The Charming Tyrants

The Charming Tyrants

Good Words

God didn't promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, sun without rain, but He did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears and light for the way. - Anon

Sunday, November 15, 2015


I'm  53 years old and I miss my mother.  I lost her when I was 34. She died on January 26, 1997, 18 years, 9 months, 20 days.

This loss was such an agonizing thing for me.  I lost not only my mom but the person who understood me the best and who listened to me and offered me understanding and unconditional love.  Don't think she didn't call me on it when I was being a whiny bitch, she did, but she did it in a such a way that it was okay.

The thing is that her passing actually made it easier to connect with my dad.  We had always been at odds and she was able to mediate the issues between us.  She made it easier for us to deal.  When she was gone we had to deal face to face and while initially that was excruciatingly difficult in time we were able to connect.  This was the one good thing to come of her passing.

In January it is 19 years since my mommy has been gone, the last time I felt her presence was about a month after she was gone, I felt her rubbing my back as she often did when she came in to wake me up.  She told me it was time, I just lay there reveling in the feel of her hand on my back.  I'd really like to find my mama again.

Go give your mama a hug and if you don't have her go give your daddy a hug in  her place.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day - remebering those who have left us revisted.

The other half of my post didn't post so here it is all on it's own.

Grandpa Leroy - One of my most vivid memories of him occurs when I was about 8 years old and my sister and I went to stay with he and Grandma Margaret; he came in after a long day of work and sat down in his chair and looked at the ceiling and said "Margaet where are my cigarettes?"  He seemed to never be able to find anything, he was always looking at the ceiling when he was asking he where something was.  I don't really remember him speaking much, when he was around us I mostly remember his quiet.

Grandma Margaret - I got to know her so much more than Grandpa Leroy, we had her for a lot longer, I remember her smile, her laugh, her habit of cutting off peoples heads in pictures, her generosity, her wit, helping mama take care of her, watching dad read to her, loving her so much, missing seeing her every day

Aunt Barbara - Mostly I remember her smile, her joy, her love.

Aunt Carol - I remember always thinking she was glamerous, we didn't see her often but she always seemed to be put together and she cared about us.

Aunt Winoa & Aunt Rhea - my grandpa's sisters - I mostly remember their little yappy dogs.  Mom would take us to visit and we would beg to stay in the car because we were a little bit afraid of those dogs.  I found a box of pictures that I think were all Aunt Winoa's it makes me a little sad that we didn't really know them.  I think we would have liked a lot of the same things.

I don't have pictures of my Aunt Barbara or Aunt Carol. It makes me just a little bit sad that I don't know my mom's family better, we always lived in Utah and they always lived in California.  I am so grateful for the time we had with Grandma and love seeing what is happening in the lives of my Uncle Gordon and my California cousins.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Memorial Day - remembering those who have left us.

Grandpa Walt - My first memory is connected to him.  He died when I was a toddler, I remember being passed around at his funeral.  I just remember the moment not really the occasion.  He was a man filled with intergrity he loved his family, the Lord and was a good, faithful man.  

Aunt Beatrice - I remember her rum balls at Christmas.  I remember Christmas Caroling at her house, I remember being 18 and graduating from high school and her calling me to tell me to come live with her and go to the U of U.  I remember dad working on her house, being stunned when she was just gone one day. 

Aunt Annadelle - I remember her voice, her laugh, her stories, the books she had stacked everywhere, the first time I had French Onion soup she made it, I remember being intrigued by her when I was young she lived in Ohio and that seemed so far away and exotic.  

Uncle Sam - I remember his sense of humor, his big black glasses, his willingness to be silly with us, his intelligence, philosophical discussions, his squirt bottle, and his swimming pool in Phoenix! 

Grandma Althea -  so so many memories, sitting in the basement watching her sew, giving me my first Georgette Heyer, Blackberry jelly, wigs, watching her go to college when she was in her 60's, her pottery, her paintings, listening to her conversations with Mom, Mary Crouch and Dad, conversations with her about philosphy, books, children, church and life in general. 

Aunt Lorraine - the lovely way she smelled, her beautiful smile, her wonderful paintings, her cute little dogs, her soft voice, infectious laugh, her friendship with my mom.  I loved her almost as much as I loved my mom. 

