Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sunday Stealing

Swiped Meme

Stolen from: Get It All Down

Do you need to write down things to remember them?

Not always, but it’s best if I do.

Do you keep a diary/journal?
I write a daily blog.

Are you scared of thunderstorms?
Not really - just a healthy respect for the power of nature.

Do you have any unusual fears or phobias?

What’s your favorite Disney movie?
I can’t come up with a favorite right now.

Have you ever painted a house?
Not the outside. And I haven’t painted inside walls in decades.

What’s the tallest tree you've ever climbed?
Zero feet.

Do you always wear identical socks?
I guess I do, but it’s not a compulsion.  When I fold clothes out of the dryer, I match socks.
Do you live by any motto or philosophy?
Not specifically.
Do you lick the yogurt or dessert lid?
No, but I do scrape it off with the spoon.

Do you lick the spoon clean after making something sweet?

Have you ever played the bongos?

Have you ever handled a snake?
I’ve never “handled” one, but I have touched one.

Have you ever assembled furniture by yourself?
Yes, but usually that’s John’s job.

When did you last go to the beach?
Last June, and we’ll be there again in less than a month. Yea!

When if ever did you last go to London?
We went through Heathrow to get to Oxfordshire about five years ago, but not into London itself.

What do you do to cool down when its hot?
Stay in the air conditioning.

What's the most unusual thing you've ever eaten?
Kangaroo in Australia, whale in Norway.

Do you have a favorite mug?
Yes, the one Jean made for me.

Do you know any self-defense or martial arts?

Who's your favorite movie action hero?
I don’t go to see “action movies”.

Have you ever ridden a motorcycle?
No, and have no desire to do so.

Do you collect anything?
Yarn, puzzle books - at least they accumulate around me.

Is there anything you wished would come back into fashion?
“Fashion” is not part of my life. Comfort clothes are for me.

Do you stick to conventional fashions or like to try and be original?
See the above answer.

Have you ever given someone a handmade present?

If you could have any feature from an animal what would you want?
I think I’d like the ability to fly.

Saturday, May 30, 2015


One of the blogs I follow is Yorkshire Pudding.  Mr. Pudding, not surprisingly, lives in Sheffield, England, in the Yorkshire District.  He is an avid football (soccer on this side of the pond) fan.  As a response to the current FIFA kerfuffle, Mr. Pudding posted this wonderful limerick.

There was an old man called Sepp Blatter
To whom football just didn't matter
As long as his crime
Through the fullness of time
Made his thick FIFA wallet grow fatter.

This was definitely a challenge.  I've never tried to write limericks before and I've always loved them (even the clean ones).  So here goes...

I’d love to write a limerick,
Just tell me what’s the trick.
Surely it’s easy,
Easy and peasy.
If I can only make the words stick.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Friday Haiku

Cards at duplicate,
So-so. Played good defense, and
Wound up in middle.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Thursday happens

I took a trunk-load of unwanted stuff to the Northside Neighborhood House this morning. It’s been sitting on the porch for ages, with me promising over and over to take it away. So it finally did happen today. Of course, I should be going through stuff and taking loads on a weekly basis. But that’s probably not going to happen.

We’ve had a lovely day today, early summer sunshine and humidity. Then about 7 p.m., the wind started to blow, and we had about 30 minutes of a really loud thunderstorm. Lots of crashing and banging and rain, and then it was gone. Fortunately for us, it’s nothing awful like they’ve been having in Texas.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Spending money can be fun

The carpenters worked all day on the porch today. Most of the deck is finished - still some railing left to do. Then they can start on the siding and overhang. We looked in the birdhouse this afternoon, and the nest was empty. I guess the babies got out - safely, I hope. John got it cleaned out, and the guys will put it back up for us.

We’ve gotten more of the logistics taken care of for our trip to the Canadian Rockies in August with Ann & Al. We’ve made the reservations for our lodgings in Canmore and Jasper. We’ve made the decision about when to go to the Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller. We’ve made our plane reservations. And tonight we got the rental car taken care of. We’ve been talking about making the return visit to this area with A&A for about five years, and it looks like we’re finally going to make it.

Spending money can be fun.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Tuesday Miscellany

  • Walmart and Aldi didn’t make a whole lot of money from us today.
  • The workmen were here shortly after 8 this morning, working hard.
  • The work on the side of the house is going to be more extensive than we hoped.
  • We had lots of rain this afternoon and evening, but fortunately nothing like what they had in Houston.
We got word this morning that the dear lady who greeted us every morning at the YMCA died unexpectedly this morning.  A beautiful voice has been silenced.
RIP Brenda Holloway.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day

MaryPage M. Drake

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sunday Stealing

Very Much Questions Meme

Stolen from: Lots of Questions

1. What was the last clothing item that you bought?
Swim suit - the chlorine eats them up and I always need a spare.
2. If you could stay one age forever, what age would you choose?

