Monday, January 23, 2006
  The Lion, The Twins , and the Wreckers

It's funny what will trigger a memory. This morning while we three adults were debating the proper outerwear for my grandson, for the 30 seconds he would actually be out in the elements between the house and the car, his mother said "I listened to the weather". That's all it took.

This story goes back about 25 years. My girls were very little. We were getting our upstairs bathroom totally redone, floor to ceiling. As anyone who has had the experience can tell you, the first step to that kind of reconstruction, is demolition. Enter the "wreckers". That's what Sarcasmo Jr. called them. My memory tells me there were three or four men each armed with a mallet or some similar tool of destruction. Although looking at the size of my bathroom I cannot imagine how they all fit, but that's what I recall. Anyway, rather than being afraid of the noise and the mess, Sarcasmo Jr,who was about three years old, was absolutely delighted by it. She sat in the hallway outside the bathroom and giggled at the floor being ripped up, walls being smashed and fixtures being ripped out. The "wreckers" as she had anointed them were delighted by her attention and were content to let her stay, and mindful of her safety.

One morning soon after the wreckers arrived, two friends of Sarcasmo's and Sarcassis's stopped to meet them for the walk to school as was their routine. This was back when you could let your children walk to school without fear of some harm befalling them. A much simpler time. Anyway , the girls who stopped were twins. Cute little blond haired girls. They were waiting for my girls to get ready when one of the twins blurted out that they were afraid to go to school. When I asked why she said. "Because of the Lion". Their mother insisted that they listen to the weather each morning on their own and decide what to wear to school.( I was impressed). While listening that morning they heard a news story about a lion escaping from the zoo and roaming at large around the city. They had asked their mother for a ride but she had sent them on their way. I assured them that I had also listened to the news that morning and there was no mention of any animals escaping the Philadelphia Zoo, but it didn't seem to make them feel any more at ease. Not really sure that I wasn't being hoodwinked by a couple of 8 year olds I agreed to chauffeur the lot of them to school. I went to collect all three of my girls for the quick trip. The wreckers said they would keep an eye on Sarcasmo Jr. As I said, it was a simpler time. Lest you think I left my child with strangers, the contractor lived on the same block as the twins and the other men were all from the area. I'm not sure I would do it today, but as I said, it was a simpler time.

I ran the girls to school and was back in 10 minutes. Upon my return I yelled up the stairs "Mommy's home Sarcasmo Jr". In reply I got a chorus of responses from the wreckers.
" She's not here"
"A lion came by while you were gone"
"A lion ate her"

Sarcasmo Jr. just giggled. Like I said, a simpler time.

*update-I just thought I should mention that the girls did hear a news report about an escaped lion that day, but it was in another state.

Sunday, January 22, 2006
  Sometimes The Truth Hurts

I saw this while visiting Mama B. .

you suck, and that's sad
you are the "you suck, and that's sad"
happy bunny. your truthful, but can be a bit

which happy bunny are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Thirteen Things about SARCASMOM

This Thursday Thirteen was inspired by Mitey Mite who posted about the power of a "Thank You". She said to pass it on. So here are thirteen thank yous.

1. Thank you to my wonderful children for gifting me with this blog two Mothers' days ago. They know me so well.

2. Thank you to Sarcasdad who pretends I mean it when I say "I'll be up to bed in a minute, I just want to check out my blog really quick"

3. Thank you to all who responded to my last post with a memory of their oldest relatives. There is some very interesting stuff in those comments. I urge you to read them. And for those of you who left them, there is some wonderful material for future posts!

4. Thank you to Sarcasmo for leading the way and making me one proud blog-mom.

5. Thank you to Michele for creating a place to Meet N' Greet. I have made the acquaintance of many of you there.

6. Thank you to Ally for the entertaining stories of lodgers and home makeovers.

7. Thank you to the Last Girl On Earth for the snippets of songs.

8. Thank you to Practigal for the amusing stories about "the little guy"

9. Thank you to Muzikdude for his unique take on life.

10. Thank you to MommaK for sharing stories about life in the Ding Dang Woods.

11.Thank you to dbsmall for traveling from one coast to the other to meet me. (okay, he was going to a wedding but he did stop and say hello.Also he was actually visiting Sarcasmo, we were just lucky enough to be along and to meet his lovely wife and adorable son).

12. Thank you for Mitey Mite for inspiring this Thursday Thirteen, as well as all of her travelogues.

13. Thank you to all I did not mention by name. I really look forward to catching up with you through your posts. This was the easiest Thursday Thirteen yet!

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. Uisce

2. Carrie

3. Jennifer

4. Mar

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Thursday, January 12, 2006
  Story of a Lifetime

There is something about a sheet of white lined paper that calls to me. For as long as I can remember, the sight of such a pristine canvas has filled me with the desire to fill up all the space with words written in beautiful flowing script. Unfortunately my handwriting is atrocious. I can't tell you how many reports cards were kept from perfection by that pity "b" in handwriting. Still,I never let poor penmanship deter me. There is something so satisfying about filling up those lined spaces.

