Tuesday, June 24, 2014

What One Auntie Knows

My husband & I just went on vacation. Our first real vacation in many years. We rode up to and through the mountains on our motorcycle. You have lots of time to think on a motorcycle and lots of thinking I did.

One thought in particular struck me and stayed with me for a lot of the 1,000+ miles we traveled. A while back my niece made and innocent comment to me. “What one Auntie knows, the other Auntie knows.”

My sister and I are called Auntie (pronounced ant-ee, not the more refined ont-ee) by our respective nieces and nephews. We even call each other Auntie. I suspect we came up with that because my sister had children first and everyone knows how hard (and cute) it is for small children to say a long drawn out name and then add an “aunt” in front of it. My name is long and drawn out. Grown-ups don’t even get it right most of the time. I could just imagine in my mind how her sweet babies would mangle it, so 'Auntie' came to life and it stuck.

Now, back to that statement that had me thinking so hard. I know my niece never really believed that phrase would live in the history of my mind, but it made one thing very clear when she said it. My sister and I are VERY close. Very close.

So close in fact that most people outside our immediate circle think we are just friends. Good friends. It has been this way our whole lives. I am fortunate, I know it. Many sisters can't even get along in the best of circumstances. Mine is my best friend.

Now, that is not to say we did not have our glaring differences and scuffles and outright fights. We do, did and have. But one of the few memorable nuggets of insight my mother gave us was that we needed to learn to get along, because we were sisters and were stuck with each other for life. The truth of the matter is that I don’t think we ever had to learn to get along, we just did. We actually liked each other and still do.

I came to the conclusion on this motorcycle journey of thought, that actually we must somehow be twins. Somewhere in the genesis of life, one of mom’s eggs split and ½ made my sister and 2 years later the other half made me. It was a medical miracle!

We don’t look exactly the same like twins do, but I chalk that up the degradation of the ovum while it rested and waited in my mom’s internalness to make twin #2 (me).

I have planned most of my life, including on this long overdue vacation, by calculating when, where, why, why not, and how often I could be with her. I have often wondered if I call (and now text) her too much. I run almost every idea I have by her so I can get her opinion. I have even made plans in my head for when we are old about how we simply must be together in the same nursing home. Adjoining rooms naturally.

I can’t tell you 100% if she feels the same way, but deep down I have to believe she does.

But back to the statement that started this whole thing; let this be a warning to all our children, family and friends - where ever you may live: if you do or say something – nothing – anything – all things – and you tell one of us…

What one Auntie knows, the other Auntie knows…

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Oh Sheet


Just something quick.

I was talking to my sister today and she was stressing out because she had so much to do and especially tense because she had not yet had time to iron her sheets.

Although our sheets are in completely different situations and live very different lives, I have to say that in all my born put togethers (a quote I got from my Dad) I have NEVER worried about my sheets being ironed. NEVER.

No matter the reason. No matter what bed the sheets wanted to be placed on - or who was going to lie on them.

They are wrinkled and they are proud.

What conclusion is this leading to you ask? It is the fact that I have one more reason to be happy and I didn't even realize it!

I have never had to worry about ironing sheets. Whew!

I feel more relaxed already!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I Forgot The Title

I had the perfect idea to blog about this morning. I worked out much of it in my head as I was getting ready for work. I was too busy to stop and jot down a note. Thinking this idea was so brilliant I could never forget it was a stroke of………well……stupidity.

I should have known better. I am all too familiar with how my mind works. I KNOW how OFTEN I forget things. I make jokes about it for crying out loud.

