An Attitude of Gratitude

Barney’s Bungling Circusthumbnail

It’s 2022 but I have a 2021 hangover. I don’t know whether to celebrate the end of a weird year with optimism for the future, or not.

It’s like waking up from a bad dream, uncertainty lingers and you’re afraid to fall back to sleep.

Please don’t misinterpret my angst, we had a great New Year’s visiting our friends in Lake Wales, Florida. They live in a gated Recreational Vehicle community with a private lake. We watched fireworks explode from their boat when it grew dark, and after a delicious dinner, enjoyed a move written by the buyer of their house in Pennsylvania, The 100 Foot Journey.

We all agreed the movie was a better choice than countdown to midnight TV shows.

The highlight of our visit was completion of a puzzle while my husband stayed in his new PJ’s and binge watched football with his friend, Ed.

Read the print carefully; I’m Grumpy . . . Deal with It!

Now that captures an attitude.

Gratitude? Well we’ll get to that.

When we arrived, my good friend Kathe was working on a puzzle she’d received as a Christmas present from her niece. I hadn’t done a puzzle in ten year. Kathe is a master and why she was gifted this puzzle. It was a find from the 1930, only 300 pieces but NO PICTURE.

The only clues were the title and shape; color matching was confusing at best. We eventually figured out Interlooking implied and in fact meant the pieces slipped apart. They did not lock together.

The two of us accomplished the impossible. We completed the puzzle. However, I’m sworn to secrecy and will post a tease, not the completed puzzle with one piece missing. thumbnail

Gratitude? Well, it is a different time in my life. A time when simple things give me enormous pleasure. Like good food, good friends and completing a 300 piece puzzle.

. . . . just saying

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. . .

Remember When

Christmas Card by Meredith aka Merf

Christmas Cards

Remember when we decorated doorways and arches with Christmas Cards? It was a simpler time. The tree went up on Christmas Eve and an evergreen scent, hard to described, filled our hearts and minds. Today I shop for a fragrant candle  to duplicate the scent unsuccessfully. The reality of a fresh Frasier Fur tree is short lived, needles drop quickly and the tree is so perfectly trimmed it appears to be a fake.

Over the years I’ve saved cards that were too pretty or special to toss and tuck them inside the branches (fake or real) of our tree. They bring me a smile. Below are some of my favorite ornaments. I have many birds on my tree.

. . . just saying

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Christmas In Florida

By Gosh By Jolly

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Christmas In Florida

It’s far from cold today in Florida; not even chilly. The temperature will climb to the mid-eighties.

I miss the snow.

Christmas doesn’t feel like Christmas when I’m wearing shorts and sandals.

My poinsettias won’t get the recommended sunlight inside our house so they are spending time outdoors. However, they might experience wilt since they prefer air temps between 65-70.

 The local newspaper gave detailed instructions on how to care for the plant and suggested that, with a bit of work, they would bloom again. It sounded like a lot of work to me.

I’ve never had them bloom again, in Florida, but was successful in New Jersey, when I threw them off our deck.

Miraculously sometime during spring cleanup they were in bloom

. . . just saying

 

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Wine Not and Cataract Surgery

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Wine Not and Cataract Surgery

Those of you who have had cataract surgery know what I’m talking about; the world is brighter. I see the walls in my house as cream, not mustard. And my hair, isn’t dingy grey. I’m hoping after the second eye is corrected, I’ll have fewer wrinkles.

Rumor was the regiment of daily drops three days before surgery and up to one month after was the most annoying part.

They were right.

Although, I had to strip naked and wear a surgical gown three times too large; told to use the restroom which was locked, and consequently, had to sneak into the hall with my butt exposed.

The surgery was everything promised. After the doctor marked my forehead to indicate the left eye was to be operated on, I didn’t feel a thing.

In recovery I overhead the nurse’s discharge instructions for the patient in the next bed; no driving, DO NOT bend at the waist, and no alcohol.

However, she did not include the no alcohol in her discharge spiel to me, nor mention the difficulty one might have walking. One eye is new and improved, but patched and vision in the other eye is cloudy and compromised. A glass of wine was in my future.

After dinner I poured myself a glass of wine and watched the level rise in the glass, carefully, not to over do it. There was no rise in the glass and I thought the glass could be cracked, only to realize I had been pouring the wine on the counter.

Fortunately, it was inexpensive wine.

