23 May, 2016

Things my Father taught me...

Some goddesses are puzzled by this...like me...going introspective as I and my daughter visited my parents' graves last month. I try to make it a habit to visit their graves at Willamete National Cemetery on my Dad's birthday so it's a happy memory, not a sad anniversary, like a death anniversary. I want to think of them as they were while alive.

I got thinking about the eulogy I gave for my dad at his funeral. Up until the last minute I wasn't sure I was going to but it just felt right. Dad's world had narrowed so much in his last years as his health failed and he wasn't working. He seemed to retreat more toward the past and family became ever more important to him, and I've come to understand that. The family I love and the things I had left undone for them became much more important to me after I had a heart attack scare a few years ago. I now know that my dad was told that he had a limited time to live because he had congestive heart failure and was trying to set things up so that my mom would be in good shape to be covered and okay. He always cared for her in his quiet way.

But back to the eulogy...the one huge lesson I remember from my dad is that you can learn just about anything you want to do from a book. And he put that into practice most of his life. He never let the fact that he didn't know something stop him from trying to do it. It was just one more challenge he hadn't learned about. I think some of that attitude came from his life's career (and one of mine) which was as a computer systems analyst. Which, if you are a good one, means that you intimately understand all the processes around the computerized systems you are bringing into being so that you can streamline them, design the correct supporting data structures and implement the training necessary for all people who are impacted by the system. To do this you have to have a deep understanding of the business process you are automating. Books can definitely come into play in this process. My father in fact possessed a business degree, as do I. His was in Management I believe, and he had certificates as a Data Wiring Operator (early computer programmer), and Systems Analyst well before colleges or universities offered the degrees as well as classes in COBOL, FORTRAN and a few other languages like me. My degree is in Project Management (probably following in Dad's footsteps...we were both Aries! And I wrote code in even more computer languages than he did. LOL and ended up a Systems Analyst and Computer Network Project Manager.) My Dad had also worked as a Draftsman and worked on a graduate degree in Engineering which he had never had the time to finish with his growing family.

But my Dad also was in the Air Force during the Korean War as part of the DEW line as a control tower officer and pilot. And when he got out he built a mobile home for he and my mother, and my older brother and sister, from scratch. Then a site built home...by reading about the codes and looking at blueprints and doing the wiring and the plumbing and the metal work and the rest of it pretty much by himself, or with his wife and kids help. As one of his kids I can attest to it. He had an almost endless belief in his power to learn anything, and he could. He passed that on. Before I entered high school I sweated pipes and soldered them and wired the electrical in our house and helped put up the sheetrock and do the taping, did the rebar and helped pour the cement, placed pier blocks and did rough and finish framing. The only thing I never did was lay carpet. (Thank you, God!)

 I really hope I've passed on this same type of belief to my children. I think I have. Because when something new comes up as a question that needs to be solved or done they don't necessarily turn to a book, or Mom or Dad, but the computer comes out, the internet is fired up...google is queried and youtube's brain is sucked dry. And low and behold the answer is found and the project is accomplished! So Thank You Daddy, we love you still and we appreciate your legacy!

from the puzzled  goddess of knowledge....

22 May, 2016

The lovely month of May...

Some goddesses are puzzled by this...like me...
it's that time of year, even bunnies are out to play. I saw one on my way to the MAX the other day and had to stop and snap his mug shot. Yeah, it was a really cheesy thing to do, but come on, I live in the city. How often do you see little bunny foo foo hopping out of the forest? I mean I live in the third largest city in Oregon. I was seriously looking around for the good fairy and his magic wand. No joy.

But dreams of hossenpfeffer and grilled thumper thighs followed me to bed that night. Num. He just hopped faster than I could deploy my mad skills with the folding cane and walker. Drat it!

But we've had some beautiful Oregon Spring days.
Like this one from the first of the month when I went to pick up my prescriptions 2 miles away and it was sunny, but it hailed back near where I live. That's Spring in Oregon for you. But the sun has been visiting, making us all think that we might have some warm days this year, even the flowers are approving.

I'm seeing more and more on my walks around the neighborhood. The vacant lot has nice wild weeds and the townhouses next door have lovely gardens. My own apartments are kind of blah though. But I can deal with it since I would much rather look at the pretty flowers than smell them coming in my air conditioner all the time.

These perennials are a lovely addition every year.

And these blue flowers form hedges that are waist high.

Who doesn't like Roses?
As for the last few days? It's been raining..
.It is Spring in Oregon after all....from the puzzled goddess of nature

In any color?