Thursday, August 26, 2010

House Memories

Caption: My grandmother is the smaller woman in the white dress. She's a teenager here.

Pulling the family room sofa from its place so I could drag out a ball the dog lost under there (I finally got tired of her whining, LOL), I found a brick with a needlepointed cover. Moths have had a heyday with the needlepoint wool, but I instantly recognized it as my representation of my grandmother's house in Georgia. I made it for her for a Christmas gift. What memories.

A one-story house built by the local lumber company owner, it was as sturdy as a stiff wind in Oklahoma. The front porch, with its red-tiled floor and straw rug, was the center of the neighborhood's social life. The porch swing was my favorite reading spot, and I'd stretch out with a book in one hand and a fresh glass of lemonade in the other while the ladies more my grandmother's age would discuss the latest movie gossip from trashy magazines excessed by the beauty shop. Life was good on a hot summer afernoon.

I didn't get to stay in Georgia for long periods of time. Just quick visits. I couldn't wait to haul myself up into the cherry four-poster with a fringed teester, the one in "my" bedroom. The wide cherry plank floors reflected the morning light, and I'd wake up hearing morning doves in the garden outside my window. Nineteenth century travel cases hid under the bedskirt, and it was a tradtion to haul them out and search through old clothes and hats stored just for my dress-up pleasure.

That cherry bed is stored in my attic, its posts too high for modern ceilings. The red lacquer Chinese mirror from my Georgia room reposes in my guest room. The trunks are long gone, along with their sartorial treasures. But the memories are all held firmly in that motheaten needlepoint picture.

I won't toss it in the trash, no matter how awful it looks. Some things you just keep.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cool portrait

One of my daughters did the self-portrait, LaceFace. Don't tell her I put it up on my blog...she'll be embarrassed. But I thought it was terribly creative. She and her sister are both so talented with a camera, it's amazing. I have no idea where they got that one. Not me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The crabgrass is winning...

Now that we've had several days of rain/heat/rain, crabgrass is king. I keep telling myself to be grateful, it's green, and a definite improvement over the brown lawn of a few weeks ago. My sweetie, however, thinks differently. The crabgrass is winning, much to his chagrin.

The munchkins are all heading back to school in a day or so. One is working on her master's degree at a top ten school in her field, the younger is heading into her fifth year of a five year architecture program at one of the best schools in the country. I love the way my kids don't want the easy way out - they always choose the harder path in their education choices. It will serve them well, as my eldest realized soon after starting to work on her masters in June. Her rigorous undergrad degree had her tearing her hair out, but now that she's in the masters program, she can see how well served she was by working her buns off for four years to get her BA. While others struggle in the class work, she's on top of it with her usual persistence and hard work. Both girls aren't happy unless challenged, and boy howdy, are they.

Re-read Larry Watson's MONTANA 1948 last week. Still his best book, at least in my eyes. The older voice narrating the events from a youngster's viewpoint makes it fit into one of my favorite storytelling devices.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Sick of Watermelon Yet?

Getting there! What a colossally awful thing to admit, since the melons this year have been spectacular. But I found myself walking away from my fav watermelon vendor at the local farmer's market, simply because I've had enough. If I could freeze the melons for later in winter when I crave a taste of summer, I would. But right now, I'm on watermelon overload. Same with cantaloupe. Great stuff, had too much.

Have you ever found an author who grabbed you with that first book you read? Then you run out and find everything s/he ever wrote and move them to the top of your TBR pile. Only by the time you're on the fourth or fifth book, you've hit the wall. Nothing seems fresh or unusual anymore, and you put down the next book in favor of another writer. Susan Elisabeth Phillips - prime example. Great writer, wonderful books, but I can take only so many in a row. I guess it's like anything else, you CAN have too much of a good thing. Think how boring meals would be if we only ate chocolate. Wait, let me reconsider that one. . . .

The moral of this story? Eat the watermelon as long as it's tasty, then move on. It's okay if you're groaning out loud. Not much depth to that pithy bit of philosophy, huh? Oh well, it's still hot as a haywire oven here, and the brain cells are pretty much melted into a buttery puddle. Forgive me.