02Jul/15

10 Benefits of Sesame Oil

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Why I love this stuff…

Apple Cider Vinegar, as many of you may know, is my number one go to cure all. Sesame Seed Oil is number two on my list for a variety of reasons. Today I will talk about the top 10.

1. Sesame Seed Oil has a high zinc content which makes it great for your skin. It has healing properties and produces collagen. Making it wonderful as a moisturizer and as a massage oil.

2. The seeds contains high levels of magnesium which has been known to prevent and help with some diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Also contains copper which can help those with rheumatoid arthritis.

3. Sesame seeds contain calcium, tryptophan and thiamin, which have calming effects and can help with pain, anxiety, depression and sleeping issues.

4. The oil has been shown to help improve the liver. Need I say more?

5. The healing properties of this seed are numerous as I mentioned above. Because of the zinc and it’s antioxidant properties it can prevent wrinkles, help with psoriasis and may lighten age spots. Start as early as possible using this, I have seen some of my age spots lighten a bit. I just wish I would have found this “wonder oil” sooner.

6. The oil can be used as a facial cleanser. It has amazing detox and healing properties due to the zinc and is very easy to make.

Mix together 1/2 cup sesame seed oil and 1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar(if you don’t know about all the wonderful things ACV does, please read my earlier post on that) Throw some water on your face first and then use this mixture, leave on for a brief moment and then wash with warm water and your regular soap or cleanser.

7. It heals cuts, scrapes and helps with skin problems such as acne, which has a tendency to pop(no pun intended) up again later in life. Also tightens skin and stops itching. There has been some studies done where it has helped skin cancers or at least prevented it. I hesitate to promote this, as I do not know this to be a fact. But it can’t hurt.

8. Sesame oil is great for sunburn and after a day in the sun. Massage it gently all over your skin. One thing I like about it is it is not very greasy and doesn’t rub off on clothing or sheets like some other oils. (do not yell at me if you use too much and you ruin something)

9. I personally use it every morning as a serum under my moisturizer. I have noticed my skin getting softer and dry patches I had have disappeared.

10. And last but not least it works wonders on dry, cracked heels. Believe me when I say I have tried all the “cures” over the years and this is the best. Rub some on your feet every night, put on some socks and voila in the morning.. soft feet. It takes a few weeks to see the improvement but it is much better than the smelly Vicks or some of the other horrible things I have tried.

This list shows you a few of the benefits of Sesame Oil. You can also use the oil in cooking instead of vegetable oil. It has healthy fats and does not burn as quickly as some other oils. Make your salad dressing with it or just throw some seeds in your normal recipes. If you are making bread or cake throw some seeds in and no one will even notice(well they might, but its good for them). You can put some in your smoothies.

Note: I am not a doctor, nor do I pretend to be one. This works for me and I share my stories on what I use in hopes it may help others. If you take medication and think something may interact, please check with your doctor before trying anything I suggest. Good luck and good health!

I have provided a link to the one I use for my skin. Just click on the picture and it will take you to Amazon to purchase it. I always search for the best cost and best brand with highest rating from other users.

 

 

 

 

 

25Jun/15

I’m Offended…

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Are you offended by this cat? Maybe you like dogs and cat pictures offend you. Maybe you don’t like the cat sticking its tongue out. Whatever the reason, if you are, my advice is this..”get over it.”

Why is everyone so overly offended these days about literally everything? And also why do we rush to change whatever is offending them so they won’t be offended by it ever again. Until the next thing comes up that offends them.Yes, I know I used the word “offend”.. a LOT(and you will continue to see it even more). But there certainly are a lot of things offending people for some reason.

Who are all these people that get so upset over just about anything? When did we create a nation of people that are so self important that their opinion is the only “right” one? And then the offending thing is removed from existence so the people who were not offended can never have it again.. And many times it is one person who it bothers causing millions of others to be left wondering what happened. Where is the freedom in this? Why does one person get to have their way at the expense of others?

But it happens, and more and more all the time. If someone is upset over something, by all means let’s get rid of it all together. I guess I was raised in a different time, a time when if we were upset with something we were told to just deal with it. And we did and we moved on. It didn’t become a national issue and we didn’t have to get rid of said item. It wasn’t forever banished from the face of the earth.

