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Last week the son came.

Then one of the three granddaughters arrived with Kota the dog.

Followed by the middle grandgirl.

And finally, the oldest who lives the farthest away.

It was her (Jessica’s) birthday!

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A day and a night and a day.  Some left and returned and the son stayed.

What did we all do?

A whole lot of talking.

The girls made stir fry vegetables.

We ate out.

And there was  a whole lot of talking and catching up to do since “the kids” have all grown up.

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Jess Stops By May 2017Kendall Reclining Mack here May 2017 It doesn’t seem so long ago our three grandgirls were little girls – Jess gurgling in her stroller, Mack wanting hugs and more hugs, Kendall the dancing nymph.

And suddenly they are women driving!  And they are beginning to drop-in to see us on their own.

The same sofa in our living room is where they all wind up – sometimes one at a time, sometimes in twos or threes.

Their smiles are huge.

And so are ours.

Two are coming again tomorrow!  And that is our excitement.

We will miss the oldest but she is in Nepal for the adventure of a lifetime.

 

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In a quiet moment I was looking around the house.

I noticed a pattern. Do you see it too?

Viola's Horse Pic

Equine-Canine Friendship

Puppy Wall Dishes

Puppy Wall

Us 3 Tigers

Tiger Trio

Jess' Rat

Unidentified Object Made By Granddaughter Jess in Her Earlier Years

Collie Pic

Collie and Friend

Unbronzed Horse

Prancing Horse

Pepper Plaque

Scottie Dog

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Auntie Acid Bad Day

There are good days for getting out of bed and there are OTHER days.

Friday was An OTHER DAY.   Saturday was no better.  Today I planned to stay immobile.

It started with a new little lamp .

I plugged  it in but then couldn’t find the right bulb.

Then I spent 2 hours trying to get AM on an AM/FM radio

Walked from room to room, plugging and unplugging and waving around the FM antenna.  Went online in a search for accessory antennas.  No luck.  FM is great but the radio was purchased specifically to listen to Kim Komando (AM) for updates on technology.

O.K., then I opened a breakfront cabinet door and the handle fell off.

Went to reattach it but the bottom of the screwdriver fell off too.  Both are reattached but shaky.

Then a little lizard approached me in the living room.

I tried to steer him out the back door but he is now living somewhere in our kitchen.

I forgot to bring in the hummingbird feeder last night.

Thankfully the Three Bears did not return.

Water, Water Every Where

Don’t know why but I was driven to lift the toilet tank lid  in the guest room “loo” to see if all was well but something strange popped up.  I turned the water off (smart huh?) and called handy husband, Bill.

Bill reattached “the valve” and turned the water back on.  But surely because I was standing nearby, there came a gushing geyser of spouting water that flooded towels on the rack, the rugs, the floor, and Bill before we could get the water back off.

Called the plumber but there has been no reply.

Now today a nice neighbor asked me to call the telephone company for him to repair his dead home phones.

I followed through, but politely wished him luck.

He obviously has no idea about “Other Days.”

 

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kenmore freezerI know it is a bit unorthodox to lean into a deep freeze when the temps hover around 100 degrees outside, but yes, I confess, “I did it.”

Truth is our cavernous HUGE deep freezer suddenly began spewing water over everything in it.  I haven’t defrosted it in a month or two, 3 or 4 months, maybe a year, so I blamed myself.

Well, I know I defrosted it since 1990.

We bought the freezer in 1990!

Imagine?

And it has been going non-stop ever since.  No repairs, rare defrostings, overloading, underloading, whatever.

Anyway, I was overheated due to rising temps in this part of Virginia, so decided to hang over the edge of the old girl, chipping away at mountains of accumulated ice and picking at giant slabs with gloved hands and long prongs.

Cool!

And to add to the joy of being slightly chilled in a heat wave I had memories of balancing on the monkey bars when I was a kid.  Leaning leaning leaning over the edge of our freezer was  a similar feeling.

I felt young again!  Carefree.  And yes – Cool!

It took about four hours to defrost, de-ice, and displace all the foods that needed to be discarded or moved to our smaller refrigerator freezer.

And at the end of four hours I could barely move!

No longer cool.

In need of Ibuprofen.

Exhausted.

I turned the X&6%#@&* thing back on again, but Bill came along and turned it off.  “The freezer’s shot,” said he.  And this morning he went to Lowe’s and ordered a new one.

Me, I’m still wondering why I defrosted and cleaned a 26 year old faltering freezer.

It must have been to keep cool.

The Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Finland offers a variety of accommodations, including snow igloos. Guests who book a snow igloo during their stay get to sleep inside a shelter of ice. The temperature is kept at a consistent level regardless of the temperature outside and the guests are provided with down sleeping bags to keep them warm when they turn in for the night. If you’re noticing a trend, it is one of many ice hotels based in the Nordic countries, a sign of ingenuity from countries that celebrate the cold.

 

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Best Butterfly

Beating the Heat

A whole week of heat, rain, and more heat.  But Bill and I managed to stay cool between storms with afternoon swims in the backyard pool.

Power Plays

One quiet, sunny afternoon, there came a giant bolt of lightning.  I know it was giant because the house shook, there was no thunder, and all the lights went out.

Our first line of  defense is always  to Call the Neighbors for there is comfort in numbers.  But no one else had a problem.  We were alone and powerless and we called the power company.

“I’m sure they will not come  out right away for one little old house in the country,” I said to Bill.  “We may be like this for weeks!”  

