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MY FIRST BIRTHDAY
2/20/2010 7:18:27 AM    [ Flag as Inappropriate ]

MY FIRST BIRTHDAY – FEB 20, 1986

by Alexandra E. Faucette (née Mills)
as told to her father, Robert A. Mills



I don’t think I remember the exact instant when I was born. But I do remember the precise moment I first knew, recalling the very first thought I’d ever had.

It was: I wish they would turn out the darn light!

I was five or six hours old. I had been born at 11:20 PM, and sometime before dawn I became aware I was inside a sort of plastic container. My view out the sides was distorted because the plastic was old and scratched and slightly curved. Overhead, however, was a huge fluorescent light with eight tubes going full blast!
Now, most people think newborn babies can’t see much until a few weeks after birth. Let’s dispose of that myth here and now. Newborn babies—particularly girls—see remarkably well . . . considering we have been in the dark for many, many months.

I saw, that morning, that I was in a brightly lit room with several women in white uniforms and blue gowns. Other babies in plastic baskets were all around me, most bellowing their lungs out.

So – I decided I would, too. Baaaaaaaaaaaaaah-waaaaaaaaaaaaah!

And that was the first thing I learned: if I wailed loud enough long enough, one of the white uniforms or blue gowns would come and lean over and do something with me. Of course, they never did turn out the brilliant fluorescent overhead, so eventually I closed my eyes—and a most miraculous thing happened. I fell asleep!

My next significant memory was of being carried by my father from the driveway, up a short walk, to the big house, which was to be my home. I remember it was a cold, gray day in late February.

This was the first time I had laid eyes on my father, my daddy, and I was very impressed. He was tall and extremely handsome, with gorgeous curly, silver hair. Being a girl, the hope passed through my mind I would grow up with hair like his.

There was chaos in the foyer of the big house, but I knew immediately who my mother was. Daddy gently, carefully, as though I were made of Waterford crystal, handed me to her, and the instant I was in her arms I knew I was home.
There was something about the way she held me, the sweet smell of her, her own childishly pretty face, the way she whispered my name and cooed over me, weeping a little . . . I would have spotted her anywhere.

My grandmother was there, too, but I didn’t get involved with her until later, when the four strangers who had brought me from the hospital went away. The one thing I did notice, however, was that Grandmother (or Nana, as she would become to me) looked nearly as young as my father. That alone, I imagine, would confuse most 36-hour old babies!

One thing that did confuse me for a few moments was a “live” stuffed animal they called Chloe. Naturally, I, like all children, had been born with the ability to speak Stuffinese, the universal silent language of stuffed animals and dolls, but when I tried to communicate with Chloe—who turned out not to be a stuffed animal at all, but a house pet called a “dog”—she ignored my attempts at conversation and spent the next entire year barking and growling at me, running in circles after her tail, begging for scraps of food I learned to toss from my table-gripping sling chair, and trying, over Nana’s hysterical protestations, to lick my face—which would have been great fun except Chloe had breath strong enough to start a snow blower. At least, that’s the way Henry Wadsworth Longears put it.

It wasn’t until later that week that I met my dear old Henry.

He was a stuffed rabbit and, at that time, nearly twice my size. He had incredibly long, floppy ears; he immediately became my Numero Uno playmate, crib-partner, confidant, best friend, and mentor. He, unlike Chloe, responded to Stuffinese right off the bat.

“Took you long enough to get here,” he said, when we first noticed each other.

“How long you been here?” I asked.

“I dunno. ‘Bout a week or two. Your aunt or your cousins, I guess, sent me up inna box from Panama.”

“Are you from Panama?” I wondered. I hadn’t the least idea where or what Panama was.

“I don’t think so,” he replied. “I was in this shop in California an’ somebody boxed me up an’ sent me east—or south, maybe—anyway, I wound up here, waitin’ for you, Miss Godot. I don’t really know how these things work, kiddo. I guess every kid winds up with someone like me for the first five or ten years—somebody to look out for theme an’ show them the ropes. An’ then when they get a little older, it’s adios muchachos! If they’re girls, they find boys, an’ visa versa, an’ by then we can’t even talk to each other. . . . Life can be a bummer.”

