April 26, 2009


Sorry it's taking me so long to get TSP together! lately it seems like everyone is very busy! So, I'll post this update on life here before too much has slipped by!
Katie and Sergio have the big day planned. It's in a church nearby on May 30th, 2:pm... all family invited! Just let us know! :D
Susan is doing home health nursing... and is really busy!
Mary is in a couple high school plays over here, and a dance recital coming up!
Other than that, all the critters are doing fine, the weather is lovely and everyone is doing well. Lotsa love to all! Until the next update!
Mary <3
Contact number: 540-674-0123, 540-250-2038

March 03, 2009

The Spider and the Fly

An Apologue. A New Version Of An Old Story.

"Will you walk into my parlour?" said the Spider to the Fly,
'Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I've a many curious things to shew when you are there."
"Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair can ne'er come down again."

"I'm sure you must be weary, dear, with soaring up so high;
Will you rest upon my little bed?" said the Spider to the Fly.
"There are pretty curtains drawn around; the sheets are fine and thin,
And if you like to rest awhile, I'll snugly tuck you in!"
"Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "for I've often heard it said,
They never, never wake again, who sleep upon your bed!"

Said the cunning Spider to the Fly, "Dear friend what can I do,
To prove the warm affection I 've always felt for you?
I have within my pantry, good store of all that's nice;
I'm sure you're very welcome -- will you please to take a slice?"
"Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "kind Sir, that cannot be,
I've heard what's in your pantry, and I do not wish to see!"

"Sweet creature!" said the Spider, "you're witty and you're wise,
How handsome are your gauzy wings, how brilliant are your eyes!
I've a little looking-glass upon my parlour shelf,
If you'll step in one moment, dear, you shall behold yourself."
"I thank you, gentle sir," she said, "for what you 're pleased to say,
And bidding you good morning now, I'll call another day."

The Spider turned him round about, and went into his den,
For well he knew the silly Fly would soon come back again:
So he wove a subtle web, in a little corner sly,
And set his table ready, to dine upon the Fly.
Then he came out to his door again, and merrily did sing,
"Come hither, hither, pretty Fly, with the pearl and silver wing;
Your robes are green and purple -- there's a crest upon your head;
Your eyes are like the diamond bright, but mine are dull as lead!"

Alas, alas! how very soon this silly little Fly,
Hearing his wily, flattering words, came slowly flitting by;
With buzzing wings she hung aloft, then near and nearer drew,
Thinking only of her brilliant eyes, and green and purple hue --
Thinking only of her crested head -- poor foolish thing!
At last, Up jumped the cunning Spider, and fiercely held her fast.
He dragged her up his winding stair, into his dismal den,
Within his little parlour -- but she ne'er came out again!

And now dear little children, who may this story read,
To idle, silly flattering words, I pray you ne'er give heed:
Unto an evil counsellor, close heart and ear and eye,
And take a lesson from this tale, of the Spider and the Fly. by Mary Howitt 1821.

March 02, 2009

Editorial, March

Edwin Markham:
He drew a circle that shut me out --
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle that took him in.

My expectation was that I was leaving the hectic emergency room for the calm of home health nursing. It seems I just got there and things started deteriorating. It wasn't me, it was corporate decisions along with a job change for one nurse and the sudden unexpected resignation of another for reasons all her own, but suddenly my 40 hour a week job has blossomed into something far more, with an unsure expectation how the compensation will reflect the extra effort and hours that seem required of me. I hear a rumble of discontent as the load falls on the remaining faithful, and I see folks around me growing weary and wearier, and I feel myself growing. I hear some grumbling, too, since "Corporate" isn't changing their expectations just because we're all working like crazy keeping the patients care needs met, and what has always been a difficult computer system seems almost intolerable in the stress of having to be as efficient as possible - and "Corporate" hasn't seen the light on that one yet.
Circles, and how we draw them, can make all the difference. It's like the foxhole theory, and it seems I come back to it again and again. It's enough to have an enemy outside willing to kill, steal, and destroy. We don't need any enemies inside the foxhole with us! Those bullets and missiles shot at close range seem to hit the target even harder than those we expect from the outside. Thankfully, we're a good team of folks and not many missiles are being launched from the inside. In fact, I find many of us are going the extra to make sure we mention how appreciative we are of the other. It makes a difference.
I love the diverse personalities with whom I have a working relationship, and at the house, I love the diverse personalities of all of us who share the 680 square feet we call home. I want my circles to be drawn broadly, giving each one of these unique individuals an opportunity to blossom into the image of God and His Christ He's created them to be. That, and the blessings He gives His beloved in sleep, His mercies which are new each morning, and the strength He gives those who wait on Him to mount up with wings as eagles, will be enough!

