Arnie stepped into our mobile home amid a swirl of blustery November wind. My husband of seven months hugged and kissed me. His coat felt cold and smelled of the outdoors. His new mustache tickled my lip. He said, “I’m taking a shower before we sit down to eat.”
I nodded, stepped into the kitchen and began to set the table. From the window, I could see a few snow flurries falling to our still bare lawn and childishly wished for more to fall.
From the bathroom down the hall, I heard the water in the shower splashing. An intense feeling of cozy happiness washed over me. I was in a warm house. The man I loved was home and showering. I had food baking in the oven along with a surprise dessert. I was making my very first pumpkin pie.
Arnie’s shower must have moisturized the air in our house because the windows were slightly steamy by the time he returned to the kitchen. The pie was cooling on the counter. For some reason it didn’t look like Mom’s pumpkin pies. It was dark in color and the surface wasn’t smooth.
When it came time for me to cut the pie, I tasted it before giving any to my new husband. It tasted like mud! Dismayed and disappointed, I shoved it to the backside of the kitchen counter. What had I done wrong? Continue reading
The night sky was bright with a large spring-planting-time moon. No lights were on in my house. As I drove into our small detached garage, I pictured Arnie, Niki and Tammie sound asleep in their beds. Earlier in the evening when Mom called to tell me that Daddy had died, I didn’t want to disturb my sleeping five and one year old so my husband stayed home with them.
At 31 years of age, my only experience with death had been the loss of a two month old baby twelve years earlier. That loss seemed like a long time ago and as though it had happened to someone else.
The May night was balmy without a hint of chill. As I stepped out of the garage an instinct prompted me to look up. Swooping down above my head was a huge horned owl. I watched as it glided silently up again though the night air to the roof top. Landing on the chimney, it hooted three times. I felt Daddy’s presence. Continue reading
After studying my foot X-rays, the young doctor said, “Your feet are in bad shape. You have arthritis in every joint. Some of the joints have worn down to bone-on-bone.”
I frowned and said, “Ah…I see.” As strange as it may sound, although what I was told wasn’t a good thing, I felt a sense of relief. My pain had just been validated. I thought, “I’m not just being a big baby when I whine about my feet hurting! There is a true, physical reason for the pain.”
Some days my feet feel good, but there are other days where they hurt. That led me to think there was nothing seriously wrong with them. In my mind I figured that major problems like joints wore down to bone-on-bone would hurt all of the time. Evidently I was wrong. Continue reading
Huge tables covered with petunias enchanted me. Bowers of begonias beckoned for attention. Golden marigolds nodded modestly in the spring breeze. All the flowers looked beautiful, but something held me back from buying. I wandered to the backside of the nursery area where a line of potted trees caught my eye.
I thought of the ancient trees along the driveway in my yard at home. It would be nice if I had a young tree growing when it was time for the old trees to come down. The tag on a healthy little maple tree about my height proclaimed, “Sunset Maple. This tree will give you a bright splash of color in your yard every fall.”
Visiting temporary plant nurseries that pop up at local stores each spring is fun. A quick detour while buying a new tube of toothpaste often results in having beautiful flowers to plant at my back door. Special treats like these are enjoyed an entire summer.
The day I bought the maple tree, I didn’t know what I was looking for, but knew that when I saw it, I NEEDED a maple tree to brighten my yard. Continue reading