An evening with friends

cercLast night Ron and I had a wonderful evening with a special group of friends. We all know how much these special friends mean to us. Wonderful food, lots of laughs and memories from years gone by. What more could one ask. Everyone kept teasing me about taking notes for my next book. Hmmm now for a title lol.

When we are young and carefree we do not think thirty or forty years in the future and what these precious times will mean to us. Some of us at the dinner table have been friends for over thirty-five years. Some we just met last night but the feeling was one of something that can last forever. 

Feeling nostalgic to day

friends

Today I was feeling nostalgic and my mind has been wandering to my youthful days. I wrote this a very long time ago and thought it might be fun to publish it again. Some of you might have these same thoughts.

Lost Friendships

Whatever happened to that friend,

I had so long ago?

Sharing dreams and sharing tears,

Together fighting foe.

I often think about that friend,

Wherever she might be,

I often wonder how frequently,

My friend will think of me.

Time does pass and life must change,

We all must go our way,

And as I watch my children,

I’d remember how we’d play.

It really, is so very sad,

What miles and years have done.

They have, taken the best of friendships,

And erased them one by one.

Whatever happened to that friend?

I loved and cared for so?

She is only just a memory,

Of a life so long ago.

Chris Hannon

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A pat on the back for a job well done.

The other day I had a very strange thing happen. I know there are many of you out there who will understand what I am about to tell you. Especially artists or authors. We all know when we accomplish something we feel very proud of ourselves for, we not only need but appreciate our family, friends and yes even strangers to reassure us that we did indeed do something worth sharing and bragging about.

When I published my latest and newest book, the sequel to A Hairdresser’s Diary / A Hairdresser’s Diary: Scissors Retired, I was so pleased and excited. I had ran into a few brick walls along the way. I cannot take all the credit because without my friends and editors, Jo-Anne and Ronnie this book would have been a grammar and punctuation nightmare. Without all my wonderful friends, family and clients I would have no stories to tell. But this time when I needed to publish I did do it myself. It was a frustrating learning experience but after pulling out half my hair I did it.

I wanted to share my accomplishment with EVERYONE. At 70 years old I needed to let others know I still had some working gray matter. Now here comes the part that I think as artists some of us are confused by. One of my FB acquaintances, while messaging me about something totally different told me she did not ‘like’ or ‘comment’ on my postings, about my book, because she was afraid I might expect her to buy one. Although most of us write books on the hope that someone will buy them, we are not so naïve to think  everyone will. I cannot imagine what that would be like to have every family member, friend or person we meet buy our books, we would indeed be millionaires. But it cost NOTHING to show support for a job well done.

I have sold a fair amount of my first book both ebooks and soft covered. I already have many sales for my new book. So please do not shy way from saying, congratulations, for fear I might expect you to buy because I promise I do not! It just feels so good to hear the words or see the ‘likes’.

I have another author friend who told me not one of her family members even acknowledged her accomplishments. She has written and published 5 books and has not sold even one copy. When she tries to talk about her books both family and friends shy away from the subject, so she took them off the market. I am so lucky for my family and friends have been so supportive.

Dear Lord

fiesta.jpg
Sometimes we feel overwhelmed and we are not sure which way to turn. I wrote this piece a very long time ago. I somehow thought today I needed to post it. Maybe it will lift someone’s spirits who feels down.
Dear Lord, it’s time you take things over for me,
I’ve got too much to handle at this time,
The burdens of this life are full upon me,
And I find life’s mountain just too high to climb.
It’s not that I am shirking all my duties,
Or that I want to give them all to you,
It’s just that I have finally reached my limit,
And I know this is the only thing to do.
I need my time to be a wife and mother,
These things are more important to me now,
And once my mind is clear from other worries,
I know everything will be all right somehow.
Amen.
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Tid bits from my sequel of A Hairdresser’s Diary – For Sharon

butterfly (2)

It was through Lil and Norm we met Sharon and Big Bob who lived across the street. We called him Big Bob because when he stood up he blocked out the sun. He was a sweet and tender gentle giant and Sharon a caring, sweet lady. They had three lovely children, again not in our kids’ age group.It was not long before we became not only neighbours but great friends. I started painting on clothing at the suggestion of my doctor to do what would not be stressful on my back. As a result, I discovered the craft of tee shirt painting. However, Sharon was the real reason I started my hand-painting business. She purchased the very first tee shirt I ever made with butterflies and she paid me with more paints and two more shirts. There was no stopping me after that. I had no shortage of clients for my artwork on clothing.

