Friday, May 29, 2015

Say Yes!

Recently, *Brenda at Coffee Tea Books and Me* wrote a thought-provoking post about saying yes. As one who says no a lot, I felt that she might have been writing just for me. So I prayed a little prayer that I might be given an opportunity to say yes more often.

 
It only took until Thursday when my sister called and asked if I'd like to go for a drive and get some ice cream. I said, "no." She's been following a new eating plan and ice cream does not always agree with me. Still, I decided to go on the 
ride —  an errand for a mower part. She and her husband have been caring for our father's lawn. Next week, they will be caring for him in their home once he is released from rehab. 


While parked waiting for her, I noticed these and, though I can't imagine what I'd do with it, I'm pretty sure I need one.

~that would be a NO~

Earlier, my daughter called to invite me out for a Paint Nite. Having visited *Linda at Linda's Life Journal* for years, I know all about Paint Nights. ☺


Now I have not painted since I was a child. Laurel, who does paint, was probably amused by my slap-happy technique. I am sure that I looked like Tom Sawyer whitewashing his Aunt Polly's fence. Not too inspired. Funny thing is...I had fun!


We had no choice about what we would paint...pretty arbitrary in subject matter; however, both Laurel and I were a bit rebellious. The instructor was a fun gal who said that there were no rules except this pledge: no saying the painting is a pile of baloney and no requests to fix this. You probably want to see our paintings.

 

There you go... Not close enough? Okay, bend my rubber elbow.







I'm tempted to say that mine is a red hot mess, but I have decided to hang these together as a memory of a fun mother~daughter evening. I have just the place in the attic bedroom upstairs.



My daughter usually does paintings like this...

~Cape Elizabeth~


She prefers to work with oils over acrylics.


Are you a person who says yes often or is your answer more often no can do? There's definitely a balance  and it is good to find it.


A blessed weekend to you...


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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Not Such a Great Vacation

Listen to my story about a family from Maine
Who saved their money to fly on a plane
Down to Florida for to have some fun
And that's when this story comes undone...
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As you may know, I was dog~sitting last week for my grandpuGGy. That's what I call my son and daughter-in-law's pug as he was their first baby. Like so many newlyweds, they had a 
practice puppy. ☺
***
John, Fioré, Bazil and I had a 
pretty good week, though I never 
dared to send this collage, which 
was meant to say all is well. As you can see, all was not exactly well. Bazil 
(rhymes with "frazzle") was 
profoundly homesick.
***

Adam and Michelle and their sons Sam and Jake had gone on a Florida vacation along with the boys' maternal grandmother and their grammie's sister. Within a half hour of arriving, the first child became very ill, then the second, then dad, then mom. (As far as I know Grammie and Auntie escaped the plague.) It was not quite the week they had planned. There were doctor visits and anti-nausea medication. Mid-week, they visited Animal Kingdom and had to leave within an hour. Bummer!


***


They did have one truly marvelous day at Universal Studios. Oh the joy on their faces!



left to right top: Adam, Jake, Michelle
left to right bottom: Michelle's mom, Sam, Michelle's aunt



***


I thought Adam and Jake were particularly stoic. If you'd like to see what caused them the fright, go to the 7 minute mark on the video *here.*
***

Disney World had to be saved for Friday. Sadly, Sam didn't feel up to it for long; Michelle was not up to it at all; Adam and Jakob did get to see the fireworks.


So what began in games and high hopes, had been planned for a very long time and with such anticipation ended ignominiously hugging the porcelain god. Not a pleasant time. Let's not even talk about the expense of such a vacation.

~We are all going to Disney World!~

(ETA: March Treasure Hunt when boys discovered what was planned for May 15—23)


***


John and I felt so bad, but were pleased to learn at our Memorial Day Gathering that their humor was intact. Though Jake had begged his parents to rent a car and drive home on Wednesday, he was soon enough souvenir shopping settling most decidedly on an Ironman costume. He had $60 to spend and the costume was $65. I asked him how he was going to pay his parents the loaned funds. He asked his mom what he needed to do to earn the extra money. She said, "Well, Jakob, you didn't eat very much last week..." Oh dear!



***


Sam spent his souvenir money on four baseballs. He is now in search of a display case.

***


I would have ordinarily taken photos of our BBQ, but the gang was all looking a bit peaked. John told them that they were "survivors." Yes, they are whole and intact and safely home.


***


Bazil was thrilled to see his family again. As we drove nearer and nearer his home, he got more and more anxious until he sounded as if he were hyperventilating. I asked John to let us out lest there be an accident in the car. Bazil pulled me up the street at a full trot and bounded into the house to hugs and kisses and pats. Later, as we sat around the table, I noticed that Bazil was lying on the deck dozing without a care in the world. He was not anxious, he was not whimpering in his sleep. All was well. He was home.