I asked, “Were you always a stuffed animal?”

“Naw. I started out as a cartoon character. My gran’ma was one of Bugs Bunny’s 273 daughters, an’ I figured I’d have a career in ‘toons, but there’s no work anymore. That’s where stuffed animals come from. If you can’t make it in movies or TV or ‘toons, they stuff you up and send you out to take care of some kid somewhere.. ‘Course, Mickey an’ Minnie, Donald, Pluto, Goofy, an’ that bunch aren’t stuffed animals—I mean, they got their own studios an’ amusement parks an’ stuff like that. But they don’t have the Cuddles . . . “

I pursed my lips into a perfect bow. “The Cuddles?”

“Yeah, you know, soft an’ furry an’ warm—like me. I mean, who you ever know went to bed with Mickey or Donald, or tried to cuddle up with Goofy or Pluto? ‘Course, Bugs is still goin’ strong on TV--“

“What’s TV?” I interrupted.

“You’ll find out. TV’s a legally controlled substance. Once they start force-feedin’ you your daily dose, you’ll get hooked like the rest of ‘em. But that’s life inna fast playpen, kiddo. . . . You wanna have a birthday party?”
And Henry began, that very night, planning my first birthday party. As the months flew by and the day grew closer, it was all he wanted to talk about.

“Here’s what we’re gonna do, kiddo: all the stuffed animals an’ dolls, even the ones up on the shelves, are invited.”

“What about Chloe-the-dog?” I wanted to know.

Henry shook his head. “No way.”

“Why not?”

“Well, listen up; in the first place, Chloe’s not a stuffed animal. She’s just a live, stupid ol’ dog. Her fur is real fur, an’ it falls out about sixty times a year—you want our crib to look like the comforter on your parents’ bed: grungy white hair all over the place?”

I said, “I think you should at least invite her."

“Look,” Henry sighed, “if we invite her, she’s so dumb she’ll prob’ly come—an’ nobody wants her. Besides, she’s seventy-seven and a half years old, for cryin’ out loud. She’d never make it over the side of the crib. An’ even if she could, she’d eat everything up before any of us had a chance. An’ she’d spend the whole night yappin’ at the other guys an’ lickin’ their faces. No way—Chloe’s out.”

I looked hopefully to Eleanor Roosevelt, my cloth and yarn doll, and Mopsy Toetwinkle, a smaller stuffed bunny, a distant cousin to Henry. “What do you think, Eleanor? Mopsy?”

Mopsy’s head popped up. “’Bout what?”

“About inviting Chloe to my birthday party.”

“Who’s Chloe?” Sometimes, talking to Mopsy was like talking into a toy telephone.

Eleanor Roosevelt sighed. “Chloe, my darling Mopsy, is that insidious live animal who barks day and night at every object, inanimate or otherwise, within a quarter mile of this house. Why they don’t just strangle the beast is beyond me. Every time I try to take a nap she starts her interminable yapping!”

I turned to Paddy Brewster, my Paddington Bear. “What do you think, Paddy?”

He looked up with his one good eye from beneath the brim of his yellow hat and said, “Sure.”

“Sure? What does that mean-—sure?”

“It means, put it to a vote.”

Notary, my stuffed white seal, shouted from across the room. “Yeah! Put it to a vote! I’ll witness it!”Tweety Bird chirped something that sounded like “Hear! Hear!”
Pagliacchio, the Pachyderm, bellowed through his trunk: “Vote! Vote! Vote Republican!”

Pekoe, my little orangutan, cried out, “I wouldn’t monkey around with this!”

Momma Bear and Baby Bear looked down from their place on the cabinet shelf and said it sounded just right to them.
A.G. Bear (no relation to Momma or Baby Bear) spoke Stuffinese as well as any of us, but he also had an electronic voice box, which permitted him to communication in Bear Talk (something which amused my daddy no end, but which I felt A.G. Bear never really needed.)

