Monthly Archives: November 2013

Gratitude

Hands in pockets: Ricky, Jared, RJ, and the kid

Hands in pockets: Ricky, Jared, RJ, and the kid

I’m grateful that my sons have such great friends to pal around with. This week two of the Core 4 who room together at Sam Houston State (e.g., my younger son and RJ) were reunited with the other dynamic duo, Ricky (University of North Texas) and Jared (Blinn Junior College) for the first time since they left for college.

Although it was a short videogame-playing session, I could tell that they had a lot of fun, judging from all the laughter coming from our game room. Here’s hoping this is an unbreakable bond for these Fantastic Four friends!

The Melding of Holidays

My sons seem to like the new menorahs.

My sons seem to like the new menorahs.

Today is Thanksgiving . . . and the first day and second night of Chanukah. Twice the fun!! And it won’t happen again supposedly until the year 79811. We’ve got to grab the gusto while we can.

Ain't he cute?

Ain’t he cute?

In honor of this rare occurrence (the first time Chanukah blended with Thanksgiving was in the late 1800s), I bought a menurkey, which my older son chose to light. It’s a little too pale (it would look better if it had a color), but it’ll be a great way for us to remember Chanukah 2013.

Hope y’all have a happy Thanksgiving. Give thanks and enjoy family, friends, food, and football!

One-Word Wednesday

My older son came home last night from UTSA.

My older son came home last night from UTSA.

Bliss!

His little bro was glad they were together again. Here’s to having fun until they leave on Sunday!

Little bro was glad they were together. Here’s to having fun until they leave on Sunday!

Bring On the Holidays!

We’ll break out two new menorahs this year . . . if the other one arrives on time.

We’ll break out two new menorahs this year . . . if the other one arrives on time.

Chanukah starts tomorrow night (yep, it’s early), and, believe it or not, I’m just about ready. I even used more-appropriate gift wrap, for a change. Pats on the back for me!

My coy boy

My coy boy

My younger son arrived home yesterday afternoon from SHSU. His older brother still has three classes today at UTSA before he joins us tonight. There will be joy, merriment, and lots of Chanukah candles to light. Plus Thanksgiving!

As always, there’s a lot to be thankful for! Happy Thanksgivukkah!

Musical Musings

An egret sits quietly on a railing as I approached during yesterday’s run.

An egret sits quietly on a railing as I approached during yesterday’s chilly run.

Bye bye . . .

Guess I got too close for comfort.

Guess I got too close for comfort.

. . . birdie!

A Somber Remembrance

The 35th president

The 35th president

It’s hard to believe that it’s been 50 years since President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. One way to tell how old someone is: Ask where they were when they heard the tragic news that the handsome, young leader of our country had been shot and killed.

Of course, I remember it clearly. I was 10 years old and in the fifth grade at Gale School in Chicago. An announcement came over the PA system that the president had died. We all stood for a moment of silence. I recall that one girl was giggling from the awkwardness. I felt sorry for JFK’s widow, Jackie, and their young children . . . as well as for our country.

The next few days my family was glued to our TV watching the grim footage of Kennedy lying in state and then the funeral procession. I still remember seeing the horse-drawn caisson carrying his coffin. It was a quiet, reflective time for my parents, three siblings, and me.

A lot has happened politically in our country, both positive and negative, since that day. I often wonder what the U.S. would be like if JFK had lived and was able to finish out his term(s). How different would our lives be?

Of course, that’s pure conjecture. The best we can do is to remember some of JFK’s words as we navigate an always uncertain future:

• Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.

• Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.

And, of course:

• My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.

These words are a priceless legacy.

Groovin’

Sunny ripples

Sunny ripples

One of the lakes in our master-planned community has a water feature that causes waves . . . in a good way.

Could this be a 33 and a third or a 45?

Looks like an LP

When I pass by it during my morning jogs or walks, those circular swirls always make me think of a record. Of course, I’m dating myself with that word, seeing as how vinyl has become passé and obsolete. But it was a big part of my teen years in the mid-1960s, as I wore out the needle on my suitcase turntable.

Round and around and around they go.

Round and around and around they go.

Naturally, the song from my past that readily comes to mind is “Groovin’’ by the Young Rascals (1967).

Maybe I need to check out the lake on a Sunday afternoon!

One-Word Wednesday

The Mister’s brother turns 65 today. They sandwich their sister, Carol.

The Mister’s brother, Mike, turns 65 today. They sandwich their sister, Carol.

Birthday!

The Mister, me, our niece Melissa, Mike, his wife Paula, and Carol

The Mister, me, our niece Melissa, Mike, his wife Paula, and Carol at Mike’s Texans-themed birthday party last Sunday; wish they had won for him!

Birds on the Brain

Lots of white feathers here

Lots of white feathers here

Last week a bunch of ibises settled in a patch of water in the creek that runs alongside our community’s walking path. This was their idea of eating out . . . literally.

Gotta love their beaks!

A snowy egret makes his own ripples among the long-beaked gang.

There must have been lots of great bugs in this area. The ibises’ long, curved beaks were immersed in the water most of the time.

Gotta love those beaks!

Gotta love those reflections!

It was interesting how well all the birds, which included a couple of snowy egrets, got along. I guess it’s true that birds of a feather flock together.

”Get out of here!“

”Get out of here!“

Except when one is annoying another. Reminds me of a couple boys I know!

A Fun, Frustrating Time

Tanner, Chase, and Josh know where to look, not my sons.

Tanner, Chase, and Josh know where to look, not my sons.

What a nice weekend we enjoyed! First, both boys came home from UTSA and SHSU. While we waited for my younger son to arrive Friday afternoon and join his brother, we entertained my older son’s good friend Josh and my “third son,” Chase, who both attend college in Houston. Or should I say that they entertained me. It was good to get their take on life (and Runescape) and talk about what their post-graduate plans are (hard to believe that they’ll be done with college in May).

The boys met their pal Tanner Friday night at Buffalo Wild Wings to eat, chat, and play trivia (the Mister and I helped our disc golf friend Eric’s team and sat nearby). Saturday night (yep, cheap Mom relented so the boys could sleep in) we watched “Thor: The Dark World” movie and really enjoyed it (Loki is such a witty bad guy).

So stubborn!

So stubborn!

Then I spent the next couple days trying to get my younger son to cooperate and let me snap a pic or two of him.

“Stop it, Mom!”

“Stop it, Mom!”

Naturally, he refused to play nice. When I told him that one day his children will enjoy seeing photos of him, he replied, “You’ve taken enough pictures.”

Really, son? Enough?!? That word is not in the vocabulary of the momarazzo!

The two brothers

The two brothers (yes, Jake got his hair cut)

At least he put up with the usual pose-with-your-brother-before-you-leave harassment. Guess I’m thankful he threw me one little cooperation crumb.

Wonder what the photographic Thanksgiving break will be like . . . or do I.