Showing posts from July, 2015

Out of the mouths of babes...Amelia-isms

When Meelie comes to stay with us, we know we are in for a treat. She is 7 going on 15, very precocious and easy to be around. Her favorite word is "why" but she know that she has a limited supply when she come in the door. She is careful to use the allowed amount wisely. We love her a big bunch.

I have new sliding drawers in my kitchen cabinets thanks to my wonderful husband. I can slide out the appliance drawer and get the mixer without unloading the whole collection. I was showing it off to 7 year old Meelie and bagging on Grandpa. "Boy," she said, "you are really really lucky!" and grinned from ear to ear. I didn't expect that. She made me realize that I need to count my blessings more.

We were getting up from dining room table and she walked over to a mirror that hangs on the wall. As she began to touch the mirror all over I said, "Meelie, please don't do that. When you touch a mirror, your finger leaves something behind that will make t…

Photographic Truths: LIFE IS GOOD!

And this is only the beginning!


When Should We Feel Guilty?

I wrote yesterday about making rain. If you don't remember, I was the grandmother that planned a pretend outdoor theater party in my daughter and son-in-law's backyard then woke up the morning of to find rain, rain, rain. I talked to my daughter and we cancelled the party with no further ado. Period.

Then, as any grandmother will tell you, the guilt began to seep in and I began to question things that I could not change. After all, who wants to disappoint their grandchildren? Not me that is for sure.

Here is where it gets tricky. Guilt should be all about what we can change. Wouldn't you agree? We can't change the past so feeling guilty is useless. We can't change the weather so feeling guilty about something that is caused by the rain is useless. Even feeling guilty about not being perfect is useless.

We honestly are in control of so few things in our lives. If we are smart we have passed the mantel to our children as we age and they control a lot of the social t…

How To Make Rain

There are people here in the Western United States that need a rainmaker...not the financial kind but the water kind. I just want them to know that I am able to do that. Yes, you heard it from here. I can make rain that comes out of the sky.

On several occasions I have made rain. Really, it isn't rocket science. You can do it too. It is all in the wrist (or something). See you only need to think really hard and make big plans for a special event that needs to be held outdoors. It can be a wedding, a camping trip or even a gathering of family in the backyard for a bbq and a movie. You need to send at least 20 text messages and get everyone to agree on a date and time. Then wait. How hard could it be?

So, if you live in the Portland Metro area, you can thank me for the rain. I send out a text message on Monday inviting everyone to my daughter's house to watch a movie outside. (Oh, did I mention that you also need to inconvenience someone you love with your plan?) The text messag…

Don't Turn Your Back

It is summer, very hot, the plants are dying and the sugar ants are sure we are canning sugary peaches. I know, not very likely you say. But tell that to the ants.

How is it that the ants move in and the plants die when I turn my back? I went shopping yesterday. I got up this morning to find ants in the kitchen and the flower pots on the patio dried up.  How does that happen in one day?

My daughter-in-law made a mixture of the essence of mint oil and water that is suppose to repel the ants. I am giving that a try.

We found a herd of polite ants that decided to use the front door as their entrance and that was the day I became the ant murderer in the family. I used insecticide and the mint spray. It was all guns blazing around here. They haven't come back. I don't mind sharing but really, there was food by the front door? I don't think so.

As for the plants, I have come to a place where I am watering when I am watering and the plants can just live or die. It is their choic…

How do they figure out how old you are?

English: 10. Measure length at side of figure from waist to below buttocks plus 2 inches. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
You will need this picture as a reference
for information posted later on this page. I suppose
doctors know this already. :D Karen Austin over at The Generation Above Me published an educational article regarding all those tests they can do on us to determine if we are going to live forever (or longer). It was called Bio-Markers for Aging. I perked up right away when I saw it because, as you know, I am curious. My outward age and the age I am inside my head are NOT connected in any way so I sometimes need a reality check.

