Monday, February 28, 2011

My sister...and an update on Ethan~

My sister, Dawn who is two years older wrote an e-mail today stating that she was ready for another blog entry. She evidently likes my writing, which is a good thing, and of course I wanted to indulge her. What? Garsh Darn-it, here we are just on the precipice of mid-life and she is STILL telling me what to do! And the worst part is I STILL do what she says!

So here I am writing a blog entry because my sister said so…as a result it got me thinking about all the things I had to do as a youngster because ‘my sister said so’.

Oh boy, there were so many instances; you see she took it upon herself to be MY boss! She would probably claim she was being a ‘caretaker’ …same thing; just a euphemism, but being the youngest of five, EVERYONE seemed to be my boss! Further I felt I could never escape it or her…but don’t worry, she’d tell you the same thing herself so I’m not revealing any deep dark secret here.

I have committed to memory the occasion I was in third or fourth grade and I had ‘on purpose’ forgotten my school book since I hadn’t done my homework. Therefore while we were standing in the kitchen and the bus was blaring its horn she yelled at me to go get my math book with the incomplete work tucked inside. I emphatically said ‘NO!’ so she pushed me toward my curtailed job and I hit my forehead on the corner of the table and needed stitches…the good part? I didn’t have to go to school without my unfinished homework!

Another time we were amusing ourselves with our baby dolls on the back patio and I wanted to rock mine to sleep and being the baby sister, Dawnie’s child sized rocking chair was there for the taking. I sat down and started swaying and singing to my baby, and she told me to ‘Get Up!’ Well, my baby wasn’t quite asleep yet, so I stayed put and kept on serenading my young one. Well, I could tell in the tone of my sister’s voice she wasn’t going to say, ‘oh gosh then, I’ll just wait until you are done…’ No, that wasn’t in her so she demanded again with her hands on her hips and her brow furrowed as her lips pursed together puckered out, shouting, ‘GET UP!’ and I repeatedly told her I wanted to sing my baby to sleep.

To this day I have no idea what bravery crawled into me, but I remember picking up that rocking chair and dashing around the back yard as fast as my little legs could carry me rushing from her as she was shaking her fist at me. Unfortunately, I was running with the furniture and my baby doll so I was definitely at a disadvantage therefore I made a cut to the right and when I couldn’t escape her wrath, I put the chair down and bounded over it; or at least I attempted to leap over it and landed on my arm. Of course, I cried and blamed her because it was ALWAYS her fault (I’m no dummy!) and spent the next six months in a cast up to my shoulder. (Picture below to prove it!)

Seriously, a sliver of examples, BUT a true depiction of our growing up, I love my sister, and what’s more I admire her. She has an incredible heart of kindness and would give the shirt off her back for those less fortunate. She has adopted four children as a single parent and continues to give when she has nothing left to offer. I want to shake her at times because she sticks her neck out repeatedly and then gets hurt so deeply and I end up aching for her, although she keeps plugging away when I would have thrown in the towel a long time ago.

My sister is a teacher who is extremely smart in the area of life, knows what she likes and doesn’t like and says what is on her mind. She doesn’t let people get the best of her, well, most of the time and her unbelievable strength carries her through distressed times only to do it all over again. So yeah, I continue to be the little sister whose big sister still can tell her what to do, but whom else would I have to tell me what to do? Never mind, don’t answer that! ...the line starts here!

I love you, Dawnie!
I received a message from my sister and Ethan was sent home, although she says she doesn't know why because he's still a very sick little boy. However, he was without a fever for 12 hours; ummmm.  He has a Dr. appointment today and she said she wouldn't be surprised if he was put back into the hospital. Thank you all so much for your continual prayers.
You all mean the world to me!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Calling all Prayer Warriors...

My great nephew Ethan, three years young has been in the hospital since Wednesday with RSV--Respiratory Syncytial Virus.  He’s having a bumpy time of it and continues to spike fevers of 104 as well as difficulty with breathing.

Therefore, it is on this day that I give a shout out to all my prayer warriors to cast a few words to God for healing in addition to strength for his family.

“We mold one another’s dreams. We all hold each other’s fragile hopes in our hands. We all touch other’s hearts.” (Unknown)

…thanks for touching mine~

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sweet Dreams are made of this...

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Sweet dreams are made of this. Get out a pen and paper and take notes on any imaginative concepts that bubble to the surface.