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Saturday, May 23, 2015

It's Freezing!

Several posts ago now, I mentioned that I wanted to bake Lovella's Roasted Rhubarb Scones as soon as I could harvest some rhubarb. I baked them on Thursday when the heat in the house needed bumping. Oddly enough, there is no fireplace and no woodstove here. We probably could use one or both on days such as these have been. This morning, it snowed up north and in the mountains. Ugh. So tired of global cooling. (The weather in so many places is just plain crazy so I am a whiny wimp.)

My success with the scones may not have been great, though they tasted  good, especially if you love rhubarb! I may have to bump the sugar next time as mine were exceptionally tart.
~click for recipe~

Sorry about the final photo there...let's just say that my scones did not look quite as lovely as Lovella's. I can now officially document that the rhubarb in the Northeast is a month behind British Columbia (the Northwest). Figures!☺

 
Bazil's time with us is drawing to a close. It has been so exciting to have him with us. He has been responsible for my laziness this past week. I really haven't been able to get out of his sight without a lot of whimpering, distress, and general separation anxiety. He said goodbye last Saturday to four of earth's dearest and he hasn't gotten over it yet. He'll be over the moon crazy with joy when they all are reunited. Bazil rhymes with frazzle. They'll be plenty frazzled all right.

It's Memorial Day Weekend. I have been amused by the news reports of how everyone is traveling because gas prices are .92 lower than last year at this time. What they fail to report is that they are also up by .69 this spring alone. The old half a truth is still a lie going on with this kind of reporting. So, no, we aren't traveling this Memorial Day, though I know that many of you are!


This morning, I was out taking photos of the beautiful blue sky and the flag when I looked back at my kitchen window and could see clear through to the other side of the house. Thought it made for an interesting photo about on par with the shovel of last time. That's the Roasted Rhubarb Scone recipe perched in the tea mug there.

 ~my front lawn~

I never grow tired of looking up at my neighbor's beautiful lawn and huge oak and maple trees. Lots of people have been tricked into thinking that the entire lawn is mine, but I've only mowed it once.


A meaningful and blessed holiday weekend to my fellow countrymen. We pray that the United States will have many more years to do good in the world and for its citizens. We honor the fact that we live in the Land of the Free because of the Brave.


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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Leading an Exciting Life

Oh it is a lovely morning here in Maine. We had frost warnings overnight, but no frost came near us. 



I am not living an exciting life, my friend. The most exciting thing that happens to me is being dragged around the house several times a day by a geriatric grandpuggy


who is very selective. The front lawn was not suitable (thank you, Lord). Perhaps it was that neon green.


The rhubarb patch would have served well, but I came to my senses just in time to yank the chain and move on. Besides, I need some rhubarb because I'm baking with it today and it will require no extra seasoning. The house is chilly and the oven will be just enough to warm things up to bearable.


I like the strangest things...the shovel at the ready for those shovel-ready jobs.


The phlox garden is doing well. I remember chatting with Linda about phlox some weeks ago. She lives in Texas and her pots of phlox were blooming long ago. I wondered how long it would take for mine to show up...must look into that. Do you ever check back on such minutiae? 


How do you get a project accomplished that you know is above your abilities? I start right in knowing full well that John will not be able to take it for long. Works like a charm and I always get more than I was even imagining.


The hill had been eroding and we needed to stop it. My idea was to build stairs. John's idea was to build a "patio."


Rain came in the night and chiseled a groove on the left side there. He'll be working on getting that smoothed out eventually before it gets too hard. We have more work to come and perhaps I'll show our progress again some fine day. You may remember seeing this area looking this way:




That's a wrap! Have a wonderful day...

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Out With the Old and In With the New


Goodbye Old Blue! It was time. 


Superman took out the old and Superman 2 brought in the new with help from his Super Wife (no pic).













The new set is forest green with sage. It is every bit as heavy as the old and sits on big bun feet. I'll be able to see vacuum under easily. It is much more comfortable and easy to rise from. I do have some repairs to make as my sister's cat has had her way with this set. Naughty Lily! I think the color is better for what's going on in this room so I am pleased. John did not think it was green, but it so happens that he was wearing a shirt the very same shade of green when he first saw it after church. I told him that if he sat in the chair, he'd disappear and he very nearly did.


I have shoes by every exit these days as a visitor is with us this week who needs to get out and about a few times a day.

I hope not too many times today as it is cold and rainy and we'd prefer to stay cozy.

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Friday, May 15, 2015

Your Wish is My Command

You asked to see the shoes so stay tuned, I'm sharing. 