Probably in my 50s. Sue has decided that she “has it all” in her 50s, good health, grown kids, no health or money problems. Works for me, too.
3. When you say “lol”, are you really laughing?

Not necessarily, but usually at least smiling.
4. What is the most interesting thing you’ve done in the past year?

Boat trip on the upper Mississippi, recover from reverse shoulder arthroplasty, deal with John’s lung cancer.
5. If you started a business, what would it be?

I never wanted to be in business for myself.
6. Do your friends/family/coworkers know about your blog?

Of course. In many ways, it’s my way of communicating with them.
7. How long does it take you to write an average blog post?

30-60 minutes - once I decide what to write
8. How do you keep up with the blogs you follow?

I list them on Feedly.
9. What is your bedtime?

Usually between 11:30 and midnight.
10. Introvert or extrovert?

Somewhere in the middle
11. What is your biggest wish?

Nowadays, good health for my family and myself.
12. What is the best job you ever had?

13. Dog person/cat person/both/neither?

14. If you had $1,000 to spend any way you wanted, what would you do with it?

I'd use it for travel.
15. How do you “dress” your toast?
Butter and jelly - unless it’s cinnamon toast.
16. How do you feel about snow?

It’s gorgeous as long as it’s only on the grass and is gone in 24 hours.
17. What was the worst job you ever had?

House cleaning - my own.
18. What song can you not stop listening to?

I don’t have one of these.
19. Love your name or hate it?

It’s okay - never any problems with it.
20. How did you choose your blog/twitter handle?

It just seemed obvious at the time.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Saturday visit

Sue came to visit.
Always good, and an excuse
To have lasagna.

She went next to Smith’s,
Checking on Margaret and
Bobby. Then back home.

Friday, May 22, 2015

A good day

Sue is here, and that's always special. We don't get to see our girls often enough. Tina came over, too, and we had a good supper of lasagna, corn, salad, and bread. Tina brought a chocolate and raspberry dessert, too. Yum to all.

The workmen got her about 9:30 this morning, and went right to work. Pretty soon we had lunber, a dumpster, and a porta-potty in the turnaround. There was lots of hammering and sawing, etc. I was sure the hubbub would have finished off our bluebird babies. But as soon as the workmen left at 3, the parents were back hustling worms in to the chirping babies. So all is well. Did I say I taped a note to the birdhouse, asking them to leave it as long as possible because of the babies? We'll see how they do tomorrow - birds AND workmen.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Doctors and Costco

John had an appointment with the oncologist this morning. John’s lab values were pretty good, including his PSA. The doc says he’s doing very well. John says, if that’s the case, why don’t I feel better. Obviously, patience is not his strong point. His followup scan and appointment are set up for the week after we get back from the beach.
We went to Costco when we left the doc’s office - our first trip in some time. I didn’t have a lot to get, and neither of us could walk too much. But I did pick up the usual stuff, plus we had a great gourmet lunch.
Some of the workmen came by and measured for the materials to do the deck. I guess they’ll get started tomorrow or Saturday Yea!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Kwizgiver's advice for all ages.

Kwizgiver is a high school teacher in the lovely state of Maine. Tuesday in her blog, What If This Is As Good As It Gets?, she posted these words of advice. I thought these made super advice for all of us - regardless of age. I got her permission to reprint them here.

This week's topic is 10 Things You Would Say If You Gave a Commencement Address.

1) You won't always get what you want. And it is sometimes better that way.

2) Be open to the possibilities. Try not to dismiss opportunities and offers if they don't jive with what you think.

3) Have patience. Life has its own time table. And it's unpredictable.

4) Get a hobby. Develop interests of your own.

5) Love takes many shapes and forms. There is true beauty in platonic love. Soul mates are not necessarily romantic mates.

6) Unplug. Take time away from electronics. Don't talk on the phone or text when there's a live person across from you.

7) Visit your friends and family in person. Hanging out, talking about nothing and everything is fun.

8) Make time for yourself. Self care is important. And for many people it's hard to prioritize ourselves into the lists of obligations. But taking care of yourself helps you take care of others.

9) Live within your means. Instead of keeping up with the Jones' keep up with yourself. Mind your credit. Honor your obligations.

