Monday, October 31, 2011

Trick or Treat!!

Spooky- BFF 137

       Even though I lived in the next town, when my Dad had a stroke…it was me that found him. It seemed like I always got stuck with the horse $hit things like finding my mother dead, and my Dad after he had his stroke.  He told me after that he was happy I did find him.   It was me that stopped by the house everyday and took in the mail, laying it carefully on the desk in his bedroom.  It was me that saw to his wishes and needs before he died.  Even shortly after he died, I still stopped in to bring in the mail and check on the house.

      One day I stopped in to bring in the mail much like I had on all the previous days.  However, this time turned out particularly spooky and I will never forget it.  While I was in the house my daughter was outside with my husband playing on the swing set my Dad had bought her for her frequent visits.  I still couldn’t believe my Dad was really gone.  The house was silent when I let myself in.  I made a beeline for his bedroom where I noticed the temperature seemed to drop to almost chilly.  Just like always, I flipped on the light switch and approached his desk.  That is when I saw it.  Chills ran up and down my spine as I was drawn to a small oval pin decorated with a picture I had seen before of two children walking on a bridge being watched by an angel. Where had it come from??  I felt uneasy as I picked it up and examined it.  I had never seen it before in my life and couldn’t imagine where it had come from.  My skin dotted with goose bumps as I hurriedly turned out the lights and rushed out of the house.

        I came upon a surreal image of my daughter swinging with my husband watching.  The sun had started to go down and dusk had fallen.  I looked over towards the east side of the house  and my breath caught.  There in the shadows were the ghosts of my parents!  “I must be seeing things!! How can this be??”  As I started forward, they turned, smiled,  and then walked away disappearing as I watched.  I strained my eyes.  I looked down at the angel pin in my hand and looked back to where their ghosts had once been and wondered if I was loosing my mind.  I wondered at the time if in my grief if I was only seeing them again because I wanted to so badly.  The only problem was that their images were so real.  Not only that, here was this angel pin that I had never seen before laying precisely in a place I couldn’t have missed it.  Instead of being frightened, I was intrigued.

          Several times since I have seen one or both of my parents in the shadows and in the mist watching over me.  On several occasions I have felt their presence.  I want to believe it is them and not my wishful thinking imagination.  It was just plain spooky!  Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.

Date with the Boogey Man- BFF 136

       Over the weekend I took my kids to a Halloween party hosted by our neighborhood fire department.  The kids dressed up in their costumes and away we went.   We discovered that the fire department was decorated with spooky spider webs and symbols of Halloween.  Within the interiors volunteers served up hot dogs, popcorn, and apple cider and we took full advantage of it!  Free food?? Count me in!! 

        There was a bouncy house, a pumpkin painting station, and a massive bonfire.  They even gave out free reflective bracelets to the kids.  Although my son begged to be allowed to try out the bouncy house,  I refused his request.  Seemed like a good way to get trampled to me.  The bouncy house was filled to capacity with jumping screaming kids as it was.  I knew if I let him go in, he would never want to come out and the whole evening would be spoiled in the blink of an eye.  Bouncy houses always remind me of a smaller version of the play land zoo of screaming wild kids at McDonald's.  Kids go in happy, and come out kicking, screaming, and throwing a pi$$y fit because once in, they never want to leave.  Personally I did not want to deal with that kind of self inflicted drama on that particular night.  I was there to have fun!!

       What really drew the crowds was the hayride through the haunted woods and the line was testimony to its popularity.  Everything from ghouls, Mario from Nintendo gaming fame, to the illustrious Harry Potter surrounded us.  A pair of ghosts moved through the never ending line handing out treats to the kids.  Despite the droves of people that lined up for their chance to be terrorized by unknown forces and boogey men in the woods, the line moved fairly quickly due to at least 4 tractor pulled wagons.   

           When it was finally our turn we climbed up and took our place on the provided hay bales.   We could barely contain our excitement!  We didn’t know what awaited us as the wagon moved slowly into the pitch  black night.  As we approached the woods we came to a lonely set of railroad tracks with warning signals flashing.  As our wagon crept across the tracks the blinding light of an approaching train drew closer giving everyone a jolt.  Zombies, goblins, and boogey men rushed up to the wagon out of the darkness eliciting screams of terror and nervous laughter.  One scary fellow stood along the path, and I could have swore he was not real…when suddenly he darted toward the wagon.  He scared the living be Jesus out of me.  I am so glad I didn’t have to pee at the time because I would have peed my pants for sure!   Instead of screaming…my reaction was to bust into a fit of giggles.  Everyone else was screaming and boogey men and women appeared at every turn.  Zombies approached moaning and bubbling cauldrons could be seen in the distance.  At one point we passed an abandoned graveyard and were startled to discover  its inhabitants busting out of the ground.   Spooky spider webs hung down from above and blood covered boogey men darted from out of the darkness and from behind trees grabbing at the wagon‘s occupants.  

