Friday, July 29, 2016


My sister Liz was coming for the weekend and wanted me to plan a girls' shopping day.
“I guess that sounds like fun,” My husband, Steven said as I told him about the plan. “I'm just glad I don't have to go.”
I understood what Steven was saying. Shopping with my guys consists of going to the store to pick up what we need, then coming right back home. The goal has always been to spend as little time as possible in a store. I've gotten so good, at that kind of shopping, that I wasn't sure spending the day mindlessly wandering around a mall was going to be much fun.
Boy, was I in for a surprise!
When Steven opened the door, later that evening, I was practically giddy. My arms were weighted down with all my shopping bags. Liz was right behind me laughing as I dropped my bags onto the nearest chair.
“Wow! You've certainly been busy!” Steven said.
“Oh my gosh, look!” I held out my arms to show him the deep grooves I had from carrying so many bags. “I hope these aren't going to be permanent!” I said, rubbing my arms.
“She definitely had fun.” Liz said to Steven as she put her bags down too.
“What did you get?” Steven asked.
“You would not believe the sales they were having!” I reached into the first bag. “Isn’t this the cutest sweater you've ever seen?” I held up the black cardigan for him to see.
“Don't you already have a black sweater?”
“Not like this one!” I tossed the sweater onto the back of the chair and reached into another bag. “They were having a sale on hand soap.” I held it up for him to smell. “Lavender.”
“It smells nice.” Steven looked into the bag. “So you got five of them?”
“It was a great sale!” I went for another bag. “Oh...and when we stopped to get some lunch it turned out to be National Cheesecake Day! Can you believe our luck?”
Steven looked over at Liz.
Liz nodded. “It was National Cheesecake Day.” she confirmed.
“Did you stop for dinner too?” Steven asked.
“We ate lunch so late that I couldn't eat another thing.” I looked over at Liz. “What about you?”
“I'm still pretty full.” she agreed.
Steven looked at both of us. “Then I guess I'll order dinner for the boys and I.”
“That's a great idea! You do that while I start putting some of this stuff away.” I went over and gave Steven a hug. “Did I mention how much fun I had?”
“You did.” Steven started to laugh.
I began gathering up my loot. “I’ve been living with guys for so long I forgot how much fun shopping with a girl can be!” I couldn't stop smiling.
That's when Liz looked over at Steven. “I'm pretty sure that, right about now, you're grateful that I don't come for the weekend more often, huh?”
Steven smiled as he looked at all my bags. “You're a mind reader.”
“Oh, by the way...” I held out one of my bags. “I brought you and the boys pieces of cheesecake too!”

“Thanks!” he took the bag and headed to the kitchen to put it in the refrigerator. “Now you're a mind reader too!”  

