Showing posts with label family. Show all posts
Showing posts with label family. Show all posts

Friday, November 10, 2017

Nagging moms raise more successful girls!



I love going to Google to look for an image, usually mid-way through, while writing a blog.  Ironically, the more productive I feel in real life, the better the writing seems to become.  If looking at the stats on meanderingABOUT and YUPPYdom are a strong indication.

Finding the perfect image to compliment the point I want to emphasis, often buried in all the other stuff I write.  I might start out with a strong title and then start writing.  However, once the image has been chosen, there is a strong likelihood that the title will change along with it.

I could spend hours looking at Pinterest art and photographic splendor:  there is a LOT of talent out there in the universe.  

Thankfulness
I may be slightly off the mark in my thankfulness blog to commemorate our Canadian Thanksgiving this year earlier in October [ usually, it fall around the third week of October, or so I thought ].

I'm sure my brother is thankful every October.  That is when he married his love of his life, his wife.  He was kinda private about relationships from what I remember growing up.  He is affectionately stereotyped as the Baby Boomer Older Sibling or BBOS (yes, somewhat bossy, but typically laid back unless you touched one of his record albums and left a speck of dust, he'd punch you in the arm).

Not anywhere else.  Just the arm.  Thankfully, it never happened very often.  In fact, once was quite enough.  



Ironically, growing up in the 1960s was not all about being groovy and surrounded by peace and love.  From what I recall, corporal punishment was outlawed just before me.  Happy to note, such an adventure to the principal's office for the strap is not among the repertoire of experiences I have had.

Yes, the innocent aura of my tribe of 1961 friends and classmates.  Yes, the worst year in history according to demographic specialists who authored "Boom Bust or Echo".  Light reading for a 25 year old to be sure.  That would have been in 1986.  A self-confessed YUPPY of a bygone era, overshadowed by Millennial entitlement, a product of our generous and forgiving parenting style where we tried to reason, take away "privileges"  the worst punishment these hipsters had to endure.  That, and our endless nagging or demanding Mom.

That REMINDS ME!!  One of my daughters texted me with a link to the following:

"Study:  Girls with nagging moms grow up to be more successful"

http://nbc4i.com/2017/10/31/study-girls-with-nagging-moms-grow-up-to-be-more-successful/
READ:  Nagging moms .... LINK


YES, this is the same one who gave me the PINK SLIP a couple of weeks ago.  One minute I'm driving her crazy and the next, I'm her hero.

The best story of nagging happened when she was at the enlightened age of 13.  As a January baby, beginning school at 3 because I recognized that she had a very inquisitive mind and knowledge student.  

I was trying to think of a gift for my son, who would have been 16 at Christmas.  That's when you start to realize that gifts are not masses of stuff but one perfectly thought out gift that connects with the age appropriateness of a boy starting the difficult journey of becoming a man.  Not something too boyish, it was getting to be a real bore buying a video game or a video console every year.  It was also expensive and not quite memorable.

In steps my daughter, where we're about to embark in the biggest mother-daughter battle of our respective generations.  Setting the tone for the next 15 to 20 years.  She suggests that I get him two tickets to this concert in February just in and around his birthday.  

Brilliant!  Now I had not even thought of that!  Probably because it was not uncommon for me to take them and pals to the Glenbow Museum in Calgary [when I did have to pay for entrance, having years ago been their advertising representative, attending free openings, general meetings, shareholder meetings, artist presentations, launching shows].  They all had been to live performances with me from The Nutcracker to Phantom of the Opera to The Wiz on Broadway in New York, NY.

So I did buy those two tickets as my lovely offspring suggested.  Son was just "meh" over the present.  He didn't even appear interested with his sister's first pay-as-you-go cell phone [ one of the reasons she turned into a math whiz I'm sure, from learning to subtract backwards on declining minutes of coolness ].

Well, as it happens.  The daughter had actually wanted to go to said concert.  She was 9/10 convinced that her brother would reward her thoughtfulness for coming up with the idea, that he would ask her to go with him.

As the date of the concert started to draw closer, her hints were replaced by out-and-out-demands that he take her to the concert.

As the most perfect brother would, he just didn't respond.  The more she squawked, the less he noticed.  




It was time to go to war.  It was time to get everyone on her side of the army to help convince her brother that she was the most logical and OBVIOUS partner.

He didn't agree.  I respected his decision, reinforcing that choice every time she peeped up.

The day of the concert also happened to be when I was going to compete in a Toastmasters' International Contest by giving a speech.  I was nervous already, about to step off the cliff of my comfort zone and compete.  

Dressed to the nines to work I went that day.  Thinking back as one of the most disastrous days as a mother.  

Like any army general, I had the battalion organized with the support and help of the Master Sgt, my mother, and her side kick, my father.  I would pick up the one daughter at home with my son, then drop her off at my parents, who would pick up the youngest daughter from her soccer game, which I had arranged carpooling with another soccer mom.  My parents would feed the girls and my son would eat garbage at the concert and be content after I drove him there with his buddy.

Like any well-intentioned-mother, I had clearance from work to leave at four o'clock to "prepare for my contest" that evening.  I was already trying to think of ways I could bow out gracefully without showing the stage fright I was hit with!

