Sunday, October 7, 2012


Yes.  It is now seven days into the month and I am finally blogging.
About the month of October.
In most places around the country October means the leaves have changed color and there is the first bite of a frost in the air.
In Arizona it means that the thermometer might finally dip below 100, and I put an emphasis on the word "might".
There have been some years where we were almost three weeks into October before we saw the end of 100 degree days.   Not fun.

The truth is, October is my favorite month of the year.
Not because I particularly am fond of Halloween.
But because the promise of cooler days is not that far off.
Because the best baseball is played in October.
Because I can start Christmas shopping and not feel too terribly guilty.
Because I love the smell of pumpkin everywhere.
And it's just so October-ish!  I wish I could describe the feeling more eloquently but I can't.
Plus, here in Casa de Z, October is also known as "birthday-palooza"
It is a month chalk full of birthdays....well, except for mine.
Everyone else in my immediate family has a birthday this month.
So, it means a lot of birthday cake (or cupcakes), a lot of dinners out, and a lot of celebrating!

And Happy October!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


The last few days have been a busy blur.  
My life has taken a new turn.
After more than two years of sleeping in and hanging out around the house,
I am now up at the crack of dawn again.
I am donning more formal attire (well, sort of) and heading back out into the world.
I am not quite a working girl (no, it's not what you are thinking!) yet.
But I am hoping this step takes me back into that direction.
What I am doing is something totally new and different.
I am just a tiny bit nervous.
I am hoping it works out like I want it to.
I am hoping that the last two years of hard work and study pay off.
I shall see.
For right now, I am enjoying the newness of it all.....

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


I love to crochet.
There is something just very relaxing about it.
Trying to explain this is very difficult.
And I get asked a lot why I do it.
It seems that there is a belief that something is not worth doing unless there is some tangible reason.
The answer "just because" is not good enough.
There is a snarky (no!) side of me that wants to ask my questioners...
"Why do you watch tv?"
We all have different ways we find comfort.
This is my form of comfort.
It beats the heck out of eating a whole package of Oreos!
I have not been able to crochet as much lately because of massive amounts of homework.
But, right now, when I need comfort most, I have been able to pick the hook up again.
What have I been working on lately?
Need you ask?  The most comforting type of crochet of all.....Granny Squares!
I just grabbed some of my excess yarn and away I went.
Something random and colorful.

It's still a work in progress but I like how it is coming together :-)
It is so good to be enjoying a little "comfort" again.

Monday, September 17, 2012


This past February, my husband and I were sitting in a restaurant in Vegas enjoying a lunch.
Sitting across the table from us were our future granddaughter's paternal grandparents.
We were here in this restaurant not just to have lunch but to meet them.  For the first time.
Of course, there was the awkward small talk that occurs at a first time meeting.
In these circumstances, it was especially awkward.
Our unmarried children were having a child.
I know.  It's not an unusual event these days.
But for two sets of very traditional parents it, well, takes some getting used to.  
Anyways, at some point in the conversation, my fellow future grandmother asks me the following:
"What are you going to be called?"
Actually, in all honesty, this was not the first time I was asked this question.
When I told friends that I was going to be a grandma I was repeatedly asked the question of how my grandchild was going to address me.
Apparently, in the years since my parents became grandparents things have changed.
When I had my children, my parents became "grandma" and "grandpa", and my husband's parents were "grandma" and "grandpa".   It was that simple.
Nowadays, however, grandparents can pick their own designated title.....kind of like how the parents pick the child's name.  
There are even web sites dedicated to this practice.
 I found one web site called "Choosing Your Grandmother Name", and I found the following list of choices:

Big Mom (Absolutely not!)
Grams (This might work)
Mamo (Squished ta-tas! No, thank you!)
Maw Maw (Reminds me of those creepy talking dolls.)
Nana (I learned at lunch that this was already taken.)
Bebe (A little French? Hmmmm.....)
Mimi (Seeing a pattern here.....)
G-Ma (My husband's personal favorite)

I was just ready to throw it all in and use the old standby of "Grandma".....simple and timeless.
But then I thought about Lily at about age 3.  
About the time when she might have difficulty pronouncing such sounds as the letter "r".  
I envisioned a cute little girl beckoning her "gwanny" and I knew what my "grandmother name" needed to be.
I would be "granny".
Yeah, for all us old folks, it conjures up images of Granny Clampett with her little wire-rimmed glasses and hillbilly attire not to mention her feistiness (this I can relate to!).
But I don't care......Granny it is!
And should anyone really be surprised given my penchant for the good old fashioned granny square???

