I Can Feel Spring

It’s spring out there and my heart is happy. It’s spring out there and we’ve been outside ridding the yard of last year’s yard debris, preparing beds for new plants, doing a little planting, painting, all those things that the warmer, sunnier weather makes us happy to do. So far we’ve:

Planted a few primrose in a pot, leaving room for another plant to join them:

Planted some peas – if you look really hard you can see the little guys popping through the surface of the soil

Planted our first hanging pot with Calabrochoa and Bacopa

Filled the planting bags with soil, putting the one shrub (a Pieris Japonica Dorothy Wyckoff) we’ve gotten so far in one bag while the others wait for the plants we’ve ordered to fill them to arrive. We did buy two Corydalis to join the not-yet-here plant in one bag.

Last year’s spinach planting is celebrating spring

I’ve always wanted a brightly colored front door, and it turns out that Kat wanted the same thing. So on our shopping trip the other day, we chose some paint in a color called Sugar Beet, and this is what it looks like on the door.

The color was more Kat’s choice than mine, but I love how it looks. There is just the tiniest bit of clash with the bright red pots planted in front of, and on either side of the door. Maybe I’ll post a photo of them together after the pots are planted with – yes, the plants that have been ordered to fill them.

When we’re not outside celebrating the blue skies, bright sunshine, and warmth, I spend time at my loom. I still have not taken photos of my more recent projects, but what’s on the loom right now is this:

It’s intended to grow up to be a V-back shawl, and I will post photos when it’s done. Really, I will. And someday I will also post photos of some of the other things I’ve done. You know, this might be a good time to go outside and take some of those photos. Maybe. Or maybe I should go out and do a little more work on what’s going to be a flower bed when the plants that have been ordered arrive to fill it. We have lots of plants on order.

In the meantime, I’m working at ignoring what I view as stupidity going on around me in this country and just enjoying the passage into not-winter weather, new blossoms, new life, happiness. Enjoying the knowledge that truly, I have

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There Must be a Reason

Warning: Rants follow, although following the rants are non-rant paragraphs.

There must be a reason that we have this new Block Editor, right? I mean, the WordPress gurus wouldn’t have made the change willy-nilly, for no reason whatsoever, right? It has to be in our best interests, wouldn’t you say? Or. . .

The WordPress gurus are really part of the evil axis, deciding we have become too complacent, too relaxed, and it’s time to wake us up, make sure we’re paying attention, then bring us to our knees. Because, you know, the national stress level has been reduced, what with no Twittering from the White House.

Except I question whether the national stress level has been reduced. Our political parties are still more interested in maintaining their party status, their party structure, their “protect the party at all costs” stance. They are still not doing what we elected them to do – or at least what I thought we elected them to do – and that is, govern. Govern, you know, make the government function in a way that is for the people. By the people – which requires that you listen to the people, not the talking heads for the party.

That rant is over now. So now for a different rant. What is it with the guns being drawn and fired, seemingly all over this country, these days? What is it with our defensive attitudes about protecting our rights to have guns, with no restrictions, no controls? What is it with our apparent fear that we might need to protect ourselves from our own government which would require that we possess guns? Seems to me from my apparently skewed viewpoint that the risk of that happening has been reduced by the same action that ended the presidential twittering. Except, of course, I’m wrong. I know this, because I keep getting told I’m wrong. And it’s okay that people who should never ever have access to a firearm have access to firearms and are busily reducing our population with no regard for anyone else.

On the other side of my world, I have had my second vaccination against Covid-19. I got my shot, and spent the next day taking naps, because the vaccine was busy working inside my body, doing its job, which was very hard work and made me very tired. Now I feel a sense of relief, a sense of freedom, despite the fact that I am fully aware that I must still maintain a reasonable distance, fully masked, when I am out in public. That’s not a problem for me – I don’t feel doing the things that make it safer for me and those around me are an infringement on my freedoms.

