Sunday, November 17, 2013


This past Thursday my son-in-law had one of those milestone birthdays.  He turned the big four O.  (Ah, I wish I shared his milestone but that ship has sailed.)  Anyway, my daughter pulled out all the stops and took on the task of planning a surprise party for him.  He knew the two of them were going out with a couple of their friends.  What he didn't expect was that another 25 of their friends were at the restaurant, hiding behind the bar all poised to shout, "Surprise" when he walked in.  He was truly surprised which made the evening even sweeter.  And, as they say, a good time was had by all.

Today we celebrated with cake and ice cream at my daughter and son-in-laws house, a perfect ending to all the birthday festivities.  Cake and pie and ice cream were delish and two of the three children played while the grown-ups yacked.  Ian was so exhausted from having a sleep-over at Papa John's where bed time for the twins ended up being a little before midnight.  Come to think of it, Papa looked pretty exhausted, too.

The poem below I wrote for my son-in-law.  I try to compose one every year and I usually stick it in with his card:

Will's Turning 40, Yay!
by Patty Lynn

You may be turning 40,
But you're not halfway home.
You've got a lot of life to live,
So there's no need to groan.

The future's bright and with it brings
More memories and adventures,
Like watching your two boys grow up
Until you get your dentures.

There're concerts with your besties
And TV soccer, too.
There's drinks with friends &
when that ends,
Those friends will all be new.

For you'll forget just where you parked,
Walk in a room and say,
"I know I came in here to get...
What was it anyway?"

But you've got many, many years
Before you'll see your failings.
Denial is your greatest friend
And speaking of your ailings...

You'll find that when you sit and rest
All comfy and all cozy,
It won't take long until you find
You'll feel a little dozy...

And pretty soon you'll start to snore.
Your better half will wake you.
You'll get up just to get something
And find your bod forsakes you...

Because each joint will ache, you'll see.
Your body will complain.
You'll notice that it gets much worse
If we're expecting rain.

Forgive me if I spread the wealth
The aging game is FUN!
Just ask someone who's old, you'll see.
It's loved by everyone!

I guess that 40's what is called
A milestone, a marker.
You aren't young, you aren't old,
I know I've made it darker...

Than what it is, because, you see,
We who are older still,
Are envious and wish that we
Were 40 like you, Will.

All jokes aside, we wish the best
On this your marker birthday.
We'll celebrate, our voices raise,
Commemorate this Thursday...

November 14th, of the year
Two thousand and thirteen,
Until you're 41, next year,
And we again convene.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


I'm not writing with prejudice, I just know that women with children can relate better than you guys out there.  My niece is in the late stages of her pregnancy and to say she's a bit uncomfortable would be a gross understatement.  I guess we should look on the bright side as, at least, it's not August.  She's still uncomfortable but she's not dying from the heat.  How's that for the bright side?

I've been having her on my mind, praying for her and wanted her to know that so I, as they say, put pen to paper, or more accurately say, put fingers to keyboard and sent her this poem last night.  If you know someone who's experiencing something similar, you might want to share this with her:

by Patty Lynn

I know you're having quite a time
With baby number two.
The days, they're feeling more like weeks,
The weeks, a month or two.

But pretty soon that miracle,
Your baby will be born.
Who knows, he may come late at night,
Or, maybe, early morn.

But he WILL come, now that's for sure,
To bless your family
With tiny toes and button nose.
Now that I guarantee.

For babies are just glorious
And nothing can compare
To every first, hard to describe...
These blessings of your care.

I may be no spring chicken,
But I can still recall
How my heart leapt, that essence kept
Deep in my soul...enthralled...

With all those memories I hold dear,
Of being this, a mother.
The joy of that, still knocks me flat,
A feeling like none other.

I envy you, this time of life,
So much ahead of you;
Another child to nurture, love,
With God to see you through.

So please accept these simple words.
They come right from my heart.
I pray God bless and keep you both
As you your love impart.

May all your days of waiting be
A great anticipation
As deep within your baby grows,
This child of love's creation.

Friday, November 1, 2013


Perhaps, that seems like a strange title for tonight's blog but I was beginning to think I had.  I hadn't written a new poem since I finished my book and I had many attempts.  It could have been that I hadn't had anything peak my interest, or no poetic phrase came to mind that I could go with or, behind door number three...I had lost my touch.  As you age things go like that.  They don't just sneak up on you either.  One day you have 'em and the next you don't. 

But all that aside, something did strike me as poem worthy, namely the commercial readying for the holidays.  When it's barely October and they've got lit Christmas trees laden with ornaments sitting next to the Halloween and Thanksgiving decorations, you've got to say, "Are you kidding me?"  I love the holidays, don't get me wrong, but every year it seems like the retail prep starts earlier and earlier and I'm, frankly, sick of it.

There's too much concentration on the buying of gifts anyway, in my opinion, but starting so early it feels like the wishing and the having of something is being stuffed down our throats.  And the constant timetable, "Only 7 weeks until Christmas, last sale before Christmas, Better get a move on, Time is a-wastin'!"  Nothing leisurely about it, no time to ponder the meaning, just get going.   

And so much is geared to the kids.   Of course, that's just what the manufacturers have in mind, what I call "The More, More, More Syndrome."  What's happened to the giving of a present, not two or three?  Is it any wonder that children feel entitled and are looking for the next gift before they've even finished opening the one in their lap?  We've created self-centered children who expect there will be MORE.  And we can't understand why they're ungrateful brats.  We've played into it all and have created these little monsters.  Shame on us! (Sorry about the soap box tirade.  That wasn't my intent.  Read on. What follows is a much softer perspective.)

by Patty Lynn

Say, what's the hurry, it's too soon
It's barely Halloween.
The stores decked out with Christmas fare
With trees and grass still green?

So, c'mon can't we take our time,
Enjoy these days of Fall,
Watch Winter slowly usher in
Our senses to enthrall...

Anticipate the time when we
As family come together,
To take the opportunity
To snuggle in cold weather...

To bundle up in comfy clothes,
All cozy by the fire,
The sipping of hot chocolate is
What freezing hands desire.

Then as the day comes closer still
For thankfulness and praise,
Share blessings, often undeserved,
Not just one, but for days,

To contemplate Thanksgiving Day
And what it really means,
It's much more than too much to eat
And tighter fitting jeans.

But rather taking stock of all
The Good Lord gives each day.
For whether much or just enough
A thankful heart repays...

By giving back, by sharing too,
And in so doing, lives...
A life that's full of untold wealth
That freely loves, forgives.

And from this holiday begins
Our memories of Christ's birth,
A birth much more significant
Than any here on earth.

So often Christmas time is marred
By selfishness and having,
When value's measured by the price,
And bargains by the grabbing?

Why can't our Christmas truly be
A birthday for our Savior,
Who came to give eternity
From heaven to a manger.

Don't you get gifts on your birthday?
Why can't we do the same
By giving presents to the poor,
Ones given in His name?

It seems to me the holidays
The sped up celebrating,
Lack time to ponder everything.
To me it's devastating.

And if the holidays become
Meshed into one another,
We'll lose the meaning, lose the joy.
Can't we go back, uncover...

The hidden jewel of family
Who love to be together,
Who come as one, who come in love,
No matter Winter weather,

Who worship Christ then pause to say
God Bless you on this Christmas day.
We wouldn't rush to buy, to wrap
And not fall prey to retail's trap.

This year I pledge to slow things down,
And savor every minute,
From Halloween to Christmas time,
Find joy and love within it.