Saturday, June 30, 2012

Greetings from the beach!

It's a fabulous beach at Fort Morgan!

Friday, June 29, 2012


All the news is about the weather. Chattanooga tied an all-time record of 106 F, and will probably do the same tomorrow. It was 109 in Nashville.

I certainly am glad we're headed for the beach in the morning. The temps there are predicted to be seasonable - around 90, with SW breezes. We're all doing the happy-dance!
The Bridge of Sighs, Venice

Thursday, June 28, 2012

In the news

In the news today….

For all Americans, the big news of the day was the Supreme Court’s upholding of the Health Care law. I’ve enjoyed reading about all the whys, wherefores, and analyses of the decision. And enjoying saying that “Obama’s Care” is a not a pejorative, but a compliment. Onward to November!
But on the world stage, the big news was the interception of 9.5 tons of garlic from Spain, being smuggled into Hungary. The possibilities in this story boggle the mind. Here’s a short article from an Austrian newspaper.

Cops Bag Transylvanian Garlic Thieves
Austrian police have arrested five men from Transylvania who travelled to Spain to steal 9.5 tons of garlic.

The men needed three large vans to transport the cargo, all of which were stacked to the very top with the stolen garlic cloves.

Officers at the border crossing from Austria into Hungary said they had smelt what was inside before even opening the door and after checking the men's paperwork realized that it was fake and that the garlic had been stolen.

Garlic was said to be one of the few things capable of warding off vampires and was widely hung on the doors of homes in Transylvania where it was also supposed to keep away evil spirits as well as the undead.

Garlic from Transylvania is popular with tourists where it is woven into door ornaments and sold in markets and local shops.


Can't wait

I couldn't wait to post about this blog entry I just found. Thanks, Kate, for posting about it.

Margaret and Helen.

Now I've got all day to read about these ladies and check back entries.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tedious work

About all I got accomplished today was to work on organizing the photos from the trip. We can only do so much of that at a time. It's not hard, just tedious. John got the dried grass in the front yard mowed, but that was it for him. For the next few days, it'll all be about staying cool.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Sunshine Award!

Wow! I’m thrilled and honored. L’empress, my fellow women’s basketball fan, has nominated me for a blogger’s Sunshine Award.

These are the rules:
Link the award to the person who gave it to me. (did that)
Answer questions about myself. (see below)
Nominate up to 10 bloggers for this award, and link my nominees to the post and comment on their blog, letting them know about the award. (see below)

The Questions:
Favorite number: I don’t really have one. I guess I could choose the Ace of trumps - since that always takes the trick in bridge.
Favorite non-alcoholic drink: Water and coffee.
Favorite animal: We‘ve had cats and dogs as pets, and loved them both. None now, and probably won’t have another pet. I love to watch penguins and the big cats.
Facebook or Twitter: I don’t “do” Twitter at all. I am on Facebook, but mainly just to keep up with our girls and grandkids. I rarely post, just read. I guess I’m just not of the appropriate generation.
My passion: Never just one - travel, knitting, double crostics, reading, family, art (in no particular order)
Favorite day of the week: I’ve been retired for years. They’re all pretty much the same, unless there is travel going on. Monday/Wednesday/Friday are always good days because those are swimming days.
Favorite flower: I love all flowers, and grow none. I have the brownest of thumbs, but do enjoy looking. I especially love fields of wildflowers.

I started blogging in 2005 to document my journey with breast cancer. After that episode, I pretty much let it lapse. I started again as a way to keep in touch with our girls and my Aunt Betsy while we were traveling. And it has become pretty much a daily exercise since then. Sometimes, I rant; sometimes I just talk about my day. I like to think about it as talking to my family and friends.

The blogging community is fabulous - a great bunch of folks - friendly and supportive. I’ve “met” people around the world, and we chat about wonderful things. I follow a number of blogs using Google Reader.

One of the first blogs I’ve followed regularly is Bev’s Airy Persiflage . I learned about her at a now-defunct discussion board called SeniorNet. She’s a delightful lady, and I hope to meet her in person later this summer.