Simultaneously, in Stuffinese and Bear Talk, he said, “Let’s – aghghgh—make—rumptft—it – gwogrottymphp—a secret – oowowphtfmt—ballot!”

Eleanor Roosevelt bowed her head. “What a ghastly sound!”

The rest of my stuffed animals—Ernest Angel, my flying guardian bear, Snoopy, Felix (a plastic rabbit who played a sorry rendition of Brahm’s Lullaby), Big Bird, Leslie Caron (another toy rabbit who rocked back and forth while playing Hi Lilly Hi Lo), Flo, my polar bear, the Pink Pansy, and Louie the Lobster—all of them were talking at once.
Henry banged one of his four good luck charms on the side of the crib.

“All right, all right, you guys, knock it off! Clam up a minute an’ lemme think.” He placed one floppy ear over one eye and contemplated the situation.

“Okay,” he said, finally, “okay. We’ll take a vote, but the secret ballot is out. . . . Quiet! We don’t need a secret ballot. The stupid mutt’s in bed with the ol’ man an’ the ol’ lady, an’ besides, she don’t understand one word of Stuffinese. So just raise your paws an’ vote. All those in favor of invitin’ Chloe to the party, raise ‘em up!”

One by one some hands went up; others remained motionless.
“Okay. One . . . two . . . three . . . ” There were seven votes in favor of Chloe. “Opposed?”

Up went other hands and paws.

“ . . . five . . . six . . . seven. Seven? Hey, wait a minute, we gotta tie!”

Pagliacchio said, “In case of ties, ties will be awarded!”

Henry looked at me. “Did you vote?”

I shook my head.

“Well, come on, kiddo, you gotta vote!”

“No,” I said, “it wouldn’t be fair. After all, it’s a party for me, and it wouldn’t be—proper—for me to interfere with the guest list.”

Henry made a face. “What kinda female logic is that? We gotta tie here---Your vote will decide it.”

I pulled Henry aside. “If I vote,” I whispered, “I’m going to vote to invite her.”

Henry turned away and addressed the others. “Okay, folks, we gotta tie an’ a tie breaker ain’t gonna work. The way I see it, Chloe’s not in an’ she also ain’t out. She’s no place. So let’s jus’ forget about her.”

“No, no!” I insisted. “We have to compromise.”

“That’s right,” agreed Eleanor Roosevelt. “Compromise is the backbone of all democratic action.”

Henry was beside himself. “Wait a sec! Whadda I got here, a bunch of Kissingers?”

Mopsy perked up. “Are there going to be kissing games at the party? Ohh—”

Paddy Brewster saw merit in appeasement. “It’s very simple. We have a tie vote. The child can’t get involved; wouldn’t be right. So, here’s the plan: we invite the silly dog to the party, but we don’t let her jump in the crib or get near the food. She’s too old to jump in, anyway, so she’ll get bored and disappear. Big deal.”

I said, “Paddy’s right. And this way, nobody’s feelings are hurt.”

Mopsy asked, “Chloe’s got feelings?”

“We all do, darling girl,” said Eleanor Roosevelt.

“Feelings are what the right stuffing’s made of.”

“All right, all right,” Henry sighed. “I give. Chloe’s invited.”

Seven stuffed animals clapped and cheered: “Yea!” Seven others snorted.
* * *
It was decided during another meeting on another night that A.G. Bear would have to actually extend the invitation to Chloe.

“Dogs,” Henry informed us, as if we didn’t know, “don’t speak Stuffinese. But A.G. speaks both Stuffinese and Bear Talk. An’ Bear Talk is a lot like Dog Talk, except for adverbs an’ conjunctions.”

“Are you sure Chloe will understand him?” I asked.

Henry shrugged. “I dunno. But it’s worth a try.”

The next morning while I was watching Sesame Street from my playpen and my momma was upstairs getting dressed, A.G. nudged Chloe, who was lying on the solar room floor taking the first of her dozen or so daily naps. Chloe growled softly and rolled over.