Friday, July 22, 2016


I went out to my car, ready to run some errands, when I noticed my Adele CD laying on my console. “No-No-No-No!” I cried as I picked it up and went back into the house. “Who drove my car last?” I asked looking at my son Alex and my husband Steven, both in the kitchen making lunch.
“I did.” Alex said. “I had to run out late last night because we didn't have anything good to eat.”
“We didn't have anything good to eat?” I questioned as I looked at the packages of cold cuts he was making his sandwich with, along with the bag of chips and jar of pickles that were sitting on the counter. “I went grocery shopping yesterday and bought all of that!”
“But you didn't buy donuts!” he said with a laugh as he pointed to the box on the counter.
Steven shrugged his shoulders. “We were both in the mood for a Boston cream.”
I could only shake my head because I had stopped trying to figure out their eating habits years ago.
Instead I held up my CD. “Why did you take this out of the player?”
“Oh,” Alex went back to making his sandwich. “I went to turn the radio on and I must have hit the wrong button because the CD popped out.” He looked over at me. “Why, is it scratched?”
“I won't know that for about a week.” I said with a sigh.
Steven and Alex both had confused looks on their faces.
“Once you take the CD out of the player it refuses to take a new one for at least six or seven car rides later.” I explained trying not to show just how annoyed I was. “It's one of the car's new idiosyncrasies I'm trying to get used to.”
I love my car. I've loved it since the day we drove it new off the lot. As the years have passed it's become temperamental, but that's no reason to give up on it.
“Remember last year when the air conditioning would only blow on high?” I reminded them.
“I thought we got that fixed?” Steven said as he put his sandwich on a plate and went to the table. Alex followed him carrying his lunch.
“Actually, I didn't bother fixing that one.” I shrugged my shoulders. “I kind of like it now, the car cools off a lot quicker.” I sat down with them placing my Adele CD carefully on a place mat. “”I've even gotten used to the driver's side door freezing shut in the winter. I just climb through the passenger side and by the time I get to work it's usually thawed out enough to open.”
“I thought I fixed that one.” Steven said. “Didn't I give you a de-icer spray?”
“You did.” I gave him a quick smile. “But I kept leaving it in the car, so it kind of defeated the purpose.”
Steven didn't say anything he just shook his head and took a bite of his sandwich.
“But the CD player is a whole different story!” I continued. “I've had to choose what I listen to very carefully because that CD will be playing on a loop for the next month before I risk making a change.”
Alex looked over at me, “Why don't you just fix the CD player?”
That made me pause for a moment. “Well, I hadn't really thought about it.” I admitted. I looked over at Steven for some back-up. “Don't you think having a car is like a marriage?”
Steven eyebrows went up. “How so?”
“Well, when it's new you love everything about it but, then as it ages little things can go wrong. You try to fix what you can but everything else is just an idiosyncrasy you learn to live with.”
Alex eyes got big as he looked at me, then at Steven.
Steven thought for a moment then nodded his head. “She's got a point.” He looked over at Alex, “If anyone else told me they listened to the same CD for a month I'd think they were nuts. But when your Mom tells me that, I think, that sounds about right.”
“See!” I looked over at Alex. “That's how you stay married for thirty years!”
“Thirty-one.” Steven corrected.


Friday, July 15, 2016


I was standing out on our back deck looking out into our woods when my son, Alex came out and stood next to me.
“What are we looking at?” he asked.
“Two morning doves.” I pointed toward the ground under the feeder.
“Right there. Don't you see them?”
He looked a while longer until one of them moved. “Oh, now I do!”
“I know they blend right in with the ground!” I moved over to sit in my rocking chair. Alex followed me and sat down too. “I'm calling them Fred and Ethel.”
Alex laughed. “Okay why are you calling them that?”
“Because I'm pretty sure they mate for life and Fred and Ethel Mertz were married forever.” I picked up my phone and Googled morning doves.
Alex sat back to watch them. “They do?”
I found the site I was looking for. “Yup. It says so right here, they mate for life.” I looked up to see them both busy eating the seeds. I scrolled further through the site. “Wait a minute, it says they're not always eating the seeds but might be collecting them in a pouch in their esophagus called a crop.”
“Okay, that's gross.”
“Well, now that makes sense because I've been watching them for the past twenty minutes and I was beginning to wonder just how hungry they were.”
“They sure are busy.” We watched them let other birds come to the feeder over their heads but would chase away any bird that was interested in helping themselves to any of the dropped seeds by them.
I was back looking at my phone. “They don't eat insects.” I called out.
“Oh, here's something I didn't know.” I scrolled down a bit further. “It says they usually only have two babies and that incubation takes just two weeks!”
By now I'd found a video of them nesting and I hit play. A few minutes into the video Alex could hear the cooing sounds coming from my phone and looked over at me. “Are you watching a video of morning doves?”
“I am!” I turned the phone so he could see.
“We have them right in front of us!” he pointed to the two that were only several feet away. “Why would you want to watch a video of them on your phone when you can watch them live right here, right now!”
I shrugged my shoulders. “You have a point.” I placed the phone down on the table and looked back at the feeder where the two were still eating. After a few moments of quietly sitting and watching them do the same thing I couldn't help myself. “You know I was only half way through the cool facts about them. Don't you want to hear more?”
I'm sure the sound of my pleading helped change his mind because he just shook his head and laughed. “Sure.”

“Yeah!” I quickly picked up my phone and went back on the morning dove site before he could change his mind.

