Sunday, November 20, 2011

Today and Always...Well, Almost Always.

One of my favorite people I've met via another mutual fav person, made a comment about enjoying the holidays or rather, how she has lost that ability to enjoy them. Personally, I've been enjoying them for years, but when I was younger, that wasn't the case. The holidays always represented time of severe stress and attempts to put on that "joyful" face. I knew I didn't like feeling that way, but I did and never really did anything about it since I'd always felt like that. Flash back into my mid 40's which was a time of great sadness, stress and emotional turmoil. I decided to get some counseling, ya know, the shrinking kind. Thankfully, through my sessions, I learned quite a bit about myself and how events in my childhood affected my adult life, even the simplest of things.

My wonderful belated Pop was in the liquor bidness. It was a family thing, which I think I've mentioned in a past blog. My grandfather started the business, selling it in Mexico where he lived, but also made big bucks selling to the creme d' la creme of El Paso, during Prohibition. My dad told me the revenuers would wait on the banks of the Rio Grande, shooting at the carriers who were hauling these barrels across the river and quite a few made it to their destinations, the elite of El Paso. So as usual, I digress. Well, my dad got into the business because of his father and older brothers. My uncle that lived here owned bars, which I would go sometimes with my dad...he had business with his brother, so I would sit at the bar and eat pickled eggs and pigs feet...ugh, can't even imagine consuming anything so awful now!!

As you can imagine, the holidays were my Pop's biggest time of the year...he made his bucks selling wholesale, so there were many private parties, organizations, businesses, country clubs, etc. that ordered their liquor from him. Of course, this came with a great amount of stress, stress that he brought home. Without going into any specific details, this time of year could get a bit testy. So without realizing it, I carried this into my adult life and forced this legacy onto my own family.

I had to be Super-Christmas Mom!! The house had to be decorated just so...I never wanted the kids to decorate the tree or have anything to do with that. I did ALL the baking, again, not including anyone else. I bought ALL the Christmas gifts for both my family and my ex's. Well, at the end of all this, I was exhausted and resentful! While I did all the work, everyone else enjoyed the holidays...WTF!!! Right??? Wrong!!! This is a case of "quien te manda?" or loosely translated, "who commands you?" Who said I had to do all the work, take on all the responsibilities, all the stress???? There laid the conundrum!! Who "said??"

During my sessions, I learned that I was the one who made those choices, I was the one who for some reason, felt I had to take it ALL on. I recall one Christmas Eve, which is the night we celebrate, my sister, who is not a cook or baker, made a comment about all my baking achievements for that evening. I told her since the birth of my youngest, Ian, who is autistic, I got real smart and didn't do as much (cough, cough, like hell, but again, I was clueless), she said kidingly that she was REAL smart...I then turned around and in a very sarcastic tone, told her she was an "f'n genius!!"

So now I don't do as much. I still have the bake-o-rama, but not because I have to, but because I want to and am good at it and love doing it. Gifts are still very creative and unique, or as creative and unique as I can get them, but I don't do the crazy shopping sprees anymore. I haven't done a Black Friday in years...I don't even go to the grocery store during that weekend. My funds are meager, but I make the best of it and my family knows that. About the only thing I really concentrate on now are gifts for my grandsons...they love Legos, so I got what they wanted already back in Sept./Oct. I already have some things made for other family members and even bought my mother her gift. She mentioned once that she wanted to read the Bible, but had trouble reading the version she's the family bible and weighs more than she!! So I went to Barnes & Nobles and found a student version, meaning simple English, so she could start reading it.

In my forthcoming "old age," I'm doing less but enjoying more. So my feelings on what my friend posted today, "Our attitude towards life determines life's attitude towards us." ~ Earl Nightengale. So I choose happiness, every chance I get; I like what the Universe sends back to me. So there will be some dark days, of course, but there will always be a light at the end of the tunnel, so cut the crap, have fun and laugh...a lot. Peace out.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Nuthin' Much

I don't even know why I'm posting today...maybe it's out of a little extra energy and time I have at this moment. First of all, I want to thank you, my friends, for all your prayers for my lovely friend, Anne. I will say this much, they're working, so keep them coming!

My honey surprised me with a weekend getaway, starting tomorrow. We're driving up to Ruidoso, NM and staying at the Mescalero Indian resort, Inn of the Mountain Gods. We're leaving tomorrow morning and will return Tues. I mentioned to him earlier in the summer that we both have taken many trips, usually to visit kids and grandkids, him to Houston, and me in Austin. We hadn't taken any trips together since Sept. of '10 when we went to Chicago to visit his daughter and her family; again, kids and grandkids. So I asked him when we could get out together, just the two of us, no kids, no grandkids, no relatives at all!! Since money is tight, and when isn't it, he made reservations at the Inn for weekdays, better prices.