Happily practicing and rehearsing out loud as I joined the commute home:  not appearing as though I were singing like all the other gals in the various lanes, nope.  I was looking like I was talking to myself!

SOURCE:  Getty Images


Being a single mother of three, perfection was my decree:  the better a job I do at being a parent than their dad, the happier they would be.  No, no yelling.  While a locked jaw clenching my teeth was usually the best sign for the troops to run for cover:  it never looked good and appeared more foreboding than any disciplinary measures handed out.

When I arrived home, not one girl was missing but both!  Huh?  Oh, look a note from the articulate writer who confessed to having swiped her brother's concert tickets and gone to it with her best friend, Stephanie.  {Ironic how both girls best friends when they were 13 were both named Stephanie - I ignored any red flags with the 2nd daughter that I shouldn't have!}

Now that I think of it, I wonder if I ever did save that note.  With butterflies, sunshine and flowers surrounding the words, she begged for forgiveness and understanding on how much SHE wanted to go to the concert.  How mean her brother WAS for not agreeing to take her, she couldn't stop herself and her best friend from going.  Fear not, she knows what she is doing and will text when she is safely settled into the seats so I won't worry about her!

I aptly stepped into the role of psycho [which a daughter has accused her mother of on more than one occasion].  

OMGosh, the competition.  Everything was choreographed and timed to perfection like carefully laid out dominoes [which I never mastered for real].  Now I had to call my mom to tell her that I wouldn't be dropping off the one daughter, but that didn't mean that all other plans were in play:  they still needed to pick up the younger daughter at her soccer game at precisely 7:30 p.m.  Of course, I had to wait for her to come to the entrance of her seniors building after riding the elevator down.  

SOURCE:  Allan Sanders


That was fine because like any fierce general faced with combat, I was barking on the phone to the Stephanie mother, who was proudly informing me that she had done her part of the carpooling to the concert since her daughter was so graciously invited to share with mine, apparently, picking them up when it was over after my competition!

My competition!  Less than an hour and a half.  Fat chance for rehearsal before the stage.  Hey, I couldn't make it!  I had to retrieve my daughter from the concert.  I was going to teach her a lesson.



Don't mess with the mom
Everyone knows this.  Wisdom about staying away from Grizzly bear mothers with her cubs is common knowledge!

Unfortunately for daughter, she wasn't aware of doing anything wrong.  She had left me a note, made carpooling arrangements, all without interfering with the original plan.

She had a phone!
Imagine me texting from the pulled over spot I was at [setting the appropriate example, important at all times, as though children and grandparents have CCTV capabilities that weren't even installed, or not yet, or were they?  Ensuring mannerly conduct complimenting the polished, professional suit I was in that said:  

"I mean business!"

Back in that early dawn of the new Millennium of the early 2000s, it likely was a Blackberry, the clear badge of honor most YUPPIES grasped and carried, or hooked on our waists with the blazer casually tucked aside, like a police firearm, the Blackberry.  No professional parent of an honorable upbringing child would NOT have a Blackberry!  

Also, we didn't have SMART PHONES where we could thumb or swipe maps and itineraries with merely a flick!  We were thumb champions, children of the 60s, Yuppies of the 80s!

I did my best to appear "calm" in my text to said daughter to ask her where she was, trying to appear casual, avoiding betraying at all costs, the combination of rage and panic:  my baby is at a concert without parental attendance!

Surely, they would ask for ID or notice that the name on the ticket was in her brother's name?  You ask?  Well, back then, they were not email confirmations with all the pertinent information like NAME of purchaser, concert seat, which could have easily have been printed out again under any circumstances!

Imagine the parking at the Calgary Saddle Dome.  Darn, I couldn't just pull up as a drop off, I had to pay for parking, look for parking, park, then hoof it to the entrance.

Heaven and mercy.  At least the son has a remarkable memory!  He recalled an approximate location of the seats, which he observed where pretty amazing, now that he thought of not having them anymore.

The rebellious daughter had not responded to my text.  The nerve!  




I likely gained attention while driving and parking waving my arms and raising eyes to the heavens when telling my buddy, Maddy, what I was in the midst of:  a crisis of massive proportions!  

She graciously offered to let the folks know that I would not be able to compete due to an unforeseen family emergency!  [ How many hear that and think:  "she chickened out"? ]  Well I was thinking about it, but now I had no choice!

I marched up to the security guard at the entrance attracting some attention for wearing a beautiful navy pant suit, perfectly coiffed hair, aesthetically polished nails and tasteful complimenting accessories and matching shoes with purse!

After explaining my situation:  that my daughter had taken her brother's present and come to the concert without my permission or knowledge and I needed to lock in parenting strategy 101:  grab daughter and eject from the concert.

A motley crew we must have appeared:  my five feet zero executive pace, clicking pumps with a purpose in mind.  Accompanied by the security guard who was a big foot Chibawka with less hair, appearing more like a bodyguard.  By then, I was pretty accustomed to flipping eyeballs and raised brows.  



Let's call him George.
While escorting me to the office at the opposite of the building, he asked me for a description of said daughter in case we miraculously crossed paths with the offender.  

Only kids born in the 90s remember "EMO"
which was the opposite of whatever their parents may have happened to look like:  lots of very dark circles around eyes, fashionable hardly ever!  Black clothes:  black jean jacket, black jeans, black t-shirt, with died pitch black hair.  Maybe carrying her pay-as-you-go flip phone for peers to notice, they were more than happening by being at said concert.

