How to Ruin Your Thanksgiving Day

DO YOU KNOW how to ruin your Thanksgiving experience? Because when I was a few years old I ruined many good meals for my family, and they ruined many for me.

Kids at the Thanksgiving table, especially if they are tired, sick, on sugar or starving for attention, whine and cry and are picky eaters. 
I heard so many, “You can go and play when you finish your green beans or glazed carrots.” Meanwhile, all the cousins around play and have fun, while you have an unhappy child kept captive and crying at the table.

Bringing up politics, the midterm elections, the borders, “the left” and “the right” may ruin everybody’s Thanksgiving as well. Making a point may not be worthy if your brother and his family leave unexpectedly. If uncle George has something to say about the president, ask him to discuss that after the party.

Turn your Thanksgiving in a sweet time that everybody would remember. Do you know that, when family pray together for a special need, right there on Thanksgiving, you may see miracles? 
Is aunt Becky suffering from back pain? 
Are cousins Jim and Jill longing to have a baby? 
Is nephew Bob stressed out because of his LSAT test?
Family, pray together. You will see God stepping in and bringing His favor over everybody around the table.

Happy Thanksgiving Day!

One Unusual Day

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The house is getting ready for a birthday party. A surprise party. I was surprised to hear about the preparations because I had no idea whose birthday was. I hear the party is going to be in the backyard, with balloons, cake and everything. Our first grader is busy-busy making invitation at the kitchen table. I don’t want to intrude, and I ask for details a little bit shy.
“It is my guinea pig’s birthday,” she says.
I look at her mother and whisper, “She doesn’t have a guinea pig.” The mother nods her head. “She has one.” I look around to spot the celebrity. “It is my pet we played with last night,” she explains. Ah! I remembered the furry toy we were squeezing to make its bum move.
I get an invitation on the spot. Such an honor.
“What’s his name again?”
No answer. We look at each other, the first grader, the toddler and I. Nobody remembers.
Then mama comes back to the room.
“His name is Lenny.”
Such a relief! The toddler starts playing with his play-dough. His sister makes yellow stars on a big birthday announcement.
Let’s the party begin. Happy Birthday, Lenny!

JUST IN: The party was wonderful. It started in the backyard with balloons and fun on the slide while I was taking a nap. Then it moved in the house. Candles, one balloon, and a nice Polish chocolate and honey cake. We sang “Happy Birthday, Lenny!” Our celebrity was totally surprised by such event in his honor and couldn’t say a word. Mom served chicken soup as well. It was only one minor incident when the toddler tried to get more cake from the plates of two guests. But mama handled it with grace, and nobody cried.

The Mailman

postoffice2Had to go to the Post Office to get some stamps for my mom’s b-day card. Asked K2 (2 1/2 years old) if he wanted to see the mailman. Agreed. The twins stayed at home with daddy to celebrate their 6 mo. old, mommy at work, and I got out of the house, holding his little hand. He is carrying a plastic container with a lid, fresh from the dishwasher. I don’t mind.
“You’ll be in the stroller,” I apprise the young man. I get the vehicle from the garage and try to lift the top in a sitting position. I don’t know how. I push and pull, and look under it to find a button or something. The little boy tries to help as well. In vain.
“You have to lie down,” I inform my subordinate. He wants to see the mailman anyway and he listens to me. Then off we go. He keeps opening and closing the lid on top of the container while we go down the hill. We cross the street and walk in the newly remodeled Post Office. Now he is allowed to sit up and watch the mailman as we are waiting in the line. When we get to the counter, I tell the postman he has an admirer. They wave at each other, I pay for the stamps and we are out the door. The little guy closes his eyes. I can see the plastic container gets heavy in his hand. “Well, you don’t fall asleep in the stroller. You sleep in your bed.”
He stays awake. He saw the mailman.

***

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Toddler’s Agenda

Crying-Toddler-Funny-Reason“Pooped!”

The emergency shout mobilizes the entire house. Somebody has to run and wipe out his bum.  Otherwise…

Daddy saves the day.

Clean bottom and clean hands will keep the walls and the floor clean as well. He is hungry.  Why would people take the jar with mayonnaise out of his hands? When a toddler needs to eat right away, a toddler needs to eat right away.

