Friday, January 13, 2017

A Woman from Maine

If you marry a Maine woman.....

Three friends married women from different parts of the country. The 1st man married a woman from Indiana, he told her that she was to do the dishes and house cleaning. It took a couple days but the 3rd day, he came home to see a clean house and dishes washed and put away. The 2nd man married a woman from Alabama. He gave his wife orders to do all the cleaning, wash the dishes, and prepare gourmet meals. The 1st day he didn't see any results, but the next day he saw it was better.  By the 3rd day, he saw his house was clean, the dishes were done, and there was a huge dinner on the table. The 3rd man married a girl from Maine. He ordered her to keep the house clean, the dishes washed, the lawn mowed, the laundry washed and ironed, and hot meals on the table for every meal. He said the 1st day he didn't see anything, the 2nd day he didn't see anything, but by the 3rd day, some of the swelling had gone down and he could see a little out of his left eye, and his arm was healed enough that he could fix himself a sandwich and load the dishwasher. He still has some difficulty when he pees.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Can't think of a thing to write..

So let's go to the cartoon first thing:

Friday, January 06, 2017

First Snow, dammit

I wouldn't mind the temperature (within limits) or the early darkness, or the wind, if only the snow wouldn't fall on the roads.  We got 3 inches last night, and it is lightly snowing now.  There is just enough to make the driving slippery, but not enough to get the plows out.  I don't have to get around today,  we even have milk and t. paper, the two commodities everyone grabs when the forecast is chancy.  But my daughter has had to go to work this morning, and yes, she is a good driver, and the roads in town are rarely more than slushy, mostly.  I still worry (I am a parent, after all) and having found she made it in, with no trouble, I am now all set to worry about the drive home in the dark.  I never say anything or ask about the drive, there is no need to pass my anxiety on.  Still I wish for clear skies all year round.

I got the check yesterday for the class-action lawsuit, all I need now is to go to the bank.  I still haven't figured out whether I will need to declare it as income, apparently it is not a yes/no question.  I will ask the financial guy his opinion, rather than find yet another guy,  an accountant, to render a definitive decision.  The settlement came with a 4 page document on this question, lots of ifs and  unlesses.  Pain.

I have been spending an inordinate time on YouTube, watching videos on... are you ready?... cross stitching.   I know, how could hundreds of people with regular lives make these videos on such a simple topic, but still I watch.  I have 10 tips I wish I could give to all of them, they are consistently guilty of most all of them.

1.  Don't scratch your head or play with your hair.
2.  Try really hard to stop saying "um"  "so"  "you know" every other sentence.  Try.
3.  Don't mumble; we are not mind readers.
4.  Make eye contact with the camera (and therefore us) and don't peer into the distance at the side; and mumble.
5.  Be organized.  Don't rummage around on your table or desk for your notes, or something you wish to share with your audience.  Have it right at hand.
6.  If you are showing projects that are completed, if you haven't gotten it framed or made into something, at least have it ironed, and maybe even tacked to a piece of foam board temporarily.  It drives me nuts when your project flops around as you hold the corners up to the camera.
7. Have something to say, not just parade a looong series of things you are working on.  A tip, a feature, something.
8.  And since we are here, if you have 20 stitches done, it doesn't count as "started".
9.  Keep your pets out of the video; they aren't cute to anyone but you.  A photo, OK, but not a pet distracting you on camera and knocking over your notes.
10.  Watch your videos after they are done and before you post them.  Editing really isn't that hard.  It helps if you are not the presenter AND trying to fiddle with your camera.

In summary, be calm, collected, organized, and enthusiastic about your topic.  Try.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Happy New Year

I managed to sleep through the fireworks in the neighborhood at midnight, thank you very much.  I didn't think they would do them as it was cold and rainy, but when you gotta go boom! then go boom!

I surely hope this year is an improvement over 2016.  Between deaths, flooding, illness and injuries, it would be hard to equal that this year.  Or so I hope.  Almost 8 months since my husband of 45 years died.  I think if I had some warning, if it had happened in the hospital, if I hadn't seen the CPR being done, maybe it wouldn't have been such a shock.  No chance to say goodbye.  The gathering (not an actual service, just an opportunity to mingle with those who knew him over the years) was a success, not as a social party, but talking with people who worked with him, mostly.  He was retired for 16 years, but we couldn't go through the mall without at least one person stopping him to chat.  He was the director of personnel for a large government entity, co-workers of many hundreds.  He was cremated, something he had stated many times.  I'm not sure he would have approved of the gathering, but it made me feel a lot better, especially since his sister could be there.  Their brother had died early in the year, so now his sister is the last close relative.  I wish we lived closer.

