Wednesday, March 28, 2018

I can't eat that...

I can’t eat that…

As a person who was well known for having a cast iron gut… I am finding out that there now a few things I can not eat.

I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE Mexican food. Can’t think of anything that I have eaten that I did not like in Mexican food.

Even as a teen, my mother use to make her own pizza’s.. and red peppers where plentiful on it. She made BIG pizza’s.  And if there were any left the next day.. we had it for lunch.. and for some reason it felt like they were hotter the second day.  Like they build up over night.

Then my moving to California several years later, that open the door to Mexican food.. I was in my glory.  Jalapeno’s in everything.   I love bacon wrapped cheese filled jalapeno’s.

But in the past 6 months or so.. My body has decided it does NOT like hot Mexican food. One of my most miserable day and night was after eating at one of our local restaurants. I blamed the margarita, as it was a different one than I usually have..  it couldn’t be the food..  Nope..
I was bent in half.. thought something was eating my stomach.. Heart attack maybe..

Since then, I have found out it is the food. Anything acidity.. kills me.. So now it is mild salsa, and jalapeƱo’s ….good by.. No more cheese stuff ones.  And no more…..  (tears here, now) bacon wrapped, cheese stuffed jalapeƱos..  (breaking my heart… if it wasn’t for the heart burn) …

Even some spicy spaghetti … and I have eaten good old fashion cook all day… spaghetti sauce since I was able to eat real food. My mother made the best ever.. and no restaurant can come close. I have her recipe..BUT when it comes to the spices.. she wrote.. spice to taste. So far I have not be able to find her taste.. Mine is close.. but hers was so much better… But now.. I have to take it easy on the sauce.  

Life is not fair… I tried to see it as I have had 75 years of spaghetti and 59 years of salsa … so should be happy with that.. but I love it.. I even ate salsa with vanilla (yes over the vanilla) ice cream.. when I was pregnant with my oldest child.. (we joke about why she is the only one with red hair of my kids)

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

The times are changing…

The times are changing…

Once again.. people marched. This time filling up the mall at Washington, D.C… filling up the whole area that politicians wish they could bring that many people out at one place.

There were many students who walked out of the school.. some .. (a good share).. just for 17 minutes… in memory of the 17 students shot and killed in Florida as their school. Those students.. a good share said a prayer in memory..yes, they might have mention that they would like to see some better gun laws.  But went back in to the school…

Now for the disclaimer, before you all get your panties in to a twit….    Yes, there were some adults that promoted this..using it for their own agenda.. yes, there were some  renegade students who did not stay at the school ground and of course there are the ones who could care less about all if it.. used it as a day to get out of school.. and some even did do some vandalized  
All of this is true..

But you got to understand .. all of the above is maybe.. if I stretch it.. 20%... the other 80% is overlooked or just bullied by adults who were upset the students left the school..  They use the excuse that the kids missed schooling.. When actually they are upset that the child left the school in something that was not of their parent’s mind set.   

These walk out have been planned since the shootings.  Weeks of planning.. well talked about in all kinds of media.. social media, newspapers, television news.. even talk shows.. So none of this is a big surprise.. You would have to live under an rock to be surprised at these walk outs..   

So my question to the parents who are screaming like a gutted sow….wouldn’t it have been a better deal to sit your child down and talk to them.. NOT AT THEM.. but to them. To have a no anger conversation around the table?  A heart to heart talk?  To talk AND LISTEN? 
If you are a home that has guns.. it should be a easy talk… after all.. guns in your house are probably not a secret.  You can talk about why you believe in guns… ASK AND LISTEN to why that child is THINKING of walking out of school that day?  The talk with NO YELLING on either side.. if  voices start to raise.. then stop.. if it is you.. say you are sorry, as this is not a yelling conversation.. if it is theirs.. tell them. There is no reason to yell, you can hear them..In fact better if it is lower. What is their true reason.. Is it because they are scared? Is it because of memorial to the 17 students that were shot.. and has been the  intention of walking back in after 17 minutes?  You explain why you are not for the walk out..  And don’t be the parent who says how important each day of school is… and then tell the school later, that the student won’t be in school for a day or two because.. a. you are taking them to hunting camp with you.. b. you are leaving early for your vacation.. and etc.

