Thursday, May 27, 2010


This was one or two wimpy blooms just last year. I love when the yard gets prolific - the pics will be coming!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Stories of grandparents

Papa & Grammie Musso (left) and Papa & Grammie Roelle (right) at Mom & Dad's wedding

Papa & Grammie Roelle (Cliff & Betty), my Dad's parents,were around quite a bit when we were kids, until they moved to Florida - sometime around Junior High, I think.
Before Grammie passed from lung cancer, both were heavy smokers. I remember leaning against Grammie once while in the kitchen and burning my hand on her cigarette.
Grammie knew I loved applesauce and always made a big deal about that. Made me like it more, perhaps.
I need to gather more stories about her, I realize now that I don't remember many details. Most of what I remember is of her passing and I'd like to instead remember her life.

Papa flew missions over the Pacific in World War II. He enlisted twice, the first time quite young. If I remember correctly, he was a gunner. When he was young, he looked like a movie star. He talked very little about his youth - but in the one story I remember, he looked out the window to see that the wing of his plane was missing. They went down into the water and were almost taken by a Japanese ship, but Americans came over the horizon just in time.
Here at home, he assembled plane models, did a bunch of woodcraft - making nativities and lights that looked like covered wagons. He collected Hess trucks and loved to fish.
When we were little, Papa had a stroke. He recovered, but often found himself reaching for words and it frustrated him. He talked less after that because he was self-conscious.
After Papa passed, I put together a scrapbook from his photos & papers, and Sonny put together a a display of his medals. I learned more about his childhood and his life before the grandkids came along which was very cool & important.

I miss them both and wish I could have had more time as an adult to spend with them, but I'm also grateful for the bits I have.

Sonny, Danny - chime in in the comments if you want with your memories. I'm going to take some time this summer to sit with Dad and learn more.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Mom & Dad now live in the 'ville

The move was finished last Wednesday, the truck returned to U-Haul Thursday am. Sonny was able to come for a few days to help pack, consolidate, and move garage stuff over. Dan came Tues/ Wed and did a lot of the stuff a young back w/ lots of energy is handy for. I threw things away, burned papers, and packed things before Mom was ready to. ;) - and packed, consolidated, and did some hauling.

Weird to think that pics from now on will be at a different place. I'm conscious of it now, so it might not happen right away, but I'm sure I'll head the wrong direction at least once when going to visit. Dad was worried about steps forward or backward. There isn't forward or backward, Dad, it's just a step. It's different. It's a new adventure.

Talking to Mom last night, she said Dad had mowed the new lawn w/ his old mower - it took 1/2 an hour vs the 1/2 a day minimum on the old. He was psyched.
They'll have fun.

Book #9 -Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders by Neil Gaiman. I loved the variety of the collection - and the notes from Neil on each piece made it that much more interesting. "Monarch of the Glen" was great, but I can't comment on that until #1b1t - the One Book One Twitter book club - is done for spoiler's sake. Another favorite was "Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Secret House of the Night of Dread Desire" ;) quite fun!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

And another spring...

Bad pun day - come on it's Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be with you!) How could I resist?

Seriously, I meant to put these pics on yesterday's post. One is the crazy sweet (Jenny, I think I'm using the word MORE since that conversation! :p ) weeds that covered our backyard before the first mow. The other are the forget-me-nots - one of our favorite flowers....

Monday, May 03, 2010

Long, muddy spring - books

Actually, just one of the two fits that description...

Book #7 - The Frog & Toad Treasury by Arnold Lobel. These were a favorite of J's as a child and I've been reading a chapter or so before bed to help us get to sleep. TBH, I did not read them as a child. Not bad. Some cute stories. J's fave is "Cookies", mine was "The Story".

Book #8 - Cold Mountainby Charles Frazier. Geh. What a stone. Yay I'm done! First off, good stuff: it picks up in the back quarter of the book - better pace, stuff is happening, you care a bit. But the remainder! Every person is so miserable and in such miserable circumstances that while they may not be mean-spirited, they live mean lives. No joy. For so much of the book nothing happens and I found myself asking often - "why am I reading this again?". I have to check out what's next in my rotation, but even WWII testimonials will be a pick-me-up from this one! I've read darker books, but Frazier's prose, his use of local terms that mean nothing to me and feel gratuitous - it just drags it all down.