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“Pathetic,” the sound of my husband’s voice uttering this word woke me from a deep sleep. “What?” I mumbled back. He could not believe that he heard the alarm clock music blaring from my daughter’s room down the hall and around the corner and I didn’t. At some point during the night he was asked to go sleep in her room (probably because of a nightmare). It’s he who sets the alarm clock, so in situations like this morning he expects me to wake him once it goes off. I do not think this is too much to ask and I would if I heard it the way he heard it. You see, I have a problem. The music of the alarm clock becomes part of my dreams. I have danced many times to the music that was supposed to be waking me up. There is always a situation in my dream happening at the exact moment the alarm clock goes off. For example, I’m at a party talking to some friends, in the midst of our conversation music gets turned on (actually the alarm clock) a friend smiles and says “Let’s Dance.” We be-bop through my dream laughing, grooving and spinning about through random rooms in a house I have never been in. I have also slowed dance with a handsome man (sometimes my husband, sometimes not-Hey I can’t help what I dream can I?). It’s not just the music that makes its way into my dreams it’s the news as well. Last week a male reporter was talking about how a horse in New York City got spooked and ran into a tree and died. The information being told became part of my dream and it haunted me for hours after I woke up. I dreamt of the crash. I’m no psychic and I’m sure the crash I saw in my dream was not the actual scene of the horse’s demise but it still felt very real. Years ago we lived in a small apartment on a busy street. Our walls were thin and there wasn’t much that couldn’t be heard. You would think I would have heard a fire truck’s siren going off across the street. I didn’t. I woke up the next morning went out on my back porch and started talking to the neighbor. It was then that I was told of the fire across the street and how the trucks were there for most of the night extinguishing the flames. What was scarier was my husband slept through it too. I wouldn’t be surprised if I had a dream that night of myself wearing suspenders and big boots standing on a ladder with a hose in my hand. Dreaming to me is like a drug; once I start I don’t want to stop, unless of course it’s a nightmare. I think dreaming is similar to what heaven or hell will be. We are moving about through worlds, dealing with situations, dancing like fools and having conversations with others. But it’s all done on a spiritual level. I like to think if we can live in our dreams than we must exist after death. And thinking like this makes the idea of death a little bit easier to swallow.
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Thirteen Things about Maribeth
In relation to me changing my blog presentation this week, I thought it would be appropriate to talk about trees. I love trees. They are the decorations that put beauty into landscapes. This is a tribute to thirteen trees and what they symbolize.
1…. Weeping Willow-(My all time favorite)-Willow tree symbolism- magic, healing, inner vision, dreams
2...Pine Trees (Reminds me of my childhood) Pine tree symbolism - creativity, life, longevity, immortality
3... Palm Trees (Represents places I would like to see) Palm tree symbolism- peace and opportunity
4...Birch Trees (I remember doing a Birch tree in Art Class and I loved how its trunk was striped) Birch tree symbolism- new beginnings, cleansing of past, vision quests
4...Apple Trees (Makes you feel homey) Apple tree symbolism- magic, youth, beauty, happiness
5...Chestnut Trees (The first boy I fell in love with lived in a house with a big Chestnut tree in the backyard. Chestnut trees symbolize LOVE.
5...Maple Trees (To me they represent richness and depth) Maple tree symbolism- balance, promise, practicality
6...Fig Tree (Reminds me of an older Italian couple my husband cut grass for in his youth. The husband would come out in his Sunday Clothes and pick figs from the tree.) Fig Tree symbolism-Divination,Fertility,Love
7...Lemon Tree (How Fun!)Longevity,purification,friendship,love
8...Oak Tree (I see it as sturdy,The one who has the most wisdom)Oak Tree Symbolism-Protection,Health,Money,Healing,Potency,Fertility,Luck
8...Cherry Trees (Cherry Blossoms are awesome trees and really know how to brighten a day) Cherry Symbolism-Death and rebirth, new akakenings.
