dancing, friendship, funny, humor, society, stories

The TRUE Beauty of Pain….

My brain was pulsating to the sound of the alarm clock, as I slowly moved my aching body, to locate the phone that I seemed to have hidden just hours before. It had been awhile since I had damaged my body in this fashion, and it seemed to me, that it hurt just a little worse than the last time…something I tell myself everytime.

Still, after pushing the snooze button once, and in between pushing it several more times thereafter, I was able to piece together all of the glamorous parts of my night, that led to this beautiful disaster.

….We we're dressed to the nines as we stepped out, into the inviting night. Black cocktail dresses, ruby red lips, feather boas, and of course…the mask.

The mask….so tribal looking, yet striking, and perfectly descriptive of the person below it. Walking proudly through the lobby of our downtown hotel, we could feel the eyes upon us. Some filled with questions, but MOST appeared filled with envy, AND mixed with a little desire.

As we gingerly slid our way into the back seat of our black uber car (which was only black by coincidence), I began to feel my status rise. I had never been to a masquerade ball before, and the glamour behind the idea of it, gave me back visions of childhood fantasies and dreams. After weeks on end of talking about it, the moment was finally here!!

We stepped inside the old train station to find tall ceilings, dimly lit rooms, a sea of people dressed in fancy dresses and suits, and the highly anticipated, eighties rap music, of “Two White Crew“, was pumping through the sound waves.

We checked our coats, took a few selfies, and then I began hobbling my way into the room with the biggest venue. My new nude pumps were cute as could be, but the toilet paper that I shoved in the tips of the toes, and then later at the back of my heels, was starting to rub against the seam of my panty hose, and was adding unnecessary pressure to my fully bent toes inside the shoe. With excitement still in tow, I fought through the pain, and tried to focus on using my thighs, more than my calves to walk.

We had seen several fun looking masks on the way in, but looking at the crowd as a whole, had us thinking that maybe it wasn't a masquerade ball afterall. In fact, there were so few masks, that I would certainly have recognized any person that approached me…. given that I knew who they were in the first place. Maybe the higher ups were taking bets on just how many idiots would fall for this mask wearing scheme……?!

….Well, all 17 of us wore our masks proudly. We had worked ourselves up too much, to let this deflate our dreams of attending a real live masquerade ball!! Those masks were worn, until sweat was dripping off our faces. We danced, we sang, and we drank merrily, until the midnight hour rang in! So far, this New Year was happy!!

We danced the night away among strangers, until the flesh had literally been worn off the tips of my toes. Lucky for me, my loving companion had been eyeing my fancy shoes since the moment I bought them. She happily agreed to trade me, claiming that she had always dreamed of owning this same pair. However, not even an hour had passed, when her own knees started buckling with each step, due to the pain these gems were causing. I had to remind her often that beauty was painful, because there was no way in hell I was putting those shoes back on!!!

Midnight came and went, and our middle aged bodies still found themselves in a mass of other middle aged people dancing to “Pump up the Jam”…. only now it was a slow song. Non lasting friendships began to form around us. People were starting to spill champagne on one another a little more often, and less and less people cared about getting champagne on their fancy dresses. The dancing was becoming a little more personal, and masks and shoes had started to come off. All of these were perfect signs that IT WAS TIME TO GO!!

“Get out! Get out now”! was chanted by security in unison. Though people were moving out the door in a slow fashion, no one was really fighting them. Still, they lunged at us, like they were about to bust out the tazers, tear gas, and police batons, if we didn't move our ailing bodies a little faster. Not wanting to risk getting our dresses bloodied up, with our own scalp blood, we opted to leave.

With smeared makeup, flattened hair, and barefoot, our uber car had dropped us safely at the entrance of the hotel. The event had come and gone, much quicker than the anticipation for the Gala itself.

I turned the alarm off one last time, and stood up. I held tight to my forehead, as I packed the rest of my things. Though I wished I would have had one less glass of champagne, I chalked it up to being worth it. I added another adventure to this short life, I had more fun than I could have ever envisioned, and I spent it with the very person who made it that much more fun!!

Happy New Year to you all!!

family, funny, humor, kids, mom humor, parenting, poetry, society

Another Birthday Poem For a Little Birthday Diva….

I guess getting older was part of your fate…

Yesterday you were two, and today you are eight!!

I don't know where the time went…how it happened so fast!

What seems so current and new, is really just a blur from the past!!


There was a moment when it was just me and a little you…

We would picnic and nap, and you even cuddled with me too.

