Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!

I want to wish everyone a very Happy New Year and a Very Prosperous 2007.

I'm kind of of new to blogging and was showing my blog site to my significant other. Now you have to understand he knows very little about computers, the internet, etc. He can get to his email and read it and that's about it. So he's asking me what is a blog and who's going to read it, etc. So I start showing him some of the blogs, and all the stuff that's out there. Of course he is very interested in the ones with the pretty girls with very little on. That's OK, because there's nothing wrong with looking at the menu.

Anyway, I came across one blog that had some interesting saying regarding alcohol, which I thought I would post some of them here, afterall it is New Year's Eve. If you want to see the complete list go to: .

- Always remember that I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me.
- An alcoholic is someone you don't like who drinks as much as you do.
- Don't drink and drive, you might hit a bump and spill your drink.
- You're not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on. (I can relate to this one)
- Stay busy, get plenty of exercise, and don't drink too much. Then again, don't drink too little.
- One reason I don't drink is that I want to know when I am having a good time. (Someone will tell you in the morning)
- A meal without wine is like a day without sunshine, except that on a day without sunshine you can still get drunk.
- I stopped drinking, but only when I sleep.
- This is one of the disadvantages of wine: it makes a man mistake words for thought.
- When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.
- The consumption of alcohol may cause pregnancy. (If is does I'll be rich).
- There is a devil in every berry of the grape.
- A bartender is just a pharmacist with a limited inventory. (I love this one afterall I did own a bar at one time.)
- I drink to forget I drink.
- Alcohol is necessary for a man so that he can have a good opinion of himself, undisturbed by the facts.
- Once, during Prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water.
- The whole world is about three drinks behind.
- I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food. (When I hear this one I always think of Justin Wilson the great Cajun cook).

However you choose to celebrate the end of 2006 and the beginning of 2007, have a wonderful time and be safe.

The Painted Lady

Friday, December 29, 2006

A Celebration!

Today was a very good day. I was able to be with my step son and my grandson. Today was my grandson's last Chemo treatment and his Dad's (my step son's) birthday. I met them at the hospital. They arrived in a white stretch limo. That was a promise my son made when my grandson had his first treatment 3 years ago, that they would go for the last treatment in a limo. You know how children are; they don't let you forget those things we promise. Of course Dad was more than happy to be able to honor that promise.

It was a great day. We took lots of pictures of all the people, nurses, the doctor, who has been involved from the beginning. Even the nurse who gave him his treatment today remembered my grandson when he was first diagnosed and even recalled the room he was in. There were lots of hugs. Even the doctor and his favorite nurse gave him a balloon and a Lego airplane to put together while he was getting his last treatment. After almost 4 hours we left to go to my grandson's favorite restaurant to continue the celebration. Lots more pictures, more balloons, big meal, and of course a birthday/congratulations cake! It was great to be a part of this great celebration.

I truly believe that all things happen for a reason. Many Many years ago, after some very unpleasant experiences with my own step mother, I made a promise that if I ever was in a similar situation to not let me treat anyone that way. I had no idea that I was being shown what not to do and learning a very important lesson at the time. But as fate would have it, a few years later I was divorced. And then about 4 years later, married again and having step children of my own, a daughter that lived out of town and a son who was the same age as my youngest daughter. Over the years I tried to make it a point to be as fair and to do what I could to ensure that they knew that I cared about them. Though my late husband and I fought often about what was fair for my girls and what was fair for the son, for both of us had different views especially when it came to curfews, chores, etc. I remember one time when his son overheard us discussing this issue rather loudly. I told him that the argument had nothing to do with him, my issue was with his father and that I felt he had different expectations of the girls than he did of him. He said that he understood.

I thought for sure that after his father passed away over 9 years ago, that we would drift apart. There was an incident about a month later that I felt for sure would drive a wedge between us. But thank God it didn't. He even brought the subject up this past summer when he and his family came for a visit. He told me how much he thought of me, which really meant a lot.

I've watched him grow up and become quite a remarkable man over these past few years. He has certainly had his share of adversity. Shortly after his father's death, he was hired by a major airline and thought he was set, but the airline started to decline over the years, so this past year he chose to leave and found another position with another company and is doing very well. He went through a divorce, not wanting one. But as I believe, all things happen for a reason. He's now married to a wonderful woman who loves him and his boys as her own. And then 3 years ago, his youngest son was diagnosed with leukemia and has gone through 3 long years of treatments. My son has handled all of this like a trooper. I am extremely proud of him as I am sure his father would be also. It's days like this that that show us how truly thankful we should be. I am so thankful that God sent me a young man to be the son I always wanted.

Life is Good!
The Painted Lady

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Christmas Traditions and Memories

It has been a very good Christmas. We spent it with family. The house is quiet and seems empty now. I hear everyone talking before Christmas about they will be glad when it's over. Not me. It's over way to soon for me. It's a special time for me, sharing what's new, past stories, and in general just enjoying everyone's company especially family. Why is Christmas so special to me? Because I've tried to make it a special time for me as well as my family. Last year it was confirmed for me that my mission was accomplished. Before I tell you the part about mission accomplished, I would like to share with you what led to my Christmas traditions.

I was an only child. We lived in a somewhat rural area and with modest means. My parents were good people. They did a good job in raising me, instilling good values, what's right and wrong, etc. When I was young we went to church. My father and I joined the Baptist church on the same day and were baptized together when I was eleven. My memories of Christmas as a young child were lonely. There didn't seem to be anyone around. I don't remember the house being decorated and we may or may not have had a tree. By the time I was 15, my parents were divorced and I was living with my father which at the time was my choice. I was dating by then, so at Christmas I was usually at someone else's home with their family seeing their Christmas traditions. I guess I longed for those special times and traditions in my own life.