The list you see here are suggested tests that people keeping statistics or doctors tracking our decrepit bodies for signs of rot can use. I am sure a professional has a more scientific way of phrasing it but since I am writing for lay people I want to keep it simple. Here was the list Austin referred to from "the Dunedin Birth Cohort study  by Th…

Creativity: The Bucket is Never Empty

There was a time when I absolutely refused to create a bucket list. You know that list of things you want to do before you die. Just the idea that the bucket would be empty and then I would die was more than this small town girl could wrap her mind around. All I could think was, why are those people in such a hurry to do all those things? Don't they know that when the bucket is empty their life is over? It was wrong on so many levels I cannot even begin to tell you why. I often talked about my fear of the bucket list. My friends really didn't understand why I was resisting the idea. Someone pointed out to me that I could keep adding things to it, new ideas and goals and adventures. For some reason I thought that I would run out of things to do. It kept me from even thinking about those things I would wish for or set out to do. In fact, up until this very day I have never given a bucket list a try.
Then along came Maya Angelou, one of the wisest women I have ever known. She did…

What Were You Doing When Bloom County Disappeared?

A blast from the past is not past anymore. Bloom County is back in print...well not in print but still. It seems that Berkely Breathed has decided that the time has come to bring our beloved, dorky clueless Opus back to life online. People like me that depended on the comic strip to get the day started with a laugh are, of course, very happy.

Bloom County 2015 now has it's own Facebook page (I know, can you imagine how confused Opus will be?) It is all very modern and up to date and trendy and handy. But it makes me a little nostalgic for the newspaper and all that it meant in our lives. All of a sudden I miss the crossword puzzles and the ladies section with recipes and Dear Abby and my husband reading the funny items from the inside pages in section III. Even though the times have changed, we at least have a little bit of that era back. As for me, I am very happy. Thank you Berkely Breathed. TBBFTH!
So, twenty-five years ago? Do you remember what you were doing in 1990?



Books: What Quote Do You Remember?

I have read so many books during my lifetime. There is no way I can remember every title or the author of each one. I am actually surprised at how many I do remember and authors too. But the thing that strikes now is that I keep lines in my head.

Remember that opening page of East of Eden. John Steinbeck brought the valley around Salinas Ca. alive with very few words. I thought I remembered the words but when I went back to read the book, I had rewritten the opening sentence in my mind. I liked his version better.
He wrote, "I remember the Gabilan Mountains to the east of the valley were light gay mountains full of sun and loveliness and a kind of invitation..." Those words brought back childhood memories of a place that I needed to treasure before I could see the beauty of the place and feel it's invitation. I love everything that Steinbeck wrote.

Now I am reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. Inching through this book has allowed me to digest the story. Early in the b…

Aging: Make Mine Beautiful

Note: This is a guest post I did three years ago. When I went back to see it again, links for every sex medication know to man had been added to the text. Read this and see why it would draw that kind of spam. 

James Joyce posits the idea: when we are in the presence of great beauty, our minds go still. We feed on aesthetics. Not only does it come into play in our private life but it also enhances our social interaction. If we are wearing or using a device that is aesthetically pleasing, not only do we feel good, but the person that sees you also experiences pleasure. So, if we are to believe the classic poet, we will want to select a gift or a device for an elderly relative or for ourselves that not only functions but is beautiful.

While our grandparents lived with just what was necessary, today’s boomer generation is accustomed to beauty at every turn. Even the groceries stores are designed to please the eye and increase the appetite. Those of us that are aging in this era want and ex…

Books: Some Walking Away Books

I love beach reads in the summer so I am on the hunt for fast reads that are interesting and different. I just finished reading Lynne Spreen's latest book, Dakota Blues. I think it has been out for a while but I am just a little late getting on board.

The book made me think of how many books I have read about leaving...some characters simply going out the door and finding a new life, others start walking and forget to stop and some being taken against their will. It is a very interesting scenario for a story. Here are some of the books that came to mind.
Dakota Blues, Lynne Spreen. This is the story of a busy 50 year old unappreciated HR director finding a life after she is fired for being too old. Spreen has found a wonderful vehicle for telling the story in a 90 year old eccentric neighbor of her late mother and a very old RV. Earthly Possessions, Ann Tyler. The character, Charlotte Emery thought she had found a solution for what she saw as a dull life...she gave most of her eart…