March 01, 2009

In Merlin's Shadow #2

Roxanne and her father Emrys finished their silent dinner and Roxanne had begun to fill the kitchen sink with hot water when a knock at the door disturbed their usual silence.
"I'll get it!" Emrys said He opened the door to find a young man at the door.
"Yes?" Emrys asked curtly "What do you want?"
Roxanne's curiosity brought her to her dad's side before the young man could respond and her gasp of recognition alerted her father that Roxanne knew him."Who are you and what do you want?" Emrys asked gruffly and glanced at the boy's brilliant blue eyes.
"Dad, please don't be rude." Roxanne pleaded."I'm sorry for disturbing you sir, I realize…" The young man began
"Leave off the flattery please. I know you're here for Roxanne." Emrys interrupted.
"Daddy. Please, your not letting him answer." Roxanne pleaded again as she stepped closer to the screen door that separated her from this fellow she had met in the library earlier that day.
"Well, sir," He began again."I met your daughter in the library today. Oh," He said realizing he hadn't answered the questions, "I'm sorry I'm not answering your original question. My name is Joseph and well, I met your daughter, Roxanne…" He paused after saying Roxanne because he had never said her name before. He wanted to taste it and remember it forever. He smiled to her and for her."It's a lovely name, isn't it?" Joseph said dreamily to her but realized again that her father was the gate keeper so he turned his gaze back to Emrys.
"Roxanne is a lovely name sir isn't it? You named her well" His sheepish grin made Emrys furious."Get on with it. I have allot to do and so does Roxanne." Emrys interrupted again and noticed Joseph's face with sun-tanned freckles across his cheekbones and Joseph's wild red hair sticking up in more directions than Emrys thought legal. Emrys wanted to hate the boy but there was something familiar about him too. Something that made him feel safe and almost warm inside. So, Emrys decided to push him away as soon as the possibility presented itself. "Well, my name is Joseph sir." "I am not deaf?" Emrys interrupted trying to make Joseph look stupid to Roxanne. "You have already established your name for us, Joseph." Emrys emphasized the name Joseph in a nasty way and Roxanne wanted to hit him for it. "Maybe," Emrys added noticing Joseph's attention upon Roxanne. "If you stop undressing my daughter with your eyes you can state your business and leave us the hell alone."
"Dad!" Roxanne said alarmed.Joseph's face reddened as much as Roxanne's.
"Sir, I would never. I …" Joseph stammered uncomfortably."Sir," Joseph tried again after taking a breath." I really thought this would be much easier. Roxanne is attractive and I understand you must have that reaction by others in public when they see her, I know how human males can be, They only have one thing on their minds don't they?" Joseph smiled uncomfortably. "But really, Sir, I wasn't …" Joseph didn't want to say "undressing her". Because, even the words embarrassed him.
"Excuse me." Emrys said in the obviously uncomfortable pause."I know how human males can be?" Emrys asked rudely. "Are you not a human male?"
Joseph reddened again and his hand went to his mouth realizing he must be more careful. Roxanne thought his embarrassment made him even more adorable. He was no movie star. She could see that. She smiled watching him struggle with her father.
"Did I say that?" Joseph asked. Directing the question with his eyes to Emrys but he meant it for Roxanne. He desperately wanted to look at her again but after her dad's embarrassing accusation he feared she would think he was doing exactly what her father suggested.
"You did say that." Roxanne giggled. " Do you not consider yourself ," She paused searching for the right word. "not human?"
"And you don't have to be afraid to look at me." She assured him. And his gaze became all hers. " My father says things before he speaks." Roxanne said.
"Before he speaks?" Joseph asked completely lost to her. She giggled again sending shivers through him. Had Joseph not been so desperate to impress Roxanne's Dad he would have spun around like a lunatic on a mountain top and broke into song at that moment and it reflected in his eyes. Capturing Roxanne further into a web of what she could have never imagined and catapulting Emrys further towards the fury he intended for this boy.
"And?" Emrys said reminding the boy that he was there.
"Oh, yes, sir." Joseph forced himself to appear to look at Emrys again but his eyes darted to the side toward Roxanne intermittently. "There's a carnival in town, sir." Joseph said. "My mom wanted to meet you." Joseph smiled like a little boy with a bouquet of dandelions for his first girl friend.
"Me?" Emrys asked surprised.
"No, sir. Not you, I meant Roxanne of coarse." He said and struggled not to turn back to look at Roxanne when he heard her giggle at his mistake.
"She wants to meet Roxanne, of coarse." He said hoping to steady the direction of this conversation."You told your mom about me?" Roxanne asked. Joseph was glad to have another reason to look at her.
"Of coarse. And she wants to meet you at the carnival tonight.." He said.
"How do you know each other?" Emrys asked.
"The library dad." Roxanne answered quickly. "I tripped in the library today and would have hit my head on a shelf except Joseph happened to be there and caught me."
"I see." Emrys said digesting it all."And now this boy who can't even comb his hair thinks you are fair game for dating? And wants me to believe his mother wants to meet you at a carnival? What's wrong with this picture?" Emrys asked snidely.
"My mother works at the carnival sir." Joseph told him wondering why Emrys wouldn't like his hair.