10) Nap.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Good Tuesday

I got to both Walmart and Aldi this morning. Granted, I didn't have much to get, so it didn't take very long. And I wore the knee brace. But glad to have that accomplished and know that it CAN be done - albeit very carefully.

Vicki called, and we met for lunch. This made two “eat-outs” for me today. We already had plans to meet Tina for dinner. There’s not much better than good friends and good food.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Monday Miscellany

Bridge was not much this afternoon. The first two rounds, we played at a table with two of the worst players in the group. I finally played with a good player in what turned out to be the last round. We play at a city-owned civic center, so it's a public venue, and available for renting. The director came in at 3, and told us (for the first time) that some "big event" was coming in and wanted to set up, so we needed to be out by 3:30. Seriously! We usually play until 4:30 and then have until 5 to be cleared out. Surely they could have told us this earlier. Lots of grumbling - but not much chance of changing our place. Oh, well...
One of our swimmers has been having excruciating back pain for several weeks. She’s having surgery for a ruptured disc in the morning. She lives alone, but with two daughters and grandkids in the area. Plus us as a support group. We’ll be taking good care of her.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Sunday Stealing

RaNdOm Meme

Stolen from: Lots of Questions

1. If you were to attend a costume party tonight, what or whom would you go as?
I would go dressed as myself - I don’t really like costume parties.
2. What are your choice of toppings on a hamburger?

Mayo, mustard, lettuce, onion, pickles, tomato.
3. You are chosen to have lunch with the President. The condition is you only get to ask one question. What do you ask?

What will you do with your prestige after you’ve left office?
4. It’s your first day of vacation, what are you doing?

Enjoying whatever it is.
5. What is your concession stand must-have at the movies?

I don’t get food at movies.
6. Which do you dislike most: pop-up ads or spam email?

Our ISP is good about blocking both those things, but pop-up ads are more annoying and “in-your-face”.
7. What do you think Captain Hook’s name was before he had a hook for a hand?

Captain Smith
8. Rock, paper, or scissors?

9. Let's say a brick fell on your foot, and your kid is standing right next to you, what is your 'cleaned up’ swear word?

10. Which is worse, being in a place that is too loud, or too quiet?

Definitely too loud. There’s no such thing as “too quiet” for me.
11. What is one quality that you really appreciate in a person?

A sense of humor
12. At the good old general store, what particular kind of candy would you expect to be in the big jar at the counter?

Licorice whips.
13. What is the most distinguishing landmark in your city?

Natural: Lookout Mountain and the Tennessee River. Man-made: the Tennessee Aquarium
14. Everyone hears discussions that they consider boring. What topic can put you to sleep quicker than any other?

Technical science stuff, like chemistry, etc.
15. How many times did it take you to pass your drivers test?

I passed the first time.
16. If you had to have the same topping on your vanilla ice cream for the rest of your life, what topping would you choose?

17. What food item would need to be removed from the market altogether in order for you to live a healthier, longer life?

18. You are offered an envelope that you know contains $50. You are then told that you may either keep it or exchange it for another envelope that may contain $500 or may be empty. Do you keep the first envelope, or do you take your chances with the second?

Go for the $500. I didn’t have anything before, so if it’s empty, I’m not any worse off than I was to begin with.
19. If you had to choose, which would you give up: cable TV, or DSL/cable internet?

Cable TV
20. What is your highest level of education?

College graduate
21. How much is a gallon of gas in your city? What was the highest it’s been?

I think it’s $2.45. A couple of years ago, it was up near $4.00.
22. What kind of lunch box did you have as a kid?

I don’t remember a lunch box. I think I probably used a brown bag. That’s what our girls got their lunches packed in.
23. What would you rather have, a nanny, a housekeeper, a cook, or a chauffeur?

I’d choose a housekeeper who also cooks and drives.
24. Would you rather be trapped in an elevator, or stuck in traffic?

Stuck in traffic. You could at least bail out of the car if needed.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Friday Haiku

Day 2, couch ‘tater.
Novocaine wore off, some pain.
John had better day.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Three for Thursday

1. I went to the rheumatologist today, checking out the various meds, aches and pains, and blood work.

2. He gave me a cortisone shot in my left knee to help continue the postponement of a total knee replacement.

3. He told me to be a couch potato for two days - no shopping, no swimming. I can do that!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Sunshine Wednnesday

Last night was one of the non-sleep nights. I really hate that. It was nearly 5 a.m. before I got to sleep. I had decided that I was going to skip swimming - just wasn’t going to get up at 6 to do that. I did sleep until 7:30, but I’ll certainly hit the bed earlier tonight.