The others in no particular order, include:
Indigo gives a good start to my day with her question(s) of the day. I don’t know how she’s able to come up with such fun questions every day.

Jenconsin has some terrific health issues to deal with. She shares this along with her husband and her delightful little boy.

Essiewb doesn’t post daily, but she always has something good to say. She has had to make major life changes, and has done so with incredible strength and grace. And she’s a fabulous knitter.

In Life on a Small Island , Sian lives in the Orkney Islands. We’ve been very near her tiny island, and would love to go back. And, she bought one of my paintings.

Jonathon Hemlock is one of the bloggers I found on That’s My Answer. He is retired and divides his time between Myrtle Beach and Toronto and considers himself a “Squirrelly Senior Citizen”.

Kwizgiver posts several times a day from Maine, frequently posting memes. It’s a good source for them.

I’ve just started following poolagirl on her blog, Life on the HMS Pie Rat. She’s a museum director in San Diego, where our granddaughter lives. Maybe I’ll get to meet her in person sometime.

Mickle posts occasionally from Wellington, New Zealand. We loved our visit to NZ, and wish we could go back sometime. She and her ZebbyCat would love to show us around.

The Dahn Report is about Bill’s life in Oregon, dealing with his semi-retirement and taking care of his elderly mother.

I love finding new bloggers from links on the ones I read regularly, and getting to know new folks all over the world. I’m sure I’ll be finding new ones from continuing to browse.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Back home is good, too.

We love to travel.
Specially for happy things.
Back home is good, too.

We went to San Antonio over the weekend for my cousin’s wedding. It was quite a party and we all had a good time. We stayed at the old Gunter Hotel in the middle of downtown, within walking distance of everything. The church was around the corner, and the reception was at the hotel. We had time to do some walking on the Riverwalk and even to take the boat ride. All the flights went as scheduled, and we got home about 8 last night.

So we’re back into the normal routine for a few days. And then we head to the beach on Saturday. Tropical Storm Debby seems to be staying pretty much east of where we’ll be, so we’re not going to worry about it.

We had really hot temperatures in San Antonio, and it was 100 when we got back to Nashville. It got to 99 here yesterday. We’re due to “cool off” into the 80s tomorrow, but then back up to around 100 by the end of the week. We do love our a/c.
They're married!

Ken and his two cousins.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Home again

We're back after a great trip to San Antonio, for a family wedding. I'll write more later.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Gone again

We're heading out again - just for the weekend this time. We're helping to celebrate a family wedding. I'll be back writing Sunday or Monday.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Getting back to the routine

It surely is hard getting back in the routine of writing every day.

I had hoped to get into working more with the photographs today, but that just didn’t happen. We got a better treat though, and got to spend the morning and lunch-time with Tina (while her car was being worked on).

That made for a good day, but the best was yet to come. Lonnie finished the re-upholstery of the second recliner, and delivered it after supper. Sheer bliss to have be back in our chairs - where we belong!
Sights along the canal in Venice.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

We're SO proud!

I'm copying an article that was in the McKesson News; News and information for McKesson employees about our daughter and son-in-law. We're SO proud of them!

How They Lost 243 Pounds
Husband-wife team use Weight Watchers and Vitality to lose weight and lower blood pressure.

Kate Fuller said “I do” to her husband, Wayne, 34 years ago. Then in 2010, she completed the sentence: “I do…want to lose weight with you.”

Kate works in Managed Services for McKesson Provider Technologies at Trover Health Systems in Madisonville, Ky. She has battled her weight since childhood.

“My maiden name is Zelle, which, of course, rhymes with ‘jelly’ and ‘belly,’” she sighs. “Kids on the playground can be so cruel.”

By age 50, Kate was the heaviest she had been in her life, on blood pressure medication and facing other potential health risks. Her husband was also overweight with high blood pressure. And both frequently suffered from back, hip and knee pain.

