Saturday, December 29, 2012

Best gift this year

None of us knew it but the best gift was that cel phone which I barely need but still I need it.
Turns out I can hear on this thing and called my friend in MA. for 53 minutes we had a ball as I could hear every word. Even on my very expensive "hearing phone" this does not happen.
I had such a good time hearing Lee, even so we both have the same problems...needed an electric can opener, she one with batteries, she is already deep into snow and power may go off any time. She concerned over falling, her two casts have just now come off.
I walk with such care outside, like I am walking on eggs.
I should call it the 80's diaries.
We will not admit to our depressions either. We are fine, we tell ourselves that and anyone who wants to listen.
My daughter acts like she is my mother, said she. I say: That is new to you?"
I have a new mother now for years but this one comes with unconditional love.
I heard it all and I smiled.
There was a day that I was 23 and she 25, we had husbands but no kids yet and we
ate lunch on payday out to where they had nice shrimp. She taught me how to shop and where at a discount. She taught me that the BIG diamond on her finger was real..I hardly believe it. Even from Belgium, diamond country, I did not have relatives with rocks like that on their hands. She installed a telephone next to her bed so she could answer my many midnight calls when I would be crying my eyes out about a no good husband. She told me to leave him 10 years before I had the courage to do so.
We worked in the same office in New Brunswick NJ.
I came in from the chocolate and lace boat. Eyes wide open to a new country and new adventures. All these years later we still try and console each other.
It helps if you have a phone and can hear.
Thank you, my dear Santa!!!!!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Comments on my blog???

I have always allowed comments on my blog but I have been told that they do not register. I checked my account and it clearly does say that comments are allowed. Do not know what else I could have done in this complicated world of technolife. For instance, I had a cell phone years ago when I was still in my shop. When I closed the business there was no need for a phone. We have had our house phone since we moved in 1976. Yes, I had a Princess phone in here at one time and diverse models over the last 36-37 years and lately had several for the hard of hearing (that is a joke !!!). Since I walk the dogs daily and walk a good distance from the house I started to worry that I might fall one day and since I am not able to get up without help, I might just sit in the middle of the cemetery for quite awhile before I am being noticed. (I walk there daily, it is quiet!) I asked Sabrina if they had a very cheap phone just for emergencies, I said that I was "thinking" about it. Well Christmas eve she gives me a box and tells me to listen to the box. The room full of people was suddenly quiet, very quiet. I put the box to my ear and at first I heard nothing then there was a faint music like little bells, it took me a few seconds to figure it out and I shouted: It is a! I did say a bad word so sue me.!!!!I used to be ladylike for decades now I am a salty broad. Well, this phone is nothing like what I had a decade or more ago. This one does take messages and leave notes and whatever else. How much a month? said I? now seeing my budget being cut some more. The girl said :Nothing. Now I knew she was full of it. Zack said he was there and since I am on their plan it makes her plan cheaper!!! Say what??? Well, the enormous bonus on this is that when I called Sabrina yesterday for a try out, she sounded like she was standing next to me. I could HEAR! Now I will see if this is going to be the norm. AFTER I learn all these buttons and probably will call people by mistake or cut off some "by mistake". I am back in the normal world. Thank you Brie. What action does Brie like? She can call me when I am a football field away from her at Sams and ask: where are you? and are you done shopping? Both of us have walked miles in stores trying to find each other. I can show you my corns and have proof of that much walking. Have a good day....

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas is over with

Well, in a few more hours.
I am starting to feel the relief.
Why? Oh! Why? is it so hard to be of joy at the holidays?
I think Bob was so busy with Christmas and decor and I was always so busy cooking days ahead of was was fun...we waited eagerly for the kids to come and mayhem to start.

None of this now for several years, near the end of his disease he hated people coming into the house, he hated even Bobby moving in. He did not know any of us anymore and he got angry.

I am tired of telling this blog how much I miss him, but I do, it does not leave me.
he is like a blanket woven with tears hanging over my shoulders. I cry and cry and then fall asleep crying. I am a mess.
So no wonder that I ended our dinner with tears...yikes...Merry Christmas to all and be of good cheer...............Sabrina held me tightly and said she loved me while she was battling her own tears....brave souls we all pretend to be ...but the Fishers have funeral and memorial to face this week.
I have asked to be excused. I told Brie I loved how we did with Bob, brought his ashes to the river in the forest, simple, no speeches of goodbye, we all there (kids and I) knew he was a gentle, kind, loving man and we had told him that many times when he was alive.