First I thought I'd share what many of you see at your own house these fine May days. To think I ever despaired of spring!


~azaleas blooming~
~bees buzzing~


















~lilacs blooming~




~projects going~

 ~Skechers walking~

And, as promised, the 
shoes — Skechers. Marvelously lightweight and yet supportive. So comfortable I didn't know what comfortable was before. Aren't they adorable? (She asked with tongue firmly in cheek. ☺)

I know that I said I'd be back in three days and it has only been two. I just remembered that we'll be receiving our new-to-us living room furniture this weekend and there is much to do before that.

Have a blessed weekend, my friend!

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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Of Mother's Day and Morphine Drips

Hmmm...let's see. I think it is time to post more often before my stats bottom out for the last time. A look at the past few months is truly shocking. Let's just say that only you are reading anymore. =D



I enjoyed a lovely Mother's Day weekend. My daughter took me shopping on Saturday and bought me shoes...real shoes...not slides, not flops. It makes walking so much nicer. I am too old for the choices of former years. On Sunday, the boys came to visit with their dad bringing warm scones, a hanging plant, and 
a Scentsy bird. 




I asked the grands what they had given their mother for Mother's Day and Sam said, "The best thing we could give Mom was visiting you." What a pip! Anytime! Glad to be of service.


The boys were so cute. They found two little girls "tight-roping" across a fallen tree in the ravine. They didn't think it looked safe (as indeed it was not) and told their dad. My son in turn told me and I asked him to calmly and firmly tell them 
to get down carefully. I tend to get shrill in such moments. Don't they look darling in the forest? No shoes! And that really scared me, too, because of all the glass down there.



Yesterday Monday morning, my daughter called me (after working the night shift) saying that she was very ill and would need to get to the doctor. We spent many hours in Emergency Care from 10 am to 7:30 pm. She has an ulcer and so is on
the proper medications for it. I had no idea that people could be so very ill with an ulcer. They gave her a morphine drip and anti-nausea medication and Percocet before they released her.


Poor daughter was a titch loopy and said to the nurse, "I'm just glad that you didn't make me wear a gurney  gourney." Ever helpful, I explained that she meant "a jersey." The nurse said, "You gals have to be tired. You mean a *johnny!"
 

I  know that I was tired, but my daughter had worked all night and was still going. No wonder she didn't remember "johnny," though John can't figure out how we could forget that. (*I have since been told by my sister that "johnny"
is a local term. What is the term for hospital nightgowns in your area? No need to tell me if it is "hospital nightgown." ☺)


I'll save what other little news for another post in a day or three. I haven't even told you about the squirrel in the basement or that my father is having another rough go with a blood clot in his "good" leg. Oh life can be so exciting. I'm hoping for a return to less excitement.


Thank you for stopping by! 


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Saturday, May 9, 2015

My Mother's Arms

Tomorrow is Mother's Day in North America. I have been thinking about the holiday for many weeks and what I would say or even if I would say anything. I wanted to share a video of Cynthia Clawson singing *My Mother's Faith.* Trouble was that I don't exactly agree with the theology of it on a number of levels. What I do know is that every time I listen to it, I am reduced to tears. Sometimes, it would be more true to say sobs. Doesn't that just inspire you to listen? ☺


My mother's arms held me many times through the years. She passed away in 2011. She was not a perfect mother because no mother ever is, though she was as close to perfect as a human could be and has become more perfect with each passing day of missing her. Once you have said that last earthly goodbye, you become very aware of the stark difference between life with a loving mom and life without one. My own grandmother would say, "When your mother has gone to heaven, you have lost your best advocate on earth." (The Lord is, of course, our best advocate always. We're talking mortal advocate for nobody loves you like a good and godly mama.) I was blessed. I am blessed.


On the other hand, my father and I have never shared that close a bond. The dynamics of our relationship were messy and the relationship is broken even now.


He is now 85 years old and ill. He is facing end of life status with a broken knee, leg, and heart. He is recovering from a heart attack just this past Monday. He doesn't have much working heart tissue left as the result of heart disease. Needless to say, these things press heavily on my mind. I have given him to God many times through the years. It is one of the reasons why I liked the novel The Shack because it helped me to realize that some things only Heaven can heal. My prayer is that one day the circle will be unbroken.


I want to wish you a Happy and Blessed Mother's  Day, one where you remember your mother or honor her. There are many women who have never had children of their own, yet are mothers who serve in that capacity every single day. Perhaps you are one of those or have one to remember or honor! Whatever the case may be, keep your faith in The Lord intact and thereby help others to find faith of their own in Him. It's what this life is all about.
Many blessings... 


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