Showing posts from January, 2016

Did Your Charmed Childhood Include a Trip to the Dump?

Where did we shop before Goodwill and yard sales and Craigs List? I don't believe I know anyone that doesn't have a story about how they acquired that wonderful old chair or table on the sunporch. Without those second hand places we would be lost. How did we ever manage to survive?

I was talking with our daughter a while back and she said in parting that one of her favorite childhood memories was time she spent with her grandfather and father cleaning out the garage. My parents lived in a very small community in eastern Oregon so everything that was disposed of out of the garage went to the dump.

She and her brothers were allowed to make the trip to the dump to dispose of the collection out of the garage if they helped clean.

The dump was treasure hunt waiting to happen. She described how people would bring old chairs and broken tables to the sight outside of town and sit them lovingly along the hillside. As soon as she and her brother piled out of the pickup they would rush t…

What can you control in your small world?

My friend and I were talking yesterday about how hard it is to be civilized. Really, really hard. As civilization has evolved, man has learned that it is not okay to act like a caveman anymore. Living with other people peacefully has left us with tasks and restraints that our baser being does not want to obey. And, surprisingly, is it not the big things that get us.

It is our behavior with those around us, what we think as we look out our front window, feeling superior to those less fortunate and our tendency to act on our anger that creep up on us. Being a good person is very, very hard.

In fact those humans that wrote the bible talked about those instincts back when civilization was emerging  tells us how slow we are to civilize ourselves. They are not listed as such in the bible but do appear in Proverbs. From what I can find they may have been collected byscribes of King Hezekiah, who reigned from 715 to 686 B.C. I suppose they could be the root of all evil. They are:
Envy: the de…

700,000 Views...but whose counting?

I do check my stats. I went over 700,000 last week. But I don't believe that 700,000 have stopped to read this blog. It is just simply not possible is it?

On Facebook I saw a post that said that we should not brag about our views. I can't remember why but the person that said it seemed to know what she was talking about. That is why I would never mention it anywhere else than right here. I can do that here because I own this space.

The question would be "WHO is counting?" There are search engines that do something if the material here is interesting. People look for something and by magic a word I use or even a subject falls into that category and a blip about the blog appears. The blog post How to Be a Snow Bird...answers and questions is one that draws a crowd so a lot of my traffic is related to that one post. How those stat counters work is a total mystery to me.

It really is beside the point...the number is big and I will take it. Not that I'm counting.

Do …

Facebook Says I Need Updating!

Facebook says I need to update my image. I was a little surprised because I thought I looked pretty good. Did they think that I had shrunk or what? Honestly, a girl could get insulted!

I have been a Facebook user for a long time. During that time I suppose I have changed my image twice. Really, once I get a semi-good photo, I don't mess with it. Good is as good as it gets these days.

But then I noticed that people change theirs a lot. Each change reflects some landmark in their life. Grandchildren are added or a picture of skydiving might be something worth bragging about. But my life is pretty routine except when we travel to Dubai or stay a week in Florence, Italy. When we do those things you will seldom see me in the picture. I require some editing and stuff before I want to feature my picture.

So I took a picture of myself with my Photo Booth app this morning and I suppose I will add it to Facebook just to prove that things have not changed a whole lot.

The whole idea of updat…

Aging with Pogo: We Have Met the Enemy and He Is Us

Back in the day when I was a young woman I would chuckle at the things my Mother-In-Law would say. She was living in a nursing home near us. My husband and I would go for a social visit on Sunday evenings and she would tell us about her week.

The stories were often about table mates or being excluded or the "crazy lady across the hall." Once she told about going to a birthday party in the big dining room where everywhere she look she saw gray hair, gray hair, gray hair.

That seems so long ago and I often puzzle about my attitude toward her life.

Today my husband told me we are seeing the enemy [aging] and he is us. NOW I get what my mother-in-law was talking about. Living in a community that resembles a college dorm more that anything is strange. We experience the same angst about friends and fitting in that we did back then. There are cliques. And finding a group to fit with takes time.

