Wednesday, November 30, 2011

People Are Funny

    My daughter works at our city's largest grocery store.  She got off at 6 p.m. tonight and called me when she got in her car.  People were standing in line WAITING FOR A BASKET.   We live in a city of about 200,000 +/-....and have three local tv stations with very competent weather people.  We have known for days & days  now that a winter storm is coming and it should be snowing for several days starting tomorrow.  Most of the time we have sunshine, wind and nice temperatures.  The weekend was windy (normal for us) but beautiful, Monday was mid-70s, yesterday and today mid-60's.....the next five days will be highs in the 20's and 30's and lows between 17 and 22 so what did most of the town do??? Went to the grocery store tonight!  Probably part of it is that today is the 30th but it has happened like this for all of my adult life.  Drive past a grocery store on the night before a storm is expected and suddenly everyone remembers maybe they should buy some bread and milk.  I like the Boy Scout prepared.  But then I hate standing in lines and hate shopping when the rest of the world is in the store.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Just a so-so day....

     I just finished another cozy mystery....The Real Macaw by Donna Andrews.   Not my very favorite series but pretty good.  I've started another...Wicked Autumn by G. M. Malliet.  This is the first book by this author I have ever read.  It takes place in a small English village.  So far so good but haven't gotten that far in it.
        Brrr!  I just let my dogs in and the 31 degree weather outside is feels cold but in a couple of days I will be wishing for 31 degree weather.  Thursday the low is suppose to be 18 and the high 28.  A snow storm is coming our way.....suppose to snow Thursday through Sunday the last time I saw the weather.  I guess I can't complain since it will be December.  Luckily here in the panhandle our weather changes frequently so it will warm right back up in a few days.  I have never lived where snow was on the ground for months....I am not sure I could handle that.  That reminds me of one of my favorite movies....New In Town...a couple of years old, Renee Zellweger, Harry Connick Jr.....  did you like it?
     I think I have caught the last mouse! Yeah!  Unless because of the snow I get a new family.  Please, please, please let that be over with for awhile.
     I babysat a sick granddaughter, came home and picked up poop and cleaned up my garden area before the snow comes, and that is about it for the day.  Where did the afternoon go? That happens alot around here.
     For dinner I am having cornbread and a can of black eyed peas.  My dogs are driving me crazy....they love cornbread.  I gave them some but they want I better pay attention to eating and guarding my cornbread.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Singing Rabbi

I am watching the Hallmark Hall of Fame Movie Mitch Albom's Have a Little Faith. I love the singing Rabbi. One of the profound things he said was about different faiths. The Rabbi said God made trees. He didn't make one perfect tree. He made trees. All their branches lift up to God.

What Is Your Favorite Christmas Movie?

I love Christmas movies, especially the old ones or musicals.  White Christmas, Holiday Inn,  The Bishoop's Wife, The Preacher's Wife, The Bells of St. Mary's, Miracle on 34th Street are some of my favorites.  It's a Wonderful Life is pretty depressing to me.  My daughter and I both thought of a movie this week that we seem to remember liking....The Family Stone.... so we are going to borrow that from the library soon and watch it again.  A few that take place during the Christmas season in at least a portion of the movie that I really like are Sleepless in Seattle, While You Were Sleeping, Meet Me in St Louis, Family Man, You've Got Mail.  I liked the Santa Clause movies, Home Alone was ok, and I've never seen A Christmas Story.  Of course I love A Charlie Brown Christmas.  I don't like really stupid movies, or ones with ugly language or situations.   What do you suggest I watch this year?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

First Birthday!

Miss Taylor has turned 1!  She had her first birthday party today.  She was such a doll.   I can't believe how much a baby changes in one year.  After having four of my own and seeing my two grandsons every day you would think I would remember that.  This is Taylor's first ever picture.  Sorry! I couldn't figure out how to turn it.  And, here she is one year later....                                               

I love this monkey hat! A gift from Kali's friend.

me, Taylor and my son's arm
my daughter and grandsons

my other daughter
Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thank you, my friends

I love to get comments!  It feels good to think I have friends.   Tammy, when I saw a comment from you it really made me smile... thank you, I love hearing from you and it made me feel good that you checked in on me.  Thank you!  I miss you! I left a response to your post but I didn't know if you would see it down there.  Tell Debbie hi and i miss both of you so much!   Kathleen, it is always nice to hear from you too.  I really enjoy your blog and love your art.  Tish, it was good to hear from you!  I was worried about you it has been so long.  I think I have lost track of your new blog and don't think I am getting emails when you post... so email me and let me know where to find you.  It was good to hear from you.  If I ever get a comment I always post a response but like I said I don't know if you guys ever see them so here is my thank you for commenting!!!! 

