Happy is the husband of a good wife; the number of his days will be doubled. A loyal wife brings joy to her husband, and he will complete his years in peace. A good wife is a great blessing; she will be granted among the blessings of the man who fears the Lord. Whether rich or poor, his heart is content, and at all times his face is cheerful…
Eventually, we sold our house in Ogdensburg and bought the house on West Ninth Street in 1980. Remember Mandy? That stupid dog would intentionally pee or poop in the house just to get thrown outside. But one wintry night she fell asleep under a blanket of snow on West Ninth Street. I really thought she froze to death and Mom told me not to tell you kids. But, next morning, there she was shaking off the snow. That’s when Mandy became an indoor dog.
And, there was the joy of food fights; sharing Thanksgiving with a lonely widow; taking Dr. Bob into our home; learning homemade gifts were worth more than store bought gifts; writing Christmas stories and scripting scavenger hunts (Mom always insisted she hated them, but I know for a fact how disappointed she was when I didn’t come up with a Yuletime story). Too, there was Dr. B and the close friendships she developed with Rita, Marlene, Leita and ValliJo. There was the trip to Junction City, KS, (hooker heaven) and Clinton, IL (you think Belvidere is flat!!!), but also the junkets to Milwaukee and Green Bay (much more pleasurable and relaxing).
And the not so joyful almost weekly trips to the ER with Nicolle, Scott’s “bathroom trip” at Lino’s in Rockford, Scott burning himself while trying to bring a Mother’s Day breakfast tray upstairs, Scott’s infamous “tummy ache” on West Ninth Street –notice a pattern here — and letting Joe go off on his own.
We lost Great-Grandma Christie and Great-Grandpa Siccardi and both of us regretted not being able to make it back for their funerals. Losing Great-Grandma Christie was especially tough on Mom. They were very close. Great-Grandma was Mom’s “best friend” and a surrogate mother. Mom could tell her anything and know it wouldn’t go beyond their conversation. She was a mentor in forming Mom’s life’s choices.
To be continued …
THOUGHT TO REMEMBER: Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time, and always start with the person nearest you. — Mother Teresa