feeling lucky

A little before 10:00am Blue dog and I stepped outside for our second walk of the morning. Temps are brrr cold and we’re walking once again upon freshly fallen snow. We pass by several neighbors shoveling and greet the ones we know. Just a few doors down, is the kind, white haired neighbor man who pauses in his work to smile and say to me, “You sure are dedicated.” Then he adds, “You sure are a lucky dog, Blue.” That made me laugh! Yep. He is. Blue acknowledged the words of his neighbor friend with a happy woof and tail wag. Oh. He knows. We stayed on course, circling around the block. The little one, not one of our longer routes. Back inside now, thawing out with a later than usual hot breakfast, while the dog curls back up on the couch. My lucky canine compatriot. After food, it’ll be time to retrieve my shovel from the garage for digging out the front of the house. For many weeks I kept a snow shovel propped by the front door, only recently returning it to the garage, rather optimistically. Oh well. More snow fell. Winter is still quite “ON.” Thankfully we got less snow than predicted and it is the light, fluffy version of the white stuff. Very doable. Although, breakfast has turned into brunch here. My boys drifted to the kitchen in search of food. Sausage has been cooked and bacon is sizzling now. Evidently breakfast meat is the secret to A Great Sunday at home. Even better is the time we’ll spend in scripture, worshipping at Home Church for awhile longer. Suddenly a day that began with solitude and quiet is filling up with life, love and yes, a bit o’commotion. Good stuff. God stuff. We’re all “lucky dogs” because we have each other. Feeling thankful and blessed. Let it snow.

March 2, 2014

“Mud Season” by Ellen Stimson @ellenstimson

It started one late fall morning, when I read an excerpt from Ellen Stimson’s first book, “Mud Season” in “Reader’s Digest” that had me grinning and laughing. When my oldest son, age 13, woke up I suggested he read that mini tale about rain, cows, a skunk and chickens. He chuckled too. He did. Laughter is even better shared. That was sometime before Christmas. I then ordered several copies of “Mud Season” to give as gifts, and wrapped a copy for myself in Christmas paper too, Mom Style. I began to meander and mosey through it, reading while I ate my meals, often standing up in the kitchen. I’ve never been to Vermont. I love cheese. I’ve always wanted to visit New England. Some of my friends have chickens. I buy farm fresh eggs from them, brown and white ones. Part of me wants to move and live anywhere but here, but we’re staying put. We are. It’s A Good Spot. Earlier today, at 9:27am, I wrote in an email to a friend, “Lots to do and I just want to curl up with a book in bed and tell the world to go away. Maybe with an F thrown in, some days. Unplugging today as much as I can. Breakfast is next. Went to the store first.” Then, at 11:08am, I wrote to her again saying, “I just finished reading “Mud Season” by Ellen Stimson. Thought of you a lot as I read because I loved the way she told her story – honest, funny as hell, with excellent cussing. I sat and read in a quiet house, with my last cup of coffee, while my Blue dog snoozed on the love seat next to me, his head by my side. I’m crying because I read to the end and she included recipes – cheese and cream laden ones. Oh my. More too. All of it really. Through the past few years, during my husband’s cancer fight, I couldn’t read much, but I could write. I love to read and “Mud Season” was a fun book. Memoir. A saucy, sassy one.” The beauty of “Mud Season” is that it felt so much like a multilayered conversation with my closest girlfriends. They are an amazing group of strong, fascinating women with beautiful smiles and musical laughs, who simultaneously pray you through a storm and help you find your smile with stories from their lives. That’s what friends do. Books are friends too. They keep us company, teach us stuff and are meant to be shared, like a good meal and laughter. Poor, Ellen Stimson. I found her on twitter and have been tweeting to her as I read along. At 11:28am, after I finished reading, I tweeted her this picture and said briefly:
“Dear @ellenstimson,
I finished Mud Season this morning. Smiled, laughed and cried w/Blue by my side.
~Janean”
The end. Now the dog is awake, off the love seat and barking to go out. No more time to type, because nature calls, both the dog’s and the beauty of outdoors with glitter on the snow in sunlight under a blue sky, even if the temp is 1*F. It’s time for me to “write for real” with a purpose. Memoir. It beckons me. My first book, “The Blue Collection,” is hiding, right out in the open here at Tumblr. It is a collection of all these micro posts, poems and stories about me and my dog, Blue. Woof. Again. He’s really gotta go at 12:45pm.
(Time lapses.) I took the dog out. My Aunt Janet called as we circled the block. I didn’t slip on the ice as we talked and laughed rat a tat tat fast. Familial shorthand. I saw a friend walking her two little white dogs. Knew today her husband was to hear Doctor News. It wasn’t good. Damn it. Hugged her. Caregiver support. Walked home. Read and replied to emails. Tweeted some. Phone got down to 3% battery before I plugged it in. 2:16pm now, as I’m finally going to click, “post.” I know where the day has gone. Words. The ones I read, the ones I wrote, the ones I spoke. The day has been gobbled up with words. I just remembered to feed the dog. I can hear his food go crunch. It’s time for my lunch as my stomach growls a reminder. “Mud Season” charmed me. That’s what this post is about. I am a rambler. Brevity eludes me, except in poetry, and I’m OK with that.