And as far as the ones who walked on Washington, D.C. … Stop and think about this for a minute….  Are you old enough to remember the MILLION BLACK MEN MARCH? How about the MILLION WOMEN’S MARCH of a couple weeks ago.. or go back even further.. the CIVIL RIGHTS MARCH…. Tell me… after all those marches .. what changed?  The first two… I don’t remember any changes that came about since. And the Civil Rights took years to make changes.. and it wasn’t because of the march.. 

My mother told me.. while raising children…to keep it simple.. because the more you blow up the situation.. the more the child is going to stick to their friends and etc. of contention…  If you stress your dislike of that person.. or situation.. and let it go.. the sooner it will be over with.

In this situation, the debate will be there forever, but how you handle it with your child.. will make a difference.   The bottom line is that Congress is going to continue to walk the same line they have for over 20 years or more.  As long as they fear the NRA… the longer the debate will be. And only token rules will come forward. 

By the way, did you know that until about 1980, the NRA was FOR more laws and better ones? Yes, they were..  So what the heck happen?  It is the same old story..  when a forceful group of men take over a group… pushing out the heads that have common sense.. and rule by bulling, by stirring up the masses… the group gets to be a bully for all.  And that sums up the NRA… The few strong men, the bully types, ate at the center of the group until they took it over.. and that is what you have in the NRA now.. Google it.. you will be amazed at how much the NRA use to be for common sense laws.

The other thing that bothers me is the way people talk about the young adults. The preteens and teens.. “They are only 12 years old.. what do they know.  12 year old are not responsible enough to know … not old enough to know how they feel…to make their own decisions.
First of all.. I don’t believe there is any age limit on feelings… Feelings of fear, of becoming a target for another human to practice on. Feelings that things are too lacks on the keeping of guns. The non responsibility of that.  I have to say… REALLY???  It might be a stretch for most of us to remember what it was like when we were 12.. For one thing.. there was no shooting in schools.. or churches…. There was no ,ullying on Facebook and etc.. because there was no Facebook and etc.  We were too busy riding our bicycles, taking care of our animals, and doing chores. But one thing you definitely had, was feelings.  And if you came from a abusive household, you sure had feelings of fear, about your safety.  
Same with the low grade thinkers, who say, how can a Tide eating teen know anything. First of all.. the Tide eating teens were what, 12 of them? Out of millions of teens?  So degrading the teens does both you and them a disservice. There are 12 year olds who are collecting blankets and food for the homeless. And taking them out at night time..Some are making sandwiches and taking them out to the homeless…  How about using them for an example of a 12 year old? 

YES, THE TIMES ARE CHANGING.. and if you really want to make a difference…take the cell phones.. YOURS as well as theirs.. turn them off.. leave them on the counter… and sit down and talk to your child. Talk to them about your concerns.. talk and Listen to them talk about their concerns..  talk about how you can make them safer.. We know it is hell out there…

So instead of yelling at the school.. instead of yelling on Facebook and the social media…and the national news reporter…… SIT down.. and quietly … have the talk… WITH …not AT… your child……. It might just save their lives.  After all.. like said in another post.. you are probably the first generation of parents who has to fear if you will see your child at the dinner table tonight.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018



f.t.l. = failure to listen

blab, blab blab, blab
or the Stienfield version…..
yada, yada, yada, yada

Those words come about 8 words into a conversation. Sometimes between husband and wife.  Sometimes between child and parent.

Raised voice does not break this barrier. The only thing that seems to bring one to the here and now of this barrier, is a question.  What do you think? How do you feel about that? Do you agree?  Which is a signal, with the deer in the headlight look.

Do you say yes and worry about what you just agreed to? Do you say… maybe to save face…  “I don’t know?”  Which might get you in trouble with: “what do mean you don’t know, I just spent 20 minutes explaining it to you!!  Or you can use my line.. when I get caught spacing.. “Good point, I will have to give that more thought.”

We all are guilt of f.t.l.  Some are so busy thinking of what we are going to say in the answer.. we space their words. Especially if the person is so long winded that you can not add words in edgewise.. 

Some find the conversation is so boring they are like the kid looking out the school house window.

Listening is a fine art, that is getting lost. Not only in the above occasion but even more so now.

With everyone so angered at others of the different point of view, especially political. No one listens anymore. They are too busy shouting over the other person. Maybe , just maybe if each would listen to the other, they might …just might….find a common ground.

So think about it next time.. you are in a conversation..  f.t.l….FAILING TO LISTEN.  You have to have your mouth shut and pay attention…. To listen well.

