Monday, March 28, 2005



Poo-Poo is up North looking at houses while I am down South getting this one in order, uncluttered and market ready. I realize that I have a certain criteria for the new house. Pretty simple, three bedrooms, two baths, family room, living room, lots of closets and a fireplace. This is Joe's criteria...fenced in yard so he can have a dog.

When he first told me his intent, I began to list every reason under the sun why I don't want a dog. Can not pick up and go on a whim. Must always think DOG then everything else. Dog's smell. They slobber on you.

The real reason came to me this afternoon while reading Ruth Store News - A Richards Bend Production. It made me recall a certain winter that I survived with a pot belly stove. The coldest winter that ever blew over Kentucky. Three feet of snow and ice so severe that the Ohio River froze. We had a dog  named Terra, half Irish Setter and half Doberman!. I would open the door to the frozen terrain and tell her, "Terra, go find wood" and that smart dog would run out there and come back with sticks for me to poke into the fire.

I loved that dog. We spent a lot of long cold nights near the Warm Morning stove huddled together for warmth. That spring, after the thaw, a friend of ours came over and brought his chocolate Lab along. The Lab and Terra took off running....and we never found them again.

My heart was broken. I looked for that dog for weeks. I just hope she found a good home, she was such a smart dog.

Then there was Toby, my brothers dog. Now Toby was a Springer Spaniel, a Liver color I believe they called it. That dog was plain mean. Bridget was so small and just learning to crawl. She would happily lumber over towards Toby while he was sleeping....he would not even open his eyes, he would just raise his lip and go, "Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr". She always stopped, they instinctively understood each other. Toby bit one of my brothers fiends one night. As a matter of fact, J.B. was a hottie, a strikingly handsome hippie that turned heads where ever he went. He bent down to pet Toby and he went for his face! Golly it was awful! Bite anyone in the face, not J.B.!!!! Jesus Mary and Joseph! It was not too bad, but that was the end of Toby. My bro found a farm to take him.

You would have thought he had committed murder the way my sisters carried on. So Mom and Dad then got Thunder, named so because my sister loved Bruce Springsteen and Thunder was actually Thunder Road. Also a Liver Springer Spaniel but female and the most lovable puppy ever. She was bred to another Springer and Bridget above is holding one of the litter.

Thunder got sick with some form of blood disorder and was in and out of the Dog Hospital quite a bit around the seventh year of her life. On the day before another one of my brothers was getting married, Thunder became gravely ill and was taken to the vet. She hung on and passed away the day after the wedding.

She was a wonderful dog up to the very end.

And that is precisely why I do not want a dog. I am tearing up thinking about Thunder and Terra right now. And Jingle Bells too, but she deserves an entry entirely for herself. They do not stick around long enough for me. I become too attached and love them too much and the pain is too intense.

I think I want a Springer again.


Friday, March 25, 2005



Life has been very unsettling as of late.  It is a fact that I am very laid back procrastinator. I avoid things until it becomes a do or die situation.  I have a leisurely attitude about everything in life.  A sense of urgency is a limited part of my physical being and psychological profile.  I do things the slow and easy way.  

This move is killing me!  Everything is happening so very fast.  I have had one realtor visit already and another on the way tomorrow.  I cringe thinking what needs to be done to get this house whipped into shape for the market.  This is torture for me.  I am so out of my comfort zone that my head is spinning.  

To continue with the company I am with now looks very uncertain.  I was crying in the Human Resource office today.  Not sobbing, just talking about how deeply  I feel about this company.  And the tears arrived. Not to fear, Poo-Poo's company has major heavy hitter relocation services.  I already have a career consultant "on staff". I have finally found my resume which has been in the vault for seven years! I am totally freaking out.  

So what do I do?  I spent hours watching info commercials this past Sunday morning.  I think they hypnotize you to walk zombie like to your computer and immediately order their life altering products!  

The first arrived today and I have been playing like a little girl with my new make-up collection.  Let me tell you all something!  This stuff is FABULOUS!  The amount of money I have spent on makeup in my life time is equal to the GNP of a small country. Honest. So I know my makeup.  I don't wear much of it because once you reach a certain age it looks like you have painted your face!  This stuff is absolutely knock out!  

My POWER-90 has not arrived yet.  Guaranteed to take me from Chunky Monkey to Hot Babe in 90 days. I can't wait!!!  

**** Note to self: Avoid life altering info commercials while in life altering situation

Thursday, March 17, 2005



You could most certainly say I live a charmed life!

