They were splashing in the waist-high water of the lake — boisterous and loud. Three boys on either side of about 10 years old, if my estimate was accurate. I sat on the dock, observing from a distance. The sun shone from behind a splattering of light cloud cover in the otherwise blue sky. The wind blew steadily — stronger than usual — cooling the warm summer air, causing waves and even a few whitecaps on the lake.
I've always been a saucy type. It probably started with ketchup, my first encounter with sauce when I was just a tiny Tater Tot of a girl. Almost everyone has some sort of experience with ketchup. Many of us have a long-term ongoing relationship and find it hard to imagine life without ketchup. My husband is a spreader. I am a dipper.
You could say it started with the simple, round smiling yellow face back in the historic happy hippy days of the 1960s. It's when Yellow Smiley was created first. Love, peace, smiles and all that jazz. For decades, Smiley was just Smiley — the iconic symbol that communicated happiness in any and every language. The word "emoji" hadn't even been invented yet.
It was a day like all others and a day like no other. As was the day before, and the day after — as are all days, just days, but often so much more. A friend mentioned it was her wedding anniversary. She was in a celebratory mood, and rightly so. I asked her the date, because I wasn't sure, and when she told me, I realized it was an anniversary for me as well. Except, mine was a sorrowful milestone.
My husband and I recently took on the task of refinishing the wood floors in three rooms that constitute our downstairs living areas — family room, dining room and miscellaneous room. We're not sure what to call it. Some days it's the sunroom, other days the napping room. Right now, if I am being honest, it is the gaming room.
Things I learned today: Some of the most unexpected actions might make you a hero. Others do not. If you are a parent, this pretty much goes with the territory. For me, it's been this way since the diaper years. When you change a diaper on time, you are a hero. When you fail to smell the stinky-poo, you are less than heroic.
Lately my hands have taken a beating, and I have no one to blame but myself. It happens around this time each year. Spring has sprung and all that jazz. With spring comes gardening and gardening comes with a cost — to my poor bare hands.
We never mastered the barbecue grill. Oh, we tried, of course — in the early years of our marriage. We charred countless chicken breasts and burned a multitude of steaks. Shrimp-on-the-barbie was never as it was supposed to be. No amount of barbecue sauce could salvage our calamities. Our collective lack of grilling ability was so expansive we even managed to light our patio on fire once. We didn't want to be quitters and blamed our failures on the charcoal. The embers were unpredictable — like Goldilocks' porridge either too hot or too cold.
The Table has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. When I was a child, it was my fortress; I crawled under it, learning every crack and crevice from the underside. It seemed massive from my little girl perspective — larger than life. The Table held a revered position in the household. It was old; older than all of us put together — and that even included my dad. It was old, but it was perfect, from the intricately carved claw feet to the highly polished, pristine ebony top with grooved edge.
There are certain things in life that prudent, forward-thinking people avoid. Like putting their tongue on a frozen metal fence, or being outnumbered by their kids. Certain actions just aren't wise and some can even get you into trouble. These are things, that if you are thinking logically, you will never do. For instance, you should never: Litter. Eat crackers in bed. Smoke in bed — or anywhere for that matter. Overflow the bathtub. Overflow the toilet (even worse).