Coffee. He sees it on the edge of the counter. By the time he stretches his arms to get it, it’s gone. Far towards the window, where he can not reach without a chair. The people in this house don’t love him. He screams, but immediately sees grandma’s glasses on the couch. He likes those glasses.

Mommy picks him up and gives him a kiss .

“You are such a good boy! Are you ready for your breakfast?” Before he can answer, he finds himself strapped down in his high chair. And the glasses had vanished. That’s not fair.

“Pancakes and yogurt?”

He loves his life.

***

NEED SOME LAUGHTER today?

CHECK OUT “One Strange Wagon” children’s story by Rodica Iova on Amazon and Kindle.

More Than the Color Grey

zara--wool-coat-product-1-17282416-1-576620617-normalMy mom got me an orange coat that fall.

I was 12 or 13 and the city still had the old kind of stores with the wooden floor smelling of petroleum. We didn’t go often at a clothing store, because buying a thick coat was a great investment for a family of workers in that part of the world. Mom always used to get me one that was one or two sizes bigger, to ensure it would be good for the next couple of years. As a child, I didn’t care. Wearing the coat with folded sleeves was all right. Nobody made a fuss of it.  But now I was already tall and mama was confident enough to buy me one my size. “She would not keep growing like she used to,” mom told dad.

When I entered the store, I could see all the coats on hangers and suspended up high on a string in the back of the counter. The orange one caught my eye. “I want that one.” Mom took a deep breath. “Are you sure they would let you wear it to school? It looks too modern. ”

“They” were the communist leaders in my school.

The same question weighed on my soul for a moment, but I dismissed it. “I’m sure they will,” I assured mom. “Actually, they might not even see it, since I don’t wear it in the classroom, but on the street.”

The clerk managed to get the coat and handed it to me. “It’s a daring color,” he admitted.

I tried it and a warm feeling comforted my heart.

Mama paid for it and let me wear it on our way home. “Here she comes the princess,” I though while catching a glorious glimpse of myself in every single shop-window we were passing by.

I was happy. Life was more than the color grey.

(And no, “they” didn’t catch me, and I wore it for the next three years.)

 

 

 

A Miracle in Transylvania

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I DIDN’T PLAN TO write about this, but I woke up in the middle of the night with this strong thought and I’m pretty sure somebody out there needs to read it.

When my grandma Buna from my mother’s side got married, she was young. Both her parents had died from some disease and Buna was left with a lot of livestock at their farm. Her big sister was already married in another village. So, the relatives had Buna marry my grandpa Bunu, a young soldier who came alive from the war.

A few years later, they had their first daughter and when she was about 4-5 years old Buna got pregnant again. Many weeks into the pregnancy and the baby died in Buna’s womb. They didn’t know that. The mom started to feel sick and then she developed high fever.
Back in 1920’s people there in Transylvania didn’t have a doctor or certified midwives. When giving birth every woman was helped on the spot by who was there, most of them grandmas, aunts and/or lady neighbors.

Bunu had to go to work in the field and couldn’t stay at home to help his wife. He took his wife in the garden under the apple tree in the shade on an improvised daybed and left her there with their little girl. One neighbor was to check on her from time to time.
The days went like this and Buna didn’t die. But she didn’t get better. She was there between life and death asking her daughter for water. The baby inside her was in advanced stage of putrefaction, but the septicemia didn’t kill the mother. That was a miracle. The mother was suffering from the deadly infection, but she stayed alive with no antibiotics.

All of a sudden one day, the stillborn came out. My aunt , the little girl then, was there. She said the baby was black and hard like a piece of charcoal.
From that day on, Buna started to feel better and she lived a long life.

***

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If You Give Birth in Transylvania

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If you have the chance to give birth in a village in Transylvania, this is what to expect:

-many ladies in the village would pay you a visit in the first few weeks from the big event

-they would not come empty handed, but bring you elaborated meals. The menu would necessary include, a pot of fresh chicken soup with homemade noodles, mashed potatoes with fry chicken and a whole three-layer-chocolate cake.

-they would also bring baby clothes and place some money under your baby’s pillow

Keep in mind that every time when you take a walk with your baby in the stroller, neighbors, acquaintances and random people would stop you to see the baby and place cash (only bills, not change)  by his head as a sign of future prosperity.

Now you know what to do.