I am going to bed, I found a book for my Kindle and will get lost in that I hope...."Behind the beautiful forevers" Katherine Boo.
When I will read that non fiction story I probably will know how lucky I am to be in my warm bed with a roof and four walls......a hiatal hernia complaining because I ate too much...

Sunday, December 23, 2012


My darling daughter asked for peace and quiet stopping the anger about the last shooting in a school.
She is right, we should calm down about it or should we be angry?

I for one I am still very angry.
After each one of these shootings there was talk for about a few weeks and then all went quiet again.
The NRA is not going to help, you heard his speech.
Obama promises in January to tackle the gun situation.

Who do we blame in this last horrible event?
The shooter? No doubt , if we believe what they tell us, this kid had been in his own hell for quite some time. He most probably did not know what an emotion is.
He must have written in his computer things he did not want us to see so he smashed it.
He was very sick.

The mother is she to blame? She purchased a weapon made for soldiers. What enemy was she expecting to land in fashionable Ct. district? Why buy weapons at all when you KNOW you have a child with a mental problem.? Did she protect the weapons so that he could not get to them? She took him to the riffle range for heavens sake.
But then he probably could have walked into Walmart and buy whatever he wanted on the racks.

Walmart sold more of these horrible guns after the school shooting. Copy cat buyers? Who knows?

Lets not forget it this time, at the very least lets just sell clips with 6 rounds instead of dozens. To refill a cop takes 1 second a journalist took 4 seconds, in that time even short as it is one can prevent more. It did in one school attack, it prevented more shootings when a person got a chance to get the shooter down.
This sick man/boy in Connected shot 30 rounds ,we were told on the News.

Let's do something.

Not the very least lets have more help available for the mentally ill.

Friday, December 21, 2012

My best Christmas ever can now be seen


I have posted it here every year since I first posted it on WowOwow.
Did not want you to fall asleep again but if you like a reminder check it out there on Forming the Thread, thank you and Merry Christmas

Rest in peace

Big John decided to leave us all on Solstice night.
In many ways it was the best for John.
The life he had the last years was full of pain, frustrations,
depending on machines and caregivers.
In and out of Hospitals at least once a month.
Then in nursing homes.
John lived his life in a big way, a giant who loves hunting, having a few with his pals, telling adult stories, and just doing in life what pleased him most.
He had to pay the price. Bad lungs and diabetes beat him and I do suspect he still had a cigarette before he left us.
Most of all he had the best wife, I believe she was his fourth one.
She took such good care of him and a halo should follow her.
Her son and John's stepson was there too to help him up and down to watch him and to love him.
To them and the kids go my sympathy.

Big John if you see my Bob wherever you guys go please do not make him stand on a box again so he can talk to you...then again maybe he is tall too in that dimension.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Post is now easy

I am delighted that this year the post office is helping us so that not only we can ship parcels in the USA right from our computer desk (which I have done for years with eBay) but now we do not have the hassle of customs anymore and can ship international too via the magic of our computer. This is heaven. Not walking to the post and not standing in long lines.I even order my boxes and stamps on line.

Does this hurt the post office personnel ? Will they have fewer jobs and close more small offices? They are already doing that and cutting and cutting.

I have to admit that for me it was heaven this year.

I noticed that Medicare went up, add to this that AARP for the supplement went up and Humana went guess what the 1.7 percent raise we got on our Social Security does not cover the "up, up, up's"

I have also joined the hundred who emailed the White House not happy with the
talks there.

Do I think that any of my bitching matters????Of course not so I will go back in my cave, hope I can pay all the winter bills and just holler on my blog.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

warm today freezing tomorrow

Mother Nature is playing with us. It will be warm today, perhaps even in the 60's but tomorrow we will drop to the 30's and they even talk of snow in the higher elevations.
Looked at my calendar and it is December. I did not dream this.
Walked the dogs and what did I see ? In one yard the daffodils leaves are up about 3 inches. They think it is March. I should bring my calendar and show them.

My heart is still aching over the school drama but we become a little numb when we read over and over again what did and did not happen. Fact is it did.