Under the Christmas tree this year was a whole book of blank pages with lines. It was a gift to Sarcasdad and myself from our Grandson, precocious one year old that he is. The book, entitled "The Story of a Lifetime" is meant to be filled in by us with details and memories of our lives, and then, at some point, be given back to the Cutie Patootie. It is not entirely blank. It is quite a hefty volume, separated into chapters , each with questions you can answer about yourself. Lots and lots of questions. According to the flyleaf there are" almost 500 questions" that range from" simple to provocative". The simple ones I had anticipated: "What do you remember about your mother?"" How did you meet your spouse?""What is your favorite book?-movie?-color?" What I didn't anticipate were questions like "What do you believe is the real mystery of life?", ""What do you believe causes ethnic prejudice & what can be done to get rid of it?", "What is your most painful memory as a teenager?"

Where ,oh where to begin? At the beginning you say? Of course. The first chapter covers family background so the required answers will be largely factual. What puzzles me more is when to begin.The answer to how we feel about our jobs could vary from this week to the next, or five years from now. And just how honest should we be? Do we pick and choose what chinks in the armour we show our future progeny, or is it in for a penny in for a pound? These questions have led to many more questions.

There are questions we won't have answers for. There is a whole chapter on the military which doesn't apply to us, we were never stepparents and we didn't go to college. The book defines The Middle Years as from 45 to 60 so we have a way to go there and then still have to tackle the Golden years.

So here is what I think. I think we should pick our questions in no particular order. I think we have to answer the harder ones as well as the easy ones. I know the actual writing will be largely left up to me, but it will be the story of our life together and how we got there. I think that as much as I would like to place the words directly on the pages of the book, I know this isn't practical for me.(see reference to atrocious handwriting). I'm going to keep them all in a file on a computer, accessible for rereading and revising. When we are ready we will choose a lovely font and print them out on carefully chosen paper to mount in the book. Will we ever finish? Will we actually give to the Cutie Patootie or will we leave it to him in our will? More questions, that will get answers someday.

I thought that every now and then I might post a question from the book for you to ponder. Here is an easy one.

"What do you remember about your oldest relative(s) you knew personally?"

I can only go back as far as my maternal grandparents. My grandfather was a big strong man of few words who smoked cigars and spent his evenings down at the VFW. I already covered my grandmother in the Nana Picklehead post. What do you remember, and about whom?

Sunday, January 08, 2006

We took down most of Christmas today, so hopefully this will be the last yuletide related post as well.

Like most of you, I'm sure, the Sarcas-family has holiday traditions. This year saw a few of them change.

The stockings were not hung by the chimney with care, but laid atop piles of gifts. This was due to the installation of a gas insert in our fireplace. In my over active imagination I pictured one of the stockings falling down and being ignited by the pilot light and sending the whole house up in flames. No one seemed to mind.

For the first time in 28 years Sarcasmo Jr. was not the first person to open presents. We go in age order and the Cutie Patootie now leads off the merriment. Technically this was his second Christmas, but as he was only a week old and 6,000 miles away, we still let Sarcasmo Jr. go first last year.

Today, for the first time I can remember, Sarcasdad got the Christmas tree, out of the stand, and, out of the house, unassisted by yours truly. This one was tough for me. There was no standing on my toes with my arm stuck in pine needles up to my shoulder trying to hold onto a tree larger than myself as it is released one by one from the tethers holding it upright. And to boot, the tree stand didn't get tipped over, spilling the water onto the carpet. I don't know. I mean, tradition is tradition!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006
  Collect Them All

Just because I haven't posted much over the holidays, doesn't mean I haven't been online. I have been keeping tabs on all of my favorite blogs. Kenju, host of Justaskjudy, has been sharing pictures of some of her collectibles. She has an array of beautiful and nostalgic paper fans. What a cool item to collect. And quite the accumulation of matchbook covers. Each one is small, but each conjures up memories of where and when. More than worth the space they take up.

I collect mice. Not real ones, although I kept hamsters as pets from the time I was a small girl to well after I had children of my own. We also had a mouse and a guinea pig. I have quite the houseful of ceramic, stuffed, china, glass, crystal and wooden rodents. It started innocently enough. My Mother had a china closet in which she housed lots of chatchkys. On the middle shelf, in the corner sat a ceramic mouse, painted orange with a white tummy. It had wire rimmed glasses and a tuft of white hair. I was quite attached to it. More so I think because my brother had sent it to my Mom from some port of call when he was in the Navy. I finally persuaded my mother to let me keep it in my room. It was my one and only mouse for a very long time. Years later,on vacation in Atlantic City, long before there were casinos, I purchased a little wooden mouse with a magnet in it at a store on the Boardwalk. Then I had 2, and a collection. Over the last 40 plus years it has grown to a number so large I stopped counting. Just from where I am sitting I can see about 100 mice perched across my rolltop desk and on the walls around it. On display on the fireplace mantel are the ""Christmas Mice" that I bring out at holiday time. I have no idea how many there are. Putting them out is part of my Christmas tradition. When they are put away the mantel will becovered with Royal Dalton china from the Brambly Hedge Collection. Featuring, you guessed it,mice. Like Kenju's matchbooks, each mouse has a memory attached to it. They really represent people who gave them to me, or places I have been.

If I had the space I would, like Kenju, have other collections as well. While trying to hunt down a nutcracker in the character of "The Mouse King" I became enamored of the nutcrackers and also something called a smoker that I saw in Christmas stores in Germany. And at a store where they carry my china pattern they also hace the cutest teapots. I could get into them as well. But we would need another house.

If you feel like sharing, tell us what you collect. What got you started?

Debra B. Designs
Debbie's Photoblog
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