Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Backwards, turn backward...

I read a post yesterday where someone was reminiscing about their childhood.  It  made me think of an old poem I loved.  It was called "Rock me to sleep" by Elizabeth (Akers) Allen.

Rock Me to Sleep

Backward, turn backward, O Time in your flight
Make me a child again just for tonight!
Mother, come back from the echoless shore,
Take me again to your heart as of yore;
Kiss from my forehead the furrows of care, 
Smooth the few silver threads out of my hair;
Over my slumbers your loving watch keep;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

I believe this poem was written by someone whose time had come to  pass from this world... and although the entire poem is poignant, the first stanza is what remained with me over the years. The rest of the poem follows:

Backward, flow backward, O tide of the years!
I am so weary of toil and of tears,
Toil without recompense, tears all in vain,
Take them, and give me my childhood again!
I have grown weary of dust and decay,
Weary of flinging my soul's wealth away;
Weary of sowing for others to reap;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

Tired of the hollow, the base, the untrue,
Mother, O mother, my heart calls for you!
Many a summer the grass has grown green,
Blossomed and faded, our faces between:
Yet with strong yearning and passionate pain,
Long I tonight for your presence again.
Come from the silence so long and so deep;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

Over my heart in the days that have flown,
No love like mother-love ever has shone;
No other worship abides and endures,
Faithful, unselfish, and patient like yours:
None like a mother can charm away pain
From the sick soul and the world-weary brain.
Slumber soft calms o'er my heavy lids creep;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

Come, let your brown hair, just lighted with gold,
Fall on your shoulders again as of old;
Let it drop over my forehead to-night,
Shading my faint eyes away from the light;
For with its sunny-edged shadows once more
Haply will throng the sweet visions of yore;
Lovingly, softly, its bright billows sweep;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

Mother, dear mother, the years have been long
Since I last heard your lullaby song:
Sing, then and unto my soul it shall seem
Womanhood's years have been only a dream.
Clasped to your heart in a loving embrace,
With your light lashes just sweeping my face,
Never hereafter to wake or to weep;
Rock me to sleep, mother, rock me to sleep!

This poem still brings tears to my eyes.  How many of us would love to have that feeling of love, peace, and protection returned if just for an instant as a child in our mother's arms... 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Monday after Christmas 2014...

Grandkids Christmas 2014

Christmas 2014 is over and New Year's 2015 is upon us. This picture of the grandkids was taken Saturday evening by my daughter with her iPhone.  We are missing one grandchild, Caden, who was here earlier but ran off to run errands with his dad. It is increasingly difficult to get a picture of all of them together... or even all of my kids and their families together. They each have their own lives and we seem to get them in shifts. But at least we did get to see all of them. Youngest one was down with a fever Christmas Eve and Christmas day... so we didn't see her until Saturday when the fever was gone. But all in all, it was a very nice Christmas. And I'm thankful for that. 

But I will say that there's this 'after Christmas' slump that I seem to get every year. After being in high gear (which is definitely not my normal mode) for weeks before Christmas; getting all the decorations up, house cleaned, gifts bought and wrapped, goodies sent out, and all the food prepared.... then the rush of Christmas day and weekend... then suddenly it just all stops. It's Monday and I feel strange.... like I don't know what to do.... and don't have to do anything. This is good in one way as I can rest, but kind of disheartening in another. Weird?

We won't take Christmas down until next weekend. That's our tradition. With all the prep, we might as well enjoy it as long as we can. 

The inside cats enjoyed their goodies too. They got a *cat crunchy bag* as well as an assortment of new mice and puffy balls. While they were sent to their restricted area (our bedroom and bath) when everyone was here (they tend to like to run across tables set with crystal, etc.), they were well compensated with treats for this indignity. In this picture above, Ghost has buried herself in the blankets on our bed.

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I will spend part of this day reading your blogs posted this past week and catching up.

Have a Safe Happy New Year 2015! 

Friday, December 19, 2014

just a thought... and a few pics

Tuesday DH and I went to see the movie, "Mockingjay" Part One. It was pretty good. Having read The Hunger Games series a few years back, I was interested to see how well they depicted the story. My imagination almost always wins over the actual movie production, but this one wasn't bad. However, it's interesting to note that an awful lot of the stories (The Giver, The Hunger Games, Divergent, The Maze - and many more) all take a very dismal view of the world's future. I wonder why that is. Is it a sign of things to come? Or possibly a sign of where young minds are going to find excitement in a world where technology has taken over our lives.

