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Before Facebook, people could not hide behind an icon/avatar. They would have to be man/woman enough to look you in the eyes and call you a stupid idiot. That takes a lot of guts to do and perhaps the self-destructive desire to be smacked in the face with a fist.
Think about that as you sit around the table this Thanksgiving, with your relatives who you used to just see on holidays and now can ‘speak’ to daily on Facebook.
Would you really have said any of the following to them, in person?
“You voted against God. You voted for the death of people.”
“You are lazy, live on welfare, housing assistance, food stamps and will make our system implode.”
“Before the election, you promised to riot, cause mass destruction and violence and assassinate ….”
The above quotes are atributed, originally to a Kimber Chitwood and forwarded to me on Facebook, by relatives, who I am pretty sure would never say any of that to my face.
I may disagree with your vote, but I would never denegrate the way you vote or your right to vote.
On a personal side, from people who would do sit across from me at Thanksgiving Dinner, I was told, on Facebook:

“…watched Jerry springer for a second and we were like damn these ppl are stupid. He (husband) said, “Well here ya go hunny, these are the ppl who must’ve voted!”

“…those of us who voted for Romney are educated enough to develop a plan of action to get Obama out of office. There are just a lot more uneducated people in America today.”

They are saying this to an Edmund J. James scholar and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society member with six years of college under her belt.  I’m hardly uneducated nor stupid.

And, that is only two entries. For months now, I have felt like I was personally attacked because my politics doesn’t agree with their politics.  Do I think I am right, “well, of course.” Do I think they are wrong, “yes.”  Do I think they are stupid because of the way they vote, “NO.” That is who they are and what a sad boring ‘Stepford Wife’ world we would live in if we all believed the same way.

This country was founded on checks and balances to stop one belief system having all of the power. If you cannot accept that, and need to denigrate the other belief than yours in a personal way, then you have a problem.

I’m told not to take it personally, but my belief system is who I am.  How do you take being told you are an idiot? Do you take it personally?

“We are an American family and we rise or fall together as one nation,” said a wise man.

So, what do you think?  Are people forgetting they are texting/tweeting/facebook(ing)?? to other human beings? Are they losing courtesy? Have they lost respect?  Is this the downfall of man? Let me know what you think.

Internet shopping!

We found our house on the internet.  I fell in love with the picture of this  bungalo on a large pond, with woods all around.  What we found was that bugs come in the house, from those woods, when it starts getting cold. The second storey was built over the walk-out basement without removing the existing roof.  Hence, our floor creeks like it has ghosts and has a ridge in the kitchen floor.

I really like this house from the outside, and we still love our 3.7 acres, but inside is a different matter and being on a fixed income it is inevitable that everything is breaking down over time.  The latest is the circuit to the air-conditioner, but before that, it was the washer and dryer.

Since my mother lived with us for several years before moving to her own apartment, we have found ourselves with duplicate appliances. It is nice to have a spare occasionally, but mom’s washer/dryer were a stacking set and these things are notorious for problems. It was worked on numerous times the first year or two of its life then it settled into random problems. First, anything but a full load of water would overflow.  So, if you had a half load to wash, you had to set it on full and waste that water. Then, the dryer started squeaking and you could not dry clothes after anyone went to bed because it would wake them up with it’s Chinese water torture squeak.

It was no surprise when the dryer went completely.  My dryer was brought in from my studio and set beside the stacking set. So, now you wash in the stacking set and dry in the single dryer. That is, unless you are half asleep.

Gaffer got home late one night from work, and being a fry cook, had really greasy white shirts to wash, put them in the dryer and pushed the on button, walked away without realizing the dryer was not running.

Next morning, he stumbles into the laundry room and realizes his shirts were not dry.

I think he needs to get more sleep.

“Darn” (sure, that’s what he said.)  Blinking dryer. I’m going to have to wear a wet shirt. I have one clean shirt and it’s heavyweight and it’s over 100 here in Indiana. “Darn, Darn,Darn.”