Reminds me of a sign my daughter in law has in her kitchen….


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Lot's wife

Lot’s wife

Genesis 19:26 King James VersionLot’s wife, alone of the four fugitives, disobeyed the angel’s warning and looked back at the destruction of the doomed city. As a result, she “became a pillar of salt”

I am beginning to feel like Lot’s wife..  scared to look back…  The difference would be she looked back at a sinful town… that was about to be destroyed.

Where as I am looking back at once was.  Where people ..  at least most of them.. were kind to each other.  Were concerned about others health.. and welfare (not the system, but of health) …   Where woman didn’t HAVE to work to keep a household going.  Where things were not fake.  Be it the news or otherwise.   Where children were safe in schools, and people were safe in churches.

I am not saying there were not bad people.. after all .. way back we had Al Capone and the rest of those type. We had bank robbers and murders… But it was hardly a person who knew such people.  And everyone was busy just trying to make a living and have some joy in life.

So as I look back, will I turn into a statue of salt?

And looking forward doesn't look everything that I held dear, to be true...... is no longer true... 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

There was a brave little girl

There was a brave little girl
Just imagine being 6 years old and people hate you..  They are yelling at you. Threatening you.  All of the adults.
Yet you hold your head high, and walk calmly in to the building with the tall gentlemen who are there to make sure no one harms you.   It is 1960… and you are black. And these adults are all white.
There is suppose to be 6 of you. But two stayed home.. and 3 others went to another school.  You are the only one who remained.

Thru the threats of poisoning you, a home made casket with a black doll in it is pushed by you… yet you remain strang.  You go to school for a year, in a room with you the only student, with a white teachers.  There are other white children who join the school after you go for two days.. Other white adults who decide to be in the building with you.  

Your family is told.. they can not longer buy groceries at the store they have been for years. Your father loses his job. There are threats against your family.  Yet there are others who stand up for you and your family. They find your father another job.  And in time a year … life calms down and others calm down… and life goes one..

One such child was Ruby Bridge. No not Ruby Ridge..  BRIDGE.. Ruby Bridge. The first black child to go to a white school in New Orleans, Lousiana. 
At first she thought it was Mardi Gras time. With the crowd, after all Mardi Gras has loud adults… but then coming closer .. she could their the words..

And what does this little child do?  She prayers for them.  Her teacher saw what appeared to be Ruby talking to the crowd, but when she asked Ruby about it.. she said she prays for the adults .. each morning and each evening..   and what is that prayers?

Please God, try to forgive these crackers. Because even if they say those bad things, They don't know what they're doing. So You could forgive them, Just like You did those folks a long time ago When they said terrible things about You.

From the mouth of babes… she is in her 50’s now.. but the story as I read it.. made me wonder.. why don’t we adults have as much compassion for our fellow man..  If only… if only … we could and would

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


Why do we hate children?

Ok, you read the heading.. but this is not all people… nor all children… but enough that it doesn’t say much for the human race….

There are children who are going to walk out of their classrooms this week…because they are tired of being targets of adults..(those 18 and older)…. School shooting after school shooting.

If memory serves me right, the first one was done by children..  two boys… one about 8 and the other about 12?  And this is so many years ago… what at least 20?  They are probably out of jail by now… WHY wasn’t something done then? Why with all the research, we do  find out how a bug lives its life… hundreds of thousands of dollars….. but our children were not worth finding out how the shootings don’t  happen again… So forward to Columbine … Sandy Hook, some smaller groups and lately… the one in Florida last month.  Isn’t it time? Isn’t it time to find a solution??  The children think so… so they are going to walk out in protest. They are tired of Congress’s  “you are in our thoughts and prayers”..  they want solutions!! They want it NOW!.  I say Bravo…to those children.. the 18 and under… of high school.. who will march for the younger ones of Sandy Hook age..  But I also want them to take it one step further… make a pak, with all your fellow students.. to talk to those who are left behind…  Left behind because they are different… they wear different clothes, dye their hair different colors, are left to eat alone at the luncheon table.. or in the yard outside… Talk to them.. listen to them.. find out what their life is like.. Yes, it is different from what yours is.. raised different than yours.. but doesn’t make them any less valuable.  Maybe, just maybe if you listen and understand them, you will find out, while they are different .. they have a lot to share with you..  And will no longer be the FREAK KID… you thought..  If FREAK KID means different.. maybe YOU ARE the FREAK KID to them.  Some school district put these kids in a difference school, called alternative school…  and you know, they excel at those schools because they don’t have to be tormented or bullied by the so call Normal kids.
Is this going to stop things.. NO.. but it is a start.. because maybe.. just maybe when that person is an adult, he or she will understand.. everyone is important..