After I was married and had children of my own, I started what would become my own Christmas traditions. I wanted it to be a special day. (Yes I know it's a special day anyway because it's the day Jesus was born.) One of the first traditions was, no one was allowed to open any gifts until Christmas morning/day. I guess that came from my longing to make this special day last as long as possible. However, my children did have one gift under the tree they could open on Christmas Eve. It was tagged from Santa and it was a pair of new pajamas. Later one my children wanted to know why they always received PJs on Christmas Eve. I told them it was so they would look nice in their Christmas pictures on Christmas morning.

And speaking of Santa, I took my girls to see Santa up until they were about 15. I told them that when they stopped believing in him, he would stop coming to see them. They kept telling me they believed. When they got older, I always tried to find a "real looking Santa" with the real beard and hair not the fake beard and hair. When they were young there weren't as many "real santas" as they are now and sometimes we would have to go a distance and stand in line for hours. One time I took them to see a Santa who knew their Grandmother and he asked them some questions about her and made some comments about her. They were about 5 and 8 at the time. I can still remember their look of surprise when he started talking to them about their Grandma. That was the year we rode the "Pink Pig." Now you would have to live in Atlanta to know about the Pink Pig. To my surprise, while we were waiting on my oldest daughter and her family to arrive, I received a call from her that they were about to ride the Pink Pig. Of course her family was rolling their eyes at her wondering what all this was about, but it was a fond memory of hers. She had ridden it as a child at the Rich's downtown.

I could go on and on about Christmas traditions and stories from Christmas' past. I look back now and I guess my intention was to create a special time to be with family for it was what I yearned for as a child. Last year my children lost their paternal grandmother. At the funeral home my oldest daughter told me that they probably would not be coming to my house for Christmas. She wanted to spend Christmas at home with her family. I couldn't say anything. I understood. She had always made it home all these years for Christmas except for one. The one time she didn't come for Christmas was after she was married and they were living in Biloxi. Anyway, she told me, but she didn't announce this to her family until they got back home. To her surprise they were quite upset that she would even think of them not going to Gran's house for Christmas. Among other things, they had to come for the sausage balls. She offered to make sausage balls, but they told her it would just not be the same. And daughter had not wanted to spend Christmas with her cousins since her grandmother would not be there, but her girls scolded her for that too. It seems they wanted to see all of Their cousins and really enjoyed the day with that part of their family. So when my daughter let me know that they would indeed be coming to my house for Christmas and what had happened when she had informed her family, I knew then my mission had been accomplished for my family even my grandchildren.

But there's more. I have an extended family which are a big part of my life and have come to be a part of our Christmas traditions also. My step son and his family always make it for Christmas too. He has grown into a fine young man and appreciates family and family values and traditions. He and I have remained close since his father passed away. For this I am very glad. I always wanted a son. God is good.

Yes this has been a very good and special Christmas. I am truly blessed and so very glad I made it a point to try and make those traditions and stuck with them all these years. For I hope that it will be those tradions and memories that my children and their children will remember fondly. We managed to make some more special Christmas memories this year.

Merry Christmas and a wish to you and yours for a very Happy and Prosperous 2007!

The Painted Lady

Friday, December 22, 2006

Grocery Store Etiquette

I went to the grocery a couple of days ago. It is not one of my favorite things to do, but it's a few days before Christmas and I needed to do all the shopping for the weekend and prepare for the on slaught of company. I like to prepare and cook ahead of time so that I can enjoy the company and the holiday and not be cooking and cleaning up all the time.

Of course being a few days before the holidays the store was crowded. My musing for the day is people's courtesy (or lack of it) in the grocery. It makes me wonder if they drive their car like they drive their shopping cart? i.e. wrong side of the aisle, park in the middle of the aisle, don't notice when someone needs to get by, two shoppers meet to talk in the aisle and block the aisle. I wonder what it would be like if they put horns on the shopping carts? No, I don't want to go there. I usually am very patient and just wait until they come out of their fog or where ever they are lost for them to notice that I need to get by.

And then there's the children hanging all over the carts wanting to play like children want to do. And then the bakery does everyone a favor and gives them a cookie to hype them up on sugar for their trip through the store. I love my children and my grand children. Of course in today's environment, I would be charged with child abuse because when my children were growing up, I believed in making my children mind in public places. But today, I do, however, have a problem with seeing people discipline their children in public places. I commend those who take them outside or to the rest room to reprimand and/or calm them down. I try to get my shopping done during the day while the kiddies are in school. God did me a favor letting me have my children when I was young. Thank you.

And my third musing for Grocery Store Etiquette is the store itself. Why do they put displays in the middle of the aisles? Here is this hugemonous store with all these shelves and on the most narrow aisle is a cardboard display of something that if you barely touch it, it will fall over. Add that to the person driving on the wrong side of the aisle or lost in their own mind. It's like dodging those orange road constuction cones.

I will say that overall my experience was good. I have to give Kroger a pat on the back. Usually when you are trying to find something there is no one to be found to ask. When I was down to my last 3 or 4 (no where to be found) items, I found a Kroger manager standing at the end of an aisle who was there for that very reason. He told me which aisle each item was on and I finished my shopping. The other Thank you I would like to say was to the store manager. He was helping to get the gift wrap table set up and spoke to me. I think he may have recognized me from one of the chamber meetings or from being in his store so much, either way I asked if the cute little singing bear that I picked up in the floral department (a gift for my aunt that I never know what to buy for her) was edligble for gift wrap. It probably wasn't, but he said yes (probably because my cart was overflowing by then) and asked the lady doing the gift wrap to wrap it for me. One less gift to wrap is a good thing.

So for my overall experience - as my grand daughter would say "It's all Good"

Happy Holidays!
The Painted Lady


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