He put on the last shirt, started the dryer again and left for work.

He did not check the dryer when he worked a long shift and came home late. Morning came and the dryer still did not dry his shirts.

It was with good humor, that he told me that evening, that he realized, for two days he had been trying to dry his shirts in the stacking unit, which was broken.

It’s all relative

Mom behind the counter at the Indiana Barbeque

This is a photo of a restaurant called the Indiana Barbeque. Mom, Phyllis Adair DeWitt-VanVleck, was a waitress at this restaurant.

Originally, she worked at the restaurant across the street, but tired of the way they cut meat off of meals that were half eaten and served it to another diner, and just unsanitary practices like that. The owner of Indiana Barbeque had offered her a job several times and she finally took him up on his offer.

One night, this gentleman came into the Indiana Barbeque on a search for mashed potatoes.

Harold G. VanVleck

Harold G. VanVleck was not in the military yet, but he fell in love with that waitress. Not just the mashed potatoes that they happened to have that night because the owner wanted some for his dinner. The owner shared them with Harold and Harold lined up all the pennies in his pocket and when Phyllis picked up that plate, she found her tip in pennies, in a ring.

Now, that may not sound like much of a tip, but this was somewhere around 1939.  Pennies were worth a whole lot more.

Phyllis is 90 now and lives alone, for the first time in her life. Harold passed away in 1998, at the age of 79.

And, they fell in love over a circle of pennies.

Family Ghosts

I really enjoy reading http://my91yearoldmom.wordpress.com/.  If you would like to read a sensitive, loving, humorous story of an aging mother, check out “My 91 year old mom.”

Helping to care for my 90 year old mother, I relate to his stories of Tom caring for his mom.  I was going to link to the story of his sister haunting the house, but I could not find it.  It is somewhere in his blog and worthy of your read.  The story of his mother and Mr. Booger head is hysterical.  I particularly relate to the story of his sister’s ghost, for I have had some experience with my own ghost.

David, Evelyn Sheryl

My brother was six years older than I am.  I understand mom would have to tell him to stop giving in to me, when I was little, because I would get spoiled.  But, what I remember is playing by the door when it was time for David to come home from school.  Through the years, David would give me advice on boys and chase away the ones who liked me but I did not return their feelings.  He was my protector and friend.  He made eclairs for us to share and he taught me how to wrap Christmas presents, play backgammon, chess and cribbage, and, when he went into the Air Force, he read my teen angst written letters.  He died in 1990 of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.  My brother, David, and I.

My dad became ill around 1998, although I’m sure Hemochromatosis was destroying his body for some time before we found out what was wrong.  This disease is a build-up of iron in the body.  Normally your body excreets it.  Dad’s did not.  It destroys your organs and causes a build up of ammonia in your brain.  Dad was getting to the point where he was difficult to deal with.   Husband and I went to visit them, in Arkansas, to discuss having them move to Wyoming.  Dad was opposed to the move but husband had the idea of giving them the upstairs and we would move into the finished walk-out basement.

David and Dad in 1948

As we sat around their dining room table discussing the move I looked out the patio door.  It was dark outside and our figures reflected in the glass.  I was startled at the resemblance of my dad to my brother.  I had never noticed it before, but there he was, my brother, looking back at me in the glass.  I slowly turned to look at dad, and to verify that there was a resemblance. There was not.  In his 70s, he did not look a thing like his son had.  I swung back to the glass, and the reflection had gone.  I could barely even see the reflection of my father.

I have always thought that my brother was letting me know that he was waiting for dad to join him. My dad died three months after he moved in with us in Wyoming.

We do not have any pets, at this time, but in October, every year, a black cat hangs around our yard, and likes to groom itself on our car, obviously.

This was my view out the kitchen window this morning.

Black cat grooming on the car

Happy Halloween everyone!

