Saturday, May 17, 2008

Spring has sprung . . .

Spring has sprung
The grass has riz,
I wonder where
The flowers is?
Not sure how well known that little spring verse is in your part of the world, but when I was growing up in the fifties, Iowa, it was a big spring time hit. You would hear it often recited by as many adults as children while they chatted over fence lines and clothes lines on some of those first warm sunny spring days.

And today, as I sit here working at my laptop, the sound of our riding mower and that of our neighbor’s riding mower, are humming away outside my open window. So nice to have the windows and doors open, airing out the stuffiness of a long hard winter. The lilacs are working on blooming--they’re just beginning to “show”, and I’m sure before the weekend is over, their fragrance will be wafting through the house carried on these gentle spring breezes.

All the apple trees, including the Crab apple trees, have been in bloom for part of a week or so. If you go anywhere near them, their scent will intoxicate. Funny how they don’t quite “broadcast” as the lilacs do. However, if you’re out driving with the windows open, once in a while, when you’re passing a large grove, their fragrance will sweep through the car, and your head will immediately turn in their direction, and you will be rewarded with the sight of their white and pink blossoms en masse along a hillside.

Mm, the smell of freshly mown grass has just gotten up to my second-story window. All that mowing is paying off in olfactory delight. For my dear hubby, all of it amounts to heading straight to his antihistamine supply. But for me, it fills me with sensory delight, and memories of a very happy childhood sprawled out on a blanket in our big backyard, watching the clouds roll by. Nothing quite like the contentment that would come from spending a lazy spring day soaking in the warmth of the sun after a winter of little sun, and being bundled to the hilt to stay warm.

I do believe my outdoor flower pots are calling. Today will be a good day to head to the local nursery and pick out my tomato plants, some flowers for my big barrel pots and some to line the garden path borders. Once home I’ll get last fall’s residue of late coming weeds and this spring’s early weeds out of the garden spots around my house. And I can work up the flower pots so they’ll be ready to plant tomorrow.

Ah yes, Spring has sprung, and I know exactly where the flowers is! Ain’t it grand!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Life's Little "oops" . . .

I’m not sure if it’s my age, “the” age we live in, or . . . ? But it seems in the past few years there have been more “surprises” thrown at me.

I know some of it has to do with the age of my mother, and her going in to a nursing home. All those little Life surprises that my two young sons used to bring into my day, have now been replaced by all those little surprises my almost 99 year old mother seems to add. This week, on Monday, bright and early, I received a call they were taking my mom via ambulance, to the hospital. That sent me into a scrabbled morning as I tried to cancel and/or re-arrange MY Monday, and get going on the road to cover the over hour drive to the hospital, so I could be there with her.

And that is kind of how the rest of the day went. There was a lot of hurry up and wait, of course, once you’re in the E.R. and they’re working through tests to determine what’s up. As I entered the E.R. room one of the blood lab technicians was working to get three vials filled with Mom’s blood. Mom is a tough one to find a vein, so the gal was having problems as they’d already started an I.V. in Mom, and that was her one fairly “good” vein. I walked in the door, and as Mom looked up and realized it was me, she let out with, “Thank God you’re here, they’re trying to kill me.”

She had already endured being temporarily catheterized, simply to get a urine sample, which later she sat on the bed pan and could have freely given them all the sample they needed SANS the invasive procedure. I tell you folks, it’s not a good idea to be in the hospital without someone “healthy” and vocal with you--they just take over and do things to their heart’s desire, and you’re just “at their mercy” so-to-speak.

It was finally determined she had pneumonia, and they admitted her into the hospital--and, of course, there went the rest of the day. And there went the next day, and the next. Gratefully she is responding very well to the antibiotics, and they determined they could switch her off the I.V. administered antibiotics and put her on orally given medication. That meant she could go back to the nursing home today. And that meant all the things I was suppose to be doing Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and today, are being done TODAY as best I can get to them. Needless-to-say, some of it will be finished up tomorrow along with the “usual” Friday venue.

I’m grateful it wasn’t a bigger Life “oops” and that Mom is responding to the treatment very well. I’m grateful that other than being inconvenient driving the two plus hour round trip three times this week, spending money on gas that was not in my weekly allowance, and eating out with funds NOT in my budget NOR in my “allowed” food’s list, things weren’t any worse, and it’s all been covered.

I really need this weekend to be peaceful. I could stand to take the weekend “off”--but I see that spring has finally sprung and the grass is growing up, up, up. Translated, that means I’ll be spending a great deal of Saturday astride my trusty lawn tractor, mowing a fourth of our town (well, our family members own a fourth of the town, so I’m the one who mows all of our properties). I’ll be singing at the top of my lungs as I merrily buzz along. It is just as good if not better than singing in the shower! And in truth, it will probably feel pretty darn good being outdoors instead of sequestered in a hospital room as I was much of this week.

Viva la Oops! As I live through them, I become stronger--well, at least I become more grateful for all the non-oops days.

Monday, April 28, 2008

What was that . . . ?

This morning, April 28th, I got up, headed downstairs and went to the kitchen. Outside were three of my four dogs, all looking at me through the French doors with rather sad puppy dog eyes. My DH had evidently let them out, but had gone off to other chores, and now they looked very cold and weary of all the “fresh air”--time to come in.

As I opened the door and stepped adroitly aside so as not to be run over by the horde, my attention was drawn to the skies--what was that? It was snow--only a few flakes flitting about--but what in the world . . . This is April, no time for snow, not even a few flakes!

We have been having some fairly decent temperatures. However, the extreme amount of rain has been making streams and creeks over-flow their banks, flooding fields, flooding parks, and then glutting the larger rivers like the Mississippi River turning them into muddy roiling messes.

But today, after putting up with all the wet mess, we have to put up with snowflakes. Granted, they haven’t amounted to anything (I’ve been told they did accumulate up in Minnesota, which is a very good reason NOT to live that close to Canada). However, let me say, when I’m figuring out where to put my new blueberry bushes, and whether I want to put in a new section of garden this spring, I do NOT want to see snowflakes. I’m really done with winter--really truly deeply earnestly DONE with WINTER and any sign of it.

