Monday, May 31, 2010

The End of the Holiday

Today was a day of endings. My holiday has ended. Everyone has gone home. My aunt and Uncle left after the Memorial Day ceremony at the cemetery. I was very sad to see them go. It is so hard now to see family leave. Dave, Becca and Sarah stayed and David grilled out for us. They just left with Mike a few minutes ago.

Becca brought her mom over and she ate with us and Mike came over. It was a nice, although hot afternoon. We moved my small patio table from the front patio under the tulip tree way in the back yard. You have all seen photos of that tree. David cooked under it. The breeze was wonderful and we were quite comfortable beneath the shade. I'm definitely going to put a small patio under that tree. It is a perfect place to relax and have a cookout.

While we were eating my sister came over. We invited her to come eat but she didn't even come out to say hello. She got on the computer and stayed inside and then she left.

Now, all the mess is cleaned up and everyone is gone. I'm alone. I suppose that is ultimately where we all end up, isn't it. I'm going to get a hot shower. My back, around my shoulder blade, feels as if a knife is stabbing me. And I have a sore neck, as usual. A hot shower, my medicine and a nice book or maybe writing something if I can summon the muse to write sounds good. I might be able to sleep in a little while. I'm thankful that I took tomorrow off and only have two days to work this week!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Longer the Day

..... grows the more painful I get. Everything hurts and I have a migraine. I've been having a cramp in my foot, pain in my neck and shoulders, pain in my lower back, and arms. My hands feel as if they were crushed and reassembled. I do not think a flower or two is worth all that.

Yes, a parking lot sounds just fine.

I have to go get ready for church. Tomorrow we are going to the Veterans Memorial service at the cemetery. We did this last year and it was rainy so they had to do it in the mausoleum. It is supposed to rain tomorrow too. I was so hoping it would be outside in the Veterans section. They have a beautiful plaza there for it.

I'm not feeling well at all so I'm going to stop now. I hope everyone has had a nice weekend. And if you are a US citizen, please, leave flowers on a veterans grave somewhere, even if you do not know them. Find one that has no flowers tomorrow and honor a forgotten hero.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Cleaning House

Just cleaned out about half dozen contact from Multiply. All were people I've not heard from or seen in over six months. Some I know just have disappeared because of things going on but there is no sense in having this inflated list of people I never hear from for whatever reason.

I'm going to be doing the same on Face Book. Someone told me that in a job interview recently they were asked if they had anything embarrassing on Face Book. So, guess what? My Face Book may be going bye-bye. And all my blogs may be going to just contacts only. I've discovered that I can actually select individuals I want to see the blogs and those I don't on both sites. So, since I'd just as soon not have some of the junk that is appearing on my wall there, I'm either going dark or limiting access to select individuals.

Was anyone aware that your employer would want to look you up? I sort of knew but didn't really think about it until now. So, I'm reviewing what's on the my wall and the drama is going. Don't need it.

On a Sunday

I'm about to head out to church. I'm a bit sore this morning in my hands from using the lawn mower. It has a self-propelled handle that had to be held down and it always caused extreme pain in my hand when I use it and for days afterward. Mike did do most of the work there. In fact, he helped me all afternoon. We have four or five bags of grass and he said the lawn looked nice.

The fountain is lovely. I have to find a spot for it now. I had originally intended to put a bird bath where the old one was and could put this there but it is wayyyyyy on in the middle of the yard and would require running an electrical cord across the yard. So, the idea is to make a small area nearer the house, lay some paving stones, sit the fountain on those. I could plant some things around it then. I almost bought a yellow hibiscus yesterday to put out where the old birdbath sat but didn't. I may go back and get it this afternoon. I know absolutely nothing about plants.

Mike is ready to go so I need to head out. Once again I was told Dave, Becca and Sarah would be going to church. I didn't believe it but I keep hoping. They aren't answering the phone. I knew last night they wouldn't do it. They were already planning on what they had to do when they got home and it was midnight when they left. I do not know anymore what to do but obviously it won't matter. Sadly, it is Sarah who will pay the price in this. She is being taught faithfulness and obedience is unimportant. That one can follow one's own philosophy and everything is fine.

See, I believe this thing I practice. I believe it and have seen the blessings of faithfulness and obedience over and over and over. I've seen the destitution of faithlessness and disobedience as well. Whether life is fair or not doesn't matter. I believe in God's Word and the instructions I've been given in that. When we put ourselves first over faithfulness, when obedience becomes "if I feel like it", we lose far more than we can imagine. And our children are the ones who suffer the greatest loss.

The Bible tells about the generation after children of Israel who came out of Egypt. They all became rather wicked and left the ways they had been taught to live. They were not faithful to God. The Bible says the reason this happened is the parents stopped teaching them and stopped following the teachings themselves. It says the children "forgot" the things their parents knew and experienced. How does one forget a cloud by day and pillar of fire by night? How does one forget the opening of a sea with dry land on the bottom?