Fortunately, the spill didn’t travel to the floor. I would have had to bend at the waist.

Note to self; in preparation for the second eye surgery, buy straws.

. . . just saying

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Thanksgiving Holiday

Happy Thanksgiving to family & Friends

Thanksgiving Preparations

“I bought a young turkey,” said my husband.

It was difficult to find a small ten-to-twelve-pound bird and he had been on the lookout.

“Thank you,” I said kissing him on the cheek.

“If the label said Old Turkeys would anyone buy one?” He wore a humorous expression.

“Isn’t an old turkey a Tom turkey?” I visualized Old in bold letters.

“No, a Tom turkey is a male turkey.”

“So, if a male turkey is call Tom, what’s a female turkey called?”

“Gertrude?”

This is how we amuse ourselves.

I went on line. Sciencing.com to confirm what to call a female turkey.

“Wild female turkeys, or hens, weigh from 5 to 12 pounds and range from 30 to 37 inches long. Hens bear less colorful feathers than males, with rusty brown, white or gray-tipped breast feathers. Their heads are either white or blue-gray, with small feathers on both head and neck. Their wattles, snoods, caruncles and spurs are small. Hens make vocalizations such as yelps, clucks and cuts. Approximately 10 percent of hens possess a “beard,” or elongated chest feathers. Hens do not strut or fan their tails. Females can lay from nine to 13 eggs, which they incubate for around 28 days.

Yesterday, I transferred the turkey to the refrigerator to defrost, arranged the flowers and made cranberry sauce.

It’s a very forgiving recipe. I boil cranberries in orange juice, add raisins and diced apple. Sometimes I sprinkle sugar during the cooking process to counter the bitterness.

Today I’ll make the pies, stuffing and roast vegetables.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

. . . just saying

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Poetry; How I’m Doing?

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Some Explaining to Do

Zipping along, writing without a clue . . . The words flew

A minor dental procedure was the first undo

Follow by pain in my hip, x-rays and a walker too

Then vertigo . . .boo-hoo . . . once the crystal where out

There was something else to do

Physical therapy not to walk like a drunk

Add to the stew . . . cataract surgery.

And . . . there’s still more explaining to do?

But I’m not feeling blue and please don’t you.

. . . just saying

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Something More to Think About; Anger


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Are Americans Angrier?

Tony Dokoupil

     On CBS Morning, Tony Dokoupil’s lead question, “Are American’s angrier?” was in sync with conversations I’ve been having with family and friends. Almost all phone calls and table discussions end with rants about people’s misbehavior and world sanity.

     Well, there is a lot to be angry about.

     During my recent flight to Maine, a three- year -old strapped in a car seat, that, had been secured in the airplane window seat, attempted to remove his Covid mask and squirm out of his buckles.

     His mother whispered, “Don’t do that,” and pointed to the glaring red seat belt sign. Her other hand held his face mask in place.

     Once in flight, the struggle continued periodically until he was screaming his protest and when ignored, hit his mother. You can image my distress watching the insanity we now refer to as child safety.

     “I’m angry and I’m not going to take this anymore,” a famous line from “Network” came to mind. My husband and I had watched the movie on TCM the previous evening.

     It is a classic and still relevant today; especially when the terms: social media and fake news, are substituted.

     The film came out two years after television news reporter Christine Chubbuck committed suicide on-screen in Sarasota, Florida. The anchorwoman was suffering from depression and loneliness, often emotionally distant from her co-workers, and shot herself on camera as stunned viewers watched on July 15, 1974.

      This real life event was used in “Network,” in which the final scene shows the anchor killed, not by suicide but by staff because of low ratings. The scene might be responsible for the expression killer ratings.  

      Anyway, I paid close attention when Tony Dokoupil interviewed a parent about his recent outburst at a school board meeting and spoke with Dr. Ling, an expert in the field of anger.

      Tony’s view of anger as an unhealthy changed and they discussed the following.

  • Anger is a natural response that keeps us alive. Anger warns us of danger.
  • Anger and Violence don’t go hand and hand.
  • Anger can be appropriately channeled into good or change.
  • Passion can be perceived as anger.

       Many of us grew up with angry threats, i.e., “Do that again and I’ll kill you.” I believed my mother’s warning and did not do it again.

       What I did, instead, is tidy up closets and scrub bathroom floors.

