Friday, April 24, 2009


Before you read this blog, take precautions. Get a mask. I have a terrible cold. And I do not want to give any one of you this damnable afliction.

The week after Easter I had a wonderful surprise. My number three daughter called saying she was coming to see me. She came on Tuesday, spent the night with her sister and the two of them arrived on Wednesday. We actually met at the John Wayne Marina for lunch. What a perfect day. On our way home I said I wanted to stop at Costco to get a leg of lamb for it was impossible to get fresh Crab which we always have for dinner when visitors first arrive. The leg of lamb cost $16 something and after the week was over I figured out that we got 15 meals out of that delicious meat.

The leg was butterflied and when we got home I worked on the flatness of the meat, rubbed it with lots of rosemary, salt and pepper and poured red wine over it. When the time came to cook it I turned on my barbecue and cooked it on very high heat for not very long. It was perfect. We ate it with baked potatoes and a salad and mint jelly. And it was even better the next day when we ate it on sandwiches for lunch.

I have to tell you about Jane, our fourth and final child. Sam felt he had to go to the Denver area for one more serious trip before this baby was born so he could stay homme for a while and help with her and to bond with her. (we did not know if it was a her or a him) So we asked Flourine, our wonderful cleaning woman from our Burlingame days, to come to stay with me while he was gone. The first Saturday I had to drive across the bay for one of my regular prenatal visits with my obstretitian (he was also the one who had helped us get pregnant with our first the secnd one) He spent a lot of time listening to the heart beat said he needed to take a test before i left. Since the three children at home were in good hands I visited with a couple of friends on the Peninsula.

Saturday and Sunday were uneventful. Monday was normal too. I went to bed at my usual time and fell asleep reading a book. At 11.30 the phone rang waking me up. Oh, it must be Sam. It was Dr Tompkins. I am so sorry to call so late. I was home in bed when I realized that no one had called me about the test we took on Saturday. I got dressed, drove down to the office and there was bad news. Do you remember I had trouble finding the heartbeat of the baby. That's why I took that extra test. That showed me that the baby is affected by the Rh factor and you have to have the baby tomorrow. Call Sam and dtell him he has to get a reservation and fly home as soon as possible. He has to be here when you are delivered. What a shock. I had several more weeks before I was due.

It took ages before I got hold of Sam. He insisted on driving back. He said I will start in a few minutes. I had invited Sam's mother an brother for lunch on Tuesday and I told myself that I would ask her to sleep over with them on tuesday night and then his brother could drive me to the hospital in San Francisco next day. I got ready and packed early. And I asked Flourine if she would stay with the children till Sam came home. She said Mrs Stockton, I cant stay in a house where there are no locks on the doors. I said I will fix that. before I leave.I looked through drawers and found some keys that worked some doors. And at last there was one door left. I found a big two by four in the garage and some huge nails and I nailed the door shut. Now, will you? She laughed and said yes.

We were in August and the temperature was nearly 100* I was dressed in a maternity, sleeveless top and shorts When the lunch guests arrived. I did not want to tell Sam's mother about the change in the baby's birthday, so we had a leisurely lunch and when it was time for them to leave I told her that I had to have the baby tomorrow. Can I go home with you, spend the night and then ask Mike to drive me to he hospital in the morning? She looked at her watch and said, I'm sorry but I really have to hurry home to get a roast in the oven for dinner tonight. And they left. I caalled Betty on the Peninsula and said can I sleep over at your house and will you drive me to the hospital in the morning. She said Of course. Do you want to take it easy when you come or do you want to play bridge. I needed to take my mind off the adventures of the coming morning so I opted for bridge.

I got into my 1939 Green Hornet, a Chevrolet we had bought from Sam's partner. I guess I was only a few dozen cars behind Sam's mother on the way across the San Mateo Bridge.

Next morning Betty drove me to the hospilal. Tommy said :you didn't have to come so early for we cannot take the baby until Sam arrives. I said Why? If you are going to have your tubes tied he has to be here to sign a paper. Later it turned out (he didn't want me to worry) that because of the trouble with the heartbeats on Saturday we might have to agree to limiting our children to three only. Betty waited with me and around 3.30 Sam arrived dead tired from having driven all the way with a 15 min. nap somewhere. And with that everything moved.

Jane was born soon after Sam came and according to Betty, she was the most beautiful baby ever born. And she was healthy, thank goodness. She was pink like a "rose bud" and her middle name became Rosebud. She had to be tested for a long time to see that she was not building up something from the Rh confusion. Having had four children and always worried about that, You'd think I would have studied the whole problem. It is still all greek to me.

That's the way Jane was born but next time I will tell you what a wonderful child she developed into and as an adult how lovable she is.


Beth said...

Oh no, your mother-in-law sounds just like mine. Were you bitter? I have tried to overlook hurtful things through the years and hold my head up high around her. I think she's disappointed that we're still married after 31 years! I sure fooled her! Love, love, love your memories.

fresh365 said...

What a story! Seriously, I can't believe your mother in-law, but good thing you had a wonderful friend to help!

Deborah said...

I have had a terrible cold too. I hope that you feel better soon.

I can't believe that your mother in law would do that to you. At least your friend was ther for you.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I just found your blog (also thru your granddaughter's) and I love reading about your life and memories, good and bad. I think your mother-in-law must have been depressed and not know how to show good feelings, like love and concern....Your art work is absolutely lovely---I especially like the leather picture of you with the mattress drying on the fence---I was a bed wetter too! Keep writing, you lift us all up with your love of life! xoxo

Anonymous said...

I hang on your every word!

Your narratives fill every sense and emotion. Truly they do. I'm now craving lamb. I would like to suggest that you consider sharing your recipes with us as well. I would love to learn how to make lamb as you described!

I enjoy imagining how the Bay Area was when you were here... your voice is so rich and full and timeless.

I hope that you are feeling better!