Sunday, June 28, 2015

At the beach!

Shrimp, crawfish, and fish.
Family, friends, all welcome.
Nothing like the beach.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Friday Miscellany

The Supreme Court has done wonderful things this week.

The decision in the gay marriage case was long overdue.

In the big scheme of things, the decision about the Affordable Care Act will have a longer reaching impact.

The shooting at the Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston was unspeakable.

The reaction of the wonderful people in Charleston was amazing.

President’s Obama’s eulogy was fabulous - he could have another career as a preacher.


Thursday night, there was a terrible fiery accident on I-75 just north of Chattanooga. Six people were killed.

John saw the pulmonologist this morning. He’s doing well, but the doc says he will probably have the cough and shortness of breath for the rest of his life. This is due to the cancer and the radiation.

We played duplicate this afternoon (12 couples) and came in first by a big margin.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Quiet time

It was a quiet day today - just my massage and starting to accumulate stuff for the beach.  Yea!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Busy morning

I did a day's work this morning. Swimming, coffee, haircut, library (to pick up the DVD of The Imitation Game).

And the big one - I went to Best Buy and got a new phone! I wanted a Samsung 5 or 6 because of the good camera, and wound up getting a S6. The poor guy worked with me for almost 1.5 hours and really earned his keep. And my learning curve is SO steep now, that I'll be ages learning all the stuff. But, with the in-store rebate card, the whole thing wound up costing me $7.90 out of pocket - can't beat that! Carol & Stephen have new phones, too, (S5 and S6) so they can help me a lot next week at the beach.

We watched the movie tonight. We knew the bare outline of the story of the Enigma Machine, but this excellent movie really fleshed out the story. We definitely recommend this one.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Ten Things Tuesday

1. I got my mani/pedi this morning.

2. My nail tech went crazy, since we’re headed to the beach.

3. Turquoise and flamingo pink with palm trees and seagulls.

4. Probably back to “normal” next time.

5. Only went to Aldi this morning.

6. Since I didn’t sleep well last night, naps happened today.

7. John rowed and napped.

8. He went to the optometrist this afternoon and had his eyes dilated.

9. The high was 96 (!) today.

10. Grandson-in-law, Joe, sang at church on Father’s Day. Listen here - it’s fabulous!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Back to what we laughingly call normal...

The high here was 96, and supposed to be the same over the next couple of days. Miserable! The cleaning lady was here this morning - always a good thing. We had bridge this afternoon, but neither one of us had much in the way of cards. I’m having a lot of pain in my “good” arm - don’t know why. It’s been getting worse over the last few weeks. I don’t see the orthopedist until August, and I’d like to wait until them to get an x-ray to see if anything is wrong, but we’ll see. I’m going to pass on the grocery stores tomorrow. We’re going to the beach on Saturday, so I don’t need to stock up on anything now anyway.

We have a pretty busy week coming up. John has an eye appointment tomorrow and sees the pulmonologist on Friday. I’ve got appointments for a mani/pedi tomorrow and massage on Thursday, with haircut due sometime.

We are SO ready to go to the beach.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Wedding

The Wedding

We had been invited to a wedding this weekend - the wedding of the grandson of one of our oldest friends. It was to be at her house north of Nashville, on a bluff overlooking Old Hickory Lake. We knew it would be a lovely event, and we’d get to see lots of old friends and their families. But…..

The wedding was to be outside…in June…in Tennessee…at 6 p.m. And it was likely to be really hot and humid. In fact, on Thursday night, the predicted weather for that day was 95 degrees, with a 90% chance of thunderstorms. Since I really hate being outside in the heat, I have to admit to obsessing about the prospect of being outside in that weather. And we didn’t know how John would be able to tolerate the heat and activities.

We drove to Nashville Friday morning and met Jean for lunch. Then we drove to Hendersonville to D & FJ’s house, where we were going to stay. It was great to be spending time and visiting with them.

The rehearsal dinner was informal (and indoors). We sat with some family members and enjoyed the conversation, but left before most of the festivities. John had started coughing and we didn’t want to push anything.

Saturday morning was in the 70s and cloudy. The forecast had changed, too, with the rain taken out. We were hoping for the cloudiness to stay so the temperature would stay down. The family had arranged for handicapped access and seating, so we didn’t have far to walk. And, wonder of wonders, the temperatures stayed in the mid80s with bright blue skies, there was a nice breeze, and the area was in the shade. After all my agonizing, it was quite comfortable.

As the guests arrived, each was given a cold bottle of water and a paper fan. On the fan was printed the program of the service and the names of the parents, the bride and groom, the officiant, and the attendants.

