Murdo Girl…Keep calm and cheer on…

I’ve been taking a lot of days off, haven’t I? It’s because I’ve been working on some other projects that are causing me to pull my hair out. I stay up late, get up early and never stop in between. At this age, you would think my life would settle down, but it won’t until I do. I worry that I’m not spending my time on the right things. I think it’s called prioritizing. Yes…I’m pretty sure that’s what you call it.

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I like the way this lady thinks.

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Let’s see…what else?

A friend of mine commented about having a nightmare that caused her to be claustrophobic in her sleep. I think the dream was directly related to her life. She spent her day pretending she was a queen. She didn’t have a convertible, so she decided a car with a sunroof would be a good substitute. She has a friend who is willing to try hair brain ideas with her, but only one had the nightmare.

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I had a nightmare too. It was so real, that I woke up in a cold sweat. I dreamed all of my teeth turned to powder. It started in the front. My two front teeth began to disintegrate. It happened so fast, I couldn’t do anything about it. I felt inside my mouth and I only had tiny little stubs where there used to be teeth, and I had white powder all over me. Okay, maybe the powder had just a hint of yellow in it.)

I woke up about then, and my hands flew to my mouth and I discovered I still had all of my teeth. I vowed to call the dentist and make an appointment. I would rather take a beating than go to the dentist, but I believe that vivid dreams are your subconscious trying to tell you something, and mine was telling me to make that call.

That was three days ago. I still haven’t called, but I haven’t had anymore nightmares and I still have all of my teeth. I guess it might be a little like a foxhole prayer. When the crisis is over, the anxiety lessens and procrastination sets in.

My second father, Gus, reads the blog, so he’ll keep me honest, but I remember Mom telling me she took the car one day to go get donuts. This was several years after they moved to California. Anyway, she thought she knew where the donut shop was and intended to take the side streets, but accidentally got onto the freeway. She said she promised God if he got her off of that freeway, she would never drive again. I think she ended the story by saying, “And I didn’t.” It could be that I have embellished the story for a few years and now I believe it. I’ll let you know what Gus says.

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Speaking of Gus, I want to write about his years in the service for Memorial Day. I know he served during the Korean War, but I’m going to try to interview him on the phone to learn more about his experiences. I read that thirty-six thousand Americans died in that conflict. Gus was only nineteen in 1950 when the war started, but I don’t think he had to go overseas. He’s a proud veteran and has done a lot with, and for, the American Legion.

I hope you all are having a good beginning of the long weekend. The kids are out of school and I’m sure the lake will be busy. I can hear all the firecrackers going off right now.

I had my friend Judy over for a fun lunch today. My first guest in the tiny home. We ate chicken caesar salad, fresh bread, fresh strawberries, and lemon cake. I sure know where to buy good stuff. I was going to fry a turkey in my new turkey fryer and make homemade ice cream, but time just got away from me…maybe tomorrow.

We had such a good time visiting, I forgot to take a picture of her.

 

Time to shut her down for the night. Sweet dreams everyone!

 

Murdo Girl…Queenology

The need for Queenology can’t be overstated

I don’t know if you know this, but Queens aren’t regulated

You don’t have to pass a test or prove qualifications

 

No license is required, to be the Queen of Queen ruled nations

You can soak up all the glamour and not do a lick of work.

Folks bow to your feet, hoping for a Queenie perk.

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But being a Queen ain’t as easy as you’d think

Queenology tells us, it can truly stink

You must wear a crown, or a hat most every minute

And that formal dress? They want to see you in it.

 

No jeans or tennis shoes and you won’t be eating steak.

You really can’t afford it. No money will you make.

If you eat all that good bad stuff, you soon will realize,

You won’t fit where you used to. Sunroofs are just one size

 

Yes Queens are pretty special. I’m sure you’ve seen a few,

BUT SERIOUSLY!!!…HAVE YOU SEEN THESE TWO?

 

Long live the Queen…and she is… believe you me.

But you’ll get tired of waving, and sick of drinking tea.

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When you’re little you’re a princess, looking for a prince.

When you get a little older, he just might make you wince

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Go ahead and be a Queen, now that you know it can be done

But if it really was that easy… wouldn’t all old broads be one?