Vitality to the Rescue
Kate had a friend who participated in Weight Watchers and was safely, steadily shedding pounds right before her eyes.

When Kate discovered that the Vitality rewards program offered reimbursement for Weight Watchers as an employee benefit, she wanted to give it a try but didn’t want to do it alone. “So I asked my husband if he would join, too,” Kate says. Wayne said “yes” and on June 10, 2010, the couple began their Weight Watchers journey.

Together they cleaned out their “trigger foods,” which included chips, cookies and ice cream, replacing them with fresh fruits and vegetables. They also started working out, walking and biking.

In two years, Kate lost 118 pounds and Wayne lost 125, both reaching their weight loss goals and significantly lowering their blood pressure levels.

“Those old aches and pains are nearly gone,” says Kate, “and we both have so much more energy.”

Vitality Bonuses
While losing weight, Kate also steadily accumulated Vitality points. She and Wayne are now at the Gold level.

“We’ve done biometric screening. I enter information for our scheduled workouts, our preventive care, walks, bike rides — anything I can do to earn points,” she says.

So far, Kate’s points have earned DVDs of “Downton Abbey” for her and a FitBug pedometer for Wayne. (Now, all spouses covered under a McKesson medical plan can receive a free FitBug pedometer.)

“I am so grateful to McKesson for offering this reimbursement benefit,” says Kate. “And now it’s even better.”

Note, McKesson now pays for the program up front with no out of pocket cost to U.S. employees in most cases. Spouses covered under a McKesson medical plan are now also eligible for the program.

High Praise for Weight Watchers
“The fact that Weight Watchers is not a ‘diet’ but a lifestyle adaptation is why it works so well for us,” Kate explains.

“We never feel ‘deprived.’ Any time we want to go out for pizza and a beer, we’re able to work it into our food plan, as long as you adjust the rest of your intake and activity to accommodate the extra calories.”

A New Outlook
“Wayne told me that I carry myself differently now,” says Kate. “He says I walk briskly, eyes up, with tall posture and, most importantly, I have a smile on my face.”

She says it is “empowering” to know that she could achieve her weight loss goal without surgery, special food or stringent liquid diets. And it’s been extra special to share the experience with her husband.

“Wayne and I don’t police each other. We’re just here for one another to lean on.” Then she smiles, “Doing this together hasn’t done our marriage any harm either.”

Monday, June 18, 2012

Non Sequitur

Non Sequitur blew me away this morning. This is undoubtedly the funniest, sneakiest, day-making comic strip around today.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Lazy Sunday

The laundry got done.
The dishwasher did its thing.
That’s all for today.
Venice - the first of many window pictures.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Hot Summer Nights

From kwizgiver
Hot Fun In The Summertime

1. What do you have planned for fun in the summertime? since we’re retired, basically what we do the rest of the year - but we do have our week at the beach (coming up soon).

2. Who was the last celebrity that you thought was bright until you saw them interviewed? I don’t pay much attention to “celebrities”.

3. Do you think that the U.S. and our present war(s) seem to just ignore our history? Nobody ever pays any attention to history. If they did, we wouldn’t get into some of the fixes we seem to be in.

4. Have you ever conformed just to "fit in"? Certainly - just like everybody else.

5. Do you feel that you at times do not enjoy the moment because you are worried about what will come next? That’s probably been true in the past. At my age, not so much any more.

6. Does it seem that when you learn more about yourself, that others' opinions of you seem stupid? I don’t worry too much about others’ opinions of me. I’m more interested in what I think of myself.

7. In rock & roll history, what bands or artists do you think made the biggest impact? Rock & roll was pretty much after “my time” - I’m more of a Big Band/jazz kind of gal. But I guess I’d have to say The Beatles and Elvis.

8. Who do you blame for the state of the economy? Why? Remember the great line from Walt Kelly’s Pogo. “We have met the enemy, and he is us!”

9. Do you get upset and do you think you're being lazy when you do nothing? Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.
Our first look at the Venetian canals.

