Friday, May 24, 2013

Treasures from the Deep

While beginning to box up some of our things, I've come across a few buried treasures.

 College entrance scores/transcripts/papers and sticker collections from the early 80s. 

Soft brown lined school paper, dating back to 1979.  This one's actually my brother, Eric's.  He still has beautiful penmanship.

Some weird zombie princess I drew even though I denied all things girly and all things princess-y.  Maybe I drew it for my future Abby.

 An autographed picture of Stephanie Powers.  I know you're jealous.  Standing in line at KMart with my grandmother to get "Mrs. Hart" to sign her picture was a moment.  She was actually really rude and my grandmother and I left that place saying, "Hmph.  Her clothing line doesn't even have any coolots!"  

Notes to high school heart throbs, college romances, and best friends gone now but never forgotten.

Old dream journals I kept religiously to figure out my "theme" and what it was trying to tell me.  This dream let me know I was not going to be a veterinarian after all if I actually wanted to graduate from college.  Dreams to me are still gospel and while I wish I grew up to be a vet, I know (and knew) full well I don't have the mind for it.

My teacher planning books filled with lessons ached over and tweaked to death.  Not until pouring over each of these, my students' work, and all the curriculum I made up from scratch for five separate subjects did I come to believe I did not suck as a teacher as I thought I did back then.  I was green, unseasoned, and impatient with myself but I did a damn good job in hindsight.  Wish the younger me gave herself a break and believed she was doing fine work.  If you're reading this and are too hard on yourself.  Stop.  Just stop.  You will look back and wish you were still that good.  Trust.

These were love letters from a class I co-taught a 1st grade class.  They called me Miss P, spelled phonetically.  26 little rainbow hearts all labeled to one Mrs. Pee.  I loved those little faces.


Here we have a Valentine from Andy when he was deployed on an aircraft carrier.  We became engaged and a couple of months later, he was out to sea for our entire engagement.  It was right after 9/11 so I was terrified for him, honored to be his fiance, and lucky to have a wedding to obsess about while he was gone.

 (Inside card view) Not sure if you can read the cut-outs but these were my favorite gifts Andy ever gave me.  Each one made me laugh harder than the next.  He had a lot of time (a LOT of time) on the ship and these cards have since gone by the wayside in favor of Hallmark so these are archived for our kids some day.

 A pile of lyrics, songs, and poetry from my time in the studio in my twenties.  Another golden era I was fortunate to have.  Man, I have lived a full life.  I always tell Andy if I die tomorrow (which by the way I'm really hoping I don't), please know I have no regrets.  I have done all I've set out to do with my life. My twenties were rich in art, hard work, love, and fearlessness.  My thirties have been devoted to my family, and my forties will be a big surprise for all of us.  I'm guessing antique shopping and a sh*tload of naps but I will probably need to get a paying gig.

All of these are legit treasures in their own right.  But none of which prepared me for this black and white beauty:

 Do you see his autograph bottom right corner?  

Look at all the intricate swirlies.  Can't get over how long this must've taken him to do by hand.

At first I thought it was a self-portrait.  Now I'm not so sure it's not George Harrison.  Either way, it's mesmerizing to me and I can't wait to hang it up in our new office at the new house when we get there.

We'll put it right next to this picture I found next to Jimmy's.  The one seated is my grandfather before he retired as a Brigadier General in the army.   Handsome fella, isn't he?  I always thought he looked like Jimmy Stewart.  And talked like him a bit too. 

I adore these men.  Always have.  Always will.  Death doesn't change that.  Death just makes me want to hang on to their memories more than I ever have before. 

It's what you do when you come across such priceless buried treasure.  You hold on to them.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Cutie Booty

Abby has taken a real liking to my mom's old classical guitar.

She walks around with it, strumming slowly and plucking nylon strings that have far too much give in them.  When she doesn't know I'm listening, I can catch her humming or singing her own song.

"I absolutely have stage fright," she proclaims if I ruin things with eye contact.  "I understand, little one.  I will go in another room."  And I do but still I listen to that little voice humming until her voice breaks out with lyrics important to a four year old heart.

"I will lo-o-o-o-ve you Cutie Boooty until the day I di-i-i-i-e."

Cutie Booty is what she calls our black lab, Sparrow.  Abby is mildly to severely to troublingly obsessed with Cutie Booty. 

Then I hear it.  I hear Abby's sweet voice elongate into a soft vibrato.  "Will you l-o-o-o-ve me forever Cutie Booty, tooooooooooo?"

Every single time I try to record her, she gets "absolute stage fright" and won't perform.  I happen to know what this is like so I won't force her. 

But I will keep asking.

Here is Abby's Debut:  Cutie Booty Runs Away - Take 1

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

It's a Colorful Life - Part 2

Our ancient computer is experiencing technical difficulties so pulling pictures from it is taking longer than my patience has tonight (about four min. per download).  My hope was to put up pictures from  2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013.  But, because I am staring at my pillow at 10:24 pm, I give you...

July - December 2008 - Our first six months of living in Virginia:

 Wow, does this make me feel old.  I have aged at least a decade (in four years!?) since this pic.  Where are my grays? Where are my crows feet?  Where have my boobs gone? 

 (Thrift store finds.  The magenta one on top became Abby's curtains with the help from my mom.)

 Ouch, my heart.  Just came across these two of Uncle Jimmy.  That crazy bike is my brother's toy.  I forget what it's called but let me tell you, it's not easy to ride at all.  Jimmy did a fantastic job going up and down the road without bailing like I did.  

 Ooof.  Man.  Ok, I can't end here...

Hi Aunt Jen.  Thank you for your beautiful smile.

This monstrosity is seriously what I served for Grayson's Dinosaur party.  
Bless all those souls who dared eat it.

Oh, that blue hat.  I want to eat that blue hat I love it so.

Mercy.  The tiny.  I can hardly take the tiny pink beggar.

Abby Turns One

It's a Colorful Life

Since I've been nothing but blue around here lately, thought I'd post pictures that have a wider spectrum and hopefully bring to you a smile as they do to me. 

I've really loved living in Virginia.  So much so, I hope to be back after our three year tour in the place where I'll eat too much, sing too loudly, and acquire a put-on regional accent.

Here's some color from our beautiful journey in my favorite house so far:


...This is fun, I'm gonna add more when I get the chance tonight.