Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween 2010

For fun on Friday night, I picked up a Papa Murphy's Jack O' Lantern pizza.  Cute.  $6.99.  Fun.  Yummy.
Punkin' pizza
 My friend Marti, from Indy loves Halloween.  One of the guys that Doug works with was having a party.  So Marti came down to go out with us.  I don't get into Halloween too much, so I just picked up a few things (headband, gloves, mask) from Cracker Barrel at half price on Friday night.  If you can't tell, there is a spider sitting on top of my head.  So I guess I was spider lady.  We went to the party and by the end of the night I had taken off the gloves and mask.  I wear glasses, so the mask didn't really work too well.
Marti (Judge Judy) & me

Doug (crazy surfer dude) & Marti (Judge Judy)

Doug & me
I'm working down at the shop today where Cindy says it will be doggie day...she is bringing in her two chihuahuas in costume.  I'll wear the spider headband for fun.  Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 29, 2010


 What does the word "out" make you think of?
Out of doors?
Out of milk, toilet paper, dog food? 
Out spoken?
Out burst?

There were a lot of years in my life when the word out could have meant any of the above definitions. 
Twelve years ago, the word "out" started to have a whole new meaning for me.

We had dinner that evening.
A real sit-down dinner.
Which was uncommon for us.  She had been troubled.  Her Dad and I had talked about it, trying to figure out what was wrong.  That night, after dinner, I asked her again what was wrong.  Finally she answered.
"There is something so wrong with me that people will hate me."

I looked at her beautiful, sixteen-year-old face.  So sweet. 
Who could hate you I said?  Why?
She looked at me and said
"I'm bi-sexual." 

I remember reading Ellen's mother's book years later and she described the very feelings I was experiencing at that moment.  All the things I thought I would have went flying away from me.  A son-in-law, grand-children, all of the girl things I had imagined for my daughter. 
I didn't know what to say.  I thought I was liberal, didn't think I was prejudice, but when these words pertained to my child, it felt different.  It made everything different.
I sat there, silent. 
"Say something"she said.
"I think I'm going to throw up?"  I said.

She was sixteen years old and she had just told me that she was gay and I said
"I think I'm going to throw-up."
I don't think I will ever get over saying that to her at that moment.   How awful. 
Even though I spoke honestly at that moment, I stuck beside her.  I think for the entire first year, I couldn't say out loud "my daughter is gay," without my voice breaking.  I learned to "test the waters" before telling certain people.  The town I was born in and grew up in is to this day, very straight and narrow.  It hurt me to think that someone might dismiss my daughter or define her based upon her sexual orientation.
 My daughter left that town her junior year of high school to attend a school where there were other students like her and she bloomed.  The school was diverse and filled with extremely intelligent students.  The class sizes were small and much the same as one experiences in college.  The students lived in dorms.  People asked me how I could let her leave home at such a young age and go off to school.  For her, it was a wonderful place to be.
There were other gay students.   One time at the school I met a young lady who stood, as if to honor me as she shook my hand.  She told me how my daughter had told her about me.  As we walked away, I asked my daughter what that was all about.
"When she came out, her parents dis-owned her."

I grew up in the Foursquare Pentecostal church.  There is a scripture that talks about how nothing will separate us from the love of God.

Romans 8:38-39  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Even before I had children, I always knew that was the way that I was going to love my children.

After high-school, she completed her undergrad at Indiana University in Bloomington (where I now live) which is the number one gay vacation destination.  Then she headed to the east coast to attend law school. 

She and her partner just got married in D.C. where gay marriage is legal.  My daughter's family stood on one side, her partner's family stood on the other side.  We all had a part in the wedding.  Promising to love and support this union.  The judge who presided was a beautiful African American woman.  She was beautiful inside and out.  When we thanked her for performing the ceremony, she told us that it was her honor and privilege and that she had fallen in love with these two women and the way they love one another.

