Just going to fill you in on mostly ‘good’ stuff going on in my

family’s life. The best times are with family!

If you celebrated Easter or Passover, hope you had special times

with family, too.

Sometimes, concerns about health issues can be a little bit of a

drawback to a holiday or any visit. You may be interested though,

to know about things, as they progress in my Mom’s aging process.

Colorful sights and fragrant aromas filled the weekend. There were

delicious meals, from Friday until Sunday evening.

Love flowed all around us…

My Mom had saved a Maxine quote, one that I have to share, due to

its Easter holiday theme. She loves it when I tell her I included

something she found, on my blog.

Maxine is an older woman, who sometimes gives biting commentaries.

Other times, she is just an observer on life, as it is for senior

adults. The cartoon character sometimes is wearing a hat or has

a bushy head of white hair, has sun glasses on occasionally and

her pet dog is sometimes looking rather amused or askance at her.

I am sometimes surprised that the creator of Maxine is a man named

John Wagner. Here’s Maxine’s recent yearly physical cartoon:

“Yesterday I went to the doctor

For my yearly physical.

My blood pressure was high.

My cholesterol was high.

I’d gained some weight,

and I didn’t feel so hot.

My doctor said eating right

doesn’t have to be complicated

and it would solve my physical problems.

He said,

‘Just think in colors.

Fill your plate with bright colors.

Try some greens, oranges, reds, maybe

something yellow, and so forth.

So I (Maxine) went right home and ate an

entire bowl of bright colors.

And sure enough, I felt better immediately!

I never knew eating right could be so easy!

Now stay healthy,

Eat your colors and have a nice day.”

(Picture is shown of a bowl of M and M’s.

Mom pointed out, it could have easily been

a bowl of colored jelly beans!)

Speaking of Mom, we went on several ‘wild goose chases,’ while I was


First of all, she felt the sweet young Hispanic housekeeper in her

wing of the Senior Apts. had taken her little Shih Tzu’s hair brush.

Mom had written two concerned letters to me, the subject being

“Missing Items.”

I found the yellow baby brush, she uses on Nicki, under the

bathroom sink.

I took her to Walgreen’s, upon arrival, to purchase necessities,

having not been able to locate her stamps.

(Which Mom was very adamant on this subject, saying they got taken

by the same girl.)

Believe me, if you have read about my mother’s love of young people,

my parents’ marching for civil rights, and paying for two non-Caucasian

females’ college education, you would know this is not aimed towards

race or age of the young Senior Apts. housekeeper.

It involves a combination of Mom’s way of dealing with forgetfulness

or possible dementia setting in. Mom is not mean-spirited, though.

The young woman has told my brothers that Mom hugs and gives her bags

of candy and other gifts.

After purchasing a few items, while I was putting them away I found


While I was looking for scissors, I found her stamps.

It was more of a chaotic time than at Valentine’s Day, when she had

written notes to my grandkids and had candy in bags, ready to take

back after my visit.

This time, her Easter cards were sitting out, with some notes in them,

not addressed. We searched high and low, found a few envelopes with

addresses of her sister, my cousins and her good friends.

I never found Mom’s “Master Address Book.”

We will tackle that ‘chore’ over Memorial Day Weekend!

The fun stuff and special times began on Friday, after shopping

and searching for lost items had been set aside, for dinner.

Mom wore a nice pink jacket with a signature brooch. Mom has always

liked wearing a variety of pins on her lapels. She had a nice pair

of black slacks on. We had heard from my younger brother that he

and his wife, Susan and a possible friend would be joining us at one

of my Mom’s current “favorite restaurants.” She is like a ‘big kid’

and likes Friendly’s for their clam boats, ice cream sundaes and the

colorful atmosphere.

When you walk in the front door, you see such a majestic brass scale

with old fashioned details on it. There is also a large circus mural.

We went home to watch an older movie, which turned out to be quite

different from what we expected. Sidney Poitier plays a type of ‘playboy.’

He depicts a wild, carefree man, who is involved with some dishonest

activities. He is ‘set up’ on a date, by a young man, played by Beau

Bridges. The housekeeper is going to leave her household, having told

the younger members of the family before the ones who have employed her.

She is played by Abbey Lincoln, with an innocent charm. She shows curiosity

about the wilder side that Sidney’s character offers her. Later, we meet

the head of the household, played by Carroll O’Connor. This was a Turner

Classic Movie, called, “For Love of Ivy,” 1968. It has music by Quincy Jones

and a happy ending. It is a satisfying romantic comedy where I was mostly

looking at the wardrobe and commenting on the dialects. (Nehru collars, Kaftan

robes and “Groovy,” spoken.)