Only in NC, last night on the news : The Tea party in Asheville had decided to have a raffle fund raiser. What did they try and make money with? You think baskets of food, turkeys, toys for , no, not these people in front of a pawn shop they were telling the news crew that there will be 2 of these big guns and I forget what they are called, the kind made for the Army not for household items or hunting items.
I just could not believe my eyes.....but they did mention that the winning person will have to get his papers in order before they hand over the gun.....voila.....
A gun society? You bet we are what is next???Maybe they will find a tank to raffle too.

I am pissed.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

quiet , it is so quiet

Walking the dogs on this rainy Sunday I noticed how quiet the street was.
No one walking. No traffic, looks like every one is huddled inside their home.
Perhaps it is busy on the highway and Walmart may be packed with shoppers but here it is an eerie quiet while the mist is coming down and the sky is grey.
I can't forget the new school shooting. This morning I watched Stephanapolis and the political show and it was an hour about the school. Brie had told me not to watch the news but here it was even on his show.

I do not understand it all. Where to begin? The man who knows said that on Black Friday , just a few days ago. The FBI received 140.000 requests for check ups on gun buyers. Just that one day, 140.000 ! Probably Christmas gifts
, are they all hunting riffles??????????
The kid who killed took 3 of his mothers guns, he left 2 hunting riffles at the house.
The school was locked. So he blasted through two windows with gunfire then slid inside.

He had child hood issues with that school, they now connect him to it while his mother was a volunteer and he a student. Mother decided they did not treat her child with the issues he had and took him home for home schooling.He was 20 when he took his life too. Issues going back that far?????????

One person on the show said more Mental Health cuts are coming, we have enough of them. They closed institutions 50 years ago, that was a good thing BUT where is the mass of people who need me3dication, a person who will listen to them? Professionals who can work with the mentally ill. Our prison are full of such souls, homeless people who just need someone to listen to them.

I am just crushed. I was crushed at the V A Tech as my grandson was in an adjoining room but it changed his life. The innocence is gone after you hear gun shots in your school.

The NRA will fight the right to own weapons. It is a power house. Do we need
these military weapons in our houses?????????Did this mother not lock up her gun collection????Look what it got her.

I am just sick looking at the photos of these lovely happy youngsters, the teachers who went with dedications for our young ones.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Another attack...........

Yesterday had been such a lovely day. Sabrina and I had gone around town, shopping and browsing. We came home late and I was totally exhausted ready to just let the groceries sit on the table and crawl in bed.

Bobby told Brie that another school attack had happened and several children were dead. I just did not comprehend in full what he said.

Shook my head and crawled in bed. This morning fresh and alert I read Huffington Post and just could not believe the massacre that happened again.
When or when will we learn to stop this?

What is the problem? Guns? surely. Mental health???Absolutely!
To get help with mental health problems is not easy in this country.
It is expensive, not all insurances cover it, and group facilities with numerous counselors are closing up everywhere. We had one place here in our town, not the best but did help a lot of people with medication and some counseling. They had to close. My pharmacist told me that his clients came begging for their pills which he no longer could give them. Most of these people are running around not always in their right mind. Where is the help???

We have more guns in this country than people.
I walk a lot and alone with my dog, I am very alert when a car stops or slows down,
I know who is around me , who is new, who is a regular. Up the hill of my street 2 people in the last year have been shot in the street. Drug related. You can't ignore any of this anymore. I am not really worried about my walks but not carefree anymore.

I can't even begin to imagine the pain these people will and do have this morning.
Your child just taken away like this. The adults gone. I can't go into it very deep or it will make me sick to my stomach.

I do not think we can fight the NRA but can we do something about better mental health care!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Old friends revisited

Not a happy camper.
Yesterday I thought I started a stomach flu.
I was very miserable.
The whole day was sort of ruined and I just sat around trying not to scare Bob that I may be getting sick. By night time I was getting worried and at the same time I started to think that this discomfort I had before.

I searched in every corner of my mind, it's not that busy in there nowadays and there it was. This was the hiatal hernia giving me grief. It probably is 20 ore more years since I had a bad bout with it.

Friend Joan who is an expert at it told me what to get for relief. Did not get to the pharmacy today but will tomorrow.

I am either running around belching like a sick animal or acting like a giraffe, you have to get the picture. No further details available.

Had Lunch with L and C again and managed to get 1/2 pancake down with some tea.
They must be wondering as I am a very healthy appetite. The Santas were part of our conversation and as close as we have been they had no idea that we made that many.
They have 2 and they were going to check what numbers they are.