Friends, Carol & Stephen, are in their RV checking out some repairs in the campground the lovely Hamilton County park. They invited the swimmers over for hotdogs at noon today. It was a lovely day - temp around 80, with sunshine and a light breeze, so it was fun. I took a short nap when we got home, but didn’t want to sleep too much - I’d rather get a good night tonight.


I have an appointment with the rheumatologist in the morning. He’s not a fan of the gel shots, but I’m going to ask him about a cortisone shot in my knee. He suggested a knee brace last time I saw him, so I got one and wear it when I know I’m going to be walking a lot. It tends to slide on my fat legs, though, and certainly will be very hot now that the weather is getting warmer. Oh, well…

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

An unusual Tuesday

Tuesday is grocery day - or at least it has been for some time. Today was no exception, but definitely different.

The last few weeks, I’ve wound up with severe knee pain after part of the first store, and the second one has been misery. Last week, our friend, Carol, went to Aldi for me (bless her!).

Today was a first! John volunteered to go to Aldi for me. He took a list and even did some “shopping”. Anybody who’s know us for a while knows that John NEVER goes to the grocery store. What a sweetie! I shouldn’t pick on him, but… Mainly I’m glad he feels well enough to do that, and it is getting some walking done.
Our Super Walmart is being renovated. I just discovered today that they are again stocking fabric and findings. Yard goods haven't been available in our Walmart since before they moved into this building ten or so years ago. Hooray for WM!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Crazy weather

We had crazy weather around here today. It’s not too unusual to have “pop-up” showers in this area. But these were different. All around our house, there was thunder and lightning, wind, lots of rain, and even some hail. We had nothing but sunshine at our house - although we could hear thunder. At least we didn’t have the awful weather they had in the plains and midWest. Our hearts go out to those folks who have lost everything in these storms.
John made it through bridge this afternoon. There’s still not much oomph there, and he is still quite pale. He’s losing hair, although just little bits, and what’s left is the grey stuff. Little bitty steps.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Quiet Mother's Day

We had gorgeous weather today, but it was pretty much Sunday as usual. Laundry and changing sheets - wow!

I had lots of Mother’s Day wishes from my lovely children. They are all special and really the reason for the day.

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Sunday Stealing



With $10, I’d probably get some coffee and a package of cookies or salties to eat in the car. We never buy snacks unless we’re on a road tirp.

A slug - although I’d rather be a hawk or an eagle.

Kate (when she’s a redhead)

Two eggs, over medium, with hash browns and rye toast.

The Purcelle Connection by Estelle Ryan. Now reading The Black Box by Michael Connelly (a Harry Bosch novel)

I can’t remember, but we have Amazing Grace waiting to be watched.

Cotton briefs

The last big one was in August 2012 when I fell on the front porch and shattered my humerus just below the shoulder.


Definitely symphony

A photo I took of the pink bluebird house during the snow last winter. (There are now bluebirds nesting in the house.)

I really don’t much like sodas. I’d rather have water or coffee, but occasionally have tonic water with lime.

I can’t remember the last time I had pudding.


I don’t know what this means.

I don’t know how to answer this one either.

Yoga pants to wear at home (on the sale rack at Walmart)

Friday, May 08, 2015

Five plus one on Friday

1. Another lovely day. Started with swimming at the Y and coffee at Panera.

2. John had a tough sinking spell this afternoon, so we didn’t go to duplicate. He’s better tonight.

3. The yard man came and did a major job on the yard.

4. Renna fixed dinner for us tonight. Yum and Thanks!

5. There was a murder/suicide in the house across the street from Missy today. Not much information so far, but the rest of the neighborhood is safe.

6. Lots of crazy things happening today: plane crash on I-285 in Atlanta, four fatalities; two separate bad accidents in Cleveland (TN) with one fatality; bizarre rush hour accident on bridge in Chattanooga.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

First night out, etc.

First night post treatment.
Mendelssohn, Brahms, string quartets.
What could be better!
I loved having an Extra Special Blogger last night, especially that he wanted to say his own thing.
We have a pair of bluebirds raising a family in our flamingo-pink bluebird house. This is the first time in however many years it’s been since Margaret made it for us. Exciting!

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Guest Blogger - John

Today is a very special day.  I had my last radiation treatment this morning.  I had the last chemo treatment last Thursday.  According to the doctors my cancer should be in remission.  All I have to do now is to regain the strength and stamina that I have lost due to chemo and radiation.

It has not been a fun trip.  The side effects were not bad for the first half.  It got tougher and tougher as it went along.  I came out of it with almost all of my hair, most of my appetite, and all of my sense of humor.