9...Pear Tree (Reminds me of my neighbors' yard when I was a little girl. We hoped the pears would fall into our yard so we could taste them. Pear Tree symbolism-Lust,Love (Who would have thought?)
9...Bonsai Trees (The Karate Kid, I was captivated by these tiny trees after watching the Mr. Miyagi carefully take care of them) The only symbolis I found on these trees are Endurance.
10...Elm Trees (When bare they can be very haunting) Strength of will, intuition
11...Maple Tree (Absolutely gorgeous in Fall-The color is magnificient) Maple Tree Symbolism-
12...Magnolia-(Romantic and whimsical)Magnolia Tree Symbolism-Fidelity
13...MONEY TREE (I have been searching for this one for a long time, if anyone knows its whereabouts please do tell :)
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I hate yard sales. I don’t hate going to them I hate having them. Every time I have ever attempted to have a yard sale it has been a complete failure. I would go into it with high hopes. I’d count the money in my head long before the first quarter was made. Unfortunately I never made much more than a quarter. Albeit most of the stuff I was hoping to free myself from was clutter, to someone else I knew it could be a find. There was one time I stayed up the whole night organizing my rummage into neat little piles. I had fancy shoes, sporty shoes, hanging about shoes and even cute little comfy never before worn slippers. They were not cheap shoes. Most were bought on a whim to go with one outfit. I really took my time on deciding their prices. I knew if I was going to make a profit the shoes were my best chance. In my mind my prices were reasonable, maybe even a steal. I didn’t mark any of them for more than five bucks even though I paid much more myself. After hours of tagging my shoes, clothes and anything extra I found lying around the house I went to bed with a smile. I was proud of myself for taking the time to make everything presentable. I jumped out of bed in the morning with enthusiasm. The enthusiasm quickly faded when I looked out the window and saw it pouring out. I tried to remain optimistic. Instead of a yard sale I would have a porch sale. After all, my porch was big enough to fit everything I was selling. The second sign of doom was when my three year old nephew ran up onto the porch. He was frantically searching for something kid friendly. He bumped into my Hagar sculptures and broke the head off. It was the most expensive item I had out. I think a person would be a fool to spend fifteen dollars for a piece with a glued on head. The sun came out and I was beginning to get hopeful. Cars were starting to line up and down the street. This was going to be it. I smiled as the people entered through my gate. I politely waved as they exited empty handed. A few women gathered around the shoes but I knew immediately their small frames were more like a size six than my gigantic size nines. One woman seemed to be interested she tried on a few pair and walked around in a circle testing them out. She held up the box and asked, “How much for these.” They were a pair I purchased but never wore. “Five dollars,” I answered. When I saw the look of disgust sweep across her face I felt it necessary to explain they were never worn and still in the original box. I sold those shoes for… a quarter. Today my parents decided they were going to have their yearly yard sale. I had no plans on being a part of it and went over for a visit. It was chaos, visually and mentally. Between my brother and sisters we have seven children. All seven children were at the yard sale. They were shopping amongst the other patrons. That alone puts added stress to the day, try explaining to seven year olds and younger that the things lying across Noni and Nono’s yard are for others to buy not for them. Between hollers of “What will you take for this,” and shouts of “Mom I really want to buy this,” a sane person can easily lose their mind. Moods changed, bickering began and before I knew it there was a family feud. I was at the edge of insanity and then the most hysterical thing happened. A woman called out to my father and asked “How much for these shoes.” He yelled back “Five dollars,” explaining they had a steel toe. “There’s no steel toe”, she replied. He looked puzzled but continued to tell her he spent forty dollars on them and wanted at least five. She set the shoes down and went across to the other side of the yard. “Mar, I didn’t want to sell those shoes,” he whispered. Someone put his new shoes out amongst the sale items. “Do you want me to go get them?” I asked. “Wait until she leaves so it doesn’t look weird,” he replied. In the mean time I got distracted by my two-year old telling me she had to go potty. When I came back outside onto the porch I saw the lady paying my sister for the shoes my father didn’t want to sell. I looked over at him and watched as he watched her walk away with his brand new, pricey New Balance sneakers. He sold the shoes he didn’t want to sell for five dollars and at my yard sale I sold the shoes I had marked for five dollars for a quarter. Life has a funny way of putting a comical moment in at the right time to make the scene a bit lighter. Out of twenty pairs of nice looking shoes out on the lawn the only ones that sold were his.