Dirty word! Ugly Word! Dirty Word! Another Post Not for the Fainthearted

I HATE MICE.  hate. them. I have mice.  I told you I would tell you anything.  I am ashamed, freaked out, disgusted but yes, I have mice.   Back when I first saw the evidence in October I was hoping it was just one.  Ha ha ha ha ha. Nope.  The dadgum-uglyword-dirtyword-uglyword mouse problem just is driving me insane. Wed. night my grandsons were going to spend the night with me.  They have a room here at my house.  The door remains shut and no one goes in that room except for maybe the couple of times a month they get to come visit. I knew I had a mouse again because when the boys and I got home Wed. I went in the their mom's old room and I found evidence of mice (poop).   I thought I had gotten rid of all the mice a few weeks ago.  Disgusting Disgusting Disgusting so I showed my 9 & 11 yr old grandsons what mouse poop looks like and asked if they had seen anything like that in their room when they just went in there. Nope.  Whew. We were all relieved, still grossed out, but relieved that no mouse evidence was in their room. Then a few hours later the younger one goes in his room, turns on the light to get something and sees the dadgum-uglyword-dirtyword-uglyword mouse.  Bless his heart.  He turns off the light, shuts the door, comes and tells me that maybe he saw the mouse dart under his bed, and me who will always believe anything they tell me, runs to the room, opens the door, turn the light on and see the dadgum-uglyword-dirtyword-uglyword mouse dart out from under his bed to the closet.  I shrieked and my grandsons and I got really freaked out. My girl dogs got freaked out as well.  They couldn't have seen the mouse but I guess me shrieking was enough.  I called my daughter and when she got off work that night at 10 p.m. (she works at the city's largest grocery store and it was Thanksgiving eve) she drove the 20 minutes out here to pick them up.  My youngest grandson told me he would never be able to sleep in that room again.  I told him I will never be able to sleep IN THIS HOUSE ever again.  I had some mousetraps (at the first sign of mouse poop in Oct. I bought a couple of pkgs) so I set 3 in that room with a smear of peanut butter and a tiny bit of dry dogfood. I stayed awake until midnight just very upset that my grandsons didn't get to spend the night, upset that I bought this house, upset that I have been fighting the mice problem for 2 months now, that I am the only one that lives here thus I have to clean up the mouse poop, had to be the one to dispose of the 3 or 4 mice I have caught so far, worry over mice-carried disease, clean, disinfect, fret, worry, wonder how the heck they get inside, upset that .... well, anything anyone could be upset over I thought about it, mice, all the way to world hunger, war & absence of world peace.  Somehow, I DID manage to go to sleep in this house because I slept from about midnight until NOON on Thanksgiving. (I wasn't going to my son's home for Thanksgiving until 5-ish).  Obviously all that worrying was exhausting.  After I got up I immediately thought of .... and what I needed to go dispose of.  What a way to start the day.  I did catch 2 mice.  OH YUCK -- two of them.  The really bad news?  I mean the really bad news?  They were not the one my grandson and I saw.  We saw an adult, these two were small.  OH cr*p, I have a family.  I am growing my own.  Visions of sugarplums do not dance in my head, visions of millions of mice dance in my head.  I am sick, disgusted, grossed out, stressed, depressed, did I mention disGUSTED?  I want to run away from home.  Really.  I want to just shut the door, load the dogs in the car, and drive away.  Instead, I do what I have to do.  Set more traps.  The one trap that didn't have a mouse in it in that room? I could have sworn I put a bit of dog food and peanut butter on that one but don't see it now, but I am kind of scatterbrained and maybe I didn't bait it, so I took it and a couple more, baited with peanut butter and dog food bits and put them in that room to catch the parent mouse.  I went to my son's home and had a wonderful Thanksgiving evening, but I had to come home.  Before I got ready for bed I checked the dadgum-dirty-word traps. No dog food, no trace of peanut butter, no dead mice.  Obviously I have talented mice and lousy mouse traps.   Last night I really could not sleep in this house.  I tried to go to sleep but I just lay there, wide awake, fretting so finally at 3 or 4 a.m. I just got up and got on the internet.  Somewhere around 5 or 6 a.m. I got so exhausted I fell sleep.  The dogs woke me up around 10 a.m.  (yes, being retired is wonderful, I can sleep whenever I want can)  So today is Black Friday, busiest shopping day of the year.  I am not going to Wal-Mart or the mall until January, at the earliest.  I will have to go to Target at the end of December to pick up a prescription but otherwise, I'm not getting out and among that many people.  Sure not going out on Black Friday.  Ok, fine.  Get up, around and finally make myself face the music and go in that room to retrieve and dispose of the hopefully dead parent mouse.  Tell myself she is the last one in the house.  (do NOT burst my bubble)  Open the door and ... no dead mouse.  Empty traps, no dog food, no trace of peanut butter, no dead mice.  I tell myself that I did not see a bigger mouse the other day, it was just one of those little ones I already caught.  No, those dadgum stupid traps have no trace of dog food or peanut butter.  The dadgum uglyword-dirtyword-uglyword mouse cleaned them up.  The dadgum stupid traps obviously do not work as expected.  I expected them to trap the mouse, not serve as a serving dish.  I threw them in the trash (they didn't even snap when I threw them away. Stupid traps)  So what do I do?  Call my younger daughter and ask her to go with me ... on Black Friday morning ... to Wal-Mart.  Yes.  I did.  I went to Wal-Mart.  The truth is it was not bad, not any worse than any other day really.  I guess everyone was at the mall.  Fine.  We finally found the mouse trap location in the store.  There are 3 display boxes for mouse traps and only one pkg of traps.  I guess it isn't just my house because someone bought all those pkgs.  I got that one pkg, totally in disbelief that I went to Wal-Mart on black Friday and they only had one pkg of mouse traps.  I want tons.  I want every single dadgum uglyword dirtyword uglyword mouse out of my house.  I think I need more than one pkg of mouse traps. So, we go to Home Depot.  They have lots of mouse traps.  And by the way, Santa was there.  Not a kid in sight, but Santa was sitting right there in Home Depot waiting for some kids to come by.  OK, fine.  I come home .... get the new different brand traps baited with peanut butter and dog food and place TEN in my grandson's bedroom and SIX in my daughter's old room (thank goodness the only two places I have seen mouse poop this go round).  That was many hours ago.  I just went to made myself go to my grandson's room.  Opened the door, turned on the light and saw the dadgum uglyword-dirtyword-uglyword mouse dart out from under the bed, around the traps and back to the closet.  I WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO SLEEP IN THIS HOUSE AGAIN. Seriously thinking of taking the dogs and sleeping in the car.  It is a toss up.  The weatherman says it is going to be very cold tonight.  I want to run away from home.  I want my mommy.  I want a different house, not a single wide trailer, in a different neighborhood, totally mouseproofed.  I want a good night sleep.  I want to not be here.  Oh, and my girl dogs? That got freaked out when I got freaked out and shrieked?  While trying to bait and fix the dadgum dirty word ugly word traps it takes me numerous times.  These new ones seem to be better and very sensitive.  While I was trying to get them fixed they went off several times each, getting my fingers, me shrieking, them loudly snapping and scaring my poor girl dogs to death.  Zoe hid between the tv and a big plant for an hour and I could not find the little one, Gracie.  I called and called and called and looked and looked and finally I found the poor little thing, cowering in the bathroom.  I found her in the tiny space between the toilet and the tub ---honest to goodness---shivering behind the shower curtain!!!!  And that is the truth!  I finally realized she was there because the shower curtain was poofed out and quivering (and these are my "guard dogs"?)  Max was asleep in his favorite doggy bed.  And my daughter?  Bless her heart, she has to deal with agoraphobia too and it really stresses both of us to have to go into crowds of people but she went to Wal-Mart with me but when I told her I wanted LOTS of mousetraps she had an idea.... she said can't you just re-use mouse traps?  I told her I am willing to recycle LOTS of things, but mouse traps are not one of them.  Not even to be considered. Nope. I am not recycling mouse traps.  It is bad enough to have to get a dustpan and try to scoop that dadgum nasty thing up.  There is no way on earth I am gonna try to remove a dead mouse and use it again.  OH I am really never gonna be able to sleep again.......

