Friday, February 27, 2009

And then...........

Finally, we arrived back home in Chaumont. Conrads were ecstatic along with Goldia and Earl McCoy who were our closest friends. You had many visitors, all wanting to hold you. As I may have said previously, Dad and I were the youngest parents in the squadron. So babies were a novelty. McCoy's youngest was ten, Conrad's Arlette was ten or so too. As you grew Jane, Grandmere Conrad wanted to feed you nothing but milk for the first year and balked when I gave you baby food. (She said food was bad for your digestive system). Once or twice, I would run out to the base, leave some food for you and she told me that you didn't like it. Haha!

When Dad went to work, Claudie would invite me over for lunch which was their main meal. They said that I needed good food and wine so I would have lots of milk for you. They actually spoiled me by eating with them daily. Grandmere knitted you a vest to keep you warm and I kept it for the longest time.

In the evenings, we drove to friend's homes for dinner and cards. We played a lot of poker those days. We would prop you up in all the coats on the bed and you slept through it. One night, while coming home, Dad had to stop and take a leak so we stopped by the side of the road (men are so lucky, aren't they?) There was a shout! I jumped out of the car and Dad had fallen into a gully. There weren't any street lights out in the country so you took your chances.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Manatees, Bottle-nosed Dolphins & Alligators - Oh No!

Had a great trip. Floss, my friend met us at the airport. It's so much fun catching up and remembering old times together. Her house is so nice with high ceilings and openness that you only see in Florida. We went to see the manatees at the electric power company about an hour away. They like the warm water there. The days were warm and sunny. I could get used to that. We stayed with her for two nights and then took off for Jeannette's friend in Northport. The following day, we met our brother in Ft. Myers and headed down to Naples another couple hours south. He and his wife, Donna live on a golf course in a gated community. It's very beautiful with lots of trees and foliage. One day we took a sail on a large catamaran that was fantastic especially when they hoisted the sails by hand. We visited the Everglades and saw lots of nasty alligators sunning themselves by the roads...ugh! In the national park, we saw the dolphins, all kinds of birds and sea life. We ate out a lot, took mile walks in the mornings, tried to get sunburned (didn't work) and just loafed around. I showed Bill our blogs and he said that he always wanted to write and will name his Bill's Martini or some such.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Musings - Taking Another Sentimental Journey

It is my plan for 2009 to reconnect with friends. Tomorrow, I leave for Tampa, Fl. to see an old friend who lived across the street from me way back in the 50s. We kept up our correspondence through the years and I would see her periodically but this is the first time I have gone to see her. Florence (Floss) is a very talented woman. She taught me so many things when our children were small. We did a lot of crafts then and often found ourselves at the Farmer's market looking for bargains and eating ice cream. One such time, Kathy lost her shoe. She was only two and kept tugging on my hand to tell me. I finally noticed her limping and realized what happened. Retracing our steps, we found that some kind person had put it on a shelf. What a relief I could just see it mashed and dirty. We laughed alot about it. Living in Westmont when Dad was stationed at McGuire, we found many things to keep us occupied both physically and mentally. Along this travel, my plans include friends in Port Charlotte. And finally, to my brother's in Naples.

Sometimes I wonder if we ever outgrow our friends? There are little pieces in your heart/life that belong just to them. So I guess I answered my own question, huh?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Jane Marie is here!

We were so excited to have my pregnancy confirmed. We had been married for nine months and wondering if I would ever get pregnant. It was a very happy time. Everyone got involved, gave me all kinds of advice and literally took care that I ate the right sort of food, etc. The Conrads were ecstatic but aghast when I told them that I had to go to Germany to have the baby. We talked and talked of names...big decision. One evening, Joe said "let's name a girl after my mother" and that's what we did. A boy would be named after him although he preferred to name him after Grandpop but that's another time. Jane, I flew to Wiesbaden, Germany two weeks before you were due. Chaumont did not have a hospital so all of the pregnant ladies got to fly in some sort of air force cargo plane. What great cargo, huh? We checked in at a hotel that costs me twenty-five cents a day. This was during the occupation of Germany and of course, we were in the American zone. We were scheduled to see the doctor a day after we arrived. I was told that first pregnancies usually went full time so figured I was there for the long haul. Looking back, I remember all of those "fat" ladies at the hotel. I had gained twenty-three pounds but still didn't look that big. Three days after I arrived, I started cramping and they insisted I go in. I got to ride in a cadillac ambulance to the hospital. LOL! My first cadillac! Well, I probably went in too early but the nurses kept me. I remember women who seemed to be in great pain and here I was reading a magazine thinking that this isn't so bad. Clueless! Then a couple more hours, my tune changed. Needless to say, you were born at 2AM after twelve hours. You weighed 5lb 8oz., 18 inches long. Such a tiny little girl. Dad finally arrived driving eight hours from France. He was so happy that you were here...such a proud papa! I stayed in the hospital three days and then we left for the long trip back to France. Before we left there, we had to stop at the American Embassy to add you to my passport. Wiesbaden gave you an American birth certificate and also a German one. Do you still have it? The ride back to Chaumont was tortuous. My butt was killing me and I couldn't get comfortable. You were good and slept all the way. I'll continue this later.