Thursday, July 7, 2016


It was late at night and I was leaned up against the kitchen counter with a container of potato salad in one hand and a spoon in the other.
Steven walked in and turned on the kitchen light. “Why are you standing here in the dark?”
“I'm not in the dark.” I pointed the spoon to the nightlight next to the sink. “This gives me enough light to see what I need to see.”
“Why are you up so late?” he asked looking at the clock on the stove. “It's 2:30 in the morning.”
“The potato salad was calling out to me.” I finished licking the spoon and dropped it in the sink. I put the lid back on the container and placed it on the counter.
Potato salad was one of the things I didn't like to make myself, because I thought it was way too much work for a simple side dish. I also didn't like many store bought potato salads. But there was one local store that made salads to go with their rotisserie chickens. I loved their salads! My whole family did! That's why there's rarely any leftover. So, I really couldn't understand why he was questioning why I was up.
“Aren't you going to put that back in the fridge?”
“Not yet. I have to wait and see if that was the last bite.”
Steven looked confused. “Than why did you throw your spoon in the sink?”
Now I looked confused. “Because I can't stick a spoon in the container that I've already licked! That would be disgusting!”
“Than why don't you just put some on a plate and not eat out of the container?”
“Because...” I was getting tired of explaining. “That would mean I'd have several scoops on a plate and I'd have to eat all of it.” I tipped my head to the container sitting on the counter. “This way I can wait and see if I'm full after the one scoop.”
Steven shrugged his shoulders and shook his head as he opened the cabinet and took out a plate. “I'll show you how to eat leftover potato salad.” He opened the silverware drawer. “We're out of spoons?”
“We are?” I peeked in over his shoulder. “Wow! I guess we are.”
He opened the dishwasher. “Is this clean or dirty?”
There must have been a guilty look on my face because Steven walked past me to look in the sink. “There must be a half a dozen spoons in here!”
“Please don't judge me.” I hung my head in shame. “You know how much I love this potato salad.”
Steven put his plate back in the cabinet then reached in the silverware drawer and took out two forks. Handing one to me he took the container off the counter popped opened the lid and held it out to me.
“We can share the last of it.”

I had to smile as I stabbed a potato chunk with my fork. “I love that you get me!”

Friday, July 1, 2016


I was in the kitchen unloading the dishwasher when Alex came in and asked. “Why is it so hot in here?”
I stopped for a moment, “You know, now that you mention it, it is kind of warm in here.” I put the last glass away than took out the silverware basket. “The air conditioning is on, I can hear it. Can you go check the thermostat and see what it’s set for?”
Alex went into the hallway. “It's set for 72.” he called. “But it says it's 78 in here now.”
“Oh no.” I picked up my phone and called my husband Steven. “There's something wrong with the air conditioning unit.” I said as soon as he picked up.
“I'll have someone there by this afternoon.” he said.
I had to smile as I hung up the phone. “It's always nice to be married to a contractor.” I said to Alex as I began putting the silverware away. “Dad said he'll have someone here this afternoon.”
“Great.” Alex called as he headed back to his room to get some work done.
Two hours later the heating and cooling guy arrived with Steven pulling his truck in right behind him. The two of them walked into the house said a quick hello to me and went right to work.
I really wasn't really paying much attention to what was going on as the attic stairs were pulled down and the repairman climbed up. I could hear them calling instructions to each other and I watched as Steven moved from vent to vent checking filters.
Twenty minutes later the repairman climbed down and the two of them stood in the hallway talking.
I wasn't sure how much time had passed before Steven came into the living room where I was working and sat down. “Bill's a great guy and he likes talking about the science of heating and air conditioning as much as I do.”
“That's nice.” I said, never really looking up from my laptop. “Did he fix the air conditioning?”
When Steven didn't answer, I stopped typing and looked up from my work. Steven was just staring at me.
“What?” I asked, wondering what the problem was.
“Didn't you hear the conversation Bill and I just had? We were talking to you, too. You even said “Sure” a couple of times.”
“Really?” I shrugged my shoulders. “I guess I wasn't really paying attention.”
“But we were talking about some really interesting things.” Steven persisted.
“The science of heating and air conditioning...are you kidding?” I started to laugh.
“Oh sure, when I talk about things that interest me you're all wide-eyed and thinking, LA,LA,LA,LA, LA!” he said in a sing-song voice while he was bobbing his head back and forth.
“Hey!” I said, feeling a little annoyed. “Just because I'm not interested in talking about the science of heating and air conditioning doesn't mean I'm sitting around all day thinking about unicorns and rainbows!” I cried.
Steven stopped and looked at me. “Unicorns and rainbows?” he had a surprised look on his face.

“Wow...” I shook my head, disappointed in myself. “I can't believe I just said that either.”