Saturday, October 31, 2020

Ten Things of Thankful

We are fast approaching the month that is associated with gratitude and thanksgiving, but not without a blast-from-the-past photo reminding us that this is Halloween! I love how one has no fear of the Jack-o-Lantern while the other would like to push it far, far away.

I am thankful for the blog hop Ten Things of Thankful hosted by Kristi of Thankful Me. She introduced me to this site long before she was the host. It was her encouragement that made me consider the possibility that I could even attempt entering the world of blogging as a senior citizen.

1. Comfortable fall days

2. The appearance of perhaps actually locating the  gopher tunnel that was leading to the open hole and being able to insert the tasty pellets into the tunnel so said gopher would ingest them 

There has been no sign of any new mounding activity in that particular area since then.

3. Our big sturdy screwdriver is my go-to tool for digging all the root of a weed out of the ground, but this week I was able to use it to find some of the gopher tunnels that were leading to the open holes created by the gophers! 

4. Having my yearly physical this past week with necessary lab work, etc. deemed necessary now in the works to make sure all is in proper operating order

5. Being able to little by little make progress doing big dirty jobs by tackling one small  area at a time as I sort through materials in a shed tossing out some stuff, putting similar items together (things to take to hazardous waste, things others might be able to use, things that could be recycled, etc.

6. Driving by a nearby wildlife refuge one day after a doctor appointment

We have not done many of the things during the pandemic that had been a common occurrences before COVID-19. It felt so good to just drive over there and sit in the car watching the birds in the water.

7. When the leaves turn red

Japanese Maple tree decked out in its glory

8. Family group texts/emails to keep everyone informed at the same time when it seems appropriate

9. More restful nights of uninterrupted sleep than not this week for me

10. Vic and his problem solving abilities

One morning at the beginning of the week as I was unloading the dishwasher, I managed somehow to accidentally flip a couple of forks. The result of that amazing flip is shown in the photo below. I could not get them untangled and when I gave them to Vic, he tried the same tug-a-war I had tried and got the same results. Then he came up with another idea and quickly was able to separate them. How would you have tried to separate these two forks?

Fork puzzle


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Friday, October 23, 2020

Ten Things of Thankful

Well another week has flown by and it is nice to still be able to discover things for which to feel thankful. I'm sharing these with you and linking them to the blog hop, Ten Things of Thankful, hosted by Kristi of Thankful Me who is carrying on the hosting efforts of the others before her. 

1. Animals which aerate the soil

An earthworm moved closer to the surface by a gopher

Aerated rocky soil thanks to resident gopher(s)

Worms, gophers, and moles help aerate even the hard red clay soil in our area, and it is also a reminder that there is more than one way to look at a situation, aargh problem. Worms are always welcome, but not so much the gophers.

2. A  lesson learned from experience

A maple tree that took root years ago is too close to a building.

With a little bit of help the rest of the tree should give up the ghost.

Do not let a tree seedling take root by a building. That seems pretty obvious, but there are times in one’s life when other things are given higher priorities, but alas, eventually some things can no longer be ignored.

3. For a crossword puzzle I was working this week that helped me learn that what I learned verbally but apparently never saw in print was incorrect

The note following fa in Do-Re-Mi is sol not so!

4. A couple and two of their sons blew the fallen leaves off the lane and did some pruning in our yard for us one early evening this week.

5. I am thankful  for the abundance of online recipes that are so quick to find, even though I am quite sure any number of cookbooks I have would have similar recipes.

Last week I posted about the crabs neighbors had shared with us and how I had frozen part of the crab meat. This week I made open-faced crab melt sandwiches for lunch one day and crab cakes for breakfast another day. Yummy and quick!

