Archive for the ‘Sherry’ Category

The Basin Improvement Committee of 1890: it sounds like an exciting group to be a part of, don’t you think? Nestled on the heart of Main Street in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, this marker commemorates the intentional efforts of a small group to make things better and to improve life within the community.

If asked, I would likely say that a basin is a small container of water. According to Dictionary.com, it is that, and more…

1. a circular container with a greater width than depth, becoming smaller toward the bottom, used chiefly to hold water or other liquid, especially for washing.
2. any container of similar shape, as the pan of a balance.
3. the quantity held by such a container: We need another basin of water to dilute the mixture.
4. a natural or artificial hollow place containing water.
5. a partially enclosed, sheltered area along a shore, often partly man-made or dredged to a greater depth, where boats may be moored: a yacht basin.

I must admit, definition number 5 is my favorite. You see, I have a basin of my own, and the improvement committee has been meeting the past two days to make it even stronger. “A partially enclosed, sheltered area along a shore, often partly man-made or dredged to a greater depth…“: it’s called marriage, and yes, it is only partly man made.


To coin a phrase, I might say “those who go away together stay close”. Little Frau and I first visited Eureka Springs in the Summer of 1991. Yes, for those of you young ‘ens keeping score at home, it was indeed last century. The Frau and I had been married all of about two years, maybe a little less. We were young. We were in love. We were broke. Truth be told, we weren’t really broke, we just didn’t have much money to spend, so everything was carefully allocated to make sure we could do the trip and make it home.

The pinnacle of the trip was supposed to be a day at Silver Dollar City in Branson. Like I said, we were young, and traipsing around an amusement park in the heat seemed like the be all and end all of a good time. As we almost ran toward the ticket booth together, hand in hand, a man called out to me. It seems that he and his bride of 20+ years had gone to Silver Dollar City on their honeymoon, and returned each year as season pass holders. With the purchase of their season passes came one pair of single day tickets each year, and each year on their anniversary day visit, they would seek out a young couple to take in with them for free.

Almost in shock (remember, I was the ripe old age of 24), I asked the man if we could repay them, buy them lunch, or something else. His answer? “Do something nice for your wife with the money, and that will be just what I wanted“. We thought about that couple and their request all day. We looked at kitschy souvenirs. We thought about going to a show. Ultimately, we decided to use the money to spend a night in a Bed and Breakfast here in Eureka.

It’s not that spending a week sleeping on the ground in a $19.99 pup tent from Wal Mart isn’t romantic, but we were beginning to feel the trip growing on us. An indoor shower, air conditioner, and a bed turned out to be a pretty nice break in the trip.

A few years have come and gone since that trip. Life and kids have placed a few demands on the days and the dollars. Little Frau and I don’t get away as much anymore, at least for just the two of us. But, courtesy of kids at camp and a mid week July 4th calendar, the stars aligned for a brief 2 day excursion back to Eureka. We were not so adventurous as to desire a day in the amusement park this go round. It seems this Basin Improvement Committee of two finds catching up with old friends, casual dining, a small bit of kitschy souvenir shopping, reading, and napping more the order of the day. And it has all happened at a little Bed and Breakfast just a few doors down and 21 years removed from the last Eureka meeting of our little group.

I think we may not wait so long to reconvene the next time…



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I have this friend. He is married. I learned just this week that he is attracted to me, my, um, the intellectual things I bring to our mutual employer. This is starting off all wrong. Let’s try again.

I have this friend. He is married. When traveling with he and others on business this week, I heard him answer calls from his wife with phrases like, “Hey there, Girlfriend” and “Hello, Lover”. My other coworkers and I mutually agree that his phraseology creeps us out, but in a committed sort of way, and that’s good.

I have this other friend. She is not married. She is my daughter. I sometimes call her Little Frauline. That nickname may not last forever. She now works for Hallmark. You know, Hallmark, the greeting card/cheesy movie hall of fame people? They are very busy this weekend selling cards to all of the guys like me who are waking up to realize that it is Mother’s Day.

Little ‘line and I were talking earlier this weekend before she went in to work, and she said they had cards for almost every occasion: tons of them. “Almost?”, I said. “Yeh, a guy came in yesterday asking for a card entitled: To my girlfriend, who has children. We did not have anything like that”, she said.

I have this third friend. She was a friend long before creepy married coworker guy and about three years before Little ‘line was born. This friend is my girlfriend. Truth be told, she is my wife. She is the mother of my children. Therefore, using the theories, postulates, theoroms, proofs, and other ad nauseum terms found in our twins Geometry textbooks, one could draw lines that conclude that my girlfriend is the mother of my children. Shocking revelation, I know.

I have had numerous nicknames for this friend over the years. “Wifey-pooh” never really gained the traction I’d hoped for years ago, so I had to give it up. Others don’t bear mentioning. In the blogosphere, “Little Frau” seems to be my tag line of choice, but I’m not sure how well she likes being referred to as a German Housewife. So, for today at least, “Girlfriend” it is.

So, here goes. Happy Mother’s Day, Girlfriend. Thank you for being a wonderful wife and mother to our three beautiful children. I see your spirit for life and love for others in their lives, and appreciate all you do that has made them to wonderful young people they are today.


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Little Frau and I were watching one of our few favorite TV shows the other night: House Hunter’s International. As we were watching a couple tour exotic locals and ponder a different way of life, I asked what I thought was a simple question.

The question? I said “if you could choose to live anywhere, ignoring your backstory, where would it be?”.

After thinking for a moment, she responded “But, I like my backstory”. Wow. Pain, and all: those are the words of one dedicated and brave lady.

That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

I love her for loving her backstory, and so much more. And, I look forward to many more stories yet to be told.

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Pearly shells
From the Ocean
Shining in the sun
Covering the shore

When I see them
My heart tells me
I love you
More than all
Those little pearly shells

Those pearly shells.


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My fair lady

I received a $10 gift card e-credit from Amazon the other evening for participating in an online survey about something.    In scanning the choices for how to use this newly acquired prize, I ventured into the world of “Musicals”.     Sherry and I, many years ago, went to Casa Manana in Fort Worth and saw the son of Rex Harrison reprise his father’s role as Henry Higgens in My Fair Lady.    And there it was, the perfect choice.   We love that musical, and I can’t wait to watch it with the kids soon.  

One of my favorite songs in the show reminds me of my favorite person around, but she’s no mere flower girl:

I’ve grown accustomed to her face.

She almost makes the day begin.

I’ve grown accustomed to the tune that

She whistles night and noon.

Her smiles, her frowns,

Her ups, her downs

Are second nature to me now;

Like breathing out and breathing in.

I was serenely independent and content before we met;

Surely I could always be that way again-

And yet

I’ve grown accustomed to her look;

Accustomed to her voice;

Accustomed to her face.

….But I’m a most forgiving man;

The sort who never could, ever would,

Take a position and staunchly never budge.

A most forgiving man…. (editorial comment: only because she has showed me how it’s done!)  🙂

But I’m so used to hear her say

“Good morning” ev’ry day.

Her joys, her woes,

Her highs, her lows,

Are second nature to me now;

Like breathing out and breathing in.

I’m very grateful she’s a woman

And so easy to forget;

Rather like a habit

One can always break-

And yet,

I’ve grown accustomed to the trace

Of something in the air;

Accustomed to her face.

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I love my wife dearly.   The photo montage is but a glimpse of the many windows into the soul that is S.A.B.    She truly is MY fair lady.


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