 

 

Murdo Girl…Escaping the garage

A little tiny house update before we talk about the big birthday bash. 

I bought the shams that matched the cheap quilt, and we started cleaning out the garage. Kip was like a drill sargent…for a little while. About a half hour into it, he said he had to go inside to call a few garbage collectors and line one up to pick up our trash. About an hour later, I went in to refill my ice tea and he was sleeping in his recliner. In all fairness, I heard the hold music, so I knew the trash company had put him on hold for a long time, and he had put his phone on speaker. He came back out to the garage a while later and said he had it all taken care of, and we had to hurry, because they pick up on Tuesdays, and we had to have our trash by the curb at seven in the morning.

Kip informed the girls at the Mother’s Day picnic that we were going to unpack all of the crates of photos, photo albums, and miscellaneous mementos and they were to come out the weekend after Memorial Day to go through all of them. They will have to take whatever they want, because we aren’t going to keep any of it. He told me to get in touch with the boys and let them know in case they have any special requests. Craig lives close enough to come if he can’t bear the thought of missing out on any of the thousands of treasured photographs, old school papers, awards, cards and all of that stuff. He’ll probably remember when I made him go up into the hot attic with me and find pictures for the blog last summer…and take a pass.

A couple of hours into sorting through our collection, Kip ran across a big box of treasures his mother had given to him. He sat in one of the chairs he has already set out for the viewing, and went through all of it. He found a letter he had written to his mother telling her he had gotten a speeding ticket and the fine was $25.00. He told her not to pull it out of his account because he was going to quit school and get a job to pay for it. (I smell manipulation.) He must have been sixteen, at least, and he lived at home. He wrote a lot of letters when he was a kid.

When we moved from the country to the small house, we put all of the crates of pictures in the attic along with several other boxes, and we never looked at any of it for three years. (I looked a couple of times.) That’s what really impacted us with this move. We probably have another day of sorting and unpacking, and the back of my Jeep is already full of things to go to Goodwill.

(Can you see the chairs all lined up? I can’t wait to see them all fight over the wedding clock on the right. Never buy someone a gift with their names on it. They can’t give it away.)

We made a pact not to bring one other thing into the house, and so far, so good.

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So…I personally think Prince Charles’ 70th birthday bash will be a really snoozer, but maybe we should take Lindy Bergh and Airy Heart up on their offer to fly us over to the palace. I sure hope I don’t have to parachute this trip. Those two are easily distracted and overshoot the landing strip most of the time. They did say they were going to serve those little wieners in BBQ sauce. It doesn’t seem like such a good idea when you think about it. One little air pocket and you’ve got BBQ sauce all over your party clothes.

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Should we wear hats or crowns? I know Cam will have a hat on, but I’m not crazy about her style. They all look like they could double as a donut in case her hemorrhoids act up.

Well…Lav can be in charge of the RSVPs. Maybe some Murdo people will want to go, too. Of course, Windy Lindy and Airy will probably have to make a couple of runs, so we’ll probably have to chip in for gas and wieners. It’ll be a hoot!!


 

Murdo Girl…Elton and Oprah and Lav and MG

After a somewhat frightening flight, Lav and I finally made it to watch the royals tie the knot. You wouldn’t believe how crowded that place was. I guess no one knew what time the nuptials were, because some of those Englishites stayed outside the church all night waiting for the wedding to get started. Lav and I barely made it. We didn’t even have time to change which was okay because we forgot our gowns, anyway. I’m sorry to say we fell asleep before Prince Charles walked Meghan down the aisle. We missed the whole thing.

Good thing our crack-up reporters were all there. We’ll get a full report when we meet up with them later today.

Later today…

PG hooked up with Queen E. just as she was getting out of the car at the church. Unfortunately, she forgot Prince Philip back at the palace and they had to jump back in the car to go get him. She told PG forgetting Philip was worse than forgetting her pocketbook, although between them, they don’t have two nickels to rub together.

At the last minute, KK pulled up in a van filled with her own flowers leftover from Mother’s Day…..”WAIT!” She yelled!

After the nuptials were over, Yram took a ride with the bride and groom in the carriage. Doesn’t the Duchess look surprised to see Yram in the backseat?