A.G. said, “Rrrrumphtdget—we’re – gummtrowww – having – wormshgdhget—a birthday party – rrooghkltht -- for – arrkkaarmutophiii—the kid. Raggummtakky—you’re invited.”

Chloe growled something in reply and A.G. nodded his head. “Frugglod- omomtruphft—two a.m. Thursday, Feb 20.”

Chloe made what my daddy curiously referred to as a “motorboat” and went back to sleep.

Later that night Henry wanted to know “what did the dumb dog say?”

A.G., who fancied himself something of a cub reporter, looked at his notes. “Said okay, but don’t expect her to bring any presents.”

“Nobody’s bringing any presents,” said Mopsy.

“Certainly not,” agreed Eleanor Roosevelt. “There’s no way any of us can get out for shopping in this weather . . . “

“Besides,” Paddy Brewster inserted, “who’s open at 4 a.m.?”

“But,” Eleanor went on, “we have to bake a cake, get a candle, some matches, ice cream, some party hats, streamers--—“

“Wait a cotton-pickin’ minute! Hold it, people!” Henry’s ears were twisting into a knot. “What is this, the Mardi Grass? It’s jus’ a kid’s birthday, for Pete’s sake, not a rocket launch at Cape Canaveral!”

“We’ve got to have a cake,” said Sam the Snake, rattling his tail.

“Yeah, well, you’re new here,” said Henry, with uncertainty. “How we supposed to get a cake?”

Mopsy said, “I’ll bake one!”

“Yeah, right. Where?”

“In the microwave.”

Eleanor said, “I’ll help!”.

“That’s a half-baked idea,” muttered Louie the Lobster.

Henry thought about it. Finally, he said, “Okay. But no candle an’ no matches—an’ you guys gotta clean up the kitchen so no one ever knows. Either of you know how to bake a cake?”

“Not really,” Mopsy admitted. “But Alex’s momma’s got six thousand cook books in the pantry closet.”

Henry kicked up his back paws in despair. “Okay, okay, so go bake a cake. It’s in your hands. But I’m warnin’ you, no candles an’ no matches.”

“How about a flashlight?” Paddy suggested.

“You wanna stick a flashlight in the middle of a birthday cake!”

“Why not?”

“I’m gonna bring wine!” cried Pagliacchio the Pachyderm.

“Come on! All we gotta do is spill wine in the crib an’ we’ll all wind up down in the basement!”

Pekoe the Orangutan shrieked, “Not the basement! Anyplace but the basement!”

None of the stuffed animals had ever seen the basement of the big house, but they’d heard tales from visiting toys that had made their fur creep.

Ernest Angel fluttered his wings, murmuring, “Yea, though I walk through the hallway in the shadow of the basement stairs . . . “

“Scratch the wine,” Henry sighed.
* * *
The night of the party I was put to bed, as usual, at 7:52, just before Final Jeopardy, something on TV that always made Daddy say “I bet it all!” as he carried me from the room. He held my bottle at arm’s length and played a silly game he’d made up called “Follow the Bottle; Up the Stairs We Go!”

In my room, we performed a nightly routine where we greeted all the stuffed animals (he even pretended to let Momma Bear and Baby Bear drink from my bottle, complete with sound effects: slurp, slurp, suck, suck, slurp!), and he had me nuzzle them all, and finally, while my mobile, the Dancing Gubaligotts, bounced over my head, he kissed me and lay me in my crib, tucked me in, place the bottle in my mouth, and promptly vanished out the door as though I might protest going to bed and he’d have to stay with me and miss Final Jeopardy.

I don’t recall that I’d ever detained him, but my dad thrived on the anxiety of the unexpected.

The moment he was gone I threw the bottle to the foot of the crib and grabbed Henry’s foot. “Are we going to do the thing we did Christmas Eve?” I asked him.

“Quadrennial Transpogration? Nah, I don’t think so. Why waste it? Besides, everybody’s comin’ up here at 2 a.m.”

I was moderately disappointed. Then I had a new thought. “What if my parents wake up?”