It's not a habit of mine to read my horoscope, however, this morning it offered me the perfect excuse to write…how lovely~ The permission I gained was imperative to my psyche knowing that I am shooting for new stars; doesn’t everyone need dreams to reach toward to keep their lives purposeful?

I adore being a teacher, and affecting the lives of my students. Most days I can’t ever see myself retiring, however within the past year a couple of innovative dreams have penetrated my soul. I fantasize of writing and publishing a book or two.

I aspire to start a scrapbooking business on the beach to assemble photo creations for others who don’t enjoy the craft as I do and will allow me to capture the essence of the special ones in their world. I couple this goal with the idea of having my studio overlook the ocean; ahhhh, what better atmosphere to get the imaginative juices flowing than to be immersed by the ocean’s beauty?

My husband, Scott has a longing to open a donut/bagel shop at the beach so we can be beach bums collectively; anybody have a couple hundred thousand dollars they’d like to donate? ...just thought I'd ask~

My point being, just because we age doesn’t mean our dreams cease to exist. I wonder, are the ideals of our life as an adult more luring because the inhibitions of youth are no longer as prevalent? Or perhaps we stop listening to ‘could’ve, should’ve and would’ve’ thoughts that saturate our dreams.
At any rate, I like the consent of my horoscope and in the meantime, I’ll let the words of my book bubble to the surface and dream of that place by the ocean.
by James Dean

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Thanks for Noticing Me~

 This is supremely my most beloved goblet. I utilize it at daybreak to hold the coffee I consume. I make use of it during the day to devour water and I employ it in the evening to savor my tea. This chalice is a gift from one of my former students whom I absolutely adore. ‘M’ is a fantastic young lady (read about her here) and I take pleasure in her company.

I find the beaker irresistible because it has my preferred colors: pink, purple and of course, Carolina blue. I am a passionate fan of Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh, but most of all, I love it because printed on the surface of the mug are the words ‘Thanks for noticing me’. The metaphor of the gift from a special needs child doesn’t escape me.

In light of the post I submitted entitled Titles and Labels which generated very thoughtful and profound comments; thank you my friends, the theme hasn’t faded from my mind. Interestingly enough, a certain reflection came to light as I stared at the phase on my stein: ‘Thanks for noticing me!’

Isn’t that precisely what we all want? Regardless of how we are or may be labeled as a result of dress, mannerisms or actions to be noticed, or recognized--a basic human need is to seek and gain the attention of others.

Just look around-do you know someone who screams ‘notice me!’ with their antics? How about the ‘drooper’ as my son calls the individuals whose pants sags far below their underpants? What about the child who acts out by spitting or touching an object when already told ‘no’? Furthermore, think of the gun wielding individual who threatens suicide. We knowingly or unknowingly ‘label’ individuals who are different.
As an adult, most of us have learned adequate socialization skills to be more subtle in our endeavors, but nonetheless, when we find ourselves exhibiting certain actions or conduct to obtain a result, don’t we all want to announce; Thanks for noticing me!?
I know I do~

"When we talk about understanding, surely it takes place only when the mind listens completely - the mind being your heart, your nerves, your ears- when you give your whole attention to it."

by Jiddu Krishnamurti

Monday, February 21, 2011

Pages of my life...

Long ago, it must be, I have a photograph...
Preserve your memories~~
they're all that will be left of you-

by P.Simon

Miscellaneous Moments...

...of the beach~

First Day of Middle School...

Your 'other' family visiting from Ohio~

Fun at the pool...

Saying good-bye to Maddy and her family...

...not happy faces!
A boy and his best friend~

Another beach Vacation~

My boys...

by Freya Stark

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Titles and Labels...

This daybreak as I was traveling the journey through my Blog List- reading and commenting, I unexpectedly became captivated with titles of the blogs I frequent: Joyful Reflections, Brian's Home, Let your Light Shine, The Rural JournalThe Run*Around*Ranch Report and Simple Southern Happiness to identify a diminutive number of the varied posts I visit.

I attempted to surmise the contents of the blog with the title; did the title define the blog? Or did the blog define the title? And on either account, was the innards a fair tagging of the person who authored the journal of beliefs, thoughts or feelings?

This concept of labels intrigues me because as a result of branding people we make snap judgments of folks be it fair or unfair. As a special education teacher, my students need to carry a label to even ‘be’ one of my students. When I am searching for my latest read amongst the shelves of many; I glance at the title and make a quick deduction of whether the book sounds intriguing, boring or absorbing purely on the heading.