Sabrina bought one on eBay this week and can't wait to get it. She has a cupboard full of them but still liked another one. They have a different meaning now that daddy is gone.

I think that it is 8 PM and moi and my new best friend the Kindle Fire will go to bed, of course Bijou joins us. Good night all.

The closet writer

As far as being a REAL writer, I am far from that.
I am a talker, a story teller of my life and I write like I talk.
Being an only child and not dealing well with groups or being a joiner I have always written down what I felt.
When paper was scarce during the war I scrounged for paper all the time.
Then I hid what I wrote.
I am a closet writer.

I started my blog thinking it was my daily journal and no one was going to find it anyway.
People find you as soon as you put your name on the internet someone is going to find you.
So this week I joined in with my Father Christmas story in Forming the Thread a fairly new site with articles about everything.
Lila is the owner and she wrote that my article had a great deal of readership.
I even forgot to go look for it.
Wow. This is great, wonderful, and I am petrified for no good reason all at the same time.
I never even had a lesson in the English language and a , or :, or :, are sort of non existing for me. So if you read my blog you already know that. I taught myself.
As I get older I am remembering more French and Flemish and often wonder while I play Scrabble "Is this French or English?Where does that word belong?" I am mixing them all up putting them in my special blender and it is a guess to what dictionary the word belongs.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Red letter day with bright yellow truck!

Grandson Zack has been waiting for this for a long time.
He wanted to take me grocery shopping.
His Mom was my Tuesday girl but now she has to take him for treatments, often he does not feel well enough to drive after his chemo.

Today is our red letter day. He has his truck , the Bumble Bee, it is yellow.
He loves it and I will get to ride in it and take him to lunch!!!!
This will be a big treat for us. We like each other a lot. I tend to try and override Mom's rules, we giggle but at the end she wins and we know it.

I am looking forward to this.
He has to stay in the truck, he does not go where there are a lot of people.
He can't "catch" anything out there. His count yesterday was 8, the like it at 10 so this afternoon he may have blood transfusions again.
In the meantime we will enjoy the morning...

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Internet friendships

A few days ago someone posted a few lines of truth about how we are all starting friendships on the internet.

In 1997 I started with a WEB Tv and soon there after purchased my first REAL computer.
I wanted to sell on eBay (and did) as I had a lots of stock in my antique shop.
I was in heaven. I love gadgets, this was new and interesting. Then I needed a camera too, a scanner, a printer. Son became my computer guru and I was born again.

15 years later and in between I read WOWOWOW every morning as soon as I got up. Shared a lot with ladies of all ages. It was there that I found out that Vet husband was entitled to a pension. It eased my budget considerably. Then I found out his Alzheimer medication ($600.00 a month) I could get at the VA for a fraction. All this was news to me. The WOW ladies helped me a lot. Soon I found someone with similar ideas as mine and we became friends by email. We still are. I will never see this grand lady in Chicago and I would not be able to hear her very well on the phone (hearing loss) but almost every day we share our reactions and feelings to what is changing in our lives.

The connections are important to me, I do not drive, I never was a club joiner, my husband was my best pal. We worked together 24/7 until he started to forget.
I had no idea what the next 13 years were going to bring me. I was devastated, tired, angry, lost and I turned to writing my feelings in a blog. It helped to unload to invisible internet people. Soon I wrote articles about my experiences with a site who paid me. Unfortunately they had to close up shop.

I closed my businesses in 2001 and took care of my husband. I continued to write to some people who are still my friends. It is a routine now that I just can't be without. Having said all that which we are all experiencing on Facebook and other places, I have a friend to thank for a hatred that I carried for decades, in fact since WW2. I just hated the German people, all of them!!!I came by it by what I heard my parents and grandparents report as they had survived WW1 and were now in WW2.

One fine day in this country and now an American I said to my son:"I do not have a racist bone in my body!" He looked at me, one eyebrow raising higher than the other and said:"Mom!!!!Germans!!!!". I was shocked , I was racist after all. Me? how could that be....I thought about it for a very long time.