For those wondering, I am not speaking to the recent “items” that are in the news this week. This trend didn’t just start today, it goes back many years. I think my first time dealing with it was while working at a major department store when I was told not to say “Merry Christmas” to the customers because “we may offend someone”. I was literally blown away by this. Who was I going to offend by telling them to have a “merry” whatever?

I myself am offended by a lot of things. I’m offended by having to be so politically correct and being absolutely afraid to say certain things without someone getting upset. I’m offended that we have to put warnings about how “hot” the coffee is on a coffee cup. I’m upset that kids can’t play cowboys anymore. I’m concerned that kids playing at a park down the street may cause their parents to be put in jail. I am upset by things and people but I am not calling for all things to be my way. I have to learn to live with the way things are today. Some people just can’t do that. These people are offended by items, books, religion, different people, logos and even food. One person doesn’t like the box the cereal comes in and we can’t get that cereal anymore.

And on and on it goes..why can’t we just “let it go?” More importantly why can’t we just forgive those who made the mistake in the first place. And really, if we want to be offended by something, let’s make it something important. Let’s be offended by hunger, poverty and homelessness. And better yet, let’s do something about it. Things that offend us go away very quickly these days so maybe if we are offended by the right things, something will get accomplished to rid us of these horrible things. A little love, compassion and forgiveness can go a long way towards a possible solution to the problems we face today. It is certainly better than the alternative and most definitely better than being offended by everything we see.

Hey, hope I didn’t offend you….

19Jun/15

“Top 10 Things You May Or May Not Know About Me”

Just a fun blogpost of things about me…

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1. My favorite car that I ever owned was my green 1966 MGBGT. I loved that car. It cost a mint in upkeep but I still loved every moment of owning and driving it. I didn’t get it until the 80’s but I sure got all the fun I could out of the years I had it. I would pile all 3 of my kids in that little hatchback area and off we would go on our adventures. We had some great times in that car. Couldn’t do that now…

2. I have had every job from waitress to restaurant manger. From working at a jewelry store to owning a women’s fashions and jewelry store in downtown Frederick. I owned my own store for 4 wonderful years. I had to close it in 1991 when the bottom fell out and 20 some other stores closed as well as mine. It was one of the saddest days of my life. It was truly one of the best, if not the best “jobs” I ever had. I had always wanted to have my own clothing store and I did it, even if it was only for a little while.

3. I have been married twice to the same man. I have gotten divorced twice to that same man.

4. The guy I was married to was 2 years older than me but every other guy I dated was at least 10 years younger than me. I lived with one guy for 9 years and he was 11 years younger than me. What can I say, I liked younger guys..

5. I got pregnant at 15, 3 months shy of my 16th birthday. It was not an easy time, you didn’t get pregnant and stay in school like they do today. My friends were going to prom and I was in the hospital giving birth to my daughter. I wouldn’t have traded places with them for anything.

6. I had all 3 of my children by the time I was 23. We grew up together. I for the most part raised them by myself. Sometimes working 3 jobs to take care of the bills and to get them the things they needed. Sure, I made mistakes and maybe wasn’t there as much as I should have been, but I did the best I could. There was no manual that came along with the whole single parenting thing. Their father chose not to be involved in their lives when they were all still fairly young. Again I would not change any part of having these 3 wonderful kids in my life. They give me a reason to get up in the morning. We have had our ups and downs but we love each other unconditionally…and in our book..Family is forever.

7. I moved to Maryland from PA 30 years ago. I needed a change after the second divorce and needed there to be some distance between us. My live in boyfriend at the time got transferred to MD with his job and I decided to go with him. I have never regretted for one moment my decision to move here. I love it here. I am close enough to my friends and family as I am only an hour away. I moved from Frederick to Thurmont 7 years ago when I wanted to be a little further out in the country. I also have always wanted a big “old” house. Mine was built in 1890.

8. My first journey into entrepreneurship was at the age of 12. I wanted a dog, a poodle to be exact. My parents said I couldn’t get one unless I paid for it. I did babysit but that didn’t get me even close to the amount I needed so I talked the neighborhood kids into donating money to my cause. They all did, much to their parents chagrin. But somehow I got my poodle. I just had to have that kind of dog for some reason and now I don’t even like that breed.

