I Can’t Bare It!

As I mentioned in my last post I started a new job this week so I’ve decided to use that as a convenient reason to not write this week. That and the amazing wedding B & I went to and shot this weekend for our dear friends Leslie & V. We have tons of BEAUTIFUL footage! I can’t wait to start the editing process. Unfortunately there is just not enough time in a week to do it all. But have no fear! Mom has come to the rescue! (Wipes sweat off brow.) Today I present a fun little tid bit on grammar, everyone’s favorite subject, written in my mom’s witty style. I promise you will enjoy it! Really. Would I lye to you?  

I CAN’T BARE IT!

If you’re like me, the title would have made you cringe. There are few things as disturbing to an avid reader as the misuse of words.

Call me Gramma Grammar Cop. Before you call me out on my perceived misspelling, may I point out that Gramma, like NaNa, Pop-Pop, Nanny, Granny, etc., is a proper name and the phonetic spelling of grandma as spoken by little mouths.

I recently read a book which had the elements of suspense, great characterization, interwoven plot lines and a dynamite ending. I would have enjoyed it, had I been able to cruise past the jarring walls thrown up by common grammatical errors any good editor should have picked up on. You know what I’m talking about. Here are some examples:

“I can’t bare it!” Whatever it is you can’t bare, probably should remain covered up. If the burden is too heavy, then you might not be able to BEAR it. Yes, bears live in the woods, too, but there are sometimes two or more different meanings for one spelling of a word. Welcome to the English Language.

Their they go, getting there knickers in a twist again. And they’re hair is a mess, too. My teeth hurt from grinding. Do you see the problem here? “There” is how you spell it when you mean over there. “Their” means it belongs to them. “They’re” is short for they are.

Yesterday, I seen a billboard with a gross misspelling. Ouch. I SAW it. I HAVE SEEN it. See the difference? “Seen” is not the past tense of see unless it’s used with the helper word “have” or “had”, depending on the meaning you want to convey.

I do not loose my keys, unless I’m setting them free. When I lose them, it’s usually not with the intent of liberating them.

I am no techno-phobe, but one disservice technology has given us is the auto-correct function. It just turned the correct use of “they’re” to “there”, as I typed it. The challenge is to catch it in the act and nip it in the bud, or, use an extra set of eyes to catch it later. That’s called editing.

I’ve been guilty of letting some of these typical errors lie in wait for the unsuspecting grammar cop to find, so I don’t feel badly about airing my opinions here. Sometimes two sets of eyes don’t catch the little devils. It’s when an entire document, or book, as in the case of the one I labored through, is fraught with these little trip-ups that Gramma Grammar Cop is ready to tare her hair out. Oops. “tear”.

The Next Step

There are people who hate change. There is a comfort in things staying the same. Knowing what to expect. Nothing to adjust to and no surprises. There have been times in my life when change has caused severe anxiety so I can relate to the notion of hating change. But true to my character I can see the other side as well, the excitement in change. All the possible opportunities, adventures and growth available. The more comfortable I get with myself the more comfortable I get with my ability to accept and deal with change in a positive way. That’s why my next step isn’t wrought with fear, but rather filled with a sense of excitement.

I quit my job last week. Actually, I gave my 2 week notice. It was a very hard thing to do because while I may not hate change,  I HATE confrontation. I was a mess that day. My heart raced way more than it should in a 24 hour period and I felt nauseous. I only ate 2 out of my usual 4 small meals of the day. (For anyone that’s ever worked with me you know that’s HUGE). I don’t know what I expected, maybe anger or disappointment. I had no need to worry. Both my bosses accepted my resignation gracefully. Phew.

I accepted a position at a larger company doing something I’m not sure I’ll enjoy that pays pretty much the same as I’ve been making. So where’s the excitement in that? It’s in working with new people, and learning new software, and finding out if I’m good at Loan Processing and having a little flexibility with my schedule. It’s in knowing that this is only a year contract and I may or may not have another job by then. It’s in the hope that in a year it won’t matter if I have a job or not because my business with B will be flourishing by then and bring me home. It’s in the many many possibilities that may come out of this change in my life right now and I am absolutely excited, and nervous, and curious and anxious to get started!

