Peace Day

P

I didn’t know it until I bought a wall calendar today to help with my organization…or lack thereof… but written on today’s date is “Peace Day.”  I had never heard of it, but according to Wikipedia,

The International Day of Peace, sometimes unofficially known as World Peace Day, is observed annually on 21 September. It is dedicated to world peace, and specifically the absence of war and violence, such as might be occasioned by a temporary ceasefire in a combat zone for humanitarian aid access.

Apparently, it is the 30th anniversary of International Peace Day so I don’t know how I hadn’t heard of it before.  Seems like a day that we should promote a lot more!  Peace doesn’t have to be just about a cease in war…unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be an end to that in the near future, but, we should do more to promote this day in our communities, encouraging others to be better people and to live more fulfilling lives by helping others.

Everyone desires peace.  It shouldn’t be celebrated on just one day.  We can create a world that is peaceful one day at a time.

South Orange’s Own “Field of Dreams”

play ball babe ruth

Today, I had the privilege of taking photos for The South Orange Cameron Field Centennial Celebration. Cameron Field is a local baseball field “where the legends played.”  This afternoon, the South Orange Recreation Department and the South Orange Historic Preservation commission sponsored The South Orange Villagers vs The Flemington Neshanock baseball game which was played according to The 1864 rules of baseball.

Cameron Field was dedicated on May 30, 1914 in front of a crowd of nearly 1000 people!!  The idea was to create a space where boys and girls would have space and equipment to play “to their hearts’ content.”

Back in the 1920’s, South Orange would host games that showcased semi-professional talents against other teams and the Negro League teams like The Newark Eagles, a sort of “pseudo All Star Team.”  During that time, players like Willie Mays, Jackie Robinson, Satchel Paige, Larry Doby and many more played games against the South Orange Villagers.  Baseball legends, Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig played in a game on Cameron Field.  They helped lead The Villagers to a win that game and together, they hit three home runs, including a legendary one that went OVER the railroad tracks.

I learned so many fun tidbits today watching the game.  No gloves were worn – since they hadn’t been invented yet in 1864.  Pitchers could only throw underhanded, running past first base would result in an out.  A fly ball could be caught on one bounce, resulting in an out.  VERY different than today’s rules which was probably why The Villagers lost 15-2. The Flemington Neshanock team plays 40-45 games a year promoting the history of baseball so they are used to crazy bounces and old-time rules.  The other team wore uniforms that were “throw back” vintage. They had bibs attached to them because the bibs were interchangeable. If a player was traded to a different team, they could still wear the same uniform, with another team’s bib and hat.

Despite the score, it was a fun, well attended game and everyone seemed to have a great time!

south orange baseball

Special thanks to The South Orange Historic Preservation Committee, where I was able to learn a lot of the interesting facts that I have included here today.

Iphone Frenzy

apple

I have to confess, I am a total “Apple Girl.”  I use a Mac, have an iPhone and an iPad.  Our family has a total of three iPads and four iPhones.  We are an Apple family.  Yet, I just don’t understand the frenzy when a new Apple product comes out.  Honestly, camping out for a week just to get the newest and latest product??  It makes no sense to me.  The fact that it is the top story on the news and people are celebrating because they were first on line – maybe I am missing something.

Seeing all of the craziness, makes me think of greed and gluttony, yet then I feel like a hypocrite, knowing there are seven apple products in our house alone.  Will we get the newest one?  Maybe, when our contract is up and we are due for a new one, but I won’t be on a line or get on a waiting list waiting for this one.  I’ll get it when it is time.   It just seems like there are so many more important things that we need or could use.  Is this “newest and greatest” phone going to do that much more than I already can do on my phone? Even if it does, do I need that??

I admit…losing my phone would be a calamity.  Everything is on it.  I don’t even know my kids’ phone numbers by heart since I just have to type their name in my phone to call them.  All of my contacts are there and I rely on it for A LOT!  That doesn’t mean I need a new one.  I am happy with the one I have.  I will get the 6 when it is time for an upgrade…probably right before they launch the 7!

No More Coddling!

roots to grow

Tonight was Back to School Night for Drew.  7th Grade.  Last year was such a great year….smooth transition, no complaints about school, he loved his teachers, made the honor roll three quarters out of four.  It was almost blissful. Even Back to School Night last year was joyful.  I loved his teachers, his team.  It was a just a really fantastic school year, and for anyone who knows Drew, it is a tough task to keep him interested, alert and eager to learn!

Well, the honeymoon is over.  He’s been in school for 11 days.  Some complaints already, A LOT more homework.  No more coddling.  They aren’t babies anymore is basically what I heard in one class.  I have been hearing this since last year.  Whenever I raved about how wonderful school was for him, I’d hear, “It is so different in 7th grade.”  Such a contrast from last year.