9. I am sure most people know this one..I have curly hair. Naturally curly hair, way to curly for my liking. I have ironed it, I have straightened it. I have cut it short and let it grow very long. I even wore a wig in the 70’s when that was the rage. It was straight. I loved it. Nothing I ever did has changed it. Everyone said, “just wait until you have kids, it will get straight.” Well I am here to ditch that myth. I had 3 kids and my hair is curlier than ever. If anything it is curlier than it was when I was younger. Maybe I will get another wig or cut it very short and be done with it.

10. And last but certainly not least, I have always wanted a place at the beach, by the water. After all the recent hurricanes and bad weather I have revised that dream somewhat. I still long for that beach house but my beautiful view of the mountains will suffice for now. At this point of my life I have many friends who live close to a beach. I  will visit them.

Oh, and one last thing…I absolutely hate the white thingys in eggs…

 

 

12Jun/15

“Memories”

“Pressed between the pages of my mind”….

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The title of this post is a song by Elvis Presley (for those of you too young to remember) and it sums up the way I have been feeling lately. It seems like everything I see, hear or smell these days reminds me of something or someone from my past.

Last week I wrote about how everything we did back in the “good old days” seemed better. And I asked the question, “were they really better or were we just missing the people who are no longer with us.” I still don’t know the answer to the question but it brought up some other things to think about. Memories.

The memories I am talking about today are the ones caused by a certain smell or something as simple as seeing kids playing on the beach. I saw lots of them on our recent trip to Chincoteague this past week. Families holding hands and jumping over the waves together. I was instantly taken back to the days when my kids and I went to OC, MD and we were playing in the water and jumping the waves. The memories all came flooding back and a few slipped down my cheeks.

It seems I can’t get through a day when something I do or see doesn’t remind me of a memory from my past. I have always had some of these moments but now they seem to happen more frequently. Sometimes they make me smile and sometimes they make me sad. And don’t even get me started on music…a song can instantly take me back to a different time and place. Some of those moments are forever etched in my mind but you will have to wait to hear about them.

The reason for all these flashbacks to a simpler time could be that I now just have more time in my day to reminisce. When the kids were little I was so busy trying to just get through each day that I didn’t have time to simply enjoy the moment. This is no excuse, but I think we get so caught up in life and are so stressed trying to provide a home and get everything done that has to get done we are just too tired to enjoy the little moments along the way.

I also think as we age we learn to appreciate things we once took for granted. When you are young you have the sense that you are invincible and that things will always be the same. But things do change, buildings are torn down, people move away and we lose those we love. I will see an old house alongside the road and think to myself, that house used to have a family living there, where are they, what happened to them? Were they once happy? Did they enjoy the moments of their life?

All we can do at this point in our lives is make new memories, enjoy each day and keep going forward. We can love those close to us and let them know how important they are. And we can try to make a difference in their lives and make each moment count by spending time with them. Time spent with those we love is the best time of all. And think of it this way, one day in the not too distant future, we will be their memory. Let’s make it a good one.

Someday, many, many years from now, when people reminisce about me I want them to think that I simply made them laugh.

How do you want to be remembered?

“Memories, sweetened thru the ages just like wine, memories, memories, sweet memories.”

 

04Jun/15

“The Good Old Days”

Were they really as good as we remember?

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A day doesn’t go by where I don’t hear someone say, “well, things were better back in the old days.” Or they mention something used to taste so much better when they were a kid. I am as guilty as anyone, I do it myself. Just recently we went to something we had been going to for over 25 years. I couldn’t wait to go again. We were there for a half hour and left. “It just wasn’t the same.”

The picture I have on here is from Atlantic City, NJ. It is me and my dear, sweet sister Rhonda on the boardwalk looking at the pigeons. I posted it in a group I belong to on Facebook just the other day when we were talking about Atlantic City and The Steel Pier. Someone had posted a picture of the Diving Horse and it made me think of this picture. Atlantic City was “the” place to go back when I was growing up. The boardwalk and beach were pristine and my parents took us every year. Now it is a place to go to gamble and instead of seeing a beautiful boardwalk you see closed casinos and stores. “It just isn’t the same.”