 The farrier came this morning to trim the hooves of the last horse we own.  It is a clear blue sky today, and the temperature is mild, unlike the last two weeks.  We had all the faucets and piping in heated rooms but I still felt like sinking into the ground when we lost the water;  I thought the pipes had frozen.  I called the water company and she told me there was a break in the water line that was being worked on.  Whew.  Our neighbors called too, with the same fear.  I'm seriously thinking about moving to a place where there is no snow or frigid temperatures, but it would have to wait until our animal census is zero.  Maybe one cat.  No horses, no dogs, no more cats.  It is not like I have a circle of dear friends, and there are no ties to keep us here.  It is worth thinking about.

I have been a slacker for writing in my journal, but it is not like I am trying to win a prize with a daily diary.  I will write when it feels right.  My blog here serves as a similar purpose, and is easier to write because it is easier to do revisions than to cross out and erase there.

That is the latest update, more or less.  Hope all the readers here have an enjoyable and trouble-free year!

 slogan for the day:  "I put the PRO in Procrastinate."


Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Back to the ordinary

The days immediately after Christmas are a let-down, don't you think?  Unless you have relatives still in the house, or the odd kid who needed an extra day of vacation.  Here the schools are closed until Jan 3rd, since Jan 1 is on a Sunday and therefore Jan 2nd is a holiday.  For us, it was a day of cleaning, laundry (as always), gutter cleaning, kitchen duty, and so on.  I was ill last night and traded dinner for an early bedtime.  I feel OK now, too much rich food that I am not used to, so it was back to housekeeping.  All except the gutter work, I don't do ladder work. 

I got a nice gift a day early, a book called "Field notes from Grief:  The First Year" sent by a friend.  I need to go to see a therapist; I am having terrible terrible nightmares, the kind where you can't distinguish between asleep and awake. I get them whether I take a sleeping pill or not; and waking up several times a night doesn't help either.  I spent one night on the living room couch, just to keep from picking up the nightmare from where it left off.  I did some calling around, but the problem is Medicare; not all therapists take it, even though I have an excellent secondary coverage.  And some weren't accepting new clients.  If this next one can't help me then I will give up.  If I can just continue through the new year...

The T-shirt I got for C says, "Don't blame me, I voted for Bill and Opus"  and there is a cartoon of Bill the cat and Opus the penguin.  None of which is understandable unless you've been a fan of Bloom County, which has only recently been back in publication.  I also got C the latest book of Bloom County,  a pokemon pikachu jump drive, and an agate wind-chime made of really lovely geodes that make a musical sound.  He is so hard to buy for.  R got boots, a sweater, an emoji bracelet, and a necklace.   I am not convinced that the boots fit her.  She always says (whatever the gift) it's fine! and then half the time puts them in her closet or dresser and are never seen again.  A big waste.  These are from Zappo's, so the return is free, maybe she wants a larger size, or brown instead of black, no problem, so long as the boots are as new.  Sigh.  Kids, irregardless of their age.

So I hope everyone had a fun relaxing day, and that everyone is safe and sound.  A New Year  coming, maybe make some resolutions?  Or just continue with ones made before now.  Anyway...

Friday, December 23, 2016

The shopping it is Over

Initially, when son, daughter, and I were discussing Christmas this year, we said, no big decorations,  the usual steak for dinner, no gifts.  But as the time grew closer, I decided a few small things for them were OK, and things have escalated.  I now have several gifts for each of them, and I hope they like them.  That is the best part of christmas for me, seeing how the recipient enjoys their gifts.  It was all the internet for me, and I never did make it to the mall.  Today we went to walmart to pick up a few things for dinner and my god! the crowds!  And they weren't very nice either.  I saw one woman, messing with her phone, drop a credit card just after leaving the register.  I said, excuse me ma'am I think you dropped a card.  She gave me the biggest smile as she picked it up, so I guess all is not lost in the Christmas spirit.

i am missing N more now than previously.  I have been getting cards from people all over the country who did not know that N had passed away.  So as I write cards to them, I am telling them the bare bones of his illness, and it is hard to do it without making it sound too bleak.  And each telling makes me a little more sad.

