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A contemplative Sunday, sans church, All Saints Day also known as Day of the Dead. I'm contemplating my lawfully wedded bliss of 29 years. It was that long ago my husband and I took our vows at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Anaheim, Calif. on a beautiful day. The temperature was 80 degrees; the sun was shining. I've been doing a lot of "let go and let God" this year. Our son turns 18 in exactly one month and he's thinking he wants to attend OK State Univ. instead of Univ. of Alaska Fairbanks next Fall. Book group is today.
I've often fancied the thought of running a B&B. I've stayed at many of them; most are lovely! Often, the owner is a great cook and prides him/herself as one who can make preparing a fantastic breakfast look easy. I've been to such places in California, New Mexico, Arkansas and Texas. Sometimes families occupy the home opened up to travelers who wish to experience something out of the ordinary in the way of lodging. Jokingly, i imagine having a place called "facile à vivre." In French, this translates to easy going. I would toss my guests a pop tart.
Today is a day "to dress for all seasons." It's a cool and delightful Fall morning, all 41 degrees of it. The expected high today is 70 so . . . instead of the black turtleneck sweater I was planning on wearing to Tuesday Club (the oldest women's organization in Bartlesville, Oklahoma) I may opt for a short sleeved tee shirt from Chico's instead. Why the weather report? Aren't they boring? Sometimes. It's just that I feel crappy today--I have a cold--and it's morning with my day spread out before me paying bills, making calls. Wanted to get my 100words done.
Yesterday I read a featured entry from someone's 100words.com October batch. The writer claimed oil of oregano works but did not elaborate. I wondered: for what?? Turns out, a naturopath was our speaker at Tuesday Club yesterday and then afterwards, a friend and I went to a health food store in town and I was told that just ONE DROP added to the saline and water solution and used in a neti pot REALLY helps clean out the sinuses. It does. Of course, oil of oregano is STRONG--aromatically speaking. It resembles a lasagna being shoved up your nose!
I'm starving on my flight today from Tulsa to Orange County, California via Dallas. There was just a short amount of time in Dallas--just long enough to find the Skylink to take me from concourse A to D and walk to gate 31, text my son and a friend back in Bartlesville and breathe in and breathe out before boarding flight 499. The middle seat is empty. A woman on the isle seat ate a sandwich she'd brought on board with her. I'm waiting for water and crackers and cheese plate for the bargain basement price of $4.00.
Another beautiful day in Southern California! Took a lovely drive up to the Orange Hill Restaurant and checked out their hours of operation. The view is spectacular from there. I had been there several times during college and post grad years. I'd love to take my mom there for dinner one night. We kept driving east as far as Irvine Lake and then turned around. We stopped in only two stores and by then I was starving; I'd only had a bear claw and a latte all day from Panera Bread. We ate dinner at Ricardo's. Huge drinks are served!
Today I passed Ross for Less and went directly to Nordstrom and spent $200.00; now that's MY way of playing Monopoly! Actually, part of this will be returned to me as I paid for my own Christmas gift (bottle of Lola!) from my mom and sister. Then, I also bought my mom a really cute winter night gown for HER Christmas present. We try to avoid mailing things if we can; it only makes sense since I am already here in sunny California. At this point I am very tired and starving. Had a small lunch and smaller dinner.
A new film has been released called "Coco before Chanel" about the first female designer mogul. This ought to be good. I just looked at a clip from it by googling Coco before Chanel. I'm predicting it will win an academy award for best costumes. Mmmmm . . . that's a no-brainer. Think I may go see the movie today with my mom; I'm trying to get her out for fun, enjoyable excursions because usually her days consist of doctors appointments, an occasional lunch or early bird supper out or long days of just staying home. Wonder when it'll play in Tulsa . . .
Another lovely Southern California day; lots of luscious sun to nourish the skin and soul. Mom and I had lunch with folks who have been our friends since 1959. Texting my son and friend in Bartlesville--who’s visiting a friend of hers in Saint Louis--makes me feel far away instead of closer. Seeing a friend of mine tomorrow whom I’ve known since we were both in ninth grade. Shopped at White House/Black Market for black, long dangly earrings and a necklace to go with the new black dress I ordered recently from their store in Houston.
Took sister’s cat, Puzzle, to vet this morning, carrying her gingerly in her kitty crate. She screamed; didn’t want to be there. She'll stay there a week; she doesn’t allow anyone except the vet to administer medicine in her ears. This makes coming and going from sister’s apartment easier; one has to be careful not to let the cat escape from the front door. My friend and I had a great lunch at McCormicks and Schmicks and stayed until after 5:00 P.M., catching up on all the years that have gone by so quickly.