During my adult lifetime, I have been everything from a size 6 to a size 22.  After years of up and down and not liking crowded closets, I have settled on having rubbermaids labeled 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16 and I used to have 18, but I got rid of it last year.  For ever!!!

While I have not gotten back to my weight lifting and aerobic exercise routine I had before my heart problems came up, I am serious about how I eat.  After open heart surgery, I found out I was one of the 26.9 % of people who develop Type II diabetes.  During 2009, I laid off of sweets, to a large degree, and went even lower on salt than I already was.  I cut out red meat, for the most part.  My doctor told me that it will not kill me to eat a piece of cake for my birthday and I have occasionally done so.  Did I mention that I have three official birthdays a year?

Salad for breakfast

In the beginning vegan diet, there was salad to eat. I was hungry 24/7 and now salad is but one part of my diet

Then, I found out that my heart surgery had failed and I had 70% blockage in a vein at the entry point to my heart. I am no longer a candidate for further open heart surgery, so I decided to go vegan.

First, let me say, in no way has this been an easy battle.  The first two months of a plant based diet seemed to be the magical formula.  I lost two pounds a week, but was continually hungry and never satisfied.  It’s the same plant based, no oil diet that President Clinton went on after his heart problem.  Only thing is, I do not have a chef to make the food taste good and the creator of the diet has the wierdest taste buds on earth.  He puts sweet potatoes or sweet squash in everything, along with about 26 more ingrediants) and frankly only sweet and sour chicken is a sweet/sour mix I like.

I am now eating Vegetarian and hoping to work my way back to Vegan.  With the help of three cholesterol busters (medications) and my no meat diet (and there is the very, very occasional hamburger out) I have reduced my clogging from 70% to 50%. You can do that.

Now, if I can just get my body back on the treadmill and weight bench, I can maybe get some of those rubbermaids emptied out to Good Will.

Bon Appetite!

I grew up in semi-rural, northern Indiana.  There was a cornfield behind our house.  This was the bane of my mother’s existence every time they plowed and sent dust into her house.  There was an empty field on one side, where my brother was allowed to play with his friends but I was not.  Mother was always convinced I was going to be kidnapped.  In later years, I decided that it wasn’t so much that she thought I would be kidnapped as that she had kidnapped me herself and did not want them to come and get me back.  This was in response to the fact that my mother is OCD and I have IWRPPTCH  (I would rather paint pictures than clean house).

My lackadaisical attitude toward housecleaning has been the bane of my mother’s existence forever. It was not an era of concentrating on the positive, with a child. It was the era when you wrote my mom a poem and she corrected the spelling and handed it back. When young, my paintings looked a bit abstract and that was considered “messy” too. The truth is, I am messy.

I have had three houses that I kept clean: 1. was a new house with plenty of storage and room, 2. was a house in Wyoming that only had husband and myself in for one year and was big, nice and I kept it clean.  Then, my daughter needed a place and everything from the basement came up and five people moved into the finished basement, but I still kept it fairly clean.  A year later, daughter’s family moved out, mom and dad moved in and we moved down into the finished basement.  We now live in a small house with two to three growing boys.  It reaches status as a feature on Hoarders periodically, and I just don’t care anymore. Upstairs we have 1 closet and no food pantry, or coat closet or any type of storage. I just cannot keep it clean.

Recently, a dear friend commented that she had so much fun when mom and I visited.  I stated it was too bad I didn’t have room for them to stay here when they were traveling through.  My mother almost had a heart attack.

I’ve always felt inferior. It took me till I hit 60 to realize that it was not a matter of me not being good enough.  i was even winning awards in painting yet never thought I had talent.  But, one day, as mom was on her constant search for the perfect “whatever” I woke up and said, “It’s not me.  Nothing is ever good enough for mom.”

http://my91yearoldmom.wordpress.com/2011/10/21/kin-to-a-ghost/#comment-134

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