Well, time to rustle up some dinner, here is today's cartoon:

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Cross Stitch

Cross stitching and machine knitting are the two main crafts that I do more or less constantly.  The knitting has to go on hold until my right shoulder mends a bit.  I use a magnifying glass that hangs around my neck - maybe you have seen them? for the cross stitch, so I can put my arms down further, and not be peering at the fabric.  It is lighted too.  One by one all my bits are falling apart, it seems like.  I can't figure out what to do with the stitched pieces, I usually frame them (have them framed) but where will I hang them?  It seems like every bit of wall is already occupied.  Maybe I will rotate them, that will also make me see them anew.  After they are completed I usually am sick to death of the sight of them.  I also try not to begin a new project when the old one isn't completed, the knitting people call them UFOs (Un Finished Objects) but unlike hand knitting, using machines means I can't readily start a new item because the old one is hanging on the machine, taunting me. 

I am having the devil of a time with an eBay seller in Beijing.  I bought a winter coat, very lovely, but about 5 sizes too small.  The listing explained that Chinese sizes are different from our sizes, so to be safe I ordered the largest size they make, supposedly a US size 3X (Chinese 5X).  The coat was about a size 12 I think.  So, with regret, I returned it.  $60 in postage, custom forms, etc.  The seller says the coat "never arrived" and ebay confirmed that they are not obligated to return my item price (I would still be out the shipping to and fro).  I have opened a case with the USPS because the coat was insured, but I don't know how that will work out.  I should have donated the coat to charity.  Damn.  My advice:  don't buy from China, many packages routinely "get lost" and how do you prove that you did not receive it, or that they actually got the return?  And they will get bad feedback from me anyway.  I have NEVER given bad feedback, and I have 100% positives and glowing comments from all 600+ sellers from whom I have bought, over the years from 2005.  Damn it.

 Well, enough sour grapes for this post.  I hope all my readers, casual or following me, have a safe trip to the family gatherings, and that all the gifts DO NOT have to be returned!

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Getting closer

It is 12 days until Christmas.  Aren't I supposed to get a partridge in a pear tree today?  I've always hated that song, it goes on and on and if you can remember the "lords a leaping" and the rest, you're spending WAAAY too much time listening to the radio this month.  And partridges are very messy birds, also.  I'm not sure about how tidy eight maids a-milking would be, cows being non- housebroken and all.  Anyway...

I got t-shirt number three yesterday, two white ones in two different sizes, and one black one, a ladies black one, all with the same logo on them.  I'll show the shirt(s) after Christmas, as I don't want to give it away yet.  Anyhow, I am clearly not proficient in on-line shopping yet.  Yet.  Practice makes perfect, yes?

Also, I opened a package that was addressed to our neighbor, it was from China and I had a correct package from there too that day.  Oops.  We get a lot of mis-directed mail, it hasn't been a problem until lately.  I hope all our mail isn't suffering the same fate.  Some of it is very important, like the check for $$$$ from a class-action lawsuit of ten years ago.  Can you believe they just poke a check in an envelope and drop it in the mailbox, no confirmed delivery, no signature needed, no insurance?  I sure hope ours is on its way without a glitch.

I was selected by the Nielsen TV group to participate in a survey about TV watching a few weeks ago.  I ordinarily pitch such mail unopened, but this time I opened it and money floated out.  It was followed, over the next week with two more dead presidents.  I'll do their surveys anytime now.   At one time I was part of a consumer survey group, and sometimes I received products ( like shampoo, bug spray, laundry detergent, and paper towels) to test.  Sometime in there I was dropped as a tester, probably skipped too many products.  I remember one where I had to keep track of how many loads of laundry I did in a month, and I was surprised at how many there were, 50 or so I think.  Four of us then, even so that is a lot. 

Did you ever hear a piece of folk superstition regarding New Year's Day?  I had a friend in the 60s who was appalled when I told her I was doing laundry on that day.  She said, 'oh no, someone in your family will be washed away (die) that year'!  I don't know where that started, she was a Georgia farm girl before moving to south Florida, so maybe that was the source.  Superstitions are always fun to hear, but now I count on  to get the lowdown on dubious tales.  Some of the ones floating around on the 'net are really old, but still believed by a lot of people.  Tales of dying children that want postcards sent; chances to win a great prize if you forward an email to 20 of your friends (that used to be called chain letters, before the net), and so on.  Snopes is a great source for quashing the false rumors, or even validating the ones that are true (not very many, I notice).  It is fun to check out their web pages once in a while.