The wedding party and the service was a delightful combination of contrasts. It was a blend of Southern traditional with contemporary college students; a blend of secular, Christian, and Jewish; traditional wedding attire and funkiness. The groom wore a suit and tie, with gold lame coated tennis shoes. The bride wore a knee length dress with a short veil (which fell off during the kiss). The bride and groom each had attendants of both sexes. The men wore the same color suits, but obviously picked out their own ties - some straight and some bowties, and one wore a hat. The women were in different dresses and shoes, but all in the purple/lavender/lavender-gray color family. The “flower girl” was their dog.

The introductory music was played by a combo of friends of the couple from college. At the end of the service, after the wedding party had filed out, a Dixieland combo played New Orleans jazz to lead the families from the wedding area. Everything went off with very few hitches, and it was fun.

A large tent was set up in the front yard of the house, and there were hor d’oeuvres and yard games (croquet, corn hole, etc.) to play while pictures were being taken. Unfortunately for us, this was all on the lush grass of the lawn, and FJ is not able to walk on the grass. So we searched out everybody we knew to hug and chat briefly with, and then we left before dinner. I’m sure it was a great dinner and party that lasted well into the evening.

And this morning, we headed back home. It was a long, tiring, and very pleasant weekend. Now to recuperate and get ready to go to the beach in a week.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Beyond comprehension

After watching some of the coverage about Charleston tonight, John and I were talking about this and other mass shootings. I guess we all know people who hate, although we don’t really understand that. John thinks people hate because they’re afraid.

But mostly we cannot understand what could possibly be going on in somebody’s head to go into a church, pray with people for an hour, and then start shooting and kill nine worshippers.

The commentators and survivors all say they want to “make sense” of this act. I don’t see how it can ever “make sense”.

It’s beyond comprehension.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Busy, busy

John and I were going to run separate errands today, but wound up doing them together. When we came out of Panera and got in our separate cars, his wouldn't start. He has a new battery, but knew he was having starter problems. We take our cars to Firestone, which is in the same center as Panera, so I took him there. We brought a guy back with us and he got the car started. We left it at Firestone to get a new starter installed.

Then we went to get John's new glasses (first time he's had any Rx glasses since his cataract surgery, but the doc thought he needed them now). The next stop was at Lowe's to get some Terro to control some little black (sugar) ants. Last was a stop at the credit union to deposit a check.

Home, then back out to pick up the car. That got us to lunchtime and naptime. The afternoon was finished off with a couple of tree-trimmers coming by to give us an estimate on some work that needs to be done.
Quite a busy day for us.

Monday, June 15, 2015


We watched a number of episodes of NCIS on the NCIS Marathon Sunday afternoon.  We actually sat two  episodes that we hadn't seen before.  I didn't know there were any.  Amazing!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sunday Stealing

Would You Rather Meme, part two

Stolen from: Sign Up Genius

Would you rather go to a movie or to dinner alone?

I don’t mind eating alone, but I’d rather go to a movie alone.

Would you rather always say everything on your mind or never speak again?
It would probably be better for all concerned if I just never spoke again.

Would you rather make a phone call or send a text?
It depends on how much and what sort of information I need to impart.

Would you rather read an awesome book or watch a good movie?
If I have to choose, it would be the book. But again, it would depend on the situation.

Would you rather be the most popular person at work or school or the smartest?
I’d rather be the smartest.

Would you rather put a stop to war or end world hunger?
Stop wars. That would probably end world hunger.

Would you rather spend the night in a luxury hotel room or camping surrounded by beautiful scenery?
I’d like to spend the night in a luxury hotel room, and see the beautiful scenery during the day.

Would you rather explore space or the ocean?
The ocean.

Would you rather go deep sea diving or bungee jumping?
Deep sea diving (I used to have scuba certification.)

Would you rather be a kid your whole life or an adult your whole life?
I’d rather be an adult.

Would you rather go on a cruise with friends or with your spouse?
My spouse - and this cruise would be on a small river boat, definitely not on one of those behemoth floating hotels.

Would you rather lose your keys or your cell phone?
Cell phone - with the keys, I could drive to my house and get what it takes to get a new phone.

Would you rather eat a meal of cow tongue or octopus?
Octopus. I love calamari.

Would you rather have x-ray vision or magnified hearing?
X-ray vision, but I’d like it to be “on demand”, not all the time.

Would you rather work in a group or work alone?
Another situational answer, generally I’d prefer to work alone.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Other days

Other days, I'm in the funny papers - Baby Blues this time.  Click here and look for the strip for 13 June 2015.  I have tried and tried to find a way to put  the strip in the blog, but just can't manage it.  (This used to be easy to do, and a couple of years ago, Blogger "improved" things, and I haven't been able to post photos since then.  I guess this is one trick that this old dog just can't learn.  Oh, well. 