 

 

. . . just saying

 

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To Tell the Truth

To Tell the Truth

Schooner Sailing in Bar Harbor

Last week, sunny skies and lots of red, yellow and orange foliage were abundant in Maine. I visited a dear friend, and to tell the truth, it was perfect. Ellen asked me on the return ride to the airport, what the highlight of the week was. It wasn’t difficult to decide.

The nature boat ride in Bar Harbor took first place.

Followed by dinner at Chart Room

We drove to Greenville, for lunch at Kelly’s Landing on Moose Head Lake and viewed a covered bridge along the way.

The next day it was Lobster Rolls at Youngs and movie Saints of Newark, Belfast Movie Theater, afternoon senior ticket was $5. We left after the power saw incident as the film lacked plot and character development. It was nothing but violence. Although the scenes of Newark, New Jersey Riots were riveting.

The last day it was brunch at Traci’s Dinner in Belfast, some shopping in Rockport and Camden then rooftop tapas dinning at The View, appropriately named because of the harbor view.

Evenings we absorbed the sunset view from Ellen’s townhouse and watched Netflix.

Sunset on Penobscot Bay

Truthfully, the cooler temperatures and fall colors re-energized me. .

The world is more difficult to navigate, post covid; especially travel. Flying on Allegiant Airlines I paid a $35 fee to carry-on a carry-on, and offered a bottle of water for $3.

At the security, we were informed computers didn’t have to be taken out of luggage after I had unzipped my suitcase and removed the device.

“Do I have to take off my shoes?” I asked.

“Are you 75?” asked the agent.

I lied and kept my shoes on.

Then stood like a convicted criminal with arms raised and feet apart in the circular scanner; patted down, and hands powder checked.

Luckily I wasn’t a serious threat and allowed to board.

To tell the truth . . . it was a great trip. Thank you Ellen.   

. . . just saying

 

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FYI (The pictures were taken by either Ellen or myself)

The Remote Problem

 

 Today’s the Day

Today is the day! I’m going to solve the remote problem. I have six remotes in my home. Only one works. It’s a long story, so I’ll try to make it short.

It was an ordinary day when the bedroom remote stopped working. Spectrum responded quickly and mailed a new remote. After using a magnifier to read the instructions I thought it best to phone and talk to a live representative. She was extremely helpful and concluded, since none of the ten LG television codes worked I needed a different, aka another, remote.   

In closing she asked, “Can you change the channels?”

“Yes, with the living room remote.” I responded and did.

However, when I returned to the living room and changed the channel, the guide went wacky. Yes, I tried rebooting and lots of other stuff. Nothing helped.      

“Described wacky,” said the next customer representative.

“When I press channel number 1060, 1103 appears and a prompt to subscribe or cancel” 

He sent me two more remotes before I could explain one was already on the way.

In the morning the television was magically restored form wacky to normal. I could change channels on both televisions successfully.

Until that evening, when wacky channel suffering returned.

Now I was yelling, “Do not send me a remote.”

After what felt like eternity this representative restored the old remote to normal in the living room and threatened to send a new box.

“Please don’t,” I pleaded.

“Why not?” he asked.

“The last time they replaced the box they had to rewire inside and outside my house.”

That was one week ago and we’re able to watch both TV’s by borrowing.

The first remote is working, the second remote stopped working, the third wouldn’t work and the next three may work if I can find the courage to try.

* * * just saying

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Pinwheels

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Thirty days has September, April, June and November. All the rest have thirty-one, except for February.

Today is September 4, 2021 and there are 118 days left in the year. Our local newspaper prints this information daily.

Can you believe it? Thanksgiving is November 25th, or 83 days away and Christmas is 113 days from now.

Yikes! Where has the time gone? To quote the lyrics from a Floor Cry song, “My mind is spinning like it’s a colorful pinwheel.

What were today’s headlines?

Covid deaths outpace 2020, “Since Jan. 1st, Volusia County has reported 609 COVID-19 deaths, a 35% increase over the 449 coronavirus deaths reported in 2020. The county had a total of 1,058 deaths as of Wednesday.”

They continued to report, “This year we are seeing younger and otherwise healthy people to be among those who are losing their life to COVID-19.”

Other headlines, Biden tells La.: “We’re going to have your back’ and US set to admit over 50,000 Afghans

We can find housing and relief for immigrants . . . but going to help citizens?

My head is spinning like a colorful pinwheel.

* * * just saying

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