Furthermore, I once misjudged the parent of a student who rode a motorcycle, wore black leather and a lengthy ponytail with tattoos up and down his arms and piercings galore. I wrongly assumed he was a gruff less than loving parent to his child with Down’s syndrome. When I learned otherwise, I admittedly spoke of my mistake to him in a revealing conversation.

Good, bad or indifferent, we conduct this seemingly hasty process with individuals. We see someone’s dress, their outer appearance, listen to their words and decide whether the person is worthy of our time to embark in conversation, put forward a lending hand or reveal details of our lives.

No doubt, often times this is necessary to protect and shield ourselves from harm. Does it serve any other purpose to our benefit?

Truthfully by nature, I am a very guarded, calm and quiet person. How many times have others viewed me as stuck up or snobbish to which I am neither? Moreover based on my self-preservation and introvert characteristics, do folks assume I’m less than intelligent and have little to share or contribute? These are truly thoughts to ponder.

In closing, I propose two questions for you my readers;

1.) How do you avoid falling into the trap of labeling others?

2.) Have you been misjudged in a way that has been a detriment to you and your life at any particular time?

"We love labels. We really do-- as a society, I mean.
It's so much easier to understand the world around us if we name it, tie it down,
and distance ourselves from the parts we don't like...
We all want to be loved, we all want to love, and we all want

Friday, February 18, 2011

Signs of Spring...

Spring is...

blossoming crocuses...

daffodils displaying their greenery...

open windows with kitty's breathing in the fresh air....
a 'Welcome Home' sign for migratory birds...

trees budding...
perennials flourishing....
driving with the roof-top down...

"Spring shows what God can do with a drab and dirty world."
~Virgil A. Kraft

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Blogfest Follow-up...

In accordance with Blogfest yesterday I asked my son Nicholas what his answers would be. I laughed at some but also marveled at his intuitiveness and insight of a youngster of eleven years. He continues to amaze me, but then again I am partial. This video was taken at his band concert last week. He is the second from the left.

So without further ado, my boy's answers....

1.What is your favorite word?  "They are all important when trying to get your point across"
2.What is your least favorite word? "any words said in anger"
3.What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? "watching people play sports"
4.What turns you off? "commercials that show abused animals" (I couldn't agree more!)
5.What is your favorite curse word? "is 'hate' a curse word? but I can only say it when I'm talking about Duke"
6.What sound or noise do you love?   "people cheering for me"

7.What sound or noise do you hate? "being hollered at"  (which let me tell you, we've NEVER been able to even raise our voice at this child because he interprets ALL of it as yelling, but we hardly ever even have to :)
8.What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? "an architect and an athlete"
9.What profession would you not like to do?  "a sanitation worker"
10.If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? "Well, I wouldn't want him to say, 'you've come to the wrong place!' he pointed down :)

In closing, I'm still not feeling great from this crud and I've picked up an eye infection; UGH!! He is also recovering from a cold as well, but he made me lunch yesterday and brought it to me on a tray. It was the most precious event ever. I was presented a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, chicken noodle soup, grapes and a cookie. I should have taken a picture because it was so sweet however that would have taken away from the moment.

He was so proud!  as was I!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


I've never posted two blogs in one day however after I posted spring poetry...because I want spring and all it encompasses to get here FAST! Anyway, I then  realized Nicole was hosting a blog fest and it looked fun so I have to answer the following questions.
IF you want to sign up for the blog fest and participate, go to Nicole's site and become a part of the fun~

1.What is your favorite word?  'Cripes'

2.What is your least favorite word?  when people use 'Jesus Christ' as an expression

3.What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? nature

4.What turns you off? violence

5.What is your favorite curse word? well, the F-word but only on the golf course, but typically I try not to swear~

6.What sound or noise do you love?  falling rain, squeaking tennis shoes on the basketball court

7.What sound or noise do you hate?  a crash, or glass breaking

8.What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?  Umm, a photo/journalist or an art therapist working with abused children

9.What profession would you not like to do?  a Vet...I can't stand to see animals suffer

10.If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?  I want God to say, 'You done good, girl!'

Happy Spring...and poetry of old~

while taking a walk,
I glanced up
to see the clouds-
but instead
I caught the glimpse
of a rainbow.
It wasn't raining,
and the sky was clear.
Was it there to
greet the spring?

