Gina Broadbent

The Trauma of the Tree – Yesterday and Today

fake christmas treeYesterday

How could my mother do it, do it at Christmas? She hung the stockings, baked the cookies, wrapped the gifts, even placed baby Jesus in the manger. And then, she did it, smack dab in the middle of the living room! She put up a silver aluminum Christmas tree.

I hated that tree. It was not festive, fragrant or full. Worst of all, it was not green!!  I was convinced Santa would take one look at it and, fearing high levels of radiation, shoot right back up the chimney. My brother, Joe, hated that tree more.

Since my father’s mechanical ability was limited to changing a burnt out light bulb, the job of assembling the tree fell to my brother. Joe was blessed with a methodical mind and a plethora of patience. On or about December 1, Joe began his work. He opened a large cardboard box and faced 642 individual branches of curled foil that fit into one, and only one, spoke on a spindly trunk. On or about December 24, Joe finished his task. [Read More…]

Dressing Daddy (That is, My Husband)

Gina's flipflopsTwenty-eight years ago, the following were my husband’s five rules of fashion:

1. Beige is good; more beige is better, and a whole lot of beige is best – Most people identify red or green or even periwinkle as their favorite color.  Not my husband, Jeff – he liked that nebulous not brown, not white shade of regurgitated oatmeal, known as beige.  He liked it so much that in the pre-Gina era, 90% of his wardrobe was beige.

He had it all – beige golf shirts, beige (aka khaki) pants, beige sports jacket, even beige socks which he often wore simultaneously for an effect that what was, at best, underwhelming.  There was an advantage (if one can call it that) to Jeff’s love affair with beige – his outfits never clashed.  No danger of pink paired with red, no maroon mixed with orange.  Only beige – bleak and boring beige. [Read More…]

By |June 18th, 2015|Categories: Commentary, Daily Living, Midlife Foibles!|Tags: , , |0 Comments

A Mother’s Job Is Never Done

stay at home momThe urban legend of motherhood contends that if you don’t embarrass your child, you’re not doing your job.

I’ve always been a bit of an overachiever and, never more so than during my daughter’s tween/teen years.  I pursued with a passion, one I usually reserve for a crisp sauvignon blanc or a deep tissue massage, perfect performance on this compass of parental competence.

Yes, I did it; I did it all- all the miserable, misguided maternal behavior sure to elicit a roll of the eyes, a highly offended yelp of “EWEE,” and the ultimate,”Mom, people heard you say  that!” [Read More…]

By |May 12th, 2015|Categories: Commentary, Daily Living, Midlife Foibles!|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Phone Folly (Three Short Parenting-A-College-Kid Stories)

telephone#1 – A phone call in the middle of the night is never a good thing.  On a mid-September night, I fall into an easy sleep, secure in the thought that my daughter Catherine is settling into college life.   A rude ring rouses me.    Mother’s intuition, fueled by my overactive, overprotective gene, shoots into overdrive.   I brace for bad news as my husband, Mr. Don’t Worry Be Happy, picks up the phone.

DWBH: “Hey, Catherine, how ya doing?  Good.  Yeah Mom’s right here.”

It’s midnight. Where did she think I’d be? At the mall?  Out for cocktails? [Read More…]

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