Thursday, January 30, 2014


I’m told this is a commercial from last year’s Super Bowl, but I saw it for the first time today. I laughed and laughed. Enjoy! If you’ve already seen it, enjoy it again.

Click here.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Snow surprise

Chattanooga from Lookout Mountain (from the Chattanooga Times Free Press)

Our deck

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


We got about an inch of snow today, with more predicted through midnight, and very cold. I went to Aldi, but it was snowing when I came out, and sticking to the pavement in the parking lot. I decided I didn’t need to be trying to walk on that at WalMart, so I headed for home. John had one errand to run, but the roads were starting to get really bad by the time he got back. So we stayed in the rest of the day.

We'll be staying home tomorrow, too. But on Thursday, it's supposed to warm up. I know this doesn't sound like much - and it isn't - but folks in this area don't know how to deal with it (me included). So it's big news and causes lots of problems. They said during the evening news that if you had a wreck, just leave your car. It would take at least 5! hours for a wrecker to get there. And the police were swamped with the number of wrecks. Quite a mess.

Just about everything is closed down Wednesday. All the schools, some companies, doctors’ offices, day-care facilities. We do believe in what we call the “Biblical solution of snow removal”. As in “God put it there, God will take it away.” This area just doesn’t get enough snow to invest much money in snow removal. It would be nice if this were the last of it for this winter.

Monday, January 27, 2014


Warm is wonderful.
It’s gonna be very cold
For a few days more.
Hope the fix lasts.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sunday Stealing

Ask Me Meme
1:What was the last argument you had about?
          I rarely argue - I can’t remember arguing about anything.
2:How long is your longest relationship?
         We’ve been married for 58 years.
3:What is something not many people know about you?
          I had my hair dyed red many years ago.
4:Two truths and a lie. Go.
          I was the baby in my family. I was born in St. Louis. I had a sister and a brother.
5:Do you believe in fate/destiny?
6:Where is somewhere you’ve always wanted to live?
          On the water.
7:Has there ever been a song that made you cry?
           I always choke up at the Star Spangled Banner.
8:Do you jump/scare easily?
           Not really.
9:Which birthday has been your favorite?
          At my age, I’m always glad to see the next one.
10:Have you ever been pulled over? Arrested?
           I’ve been pulled over and ticketed. Never arrested.
11:Have you ever been to a fortune teller?
12:What’s your favorite series of books?
            In no particular order, I like Harry Potter, Kate Shugak, the series by Nevada Barr set in National Parks.
13:Who is someone that you think knows the most about you outside of family?
           Probably Flo Jean or Vicki.
14:What is the weirdest thing you’ve eaten?
           I’ve eaten kangaroo (not too bad) and tried whale (yuck).
15:List one of your quirks.
           I always fold the clothes as soon as the dryer stops.
16:State 1 bad habit of yours.
           Eating too much.
17:Has a scary movie ever given you nightmares?
18:When was the last time you got your hair done in a salon?
          I get my hair cut every three weeks. But the last time I had something “done” was probably my last permanent, which was at least 20 years ago.
19:What was the last thing you did with your friends?
          Two of my gal friends came over last Monday to eat when John and Margaret went to the basketball game.
20:What’s something that you like to do that others might see as weird?
          I enjoy being in the quiet.
21:What was the last trip you took?
         We took a river cruise on the Columbia River, followed by a few days in Colorado, in October. For a day trip, we went to Margaret’s on Christmas Day.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

800 wins

We made it through the night.  The house only got to about 55F, so it wasn't too bad.  It was not as cold today, and we borrowed another space heater.  I guess we'll survive.

We got out of the house for a while.  The UTC Lady Mocs beat Samford 61-50.  But more exciting was that our coach, Jim Foster, got his 800th career win!  We are lucky to have this Hall of Fame coach take over our team.  Congratulations to him!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Baby, it's cold inside!

I got up and went to the swim class this morning. It felt good to get back in the water. But then I came home. Uh-oh!

John said the heat was not on. The overnight temperature had been about 10F. Our usual comfortable 68 was down to 63. John made several calls to the HVAC miracle man, and they figured out what part was needed. However, it wasn’t going to be available until Monday.

 (Note: Never have HVAC problems on a Friday night when the temperatures have been below freezing for 3 whole days.)