6. Playing a grownup's version of a matching and sorting game

Sometimes cleaning out a shed is kind of like that. HaHa

7. Dinner for two delivered to us, just because, by another caring young couple this week

8. Visual and auditory stimulation by talented Matthew Buckley

9. Being able to verify that our ballots were received and that we will be notified when they have been counted

10. Being able to see some improvement in Vic’s mobility and that there is now an appointment scheduled next month to see if cortisone shots might help

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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Six Sentence Stories - Boutique

Each writer has their own technique for inserting the prompt word into this weekly blog hop challenge. Some have already written a story, maybe even one with more than six sentences, that just requires some adaptations and the substitution of a word to make it fit the requirements. Others just start writing, hoping somehow for inspiration as to where to plop that cue into place while not going over the limits given. Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog hosts and promotes this week's writing adventure called Six Sentence Stories - Boutique.

Bracing against the wind, arm in arm they trudged toward the end of the pier to the place where it all began, the day when it just as easily could have ended all prospects of ever seeing one another again.

The roar of the waves dashing against the pilings wasn’t anything like what now seemed to have been an unusually sublime day so many years ago, but in the interim they had gained some experience facing some of their own storms, although a few unfortunately were solo confrontations when one or the other wasn’t willing to bend.

They each seemed lost in their own  thoughts for a few minutes until a huge wave splashed onto the top of the pier drenching both of them and causing an eruption of laughter and screams from all those who had joined them in what was like an unplanned oceanic baptism.

Combined with the blare from a boat navigating through the channel below and the noise of the intensifying gales now pressing on their backs as they rushed to return to their car, he quickly agreed to her suggestion to stop at Bo’s before heading to the bed and breakfast.

With her teeth still chattering, she grabbed a couple of beach towels from the back seat so they could dry themselves off a little before getting into the car which knew their story better than any other inanimate object they owned.

She was looking forward to finally getting to visit the raved about newly opened boutique in the little coastal town but when she exuded her excitement to him, he decided it best not to tell her that he thought  she had been referring to Bo’s Tackle Shop when the blare of the boat horn had so rudely clipped a few of her words.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Ten Things of Thankful

 It is Sunday, and although the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop opened up on Friday, the blog link stays open until Tuesday, so there is still time for any of you wanting to post your "thankfuls." Thank you Kristi of Thankful Me for being our host and for all the co-hosts.

Criterion Apple Tree

1. Two different neighbors and their care and thoughtfulness

Neighbors #1 came to our aid by lending us a pair of crutches when it became apparent they were needed this week for Vic to be able to maintain stability when walking until he finds out what procedure will be deemed best for him.

Neighbors #2 shared some of their crab catch with us

Crabs in a bowl ready for picking

Vic helped me pick out the crab meat. I froze some of it to use  in a seafood chowder I will make this coming week. I made a Crab Louie for supper Saturday night with the rest of it. It brought back memories of our honeymoon when we bought a crab and fixed our first home-cooked meal together.

2. Getting our flu shots and having no side affects

3. Being able to look at photos of our children taken when they were young and being reminded of the occasions pictured (I am glad we are still able to celebrate your birthdays Kristi!)

Our first born exploring the yard on her first

The home of my paternal grandparents burned to the ground after my father was grown. I remember my grandmother telling me how all the family photos had burned in the fire and how afterwards some relatives sent them a few photos of my dad as a baby and of my grandparents when they were young adults. I am thankful too that I have my eyesight to see the photos and that when cataracts on my eyes were detected a number of years ago, cataract surgery was a possibility.

4. The service of a handyman this past week has made it easier for us to be able to do one of our bi-yearly tasks.

5. Our ballots arrived safely in the mail, as they have in our state for years, and are now completed and ready to deliver to one of the drop boxes on Monday.

6. Friends and family who recommend books and movies they have enjoyed, or products or services that they have found helpful

7. Documentaries and the skilled photographers and historians who give us their viewpoints of the past and of the present

8. Traditions 

Although I do not come close to doing the amount of baking I once did, I still have the collection of cookbooks and recipes I clipped and used for many years. One of our teenage grandsons likes to cook and has a sourdough starter.  It made me happy to share a recipe  one of his great grandmothers used to make a sourdough chocolate cake that was loved by all in the area where she lived.