I do enjoy the idea that maybe I can have lunch out now and then – following guidelines. Maybe even get a massage, fully masked, sometime this spring. I have missed things like massages and pedicures, and the feeling of being pampered, like someone special.

To live like this – no stress. Knowing there is enough in this life.

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Answering Five Brilliant Questions and Other Things

This morning Ally Bean asked some questions and today feels like a good day to answer those questions before I head out to work in the yard because it’s spring out there and the birds are twittering and singing songs of happiness. But first, the question of who gets this lap must be answered. Will it be this cat

Or the laptop? (how does one adjust the size of photos in this editor anyway?)

Q1 – What’s your favorite movie? Maybe Patch Adams with Robin Williams? I’ve seen a lot I loved, but none lately because Covid, cost, distance to a theater, and I find I’d rather stream a documentary, something HGTV, or a BritBox show.

Q2 – When trying to buy shoes, what’s your biggest problem? Finding a pair that is comfortable on both feet. I have a bunion issue on my left foot, which complicates matters greatly.

Q3 – Ice cream cone or cupcake? Ice cream cone for sure, preferably chocolate with a waffle cone.

Q4 – What’s one good thing you have learned about yourself during this pandemic? Truly not much has changed for me, other than wearing a mask when I go shopping. Oh, but then there is this wee bit of angst about the inability to go out for lunch with friends or maybe take a train trip to visit a friend. So maybe I am a little more social than I would have said I am.

Q5 – Any eccentric people in your family? Discuss. Ha! Of course! Doesn’t every family have someone who is eccentric? Like maybe me? Beyond that, I prefer not to discuss.

I gotta say, this day this block editor is making me much crazier than it did when I last used it. I feel like the software is winning at deciding how things are going to be done on this blog.

Then I have this ongoing quest for how to try to sell some of my weavings – I’ll probably end up on Etsy, which is already overloaded with handwoven items, but it’s also the best-known and easiest way to go. In the meantime, a look at another shawl I’ve done, which is available if anyone is interested:

Off now to see if I can learn more about using this editor. Please.

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It’s Tuesday

Where is time going? Suddenly I realize I have not posted in quite a long time, but I have a really good excuse. I have been very busy doing nothing. Sitting. Thinking about spring. Wishing for spring. I know it’s coming because we’ve already had a couple of very spring-like days that encouraged going outside to pull some old weeds and start working up the vegetable beds for planting. One of those days even involved Kat planting some carrot seeds. Yay!

But now – now the “it’s a bit too chilly out there to spend much time” weather is back. so here I sit, watching through the windows, waiting for the clouds to disperse enough to allow that “partly cloudy” part of the forecast to come true. However, inside I will still stay, until that “it’s 60 out there!” part of the forecast comes true – like maybe tomorrow.

In the meantime, I have been weaving and reading, and trying to determine the best method for trying to sell some of my weaving results. Etsy is overloaded with handwoven products, and does not entice me. Maybe Facebook Marketplace? But I don’t think that allows me to organize the product as I would like to. Gertrude is now here with me, so one day soon I can begin the process of getting some (hopefully) decent photos of what I’ve done. You remember Gertrude, don’t you? In case you’ve forgotten, here she is:

She is shown here modeling a handwoven rayon wrap, which happens to be available for purchase if anyone is interested. I don’t recall off the top of my head (which contains an old brain, you know, that doesn’t remember as much as it used to) the sizing, but if you are interested, let me know via email or text, and I will give you the details.

I have had my first “Fauci ouchi”, the Moderna version, and will get my second in a hair over a week from now. The first left me with no nasty side-effects other than a bit of soreness in the receiving arm, but I am planning a day in bed after the second, just based on the experience of those around me who came before me in receiving the vaccination because they are teachers. Okay, so staying in bed for the day wasn’t really necessary for them, but the bit of flu-like symptoms they experienced sound like a good excuse for me.