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When they got to the tea and crumpets, guess who was serving the cake? Miss Patricia said they got twitterpated with her for cutting the pieces too big. Good thing she brought along some of her delish brownies. Those Englishites are tight with the edibles.

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By the time Lav and I woke up, we had to go in search of a bathroom. The only one we saw had a guard guy standing in front of it. We tried to tell him we really needed to use the facilities, but he wouldn’t even talk to us. I don’t think those Royal Guards know how to speak United States.

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Woops…wrong picture…Those girls were ahead of us. We were so happy to finally find an unguarded chamber throne.

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So, when it was all said and done, everybody had a lovely time. We got a royal sendoff and Lav even snagged an awkward Cam hat.

We managed to catch up with those same high flying pilots who got us pretty close to home.wp-1526692864852.jpg

 

Hope you enjoyed our accounting of the events. We told Queen E you all said hey. She invited everyone to Charles’ 70th birthday, but Lav and I are busy that day.

 

Murdo Girl…England will be swinging

Well, Lav and I decided to attend the royal wedding. We’re not really crashing it. We figure since we’re both so tight with Queen E, it goes without saying we’ll be welcomed like family. Who knows, maybe we’ll even walk Meghan down the aisle. It sounds like she’s having a little trouble filling the position. I really don’t think Charles is the right one to give away the bride, do you? He can’t even give away poor Cam’s awkward hats.

Anyway, we caught a ride with two high flying pilots who are headed across the pond to enjoy all the festivities, and pick up some souvenirs…

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Don’t miss Saturday night’s blog. Lav and I, along with a few of our friends, will give you the lowdown you won’t get anywhere else. Our motto is, “We cover like non-other.” Plus we have a a couple of crack up reporters with us.

We’ll also be selling T shirts and socks…

I’m sure the whole royal bunch is waiting at the airport for us to arrive…

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I think we’re landing. I heard one of the pilots scream…

 

Murdo Girl…Too cool to be crazy

I had a real epiphany at my book club meeting the other day. I hope I misunderstood the point of the book we discussed, because if I didn’t, it means I’m bat crap crazy.

As usual, I didn’t start reading the book until the day before the meeting. That works for  me because I can remember most of what I read for twenty-four hours.

Have you read Saving CeeCee Honeycutt? Just in case you haven’t, let me fill you in on some of the controversial subject matter.

I was only a few pages into it when I read this:

wp-image-136581184jpg.jpgIn case you can’t read it, here’s what it says in a nutshell. And I do mean, nutshell. CeeCee’s mother buys prom dresses at Goodwill for a dollar and parades around in them while wearing a crown. Apparently, she was the 1951 Vidalia Sweet Onion Queen. Unfortunately, her life went downhill after the event. It’s all very sad.

wp-image-55661302jpg.jpgDo you think it was the dyed to match high-heeled shoes that put her over the top? I don’t do that. I always make it a point to wear sensible shoes.

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See? Mari and I have on sensible shoes. On the other hand, Lav appears to be trying to draw attention to herself. 

We escaped for a quiet lunch at the shed one day. They make you check your crowns at the door.

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Lav and I don’t wear crowns every day and I happen to know Lav paid a lot of money for her Queen E. parade dress. At the time, I felt rather smug about the fact that I only paid five dollars for my Kitty Reynolds red gown, and yes, I purchased it at Goodwill.

Miss Vidalia Onion Queen nearly ruined her daughter’s life because she felt the Vidalia Onion was the only thing that validated her life. That is too sad for words. An onion should not have the power to be life changing. Highways can, though. My mother was Miss Highway 16. It changed her life and mine, for the better.

 

At the book club meeting, I told everyone that I identified with CeeCee’s mother. One lady looked at me and her eyes got big as she said, “Ohhh, yeah…” That worried me just a little.

Cousin, Lav was Miss Paper Coffee Cup, one year. We were all thrilled for her. (She accidentally recycled her dress and that was the end of that!)

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These days, it’s more important than ever to think about how your actions might affect others. What if one of my grandchildren decide to run for office. Will the photos of their aging grandmother with a crown on her head pop up all over and be misrepresented? Will a congressional committee decide my darling grandchild is not fit for office because his or her grandma was an unabashed crown perp.

And what about my cousin, Lav? Will that picture of her being violent with a pitchfork bring her family down? Or will it be her fascination with tumbleweeds?