9. A day of rest

For me, the Sabbath Day is a day of rest from weekday labors, as much as possible, and instead turning my heart and mind to His teachings and pondering the ways I can emulate His teachings better not only on the Sabbath day but throughout the week.

I remember my mother sharing the story with me of why my father decided to change his ways regarding what he did on the Sabbath day. My father did not attend church most of my life and for him Sunday was pretty much no different than any other day. My mother once told me of a conversation she had with my dad later in his life when he told her he had decided not to try working around their home and property anymore on Sundays because something invariably seemed to go wrong when he did. It didn't change his few of attending church, but it did change his Sunday habits.

10. The beautiful fall day this week that made it a little easier to visit the cemetery where my mom was interred beside my dad almost a year ago

There was a small graveside service in progress in the cemetery when I was there, and I was glad that the weather was so beautiful for them too.


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Friday, October 16, 2020

Six Sentence Stories - Field

The nearest thing we had to a physical education class when I was attending a two-room elementary school was playing volleyball or softball. The teams included all the kids in the upper grades, 5th through 8th grade. Sports were not something for which I had much skill and especially when it came to participating in a game of softball. Being chosen for a team was excruciating for me, a skinny 5th grade bookworm terrified a ball would actually be thrown or batted toward her. Invariably a spot way out in the field as far as possible from the batter, was where I was told to stand and wait for the ball which hardly ever came my way, thank goodness. 

I'll fast forward to another field with this Six Sentence Stories - Field which I am linking to this blog hop hosted by Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog.

Autumn pastures green with new growth  from the recent rains sparkle as the early morning  sunbeams bounce off the dewdrops enveloping the blades of grass. A red Hereford cow standing near the wire fence nuzzles the face of her calf recently weaned. With the changing of the seasons flocks of migratory birds stop to rest and feed among the trees, grass and hedgerow. High overhead is heard the scream of a red-tailed hawk proclaiming its territory. The branches of the fir trees lining one side of the fence provide a playground for the gray squirrels as they scamper and leap from one branch to another. In the unfenced field across the road, a dozen white great egrets stand like sentinels randomly spaced throughout the field to usher in the new dawn in the peaceful countryside, unaware of the impending doom.

Friday, October 9, 2020

Ten Things of Thankful

Turning one's mind to something other than what causes one angst is a healthy way to rise above the challenges of everyday life, especially if you consider those people, things, creations, opportunities and other blessings that are often in plain sight. I am linking this post to the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop hosted by Kristi of Thankful Me. If you want to start participating in the blog hop, consider yourself invited. Click here to see how to proceed.

1. Decorating pumpkins with inspirational messages 

2. Online Education Week classes

I registered this week and am able to watch these virtual classes until March 31, 2021. People can register anytime.

3. One of my yearly appointments was able to be done via a phone call.

4. A friend’s surgery went well.

5. A spider trap (different type than the one pictured here, but similar because they each had a sticky surface) for the second  time in a month made it on my blog, this time as mentioned in my Six Sentence Stories post this week

This is a thankful because I was able come up with a story using the prompt word resistance.

6. Cute little mushrooms

Gray mushrooms growing among bark chips

When I went out to look at these a few hours later, they were bent over and appeared to be dead. Some other mushrooms that I think are the same kind but were more opened up were black but still standing, I think because of how close they were to each other. They appeared to be dying and had turned black. The largest of the mushrooms pictured above were about the size of a silver dollar and about five inches tall. They were attached to white slender stocks. I tried to identify them, but decided that it was best to leave that to the more knowledgeable.

7. Being able to see Mars without the use of binoculars or a telescope

This is a sure sign my vision is fairly good. The younger crowd will have another opportunity in 2052, but 2020 is my last chance of seeing it so close to Earth.