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My Love Was Like A Rosebud

roses

My Love Was Like A Rosebud

My love was like a rosebud,

Kissed by morning dew,

It’s fragrance is so fresh,

Like the love I gave to you.

And like the tiny rosebud,

so delicate and small,

With just a little love and care,

The petals will hot fall.

But pluck it from its stem,

You could almost hear it cry,

It’s as if that tiny rosebud,

Knows that it will die.

My love was once that easy,

To crush, to wither and kill,

But you put a fence around me,

And here I’m growing still.

But some of my tiny petals,

Are a little worse for wear,

My stem leans’ over slightly,

And thorns are growing there.

I no longer sway so freely,

In the gentle summer breeze,

Al1 my petals now are open,

And there are holes now in my leaves.

But unlike that tiny rosebud,

I had someone to care,

Although I’m worn and tattered,

I know he’s always there.

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Tidbits from A Hairdresser’s Diary /Scissors Retired – part eight

One day, while I was looking through the newspaper for the weekly sales, I noticed an ad for young adults who were wanted for various modeling positions or to work as extras in the movies. Although it intrigued me, I shrugged it off thinking it could only be a scam. When the boys came home from school, I told them of my find. Doug was not the least bit interested, but Terry jumped at the chance and begged me to check it out. I warned him of the fraudulent aspect of the ad, but he pleaded saying, “Mom, could you please just call and see if it is real?” I talked it over with Ron who was adamant that I be careful of being reeled in like an unsuspecting fish. I promised I would be diligent. I made the call the next morning to the Hamilton number supplied in the ad. I was both pleasantly surprised and thrilled about the exciting information I received. Therefore, I immediately made an appointment for Terry to be interviewed the following day. Ron quizzed me in a hundred different ways until he was satisfied the information I had was on the level. Terry was overjoyed at the thought of working in the movies, even if only as and ‘extra’. I begged him not to get too carried away until his interview was completed. That was like asking a little boy in a candy Shoppe not to want a piece of candy. Terry was up and dressed hours before we had to leave. Once there, we were surprised to find a small, one room dreary office in a rather dull, half run down building. Taking hold of Terry’s hand, I took a deep breath before entering. My first instinct was to run the other way as fast as we could. The heavy wooden door squeaked as I opened it, which alerted the only person in the office. He immediately stood up to greet us. Extending his hand to me, he said, “Good afternoon and welcome. Have you come in response to our ad?”

“Yes, I am here with my son, Terry. You advertised the need for young people for modeling positions and to work as extras in the movies? I have an appointment to see Stan. I assume that would be you?”

“Yes it certainly would, and you must be Chris?”

I nodded and smiled. I think Stan sensed my uneasiness with their unprofessional location and the lack of secretary in the office, for without hesitation he said, “Please excuse our informal location – it is only temporary. We needed to find an office ASAP here in Hamilton so we could do interviews immediately. There are three movies booked to be filmed in this area and they need extras who are ready willing and able before the end of this week. Our new office will be in one of the new buildings downtown. Feeling more at ease, I asked, “So, what do you need from us?” Stan motioned to the two wooden chairs in front of his desk and Terry and I sat down and made ourselves comfortable. Stan turned his attention to Terry and asked. “So young man, which of our programs are you interested in?” Almost before Stan could finish, Terry blurted out excitedly, “Working in the movies!” Stan laughed, “What no modeling?”

“Not really – I would prefer not to do that. That is what my mom used to do” Stan looked at me with a questioning look but I quickly changed the subject.

“Stan are there certain specifications needed?”

“Not really. You will have to sign a contract that you will work for us only. We get our money by supplying the extras to the movie companies.”

“Do we have to pay a fee or buy anything?’

“No, we have no fees or sign up costs. You get paid by the hour, whether you are physically working or not, as long as you are on the set. Terry, you will have to come here to this office or when the new one is opened to that one when you are ‘called’. We provide transportation to the designated location. Now, if you decided you want to be a driver, you will have to take others with you but you get paid gas money as well. We can figure all of that out once you see if you like the work. One last thing Terry, there is no set or guaranteed hours. If this suits you, we can draw up the contract.” Terry was very excited with all the information we received, and already had pen in hand. Just as Stan was finishing his paper work, he looked at me and said, “How about you Chris?” I must have looked confused for he continued with, “Why don’t you sign up too?”

“Me? Are you kidding? I am not here for me. I am here for my son.”