 

 

And then there was that selfie we took while riding in the red convertible.

wp-image-69708489jpg.jpgI can’t think about this anymore. Our descendants will just have to stay out of politics. We’re probably doing them a big favor.

I just hope we quit reading those scary books in our book club.

 

I think I’ll run over to the Goodwill store and see if they have any dyed pumps to match my red taffeta dress. No…that wouldn’t be sensible. I don’t have anything else that goes with red heels.

Murdo Girl…Making tiny homey

Do you want to hear something funny? I was looking for pictures tonight and my google photos are all categorized. They’re in groups of things, people, pets, locations, mountains, deserts, trees, cars, castles, food, etc. Our tiny house is under trains. I think I’ll refer to it as the caboose from now on.

Here are some photos I took tonight showing the progress we’ve made.

I bought a cheap quilt at Walmart today…didn’t even get the shams. The bedspread we had in the small house looked too drab and I don’t want to spend the money right now to get my forever spread, quilt or comforter. Besides, we don’t know what we want. A true minimalist would say this quilt is just fine, anyway. We don’t have our newly framed pictures up yet, either…maybe tomorrow. There is no room for dressers, which is why we must continue to cull. We have plastic bins on wheels under the bed for extra linens and everything else is in the closets or in bins in the ample storage cabinets in the bathroom.

More of the bathroom…

Words to start the day with are between the mirrors and above the cabinet on the other wall. (I love my South Dakota dirt shirt given to me by Dianna, aka KK.)

We haven’t put the towel bars or paper holder up yet. The washer and dryer are in a little alcove in the bathroom. Most of our other houses had the W/D next to the door that leads to the garage. I like this set-up much better.

I had this large glass terrarium and decided to plant some cinnamon basil, peppermint, and chocolate basil in it. It smells heavenly. I’ll remove the lid during the day.

Some of us are more traumatized than others, but we all enjoy a good walk three times a day. All except Dollie. She guards the house. We still have a lot to do, but we’re starting to enjoy life again.

I can see that minimalist living will have to be a state of mind. A desire for things is innate and living another way will take some getting used to. I still have a long way to go, but I’ll stay on the train. I’ll leave you with a little something I read today.

These words were taken from a book written by Kahlil Gibran in 1923.

For what are your possessions but things you keep and guard for fear you may need them tomorrow?

Is not the dread of thirst when your well is full, the thirst that is unquenchable?

Have you remembrances in your houses; the glimmering arches that span the summits of the mind? Or have you only comfort, that stealthy thing that enters the house a guest, and then becomes a host, and then a master.

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All aboard the caboose Beasterhops. Don’t worry…you’re safe with me. Nobody’s perfect!

 

 

Murdo Girl…Small town smarts and a message to the MHS class of 68

I think Mom and my aunt were two of the cleverest people who ever lived. They were never without a plan. They were never caught flat-footed. I never, ever, saw them unable to meet a situation that called for a plan, without one.

 

 

Let’s use the telephone as an example. Back when I was growing up, if the phone rang, you answered it. There was no way of knowing who was going to be on the other end. It could be an important call that you wouldn’t want to miss. If it was juicy news, and you didn’t answer, the caller would just go on to the next person on the grapevine. There was no such thing as voicemail, either. If you missed an important call, you could only hope the party would call back. But then there were those “other” calls. The ones you would rather have missed. The ones from the PTA asking you to bake cookies, or the ones from the ladies who could talk for hours and not tell you one iota of interesting news. These are the calls that gave birth to the plans.

My aunt always answered the phone with a pitiful voice… (cough)…hello…(cough). If the caller was someone she wasn’t in the mood to spend time conversing with, she could say she wasn’t feeling well, and would weakly ask if they could call back another time. If it was someone she wanted to hear from, my aunt recovered quickly.

I’ve told you about Mom’s trick. She would hang up when she was in the middle of a sentence. She said no one would ever believe she hung up on herself. They’ll think they got disconnected. If the party called right back, the line would be…busy. It’s hard to believe anybody would ever call them, isn’t it?