I know there are a few years that are what teachers call, “transition years.”  This is one of them.  I could even feel that vibe myself just sitting through his classes tonight. It is going to be rough and he might struggle, but I know that as a classified student, and with the extra help he will be receiving, he will be okay.  It will be a lot more work than it was last year, but he will get through.  I am sure we will have some homework battles at home…it will probably even wind up in a blog now and then.  Last year, it was so easy to work along side with his team and his inclusion teacher.  This year might be more difficult, and I know I have to let him develop more independence.  It will be a learning and growing experience for both of us!

Disposition

martha washington circumstances

Today is one of those days where I am struggling to find something to write about. When this happens, I look through quotes that I collect in a folder that I call, “unused but still inspiring…”  These sometimes help me get motivated.  I came across this one in the folder and decided that it fits.

It has been a rough few weeks with dad in the hospital.  It has caused a lot of stress and disagreements among our family.  I know this happens often when a loved one is sick.  Bickering, arguing not all getting along….I know it isn’t uncommon.  Tonight, he is home and although our schedules are crazy and hectic, Dave and I made dinner at his house for my sister’s family, my older brother and my dad.  We all ate at his house and made sure that he was settled, fed and comfortable.  He seems to be doing fine and with very few restrictions, he is sure to be out and about in a few days.

We had planned something small just the four of us and dad, but it turned into something bigger when my dad called and invited the rest of the family.  At first I was frustrated, not thinking there would be enough for everyone, and knowing that now I was cooking for ten rather than five, but Dave assured me that he’d bought enough for us all and not to worry about it.  My sister offered to go and buy more food to contribute to the meal, but it wasn’t even necessary.  Even if there hadn’t been enough, we would have made it work.  We always do.  Her kids, who are far less picky eaters than my own, wound up eating more than mine did and they enjoyed it.  That was a nice bonus!

At the end of dinner, Kathi, Dave and I did the cleanup and I was able to continue with purging his pantry that sadly is filled with expired cans and boxes of food.  Since he doesn’t do any cooking on his own, a lot of it has passed its expiration date.  It aches me to throw it away when I know how many starving people there are, but no one can use it past the dates so it has to be trashed.  I do a little bit each time I go.  My mom used to cook for a crowd and always over ordered in her grocery orders. They have a very big pantry and it will take some time to go through it all since we do it little by little.

Although I don’t show it much in public, (I reserve it for my family,) I often need reminders to appreciate what I have and to be less pessimistic.  We are all healthy, I have a job that I love, I am married to my best friend, have really great kids and amazing friends.  Yes, Dave needs a job, we could use more money, a bigger house, a cleaning lady…(my list goes on and on.) But in the end, rather than dwelling on the things I don’t have, I will try my best to see the bright side of situations and look for more positives.  A challenge I give to myself.

He’s Home

grateful2

Not much time to post tonight but thank you for all the well wishes.  My dad came home today and is much, much happier.  Dave picked him up, brought him home, did his grocery and medical shopping and hopefully he will be fine staying at home alone. According to his doctors, if he was to go home, he had to be sure he could be independent.  He says he is so we are trusting that he will keep to his word and let us know as soon as something does not seem right.  Hopefully it will all be fine and he will be back to his normal routine soon.

I had a busy day at work with two meetings so I haven’t even gotten over to see him but I can’t even count how many people asked about him today and were expressing their concern. Everyone misses him in town.  He’s a regular sight in the village.  Everyone knows him.  It is good to be well known..it means a lot of people are praying and wishing for your speedy recovery!  Our whole family thanks you for your thoughts and prayers.  We are grateful.

Cranky

small steps

Dad has reached that point.  He wants to leave the hospital.  He is done and ready to go home…at least he feels that way.  Unfortunately his doctors do not agree.  He has gotten his hemoglobin levels to stay in the 9’s and that is okay but he has been attached to oxygen for the last few days and every time they take it off, his saturation levels drop too low for them to feel that he can leave safely.

He was not happy when I got there after school today.  He wanted answers from his doctors!  I was able to speak to two of them on the phone.  Both were very helpful to me but when I relayed their information to my dad, he wasn’t satisfied. It doesn’t help that now he also has a stiff neck making him miserable. Not sure where this is coming from.  Being in bed for a week?  A symptom from something else??  I told him he must tell the doctors and nurses about it though because if he doesn’t tell them, hoping that it gets him released sooner, he’s just going to wind up back there again.  I think he will listen…I hope he will!

One of his doctors was so incredibly kind to me on the phone.  I told him how dad was at his wits end.  The first week was honestly pretty smooth…very little complaints from him.  He was following doctors and nurses orders doing everything EXCEPT for walking around.  So now, his legs aren’t working well again.  This was what has kept him in rehab from the last time he was in the hospital.  Hopefully it won’t put him too far behind in his progress.  The doctor told me to remind him that he has to walk.  When he leaves, he will be going home with oxygen. He has to use it.  If he doesn’t he will wind up back in the hospital.  We have to keep reminding him of that.

I am keeping my fingers crossed that tomorrow we get good news and he is able to go home.  If not, he will not be happy but they wouldn’t be keeping him there if there isn’t a reason for it.  We just have to convince him of that!