Tidbits from A Hairdresser’s Diary /Scissors Retired

Now we were into early 1974. Four more years had passed and there were even more dramatic changes in our lives. We had happily reunited with my Baba and Guido only to have Guido pass away just a few weeks before our son Douglas Ronald was born. I also had a second chance to get to know my father. I must say I had a burning curiosity to see him again. I was not sure if it was to confront him or forgive him. Maybe a little of  both. I was biding my time until I was comfortable about asking Baba how I could get in touch with him. Once reunited, our visits were sporadic but we were trying to get to know each other. I was looking forward to having our kids and Ron get to know him as well. This reunion did not sit well with my mother so we didn’t discuss it with her. I had not seen him in 26 years. We had so many years to catch up on. I also had the good fortune of cultivating a good and loving relationship with all the siblings I knew as my brothers and sisters. Now we were grown and could think for ourselves, we as a family decided to be just that – a family. Nothing pleased me more. We started going to the family Christmas gatherings, something we had not done for many years. This was great for our kids – they now had a very large extended family.

The smartest decision we ever made was to take the four thousand dollar settlement from the accident – not more than an insult for the extreme loss we suffered – and use it as a down payment to build our tiny one floored castle. We could not know how this one important decision would have such a positive impact on our young family. We would no longer look back. We went from Windsor Housing to becoming homeowners. How proud we were of that accomplishment. We would take a horrible experience and make it something special and wonderful – ‘a silk purse out of a sow’s ear’ – or so they say. One of the things that made it so wonderful was we brought our beautiful, seven month preemie, miracle baby boy, Douglas, home to our new home the first week we took possession. We had to leave him in hospital for five heartbreaking, frightening weeks after he was born. He was too tiny, sick and weak from fighting for his life to come home with me. We knew he was our son when he fought and won. Christine was the typical big sister who wanted to be a little mommy and Terry the big brother who wanted to protect his baby brother. The doctor was worried about my health and arranged for a tubal ligation the day after Doug was born. We were concerned another pregnancy might land me up in a wheelchair. God gave us three amazing, caring and loving children who rarely complained when they had to chip in and help. It did not matter if it was helping with Doug, housework or just running errands.

Doug was only a year old when I had to have an emergency hysterectomy. I was shocked but so very thankful that my mother came to the rescue to take care of Christine and Terry. They were old enough to go home with her and they genuinely loved their Nanny. To my delight, my mother and I had found some common ground. I no longer wept for the mother I never had. What she lacked in motherhood she made up for as a sweet, loving grandmother who the kids called, Nanny. She showed her love not just to our children but to the rest of the family as well. She showed no favoritism. We had too much baggage to let bygones be bygones but we could have comfortable and enjoyable visits. I must confess I had painful moments when I caught myself feeling jealous, these thankfully were short-lived and fleeting. It was important to me that our kids had grandparents that I was deprived of. It was obvious she was still oblivious to the bad treatment she bestowed on me. She acted as if it never happened. When I tried to talk about it she would look at me as if I was talking about someone else. I put it aside for our kids’ sakes. Ron didn’t want Doug to be so far away so we had a friend come stay at the house and take care of him for the week I was in hospital. She also helped for the six weeks I needed to recover.

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The final words written for A Hairdresser’s Diary / Scissors Retired

Good morning all. It has been awhile since I have been here to visit with you. I can give you the whole list of excuses and most would be valid and accurate but who needs to be bored with those. Everyone has them and no one wants to hear them. So I will give you some good news. This past Mother’s day I wrote the final words to the sequel to A Hairdresser’s Diary. I was so excited to have finished although we all know it is not really finished. Now comes the hard part edit, edit, edit.

I though you might like a taste of what I have accomplished so far. For those who have read my first book this will make sense to you. For those who have not it might be a little confusing. Anyway here is a taste. I will add more to morrow.