Oh yes, and if snowflakes flitting about wasn’t insult enough, I had to put on warm clothing today before I left the house. I had already broke out my Capri pants--my short-sleeved shirts--my light-weight socks. I had put the snow scraper in the trunk of the car and had thought seriously about bringing my spare coat and my gloves back in to the house for summer storage. And they say tonight will be a hard freeze--please, enough already with the cold.

For those of you living where the trees are fully leafed out, where the flower buds are beginning to make their appearance, where you actually have flowers not just poking their stems up out of the ground, but flowers blooming, ENJOY all of it. Just the minute it gets to Iowa, I intend to drink it all in and relish every moment of it--right up until it turns humid and sticky and sultry and bugs are every where and you can’t sit outside in the evening because the mosquitoes will drain you of your life’s blood . . . Then I’ll be missing those little snowflakes I suppose.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Country Folk and the Big City

There’s a great concert going on in Chicago April 30th. It’s suppose to take place at the Navy Pier Grand Ballroom--on the Lake front downtown Chicago from what I can tell on the map. It looks like an amusement park of sorts, and the event is in the ballroom at the end of the pier.

I really wanted to go. I probably had enough warning that I could have secured some pretty decent seats, up close where I most enjoy being in a concert. Money for gas and food and lodging would have added significantly to the cost of the event--but it’s a group of performers I would truly like to see LIVE. AND, it’s going to be video-taped, so eventually when I would buy the DVD, I would know that I had been there in person and witnessed the entire event. How cool!

HOWEVER, in the paper recently, as in as recent as this past weekend, there were something like 26 shootings in Chicago. And that, according to the article, is NOT unusual there in the area. They cited how many shootings there had been in the past couple weekends--all double figures. The shootings were not all in one place--they sounded over-all gang related, yet it was not only gang members that were the victims.

I understand I’m a country gal, so I’m not a big city fan--but really, why would I seek out going to a place where they have THAT kind of thing going on regularly? I know there are a lot of great events going on in Chicago--many of them I could see me wanting to take part in. BUT, why would I put myself in that kind of danger? Is there really nothing that can be done?

The article, if I remember correctly, quoted a police officer as saying there were just too many guns in the area for anything effectively being done to curtail the shootings. When I finished reading the article, my impression was: too bad about it, but we can’t do anything to really get it stopped, so this will no doubt continue, and probably escalate.

Is that acceptable? Is that attitude acceptable? I know I’m Miss Small town and Rural Girl’s poster child--but I just can’t believe big city folk would be willing to accept that kind of response considering this is where they live, work, recreate, and function daily. Is it true that NOTHING can be done?

Anyway, I’m not going to my big event. They will come somewhere else I can get to without thinking my life is at stake to see them. In this world today I understand there are always risks being out in public anywhere, even Small town U.S.A. However, there are cities that appear to be keeping their crime to a dull roar--where a person can go to an event and expect to live to tell about it. Color me old fashion, but I choose to believe the American public should expect better living conditions whether living rurally or in the big city.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


OK, it’s the same face I’ve had for a very long time--however, today I ordered new glass frames--and that is kind of like getting a new face. At least it will change my looks--kind of sort of . . .

I say kind of, because it amazes me how many times friends and family members have gotten new glass frames, and I’ve not noticed. This could be completely me, Miss Non-observant. However, I’m sure I’m not alone in this department. Am I?

Of course, there are some glasses that just draw your attention, whether they’re “new” or not. But many people I know that wear glasses really don’t try to have “outstanding” frames, but rather ones that blend in to their face, or at least don’t make a spectacle of their face (OK, I could have helped myself, but I didn’t--it was a blatant use of the word to elicit a smirk, giggle, chuckle . . .).

As a very pleasant young woman helped me with my frame’s choices, her first response to the frames I liked best was that they were “too large” for my face. She said that the top of the frame covered up my eyebrows. I told her if she’d look closely at my eyebrows, that wouldn’t be considered a bad thing. I also told her I have rather outstanding peripheral vision, and that small frames tend to stay in my sight and bug me as I’m attempting to look out at the world (not at the frames). I also thought the color went well with my hair (as in marble-looking white frames matching the increasing white mixed in with my past-prime brown/auburn hair).

AMAZINGLY, the store manager and prime sales person immediately began to see my point, and could see all my points as being VERY well-thought out. At her quick concession speech, I reached for my cell phone and called my cousin, who was elsewhere in the store shopping, to come give me HER opinion!

The first words out of my cousin were: “They go really well with your hair.”

I felt that was good confirmation, as I have to say my very first thought on trying on the frames was that they went well with my hair.

NOW, how good is it that frames match one’s hair? Is it a valid selling point? Possibly not a primary one, but then again, they were large enough NOT to affect my peripheral vision (you do remember that good point, right?). And did I add that they were from the Sophia Lorenz line of designer glass frames?

I have to say, as the conversation continued to come back to the size of the frames on my face, I finally had to let the young woman know, I have worn glass frames MUCH larger than these in my life. Back in the tortoise shell plastic frame days, I looked like I was wearing massive underwater diving goggles. And during the early sixties, the “wings” on my glass frames rivaled the “wings” on my dad’s car (fins they were called on the cars--but the affect of the sweeping upturned expanded metal was pretty equivalent on both the car and on the glass frames).

Of course, during the end of the sixties, the turn in design had been in large part due to John Lennon’s “granny glasses”--which were pretty much duplicates of Benjamin Franklin’s half-glasses I think. John had pink lenses in his, other people had blue, and yellow, and purple, etc.--but they were tiny and a direct revolt against the wings of the early sixties style. I had them too--no colored lenses, but they were barely large enough to look through--which must be true as I think they were forever hanging off the end of my nose and I looked over them more than through them.

And in a week, I’ll be wearing my spiffy new Sophia Lorenz designer glass frames that go with my whitening hair. You can see some of what’s left of my eyebrows, which are also whitening. I think I’ll be very happy--with the glass frames and my new face.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Back Aboard

I had been on a roll. I was looking at that big 100 mark, and thinking what I might post for my 100th blog entry. And then . . . And then the bottom seemed to drop out of my little world and voila, it’s been almost two months since my last post.

And what “bottom” dropped, you ask? Well, my doctor (my new doctor), decided to do a complete blood workup on me--and since I’d not had a complete blood workup on myself, as in NEVER, I decided to let him. So when he said “type two diabetes”, he might as well have hit me over the head with a loaded two by four. I did NOT take the news graciously.