Friday, June 12, 2015

Some days are better than others

Some days are better than others.

Today didn’t start out much different from any other Friday. But there were things on the calendar - mostly for John.

Today, he was going to try to get on the river…to row for the first time since his diagnosis and chemo/radiation. This was his primary objective for post treatment. He says he didn’t go very far or very hard or for very long. But he was ON THE WATER!!

When he left the boat house, he had an appointment with his cardiologist. John’s been concerned about a rapid heart beat that is exercise-induced. It shows up on a sports monitor that he wears when he exercises, and he was concerned that he was having atrial fibrillation. The doctor had him wear a Holter monitor a week or so ago. He saw the doc this morning. It turns out the reading from the monitor was normal. The doc said he didn’t have a-fib, and he should just continue exercising as he normally would. Only if he had some other symptoms should he be worried and seek further care. Whew! That’s a big worry that doesn’t exist any more.

We played duplicate this afternoon, and came in third out of the seven couples playing the east/west cards. And we now have 5 master points.

Some days are better than others. And today was maybe the best so far this year!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

And again

Today was another day for Friends and Food.
John's rowing partner and her husband have both retired, so we met them for lunch today.  We hadn't seen them in a while, so it was great to get caught up over some good food.  She and John were both having severe health problems this year.  She was in the same hospital where John was having his treatments, at the same time, but we didn't know it then.  And both are on the mend, working to regain strength.  We've made tentative plans to meet again next month.
It made for smiles!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Hot & humid Wednesday

The last of the painters came to look at the job. We should have an estimate in a day or two, so John can make a decision. Then that job can get underway.

I’ve gotten all of the closet done now, except for the shelves I can’t reach any more (for the out-of-season folded stuff). John will have to get that down for me. That’ll have to wait a day or two, though. The beds are full of stuff I’m giving away, and it’ll have to wait until I make room. But at least I’m working on it.

Carol & Stephen, Missy, and Tina came over and brought KFC for dinner tonight. We ate inside because it was still near 90, with humidity to match. As always it’s great to share fun and food with this group.

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Ten Things Tuesday

1. I got a good night’s sleep!

2. Went to the post office to mail the quarterly tax payment.

3. Went to the library to do the annual renewal of my library card.

4. Went to Aldi.

5. Went to Walmart.

6. My knee didn’t start to hurt until I was almost finished at WM.

7. John had an eye appointment and ordered glasses for the first time since his cataract surgery.

8. We both had good naps.

9. Made plans to meet John’s old rowing partner for lunch later this week.

10. Got invited to dinner next week with Vicki and Roger at their new house.

Monday, June 08, 2015

Scattered showers

Last night was one of those nights when I couldn’t get to sleep. I probably dozed off in the chair about 2 or 2:30, then woke up and went to the bed about 4. I still got up at 6 to go the pool, but will no doubt call it quits early tonight.


We went to our usual Monday bridge this afternoon. John came in second last week, but neither of us had much in the way of cards today. We may not stay with this group much longer. Folks have come and gone, and we still enjoy playing with about half of the players at 4-6 tables. But there have gotten to be some folks who are unbearably annoying. There are beginners, but that’s okay - that’s how new players are made. But a couple of them just seem to be incapable of learning and/or improving. And there are a couple of pretty good players who seem to play just shy of cheating. This group doesn’t have “bridge police”, but there are rules and they are there for a reason, to make the game fair for all players. And there’s at least one who is just an unmitigated a..hole. We play bridge because it’s a good game and because we find it fun and challenging. When it stops being fun, then we just may quit this group. Stay tuned.

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Sunday Stealing

Would You Rather Meme, part one

Stolen from: Sign Up Genius

Would you rather go into the past and meet your ancestors or go into the future and meet your great-great grandchildren?
Meet my great-great grandchildren
Would you rather have more time or more money?
More time
Would you rather have a rewind button or a pause button on your life?
A pause button - there’s not that much time left
Would you rather be able to talk with the animals or speak all foreign languages?
Speak foreign languages - communication with other people is more important
Would you rather win the lottery or live twice as long?
At this time in my life, I’d rather have the money
Would you feel worse if no one showed up to your wedding or to your funeral?
Definitely my funeral
Would you rather be without internet for a week, or without your phone?
Without my phone
Would you rather meet George Washington, or the current President?
I’d rather meet President Obama
Would you rather lose your vision or your hearing?
I’d definitely rather lose my hearing.
Would you rather work more hours per day, but fewer days or work fewer hours per day, but more days?
I’m retired, I’m not working ANY hours or days
Would you rather listen to music from the 70’s or music from today?
I’d rather listen to music from the 1870s.
Would you rather become someone else or just stay you?
I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather be
Would you rather be Batman or Spiderman?
How about Wonder Woman?
Would you rather be stuck on a broken ski lift or in a broken elevator?
I’d never be on a ski lift, but I think that’d be my choice
For your birthday, would you rather receive cash or gifts?
Cash - I have enough stuff, unless it’s something special made for me.