Monday, November 21, 2011

There is Trouble in River City

     The Music Man..... one of my favorite old musical movies....  I have seen it a million times.  I should buy that dvd.  I wish I could watch it right now. The movie was made in 1962.  It is just wonderful.   One of the songs in the movie is "Ya Got Trouble" and that starts with T and it rhymes with P and that stands for "pool."  (playing pool was going to lead the town's youth astray thus "the music man" was in town selling band instruments)  Well, I GOT TROUBLE and that T rhymes with P and it stands for POOP!!!!    
view just now from my front porch to the north
       It is 39 degrees right now, and has been foggy and drizzly all day.  I was on my couch, wrapped up in a blanket about 3 p.m., coughing up the crud from my lungs after being sick for a week and my phone rings. Animal control is outside and they need to talk to me. I guess I had better explain.   My house is completely surrounded by a chain link fence with locked gates so no one lets my schnauzers out of my yard and no one gets in my yard.  I am hearing impaired.  My kids can come in my front or back door and if I am not in the same room I will not hear them open the door or shut the door....if someone were trying to quietly break in I sure wouldn't hear them so my fences are locked just as an added deterrent. 
view from my front porch this afternoon to the south
I am really weird in that when I am in the depression hell hole a knock on the door startles and scares me to death.  Locked gates prevent that.  If my friends or family want to come over they have a gate key and know to call first, or they don't have a gate key and they have to call first.  Anyway, I am dozing on the couch, my head under the covers, two of my dogs snuggled up with me when the phone rings.  Animal control is outside and they need to talk to me.  HUH?! OK, fine, I get up and go outside, thinking what the heck.  Schnauzers are barky dogs so I expected them to say we have had a noise complaint.  I mean, what else can it be.  My dogs are never, ever out of the fence.  Since my ONLY neighbor on my side of the street has 3, dobermans, 2 pit bulls and a schnauzer that bark too I am kind of surprised.  Across the street are two houses separated by two vacant lots that are directly across from me.  The one the farthest away is an older man who has lots of cats and never has commented on my dogs.  The other house has a new young couple that moved in just last week but they have a big dog...boxer mix, with no fence.   My only other "neighbor" is a piece of property 120 feet wide and half a mile long that is totally buildings, no businesses, no houses, just a few trees, rocks, lots of weeds and ant beds.....oh, and prairie dogs or gophers... we assume from the holes and mounds of dirt.   At the far end of that property are two pieces of has numerous cows and horses, the other has a lot of sheep.  Around the corner from them live the emu i pictured not long ago, and another piece of property that also includes a big lot for about 6 horses.  Next to them the people have cute little goats.  Yes, we are inside the city limits but we live in a funny area on the north end of town where many lots are often 1/2 acre to 2 acres or so, and animals have always been kept. Interspersed and all around us are regular neighborhoods with small lots big enough for a house and a yard.  It is a weird part of town. Out of that big chunk of vacant land I have a lot that is 60' x125' with a single wide trailer on it.  All but the first 15' feet at the street is fenced in. Ok, fine, you get the kind of rural setting I am in, minding my own business.  So I go outside to meet two of the nicest animal control guys ever.  I'm prepared for a barking complaint.  I am not prepared for what comes out of this guys mouth.  "Uh, Ma'am, we have had a complaint that you have been throwing dog poop over the fence."  "WHAT????"   "A complaint that you have been throwing your dog poop over the fence."  "WHAT????" (I guess they could tell I was stunned and speechless, or maybe I only know one word)  Finally after a moment of looking at them like they are crazy I proceeded to tell them I do not know what you are talking about.  It has been raining all day---I have not been outside throwing poop or anything else.  "No ma'am, the report was filed about a week ago"  "WHAT????" I tell them---nicely cause I am nice, plus I was stunned and baffled and, did I say I am always nice to people? because I am just a nice, law abiding, anti-litter with anything, nice old grandma lady, and they are being nice to me---so I tell them I pick up my dog's poop every few days in a white Wal-Mart bucket and I put it in that dumpster right over there. I do not throw it over the fence.  Meanwhile, my dogs Zoe and Gracie are at the fence barking their heads off at the officers.  Zoe is a little girl, about 15 lbs and Zoe is a bigger girl, maybe 25 lbs..  Anyway, the officers said at least ten times in the ten minutes or so that we talked that they had never had a report like this before.  Finally I had the wits about me to ask "Was it these people over here -- with the dobermans--that filed the report???" (because who in the heck would be turning me in, especially for something I haven't done, and they are my only neighbors "across my fence") "No ma'am, actually it was the man who owns the vacant property.  He was trying to sell a lot and he said he saw you throw poop over the fence."  "ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? I have been sick in bed with a bad cold for a week, I don't know what he saw but it is just me at this house.  I pick up the poop in a bucket and dump in that dumpster."   They are obviously looking in my front yard and don't see any poop, do see my two little dogs, and say one more time "we've never been out on a complaint like this.....".  I get my wits about me enough to point out that this neighborhood has dogs running loose all the time.  I pointed out the 3 dobermans and 2 pit bulls next door and told them those dogs are out of their fence and on this big vacant lot several times a day.  There is a couple that walk past my house every day and across the vacant lot walking to get a coke at the convenience store down the way and they have two big dogs with them that are not leashed.  Some new people moved in across the street with a big dog and you can see the house has no fenced yard. Any of these dogs could be pooping on that man's vacant property.  We have people riding their horses in this neighborhood all the time.  There is a creek on the other side of my neighbor's house and who knows what lives along the creek.  Before the people moved in we saw deer out here all the time.   Finally, I am drenched in cold drizzle and mad as I can be so I said "Let's go look for all this poop" and one of the nice guys says "Can we go look?" and I said sure let's go so we walk all around the two sides of my yard that border the man's vacant property.  110 feet of fence the long way and 60 feet the short way.  We walk along the fence and about 10 or 15 feet over so the three of us can easily see 30 feet from my fence outward.  Guess what? Where was all this poop I had supposedly thrown???  On the 110 feet side we ran across about 5, uh, piles.  The officer commented that my dogs could not have produced what we saw based on size. The next pile, THAT was horse manure, more big dog poop,  more horse poop, biggg dog poop.  The officers agreed nothing on that lot they saw indicated anything that could have come out of my schnauzers.  The animal control officers were very nice and just doing their job.  Darn, about two hours after they left I thought I should have told them THAT GUY who owns the vacant property....maybe HE needs to get out here and clean up his property....weeds, horse manure, someone's dog poop, and do something about those gophers and ant beds, and did I mention his weeds??!!
   I have a blogger friend who lives full time in an RV and travels all over the place.  I wish I had the money to do that.  If I didn't like the neighbors I could move on and see what the next place was like.   

Sunday, November 20, 2011

From she who will tell you anything...179 lbs!

At 18 I weighed 110 lbs.  At 25 and 9 months pregnant I weighed 175, in my 30's I weighed 130-ish,  for my 40th birthday a friend gave me a vhs tape of Richard Simmons' Sweatin' With the Oldies because I had ballooned up to 153 lbs.  It didn't work.  (OHhhh, you mean you can't just WATCH it???)  During my 40's I was sick the entire decade, my sick leave record with the city will attest.....constantly had a stomach bug, migraines, colds, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, hysterectomy, lumpectomy, strep throat, sinus infection, shots in my knee, URI...just constantly sick.  My immune system was MIA.  People at work used to say I was the sickest human they ever met (it did not make me feel any better).    If anyone had a virus of any kind I caught it.  For the asthma I was given rounds of prednisone and I swear all I had to do was pick up the prescription and I immediately gained 10 lbs...prednisone will make you gain weight like nothing else.  Then the depression got seriously bad and that added antidepressants that caused weight gain (as if I weren't depressed enough). By 50 I was 200 lbs.  In my 50's I briefly (for 5 minutes) weighed 180 after 6 months of Weight Watchers and shear determination (money was involved---it was an employer program) but within a 6 months I was back up to 200.    During those years I walked many, many miles for exercise, then the Morton's Neuroma raised it's ugly knot of nerves and I could barely stand on my feet.  I continued to count Weight Watcher  points occasionally, tried to watch what I ate (sorta), every Monday said this was the week to stick to the diet and if I made it a day that was a good week.  I love food.  In August I weighed 204.  I just gave up even thinking I was going to diet and exercise.  About then is when the Morton's Neuroma really flared up bad and I was in excruciating pain for months and going for a walk was impossible.  During that time I also lost my insurance and medication and I guess that did the trick (not having antidepressants).  I have lost 25 lbs in the past 3 months.  I don't know why.  I have kept drinking Dr Pepper and Cokes.  I have had cinnamon rolls on a regular basis.  If anything I think it is stress, lack of then a change in medication, and what I eat.  Since it is just me and the dogs I don't cook anymore.  Well, I haven't cooked since my mind is just to crazy to concentrate enough to try to follow a recipe or remember to time things but anyway....I like my crockpot.  I make vegetable stew an awful lot.  If stew is not in the crockpot then pinto beans are.  I eat either beans and cornbread or a bowl of stew just about every day.  I eat cornbread alot which is high in calories.  I don't really know how I have lost any weight.  I still eat ice cream.  However it happened I hope it continues.  By May I would love to weigh 130.  That would be perfect I think and make me be at a healthy weight.  But for today I am just really happy to be 179