His answer was to begin going down the “type two diabetes” hit list. There were medications to help prevent any damage to my heart. There were pills to lower cholesterol. He had already gotten me on a blood pressure pill before we even got to the blood workup. And once he had his final figures from the month of doing blood sugar daily testing (four strips a day, on rising and before and two hours after two meals) he was prepared to put me on insulin medication and/or some other diabetic medication. He had his “list” and I listened to all of it.

As soon as I got the blood workup results (a full four weeks before my next doctor’s appointment where I knew he would indeed begin giving me his roster of diabetes to-do list items), I got to work doing my research on Diabetes Type Two! I’m a teacher and a writer, and the thing I always start with is RESEARCH. I wanted to know everything I could about this named adversary--if at all possible, much more than my doctor would know, because I’d be looking at what one could do sans medication. And since my research assured me it was my eating and habits that got me into this mess, I was equally sure eating and building new habits would get me out of it.

God has blessed me with a very good doctor. He has stuck with this old broad now for two months as I have made major over-hauls on all aspects of my daily life--my eating and my exercising. He hasn’t pushed his list down my throat. Now, I do believe he may well have felt I’d be enthusiastic for a month or so, but that soon my old habits would resurface, and THEN we’d go to his list. But week after week he’s watched my weight going down. And week after week he’s watched my first blood sugar reading of the day lowering and lowering, and my daily readings lowering and lowering. To the point where he’s finally decided to let me go for two months “on my own” and then we’ll regroup for another full blood workup and see where we’re at. As it is right now, my numbers put me OUT of the Type Two range, but I’m still in the “pre-diabetic” range.

Of course, Life seems to bring things in bunches, so I’ve not been able to just concentrate on “me” and changing these quite well established daily life habits. No, I’ve had my 98 year old mom having health problems that have required quite a bit of time and travel getting her to her doctor and seeing to her specialized care. And I’ve had another close relative pass on--so was able to be with her as she passed on, and then be there for the family for her funeral and the time since as we all make our adjustments to her loss.

A number of you dear blogging buddies have sent me notes asking after my well-being, and have also expressed missing hearing from me. I cannot express my gratitude to those of you who took time to send me these thoughtful notes. I’m not sure I have much to say of import, but you’ve all blessed me by taking your precious time and reading and responding to my posts ever since I began blogging. Thank you one and all!

Hopefully I’m back and will be up and posting again regularly. I’m SO close to that 100th post--I can “see” it coming. Again, thank all of you who gave me encouragement to come back to the blogosphere. I’m so grateful for all of your support.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


It had been an interesting supper hour with my son. Last week we were on a day of errands together and decided to stop for a nice meal at one of our favorite Chinese restaurants. Good food, pleasant atmosphere, and rather one subject leading to another from conversations that had been going on during much of our car trip that day.

My son is now 31 years old. He has been observing me, therefore, for a very long time. He has gone through many years of growth, experiencing me as a child, a youth, and now a young and maturing man.

He is a unique soul, with his own take on the world, people, and spiritual matters. He is so singular in many areas, that his teachers finally defined one of his habits as “well, he’s doing it in ‘Zach-time’” which is because Zach has one speed--HIS speed. And whether you want him to snap it up, hurry along, work as quickly as possible--well, he’s going to be doing it in Zach time and you might has well cool your jets or risk an aneurism, because you can bet Zach’s not going to move faster for all your persuasions, threats or cajoling--if anything you may well slow him up.

One other thing about Zachery, are his opinions of his father, brother, and mother. And, naturally, I am rather invested in the subject of his opinions of his mother. Even when I feel I want to correct something he’s said, or relate something I think will influence his thinking--you know, Paul Harvey’s “the rest of the story”--often I’ve learned to just shut my mouth and listen. I can learn a lot and have learned to change some things thanks to listening to him.

Now I’m not saying I agree with all of his opinions and observations of me. However, just realizing he has these ideas about me, and listening to what he has observed that brought him to these assumptions about me, HAS helped me. If he is coming to these ideas about me, then probably others react to me sometimes in similar ways. And if I don’t like what I’m hearing, if that is NOT the impression I want others to have about me, then I am grateful for the head’s up and the opportunity to change.

Of course, sometimes what he comes up with amuses me (as in it doesn’t always make my toes curl in my shoes, my hair sockets cramp, and my nerves jangle). One of his continued assessments is that I am a powerful woman. This one always cracks me up. I truly wish he’d been able to express that to me when I was younger. There have been times I felt the world was mopping me up, or people I was attempting to help were walking right over my prostrate body. It would have been so good to know much of the unkindness was based in their “fear” of me. This is Zach’s assessment.

He tells me that when I walk into a room, my very aura says “I’m in charge”. And sometimes others react by immediately stiffening their necks and rejecting anything I say or do, because they’re afraid of my controlling them.

Wow--to think I’ve been wielding that kind of power all these years, and I felt when I walked in a room and slid into a chair at the back of the room, everyone was either NOT noticing me at all, or thinking “who’s the strange little broad with the out-dated clothing?”

Now it’s true, back in my stand-up comedy days, I did a bit on my being Super Woman. However, it was done for comedic affect--as in, those who were looking at me on stage could tell I was anything BUT a super woman. However, my son, who was VERY little when I was doing this bit, says the humor was that I was making a joke out of “the elephant in the room”--everyone KNEW I was Super Woman, and therefore I could make jokes about myself because who was going to challenge Super Woman?

OK, I will admit, my pastor at the time called to tell me he’d gotten a call from his son’s school. Seems his son had told his class that Super Woman went to his church. The teacher tried to explain there was no such person in reality, and if there were, she wouldn’t be going to his church. No dice. He was very adamant. So much so, that it became a brouhaha with his teacher, which got him sent to the principal.

The principal wanted to know what the minister was going to do about it. He told them he wasn’t going to do anything, because Super Woman DID go to his church! I had done my bit for a church teacher’s appreciation dinner the Sunday before, so, of course, their son believed Super Woman did go to his church. After my talk, even some of the deacons offered to put a telephone booth downstairs by the back entryway incase I had to make a quick outfit change and fly off to fight crime!

