May 2018

May 2018

Friday, July 27, 2012

Go USA! Whatever.

I'm not a sports fan.  I just don't enjoy watching people grunt and sweat.  I do appreciate, however, the economic lift a good team gives a community, although I'm disgusted by the players' salaries.  Yes, I realize many of my favorite movie stars also make obscene amounts of money, but a good movie brings pleasure every time it's watched and to many generations of viewers.

So, while many people are excited about the 2012 Summer Olympics, I'm already bored.  Thank goodness for Cable television, DVRs, DVDs, and video apps.  I'm much more interested in learning how someone took an idea, made a product or created a service, and earned a 1.5 million profit last year.  Have you seen Shark Tank?  For me, that's way more entertaining than watching some athlete break another record.

Go USA!  Whatever.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

From Ordinary to Extraordinary

Today was a special day.  I've been a huge Harry Potter fan for years and don't seem to be outgrowing it. As soon as my first grandchild was born, I began looking forward to one day sharing the books and films with him.  Over the last couple of years, Elliott has watched a few of the films, but I always had to fast-forward through the scary parts.  We've also had fun building Harry Potter Lego sets.  But, before today, we hadn't read the books together, which is what I've been the most eager to do.

I picked up Elliott at noon for a sleepover.  As is typical for us, we quickly began talking about Harry Potter and the differences between the books and films.  Elliott starts first grade in a few weeks, but my guess is he's reading at the second semester second-grade level.  We decided, therefore, that he was ready for at least book one.  So, before bed, I finally began reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone with my first grandson. And, magically, an ordinary day became extraordinary.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Keeping Clutter at Bay

Today I had a shopping date with my girlfriend at the Saint Louis Galleria.  It's something we've been doing two or three times a year for over ten years.  And, after all that time, we still have a lot of fun catching up and shopping together.

This time around, however, I really wasn't in a shopping mood when the day began.  I had a couple of items on my list, but didn't plan to go beyond that.  Nevertheless, I was lured by the sales and ended up buying several new tops.  So, as soon as I got home, I went to my closet and got rid of more tops than I purchased.  And that's how you keep clutter at bay!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Longing For Boredom

Jim's hernia was confirmed today and surgery is scheduled for August 20.  As surgeries go, a hernia fix is a simple and common procedure, but, honestly, how many challenges do we have to deal with this year!

I'm longing for some dull boredom, a period of time when nothing extraordinary happens. We're sick of all the challenges being thrown at us this year.  If someone is trying to tell us something, we're listening.  Now please just give us a break, so we have time to decode the message!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Christmas in July

I do a lot of online shopping, so I'm on a lot of lists.  The last couple of days my email account has been filling up with "Christmas in July" promos.  I'm so not in the mood this year for two Christmases.  In the past, I tolerated the mid-year "Christmas" and even took advantage of some of the offers.  After all, I'm all for finishing my holiday shopping early. In fact, I'm a third of the way done already.  But, this year, I just don't want to see winter holiday decorations in July.

Part of the reason is the severe heat here in Missouri.  Temperatures have been in the 90s and 100s for weeks with no end in sight.  It's awful.  But the main reason is the stressful year we're having.  We've been hit with one personal and business challenge after another since the year began.  The latest was yesterday when the new technician was rear-ended and pushed into a fire hydrant in our week-old truck.

Nope, I'm not feeling jolly in July this year.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Paper Obsession

I've been finishing off my hobby room since the beginning of summer.  I've hung curtains and some wall art, got a new table, and ordered a chair.  It really looks nice and is much more inviting, which is why I've been happily paper crafting any chance I get.

I'm currently obsessed with Graphic 45 papers and embellishments.  I just got the Happy Haunting and Christmas Emporium paper pads, which are vintage 1950s designs.  All the images remind me of my childhood and lift my spirits.

Thanks to many YouTube tutorials, I'll be using the Graphic 45 papers to make home decorations and gifts.  The internet is a beautiful thing.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Bigger Little Brother

My six-year-old grandson, Elliott, had his well visit yesterday.  Based on his growth to date, he's expected to eventually be 5'10".  This was a surprising discovery since Elliott's little brother, two-year-old Jonah, is expected to be 6'2".  With a 5'3" mom and a 6'2" dad, however, 5'10" is not a shocking prediction.

