Saturday, October 23, 2010

Basic truth - Yoohoo

It seems I have gotten away from the purpose of my blog - to explore the value of truth - its purpose in the life's journey and how each of us has a truth or truths, an "it" or "its" that we wish were not in fact true, but ah, they are true and this blog is about encouraging people to find theirs and embrace them for dear life.  For not to do so is a life of running and escaping and purging from ourselves the very spirited essence of who we are - people spend life times doing just that. 

I have shared many truths here and in doing so it seems that others, (some) have found a freedom and a strength to do the same.  I wonder though, how all of you really are doing?  I got to tell you that lately I sense a distance, or a lag in connection from some of my most avid followers.  Yoohoo, do you see me?  Have I done something to offend?  Yoohoo..............Oh I know folks are busy and life demands our attention else where - there are just some folks I miss seeing - hearing from.  Yoohoo.............

So I thought it was time to get back, perhaps, to the original design and purpose of this blog,  "Basic truth".   And the basic truth is ....I feel like folks have lost interest and therefore have slowly lessened or in some cases, ceased their visits :-(  I understand..  So I guess  I will just write, as i have, however it makes sense to me in keeping with the 'basic truth'..

I believe 100% that our truth denied is our life denied and to live that life of denial is an exhausting endeavor and it is never ever completed.  I know that some of my truths and yours too are quite harsh.  We cannot change the fabric of our designs, the experiences that are us are always part of us , good or bad it is ours to face, reconcile and honor. As October comes to a close, and some of my harsh "its" settle within - I realize how lucky I am to "know" and NOT need to hide or run from what I know.  As much as the truth is tragic it is mine to behold.  They blend with my celebration and victories, each with merit and purpose to be held and offered, and humbly shared.

As Winter closes in and the stillness overtakes my world I am content in my life to "be" as I am.Oh there are things I wish were quite different. I wish mobility was easier and without pain - I wish for more time with Skipp as his job has some long hours some days.  I wish my Mom was not suffering. I wish my oldest daughter Kristie would find her way home. And yet I am truly blessed to have Skipp and my Mom and to be able to get around as I do.  I am excited for Thanksgiving approaching and all our wonderful Holiday traditions.  I love that Dolan calls me every day and that Jen is close by to be part of each other's day to day lives.  We have wood for our wood stove and food in the frige and warmth in our hearts and our home.  We have music and laughter and faith.........we have love, an abundance of love.....Amen

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dad (re-post)

The picture up and to the right is my Dad holding my son, Dolan. He adored him. :-)
I apologize for the lack of focus on the photo to the left. It is my Mom and Dad - outside their retirement home just one month before my Dad died - He passed on October 22nd, 1984. The photos above are of our side and back yard views - Autumn is struggling to become vibrant with color - it is more subtle and demure - and yet still is inspiring and promising. I love cloudy Autumn days so much.

The week before my Dad died he was on a mission. It is as if he knew. On the Thursday before he died (he died on a Monday)....he and my Mom came to my house. Dolan, my son was just 7 months old. I remember my Dad saying to me - "Gimpy, (he nic-named me that when I broke my leg when I was eleven), anyway - he said - "Gimpy, if I keep hanging around here this kid is going to start calling me Daddy.". :-) This particular day he wanted to be sure that I knew how to drive my Mom to her sister's house about 30 miles away. He knew how important those visits were to my Mom and her sister. On the way back he was telling my Mom what to do should he have a heart attack while driving. On the Saturday he helped put the roof on the VFW hall of which he was a proud member. On the Sunday he helped his neighbor put together their entertainment center. He was happy to do it. On the Monday, he started his day with a hearty breakfast. Then they went to my sister's house to take care of their youngest son, Ethan - the two older boys, Josh and Clayton were in school. My Mom and Dad took Ethan to Josh's school for an event - and then returned home around 3:15. My Mom was downstairs coloring with Ethan, and my Dad went out on my sister's back deck. Josh headed off to dance lessons and for some reason went out the front door rather than the back deck - they never used the front door. And the Mom that was picking him up, for some reason, backed in to the driveway rather than pulling in - had she pulled in she would have seen my Dad. Clayton came home with his dirt bike which he always put under the back deck - but this day he did not do that and he too came in the front door. My Mom decided to color another picture with Ethan - and then said to Clayton - "go check on your Grand Pa, I hope he isn't raking leaves"!! Clayton did go check and my Dad was laying out on the deck - Clayton yelled for my Mom to call 911 - but it was already too late. My Mom screamed so loud that neighbors came running - and so that is what happened 25 years ago this October 22nd - it was 4:00.

My Dad was a vibrant, proud, hard working man. A real man's man' as the saying goes. People who know me know his fun sayings and antics because I say them and do them (most of them) often. :-) I learned how a man should treat a woman by watching how my parents loved and cared for one another. I learned what it meant to be a real friend, a good son, a loving brother, Dad and neighbor by watching my Dad. I can still recall when the neighbor across the streets house caught on fire and my Dad wanted to go in to rescue her and her dog - the other neighbors stopped him - she and her dog both died that night. My Dad never got over that. I remember when our next door neighbor left his wife and three children. The son was devastated - my Dad invited him over and did what he could to be there for him. My Dad built us a bomb shelter~!! Underground!!!! My Dad's motto was that every day he should make someone laugh. :-) And to always pick up hitch-hikers and take them as far a possible to get to their destination. We crossed state lines many a Sunday doing just that!!!