Oops, the load in the washer is done, time to load the dryer.  Take care these next 12 days especially, lots of maniacs on the road this time of the year.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Christmas in 15 days...

I have finally gotten all the stuff I ordered, so other than wrapping, I'm ready to go.  Well, there is one sweater that is due Dec. 23, but that's OK.  It still feels like N should be here, doing all the outside decor and more of the tree trimming, but I just don't have the heart to do it.  It will even be strange on Christmas morning, as he was the one who handed out the gifts, one at a time so we could see how everyone liked the choices that were made.  He was also the chef for the steak and trimmings that is our traditional menu.  None of us have actually ever cooked steaks.  So, a little anticipation there.  Given what steak costs, it is to be hoped that it turns out great.

I was thinking the other day about blogs that don't exist anymore.  Back when I started, way back in 2004, I remember one blog supposedly written by a British call girl that was quite amusing.  She stopped writing because she got an offer to put her musings into a book.  Supposedly.  I don't remember her name or the name of the blog, so I can't google to get the whole story.  There were others; most only lasted a few months, for whatever reason, perhaps just boredom and failing to come up with things to write about.  I, of course, have never been at a loss for words, a factoid that was frequently found on my report cards many many years ago.  No point in trying to change now, is there?

If my sister was still alive, she would have been 70 in March.  She's been gone for 12 years.  When she was alive, it was a crisis a day, and I was supposed to mediate whomever she had pissed off.  It got really really old.

She was the first of all our relatives to go, due to a fall.  Now there is no one left except me and 3 cousins (out of eight) that I haven't seen more than once in the last 20 years.  All the earlier generation has been gone years too.  It makes Christmas a little bleak, and maybe we try too hard to be jolly.   Ho?  Ho?   Ho?  Hello?  But it is what it is.

Definition for the day:  "OCD : Obsessive Cat Disorder."  (We have 6)

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Cold and windy

We are truly getting a taste of winter today.  R left to go to work, then came back in for a warmer coat, a hat, and gloves.  Brrr.

I ordered my xmas presents in what I thought was ample time to get here before the big day.  But I still haven't received most of them, and I am getting annoyed.  In one case, the present is not available until February!  Why advertise it on your web page when it isn't available until months later?  Which, I should point out, wasn't revealed until the purchase was complete.

For one item, it was attempted for delivery yesterday "unsuccessfully".  We were home at 4 pm, and checked the mail right away - nothing.  At 5 pm C checked again, and this time there was a pkg., but not the one that is to be redelivered.   I did get 2 copies of Consumer Reports, the extra for someone I don't know at an address I've never heard of.  If that pkg. was OK to put in the box, why isn't this one?  Anyway, we will be here all day today, so no excuses.

I am making slow progress on the cross-stitch which I started years ago.  I am determined to finish it and get it into the trivet case, however long it takes.  Before I start another, I want to see how the "Red line " product works to grid the canvas and makes stitching go faster.  It  hasn't arrived yet either.

OK here is the photo of the living room and the dining room, actually taken before the Great Flood in July:

Things are not quite in the same place now, but you can guess what havoc all the "stuff" from downstairs (where my bedroom is) made on this area.  All that, plus in the garage for the furniture.  The room had to be stripped to the walls for the carpet guys to do their thing; afterwards I offered them (2 of them) a tip for the very good job they did, but neither one would take it.  I couldn't figure out any way to tuck it into their tool boxes, etc.  So when I went to get my hair done (see the post below) I tipped the beautician $20 and I thought she would pass out.  It is a little place, no appt. taken, if you want a particular stylist there is an extra charge, etc.  But I think of it as "paying it forward".  The rest will go in the kettles of the Sally Army.  They have an anonymous donor that puts a $1000 bill in a kettle every year (the specific kettle is revealed to the main Army ahead of the time), isn't that neat?  I wish I could afford that too.  Donations have been going down every year as more people are unemployed.  But of course DT is going to fix all of that, restore the coal mines that are closed, put all the coal miners back to work, happy days will be here again.  Right?

 T shirt for the day:  "I've finally reached the wonder years!  Wonder where my car is parked?  Wonder where I left my glasses?  Wonder where I left my phone?  Wonder what day it is?"