We drank a juice glass full of Sangria, had crackers and cheese,

with a ‘side of cookies’ before bed. Mom and I did our special

Spanish toast.

Our Saturday began with my ‘fetching’ breakfast from the dining

room. Mom loves eating breakfast in her room, in her pajamas. I tell

people who ask why she doesn’t come down, that my Dad and she got

‘spoiled’ while retiring early and became ‘night owls!’

I piled on the dining room tray, a jelly donut for Mom, a pecan nut

roll for me, a big bowl of oatmeal with garnishments of brown sugar,

raisins and pats of real butter. It becomes ‘less healthy’ for me, as

I add so much to it! I grabbed 3 cups of delicious coffee, a juice cup

of cranberry juice for her and one of tomato juice for me. I also bring

back two bananas every trip I make (anytime) past the dining room. Mom

lives (while I am away) on bananas and peanut butter out of the jar,

for her breakfasts and lunches. She only goes to dinner in the dining

room daily at 5:30 p.m. Unless we are around to ‘cancel her dinner


On Saturday afternoon, watched a movie I had brought from the library

called, “The Young Victoria,” 2009. It has an excellent British cast

of Emily Blunt, Paul Bettany, Rupert Friend and Miranda Richardson.

I highly recommend this love story about Queen Victoria’s childhood, her

growing up years and her courtship by two suitors. The story made both my

Mom and I ‘tear up,’ but it is still a lovely movie. We hold hands, eat

cookies, candy and some maple flavored walnuts that my youngest daughter

had left behind. They ‘roasted up’ in the microwave, tasting quite yummy

while warm. We ‘pause’ the movie to either make instant coffee or to use

the bathroom. I think that I will always drink coffee, since evidently,

she has lived to 85 and other than needing to use the restroom frequently,

no dangerous side effects!

On Saturday, my artist brother, who had been enjoying a night out

at a place that pays him to paint logos, make tables, along with

clouds and headhunters for either “Fat Head’s Brewery” or “Fat Head’s

Restaurant.” We have eaten their numerous times. Even my good guy

friend, Bill has been up to witness the wall designs and murals.

Last Autumn, I wrote after our going to a gallery opening with some of

Randy’s artwork, we and others went to see the actual brewery. They win

awards for their homemade brews, located in Cleveland and Pittsburg.

Randy will be heading West to Oregon, sometime in the near future, for

a new Fat Head’s Restaurant.

Randy bought Mom’s and my prime rib dinners at a railroad station

restaurant, which while we were in high school was called the “Cahoon


It is located on Cahoon Road, in Westlake, Ohio. It is less than a mile

from our home on the other side of the tracks, where we lived in during

our middle and high school years in Bay Village, Ohio. It is now called,

“The Whistle Stop.” We admired the different antique photographs of trains

and memorabilia along with a brass spittoon on a shelf.

Eating out is a different way to celebrate holidays, than our family

used to in the past. We made adjustments and changes once Mom’s ‘home

base’ was moved into the Senior Apts. In the ‘old days,’ I would drive

up from Delaware, when the children were small and Dad would take over

watching them once we got inside the door of their lake cottage.

Mom and I would head to the grocery store in Vermilion, immediately

upon our arrival.

Our ‘job’ was getting a bunch of food to cook. We would have ‘the boys’

use the gas grill, in all kinds of weather, on the covered porch, a

‘carport,’ but never was used for that.

There were always two picnic tables end to end, lined up and some chairs

positioned around the edges. If it were snowing, one of my brothers, or

while my Dad was alive, wearing ear muffs and armed with the barbecue

equipment, would grill steaks, chops or chicken out there, while Mom

and I would make the side dishes.

Onward to Easter Sunday!

This is getting too long and filled with a mixture of nostalgia and

too many details!

I got Mom’s and my breakfast, we ate it with a little bit of

lingering, knowing that our time was going to be cut short. She

always understands I need to get back to see my grandchildren. Mom

had thought of them last year, after Easter, buying gifts at super

discounted prices. I reassured her, not to worry. They remember her,

some had been here for Thanksgiving and others over last summer.

We have a wedding celebration of my niece, which will be held out at

the lake side cottage.

I had found, in the back of the closet, a packed box of Easter glitter

globes, some with bunnies inside, others with chicks and one smaller

one had Tweety bird in it. I was surprised that she had this one

labeled for Skyler, age 9.

The Official Family Easter Egg Hunt in Delaware with the ‘real’

Easter Bunny’s choices of goodies was held while Nana (otherwise

known as Robin, to you) was out of town. The breakfast and fun time

dying eggs was also completed. (Usually done the day before,

but this time, just in time to crack colored eggs and make deviled

eggs for company.)