It is hard to make friends and it is very easy to lose them. They are more precious tha…

Books: What is Your Cup of Tea?

Have you ever read a book and endorsed it based on your own personal preference? Did you do that because you thought the subject matter was bad or the writing horrible or because "it just wasn't your cup of tea"? Book reviewers endorse or nix books on a daily basis but it seems to me that they must have some criteria beyond "personal preference". Surely that type of person must have a broad range of interests. I hope so because I depend on those people in a lot of cases.

Last night I had dinner with two women that love reading as much as I do. The subject of how we pick books and what will turn us away from something we thought might be good came up in the conversation. Two books that I had read were on the considered but dumped list. A personal friend had in both cases told the reader that the books were not worth the time it took to read them. You will be amazed at what the two books were.

The first was the Pulitzer Prize winning  The Goldfinch and the secon…

For the Love of Pete (Apple) and Trolls

Apple IMac(de) (Photo credit: Wikipedia) We owned on of these back in the day...unfortunately
I did not name it.  I am sitting in front of my new iMac computer, a modernized version of my old computer, needing to write but not filled with focused inspiration. Not that a lot of stuff isn't flying around in my head. What to write about is the dilemma.

Thought #1: Trolls
A string of bloggers in a midlife age group I belong to began talking yesterday about trolls on the Internet. You know, those are those humans that take pleasure from telling us how they REALLY feel...the Donald Trumps of the blogging world in a way. Of course everyone is appalled when they are attacked personally. One woman was called a very bad mother which does honestly go the heart of who and what a woman is.

Then an author of published books said she made lemonade. Isn't that wonderful? She said that when she received one of those reviews she made notes and used the information in her next book. It was one of…

Bullying...Monitoring Your Own Backyard

Facebook logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Pam Lutrell has written an article that is featured on Huffington Post. It is titled Another Life LostWhen Will We Pay Attention. Pam wrote about the loss of a student she knew when she worked for a private school in Texas. The young person took their life because of an onslaught of social media bullying. The article was so well written and heartfelt.

As with all things that happen related to the community of students and those that are harmed by students bullying other students, my immediate reaction was that the school should have prevented this tragedy from happening. Then I began to wonder. Are we looking for or expecting something from our schools/government that we could actually in part take care of ourselves.

Social media is such a ethereal thing that even the most sophisticated user can forget that what we say is actually read and processed by a real human being somewhere and that that human may take what is said personally.

Every child…

Eyes in the Back of My Head

"How did you know that Mom?" they would ask when I would predict the arrival of a friend at the front door. "I have eyes in the back of my head!" was always my answer.  I explained that, when you have eyes in the back of your head, you just know things. As the years passed my children came to believe that I had great powers. The truth is I never told them any differently.

I suppose all mothers have that intuitive ability to know the next thing that will happen before it actually does. We see the harm in hammer thrown into the air and what will happen if you run at the swimming pool or don't learn to use the brakes on that new bicycle. It just comes with the job.

This morning I woke thinking about the New Year and those eyes that could see the future by looking backwards. My second set of eye were being called into action one more time. Could I look back and maybe know what was coming next?

See, we have just married a grandson off...2 married and 10 to go...and…

2016...Our Family Is Growing

We flew home from Arizona yesterday. Our flight was to leave Ticson at 8:30 and we were to catch a connecting flight in Phoenix at 11. As with all the best laid plans this one went awry. The plane had mechanical difficulties. We missed our connecting flight. We had a layover of five hours in Phoenix. View of Mt. Good and Mt. Adams
But you know was so much fun. The layover in Phoenix allowed us to drink a glass of wine, learn about the Oregon environmental agency from the lady sitting next to us in the bar and to practice taking a little nap sitting up. Life is good.  In the picture above Ethan (our grandson) is the hunter and Mikaela is the beautiful girl with the antlers. They are to be wed tomorrow afternoon at 2:30. 
And we are enjoying all of the joy filled excitement that goes with an occasion like that.
Happy New Year's to everyone and I'll be talking to you later.