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tomorrow is clean house day :(

      My oldest daughter needed to go to the mall so Taylor and I went along.  Santa is not coming until tomorrow but they had the see Santa area all set up and Taylor enjoyed seeing the Christmas trees and the robotic reindeer. 
     I intended to go to town this afternoon just to take a photo to put on this blog but I fell asleep and slept soundly --- through 5 missed phone calls.   At my grandson's elementary school they have races every November...they call them "turkey runs" but NO, turkeys are no way involved, just something fun for the kids to do and parents come watch.  My grandson and several other kids colided causing a pretty darn awful scraped and banged up chin, skinned knees and elbows, but he got up and kept running.  He sort of staggered and fell again...dizzy I gather from the first fall....except this time he hit his head on cement curbing.  Got a pretty good bump on the head, breaking his glasses and cutting his eye area, and more scrapes on his face.  Bless his heart!  Luckily his mom didn't have to be at work until 5 p.m. so she was at the school to have lunch with him and then watch the turkey run so she was there to take care of him.  She was just calling to let me know.  Then this evening my grandson's PaPa and NaNa took the boys to CiCi's Pizza and he walked into a pole!
     The photo I missed getting to take was of the tree going through town on it's way to Washington, DC to be the US Capitol's Christmas tree.  It spent its life in California.  Age is believed to be 118 years.  The Sierra white fir was 63 feet tall and the width of the tree at the base of it's crown is 23 feet.  I am always sad that they cut down these huge trees.  I wish they had just planted a tree to use and let it grow all these years even though it might be a few feet tall instead of 63 feet. But anyway, the tree was in town since I-40 goes through here.  You could go downtown and see it on the truck.  I didn't make it. 
    Whether I want to or not tomorrow is clean-this-house-day so my grandsons can put up Christmas decorations whenever they want to.  There is a lot to do.  I've made my list.  Now to just get up and do it.  I am soooo slow at things like housework.  I wish I had tons of energy and the inner umptf or whatever it is that makes people good and really quick housekeepers.  That is just not my talent.  I'm slow as Moses (Lordly if I had a dollar for every time my mother told me THAT!), it takes me forever to do things other people can do it minutes, I have no energy so I tire out easily and decide to rest when I should just keep on keeping on, I have too much clutter (really, how many plastic Wal-mart or grocery store bags do I need to keep on hand?? how many newspapers do I need in case the dogs have an accident? and papers----I keep stuff I just don't need, but I have been working on throwing away paper I don't articles I have cut out, old bills, junk mail) ..... and instead of cleaning, I look at it, get overwhelmed and would just rather read a book.  Plus, when I am in the black depression hellhole the thought of folding laundry or washing dishes might as well be someone asking me to climb Mt. Everest.  I really wish I had been born different and was a super effective and quick housekeeper, I really do.  About 35 years ago my favorite aunt sent me a cartoon she cut out of her newspaper.  She knew it was me!  I kept it on my fridge until it yellowed and wore out.   I wish I still had it.  It was Hi and Lois, and Lois was looking at this room that looked like a tornado had been through it and in that frame she says "I had so much to do I didn't know where to start..." and the next frame shows her on the couch with a book and she says "so I didn't"    ...   LOL!!!! That is me to a T!  And that is why I love --- she really helps me, mostly because she has sensible tips, she understands and she lets me know that I am not the only one....I really use to think I was (talk about no self esteem) and she shows me there is a way out.  When I have the energy and do her steps life is a lot better.   She says your house didn't get dirty in fifteen minutes and it isn't going to get clean in fifteen minutes but she has steps and tips how to get started and what to do.  Whew...anyway, tomorrow is cleaning day.  It is start over and get this place in shape and then do flylady's steps to keep it that way day.  I will love having a clean house again.  I just hope I can do it.  This is like running a marathon for me and I am not a runner.  Say a prayer for boundless energy for me please!
   and one more note---I have been taking the new med for 18 days now and i am doing better.  My feet have not hurt at all, well except for a few lightning bolts of pain shooting through them, but compared to before that is absolutely nothing.  I have not been on any long walks, not even any short walks for fear of stirring up the Morton's Neuroma pain plus I was in the throws of depression from not having medication for months, then the weather got cold and the wind has blown furiously, then physically I have been sick for the entire month ...  first I had that ongoing stomach flu that took everyone I know about 2 weeks to get over and left me weak and drained, then I got this cold.  For thanksgiving I just want to feel better physically and mentally every day and I know I am going to.  I have a lot to be thankful for. 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I feel better!  I got myself up and around to take care of Taylor today.  She is still cutting teeth.  I don't remember her being very attached to pacifers when she was a baby but she found one in the toybox today and stuck it in her mouth.  I got it from her and washed it and she decided to keep that in her mouth for a good bit of the morning.  I guess it felt good on her gums, I don't know.  I sucked my thumb forever no matter what my mother did---and she tried all kinds of things---so I have no problem with her having a pacifier for the morning if she wanted one. After awhile she tossed it in favor of my cell.  

I'm watching the news....
  • It got down to 19 degrees last night.  (Brrrr)
  • I am not real excited about flying but I am even less excited when a pilot can get stuck in the bathroom and no one goes to look for him.  (Just sayin'......  maybe the bathrooms need an emergency button, or the pilot, and other employees need walkie talkies??? I don't know, I have never been in an airline bathroom)
  • Amarillo, human population around 200,000 kills more dogs and cats per year than Austin, human population 812,000. a local group is pushing for a no-kill shelter.   (sad, sad, sad how many sweet animals are put down here in Amarillo.....IMHO Amarillo needs to work on animal population control laws first followed by the possibility of a no-kill shelter)
  • A New York man wearing a T-shirt declaring  "I'm not an alcoholic / I'm a drunk / Alcoholics go to meetings"  is facing DWI charges after a collision with a police car.  (sigh. eye-rolling. I have met people who I am sure would wear such a shirt AND drive drunk.)
  • Turkey, TX is a tiny town in the TX panhandle population 494. Animal rights group PETA is asking the town of Turkey, Texas, to change its name to be more vegan friendly.  (oh, please...)
  • Yesterday on Dr. Oz he said if you aren't hungry enough to eat an apple then you aren't hungry.  I thought about that and I think that is true.  Lots of times I have been "hungry" enough to eat a huge bowl of ice cream but at the same time not so hungry that I would eat an apple.  Explains why my almost-vegetarian/anti-fast food/sugar in moderation/no processed food son is so skinny and I am not.  I just saw a  commercial for a processed food that I am sure I will never try  ...  something called Steak-ummms  (it looked like it would taste nasty)  But "processed food" bacon?? -- I rarely buy it because bacon isn't that good for you BUT my favorite processed food is Oscar Meyer precooked bacon....warm it in the microwave for just seconds and you have the best, crispy bacon ever.  I could eat it every two favorite sandwhiches....BLT's, and a sandwhich made out of crushed bacon & shredded cheddar cheese stirred up with Miracle Whip to make a spread ...both eaten on fresh, soft, white bread.  Crumbled bacon over a salad, mixed in pasta salad, bacon on biscuits, strips of bacon on a scrambled egg sandwhich (the only way I will eat eggs).   Oh man, if it weren't so cold I would run to the store and buy some bacon..... it is my sister's fault..... the other day I was stressed and told her I was going to go to MacDonald's to get their pancakes ( I LOVE McD's pancakes) and my sister told me to get them with bacon.  On the menu the choice is with sausage or without sausage but I asked and they made me some bacon....I'm pretty sure it was my beloved Oscar Meyer precooked bacon... it was so good, and I have been craving it ever since.
  • Saturday is "Shop Small" day ---- a good idea ---- the idea is everyone make a purchase from a small business owner on Saturday.  I am sure small business owners need all the help they can get in this economy and up against Wal-mart type places just to stay in business. 
  • I"m not a big Regis fan but I am going to watch Katie Couric's 20/20 program with Regis.  I am a Katie fan.
After I made it through The Mrs. Jeffries book a few days ago I have kept on reading...obviously all the rest I got this week plus being on Cymbalta for 17 days has greatly helped my concentration.  Yesterday I read Leslie Meier's book An English Tea Murder and the day before that I read Maggie Sefton's book Unraveled: a Knitting Mystery.   I am about to start Donna Andrews' The Real Macaw.