While finishing my undergrad, I worked at Ball State.  I was mostly out at the university.  I felt that if I was open about my daughter being gay, it might help someone else.  Most of the students would react the same way... "that is cool that you are so cool about it."  But I couldn't be out with everyone because we hadn't told my parents yet.  I didn't want to tell them.  They are Pentecostals, too and I thought they would reject her.  My daughter came home to Indiana in August, a special trip, just to tell them. 
We sat in the living room and my daughter began...
"Whenever you would ask me if I had a boyfriend, and I would say I was studying, out of respect for Mom, that was kind of a lie.  I was studying, but I was often in a relationship, but with a woman."
My Dad is a little hard of hearing and leaned forward
"Did you say that you were in a relationship with a woman?"
"Yes, Grandpa."
Then she proceeded to tell them that she had fallen in love and was going to marry a woman.
Again, my dad leans forward
"Did you say you were going to marry a woman?"
"Yes, Grandpa."

So now it isn't a secret any longer.  I have a beautiful, intelligent, successful daughter and a new beautiful, intelligent, successful daughter-in-law.

I always joked that my daughter always wanted me to wave a flag and say
"Yay, yay, my daughter is gay!" 
This is me, being out.
I'm waving my flag for you, now.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

On being haunted

I had a haunting dream last night. 
There are two who haunt me.
One is my Grandma.  She is the one I want to turn to when I'm troubled or stressed.
She passed away in December of '06.
Her phone number is still in my cell.  I cannot take it out.
I still cry for her sometimes.

The other who haunts me is a past love. 
An impossible relationship that ended without much closure.
I just moved on.

In my dream, I was at my Grandma's house.
Her house was a place of safety to me.  Other than being at her house, she wasn't in this dream.

He came to the door with a little girl in his arms, maybe between one and two years old. 
He simply said to me, "she needs to be changed." 
He had her clothing and toys in his car and I asked if she was his. 
He denied it.  I did not believe him.

We went to a place where people lived who had no where to go.  He helped them, worked with them at this house-type building.  It was a peaceful place.

Then for awhile, he was gone and in the dream, I wandered from room to room of the shelter looking for him.
I couldn't understand why he had come to me with this child.

I have been with Doug for several years, but this man continues to haunt me. 
No other person from my past has lingered like he has.

I remember the first time he came to me in a dream after I had started to be in a relationship with Doug. 
Doug and I were camping in Long's Peak campground, having a wonderful trip.
I woke and remembered the dream, laying in a tent, beside Doug and I felt so strange.

Sometimes, in dreams, the man has no role, no voice, no part. 
Yet he stands to the side and watches me.
I have no control over where my dreams go, when he comes to me, haunting my life to this day. 
I have heard that spirits of those gone on linger on earth when those who love them cannot let them go.
What about someone who is alive?
Someone who I walked away from yet he lingers on, haunting - for years?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A new October love

For those of you who are regular readers probably think that the title of this post has something to do with my daughter's recent wedding.  Not so.
This post is about a new recent October  discovery...the North Carolina State Fair. 
 The North Carolina State fairgrounds is a mixture of old buildings.  One of the first buildings we saw a grist mill where they were giving away piping hot hush puppies.  Delicious.
Me, in front of the grist mill

Look close and you can see the rain a-comin' down.
 One thing they had at the North Carolina State fair that we don't have in Indiana was tobacco.  I've always thought the drying barns were cool looking in North Carolina.  I wonder if the industry has been hit in recent years?  I quit in '97, so I figure everyone else has quit, too.

Look!  Sir Walter Raleigh in a can.

 We have cows in Indiana, but the cows in North Carolina are smart cows, from N.C. State.