In the years since my Super Woman era, I think I look less and less like a super hero or person of power. Yet my son sticks to his opinion, his mom is pretty amazing. I really don’t want him to have a false opinion of me--unrealistic. And yet, having your son think you’re extraordinary, singular, accomplished . . . Not such a bad thing, is it?

He does feel, as I age, I’m losing some ground. Some of my super powers are slipping. He feels by the time I’m ready for the old folks home I’ll be “ordinary”, maybe even fall to the state of “average” if I really get old old. Guess I can live with that. Just wish I’d known when I was younger that I was so powerful--I’d have done things differently!

Monday, February 11, 2008

hi ho - Snow white and the seven dwarfs

Just get right in there and "dig, dig, dig . . ."

Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, It's off to work I go . . .

It’s Monday, the beginning of the week. And I’m ready to get back on the horse and ride! Well, OK, I’m working on being that chipper. I have had almost two weeks, though, of taking care of family business, and trying to get a little R & R for moi. So I’m thinking it’s time to just get back in the saddle and head for the horizon.

And what kind of music does one need to truly INSPIRE a good work ethic? What better than Disney’s Snow White and Seven Dwarfs’ Hi-Ho? So whistle a happy tune, and “dig-dig-dig-dig . . .” along with our little mining crew ;-)

Check in with Soccer Mom in Denial who started Music Monday and see who else is playing!

Saturday, February 9, 2008


Hopefully turning the corner on the past few weeks, I‘m beginning to feel:


Jenn in Holland inspired me to join in on her: Singular Saturday. If you pop over to her site, you can see who else is being "singular" today.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Harry Nilsson...One

Haunting, heart-felt . . .

Sometimes you just feel like you're all alone . . .

I’ve been having a couple of tough weeks. And this weekend hasn’t improved things a bit. I’m hoping to get a few things at least “resolved” by the first of this week--but I’m trying to steady myself incase these things go on for a while longer.

What, you might ask, does that have to do with Music Monday? And well you might ask. Songs create moods, but they also reflect moods. And these past few days, possibly because I’m feeling somewhat over-whelmed an oldie but goodie song has been running through my head.

It’s a song that I cannot recall ever making me feel bad--but I can remember feeling bad and then this song would come on, and some how it just “spoke to me”--it was like “someone else KNOWS what I’m feeling”--and that, amazingly, did comfort me.

So, here’s a rather sad song, that gave me comfort forty years ago--and it’s still able to do that for me now. One Is the Loneliest Number by Harry Nilsson. Harry is the one who actually wrote it, however, it’s been performed by many others, including the best known version by Three Dog Night. Yet for simplicity, and I feel the truest interpretation of the song, I rather turn to its creator, Harry Nilsson.

Check in with Soccer Mom in Denial who started Music Monday and see who else is playing!

Saturday, February 2, 2008


As a little girl our kitchen table was positioned next to a large plate glass window. My chair faced the window. I have vivid memories of just staring at myself for the entire dinners during the winter since the dark would turn it into a mirror. When talking about my day, I would talk to my reflection, watching how I carried myself, how my clothes looked.

It drove my mother nuts.

Now why she didn't move me to another chair I'm not sure. But I recall being constantly asked, cajouled, told to stop staring at myself.

So when we moved into a bigger house when I was in third grade it was a bit of a relief to find our kitchen table had a very small window in the room.

Then she hung a mirror.

Years later my mother cannot understand why I don't have a slew of mirrors around my house.

I don't need them. When darkness falls my three kids perform in front of the bay windows.

Just like their mama.

Soccer Mom in Denial is visiting the Rocking Chair today. A mom of three kids - twin 7 year old boys and an almost 4 year old girl - she dragged* Wholly Burble into the blog exchange. Today we're writing about Groundhog Day, or things that keep repeating. Come to Soccer Mom in Denial's site to find Wholly Burble's piece. Click here for more information on the Exchange.

*A wee note from Wholly Burble: SMID really didn't "drag" me into the exchange--I was quite honored that she asked me to participate--Thank you SO much for allowing me to host your Groundhog Day entry, and for hosting my piece on your site today.

Thursday, January 31, 2008


Well, it's not "here", but it is HERE! Please head over to the Game site, or to jen's a2eatwrite, and find out who's playing. Then go read some FUN stories--and NEXT TIME, be sure to sign up so you can play too.

Click on: Blogosphere Meets Real World to read my entry. Hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Thanks again, jen, for inviting all of us to play The Writing Game!

Monday, January 28, 2008

the Association - Windy

Ah to be young again . . .

Windy and a little breath of youthful joy . . .

Check in with Soccer Mom in Denial who started Music Monday and see who else is playing!

On Soap Opera Sunday I’ve been telling tales from my early dating years entitled “Older Men and other acts of insanity . . .” The first fellow I’ve been talking about was a very gifted artist, Tony. He was a drummer besides being an art major--drew in several mediums, but I think was partial to acrylics, pencil, chalks and charcoals.

Anyway, one of the big summer hits was a song called Windy. And for whatever reason, Tony decided it was “our” song, and most especially because he felt the words described what he saw in me.

NOW, before all those who know me now think it has something to do with me being long winded, talking ad infinitum, etc.--NO--a thousand times NO (and stop your giggling). Tony was a romantic, and saw me through his artistic, romantic-soul eyes as this wild and free character, breezing through life with a song in my heart.

Not sure that would have summed me up at all--but the Idea of it and the song itself, became one of my favorites, just because I accepted it as his vision of me, and one I found VERY winsome and wonderful.

Hope you will enjoy the song with me.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

SOAP OPERA SUNDAY--postedponed due to Life . . .

Hey Gang,

Life rather "happened" around here, and I'm going to postpone my next SOS segment for this week and possibly next week. Sorry--there's more of Tony, more of "Older Men and other acts of insanity . . ." And I thank everyone for giving me great encouragement to continue sharing all my hair-brain youthful escapades LOL.

Please head over to Anonymous Soapiness to see who else is writing today! And I'll see you back again in a week or two!

Thursday, January 24, 2008


It amazes me that last November, when I took on the thirty day blogging assignment, I actually wrote something every single day--week days, weekends, through the holiday with houseguests--I wrote something every day. And further to my own amazement, some of them were fairly “substantial” pieces.

However, as soon as November was over, it was like one of the Macy Day balloons--like someone let all the air out. I was full and inspired, right up there flying high all November. And then, whoosh, December 1st, the party was over. No inspiration, not a thought in my head worthy of adding two or three words together to express. Zip.