Life is pretty good these days. Kat and I actually had lunch out last week, at a restaurant that provided socially distant outside seating on one of those lovely “it’s 60 degrees out here” days when we had gone out for her second shot and a few groceries. it was so nice, the eating out in a lovely outside setting, those fish and chips and beers.

I am enjoying the peace and quiet, both in my home and in this country. I am enjoying not listening to a self-absorbed, unpleasant, lots of other not nice adjectives, man. I am enjoying having a presidential president. I am not touting any particular political party here, although I do have my preference, but I am touting dignity, reason, intelligence, thoughtfulness, empathy, all those human qualities we could all do well to aspire to.

So I raise my glass (okay in this case my “glass” is really my coffee cup – it is still morning after all) to the hope that we are approaching a sort of normality, albeit still a masked normality, spring flowers, a little more kindness, a little more tolerance – enough to make this life something to smile about. Here’s to you!

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Thinking About Things

It’s snowing out there – the snow arrived about the same time I had decided spring was definitely near. I guess Mother Nature decided I needed a dose of reality.

Reality – in these days, that’s rather an interesting term, don’t you think? I mean, what I see as real is not what some of my friends see as real. I am so far from understanding how there can be so much difference in what we see, how reality can be defined so differently.

Yes, I’ve been paying attention to the impeachment hearings. I haven’t been watching steadily, but have gotten several updates on it from various news organizations. I’ve watched the video of the insurrection at the Capitol building – I’ve read that most of the Republicans will vote not to convict Trump. I’ve heard too many of them say Trump is not responsible for what happened. Wait! Wait! We all heard the same words spoken, shouted, from the lips of this man, did we not? I recognize that English as a language can be confusing, with the same words having different meanings – but, really? Really? You think Trump did not encourage this demonstration? You think Trump did not tell those people, his white supremicist supporters, to take this action?

You tell me the whole thing was BLM and Antifa, when it has been very clear that it was the Proud Boys, that it was people who clearly stated they were doing “what their president asked them to do”? Really?!

And then we have the Congressmen Hawley, Cruz, Graham, and others – who openly and loudly pronounced Trump as correct, right, in saying the election was stolen. These men appear to be continuing on in their lives as normal – without any condemnation or correction. Yes, we have the freedom of speech, but don’t we also have a responsibility to moderate that speech, to not encourage violence with that free speech?

I am rambling, but I am truly, deeply worried about this society. About how duly-elected persons who are supposed to be in our government for the people, by the people, can turn blind eyes to truths that are so obvious. How those same people can be more concerned about being re-elected, about being in “good standing” in their party of choice, than they are about making decisions based on fact – reality – on demonstrating integrity in their decisions. On how a political party can get so off track, can be so subversive to what I believe our forefathers have intended. I am not saying it is only the Republicans who are off-track – I am saying our political system is off-track. It is corrupt.

And – I worry about our future leaders. My daughter left a teaching job with a preschool because she was suffering real abuse at the hands of these small children – our future leaders. Throwing objects – rocks, chairs, toys, directly at the teachers. Refusing to follow instructions or direction by the teachers, with no consequences. Time-outs, discipline, the things that make our children responsible adults, not allowed. Really?! My son, who is also a teacher, has had students strike him, kick him, call him names – and when those students are sent to the office, they are coddled, they are stroked. They are not punished, they are not reprimanded, they are not corrected. These are the days of “trophies for all”. But, hey, life is not really like that! You will grow up, you will be fired from jobs, you will lose competitions, you will have responsibilities and you will have to face up to those responsibilities. Life is not all trophies.

Medical costs so high too many of our citizens cannot afford to be treated by doctors. I spent 7-1/2 days in a hospital in October – no surgeries, but lots of odd tests – swallow tests, because it was decided I could not swallow properly. Yeah, sometimes when I swallow I make the mistake of taking a breath – you know, that silly thing we all do now and then – means I can’t swallow. Wait – I’m going so far off-track. I was talking about medical costs – My insurance was billed nearly $70,000 for those 7-1/2 days. I now understand why people end up filing bankruptcy after an illness. I understand now why people die at home because they could not afford medical treatment. They could not afford the costs of medical insurance. Isn’t that a really sad statement to be made about life in this country, supposedly one of the wealthiest and most powerful countries in the world?

