As I was Driving to the Grocery Store . . .

washing machine

with my mother yesterday I told her I had an idea for another blog I wanted to write.

“You what?” she said.

“I want to write another blog,” I repeated, even though I knew she heard what I said.

“For whatever reason do you want to take on writing another blog? Don’t you already have enough to do?” She asked.

I knew she just needed a couple minutes to mull it around in her in her brain so we drove for a few minutes without saying much of anything. She was trying to figure out where my head was at this time.  Out of the blue I had just blurted it out without giving her any notion of my plans.  We talk a lot, I mean really talk a lot so it was unusual for her to not not have any inkling when I was about to go on another one of my ‘Sharp Turns to the Left’ I called them.

Ordinarily you would think a statement like that wouldn’t deserve much of a reaction, but she knew, and I knew, that I was already so overextended by the other projects I’m working on that fitting in another one would mean I would have to let something go.

I thought that I could easily let go cleaning my room, which doubles as my office, and if I didn’t turn around I wouldn’t see I hadn’t made my bed again today.  Who would really care anyway?  My husband is as ensconced behind his computer in his room as I am in mine.  He has to be pried away from his computer and forced to come up for air.  He’s a master gamer.  Dinosaurs could go tromping by his window and he probably wouldn’t notice.  He certainly wouldn’t care if the bed was made or not. He loves my cooking, but he’s just as happy eating White Castles and Doritos. (We should own stock in those companies!)

Mom and I were driving through town in the afternoon, running errands and heading to the store to buy ingredients for Christmas dinner the next day.  She and I were planning on cooking this massive amount of food for friends and family that was being held at her home.  This was really quite an undertaking because my 81 year old mother and I both deal with back injuries that cause us quite a bit pain if we stand up too long. But dang it, we were going to make it happen! Misery does love company, doesn’t it? This dinner was going to happen even if it meant we were going to feel like we were run over by a truck that backed up and ran over us again!

Standing up for more than fifteen minutes is often excruciating.  Here I was, committing myself to endless hours of standing up to cook. (I’ll double up on my pain meds, I told myself.)  I love to cook very much, and I think I’m pretty good at it, so I figured I’d grit my teeth, (I did) and close my eyes and breath slowly. (None of which worked very well.)  But heck, we turned out a great dinner, and had a walloping good time! As I looked around the room and saw people’s faces they looked like they were having a good time, too.   A few neighbors joined us so they are honorary members of the clan now.

There is a guidance I read many times. “Enjoy what there is to enjoy.  Suffer what there is to suffer. Regard both as facts of life and continue to pray (chant, in my and my mother’s case) for happiness, no matter what.”  I was so happy I was able to be part of it instead of sitting home by myself like some people do. even if they have a choice not to.  I have a crazy family and we’ve had lots of issues, but they are still my family.  What’s the point of having them if we can’t get over the things that cause us pain.

My mother was pretty pooped out by the end of the evening.  (She’s going to be hysterical when she sees I posted this picture of her!)

Droopy Mother

“So,” my mother said, as we drove through town, “what are you going to write about and what are you going to call it?”

“There are so many thing I read,” I told her, trying to make her see why I thought it was a good idea. ” and I want to share them with other people.  Lots of people have very interesting blogs.”

“As I search the web, unless I share it on Facebook, or another type of social media, it just isn’t enough.  I want to reach a larger audience.  It takes awhile to get a new blog going, but I have lots of patience.  If people share what I post with other people it ends up being read by people I don’t even know.  I find that exciting,”

She thought about this for awhile and asked me, “Can’t you do that on the blog you already have?”

“Mom, my other website is so structured around one concept that it doesn’t allow me write about other things I think of, or post something someone else has written that I think is really good, or has a valid point to make that I think my followers would like.” I tried to explain.  She has a hard time understanding how people connect all over the world without really knowing them in the physical sense.  To her they aren’t really real relationships.

I write about Jamie, my grandson Jamie’s father, who is in prison in Huntsville, Tx.  I will  add a link to my latest posts so you can see what my other blog is about. He just finished nine years with eight to go.  We share many letters and through the years I realized there was a story to tell. You can find that blog at  The  name is: My Name is Jamie. Life in Prison.  There is so much wrong with our injustice system that many people are unaware of.  I also include many links for people to go to if they have questions.  I am often still up at a 4 AM working on the posts.  In a different direction I am also a keyboardist and I compose improvisational piano pieces and some of the posts have a piece of my music inserted. There is also a separate page with all the music links in one place. I needed a website for all the other things I saw that needed a separate place to be.

My mother thought about that and said, “What are you going to call it?”

“I don’t know. Any suggestions?” I asked her.

We started joking around, calling out the names of businesses we were passing.  After doing this for a minutes we passed a laundromat called, Wash and Whirl.  I repeated that over and over for about ten or fifteen seconds and then my mother said, “How about Watch and Whirl?”

I sat there silently for a few seconds and said, ” I like that.  Watch and Whirl. Like I was watching something and then wanted to give it a whirl.  See how it flies.  Like a boom-a-rang.  See if it comes flying back at me.  Or like a washing machine that swooshes it all around and see what comes out the other side.”

So, Watch and Whirl was born.

And Christmas dinner was a smashing success!