I then received an email from my bud in Austin that she and her hubby were coming to El Paso and then going to Ruidoso at the same time we would be. It's her hubby's birthday and he wants to celebrate it at the Inn. Today, she and her hubby, cousin, cousin's hubby and best buddy took off and will be staying at the Holiday Inn this evening. Tomorrow, the buddy and relatives will be returning to El Paso, but they will be checking in at the Inn Sunday afternoon; we'll probably meet up with the whole gang for lunch somewhere in town tomorrow and do a bit of shopping, or in my case, lots of window shopping. Personally, I would love to have lunch in Alamagordo, NM, on the way up, at Blakes...chile cheeseburger and fries....oh hell, just yummers!! Chile in these parts aren't the stew, with hamburger meat and beans, but beautiful NM long greens, roasted and served with just about everything. Anyway, later on we're planning on having drinks, dinner, drinks, do a little gambling, drinks, chatting, drinks, well, ya get the picture.

The first time I went to the Inn, I was pregnant with my first child, Joel, who is now the math. I was about 7 months along and my sister had come in from CA and spent almost a month with us. My parents, 2 brothers, sister and I went up for a nice weekend. That first night, the electricity died and they were serving all kinds of free goodies downstairs in the dining room....I recall sending my little brother several times for some desserts...well, lots of desserts. The next day, they all went on a canoe dad didn't let me go along due to my I couldn't swim in my condition?? LOL He was just concerned....that was my Pops. The second evening, I asked my sister, who I was rooming with, why she was sleeping with her camera tripod...she said it was to protect us from Sasquatch!!!! We were on the 3rd floor...unless Sasquatch was half-spider or fly, don't think we had much to worry about!!

This is a photo of the sculpture in the front of the's a group of Katchinas or as my daughter said when she was a little thang, cochinos...means, "dirty or pigs" in Spanish. We were at the gift shop in the Grand Canyon when she was about 20 months, remembering freezing are areses off because we camped it. Anyway, I had spotted some beautiful Hopi Indian Katchina Dolls, the real deal, and they were still at very affordable prices back in 1980, so I asked her if she wanted one for her doll collection...her reply was, "No, I don't like those cochino dolls!" My daughter began walking and talking at nine months and hasn't shut up since!! A year before, we were traveling back to El Paso after spending 3 years in Stuttgart, W. Germany, it was still West back in those days. We were at the Cracker Barrel, or something like it, in GA, and I she had just turned a year. I was carrying her on my back in a baby back pack and I showed her what is now the original Cabbage Patch dolls, hand-made. She said they were ugly, and I had to agree, but it was an original, hand-made and only for a few dollars....OY....pulling my hair out. Why I gave the 4 thousand year midget so many choices is beyond me!!

This is a photo of the large water fountain at the Inn. Wish I could find a photo of the's gorgeous! In the background are the Sacramento Mountains and Sierra Blanca, meaning "white mountain"...beautiful.

Below is a crappy picture of Burro Street in Cloudcroft, NM. I know the orgiginal structures burned down a couple of years ago, but the whole area was rebuilt. Cloudcroft, which I truly love more than Ruidoso, is a very quiet, quaint little town also nestled in the Sacramentos and just about an hour away from Ruidoso. We'll take the old road from Ruidoso and travel to Cloudcroft for an afternoon...maybe stop by the local grocery store for freshly made bread and pies and stop and do a bit of shopping or window shopping...lots of artists live in the area and have set up shops up there.

One of the other spectacular areas in NM is the White Sands National Park. It was always a destination for us as children, but only in the Spring, Fall and Winter...the sand is too hot to walk on during the summer. Unfortunately, the dessert is encroaching on it, so the dunes are slowly disappearing. I won't see that in my lifetime, but perhaps my great-grands.

Another spectacular view is the one from White Sands up towards Sierra Blanca in Ruidoso.

That's the snow covered peak, and the other white stuff below is the gypsum sand from the park. As you travel up the mountains to either Cloudcroft or Ruidoso, the view below is're in this beautiful pine forest and just a few feet below, is the desert and the view of White Sands.

Ok, folks, hope you enjoyed my mini-tour of one of the most beautiful places in this! I love NM and wish I lived there, but I'll settle for far West TX, almost in NM, since it is where I was born and lay my head each night. Peace out.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Good morning friends. Today, I'm asking you to pray for someone. I really am not at liberty to reveal this person's name or location since she is still trying to cope with the news of her medical condition, but I'm asking you to pray for her, please, please, pray. The good Lord knows who she is, so the prayers will find their way to her.

I've known this wonderful woman for about 3 years now. We met, as I have met many of you lovelies, in Blogandia. She has a cutting wit and sense of humour that rivals only a few. Every time we have had our "marathon" phone calls, we laugh till we almost pee in our pants!!

My heart is heavy, sadden and I feel so helpless at this moment. Friendships are so precious and for many of us, we have plenty of acquaintances, but friends, few and far between. So please say a prayer for your buddies today and always. Pick up the phone and call them...or send them an email and tell them you love them. Friends, as life, are so precious...I said that already, but I can't reiterate enough how important this is. I know we get all wrapped up, especially lately with Halloween and now the coming big-ass season, and it's not fair to beat ourselves up, let's face it, life gets in the way and the distractions don't allow us time to do much but carry on our everyday and dem sum.

So today or when you read this post, please think of your friends and let them know you carry them everyday in your heart, regardless where your brain might be. Again, please pray for this wonderful woman and know that I love you, my precious friends. Peace out.