Monday, November 14, 2011

I Hate Having a Cold, and yes, I am whine-y

Post # 212     Ugh! I hate having a cold. Like anyone LIKES having a cold.  I've had many cases of bronchitis and 2 bouts with pneumonia in the past, and colds and URI's just make my lungs hurt. I have pretty much been in bed since I came home from taking care of Taylor on Friday.  I won't get to go take care of her tomorrow.  I never see that little stinker on Sat., Sun or Mon and I sure do miss her and now I am too sick to go tomorrow.  I have coughed till my chest is killing me and I don't have the energy to move off the couch..  Hopefully one more day of rest and lots  of orange juice  and I will feel better.  Both my daughters came over and spent a good part of the day with me. They fixed lunch for me, kept me supplied with water and juice, went to the library and got more books for me,  got me a coke, hung out with me.  I just sneezed, coughed, moaned, groaned and slept.  My oldest son offered to bring me dayquill or whatever tonight.  I never take anything for a cold.  Most cold remedy things say do not take if you take thyroid medications.  Some things make me have an asthma attack.  Some things dry my sinuses up so much it makes me more miserable than before. What I should have done is stopped at the store on the way home Friday and gotten zicam when I first thought I was getting sick but by the time my daughter-in-law got home I was feeling so bad and so ready to get home and get in bed I didn't think of it. I think it really helps if you take it at the first sign of a cold. Today I got to talk to my grandsons on the phone.  I will be glad when Taylor is big enough to talk to on the phone. We all watched over Max.  He is still not acting like he feels well either.   All in all, it was a nice day, considering I just feel drained of anything that could be called energy.    I have to get better pretty quickly... not only do I need to take care of Taylor but my grandsons get to come spend Saturday night with me so I have to clean this house from top to bottom.  It is awful.  I haven't felt like cleaning anything since I ran out of medications in August and fell in the hellish black hole of depression and cried for months. During that time I used my energy to take care of Taylor and then did what I could at home, which was not much. Now that I am on medication again I will get over this cold and hopefully I will have some energy and get things cleaned up.  I want to be able to play games with my grandsons this weekend.  I just have to remember that story "spoons"--- or remember that my therapist used to use a 32 oz Dr Pepper cup for the same example---if you have  this much energy and you use this much on one thing, and this much on something else you only have this much left and it is OK to realize you can't do everything if you just have this much you pick and choose what you can do and let the rest go.  Depression just takes so much energy in day to day functioning.  People that do not have clinical depression just don't understand the truth behind some days it takes everything you have just to get up and get dressed and then your energy tank is drained.  I think that is why this cold bug has just wiped me out until I can not function, I have so little energy to begin with and fighting a cold is so exhausting.  I would just like to feel loaded with energy for one day and be able to do all the things on my to do list.                                                  I'm watching Diane Sawyer's report on Gabby Giffords. What an amazing woman, an amazing husband she has, and an amazing recovery she has had.  I have heard of music therapy before but did not realize really how it works or how important it is.  It sure played a big part in her recovery.  I can hardly wait to read the book:  Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope by Gabrielle Giffords, her husband Mark Kelly, and Jeffrey Zaslow.
   My daughter brought me 5 or 6 books from the library....mysteries and one that I really wanted and she didn't even know.  I had just read about it last week and thought it would be something I would like.  The Little Women Letters by Gabrielle Donnelly ---  here is the book description from --- "Vibrant, fresh, and intelligent, The Little Women Letters explores the imagined lives of Jo March’s descendants—three sisters who are both thoroughly modern and thoroughly March. As uplifting and essential as Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, Gabrielle Donnelly’s novel will speak to anyone who’s ever fought with a sister, fallen in love with a fabulous pair of shoes, or wondered what on earth life had in store for her. With her older sister, Emma, planning a wedding and her younger sister, Sophie, preparing to launch a career on the London stage, Lulu can’t help but feel like the failure of the Atwater family. Lulu loves her sisters dearly and wants nothing but the best for them, but she finds herself stuck in a rut, working dead-end jobs with no romantic prospects in sight. When her mother asks her to find a cache of old family recipes in the attic of her childhood home, Lulu stumbles across a collection of letters written by her great-great-grandmother Josephine March. In her letters, Jo writes in detail about every aspect of her life: her older sister, Meg’s, new home and family; her younger sister Amy’s many admirers; Beth’s illness and the family’s shared grief over losing her too soon; and the butterflies she feels when she meets a handsome young German. As Lulu delves deeper into the lives and secrets of the March sisters, she finds solace and guidance, but can the words of her great-great-grandmother help Lulu find a place for herself in a world so different from the one Jo knew? Some things, of course, remain unchanged: the stories and jokes that form a family’s history, the laughter over tea in the afternoon, the desire to do the right thing in spite of obstacles. And above all, of course, the fierce, undying, and often infuriating bond of sisterhood that links the Atwater women every bit as firmly as it did the March sisters all those years ago. Both a loving tribute to Little Women and a wonderful contemporary family story, The Little Women Letters is a heartwarming, funny, and wise novel for today."  Have you read this book and what did you think?  Did you read Little Women?  Little Women has been made into a movie at least four times, once with Kathryn Hepburn in 1933, June Allyson in 1949, next with Meredith Baxter Birney in 1979, and then with Wynona Ryder in 1994...which is your favorite version? 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

WOOO-HOOO! I Read That Book!