The Unexpected Visitor

This is a high traffic week for Unforgettably Ordinary! First a special guest blog post from my mom and now this little diddy (or is it ditty?). I actually wrote this last week, the same day of the adventure, but as they say, all good things come to those who wait. Enjoy!

This morning I woke up as I do every morning to see the twins off to school. As they were leaving one of the neighbor kids came up on my porch because it was drizzling and he was cold. He asked to stay there until the bus came. Compassion got the best of me and instead of getting in the shower as I would normally do I looked around for a sweatshirt I could offer him. When I offered it to him he politely declined and I closed the door and proceeded to return to my regular schedule.

Half way up the stairs I hear a frantic knocking on the door. This same kids rushes past me as soon as I open it. He looks…frightened! I look out and one of my sons is walking up to the door followed by a mangy looking dog. At that same moment the bus pulls up to the corner. My son turns to run back to the bus stop. I tell the neighbor kid that he has to go now to get the bus. He’s not budging. He only says, “I’m sensitive to dogs!” The dog is standing at the bottom of the stairs to the porch physically blocking this kid from leaving my house. What was I to do?

I grabbed a hold of the dog’s collar so the boy would make it to the bus, which had already started pulling off. While I love dogs I am allergic to most of them so I am that person who stands back and watches others play with the cute furry creatures. But that compassion took hold again and instead of letting the dog go I asked her to come into my house and escorted her to my sunroom. I got her some water and finally got into the shower, all the while wondering what the heck I was going to do with her.

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My first attempt at finding her owners was a flop. Apparently you need more than a Rabies tag number. The next option was to call the shelter, but they didn’t open until 12pm! All this time B is still asleep. I usually wake him up as I am leaving. I woke him up a little earlier to tell him the news, “Honey, you will have some company today.” He practically jumped out of bed. (He’s been talking about getting a dog and this was just too exciting.) I left her in his capable hands and headed to work.

I kept thinking about her all day. B kept me updated on his findings. The shelter said they were coming to get her. Does that mean that they are taking her to her owners? I don’t know, let me call them back. No, they are going to take her to the shelter. I told them to hold off. What should I do next? Try posting a lost dog ad on Craigslist.com with pictures. I’ll do that. The computer is not allowing me to set up an account.

Meanwhile I had called a neighbor to borrow dog food and a leash. B took her for a walk and she bit right through the leash! I came home, successfully posted the ad on Craigslist.com, bought a new leash, and took her for a walk during which she bit through that one too! (I am going to have to buy one more to give back to my neighbor..sheesh!) We made it back from the walk with the dog still with us regardless of the fact she was leash-less. I checked my inbox…nothing. Two minutes later there was a message, “You found my dog!” Before I could even call the woman back she and her husband were in the car headed in my direction. It was a happy reunion for all. The boys and I discovered that her name is Clemmie and she lives 2 blocks away. There was just one more thing that needed to be done. I had to tell B!

B had left by this point to record his podcast. I got him on the phone before he arrived and explained everything to him. He was quiet. When I asked if he was okay he said he was glad I told him before he came home tonight to her being gone. I detected a little sadness in his voice. It’s funny how attached we can get to an animal after spending a day with them. For this one day we had a pet and a ton of excitement. Don’t worry B, I see a dog in your future. Oh and by the way, can you fix the screen Clemmie pushed out of the window today? Thanks.

A Comment on Comments

I don’t usually post on Mondays but I have a special treat for you today…a guest blogger!! I haven’t had a guest blogger on for a while and this guest is super special because she gave birth to me. My mom has been commenting on my blog since I started it, so I love that the first post from her is all about…you guessed it….comments! Without further ado welcome my mom.

A Comment on Comments

I have a house full of character. Dyana calls it clutter. It consists of shelves filled with photos of and gifts from people we love most in the world. That includes our children — loosely defined by their kinship through blood, marriage, past marriages or not so married — and our grandchildren — those who belong in some capacity to that hodgepodge.

They are characters, without a doubt. They are also talented, intelligent, beautiful, spirited and fun.

I’m a published writer. By that, I mean I’ve written a few articles for a small hometown newspaper. They were good articles, and fulfilled my lifelong dream of writing something that someone else would read.

