November, 2006


Jane Brooks

KITTERY, Maine — Jane Brooks, 63, died Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2006, at Portsmouth Regional Hospital, after a sudden illness.

She was born on March 10, 1943, in Portsmouth, N.H., the daughter of the late Charles and Helen (Malinowski) Gryzbowski.

Mrs. Brooks was a homemaker and had recently retired from Flextronics. She enjoyed spending weekends at Mousam Lake, playing bingo, making ceramics and spending time with her grandson, Thomas.

She is survived by her husband, Richard, of Kittery; her son, Ramon Gagnon and his wife, Alison, of Portsmouth, N.H.; her daughter, Anne Shaffer and her husband, Michael, of Plano, Texas; her sister, Linda Grant and her husband, Dean, of Kittery; two grandsons, Thomas Gagnon of Portsmouth, N.H., and Morgan Shaffer of Plano, Texas; and many nephews.

SERVICES: Visiting hours will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on Sunday at the Farrell Funeral Home, 684 State St., Portsmouth. Burial will be held privately.

Right now I’m just numb. This obviously comes as a shock. My mother was only 63 years old, and though she wasn’t in the best of health, it wasn’t terrible either. She was ill from some bug she caught, and that is what they think contributed to her death. It doesn’t help that I got the news the day before Thanksgiving… A thanksgiving that we have 2 guests here for; though them being here has kept me from falling completely apart.

Pookey has been wonderful, and came straight home after my Aunt Linda called me with the news. The moment I heard her voice on the phone, I knew what she was going to say, but I didn’t want to hear it. Hell, even now I don’t want to even think about it. It’s like an unwelcome guest in my mind. A thought I keep bumping into as I go about my day. I know it’s something that I will have to come to grips with, but don’t know yet how I will. I will miss her each, and every, day. *sad sigh*


Turkey For our first Thanksgiving in our new home Martin, Pookey’s brother, and his 7 year old daughter, Ellen, will be coming up from San Antonio to celebrate it with us. We are all looking forward to this, but none more so as Morgan. He just loooooves his cousin Ellen, can’t wait until she arrives. She’s all he talks about lately.

When we first moved to Texas we would go down and spend Thanksgiving there, though for the last few years we’ve stayed home. It’s nice to see people you haven’t seen in person for a whole year, but you still end up missing your own home. Plus, it always figures that I’d either be PMSing, or having my period during that time, or as I did the last year we went down, sick as a dog with the flu. *sigh*

So, this year will be especially nice… I’ll be in my own home, and won’t have any of the stress of being somewhere else. My mother came for Thanksgiving last year, so I know exactly what I’m getting into. Though I do anticipate that Martin, and Ellen, will be easier houseguests. *lol* Now, I just have to figure out what the menu will be for all the meals they will eat while here, and write up my grocery list. Thanksgiving day is the easiest part: Turkey (of course), my famous stuffing, mashed potatoes, a vegetable (or two), a pasta (or rice) dish, rolls, & several pies. The menu will evolve the closer to Thanksgiving we get. Just thinking about it is making me hungry. Yum!


OK, I finally admit it… After being here in Texas for well over 5 years I’ve lost my tolerance for cooler temperatures that I had when I lived up North. There, I said it. It’s a hard thing to say, since I am originally from New Hampshire, and I prided myself on my ability to take any cold weather Texas threw at me with a studied indifference. Not anymore, now I just bundle myself up when I have to go out. Though, I still do laugh at them when they get all freaked out when they get 1 inch of snow. That will never change. Definitely not.

Tonight, it dropped into the 40’s, with a brisk wind blowing in from the East, and I’m freezing my ass off. I know the 40’s isn’t particularly cold, compared to how cold it can get up North, but when you’ve gotten used to it being warm, if not downright hot, most of the year, then it is. It’s definitely a sign that Winter is well on its way. Brrrrrr!!!

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