Post # 211      I had a very good day.  I still feel like I have been run over by a Mac truck and left for road kill but my son came to visit and that made it a good day.  I slept until 12:30 p.m. -- all morning -- and then my son came.  I had put some chicken breasts in the oven to bake when the dogs woke me up around 9 a.m., then I went back to sleep, so he took that chicken and finished lunch for us.  Since we were celebrating his birthday that was kind of sad that he had to cook but I just was worthless.  I think I chopped onion and that was about my only contribution!  He made King Ranch Chicken and we had that, salad, guacamole, chips and then chocolate cake which he made from scratch.  Yep, had to make his own birthday cake too!  I sprayed the pan with Pam. :)  When he was a little boy (he will be 26 tomorrow) a mom brought Baklava to school one day for the kids and my son just loved that.  He told me how good that was for years.  Saturday I went to Braums (a TX ice cream/dairy store) to get some ice cream for my sore throat and saw Baklava Ice Cream....they always have a big variety of I got that for my son.  I had never seen that flavor before.  For myself I got vanilla with butterfinger bits.  I started to get pomegranate but it was light ice cream and if I am going to have ice cream I want to real deal.  Now I wonder what it tasted like so I will have to go back sometime and try it.  Lunch was delicious and the cake was out of this world excellent.  It always is.  Even I can not mess up this cake.  We ate it piping hot out of the oven so we didn't even put ice cream on it.  I think everyone I know makes both the casserole and cake but just in case you don't here are the recipes...I promise they both are just really really good. 
King Ranch Chicken Casserole
  • boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced ( today I cooked 3 plump breasts that weighed 3.7 lbs and that was the perfect amount)
  • 1 pkg corn tortillas
  • l can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can Ro-Tel Tomatos and green chilis
  • 1 onion, chopped  (I had a big onion so I just used half)
  • grated cheddar cheese, the more the better
  • 1 cup chicken broth
I prefer to cook the chicken breasts in the crock pot but today I put them in oven and baked them, or you can boil on top of the stove.  Dice or shred.  In a large pan or dutch oven saute the onion in a little butter.  Add the cream of mushroom soup, broth, Ro-Tel, and chicken.  Heat and stir until the soup is blended with the other ingredients. If it is real thick just add a little more chicken broth.  It shouldn't be real soupy but not dry either.   Spray a 10" x 13" casserole dish with non-stick spray.   Cover the bottom with corn tortillas.  Cover that with half of the chicken mixture.  Top with plenty of cheese.  Repeat layers.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.   

Cinnamon Chocolate Cake
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 & 1/2 teas. cinnamon
  • 1/2 teas. salt
  • 1 cup oleo (2 sticks)
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 Tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 cup reg. milk with 1 T. lemon juice, let set 5 min to sour)
  • 1 teasp. vanilla
  • 1 teas. baking soda
In a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt.  Set aside.  In a saucepan place the oleo, water and cocoa.  Stir and bring to a boil.  Mix boiling mixture into the flour mixture in mixing bowl.  Set the saucepan aside to make the frosting.  In the mixing bowl of ingredients add milk, eggs, vanilla and baking soda.  Mix well.  Pour into a 10" x 13" pan sprayed with non-stick spray.  Bake 30 minutes at 350.  While cake is still warm from oven frost with this frosting (don't make the frosting until the cake comes out of the oven--it just takes a few minutes):
1/2 cup oleo (1 stick)
3 Tablespoons baking cocoa
6 Tablespoons milk
1 lb powdered sugar
1 teas. vanilla
1/2 chopped pecans if desired
Place oleo, cocoa, and milk in the saucepan. Bring to a boil.  Add the powdered sugar and vanilla, beat until smooth. Add nuts and pour over warm cake (it will somewhat soak into the cake)

again, I don't like things super sweet so I prefer to half the frosting recipe but my kids like the entire recipe.

After  my son left I decided I was not going to do anything the rest of the day but lay on the couch and read that book.  I DID IT!  It is a victorian mystery, British, so it took me a while to get through it, and truthfully, some pages I just scanned part of it but I did enjoy it.  I can hardly wait to get another book. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Max and I Need Hot Chicken Soup

Max, Gracie and Zoe

Brent and Max
Post # 210  This is my oldest son, Brent  and my oldest dog, Max.  When Max is glad to see someone or feels "love-y" he gives hugs.  That is what he is doing in this picture.  He hadn't seen Brent in a long time so he tackled Brent and gave him a big ole doggy hug.  He firmly presses his cheek to ours and puts his arms around our neck.  Max is 11.  Becoming a senior citizen in the doggy world.  Like me.  Last night he scared me.  Max was asleep in a doggy bed next to my chair when he started jerking violently and flopping over like a fish, sort of a sideways somersault, at least 3 times.  You have to understand that Max has not used any energy unnecessarily for several years.  Probably 10 years ago I would tell Max stories to my boss and he always said that Max is a basset hound born in a schnauzer body.  He is just a pretty laid back dog.  Flopping around for no reason is not something he did even as a puppy and what he did last night was not a playful thing.  Bless his heart,  once he stopped flopping around he ran between a big potted plant and the wall.  Also something that is not normal behavior for him.  My other two dogs ran over to him, obviously concerned for him.  I quickly put the girls outside and Max walked out from behind the plant but sort of sideways, wobbly, slow.  He was not well.  I picked him up and held him on the couch and he stayed there the rest of the night.  Before bed I sat Max in the floor and tried to get him to go outside but he just walked a few steps over to another doggy bed (I have them all around the living room for the 3 dogs) and stayed there all night.  He did get up and go get a drink but he stopped and laid down and rested a bit in the maybe 8 feet from the water dish back to his favorite doggy bed.  I think he had a seizure or something.  This morning he went outside but spent the rest of the morning in his doggy bed.  I gave everyone a doggy bone (we call them cookies) and Max wouldn't have his cookie----he never turns down cookies.  A sure sign he does not feel well.  This afternoon I convinced Max to go outside and I went with him to watch him walk and he was walking just fine.  Later Casey came over and brought her dog, Andy.  Max loves having another boy come over and he always plays with Andy.  
Casey's dog, Andy and Max's friend
After awhile Max got up and played with Andy for a bit so that made me feel better.  When Max's time to pass comes it will be very hard on me.  I hope it isn't any time soon.  I hope he just passes away in his sleep and doesn't suffer.  He has been an excellent dog and friend and he deserves to go easy.

