Better Weather on the Way

PHOTO PROMPT © Sarah Potter

Photo copyright: Sarah Potter

Many thanks to our gracious host and purple aficionado, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for giving us our weekly prompt here at Friday Fictioneers and to Sarah Potter for supplying the photo prompt. My initial response was zilch, having locked my muse in my sewing closet last weekend. However, she won’t stay there when a challenge like this presents itself. Today she popped up to remind me of dear old Whiny…Winnie.

Another vacation trial for the peevish Winnie and her long-suffering traveling companion, Raylene. To read the first part of their Florida adventure, click here.


Winnie was staring out the window when Raylene looked up from the TV screen. “Are you happy now,” she asked. “That nice manager gave us a room with a better view.”

Winnie scowled at her. “But it’s still snowing in Florida, of all things. How will we manage Disney World tomorrow in this mess?”

Raylene hit the power switch. “I have good news for you, dear. The weatherman says there’s a hurricane barreling toward the Florida coast as we speak. Should hit here tomorrow about noon. That’ll wash away all this snow.”

Winnie eyed the outdoor scene. “Well. Thanks be!”


Photo courtesy of Pixabay

—Winnie in Florida hoping for sun 🙂 —

Grandma’s Birthday Party

Part One:

“I think it’s so great that you still have your grandparents,” Tiffany said to Todd as they walked up the steps to his Uncle Steve’s home. “And a family that gets along so well — not everyone has that.”

Todd nodded. “Yeah, we have a lot of reasons to be thankful. We’ve been able to celebrate Grandma’s birthday every year, but this one will be the party to end all parties.” Todd and his wife were joining the family this evening to plan some last-minute details of Grandma’s eightieth birthday coming up in four days.

Uncle Steve opened the door just as Todd reached toward the doorbell. “Hello, nephew. Hi Tiffany. Glad you could make it. Come on in. Darryl, Jenny and Jim, Matt and Shelby are here already.”

Tiffany glanced at Todd and he whispered in her ear. “You’ll remember Matt & Shelby when you see them. He’s Uncle Steve’s son; they were at our wedding, but moved to BC two months later. Jenny is Aunt Joyce’s daughter; she and Jim live in Nova Scotia.”

Aunt Cassie swished by in her long dark skirt. “I’ve set out punch and snacks on the kitchen counter. Help yourselves when you’re ready.”

Todd and Tiffany walked into the living room and exchanged hugs and greetings with his brother Darryl and the cousins gathered there.

Jenny gave Tiffany a big hug, saying “Now I finally get to meet Todd’s wife. Welcome to the family. I see you two are being fruitful and multiplying. Congratulations.”

“Thank you,” said Tiffany. “I’ve really enjoyed being a part of your family and am looking forward to meeting the rest at Grandma’s party.”

“We all are. But are you going to be there? Mom tells me your baby’s due in a couple of weeks — which means any day now.”

“I hope Junior can wait a bit — at least until the next day!”

“Yeah,” said Todd. “We’d be disappointed to miss Grandma’s big do. Mind you, not TOO disappointed.” He put his arm around Tiffany and winked at Jenny. “If we’re in on another birthday party instead.”

Jim laughed. “You wouldn’t want to miss that one, I’m sure.”

Todd grinned, then glanced back at Jenny again. “Your Mom not here yet?”

Jenny shook her head. “I don’t know what’s keeping her. Your Dad and Mom are coming, too, aren’t they?”

Todd shrugged. “I’m sure they will. I thought they’d even beat us here.”

Jenny frowned. “You know, Todd, I’m getting wind of a little difference of opinion between my mom and your dad. I heard her talking on the phone yesterday evening — I think it was to Uncle Brian — and she seemed pretty upset about something. I’m hoping this blows over and doesn’t spoil Grandma’s special day.”

Todd’s brows arched. “My folks haven’t said anything to me. Can’t imagine what they’d quarrel about – especially right now.”

“Well, your dad can be pretty stuck on his own ideas sometimes.”

Todd bristled. “If I recall correctly, Aunt Joyce can be pretty insistent at times, too.” Tiffany nudged his arm.

“Well, yes, she can. I have to admit that.”

Aunt Cassie caught the last part of this conversation in passing. “I hope they can set aside their differences for Grandma’s sake. I’ve been looking in on her more lately; it seems she’s not as strong as she used to be. I was surprised how pale she looked last week.”

