Sara and Ben’s Wedding: Klainer Cousins

Sara and Matt have a raft of Klainer cousins, most on the east coast  but spread out now, as is the case with most families. The cousins really like each other, but as all now have jobs and families and perhaps children, their chances to hang out together are limited.

The Klainer cousins are showing up in force for Sara and Ben’s wedding, which makes me really happy. The wedding is on a Sunday. On Friday night, they are doing a dinner with parents and close family. On Saturday night, it’s the bridal party — including cousin Suzanne, who is in the wedding — and the rest of the cousins on both sides.

I’m really, really happy — first, that the cousins are coming. Destination weddings are not cheap and not easy to get to. Second, I’m thrilled that these wonderful young people will have time together in a beautiful setting to just hang out and relax and catch up.

Weddings can be stressful when there is family tension. Jerry’s and my Jewish/Catholic union was that way. But when family is first up to say how happy they are for the couple, and how glad they are to be part of things, and how much happiness they wish for Ben and Sara, it’s all fair winds and smooth sailing.

Cheers and gratitude and much love for the Klainer cousins. 🙂

Ben and Sara’s Wedding: Jerry’s Ginger Jar

Jerry and I had many beautiful things in our home on San Gabriel Drive — pottery, art work, oriental rugs. Most of it I chose, and he acquiesced. Not long before he died, we visited a favorite gallery, and he fell in love with a porcelain ginger jar. The piece was expensive, and he was ambivalent about getting it. He pointed out that we already had a lot of nice things. He said we didn’t really need it. He said he wasn’t sure where we’d put it. And yet he kept looking at the ginger jar, savoring its beauty.

You get the idea. It was easy for Jerry to be generous with others, me especially. But it was hard for him to be impulsively generous with himself.  Finally, he decided against buying the piece.

His falling in love with something like that was so atypical, that when we got home, I called the gallery out of his hearing and said that I’d be in on Monday to pay for the piece, and would they set it aside. I surprised him with it, and he responded with a wonderful smile. Finding just the right spot was not hard, and we both enjoyed our latest acquisition. Jerry died only a month or two after the ginger jar came into our home.

At a point I asked Sara and Matt if they would each like to take something to remind them of their dad, and Sara chose the ginger jar. She had it in her apartment in Boston. Then, when she moved to Michigan for graduate school, then Austin to work for Dell, she asked her aunt and uncle in Maine to keep the fragile jar for her until she was permanently settled. The ginger jar was safe and well cared for with Uncle Paul and Aunt Jeanne. Sara has moved a fair amount, and hadn’t swung back around to ask for the jar.

Well, she and Ben are settled, and about to be married. Jeannie came up with the wonderful idea of shipping the precious jar. It arrived safely, and is now with Ben and Sara. My heart is smiling. Thanks to Jeannie and Paul, to those who did such a good job packing and sending a fragile piece, and for Sara and Ben’s welcome for Jerry’s Ginger Jar in their home.

M.O.B: My Shoes

As I said in an earlier post, one of the three pairs of shoes that Sara ordered me online fits perfectly and will go well with either dress — depending on the final decision of which one to wear.

What do you think? Remember it’s a beach wedding on sand; flats definitely called for.

I spoke with my Boston family the other day, and they are all teasing me about wearing a dress — something they haven’t seen in decades, to be sure. I wore a dressy pant suit to Matt and Amy’s wedding, and to my niece Suzanne’s, and I even — with the approval of the bride and groom — wore a dressy pants outfit to officiate at a wedding. I have good legs, so it’s not that. The rest of my body just doesn’t fit all that well into a regular size dress — I’m too broad across the chest and narrow at the hips. Separates work better.

But, I did find a dress at Nordstrom’s that works, fits well, and which I like. When my online dress arrives, Sara and I will make the choice.

I have good legs but not gorgeous feet; I think my feet look old. But they are the feet I have, so they will have to do. 🙂


MOB: Shopping for Shoes

Sara and I ordered a M.O.B. dress for me online, which hasn’t come yet, and I bought a back-up at Nordstrom’s. We had breakfast yesterday morning, and I asked Sara if she’d have time to come with me to look for shoes that would suit either dress. She asked why we didn’t order three or four possible pairs from Amazon, and see if any of those worked. I signed into my Amazon account on my phone, she took the phone and selected some shoes, I clicked ” place order”, and the shoes will be here on Thursday. The whole thing was done before our hot breakfasts arrived at the table.

This is how Sara’s generation shops for shoes — and most everything else, for that matter.

I’m careful about buying clothing or shoes online because I hate to return things. Sara doesn’t mind, so she promised to handle the returns for any of the shoes we don’t keep. If none of the online pairs work, we’ll go shopping live.

At Nordstrom’s all the sales people were young and trendy, but the people shopping weren’t. People my age like to touch and feel the fabric and try on, leaving behind the items that don’t look flattering. People Sara’s age like to save time by ordering online, trying on at home, and dropping the unwanted items at a pickup center.

Makes it hard to see how downtown retail stores, even high end and popular ones like Nordstrom’s that are trying hard to adapt, are going to survive.