You would fall behind, and make poor attempts at catching up,

but still burrow your little hand in mine, while holding that tiny sippy cup!!



Being the baby of the family is a role you have always played well.

There isnt a person in the world who wouldnt be able to tell!

The change in the pitch of your voice, gets you whatever you desire,

and when youve done something wrong, you call the other person the liar!!


You're cute and youre spunky, and have a style of your own.

You're dramatic, annoying, and I cant even imagine you with a phone!!

You throw serious tantrums…some bigger than lve ever before seen..

Im not ready to even consider your life as a teen!!


Though youre funny and witty, you create drama in both of our lives.

Sometimes rather than dealing with you, Id like to stand amidst 10 bee hives!!

You cry, and yell, and refuse to do most anything that we ask,

and you make me consider before dark, to take a sip from my flask…


You need so many things including bows, glitter, dresses, and high heels.

Today you reminded me that “Beauty is pain”, as though you know how that feels.

I often wonder what youre life would have been like, if we werent blessed with your presence.

I dont see how you could have survived, while living the life of a peasant….

As crazy as you make me, it is abundantly clear,

that you are smarter than all of us, my dear…

You have us all wrapped around your tiny little finger,

and even have us convinced that you are the very best singer.


Today you lose the car seat, yet another rite of passage..

I think staying one step ahead of you, may be to my advantage.

We spend most of our similar lives, butting heads with each other,

but I wouldnt be able to bear the thought of never being your mother.


I Love YOU my baby girl!!


Happy Birthday!!


Love Mama T




death, family, funny, healing, humor, society

The “Jig” of Life

Today, the matriarch of all of the dogs in my family, has gone to be with Jesus. Though she was elderly, and it was not a surprise to hear that she had passed away, it still stung my heart.

Jig was her name. I never knew why they named her that. I only assumed it was because they thought that she was a missing piece to their jigsaw puzzle….The puzzle we call life. This beautiful dog entered this family about 15 years ago, when my mom got her as their family pet. My sister was still a young girl living at home at the time, and though the rest of us had moved out, that little dog has given our family enough memories to last a life time.

Earlier today, knowing my sister was mourning the most, I told her I would love to write a tribute to this small dog. A dog that may not always remain in our hearts, but that will most definately live on, in our minds. I asked her to send a few pictures, and a story or two, to sum up her early life with this precious dog. Due to her overwhelming grief, she was unable to provide a story at the time, but sent a few photos. So today, I will tell the stories I know from memory. I hope the entire family, but mostly my Mom and my sister, will find peace in the memory of the majestic beauty that this sweet dog provided, in her short life.

First, I will describe the environment where she grew up. My mom and my tougher than nails step father, live on a large farm…. One that has cows, horses, full gardens, and fields surrounding it. However, their house is directly in front of a highway, that divides them from the livestock. This means that they have to cross this road frequently. Needless to say, they had several dogs before Jig came along…many of which died on this very road. It just didnt seem meant to be…..until JIG!

Some of my earliest memories of Jig, start with the horrible diet she was on. Chuck, my more than accomodating second father, always refused to buy a large bag of dog food, in case the dog died on the road, leaving him stuck with $10 of unused dog food, that he would be incapable of getting full resale value for in return. Also, Jig got the food that was on sale. Many of times this left her with Kibbles and bits. While she enjoyed the kibbles, she hated the bits. So, every day, after they went to work, Jig took her bits, one by one down to the basement, where she would fill my mothers shoes.

She was a smart dog…one that made her message clear.

After a couple of years, my mom found Jig a companion, named Bob. They always seemed to travel in pairs. Upon one of my visits to see them, I was amazed when my mom had told me that the dogs were trained not to cross the road without 1. looking both ways and 2. Without being in the arms of a grown adult. Then, as we were getting ready to cross the street, she told me to try it.

Well, I dont particularly LOVE dogs, and I didnt want to hold it. Still, she persisted. She told me to pat my leg, and then Jig would jump in my arms. IT WAS DUMB, but I grew tired of arguing. That dog stayed at the edge of the road, until I called it. Though she got my good capri pants dirty, she did jump into my arms.

She was a smart dog….one that listened to all commands.

Every time that one my siblings or I needed to move, Jig would tag along. My mom and Chuck would always volunteer to help move our things with their horse trailer. Chuck never felt comfortable with letting this miniature dog stay in the main cab area of the truck. Instead, this dog was required to stay in the back of the empty horse trailer, sliding side to side with every major turn. When they would stop for a burger, they would let Jig out to use the bathroom. I loved watching the other customers watch that tiny dog run out the back of that giant empty horse trailer, wondering what was happening.