8. Fixing fried green tomatoes, something I ate growing up, but rarely have fixed  as an adult

Fried green tomatoes

Thinking about that piece of my history I thought perhaps my mother grew up eating them because of where she was born and where some of her ancestors lived, but thanks to a google search, I now think that the tradition more likely stemmed from my father’s side of the family. I am thankful for food traditions, even if we just do some of them occasionally.

9. Beautiful little red berries on the barberry plant

Barberry berries

10. Being married to Vic

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Thursday, October 8, 2020

Six Sentence Stories - Resistance

Being somewhat of a resistant writer at times when the prompt word for a blog hop isn't stirring up a story with the words in my October cauldron I just about walked away, but no, I received some help in the middle of a dark night! I'm linking up to Six Sentences Stories - Resistance hosted by Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog.

The music wasn’t achieving its purposes when there was resistance between the eyelids and the mind. As she attempted to quiet the racing thoughts of things still needing to be done sometime before the next ten years or sooner, an unidentifiable noise on the floor above interrupted her train of thought. Trying to ignore the insistency of the sound was an impossibility, so grabbing a flashlight, off she went to investigate. In a corner under some shelves was a teepee shaped spider trap jumping and bouncing from side to  side. The mere thought of a gargantuan spider being able to propel the trap seemed like an early Halloween action prop and for her own sanity's sake, pretty far-fetched. Considering the situation, she opted for going back to get her grabber tool so she could safely pick up the spider trap and not risk being bit by one frustrated little mouse, now slightly visible hiding within, and dispose of him before FINALLY calling it a night.

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Ten Things of Thankful

It was an interesting and strange week to say the least, so let's just put that aside for now. Thank you Kristi of Thankful Me for providing this safe place to link up to each weekend. She is the host for the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop, so here I go.

1. For on/off buttons

2. That deer or other creatures didn’t walk across a small patch of fresh cement that was poured this week at our place

What a nice deer to not leave any hoof impressions

3. For noticing a private message from someone  who had not been my friend on FB and who mentioned what he thought was a family connection

He wanted me to call him. It was dated the latter part of 2019, but for some reason only popped up  in my messages this week. Just so you know, I am very careful about accepting friend invitations on FB, so I did my homework to see if he was really who he said he was and to see if I could find any connection, BEFORE calling him.

4. A shirttail relative (the someone mentioned above) discovered me because he just happened to buy a copy of the local newspaper the day my mom’s obituary was printed almost a year ago and after reading it thought she might be related to his mom’s side of the family.

5. The shirttail relative attended the same high school as I did but we didn’t know each other then, had interactions with my mom’s employers through his own line of work, and built a home just a mile from where  I grew up. My mother would have been so excited had she known there were relatives living so nearby all those years she was searching for information about the descendants of her great great grandparents.

6. Extra space in our garbage can so I could clean out a few things from one of the sheds

7. Being able to discern that the pretty leaves high up on a maple tree had a little help obtaining their fall colors

A long thin limb on the tree apparently broke during the recent windstorm and is hanging by a piece of its bark leaving it suspended high up and resting on an oak tree near it. All the leaves on the unbroken limbs are still green. Now that we are aware of the problem we can arrange to have the widow maker removed. We  walk through the area a couple of times a week and would like to continue doing so safely.

A broken limb hanging by a narrow strip of bark

Colorful maple tree leaves on broken branch 

8. Watching what turned out to be a better than expected 1974 western movie on Prime

Sometimes I double task while watching movies, but almost from the beginning this movie had my full attention. It was more like watching a play than a movie.  Although it was a Western, It had the feel  of a Greek tragedy, if you can imagine that.

9. For the Constitution of the United States and the Separation of Powers

10. Being able to watch my church’s General Conference this weekend is just what what I need to fill my spiritual cup.

11. For Vic and our family

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