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

RED head

I got my hair colored, cut, and styled today.  I have worn it red for many years, and when my hair grew back after chemotherapy it was gray.  Very gray.  It made me feel old and sick.  It took many treatments and haircuts to get back to red, maybe 4 boxes of color.  It didn't look very even but it was an improvement over orange.  Anyway, I haven't had anything done with it for many months, 7?  9?
but when I described how I wanted it to look today, it came out a little,  I can't think of a description, but it is OK with me.  I mean, other than brushing my teeth, I really don't see myself in a mirror too many times a day.  And this answers the question, "Are you a natural redhead?" without saying a word.  NO, my hair grew out looking like this...

I have been doing some cross stitch on a project I started a looong time ago.   I made an error back in the beginning, had to rip it all back, and it put me off doing more.  I should have just set this project aside and started something I could be enthusiastic about, but I didn't.  I have started this up because I can't use my knitting machines; the ortho doc says I have a torn rotator cuff in  my right shoulder.  I can't say I really know what that is, I think it sounds like something wrong with my car. (Sorry ma'am but you need brake pads and new rotator cuffs)  but what I do know is that sliding back and forth with my hands on the carriage sends hot daggers of pain from my shoulder all the way to my hand.  I regard this as just another page in my disaster journal.  The doctor said I need physical therapy, but I am not going to set up weekly or biweekly PT visits in the winter.  Our road never gets plowed, and being on a ridge means we get a lot more snow than our share.  So he gave me home therapy exercises to do, which I haven't actually looked at yet.  But I will.  I'm sure.  But I wonder why not go with rest (no vacuuming ya hoo) instead, to give it time to heal.  I have only seen this doctor once before, and all he really wanted to do was give me a cortisone shot and call it a day.  Instead I suggested that having an actual diagnosis might be handy, down the road, so he sent me for an MRI.  If you have never had one, count yourself lucky.  I kept my eyes completely shut the entire time, so my claustrophobia wouldn't send me over the edge in that very tiny tunnel.  If I ever need another I'm bringing my sleep mask.
I am finding that even cross-stitch is messing up my arm and hand, after a short while stitching my right hand goes numb and I have to stop for several hours at least.

Our Christmas tree is up.  I bought a little pre-lit 4 foot tree, we pulled it out of the box and plugged it in and viola! instant holiday decor.  Maybe I'll see about some other decorations, but if not, it still looks nice.  Our big tree is in the storage unit, along with all the decorations, and getting  it out sounds like way too  much effort these days.
We bought a bow for the tree topper for the tree, it looks great.  That is our sole acknowledgment of the season, so far.  Maybe a wreath on the door is next.
I hope all of you enjoy your decorations, baking, shopping, wrapping, sending cards, and on and on.  Written out like that sounds like too much work, doesn't it?

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Before and After

 This is what my bedroom looked like in August after clearing out the salvaged stuff, and the water damaged stuff to the trash (like the carpet).

This is what it looks like today, cluttered but comfortable.  And dry.

Happy Thanksgiving!  We are doing a scaled down dinner tonight.  One neighbor brought us stuffing, and another neighbor asked for a cup of flour.  It is a good thing she didn't want a more exotic ingredient (like tapioca) since I need to go grocery shopping with Chris and do a resupply of all the odd things.  But the pie is in the oven and smells heavenly, and the bird will go in next (a boneless turkey breast) and then the last 30 minutes will be the usual pandemonium.  I remember the prep we had to do 20 years ago (has it been that long!?!) when we typically had around 17 at the table.  Several tables.  I would be so beat by the time it all hit the table (buffet type) I wasn't even hungry.  But I never had to worry about leftovers because I made up a carry-home plate for every one and that pretty much took care of it all.  I miss seeing all those who have died over the years, but I don't miss the work it took to prep it all.  My mom was a big help in those days, but N sat in the living room visiting unless I called him.  Anyway, today is today, and who would have thought N would die when he had never been sick at all over the years we were married (45).