Was it better back then? Do I remember it correctly or am I just remembering how wonderful it was because I was with my parents and sister?  Does the fact that all of them are no longer here cloud my thinking? Is it that things have changed or is it the people we are missing?

But what about the food? Oh yes, truly one of the best parts of growing up was the wonderful food. My Grandmothers were both wonderful cooks and I made many cookies and pies with them. One of my favorites were pie. I loved my Grandma Gibbons pecan pie. I was at a diner recently and saw they had pecan pie. It looked just like hers, didn’t look like the stuff you see in the supermarket at all. So I got a piece and couldn’t wait to dig in. “It just wasn’t the same.” It was ok, and of course I ate the entire thing, but it just wasn’t quite the same. Why? Maybe the reason was because I didn’t make it with my Grandma?

Everything changes. I don’t expect everything to stay the same. Time goes on and we are constantly being told that this or that is new and improved. But is it really? Don’t get me wrong, sometimes change is good. I definitely wouldn’t want to be wearing some of the things we wore “back in the day”. I can still feel the pain in my poor feet while wearing my platform heels. Most recently I have been wanting a jumpsuit. I don’t know what made me decide I had to have one, but I saw they were back in style this year and for some reason just had to have one again. I found a really cute one. On sale… So I got it. I forgot why I didn’t like them back in the day when I wore one the first time. You have to take the whole darn thing off to go to the bathroom. And I go to the bathroom a lot more these days..sorry for the TMI…. It is still cute and I will wear it, but I definitely won’t be drinking anything while I have it on.

I can honestly say I don’t know the answer to my question? “Were the good old days really as good as we remember?” And, let’s not forget that someday these very days will be the good old days for someone. What do you think? Are things so terrible today or are we simply missing those people that made the past so great?

 

28May/15

“What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?”

How often did you hear that as a kid?

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When I was a young girl about the age I was in this picture, people started asking me the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I never hesitated even for a second. I always said I want to be a nurse, for no other reason than my Aunt Norma was one and I thought that she was very cool. Also, I loved my doctor and I watched Dr Kildare. What did I really know about nursing or what a nurse really did? But it looked very exciting and romantic on tv.

Around the same time I started writing a novel. It was called “I Walk Alone” and was set in Paris. I was the lead character, of course, and also, of course I was beautiful, tall and fashionable. And had long straight hair. None of which I had or was in real life. I met a man(in my novel) and he was handsome, rich, famous and mysterious. And he lived in Paris. I have never met a man who was any of these things in my life with the exception of mysterious and believe me, that is not a good trait in a man for which you want to form a relationship. Ok, I have had a few boyfriends and a husband that you could call handsome or at the very least cute.

I never finished the book. I found it recently as we were going through things in my parents home. I found all my writing materials. They were all in a box in my parents attic. My past desire and childhood dreams all together in one box. The children’s books I wrote when my kids were little. Books I had tried desperately to get published to no avail. I took a “Writing Children’s Literature” course and thought surely I was going to be the next Dr. Seuss.

Sadly, the being “the next Dr. Seuss” thing never happened. My kids loved the stories and still talk about them to this day. So guess it was worth it. Sadly, life got in the way of my dream of being an award winning novelist, as life has been known to do. By this time, I had gotten divorced and 3 kids and as many jobs didn’t lend itself to much time for writing. But finding the box that day brought it all back. The hopes, the dreams..the book signings.

I am finally writing now, some 50 years after that first novel I attempted to write. Not to be a best selling novelist or the next Dr. Seuss, but for me. I write because I love to write and because it fulfills something deep inside me that has always wanted to get out. I don’t know, maybe it’s a need to be “heard”. Really heard..

Growing up I don’t think my parents ever really listened to me when I talked or spoke of my dreams. In reality I don’t think they had the time or they just really didn’t know how.  I have always tried to listen to my family and friends and even to just anyone who was talking to me. Maybe my ability to listen has given me the ability to write. I know I have a million stories inside me waiting to get out. And I am thankful I can finally do just that!