The thing is…Jig had to endure a lot in her years.

…Her baths consisted of her being placed in a tub with the drain stopped. Tepid water would surround her, while her master smoked a couple of cigarettes to relax. Though she knew she wasnt allowed to get out without permission, each time she would silently whimper, wondering if this would be her last breath and her last bath….Poor Chuck…he had never given a dog a bath in a tub!

…Mouse traps were set to ensure she didnt get on the furniture, when they were gone.

…When she had a tumor so large that all of us knew she would surely die, my mom and sister in law took drastic measures to keep it from happening. Chuck didnt believe in large dog food bags or veterinarians, so they settled for a friend of theirs, that just so happend to be a gynecologist. While she didnt give Jig a pap smear, she was able to get rid of the tumor, suture her up, and give her a few extra years of life. She is a miracle worker….One my family wont soon forget.

Over time, Jig got so old and senile, that my mom may/or may not have purposely planted plants in her yard that were poisonous to dogs. Still, she lived. She lived longer than we all expected, but died in a manner that surprised us all.

She was hit by a car early this morning….

Knowing she knew the rules, and that she always followed them, it could only mean one thing…


Im glad she was able to go quickly, without any more suffering than she had already endured. Though Jig gave our family a lot of laughs, and though I joke in part to her passing, she will be very missed. Each one of us have a memory of this silly dog….

Im sending a giant hug to the ones that are mourning Jigs passing, and wish you peace knowing she is in much better hands now.

….MUCH better.


family, friendship, funny, humor, kids, mom humor, nurses, parenting, society, stories

A Mothers Perspective…

I was silently munching on toast that was cooked for too long, and that had cooled too much, for the butter to melt. I was driving to work and still rehashing the scenes from my Mothers Day morning so far….

I pushed the snooze button too many times as usual, and was hurried to get out the door. I tried to let the dogs out, but it was raining, and the thunder was booming outside. The dogs are scared of storms and have actual prescribed medication for this disease process. You may realize at this point, that I have no tolerance for this. Needless to say, they refused to go outside the door. Since I didnt have time to pull them outdoors, knowing that the claws of all four of their extremities would be holding onto the doorframe…risking me losing my grip on them, and falling onto the wet concrete….I went on my way.

As a consequence to my lazy actions, just prior to leaving my house, I stepped in dog urine that would soak through the only pair of good black socks I had clean. I took a deep breath, while fetching out the only pair of black socks left in my drawer….church socks with a very low thread count!!

Though I was feeling a little irritated upon my departure, I was determined not to let it ruin my day. As I ate my toast, I found myself listening to the easy listening station. I hummed along with a good Billy Joel song, before a commercial came on. The station was wishing all mothers a happy Mothers Day, and was surprising all of us, by playing a full 24 hours of “Ladies of the 80's”….

I found myself cynically laughing. Do we as mothers feel as though they just dont play enough of this music throughout the year, and then thank Jesus that we have this one special day, when we can listen to all of the Cindi Lauper, Barara Streisand, and Donna Summer songs that we have longed to hear all year long? I think I speak for all of us when I say…..YES! WE DO!!

Unfortunately, I worked12 hours today, and didnt enjoy one of these songs, which could have made my attitude worse…but I stayed strong. This was my third 12 hour shift in a row, and I am a pathetic baby when it comes to my exhaustion in response to this. However, I was lucky enough to work with the same ladies on all three of those days, which gave us plenty of time to plan our Mothers Day Gala.

We had Starbucks, chocolates and candy from parents, donated cookies from the doctors, and then OF COURSE, we ordered out! We ate questionable sushi that was in take out form, and somehow managed to keep all $96 down, for the duration of the day.

It was a well needed, quiet, and relaxing day at work, in which we shared not only with our peers, that were mothers, but also with the mothers of the babies on our unit. Sometimes Mother's Day is put into perspective when you get to spend it with mothers with ailing children. It reminded me that everybody has a different story when it comes to Mother's Day…stories that many of us take for granted.

Last night, I found my ownself weepy eyed on the eve of Mothers Day. Last year, on this very day, I wrote a tribute to both of my mothers and the phenomenal roles they play in my life. That same year, I lost one of them to the very cancer she was surviving at the time. This Mother's Day was a little different for me.

