Cherise the Name

In 50 years, I've met exactly 35 people who share my first name. With two exceptions, every time, it has given us a special feeling of kinship. I'm the only one I know who has counted. There were three of us named Cherise in my class in high school, and the other two are the exceptions. Normally, three women sharing a first name isn't a problem, but with a rare name such as ours, it was.

A guy ran up to me in gym class and proudly announced, "I voted for you for Homecoming Queen!"
"I'm not running," I told him.
"Huh? But your name is on the ballot." He smiled at me. "Maybe someone else signed you up!"
"Nope. Cherese ____ is running."
He looked dumbfounded. Cherese ____ and I couldn't look any more different. Literally, black and white! LOL!

There is at least one other Cherise Kelley online. She is blonde and 20 years younger than I am. Kelley is her maiden name, so I hold out hope that perhaps hers will change.

I love my first name, and I'm so glad my parents spelled it right! Cherise translates to cherry from Old French to English. Not cherries, which it does kind of sound like, but cherry. Modern French for cherry is cerise. In 1989, I visited a French friend where she grew up, in Paris. She and her family and friends found my name just as rare there as it is here in the US.

Cherise is my real name. I'm not French, though. My parents found my name in a book of baby names. I grew up before everyday people had Internet access, so I didn't know the meaning of my name until 8th grade Spanish class. I told the teacher my name and he told me my Spanish name was Cereza. I looked that up and it translated to cherry in English.

Nicknames? My dad's parents thought Cherise was too weird a name to call a little girl, so they called me by a name that was more common in my childhood, Sherry. It stuck. My whole family still calls me that, but we spell it Cheri. In French, that is pronounced share EE, and it translates to dear one in English. To my mom and my sister, I'm Cher. I've had odd nicknames, though. Cherries. Reeses. My friend's dad called me Chartreuse.

A black co-worker gave me my favorite odd nickname: Cyd (For Cyd Charisse, the white 1940s actress and dancer best known for the movie "Singin' in the Rain"). He would say it enthusiastically whenever he saw me, "Cyd!" People's reactions were funny. Even in the early 1980s, almost no one remembered poor Cyd Charisse.
In the late 1970s, a guy my age told me that from hearing my name before we were introduced, he expected me to be more of a model, more glamorous. When an older lady heard my name in the early 1990s, she said, "Yeah, that's a 60s name! It's pretty groovy!" Yes, I was born in the 60s, so that makes sense.

When I got Internet access in the late 90s, I looked my name up on various name sites that asked people if they liked their names or not. This one Cherise said she liked it, but it bothered her that even though our name is Old French, people expect her to be black.

I like that my name means something. The other day, someone said it's only recently that people have named their children by putting together sounds they find "pretty" or "cute." He pointed out that traditionally, names have had meaning.

Pirates of the Coeur d'Alene Kids Cruise Review

We took the Pirates of the Coeur d'Alene Kids Cruise in June of 2013: Mom, Sis, and me. We really enjoyed it! This is definitely meant for kids and we had so much fun watching the kids get into it. The crew did a good job engaging the kids with crafts, games, stories, acting, singing, and dancing.

I'd say the kids pirate cruise is aimed at littler kids, ages 3 - 8. Adults had fun watching the little ones have fun, but I think teens would be bored.

It starts with face painting and costuming the kiddies inside the lower level of the dinner boat. Then, up top where the cannons are there's storytelling and a fun action sequence that changes every year.

The crew use microphone headsets, so everyone can hear what is going on from every seat.

The vistas from the pirate ship boat are as spectacular as the show. Lake Coeur d'Alene is an international resort destination.

There's a full bar the entire time of the cruise. Snacks are on sale, too, and soft drinks.

There is an adult version of the Coeur d'Alene pirate cruise for those over 21, too. I haven't partaken, but I hear it is worth doing if you're in your twenties.

Window Is Short for Wind Opening

We only have a one-room portable air conditioner that Scott uses in the bedroom to sleep during the day to be ready for his night shifts at work. The rest of the house is cooled by air flow. We open all the windows and use a series of fans to push air through the house. We point all the fans the same direction as the wind is currently blowing outside. This means one end of the house has fans blowing air in through the window and the other end of the house has fans blowing air out through the window, or wind opening.

So, in my mind, windows are for allowing the wind to blow through and cool the house in hot weather. A neighbor recently asked if I'd seen the new paint job on the back of his house. When I told him I hadn't, he told me, "That's what windows are for." I thought to myself, "No, windows are for letting the wind cool the house off. If windows were for spying on our neighbors, then they would be called 'spyows' (spy openings)."

I imagine people shortened 'wind opening' to 'window' long before they had electric fans to help the wind cool their houses. I wonder when we lost track of why we called them wind openings, but I'd guess it happened fairly recently, with the invention of air conditioning.

That reminds me of a cool story about my family's old farmhouse. My Grandma Anna, second from the left in this photo that was taken in the late 1980s, grew up in tornado country. Her father built this farmhouse in the thick of tornado country. During tornado warnings, she would tell us to open the particular window that appears in this photo. She said that giving the wind this opening would prevent the tornado from tearing the house down.

Unfortunately, this photograph got double exposed. That used to happen sometimes, back when we needed to use film in order to take pictures. I mistook this roll of film for an unexposed roll, and I took another picture on top of this one.

In other news, I weighed in at 156.6 this morning, and I will be dieting for the next week or so. The cheesecake our church gave us to celebrate our 19th wedding anniversary sure was yummy, though!