George didn't slow his pace after ingesting the description any decent mother would recall what her child looked like for Pete's sake [ nobody says:  "Pete's sake" anymore, you notice?].

He empathetically observed and commented that she would fit right in since she looked like every other concert goer we were speeding past.  



Just as we were approaching the will-call booth to begin closing in on the culprit, I did get a text back [she probably remembered the number one rule she was nagged about when she got her pay-as-you-go-phone:  "always answer the mother, no matter what you are doing, even if on the toilet and asking her to hang on so she could wash her hands").

My daughter's text calmly advised that I should not worry as she is in her seats, safe.  The concert was about to begin.  She'll let me know when it is close to ending so I can swing by and pick them up out front.

They were so advanced technologically at the time:  all I had to do was provide the attendants with my DEBIT CARD [note:  single mother as stated previously.  CREDIT CARDs go better being part of a couple].  My ID was used to verify that I should be a very irate parent.  They were able to verify that the seats were claimed with the tickets.  The speed in response was amazing!

The other security guards were starting to form a circle around me as I waited for the seat details and escort to pick up my daughter.  Trying not to be rude [texting while conversing was unheard of "back then"], I texted to inform daughter that I was in the building, she was going to be surrounded by security guards and her name was going to be said out loud by the act's lead singer, telling her that she should meet her mother at the concourse!  

Never humiliate a child unless you want revenge
She gasped and said that she was on the floor, no longer in her seats, so I wouldn't be able to find her.  By now, I was furiously texting to demand that she give herself up and come out, it wasn't going to end well for her if she didn't.

Smarty pants response was that the concert was just starting and she'd be coming out when it was done.  My response was less composed when I told her to watch for all the guards' flashlights going up and down the aisle.  We knew where the seats were.  She could meet me or we could come and get her.

When caught in an argument with an adolescent child, name calling, threats don't work.  

The show down was set at the replacement for the Corral in Calgary, the Saddle Dome.

The stadium was blacked out with the exception of George and I carefully avoiding taking a tumble, with a flashlight guiding him and his hulk blinding me.

She wasn't there!  

We went back to the concourse as my thumbs were warmed up and I reminded her she should be hearing her name any second before the band started.

Embarrassment is revenge
a parent should enforce.  At 13, being singled out among peers at such a big coolness event with the mention of having a mother, was a disaster worth considering.

She gave herself up.
There was only so much she was prepared to do.  She walked up to me with Stephanie so casually, as if it was a well thought out planned meeting.

"You're coming with me"
George boomed as he grabbed their arms as he started to firmly walk them to someplace he had in mind.  There was no rehearsal on what we would do when they finally gave themselves up.  I was curious somewhat on where we were going, but too puffed up with pride for accosting the culprits:  I was victorious.  I had won.  I had found the stubborn so and so.

Every stadium has a jail
for wayward tweens and teens, originally intended for drunks and obnoxious folks waiting for a trip to downtown.

George took them into the jail
I caught a glimpse of a grey room, more like an arena dressing room without any bars.

George politely asked me to wait outside
I'm sure my look of astonishment wasn't lost on the girls, who may have decided at that precise moment that the fun was done.  They were catching heat of the shocking kind!

After what seemed like a very long time, remembering that everything had been a blur since sailing out of work to glide into my wonderfully planned organizational masterpiece of pulling off being in three places at once.

George came out and whispered to me:  " I really think 'we' got them.  What would you like me to do?  Scare them?"

Masterfully calm parenting
was out the window.  I exclaimed:  "YES!  Make her pay.  She deserves to do the time!"

After promising to come out in a few moments, George hailed another enforcer, motioning another Big Foot Chibawka to join me and wait for a few, he needed help escorting a couple of young girls out of the building.

True to character, the young darling was miffed and annoyed by the time she reappeared.  Declaring to all within hearing (a wide area) directed to George and complaining to me that a big deal was being made out of nothing.

"Nothing?" boomed George, supported by a scowl from his associate.  "Were you not in possession of stolen tickets?" he asked.

"Stolen!?!" she responded.  They were her brother's tickets and they were NOT stolen she declared, indignantly.

"Young lady, did you pay for those tickets?" She immediately glared at me to provide support.  I was quite intimidated by the turn of events and remained quiet.  [Not my strongest suit.]

George then turned, all 6 or 7 foot of over 200 lbs, quite easily two of me or my daughter and I combined and asked me:  "Ma'am would you like me to take this young lady down to the police station for them to do an inquiry on stolen property?"

I gulped and blushed as concert stragglers were being entertained by this scene, suggesting that perhaps that wasn't necessary if she was prepared to come home with me then and at the same time drop her friend off home on the way.

The longest mile
You've seen in the movies where the police escort or bailiff escorts the criminal to jail or to court.  In our case, it was two imposing figures flanking all three of us as they walked with us to the nearest exit.  George asked if we needed assistance to our vehicle and I assured him it wasn't far and we were good to go.  As I turned to lead the girls to the car, George winked at me.

Oh the shame, embarrassment
was the rant the whole drive home, while her friend was frozen in fear to what she may expect when she got home where her mother was waiting.  She had ignored her mother's frantic calls and text messages as well.