And, more or less, it’s been like that ever since. I try to get myself going. I sign in, go out and begin reading others’ blogs, and commenting on others’ blogs--and there goes my day, there goes my time on the computer, and I haven’t created one single paragraph for my own blog.

Heaven forbid, but I’m beginning to wonder if I should have taken on the new expanded NaBloPoMo 365--writing daily for the year.

It seems I need deadlines. I need writing assignments. Mostly I need an editor who says “write this, have it on my desk by this” and then hangs up on me, or swivels their chair around and all I see is the back of their head and a perfunctory wave of their hand dismissing me from the room. OK, I might have made that last part up . . .

Never-the-less, I am often astonished how completely focused I become as the days dwindle down to hours, and the hours to AN hour--just focused, creative, words flowing . . . And I always read the thing thinking “now if I’d just had a wee bit more time, I could have done this, or I could have added a great quote, or . . . “ but of course, there was no more time was there!

Perhaps like the drunk at the party who, in his/her impaired condition, thinks ALL his/her jokes are hilarious, I’m convinced I do my best writing under these eleventh hour writing jags because that’s almost always how I allow Murphy’s Law to affect my time: A task will automatically fill all the available time--whether two minutes or two hours or two days.

And how about you, my fellow bloggers? Are you deadline writers--or are you all organized, topics for the week picked out, a time lined up for your writing, editing? Pages in the hopper, waiting for posting? Come on, you can tell me.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

It's a dog's life--part two.

Check out Jenn in Holland to see who else is playing Wordless Wednesday.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Blue man group - Sing Along - Live!

Will you sing along?

Will You Sing Along?

Check in with Soccer Mom in Denial who started Music Monday and see who else is playing!

It’s probably because I have always felt tuned in to the percussion instruments (OK, I have always had a “thing” for drummers too--but that’s rather a side-bar issue), but I can listen to drum solo’s, and heavy percussion pieces and just be in my fifth heaven. And that’s probably why, when I first heard the Blue Man Group, I just went total immersion into their stuff.

I suppose if I were to get all “into” the heady diagnostic angles, like their appearance, their on-stage persona’s and how they work off each other, there’d be an entire other aspect to why I enjoy their performances so much. But basically I just enjoy their sound.

Now, although the piece I’ve chosen to share today isn’t one where they show off so many of their varied instruments, it just happens to be a song that resonates inside me. I don’t care to analyze it--I just like to listen to it (over and over and over). I can play it for quite a few takes before I’ve had my fill. And then the song can run around in my head for the rest of the day.

Hope you enjoy it too.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Older Men and other acts of insanity . . . Part Three

SOS is an event inspired by Brillig and Walking Kateastrophe's . To find out who else is taking part, and read some great SOS, Walking Kateastrophe is hosting this week. Go check it out for some soapy fun! This is my own story--an ending and a beginning, from high school to college--and the array of “older“ men that came through my life back then. Part One is here., Part Two is here.

With approximately three weeks of finals and my actual graduation ceremony left, and Tony’s last two weeks of college finals, we saw very little of each other after our rather enticing first date. We spoke via the phone, and saw each other Saturday evenings during finals weeks.

My father kept pushing for me to go to the state university, even though my dorm room and roommate were already chosen for the coming fall semester at the university at Ames, Iowa. However, once the local university offered me a generous honor student placement, if I would go to summer school instead of waiting until the fall semester, my father offered me the sun, moon and stars if I’d accept. Ok, not the sun and moon, but a Maroon Mustang and a gas credit card (unheard of back in the late sixties for a student to have a gas credit card). Of course, Tony was also pushing for me to accept the local honor student enrollment so he and I could continue dating.

Finally with so much pressure from my parents, I accepted the honor student position, and there I was four days after high school graduation, I was starting summer school, sitting in the honor’s classroom at 7:30 a.m. If I hadn’t been practically asleep in my chair, I would have been completely devastated that I was no longer going to the college of my dreams, but I was also surrendering my last summer of “freedom” before beginning “adulthood”, college, and looking at a life of WORK and OCCUPATION squarely in the face. Good thing I had a very cool car to drive around in, or boyfriend or not, I could have been pretty depressed.

Tony, on the other hand, was also taking summer classes and was there to pick me up for my first day of classes. He was extremely tickled that he would have me by his side, and get to walk me to classes, take me to the student union, to the library for study dates, to school events, etc. I tried to join in on his enthusiasm, but I’m NOT a morning person, and pretty summer weather or not, climbing in his car at six-thirty a.m. on a June morning, didn’t catch me in my most “perky” mood.

Still, Tony showered me with little surprises throughout the day. He had created a series of small “welcome to college” gifts, each one wrapped in crazy and sweet ways, decorated with his own personal artistic flare. It was difficult to stay in a crummy mood when such attention was being lavished on me.

At the end of the day, before delivering me back home, he had one more BIG box in the trunk of the car. I unwrapped it, and there was a stuffed teddy bear with a graduation hat on--and it was sitting on top of another wrapped box. I opened the next package, and it had a box of new ink pens in it--and another box. By the fourth box, which held a “coupon” for one free back rub, redeemable from gift-giver at the time of my own choosing--and one more tiny box, I was pretty knocked off my feet by his thoughtfulness and creativity. In the last box was a bottle of VERY expensive perfume.

I wasn’t sure my father would allow me to accept such an expensive gift--but that wasn’t all that was in the box--under the perfume was a beautiful wristwatch--with diamonds set around the clock face. THAT I was VERY sure my father was going to object to heartily.

Tony was rather surprised when I said I couldn’t accept his gifts without my father’s permission. He argued about it saying he was working, and had been working for over a year and a half to pay for his college expenses, but that he had enough to “spoil” his favorite girl. I told him my father was born in 1908, was pretty “Victorian” in his views--and I doubted he’d let me keep the gifts. I told him my folks had me when they were forty, so I’d grown up used to an “older” set of values--and there really would be little chance he’d bend on this.