I know that now I have enough. I fear that, in future, there will not be enough. For anyone. Enough caring, consideration, reason, tolerance, logic, thoughtfulness, for this country to go on. I fear we will one day have the “Big Bang” that will bring us to our knees, open our eyes, make us refocus. Sad.

And now I’m going to go look for some happy stories, maybe a few tales that will make me less fearful for mankind.

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Happiness Is

Happiness is cooking a whole frozen chicken in an Instant Pot.

Happiness is cooking a whole thawed chicken in an air fryer.

Happiness is good food

Happiness is being with loved ones

Happiness is the sun shining through the window over my shoulder

I just looked at the date of my last post – don’t know where the heck that time has gone, but gone it is. We are now in February. I can feel spring coming. That’s happiness. Planning gardens – both flower and vegetables. Happiness.

I will be in charge of planting things other than vegetables. My daughter will be the vegetable queen – although we’ll work together. My hope is to find someone with a younger, stronger back to dig up the grasses and weeds in the area where I want to plant a triangular shaped flower bed, with a couple of shrubs and a tall ornamental grass and flowers – of course, brightly colored flowers. And I want to plant some pretties in pots nearer the house. I also want to keep my planting areas smaller than I did in my previous home, more manageable. Blooming flowers is happiness.

I have told myself I’ll stay away from topics political in this post. I’m working at it. But if something stumbles out of the brain unto the keyboard, you have the absolute right to simply skim over it, past it, ignore it.

Today my daughter and I will leave the house. There is a cat that needs booster shots. There are a couple of items needed to be sure the pantry is fully stocked with those things we need or think we need. A venture out into the real world. Something I’ve been doing very rarely these past months.

A not-so-happy-note here – I got a statement from the hospital for my October visit. Seven and one-half days – nearly $70,000 was billed to my insurance. My portion is a very small part of that, but. . . $70,000! No wonder so many people end up filing bankruptcy because of medical bills. I think next time I’ll just go to a luxury resort – it would be less expensive.

On this note – political thoughts appear – wouldn’t it be nice if we had a government that could work together and actually get things done? Like a reasonable health-care plan that would work for the people of this country. All the people – not just the wealthy. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could live in peace?

That would bring even greater happiness.

I have been weaving, I just have not been taking many photos. The stack that needs pressing and photos taken grows. But I do have a couple of photos to share:

Weaving is happiness

Having enough is happiness

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What Time is it?

The other night I woke to howling winds. Howling forcefully, making me wonder whether we would end up in the wizard’s kingdom. But it was not the wind that woke me, it was the fact that my bed reset itself to flat. It is the kind of bed that allows me to raise the head of the bed, or where the knees go, contorting my body to its most comfortable position. I keep the head slightly inclined, and find I sleep best this way.

But – it reset! Say what?! Oh – my clock also says it’s 12:00, and I know that isn’t correct, because last I looked it was after 1:00. Power blip. We had a power blip. Now my clock says it’s three hours later than it is. And. I. Can’t. Figure. Out. How. To. Set. It.

I remember having trouble setting it when I first got it, but I managed and somehow it’s been showing me the right time. Now when I awaken overnight – because I’m old and that happens more often now – I have to wonder what time it is, and mentally deduct three hours from what I’m being shown. That can be difficult at 2:30 in the morning, because my brain shuts down and doesn’t really like being disturbed.

Today, my daughter has said we will work together to set that clock so I won’t have to go around wondering what time it is. Because, there is enough to wonder about, these days, in this world. Like – what the heck is reality anyway?