Yep...."Granny" is the perfect name for me.  

Saturday, September 15, 2012


On a Tuesday morning about five years ago I was doing what I normally did on a Tuesday morning when I was a working stiff......
I was standing in a Starbucks.  Waiting for my drink order.
What made this Tuesday morning so different was that I was in full police uniform, all polished, pressed and shined.
At the time I was assigned to a unit that was responsible for usher duties at police funerals.
I was getting ready for a long day at a funeral for a veteran officer that had died quite suddenly due to natural causes.  
As I stood there waiting for my coffee, a fellow patron approached me and said "I want to thank you for your service."
I cannot remember exactly how I responded but I'm pretty sure that it was something like this.....
I shifted from foot to foot unsteadily
I said a couple of "ums" and "ahs" as I tried to think of an eloquent and wonderfully sincere response.
And in the end I was probably as clumsy as I always am in these situations.
The truth is this was not the first time that someone approached me in uniform to express their gratitude.
However, in true form, I have always responded in the most ungraceful of manners.
I really never know what to say.
There is a big part of me that feels very undeserving of such heralding or praise.
I've never done anything heroic such as run into a burning building or tackle an armed suspect.
Maybe there were times I put myself in harms way. Maybe.
But I cannot think of any off the top of my head.
I hear the stories of other officers and often I stand in awe of them.
There was a fellow officer I worked with that once subdued a drugged up attacker, who was trying to kill him, with his bare hands.
Yes, I do not feel worthy to be in such company.
And today, it is even harder to be an officer on the street.
Much more dangerous and so much more second guessing.
When I think of all of them, I feel like a fraud.
I did not live, eat, or drink the job.
I did not picture myself as the superhero or the first person anyone would want to come to their aid.
I never felt deserving of all the thanks.

But then when my career was over and I was more retrospective I realized something.
The people who approached me were not just thanking me.
No, it wasn't all about me.
When they offered their thanks, they were, by extension, thanking all those who wear the uniform and put their lives on the line daily.
When they thanked me, they were thanking all officers.

Today is National Thank A Police Officer Day.
And I have this one request.
If you see a police officer, make sure to thank him or her.
You will, in essence, be extending your thanks about 800,000 times over.

Friday, September 14, 2012


I needed a vacation.....a break.
A refresher before plunging back into school.
And what promises to be a demanding student teaching schedule.
So off to Vegas we went.
Where we enjoyed some of this.

And this.

And some time with this one.

In the end I am not sure it was really much of a break.
Vegas is always, well, hectic.
And overstimulating.
And extremely smoky.
Clearly the highlight of the trip, for me anyways, was Lily time.

And then we headed home.
Where my sinuses started feeling normal.
And I got my first good night's sleep in four days.
In the end, there is no place like home.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Lately, I've been a little down in the dumps.
I've tried (although not successfully) to avoid the news.
And I stayed away from The Facebook for a few days.
The reasons for my melancholy?
Well that is for another day.
Today, I want to focus on happiness.
Because when I get a little down....there are a few things that can always lift my spirits.

A pile of granny squares.

A relaxing day by the pool with a little lime concoction.

A sweet baby face.

A day of scrapbooking (ignore the mess!)

Happy hour trivia! (No.  I am not an alcoholic! )

At the end of the day.
There was no school work.
There was no watching the news or more specifically, politics.
There was no Facebook.
There was happiness.
Now if I could just stay completely away from the Facebook, the internet, and the tv.
I would then probably always be happy.