At two years old, I watched Michael stand in the middle of a room at a church banquet of about 250 people and "preach" for 15 minutes about baptism. He knew the scripture by heart at two and could barely quote it. When we went to church, he always worshiped. And for years I had ministers at fellowships who had visited our church approach me and say they remembered seeing him do this. There are still people in that remember that banquet and talk about it. Mike is one of the most faithful people I know. He doesn't always do the right thing, but he tries and is more faithful at times than I.

Paul I believe said that the greatest comfort was to know his children walked in truth. He was talking about God's truth, not their own.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

It's Only Money

I just spent a ridiculous amount of money on a fountain for my back yard. It is a two tier cast iron fountain. I have no idea how I'll put it up yet or exactly where. But I'm really quite pleased with it. Here is the photo of it from the garden center's website. I'm quite pleased with it. It stands taller than Sarah and can't wait to see it going when she is here.

I was going to get a bird bath but when I saw all the fountains going at Lowe's I couldn't help it. I wanted one. They had one I could have bathed in and if I ever have the money I'll be buying it! It was huge and since I have this huge back yard I could have a large one but it means doing some serious landscaping and I'm not up for that yet.

I've decided to try and get all the non-essential debt paid by the fall and take out a loan to get the siding on the house replaced and repaired and gutters up. I don't know what that will cost but I it is doable I believe. I'd like to do the yard up nice next.

I'm waiting for the sun to go over just a but before cutting the yard. The plan was for the kids to all come over and we'd cook out and get the yard done and just have a nice day together. It is gone 1 p.m. and no one showed up. So, I went to Sam's Club and bought rotisserie chicken. I'm making a sweet pea salad too. When that is done, I'm going to get my book and sit on the patio and eat alone. Then, by around 3 I can cut the yard. I can do it without help.

For those of you who've never heard of sweet pea salad you don't know what you're missing.

1 can of sweet peas (those little round green peas - may be called something else in other locals. LeSuer, Delmonte, just about everyone carries them.
1 or two boiled eggs - chopped up finely (I do one egg for each can of peas)
1-2 tablespoons sweet relish per can depending on how much you like the tartness.
2-3 tablespoons of Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip -again depending on how much of the dressing you want. Don't put too much!

Mix it all up in a bowl and eat freshly made or chill it. Great either way in the summer time. We eat it all year long. My family devours this stuff. It was my grandmother's recipe. I've never seen anyone turn their nose up at it.

I've started or rather picked back up a puzzle I stared last year after I finished the train puzzle. It will be another glow in the dark of a lovely village street with a street car and people and gaslights. I'll be posting photos again I think. I put it aside last year when I moved furniture but last night I brought it to the den and put it out on my table. I sat here with my wireless connection playing television shows and putting the puzzle together. I believe it was the most relaxing evening I've spent in a long time.

I took flowers to the cemetery today. I really have a very hard time going there. And the grave looks so bad. Grass is still not growing well. I notice that several are like this. And the clover is everywhere. I suspect as a city cemetery it isn't landscaped very well. But it would be nice to think that the veterans cemetery was given more care. I'm thinking of buying a bag of grass seeds and strewing them. I suppose they'd probably not grow that way but maybe some would. I may wait until the next rain and do it while it is raining. They'd get a good soaking and the ground would be soft. Right now it is very hard. Still, it is a lovely cemetery and I am glad he's there.

I'm going out now. I've fixed and finished my lunch. I don't know for sure if they kids are coming over. I remember the times in the last months his life when Jerry begged them to bring Sarah over and they didn't. Will I ever get images out of my mind? I don't think so. I should haves never end.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Work on Wednesday

I'm on my way to work and the day is as gray as it gets. It is 56 degrees out and I want to know who stole the spring?

I have accomplished so much at work this week that I am astounded but I've gone in and closed out every thought and just processed like a machine. Maybe that is why I've been exhausted every night. This morning, I'm so tired and just want to lie down and sleep some more. I woke up again in the middle of the night. I don't know why I'm doing that and it is disconcerting. I keep feeling like someone is watching me when I wake up. Don't like it at all. I usually have to will myself to turn over and go back to sleep and I do fall asleep. Just would rather NOT be woken up. And I've been waking up an hour earlier - 6 a.m.!

Tonight is writer's meeting and I'm so looking forward to it. I haven't seen the group in over a month and need a bit of insanity to put me on track I think.

I hate I'm not writing. It is as if everything dried up and I have no idea why. I've done a little but precious little. Maybe it is time to go back to an old work and get it going again to get me in a mental place to actually write.