“No chance,” Henry assured me. “Pagliacchio put some spider dust in your momma’s teapot, so when she has her 8:45 cup, it’ll be buenos notches, hasty la vista, and aloha ‘til dawn’s early light!”

“What about my daddy?”

“Well, if he has tea with her, no problemo. Jus’ to make sure, though, Pagliacchio put a pinch in the milk bottle as well.”

“What if he has both?” I asked, knowing it was often the case.

Pagliacchio chortled through his trunk. “Then he’ll get the best night’s sleep since he was single!”

“Or,” Henry giggled, “he’ll sit in the den bug-eyed an’ make up some more nutsy songs to sing you.”

I pouted. “I don’t think his songs are so nutsy.”

“Oh, no? You think he’s gonna win the Stephen Sondheim Award with I’d rather have Hickory an’ Dickory an’ Doc, Than all the borscht in Vladivostok, ‘Cause borscht is worst when served by the cup, It makes li’l girls wanna throw up! Whew! You think that racket they hear underfoot on 42nd Street is the rumble of the subway train? Not so, kiddo; that’s Cole Porter turnin’ over in his grave every time your ol’ man lays that one on you! Come on, he’s nuttier than a Snicker’s!”

“Oh, Henry!”

“That one, too. It’s your choice.”

The party was in full swing by 2:25. Everyone was there. I stood in my crib, holding on to the rails, and watched Mopsy dance with Louie the Lobster (for music we had three musical toys playing Brahms’ Lullaby, Send in the Clowns, and Hi Lilly Hi Lo simultaneously). A.G. danced with Pagliacchio, Pekoe whirled around the nursery with the Pink Pansy, and Henry even climbed into the crib and tried to dance with me—I refused to let go of the railing.

Paddy Brewster grabbed Eleanor Roosevelt, attempting to trip the light fantastic, but she said it was not proper for the chaperons to cavort on the dance floor.

Tweety Bird and Ernest Angel flew the cake upstairs, and I had to admit Mopsy and Eleanor had done themselves proud.

“It’s great!” I cried. “What kind is it?”

“Chocolate banana spaghetti and orange pea soup,” beamed Eleanor Roosevelt.

It was a marvelous party, the very best birthday party I’d ever had, and I was certain the one my parents were planning for that night would also be very nice. But not this nice!

Even Chloe showed up in good spirits. In spite of Paddy’s admonitions, Ernest and Tweet Bird picked her up by the tail and the nape of her neck and flew her into my crib. She yapped and growled something (A.G. told me it was Happy Birthday, you little runt!), and I let her lick some cake off my face.

And then—-it happened!

The light snapped on, and there in the doorway—oh, no!—there stood my momma!

“Chloe!” she shrieked. “Bad girl! In the baby’s bed! Never! Bad! Bad! Bad dog!”

Naturally, the music stopped the instant the light came on, and all the animals and dolls literally collapsed on the spot, totally lifeless. And I did, too, closing my eyes tight and pretending I was asleep. Chloe, of course, was frightened out of her wits, and with one grunting leap, sprang from the crib, over the railing, right into Momma’s arms.

Daddy appeared behind Momma, mumbling, “Hell's bells! What's going on?”

“Your dog was in the baby’s crib!” Momma cried.

“My dog? . . . .That’s impossible. She can barely climb up on our bed.”

Momma hesitated, yawning, no longer entirely certain. “Well, it looked like she was in the crib. Maybe she was just in the rocking chair. I’m—very sleepy.”

“I’m going back to bed,” Daddy said, rubbing his eyes “The tea and that glass of milk didn’t mix.”

Momma told him to cover me up as she put Chloe on the floor and left the room.

Daddy came over and tucked the quilt around my shoulders. I opened my eyes when he placed the bottle in my mouth; he brushed my hair back with the palm of his hand.

“You know something, kiddo,” he said, drowsily, “You’re a whole year old today. A whole year. One year old.” He yawned loudly, scratching his stomach. “Nuthin’ this time, but next year it’ll mean something to you. Nite-nite, sweetheart.”

The next day my momma, who never remembers dreams, told Daddy she’s had a dream last night that Chloe really did love me and was sleeping in my crib to protect me.

“That’ll be the day,” Daddy said. “By the way, I had a crazy dream myself last night.”

“What about?”

“I don’t know exactly, but it was about the baby’s birthday party. You made a weird cake for her out of chocolate, bananas, spaghetti, oranges, and pea soup.”

Momma laughed at that. “How was it?”

“Not so bad,” my daddy said, looking at me. “And what’s so funny about that, young lady?” He made a comical face, puffing his cheeks out and bulging his eyes.

He had no idea why I was laughing.


Copyright 2010 by Robert A. Mills






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• BOATS - Saturday, May 11, 2013
• BALANCE - Saturday, May 04, 2013
• USPS - Saturday, April 27, 2013
• TAXES - Saturday, April 20, 2013
• AUDITION - Saturday, April 13, 2013
• NASHVILLE - Saturday, April 06, 2013
• BOXER - Saturday, March 30, 2013
• COLUMNS - Monday, March 25, 2013
• VIETNAM - Saturday, March 16, 2013
• ΣAM - Saturday, March 09, 2013
• WHOA! - Saturday, March 02, 2013
• TWO - Saturday, February 23, 2013
• QUITTER - bonus - Tuesday, February 19, 2013
• GHOSTS - Saturday, February 16, 2013
• VALENTINE - Wednesday, February 13, 2013
• FBI - Saturday, February 09, 2013
• WOOLLEY - Saturday, February 02, 2013
• GRUMPY - Saturday, January 26, 2013
• FORMAL - Saturday, January 19, 2013
• PATTY - Saturday, January 12, 2013
• OFFENDED - Saturday, January 05, 2013
• LOVE - Saturday, December 29, 2012
• CHRISTMAS - Wednesday, December 26, 2012
• PEPE - Saturday, December 22, 2012
• TIME - Saturday, December 15, 2012
• TIME - Saturday, December 15, 2012
• UGA - Saturday, December 08, 2012
• MASS - Saturday, December 01, 2012
• SLF - Saturday, November 24, 2012
• THANKSGIVING- a bonus column - Wednesday, November 21, 2012
• ASSASSINATION - Saturday, November 17, 2012
• POLL - Saturday, November 10, 2012
• YOGI - Wednesday, November 07, 2012
• VOTE - Saturday, November 03, 2012
• REACH - Saturday, October 27, 2012
• WASTELAND - Saturday, October 20, 2012
• 58% - Saturday, October 13, 2012
• WACKO - Saturday, October 06, 2012
• REVIST - Thursday, October 04, 2012
• DEBATE - An addendum - Wednesday, October 03, 2012
• CRASH - Saturday, September 29, 2012
• VEEP - Saturday, September 22, 2012
• BUGLE - Saturday, September 15, 2012
• DELTA - Saturday, September 08, 2012
• ANNIVERSARY - Saturday, September 01, 2012
• INCA DINKA DO - Saturday, August 25, 2012
• METH - Saturday, August 18, 2012
• PHELPS - Saturday, August 11, 2012
• UPDATE EXTRA - Wednesday, August 08, 2012
• CHICKEN - Saturday, August 04, 2012
• OLYMPICS - a review - Tuesday, July 31, 2012
• SUMMERTIME - Saturday, July 28, 2012
• SHOOT! - Saturday, July 21, 2012
• PUN - Saturday, July 14, 2012
• DECISION - Saturday, July 07, 2012
• FREE - Saturday, June 30, 2012
• EXTRA! - Thursday, June 28, 2012
• ANNIVERSARY - Saturday, June 23, 2012
• REHEARSAL - Saturday, June 16, 2012
• BELMONT - Saturday, June 09, 2012
• 1% - Saturday, June 02, 2012
• DERIVATIVES - Saturday, May 26, 2012
• MEDICARE - Saturday, May 19, 2012
• CRIME! - Saturday, May 12, 2012
• POTTER - Saturday, May 05, 2012
• BUCKHOUSE - Saturday, April 28, 2012
• SOX! - Saturday, April 21, 2012
• SOL - Saturday, April 14, 2012
• CONTEST! - Saturday, April 07, 2012
• JUSTICE! - Saturday, March 31, 2012
• SUITS! - Saturday, March 24, 2012
• BOBBYS - Saturday, March 17, 2012
• NUNDA FUN DAYS – PT II - Saturday, March 10, 2012
• NUNDA FUN DAYS - PART 1 - Saturday, March 03, 2012
• HUTSON IS ONE! - Thursday, February 23, 2012
• TôT OU TARD! - Saturday, February 18, 2012
• MINE! - Saturday, February 11, 2012
• SOUP! - Saturday, February 04, 2012
• BUCK STOP - Saturday, January 28, 2012
• FOLLIES - Saturday, January 21, 2012
• MISFITS - Saturday, January 14, 2012
• MOHS - Saturday, January 07, 2012
• GOODBYE! - Saturday, December 31, 2011
• CITY SLICKERS -- Week of Dec 24 - Saturday, December 24, 2011
• HEADLINES - Saturday, December 17, 2011
• FIRE! - Saturday, December 10, 2011
• YEP, THE SKY IS FALLING! - Saturday, December 03, 2011
• HOBNAIL BOOTS - Saturday, November 26, 2011
• GIRL o’ WAR - Saturday, November 19, 2011
• CAIN IS NOT ABEL - Saturday, November 12, 2011
• JOHNNY CAN’T READ - Saturday, November 05, 2011
• HOLY SMOKE! - Saturday, October 29, 2011
• CELL PHONE - Saturday, October 22, 2011
• 60 MINUTES - Saturday, October 15, 2011
• BANKS CLOSED - Saturday, October 08, 2011
• ANNUAL PHYSICAL - Saturday, October 01, 2011
• A T W IN 80 MINUTES - Saturday, September 24, 2011
• HUTSON! - Saturday, September 17, 2011
• A TIME TO REMEMBER - Saturday, September 10, 2011
• TOMB AT ARLINGTON - Saturday, September 03, 2011
• GUNFIGHT AT DODGE CITY - Saturday, August 27, 2011
• NOTHNAGLE - Saturday, August 20, 2011
• A CLUTTERED BELFRY - Saturday, August 13, 2011
• CFS, FOR SHORT - Saturday, August 06, 2011
• THE MINSTREL SHOW - Saturday, July 30, 2011
• BIRTHDAY BOY RIDES (MARTA) AGAIN - Saturday, July 23, 2011
• KNOCK, KNOCK! WHO’S THERE? DEATH! - Saturday, July 16, 2011
• COMMENCEMENT - Saturday, July 09, 2011
• 234th 4th OF JULY - Saturday, July 02, 2011
• MIDNIGHT RIDE OF BOORTZ/DUPREE - Saturday, June 25, 2011
• OH, MY PAPA (& MAMA, TOO) . . . - Saturday, June 18, 2011
• ROLLING STONES - Saturday, June 11, 2011
• I DOUBLE D’AIR YA! - Saturday, June 04, 2011
• WOW—SUM BEACH - Monday, May 30, 2011
• GRAMP ON THE TOWN - Saturday, May 21, 2011
• THE UNSOCIABLE NETWORK - Saturday, May 14, 2011
• DING DONG, THE WICKED SUMBITCH IS DEAD - Saturday, May 07, 2011
• KATE PLUS MATE - Saturday, April 30, 2011
• GOP IS TRUMPED - Monday, April 25, 2011
• SNIFFING JOCKS IN ATLANTA - Saturday, April 16, 2011
• BOEHNER BLINKED - Saturday, April 09, 2011
• ROY ROGERS - Saturday, April 02, 2011
• SWEAT MORE, BLEED LESS - Saturday, March 26, 2011
• HE STILL DESERVES BETTER - Saturday, March 19, 2011
• AFTRA & EARTHQUAKES - Saturday, March 12, 2011
• ALEX IN WONDERLAND - Saturday, March 05, 2011