The light went on when I became Farm Town friends with a gal in the UK. She had a tremendous sense of humor, very kind, loved animals, good cooking BUT she was German. We wrote a little bit here and there with little and big problems. It was not long that I found out that I liked this new friend a LOT. She helped me see some problems with another eye and correct myself when I was wrong with the kids or grandkids. She was right most of the time and she was younger and had some very good ideas. It went way beyond the farm we were both playing. I very slowly learned that I was so wrong...nothing was bad or viscious in this lady's heart and soul.
Yet she was German and I woke up to the fact that it is just a name for people born in a certain place. I am Flemish, that does not mean that all the people in the Flanders are good people or bad people. I kept a whole nation accountable for what bad leaders had started. My heart became soft and my daughter was very surprised when I started to talk to German tourist in our supermarket. Told them what to see and where to eat and shook hands and hugged.

So what is the big deal , you might say. It is for me. I lost a hatred which was stuck in my psyche and this one person on the internet healed me.
If she reads this she knows who she is and I have to say an eternal thank you to you my friend.

Santa brings gifts a bit early and I learn about games on the Kindle Fire

Last night I saw a show about people's addictions to games on the internet.
I have played Farm Town for a very long time. Young Bob got me started on it and then he got bored and I was on full swing. I now have 16 farms.
I rarely buy the extra's they offer you, I can enjoy without them too.
I think I bought perhaps 30.00 worth over the year.
On the program they tell us that one lady spends about 300$ a month and can't afford it, she is totally hooked on having EVERYTHING the game offers. She can't stop!!!Enters a new breed :"Internet game psychologist" .
Say what? Yes, they need help.
Yup, like gamblers this is for many an addiction which costs money. Big money.
These companies do not put up all these programs for a person like me, they would be going under in no time. Many have. They want the "Big Spenders" so they add a train set, a circus set, another factory, and the list gets larger and larger.

SO fast forward to an early Christmas present from son.
A Kindle with color!!!!The black and white one is lonely in my night stand.
I am so excited and load up Mahjong, check out what books I have not read yet and look at the Smurfs.

The Smurf game on kindle is totally different then the game on Facebook.
My son is hooked, you built villages, plant flowers, trees, windmills,etc..
Here again you can BUY berries to make all these things happen FASTER.
The top you can spend on one buying spree is 99.00. WOW hold on here!
Bob is quick to show me how fast the offer run short of berries and there is a cute "commercial" to where you can get more.....
Bob tells me that in Merry Old when the game first came out parents found themselves saddle with bills to Amazon in the thousands. It became a big public mess.
Kids who play this just clicked for more and more berries. They did not know or understand that Mum and Dad were running out of grocery money.
So I learned very quickly to stay away from that, it goes too fast.
Not sure I like this part of Smurfs, well, still a Belgian at heart maybe I should support that.....yes, I hear you.

Last night I played 4 hours of Mahjong. I am hoping that it does something positive for my brain cells. Probably not.Mahjong is free.
I am delighted with my present BUT I wish it came with more self discipline...sometimes I think that at 80 I am allowed to sit in my chair all day and let the house go to hell. Sometimes I think that....sometimes is right now...where did I put the Kindle? It is being charged...bye bye I have a game to play.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Father Christmas dolls...........

Eons ago I was selling handmade Father Christmas figures in the style of the old German ones from the late 1800's. The artist was Norma de Camp. She is still very busy and by now very well known. I loved them in my shop and sold them on consignment.
Norma became more and more popular and the prices went up and out of my reach.

I was sad over that but Norma was a friend and she was on her way UP and that was that!Bob looked at me over his cup of coffee and said : I can make that too.
I chuckled. I figured that he was a great painter but not a doll maker.
I forgot the whole conversation until one morning he put a Father Christmas on the table!

I was totally shocked, it looked old, fabric was very old and threadbare ,I had no idea where he found that. The toys were leaden soldiers (of course antique) and it looked quite ancient. I sat there and the wheels of the retailer started to turn.
Said I :"can you do that again? But a different fabric and toys?"
He answered with a grin and said of course I can, I can make these whenever I feel like it.

"Whenever I feel like it was the catch with Bob. He was a diva about his art.
When I married him I made a schedule.
Now dear, said I. (so proudly) you can paint from 9 to noon, we will have a nice lunch and you can go back from 2 to 6. We will have the evening with the girls and whatever we want to do.

The artist looked at me like he heard it thunder in Berlin (Belgian expression).
Say what? I can't work in the morning. I never, ever, never work in the morning.
I do my best painting at night!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My turn to look like I heard it thunder you know where.
What do you mean " you can't work in the morning" ???Do you have morning sickness or something???What does that mean?????I am a morning person and I never heard of someone who did not want to work in the morning, the best time, the fun time, the "I am alert time", What kind of man was this?