That was my Pessimist Gene talking as well as thinking, “No lights, no air conditioning in  90 degree heat, no flushing, no washing, no cooking and miserable sleeping.”

The power company fella came out within the hour, replaced a blown fuse and we were “back in business”.

Dead Pump Revival

Our pool pump stopped pumping.  This time Bill was the one  bemoaning our fate, for the cost of a new pool pump is very high.

But the electric company came  right out and replaced a switch.  And Voila!  The pump is going strong again.

New Hummer Space Station Works!

 

20160729_155012My brother and his darling wife sent a “just for love” gift !  It is a new humming bird feeder that looks like a space station.

This odd Hummer Center has been waiting for the little darlings for weeks with no action.  I was about to give up but subliminal messages must have worked. The tiny birds are finally  arriving and so excited they don’t even care if I am out there in their midst.

Soft Free Fall

Don’t ask me how  but I fell flat on my back in the garage this week.  I simply felt my body drifting backwards, down, down and down, like when you let yourself sink into a comfy sofa.   It was a soft landing on a hard wood stoop with no sprains, strains, bruises or blood.  And I am “up and at ’em” as my Mom used to say.  All I can figure is I must have missed that step.

Beauty Comes for a Visit

Finally, I have a flower bed of zinnias that should have  been thinned  out early on.  The flowers are arriving  in a thick patch, but they look slightly weak.

Not too weak for the most gorgeous butterfly to land on and enjoy however.  And her visits make my day.

This all reminds me of a Bing Crosby song:  “You’ve Got to Accentuate the Positive” written by Johnny Mercer and Harold Arlen

“You’ve got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don’t mess with Mister In-Between…”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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After the mushroom growing in our wall to wall carpet,

and after systematic drywall extraction,

leaky pipe repair, and

 carpet removal,

Bill’s den is remarkably renewed!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My friend Scott in repose.

Scott Xmas 2015

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Gathering Storm

Storm Brewing in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia

Online Confession:  I am terrified of thunder storms.  Never used to be.  Only since we moved here.  That was 26 years ago, so I have been afraid of thunder and lightning for all that time.  Tsk!

In spite of valiant efforts to hide this phobia, most of my friends know all about it.

I used to tell them our Golden Retriever, Peaches, was so afraid of storms she would try to get in the bathtub or shower.  I suggested the closet and would accompany her there for comfort and solace through the wild flashes.

From that time on, Peaches and I hit the closet together to weather storms.

  • I lined the closet with pillows where delightful scents of shoes and clothing might calm the poor pup down.
  • I rubbed her with dryer sheets (supposed to reduce static electricity),
  • and I even gave her little candies laced with doggy herbal tranquilizers.

Maybe I should have tried the dryer sheet-tranquilizer thing on myself!

Friends would say, “It’s thundering Dor –you and Peaches better get to a closet!”

The real story is that in a state of abject fear I prefer to lie down in a closet.  Folks do not understand there are no windowless rooms in this house – no comforting walls for protection.   And then of course, Peaches caught my fear (dogs are very perceptive that way you know).  And I suppose she entered the closet to actually comfort ME!

We finally lost Peaches (not to lightning but to old age), and then inherited an old rescue dog named Rozie who also found solace in the closet during raucous weather.

We lost sweet old Rozie as well (not to lightning but to old age).  I fervently wish a stray would wander in but there are no dogs here now and I hit the closet alone.

This is irrefutable proof that fear of lightning is my own hangup and I should stop involving helpless animals.

Peaches

Peaches

Rozie

Rozie

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Secret Box n DescriptionThe aches and pains of aging are one thing.  I expect that.

Short term memory loss is another.  I expect that too.

However,

Planned Forgetting requires some immediate attention.

Have you ever looked around for a foolproof hiding place for your special treasures?

Well, that’s what I was going about doing.

Where could I hide my favorite locket?

  • How about the freezer?  No, that’s old-hat.
  • Hide it in one of those mini boxes with secret ways to open?  Nope. Probably well known to marauders.
  • In the back of a desk file drawer?  Not there either – thieves would probably look there first.Locket in Files
  • In a shoe box with some shoes.  No, No, No!Locket in Shoe Box 2
  • Finally there it was – the perfect spot.  “I WILL remember this place! I MUST remember!”

You can see where this is going.  I was consciously, knowingly planning to forget and stored the locket in the pocket of a favorite off-season jacket.

And of course I did forget  both the locket and the jacket.

Weeks later I wanted to wear the locket but where was it?

I looked in the mini treasure box, the desk drawer, the files in the desk drawer, the freezer, all the logical storage spots, and every box of shoes (including Bill’s).  This took hours of emptying and reassembling drawers, thinking and thinking, retracing steps.

“It’s no big deal,” I thought, “How important are such things in life anyway?”

But it wasn’t the loss that was so frustrating, it was the fact that I could not remember where I put it, that I knew I would not remember where I put it, and my own prophecy had come true.

Finally on the verge of tears, I tried one last place.

“It must be in a pocket! My mother always hid things in pockets!”  That meant going through the pockets of all the slacks, tops and vests in the closet, and finally the jackets.  Touching the last jacket I knew the locket had to be there.

And there it was!

And that is the essence of “Planned Forgetting!”

Locket in Jacket

If you are a robber and want my pretty locket, well, come and get it!

It’s will now forever reside in an old fashioned junk jewelry box in plain sight.

Hopefully I will not forget I didn’t plan to forget another hiding place and then forget that it is in the jewelry box right under my nose.

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