I remember Mom’s excitement one day when she read Erma Bombeck’s plan for dealing with unexpected visitors. Don’t worry about getting caught with a dirty house, she advised. You should invite them right in. All you have to do is put some get well cards all over and people will think you’ve been too sick to clean. It’s funny…I don’t remember my mother ever being “for real” sick. I would be afraid all of that pretending would tempt fate. I would fake being sick and then really get sick.

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Mom came up with some good plans, but she was always willing to learn from others like Erma Bombeck or Ann Landers.

You’ve gotta love small towns. I’ll always love my hometown.

Speaking of Murdo, I got a message from Marilyn Kinsley Strait. The class of 1968 is gathering contact information for a potential get together. You can send information and updates to cmstrait@goldenwest.net (Marilyn).

It’s been fifty years since you spent your last day as classmates and I really hope you have a well attended reunion.

 

 

I was looking at the only MHS annual I have. It belonged to Connie Jackson and was given to me by her brother, Eddie. He discovered I spent most of my high school years trying to be “Connie like” and knew how much I would treasure having a little piece of her history. It’s the 1967 annual which was the year all of you were Juniors. (My small town smarts in action.) Some of the comments you classmates wrote inside are priceless.

 

 

I hope you give yourself the gift of going back and sharing memories of those high school years. Please pass the information on to anyone who might not read Murdo Girl. There can’t be that many.

A few youngsters from the class of 70

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Songs from 1968 to get you feeling nostalgic…

https://playback.fm/charts/top-100-songs/1968

Happy 50th!

 

Murdo Girl…Sometimes you’re the tail and sometimes you’re the donkey

Catchy title isn’t it?

For a whiny baby, I had a pretty fantastic Mother’s Day. We met our two daughters and their families at a park for a picnic and it turned out to be just what we needed. Kip and I and the three dogs were among the last to leave. It felt so good to relax and have fun with all of the grandkids. We all had a ball…

 

A very big ball…and good food! I didn’t get to see my sons, but I got flowers and had good talks with them both…

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Tiny Home living…

I was never completely sure I wanted to sell our house and move into a tiny home. I finally decided I didn’t hate the idea badly enough to fight it, so here we are. Things happened quickly at first. We sold our house and moved the dogs and cat into our RV. We had no idea it would be three and a half months and many challenges later, that we would finally move in.

I’m learning a lot about myself. I have always had sufficient stamina to get through whatever is happening. I have always managed to stay positive in most situations and if I  get depressed, it usually doesn’t last long. Maybe it’s because we’re getting older and I haven’t been getting much sleep these past few weeks, but I have had some times when I have been very emotional and little things can throw me for a loop. I don’t like being that way one little bit. I’m too big to hide under the bed and besides, there’s already too much stuff under there.

Maybe I’m talking like this because we had to call the water/sewer company tonight on the emergency line because we were having a problem with the sewer pump. It all worked out fine. They came out immediately and fixed what turned out to be a minor thing.

This is our fourth day living here and we have been trying really hard to put our house in order, so to speak. I have changed things around so much, I’m wearing things out. It’s more difficult than I thought it would be to discard things, but I have found it stresses me more to feel like the place has something in every inch of space. I have packed and repacked plastic crates in an attempt to be organized and know where everything is or isn’t. If I can keep the crates of the nonessentials in the barn for a couple of months and not need them, I will discard the contents without looking at them ever again. I know I have said all of this before, but guess what? I’m saying it again. If you’re thinking of a TH, it bears repeating.

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On the plus side…

We love the neighborhood and we love the house. It’s kind of exciting now that the worst is over.

We still have to put in a small yard, fence the backyard, put in a mailbox, finish the asphalt part of the driveway, get the remainder of the siding on, put in the new door with the built-in dog door we ordered, build the steps front and back, put electricity in the barn, get the builder out here to fix things on our punch list, and whatever else comes up.

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But do you know what I have to do right now? I have to read the last half of a book for my book club meeting tomorrow. I’ve decided it’s important to read what other people write once in a while. Looks like it’ll be another late night.

I should be able to take some pictures tomorrow to show you what we’ve done with the place…

Oh…I guess I should explain the title of the blog. I put myself in charge of games yesterday. I brought pin the tail on the donkey. Turns out I didn’t know how to play it.

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Sometimes you’re the tail, and sometimes you’re the donkey…Mike nailed it.