I took this for my egg lady.
 They had a row of restaurant type buildings that were represented by all faiths.  We chose the Christian Church and when the man took our order, he said it would cost more because I was from Ball State.  He said he knew of Ball State because of his church conference being held in Indianapolis.
Church row.  Restaurants from all kinds of churches. 
 We ordered a barbecue sandwich with slaw.  Doug and I try to share food as much as possible.  Seems we always end up eating more than we plan to, anyway.
Not in Indiana.  Not this menu. 
 We were at the North Carolina State fair on my birthday, which is October 20.  I overheard someone say the word "birthday," and I asked who.  This little gal came over to visit with me. 
My birthday friend, Hannah.  She was 11.  I said "ME, TOO!"  Then I said "not really."
 We didn't eat anything fried - but I had to take a picture of this...yuck.
Fried, fried and fried.
My son and his girlfriend had been to the fair and he told me that there was one place that sold pineapple whip - which if you are a regular reader, you know I love pineapple whip.  We searched and searched for it.

When I finally found the pineapple whip, I told the lady, "I heard you were here and we've been looking for you - I have pineapple whip at the Indiana State Fair and I love it."  Then the lady said "you probably buy it from me, I'm there."  She was from Indianapolis, but now lives in Florida. 
For my egg lady who keeps bees.
 Am I the bee's knees or what?
I loved this sign.
It rained almost the whole time we were there, but we had a great time.  The North Carolina State Fair is held in October because it is too hot in the summer.  So now I have a new October love.

In the backseat

I'm home.  Yesterday was my first day back at work.  We left on the nineteenth and I took my lap top.  I had such grand plans!  I was going to blog, everyday, from the road.  The second day I tried to blog, I couldn't get my photos to load and I kept losing my Internet.  That was probably the last day that I had the time to blog.  It was a non-stop whirlwind trip.  On Tuesday the nineteenth, we drove from Bloomington to Raleigh/Durham.  Late on Thursday we left Raleigh for Maryland.  Friday morning we all drove in to D.C. and returned to Maryland after lunch.  On Sunday we drove back from Maryland to Raleigh then to Durham.  When we left Durham we drove to Asheville, NC.  Then on our final day we drove from Ashville to home in Bloomington, IN. So, I lugged my laptop out there and back and blogged one time.  My son used it one morning while waiting on everyone to get ready.  Other than that, nothing.  I have this dream of going to the Outer Banks and renting a cottage and having a slow and easy, relaxed vacation.  I hope one day to get to take that trip.
Friends since age 17.

On the way home from Maryland, my friend and I sat in the backseat of the big Dodge Mobster.  From Maryland to Raleigh/Durham it is a five hour trip.  (My son lives in Raleigh, my friend in Durham.) 
We had more fun sitting in that backseat together.  We went through our purses, our bags, we talked and talked and talked despite the fact that we had been together for most of the trip.  She and I have been friends since we were 17.  My daughter is named for her.  We all went out for my daughter's wedding. 
When I was a kid, I was the oldest of three.  We were stair-steps, my brother two years younger and my sister three years younger.  My memory of being in the backseat together was that no matter how hot, some one's legs were touching someone else's legs.  As an adult, I rarely sit in the backseat.  We had a lot of fun.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

NC/DC/MD trip!

We had to wait until 8 a.m. to pick up the rental car.  I drive an '03 and Doug drives a voyager van that is a '97 or, we got a rental.  We are hauling 6.5 cases of Oliver wine out to the east coast for my daughter's wedding.  We normally get a compact car, but this time we went for the mid-size.  We got to choose and we chose the car with the biggest trunk.  It is a monster of a car that looks like we belong to the mob!
Doug's first pit-stop.  Somewhere in Southern Indiana

Doug heading back to the "mobster/monster" car

Lunch.  Somewhere in Kentucky.  Monticello?  I think.
We wanted to have lunch somewhere that we don't normally eat.  The place we went to wasn't very fancy, but the lunch portions were huge!  Doug had an egg for breakfast and I had eaten a half a portion of oatmeal, so we were starving.  We hit King, North Carolina around 7:30 p.m. and Doug had something from McDonald's and I had a strawberry/banana smoothie.  My body was tired of being in the car and I felt nauseous.
uh-huh.  I only had one.