Tony said he wanted to talk with my dad--I gave him credit for courage, but I felt it was going to NOT bode well for our “future” dating. But Tony went right in to the house and asked my father if he might speak with him. He explained that he had his own money. He had purchased the watch for my graduation present, but hadn’t had time to give it to me since between graduation and my starting college I’d been busy with family things. He said it wasn’t just an “off-handed” gift, but appropriate for graduation. My father was protesting, but I was surprised, he finally agreed as Tony assured him his parents knew of the gifts, and his intentions were honorable.

I was impressed. And I only had to take a mild amount of static from my parents after Tony left that evening. All-in-all, my first day of college had been pretty awesome.

The second weekend after college classes had started, Tony asked me out for a second “date”. We had been fairly inseparable on campus between classes, but Tony said that didn’t count as a date. He had planned a special outing for us, and he’d be there to pick me up bright and shining on Saturday. I said it was going to be my first day to sleep in since school began, so not to make it too bright and shining. But he said we had a ways to go, so no sleeping in.

After a two hour’s drive out through the countryside, Tony turned in to an area marked as “trout stream” area. He had packed not only a picnic and munchies, but also a bunch of art supplies. Tablets, pencils, charcoal, colored pens, just all sorts of things. I figured they were for him. But he said since I’d shared with him I’d been a rather “closet” artist since my dad was the real artist, and told me I was NOT an artist, I was a writer; well, he wanted me to free myself and just draw. He said there was plenty to inspire me there--a trout stream with water cascading over colorful stones, trees with shaggy bark, an array of summer flowers in bloom, birds and critters all around, granite outcroppings, etc.

Tony threw our drinks in the cold stream, made a little fire ring for our foil wrapped steaks, potatoes and corn on the cob to slow cook in the fire’s coals. And we two settled down with our art supplies and began to draw. By late afternoon we stretched out on the blanket just enough in the shade of a large tree to keep from getting sunburned, and took a catnap. We were lulled asleep with the sounds of the birds and the water rushing over the stones. The scent of the flowers was intoxicating.

When I came to, Tony had packed everything up, and was stretched out beside me, tickling my ear with the edge of a daisy. He brushed kisses along my cheek, my nose, and nibbled on my earlobe. The light warm breeze of the day seemed to accentuate his every move. He ran the tips of his fingers from my shoulders, down my arms, and out to my fingertips. It felt like tiny electrical zings that went from my finger tips, directly to my very alert breasts and other VERY alert special places. He took his time, even playing gently with the ringlets around my face.

I had reached up and put my arms around his neck, pulling him over me and down closer to my body. The warmth of his skin, and his scent made my body ache. As his lips pressed into mine, I tightened my arms, pulling him deeper into my embrace. About the time I was beginning to wrap my leg around his, he laughed ever so gently, and pulled himself out of my arms, and raised himself up and away from me.

“Whoa there, Sweetheart. Let’s not do anything we’d be sorry about later. I intend for us to make it for the long haul. We better head back to the car and down the road for home.”

He took my hands and pulled me to my feet. I was rather confused and a bit out of it. The hormones were still dictating what my body wanted--and his words weren’t quite registering. The Sunday-go-to-meeting side of me was glad for his restraint. The “you’ve GOT to be kidding” hormonal side of me was a bit hurt about this seeming rejection of my “offering”.

Tony pulled me close to him and kept his arm around me on the drive home. I really was inexperienced in getting into hot and heavy sex--but some how I did feel rejected. I kept telling myself he was right, and I was safe with Tony and could trust his judgment. It had been a wonderful day--and he had seen to it I had nothing to regret later. Now if I could just convince my hormones, it would truly have been the end to a perfect day.

Saturday, January 19, 2008


After a week babying my back, mincing around, and taking muscle relaxants, I‘m:

Jenn in Holland inspired me to join in on her: Singular Saturday. If you pop over to her site, you can see who else is being "singular" today.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Monday, January 14, 2008

Neil Diamond

Beautiful noise: The Music of Life


Soccer Mom in Denial started Music Monday. This week, though, Flower Child is hosting, so check out and see who else is playing over at her site!

Here’s a very simple tune, yet I find it nurtures my soul. Hope you enjoy this Neil Diamond song and find it as pleasing as I do. It truly is a “beautiful noise”:

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Older Men and other acts of insanity . . . Part Two

SOS is an event inspired by Brillig and Walking Kateastrophe's . To find out who else is taking part, and read some great SOS, Brillig is hosting this week. Go check it out for some soapy fun! This is my own story--an ending and a beginning, from high school to college--and the array of “older“ men that came through my life back then. Part One is here.

I introduced Tony to my parents. He did all the proper things, like looking directly into my dad’s eyes as they shook hands, pleasant smile, but a direct man-to-man look. As my mom stretched out her hand, he shook it smiling as he kept her gaze. I saw Mom and Dad nod an approval to each other on his manners. Round one, and Tony was doing pretty darn good.

He was dressed in a very handsome suit, which I would have expected since we were going to a wedding. But as he chatted with my parents, he stated that he was one of the ushers, and we really would need to leave as he was wanted at the church prior to the wedding to get his boutonniere and begin seating the guests as they arrived. I have to admit, I probably looked a bit concerned, as I had thought I’d be sitting with Tony. He looked over at me, grinned, and assured me he’d be close by, and I wouldn’t have to sit with his parents unless I wanted to. I DID let out an audible sigh of relief, to which everyone chuckled.

And then we were off. He had rather whisked me out the door, down the stairs, and off to his car, where he opened the door. I slid on in (and in those days, no seatbelts), and tried to straighten out my dress so it wouldn’t wrinkle.

It turned out the church was only a few blocks away. Funny how we’d evidently been practically neighbors for years, but had never met. We went to the same high school, but I would have been a sophomore while he was a senior--that pretty much would have kept us separate right there! Seniors and sophomores don’t share classes, unless they’re in band, orchestra, chorus--or a few “elective” courses. And if we’d ever seen each other at the local grocery store, pharmacy, etc., well, unless he tripped over me, or we bumped car fenders, I doubt we’d ever really would have noticed one another. OK, I would have noted a good looking fellow, but no sense in dwelling on something “out of your league”.

I have to admit, by nature I’m rather shy. OK, everyone who knows me, stop chortling, you might hurt yourself. I know I have performed on stage for crowds, I’ve taught from lecterns in theaters and at the front of classrooms. And I engage total strangers in conversations with no hesitation. BUT, when it came to my dating years, being with a new fellow, and meeting his people, his family, his friends, I was ready to blend in to the woodwork, be the mouse under the table, or the fly on the wall--I really was so worried about the impression I’d make, I would freeze up like a deer in the headlights.

