Pull Up A Seat Photo Challenge: Two ‘Throw-backs’.

I decided to take part in XingfuMama’s photo challenge this week. All you need to do is post photos of objects one can sit upon.

Here’s a ‘throw-back’ from 1998, snapped by our son Jeff. Hubby and I were resting on a bench in a rainy Central Park before leaving for the airport on our way back to South Africa. I really loved that flowery umbrella and wish I knew where it eventually disappeared to.

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Another memory from 6 years ago when our granddaughter Sienna was visiting us with her dad in Johannesburg. In our local shopping mall we came upon this rather flashily-dressed cow reading the Daily Mooews.

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Wishing you all a great week ahead. To take part in this challenge, go to https://xingfumama.blog/pull-up-a-seat/

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Having Fun On A Windy Day

It’s been a strange sort of vacation, with far too much time spent in doctors’ waiting rooms, hospital X-ray department, CT Scan and Bronchoscopy units. There is no part of my lungs which haven’t been minutely inspected and scrutinized. My persistent cough is apparently due to nothing more serious than chest inflammation and sensitive airways. I’m now on my third lot of antibiotics plus a course of corticosteroid tablets which actually give me nightmares. For example, last night I dreamed that I was staggering around with a fold-up bed on my back, looking for hubby who was supposed to be meeting me with the car. My cell phone wasn’t working, so I couldn’t call him. Luckily I woke up before I got too tired of lugging the bed around whilst totally lost. So many pills that I do believe were I to be shaken, I’d rattle.

On the bright side, I’ve seen quite a lot of my darling sister and a few very dear friends. We’ve had some really fun times together. Here after dinner, we had just discovered that our fingers are actually identical in length.

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Today is the last day in our beach front apartment here in South Africa. Tomorrow we drive up to stay with our daughter in Johannesburg for the weekend, before flying to England on Monday to see hubby’s soon to be 104-year-old mom, Kathleen.

We have a splendid view of the Indian Ocean from our balcony and yesterday hubby took these photos of intrepid guys having fun in the surf. I think it must feel really awesome to do this.  I’m not much of a water-baby myself,  but I do enjoy watching them.

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I may not be able to blog or comment for the next week or so until we get back home to Florida on July 4th. I wish you all a very good week and will see you again soon.

 

Remembering my darling Mom

On Mothers’ Day,  I’m remembering how exciting it was as a child to celebrate my special  Mom.

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You were always my heroine, so pretty, chic and very clever. You taught me so much from a very young age. My love of music was nurtured because of your encouragement, and even though you had never learned to play an instrument, you were determined to give me the chance even though the cost of piano lessons was quite a sacrifice on your tight budget. You worked so hard at many menial jobs in order to supplement the family income, and yet still found the time to make my sister and I the most gorgeous clothes, often sitting at your sewing machine late into the night. I’ll never forget the Sunday School Anniversary dresses you sewed, especially the blue flocked one with the enormous navy bow at the back, which made it very difficult for us to sit down. Your daughters always had to be the smartest on the block, and I guess that’s why you insisted on the hats as the finishing touch. How we loathed wearing those feather hats, and also the ones that looked like a couple of beige blancmanges, but I’ve long since forgiven you. You were very brave in the hat-stakes yourself, and I remember that you were mortified, when at church one Sunday, our oldest member called out very loudly, “Vera, I like your new hat, but that feather makes you look just like Robin Hood.”

There always seemed to be just enough money to take us on a seaside holiday once a year, but only because of your thriftiness. Nothing was wasted in our house, and you somehow found the time to make all your own jams and pickles with fruit and vegetables harvested from dad’s garden. Coming home from school on cold winter days in England, I knew that there would always be a good fire going in the hearth, and toast or muffins with homemade strawberry jam to warm me up. You cajoled me into eating my vegetables, even brussel sprouts, with the promise that they were going to make my hair curl. I forgive you for that little white lie, but only because you made the best apple pies in the world.

I have so many wonderful memories of you. It was so heartbreaking to see you the way your health declined during the last two years of your life. You became so fragile and could no longer manage to stand on your own. When I took you for a walk in the garden in your wheelchair, I thought of how you used to push me in my stroller all those years ago. Our roles had somehow been reversed. You were always so dignified and independent; so strong and upright, and I longed for you to be like that once again, but as you said to me, “I just have to be content with the way things are now.” I know you wanted to tell me all sorts of things, and yet your mind just couldn’t process your thoughts and turn them into words. How frustrating this must have been for you. As we sat there trying to hold a conversation, I was really moved when Mrs. G, the lady in the chair next to you, rousing a little from her slumbers, reached her hand over the arm of the chair until it found yours. She didn’t even open her eyes but grasped your hand so tightly, and as you stroked her fingers I saw a glimmer of a smile on her face, probably remembering a time in the past when she had someone’s hand to hold, maybe a husband or even a child. She never had visitors, but I’m sure that your cool touch that day brought comfort to her heart and she felt loved, just as it used to for me when I was a child.

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Mom thank you for everything you did for me. You are loved so much and will always be in my heart.

Bench Series #45: Mosaic benches

“A bench with a message” is the requirement for Jude’s Bench Series this month. I hope these two lovely mosaic benches seen at ‘Glass Cuttings Gallery’ at the Piggly Wiggly country village on the Midlands Meander route, will qualify.

These pretty benches are a couple of creations from the “Fragments of Africa” collection by Sarah Pryke.

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They still have their price tags attached, and this one of a “Pied and Malachite Kingfisher” will cost you R4,800.

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I wish you all a very happy and relaxing weekend. I’m happy to report that my sister is back home and recovering well. Her surgeon says that she is allowed to paint for limited amounts of time once she feels up to it, but at the moment she’s sleeping quite a lot and just getting her strength back.

Bench Series#41: Mom and I

Jude’s Bench Series for this month is a bench with someone or something sitting on it. I’ve been thinking about my Mom such a lot today, and just found this photo taken on her birthday in 2013. This was the last time she was able to come down to stay with us in our house at the beach in Umhlanga.  We sat on this bench for a long time, just watching the waves together. It’s good to remember the happy times.

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Sister’s latest Leopard

I went up to my sister’s house yesterday, after visiting mom. I always go into her studio to see what she’s working on. She’s just finished her latest leopard painting. Isn’t he gorgeous? The texture of his fur looked so real, that I had to stroke it.

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Today I’m not relaxing like this leopard. I’m running around like a mad thing, emptying drawers and shelves. Isn’t it amazing, the stuff one accumulates over the years. Whatever do I need four dozen pairs of stocking tights for? I hardly ever wear them, as I live in sandals and flip flops most of the time. I’m sure someone will buy them from the animal welfare sale. The woman who works there, says that people will buy absolutely anything. Isn’t that fortunate? 🙂

You SHALL go to the Ball!

My beautiful granddaughter Tamsyn loves to help out in the kitchen, and fortunately, unlike Cinderella, she doesn’t have any jealous ‘Ugly Sisters’ to spoil her fun.

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When I saw photos of her all dressed up to go to her ‘A-Level, College Ball’, this quote came to mind:

“Don’t be alarmed, Cinderella,” said the fairy. “The wind blew me your sighs. I know you would love to go to the ball……

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….and so you shall!

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I can hardly believe that she is eighteen already. The years certainly have flown by, and now she’s all grown up.

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“Grandchildren  are the dots that connect the lines from generation to generation.”  ~ Lois Wyse