Time to get back to the kitchen, hope all of you have a safe and enjoyable holiday, with food, parades, football and all.  And family and loved ones most of all.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Grieving in my own way

The 10th of November marked six months since my husband died.  I hate using "passed" and other euphemisms for dying, but the straightforward 'died' seems to startle conversations when the subject comes up.  Ah well, this too will pass.  The main change in my behavior is that I am ordering tons of stuff on Amazon and winning items on eBay.   When N was alive, he made remarks like "what, another package?" and I felt like I had to defend every little thing I bought.  And they were universally cheap things (under $25, some less than $10) and even though he kept the accounts paid up without stress.  Now that he is gone, I have nothing to rein in my purchases, and I have used that freedom a lot.  50 orders in the last 6 months.  I always called it "retail therapy"  and in the past I would physically go shopping at the mall, etc.  Now that I can't safely drive myself ( neuropathy in my feet, it is impossible to feel the pedals) it is all done online.  I want it to be like Coyote in the Road Runner cartoons, when he puts an order in his mailbox and the immediately the item is delivered.  The impact is missing, because the order might be something non-exciting, like new ink cartridges for the printer (which cost the earth), etc.   My son is disapproving when he collects the mail now too, but what can he say?  It is my $$$ now.  Even the mailman is disapproving, he put a flyer in our box for how to order the new larger mailbox.  I duly ordered it ( and when it arrived, it was hand delivered to the house because it obviously didn't fit in the box).  So I put the name and box number on the box, and when my son took it out to switch them, he found that although the new box is wider and taller, it is 8 inches or so shorter.  Not helpful at all.  So it went into the garage to be used if the current box is flattened  (like in the snow when the plow comes through).  There has also been quite a bit of returning things, for which I get no pleasure, since I pay the return postage, worse than buying stuff. 

Anyway, I am slowing the ordering down, and I find my attention turning to my knitting, cross stitching, and so forth.  I found stuff that had been in a closet when I sorted through the stuff coming back into the my room.  I have filled a huge trash bag, and donated boxes and boxes of useful stuff.  For example, I donated  huge amounts to one of D's friends who is a 3rd grade teacher.  They won't have to buy pencils until the next millennium, I think.  Much "stuff'" has also been donated to Goodwill.  I would include Salvation Army, but getting in and out of their parking lot is a nightmare.   

Photos of the room will be forthcoming soon, aren't you excited?

I opened one envelope from the mail that included a check for $$$ as our settlement in a class-action lawsuit from 10 years ago.  Unfortunately the check was made out to N.  No problem depositing the check, but the letter included a W-9 from for the IRS so I could collect $$$ more.  So I called the legal phone number, and she told me to send the form in my name and the check (sob) back to them, and they would issue another check for the whole amount made out to me.  I hope I haven't been too conscientious.  I shall see.

Well I have gone on and on in this post, even I am bored, so I will stop.  Hope this lovely cool weather continues for a few more weeks, it is one of the reasons this is my favorite time of the year.  Besides, I could rummage around in some more boxes, see what it in them.  Exciting things like a huge tub filled with socks.

Thought for the day," I’ve decided to sell my Hoover… well, it was just collecting dust."

Saturday, November 12, 2016

I promise I won't mention his name

OK everyone, the wrong guy won.  There is a lot of hostility and rash statements flying around on the 'Net.  Everyone needs to calm down until there is a valid reason to condemn a specific action.

So take a deep breath...
And hold it.
For the next four years.

There now, don't you feel better?

Today's cartoon (instead of the thought/joke/etc. I usually end with):

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

The End is Near

At least the end of this electioneering, for which I am thoroughly over with for the next 4 years.  This week is apparently the time for local candidates to call everyone at least once.  Or more.  I am pleased to be able to say I voted last week (true) at an old store nearby.  No point in campaigning with me.  Doesn't help with the robo-calls.

I am getting over a bad case of flu and this will be a short post.  In my last post I mentioned that I had been to the doctor's; I suspect that is where I caught this bug.  Either that or from the flu shot, even though the shot is not supposed to be able to infect people.

I have a lovely opal pendant, set for now in a truly ugly setting.  I have found someone to reset it for a modest sum, and it can't came out as bad as it is now.  Here it is now:

 I'll post the New look when I get it back.  I had a heck of a time getting the photo so the details can be seen; three different cameras, and the Nikon DSLR won the match.  Even so, the "fire" doesn't stand out much.  It is about one inch long.

Back to bed for now.  I hope all of you vote today (if you haven't already).  I hope Trump is soundly trounced, but all the polls are so contradictory, who knows?

Thought for the day:  "When I get a headache, I take 2 aspirin and keep away from children.  Just like it says on the bottle."

