Friday, October 31, 2014

A Halloween Story

Seeing all the Halloween posts on FaceBook makes me think I will tell you a Halloween story. I have only told it. Never tried to write it before so we will see. It happened a long time ago. 

Rex and I were invited to an adult Halloween party. I went as a witch. He went as Dracula. I waxed his hair back and gave him a widow’s peak. He had a goatee so I took a little stage blood and dribbled it down the corner of his beard. A little white make up, tux pants and shirt and a long cape and he was amazing. 

We were greeted by our hostess. Rex bent over, kissed her hand and said, “I vish it were your neck.” We all laughed. A friend of hers walked up and she introduced us. Rex bent over her hand, kissed it, and said, “I vish it were your neck.” And she never left his side for the entire party. 

Once in a while he would meet my eyes across the room and I would know it was time to come and take him away. She always found him though. It was rather interesting. Once the party was over and we moved into November, the phone calls started coming. He was invited to lunch several times and each time he would say, “We would love to come. I just have to ask Susan her schedule.” And the invitation would be gently withdrawn. I guess she finally got the hint because the calls stopped. Moral: Make sure the neck you offer to bite is actually one you want to bite. Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Ode to A Chair

I am wary of saying anything too early for fear of breaking the spell ~ and I think the chair has done it for the feet and legs. Of course I tried out all sorts of moves and massages yesterday and just before going to bed I did a foot massage for 10 minutes. No feet and leg issues last night. None. Slept well. Woke feeling good ~ and just a little bit anxious to get back to the chair. This morning I can feel the fire next to my face and the chair heat on my feet. ~ feeling blessed, and blessings to you

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Cellular Memory

I’ve been reading from my Kindle for quite a while. I do still read paper books but, much to my surprise, not as often as I read from my Kindle. Still, I have read from paper for many, many years more than from a Kindle. 

The other day I was reading and a woman asked what I was reading. I automatically turned my Kindle over to show her the cover as I recited the title ~ except it was my Kindle so the same black cover is there regardless of the name or type of book. 

Today I was reading when the storm came in. The room darkened as the rain spattered down. Sitting in a chair with no lamp close, I realized I was having a hard time seeing and was just about to mutter about having to move to have more light when I realized I was reading my Kindle ~ and the last time I had read had been in the middle of the night and I had turned the back light way down. I turned it up and kept reading. It takes a long time for the body to change habits of a life time. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Christmas in October!

When I had hip replacement surgery 3 1/2 years ago, I found both my legs needed some elevation time. The best chair I had for that was a deck chair, one of two ergonomically correct chairs that allow me to lie back with my feet raised. As you can see from the picture, once the cool of fall came, even inside, I felt better if I covered the back with a throw. And it wasn't exactly my idea of nice living room furniture. Still I was what I had and I have been very grateful.

Today, Dean came up the stairs grinning. 
Guess what? 
I bought the chair. 
Several days ago, he had found this chair on Craig's List. Today he bought it.

It is one of those that does everything: massages, vibrates, heats your feet. 
The list of massages is impressive: kneading, tapping, knocking, pressing.
I can decide on Fatigue Recovery, Pain Relieving and Comfortable. 
I can decide on Overall, Shoulder, Back and Waist. 
Oh and there's "Stretch" - I'll let you know what that does.
I'm going to explore "width" as I think my back needs just a little more room. 
Sitting here I notice there is a timer going down. Don't know what will happen
when it gets to 00. Ah - it returns the chair to its original position. Ok, have to figure out how to keep that from happening in the middle of a tv show.
The next few days/weeks will be spent exploring possibilities, all of which will make me feel better I think. I won't be bothered if I don't have a present under the tree. I will just sit in my chair and grin.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Cyber Sighs

Back in September I clicked on my journal and up came a little window saying that Pages was no longer supported. I had to upload Yosemite. Fine. Except when I went to the Apple page, it told me that Yosemite would be available “this fall”. Having no idea if I was behind or ahead of time I called the friendly folk at Apple. I was ahead. As my journal kept opening, I was ok. The Apple tech wasn’t sure what day in October Yosemite would be available but I would get some kind of announcement. 
I’m not sure I actually received an announcement but while visiting the family in SoCal who have very fast wifi, I decided to check. Sure enough Yosemite had been launched and so I uploaded the new system. 

Given how minimally I use the abilities of my computer, I am not really aware of any great changes ~ except for the look of things. I guess they really want you to know just by looking that you have a brand new system. My dock looks different. When I pull up my browser, that page looks different. Even my mail page is pale pink and purple instead of the basic black and white of before. It did leave me with my chosen desk top palate for which I am grateful. 

I guess, if I am going to live even peripherally in a cyberspace world, I need to adjust to there being changes all the time. Things move very fast. Even my “new” phone is about 2 generations old. *sigh* Dean calls me the Cyber Grandma, but I’m beginning to feel like the cyber bones are creaking rather loudly. 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Journey of the Cake

We had a 14th birthday to celebrate and so the cousins helped mom make and bake.

Sifting flour and cocoa

Holding very still while vanilla is poured.

Pouring it in.

Taking turns ~ in go the eggs

Mom is the one who mixes and stirs.

Yes! Two layers with peanut butter filling between the layers
and a C on top for the birthday girl.

Birthday girl and her brother.

Lots of candles for 14. Take a big breath ~ 

It was a fun night, ending with a Delicious cake lovingly made with 
the assistance of two young cousins. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Ballerina Artist

The Ballerina Artist is also a terrific soccer player. I will see her play at 8 A.M. on Saturday. Ah the things one does as a grandmother. 
Selfie when she bounced up next to me after school.