Doug reading his menu long-distance.

In the bathroom at the hotel.
We are staying the first two nights at the Briar Creek Marriott Fairfield Inn.  We chose this location because we are directly between my son in Raleigh and my dear friend in Durham. 
First vacation bed at the Marriott Fairfield Inn
For some reasons, I like to photograph the beds that we sleep in while away from home.  This place only opened two months ago.  Very clean and nice!  And free wi-fi! 
Remember when I told you I was going on the road and taking all of you with me?
Are we having fun, yet?

Monday, October 18, 2010

All in a day's "work"

Usually my post is at the cash register.
Many of you know that I have a part-time job at a little shop down in Nashville, IN named Papertrix.  Just yesterday, someone was asking Cindy and I if we ever get tired of the whole scene.  We looked at each other in amazement.  First of all, Wayne and Cindy refer to the shop as "Cindy's studio."  Cindy has great taste and works hard to see that her shop has a lot of unique items.  Almost everyone who comes into the shop is in a good mood, are artistic and excited about what they find in the shop.  Especially in the fall, when tourists flock to southern Indiana, the shop is busy.  Time really flies.  Yesterday, the first three hours were very busy and before I knew it, it was one o'clock.  I took my camera to work with me so that I could show you some of the fun.  
Yesterday Cindy had a fall snow globe make 'n take.

Cindy instructs, delights, encourages and is amazed all at once.

budding young artist
look at that concentration!

They were painting a fall tree and then using "leaves" of flowersoft in fall colors and then putting a snow globe cover over the painting.  It is great to have a make 'n take so that people can get some hands-on experience before they buy and head home to try it on their own.  Before I ever started doing any art at all, I sat down at the table in the shop with Wayne and made a butterfly stamp and painted it.  Then I took a card making class with Cindy.  The rest, as they say, is history. 
I usually help out at the cash register, but last Saturday I was at the table showing folks some products.  If it slows down enough, I help re-stock.  Every part of the job is fun.  No stress at all.  I love working there.  It is a blast! Calling it work is somewhat of a misnomer!
I won't be in the shop next weekend though, because I'm going on a road trip...and I'm taking all of you with me!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Movie night

I love the anticipation of someone coming out to the farm. 
I bought the plate the candle sits on, recently, at a road-side sale.

I love these decorative boxes of matches and have been known to refill the boxes.

on my desk

on top of the refrigerator

Jennifer and I decided that we needed to have a movie night and watch Steel Magnolias.  Before we sat down to watch the movie, Doug grilled for us.  He kept asking us what movie we were watching and we told him it was a surprise.  Finally, we gave him clues and he figured out what we were watching. 

look at little Miss Chelsea peeking

doesn't it seem she is watching the movie, too?

hey, pay attention to me!

sittting pretty

Milo, peeking out the window

and here is the duggles "watching" the movie with us

I love spending time with Jennifer.  She is dog mom to her standard poodle, Lucy, and she is always wonderful with Chelsea.  It was a great way to spend a Friday evening.  What movie should we will watch next?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Hallowe'en In Wonderland, Alice's Tea Party

Alice in Wonderland is an age-less story that just about everyone loves.  I know I do. 
I saw the recent release of the  Johnny Depp version.  I loved it.  Graphic 45 jumped on the band wagon with Hallowe'en In Wonderland, Alice's Tea Party line of papers.
I made this altered book for Papertrix, which is the shop in Nashville, IN where I work part-time and do some design work for.

 The "Down the Rabbit-Hole" ephemera shown here was from an ad I found in a magazine.  In her hand, I placed a real key.

 I used some of the words from the Jefferson Airplane song "Go Ask Alice."  I tried to remove most of the drug references since young ladies are often in the shop, looking at the books.  I did my best, but that song is filled with drug references.

I love how Graphic 45 made Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb pumpkin heads!  What kind of Halloween art have you created?  I would love to see it!

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