Wednesday, January 8, 2014


December 2013 was full from start to finish. 
I don't know if we could have crammed one more thing in it. 
When Deanne was here she asked me if we should make *buckeyes*
which reminded us both of this story that happened a few years ago:

One cold December night I rushed out of the grocery store
and tossed sacks of food in my car.  Shivering, I started the
car and glanced over my shoulder as I began to back up.  That's
when I saw her -- Mary Lennox -- just as if she had stepped out
of The Secret Garden and was perched in the middle of the backseat
of the P T Cruiser parked next to me.  The interior light was on and I
recognized Mary by the sour expression on her thin face.  Yes, there
was strait hair falling in bangs on her forehead and eyebrows in strait
lines above her dark eyes.        

Her mom was twisted around in the front seat,
leaning back and *talking* to her. 
I thought about all the little girls across the country
with stressed out moms.  
All the moms giving "a talking-to" to their little girls . . .

And all for what?!

The mad scramble of Christmas 
-- shopping
-- baking
-- gift wrapping
-- cleaning

I started to pray for that little girl and her mom . . .
then for all the moms and all the little girls (big girls, too)
struggling in their relationships.  I had no idea I was praying for
myself at that very moment.

A couple hours later Deanne was going to finish the *buckeyes*
she had started.  She needed a bowl and asked if she could use my
green Tupperware bowl in the microwave.  It isn't microwave safe
so I gave her my double boiler.  I didn't think to tell her it can't go
in the microwave either.  I was washing the pan for the double boiler
when I heard the door of the microwave open.

  you guessed it . . . Deanne was taking the stainless steel double boiler out
of the microwave to stir the chocolate. 

And you guessed it again . . . I lost it

"You can't use that bowl in the microwave!"

Deanne was as cool as a cucumber.  "You never told me that. 
I'm sure it's okay."

In my delirium it seemed to me she was actually going to put the bowl
in the microwave again.

"Your dad ruined the microwave at Hog Slat by putting tinfoil in it!"

(Why do I always bring up past mistakes in the middle of another
totally different occasion?)

Deanne was sure I was mad at her.  I wasn't, truly I wasn't . . .
just sorry I hadn't thought to tell her that bowl wasn't microwavable. 
I said I was sorry for screeching and gave her a hug.

Then to top it off I glanced over Krysta's shoulder and saw her
homework problem.  (Ellis was helping her with Math.) 
She was writing  21x1=37 in her division problem. 

After coming unglued again I was kindly but firmly dismissed
from the room.  I'll bet my face was a perfect replica of Mary Lennox
about then.

I remembered the little girl in the car.   
The picture of someone outside looking in . . .
When I stepped back and looked at the whole picture
there was a funny side to the whole episode. 

That night when the house was asleep I wrote down the whole story
in my journal - and read it to Deanne, Jorgan and Krysta the next morning
on the way to school.

Deanne said,  "You're not going to send that to all your friends in an e-mail!"
I said,  "I'm the one who was a grinch. You didn't do anything wrong."

There's a little snapshot out of the past . . .

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to one and all!