Sit Down and Take Your Coat Off

The words “Sit down and take your coat off” are ones I heard very often growing up and later when I would visit my mother at her home either in Indiana or Iowa. Those words were part of her greeting to anyone who ventured into her abode. I was always puzzled by her insistence on […]

Cracker Jacks or Cracker Craps?

I love sugar and as a child I also loved little trinkets, no matter how junky they might be. Imagine my face when I found out about Cracker Jacks. I could satisfy my need for sugar and my need for a trinket all in one amazing little box! Problem number one was getting the necessary […]

South of Hell’s Gate

In writing about the long and winding road that my sister and I traveled every summer to Indiana, I failed to mention our mother’s extreme hatred of air conditioning. Every summer, when my sister and I would visit, it was almost without fail the hottest time of the year. And upon our arrival, there would […]

The Long And Winding Road

Once our mother had returned to southern Indiana, every summer my sister Abby and I would make the long and difficult trip to see her. We dreaded these trips, because getting there was a long, arduous drive, but more so because we knew the outcome before we arrived.  At some point in what had been […]

The Postman Didn’t Need to Ring Twice

When Mother moved to southern Indiana, she became best friends with the mailman. While living in southern California, Mother had easy access to a number of stores where she could purchase more junk to clutter her already-brimming apartment. In Indiana, Mother’s access to products locally was severely limited because she lived in a teeny tiny […]

A Job Record Like No Other

Mother had a sordid past in oh so many ways. One of them was her employment record, a record which was scratched and mostly broken. She stayed at jobs less time than it takes most people to apply. You may remember reading about her less than stellar experience at Marshall Field’s in Chicago. Or about […]