I've stopped getting breakfast on the way to work and eating it at work. I will save a few dollars and am not having to rush so much. Although, I'm waking up an hour earlier too on top of not sleeping well and so it makes sense to just fix breakfast. I'm not a big breakfast eater but since I'm skipping a formal supper at night I figure I have to eat something. You'd think I'd lose pounds the way meals are not but I'm not.

Ok, time to dash out the door. I had more to say but I want to beat the rush hour and have time to get into work mode.

I only need four million dollars to retire.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Mid-Day Update

I've been at workthree hours and I've actually got a lot accomplished. I think I have just reached a place I have to keep moving so I don't lie down and die. That's the way it feels. I want to lie down. The day itself is heavily overcast. It hasn't rained but it is just a cotton batting day. That doesn't help my mood at all.

I was thinking on the way to work I need to clean out cabinets and get rid of a lot of stuff. I have tons of dishes that I no longer need. No  big family to feed. No tons of friends. No house filled at the holidays. Just me. I don't need it and I think it is time to go. I also am going to get rid of a lot of furniture. It is just in the way and I have to clean it. Maybe it is crazy but I have this real need to throw everything out. Bit crazy I suppose.

I'm getting rid of the china cabinet and two book shelves. I still have two more book shelves so it isn't a big issues... except the books are a problem. I was thinking of getting rid of all the books in my book shelves and Becca said she would like to have the shelves. I told her she could. One of them is a really nice bookcase with sliding glass doors. The back leg was broken off when I got it used. But it is Ethan Allen and really nice. I have a block I put under it and it has worked fine. No one can see it anyway. Since they will be moving in a couple of months, she can get them then.

Lots of dishes, enough for a family of four. I never cook and so I have some old pots and pans to get rid of as well. I don't know when was the last time I went into the pantry for a pan. I use what is on top of the stove if I need a pot. I'm going to clean out closets and toss a lot of clothes I don't wear either.

I don't want other people pawing thorough my things, I think, when I die. I have some specifics I want to go to certain people but I don't really want all this stuff left behind. It is hell finding things of Jerry's that he kept for some unknown reason and wondering if I need to keep it. That is not happening so much now but still, once in awhile I find something and I spend days trying to decide what to do about it, agonizing over the last thing he touched, wrote, wore. Wondering if it was important. I threw out tons of stuff last year that I knew were not important. Earlier this year I did it again.. things he kept because he was clinging to life itself and by hanging on to a receipt in case he needed to return an item.... well, surely he'd live to return it if he needed to.

I'm not leaving stuff behind to sort out, agonize over, wonder about.

In a Fog

I don't know why but I really don't like it. I don't know if it is a fibro fog or not. I haven't had much pain but I'm not sleeping well so anything is possible. Either way, don't expect much until the weather clears... my weather.

I don't actually know what's wrong.. life in general I guess. If you ask me, I'd have to say everything is fine. But deep down it isn't. So there. Off to work.

I'll be back when I can. I have a writer's meeting tomorrow night so maybe that will wake me up.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday Rambles

Mike went to church with me this morning. Afterward we went to Mandarin Garden for lunch. We both like Chinese and it wasn't very expensive as Sunday dinners go. Less that $25 for the buffet for both of us and that included our drinks and the tip. Although I really have a problem with tips since you basically wait on yourself except for your drinks. But at this place on Saturday and Sunday children under 7 eat free, too. So, altogether a good deal for a family.

On the way back we were talking about something, don't remember what but I told him that he had made life interesting. He looked at me and said, "Not on purpose." I could only laugh. He has these flashes of intuitive humor on occasion and I'm always surprised. I said, "No, I didn't think you did it on purpose but you did make it interesting." And he did, I guess, in a painful sort of way.

They were both interesting and fun to be with when they were growing up. Jerry and I both truly enjoyed our children. One never knew what was going to happen. I'm terribly saddened that I don't have his memories. They did things with him that I don't know about. And they don't seem to remember them... most kids don't. All of it lost.

Write down your memories now, while you have them. You children, grandchildren will have such a wonderful treasure in them. My family always told me things about myself growing up that I didn't know about, didn't remember because childhood is a blur of activity. Only the most profound things get remembered and they are often not the most amusing. Leave them good memories.

Friday, May 14, 2010

What a Difference A Vacation Makes

Two weeks away from one's work gives one an amazingly clear perspective of exactly how much work just sucks the life out of us. I spent time doing some things I enjoyed. I spent time doing some things that weren't my cup of tea. I spent some time sick. I spent some time just sitting in a chair, doing nothing. As a result of all this time spent, I realized that the structured environment of an office dealing with other people's problems is just not something I even care about. I have no desire to do it.

