Monday, December 22, 2008

i miss him

My dad's been gone for 7 1/2 years.

While I don't usually miss him so much this time of year, I was watching Little People, Big World, and saw that their best friend passed on, and it was sudden, and quick, and unexpected. It made me think of my dad.

When I was a kid, this time of year was quiet. The harvest was in, everything that could be repaired probably had been by now, and the sows weren't going to farrow for at least another month and a half. This is when my dad would get fat and sassy (yeah, right, the man never broke 160. he was 5'6", and definitely not a fat man. during really busy times, i think he was lucky to be 140).

"HO HO HO! MERRY CHRISTMAS!" i can remember hearing that on several christmas mornings. my dad had a big voice for such a small man. he could rattle the windows.

i remember he could never say "banana." it was always "balana." He was very sick as an infant, and spent most of the years we learn language not hearing anything. When he finally began to hear again, it was never quite right. the Nebraska School for the Deaf focussed on sign language, rather than speech. i credit my ability to understand most people to the fact that i grew up hearing "mangled" english.

i don't miss him much this time of year. he's not as close now. wait for spring. when i drive in the country, and see farmers planting at all hours of the day and night, i hear my dad's hollering for more seed corn. when i see the corn growing up and up and up, i hear my dad talk about when they were kids and how corn grew during WWII (he wasn't allowed to serve, for obvious reasons, although he tried). My favorite smell is corn pollinating in july. Seeing combines on the road makes me remember rides on the tractor, going from field to distant field (although my dad NEVER took his equipment on the highway. if it needed to go to town, he had it trucked. said it was too hard on the tires to drive on the highway (and those tires were $500 in the 70's!))

i miss my dad

Friday, December 05, 2008

we remember

One year ago, today, the nation's worst mall shooting occured in a place i've been several times. maggie webb, angie schuster, janet jorgensen, dianne trent, gary joy, beverly flynn, gary scharf, and john mcdonald were lost that day. their families still grieve, as do we all.

never forget.

i was at miss violet's when the shooting happened. i was driving down to sean's school, when carin called me and told me "don't go to westroads. there's been a shooting." as we watched, and heard the stories, and the horror, and saw the tears and fears, we cried.

never forget

Monday, December 01, 2008

Her name is Frances

A couple of button down shirts. Some paper towels. Toilet paper. A book of stamps. Simple things. But that's all I know. These are what she wants for Christmas.

I found a giving tree at walmart today, for seniors. I went through all of them, and thought, "which one shall i pick?" when i saw Frances, I knew. What kind of life is she living that her wish is for paper towels and toilet paper? I almost broke down right there in Walmart, and every time i looked at the tag i'd taken from the tree, i'd tear up again. in fact, i need a tissue right now.

I'm so grateful for the fact that my mother isn't in that position. But Frances is someone's mother, aunt, or sister. So, I bought what she asked for. I hope it makes her Christmas a little brighter.