February 7, 2014

day by day

“We make plans and God laughs.” I seriously said that aloud earlier this week, on Monday in fact. Like a “bring it on” idiot. Plans change. Sometimes fast. Thankful it’s just flu, and nothing worse. My Grandpa will still turn 98 tomorrow, just without us there in person. We’ll be there in spirit, and keep our germs at home. We have everything we need and will all be A OK soon. I boarded the dog anyway. That too is for the best. Funny thing is, in 20/20 hindsight, I scheduled more things this week than I’ve attempted all in a row for awhile. When first my youngest son was sick on Sunday, I started rescheduling, canceling and shuffling things around. The things meant most to happen did – like helping K3 finger paint, getting groceries (more jello), and visiting fast with friends. My oldest son knew I planned to call both boys off school today, so he diligently worked ahead. I had hoped he’d dodged this bug, but the 8th grader has it now. “Confirmed” like on MythBusters. Quarantined too. That’s what’s happening at my house. Happy Friday and wishing good health to you!

side by side

While walking my dog, Blue this morning
I nearly laughed aloud
We walk past this one house
The one with an in-ground pool, slide and gorgeous landscaping
They have a fence, but it’s not that tall (sort of like me)
I spy a mallard pair
Him and Her
Just standing there
The cover is off the pool for the first time this Spring
As the dog and I walk on past, there they go
Jumping in
I smile as they swim side by side
Gliding along the backyard water
That they were lucky enough to find
A lovely l’il morning swim
For them

May 26, 2013

Dog Walkin’ Story For Today

As I think, “What’s that? Looks like a stick.”
Blue pokes it with his nose and then suddenly jerks back.
I laugh and say aloud, “A wiggly worm.”
We timed our walk just right, for between rain storms.
Peacock covered rain boots on my two feet.
Blue rockin’ four furry paws.
The early birds are feastin’ this mornin’ ‘cause the wiggly worms are right out in the open.
Monday again.
Have a good one.

April 8, 2013

These two canoodling canines sure would make some pretty puppies. Alas, twill never be, ‘cause my boy, Blue, was already “fixed” before Miss Luna moved in to the house on the corner with the fenced yard. He’s a l’il bit older, no comment on wiser, and even without a litter o’pups shared between them, these two purebred dogs are all kinds o’crazy in love with each other. Oh, how they make me smile and laugh with all their carrying on!