"We travel with the carnival, sir." " We're all like a family there really. I grew up there. Well, not just there where it is now of coarse but with the carnival I mean and Mom will be there tonight and wants to meet Roxanne and read her palm and stuff."
"No!" Emrys answered."We don't participate in the occult. That's occult. It's not a game for us. So the answer is no you can go away now and leave us alone. And, don't bother coming back!" Emrys said sternly as he placed his hand on Roxanne's shoulder and gave her a gentle tug away from the door so he could close it.Roxanne resisted and stepped closer to the screen door.
"Please sir." Joseph pleaded."I'm sure my mom and I would agree with you. Mom reminds me all the time that occultish things and dark magic is forbidden to humans. I nor she would ever presume to…"
Upon hearing the attempted explanation, Emrys grabbed Roxanne's shoulder firmly and yanked her backward from the doorway. She lost her balance and fell over her fathers foot striking her head sharply on the floor. In a moment too quick for Emrys to see, Joseph was inside helping Roxanne to her feet.
"Are you alright?" Joseph asked her while he examined the back of her head and relieved there was no external injury. She nodded silently embarrassed. When Joseph was sure Roxanne was alright he turned his gaze and glared into Emrys eyes. Emrys could see nothing but boiling blue. "Don't ever hurt her again. Ever." Joseph said then took a deep breath and became a nervous boy again.
Trying to dispel the guilt Joseph had just sent into his heart. Emrys turned away from Joseph. Familiarity struck him again and he struggled to remember when had he seen a gaze just like that before?
"Are you really alright, Roxanne?" Joseph asked again.
"Get out of my house!" Emrys commanded sternly.
Joseph obeyed but only as far as the screen door. He turned back to watch Emrys slam the front door in his face. So, Joseph opened the screen door and put his ear to the inner front door.
"When did you decide you could start physically abusing me, Dad?" Roxanne screamed."Obviously I would be safer with a stranger than with my own father! And what's wrong with that picture Dad?" She emphasized the word "that". Roxanne stormed from the living room and into her bedroom and slammed her door shut. Then, she looked out her window hoping against hope that Joseph hadn't left. She was more than pleased to see him listening through the front door and giggled. When her bedroom door opened again she was dressed in the only dress she ever owned, an emerald green dress with an iridescent sheen she found in the thrift store some time ago without her father's knowledge. She liked it because it brought out the red in her hair which she thought, was her most becoming characteristic even with her freckles which she hated until she saw Joseph's freckles today. Besides that, she that dress proved to herself that she was indeed girl instead of just some lump. Emrys never allowed her to wear dresses or makeup or anything that would revealed herself as female.
Roxanne discovered her father sitting on the couch rocking back and forth with his arms around his chest, "Like a lunatic." She thought, glad Joseph didn't see this. This behavior of Emrys' had been increasing in frequency of late and worsened with stress which was one reason she never resisted his moods, until now.
"He needs his medication increased" she comforted herself with as she chose her words. "I'm going." She said and noticed the bloody bandage on his right wrist was. Further indication of his stress level. The bandage protected an unhealed wound, which resulted from being struck by a car during his childhood. The other result was his mental illness, secondary to a massive head injury. The wrist bled in times when he was the most stressed and the rocking made Roxanne feel angry. "You're bleeding again Dad. This is not something to get upset about. You can't keep me caged up here like I'm your pet or something. I'm going to the carnival and I promise to be back at a reasonable time and he is not going to hurt me dad. He's different. I can tell." She said feeling bolder now than usual because Joseph was at the door listening and she hoped he could hear her.
Emrys looked at her. He hadn't realized that Roxanne had grown into womanhood and found himself rather taken by her beauty."You're very…" He struggled uncomfortably. He wanted to say the word beautiful but it caught in his mind somewhere.
"You look very pretty." He settled on saying and he actually smiled. Roxanne's heart softened slightly toward him.
"I don't really." She said, fishing for another rare compliment from her Dad. "Yes," He smiled again.
"You do. You are very…" He inhaled. "I can say it." He told himself in a struggle he couldn't understand. "Go on and be the man" he told himself."Beautiful!" The word came out rather loud and rigid but Roxanne accepted with a smile.
"Roxanne…" He said wanting also to tell her that he loved her. But that was unthinkable for him. The words stuck in that same sticky place in his mind and when that happened he only wanted to sit and rock. His wrist smarted. Except for Roxanne's blue eyes which were her mother's, she was the exact image of the woman in his nightmares. He knew they were just nightmares, part of his illness since childhood, but he couldn't divorce himself from the fact that Roxanne had become the exact image of the woman in his dreams, except that is, for her eyes. She had her mother's blue eyes, not the vivid green eyes. "Like the color of her dress." Emrys realized to his discomfort.
"Her eyes were green, green not blue" he began to repeat in his mind over and over. In the place where things stick.Roxanne recognized the look on her father's face now. He had slipped into his inner world again and began to rock back and forth..
"I'll be home Dad." She said giving him up again and she left.