Who are the people on your street? Do you know what life they live? I have lived on the same street for most of my life but barely know my neighbors, most of them anyway. In the small one level home on the corner is an elderly woman. Growing up she was not the kindest woman. She barely said hello. Rumor had it she did not like young children. I recall her husband being equally distant. He was always outside watering his sidewalk of all things. He died of a massive heart attack and the woman was left alone. After his death she would acknowledge me as she passed taking her dog for a walk. First a small smile, then a soft hello. The dog seemed to keep her company but he died too. The small smiles turned to wide grins and the soft hellos became loud hollers. “Hello, come talk to me she would say.” Surprised but intrigued I did. It turned out she was a nice lady but she was lonely. She faced hardships in life. She lost a young daughter years before I was born. I understood a little better why she wasn’t nice to children. Perhaps they reminded her of the little girl her daughter never became. Often she would invite me over for a chat. Occasionally I would go but having three children takes up a lot of my time. Late at night when the street is dark I think of her and how lonesome she must be. Diagonal from my home is a cute ranch style home. The home was built long ago and the man who built it still lives there with his wife. He is in his late seventies possibly early eighties but still full of life. He can always be seen on the front lawn planting flowers or tidying up his quaint yard. He loves my son’s curls and always asks if he can cut some of his hair. I admire his work ethic and find his smile endearing. Directly across the street from me is another elderly couple. The husband jogged around the neighborhood for years until his age took away his stamina. They were the only ones on our street to have an in ground pool. The wife used to be active in our church and would throw pool parties for the youth group. I always had a blast at her house. Still I really never knew her. Last year an ambulance pulled in front of our house. When I looked out to see what was happening I saw them take her away on a stretcher. She had a stroke. Now instead of jogging her husband walks arm and arm with her around the block, so she can get her exercise. A few houses up the street are a young couple. They recently had a baby girl. They are friendly. I have had some quick conversations with the husband who is usually the one I see outside. I know he loves the Yankees and works down the road. He is a loveable guy who seems to adore his wife and was very excited to become a father. Another young married couple moved next door to them. They don’t come off as friendly. They may be the type that likes to keep to their selves. Actually, I have never seen the wife only the husband. He is a tall dark haired man with intimidating eyes. He did help the elderly woman this past winter per my request. Her driveway was snowed in up to her back porch. She yelled over to me and begged for help. I noticed him plowing his sidewalk and ran up and asked if he could assist her. I got the feeling he was annoyed but he did it anyway. There is a hippie dude at the end of the street. I bet he is a fun guy. He drives a white Volkswagen Beetle. His front yard is filled with wildflowers and his window treatments are Mexican blankets. Across from him is a recently divorced woman who has three Newfoundland’s. Don’t ask me how but she manages to walk all three of them at the same time. They are all people who I’m sure have depth. Their lives may be completely different from mine or more similiar than I know. I live in a surface neighborhood. Our knowledge of each other is equivalent to small talk. You throw something out there, “a hello or a how’s the baby?” Maybe a “How are you feeling?” but nothing more. They don’t know me and I don’t know them. It’s funny how you can live right next door to someone but be so far away. A song comes to mind as I write this. A song I heard repeatedly in my childhood years. Who Are the People in Your Neighborhood? It was a song from Sesame Street. The lyrics summed it up. They are the people that you meet when you are walking down the street the people that you meet each day. But we were never told who those people really were. Sure we knew their occupations-a postman, a fireman just like I know a hippie, newlyweds, an older woman, and two married couples. I know their titles, their surfaces, but I have no idea who they are. And I probably never will.