Thursday, November 03, 2016

eBay and PayPal

I have a love-hate relationship with eBay, and at the moment PayPal is driving me crazy.  I won an auction for an opal pendant, not much in cost and nothing I would lose sleep over.  But when I went to PayPal to pay for the pendant, the only choice was for an E-check which takes 2 - 5 days for the seller to get their money.  Why?  As near as I can tell my purchase tripped an internal alarm because I bought a bunch of stuff (less than 10) and that was from China mostly.  The paypal customer service said they can only guess why I cannot pay with a credit card (I find the notion fairly disturbing) and gave me a list of scenarios that cause the rejection to be made.  Basically, the purchase tripped an alarm, thanks to some bit of code somewhere that does actions (refuse a purchase) with no one able to figure out exactly why, is that not weird?  So much like HAL in 2001.  If anyone still watches that old old movie now.  I am getting steamed again, new topic...

I saw my GP doctor yesterday, and in 15 minutes we covered my diabetes (looks good), my aches (in knees, back, shoulder) and an earache (!) and I was pretty much reduced to "get physical therapy in my shoulder"  and "everybody as achy knees and back"  and oh yes, I am leaving the practice here and you will be seeing another doctor for your next visit.

Not a reassuring visit.

I think I've been played.

 So those are the high points of my visit.  Oh yeah, 5 tubes of blood.  Like the results will have a valid meaning when I next come in 3 months.  I'm going to call tomorrow and get an appt. with another doctor.  Grrrr.  I did get the flu shot, so something was accomplished.  Oh yeah, the next visit will be with the doctor who was seeing my husband right before he died, which is disturbing too.

Moving right along, it is 6 am and I am going back to bed.  With a pain pill, like that will have any effect this time.

Thought for the day, " Standing in the park, I was wondering why a Frisbee gets larger the closer it gets. Then it hit me."

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Still getting my room squared away

It is a controlled mess.  Controlled because once I have sorted out all the contents in, say, a chest of drawers, I don't put anything else in there but what belongs.  I have one biggie yet to do, and that is the cart that holds all of the bits and tools for the knitting machines.  Worse yet, I caught the upholstery from the chair on the gate pegs and needles  of the knitting machine and bent them.  The needles I'll just replace, they get damaged pretty easily and I have spares.  But the gate pegs are tough to bend, and get them lined up so the carriage doesn't jam.  It makes me tired to think about it.

The weather has dramatically cooled down and it feels like fall now.  Unfortunately we have had brisk temps at night, but not frosty enough to change the trees to the brilliant reds and golds.  Maybe in the next few days.  Fall is my favorite time of year. 

Did I mention that I got an Amazon Echo?  I'm still finding things to do with it.  Last night I asked Alexa (think Siri) to play Mountain Lullaby by Larry Groce, and to my surprise it started right up; I haven't heard that song since my kids were wee babies, on a Disney record.  A record!  I tossed them all several years ago, along with the record player.  Anyway, she does some mundane stuff (like telling the time, date, weather) but also answers questions like who won the Kentucky derby last year?  Or what does bokeh mean?  Odd stuff.  It would be a great addition playing Trivial Pursuits, if anyone even plays that anymore.  She is a great alarm clock too, no fiddling with buttons, just tell Alexa what time, or how long, and she wakes me with a gentle chime; or a loud buzz, your choice.  Last night we did lullabies, and I fell straight to sleep on the second tune.  It is basically a toy for me, but I can see how big a help it would be for school-aged kids.  It will go straight to Wiki if you specify that, or play NPR with interviews, stories, and so on.  NO commercials.  You can buy interfacing connections so you can turn lights, TV, doors or whatever on and off.  The connections are pretty pricey, and they aren't too useful if, like us, you are home all day.  But I am thinking about the floodlights around the house, which aren't the greatest at sensing movement, and I want them on when I hear a cat fight or whatever, without going outside.

The election will be over soon and I am so very ready for that.  I don't know how we got on all the telephone lists for surveys, but we get at least 2 or 3 every day.  And after being polite for the first 25, now we just hang up as soon as they speak.  Or if no one is there and so it is a robo-call.  I want Hillary to win, and not that blowhard narcissistic madman.  Surely these latest revelations will put him in her dust, but then I missed when Reagan was elected.  The second time he carried every state except West Virginia, we were a lone blue spot in a sea of red.  So what do I know?

Thought for the day:  "I finally figured out what I want to be when I get older... YOUNGER."

Thursday, October 20, 2016

What will I do on Halloween?