Still today, I feel so lucky. I have so many great memories with my Mama P, and feel lucky to have known her for the amount of time I did….She will never leave my heart. I felt lucky to still have my own mother, who is the funniest, most carefree, loving, and accepting mother in the world. I felt lucky that I had 4 healthy children at home that call me mom, and I felt lucky to have a chance to have a different perspective into the lives of mothers who dont have that same luxury.

After learning that I had to work on Mother's Day, a handful of people said “Oh, that sucks! So you didnt even get to enjoy your Mother's Day”!?….BUT they were wrong…I did!

Today, I celebrated the day with many mothers….and with people that had mothers of their own. I got to help make silly baby “footprint butterflies”, that were to the MOMS, and from their babies in the NICU. Today I saw mothers smile over the simplest things. Today, my own children surprised me at work by bringing me chocolates and home made gifts to brighten my day. They are still little enough that they hid the presents in their hands, behind their backs….and I was smiling over the most simple things. Today, I got the opportunity to call my mom and tell her how much I love her….and I know she smiled over my smallest sentiment.

Everybodys story is different…. Some moms are great, some are sick, and some leave a bad taste in the mouth of their child. Some moms have lost their only child, some moms never got to be, and some of our mothers are no longer with us. Regardless, mothers somehow hold tight to our hearts and minds.

Today, my tired, dog urine soaked sock wearing body, is happy… Not only because I got the chance to be a good mother, but also because I feel so fortunate to have had two Mothers that have loved me, and that I have loved in return.

Happy Mothers Day!!




family, humor, kids, mom humor, parenting, poetry

A Birthday Poem to My Phenomenal Daughter


I cannot believe that its 12 that youre turning!

Though Im happy for you, for me its concerning.

While I will always view you as my little baby,

I cant help but think it makes me look like an old lady!


It seems amazing to me to see how fast you've grown,

and Im even more impressed with how often you are on that phone.

Only one more year before you grace this family with your teens!

I wonder how many more eye rolls, before I enlist you in the marines?!

Honestly though, so far I feel lucky!

You dont often talk back, and you know the capital of Kentucky!

You are helpful and listen, and help me to keep this place in shape,

and you've grown used to tolerating my love for the fermened grape!


You are an inspiring child who continues to teach me new things.

You are so sweet and considerate, that I often wonder if you have hidden wings.

You care about others, and never put yourself first.

You have so much to offer, even when you feel you're at your worst.

I grow nervous watching you bravely step into the giant world ahead.

I never want to see your heart break…. Its the one thing that I dread.

You're incredibly smart and you always have the best of intentions.

You're nothing like me, who would already have had 9 or 10 detentions.


You constantly remind others that you had no choice,

when I act overly silly and use too loud of a voice.

You are technically right when you say Im not your “biological” mother,

but one thing's for sure…I wouldnt have picked any other.


I promise to always pick you up, when you fall short or falter,

and I want you to know how proud I am to call you my daugher!


Happy Birthday my love!!


Mama T


family, funny, humor, society

“Will You Be Mine”? VS. “How Do You Stay Mine”?

There is something about Sweethearts day, otherwise known as Valentines day, that makes you want to be nice to your sweetheart…for at least a moment. It may be caused by a glance at your loved one….a glance that happens at the right moment, when the light is shining perfectly on them…..OR…It could be an act or gesture that is done for you…maybe even something they've done for you a million times. Either way, something about this season of love makes your heart swell, and your face smile with appreciation. Call it cupid, or call it a mood, but it happens to the best of us!

To start off this Valentines week, our deep freezer went out. Luckily, we were making a meal requiring us to go to the deep freeze, because Im certain I wouldnt have liked the image of what COULD have occured in another week or two. It was bad enough as it was.

Once or twice a year, my “farming” parents butcher a cow, and divy the meat out, to our immediate family. To make it clear, our freezer was stocked with meat, fresh corn, and with things that had been on the bottom for years, that we were never going to eat (smashed buns, freezer burned Buca burgers, and open containers of ice cream). Again, we were lucky that we caught it early enough, and were able to save almost all of the meat, and all of the corn. The stuff on the bottom though, was sitting in a pool of blood from the meat that had thawed. The smell was atrocious!

Everyone worked together, unloading meat into bins, so we could move it elsewhere. We were also lucky in the fact that its below zero outside, so we didnt have to worry about finding freezer space. However, nobody wanted to touch that blood. I kept my long winter coat on and used my winter gloves to protect my diva hands. As you may have figured, all it did was soak through my diva gloves.