(Mar, 1977)


These be
three spring things;
grass growing greener...
flowers blossoming...
after a storm,
a rainbow!

(Feb., 1977)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day~

the Spaine family, 2005
“All you need is love, all you need is love,

All you need is love, love, love is all you need…”

…to quote the infamous Beatles, who can argue with that thought, right? Or ‘Love is what makes the world go ‘round’? Blah, blah blah…

On this day of love taking center stage; thank you Hallmark, I felt compelled to address a side of love that no one mentions and my guess is no one even considers. The concept of-

-receiving love~

If you know about me I am neither shy nor guarded in talking about my tumultuous childhood. In fact I’ve come to peace with the events as well as the people responsible because those are the proceedings that shaped my personhood and I rather like who I’ve become; strong, confident, compassionate, creative to name a few qualities.

However, to receive love had at all times been extremely complex for me since my training in life led me to equivocate kindness and love with abuse of my body, my feelings, and my life. I denied myself food because I wasn’t deserving of its nutrients. When someone offered me a gift, or a kind word I shunned them because the debt of thankfulness was too immense. In fact, the first time the man who is now my husband told me he loved me I stared him straight in the eye and said, ‘Don’t ever say that unless you mean it!’

Enter Barbara, Martha and Tanya; my guardian angels--my therapists at vital crossroads who truly bestowed life and rescued me with their love, dedication and commitment. Just as important these astounding women who acted as a surrogate mother at various points in time, taught me to accept gestures and expressions of love with gratefulness and gratitude.

I’ve recently been in touch with these amazing ladies when it became necessary to complete the ‘Acknowledgement’ page for my book. I could never deny their impact on me and the person I’ve become. I will remain forever indebted to them as I carry their spirit and strength with me in every cell of my being.

So on this Valentine’s Day, it is with fortitude to each: Barbara, Martha and Tanya that I’ve learned to receive love in its many forms with an open heart.

“For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it. For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it. For every love there is a heart somewhere to receive it.”
By Ivan Panin

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Time Wasted....

Time is precious. Time is limited. Time is free and ours to use as we desire whether we prefer to spend time with our family, exercising, baking or shopping, etc…time is what shapes our lives.

Most often we believe we have too little time as evidenced by the harried over-scheduling of ourselves and our children, stressed out family members frequenting drive by fast food restaurants rather than sitting down together as a family and partaking in a home cooked meal and actually sharing the day’s events.

One parent is crazily driving to dance instruction or scouts with one kid, at the same time as the other parent is madly maneuvering soccer practice or band, or religion or after school events. That is assuming they are an element of a two parent family unit with two children. What about the single parent family with more children heading off in various directions?

You are currently chuckling and chortling while nodding your head because you know what I’m talking about- you’ve been a victim of these circumstances more moments than not. I presume within the most recent week you’ve experienced these precise happenings. We certainly have had our share.

Many questions abound such as to why we feel compelled to over-schedule ourselves? Why do we insist on stressing ourselves out when we have choices? Does this life of pressure, tension and anxiety enhance the quality of our lives?

As each person is responsible for answering those questions for themselves and their family, I think I’ll just sit back for the next three weeks as I am ‘tracked out’. This is one of the luxuries of teaching in a year round school; I have time off every nine weeks to rest, relax and rejuvenate. Ahhh, I can ponder what activity will fill my minutes …will it be curling up with a book? Perhaps watching an old movie, definitely writing or taking my son to the driving range?

Ummm, maybe we’ll go for a walk at Umstead Park and we won't forget the camera since the weather is going to be lovely here all week. (See for yourself !)We could possibly scrapbook, or play hockey or go bowling? Whatever activity we choose to engage in I will keep the following thought in mind…

“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” By Bertrand Russell


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

a note from Miss Angel-Kitty~

Hey Y'All,
It's me, Miss Angel-Kitty! that?

As you know, or perhaps you need to be reminded as I did that I am a Southern Belle and like all Southern Ladies the term 'Miss' is in front of their name so I now want to be referred to as Miss Angel-Kitty! I think I like the sounds of that~

Anyway, I am filling in this morning for my Nee Nee because she is dealing with the Creepy-Crud as she calls it. She said her kids gave it to her at school. Well, I do declare, such nice children to give her things so special. Did you hear my newly acquired Southern accent as I said that? Well, please listen more carefully next time, will you? I was saying, Nee Nee is sick and she is fretting about not making it around to your house for a proper visit, however she did mention that a spot of tea would do just the trick for her throat. Although you truly wouldn't want her cough or her sneezes; sometimes I can't tell the difference so I can express a right nice 'Bless you' to my Nee Nee.