Jim nudged his wife. “Here’s your mom now.”

They all looked out and saw Joyce get out of her car, holding a cell phone to her ear. She appeared to be having an angry conversation with someone, waving her arms at times.

“I hope she wasn’t talking like that while driving.” Jim’s tone was reproachful.

“And here come Brian and Sylvie,” said Cassie as Todd’s father and mother got out of their car and stood on the street.

“Dad’s talking on his phone, too.” Todd saw his father run his hand through his hair impatiently. “He seems pretty upset. Why aren’t they coming in?”

“You don’t suppose they’re talking to each other, do you?” Tiffany asked.

Todd frowned. “When they’re only fifty feet apart?”

“I hope not,” Jim added. “They both look like tornadoes about to touch down on someone. Maybe us.”

They watched Joyce shut her phone with a snap and stuff it in her purse. She shot an angry glance at her brother, then hurried toward the house. Aunt Cassie rushed to open the door.

Todd’s father shut his phone at the same moment and rammed it into his pocket. He turned to his wife to discuss something with her.

Joyce charged into the house. Her eyes fastened on Todd and she hissed, “Your father is a pig-headed imbecile!”

Jaws dropped all over the room. Aunt Cassie gasped. But before anyone could answer, the door banged open and Brian marched in, his trembling wife in tow.

To be continued…


This is Part One of my reply to the Write 101 Day Fourteen challenge:

Think about an event you’ve attended and loved. Imagine you’re told it will be cancelled forever or taken over by an evil corporate force. How does that make you feel?

Walk Beside Me Awhile

Take A Few Minutes to Listen

In the course of bustling around the hospital ward, Nurse Edith came past the room of an elderly lady who’d been in the hospital for a short time, recovering from surgery. The old dear was starting to shuffle around again; now she was standing in the doorway and called to Edith as she went past. With a cheerful smile Edith stopped to see if the lady needed anything.

“Isn’t there a television room at the end of the hall?” the old lady asked. “Would you help me to go there?”

“Sure I will. But it will be such a long walk for you, dear. Let me find a wheelchair and I’ll zip you down there in no time.” Edith looked around for a chair.

“Oh, you needn’t do that. The walk will do me good. Just take my arm and I’ll manage if we take it slowly.”

So Nurse Edith took the woman’s arm and accompanied her down the hallway; the old dear visiting with her the whole time. When they entered the lounge Nurse Edith led her toward a recliner. “Here’s a nice comfy chair for you, dear. I’ll turn the television on if you like. Would you like a pillow and blanket?”

“Oh, I don’t plan to stay here. I’m not interested in watching TV really, but I’ve so much been wishing for someone to talk to. I’ve observed you tending to other patients and you seem like such a kind, friendly person I thought you would oblige me. But you can take me back to my room now.”

What could Edith say? Her heart went out to this poor woman recovering from a bad bout and just wanting someone to talk to. With a sweet smile she took the old lady’s arm again and they went back down the same hall, chatting all the way.

Have you lent a listening ear to anyone today? If so, I hope the Lord will give you a blessing for it.


Antiquarian Anabaptist

There are things that I wish that I would have understood better when my parents were suffering with dementia.  Above all, I wish I could have understood that even though their personalities had changed and their memories seemed to be gone, the father and mother that I had once known were still there, though unable to communicate.

I am beginning to understand how important it is to talk to such people and demonstrate our love in other ways, even though we see no sign of understanding and response.  And in some way that is unfathomable to us, God is still able to communicate with people with dementia.

Yesterday I attended a volunteer appreciation tea, put on by one of the hospitals in Saskatoon, for those who are involved in the Sunday morning chapel services.  The conversation got around to how important it is to older people to hear the familiar…

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Here’s a little story I was going to include in my upcoming book, but at the suggestion of writer friends, I’ve pulled it and worked on it a bit more, to give my readers a more complete picture.


One sunny afternoon Mavis Gilbert took her cane and set off to visit her good friend Annie Mitchell. Since Mavis’s husband Charlie passed away, the two ladies had fallen into the habit of having afternoon tea together at three, after Mavis got up from her nap.

Annie welcomed Mavis in and soon she was seated at the table while Annie brewed some tea. “I hope you’re fond of banana bread,” said Annie as she sliced some cheese. “I asked George to pick up some biscuits at the supermarket when he went yesterday, but it seems he forgot.”

