Looking for answers to life's questions

Archive for January, 2018

SUZY Q Dancing in the Window

Our little family of four made the move back to Germany when my dad was reassigned there for three more years. I’m certain mom was glad to be back in familiar territory with her family some distance away but at least on the same continent. Not long after our arrival, my first little brother arrived.

We were technically in Base housing but not isolated or walled off from the city in general. There were five or six large concrete buildings one behind the next that had six apartments on each side and there were two sides to each building with a floor below for storage and a floor above each side that help maids quarters and a playroom at each end. The top floor and bottom basement that had storage units for extra personal things were the only floors that connected the two sides. Each apartment I believe had three bedrooms and one bathroom. There was no outside play area provided.

Mom holding my sister’s hand to keep her in the photo, Aunt Helga and one of her sons sitting in front of mom. Perpetual cigarette in hand. I took off my glasses for the photo

Directly across the street were rows of barracks facing us. Single GI’s lived there or those without families or without families along.. They worked odd shifts so they were there infrequently and stayed to themselves.

My little sister loved to dance and thought she was quite good at it. She didn’t even need music. I think she had her own music playing in her head. She was always happy and carefree with more energy all of us combined. Mom had her hands full and was in a chronic state of overwhelm so my sister just ran. She would sneak out and mom could do nothing till I got home from school as she had a newborn to requiring constant care.

I came in from school one afternoon to see mom staring across the street at the barracks across the street. The GI’s were looking up at the top of our building, which was almost a mirror image of theirs. Mom asked me to go upstairs to the 4th floor where the playroom and empty maid’s quarters were located and see if my sister was playing with the neighbor kids up there.

As I walked into the playroom, I saw my sister up on the wide window ledge with the windows open, dancing. She thought she was entertaining the troops and her friends, having the best time ever. She waved at the GI’s as they held their collective breaths. My heart stopped.

I may have only been 7 but I knew an accident waiting to happen when I saw one. Somehow, I managed to calmly talk her down without incident and took her home. As a hyperactive two year old, listening was not what she did well.

I was just grateful that my sister came down when asked. Probably one of the few times in her life she did as she was told. I wish that was the last time she was in that window or that someone had the foresight to put bars on them but I never saw that happen.


From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

Reset Priorities

December was one of those months that just left me run over. Or maybe it was the couple of months before. I’m supposed to be RETIRED!  That means I’m tired twice, right? It seems that has been my mantra for ages. I’m tired and dragging my buns behind me or sometimes I’m so tired I’m behind my buns.

Dec 25 2017 Last years snow

Dec 25 2018 This years snow. Big difference

I looked around and saw projects that need doing. So many projects and so much basic work that I finally realized I was waking up every morning with a chronic sense of overwhelm. I’ve finally put Christmas away. It’s not that there was a lot out this year, I’m just slower at putting it back.

This one is done and mailed.

I found out why I’m so tired after my physical in October. I have some health challenges that are being addressed and I need to start taking things a little more gently. It doesn’t help when I set my bar higher and higher and wonder why I’m spinning in circles with nothing getting done.

Christmas tea with my daughter at the quilt retreat center. I forgot to photograph before it was all gone.

Lunch at a quilting friends home for our group of six

This year I am taking back some time. I’ve given up some of my outside activities to concentrate more on the internal activities. Wellness is a mindset and mine needs a reset.

I’ve noticed that a lot of my favorite bloggers are not blogging as often either. Many have life challenges and often, when life gives you a load of manure, you use all your energy trying to excavate the pony rather than talk about it. You take a deep breath, pull in your resources and come up with a game plan before you venture out the into the world again.

Jan 1 2018 Super moon on a foggy night

Quiet time is very healthy and I hold a space in my heart for all the bloggers that need that time. I’m wishing you all well too. Going away from this community is not an option for me right now. It gives me hours of encouragement and enlightenment as I see others traverse this treacherous trail of life. I’m traveling a little slower for the time being.  I’ll be here for you too.


From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself