Friday, March 20, 2009

Billy Boy

To turn off music so you can listen, just look to the right hand column and scroll down until you see the pink music box. Click on the middle button and it will stop the music.

This is Billy singing (sort of, 'his song' Billy Boy)

Where have you been Billy Boy Billy Boy

Where have you been charming Billy

I have been to seek a wife

She's the joy of my life

But she's a young thing and can not leave her mother

Monday, March 16, 2009

One Year

It has been one year since my mother died.

I can't believe it has been a year.

Not really ready to write about it right now - so I'm posting an encore of my sister's eulogy to my mum. I love you Mum!!

Our mother, like most mothers, was a very special person. She was warm and loving and funny. You often hear people say how those that have passed will leave a hole or a void. The absence of my mother will leave an abyss. Or at least, that’s how it feels.Our mother was a big presence in our lives. For us, she was truly the tie that binds. Over the past few days, I’ve found myself wondering how we will carry on without her. I know, of course, that we will, but the idea of it seemed inconceivable.But as I thought about having to face life without my mother, without my best friend, I realized how, because of her, we will certainly get through this terrible time together.My mother taught us many things, as most parents do. But three things we learned from her are perhaps the most important lessons for dealing with life.Naturally, she, along with our father’s help, taught us right from wrong. Through her example, we not only learned the typical rights and wrongs, but we learned the right way to be a good friend, the right way to care about others and the right way to treat the people that are important to you. And she taught us that it is right that family takes care of family. More than once my mother told me what a great comfort it was to her that if ever any of her children were in trouble or in need that we could turn to any of the other 4 and we would be a help and support one another.Another thing we learned from our mother was to love one another and to do so openly. More than a few people have commented over the years how affectionate my family is to one another. We always great each other with hugs and kisses and do the same again when we part. Well – ok – maybe Eddie and Mark don’t hug and kiss each other – but there is certainly brotherly affection. When we speak to one another on the phone, conversations almost always end with “I love you”, and “I love you too”. We tell our children and our nieces and nephews all the time how much we love them and how special they are to us. Something we learned from our mother.The last of the three important lessons learned from Mom, was to laugh at life – even if it’s at your own expense – which, in her case, it often was. Mom loved a good laugh. All of the Rockwood family loves a good laugh and we are never together that we don’t laugh a great deal. We learned not to take ourselves so seriously that we couldn't laugh at ourselves – something my mother excelled at. In fact, if she did something funny and there was no one to witness it, she would'nt keep her goofs to herself – she’d tell everybody, which is funny in itself.So, as I think of these things, I realize, though the void is sizable and though the coming weeks, months and even times throughout the years will find us mourning our dearly loved mother, we will as a family, get through it together.We will stand by one another. We will love one another. And we will laugh together. And in doing so, we will keep our mother’s spirit with us always.I hope that some of you will learn from my mother, especially to tell the people you love that you love them – and tell them often. Not because life is precarious and you never know how much time you will have together. Not even because it’s what people who love one another should do. Tell them simply because you DO love them.I know that we will pass these lessons on to our own children and grandchildren: To stand by your family and love and support them; To tell them often how much you love them and to laugh at life – even if it’s at your own expense. Oh – and to never, ever tell a child you have eyes in the back of your head.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


I finally went to the furniture mecca that I've been told 'I Must!' go to.

I went... I walked... I walked... I walked....

You see, I learned that the English translation for the Swedish word Ikea is: labyrinth!

They get you in, but you can't find your way out!

Sure, there are blue signs hanging from the ceiling that say: 'Exit', but they are really just a trick. A mirage if you will, leading you a seemingly never ending journey through a see of very contemporary, brightly colored home stuffs. (I hate the word 'stuffs' by the way .. but it fits here)

I have never in my life felt claustrophobic before, but I did there in that 100 billion square foot store. We did the top floor (hubby and I) and it was pleasant enough; sofas, beds, children's rooms and toys. But then when we hit the bottom level and I decided there really wasn't anything of interest to me, I wanted to leave. But after running through the isles like a science lab rat, I began to panic. It was all I could do to not yell out "I'm not going to buy anything!! Even if you force me to see every single floral lampshade, florescent rug, busy comforter, odd shaped plate, and every lighting fixture known to man! Let me out! Let me out!!!!"

Finally, we followed our noses to the source of the smell of cinnamon buns and we escaped, I mean we left the establishment.

Ikea... Not going in again with out a GPS system and a bag of bread crumbs!

On the plus side: We were not bothered once by a sales person (but don't know how easy it would be to find one for help if I needed one), they have a child care drop off (I'm not recommending this as we didn't use it - has anyone tried it? interesting idea though!!), and I did see some items I'd like for my home child care at very reasonable prices.