Friday, June 15, 2012


Glad there are steroids
To help all us creaky folks.
Things are better now.

This is the Aegean Odyssey - our home for two weeks (Cabin 708 on the Bridge Deck).

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Enough whining, already

I was going to start back on the treadmill and/or the stationary bicycle today, then maybe go to the vegetable stand. But the old body wouldn't loosen up this morning - just too many places stiff and hurting.

I finally gave up and called the rheumatologist to ask for a cortisone dose pack to tide me over until I see him the end of July. We've got that wedding in San Antonio weekend after this, and our week at the beach a week after that.

It is nice that the dose pack kicks in quickly. I’m much less achy this evening.
Cortisone is good.
We’ll see how tomorrow goes.
So enough whining.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Wednesday wandering

Our summer teacher worked the class hard today - and it felt good. Getting haircuts felt good, too.
We did get our photographs from the trip downloaded into the computer. They’ll need some editing, and meshing John’s and mine, and then I’ll start posting some.
Parenting is hard,
No matter how old the child.
The best help is love.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


When we got home, there was a phone message from the chiropractor I had seen last fall. Our insurance had wound up covering some services that I had paid for at the time, so I had a credit balance. They told me I could use it up with a massage. Hmmmmmm, let me think. OK - that took about a nanosecond. I called this morning, and went in this afternoon to use up my credit. The massage was wonderful. She said she could tell I’d been walking a lot, and the thigh muscles were really tender. All the body parts felt better afterwards.
I’ve had trouble with my left foot forever. There was a congenital defect (metatarsus adductus - bent inward at the instep) - not bad enough to do anything about for years. But then the deformity gradually increased and finally was causing me enough trouble to see about fixing it. The orthopedic surgeon did a major reconstruction, straightening the foot, leaving pins in the great, 2nd, and 3rd toes. This was in 2003. Since then, the correction has gradually overcorrected, and now the great toe is bent outward at about 45 degrees, and the 4th toe has overlapped # 2 and 3. Ugly, but it hasn’t been a problem with shoes or causing any pain until relatively recently. And after all the walking I did on this trip, I’m now ready to think about the possibility of getting some more repair done.

I called to make an appointment with the doctor who did the original surgery. The first appointment they could give me is in October. I took the appointment, but I’ll be seeing my family doc and my rheumatologist long before then. Maybe they’ll have some other suggestions.
We had about 2.5” of rain over the last couple of days. It was in the 80s with miserable humidity this afternoon. Welcome to summer in the south.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Back to the routine.

I got a long night’s sleep last night, and got to swimming this morning, so I guess I’m on the way to getting over the jet lag. I know it’ll take a while longer, but we’ll get there. We even went to bridge this afternoon…and have been up this late without a nap.

The trip was mostly terrific. We saw some great cities and learned about some smaller ones. The stops were in Venice, Ravenna, Split (Croatia), Corfu (Greece), Taormina (Sicily), Pompeii, Rome, Florence, Marseille (Avignon and Arles), and Cannes. The ship was really nice - small with 322 passengers on this trip. Great food and staff. The Road Scholar group was a good one - only 22 this time - and only one real clinker in the bunch. We’ll probably keep in touch with at least a couple of the single women - at least to exchange pictures.

Venice and Rome were just too crowded and touristy for our tastes - although with the wonderful stuff to see. We didn’t see nearly enough of it. For a variety of reasons, the stop in Florence was mishandled, and we wound up doing a lot more walking than necessary. I found I can’t do nearly as much walking as I thought I could, so I relied heavily on my cane and John and skipped some of the excursions. We loved the smaller stops.

We’ll keep working on getting back to “normal”. At least I’ve managed to put off WalMart until tomorrow.

I’ll be posting some pictures when we can get them into the computer and done some editing.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Home again

We got home about midnight - and the jetlag is pretty strong right now. We had a great trip and, of course, took lots of pictures. I'll try to get back on a regular schedule in a day or two.