Showing posts from August, 2014

Aging: The Mailbox is Just Not any Fun Anymore!

We used to get things like offers for free vacations and catalogues from exotic companies in the mail box. Now we get some really strange stuff aimed at people that are old and bills of course. Seriously, the mail is just not what it used to be.

Did you know that you can actually buy a fake mailbag online...I mean isn't that illegal or something? Isn't there a law that only mailmen can carry the trusty bag? If there isn't, there should be...I'm just saying.

Speaking of mail, we did get some today. My Fitbit wristbands came and they are just as beautiful as I thought they would be.

Now if my Fitbit would just give me my 15,000 steps I earned today walking 18 holes of golf, I would be all set. My husband got them and they are equal to 7 miles or something. I want mine but NO...I only got 8000 even though I am much shorter than he is and I hit the ball a lot more times. I love the bands but the Fitbit is really making me mad!

Then there was the offer from the National Cr…

4 Best for a Retiree's Summer

Best Summer Fun:

Best Funny Video: My Husband's Ice Bucket Challenge before the Craze Hit the News!

Best Book: My favorite book this summer.

Amazon Best Books for August (Click this Link to see them all.)

Blogging (and other stuff): On Messing with Perfection

You know the old saying "if it's ain't broke, don't fix it"? That is the way I feel about this blog of mine. The little old thing just keeps perking alone and, in spite of what I do...not because of what I do, it continues to draw people.

For example, today my readership was down markedly but my earnings were up. My last post about bean salad was not a winner exactly and the one before that about expats dogs did even worse. spite of my poor showing today, did I tell you that my earning were up. Strange but true!

When I look at what people were reading I found post on How to be a Snow Bird, How to Add "Reply" Function to the Comment Section, and a post with a List of Kindle Books. All of those post are quite old.The post on Happy Hour and Why Do We Reread Books I wrote last week also made the cut. I suppose an experienced blogger would say that those older posts were "evergreen" meaning that even after a period of time, people still wa…

Food: Best Green Bean Salad Ever courtesy of Jamie Deen

Okay, my husband is done with green beans for a while. I have tried giving them away to the neighbors but they are not biting. They were picked and in my huge Tupperware bread bowl...what to do now. 
The darn beans were going to be used or I am going to die trying. 
And to think I was begging the plants to give me some vegetable just a short while ago. Darn! make a long story short...we had our neighborhood party today and I figures I would feed them to people I don't see all that often. They have to eat a little bit of everything at a potluck whether they like it or not.  I chose the Jamie Deen Green Bean Salad Recipe from Food Network. It was just perfect and I had every ingredient in my fridge or in my garden! The wine vinegar was homemade from our own stash. No special shopping.
Kosher salt 1 pound slender green beans, ends trimmed 1 cup feta cheese crumbles 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half 2 tablespoons chopped red onion 1/2 cup slivered almonds 3 tablespoo…

Links: How Expats Move with Their Cat or Dog

A cat and dog, the two most popular animals kept as pets. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) My son and his family just moved from Shanghai, China to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates and not only did the children and wife come did two dogs! Only a few years ago I would have thought it was impossible to move the dog from the house to the back yard. It had never occurred to me that animals could follow a family half way around the world.

In the case of my son and his wife, the moving of pets just did not seem to be a problem. When they left the Middle East 8 years ago, they brought a cat named Lester and a dog named Jake with them. The dog was a given I suppose but the cat was...well just a cat. (I'm sorry RV, my cat, and all the other cats in the world. That is just mean I suppose.)

But, you see, Lester was an Arabian cat that had gone through a terrorist attack on their compound in Saudi Arabia. He got himself locked out of the compound for several months and turned up one after…

Happy Hour: Enough Already...I want french fries!