As a side note, I am glad I didn’t become a nurse. I don’t think I would have been a good one.. I am not a fan of blood and gore and all the stuff that goes along with nursing..and honestly, white has never been my color.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

21May/15

What Are You Waiting For???

Why are we waiting for that magical “Someday”…..

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Waiting…

 

Why do we wait to do the things we want to do? What is it that makes us think we have all the time in the world and that “maybe someday” we will actually do it?

It’s not just waiting to go somewhere, it’s also waiting for that day to arrive when we will wear that perfect dress or outfit we have hanging in the closet for years and the cute pair of shoes we got to go with it. I have an adorable top I got a few years ago and every time I go through things to donate or sell at a yard sale I leave it hanging, because it’s just perfect for that special occasion “someday”. That top and the cute little pair of heels I got to go with it are there ready to go, fresh as the day I bought them. Well, not quite as fresh…

Maybe your “someday” thing is a trip to somewhere far away or just traveling this great country of ours. You constantly say I want to see the Grand Canyon or I am going to drive the California coast “someday”. I can honesty say I have visited most of the places in our country I have wanted to see, for the most part. However, I do still have a few things that remain on my bucket list.

I would like to rent an RV and travel across America and stop wherever and whenever I want with no time schedule or planned itinerary. I also have a few places I want to see abroad, places such as Paris, Greece and Tuscany. Yes, I have seen “Under The Tuscan Sun” so many times I can say the lines along with Frances. I picture myself in her beautiful home and I look just like her. Someday, I will go and when I do, maybe I can wear my special top and shoes…

Sometimes it’s something we have always wanted to do, like play an instrument, learn another language, write the next great american novel. I want to do all of these things. I am so happy that I have finally have started to write, not sure if a novel is ever in my future, but I’m doing it. The piano, I’m sorry to say, is in the upstairs bedroom. It’s there waiting for that special someday when I decide to learn how to play. And by the way, Italian is a really hard language to learn.

The saddest someday of all isn’t about places or things, it’s about people. Those very special people in our lives we love, our family and friends. Maybe we will call them, maybe we will visit them, maybe someday. They are very special to us and we really mean to see them more, but somehow life gets in the way and we put it off.  Don’t. Sometimes someday never comes. This has been a priority of mine lately. I try and see or talk to the people I care about as much as possible. And I constantly let them know how much they mean to me.

I’m sure most of you have a bucket list of things you want to do and places you want to go. I see some of my friends posts on Facebook, and they are going places and doing things and I am very happy for them. They are doing it, they aren’t waiting for the magical, mythical “someday”. Now, I know a lot of people will say, “I would, but I don’t have the money to do the things I really want to do”. But my answer is this…somehow, someway you can. You will find a way to make the things you really want happen. If there is one thing I have learned in this life, it’s that.

What do you want to do? Where do you want to go? And what are you waiting for?

 

 

 

12May/15

Excuse Me….

Are manners obsolete?

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When was the last time someone held the door for you? I don’t care if you are a woman or a man, if you are walking out and someone is behind you, it is common courtesy to hold the door for that person. I am actually shocked now when someone does it and it has become the rare occasion and is no longer the norm. Has anyone said thank you to you, with the exception of the cashier at the grocery store and they get paid to do it and even then sometimes don’t. What about, “excuse me” if they bumped into you by mistake? When was the last time a stranger smiled at you, if they happened to look up from their phone or the sidewalk as they walk along in their many journeys.

I am very upset about all of this and feel people in general have gotten increasingly rude over the last few years. Granted, working retail has not helped with my view of the situation. And I feel we have created this “monster” customer due to the stores giving in to all their demands. If they don’t like something or feel they have been treated unfairly they call and complain and the stores give them free merchandise or money back. People know this and take advantage of it. If you look at someone the wrong way they report it to management. The consumer is all about getting something for nothing. I’m all for getting the best deal and looking out for myself as anyone that knows me knows this, but there is a line. And I think we have crossed it.

It is always the same scenario every time I go shopping lately…I am happily looking at racks of tops or shelves full of beautiful shoes and out of the blue someone wants to see the exact top or shoe I am looking at. Ok, thats fine, I will just go to another aisle and look at handbags. No one is in this aisle. I start looking and immediately 4 other people come up and stand around me wanting to look at the exact same bag I am looking at. I must have great taste. Well I do, but that’s another story.. This happens every single time I go shopping, doesn’t mater where, what city or what store.