I had not met :"The Muse". The man explained that he did not get inspired unless it was quiet, he worked under artificial light, he needed music, he needed operas, he needed to be alone.

He set the rule about when to work. Decades later and a thousand operas and dozens of worn out equipment to listen to them I knew that he had a rule to stick by.
BUT now and then I had to tell him that rent was about due and better get your assets upstairs to paint. He THEN would say: Yes Dear.

When his Mom and Sister passed on he was a wreck and for 2 years he did not touch a brush. It almost broke us up. The need for the dough was bigger then the need for a Muse.

So ...when he said that he would make me more Father Christmas dolls I felt terrific and I knew I would have to put my foot down about WHEN another one would appear.
He liked this new adventure and started to run to every thrift shop to collect fabrics, leather belt, leather gloves for the hands. He was in his junk world which he loved. He was a hoarder with order BUT when he became sick he simply was a hoarder and kept piling up "stuff" in his studio till you could not find a thing anymore.

I put them in the shop and lo and behold, they sold!!They sold!!!
Magic to my ears!!!!!I decided to step in and help.
My turn to look for "things" , I bought a new sewing machine, trims, old furs.I set up shop in the kitchen and I would make the clothing and he would built the body , the face and finish the decorating. We had a business going.
We ate out a LOT, the rabbit fur had taken over the kitchen.
You know how light that fur is, it drifts everywhere.

I signed up for a small show and designed the tables for display. Still testing the waters.
We educated the people.
Most people would say that is not OUR Santa and I would explain the history of the dolls.
One show led to another.

A baby was coming into our family and my trusted daughter who worked with me in the antique shop was in heaven when she thought she could have Mommy look after baby.
Not so fast, girl, he can’t inhale all that stuff in the kitchen.

A shop above my shop was empty for years so I bargained with the landlord to rent that space.
It became our studio , it was huge, I had room for a cutting table, a sewing table, a his and her table to put it all together. On the other wall we had metal shelves with all our boxes of toys and fabrics.
It was heaven, a shag run did well to hide a lot . A play pen came in another part of the room and Zack was our real baby while we worked on the little baby dolls in Santa’s arm.

I became a fabric junky , shopping at Mary Jo’s in Gastonia became an all day affair, we start in the morning and then have lunch and continue in the afternoon. A yard of this, half a yard of that, trims, and glues. In Belgium visiting my mother I went wild in Brussels in the Rue Neuve. I bought a meter one day of Italian made net which was covered with handsewn gold ribbons. It was spectacular. It took me a long time before I could cut in it. It cost $300 a meter.

The Biltmore House heard about us via a Friend. They called me and asked if I could do a sled and a large Peddler Father Christmas with all Victorian items , fabric, and furs.
We were extremely proud of this commission, we also were well paid.
They have been in the House almost every Christmas but I did not see them this year, it is all about dozens of trees this year and real candles.

Son while in High School had a tour with his class. He spotted the Peddler and told his friends :“My parents made that!”. They laughed ! He called the guide behind the ropes and asked if he could show the base of the doll. He obliged and the kid’s mouth fell open when they saw the signature: Kensinger studio.
Young Bob beamed and was popular for a half hour.

Soon we did shows by invitation only and mostly about Christmas markets.
We went from Arlington VA all the way to Jacksonville FLA.
We were never home for Thanksgiving as our Greensboro show would start and soon the
Promotors found great spots for us to get attention.
In Augusta Ga we always sold out. People waited at the door to run to our usual spot and pick out a favorite of the year. One couple had dozens of them and large ones too , he built a mahogany display case with glass to put them in all year round.

Sabrina and I did the Augusta show when Zack was a few weeks old.
He screamed all the way home for 3 hour ride.
Next year he did the same thing.
We started to think he just did not like Augusta and sure enough we went out to dinner after the show and he decided to start screaming in the restaurant and all the way home and he most have been 3 or 4 by then. Zack doe not like Augusta.

Sometimes we doubled up on shows and Bob would do one and Sabrina and I the other.

The in between shows was rough as we had to finish others to be ready by Thursday and be in another town. We had little sleep during these months, I always ended with lung problems and one year a very bad pneumonia bout.