We walked into the church vestibule, and there they were. Hoards of them. All people Tony seemed to know. Everyone came over to give him a squeeze, a handshake, a kiss on the cheek. And EVERYONE, was rolling eyes, tipping heads my direction, and asking “Oh Tony, who’s THIS sweet girl?” or "Oh, FINALLY, we get to meet your special lady.” And I clung to his hand for dear life, as he graciously, and with a sweet little grin, introduced me with the title of “his lady” and my name.

I was very relieved when he finally led me to a pew at the back of the church. His parents weren’t there yet, and he needed to begin seating people--so he put me back close to the place he’d be sitting during the service. Everyone was being ushered up to the front, filling in seats there first. And I was quite content to hold down the fort at the back, all by myself.

Just when I had begun to breathe normally, Tony was standing next to my seat and on his arm was a woman--who turned out to be his mother. And on the other side of his mom was his dad, and his two brothers. They had decided they would sit back with me, rather than move up closer to the front. Tony busied himself making introductions, and I stood up and moved out of the pew to make room for them--at which point his Mom went past me and began moving down the pew to make room--but his dad shoved me back in telling me he didn’t want me to feel left out, so I was going to sit between he and Tony’s mom. Yikes.

Good thing I was young and not prone to heart attacks, as I’m sure my blood pressure was off the Richter scale! Everyone was speaking in semi-hushed “church” tones, with his brothers leaning around their father to ask me questions, and his mother leaning around me telling them to be quiet. Every time Tony went by ushering someone to a seat, his father would elbow me, and nod toward Tony. To which he would add some kind of conspiratorial wink and grin, which I decided not even to try and figure out all of what that was about.

Although we all stood as the chords to the wedding march for the bride began, I have to admit, the rest of the service was a bit of a blur to me. I was greatly relieved when we all stood and filed out of the pew, and I could beg off needing to head to the little girl’s room. Sitting in my little potty cubicle, I finally had a few minutes to collect myself and see if I could get my blood pressure back somewhere close to normal--I don’t think even when you’re young it’s good to have elevated blood pressure for over a half hour.

As I came out of the bathroom, I was almost afraid to look around and find one of Tony’s immediate family ready to corral me again. Instead, there was Tony. He bowed slightly from the waist. Flashed me an irresistible smile. And slightly extended his bent arm, allowing me to take hold as he led me toward the church’s reception hall. And just as we got to the door of the hall, he dropped his arm, moved slightly behind me, and wrapped his arm around my waist, pulling me close into his body.

I barely had time to react to this masculine gesture, when I felt his warm breath on my neck, as he whispered in my ear, “You’re safe now. I’m not letting you go for one more moment the rest of the day.” I felt the heat rise from my neck up what I was sure to my now blushing cheeks. And from that moment on, he was at my side. Even sitting at the table for our meal, he ever so slightly moved his leg over to touch my leg. When dancing, he alternated holding me out at arm’s length, as he looked me over like he was thinking I was edible, and then pulling me in to his warm muscular body directing us smoothly around the dance floor.

And some where in all of it, there on the dance floor, as he pulled me in close, he dipped me ever so gently and kissed me. His lips were soft, tender, yet with just a bit of urgency. I was grateful he had a good hold on me or I’d have swooned and hit the floor.

Can’t tell you much more about the rest of the day--I don’t think my head was in gear, but my glands were working over-time. And this was our FIRST date, I couldn’t imagine how he could top it on our second date--but he did!

Saturday, January 12, 2008


The reason I read:

Jenn in Holland inspired me to join in on her: Singular Saturday. If you pop over to her site, you can see who else is being "singular" today.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Reporting on Day to Read!

I read, pretty much off and on all day long. One thing I did, which I have not taken the time and enjoyed the luxury of for a VERY long time, was to read the paper from beginning to end--pretty much every page, every article! Wow. I used to be such a paper reader. But now, with on-line news "clips" and such, I just don't read the entire paper. BUT, yesterday I had the joy and satisfaction of reading it cover to cover.

I also worked on other things--but really that was my one big commitment for the day. There is a book I'm reading, but it's going to take me some time to get it finished. And I have a couple others I have been reading excerpts from as research for my novel. But over-all, I am working on reading those things all the time. The paper was "special" for me--and I only wish it had been a Sunday paper, because that can be an all-dayer, replete with munchies and such! ;-)

It's been fun today to go around to those participating and see what they read and their reports. I'm so pleased we all took this time and made this commitment. I just left off the computer for the largest part of the day, and didn't go to any blogs--it was the only way I wouldn't find myself reading blogs LOL.

Again, this has been fun--maybe we'll have to do it again.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Wordless Wednesday


Momma's auburn-haired sleeping angel: Daisy Mae

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Elvis Presley - Amazing Grace

Happy Birthday Elvis!

Happy Birthday Elvis!

Today is Elvis Aaron Presley's birthday. I was pretty sure I was born as his 14th year birthday present (the day before, so I'd be there on time I'm sure). However, other than my grandma and me, no one else seemed to share this idea.

I was pleased that the year before he died, I was able to see him perform live, in Ames, Iowa. I was up in the third tier of balcony seats--had to have binoculars, and try to keep the pigeons from roosting on my head LOL (OK, maybe a slight exaggeration). But, still, he and I were in the same "room", breathing the same air--it was live--and after so many years of being a true blue fan, it was a biggie in my book.

The next year, as I was taking care of my one year old son, the phone rang. A relative who knew what a die-hard fan I was, asked if I was sitting down. That is NEVER a good sign. She told me Elvis was dead--that it had just come on the news. She told me what channel to put on to see for myself. I was shell-shocked. I really didn't want to believe it.

There was much time afterwards to contemplate the why's, hear all the suggestions of how it came to happen, and think about the what if's. And it still all came down to the fact--Elvis was gone.

I have never gone to see an Elvis impersonator--if I want, I can see his movies, I can listen to his recordings--there is only one Elvis, and I don't care to see anyone trying to "play" him.

He was a one and only. He was a man with foibles. He was a gifted fellow, who had, within him, the ability to bring happiness to others through his singing. He never took the Elvis image seriously. In fact, he had quite a sense of humor about himself. But he understood people did take the hype seriously, and he tried to be that for them as much as he could.