Not that I'm complaining. I love my iPhone as much as the next guy.  And I really would miss this opportunity to communicate through this blog. Guess I'm a firm believer that we need to keep up with the technology... at least to a point. While I do do Facebook, I use it mainly to swipe family pics that are posted and to check in occasionally to see what's going on with friends and family. And I have never done Twitter... and am not sure of it's merits - nor Instagram.

But I would like to see a movie with a much better (more optimistic, more altruistic?) view of the future. I'm not a Pollyanna and I don't expect that we will cure world hunger or completely stop wars, etc. But you would think that with all the wonders of technology at our fingertips (so to speak), we would eventually cure Cancer, stop Ebola, slow down Alzheimer's and maybe put a dent in world hunger, etc. Just a thought.

And I also wonder why I'm not so taken with computer games when so many actually are... or as an older adult not interested in gambling casinos, etc. again when so many are. It's not that I don't care for fiction (like portrayed in computer games) as I love reading fiction. I actually love reading almost anything... but fiction is probably my favorite. Don't know why. Although if I had to come up with a reason I would probably say it's because it amazes me what our imaginations can come up with and I like visualizing other possibilities.

BTW, our 2 little black kittens that live (for the most part) in our front yard are enjoying their Charlie Brown tree we put out there. I hung an ornament on it and came back from the movie to find they had not only knocked the tree over getting it off, but must have played with it on the walk enough to break it (it was glass... stupid of me). Now I've swept up the glass and replaced the ornament with an unbreakable one.

Braveheart in basket on front porch
(taken with cell phone through window)

More pictures of our cats in holiday spirit... (kind of)

Tux in Santa cap ("really mom???")

Molly in Christmas collar... ("whatever...")

Ghost in Christmas scarf thinking.... ("WTF?")

Julie getting ready to attack singing mouse
(I had to take about 6 pics before she would settle down and stop hitting him)

And last of all  this pic I took in the parking lot of Walmart as we were getting in our car. The cart area was covered in birds and as I took the picture, some flew off... but still it's a strange shot... and I like it (although I don't know why). So I thought I'd share. 

Have a great Christmas week! And stay warm and safe!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

a minor set-back...

For whatever reason, my migraines decided to haunt me these last 2 days. Eyes went wonky yesterday morning... took a pill... laid down in the dark... up again and started baking.  Eyes went wonky again a little later, but got by without pill.  It's unusual for it to come back once it's gone.

These *elderly* migraines are a lot different from the awful head bangers I used to have at a younger age. Those usually sent me to the emergency room for a shot of Demoral or a Tylenol 4 with codeine... and they always lasted a day or two.  But these last few years they've developed into *ocular* migraines - the aura of light is still there and my eyes go wonky - can't see straight - but luckily they don't last too long (maybe 20-30 minutes) and even if I'm left with a dull headache, it's nothing like they used to be. I always figured it was one of the *good things about aging*. 

The trouble is that they come more frequently... not the 2-3 times a year as in the past, but now almost every 2 weeks. This one yesterday was unusual in that it returned twice and then later last night my head hurt above my right eye... so much so that I ended up getting my cold head wrap and wrapping it tightly around my head. But by about 3 am, I gave up and took another pill. 

Someone said that I should go visit the Neurologist because of the increase in frequency, but he'll want to run a MRI, then probably tell me something I don't want to hear... or put me on meds. I'd like to try to do without that as long as possible. The pill I take now that seems to work is only a 500mg Tylenol.  It's actually the only med I take... and I try not to take it too often.

Anyway, I finally got a good bit of my baking done today. Will continue tomorrow and hopefully get to mail out by Thursday. We also got our Christmas cards (with Jack's pic) yesterday, so I can include it with our Christmas goodies.

I love sending off packages of Christmas goodies. Don't really know if family and friends enjoy getting them, but I always did. My MIL (bless her soul, she's 97 now and no longer bakes) used to mail us these huge boxes of home-made pralines, candies, cookies, etc. and we were always so excited to get them.  So I try to continue the tradition. So far I've made whiskey balls, pecan tassies, PB chocolate chip cookies, Christmas tea cakes, and chocolate pecan graham cracker bark. Tomorrow I will do espresso shortbread and rum cakes. If there's time, I may do some trash cookies... which have chocolate, pretzels, and nuts in them. 

Happy Holidays!