And yet, for one brief second this morning, I forgot the past, the history of my ‘senior moments.’ I believed I still had the mind of an 18 year old. An 18 year old girl – I am after all in the possession of an 18 year old boy and if something isn’t attached to his forehead, shirt, pants, shoes, or random body part, he will forget. Even if I leave a note – he forgets! He ‘forgets’ because the note is on the stove or somewhere in the kitchen and goodness knows he can remember that he read it, moved it, slid it elsewhere, transported the pen back to its assigned pen portal, and do anything else you can think of with any part of the note, BUT REMEMBER WHAT THE NOTE SAYS, because it isn’t stapled to those places I mentioned earlier! Maybe I should start doing something different. Before he gets up in the morning, I should write my instructions for the day on a piece of paper, sneak into his room and BAM, tape it right to his head with duct tape. Mission accomplished. But alas, that would probably also be unsuccessful in some bizarre way that would never cross my mind, but is all too familiar in his.

Anyway, back to me. Wait, what was I talking about?


Saturday, June 7, 2014

Children, Charts & Maxwell Smart

I have 2. More than enough for me. Not enough for a large portion of the population.

You can never be sure what your children remember. And if you have more than one, the chance of parents and children having the same memories grows out of proportion exponentially!! Think Line Chart - your memories in blue - theirs red.

Something that was monumental to you, when retold to those children involved, may get a nod of the head or a "I don't remember that", striking you dumb for a moment before you go off muttering to yourself what ungrateful little bastards your kids are. 

There are things you have saved in your attic - that at the time - were the most important thing your child ever had. When asked, now that they are adults, if they want it - they look at you like you are some kind of vampire-zombie chasing them (I know, I know, there is no way those 2 could even mix, but I do so love a good weird monster) and say, "Why would you save that? Throw it away."

Then there are the vacations. My children really didn't have too many (that is another story), but the few we took are either not remembered, or not remembered the way I remember them. But actually I can relate to that one because there are are several vacations my family took that if you ask my Mom or Dad if they had a good time - they say yes it was great! But I thought it was torture. So I might let that one take a bit of a pass. Although, I am quite sure that ALL my vacations with my children were way more fun for them than any of the torture vacations I was a part of. After all, I am way more fun with my kids than past generations were with their kids - right?

But every now and then one of your children says something that makes you realize they WERE actually there while they were growing up. Case in point.

I love water. I love to be in water. I love to move around in water. I love water from the hose, from sprinklers, from the sky, in a bath, in a shower, in a hot tub, in a hot spring, in a regular spring, in a zombie apocalypse, in a in-ground pool, in an above ground pool, in around and under a waterfall, in a lake, a river, a brook (even if it is not babbling at the time), in a pond, a canal, in a creek, a lake, in an Icelandic fjord, a stream, not in a cave, even in a cattle trough (don’t ask), and I have for the most part, had an above ground pool in the back yard as the kids were growing up. I always told them it was for THEIR enjoyment.

But they are mostly gone now. They are only home for visits now, and the pool, when only around just for me, seemed to be more maintenance than I wanted to keep up. When the last one I had finally split a seam a couple of years ago and I watered the back yard AND the cats laying in it - unintentionally, I decided that now was the time to let the pool area retire and to plant strawberries and raspberries in its spot.

But I live in the south – and it is HOT already. So, last weekend I went to Walmart and bought a $79 – 12’ by 30’ deep Quickset pool. I just set it up in the grass. I love it – it is perfect.

Yesterday I coaxed my son, who is home for the summer, to get into it with me. We sat there for a while just enjoying the cool water when he stated that last week his sister had texted him and asked why I did not have a pool set up. She had been here the week before for his graduation from high school. His second graduation in 2 weeks – thank god that is all over! ANYWAY, I didn't even know she cared or noticed, let alone would ask her brother. Here is his dialog:

“So, Sarah texted me last weekend and asked me why you didn't have a pool up and I told her I didn't know, that I was wondering that too. Then this week I come home from the beach and you have this pool set up! I couldn't believe it. So I texted Sarah and told her that she had in fact only - missed it by a week.” 

In my head I am hearing Maxwell Smart say that line, "Missed it by that much."

So, out of all the things my kids know, or don’t know, or I think they should know, about me – they have this one nailed.

It makes my whole body smile.