I had a good week with Taylor. She and I have a real good time together.  She is getting to be such a big girl.  Friday she and I ran up to KFC to get me something for lunch.  She had already eaten her baby food lunch but I gave her a bite of my mashed potatoes and gravy and that little stinker proceeded to eat the entire serving!  Kept opening her mouth like a little bird and I kept feeding her.  She loves real food!  I was starting to feel like I was getting the same "flu bug" her other grandma Nana, aunt, momma, and daddy have had so I thought oh goody, she will have such a full tummy she will take a long afternoon nap, and I will lay down next to her crib and take one too.  She always takes a pretty good afternoon nap.  Guess what?! Friday she took NO nap!  I guess all those potatoes gave her lots of energy because she was too busy playing to take a nap.  I went home and went to bed since I felt like I was getting sick.   The only thing I got accomplished today was I had my mammogram.  It was a nice surprise, not as much compression as they use to do.  Wonderful, caring people at the Women's Imaging Center at Northwest Texas Hospital and I am really grateful that I was able to have one for free since I have no insurance....and yes, I told them I felt like I might be getting sick but they let me have my mammagram anyway.  This evening I feel like this guy:
stock vector : Sick with flu. Vector illustration of a poor guy sick in bed with a thermometer in his mouth.
I have had my flu shot so I know it is not really the flu but I have that headache, bodyache, sneezing, coughing, eyes hurt, throat hurts, totally exhausted, dizzy feel like I have a fever bug.  When I was getting ready to go get my mammagram this morning I thought it hurt to just brush my hair.      If I didn't feel this way I would have gone to our local bookstore today to meet Ree Drummond, better known as Pioneer Woman to blogging fans and food network viewers.  Well, that is probably not true.  I am not real star struck and wouldn't really get that big of a kick out of just walking up and saying hi to someone.  I mean, you can stand in line, buy a book, get her to sign it and say hi but that doesn't really appeal to me.  I would have loved to have been able to attend the rodeo that is taking place here in my city though....and sit next to her, and get to talk to her about the rodeo, etc.   Her family is here in town for the 16th annual WRCA World Championship Ranch Rodeo. Her husband, brother-in-law and the other cowboys from their ranch are the Oklahoma Working Ranch Champions for this year and here to represent OK.   She is going to blog about it here...   In fact, when Casey came over tonight we talked about how fun it would be to go see her family compete in the rodeo but we decided the way both of us feel we would have to have 1) someone to drive us to the rodeo and 2) pick us up at the car with a golf cart and haul us into the civic center and to our seats because there is no way we could come up with the energy to walk that far.  Keeping us awake might be something else, even though the rodeo would be exciting.  Dang it, the first time I really, really want to go to an event....  Maybe Amarillo will get to hold the rodeo again next year and they will come.  I read her blog every day and they feel like extended family.  Later----OMG----I just found out that rodeo tickets were $18 to $30----way out of my budget, and sold out anyway, but there is no way I could afford that.  I don't ever go to movies, plays, events although sometimes there are things that I would really like to get to do.  I hate being fiancially challenged. (I know, it could be a whole lot worse, but sometimes I would just like to have some "fun" money)  I don't know how families afford to go to anything, I never could afford to take my kids to anything like that way back in the day but sure couldn't now.  I really think I should have been born with money :)
     I am still trying to read this book:  I have read the first 36 pages or less several times now.  That I can not concentrate enough to just pick up a book and read it cover to cover is a continued stress and thorn in my side.  When you go from reading a book a day all of your life to reading a book maybe every 4 months or so it is really, really heartbreaking.  I have so many books I want to read (I have a notebook full of titles that I haven't even added to the lists over there on the right I hear of new titles coming out that sound interesting I jot them down)  I have 6 more days before this book is due so maybe tomorrow.   Right now I am going to go to bed and hope I wake up full of energy.  My youngest son is coming for lunch tomorrow to celebrate his birthday.  I have been gargling with hot salt water and drinking hot green tea with honey, taking tylenol and when I get the energy I am going to get up and find the humidifier and get it going.   I think Vicks Vaporub should be involved.  When I was little I remember my mom rubbing Vicks on my chest and then pinning a hot washcloth to my pajamas over my chest. My son and daughter-in-law were taking Thera-Flu yesterday.  My daughter went to the Dr Friday and got a prescription cough syrup and antibiotic.  She has bronchitis.   I think I just have the crud.    What is your home remedy for the flu bug?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Dreary Day

Post # 209 
      What a weekend! I slept through it! I am not sure if it is the new medication, the depression, the weather, or just me being exhausted...probably a combination of all of that but I have slept about 18 hours out of every 24 the past three days.  I have to stay awake all day tomorrow to take care of my granddaughter.  Casey has a cold so she won't be coming in to relieve me at noon so I will need to stay until 5:30 or later so the plan is to stop and get a 44 oz caffeinated soft drink on the way at 7 a.m. 
    This morning about 4 a.m the dogs woke me up to go outside.  I just got them back inside when the lightning started.  By the time I was back snuggled under the covers the rain started coming down just furiously.  It sounded so awful I thought about getting up and seeing what the heck was happening but I was so sleepy, so warm, so comfy I thought if my single wide trailer gets blown away I might as well be wrapped in this warm blanket!  I am still here so we did not blow away!  It was very cloudy all day.   Almost 7 p.m. and it is drizzling again.  Suppose to get down to 25 degrees tonight so I had gone out and sprayed my car windows with vinegar.  I read that if you do that you will not have frost on the windows.  About the time I got in the house the drizzling started so I guess my vinegar will be washed off.  Will have to try that again another day to see if it works.   I don't have a garage so leaving here at 7 a.m. means scraping heavy frost of the windows on these cold nights.  

my dogs love Travis, no matter what is on his "hay-ED"

     Yesterday I had two good visits.  My daughter and grandsons came over and I enjoyed them so much.  I had a hard time waking up from my afternoon nap (side effect of my new medication I suppose---or just my regular depression brain fog) so I didn't get to play a game or cards with them.  We agreed we will do that in two weeks when they get to come again.   I told my grandsons I was getting rid of a bunch of things and one was a clown wig.  Travis decided he needed it. I am going through junk I have in my room and getting rid of everything I don't really need. 