Emailing allows us to not miss a beat whether it be news from around the world via the Internet or news from home while we’re away on business/pleasure. The mother of a close friend passed away last night. This was expected but it’s still difficult. Another close friend back home emailed me that her neighbor was murdered in Tulsa. A third close friend informed me that she has decided to get a divorce after much contemplation and 18 years of marriage. This was a triple hitter. I made really good chili tonight: pork, green chilies and beans.
This, too, was a most delightful day in Southern California—again! I took my mom to get her hair permed while I took care of paperwork to obtain her wheelchair and then we had a great lunch at Marie Callender’s. We then went to downtown Orange on the Circle and looked in one shop, Two Sisters, where Mom treated herself to a pair of pearl earrings. I stopped in another shop, Eikon, and bought a funny card for my gastroenterologist—it’s a card only a gastro could truly appreciate. Settled in to watch “Grey’s Anatomy” this evening.
Picked up the wheelchair— not lightweight. Explored Senior Center in Orange. Nice place for lunch Monday through Friday for the bargain price of $2.50. Hoping to take Mom there Monday. They have many activities; would be a place for her to call her own and get her out of her chair in the stuffy living room where the blinds are usually closed and the heater is usually on because she’s always cold. We enjoyed prime rib dinners at the Orange Hill Restaurant this evening; such a view! A wedding was taking place; so festive! Had a great time.
Drove from Orange to Whittier in 43 minutes flat. Stopped at my mom’s friend’s house so they could visit/have lunch while I lunched with group from high school. Nine of us gathered for an energetic, lively and warm “reunion.” Good to see these women—some whom I haven’t seen in 40 years. Was pleased the traffic moved along smoothly both directions. I haven’t driven those freeways for 26 years when we left California and moved to Tulsa in 1983. My husband always drives when we visit. I have my “drivin’ the California freeways" juice back.
Sunday, Sunday! I love our Sunday routine while I’m here. I spend a little time at Panera Bread and then we go to an early matinee. We saw “Amelia” and then we ate scrumptious cheeseburgers and fries at Bob’s Big Boy. It’s a cheerful place that brings back many memories while I was growing up in Southern California. Once again it was too late to stay up and watch “Brothers and Sisters;” it doesn’t come on until 10:00 P.M. and I am so spoiled in Oklahoma where it begins at 9:00 P.M..
Took Mom for her virgin spin in her new wheelchair. We call it her Lexus. Went to The Main Place. I wheeled her around Chico’s and Coldwater Creek—two of my favorite stores she has never been. She liked not having to walk with her cane; she gets tired. I’ll get tired, too, when I’m 90 and have, maybe, congestive heart failure. We enjoyed a delicious dinner at an Italian restaurant in Orange and watched “House”—our favorite show. My sis was supposed to return tomorrow; surprised us when she walked in at 7:15 this evening.
Another day of cruisin’ in the Lexus. We went to an upscale consignment shop and thrift store. It was tight getting the wheelchair through the isles but we managed. We each managed to find a couple of things to buy; scored great bargains. Everything was 50% off; can’t beat that! We went for a late lunch at Mimi’s café and had fabulous French onion soup and a triple fudge brownie; had to bring that home to finish up. When we eat out, we eat slowly and chat and are relaxed. One learns to slow down as one ages.
Emailed from Panera Bread before getting back to my sister's. The once upon a time child who was the flower girl in my wedding is now a beautiful young woman who has always been my friend. We have a special kinship; I've always been like an aunt to her. We had simpatico from the moment we met. (She never spoke to strangers when she was four but we hit it off immediately.) Today we had a fabulous Cuban lunch at Felix's on the Circle in Orange and shopped in Chico's, Coldwater Creek and Nordstrom where we reminisced about her grandma.
Today was my departure. My two weeks in California were wonderful. I enjoyed a lot of Mom time with my mom, down time reading and emailing, watched more t.v. in those two weeks than I ever watch in two months, and spent whirlwind days with long time friends. My flights were uneventful, thank heavens. The connections were painless. Some of the flight attendants were snotty. Our son picked me up at the Tulsa International Airport; my husband was at a business dinner. First time our son had driven by himself to Tulsa. Ate chicken from Popey for supper; yum!
I spent a FULL DAY AT HOME and it was good to be back. I mopped all of the floors downstairs, did lots of laundry, unpacked all of my luggage, lighted candles to make the house smell good, made several phone calls to set up appointments, visited with my neighbor down the street and gave her a couple of gifts I'd found for her at Eikon on the Circle in Orange. Our son and one of his friends had a combined birthday party tonight with so there were eight boys at our place for pizza and a "Lan" party sleepover.