I arrived to a sunny and warm, outdoorsy scene with children taking

turns jumping on the trampoline. Others were playing on the swing and

gym set. They were all stopping to run in the house, to receive their

gifts from Great Grammie O. and then, to keep their eyes glued on

something other than the windows, while Nana hid her eggs. I specialize

in putting dollar bills in the green eggs, little wrapped chocolates

in the other colored eggs, along with an occasional quarter or

dime in the yellow eggs. I also gave each a stuffed animal that

was chosen over the course of the year, not all bunnies and

ducks, either.

When all the eggs were found, we went inside to eat a delicious

orange, honey glazed ham. My son made the ham and glaze, mashed

potatoes and green bean casserole. My daughter in law made the 3-cheese

macaroni casserole, chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting and

the deviled eggs.

Yesterday, after I posted my story, I went over to give Micah and

Skyler their gifts from Mom and me. Micah had generously told me

that he “would wait on brother” to open them, since Sky was at

his Dad’s house, while Micah was with his Mom and Dad at my son’s

house. He participated in the egg hunt, meal and trampoline so it

was not a ‘big sacrifice!’

Skyler showed me an amazing gift that the Easter Bunny had given

him at his mother’s house. My daughter, being an artist, had chosen

or suggested to that Bunny, this would be a good year for the two

boys to receive drawing or sketch pads. Sky proceeded last night to

have me sit on his front porch within an arm’s length of him. He

drew a picture of me, with my work shirt on, my worn face none the

worse for wear. He drew in my wrinkles and lines around my mouth, a

good and fairly accurate drawing of me. I was pleased with my oval

shaped head, my neck and eyebrows looked very good. I drew him,

in turn, using a different page, while Micah blew soap bubbles

upon our heads.

We had a lovely and simple, quiet time.

When I got ready to leave, both boys declared they love me, which

is always a happy ending of any holiday! They also pronounced next

Saturday, to be an “overnight with Nana” event. Mom and Micah’s

Dad, Sky’s Stepdad, agreed!


30 responses »

    • I saw you are trying to not include sugar, though, so this would not be a good suggestion for you! I liked that you still ‘broke’ your diet to make your mother in law for her birthday, Orange Chocolate Chip cookies. Anyone here, reading comments, you need to check out Celeste’s blog, Honk If You’re Vegan by clicking on her name above! Smiles, Robin

    • Thanks so much, Jonathan, for your reblogging my post yesterday! I think I visited and mentioned that my Mom and I did pray for the world, family and friends. We also thanked God for the special gift of His Son… I just didn’t go into it, since my own two of three children don’t choose to go to church. I will hope someday they may… smiles, Robin

  1. I love your mother and I love Maxine! Traditions change as we and our parents age, but that’s okay, as long as we focus on the day, it’s all good.
    So…what’s up with the “good guy friend?” Just kidding! πŸ™‚

    • No problem, it is going to be fixed! Anyway, I talk in my early posts, for about 12 or more times, about Bill, my best guy friend. He is zen-like, he has known me for years. I knew him, 3 of his 5 kids knew 2 of my 3 kids, etc. We go out for something here in my small town, called, “First Fridays.” It won’t go any farther than friendship, I have dated on and one guy in particular, that I have ‘break up’ posts and big holes in the ground stories… He has dated a few women, over the years, too. Recently, last Fall through Spring, he is 61 and dated a 39 year old! There is a little info, in a ‘nut shell!’ Smiles, Robin

      • Thanks for the “info” Robin. I hope you don’t think I’m prying. I just want you to be happy and I wasn’t sure if he was someone that could be more than a “best guy friend.”
        Some day, when I have extra time, I definitely want to go back and read your older posts…unless of course, you’re turning those posts into a book! πŸ™‚

  2. Such wonderful family moments. I thought maybe Maxine was going to say she ate a bowl of a Fruit Loops, but the M&M’s is even better. Watching the aging process on our loved ones can be quite a challenge at times. I have seen it played out many times as an RN. Your Mom sounds lovely and it’s wonderful to see she has such a loving family surrounding her(possibly the most important thing in the aging process). Thoroughly enjoyed thus post

    • I like the idea of Fruit Loops in the bowl, too! (or Fruity Pebbles…) I guess the picture was sent off a computer to my Mom. She has ‘pen pals’ who will print out letters, information and stuff off the internet. If she were ‘computer savvy’ they would correspond via emails. While my Mom’s letters include cut out newspaper comics and articles. She does the same for me, taking a lot of time to do this.
      Thank you for noticing my Mom’s health setbacks. I did not realize you were an RN. I think it is so kind that you said all those wonderful comments! We were going to bring Mom here to Delaware where my 3 children and 6 grandchildren live, but we found out that it would cost twice as much as up in Cleveland! My sister in law calls Cleveland the “mecca of nursing homes!” Anyway, Susan, my two brothers and some friends live up there, so they are her ‘network’ and I will be visiting more, now that winter is over! There were a few weekends, even in March, where sleet and ice made me nervous to drive up there! Thanks again for your very nice comments! Hugs, Robin

  3. You are an excellent daughter to your mom, Robin, and the way you bridged the generations over your Easter weekend is wonderful. And, like Barb, I was ready for Maxine’s bowl of colors to be Fruit Loops!