I have been weaving. I have not been taking pictures of my weaving. Soon, I will do that, and I will share. Because I know you are very interested in what I’ve been weaving. Of course you are.

In the meantime, what time is it? Have we gotten through the inauguration yet? Did we make it without more mayhem and bloodshed? Because. I’ve had enough. Really. I want my most serious problem to be what time is it.

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Is This America?

I watched Wednesday’s news reports with jaw dropped open, stunned at what this country has become. I knew we had taken the low road, but this low? Really? What I saw were the very actions we, as a country, completely condemn when we see reports of them happening in other countries. And now, here we are – down to that very level.

I am baffled as to why there was not further protection of the Capitol building that day. As I understand it, the mayor of D.C. had requested National Guard presence – where were they? Oh, it says here that “the Pentagon prohibited the District’s guardsmen from receiving ammunition or riot gear, interacting with protesters unless necessary for self-defense, sharing equipment with local law enforcement, or using Guard surveillance and air assets without the the defense secretary’s explicit sign-off”. Ummmm.

Compare: National Guard presence at the Lincoln Memorial during the George Floyd protests and police only presence of January 6 at the Capitol: https://mashable.com/article/capitol-police-trump-riot-black-lives-matter-protest/

I give you a link because I cannot find images that I’m able to copy.

All of this approved by the man who is called the President of the United States. Today I have read some comments about how Trump was abused by his father, and how his father drummed into him to “never lose”. I have read this before, and I am sorry he had to go through that – yet, even that is not enough to allow me to consider any empathy, sympathy, or tolerance for the man. The very fact that our GOP Senate would not condemn him during the impeachment hearings, despite adequate evidence of wrong-doing, also contributed to what happened on Wednesday.

My mind is racing, my thoughts are jumbled, I am angry, I am out of tolerance, I see no reason to hold my tongue when disagreeing with supporters of this mad man. The gates have been opened, and I am ready to charge through them. To these supporters, I say: You have lived in your alternate reality for at least five years now, and it’s time for you to open your mind, your eyes, and your ears – to recognize that the excuses you have made, the lies you have tolerated, the horrid behaviors you have ignored, and face the reality, the real world.

Just get over it, would you? And join the rest of us in praying that there will indeed be a “peaceful transition of power” and not more violence, perhaps even bloodshed, on January 20.

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Happy New Year!

It’s a new year. New hope. New plans. New goals. New wishes.

I wish Covid would be done with us and would fade off into the sunset.

I wish people would be nice to one another and stop being stopped so reactive.

I wish our government would govern.

I wish I could renovate my old parts so they would do more for me instead of complaining when I try to do things. Back, I’m talking to you.

I’m thinking spring. I’m thinking I want to plant pretty things to grow and spread cheer. I’m wishing weeds away.

I read that red wine and cheese help fight cognitive decline. That’s a study that I’ll support! Yay for those of us who drink red wine and eat cheese!

There’s a lot of “I” in here. Seems a bit narcissistic, yet I can only speak for “I”.

I got my notice from Social Security about this year’s income yesterday – yes, I got a raise. Yes, they increased the cost of Medicare so that it absorbs most of that increase. Did the cost of living really only go up 1.3%? Why does it feel like it went up more when I go shopping?

As I weave my way through the days, I feel I have enough in this life. I think there are many of us that have enough, and too many that do not. I wish for you a new year with love, joy, and enough.

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Happy Holidays!

Christmas is rapidly approaching and the New Year is hot on its tail. I have been thinking I would make Christmas cards and send them out this year, but haven’t actually done anything about it, so I solved that problem by sending an e-card to those in my contact list. But that didn’t get my wishes for the season to any of you – so I have chosen a photo from last Christmas to use as my “card” for all of you.

Wishing each and every one of you a very Happy Holiday season, whatever holiday you might be celebrating. Wishing love, peace, happiness, and good health to all of you. Wishing for bridges to be built in the coming year, and our world to find its road to unity and moving forward. Wishing you all – enough.


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