            As we approached the edge of the woods and inched closer to safety one zombie grabbed onto the wagon directly in front of us and demanded to be fed.  “Feed me!!” he begged in a ghostly voice.  The lady sitting beside me was tempted to throw her child’s pumpkin pail at him, but she couldn’t pry it out of her kids hands.  

          As terrified as my kids have been of the things that go bump in the night in the past, both were biting at the bit to get on that wagon and head off into the night to face the boogey man head on in the spirit of Halloween.  It was a night of pure Halloween fun and I applaud the Concord Township Fire Department for their efforts!!  A big thank you to all the people that made the party a reality.  We had a blast.   Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a truckers wife.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thrills and Chills: Could it be Satan??

      In the spirit of Halloween, an experience from my past came to mind that provided me with more thrills and chills than I could have bargained for.   Shortly after I first met my husband we went to our neighborhood Kmart to wander the store and see what was new.  Since we are both big kids at heart we were drawn to the game aisle and soon found ourselves eyeballing a Ouija board.  Although I had tried using a Ouija board before with my mom, my future husband never had and was soon eager to buy it and rush it to my house to give it a try.

       We sat side by side on the living room couch balancing the Ouija board between us on our laps.  We carefully placed our fingertips on the included plastic indicator.  Nervously we giggled as we decided what we would ask the talking board first.  We had both lost loved ones who we had been extremely close to and I think we both desperately wanted to make contact with each of them.  Not surprising then that the first question posed to the mystical board was “Is there anyone who would like to speak to us?”  After a brief hesitation the plastic indicator began to slowly move towards “yes”.  

         We held our breaths and asked the next obvious question: “who?” and the plastic indicator went wild and began to swirl across the surface stopping  at each letter in quick succession.  We read the letters out loud as they were revealed.  S - A - T-  A- N.   As the indicator finished the word it shot off the board right under our finger tips.  At the precise moment that our brains registered that the devil himself wanted to make our acquaintance a brisk wind blew through the living room.  From another room of the house,  my Persian cat Alicia May howled, screeched, and then raced down the center of the living room to the kitchen as if the devil himself was chasing her.  Pieces of paper flew in her wake.

 Satan!!! Holy hell!  We freaked out!  The Ouija board crashed to the floor as we jumped up scared $hitle$$.  The fact that Satan wanted to have a cozy chat with us scared the living be Je$us out of us.  The instant gut reaction was to get that crazy board out of the house NOW.   We rushed outside the back door grabbing a box of matches as we raced to the burning barrel which sat unsuspecting by a huge tree that bordered the property.  My dad had recently had the barrel dumped and as we threw the board, indicator, and box into the barrel we realized that the barrel was completely empty except for what we had just added.   My better half lit a match and threw it in the barrel.  We fully expected for the contents to burn slowly, so when flames immediately shot up into the tree tops burning hot and bright…we freaked out just a little more.   What in G0d’s name would cause the fire to burn so hot and so high?  Could it be Satan??  We fled to the safety of the house and watched the fire mesmerized as the flames shot from the barrel to the sky.

          After a short while the fire stopped as suddenly as it started and we went back out to the barrel to peer inside.  Every trace of the Ouija board was gone !   I am not sure what we expected when we bought that Ouija board, but I guarantee we got more than we bargained for.  That one incident made a believer out of me that a Ouija board was nothing to mess with and I have never attempted to again.  I learned from that experience to allow fate to take its course and once folks are dead it is best to let them  rest in peace.   If you go looking for the devil, you will surely find him.  Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Witchy Woman - BFF 135

     My mother loved Halloween.  She loved to dress up, decorate the house, take me trick or treating when I was a kid, and hand out Halloween candy.  We never got very many trick-or-treaters, but for those few that decided to darken our door Halloween night my mom bought bags of all her favorite candies and filled Halloween themed treat bags.  We literally had candy coming out of our ears!!!  Didn’t really have to go trick-or-treating, but we did anyway.