A few moments ago I was sending a submission to FOUND MAGAZINE. I have had in my possession this particular found "note" for a year or so, always misplacing it, always finding it, then misplacing it again. Intending to put it in a safe place, I opened up a cigar box I keep "stuff" in (It will most certainly be lost again) and laying on top was this old cutting from the local newspaper!

Oh how I remember this night! And all the nights that my mother dressed me up as an Irish Colleen and paraded me around commanding I do the Irish Jig like a trained monkey. I hated it! I hated practicing for the upcoming St. Patrick Day shows that were inevitable!

That year was my last performance. I think I was 12 (the hairdo, pre-shag Beatle cut) and suffering the humiliation for the final time. This was the annual Fashion Show that the local stores would put on to introduce all the latest Spring Fashions. We were the intermission entertainment.

My Dad sang all the time. He was a member of the Barbershop Quartet, the song leader in church, and sang at all occasions. He loved to sing, and had a sweet tenor voice. When I was a kid, it totally embarrassed me. I was different to begin with. Not a whole lot of northerners settled in the small rural farming towns  in central Kentucky back in the early sixties, let alone Irish jigging and singing Catholics from New York City!! All I wanted was to fit in and be like everyone else.

That never happened. My parents made sure of that.

As the years pass by I find that my strongest memories of embarrassment due to my parents, are also the most precious gifts I have received from them. Pride of being Irish and Catholic.

The last time my Dad performed in public was at my sister wedding in 1992. She married a German named Daniel. My Dad stood and sang the sweetest version of Danny Boy he had ever delivered.

It was the final time.

What I would give to be "embarrassed" by his spontaneous serenading today.  

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

With Love

Happy Birthday to me

My lovely daughter sent this card to me for the auspicious occassion of my birthday. I still tear up reading it...

"I remember being a little girl putting on your high heel shoes and dancing around the kitchen to Tainted Love. Do you remember too? So, this card is the perfect card for you! I wanted to be just like you so badly as a little girl, and today, all grown up, I still admire you and wish everyday I could fill those shoes! I only hope that I can be as good a mother as you have been to me. I love you so very much, Mom and I hope you had the most Happy Birthday"

Sunday, March 13, 2005



Naturally, we found the best pub in Ft. Wayne. How could it not be with a name like this... MAD ANTHONY BREWERY COMPANY and Munchie Emporium!

Absolute great atmosphere. Wonderful mix of people dining in the restaurant area and warming the seats at the bar. The bartenders were top shelf! We went three times while I was there. On the second trip we met one of the owners. Sometimes it is astonding how small the world really is. We mentioned we were from Kentucky and he responded that he had lived in West Kentucky for many years. In Paducah, of all places! (Very close to Murray where I first attended college).

Besides having truly great beer, the best being the Ruby Raspberry Wheat Ale, they also sell mugs that hold 22 ounces. The cost of the mug  $39.95!! The mugs are housed on a shelf behind the bar. When you come in, you are served in your personalized and specific mug. You receive that much more beer than your normal pint, and pay 50 cents less! We quickly figured that based on going three times a week, having x amount of beers each trip...the mug would pay for itself in less than two months!

How could I not love a pub that has a menu with an old VW bus on the front sporting the tag line, PEACE LOVE AND HOPPINESS? And a beer called Old Crippled Bastard!!!

While at the bar talking to the owner, one of the regular patrons over heard the conversation. As we were leaving, he yells goodbye to us, and welcome to Ft. Wayne and Mad Anthony's!! "You're a Hoosier now!" he happily shouted at us.

I never thought I'd see the day!

Saturday, March 12, 2005



Life is pressing in on me as of late. I have, I feel I have so many obligations to so many people. My husband, my parents, my daughter who is beginning her life as an adult but still needs me.... my in-laws, rather my husbands children who need him, my work, my customers, my friends, my co-workers, and oh-my-God can I believe I put them on the end!!!! My family! I feel I am thrust into responsibility head first and hands bound together.

This morning I was walking down the inner city streets of Louisville...alone...heading towards Slugger Stadium for the first leg of the Triple Crown of Running, the Anthem 5K. I felt so overwhelmed. So many people depending on me to make them happy, make their lives easier. Every step I took I felt the heaviness of responsibilty slide from my sholders. I had a fantasy of cashing in all my chips and running away. For the briefest moment I remembered what it was like to not have a worry in the world....

Sometimes to run is to be free. Even if you are running at the back of the pack.


You know what I love?  When I can't make the picture challenge work and so I reach into my archives and find one from years and years ago....more than likely 1993 because of the braces! And I see how much I loved my Nikon F...which was stolen....the best camera there ever was!

Natch, this is Bridget and some of her friends from a dream time ago.

Tuesday, March 8, 2005


I'm in the Mid West checking out the new town....