Saturday, June 22, 2013

Uncle Cal

Uncle Cal was well known for being a kid at heart, eating his dessert first, and the hilarious one liners he could still throw out up until the end.  The part of “Callie” as we first knew him, and which we later learned he hated, that has been bouncing around in my head, is what a fine and fierce protector he was.  Two incidents come to mind, the first when I was about four years old and was knocked down by a jealous Laddie, the Farm’s resident collie.  This dog was terrifyingly scratching or biting my face, but Uncle Cal was right there and got the dog off me quickly.  He even offered to shoot it (which did not happen), if I remember correctly.  In fact, I’m not sure I actually remember any of this, it could be just the retelling I remember, but I still have a trauma reaction when a dog comes at me barking.

The second was when Betsy fell off a horse and broke her arm at about age 10.  This I do remember. As soon as she was thrown, I can see Uncle Cal running down the country road in his requisite coveralls, and into the ditch to retrieve her.  I can still feel his anger at any person or animal that would hurt one of his family.  Since he didn't have any children of his own, and my mom was his only niece, we were his adopted grandchildren.

Uncle Cal taking a swing at ping pong, 2009, age 84.

Two years later, 2011.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013


May 29th and summer seemed to stretch out forever. It's already been a week, and it's slipping away. I always have this idea that if I write, it slows down time. If reading other people's journal is boring, you can just stop now.  So my break is May 29-August 11.  I have a few plans, it won't be all wasted.  But it will go too fast.  I know this.

Here are a few things I have up my sleeve:

1.  Taking a graduate class on AD/HD via distance learning, should take about 40-45 hours.

2.  Participating in School Crisis Assistance Team training in person (about 40 hours including the commute).

3.  Driving my mom to North Dakota for Uncle Cal's Memorial Service: June 13- 18.

4.  Entertaining brother, sister and their families June 28-July 6.

5.  Watching Cal play Legion baseball.

6.  Preparing some lessons for junior high boys with behavior disorders group.

7.  Traveling to Buffalo to join Pat's 9 siblings to celebrate Ellen's 80th birthday, July 25-30.

8. Spending time with Little Sister; we will celebrate our 2 year anniversary in July.

9.  Reading, read some more, make picture boards for Cal's service, clean up around the house.

10. Volunteering at Loaves and Fishes monthly.

11.  Taking yoga class and 'walking for wellness', riding bike, walking for the heck of it (I have two weekly walking dates), lifting my wimpy weights, cardio, etc.

I just have to remember not to complain.  What's there to complain about,  you say?  Well, there's summer guilt, kind of like survivors guilt where I feel like I should be working like everyone else, and I let it crawl into my head. I only feel worthy on weekends, when it's okay to not be working.  Sometimes I feel a little lonely when the house is empty because everyone is at work. And, yes, sometimes I get irritable about things like cooking, shopping, cleaning up, and the thought that 'summers off' means house servancy.

Oh, it will be glorious. I really do love my new schedule. I worked hard for it, so why not enjoy it?