Saturday, January 13, 2018

Piping Hot Tortillas

One winter, long ago, my Tia Lucia, came to visit us in Long Beach all the way from Salt Lake City. She kicked me and the rest us out of the kitchen while she was making her tortillas. She wanted to spend time talking with her sister, my mother.

My cousins and I were going to go to the movies and I didn't want to miss out of eating fresh, hot tortillas. I walked into the kitchen and gave Tia Lucia my best puppy dog face I could muster. She looked beyond me to make sure no one was watching. I swear her eyes twinkled with sweetness and a hint of mischief. She motioned with her hand for me to follow her. She walked to the stove and whirled around so fast that I barely noticed that she had lifted my shirt and plastered a piping hot tortilla on my stomach. She grabbed my shoulders, turned me around and pushed me out of the kitchen. I felt special and loved.

I ran outside and got into the car with Denise and my cousins. I started the car and moved it away from the curb. The tortilla was burning my stomach. I reached under my shirt and pulled out the tortilla. The aroma was wonderful. I worried that everyone would smell it. 

And then laughter broke out in the car as each of us pulled out a piping hot tortilla from under our shirts. We all realized that Tia Lucia and made each of us feel as if we were THE ”special” one. She had put a hot tortilla under each of our shirts so stealthily that none of us realized that anyone else got a tortilla.

Mary's Payback

My sister, Mary, wrote the following post about one of her "payback" experiences with our mom, the prankster. 
Being a prankster is a family trait.

There she was in the backyard engrossed in a book, oblivious the world. I never had an opportunity like this. The dozens of times my mother had doused me with the hose when I had been enjoying the sunshine, reading, sunbathing and listening to music. I had gone as far as hiding out on the roof but she would find me with that stream of cold water and now, now revenge would be mine!
I couldn't go out the sliding screen or she would hear me so I ran through the house to the laundry room where there was another door to the backyard. Slowly I eased the door open and crawled inch by inch to the spigot, my heart hammering in my chest. I kept glancing at her, praying she wouldn't notice me. I felt the nervous giggles bubbling up. NO! I bit the inside of my mouth to keep them down. I finally made it and reached to turn it on. Please don't squeak. I turned the handle in millimeters while darting glances at my mother every couple of seconds. I needed the water full blast to make this worth it. At last I had my weapon.
I jumped up with a triumphant shout and soaked my mom from head to toe. She let out a blood curdling scream and the book went flying. I dropped the hose and ran through the sliding screen door into the living room. "Haha I got you"! I yelled as I slammed the door shut. She stood with the hose in her hand and smirked at me. I saw the gleam in her eyes and suddenly I went cold with fear. "You can't come in here, you will get the carpet all wet" She got a big grin on her face and grabbed the door "It's my house"! My mom chased me into the house with the hose!
Later that day my dad asked why the carpet was all wet. We just looked at each other and laughed.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Denise Loves To Scare Me

Denise hid,
Out of view,
Behind the kitchen wall,
And silently giggling,
Waiting to pounce,
Her tummy tightened
In anticipation.
Waiting for me,
Waiting for my foot
To cross the threshold.
And when it did,
She screamed, 
I flinched!
My arms flew up
And my tummy tightened.
She jumped up and down,
"Ha!, Ha!, Ha!, Ha!, Ha!" 
Throughout the house.
She beamed a smile
That could light up the night sky.
This is yet another reason why
I love Denise.


Our guava tree giggles in the wind

And invites me to be with her.

She sparkles her firecracker

red and yellow blooms

And invites me to taste her sweetness

In the petals.
When autumn time comes

She drops her delicious gifts

Wrapped In green oblong balls

Onto the lawn and

under her little companion's skirt

of big green water channeling leaves.

She assists me when I do healing work

Under her branches

She opens her secret place

and invites me in,

Into her core,

Into her heart,

Into her soul.

She lets me down gently

Beyond the veil,

Where my great grandmother sits

By her pool,

Waiting to give me a hug.

She is surrounded by her friends

Who teach me,

Guide me,

Nurture me,

And love me too.
When I an done
I go back to our guava tree

And bask in her gentle energy.

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

My Mother, the Trickster

My mother. Amy, was a trickster. 
When I was a freshman in college, I had a part time job, but I was always looking for opportunities to make a little extra cash. On a day that I had come home from school, my mother offered to give me $50, if I washed all the windows, inside and out. (That would be like paying me $500 today).
“I found some extra money and I’m feeling generous,” she said.
I got a bucket, some soap and water and some newspapers. I was thrilled that my mother was offering me so much. I made sure that there wasn’t a smudge on any window. They were sparkling clean. I was proud of the job I had done.
After I put all the cleaning stuff away, I went to my mother told her I was done. She beamed a smile and handed me an envelope that had been opened. I removed the contents. It was my last paycheck and pay stub from my former employer, Fiddler’s Three restaurant. The amount was $50. I glared at my mother. “You tricked me. That’s not fair.”
She gave me her impish smile. “Why are you upset? I told you I would give you $50 and I did.”
“But that $50 was already mine.”
“I never said where the $50 came from. I only said that I found some extra money.” And then she laughed.
“You cheated me into washing the windows!” I whined.
“You were happy washing the windows,” she said. "And you are proud of the good job you did."
“That’s when I thought you were paying me fifty dollars.”
“But you have $50 that you didn’t have before you did the windows.”
I knew I wasn’t going to win and I wasn’t going to get any more money. I hated admitting that she was right. I was happy washing the windows and proud of the good job I had done.