Supper time was approaching and I had a pork loin with trimming ready to be prepared. I had tomatoes, greens, cucumbers and apples ready to go. Our garden is a bounty right now and I am working on using every bit of it and have been for 6 weeks or so. It was just as I put on my apron that my husband expressed the desire to go out for "Happy Hour". I was excited. I like going out even if it is just to Home Depot. I am a very cheap date.

But I am not a beginner in this business of marriage. I know that the phrase, "Happy Hour", has two very different meanings. It depends on if you are a female or a male. Here is the way it went:
I was thinking wine and a green salad.  My husband was thinking beer, sliders and fries.  I slipped on a slinky long skirt, put on some makeup and jewelry...I was going out on a date.   My husband got up out of the chair and walked to the his t-shirt and shorts...he was going out to get some real food. Enough with the vegetable alr…

Books: Why Do We Reread Books

My grandchildren just amaze me. I learn something from them every time we talk. For example, I learned just a couple of weeks ago why children will reread a book that they love over and over. After all there are so many wonderful things to read it seems a waste to reread anything doen't it?Maddie explained it to me first.
"When the book is done I miss the characters." she said. "I don't want the book to be over." 
Is it as though they have become friends and are a part of her life. Of course she misses them. Why didn't I know that? I have done that over and over. There is a book called The Last Convertible I have reread several times. The character, era and setting appeal to my idea of what a romantic life would be like. Even though the book made me sad, I still keep going back.
Maddie expressed the same feeling. She told about a book she was reading but had stopped. "It makes me sad," she said. "The little girl just woke up one morning a…

Off My Chest: On Jealousy and Keeping Score

I would like to say that getting older gives one the grace to avoid keeping score in life. You would think that our minds would explode with all that tallying and counting and feeling neglected or hurt or smug. But never really goes away for many people. I try very hard to avoid going down that path.

On taking paths, I need to have you look at a blog post I read this morning written by a mother that is sending her child off to college. Beginning a new life usually requires some help from someone you love and this mother had some of the best advice I have ever seen...we could all use it no matter our age. A new beginning needs a new attitude and some gumptious courage. In The 12 Things Fangette Needs for College inspired me to rethink the qualities I need to embrace in my life that is continually changing.

During my retirement life I have moved several times and entered into new communities of people both here in Portland and in Tucson, AZ. The life in our Arizona RV resort has…

Dining Out: Let's NOT Talk About Money! Let's Have Some Dessert!

I think it is very interesting how we older people are willing to talk about money in front of our friends. We will actually say things out loud that we thought we were only thinking. Bless our wee cotton socks...did we just say that?

For example, we will take one look at the bill after dinner and grumble about how much the coffee or dessert costs. When we take a look at the menu, the first thing that comes out of our mouth is "this is a lot more expensive that the place up the street"...out the waiter and other patrons can hear. Forget about the lovely possibilities for food...just tell me how much that cup of soup is please!

Expensive dessert or a money pit? (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Sometimes I beg people to leave the subject alone but all I get is "oh Barbara!" and to think that I even say "please". Then I find myself doing the same thing.

See, I was taught that money was a very poor topic of conversation. We didn't talk about it even tho…

Travel: Victoria...getting there is easy!

Victoria, BC is one of those beautiful little cities located on the water that seems to call you back again and again. I am not sure if there are any first time visitors left on the west coast because there certainly weren't any on the ferry that took us from Seattle through the Puget Sound to the southern tip of Vancouver Island. 
In order for us to get there we chose to ride Amtrak from Portland to Seattle. It was one of the easiest trips we have taken in quite a while. No car or driving to worry about. There were lots of taxis to take us from the King Street Amtrak Station to the ferry terminal and the ferry ride was very reasonable.  Here are a few of the pictures I took on this trip. I hope you like them. The food is excellent and shopping is great...but there is so much more. Butchart Gardens, a bus that becomes a boat, a beautiful museum, butterfly gardens and the wonderful crown jewel, the Fairmont
Empress Hotel.

We stayed in the Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites and thou…