After allowing my wayward daughter to exhaust herself from crying and bemoaning how she was going to be the laughing stock when "everyone" heard that her mother had come down to the stadium and hauled her out, narrowly avoiding jail time.

Things were pretty quiet by the time we got home.  Her younger sister perched and ready with her grandmother waiting to hear how her heroine, older sister, rebelled and got caught.

Per normal, the brother had escaped to his corner of the house, where he often went to when he wanted to avoid "the drama" of the girls.

The daughter dutifully brushed her teeth and went to bed without a peep.  Fresh the next day, off to school she went to face the music from her peers.  Respectful, polite and chipper as though what had unfolded the night before was a dream or conjured imagination of events.

Of course, by the time I got home that evening, I had no steam left.  Yet my daughter wasn't apologetic or acting like anything had happened.

After dinner, wash up and after less fuss than usual for what time it was to go to bed [not having the "wait till your father hears this" refrain available as a single mother].

When all was quiet, kids settled and snug in their beds, my daughter crept downstairs to check in and see whether I was gritting my teeth still.

She approached me quietly and then said that she understood what had happened and how things happened the way they did.

She said that I became a hero to all parents who had heard that I hadn't done what they would have done:  wait at home until they got home before going on the offensive.  I was a hero because I went out of my way to prove that she was wrong.  She then chipper-like confessed that she hadn't been embarrassed at all.  In fact, she was a hero for being so rebellious by going to the concert alone.

Sigh.  That was one of the first struggle over power between my daughter and me.  The never ending saga of being the nagging mother, trying to teach right from wrong, good manners and bad.

Like the happy moral of the story that she optimistically revealed of two champions:  a mother and a daughter, each forging their way toward circumstances that required a stand off.  Apparently, both equally glorious.  

After a pink slip and the silent treatment, I did reach out and we had a Facetime conversation last weekend.  Lovingly mother and daughter as though it was all par for the course.  She then texted me a note about an artist that I had unveiled a recognized woman who became famous in the 80s when she passed away, sending her pieces to appreciate in value.  Validating that such was the case.

Then the text and article about how nagging moms raise more successful girls:  from a daughter skyrocketing in her own right as an emerging artist, scholarships, grants and the Dean's list earned solely on her own.







Friday, October 13, 2017

Want to know what it means to get the PINK slip?

Original content by:*
Jeannette Marshall
@optioneerJM
optioneerJM+
aboutME.com


If you're around my age [ 50 on a good day or 56 on a bad one ] and you have a daughter or niece or granddaughter around the millennial set (is this the Y? Generation? ] fact check [ ) --> i first called it the Y Generation on one of my first INbeTWEENers blog [ via #WordPress ] aka now as YUPPYdom > target audience & readers born 1960 or later, but before the Millennial (otherwise known separately as The Baby Boomers :: those born of the Elvis and 50s era and vibe, became adults of GENX which is sandwiched [aka squeezed] between the Baby Boomers, inBETWEENers (1960-1969) & what I like to  I call the war babies (those babies born after either World War I ] fact check [date when WWI ended?].

Phew, what a mouthful, eh?  Sometimes I get multiple thoughts that run like a freight train, full speed ahead.  It drives a lot of people crazy [the Hunkster Hubster in particular] ::.... sometimes I am telling him something and 2/3 of the way through, I go "um ah" multiple times until he barks at me:  "Um uh!  You didn't finish!  

Luckily for me, and the loyal few, I sometimes take the time to capture some cool moments.  Or, not so cool moments.



The PINK SLIP?

It is when you mess up with your Millennial daughter and she goes ape shit all over you.  If that isn't suffice, she goes into IGNORE mode, and often BLOCK mode.  Thus is the PINK SLIP.

It doesn't seem fair that father's rarely, if ever, get the PINK SLIP.  It seems a
blessing in disguise when the ticked off goes into overdrive.  It is a process.
It is quite inevitable, particularly if you're the "Mother".    Sometimes it can actually be funny, payback for when 2 PINK GIRLS change the Alpha Pink Girl's status under family that "she is adopted".  

That is the distinction between the battle hardy inBETWEENers:  we've been pushing water up hill all our lives [ saying credit to Wade Sparks, former boss and President of a SMB:  Small Medium Business; selling to very BIG companies and running a branch ].

What obstacles don't 1960 to 1965 in particular share with Millennials?  A-LOT!  Remember we were the original hipsters, aka Yuppies, adulting in the 80s [ exact same age as they are in my case - 27(Kyle) etc.  My girls are wise beyond their years and really have some great attributes that I envy if I could only have known back at the same age, how magnificent everything would be.  



YUPPIES:  Eternal optimists
What would this world really be like, if Yuppies weren't born [ other than cult culture of the 1980s skippy high bangs and big hoops and slouch socks with tights, ankle runners, big oversized sweaters, perms galore, fresh eyed trusters after being abolished and quietened by our very loud Baby Boomer siblings [ brother or sister ].   Being the object of teasing at the edge of tormenting their younger, devoted sibling who iconized their every move [ except thinking he is Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin with his electric guitar and amp turned up to the max, "WAHW.... wahwm .... WAHW" be still my pounding ears:  no wonder I don't like waking up and jumping out of beg:  clear bad memory of when having to do so ].