    My son is a barista at Starbucks and when he got off work Sunday he came over for dinner.  It was a cold evening.  I had beef and vegetable stew in the crock pot and made of my favorite meals.  He is just the most interesting person I know.  I love our conversations.
My son Trey, when he came over last night
      His entire life he has been a learner.  If he is interested in something he learns everything he can about it, and amazing to me, he can remember it and share it in the most interesting ways!   When he was just a little boy, barely reading but reading everything he could find out on exploding ants, dinosaurs, elephants, giraffes ---just anything, he could talk for an hour or two about the subject and we all told him them he was destined to grow up to become a college professor.  He is working his way through school.  I have no doubt he will be a professor one of these days, as well as an author.  He is just a talented young man.  He plays the drums, can throw a pot and make beautiful ceramics, when he was in his early teens he did great watercolors, he writes, he cooks and once thought about going to school to become a chef, but writing is really his passion.  One of the interesting things he taught me last night was about Lake Vostok, which is buried under the ice, yet liquid, miles underneath Antarctica.  I did a little research so I could make sure I remembered the facts correctly----4 kilometers of ice stand between the lake and the surface.  In 1957 the Russians established a remote base in Antarctica, the Vostok station.  The coldest temperature ever found on Earth (-89°C) was recorded here on the 21st July 1983. In the 1970’s a British team used airborne radar to see beneath the ice, mapping the mountainous land buried by the Antarctic ice sheet. Flying near the Vostok base their radar trace suddenly went flat. They guessed that the flat trace could only be from water.  20 years passed before their suspicions were confirmed, when satellites finally revealed that there was an enormous lake under the Vostok base. It is one of the largest lakes in the world – at 10,000 square km it’s about the extent of Lake Ontario, but about twice as deep (500m in places). The theory was that it could only exist because the ice acts like a giant insulating blanket, trapping enough of the earth’s heat to melt the very bottom of the ice sheet.   Amazing!  I would never have known about that had Trey not brought it up in conversation.  His conversations are like that!   Trey is taking a geology class.  We talked about the Oklahoma earthquake and he explained in detail about earthquakes.  We talked the holidays (we both would like to sleep through them), we talked about art therapy.  I told him about another blogger's yellow iris painting and we talked about that was therapy for her whether she knows it for sure or not.  We touched on politics---we both hate it, we talked about child development.....he has a great understanding of the mind and of development in young children.  We talked about cats (his girlfriend has one) and dogs (mine) and the funny things they do.   Not in a morbid or sad way at all, we talked about death, Steve Jobs final words, hospice (if I were not such an emotional mess I would want to work in hospice), assisted death (one of his favorite author's, Terry Pratchitt, has Alzheimer's and has been investigating pushing for the right for assisted deaths in the UK where he lives).  I told Trey about a woman I saw on The Texas Country Reporter  that has a pair of Clydesdale's, an old wood and glass hearse wagon and she takes people on their last journey to their grave slowly in quiet and dignity.  I do not want a funeral, I want to be cremated and my kids take me to the mountains and dump me out and them have a good time playing cards and games in a cabin for the weekend instead of spending money on a funeral.   If I were having a funeral, and money no object, being delivered in that horse drawn wagon would be cool, though.  
        My daughter, Casey, came over tonight and had dinner with me---leftover stew and more cornbread.  It was nice to have her visit too.  I am lucky to have my kids here in town.  This weather stirs up her fibromyalgia and then to have a cold on top of that is just the pits for her.  I hope the cold germ skips me.   Trey and I talked about how sick I used to be.  When I worked at the library I had bronchitis a couple of times a year, a cold every other month, migraines.  Nausea all the time.  My asthma was much worse. One year I had pneumonia twice.  I think all the dust on the books in the library really was unhealthy for me.   
      I just watched J. R. dance on Dancing With the goodness, that was a beautiful dance!  I think he is just awesome.  I need to go to bed but I love to watch DWTS's and J. R. will dance again before 9 p.m.   
     My feet do not hurt at all! I am not sure if it is the Cymbalta or if it is because I have slept since Friday afternoon and therefore have not been standing on them for 3 days but it is heaven to not hurt! 
     Back to my cleaning things out of my bedroom...In my former life, among my part time jobs was selling jewelry.  I haven't done that in two years and I never wear jewelry so I am putting all my Premier Design jewelry samples on Craigslist soon if you know anyone who would be interested.   
     Casey picked up a library book for me last week, Mrs. Jeffries and the Mistletoe Mixup by Emily Brightwell.  I haven't been able to concentrate enough to read a book since last summer and over the weekend I sure could not since I couldn't stay awake.  I have been trying to start it since Thursday and haven't gotten beyond reading the first three pages over and over.  Maybe tomorrow I can.  I used to pick up a book and read it cover to cover in one sitting in an evening.  I haven't read a Mrs. Jeffries book before.  This is # 29 in the series but I wanted to start with it since it has a Christmas theme.  I put a hold on it at the library when I read about it on new releases.  Have you read any of the series?  What did you think?
   Oh, crumb!  I finished watcing Dancing With the Stars, and now Castle is coming on! I like Castle....what to do, watch it or go to sleep so I will be wide awake tomorrow?  Guess I will catch this episode of Castle later...  goodnight everyone! 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Going to McDonald's

Post # 207

Taylor has her coupon and is ready to order!

 In case you never go to McDonald's in October you could purchase a page of coupons for a $1 to hand out for Halloween.  I don't know how many coupons, but a bunch... a dozen maybe.... for a $1 so that is just a great deal.  Coupons are good for ice cream cones, white milk, apple juice, a hamburger, or apple slices.   I don't like Halloween, did not hand out candy or anything else, but I did purchase the pages of coupons for my grandsons and the kids next door and across the street.  Friday Casey and I got to pick up my grandsons after school so we took all 3 of my grandkids to McDonald's to let them use a coupon.  Travis chose to get milk, Mason an ice cream cone and we decided Taylor better go with apple slices.  Her parents let her have applesauce so it seemed like a safe choice.  While we waited in line Taylor patted her cousins on the head.  I'm pretty sure that meant "I love you, man." 

Saturday, November 5, 2011

My Momma Said---

Post # 206

I'm still thinking about the upcoming Thanksgiving meal.  Those of us here in the United States are familiar with the green bean casserole most of us serve on Thanksgiving.  I love it!  In case you haven't ever had it ...where have you been? ....I will post the recipe from the Campbell's Soup Company at the bottom ....  but first something that tickles my funnybone that my grandson said...
Even left over the next day I think this dish is wonderful but it does take on kind of a gray color, uh, just not the most attractive dish right out of the refrigerator.  Warm it in the microwave and it tastes great, just don't concentrate on it's looks.  When my grandson was 2 yrs old it was a day or two after Thanksgiving and I had pulled out all the leftovers and had them on my counter.  I was holding him in my arms and pointing to different dishes and asking him if he wanted some of that on his plate.   When I pointed to the leftover green bean casserole he got this wary look on his face...eyes just llike the Precious Moments kids....and he slowly shook his head and said very seriously "Ohhh, my momma told me don't EV-A put that in my mouth!"  Where he got that nobody knows, or what he thought it was! That story is one of those in my "bee happy" notebook of things that make me chuckle.
Here is the recipe from the Campbell's Soup people...

1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell's® Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon soy sauce
Dash ground black pepper
4 cups cooked cut green beans
1 1/3 cups French's® French Fried Onions
Stir the soup, milk, soy sauce, black pepper, beans and 2/3 cup onions in a 1 1/2-quart casserole.
Bake at 350°F. for 25 minutes or until the bean mixture is hot and bubbling. Stir the bean mixture. Sprinkle with the remaining onions.
Bake for 5 minutes or until the onions are golden brown.

Friday, November 4, 2011


Post # 205
     :)   This post is not for the weak stomached!  Today driving through downtown I was at a streetlight next to a cattle hauler.  This reminded me of something so I whipped out my camera and took a photo for you in case you don't live where cattle trucks are common. 
    Being a single mom was not always a piece of cake. My boys knew I was occasionally, well, a lot of the time, a pushover.  Some times I truly believe the Lord stepped in to give me a hand.  Our city is intersected by two highways...I-40 east and west and I-27 north and south.  Being in cattle country means a lot of cattle hauler trucks travel these highways.  The trailers have two levels, a double decker so to speak, and hold a lot of cattle.  Those cows poop and urinate so they are standing in a nasty smelling sludge.  When my boys were young, maybe 7 and 8, we were driving up I-27 through downtown next to such a truck, which is just about a daily occurrence.  It was summertime, I had the car A/C on and the boys were in the back seat with the windows down. I asked them to roll the windows up since the A/C was on, which was followed by "it's hot back here" and "the A/C doesn't even get back here, Mom" from them.  I repeated my request, they repeated their protests while I was stopped at a street light next to the cattle hauler.  As the light turned green the truck and I both started moving forward and at the same time I rolled up the boys windows with the electronic controls. The timing was split second perfect.  The second the window was closed on the side of the car next to the truck that truck lurched forward sloshing enough of that sludge so that my son's window was completely covered in green/brown stinky, nasty, gross, cow poop sludge.  I didn't have to say a thing and we were all too stunned to say anything but eeuuwww! anyway --- we all realized that had I not rolled the window up when I did their little faces would have been covered in that nasty mess. I had no idea that was going to happen! But believe you me, I took that as a teaching moment.  I told them from now on whenever I asked them to do something they had better do it without questioning me because sometimes I know things that they don't and to remind them  if they ever did hesitate I would say "COW POOP".  It worked like a charm!!   Throughout their childhood I said 'cow poop" a million times and whatever I asked for got done!  I have been driving next to a cattle truck a million times in my 57 years and never before or since have I seen cow poop sludge slosh out on a car!