Every year me, my Mom and sister go to Chatfield Hollow state park and pick greens to make head baskets for my Dad's grave, Clayton's grave, (my sister's oldest son), and now for Kelly's grave - Clayton's Dad who just died, as most of you know, this past January. Chatfield Hollow, in Killingworth, CT is where my Dad worked as a member of the Connecticut Corp of Engineers as a young man - age 17. He and his crew built ALL the bridges in Chatfield Hollow. Every year we go we are reminded of his talents as we stand in awe of the detail of the beautiful bridges in the Park that he helped build. Also, Killingworth is where their retirement home was. :-) He came full circle.

And so this October I honor you Dad for all that you are - the legacy you left behind from bridges to values to love and to ethics to faith and to marriage and mankind. For the lives you saved in WWll and the lives you touched every day of your life. I have learned so much from you and I love you.


rest in Peace Dad.......

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Reuben Pasta Bake

 The pictures are tricky to line up with bloggers new system for adding imagesThe last two pictures above are of the kind of day it was yesterday for our pasta bake. It was mostly cloudy all day with peeks of sun.  The trees are still green with some color appearing.   It was a windy and chilly and wonderful.  Jen and I had a great time making our Reuben pasta bake.  I told Grizz I would share the results and the recipe.  So here it is. We doubled the batch:

2 pounds large curly elbow macaroni
(cook, drain, add i/2 stick butter, mix and and set aside.

saute one pound pastrami cut in bite size pieces, add one 12 ounce can sauer kraut and 1/2 stick butter - saute until heated well

add one 16 ounce jar of con queso cheese sauce (I used medium, there is mild or hot as well ).   and 1/2 cup parmesian cheese to pasta, add pastrami and sauer kraut to pasta, mix well.

pour into baking dishes, 9x13, sprinkle with plain bread crumbs, dot with butter, bake uncovered 30 minutes - and when served drizzle with warmed thousand Island dressing.   A very filling and comforting and delicious meal for a chilly Autumn evening.  
Love Gail

(I lost  my signature template, again,.    eesh.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Two Out of Three

I love that he sends it to me first.  ME!!  My son Dolan is a published writer, so talented, and of high intelligence, intent, passion and wit.  And he sends his  writings to ME first for MY opinion.which he values.  I love this part of our relationship SO much.  He is an amazing young man, a teacher of High School English as a second language at an International School to a very diverse student population. He is a playwright, and was a member of a comedy troupe for several years that performed at Caroline's Comedy Club in Manhattan.  He is a gentle and kind and very funny young man.  I believe in him and his life's dreams and goals and most of all I love that we are so connected regardless of distance and time allowed we are connected, solid and enjoy our relationship very much.

His recent published story is in a magazine called "The Lifted Brow" and is circulating in book stores in Australia.  He is very excited. 

My middle daughter is doing  well.  So much better since the days of "The Intruder" which, those of you who have been following this blog for a while know how awful that was.  She lives in an adorable farm house just down the road from me - I/we like her boyfriend and her son is doing great.  She is working and living well. She is a big help to me and also to my Mom with rides to dialysis and so forth.  She is SO funny and makes me laugh like no one else can.  :-)

My oldest daughtre Kristie is the lost one - so far from all of us here both in distance and in contact of any kind. It is so heart breaking that she has abandoned her family.  We have yet to meet the new baby Damien and know very little about her life, the baby's father and the people in her life.  Her secrecy is chosen because she is in a deception that runs very deep. I have tried all I know to reach her but to no avail.  I remain open to her - loving her no matter what and leaving the candles lit in all the windows to light her way home.  I miss her so much it hurts beyond words.  :-(

Anyway - two out of three ain't bad. sigh..... 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Our dear young friend was married - Ashley, to Pete.  She was my intern some years back and has gone on to become a LMFT.  She is stunningly gorgeous and a fun,  delightful, humble, bright loving soul that I adore and so does Skipp.  We re-named her - "Sophie Lennon", saying that if we ever had a daughter we would hope for one like her and would have named her "Sophie Lennon".  :-)

I did well navigating the beautiful, spacious hotel.  I had a small melt-down when I was waiting to get on the shuttle bus from the hotel to the reception.  It was a huge bus and folks had already boarded. I was embarrassed. - unsure if I could manage the steps and so forth.  My fears were calmed by the time the second bus arrived and I boarded without incident.  phew........

The ceremony was simple, loving and so beautiful.  The reception - elegant, classy and fun.  AND - I walked on to the dance floor with Skipp and WE DANCED  an entire slow number.  It was wonderful to be moving and swaying and connecting totally in dance.  I was so grateful.  :-)

For some reason blogger wont let me add a video - it would have been "Have A Little Faith In Me" - by Joe Cocker - perfect song for our dance.