• THE OSCARS - 2011 - Wednesday, March 02, 2011
• FIRST BIRTHDAY, PART THREE - Thursday, February 24, 2011
• FIRST BIRTHDAY, PART II - Tuesday, February 22, 2011
• MY FIRST BIRTHDAY - Saturday, February 19, 2011
• IDES OF FEB, MINUS ONE DAY - Saturday, February 12, 2011
• FUN AT THE ICE PALACE - Saturday, February 05, 2011
• VACATION FROM HELL - Saturday, January 29, 2011
• BARBERSTOWN CASTLE - Saturday, January 22, 2011
• TRYING TO TAKE TUCSON – a bonus blog - Wednesday, January 19, 2011
• THE “BOBBYS” - Saturday, January 15, 2011
• POLITICS 101 - Saturday, January 08, 2011
• THE SNOWS OF KILIMANGEORGIA - Saturday, January 01, 2011
• WRITER'S CRAMP - Saturday, December 25, 2010
• BELLS ON CHRISTMAS DAY - Saturday, December 18, 2010
• PATTY ROBERTS, Part Two - Wednesday, December 15, 2010
• SECRET SANTA - Saturday, December 11, 2010
• PATTY ROBERTS - Thursday, December 09, 2010
• GETTING MY GOAT(EE) - Saturday, December 04, 2010
• IN FLIMFLAMS FIELDS . . . - Saturday, November 27, 2010
• PLYMOUTH ROCKS - Saturday, November 20, 2010
• LACED FOR ACTION - Saturday, November 13, 2010
• PEER PRESSURE - Saturday, November 06, 2010
• POLL CATS - Saturday, October 30, 2010
• FRIENDS - Saturday, October 23, 2010
• MY COUSIN DOUGIE - Saturday, October 16, 2010
• LOBSTER POTTED - Sunday, October 10, 2010
• A PRECIOUS GOLDEN BOBBY - Thursday, September 30, 2010
• THE KING IS DEAD (or at least in his throes) - Saturday, September 25, 2010
• STAND PAT - Saturday, September 18, 2010
• EGGS ROSAKOVIA - Saturday, September 11, 2010
• POLL CATS - Saturday, September 04, 2010
• KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE - Saturday, August 28, 2010
• (Bonus Blog) BUT WHO’S COUNTING? - Wednesday, August 25, 2010
• PEANUTS AND CRACKER JACKS - Saturday, August 21, 2010
• LUCKY STRIKE GREEN - Saturday, August 14, 2010
• AMERICARE vs. OBAMACARE - Saturday, August 07, 2010
• THE MAN WHO WOULD (temporarily) BE PRESIDENT - Saturday, July 31, 2010
• THE WEDDING - Saturday, July 24, 2010
• BUTTERFLIES ARE HAPPY - Saturday, July 17, 2010
• HATTERS ARE MAD - Saturday, July 10, 2010
• WHAT DOES THE BOSTON TEA PARTY AND THE REPUBLICAN TEA PARTY HAVE IN COMMON? - Friday, July 02, 2010
• MILQUETOAST HEADLINES - Saturday, June 26, 2010
• JAMIE DUPREE DESERVES BETTER - Saturday, June 19, 2010
• WHAT BARACK OBAMA AND HELEN THOMAS HAVE IN COMMON - Saturday, June 12, 2010
• GRANDNIECE LEIGH IS OFF TO HONDURAS - Saturday, June 05, 2010
• MEMORIAL HOLE-IN-ONE - Saturday, May 29, 2010
• GRANDNIECE EMILY GRADUATES - Wednesday, May 26, 2010
• THE MOON IS ROQUEFORT - Saturday, May 22, 2010
• LENO VS. O’BRIEN – TEMPEST IN A TV POT - Saturday, May 15, 2010


From Eulogy To Joy, An Anthology, compiled by Cynthia Kuhn Beischel wi by Maryanne Raphael

FROM EULOGY TO JOY is an anthology with personal stories of people who have lost a child, a spouse, sibling or close friend. Each person shares their pain and the light they d..  
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