Yuppies had to prop each other up and really boost each other's morale.  We were either in college or at our first REAL job(s) in the 1980s.  Amidst recessions, world war threats between the US and Russia, joblessness skyrocketed with the increasing temperature of world affairs.  Just graduating from high school, we were surrounded about hostages, capture, and hijacks and we only had the radio or television where we were likely to get our news.  [ Others would say newspapers, but some of us gal Yuppies didn't like how the ink came off on our fingers so we weren't a fan of newspapers but we were the dawn of capitalism in the 1980s, with greed on most corporate executive's manifesto.  Today, layoffs, downsizing, let go, fired, laid off, work force reduction, reorganization, restructuring are more the norm.  

Loyalty has left the atmosphere.  Neither company nor employee get what they want out of the deal and their is a parting of ways.  The Pink Slip was probably coined in the 1980s ] FACT CHECK [.  Another tie in to the nifty headline I was particularly impressed with ( pat on back to Jeannette ).

Another characteristic of those arriving at adulthood, parenthood in that decade is that Yuppies really like recognition.  More sore than any other generation, simply because being sounded out by our louder siblings, who took credit for a clean car [ trick:  ask younger sibling to help wash car and he would drive them around town for "a while"; so you help them and they take you for a drive to main street and back [ in my life, never really that far:: walkable ]. 

So having a Millennial child is about setting and understanding boundaries.  A familiar song we sang as parents coming back full circle upon our ears.  From that really smart child who snaps it up and snaps it out, except louder.  Probably because we likely seethed but didn't shout in anger, or clenched our teeth akin to biting our tongue.  We were born of the parents who believed that how you dressed {stylish and polished} and how you behaved [ impeccable manners ] were a direct mirror into their inner soul.  

Ask a War Baby what it means to go without (ahem, attention Yuppies and Millennials, take note here)?  You better sit down and grab that cup of coffee anyhow because their answer is going to take a while.  What is amazing is when you actually recognize the sacrifice that War Babies had both as children, growing up and as adults, parents:  having to make do with very little.  Appreciating value over squandering money, which Yuppies and Millennials are apt to do.

Wanting to climb the ladder?  
There's a big leap between The Baby Boomers who are retiring to the tipping point beginning of the Millennial leaders, pioneers.  Yuppies and GEN-X likely skipped over.  Why not?  More educated, Millennials can bring fresh ideas, latest technological improvements [ which is a HOAX by GenXers letting others think that Yuppies aren't technologically inclined ].

Ask yourself, when was the birth of the computer?  Technically, it began a long long time ago, before Yuppies were even born.  What I mean is the birth of the personal computer?  Some of us went to school in 1979 to have hands on computer in our post secondary, either by instinct or natural survival mode.  If you want to have someone project manage something to perfection, you would be wise to consider a Yuppy:  they've been coming up with solutions and fixing problems by the time The Beatles broke up (a long long time ago).

Since I'm already in trouble and she doesn't read my blog * giggles *


So I apologized to my daughter.  Fingers crossed the PINK slip won't last long.  I will try to continue to be optimistic that she'll reconsider her reaction (ah-hem scale 1-10 ticked off:  9.5 degrees out of 10.)   

Maybe the next Millennial will read this, think about their mom mostly, or their dad if it happens, tone down the reaction and embrace the differences between you, with the added value of life experience that COULD spare them a lot of grief.  Knowing that rarely is advice heeded.  Swash-buckling their way to their future in their own brave style.



You have to remember, that your Yuppy mom or Yuppy dad, are prone to recognize how well you are doing.  Driving you crazy for posting about an accomplishment or re-sharing a picture, simply because you thought it was beautiful, unconsciously unaware that so many would agree.  They see the inner beauty paired with the outer strikingness as a formidable force, into the stratosphere when it is blended with intelligence and street smarts, common sense.  With a twist of humor, knowing that laughing at one's self is the biggest show of humility.


Even more if they are a Millennial 


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Bon Voyage to drama, drugs, drinks

Welcome to bright lights
I watched this documentary last night, just released by HBO.  It was sad, surreal, joyful at times while uppermost insightful on these two talented ladies who were people just like us with their grace, goodness and goofiness.



I can't imagine what it would be like to be Todd Fisher and the rest of the family to watch, after privately laying to rest this dynamic duo.  I say dynamic now because I would not have known much about either lady other than what most of us know: the Princess Leia character dearly loved by Star Wars fans and Carrie Fisher:  I didn't write it down but there was a profound quote by Carrie in the documentary to the humble effect that she was merely the vessel with which the character was entrusted to. She took the responsibility seriously yet it didn't define her.

I learned a lot more about Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds than I ever had before.  I suppose that is often the purpose or outcome to a documentary:  to inform us, to peak inside the private world of mother and daughter.  To this end, we saw the people behind the personas: loving, caring and whimsical.  




Now it makes sense when it was reported that Debbie Reynolds' last words were along the lines of "I'm going to be with Carrie now".  One can't help but feel saddened that the world is left without a mother and daughter who truly were devoted to each other, relied on each other so much.    The viewer can't help but marvel at the strength and humor they leaned on each other so much for.  