Life, despite all the rumors, is hard and often not fun. If one looks backward, against all advice, one will find that moments of happiness are islands in a sea of misery of one sort or another. There are those who would have us believe that this state of affairs builds character, strength, appreciation for beauty. I'm not buying it. It hasn't done much for me. But two weeks of watching white clouds drift across a blue sky lifted my spirits much more effectively than watching someone die. Five hours of sitting in an unstable canoe, drifting on the current, listening to the sound of nothing but birds while paddling in the rain did more for my character than five hours in this office listening to the whine of ungrateful, insensitive, lazy people.

No, work doesn't improve our character or the quality of life. It does improve our greed, competition with our fellow earthlings, breeds contempt and erodes good manners. We weren't designed for it actually. Two naked people in a garden, lying by a lake, eating fruit all day and playing tag clearly indicates we were meant for a life of leisure. While I'm not quite ready for the nudist camp, I am willing to forget structured work.

Unfortunately, once ensnared in this web, it is virtually impossible to escape. We've become dependent on work. We've bought the idea that it is required to survive and that quality of life can be purchased. We simply must have all the bells and whistles and fancy homes and clothes. We must, must, must be able to show to the outside world that we are successful, prosperous, and cultured. This requires vast quantities of money which can only be obtained by honest work, illegal activity, or winning the lottery. Since I have a moral and ethical code that prohibits illegal activity and gambling... aside from that involved in crossing the street or getting out of the shower, employment is the only alternative

Those islands have gotten farther and farther apart. And once you've met death you realize you live with him pretty much all the time. He simply stands and waits his turn. So, t
he crowning moment of all this is that in all probability, if I ever reach a time that I no longer have to work, I'll die before I get to enjoy retirement. I once said he was no gentleman. It is true but he is patient.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Daddy's Dogs

My daddy raised bluetic hounds when I was about 12 years old. I don't know if 50% of you will even know what that is.

I' found a photo on Wiki. And here is a good link that describes the animal. Bluetic Hound

Actually, Mama raised the dogs. He had three of them. I remember her getting up in the middle of the night and bottle feeding those puppies for him. She grumbled that they were his dogs but she had to do the work! Well, he did work most days and on the weekend, well raising those pups would have cut drastically into his drinking time. So, she raised them and turned them over to him.
Once grown, he hunted deer with them.

The blue tic is not a pretty dog per se. Although, I've seen some beautiful ones.
They were pretty little pups but as grown dogs, they're a bit rangy - all legs and ears. They're very smart but have they ugliest bay you ever heard. You can hear it for miles in the woods. My daddy could imitate that bay and the dogs would answer!

I don't think he actually hunted that much either, not enough to pay for what it cost to keep those dogs. He was like those guys who go out and build this old car from their youth and sit it in the garage and drive it only on special occasions. He'd take a walk in the woods and the dogs would go with him. He always came back with how well they worked but I don't remember seeing a tremendous amount of deer meat. But then, deer season was only once a year for a period of weeks.

I remember when the dogs died. It was terrible to watch. They caught some kind of disease and lay on the ground on their sides baying and their legs running. I remember asking Daddy what was wrong with them and he said "He's taking his last run." He had to put them down but it was the hardest thing I think he'd ever done.

It was the only time I remember seeing him cry. Until, years later when Mama died.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

This or That?

Discovered last night that the new videos I uploaded will play! In Internet Explorer, if you double click on the middle of the video they will open in another page in Quicktime and play just fine. In Firefox they want to upload in Windows Media player. So they do play, just not in the Multiply player. Use Internet Explorer. The Firefox takes too long. IE is fairly instantaneous.

However, the ones I loaded a couple of weeks ago that wouldn't play on Multiply....NOW will play in their player! Come on Multiply!Get it right! It was not broken before you "fixed" it.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Video Blues

Just posted my canoe videos. Don't even try to watch them until tomorrow. I don't know why it takes about 24 hours after I upload them to be able to watch them on their viewer without downloading them but it does.

I'm on my way to bed but hope once they work, you enjoy a short canoe ride. Less than an hour of footage, just a taste of the 5 hours I enjoyed.

Also, there is a special video where a special contact shows up.

Until next time... same bat.... oh, sorry, wrong show. G'nite!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Blue Skies and Sunshine

In abundance all day. I have been on the back patio since before noon. It has been balmy all day, perfect weather. I've written some on my story about Simon, read briefly, sunbathed off and on, listened to the birds, and watch movies on the laptop. I can smell the tulip tree blooms. It is loaded with them. They have a spicy smell, not sweet. My wind chimes have been tinkling all afternoon, too. The air has turned cooler. Currently, at nearly 7 p.m. it is 72 degrees with a light breeze.

This is one of those days you wish for many things but you wish most of all that it wouldn't end.I can sit here and pretend that life is normal for hours at a time. Now, I have to go in and find it isn't really. Survival, it is just survival.

Water, Water Everywhere

Next time you're offered a bottle of water you may want to think twice.