Archive | July 2013

Almost There

Almost. That’s a good word. Very hopeful. It’s been a good five years at least. But I think it’s almost done. My little novel, that is. It’s a really patient one. I mean, it’s put up with me for a long time, and never bugs me when I have taken months away from it. And sometimes I have done that, although its always in my mind. I have to be in a certain state and have a certain emptiness and calmness in my mind to concentrate. Otherwise the things like kids, work, kids…keep yelling too loud for me to think about it. So it really has had to be patient a good deal. But now it is beginning to stir and to stretch its limbs because we can see the end of the tunnel. Now the question is, what to do with it. Recently a friend’s husband published his own novel on Amazon. That has a certain appeal to me. I just want to share my little ideas with others. And hope that someone else out there finds it as moving/entertaining as I hope. What have you, bloggy friend’s of mine, done with your own achievements?



This Sunday,as I sat in the back of my tiny church with the rest of the small choir, struggling to keep two sleepy red heads from fighting, I strained to hear the sermon, as it was one which I thought could use a little repetition. Our current ‘supply priest’ has a real knack for sermons. He started out quoting one of my favorite childhood shows, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, and went on to discuss the state of neighbors and neighborliness. The sermon touched a lot of us, who realize that so much has changed (although much more has stayed the same). People in these suburban mazes don’t know many of their neighbors who live right next door, and forget sometimes that even those you don’t know are neighbors. It’s nice to get a reminder once in a while that people really haven’t forgotten, they just need a nudge.

There was the time that one of my daughters (I forget which now) was crying over a lost helium balloon from Friendly’s on her birthday. I remember commiserating with her and trying to entice my other daughter to share her balloon (it didn’t work),when a young man, probably still a teen, ran into the restaurant and came out with a new balloon for my daughter. That always will stick in my heart. Then just this past week, my oldest decided to bake some sweets and some pasta for an elderly friend of ours who doesn’t get around very well.

This morning I got a text message from out township police department sharing that there had been two burglaries in the area. A few months ago there had been a prowler who was never caught. And that’s just in our very small and safe area. It makes one wonder how many people have forgotten to be neighbors even in a small town. That is, until we see these small acts of kindness. They may seem small but are not small to the recipient. So take an extra 5 minutes and stop by the lemonade stand that those two noisy 8-year-olds put up and buy some super sweet lemonade, or give your grandparents a call. It’s a small price but the reward to both parties is extensive.

As my dear friend said this Sunday morning, make it a beautiful day in the neighborhood.


Recently an old friend of mine sent me a message concerning our hometown. It seemed that she had gotten the chance to visit one of those mysterious places from our childhood that we held in awe. We all had them, be it a ‘haunted house’ or that old cemetery where you frequently dared one another to enter. In this case it was a building we called ‘The Guitar Factory’. I guess it had been at one time, although my mother told me it had been converted into artist’s studios. Since I knew enough artists along with my mom, that sort of put a damper on the romance. However, there was also a character to go along with it. An older man with a long gray beard who rode his bicycle through town. The poor gentleman was probably the nicest of fellows, and had to put up with our giggles. We called him Weird Beard and pretended that he lived in the guitar factory for some reason which probably made sense at age 8. Anyway, along with the astounding news of my friend’s visit to ‘The Guitar Factory’, she also sadly wrote that ‘Weird Beard’ had passed away. Her news awoke some memories of our old town which have probably been forgotten by many.

We lived in a quaint old town with quite a few characters. The kind who seem to inhabit towns small enough and old enough to have a strong personality. There was Walking Bob, Sunoco Tom, and Tiny, the village homeless lady who of course had grown up in a very wealthy family who live in the ‘Castle’. As children we never knew the stories of Sunoco Tom (who drove a huge old car with fins covered with gasoline brand decals) or Walking Bob, probably there were none, but the one about Tiny – well that was mysterious enough to capture anyone’s imagination. Word had it that her family was swindled out of all their money and she was left penniless. (I never knew if the story was really very truthful, but I like to believe it is) The Castle was actually a largish house on the outskirts of town which had since been divided into apartments. I have told my own daughters the story of Tiny, capturing their own imaginations too.

It seem to me that we all should be able to have known a place, our hometown or maybe a summer visit to our Grandparent’s, which contains mystery and romance. I don’t know if many of the kids growing up today have that. I know my own daughters don’t hear of anything like that in our own particular suburban jungle and that saddens me.