He is missed by many. I am one of them. Here's a little tribute for him--enjoy. And Happy Birthday Elvis!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Happy Birthday!

Check in with Soccer Mom in Denial who started Music Monday and see who else is playing!


I’ve hit the big 59--and the BIG 6-0 is looking me square in the face LOL. Although I’m all for saving a few quarters, I’m really not dancing for joy to being another year closer to my Senior Discount at all my favorite restaurants!

I wish I had great revelations of knowledge, pithy sayings that apply to aging gracefully, and wisdom being revealed by my every thought and deed. However, I’m turning out to be a pretty nice gal, and a good friend, and as long as I wake up breathing, I have another day to be my very best.

Here’s a little music to celebrate my special day!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Paul McCartney - Birthday (Knebworth)

Happy Birthday to me!

Older Men and other acts of insanity . . .

SOS is an event inspired by Brillig and Walking Kateastrophe's . To find out who else is taking part, and read some great SOS, Brillig is hosting this week. Go check it out for some soapy fun! This is my own story--an ending and a beginning, from high school to college--and the array of “older“ men that came through my life back then.

It was my high school senior year. We were allowed two days off to travel to colleges and attend their events for selling their school to potential students. My only desire was to visit the university at Ames, Iowa--where my brother had gone. The ratio of males to females was something like five to one (and I felt five males to my “one” was a good thing).

My father wanted me to check out the university at Cedar Falls, Iowa--a mere twenty minute drive from home, thus eliminating the need for housing and food expense since I could stay at home. According to my father, when they snipped my umbilical chord from Mom, he picked it up and had attached it to himself--so, in short, he said I could only go so far from home/him--and then HE would feel he could keep me safe (Dad’s are SO unrealistic. If a girl decides to do stupid, dumb, potentially harmful things, by golly, she’s going to find a way!).

Anyway, my cousin was a sophomore at the local college--so I decided to go with him to some of his classes, and he had agreed to take me to some of the scheduled events for potential students. And spending the day with my cousin was going to be a treat in itself, since he was my “other” brother, and always fun to be with.

My senior year I was pretty “buff”--long before working out was “in”, I was a closet exercise nut. At a petite 5'2", eyes of blue--I was a mini-Dolly Parton (OK, not the same cup size, but not bad either). My cousin thought I created “good PR” for him, as fellows envied him his “date”, and potential girlfriends wondered what they’d been missing with this guy (at least that was how he saw having me tagging along).

The day was a blast. I met SO many good-looking fellows, all friends of my cousin, and all college sophomores--a high school girl’s dream. “Older” men, and I got to chat with them, flirt discreetly, and often was the only female in a pod of males. Well, if I hadn’t decided I was going to the other university, this had to be a great selling point right there.

However, the icing on the cake was a call from my cousin a couple of days later asking if I’d be OK with one of his classmates calling me. Evidently I’d made quite an impression on one of his buddies, and he wanted to call me and ask me out on a date. A college man wanting to date me. OK, I was officially psyched! But for the life of me, as my cousin described the fellow, I couldn’t think who he was, or what I’d thought of him when I met him. Ah well, details, I’d find out after he called.

That evening the call came in. Dad had answered the phone. I had an extention phone in my room, which back in those days was pretty rare (yes, I’m dating myself). So at least once my dad hung up I had relative privacy.

His name was Tony. I was already in love. He started right off trying to help me figure out which he had been, of the many fellows I’d met that day at school. Finally he admitted he hadn’t talked with me, but had seen me with my cousin, and thought I was his girlfriend so didn’t intrude. He had ethics, hum.

He began telling me where he lived (which turned out not to be very far from my home). He said I couldn’t miss his family’s home, as it was the only “barn” on Fourth Street. That street was filled with some very beautiful old Victorian homes, so I was thinking, “wow, NICE neighborhood”. I assumed the joke was calling it a barn because of its size--but later I was to find out it was, indeed, the shape of the house, like an old red barn found everywhere in Iowa’s farming landscape.

He then told me about his family. His sense of humor was fantastic. I’m a sucker for a guy with a good sense of humor. And this fellow liked to play with words, doing quite a “standup” routine via the phone. I was more than hooked. He had me chuckling and occasionally laughing out loud. I figured by then looks would be small potatoes, as he had me where my heart is. Laughing.

When he asked me out, I was a bit surprised. He had to attend a relative’s wedding that weekend, and he wondered if I’d like to be his date. He thought it would be a great way to spend time with me, and introduce me to his family. My goodness, meet his family already--we had barely met. But he was so sincere, so dear the way he asked, how could I refuse?

So I dressed in my Sunday-go-to-meeting clothes, nice pumps, new purse, hair all done up, and there I sat, waiting for him to arrive. I had older parents, so there was no need (and probably no use) giving the “Please don’t say anything stupid or embarrassing” speech. My folks were SO proper, they would be polite to someone who picked his nose, although he would never be invited back.

A pristine baby blue 55 Chevy pulled into the drive. OK, in 1967 you couldn’t do better than that unless you had a Vet! And as I tried NOT to be seen staring out the window, I was intense, trying to see what this fellow with the great sense of humor looked like. The car door opened, he stepped out of the car, closed the door, and there he was. He was Handsome--I mean, Hollywood handsome--not Marlboro man handsome--more a shorter version Cary Grant handsome. Extremely BUFF! As in I work out with weights, Buff.

He came to the door, which I already had wide open. He took one look at me, and before either of us said a word, he broke out in the biggest smile, then rather shyly looked down as if to regroup--but then looked right back up, deep into my eyes, reached out to take my hand in his, and said a sweet and simple, “Hi.”

I was smitten, and amazingly he seemed to be smitten with me--Wow!

Saturday, January 5, 2008


Looking toward my upcoming fifty-ninth birthday, I can truly say, My Life is:

Jenn in Holland inspired me to join in on her: Singular Saturday. If you pop over to her site, you can see who else is being "singular" today.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

The Blog Readability Test

Found this “test” for readability level at Katstuff’s site. Clicked on over to the site and found out what my site’s readability level was--and found out it’s Genius--who knew LOL?

You’ll have to click on over and find out where you land--might surprise yourself.