Always A Mom

I am a grandma five times now plus one great grandson. Not too bad. I love it. But I will always be a mom.

In the back corner of my mind I thought that once the kids grew into adulthood and had their own families going, when their careers and schooling and such were all in tact, well, I thought somewhere in the crevices of my brain that I would be done being a mom.

Silly, I know. Because I think I am more a mom now than ever. What I mean by a “mom” is that my heart is bigger and more soft and vulnerable than when I spent many hours feeding, cleaning, burping, guiding, etc.

Now I have more time to look at what my children have become and are still growing into who they are. I give myself and my husband a great big pat on the back for who these kids are. And who their kids are becoming.

But as I watch, I cry. I cry tears of joy and silly sadness. One of my boys and his lovely wife is moving to the UK in just a few weeks! The UK!!! I live in the USA!!!

The good things are……. they will be there for a year (could be longer, who knows?). The better thing is that this is a dream come true for our son and his wife…..an opportunity to study at the University of Edinburg!

The BEST thing is that my husband and I will take our dream trip this Christmas and spend two glorious weeks in Scotland and a bit of Ireland! I’m beside myself with excitement! The child rearing years have paid off.

Then why the sadness you ask? Just knowing they are not and hour and a half away makes me cry a little. I actually feel a little lost. I go through that with our oldest and his family being twenty hours away by car.

I’ll make it. I couldn’t be more proud of all my kids.

But being a mom is hard.

Cate B

Here is a “seed” a friend sent me… my first spending money:

People You Can Meet in The Burg

I am mostly a homebody. I enjoy staying home and doing projects – reading, writing, breathing fresh air in the yard with my doggies, bird watching, photography, and so on……

But I also know that to remain open to life I need to get out and about. So yesterday I met up with a friend at my favorite local cafe for lunch.

We were chatting away getting to know more about each other when the subject of carbs popped up. Yes, carbs. How many carbs is enough? How many carbs are needed? How many carbs do I want? The subject is vast and annoying and funny.

A young man was sitting at the table next to us and in the middle of the carbs talk he piped in with a whole-hearted agreement! We spent the next several minutes laughing and talking about that painful subject.

Then I needed to know more about him.  I love people (until I need to turn myself off and go into homebody mode), so it was easy for me to ask about him.

Turns out he is on a walk across our beautiful country. Not for the usual reasons that pop up into our heads…… journey to find yourself; looking for the answers to life; wandering spirit….. you get my drift. He has a cause and a really good one.

So I don’t miscommunicate I want you to go to this website https://www.sevenmillionstrides.com and check him out. I think you will be refreshingly surprised and perhaps even donate to the cause. I also recommend following on FaceBook.

This one’s for you, Frank. We tend to think our small town is smaller than it is. We tend to think why would anyone pass through The Burg – or that is exactly what one does here… pass through.

We did that, thought we were passing through or staying temporarily and we got bit. Looks like we got infected with The Bug of The Burg. It’s a great place to live and meet people.

So Frank, my prayers on with you on your journey. Success is what I see in this for you in many ways. Success for the youth you are helping and success for YOU with the people you meet. Heart success. The non-monetary kind that goes deep into your soul.

Thank you for eavesdropping with Amy and I. We were the blessed ones.

Enjoy!

Cate B

Surprises

It can get pretty hot here in The Middle. This summer is mildly hot compared to other summers in The Middle.

This summer is better for us since we  had central air installed. I have to go outside to warm up. I’m not complaining.

This particular afternoon I realized I needed to water my tropical plants that I have on the front stoop for the summer. It makes them happy to be in very warm fresh air, but if I don’t water them daily the wind can blow them over, then they bleed.

So out I went into the intense heat. I had the hose pointed toward the grass to cool the water down before spraying the plants.  As I turned to water the plants I heard a friendly female voice call out to me, “Excuse me”.

I turned, and a woman slightly older than me, was standing halfway up my driveway. This is unusual since very few human beings are outside in the mid-west heat.

I asked if I could help her, then I noticed her husband standing at the end of the driveway. My phone was inside and all I had as a weapon was the flimsy hose and moderate water pressure. I prayed.

She introduced herself and even shook my hand. Boy how suspicious I had become over the years. I shook her hand saying my first name only.

She jumped right into the reason they were there. Thirty-five years ago her husband, who now shook my hand and told me his name as I gripped my ninja hose even tighter,  had been stationed at Whitman Air Force Base and they lived in the duplex across the street.

They both went on about their time there. I asked where they were from. “New Jersey”, she said, delightfully. I relaxed at that point. I mean, hello! I am from New Jersey.