Often I would still work at the motel with Zack under foot and sew some more.
Sabrina was in love with every doll and was a great sales lady.

In fact Sabrina just yesterday bought another one on eBay.
She too has cases full of them she was delighted to find an early model.
We numbered them all.
13 years on the road and well over 1000 Father Christmas dolls.
On our 10th anniversary of making dolls I embroidered the date n the lining.
I made all sorts of wild ones, Liberace sequined ones, all real Belgian lace ones,
All fur ones, real furs and fake furs.
When I use the word “I” it was strictly for the clothing Bob was still the master of it all.
We sat next to each other in the studio and always talked. I do not know what we
Talked about.. 42 years and we still were talking all the time.
If I fell asleep in the car he would be a little annoyed that I had nothing to say.
No one in my life ,absolutely no one filled me with joy and love like that man did.

Here are some photos of Bobby’s collection :

Number 333 B stand 14 inches
Dated 1998
Faux fur
Old trumpet in arm’new cloth doll and basket of fur
His underskirt (yes he had to have that covered too )is a cotton Christmas print

Leather belt knitted gloves (from real gloves)
Sheep wool hair

Number 23
He made little packages with paper and then antiqued the paper with tea
Here he made his own gloves out of leather with a thumb, (gave up on that later)
Leather belt and the fur is ermine from an old cape that was falling into strips.
Love that one and I did not touch that one at all, it was before our shows and I do not know how it is still here, glad that it is.

Then we also made peddler santas, after the English peddler doll.
This one stands 25 inches
He has an original Victorian cape which is still in very good condition,
With hand applied passementrie and jet beads. (circa 1880-1890)
The gold trim came from a chasuble from a priest and it was falling apart but I managed to save the trims.
This one is dated 2001 and was a present to Bob and Ari.

I am hoping that the 1000 plus Father Christmas dolls out there will come out of the moth balls and be enjoyed by all this Christmas.

Have a Merry!!!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Great relief thanks to C scan

The new scan did not show anything abnormal said the nice man.
18 months now cancer free so I will keep it that way.

My mood is on top of the mountain until I think of Zack and his parents.

Zack has been in a lot of pain the past days from burns, blisters, bleeding, etc...result from radiation. He is there again this morning and 3 more days with it till he is finished. He is in a bad mood and who would not be.

A friend of ours had the same cancer 5 years ago. He turned 18 when the last treatment had to be done and he refused to go in. He flatly said :"I am 18, I am going to make the decision and NO MORE" .So far he is in the best of health. Who can blame them????

I think a decade from now we will have other means and we will think how cruel this was. The chemo and radiation are just plain hell.

I am in such a good mood until I see Zack's face in my mind and then I loose it.Sabrina too , that is another chapter. She is strong BUT to maintain this is hard.

Love you guys so much.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

I got scalped

I have known my trusted hairdresser since she had small babies, now they are in college. No one touches my head but Theresa. She does not freak out when she sees my scalp totally covered with psoriasis crust. She does not freak out when I am in a bad mood or tired and fall asleep while she cuts.
She always gives me a cut which will grow in very nicely.
She has cut Bob's hair and amused him. Bobby grows his hair till he has 12 inches to donate ,he has great thick hair. Brie has always been there with me and on occasion even Rhonda.

Theresa knows all my secrets, like a bartender she listens.

Since June my driver had other plans, she takes daily trips to Asheville to tend to her son (He is truly mine) and his medical condition.

My hair grew and grew came down my back while my scalp was covered with psoriasis.
Theresa's shop is far from my house so I just waited till there would be a time
Rhonda could take me.

The last photo of me was at the Biltmore and I looked like a witch , I did not need to dress up for Halloween I just looked liked like a very old witch.
So I decided to start begging.
I asked Sabrina for only one present this year, NOTHING else (she will not listen)
but a haircut from Theresa.

No problem said the wonder woman, she simply called the coiffeuse and said: Please go to my Mom's house and cut her hair, I will pay for it!.
Theresa said :Gladly.

So here came my angel hair person scissors in hand.
She asked : how short?
Lately I have it till my jawline but since it grows so fast I said the bottom of my she cut and no mirrors around and we talked filling in 6 months of gossip. Plus the dogs trying to get her attention too.

Work all done, I go to the mirror and see that I have little hair left....but you know what? It probably will be another 6 months before I get to Theresa and it will grow out again and again.