I had the greatest support that anyone could ask for, starting with Mary.  She has been there for me every second of every day.  What ever I needed she was there, usually before I asked.  She had my back, front, and both sides.  The idea of going through this without her at my side is something I don't even want to think about.

My daughters were always there, I love you girls.  Mary's water aerobics class, as always, was there to support whoever was in need. It was my turn.  One never knows how great one's friends are until you are the one who needs a friend.

The nurses and techs at the hospital were always wonderful.  The radiation techs were always bright, cheerful. and caring.  This is at 7 am. I don't know how they do it.  Unless I can not judge people they truly cared about me as a person.  I did not see the chemo nurses nearly as often but the same warmth and caring was there.

I did it with a lot of support and love.  I want everyone that helped me through this to know that I really appreciate it  Folks, I love you!

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

One more

I went to Walmart this morning, but that was as far as I got. My knee started to act up again. Carol had offered to go to Aldi for me, so I "let" her do that (Bless her!!!). As another treat for me, I got a massage.

John seems to be feeling better today - still not much energy, but much better color. Most of the time, he's able to walk across the room without having to sit down along the way. One more radiation treatment to go, and then he sees the oncologist on Thursday.

Monday, May 04, 2015


John has had probably his worst few days over the weekend and today. He’s had the extreme weakness and lower intestinal difficulties. Only two more radiation treatments, though, and no more chemo. We’ll see the oncologist on Thursday to check labs and set up followup appointments and scans.

Grocery stores tomorrow. And the contractor is due to come by to set up stuff for getting the work done on the deck and the siding of the house.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Sunday Stealing

This isn't actually this week's Sunday Stealing, but an old one I stole from Bev at Airy Persiflage. This week’s Sunday Stealing was definitely not directed at my demographic. Thanks, Bev.

The phone rings. Who will it be?
A telemarketer.
When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart?
In a social setting, are you more of a talker or a listener?
Definitely a listener!
Do you take compliments well?
I try to remember to just say “Thank you”, and not to depreciate whatever is being complimented.
Do you play Sudoku?
Nope. I do word puzzles, mostly double crostics and cryptograms.
If abandoned alone in the wilderness, would you survive?
I could probably get through the day, but not longer.
Did you ever go to camp as a kid?
I went to Girl Scout camp, probably 4-6 summers.
What was your favorite game as a kid?
Could you date someone with different religious beliefs than you?
Of course, assuming he didn’t want to convert me.
Use three words to describe yourself?
Old, creaky, friendly.
Do any songs make you cry?
Sometimes, but I can’t think of one right now. I always choke up when singing the Star Spangled Banner.
Are you continuing your education?
I like to think I’m always learning something new. And I finally got a college degree in 1990 (at age 54).
Do you know how to shoot a gun?
Not really. Although I have shot at squirrels in our back yard with a BB gun - and actually hit one once.
How often do you read books?
I always have a book going, and never go anywhere I might have to wait without one. Unlike some folks, though, I rarely read more than one at a time.
Do you think more about the past, present or future?
I don’t know. I’m trying to play for the future (what there is of it), don’t dwell in the past, and just cope with the present.
What is your favorite children’s book?
I always liked the Bobbsey Twins and then the Nancy Drew books.
What color are your eyes?
How tall are you?
I used to be 5'7-1/2"; now I'm 5'5"
Where is your dream house located?
I’ve always wanted to live on the ocean, but that’s not likely to happen. We’re comfortable in our house, but I wouldn’t mind moving into an apartment sometime.
If your house was on fire, what would be the first thing you grabbed?
John, and then “Pinkie” (some will understand this).
When was the last time you were at Olive Garden?
About a year ago, when I met some friends for lunch.
Where was the farthest place you traveled today?
Back and forth in the house.
Do you like mustard?
Sometimes, usually a brown mustard.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Tough Saturday

Today was probably John’s lowest day since he started treatment. He slept most of the day, and pushed fluids when he was awake. By suppertime, his color was better, and he said the chicken noodle soup even tasted pretty good.

I guess I was having a sympathetic “low day”, too. I had two naps myself. And spent most of the day in the chair, with the usual NCIS marathon on the TV. I did get some knitting done.

I hope the improvements continue tomorrow.

Friday, May 01, 2015

Friday stuff

Usual Friday swimming and coffee.
John had radiation treatment #27 (out of 30).
He picked a contractor to do the need repair work on the deck.
He’s really feeling the enervating effects of the treatment.
Hopefully, he’ll recover his energy quickly.
Talked to Sue about plans for the beach trip this summer.