Friday, June 05, 2015


I'm too sleepy tonight to even think about writing anything.  Sleep well, Friends.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Thursday Thirteen

1. Today was a stay-at-home day.
2. I cleaned out another section of my closet.
3. There’s still lots to do, but I stopped before it was overwhelming.
4. John saw the oncology radiologist today.
5. The doc told him he was doing great and to keep doing what he was doing.
6. He should continue to improve and gain strength, even if it isn’t as fast as he thinks it ought to be.
7. The first painter to look at the house job sent his estimate.
8. John got an e-mail from his old doubles rowing partner.
9. She had a major bout of colitis with surgery and excision of most of the large bowel.
10. She’s in the middle of a long convalescence, too.
11. Renna is in the hospital with a severe UTI, but improving.
12. Rick Perry announced he’s running for president. Be still my heart!
13. The Duggars are lower than pond scum, and I hate that I even remotely know who they are.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Life as 2015 grads know it

This list (from Beloit College) was in the Chattanooga Times Free Press the other day. It was a sidebar on a story about the valedictorians from area high schools. These lists are always an eye-opener.

Life as 2015 grads see it

Here are several things that have been true for the class of 2015 for most of their lives.
  • Robert De Niro is thought of as Greg Focker’s long-suffering father-in-law, not as Vito Corleone or Travis Bickle.
  • They have never seen an airplane “ticket”.
  • For most of their lives, maintaining relations between the U.S. and the rest of the world has been a woman’s job in the State Department.
  • They can’t picture people actually carrying luggage through airports rather than rolling it.
  • There has always been football in Jacksonville, but never in Los Angeles.
  • Their folks have never gazed with pride on a new set of bound encyclopedias on the bookshelf.
  • They have lived in an era of instant stardom and self-proclaimed celebrities, famous for being famous.
  • They know many established film stars by their voices on computer-animated blockbusters.
  • History has always had its own channel.
  • Gene therapy has always been an available treatment.
  • Few in the class know how to write in cursive.
  • Email is just too slow and they seldom, if ever, use snail mail.
  • Clint Eastwood is better known as a sensitive director than as Dirty Harry.
  • Fergie is a pop singer, not a princess.
  • They've never recognized that pointing to their wrists was a request for the time of day.
  • “View Discretion” has always been an available warning on TV shows.
  • Secondhand smoke has always been an official carcinogen.
  • Nirvana is on the classic oldies station.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Special people

Our super family has come through to help each other. Wayne (Kate's husband) doesn't ever go to the beach with us. He has offered to stay with Bobby for the week so Margaret can go, and get a break. We are always proud of all our "babies", but this is really special.  Wayne, you're the best!

We met some of the other swimmers at the visitation at the funeral home for the great gal who worked the front desk at the Y.  Brenda was just super special - always with a smile and a song (with a glorious soprano voice, mostly singing spirituals and black gospel music). She was only 62, dropped dead on her way to work last week, probably a blood clot. We didn't stay long, there was quite a crowd. Then we went to a local fried chicken eatery for supper. It was a good send-off for her. We won't go to the funeral tomorrow, although I'm sure the music will be fabulous. RIP Brenda.

Monday, June 01, 2015

Guest limericks

In response to my feeble attempt at limerick-writing, my oldest friend, Anne, replied with these wonderful descriptions of our family. Anne, you’re the best!

Here's to the great Margaret Zelle
Renowned far and wide for her jelly.
Be it peaches or grape
What it does for my shape
Increases the size of my belly!

And then there's my oldest friend Mary
With word command useful to parry
when youth of today
spout out words and display
a truly sad vocabulary!

Her husband John races in boats,
(at least when he's feeling his oats!)
So get back on your feet
Soon to compete -
Remember, my friend, that "hope floats"!

Their number one daughter is Sue,
Very organized, SO much to do!
When her kids left the nest
Did she take a rest?
You could bet on it, but you'd lose, too!

The third one in line is our Kate,
At weaving and biking she's great!
A bad broken leg
Took her down a peg,
But quitting? That's not her fate.

The fourth little girl they named Jean.
Her language can sometimes seem mean,
But her heart's made of gold,
And, truth be told,
That tough talk is only a screen.

And then there's the folks called "Beach Bunch",
Who never miss meals (except lunch).
In the ocean they dive
and come out alive -
For Happy Hour'd be my best hunch!