    • I am laughing at the cereal and think that you summarized my post so well! It is nice that you did this, recapping like a sporting or musical event! I can see why you are a journalist and I am a rambling blogger! Smiles, Robin

    • I appreciate this funny thought! Wish we could just blurt out what we thought. I still tend to put my foot in my mouth often. I have improved since high school, where my brother used to joke with the guys he hung around with (and I liked!): “Every time Robin opens her mouth, it is to change (or switch) feet!” Thanks for this and your other comments, so sorry I did not respond back in a timely manner! I explained it on one of the other ones! Smiles, Robin

  4. and i thought maxine’s bowl would be trix. ) it sounds like you had a wonderful easter weekend, filled with fun and food and family and i am excited for the upcoming weekend at nana’s for you and the kids )

    • Trix, that would have been a tasty and colorful idea to fill a bowl with! I think adding milk would have made it ‘too healthy’ for Maxine! She is a chocolate ‘fiend!’ (I assume, since aren’t all of us?!) I look forward to just the boys, once in awhile. We have had such fun, found a miniature waterfall last summer, while ‘creek walking.’ We will definitely be taking our flashlights on a hike over through OWU campus! Smiles, Robin

  5. Your mom and Maxine are both delightful characters! The aging process can be graceful and grace-filled if we allow our love and humor along for the ride. Sounds as if you’re doing just that! What a great Easter! ~Karen~

    • Thank you, Karen! I appreciate those comforting words about grace in aging and in our love and humor when we handle the situation. I am blessed Mom is still around! I was having a very hard time, editing and not wanting to omit too much! Believe it or not, it was almost double in the beginning! Take care and see you over in your ‘neck of the woods.’ Smiles, Robin

  6. Maxine is awesome!! One of my favorites: “I always start running in the fall, not all of me, just my nose.” LOL Your mom is a rip. My gran got like that, losing things. Makes me laugh now when I look back. In our egg hunt, the gold eggs are $20 and the silver, $1 bills. Any other colors are coins or candy or whatnot. It’s fun and the kids make out like bandits. Aw, your grands are precious.

    • I think it is such a fun idea of including money. I found this worked well when my kids turned teens, I have a photograph of my youngest on ‘break’ from college, searching with her church clothes on, and her wet, clean hair wrapped up like a turban with a towel! We laugh because I did include $5 in some, but they would have LOVED your egg hunt, my dear!

      • LOL I’m sure you’re right!! We had teens in their own hunt, and for one I put a DVD aside with a post-it in an egg. It was for Hunger Games: Catching Fire, and the teen seemed pleased with it. Teens are tougher than tots. I did give them a gold egg, too. I didn’t have many gold and silver.

      • Oh, such a good idea, Brenda! Having items set aside with the gift ‘ticket’ enclosed in an egg! I think that movie is a very popular one with teens, too! Great way to add some memories for that teen, too! Fun times! Smiles, Robin

  7. So…I was thinking…since you are from the Columbus area, or familiar with it….what are the best restaurants around the area? I used to go to an Indian one in Dublin when I worked near there years and years and years ago…I know Fado’s Irish Pub…Aladdin’s…and a the ubiquitous Red Robin. But, what are the best places in your opinion?

    • I am not really a connoisseur of food, but I like the Happy Greek on High Street, I like our little restaurants in Delaware, Ohio. Our local Greek restaurant is called, “Opa’s.” We have an Old Bag O’ Nails, as does Westerville, Worthington and Marysville. I do enjoy Schmidts in German Village, Brio’s for Italian but my friends like Marcello’s and Buca Di’ Beppa. (I am not sure about spelling, but the internet will get you there!) We just got a Son of Thurman’s and I like Thurman’s and Katzinger’s in German Village. I do like Red Robin’s, Olive Garden, California Kitchen, The Cheesecake Factory and The Pub at Polaris. I have posted about various locations but not sure if it was Out and About Town or some such title. Thanks for asking!

      • There was a Taverna Opa years ago near German Village- we went there whenever we were in town it seemed like…but i don’t know if they are there anymore. My mother loves ethnic restaurants, so Schmidt’s and Opa’s sound like the ticket next time I’m in Columbus.

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