I am used to this by now and used to the fact that no one says excuse me or sorry if I have to move out of “their” way. But my recent “bad” shopping experience tops all the others I have ever had and that’s saying a lot. I was in a store last weekend and happily looking at some soaps and items on a shelf, when all of a sudden I was surrounded by 3 women of various ages. I think maybe a mother and 2 daughters. I continued to look, I thought maybe if I ignored them they would go away. But that didn’t happen..This did..One of the women reached over top of my head and actually bumped me on the head to pick up something from the shelf. I couldn’t believe this even happened, not to mention no one said I’m sorry or excuse me or anything at all. I picked up my item and slammed my cart into theirs and said loudly, “I’m sorry, I’m evidently in “your” way. I’ll go!” I couldn’t help myself, it just came out. I was “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore”. To my amazement, they all looked shocked and one of them said sweetly and with an honest, sincere look on her face, “Oh, you’re not in our way.” Really..

I mentioned this to my friends later that evening and asked them, ‘is it just me or are people getting ruder?”(not sure if this is a word, but it should be) Every single one of them agreed..and loudly agreed, even the ones I didn’t expect to since they are always so nice and not like me who lets this kind of thing bother me. One of the girls even shared a story that had recently happened to her while shopping.. She had been carrying a top around because she didn’t get a cart and a woman came up to her and said, “are you going to get that?” Of course she was, even if she didn’t want it, she was now…

So often I have had these encounters and when called out, people seemingly are oblivious about the fact they are doing these things. They truly look shocked and some do say, “oh, sorry”. It is as if everyone is in their own little world and that world is all that matters. You have to shock them back into reality and only then do they see what they are doing. I can’t be the only person to notice this and I hope it’s not because I’m getting old and remember a time when people were nice to each other. I also remember when a person smiled back at you if you smiled at them and most of the time, even said hello.

So what is wrong with people? What happened to create this environment? And how do we go about changing this? What stories do you have to share?

And don’t even get me started about angry, crazy drivers, that is for another day.

 

 

 

05May/15

Friends Till the End….

Together on this roller coaster called life.

 

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I just returned from my annual “Girlfriends Weekend” in Bethany Beach. We have been doing this for almost 20 years now and each one is special and never the same. While it is nice to visit the beach and get away, this weekend is always so much more than that.

The annual event has taken on a life of its own. We have many rituals and then there is always something new that I take away from it and this year was no different. We all look forward to it so much all year long. A few times there may be someone who can’t make it and someone new who goes along. This was one of the years a few people didn’t make it. My best friend just moved away and wasn’t able to come as well as my 2 daughters who have been coming for quite awhile. I needed space to figure out what all of this change meant and the girls gave me that time alone. But they were there when I needed them.

We have a great time together. We eat, we drink, we shop (boy, do we shop) but more than that, we talk. Intimate stories of our lives are shared and we are never afraid that this will be repeated. “What is said in Bethany, stays in Bethany”. All of us have gone through similar times, with the deaths of parents, divorces, family issues, children and grandchildren. We also talk of silly stuff and things I guess all women do, but we talk about things that matter to us. Someone will have gone through it and will have advice to give.

We have shed a few tears over the years as well. One year in particular a friend couldn’t make the trip due to her Mother being very ill. We would call and text and send pictures so she felt as though she was there. At dinner one night she texted us that her Mother had passed. We made a toast to her and it was maybe the quietest dinner we ever had.

Most of the time though, we are laughing as we share stories on body issues and menopause and other female things that come up in the conversations. Seems like we never get away without at least one of the never ending stories of someone’s poop problem (or lack thereof). On this recent trip I ran into one friend in the hallway and she had pulled up her shirt and was looking at her stomach. I stopped and asked her what she was doing. She said she had all these “things” on her body now. Skin tags, moles, sunspots, hard spots, you name it, with new ones coming on a daily basis. I was so happy!! I couldn’t believe it. I hugged her and told her I loved her and said, “thank you, I thought I was the only one that had these, you just made my day”.