Here it is the 20th of Oct, and I am not making any plans to give out candy, etc.  Last year it was a nice night, no rain and not much wind.  We had about 50 kids, and some of the costumes were really imaginative.  But this year my heart just isn't in it.  Do I go ahead and "treat" (ho ho) it as just another year, or do I turn out the lights and stay inside?  I don't think there are many homes that do the old holiday things anymore.  I mean, when was the last time for holiday caroling?  Dancing round the Maypole?  Do kids even go to find Easter eggs?  Thankfully, fireworks are mostly the province of professionals on the 4th.  And in these parts, Thanksgiving is in the first week of deer hunting season, so a lot of wives celebrate with a shopping spree and turkey TV dinners while the guys go huntin'.  Christmas is mostly still the same, with big family and friends getting together for a dynamite dinner and family gossip (if you aren't there, they will talk about you). 

Anyway, Halloween.  My dentist says she is divided about whether she can in good conscience contribute to dental problems; and no, she didn't suggest giving toothbrushes to the kids.  But I have no problems with that, everyone knows the parents eat half of it.  Maybe more.  But it won't be the same.  Back when my friend was a kid, everyone went door-to-door, you went in the house, everyone tried to guess who you were, you got homemade candy, it was a jovial celebration.  Not anymore, even small towns like ours often stage parties for the kids to go to in lieu of trick or treating.  I guess eventually it will stop altogether.  I remember when my kids were little that we were advised to check out the candy before they ate any (yeah, right), and to throw away anything that wasn't in a sealed wrapper (yummm).  I'll probably do it this year, if the weather cooperates;  we have been giving candy for at least 20 years, I think. And as I sit there at the driveway with this massive bowl of all my favorite kinds of candy, I'll make sure it is all OK. 

I'll think it over during the next week.  Meanwhile, here is my T-shirt for the day:  "Photographer:  I shoot people and sometimes chop off their heads."

Friday, October 14, 2016

This is the end of book three

Several years ago I felt the need to find a way to backup these posts. I tried to just print each one as it was posted, but that was so unpleasing in making each post look similar, I gave up.  Then I read a post that recommended using and so I now have 2 volumes going back to Oct. 2004.  I planned to do this every October, but the instead volume 2 begins in Oct. 2013.  Now it is 3 years since that volume, so I plan on this post being the last one in the third printed book.  It isn't very costly, and the result is quite attractive, includes photos, covers, and a table of contents.  I will post a picture after it is done.  Won't that be exciting (not)!  But just think, 10 years of blog postings!  I know people whose marriage hasn't lasted that long.  Or even 3 years...  Maybe it is due to my compulsive trait, but if so, I don't give a damn.  I never think about who may be reading this, but my pageview counter says 28,500  give or take.  If I ever give this up for good, I'll post a final goodbye, so anyone reading regularly (a few now) will know there is no need to continue.  Meanwhile, read, comment, plagiarize, or quote, I'm easy. 

Quote for the day:  "It's not really Hoarding if you have Cool Stuff "

Sunday, October 09, 2016


We are all feeling the worse for wear today.  C has a chills-and-fever thing going on; I am just incredibly tired (malaise), and Rachel has her door closed all day, so who knows?  I have been looking at ebay and naturally found three things that look pretty good.  But stingy me, I put in a somewhat higher bid with an auction sniper, it adds a little  something to the bidding watching.
I don't expect to win...

I am still grieving the loss of Maggie, she went downhill so fast (2 weeks or so).  We had her at the vet's office to remove a growth on her leg, and I think they would have noticed her illness then.  But there isn't much to regret, even a month ago she would have needed a lot of chemotherapy, and to be frank, I wouldn't have agreed to put her through that.  My chemo made me ill, and I understood why.  A dog would not have understood anything except that they felt bad. 

2016 will surely go down as a Bad Year.  Beginning with my husband's death in May, the death of my horse Willie in June, the water completely flooding into the lower level of the house following a rain storm in July, and now the passing of Maggie, I know they are not equally the same importance, but still they are all losses.  Being diagnosed as diabetic, having neuropathy, breaking a tooth, all kinds of little things that by themselves are trivial, but added to the rest I feel like I am wearing a big target on  my back.  2015 wasn't a great year either, with the death of my Uncle and then 10 weeks later my Aunt.  Seems like they were setting the stage for the later things. 

I am way too morbid to continue this.

Thought for the day:  "My glass is empty! Quick! Call Wine-one-one! "