I went to Lowe’s and got a quartz room heater, and that was working and helping take the chill off.

The MM came to the house about 3. He and John tinkered around with the unit, trying to get to work, at least until Monday. And, Hooray!, they got it working, and the temperature came up to a bearable 66F.

Well, the heat was short-lived. The MM going to try to get the part tomorrow, but isn't sure he can do it. It's supposed to be around 20F tonight, so not as bad, then in the upper 40s tomorrow. We'll survive, but @###$%$#$#.

We’re going to close off part of the house overnight, and just heat the kitchen, master bedroom and hall, so we’ll be okay. What a pain!

Thursday, January 23, 2014


It's really cold here - not in comparison to Michigan and New York and Canada, but definitely cold for this part of the world.  At least it hasn't snowed, and there's none predicted.  So we know it won't last too much longer.

I'm afraid I can't say the same thing about this cold.  I think I'm finally getting better.  Now John is really having a tough time with his cough.  The coughing has badly strained his abdominal muscles, so it's really painful for him to cough.  Poor baby, he doesn't do "sick" very well.  I hope that improves quickly for him. 

At least the Lady Vols prevailed tonight - 89 to 69 over Florida.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Busy Wednesday

With the temperature around 15* this morning, I wimped out and didn’t go to swimming. Sometimes it is hard during the cold weather to get out of the house, but it’s usually okay at the Y. And, like anything, the routine is important. Once that gets “broken”, it’s hard to start up again. I do need the exercise SO much, and I know the pool exercise is the only thing I’ll do consistently. I shouldn’t skip, so I’ll probably be going on Friday, even though it’s due to be even colder. I’ll be farther away from my head cold, too.

We didn’t get any snow at our house, but we surely have gotten cold. We took advantage of it, though - John defrosted our big freezer. He put everything out on the deck, and just let the freezer defrost. By the time I got home from the painting class, it was time to put the stuff back in. I threw some stuff out, and at least now I know what’s in there.

The painting class went well. It’s different experimental stuff - as is the usual class, but we’re working on a canvas this time. I’m having to get caught up, but should get that done by next week.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

This and that

John managed to take my cold to a whole new level. He’s been coughing SO hard. He went to the doctor’s office this morning to see the PA.  His chest x-ray was negative. But he did have bronchitis, postnasal drip, the coughing, and a lot of wheezing. He got prescriptions for a Z-pack (antibiotics) and an inhaler, with the recommendation to take one of the OTC decongestants. He’s still doing some coughing, but not nearly as much by this evening. This is a good thing on lots of levels, not least because his abdominal muscles are extremely sore from all the coughing. We hope he’s on the way back. This has been one stinker of a cold!


Click here to read an article about all the great things going on in the Chattanooga Library. This is in the downtown "main" library building. Our new head librarian (the one who has just been named National Librarian of the Year) came about three years ago, and has brought in a lot of youngsters to work with this transformation. I don't know how this is all being funded - maybe just with their regular funding, plus what they get from donors and the Friends of the Library book sales, etc. She is really bringing people into the building and using the facilities - including the fourth floor, which had been used only for storage. It’s exciting!

Still winter

It may still be winter, but we're ready for spring.

Sunday, January 19, 2014


Football, more football.
Heading for the Super Bowl.
Broncos and Seahawks.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Sunday Stealing

The Last Night Meme  (For Friday night, since I'm doing this on Saturday night)

Did anyone call you last night?
      Tina called last night so we could make arrangements to pick her up from the airport.
How late were you on the computer last night?
       About 12:30 a.m.  
What did you have to eat last night?
        For supper we had leftover pork sirloin roast.  It was just as good as leftovers and it was originally.  
Did you watch any good TV shows or movies last night?
         We watched our usual Friday programs.  Washington Week, Tennessee Insider (a local PBS program similar to Washington Week), Hawaii 5-0, Blue Bloods, local news, Aerial America.
Did any news items stand out to you last night?  
          A couple of local murder trials - each with the defendants found guilty.
Did you go out last night?  
           No - I don't think I left the house yesterday.
What was the weather like last night?
           Clear and cold.  
What was the last thing you said last night?
           "Sleep well.  I love you." 
What time did you go to bed last night?
            About 12:30 a.m., then read for a few minutes.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Chattanooga on C-Span

There will be programs about Chattanooga on the C-Span networks this weekend.  Check your local listings.