So I do aim to head on out of here and fixin' to get my much needed beauty rest. You know a girl can never have enough. (wink-wink)

Go Hog-Wild and have a fabulous Day!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Pages of my Life...

When anxious, uneasy and bad thoughts come, I go to the sea, and the sea drowns them out with its great wide sounds, cleanses me with its noise and imposes a rhythm upon everything in me that is bewildered and confused.

It's been a very pleasurable weekend as I spent some time scrapbooking and living vicariously through memories of our moments spent at our favorite vacation spot: Emerald Isle. So for your viewing pleasure, please find below sprinklings  of well, 'Beachin' it!' although I took the photo with the spread backwards. Oh get the picture!

No Hurricane in sight~a lovely day!

Beach Bocce Ball...


At the fishing pier~

Shark!!! ..thank God it wasn't a big one, but big enough!

Sights and Sounds of the Sea...

Speed Racer...

Rejoice with your family in the beautiful land of life!

Instant Replay!

I was feeling particulary melancholy yesterday about the world's trevails and enjoyed reading the comments from everyone. I also agree that sensationalism is alive and well in the good ol' USA, as well as violence perpetrated by video games and movies which is why our sone never gets to play  or watch any of those. Call me old-fashioned but our kid will not have that type of mentality and he doesn't.

Anyway, I recall one of my very first posts being of this topic so I went back and read it and decided since I didn't know most of you, nor did you know me, I would post it again. In my mind's eye, I can actually see God performing this antic and who would blame Him?

June, 2010
As a teacher, this is an extremely hectic overwhelming STRESSFUL time of year! What’s more, the inundation of tasks that need to be accomplished in teaching in a year round school is compounded when one year ends and eight days later, we inaugurate a brand new school year. Both tasks are complicated in their own right, however when the two are combined, life can be enormously stressful. Have I mentioned how stressful this can be? So suffice it to say, I feel challenged to have a few coherent thoughts at this point in time which makes writing taxing in a way it never has been before. Nonetheless, I’ve been waiting for this moment; Saturday to be precise when I can sit and pen the thoughts continually swirling in my head.

One persistent prevailing thought accompanied me on my walk this morning along with the sweltering heat and drops of sweat beads dangling off my eyelids. I was really quite amused at the idea. With all the global atrocities occurring; the Gulf oil spill, the War in Iraq and Afghanistan, suffering incurred by sickness and disease, poverty, the state of our education systems just to name a few in the headlines of today’s news, my question is this…

Does God ever want to make a sweeping motion across the world and declare, ‘DO-OVER?’

Then, a song which is one of my favorites came to mind so here is the link of this lovely lady Charice who is seventeen years old; singing a powerful song... ENJOY~
(I tried to upload the vieo but it wasn't available so please take time to go on youtube and listen. I promise you will enjoy it tremendously!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Why must there be so much hate?

Doesn’t there seem to be an abundance of HATE in the world today? It appears to be lurking globally based on the news in Egypt, Jordan, Sudan, and of course Afghanistan as well as the Tragedy in Tucson to name a few. Hate prowls on our local street corners with murder, hi-jacking, gangs, shooting deaths, child abuse and most pronounced to me is the bullying that occurs amongst our children.
I don’t proclaim to discern the solution to this quandary of revulsion and abhorrence; the inability to tolerate the views of other individuals or clusters of folk. I could go into a legion of ways to solve the evils but that appears futile.
However, what I do recognize is extreme dislike is not a new concept to me evidenced of this poem I penned back when I was a youngster of seventeen. I might have written the same words forty plus years later.

February, 1977

jabbing, frigidly cold,
loneliness, fear
black, darkness
unpleasant, striking
dirty, cluttered
hard, blaring, loud
harsh, sour
yelling, wailing, running, leading to

"Those who hate most fervently must have once loved deeply; those who want to deny the world must have once embraced what they now set on fire.”
Kurt Tucholsky

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Poetry of Old...

April, 1978

we laughed
in the rain,
We ran and jumped,
we danced
through puddled
in bare feet.
You held my hand.
...that was yesterday.
it's sunny~