Mom - I couldn't have wished for a better mom, friend, or confidante.  I remember trips to the store with her where she would buy a Reese's & a Kit Kat she would split it with me and tell me not to tell the others.  Of course she was doing the same thing with them.  Sitting under a quilt watching her needle move in and out and listening to her and the other church ladies gossip.  Waking up to her rubbing my back, putting curlers in her hair, dressing her for her funeral, and my final memory, feeling her rub my back to wake up about a month after she passed.  

Dad - I remember him reading to us on Saturday afternoons until he fell asleep, he taught me to drive, one rainy afternoon he made me park for 3 or so hours until I finally got it right, weeding the garden, tending the calves, the barrel of wheat in the garage, the mustache, visits when I was in school and pining for home, driving him to and from Cedar City for surgery, giving him his pills, making sure he had eclairs, riding with his body to the cemetary and my final memory, him sitting beside me on the couch about a month after he passed.  

So loved, so missed.  Take a moment today to remember those who are gone, and then give a hug to those who are still here that you love as well.  

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


I guess I'm more like my dad than I thought.

When I was a little girl we regularly had liver and onions because my dad would give blood and Mom was trying to get his iron back up.

Let's just be clear, I hate liver and onions to this day, however, since I was 18 years old I have given blood.  I always thought it was just what you did because it was what Dad did.  This year I was told I can't give blood for at least 15 years.  I thought I handled it pretty well when I was told in April.

This brings us to today, the 2nd of the blood drives we have at work each year.  Giving blood has been a way for me to feel close to my dad so I was feeling pretty sorry for myself and was a bit snarky about it.

Then I looked over at a bin on my desk and saw these:

For my family this will not require explanation, in fact they are probably laughing right now.  For the rest of you.  My father was born in 1933.  He was one of 10 children.  He grew up in extreme poverty.  They lived in tents, the back of a pick up truck, one room shacks, chicken coops and various other assorted structures.  Paper was a luxury.

Up until he died he never used a complete napkin.  That was wasteful.  He would take his napkin and tear it into 4 pieces, use 1 and leave the other 3 in a pile.  When he passed there was a large pile of torn napkins on the table. 

Thanks Dad for the memory.  I love you!

Friday, October 24, 2014

New Glasses & Pumpkin Painting...

HT has been complaining that his eyes were burning in school lately so his mom had his eyes checked.  The results are in and he needs glasses for distance.  I think he's very handsome.  Don't you agree?

In other news we picked up pumpkins yesterday and had a fabulous time painting them.  EM is in the middle of his blue period.  He says this one is a blue kitty with a black bum, bum.

HT painted an Angry Bird...

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Recipe Blogs

My mom wasn't the most adventurous cook.  In fact she didn't learn to cook until after she married my dad.  Plus there was the fact that with 8 kids and a husband who was a student and then a pastor there wasn't much money and or room to experiment.

I didn't really start to like cooking until after she passed away.  When I learned it was at a boarding school where we cooked large quantities for lots of people.  Not a lot of experimentation happening there either, mostly the quick, easy and lots of it.

So, now I like to troll Recipe Blogs, it's fun finding new things to try.  It's amazing to me how many people are publishing these blogs and that so many of them are taking a recipe from one blog and changing one thing, i.e. whole canned tomatoes that you cut up with scissors before you dump it out of the can instead of diced tomatoes or maybe 1/2 teaspoon of salt instead of a full teaspoon.  Then they may or may not say it was "adapted from so and so" and it may or may not include a link. 

What's up with that?  Just once I want one of these blogs to say yeah, I didn't develop this recipe and I didn't really change it but I really liked it so I'm sharing it with you.  I get that it's hard to come up with your own original recipes, but you really shouldn't be calling yourself a "recipe developer" if all you are doing is tweaking someone else's recipe.  I especially find the disclaimer at the bottom disingenuous, you know the one, it says if you use my recipe please link back to my site and give me credit.

Well, I guess I'll go see if I can find something new to cook for dinner.   Who knows I might blog about my "newly adapted" recipe.  

Thursday, September 11, 2014

It's a smile.. right?

This one sat on my legs yesterday afternoon as I was trying to nap on the couch and asked me to take his picture.  I told him to smile and he very firmly told he me he was smiling.

I took the picture and showed it to him and he said "see my wips are turned up".