Impeccable timing is everything but in this instance it is surreal.  How uncanny that the HBO documentary released January 7, immediately after the duo were laid to rest.  

After watching this, I understand why the two would leave together at the same time.  Ironically, most of us would recognize them as singular personas, each talent bright on their own, yet privately, their love for each other so transparently glimpsed, thankfully, by the dedication of Fisher Stevens.

I suppose a lot of people knew more about their unique contributions than I did.  I appreciated knowing more about them.  To be so lucky in family in so many ways.  Drawn together by heartbreaking media bonanzas.  



Many of us weren't around during the scandal in 1958 when Elizabeth Taylor and Eddie Fisher betrayed friendship and marriage vows together.  Such is the makings of a legendary Hollywood screenplay.  It was almost painful to see and listen to the memories replayed by all those hurt.



I sure hope that a resurgence of Todd Fisher's dream of creating a "Debbie Reynolds Museum" as a tribute to her passion of collecting Hollywood memorabilia.  How wistful to watch when Debbie had to part ways with some of her fondest treasures.

 Despite the drama, I came away with a deep appreciation for the meaning of family.  Even though it seemed obvious the great love between the mother and daughter pair, it was obvious how Todd was an adored member of this nucleus of strength and love.








Sunday, October 16, 2016

Making champagne out of vinegar



My husband and I suddenly had it dawn on us that we are truly empty nesters ... EUREKA!  

The first dawning was Thanksgiving.  It was peaceful and quiet.  Almost too quiet.  We're used to all four kids and boyfriends and orphans join us for Thanksgiving (last weekend for Canadians).  My son wasn't there to claim ownership of the almighty drumstick.  There was no circle of thankfulness that has been a tradition that I have tried to enforce.  That is when we go around the table and everyone speaks to what they are thankful for.  


Typically, the "Thanksgiving Story" is told by me of when I was a single mom, as usual trying to do several things at once.  I had prepared the stuffing for the bird, and had it all ready to assemble.  I also had a deadline to get my youngest to the outdoor soccer field for tryouts for the upcoming indoor season.  There never seemed to be enough time or alternatively, I was juggling priorities.  I ran up and had a shower before I was going to get the turkey stuffed and prep'd before we headed out.  The bread cubes were all ready, celery and onions diced for mixing.  All it needed was the crowning by spices.

When I came downstairs to do the final stuffing, the kids were still around, and giggling amongst themselves.  Well, they had a field day!  Someone thought it would be a good idea to "help" spice the turkey stuffing.

To my dismay, when I went to mix the stuffing I couldn't help but notice a lot of colorful contributions added.  The kids had raided the spice cupboard adding cupcake colorful sprinkles and candies in the dressing.  Oh horror was me.  I was beyond stressed by this because they had soaked into the breadcrumbs casting a colorful rainbow of tint throughout.

As a single mom trying to hang on to normal family traditions was ruined because the stuffing was sweetened beyond recognition.  I was upset, a cross between anger and angst.  

I needed to get out the door and get Kelsey to her soccer field and running out of time.  I had no more ingredients left for the stuffing.  So I just put the turkey in the oven, trying to "make champagne out of vinegar" (one of my favorite attitude adjustments when things are not the best circumstances).

Not to be outdone by the mischievous crew, I put a third of the stuffing into a baking dish and threw it in the oven, despondent over the missing aroma of turkey roasting with the wonderful smell of the typical spices mixed with turkey.

When we sat down for dinner, I gave each one of the kids a heaping spoonful of their stuffing creation and told them that since they had put an effort into making it, they were going to try it.  


I like to say that I don't get mad, I get even.  This was a perfect example.  This is when they fessed up and told me that along with the candy sprinkles they had added Pepto Bismal, aspirin, and Tums into their creation.  I was horrified that I could be poisoning the kids with the added ingredients if I forced them to take a mouthful.

I tell the story over fits of giggles every year.  To the dismay of the family, because it is just too priceless not to reminisce for the past 10 years and counting.  It is more with fondness at their banding together to play a trick on mom I most enjoy.

Perils of entrepreneurship  
You may find this HILARIOUS (I hope).  I signed up with a dating site called  Elite Partner . com because the owner/principle is a former colleague of mine from HP.  

Back then, he worked on behalf of our enterprise clients internally, while i was the product manager and project manager for server builds, ensuring security, apps, and such were assembled.  

It was a time of legends.  I worked with pretty amazing people who were beyond merely talented and most bordered on genius.  Some really superb people.  It was really interesting.  I loved it.  It was unfortunate that saving money at all costs meant offshoring more and more North American jobs.  


Do you find it ridiculous that I signed on to a dating site, me happily married, in order to do a proposal for Elite to launch their social media program and write their blog.  I did go to check on it and, yes, the owner had popped on to see if I had signed up as I said I would.  He would have been surprised if I had not because that was what he liked most about working with me.  We were both under a lot of pressure, driven by technology which was hard enough keeping up with personal technology.  I have a pet peeve of those that over promise or under deliver.


