Ground Control to Major Sam

Over the past few weeks we have been trying to adjust to the fact that we must be more prudent in watching our expenses. As our house payment has increased nearly $500 a month we have to watch every penny so we don’t bounce any checks. We have had to eliminate breakfast every Sunday at the I Hop which we enjoyed immensely after church. Even our trips to the grocery store need to be monitored.

As some of you know, my husband Sam has always done the grocery shopping. When I was working full time he would do it as a favor to me because I hated to do it. He was the envy of all the check out girls who would comment that they wished their husbands would do that for them. Occasionally they would ask if he had any brothers. Invariably there was always a bouquet of fresh flowers for me along with the groceries. (I really don’t deserve this man.)

I try to make a list of what we need and meal plan when I can so we don’t over buy. Sam also comes from the school of if one is good than 3 is better. So I mark exactly how many I need.

On a recent Saturday after a trip to the grocery store, I was unpacking the groceries (that’s part of our agreement, he buys, I put away) he was commenting on how hard it was to keep the bill under $100. Just then I pulled a package of filet mignon out of one of the bags. How funny, I thought.

I do the same thing when I go to Starbucks and usually take change out of our magic pumpkin we have under the counter. I am careful to count out $3.38 in change for a tall non-fat latte. When I recently went to the mall to meet a friend for coffee, I was counting out my change to the barista and apologizing, saying it was a sign of the times, she looked at me then at my bags from Nordstrom’s and back at me again. I quickly responded that I just knew where my priorities were. And after all it was their semi-annual sale.

Only time will tell how this all will shake out. We are trying, as is every one else in the country, to make our money go further. Needless to say I am not getting flowers anymore from the grocery store.

Here Comes the Sun

Usually by now I have sunk into a deep state of depression brought on by the weather. But not so this year. The weather gods have been good to us for the most part out here in the Pacific Northwest.

We have had a beautiful Fall season with a lot of 70 degree days and sunshine until about a week ago. It rained quite heavily for a few days, but then something odd happened. The sun came out again. Hallelujah!!! I don’t mind it when it rains, as long a I see the sun once in a while.

The rain normally starts in September and doesn’t stop until the middle of June. During that time we all start to feel like ducks, slogging around in the rain. The ground is soggy and mushrooms sprout in our yards. We sneak away to the tanning salons just to feel some light and warmth on our bodies.

So I guess what I am saying is that I have an attitude of gratitude for some respite from the terrible rainy season, even if it will be short lived. I will take it one day at a time and count my blessings when we have a nice day.

Ode To Saturday Morning

Morning creeps in
dawn appears between the
slats of the blinds
slowly waking
slowly aware
the hum of a C-pap machine
cars in the distance
planes taking off to unknown
snoring Corgi under the bed
Wake up
enjoy the solitude
write a little bit

The Times They Are A Changin’

Well here I am again. I know you can’t believe that I am posting two days in a row, but I am so excited by the results of last night’s election that it is hard to contain myself.

I actually woke up happy and hopeful this morning. Remembering the historic ramifications of last evening. Watching President-elect Obama speak to the throngs in Grant Park. What a great night for the whole country. It speaks volumes about how far we have come as a nation.

The new President will have his hands full with the mess that he has been left with. Two wars, an economy that is in the toilet, and health care, are but a few of the enormous challenges he will face on January 20th.

For now let us revel in the success of electing our first African-American President. It is truly a proud moment for all America.

V ote Early And Often

It is 5:05 a.m. and I am up and at my computer. I am giddy with excitement. Today is a historic day. We will either elect the first female Vice-President or the first African-American President of the United States. I am much more excited about the latter to be perfectly honest.

Being a child of the 60’s, I remember all too vividly the violence of the Civil Rights movement. The assassination of Martin Luther King,the riots of the late 60’s in Detroit and yes even Kalamazoo. I remember stories from my friends who went to Kalamazoo Central about girls being thrown out of second story bathroom windows and a lot of fighting between black and white kids with knives.

How far we all have come and none too soon for my liking. The fact we can look at a person for their achievements and character and not the color of their skin says a lot about us.

Anyway, off my soapbox and back to the couch. I will be glued to the TV tonight watching election results. It should be a close race which makes it exciting.

We have been through 21 months of endless campaigning and I am personally glad it is at an end, but what an end it will be.

Why isn’t voting on my agenda today you may ask. Well my friends, I voted on October 26th in the privacy of my own home. What a kick. Here in the State of Washington we vote by mail. It was a great experience for us. No slogging out to the polls, where I might get wet or worse, have to talk to someone. (Not really). Yes I am a fair weather voter. I love taking the easy way out.

On a serious note, as screwed up as our country is right now, we are lucky to live here and have a say in our electoral process. So let your voice be heard today and know that you are a part of living history.