“One of his senior moments?” Mavis asked. “I understand them all too well; my forgetter is working overtime these days, too.”

“Tell me about it. And George is so good to do things for me, I didn’t want to mention his lapse. Thankfully our daughter stopped in this morning and brought us this fresh loaf of banana bread.”

“All’s well that ends well. And it’s a treat for me. I’m very fond of banana bread.”

Annie carried two cups of tea to the table, then set the plate of bread and cheese in front of Mavis. She took a couple of napkins from the counter, picking up several envelopes as well. “Just help yourself, Mavis. I hope you don’t mind if I address these letters. I want to get George to mail them when he goes for his walk, which he usually does about his time.”

“Go right ahead,” said Annie as she set a slice of cheese on her banana bread. “You’ve written quite a few, too. Good for you. I need to send some letters off myself, but it’s so easy to procrastinate.”

Annie fanned out the envelopes, copied addresses on them from her address book, and put a stamp on each. Then she closed her book and Mavis watched her address the last envelope to Mrs A Mitchell.

When she saw her friend write her own address on the letter, Mavis’ curiosity was piqued. “Are you mailing a letter to yourself?”

Annie looked around and lowered her voice. “As I said, George is a bit forgetful. But I don’t want to always be asking him, ‘Did you remember to mail those letters?’ So I devised this system: I always slip one in that’s addressed to myself. If it doesn’t come back to me in a few days I know I’d best look in the car or his jacket pocket to see where my letters have stayed.”

Mavis chuckled. “Now that’s a great idea. I’m going to pass it on to my daughters for when senior moments hit their households. If we try, we can often find a kind way around our loved ones’ failings.”

A Senior Moment

These past two weeks have been rather exciting for me, as I’m finally doing the ground work for the book of poetry and parables I want to publish.  So I’ve been going through my two blogs and taking out all the items I want to include in my book, plus going through a flurry of scrap paper scribbling that has collected over the years– some to finish and some to finally abandon.  And working on a few new poems.  And praying the project will fly.☺

As secretary of the His Imprint Christian writers group, I’m also involved in spreading the word about our writers conference April 12-13.  One of the co-ordinators assured me the mail-out info would be ready today, so yesterday I spent a few hours going through past records and addressing 88 envelopes for brochure/registrations to send to past attendees.

This afternoon I picked up the brochures and posters from the printer and Bob & I stuffed and mailed them.  One job done.  As soon as I get the info in a PDF file I can e-mail it to dozens of churches in the region around us.  Since I volunteered for this job, January & February have been busy months for me, which is why I’m not doing as much posting.

I came across a writing two days ago that gave me a chuckle – especially since I forgot I had the car at church last Tuesday (Sewing Day) and almost left without it!  (I think they call this “a senior moment” and I’ve been having too many lately.)  I don’t know who wrote this, but I hope it will give you a smile:


I’m the life of the party…even when it lasts until 8 p.m.
I’m very good at opening child-proof caps with a hammer.
I’m usually interested in going home before I get to where I’m going.
I’m good on a trip for at least an hour without my aspirin, beano and antacid.
I’m the first one to find the bathroom wherever I go.
I’m awake for hours before my body allows me to get up.
I’m smiling all the time because I can’t hear a word you are saying.
I’m very good at telling stories…over and over and over and over.
I’m aware that other people’s grandchildren are not as bright as mine.
I’m so cared for: long-term care, eye care, private care, dental care….
I’m not grouchy, I just don’t like traffic, waiting, crowds, children, politicians….
I’m positive I did housework correctly before my mate retired.
I’m sure everything I can’t find is in a secure place.
I’m wrinkled, saggy and lumpy, and that’s just my left leg.
I’m having trouble remembering simple words like….
I’m now spending more time with my pillows than with my mate.
I’m realizing that aging is not for sissies.
I’m anti-everything now: anti-fat, anti-smoke, anti-noise, anti-inflammation….
I’m walking more (to the bathroom) and enjoying it less.
I’m sure they are making adults much younger these days.
I’m in the initial state of my golden years: OAP, CPP, mature RRSP…
I’m wondering…if you’re only as old as you feel, how could I be alive at 135?
I’m a walking storeroom of facts…I’ve just lost the storeroom.
I’m a Senior Citizen and I think I am having the time of my life!