Remembering my father (and mother) on Father’s day


My parents before they were married.

My parents before they were married.

I have a confession to make. Sometimes, I close my eyes in my bedroom, and pretend, only for a minute, that I’m back home in my old bedroom. I visualize where the bed was, my dresser, and the closet.  I think about where the other rooms of the house were situated and what they looked like.

Sometimes, when I’m remembering, I hug the pillow and remember how it felt to hug my parents. How comforting it was, and how safe and loved I used to feel with them.

I had a special relationship with both of them. I was the baby of the family and lived alone with them from the age of 13. I did miss having my two newly married sisters living with us, but I enjoyed hanging out with my old parents. We went out to eat a lot, saw movies, and attended the theater. (My old parents were somewhere in their late 40’s and early 50’s.)

Sometimes, I try to remember them talking in the kitchen on a Sunday morning. I can see my mother sitting at the table, newspaper not too far from her. (She loved to read that newspaper cover to cover.) My father is standing up, probably doing some chore. They’re talking about his job, or what they’re going to do in the future.

I can almost hear the comfortable din of their voices. She saying, “Hank, why don’t you get some blintzes from Solomon’s?” (We used to get blintzes from the local delicatessen every Sunday.) Before he ever left the house he would always give her a quick kiss. Before too long he’d come back with the scrumptious Solomon blintzes. All my mother had to do was heat them on the stove.

After we eat our blintzes, my father is going to go out and do outside chores like mowing the lawn or shoveling the snow. He might run some errands.

Sometimes, I’d tag along with him. I was crazy about my father. He’d talk to me like an equal, and was a good listener. He always made me feel loved and important.

He had a friend who owned a car wash, so about every weekend I’d go with him to watch the car get cleaned. I’d carefully watch the car go through the stages, while he kidded around with his friend. I could see that Dad could get along with everyone.

I had an acquaintance whose parents were divorced, and the father would take the kids somewhere special every Sunday. I didn’t know it was because they were divorced. (In those days people kept divorces quiet.) So, I kept pleading with my dad take me out on Sunday without my mother. He did it once. We went to the planetarium at the Cleveland Science museum. We looked up at the pretend stars in the planetarium and listened to the lecture. I loved having my daddy all to myself. (I only hope my mother wasn’t too hurt.)

My parents sometimes took me to a local amusement park, Euclid Beach. My mother would park herself on a bench and my dad would go on rides with me in the park. This was a big feat for him because he was really not too crazy about amusement park rides.

One time we got on a ferris wheel and before it started, he asked the ride attendant to let us off. Another time we were on an Over the Falls” ride and the power went out. We were stuck on the ride for about 20 minutes. I wasn’t worried cause I was with my dad. (Years later, he told me he was nervous about my mother being alone, and us getting stuck on the ride.)

My dad  always took time to get dressed for work as a Cleveland Policeman. After he shined his shoes, and put on his uniform with the golden badge, and completed it with his hat, he didn’t look like Daddy anymore; he looked liked a king. I thought I was the luckiest girl in the world to have such a good-looking, important father.

My parents were so close, that I can’t remember my father on this Father’s Day without including both my parents.

Happy Father’s Day to them both, wherever their souls ended up. If there is such a place, I have no doubt that they are together.

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Playing ping- pong with my dad: A sweet remembrance


My husband and I were going through some old pictures. He found an old picture of me when I was a little kid.

I’m sitting on top of a ping-pong table in my basement. It was our rec (recreation) room. It was supposed to be for parties. We had a few of them, but a lot of the time I’d play ping-pong with my dad.

I remember when I started to play, I couldn’t even reach the table. My dad was patient with me. He’d spend time, when he wasn’t working, aiming the ball at me. He showed me how to aim the paddle, and properly hit the ball.

After awhile I could hit the ball back. We spent a lot of time playing ping-pong together.  I got pretty good at it. I can still hear the pride in his voice, “ Say, Barbie

My dad, my ping-pong partner, took this picture long ago.

that’s pretty good.”  I guess practice really  does make perfect. (Or close to perfect). He didn’t ever let me lose. Maybe not a great lesson for life, but my dad was a kind person.

I can still smell the paddle. It had a little bit of a musty odor. The ping-pong balls were bouncy, and I chased plenty of them. You could dent them pretty easily. They were light as a feather.

Time went on. Naturally, I wanted to spend more time with people my own age. I grew up, got married, and left home.

When I was 26, my dad died, and I still think about him. I’d give anything to just play one more game with him. I bet he’d let me win.

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Imagine by John Lennon


 

Nice dream, huh? I respect all religions. I wish everybody else would. Talk about overreaction. It’s not the first time either. More wars were fought over religion. Some things never change.

 

TV Reaches a new low: Nancy Grace Weighs in on Honey Boo Boo


Nancy Grace's Objection! — How High-Priced Def...

Nancy Grace’s Objection! — How High-Priced Defense Attorneys, Celebrity Defendants, and a 24/7 Media Have Hijacked Our Criminal Justice System (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You want evidence our society is in trouble? What Toddlers and Tiaras. I’m sure you’ve heard of it. The show where the wannabe mothers doll their kids up, put on make up, and sexualize them with strange costumes.

There is a new offshoot starring Honey Boo Boo, one of the little beauty queens.

I really cannot take the lawyer Nancy Grace, but I stumbled upon her show while surfing the television. Nancy Grace seems just plain mean and nasty. (Her voice modulates between nasty and overly  sweet which just seems dishonest to me.)  She claims to want to help innocent victims of crime. The former prosecutor is pretty brutal to some of her guests. I think she drove one of them to suicide.