       One year when I was in my twenties my mom and I dressed up to attend an Oak Ridge Boys concert on Halloween night downtown at the old Elco Theatre .  My mom chose that year to dress as a witch and yours truly dressed as a court jester.  My mom really wasn’t satisfied with the plain Jane witch costume she bought. It wasn’t her and it certainly didn’t have enough sparkle to wear to see her favorite singing group.  Not only that we were sitting on the front row, knew the boys personally, and in my mother’s opinion it would never do to look like a dumpy frumpy witch in front of them. 

       She decided her witch costume needed sequins and glitz, and even suggested I should spice mine up too.  She added black sequins to her witch’s dress,  wore spiked 3 inch high heels, adorned herself with sparkly jewelry, and the classic black witches hat.  She looked like a rich witch from the right side of the tracks.  We both looked pretty good.  Unfortunately neither one of us won the top costume prize…that went to some guy who came in a garbage can and covered himself with trash…seriously.

         It wasn’t the fact that we went to a concert that night, or the fact we rubbed elbows with the Oak Ridge Boys before and after the concert.  Those details have faded with time.  What I remember best about my witchy mother was what she did when we got home.  You have to understand…we lived across the street from a very busy bank at the time with an equally busy ATM machine and drive up windows.  I don’t remember why we made a trip home…maybe we forgot something.  That must have been it…because it was still light out and the bank was swarming with cars .  My mom peeled rubber into the driveway stirring up a dust cloud in her wake, jumped out of the car, and heisted her witchy skirt to her thighs, squatted and took a very satisfying pi$$ right there on the front lawn in front of G0d, sunny Je$u$, and everyone waiting their turn at the bank!!!

          At the time, I laughed my a$$ off at the sight of a Halloween witch on Halloween taking a fresh pi$$ in full view of everyone and his brother. It was hysterical…witch hat and all.  I can still see my mother with a look of contented bliss and relief clouding her features that I don’t recall seeing before or since that precise moment.  It was peeing at it’s finest.  You know the kind….where you have to go so BAD and finally unleash the fury and dump enough urine to fill half of Lake Michigan.  She simply couldn’t have waited to unlock the door, dash down the hall, and use the bathroom.  It was either squat and pee on the lawn as G0d intended or pee her pants and I can tell you my mom had no intention of doing that!  At the time, I am sure she didn’t care one iota that half the free world was watching.

      Even this many years later, I have to chuckle at this priceless Halloween memory of my mom.  I am afraid it is a memory that will be ingrained in my brain until the day I die.  Much better than pi$$ing your witch duds on the biggest bewitching night of the year.    Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Haunted Graveyard- BFF 134

     Once my parents died, I had no qualms about going to the cemetery.  My folks were there, so it had to be a safe, peaceful place.  Never expected anything sinister, or actually thought I would experience anything resembling a haunting or see any ghosts.  It was safe as could be.  Right??  That is what I used to think anyways.

      After my mom died, I would often go and sit on her grave and talk with her and cry.  Pathetic, I know but necessary at the time.  I felt closer to her somehow.  Finally my visits became less frequent.  Christmas was always a special holiday for my mom. She loved to decorate every room of the house and loved the lights.  She loved everything about Christmas.

      It was because of this that my Dad bought her a small Christmas tree and we made a tradition of going to the cemetery every Christmas eve night to illuminate the lights, give her flowers, and wish her a Merry Christmas.  It was an artificial tree outfitted with battery operated lights and my Dad figured out a way to make it work.  The challenge was having the tree lit up for most of the night.  Unfortunately the cold always played havoc on the batteries and usually by the time my family and I were heading home from Christmas eve festivities at my dad’s house, the lights were out.  We would go into the pitch black cemetery and pick up the tree and take it home.

         In 2004, my dad joined my mom in heaven and my husband and I decided to continue the tradition with a new tree.  I had found a small fiber optic tree for a reasonable price and decided to buy it for my parents for Christmas.  Much like every other Christmas we continued to visit the cemetery on the night before lighting the tree.  The only problem that arose was that we no longer had any holiday parties on Christmas eve.  Since we didn’t want to leave the tree at the cemetery for fear someone would steal it, we always went and brought it back home before bedtime.   

       One year it was snowing, and as I pulled up and parked I noticed that the tree was still lit.  My daughter and I waded out into the snow to my parent’s grave.  As we approached the tree began to blink and the lights were extinguished.  I was just about to remark that it was nice the lights lasted for as long as they did when suddenly the tree lit up the night once again!  My daughter and I exchanged glances and I quickly unplugged the tree plunging us into darkness again.  Before I could pick the tree up again, the lights flickered one final time.  Ok, now that freaked me out a little.

