Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I remember when..

There is one thing about being retired: there is a great tendency to reminisce. It is one of the more discouraging aspects of getting older. I have never really been a “give me the good ole days” person. I have always the bear who wanted to get to the other side of the mountain so I could “see what I could see.” With that said, there are some things that I long for from my past:

• I miss a time when people who “talked to themselves walking down the street or driving their cars” were understood to be “a bit tetched” as they say here in TX and not having a conversation on their cell phones.

• I miss when “taking Sabbath time” on Sundays was a given, not just something you fit in between the football game or the kid’s soccer practice, when Sunday dinner was de rigure.

• J. misses the Orange Julius stand. For me, it was snow cones in the summer.

• I especially miss the freedom that children used to have to play in their yards, pick-up games of football or ‘catch’ played in the street and the call of parents at supper-time to come home to a family meal.

• I miss a time when you could pull your car into the mechanic’s shop and you could both put your head under the hood and listen to that strange sound that made you bring it in and the mechanic would say, “let me put that up on the rack and see what the problem is” without having to schedule an appointment. Same thing about doctor’s and vet’s appointments.

• I miss the time when you could depend upon having at least one wonderfully creative gay guy as your hair dresser who would help us helpless dykes figure out what was attractive. Now they are technocrats, lawyers or financial consultants. ( I know, I know—stereotyping is a bad thing, but I’m just sayin’)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Friday Five:De/Re/CLutter?

Jan has left an amazing, timely Friday Five:

Since posting about decluttering, I am still muttering about the need for it in my house. How about you?

1. What things do you like to hang on to?

As the daughter of a saver—my parents were just newly married during the last Great Depression, I save almost everything of any value. J is also the child of savers and would recycle TP if she could figure out how. Even when things are not of value, I am loath to throw it away. I am also not a good organizer so I seldom know where things are. So I am likely to buy another do-jinger to replace the one I can’t find. A luta continua…

2. What is hard to let go of?

3. What is easy to give away?

Clothing that I can no longer wear. But I do pass them on to J first because she can often wear my hand-me-downs and then SHE can’t give them away.

4. Is there any kind of stumbling block connected with cleaning out?

I have often laughed off the comments about my desk.  I always knew where things were:  They were on my desk and all I had to do was dig long enough and I would find it.  Files often defied me.  Once something was filed, I could never remember where or under what topic it was filed. 

As I have said, organization is the most difficult. My brain just cannot seem to figure out where things can go. In this most recent move, I have finally hired some women to come in and help me unpack. They have so far gotten the Living Room and the Kitchen in some sort of order. (One of them has a new apartment and does not have things to go into them. I have been giving her things that she needs if we have too much or too many.)

5. What do you like to collect, hoard, or admire?

I am not much of a collector except for books. J. collects "little things." (paper weights, little figurines, etc. Now that I have a Kindle, that is beginning to help with accumulation of novels and mysteries. Before we moved, we gave away tons of books to the libraries in our area, but we still moved 40 boxes of books. We haven’t even begun to unpack those yet. (Next week’s chore)  What do you with all that fine China that was left to you by great grandmothers but you NEVER use?

Bonus: Tell us about recycling or whatever you can think of that goes along with this muttering about cluttering

Recycling is the best way to go for us hoarders/collectors/conservators. By giving books to the library, I knew that they were going to be valued as I had valued them. By giving my kitchen extras to the new apartment owner, I knew that they would be used. By giving my clothes to a “nearly new shop” I know that someone who needs them will get them.

I HATE fill landfills! And I am having a hard time with the new recycling rules in my town. I grumble and fuss about having to wash out cans and plastic containers. I fret over the over-packaging of all products. And I REALLY don’t know what to do with all the wires and extensions cords that I have accumulated to things that I don’t know what they go to. AND WHAT DO WE DO WITH ALL THAT OLD COMPUTER STUFF THAT WE HAVE IN THOSE BOXES IN THE GARAGE???? Even the recycle guys won't take them.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Memories, memories Friday Five

Sally from Revgals gave us a memorial Friday five:

This year Tim and I have planted and nurtured a vegetable garden, and I have just spent the morning preparing vegetables and soups for the freezer, our veggie garden is producing like crazy and it is hard to keep up with, that said it'll be worth it for a little taste of summer in the middle of winter :-). That got me thinking of the things I treasure, memories are often more valuable than possessions. How about you, can you share:

1. A treasured memory from childhood?

In 1949 I was 4 and we moved from Illinois to TX. My father had asked for a transfer because the northern winters were getting too difficult for his lungs and the doctor had told him to move to the southwest, I don’t remember the move per se, but I remember the train trip that brought my mother and I here. My father and 16 year old brother had preceded us. My father, who had wanted to be an artist and not a draftsman, had made me a coloring book of the event. I have since lost that coloring book, but I can still remember the pictures.

2. A teenage memory?

When I was a junior in HS, I made the state band. It was a great experience for me. The sense of personal worth that came from that experience undid much of the put down I heard at home. It was also from that HS band experience that I got a scholarship to university.  And that introduced me to a whole different world.

3. A young adult memory?

I came to know Christ at 25 and not long afterward entered the convent. The two are not necessarily connected, but I am clear that it was the call of Christ to know him intimately that was the reason I entered religious life. I am very thankful for both of these events in my young adulthood because I learned to pray—various methods and they have all served me well though my ministry and my life.

4. A memory from this summer?

I retired and have moved back to my family home in TX after being away for 38 years. Lots of memories have been coming up since I moved back here. But honestly, I don’t want to remember the agony of moving or do it again!

5. A memory you hope to have?

J and I have been visiting churches in the diocese. Finally last Sunday while sitting in a large parish, I suggested that we need to choose a parish in which we wanted to have our funeral! We have never gone to the same parish and will continue that practice so that we can both have a parish community where we both can be of assistance to the local rector. We also thrive in different kinds of parishes. For years we did that so that people would not think of us as a lesbian couple. So on my part, it was done partly out of fear. A memory I would like to have is for people to respect the relationship that J and I have, honor it and support us the same way that they support others who have made commitments to each other. We celebrated 32 years of living together this year. Married couples don’t generally do so well. Just sayin’….

Bonus- a song that sums up one of those memories