C-Span 2 (BookTV) - Noon - 1:15 pm ET (Authors and books)
Repeats, I think, on Sunday, 10:45 am - noon

C-Span 3 (American History TV) - 5 - 7 pm ET (History and culture)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


No sleep last night, so
Wiped out today. Won’t be up
Late. Sleep well, my friends.

Better, I think

I finally went to the doctor this morning. The cold had finally gone down into my chest, with much more coughing. He gave me prescriptions for an antibiotic and some cough syrup with codeine. He also sent me for a chest x-ray. They didn’t call me back today with any results, so I guess it didn’t show anything too bad.

After a couple of doses of the antibiotics and a couple of slugs of the cough syrup, I don’t seem to be coughing as much (mostly just when I laugh). So I guess it is getting better. Let’s hope so.

Sorry to have been such a whiner. I know this is very small in the big scheme of things. I’ll try to do better.

Thanks to all for your concern and good wishes.  And now I'll change the subject.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Dr. Dementia?

We got this in an e-mail the other day.  I'd seen part of it, but not the numbers part.  It really is amazing.

Here's another trick of Doctor Dementia to test your skills....

I've seen this with the letters out of order, but this is the first time I've seen it with numbers. Good example of a Brain Study: If you can read this OUT LOUD, you have a strong mind. And better than that: Alzheimer's is a long long, way down the road before it ever gets anywhere near you.

7H15 M3554G3

53RV35 7O PR0V3


D0 4M4Z1NG 7H1NG5!

1MPR3551V3 7H1NG5!

1N 7H3 B3G1NN1NG

17 WA5 H4RD BU7

N0W, 0N 7H15 LIN3


R34D1NG 17


W17H 0U7 3V3N

7H1NK1NG 4B0U7 17,


C3R741N P30PL3 C4N

R3AD 7H15.

If you can read this, you have a strange mind, too.  Can you read this?  Only 55 people out of 100 can.

I cdnuolt blveiee that I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd what
I was rdanieg . The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan
mnid , aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy ,
it dseno't mtaetr in what oerdr the ltteres in a word are,
the olny iproamtnt tihng is that the frsit and last ltteer
be in the rghit pclae . The rset can be a taotl mses
and you can still raed it whotuit a pboerlm . This is
bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by
istlef , but the word as a wlohe . Azanmig, huh? Yaeh,
and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt !

Sunday, January 12, 2014

We'll see...

If I don't have a better night and morning, I'll be heading to see the PA at our doctor's office.  This is getting old.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Still sick

I'm still here, and still sick. Doing better, I guess, but not great. We got lots of rain and thunder overnight. I was up nearly every hour on the hour during the night, but managed to go back to sleep. I got a little snooze in during the Lady Mocs’ game on the radio (they beat Western Carolina 77-57.) The weather cleared off nicely this afternoon.

John seems to be doing better. He had to get out of the house, so he went to the drug store to replenish our supplies of tissues, cough syrup, cough drops, Mentholatum, etc. Sue’s had this stuff, too. I hope she’s better than we are.

I made some great chicken/barley/mushroom soup last night - wonderful medicine. And we finished it off tonight.

I can only hope tomorrow will be better.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

The cold (but not the weather)

I guess it’s a cold.
I don’t feel bad enough for
It to be the flu.
I’d hate to feel worse.
Nothing like chicken soup and
Tea and heating pad.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

I hope not

Oh, dear.  I'm got a raspy throat and some cough and my ears are feeling a bit stopped up.  I'm officially worried.  I hope this is all gone when I wake up in the morning.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Incredible ice

Bet you thought I was going to talk about the "polar vortex".  But no....

I read this morning about the Harbin (China) Ice Festival. It's like a world's fair out of ice and snow, and just spectacular.  This is the 30th year for this event, which I've heard about for the first time today.  Guess I'm just slow.  Oh, well.  Here are a couple of pictures to whet your appetite.  And click here to see more pictures. 

Monday, January 06, 2014


C-Span was in Chattanooga last month, filming here for a feature to be broadcast the weekend of 18-19 January 2014. It’ll be on all the C-Span networks - at various times during the weekend. And, of course, all the segments will be available on their web site.

