessons.
I remember the first time I watched it on television on clay courts.
As an adult I listened with total interest about the trip our friends went on
to watch at Wimbledon. It is still thrilling for me to watch a match here and
there. I love seeing little kids learn the game. Yup, it is a game folks.

My mother (well you are all familiar with my type of mother), would not let me play unless I wore
white shorts and a white top with sleeves or a white dress with matching white panty covers. They were really just small shorts. I had to wear the proper attire even just to ride my bike to some courts to just play for fun or practice. She played the blackmail card, you either wear the proper clothes or you don’t play. It was an easy choice for me.

I had what I liked to call my lucky tennis shorts. Actually, they just had great big pockets to tuck in an extra ball or two. LOVED those shorts. Heck, once I learned to sew I even sewed my own outfits.
Yup, I was a rebel and I sewed little pieces of pink ribbon on one dress hem. Oh and yes, I even was a wild & crazy girl and sewed white lace on the white under garment that covered my panties (white of course). Once I even went insane and sewed on a blue (that is the color boys wore) plaid ribbon on one of my outfits.

Where am I going with this you ask? Two words; Venus Williams. Yikes. First, I can only imagine what my mother would say. Now that makes me laugh, belly laugh. We all know my mother is about 5’1″ tall and leans towards the Nancy Reagan look and attitude. So to imagine her going toe to toe with a 6’1″ athletic gal such as Venus is just silly. Anyhoo……

Like I said, I love tennis. I love the tradition that surrounds the game.

I am pretty sure you can guess how I feel about Venus Williams’ outfit that she wore to the French Open. Personally, I would rather focus on the game. Secretly, on the other hand, maybe if I looked like her and played like her….maybe just maybe……….