The support of this group of women is amazing. Most times you hear when women get together especially for a long period of time, they are gossipy, jealous and always trying to one up each other. Not these women. We support each other completely and know full well if needed, one if not all of them would be there.

And so we all got up early Sunday morning to pack and hit the road for home once again. We hugged and made our annual promise to get together more than once a year. I don’t know if any of us will or not but I do know one thing..should I ever need anyone for anything, these women are there for me.

This makes me wonder….I know men have get togethers. They go on golf, hunting, fishing trips together and I’m sure they have lots of fun. But do they share these kind of memories and stories with each other? I sure hope they do.

25Apr/15

Very Interesting….

Or not…. our trip to the Gettysburg Battlefield.

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My daughter and my 3 grandsons were visiting this week from VT. We decided to take the boys(12,10 and 7, keep these numbers in mind as it may explain some things) to the Gettysburg Battlefield. The oldest was studying the Civil War, and especially Gettysburg. So we decided to take them there, since believe it or not they had never done this while living in MD. You know how sometimes you really don’t get to the places closest to you. We both thought this would be extremely interesting for them. However, that couldn’t have been further from the truth.

On the way there, I was sharing stories of my trips to the Battlefield and all of the knowledge I had picked up over the years. I really love going there and remember the first time I went in the fifth grade. I try to go at least once a year. It never gets old for me. I shared how many lives were lost over the three days the battle lasted and all of the souls I feel still exist there till this day and the fact that I can feel them. They thought that was gross.The oldest grandson shared some stories he had recently learned as well so I’m thinking wow, this will be a great experience for all of us. Imagine my surprise when the boys didn’t share my enthusiasm.

The first clue came as we pulled up to the Peace Light. This is one of my all time favorites and so we decided to start the tour there. I was so excited for them to see it and experience the same feeling I get every time I go there. The excitement building in the pit of my stomach as we pulled in the parking space. I envisioned them all running up to it and asking me how it stays lit like that in this wind. The real scenario was a little different. The two oldest didn’t even want to get out of the car. “Why do we have to get out, we can see it from here”, really..that’s what we got. I made them get out and go up to look at it’s majesty. They reluctantly ran up, looked at it for a full second and ran back to the car. The 7 year old, my daughter and I explored. First fail.

We took the entire tour and at every single monument I had the hopes that maybe they would start to see the “light” or get excited and want to get out and truly “see” one. Even the towers…what boy doesn’t love climbing up to the top of a tower and lean over and scare his Grandmother to death…evidently these boys. Again the 7 year old was out of the car and up the tower before I could open the door. I kept thinking in the back of my mind, wait till we get to Devils Den, they will love this. The view, the chance of falling off the rocks, the thrill of it all. So we finally pull up and once again they don’t want to get out. We made them go and as we start up the path to the top they say, “ok, its freezing, we’re going back to the car”. In all honesty, it was darn cold and very windy and cloudy which didn’t help. But these are the same boys that wear shorts all winter long to school everyday no matter what the temps. My daughter turned to me and laughed and said, “I have the car keys, they won’t be able to get in”. I smiled. We returned to the car to see two shivering boys standing there with a not so fun expression on their little frozen faces.

We made them get out one last time, at the Pennsylvania Memorial. I love this one too, another of my favorites. We told them it was the last one so they could make an effort. We all went up to the top and literally almost blew off. I was freezing but wouldn’t give them the satisfaction of knowing how cold I was.  We saw Lincoln’s statue and read the Gettysburg Address and went back to the car and headed home.

Later that night, I talked to the two older boys separately knowing I was going to write this and just wanted to get their real feelings on the trip. I said, we take them places all the time and we get the same reaction, it is a waste of our time and their time, so why should we bother. I asked both boys why they was so disinterested and wouldn’t get out of the car. To a word, they both told me they did really enjoy it. Each one said this as well…”Grammy, I was just cold.” I know one thing for sure the 7 year old really did. Not sure I’m buying the excuse from the other two, but they sure sounded sincere.

I fear we are raising a generation of kids that have no interest in our past and how as a nation we got to the place where we are today. They would rather stay home and play video games than visit a historic site. This makes me sad. What do you think?