Well, out came the Jersey accent like a knife through butter. We laughed together and tisked as we shook our heads over the lack of knowledge of true pizza and bagels and the proper way to pronounce cawfee.

What a delight. I just love those moments in life that sneak up and surprise you with such little things that can make your ordinary day look totally amazing.

Those things that come up on you like a butterfly caught in the wind that nearly bumps you in the head. Something you weren’t looking for or expecting.

The little things. It may sound mundane or so simple for some of you and you don’t get it. That’s OK. But for others it may wake you up and you begin to “see”.

I think so much goes on around us that are small or large events but most of the time we just don’t notice them. If we could just slow down long enough….the watering of a dry plant or taking the trash to the curb can be quite an experience.

I love to go and sit different places and watch what is going on around me. I can’t explain it ….. I just enjoy it. And when you take that one slight step closer to a situation and actually

here’s looking’ at you

….. well, try it. You may just change a life that day or you may change.

Enjoy!

Cate B

I Need Color

I am still getting to know my camera and the zooming in part.

Here, in The Middle of the USA, the summer can get rather hot and things begin to dry up. We had a great spring and beginning of summer.

But now, the drying up has begun. I decided to find color. Any color besides browns and tans. They have their place – I especially miss the tan M&Ms.

Here is what I have found so far…….

Enjoy!

Cate B

Freedom

I have posted this quote before.  I decided to “bleed” a little today.  It’s been a while. I have felt a bit dry, much like the summer heat in The Middle.

My dryness comes more from fear rather than the weather.  I have an irrational fear of failing.  Failing at what? How can pouring my heart out on paper be a failure?

This post is for all you people (including myself) who think daily of writing and don’t because of the same fear I have.

How can it be wrong to share with the world your thoughts when we live in an age that is so easy to be heard??

We all have something to say. Somebody out there will be touched by our words, by our thoughts.

It is a great feeling to pour out in printed words. Even to pour out in photos or songs – or whatever form of bleeding you can. It is cleansing. Freeing. Vulnerable. Healing.

There. I feel better. Thanks for letting me bleed a little.

Cate B

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Finally – A New Camera!

I just love to take pictures. My Fuji from 2004 bit the dust completely last year sometime. I was so sad, but it was outdated. It was time.

I continued to take photos with my iPhone6! LOL. It was alright but I missed having a real camera in my hands.

Just so you know, I am by no means what I consider a photographer to be. I am clueless as to what aperture means and all the other terms involved. All I know is point and shoot and hope for the best – the beauty of digital!

Well, I finally decided on a camera. It actually came recommended to me by a photography blog I follow. I just loved Cindy’s photos of the colorful birds in her area. Absolutely beautiful!

So here goes. This camera, a Sony – DSC-H400, is simple to use and the best thing is it zooms to 63X. Say what?

That zoom got me excited. But it takes practice for a simple lady like myself. But look at the moon:

And I know I can do better with practice! It’s all I can do not to spend all of my free time outside looking for things to shoot.

Here’s a few more…..

Enjoy!

Cate B

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Who Are you?

After posting Love is the Key on January 19th of this year, it still stands. I just love my dogs.

Maybe they have replaced caring for my granddaughters full time. LOL I do call Teddy Roosevelt (the pup) Penny June (the girl) from time to time. I have even called Penny Teddy, oops.

It must be the mothering thing. It just doesn’t go away as time goes by, it changes. I like that. After all, as we grow out of childhood into adulthood and the decades that entails, we don’t go away…..we change. We evolve. We grow.

We are still there – or here. I know for me, my whole life has grown and changed and evolved. Some of us “find ourselves” at a young age. Some never lost ourselves so therefore, didn’t have to find ourselves. Some of us, like me, did not grow up in an environment that knew myself. But I found me along the way and I love me.

Did you follow that paragraph? I hope so. The bible says to train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it. I’ve heard countless times that it refers to faith and spiritual things. I believe it goes deeper than that.

If you have five children you cannot raise all five the same way. You have five different people in your care and all five are individual personalities. I believe that as parents we need to purposely find out who each one is and help them along the way to see who they are and who they will become. Then they won’t have to go on that journey of discovering who they are. They won’t lose themselves in life and then have to find themselves.

Wow. That almost twisted my head. I had two cups of coffee this morning and then a noon latte.

So, back to my dogs….. Teddy Roosevelt is just about five months old now and has already outgrown his brother George Bailey. The games continue….

Teddy Roosevelt

 

George Bailey after Penny June put party hat on his head

Enjoy!

Cate B