Then there are the adults who have a short attention span with children… small children.. who seem to feel throwing, slapping, slugging small children will change the situation that the adult can’t handle.  A crying child.. is hurting already…hungry, wet, pain… before the adult loses patience.  Some are the parents.. and some are boyfriends.  Why single women think a young male is suited to take care of a small child is beyond me.. And there sure is enough articles in the papers… to back this up to the contrary.   Surely young mom, you can’t think that YOUR boyfriend would NEVER do this.. Are you really willing to take the chance of losing your child to shaking, punching, slapping, throwing them like they are a doll?

Then we can take the foreign countries to task.. One such PRESIDENT who oks bombing with gas bomb where there is not only hospitals but a lot of SMALL CHILDREN.. HE KNOWS THEY ARE THERE.. AND DOESN’T CARE.. because if he did…knowing the children are there, he would find another way….  Why does he fear children so much? 

Africa adults, not only kills the young, but also kidnap the boys, and drug them to become their warriors, so they … the adults don’t get killed.

Why does the world… in our times.. hate children…
To those who hold their children dear… who weather the crying, fit throwing.. wailing of a sick child, and hangs it there .. because they love their child, they value that child’s life… each and everyone of them.. You are the ones who hold out hope by the rest of us. Thos of us who hope and pray, common sense, love will prevail… and hopefully some day.. will live in a world where everyone does.
And to the Step parents who treat their step children with the love they do with their own.
To the grandparent who steps up to the plate, for their child… by taking in the grandchildren, and giving them a loving home..  BRAVO… 

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Growing up in the 1950's

Growing up in the 50’s

Going barefoot all summer..
Hopping and jumping the first time
On the hot tar road..

Playing with blow fish, while our parents
Purse seine on  3 rd beach in Middletown.

Clam bakes in the evening..  the whole day
Spent playing on the beach.. while the adult
Set up the fire pit and put the clams, chicken,
Corn, and sea weed over the burning rocks.
Covered with seaweed and sand until 5 at night.

Haying with the folks, in the hot sun. Going
Down to the town pump with a large canning
Jar to get cold cold water to drink.

Fishing off the rocks for striped bass.. and
Getting 6 or more.. in 3 hours time.

Going to the dump with our dad and bringing more home than we took to the dump.

Cranking forever it seem, to make ice cream in a wooden bucket with ice and a metal can in the middle… Putting strawberries in as it started to solidify  

Riding my pony, Bucky thru the tree nursery, to the canel.. and laying on his back watching clouds form while he ate grass…

These are the memories of a good childhood.
Spacing out the not good memories.

Tuesday, March 06, 2018

I lived on an island….

I lived on an island….

Not a Gillian like Island.. but an island never the less.   Even the state I was raised in.. has Island in the name..  It is the smallest state, with the largest or longest name.. State of  Rhode Island and Providence Plantations… Providence being the state capital …which is the main land connected to other states.  

But I was raised on Aquickneck Island which was a combo of 3 towns… and roughly 15 miles
Long and about 7 miles wide. So one could walk across the island easy enough.  And connects to the main land by 3 different bridges along the island.

The towns were Newport, Middletown, and Portsmouth. (for those non east coast, that is pronounced like Portsmith not Ports  mouth)… with several Islands around it that belong to Newport County.
Prudence, Patience, Hope, Jamestown just for a few.  

As a kid, it was wonderful..  I was born in the hospital in Newport, but raised my whole kid life
In Middletown.  In my time.. we all went to our local schools but come high school we went to Newport. There were 3.. the Catholic boys..  DeLasalle , Catholic girls ..St. Catharine’s
And the public high school Rogers High School.
Everyone in the county went there.. at that time. Now there is 3 high schools.. each town having their own.  Going to school was a hour ride or more.. because we were the first ones on in the morning.. meaning we traveled all over the town and then headed to Newport.. And the last one off the bus for the same reason. I could walk to school faster than taking the bus. And I did it often in the Spring and Fall.