But I'm not sure Elliott realizes his little brother will end up towering over him.  Or, worse, Jonah will soon be as tall as him even though he's four years younger.  Elliott's only response to the news was if he's at least as tall as Papa (my husband) that's fine with him.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Time Has Come

We've put it off.  We've tried to ignore it.  We made all the excuses.  But the sad fact is 70 percent of all Americans end up needing long-term care.  So, as much as I hate paying for more insurance, we'll be signing the dotted line sometime this month.

It's perhaps shocking that I haven't purchased long-term care insurance before now. After all, mom's been in a home for over three years.  Plus, if not for dad, she would have needed in-home care for at least six years before being placed.  I suppose it's a case of being in denial and also hoping I've pulled more from dad's gene pool than mom's.

But, truth is, even if I don't get dementia, there are 1000s of other diseases and accidents that could land me in a long-term care facility.  Plus, thanks to modern medicine, people are living longer.  And, the longer a person lives, the greater the odds they'll need long-term care.  I often think it's too bad mom had bypass surgery eighteen years ago. Without that surgery, odds are she would have died instantly of a major heart attack years before she was hit with "dementia with signs of Alzheimer's disease."  Then all of us would have been spared ten years and counting of heartache and pain.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Down in the Back

Over the past few weeks, I've been watching a lot of YouTube videos about how to make mini albums with envelopes and paper bags.  I was all set to spend most of today creating a mini album with a beach theme.  The plan is to add this year's Sanibel pictures after our trip the end of the month.  But, unfortunately, I woke up with lower back pain.  I was so uncomfortable sitting at my craft table, I finally gave up and am resting on the couch.

It doesn't happen often, but I am familiar with this pain and it usually goes away after a day or two.   So I guess my first mini album will just have to wait :(

Friday, July 6, 2012

Fun in the Kitchen

For the last 5.5 hours, I've been having fun in the kitchen.  I made Ina Garten's Mexican Chicken Soup and Chicken Salad Veronique.  I also made a double batch of Basil and Roasted Walnut Pesto and tortilla chips.  My crop of basil is doing fantastic this year, so I'll definitely be making more pesto before the season's over.  I can't say the same for my cilantro crop, but I was able to harvest enough for the soup.

I'm still amazed that I've become a pretty good home cook.  Just five years ago, I had no interest in cooking.  But I now realize it was mainly because I didn't know how.  Hours of watching the Food Network changed everything.  Who says no good can come from watching so much television?  Not me!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Perfect Holiday

I had a perfect Fourth of July.  I stayed home in the air conditioning all day.  Jim had to work half the day, so I spent the morning doing laundry in between cleaning house and surfing the web.  For lunch I grilled corn on the cob and gourmet hotdogs on the stove top grill.  For dinner I made a mixed greens salad and cheeseburgers sans the bun.

We also started watching the first season of Homeland, using our cable's OnDemand feature.  I foolishly had never taken the time before to fully investigate all of our cable channels.  But I got curious enough about Homeland to do a search and uncovered hundreds of new channels included with our monthly subscription.

I've been curious about Homeland ever since it won the Golden Globe for Best Television Series - Drama.  There's only been one season of 12 episodes so far, but it was renewed for a second season that premieres September 30.  As Jim said, the main story line could get frustratingly old after awhile.  But, until it does, it's worth watching for it's unique plot and good acting.

A comfortable home with good air conditioning, premium cable, and a loving companion, what more does anyone need for the perfect Fourth of July.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Another Fourth Without Fireworks

We haven't been in the country for Fourth of July in over 10 years.  Other years at this time, we've been relaxing on the beach in the Riviera Maya.  But, this year, we were unable to leave due to multiple challenges with our small business.  The latest happened last Thursday night when our newest technician tried to commit suicide because his wife left him.  Jim spent over a month training the guy, and he had been on his own and productive for only four days!

Because we're going to be home this Fourth of July, I thought we'd make the most of it and spend the evening with the grandsons.  Their driveway is a great spot to watch a local park's firework display.  Unfortunately, however, that's not going to happen.  All firework displays in the city of Ballwin and Ellisville have been cancelled due to the severe draught in our area.  It's simply too dry and a spark could easily cause a fire.

So it's another year of no Fourth of July firework displays for us.  I don't know if the fireworks will still be launched on the riverfront in downtown St. Louis, but it doesn't matter.  There's no way I'm fighting those crowds, especially in 100+ degree weather!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Let the Harvesting Begin

Future 4-H member. . .

Jonah admiring the first home-grown zucchini of the season.