       As I grabbed the tree and we told my parents how much we loved them and wished them a Merry Christmas, we heard voices say “Merry Christmas”.  My daughter and I looked at each other and said “ Did you hear that?” at the same time and then simultaneously hauled a$$ for the car slipping and sliding in our mad dash to get the hell out of there! It was as effective as someone screaming to "Get out!" We moved so fast we were theoretically out the door, down the street, not letting the door hit us in the a$$ on the way out.  We threw the tree in the back, jumped in the car, and sped out of there like the hounds of hell were after us.  I don’t know what we heard that night, but I can tell you it scared the be Je$u$ right out of both of us!!

        Since that Christmas eve, only one thing has changed.  We still visit the graveyard on Christmas eve night, but now instead of going back and getting the tree later that night…we leave it till AFTER Christmas.  Do I think there are spirits that haunt the graveyard at night???  That would be a yes!!  Much like the cowardly lion in the Wizard of Oz, I do believe in spooks!!   Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.


Wordless Wednesday: A Trip to Pumpkin Fantasy Land!

Highlights of our trip to the 2011 Fashion Farm Pumpkin Fantasy Land!


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tasty Tuesday: Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

     One Halloween I decided to concoct my own recipe for roasted pumpkin seeds.  Since Halloween is just around the corner, and most of you will soon be up to your elbows in pumpkin guts, I thought I would share it with all of you!  It has become a tradition at my house to bake these pumpkin seeds for an after Trick-or-Treating snack.

     When carving your pumpkins this Halloween, save all the seeds.  Place them in a colander and rinse with cold water to get rid of any stray pumpkin guts.  Pat dry with paper towels.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  In a plastic zip lock bag add...

2 TBSP sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Melt 3 TBSP of butter in the microwave.  Coat seeds with butter, then toss seeds into zip lock bag to coat with seasonings.  Prepare a cookie sheet by covering with aluminum foil and then spray liberally with non stick cooking spray.  Spread seeds on foil lined cookie sheet.  Bake  60 minutes, turning seeds occasionally throughout cooking time, until browned and crunchy.  Allow to cool and enjoy!!

Bon Appetit'!

Ownership of Your Own Safe Haven

      What does a person really own?? I mean really? What do you have true ownership of? We make payments on everything just for the chance to own it.   As a trucker’s wife  my husband is gone more than he’s not and some folks may guess I am the owner of a lonely heart.  Some trucker’s wives can’t deal with the loneliness and find companionship outside of their marriage.  I can honestly say that I have never even had the desire to pull a stunt like that.

       Many years before my husband and I had ever crossed paths I searched hopelessly for that perfect someone who would make my life complete.  It finally took being raped for me to realize that I had to grow strong within myself, be comfortable in my own skin, my faith in G0d, and find my own inner peace.  Being raped changed me but I made a conscious decision when I came home from the hospital and police station that I was NOT going to live in fear.  I would go into my house and lock the door and if someone got to me at that point, it was meant to be.  I learned from my mistakes not to be so trusting.  I trusted G0d to take care of me and found my safe haven within.  I learned I really didn’t need to have anyone else to make me happy.  

       From the series of events that led up to this catalyst in my life from my mom’s death which left me isolated to now, I have learned to find my strength, my safe haven, my companion from within.  I learned to enjoy my own company.  I forced myself to go to the mall alone, eat out alone, you get the picture.  You hear people say…get a hobby.  I did.  My hobbies are all things I am perfectly happy to do alone whether it be writing, crocheting, reading, or listening to music.  After my mom’s death I spent hours playing the piano.  I don’t do that so much anymore, but the point is…I keep busy.  

       One time I heard a sermon at church that really stayed with me.  The whole point was that everything we have is given to us by G0d.  He supplies us with money to buy stuff and for a while we go through the motions of “owning” it.  Seems to me, we are just “using” it for a while until we move on to the next step. When you die you leave it all behind to be fought over by your next of kin and then one of them will own it, or sell it.  

       After much contemplation I have decided I own much more valuable stuff than I realized…contentment, peace of mind, and I am my favorite companion. I also have faith.   At least those things can’t be stolen, raped, burned, trashed, and will never deteriorate or mold which is cool.  Can’t buy it in a store…it is priceless. It is your own personal safe harbor, and like Visa it is wherever you happen to be.  Until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.