Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Random Thought for the Day

No matter how bad our day has been,
No matter how much our life stinks,
There is always someone somewhere whose situation is worse.
It is time to be generous; spiritually, physically, emotionally.

“To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.”  Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Tree and Me

I am having a hard time taking down our Christmas tree this year. The room where it resides, where all the living gets done in our house, is a minefield strewn with boxes, lids, and paper. There are ornaments on the tree, on the couch, on the coffee table, on the floor.

The problem is not that I’m lazy. The problem is that I’m sentimental. Our tree is a 3-dimensional, large-scale family scrapbook. It includes the very first ornaments from our very first Christmas together and at least one for every year we’ve been together. They each have a story; representing where we were geographically and what we were doing. There are also some from my childhood and some that were gifts from family and friends; store bought and handmade; all precious.  

Then there are Anna’s ornaments; at least one (usually several) for each of her 18 years. Ornaments she made at school, the Christmas spiders she made with Grandma Franny, the ornaments she picked out with Grandma Grace, the Beanie Baby ornaments, and the Swan Lake and Nutcracker ornaments. There are the exquisite Waterford ornaments from my sister commemorating her birth; and all the other “first Christmas” ornaments. There are the quirky, yet perfect, ornaments she chose for herself every year. These are the ornaments that are kicking my butt.

For as long as I can remember decorating the tree has been a family event filled with laughter and stories and remember whens, and the tradition has been carried out in my own home. Anna helped me decorate the tree this year, and we had laughter and stories and remember whens.

But Anna doesn’t live in our house anymore; she has her own place. So as I dismantle this tree, Anna’s ornaments are going into a separate box. They are hers, for all her trees to come. That has always been the plan.

I plod through this task and remember every detail. I remember her at every age. And I wonder with an extremely heavy heart if this was the last tree she will decorate in our home; the last year these memories will adorn our tree.

I wonder, too, if this is how my mother felt as she packed up ornaments for each of her four children as they journeyed out on their own; shedding her own bittersweet tears for what was and what is to be.

To Prove My Point

Okay, kids.
This is what I want you to do.
First, muster up your very best red-neck accent.
Go ahead...I know you have one.
Now, I want you to say the following sentence out loud in that accent:

"Our product development department has came up with..."

Hearing that every day on the radio makes me want to stab pointy sticks into my ears.

In the past week, along with the above,
I have heard "ain't" used in a local radio ad,
and a news broadcaster say, "That's a whole nother story",
and a television commercial for a national product for children use the word "funnest".

These phrases do not instill confidence.
They do not create a connection.
They make they speaker appear uneducated.
They make the product appear substandard.

 I ain't got no more to say 'bout this here matter. (Spoken in my best red-neck accent).

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Random Rant

Will someone please tell me when it became acceptable for the media to butcher the English language?

Is it a case of trying to "connect", or do these people truly not know better?
And where the hell is the editor?
And if the editor is allowing this stuff to go through they need to find another line of work.

Okay, I'm finished.
Carry on.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Adventures in Yoga

I've decided that I really like the whole yoga thing.
And there's something to be said for doing it in the privacy of your own home.
Because no one sees you topple over when doing some full body stretch that involves bricks.
And nobody can laugh at you when your boobs get in the way of another stretch.
There are issues with having an ample bosom and small feet.
Just saying...

However, there are some disadvantages, too.
Three to be exact.
Their names are Sam, Dolly, and Sassy.
Sam thinks any time my body is not in motion it's kitty snuggle time.
Dolly has this crazy hair-nesting thing going on.
Sassy feels it is her obligation to "revive" anyone lying on the floor with a frenzy of wet doggy kisses.
So...while I'm doing my yoga thing they are banished to the great outdoors.
Problem solved, right?

There's just one little thing...
I can look over at any time and see three furry little faces staring at me through the door.

I wonder if they're laughing?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Let Go, Let Go, Let Go

I am tight.

Not in the sense that teenagers use the word.
As in, "That Mrs. B is sooo tight!" (Translation: cool).
Although, I am.
My sister-in-law and I decided that we were both totally cool, and we always will be.

But I digress.

I am tight in the sense that I am a wad of shrieking, knotted muscles.
The extend to which was not fully realized until I decided that something had to be done about it.

You see, I (and my sisters...it's one of many family curses) carry all my tension in my shoulders.
It's painful, dammit!
Before Christmas I decided enough was enough.
So while ordering a Christmas gift for my daughter from Barnes and Noble, I also ordered myself a wonderful little DVD entitled "Yoga for Back Care".
It's all about stretching and relaxation and a little strengthening.

It's great.
Except that once I got started it became painfully obvious that this tension problem is not isolated to my shoulders.
I can say with certainty that every muscle in my body is involved.
And I'm wondering how the hell things got so out of control.
One day you're young and limber, and the next day, bam!, your butt is screaming as you try to touch your toes!

But the program works.
I actually feel taller.
I sleep better.
I wake up less stiff.

Oh, there's still LOTS of work to be done here.
Physically and emotionally.
As the mantra at the end of the program tells me,
"Let go...let go...let go..."

I'm less tight, but still...
Sooo totally tight.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Little Irony

Our cable television provider and the local NBC affiliate are in a little contract tiff, and as a result as of Monday at midnight we can no longer watch NBC or CW programming at our house.

Honestly, there is very little on either of those channels that I watch, so no big deal.
Except there is one show that I really, really like...Parenthood.
If you've never seen it, you should...it's good.
It airs on Tuesday evenings.

So last night I was slightly miffed over this whole money-grousing thing between the two entities. But then I recalled that this particular show can be viewed on-line.

So, that is exactly what I did!

It was great because I actually watched two episodes in the same length of time it would have taken to watch one episode on television.

The irony?
Our cable provider is also our internet provider.