The Really Important Stuff




Natalie and Kailyn

I met Natalie a year ago - not too long after she learned she was pregnant. She was looking for a place to live and I had an extra room. She and Kailyn add joy to my life ... and a necessary amount of chaos :-) May 24 was a big day for Kailyn - it was her first time in a high chair (Chow time). Her Grandmother and Papa Sid (Natalie's mom and dad) bought it for her. A videographer I'm not!

My Family

I think my sister, Tecy, has earned sainthood and retirement. She has taught middle school for at least 30 years - I think longer. But that isn't what makes her special. When her son, Matt, was in 9th grade he came home and told his parents that there was a kid, Dan, in band who needed a place to go over Thanksgiving. The kid's mom was an alcoholic, unemployed and had been on a binge. There was nothing in the house. My sister and brother-in-law took Dan in. Thanksgiving lasted for 4 years - until Dan graduated from high school. A few months after Dan moved in, he and Matt went to my sister and brother-in-law asking if Dan's brother Kevin could move in. Kevin had just been kicked out of their older brother's house. Kevin moved in 'for a while'. 'For a while' lasted 3 years - until Kevin graduated from high school. Then the boys asked if Ray could hang out for a while. Ray's mom was also an alcoholic and had been on a binge. You guessed it. Ray hung out until he graduated from school - about 2 years. The Spring after Ray moved in, I got an Easter card from Tecy. The household population was up to 6 cats, 2 dogs, 2 goats, my brother-in-law and there had been an addition to the family. I knew it was another boy. Warren needed a place to go. And where better than my sister's? He hung out for about 2 years before he graduated from high school. At one time, Tecy had 5 teen-age boys between the ages of 15 and 17 living in her home. Dan, Kevin, Ray and Warren call her 'Mom'. They are as much a part of my family as my biological nephew, Matt. We call them 'generic' nephews. I'll go to Warren's wedding this summer.

San Antonio

I have lived in San Antonio for the last 15 years. Our winters are generally mild with only one week to let us know there is a season called 'Winter'. Summer, however, is long and hot :-) Central air conditioning is unquestionably one of mankind's greatest achievements.

The Dog

Pax was a pound puppy. Originally, I was going to call her Pax Domini. It was shortened to Pax when I realized I was not going to call Pax Domini, Pax Domini. Come so the neighborhood could hear me :-)

Pax, as far as the vet and I have ever been able to figure, is part Shetland Sheepdog and part Border Collie. Her breeding says she protects her herd at all costs. While she is more than willing to do that, she has a major problem - she despises water. She tolerates baths as a necessary evil. She absolutely will not willingly get in water. As a result she is a hysterical dog when any member of her herd is in the water. Watch Swimming to get a small idea of her reaction to people in a pool. She is becoming particularly protective of Kailyn.

Music

I always wanted to learn to play piano but my mom resisted the idea because of the weight allowances associated with pianos and the tuning after each move. I knew very few people who owned pianos as (I was growing up because of it.

My solution is to sing. Although I don't have a solo quality voice, singing in the church choir is an integral part of my life. There are a few types of music I don't appreciate (Punk and Heavy Metal) but beyond that I like almost anything from Rock, to Folk, to Classical and to Jazz. I have always liked Copeland's Fanfare for the Common Man and the Woody Herman version from the Herd At Montreux album is cool because it adds a jazz flair. If you like Copeland and jazz, see if you can find a cut of it. Amazing Grace has been a long-time favorite and this version by Phil Coulter is nice. A more recent favorite is Before the Throne of God Above. The first time I heard it was in choir rehersal about a year ago - I listen to it frequently. At 6Mb, it may take a while to load. Check out www.mp3.com or www.emusic.com for more good downloads.

Skiing

I love skiing. I love the challenge of the mountain. These are some of the places I have skied or would like to ski.

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© 2003 Maggie Rice