June 12, 2007

I seemed like a good idea at the time.

As many of you know, I provide a great source of amusement and merriment for my oldest son, Mike. He seems to be at a loss to understand why I do many of the things I do. Apparently my actions seem very confusing, irrational and certainly quite eccentric.

While most of the stuff I do really does have a logical basis, I can understand that some things may seem surprising and can result in a certain curious befuddlement. I have no doubt that after I have left this plane of existence, both Mike and Matt will have many stories about their whacky and confusing mother. This makes me happy because I know that laughter is always good for the soul.

Nevertheless, I hope that they will also remember that there were other sides of me, and that I will not go down in family history simply as a crazy, silly and eccentric woman, but one who had attained a bit of wisdom in her years. And the truth is that I sometimes long to be taken more seriously … and hold the hope that I will also be remembered as someone who taught them a thing or two about life and what is important. Yet, that like all things, is out of my control.

But then I digress, and want to go back to what prompted this post. If you are still with me, you might be curious about what I did this time. And might be wondering what seemed somewhat crazy to my intelligent and indulgent sons this time. So, here is the story.

Last Friday night, Matt and Yvette arrived from DC to spend the weekend with me. I was touched that they wanted to come here. And, it was perfect that I would have company while Pete was away.

On Saturday, Mike drove down with the girls so they too could see two of their favorite people. Aunt Yvette and Uncle Matt that is. It was a warm day, and both Mike and Matt, at one time or another, went to the freezer to get some ice to cool down their beverages..

Many of you know that I like to be prepared for any eventuality. I think that is a natural outcome of having years of experience being a mom, housekeeper and in business. I like to have an organized household.

In the past, when I had loads more energy and was not constrained by my current physical limitations, I was always able to put up unexpected guests, put together an impromptu party or feed a wandering horde if the occasion arrived.

I always cooked for an army expecting that one or other of the boys would bring home a friend or five who would join us for dinner. Normally, it was my rule to make not one, but two dishes of lasagna or other food, just in case. If the extra one was not needed, it went into the freezer for later use when time was at a premium. But that was then….

These days my freezer contains not only frozen uncooked foods, but also ice packs and lots of covered ice cube containers. I also keep another larger covered container that is filled with the contents of several previously frozen ice cubes for easy access. I like to be prepared.

After coming home from the hospital, I needed to start moving again, and though there are several restrictions I must comply with, (no bending, twisting or lifting more than 5 pounds) I needed to feel as though I was accomplishing something of use every day, even if it was little, which had nothing to do with recovery or sedentary behavior.

The first day I was able to get up and moving, I noticed that the light switch plate in our bathroom was covered with dark fingerprints. I surmised that this was a result of someone turning on the light while, or after, reading the daily newspaper. You know how the ink of newsprint tends to transfer itself to your fingers as you turn the page.

The smudges bothered me, so I took a cotton ball, soaked it in rubbing alcohol and cleaned off the plate. Then it hit me that if that switch plate was dirty, it was likely that the other ones in the bedroom were likely to be similarly smudged. I started there and moved with my cotton pads and rubbing alcohol to the next room. This made me feel good, and so I decided to clean all of the upstairs switch plates I could reach.

I slowly went from room to room, much pleased with my sense of accomplishment. In the last room … the guest room … after cleaning that dirty plate, I noticed that the switch itself was dirty. I went back into our bedroom and got out some Q-tips and an old toothbrush that now has a new life as a cleaning tool. I then proceeded to clean all the actual switches. It was slow going. After about an hour and a half, I was rather tired, but nevertheless returned to my bed quite pleased with my accomplishment.

The next day I thought of something else I could do which at the time seemed to me like a brilliant idea.

Nearly every day, either Pete or I make a new pot of coffee. When Pete is not here, I make a large pot and after consuming my usual two cups, I put the rest in a pitcher to be available for future use. This makes sense to me as it seems a shame to waste perfectly good stuff. But on regular days the tiny bit left is usually poured down the drain.

Every day I also drink a glass of cranberry juice as I down my meds and dietary supplements. I always keep a bottle of this beverage in the frig next to the milk. There is nothing quite so refreshing as a glass of icy cold cranberry juice.

One day after my surgery Pete brought in a new bottle from the garage pantry and for some reason, I wanted it more chilled. Pete put the glass in the freezer to quickly chill it down. But then it was forgotten until later. When he finally brought it out it was slushy with ice crystals. I took a spoon and discovered that freezing cranberry juice makes into a wonderful slightly tart but refreshing Popsicle. This was very cool and I thought that a fresh supply would be nice to have around.

One day, I decided that it was a shame to waste the left over coffee and started to collect the small amount left. I emptied most of the ice cube trays into the larger covered container. Then I washed them out and proceeded to fill half with cranberry juice and the other half with the leftover coffee. Just the thing to have in a pinch and to put in a glass to chill down either beverage!

Last weekend, first Matt then Mike discovered the coffee or cranberry ice cubes when they reached in for some ice. Matt seemed to understand my logic, but then maybe he was just being nice since he only sees me on the occasional visit. To Mike though, it was just another example of his mom’s craziness. On the other hand, the girls liked the idea and the thought of cranberry popsicles would be just the thing for hot summer days.

Well, that is the story. ☺

Posted by Judi at June 12, 2007 12:08 PM | TrackBack
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