Hubby and I had a great day in Tulsa. He picked up his early Christmas gift--a stereo system. We discovered a consignment shop I never knew existed and then had sushi at Fuji and a cupcake and cup of coffee at Kupcakz. We stopped into the Apple store to say hi to our favorite salesperson there and she showed me two of her favorite aps on her iPhone. Then we went to see "The Time Traveller's Wife" for the bargain basement price of $1.00 per ticket; when does that ever happen? It wasn't one of those dollar theaters!
Sunday, Sunday--and a most delightful one it was! I awoke fairly early and enjoyed my coffee in bed while catching up on email--the way I like to begin every day whenever possible. I grocery shopped for some good deli and Jewish rye and rolls. Made wonderful brownies and our company from Florida and Kansas arrived at noon. It was so good to see them again--neighbors from the middle 1980's when we lived in Tulsa. We talked for over five hours and it was like we had just seen each other last week. Reconnection: it's a good thing!
Monday, Monday. Fog-filled morning; nice Fall temperatures. Will have to remember these mild days when the wolves of Winter are growling and nipping at my heels. Ran four errands and was back up on the mountain in one hour flat; that was nice. When I returned, our dogs had thrown up on the throw rug in the entry hall. What a mess to clean up. They stayed outside all day, not bugging me to come in. Son and I had our teeth cleaned and ate dinner at Ocean China. Dogs wouldn't eat a bite of dinner when we returned.
After the pest control guy was finished spraying the inside and the outside of our house today, I left to buy a couple of 3-in-1 deviled eggs/cupcakes/pie carriers. One never knows how many of those will be needed when heading to a pot luck, especially during the holidays. Then I bought dark chocolate covered potato chips by Bedre'. Bedre' chocolate is from Oklahoma and is WONderful. While a delegation of Russian women were in Bartlesville several years ago, Bedre' chocolates were one of our several gifts to them. I had piles of mail to sort today.
Today was an admixture of beautiful weather and sad news. I met with two friends for lunch and we had a good time except one told me her mom's non Hodgkins lymphoma has returned in her abdomen. Her mother is a dear, dear friend of mine and is 93 years old. I went to see her right away and was going to anyway. When I got there, she was resting in bed. I sat on her bed and held her hand. She said she's disgusted it has returned; she's had it a couple of times and will begin chemo monday.
This morning found me waking up with my morning java, catching up on email in bed on my laptop and then paying bills. I caught up with a pile one mile high from the two weeks I was in California. I had prepared the cranberry relish yesterday morning and today I prepared and baked my traditional sweet potato pudding. We had dinner with our friends out in the country and had a great meal and nice conversation. By the time we got home, it was 10:30. I was so tired, I felt like I would collapse. Am getting old.
The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally the day we get together with the folks we spend Thanksgiving with. This includes a friend of my husband from grad school who drives from wherever he lives to be with the rest of the bunch--wherever they happen to be. Today my husband and I prepared brunch. We grilled halibut from Alaska and had smoked salmon from there we added to the scrambled eggs. Two of us had a fun-filled shopping excursion at Chico's and the consignment shop I'd found last week. The guys joined us in Tulsa for dinner. Home again.
My day began earlier than I had hoped it would. I stayed up and tended to the dogs, made the coffee, went through my email and colored my hair. My husband slept-in until 10:00; he must have needed the rest. We took off and bought a couple of garage door remotes. We had lunch at a deli and I spilled a tall glass of ice water on my lap. I did laundry, paid bills, filed paper work, emptied and refilled the dishwasher and vacuumed before we drove over the border and had dinner at Rio Escondido with friends.
It is the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Long ago and far away (in a time I can barely remember--back when I was single and organized!) this was the day I wrote my Christmas cards. Then came children, crises and clutter. Simple traditions were lost in the shuffle. I’m seeing now--just beyond the horizon--a time when life may be (somewhat) organized again. Glad we enjoyed the time with children when they were at home. Since I've written the letter, I now need to get the cards out and address the envelopes. I really could create labels for that!
The morning began with phone calls coming in and continued all day amongst running errands to the credit union, the health food store, the dry cleaners. S.P.C.A. will give Tuesday Club program. I bought Christmas presents for our daughters, canned goods to take to Christmas luncheons and they will be distributed to the needy. I grocery shopped and hurried home, not getting here before the fellow who was to close down our swimming pool for the winter; no can do. Too many leaves. He suggested a teenage boy remove them. I happen to have one of those . . .
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