As I pretended to be fillilng the bins and separating trash…….

I looked over at Renee…She was diligently working to sop up blood with towels. She was carrying all those heavy bags outside in the cold. She was taking the rotting meat to the trash. She was emptying and filling bins with corn. She wasnt complaining at all, even though she was covered in cows blood. In this instance, I looked over at my sweetheart with…….horror….

We were late to my daughters swim meet, and she didnt intend to shower, but simply rinse off! It was neither here nor there in that instant, because we were completely over it by this point. As we sat at that meet, in the sauna of the pool area, in sheer misery, I reminded Renee that our family smelled like “CARRIE” on prom night. No one was sitting by us!

After making our way home, pouring wine, and reflecting on the day, more hardship came about. My sweetheart told me that I was going to have to buy a new deep freezer the next day, AND that I would have to go measure it! I admit, I started whining. “Why do I have to measure it? This isnt my forte! This is the boy job…I shouldnt have to do the boy jobs”!

She asked what else I thought were boy jobs and I was completely honest. “Taking out the trash, mowing the grass, fixing things, measuring things….emptying the dishwasher”! She giggled as she added that I must also think its the boys job to do the laundry and clean the house too, because I certainly do not claim them to be the girl job either! The thing is, I dont care to have to do things, that have to do with measuring or buying appliances!

I never measured. Instead, I bought a new deep freezer by “eyeing it”. I paid extra to have it delivered, because I didnt want to have to move the old freezer out of the basement or the new freezer into the basement….Which is, for sure, what Renee would be having me do next!

Today, the appliance was delivered. The delivery guy called ahead of time to say he was on his way, that he was by himself, and could we just help him move the appliances. This is HILARIOUS, because this happens every time. Im not sure what the delivery fee is for…the truck ride over?

Anyway, sadly, Renee had a funeral to go to today. She was dressed beautifully in her dress slacks and high heels when the appliance came. She was a little frustrated when I told her that she was going to have to help him move the appliance, and more frustrated when I laughed. Again, I DID act as though I was lifting a large portion of the freezer, but I had my cute salmon colored tennis shoes on, and I didnt want them ruined. At one point, I forgot to help all together, and found myself just watching the whole fiasco…

The poor old man was using the best body mechanics he had, to pull that dolly and the freezer up a staircase, that was barely wide enough for it to fit through. Once, he got his heels stuck and was falling backward, telling Renee to “slow up”. Then, there was Renee….pushing with all of her might, and while wearing a pair of high heel boots, which only happens a few times a year. She looked over at me, when she heard me laughing, and it made me laugh more. Honestly, I dont know how she has been able to bear living with me for the last 10 years…..

This is the instant my friends…..the instant that I looked at her and my heart filled with love. I dont know if it is because its Valentines day week, or it was just the moment, but I sure do love my jean/tshirt wearing, high heel/dress pants wearing, boy chore doing, girl chore doing sweetheart!!



death, family, poetry, society

Emotional Roller Coaster

I stare at her picture, as though Im in a room full of mirrors.

Days seem like weeks. Weeks seem like years.

Rationality and Madness are separated by a line that is taunting.

Our souls were intertwined. Her abscence is daunting.


Tears blind my eyes, and seem to fill up my days.

Forgive me please. My mind's in a haze.

I see what youre saying, but my view is somewhat distorted.

Im not feeling loved. Im feeling less than supported.


I want to move forward, but lack the strength to take a step.

I loved her so much. I never realized the depth.

I want to be positive and surrounded by those that I love.

I want to be with her. I want to look down from above.


I should be gaining strength, but Im only growing weaker.

I cant see the light. My future appears bleaker.

My eyes are so heavy, but fight the weight to stay open.

Somethings not right. Something feels broken.


Sleep is inviting, as it calls out loudly and tempts me.

My thoughts are so full. My soul is just empty.

Please be patient, until the answer becomes clear.

Im still holding my angel very near.


Today is the wedding anniversary of my Dad and Patty. As I reflect on how hard it has been for me to have lost Patty this past year, I realize that I sometimes lose sight of how much harder it has been for my Dad. Feelings are like roller coasters, and no one has the answers to how to respond. Recently, I just sat down and tried to think about what he may be feeling. In return, I came up with this. Though she isn't here physically any longer, Im still going to give a shout out….. “Happy Anniversary”!…. Because it just feels right!