Middletown was about 3 miles long. So we could walk where ever we wanted to.  Just our parents didn’t let us, unlike it is now days. So we pretty much stayed in our own neighborhood.

It was the best of times.  We worked hard. My brother and I.. we lived on a tiny farm. Horse farm. So that meant haying for summer fun. We would go to different fields that the folks had got permission to cut the grass and bale it. Well, bale it later in years. The folks threw the hay on the back of the old one ton truck we had. And my brother and I would stomp it down. When we got old enough, we got to drive the truck very slowly.. idle .. up and down the aisle of hay, while the folks threw it on the truck. My brother and I would stomp it down before we left the field. Then Dad would drive home and we were on top.  Now days that would be child abuse as we could have fallen off.  After all Dad was going top speed of 25 mph. Once we got to the house, he would back up to the barn area.. where we would either add to the stack there.. or start a new one.. Seems it took 3 stacks to last the winter. As they would be as tall as the barn. As the folks threw the hay on the stack, we would stomp it down. When it was the proper height, they would tarp it with a canvas tarp.
At times we would climb up on the barn and run across the roof and jump on to the stacks.. which got us into big trouble, because when we came down off the stack, it seems some of the hay would come with us. Didn’t take long to learn that was not a fun way, by the time Mom got finished with us.  

Mom had a garden. Of which we seem to be a big part of that too. Digging, planting.. and of course the real fun stuff…. Weeding.. all summer long, weeding. All kinds of veggies that we didn’t like (egg plant for one) that we had hope would not grown.. which seem to grow in great bounds.

We had chickens besides the horses. The horses were shown at horse shows.  American Saddle Bred for starters and then in the 1950’s, Holy Smoke came to the barn.. from Ireland. He was a steep chase jumper, but got injured on the ship over to the USA.. so was sold at auction. Mom bought him for $100.. which was like $1000 now. And Mom showed him many years. He was grand champion jumper of New England.  Some people were jealous.. and some men came to see if they could give him a shot in the middle of the night to drug him.  Which was a shock to them to find two girls sleeping and giggling in the hay loft above.. they ran, but dropped the needle in the driveway.

The chickens produced eggs but also for fryers.
Mom would order 200 chicks. Dad had fashion a metal ring in the basement, with a heat lamp over the top of it. It had shavings in it. The chicks loved it.. Weird as the US postal service use to deliver them in a 4x4x1 foot box… They were so cute.. I still love the smell of them, when I go into a feed store these days in the spring..and they get their orders in.  When the chicks got big enough to jump out of the circle it was time to put them in the coop.  And a few weeks later it was time to kill the roosters for fryers. Dad would chop off the head… my brother would chase them down and bring them back to him.  Then dad would douse them into a boiling pot and out.. taking them in to the shed to hang them by their feet. Then Mom and I defeathered them. Which wouldn’t be too hard to start with, but the pin feathers sucked.  And Mom made sure I got ever single one of them. We usually did about 25 at a time.  Dad wouldn’t eat chicken for at least 2 weeks.

Over all life was good… now that I look back and see the difference between my childhood and the ones of my great grandchildren.. I realize what a great childhood we had. So much less stressful.  There wasn’t any peer pressure. And we were so busy doing chores and homework, we didn’t have time to get into too much trouble.  Mom and Dad were pretty strict, so we didn’t go far from home.. We didn’t have to worry about some one taking us.. well, come to think of it.. Mom and Dad threaten us with the Gypsies that could come thru town and take  kids.. when we weren’t being good. 

I sure wish I could give my childhood to my great grand children.  Even my grandchildren who are raising their kids.  It was a good life.  We didn’t have a lot.. but we didn’t know we were not well off. Dad worked for the government as a mechanic. So we had enough.. Mom managed the money. Her grocery bill was $10 a week. Even when we were teens it was like $15.  I would watch her make out her list of food to buy. She canned a lot. This was before freezers… at least for us. I think I was 15 before we got one.

The islands that were around Aquickneck was where my father was born and my grandmother. My father was born on Jamestown.  My grandmother was born on Prudence Island. My grandfather was raised on Jamestown, and he would court my grandmother during the week while she taught school in Jamestown.  Then weekends she go home to Prudence. He would row a boat over to see her on weekends during the summer. The bay was too rough other wise.
They got married in New York at the church called. The Little Church on the Corner.  

I am glad I grew up with I did.. I never would have made it now.