Well I DO have other PET PEEVES:

Clipping nails:  that is as personal a thing as plucking eyebrows, popping zits and similarly are all intended at one's own discretion in their own private moments.  Like scraping the inside of your nose because it feels crusty and it looks like a pick.  There are just some things only meant to be done in private.
Chewing gum:  I have rarely, mostly never met anyone who chews gum with any elegance or class.  Mostly everyone I see chewing gum looks like they are battling the gum or attacking it.  I suppose if you just wanna zone out and not talk, and you are alone.  Have'at'er.  You have the freedom to decide what to do with your free time.  Me, I like to spend time on iTunes, listening to my music channels or their choices for me.  I joined up for iCOULD more cohesively and liking that a lot. 
BROKEN PROMISES are a toughie and I think most people agree with me.  Very few people enjoy being on the broken end of a promise. 


AND OTHER THINGS that matter...
I am a somewhat chatty, gregarious, outgoing person.  At 5 ft, I always say (after my favorite: "when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping") that "what I lack in stature, I make up in ATTITUDE".   I would say I am a very the "glass is half full, and start looking where the other half went to" kind of a person.

I'd rather distract someone and steer them away from anger, bitterness, whining, bragging to talk about me.  That is enough to aggravate them to forget what they may have been complaining or talking down someone else about.

I haven't been blogging here as much because I've been "distracted writing".  Not while driving, of course.  There could be a fine for that in Alberta, specifically Calgary, where I live.  I have to say that the media is pretty quiet about this.  Is it because it isn't policed very much, difficult to police or hardly anyone care enough to ask? 

Many are likely similar to me.  I rarely watch "reality TV".  So much why due to the fact that I can pick out the actors paid to act like they're contestants when they're really playing a part.  Quite brilliant if you ask me.  Why go to numerous dissapointing auditions when you can just pick one character, that could be like your alter ego, and act that part for reality TV.  Kinda like that Chumly character on "PAWN STARS". 


I just watched last night, one of the latest NETFLIX productions about Mascots competing at a world event.  What a riot of a plot.  Same idea as this, really.  The portrayers are being MASCOTS.  As in the people under the costume as well as the performance art as a mascot.  You could almost feel yourself want to clap along with the show's audience, so much like REAL PEOPLE that it feels like you're invading into someone's personal home video. 

The reality TV of all time is going on right now.  This US Presidential Elections is going to go down as the greatest political fight of all time.  Just think of the stakes:  the United States of America may actually vote for their very first woman President.   I wrote about this a couple of months ago .... more about the opportunity to have its first female President may end up being too difficult to resist. 

Pilary Clinton

Hilary Clinton, or Pilary as I like to call her (from "Pi" in Pinochio combined with "lary" taken from her first name). The first of its kind was back in (I'm going to go looking and fast checking on this) the 1990s I think with Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck.  Was it Bennifer?  Can't quite remember exactly.  Recently, we were reminded about Bradgelina. 


Mein Trump

Then there is Trump.  Who's biggest celebrity fan must be  Cosby.  I'm guessing that Cosby has made donations to the Trump Camp merely as a token of appreciation for distracting media and audiences away from his never-ending women disgrace and accusers.    Cosby is now looking to head up the chapter of "I'm not as bad as him".  A chapter dedicated to adding membership like a veteran's club of disgraced men of yesteryears.   Does anyone really care anymore that Russell Brandt seems to have some issues.  I can't say I've paid any attention of late, but there seemed to be some sort of fascination of bedding any female worth his plight.  Even wedding one who would refuse to be seduced until she had a ring on it which said "I do". 


I really don't know who the American people are going to choose.  Honestly, if it were me, I'd be jumping into super bionic mode to be able to vote (an 80s term for you young'uns as in BIONIC MAN from the "Six Million Dollar Man").  
The 80s had one of the greatest decades of breaking out super star legends, in my opinion.  The ideas that began in the 80s have built a foundation for audiences and fans to this day with reincarnations of everything 80s:  music, fashion, TV shows, cult scene.


I remember.  Wasn't it the guy that was the BIONIC MAN, Lee Majors, married to the biggest sex symbol of that era, and in a dead heat with Marilyn Monroe for sex symbol and iconic as Diana, mother of William and Harry.  Farrah Fawcett was her name.   I'm not sure if she was the biggest PIN UP of all time?  But I'm sure it would be a close runner up to that one of Greta Gable or the movie siren of the 40s bought by GIs fighting the world over in WWII.  I'll have to get that name and image for insertion here too.


Mindfulness
It really feels like the empty nesting has hit us with full force.  I guess like after any traumatic events, it takes a while to get over them (in our case blending 4 kids together as they were just hitting their teens, 3 of them girls born 3, 2 and 2 years between each of them.)  I'm writing in circles.  Well, it is intuitive and mindful of the mom 
Mindfulness.  This craze has not even hit magnetic gigantic proportions yet.  I predicted in my optioneerJM blogspot a year ago April 2015, that there were really good reasons why Adult Coloring Books were a brilliant idea.   I researched the benefits and started doing it.  It really had a way of calming me, relaxing me.  You are not chilling out truly unless you are coloring in an adult coloring book.  Sitting back with headphones on listening to music doesn't come close to the europhoria of coloring.  It is like formal, authentic permission was given to do one of your most favorite activities you had as a child:  coloring.