March 9, 2013

LUNA
Blue just KNOWS
when it’s time to head outdoors and see his best girl
oh how she dances and prances at seeing him
he tries to go into Stealth Mode
as if he is invisible and she can’t hear his tags jingle or my booted feet hitting concrete
he hunkers down and crosses the street
trying for slow motion
but he’s tugging, “Hurry up!”
as he beelines toward her fence with complete canine devotion
as soon as we hit her sidewalk she woofs and he drags me on ahead
I hustle as I hold his leash, and can’t help but laugh aloud
the musical sound rings out, in the quiet of the neighborhood at high noon
these two purebred pups
oh my, but they do make me smile
bigger than puppy love
so I call it Dog Romance
not to say I don’t call ‘em Romeo and Juliet sometimes too
or drag Blue away, saying, “Come on, Casanova, it’s time to get on home.”
*sigh*
Love
long nose, pointy eared, tail wagging kind

March 3, 2013 
written standing on the sidewalk at 12:04pm on Sunday afternoon, while Blue and Luna canoodle, the neighborhood Love Pups

Here Lies the Remains of a Girl Who–Did What Now?: Put yourself back together.

autumndragonfly:

  • Sit quietly in a storm without an umbrella, without a word of complaint. Let the rain wash away every ounce of bitterness that has been used to write a eulogy on your skin.
  • You’re not dead.
  • Remember.
  • Drive down to the river. Drive down to where the industrial waste has not re-colored the…

I love the rain
Spring rains will come soon
Thunderstorms and gentle mists
I welcome both

I love walking in the woods
and on a gravel road
lined with trees on either side

I love resting
whether on a proper bench
or plopping on the ground

I love the river
especially Grandpa’s river
the mighty Mississippi
standing atop his bluff
looking o’er her curving path
there I can breathe

I love to smile
and often do
a gentle curve of lips
or crooked at the corner
a flash of teeth and quick laugh
full wattage mega kind too
the best ones reach my eyes

I love the rain
I walk my dog without an umbrella
wearing rain boots with peacocks
splashing through puddles
with a grin
laughing at my prancing pup

I am not dead. I am here. Thank you, God, for these simple things and the ability to find joy in quiet moments such as these. Thank you for family and friends, and the powerful prayers of Your people who are lifting up my cancer fighting husband and me and our boys asking for the strength and courage we need to weather this vicious storm. We are thankful, humbled and oh, so very blessed. Hope bubbles fresh anew each day. Your love will see us through. ~Janean

January 25, 2013

Here Lies the Remains of a Girl Who–Did What Now?: Put yourself back together.

funny story…

My best text of the day was a wrong number.

at 9:42am ? wrote:
Happy birthday gorgeous. Enjoy your day hope all’s well.

at 10:11am I replied:
Sweet message, but you sent it to a wrong number. Hope you resend to right person ASAP.

at 10:40am he (I’m assuming) wrote:
Ha my apologies.

I replied:
No problem 🙂

? wrote:
Btw who did I send this to?

I wrote back with my phone number, ‘cause if it were me, I’d want to know which digit I had wrong

? wrote:
New phone and carrier so flying blind. Sorry again whoever this may be 🙂

The small smile and quick laugh, that I shared with a friend, as I read the initial text aloud, added to the fun of it.

That sweet text though
I knew it wasn’t for me
Even if my birthday had been on January 13th
(And it’s not)

January 13, 2013

The oven timer beeped, “done” at 8:30a.m.
I asked my youngest son, as he was quietly sitting nearby, to tell his big brother, “The cinnamon rolls are ready, it’s time for him to save his game, power down and come upstairs to eat.”
Next thing I knew the basement door was flung open, and that littlest boy used a great big voice to shout, “Get your butt up here! Breakfast is ready!”
I gotta admit, his big brother listened and I laughed aloud in reply.
I was still chuckling and smiling as I handed ‘em each a plateful of iced, cinnamon goodness, baked from a refrigerated Pillsbury tube.
Good morning.
May your day be A Good One.
I’m smiling here, still charmed by my youngest son’s cut to the chase translation.
~ Janean

November 4, 2012