MY NEW YEAR’S FRIEND

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Source: MY NEW YEAR’S FRIEND

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MY NEW YEAR’S FRIEND

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It’s the last week of the year and here I am, thinking about New Year’s Eve.
It used to be a major event in my life when I was very young. We got to stay up late to watch for the New Year to come in, that is, if we could stay awake. My folks would often play cards with their friends, and we would have one can of pop, and potato chips, or more likely popcorn.
One tradition over the years was that my mother’s oldest friend, Howard, would call her up to wish her Happy New Year. We could always count on him. Howard was one of those people who was always happy, telling jokes, making people smile. His wife of many years, Jeanette, called him “Howie” until he became outrageous and then it was “Howard.” When I was a teenager I babysat for their children, Gayle and Jerry, on Saturday nights. What I really loved was that they belonged to the Doubleday Book Club and so I got to read a lot of adult fiction. My mother didn’t know that, fortunately.
After I became an adult, married and moved away, Howard started to call me on Dec. 31st, no matter where I was. That was probably because I was the oldest. My children still remember to this day. As I traveled all around the country he sometimes had to really work at it to find me. It wasn’t like today where we keep the same phone numbers. I even changed last names. When I was out west in Colorado he struggled with the time differences. But he always managed to find me no matter where I was, and he was a faithful and stalwart friend.
The last time he called me was at our farm about 20 years ago. By now he was in his 80’s. He had been calling me for over 40 years on New Year’s Eve, and our friendship has never been forgotten. New Year’s still brings a smile to my face whenever I remember Howard. He truly cared about what happened in my life, no matter what! His spirit remains with me always throughout my days.

CHRISTMAS WISHES

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I’m dreaming of a White Christmas. Actually all I have got here is a picture of a white tree, an apricot tree that exists only in our memories, but it will do.
It is the Sunday before Christmas, and I have just finished writing my greeting cards. Better late than never, I say. But the bulk of my cards will be the e-card kind, the ones that I can zap on my computer. I won’t have to buy them, or stamp them. I’ll just go into my favorite app, read a few different cards, marvel at how creative they are getting, and then push a few buttons. The only problem with this is that they won’t be remembered as well. Here today, gone tomorrow. But they serve a purpose because it shows the recipient that I am thinking of them, wherever they may be.
My friends and my family are everywhere. I thought about that this morning. Here are the states that my immediate family are scattered to, including my husbands: Washington, North Dakota, North Carolina, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Wisconsin, Florida, California, Louisiana, Arizona, Tennessee. Hope I haven’t left anyone out. E-cards are a great blessing to all of us. They make us smile, or sometimes even do a puzzle. They remind us that someone is thinking of us.
Of course there are still a few folks who have resisted going on line every day, but I am reminding them that they are missing their e-cards.
So Merry Christmas to all of you, and a glorious New Year. Hope that you will enjoy your Christmas card, no matter what kind it is.

YESTERDAY

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Yesterday I couldn’t hear worth a tinker’s darn. I mean, when I turned up the remote on our TV to the point where I could tell what the announcers were saying, and the little black line on the bottom filled up to “69”, it was becoming embarrassing.
Last Monday morning I was sitting at my writing class and we were using a microphone at the table. Altho the words were blurred I kept on smiling. I didn’t want anyone to realize that I had a problem, but finally I asked someone to read a little louder.
After all, I have been living with a man who wears hearing aids for twenty three years. How many times had I repeated myself to him because he truly couldn’t hear well? Over the years we had both adjusted to his requesting and my repeating.
Now the shoe was on the other foot. Especially in the car it really became a problem. Usually he was driving and my left ear seemed to have quit working.
And out of the blue, serendipity you might say, I got a phone call from a local hearing aid center here in town. My spouse had gone to them for some repairs on his hearing aids several years ago. Now the lady had retired and the business had been sold. The new owners were calling her old customers to let them know they were now in business. Like a drowning man reaching for the brass ring I grabbed at an appointment. The next two days were spent talking myself into going to the hearing test that I had set up. I knew that I had a problem,, but it couldn’t be that bad, could it?
The hearing test actually turned out to be fun. I sat in a little booth, repeated the words I thought were spoken to me, pushed the buttons when I heard the sounds, and watched the lines on the computer screen. Technology is wonderful. And technology told me that my left ear was basically in a bad state. I couldn’t hear. The right one was not as bad but on its way to a similar fate.
It was just amazing. He put a small piece in my left ear based on the information from the screen, and I could hear my voice!
This all took place yesterday. TODAY I have my new hearing aid and life has taken on an extra dimension. I even have a little remote where I can set the volume or other good things at any time.
Also I now have something more to put on the charger. My IPad, my IPhone, and my aid charger, can you imagine charging them all every night? Technology has brightened my life in so many ways, and now another big one. I can hear. I can hear the voices of everyone around me. I’ve had to turn down the speakers on the TV. I hear the water running in the sink, or a squeak in my wood floor is new.
So long as I have batteries I won’t have to go back to “Yesterday.” I can relax and know all is well and I CAN HEAR!