A  Hairdresser’s Diary

Scissors Retired

Chapter One

It was a long and painful, five years that followed the devastating car accident that targeted me in mid-June of 1970. The memories were overwhelmingly painful for me. So horrifyingly vivid were those first hours after being hit by the unconcerned, uncaring drunk driver those memories remained fresh in my mind. The life altering accident happened in a split second, but in my mind, it repeatedly played back in slow motion. There were even freeze frame moments. I was overcome with anger as I recalled the way my back was twisted so severely and grotesquely. Seat belts were not installed in vehicles as of yet. I was sitting facing Ron, my husband, both my knees rested on the front seat, my feet on the console and my left arm on the back of the seat. Then, in a flash of a second, a drunk driver sideswiped us. He was driving a stolen car, and was on probation from prison and had no driver’s license. He was eventually charged with dangerous driving. When he hit us the whole top of my body twisted to the right. I hit my forehead on my passenger side window. My knees remained on the seat. I thank God that Ron was not badly injured, even though our car was totaled. Fast thinking and in shock, Ron was able to get us to the OPP station safely. He was smart enough to get the description of the car and had part of the license plate memorized. It was not long before an OPP officer had the driver in custody. Remorse was not in this uncaring person’s personality. For someone who caused so much devastation and destruction he got off easily, his sentence was few more years in jail. My sentence was far greater. Although I was the injured one, my sentence would be for life. How profoundly unfair, one drunk drivers inconsiderate choices changed the lives of a whole family. At the time, Ron and I did not know just how much fight God had instilled in us. In the next few years, we would have many an opportunity to show the world just what we were made of. I still remember those family members who thought these two, nineteen-year old kids wouldn’t last a year together, let alone have the guts and gumption to get through this life-altering circumstance.

Flabbermouth Story #4

 

Water drops

Water drops

 

Flabbermouth 4/ The drinks are on me

Marilyn, a very good friend, was having a bridal shower for her daughter Lynne. The unanimous decision for not having strippers at either the shower or the stag was agreed upon by all. She was not sure how to make the shower fun without the silly parlour games and party favours. So she decided to have the showed at a well-known reputable hotel and local bar. The idea being no one would have to drive home inebriated.

I have never been a drinker. My childhood memories of drinkers and the fact I took so many pain meds were both factors. I did, however, like one drink that my stepsister learned to make in Bartending School. The love of cherries was my downfall and the fact the drink had cherries in it was a plus. The drink was called, ‘A Cherry Hooker’- cherry brandy and orange juice with 3 cherries impaled on a plastic skewer. I always requested a whole lot more orange juice and a lot less brandy.

It was quite the joke about my heavy drinking. My kids teased me saying, “If you even open a beer bottle in the same room as Mom, she gets drunk.” Ron said I was a cheap date to say the least.

I was looking forward to the night out and figured I would nurse one drink. Therefore, anyone I didn’t know would not ask questions. I did not advertise my no drinking habits as sometimes I found I was defending myself. I was also not familiar with the new fangled drinks that were circulating the bars. I will not say I am a prude, but I am a bit naive.

When I arrived at the hotel, everyone else had already been seated at a table. I knew most of the girls, but there were a couple new faces. We had our introductions. Marilyn then asked, “Who wants a drink?” The hands were flying in the air and an array of drink names shouted out. Marilyn waved her arms and said, “I think the late comer should place the order.” Everyone thought that was a great idea. I of course was the late comer.
“Okay,” I said, “What is everyone drinking?”
Marilyn looked at me and smiled, “You will have to memorize the drink names, they are not what you are used to.”
“Not a problem I will write them down.” Then I asked, “Why don’t we just give the order to the waitress?”
Lynne piped up and said, “If you give them to the bartender first the waitress can just keep filing our orders for the rest of the night.”
I shrugged, “Okay no problem.” I started to write,” So what’s the order?”

I was surprised at the list, but I was assured I had it written down properly. Off to the bartender I went.
Now I was sitting on the high stool looking straight into the face of this very handsome, young man. Behind me, I could hear giggles, but didn’t pay too much attention. I needed to concentrate on the drink list. Oh boy, where was I to start?

Okay I would start with the simple ones first. Leslie wanted a Screwdriver. With that, the bartender nodded. Carol wanted a Planters Punch, again a nod. Betty wanted a Slow Screw? Yep that one was okay but with that one, he smiled. Lynne, ordered a Slow Screw with a twist? Whew, this was getting a little embarrassing. The bartender didn’t even miss a beat. Now for Cathy’s she wants an Orgasm. By now I was getting a bit flustered and had my face lowered and my hand shielding my eyes. Now flabbermouth blurted out, “Do you know how to make a Happy Hooker?”
“No my dear but I do know how to make a hooker happy.” With that, everyone at the table burst out laughing. These wonderful ladies had set me up. The bartender was in on the whole deal. The drinks were indeed real drinks, but the girls at the table were not having any of them.

The most exotic drink served that night was my Cherry Hooker. Now who other than your friends would love you so much and feel comfortable enough to embarrass you in front of a cute bartender and still know you loved them.

 

 

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