Every once in a while she’ll be talking about a controversial subject that interests me, so I’ll watch her show. Sometimes I find her extreme behavior slightly entertaining.

She was talking about “Honey Boo Boo”, a star from Toddlers and Tiaras.  Her mother is obviously starved for attention and is using Honey Boo Boo to make a name for herself.  She is succeeding.

One of Nancy’s guests was Mike Walker from the National Enquirer, the best trashy newspaper rag out there. Why Walker was offended by Honey Boo Boo makes no sense. He makes a living digging up dirt.  He should love watching Honey Boo Boo dress up in her Dolly Parton outfit, and wiggle her little behind.

Nancy Grace  on a campaign to stop Honey Boo Boo and her mother. (You may remember Nancy on Dancing with the Stars. She wasn’t afraid to wear provocative costumes on her overweight body.)

Nancy feels that sexual pedophiles are loving this show, and might go and try to hunt these little girls down. She contends that is probably what happened to Jon Benet Ramsey, the little beauty pageant winner who was murdered. They never found her killer.

Nancy  showed a video of Honey Boo Boo dancing at a college bar on top of the bar.   She also showed her pulling up her little shirt, rubbing her  already fat naked tummy, and drinking Go Go juice, a combination of Red Bull and Mountain Dew.  Honey Boo Boo  said, “it makes me laugh, and pull mommy’s hair.” She only uses it before a performance.

Honey Boo Boo’s father, a convicted felon, is trying to take custody of her. Like Nancy Grace, he feels this is child abuse. God knows what he’s planning to do with Honey Boo Boo once he gets custody.

But as much as Nancy Grace annoys me, I have to agree with her.

If those mothers want to be glamorous strippers, they ought to lose weight, get themselves in shape and live out their dreams. There is nothing more abusive than a parent who lives out their fantasies and dreams through their children.

What they’re doing to their kids is child abuse.

What is even sadder is that Toddlers and Tiaras is TLC’s—The Learning Channels—#1 show. Honey Boo Boo is an instant hit.

One of my friends suggested that people watch those shows to make themselves feel superior. (I may be a lousy mom, but at least I don’t dress up my child, and allow them to dance on top of a bar, or walk in a sexual way.)

Do you think there is a place for kiddie beauty pageants? Do you think Honey Boo Boo’s mom loves her child more than she loves herself? Convince me I’m wrong.

10 good reasons to have children


Cute Kids in Children's Costumes

Cute Kids in Children’s Costumes (Photo credit: epSos.de)

1. You are patient, kind, and love children. You find them fascinating and fun.

2. You have a strong marriage or relationship  and want to share your happiness by having children.

If you’re single, independent and secure,  that may work too.  (I’d like to hear from you if you’ve accomplished that.)

3. You are a mature adult, and can put yourself second to others. It is amazing how you can have room to love your children. It’s a great feeling, natures’ way of putting you lower on the totem pole.

4. You like to get on the floor and play. It doesn’t hurt if you like play-doh, paint, and all that fun stuff. How about those little people toys?

5. You like fun activities like going out to the zoo, dressing up, and watching plays.( Ones they put on), There’s nothing like seeing activities through a child’s eyes for the first time. How about the surprise and delight when they get on that merry-go-round for the first time?   It’s like being a child yourself….all over again.

6, You aren’t having a child to recreate your life. They are not there to give you a second chance at athletics, academics, or a social life.  (Please don’t yell at your kid when they’re playing sports.)

7.You don’t care about having the best clothes, vacations, etc. Unless you are wealthy, of course!

8. You don’t mind tending the sick occasionally. It comes with the job description. Have a relief person when you get sick yourself.

9. You don’t mind being a disciplinarian. It is necessary. It’s the hardest part about being a parent.

10. Be prepared for your heart to break when they get more independent, and would rather spend time with their peers. You’re only a hero to them for part of the time.( When they get older and realize your human too, it’s always a little sad. )

Was I good at all these things? I would have to say no. . My report card would show I had weaknesses and strengths, like anyone.  But, these are conclusions I came to when all was said and done.

Maybe it can help you.

Anything to add? Disagreements? Please comment!

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A trip to the Smithsonian: I liked the First Ladies’ Dresses!


Smithsonian American History Museum

Smithsonian American History Museum (Photo credit: ttarasiuk)

Kermit

Kermit (Photo credit: Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer)

Flag that floated over Fort McHenry in 1814.

President Barack Obama and the First Lady Mich...
President Barack Obama and the First Lady Michelle Obama dancing at the “Obama Home States Inaugural Gala.” The event took place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last week,  I went to the Smithsonian American History Museum in Washington, DC.  Every time I go there, I like to see The Star Spangled Banner display. It’s the actual flag that flew over Fort McHenry. They changed it around because the flag is starting to get really tattered. You can’t even take flash pictures of it anymore.

Being a child of the 50’s I like to be reminded of all the popular culture stuff  from my childhood. Everyone does like Kermit! And Dorothy’s red shoes.  Gene Autry and Dale Evans? Mouseketeers? Did you have a pair of those ears?

Being an old girly-girl, I enjoy the  display of the  First  Lady’s dresses. I wasn’t the only female looking at  them. While  many men looked at all the War stuff, the ladies were looking at the dresses. I had to wait in line.  Michelle Obama’s  gown was my favorite!  Whether you like her or not, she has got style! (i do like her.)

I did look at some of the war stuff too, although I like to honor veterans, I always feel it so unfortunate that innocent people have to die. Like we used to say, “put all the politicians and leaders into battle, and see how long it lasts.”

Here are some of my favorite pictures from my visit today!

What are your favorite things from the olden days.