One of my fans (I can count them among the photos on the shelves) kindly mentioned that I should start blogging. I thought it was a dance move, related to clogging, and forgot about it. That is, until my daughter started her own blog.

Dyana’s writing style and content are honest, thoughtful, and insightful. She has a conversational style that’s easy to read and relate to. She thinks I’m biased, and I’ll admit my comments are colored by love. If she needed a recommendation letter, I’d joyfully endorse her because I firmly believe she’s the best choice for any job she’s interested in.

In spite of my bias, her writing speaks for itself, and she has done something every mom dreams of. She has openly asked for my comments! It’s a deal a mom cannot pass up. How many of you mothers or fathers can say their child ASKS for their opinion? Okay, so there’s no “Mom” attached to “leave your comments”, but the temptation is irresistible.

Commenting on a blog can open a door for communication and hone writing skills. It can encourage, edify, and even spark ideas for creative writing. Good writing often evokes an emotional response and entertains us. Our comments can reflect that back to the writer.

A comment or critique should be honest, well thought out and presented in a civilized, adult manner. Critiques are valuable to a writer when they include suggestions for improvement, but they’re no more than criticisms when they don’t.

Turnabout is fair play, as my Mom used to say. So, Dyana, I personally invite you to share your opinions with me. In love, of course.

Mom

OMG I Sound Like My Mother!

I remember the first time I heard my mother’s voice come out of my mouth. All at once I understood. I was being initiated into a secret society I didn’t remember pledging to and wasn’t sure I wanted to be a part of. But it was too late!

My twin toddlers undoubtedly did something that I had told them MANY times not to do and inadvertently opened Mommy’s flood gate of “THAT’S IT”.  If you ask me what those exact words were that formed in my brain and leap off my tongue, I would not be able to tell you. It wasn’t the words exactly, but the way in which they were said. They had her tone of voice all over them. Despite all my pronouncements as an adolescent (as most adolescents do) that I would NOT be like my mom when I grew up, I had indeed inherited some of her traits. And to my surprise it wasn’t as upsetting as I thought it’d be. Quite the opposite actually. In that moment of clarity I finally got her! And with it came a deep sense of appreciation.

For most of my childhood my mom was a stay-at-home mom. Not because she wasn’t a strong-willed independent woman (if you know her at all you’ll know I’m not lying), but I believe it’s what she and my father thought was best. I am so grateful that they did. There was a security that came with my mom always being there. She was able to be involved in our school activities. She made sure we had healthy social lives. She baked…not everyday but there wasn’t a Christmas that went by without our kitchen becoming a cookie factory so she could give trays of cookies away to everyone and their neighbor. She encouraged us creatively with messy projects. She was (and still is) a great story teller. And boy could that woman get mad! And quick! What I didn’t realize then, but do now, is the amount of work and brain drain that goes into being active in your childrens’ school activities, social lives, baking, messy projects and even making up stories. It’s exhausting! No wonder her fuse was short.

There is another side to sounding like my mother. My mom is always ready with an encouraging word. If you ever read the comments on this blog you’ll know what I mean. I don’t think there’s one post she hasn’t commented on, each more encouraging than the last. I love hearing her converse with her grandchildren (which I just got to do last week when she was visiting). There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that she thinks they’re the shiznit! It’s a trait I hope people will see in me as well. That and her compassion for others. She’s always been easy to talk to. She was, and still is, usually volunteering for one organization or another.  And I can’t tell you how many times we had people staying with us for a week or two until they got on their feet. My friends knew they had a place to go and my mom would accept them with open arms. She just had 3 rules: 1. No drugs, 2. No sex and 3. Don’t leave the toilet seat up. I’m pleading the 5th on whether or not those rules were upheld.

It’s funny how we as humans can have a hard time appreciating someone without walking in there shoes. Becoming a mom myself has been an eye opening experience and I know I have still barely scratched the surface. Both my moms have survived adolescent children, whereas I am just beginning that phase, and there are still so many stages yet to come: college, weddings, grandchildren.  I am fully prepared to be amazed by these two incredible women at each stage as I learn to appreciate them and what they’ve been through more and more. So sounding like my mom.. ain’t so bad!

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!