She's in an art class. She did painted the back ground with a credit card. She dipped a stick of some sort into an ink pot to draw the city. Notice the Statue of Liberty.

I wasn't able to stay long in her ballet class but I did get some posed pictures before class.
These are all her own chosen poses.

She loves dancing. This same afternoon she headed for soccer practice. I am looking forward to the game on Saturday. I love having multi-talented grands.

Lil' Darlin'

Lil' Darlin' is three. She is gregarious, bright-eyed, fearless and into all sorts of activities.

She needs a little help with some of them at first,

and she soon has it on her own.

She joins the family soccer tradition and can really kick that ball.

She turns a little shy when another soccer player  tries to make friends.

Yes! Kicked it through the hoop every time!
Soccer players got a present

Lil' Darlin' also takes ballet. I snuck in a picture. 
This day they performed their Jingle Bells dance all by themselves.
She knew Exactly where she was to stop after the circle. 

She is also a wonderful cousin who is willing to share her pizza with her younger cousin.
I am having such fun. More pictures follow. I already have too many to put them all in one blog. ~ May your day be as blessed as mine!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

On Reading and Learning

The typical question has always been “What are you reading?” It is always a good question to start a conversation, learn a little something about a new acquaintance, catch up with an old friend or just fill in some time when conversation is called for. 

When I am asked that these days, I am always just a tad embarrassed because I am not reading a lot that isn’t mystery and usually I am asked while reading something light and fluffy. But ask me what I am learning and the answer becomes a lot more involved. 

Right now I am watching and listening to Great Courses lectures on the American Revolution. I am learning about all the military planning that went into the British attempt to put down this rag-tag rebellion in the colonies. Lexington and Concord were lost because the British underestimated the strength and the abilities of those rag-tag militia. Once they decided they had better take this rebellion seriously, they had the problem of a 3000 mile ocean between the battles and the orders or replacements coming from King and Parliament. 

This is fun stuff. It wasn’t fun in the winters of 1776 - 1779. General Washington found himself retreating more often than advancing. It is interesting to delve more deeply into the diaries, documents and decrees from this period in our history and learn what we really mean when we raise a toast on July 4th to the founders of our feast. 

So - my reading is a light, well-written romance by one of my favorite mystery writers (I decided to check out her other genre) while my learning comes from watching and listening and spending some imagined time marching through New England with both Generals Washington and Howe. Two very different answers to two very different questions. ~ blessings 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Granddaughter's First Trip to Tahoe

The first word I heard her speak was "water" as she had her hands washed. We arrived at the lakeside restaurant and the second through umpteen words I heard were also "water". So easy to bond with a Mama Susan who promises to take you to the water.

Of course once you get out on the pier, close to the water, you have to put up with family pictures.

You try to be patient though - lunch will come.

"Here's my nose." We take inventory both to show off and pass the time until lunch arrives.

Mama Susan bought a book just for me. 

My first hike in the woods. Of course Dad carried me a lot of the way.

Standard "at the Point" picture. Wonderful day. 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Thanksgiving on the Deck

Yesterday was Thanksgiving at our house. Our Chinese daughter-in-law had requested a traditional American home cooked dinner for her family who had never had one before. She requested Thanksgiving. And so it was. 

Turkey gets moved from the smoker to the grill for its final roasting.

Lookin' good.

And good it was, bringing smiles to our new friends' faces.
They even returned for seconds on turkey (which they don't have in China).
Dean and I loved being able to have Thanksgiving dinner on the deck.
November temperatures will not allow that indulgence.

It was traditional: turkey, dressing, gravy, mashed potatoes and roasted veggies. 
I didn't take a picture of the pecan pie but on my own behalf, let me say, I nailed it. 
The entire meal was a worthy representation of American home cooking.
On her behalf, daughter-in-law prepared two amazing Chinese home cooked meals
for us on Saturday. We ate internationally and really well!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Cold Frame's Done

Tomatoes, Basil, Thyme and Mint travel on the bobcat up the
hill to their new home in the cold frame.

Dean is proud of his tomatoes and his work and we are ready to eat tomatoes 
for an extra month or so into colder weather. 

Dean's first really big tomato. :D

Friday, October 3, 2014

Happy Birthday, "Baby"

Ah yes, I remember it well. The day started warm and energetic. I was up and doing, dressed in a short sleeve jumper. I didn’t feel quite like biking 3 year old daughter to day care but otherwise I was fine. By the time Rex came home for lunch, I had on a long sleeve blouse under my jumper, had slept most of the morning and was very lethargic. Even though I had a 3:30 appointment with my OB, Rex insisted on taking me to see him right then. 

I wrapped a wool cape around me and as the snow started to fall, we drove in my lithe car past the service station where the big, sturdy station wagon was getting the snow tires put on in case we had to drive to the hospital in the snow two weeks later when the baby was due. 

Rex went into the doctor’s office and said, I think my wife’s having the baby. The doctor tossed an armload of files who knows where and came out to the car. He sent us to the hospital, assuring us nothing was going to happen soon and he would see us after work. He made it to the examination room before Rex could get up from admitting. We all three moved quickly to delivery and our precious, wonderful baby girl was born an hour before my appointment time. 

In those days, we didn’t know she was a she until the announcement in the moment. Denver had a 19 inch snow that day. I had a 19 inch baby girl. Joy I will never forget and in spite of all the years between will remember every October 3rd for as long as I live. Joy then ~ Joy now in all the accomplishments and delight only vaguely imagined on that snowy October day. ~ blessings to you in your joy and delights both past and present