 It really wasn't a gender biased thing either.  It was perfectly acceptable for elementary aged boys and girls to like coloring.  The boys ended up still having their sports in there while girls were shoppers-in-training with Barbies.  Barbies taught girls of my age that one pair of shoes was never going to be enough, with mininimum requirements of one in every color, heels of every height, wedge, spike, stilletto with a purse to match and jewellery to accessorize with.  And the plain black or navy Channel-esk suit was ever enough.  Unless, of course, your accessories were vast and all real or really good costume jewellery.

I remember back in the early 2000s when I was researching to launch a National magazine for an airline in Canada.  I recognized then, the franchise that Oprah was making with launching her own magazine:  O!   Its popularity in print was solidified by Winfrey's golden touch.  Making  it about beautifying the outer body, while purify the inner soul.  Back at the time, VOGUE, PEOPLE and the NEW YORKER were reigning in media vibe. 




Today is replaced by the moment is now.  As in mindfulness is the next big springboard to capture the major population.  Reduce your stress, eliminate your anxiety, calm yourself the hell down awareness can be found in MINDFULNESS.  It really only is about being aware of the present moment.  Right now.  With practice and discipline combined with obedience training, one can become mindful.    No longer a slave of yesterday's disappointments or yearnings.  As in letting go, get over it are no longer needed to be heard.  You just stop dwelling on yesterday or yester years.  No longer yearning.

Tomorrow isn't here yet.  Mindfulness has the ability to train your patience.  This would be the most excrutiating exercise for those with anxiety, depression or stifled fears about tomorrow.  With mindfulness, you are centered, balanced with a full stake in the present.  A steady hand, a graceful pose.  You stay here.  Take time to smell the roses:  take a sniff of the air with the freshly cut lawn, or check which flowers actually have scent.  You dismiss buying anything that doesn't have any.  If you are in a mindful state, you can only think about how it smells now.  You are not allowed to remember when or in what surrounding you were when you first were given a rose, from a former boyfriend, a floral bouquet as a bride or a bridesmaid.  Nor are you allowed to jump to tomorrow to think how you will investigate where to buy the most fragrant roses or flowers because that is invading the space or bursting the bubble of the now parameters.    Mindfulness boundaries are clearly defined and boxed in between before and tomorrow.

I did begin to say that I have been distracted.  I set up a couple of more Blogs so it defintely thins my writing out on here.  I apologize for that.  The good part is I can experiment and find what I like writing about without breaking into this theme or the business-Y theme of optioneerJM blog (link on right).    I've discovered an interest in finding really good poems and have tailored The Publisher blog more on that side.  That is more a creative outlet than anything because I am not writing the poetry, I'm merely humbly sharing the very great ones.  Then enjoying the find of a great image, art piece or photograph that seems to resonate with the poem.  My interpretation of it at least.



I did miss writing on this one.  I am more about just letting go and enjoying the sphere of writing, not worrying about the focus or trying to analyze any self-discovery.  A journaling of sorts on a massive scale when you think about just putting it out there and see if anyone reads. 

I'm actually learning to embrace the present moment in writing.  Actually it is quite freeing.  In a mindfulness-sort-of-way I'm writing what I'm thinking about now.  Less and less on reminincing of yesterday.  Although a blip on the radar will always emerge, as did earlier even in this blog when some of the 80s coolness is rebounding again.  A marriage of what was cool back then is adopted as even tres cooler now.  More apparent with Millennial generation.

A lot of restraint and discipline I need help focus with is NOW.    It is a really nasty habit to break if you are trying to hang on, be still attached of things that were long enough that they are only relevant to you.  Not interesting to anyone other than you.    To be a better writer, if you are teaching or informing people of something that, unless a historical or bio, is only interesting to you.

As a parent you watch your kids glide from one area of awareness to quite a different one.  What was once a fascination with them when you shared a memory or a cool childhood event they were rapt with attention (more likely because it was past their bedtime and they thought they were masterful distractors or potential politicians).  To now, it is me me me and mine ..... and they don't even fart or burp anymore like they used to drive me crazy and see if they could get a passionate angry reaction from.


I can't abide by disrespect and poor manners.  I'm growing into my Mz Mannerz persona who is wrestling with the Grammar Queendom.    You, as a reader, get to follow along.  As long as you turn on and tune in.  Should be fun. 

The nice part of being in the now.  I am writing this for me now.  Not worried necessarily if I had any readers yesterday or a building audience tomorrow.  I can't change that right at the present time.  I can only control what I am writing right now.  So, it is good enough for now.  It doesn't matter if it will be good enough for tomorrow or if readers from the past will return or if it will do better than my few pageviews blog.  Pretty impressive, not out of this world by any means. 



I don't mind being responsible for cultivating the best, niceful, peaceful "REMEMBERS WHENs" of tomorrow.  I can't even sway the outcome or force the present moment to be any different.  I'm content where I am at this very present moment.  Forcing myself to focus on this the weekend, ignore any anxiety or worries about work next week or whatever else pops up bigger or smaller than what I can imagine.

I have a lot to learn about MINDFULNESS and that is okay.  I like to become a student of a topic that I am intrigued by.  Reading and understanding it so that I can slam the door on any regrets or great memories ... nor jumping or fast forwarding ahead to what tomorrow brings ..... steering perhaps but not quite in total control of.  That's ok.  The weight of the befores and the pressure of the tomorrows are a big burden to lift.  But once let go, the possibilities are really truly amazing and endless.  I can only imagine that now.