Click here for an article about one of the local authors who will be interviewed during the segments.

I’ll be posting reminders about the programming as the time gets closer.


The doctor’s office called this morning with the results of my echocardiogram. She said there is definitely some calcification on one of the valves in my heart, but it’s minimal. At this point, she’s just going to watch things and keep a check on it. Nothing to worry about so far.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Still about weather

List’ning to the rain.
Wondering if tomorrow
Will bring snow and ice.


The UTC Lady Mocs were back at home for the first time since the end of November.  Tonight, they opened Southern Conference play by beating Georgia Southern 69-60.  This will be our life for the next two months.
This variation showed up on FB today: 
Lord, give me Coffee to change the things I can change, and Wine to accept the things I can't.
Philosophy to live by.
It's all about the weather this weekend.  They're backing off on the amount of snow predicted, but still talking about ice, a "flash freeze", and bitterly cold temperatures.  Brrrrrrrrrr

Friday, January 03, 2014

The Weather

The weather is the big news around here. It’s certainly nothing compared to the awful weather that’s happening in the Middle West and New England areas of the country. But the high of 32F that we had today is certainly cold for this area. And the prediction of snow, black ice, and single digit temperatures (above zero) is way out of the ordinary around here. So we’ll just have to deal with that, hibernating, and knowing that it won’t last long.

John’s cousin has just moved to this area from up-state New York. I know he’s enjoying not having to shovel snow any more. But I’m sure he’s getting really big laughs out of the huge to-do going on on the local news broadcasts about the predicted cold weather and 1-3” of snow. He’ll eventually get over it and complain just like the rest of us.

Followup: Remember my writing about the police chief in a neighboring county who resigned after the discovery his storage-unit love nest? Today he asked the city commission to rescind his retirement and give his job back. What chutzpah! The city manager politely declined.

Thursday, January 02, 2014

The proposal

Grandson Matt proposed to Claire in the middle of Disneyworld.

She said "Yes"!

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

The Generic Meme

The Generic Meme (from Sunday Stealing)

1. What did you want to be when you were little?
I don’t remember anything specific.
2. Would you prefer to have a large group of friends, or a small group of friends? Why?
I think a small group of very good friends and a larger group of more casual friends. It’s just seems “friendlier” to me.
3. What is your fashion “style”? Or what type of clothes do you wear on a daily basis?
Oh, that IS funny! My “style” is sloppy, and I prefer to wear “soft clothes”.
4. If you could live anywhere where would you live?
I would live on water somewhere.
5. What is your biggest hope for the next year?
For all those I love to make it through the year without major difficulties.
6. When you pass by reflective surfaces do you check yourself out?
7. Favorite genre of movie as well as TV show?
I used to love the movie musicals, but we don’t see enough movies nowadays for me to have a favorite genre. On TV, we tend to watch police procedurals.
8. Top favorite books? (limit of 5)
Monte Walsh (Jack Schafer), Harry Potter series, John Grisham stories. That’s all that come to mind right now.
9. Have you ever taken a cooking class?
10. What three words would you use to describe yourself?
Wife, mom, friend.
11. Favorite animal?
I like most of them, but I don’t want to have one permanently in my house.
12. What is your dream job?
13. If you could go back in history to any moment that you did not live, what would it be and why?
Some time when I would have the power to prevent a war or stop people from hating one another.
14. If you could have any superpower, what would it be? Why?
See #13.
15. What is your favorite movie?
To Kill a Mockingbird.
16. What is your best childhood memory?
I don’t have a lot of childhood memories, and can’t think of anything I’d call my “favorite”.
17. What is your favorite part about blogging?
18. What is your favorite quote?
Many lines from Jimmy Buffett songs.
19. What song do you feel like describes your life the best? Why?
I don’t know any current songs, and usually listen to orchestral or chamber music.
20. Would you describe yourself as shy or outgoing?

Somewhere in between.


And so another year starts - at least on the western calendar. At least the winter solstice has passed and the days are lengthening again.

2013 has been tough in some ways with deaths of friends and family and medical issues. But there have been good things, too. Good times with family and friends, and good travels.

We can only hope this will be the beginning of a wonderful year.