Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A few days in my world

On this once again rainy morning, I thought I'd share some images from the past week.

Clematis blooming.  A present from  my mom and dad many years ago.

Awesomely tart pie cherries.  Only enough for two pies - but  I'll take what I can get!  Strawberries are coming on strong.  Yum.

Rubberbands hooked to plastic whirly-wheels is a lot of fun to shoot into the air and then catch.  Unless the rubberband snaps your fingers (see Anna on the left)

It is easy to get away from the troubles of life when fishing in the cold waters at Stieferman's Bluff

A little front porch sitting would be so nice.  (Notice the layering of cusions on the rockers?  The first set belongs to Bailey.  She kindly allows us to remove them when we sit down.  That cat does know how to shed!)

Monday, May 30, 2011

God Bless Them All

This day was set aside during the Civil War as a day to remember Union soldiers who fought and lost their lives during war.  It was called Decoration Day.  We've been watching the Civil War miniseries that we recorded from the History Channel sometime ago.  It is a powerful message of the futility and destruction of lives wrought by war.  Today I also remember the Confederate Soldiers who were apparently left out of the original declaration. 

Today we know this day as Memorial Day.  We have a great deal to be thankful for, and those who fought and died to protect us, deserve to be remembered.  As I sit here typing, through the corner of my eye I catch sight of our American Flag dancing in the wind.  Without the death of so many brave souls, that flag would be no more.  The thought is a bit overpowering.

I also remember those who fought in other wars - wars that could even have been avoided or were ours not to fight - and lived to come home with memories and heartaches too powerful to talk about.  Experiences that haunted or will haunt them the rest of their lives.  They have paid a very high price for their patrioism.  You, too, are in my heart and prayers.

Today I also keep my nephew, Jesse, in my thoughts and prayers as he continues to serve his country and lives in the dangers of war.

God Bless You every single one - and God Bless America.

The sun is shining here, the heat is upon us, and the cicadas are singing louder every day.  We were able to hear them inside our closed up house this morning.  It is an amazingly powerfully irritating song.  The shells they are leaving everywhere are pretty irritating too. 

I am out of my funk now.  Sometimes life just gets a bit overwhelming.  In answer to some of your comments on my previous post, our "situation house guest" will have been here a year on August 29.  We have told him that it is our goal - and must be his goal - to be in a place of his own by August 29 of this year.  He now has a steady, although low paying and no benefits, job.  Once he is again standing on his own two feet, it is my belief  that his self esteem will return.  With that, hopefully, will come better opportunities.  I can only pray.

Love and good wishes to all.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Hi everyone.  I'm sorry I haven't been around commenting on your blogs.  Blogger has wasted so much of my time not posting comments after I took the time to comment, that I finally gave up.  I think it might be working better now, since I was able to comment on a few yesterday, but I am terribly frustrated.  That plus I am in a bit of a funk. 

I am tired of having the perpetual house guest still living in my downstairs.  I am tired of the phone ringing over and over again because his daughter is trying to get a hold of him and can't find him.  I am tired of not having a place, other than the floor, for my grandkids to sleep because of said perpetual house guest.  I am tired of worrying he may have reverted back to his old ways when he doesn't come home until hours after he gets off work.  I am tired of feeling guilty that I don't invite him to eat meals with us, even though I know that would just perpetuate his dependence on us.  I am sick when I look at his idea of cleanliness and know that when he does move out that, at the very least, I am going to want to gut my bathroom and start over.  And I am totally pissed that I can't even offer my only sister a place to stay when she comes to visit for two weeks.  So, I am in a bit of a funk.

I hope everyone has a good Memorial Day.  I may just run away from home.  A nice hotel room is sounding real good to me right now.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Pray for them

By now everyone has seen the photos and videos of the devastation wrought by mother nature in Joplin, MO.  Help is needed.  If you would like to help, Text "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation, or visit The Red Cross website to donate or give blood.

It never occurred to me that people would worry about me.  However, I have had enough inquiries that I feel I need to let people know that we are all ok.  I received emails from my good friends Alice Kay, Karla, Hank JR, and Iggy expressing concern.  Many others have expressed concern on Facebook.  This was my reply to Iggy.  Thank you everyone for caring.
 I have watched the news in horror as this tragedy unfolds. The death count is now well over 100. I am very proud of how those involved are handling themselves - with dignity and professionalism. Joplin is about 200 miles from me. I was there many times during my years of government work. It was a nice place to go. And I'm sure it will again be. It is a very hopeless feeling to know there is little I can do right now. I am going to donate blood today (they have finally lifted the "cancer ban" from me and I am again allowed to donate). I will donate money to church if they take up a special collection this weekend, otherwise to the Red Cross. Other than that... all I can do is pray for those involved in this horror. It is at this point, I believe, the deadliest tornado in the nation.

We have been plagued, and will continue to be apparently, with thunderstorms, hail and the threat of tornadoes. The idiots were wrong about the end of the world, but God is definitely getting everyone's attention these days. Not just here of course, but around the world. I don't worry about me, but I do worry about my kids. My prayers are always that God keeps them and their families safe.

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Yesterday was a great day. 

"They" were calling for rain to roll in yesterday.  "They" were once again wrong.  After a morning of going to the gym, running errands, and cleaning up around here, we cleaned up (yes, it was necessary) and joined the kids at Greg and Alicia's for my birthday party.  Everything was so relaxing.  Alicia fixed Mint Juleps.  I'd never had them before!  They were scary good. - you know, the type of good that would sneak up on a person if they are not careful.  I was careful and only had two.  We then all stuffed  ourselves on grilled pork steaks, potato casserole, broccoli/cauliflower salad, baked beans and maybe I'm forgetting something else.  It was all delicious.  Then we had cheesecake for dessert. Since they were worried about smoke soot damage to their ceilings, we decided to forgo the candles. 

Jim is working this afternoon.  I am smoking a pork loin and checking out blogs.  As soon as I get done here, I do believe I need to "pick up" the house.  I'm terrible about not always putting things away.

Oh, and I picked strawberries this morning.  And the cherries are almost ready.  So far the birds are leaving them alone.  So maybe I'll get some.  Apparently this is the year the cicadas are supposed to get really bad.  While walking around outside this morning, we saw two of them hanging around.  I hate the damage they do to trees, especially the tender barks of new fruit trees.  I hope the pear trees we planted last year survive.  I'm not looking forward to the deafening noise they create when they are in great numbers.  Sitting smack dab in the middle of the woods equals full surround stereo.  Sometimes that is not a good thing!

I hope every one has  had a great weekend.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Happy Birthday to me!

Happy Birthday to me
I belong in a tree
With the Indigo Buntings
And the Humming Birdies

Original prose by my dear husband, Jim

Yessiree, it is my day.  As Iggy said in his comment on my previous post, today is a day of LOTS of candles and mountains of flames.  Well put! 

I'm celebrating 59 glorious years!  How is that possible?

Today is going to be just like any other day, with an eye Dr. appointment this morning and work this afternoon.  I can't wait to ditch the readers I've been constantly losing for the past two years and get back into a pair of bi-focals.  The next picture you see of me, I will be wearing glasses again.

Look what Jim surprised me with. 

Willow Tree - Peace on Earth
I absolutely love it.

Tomorrow we'll CELEBRATE! with a party at Greg and Alicia's house. 

Thank you everyone for your sweet comments and birthday wishes.  It means a lot to me.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

6:15 am - Woke up, big stretch, got up to pee and brush teeth
6:17 am - Curled  back up in bed
6:47 am - Crawled Jumped back out of bed to face the day
6:48 am - Grabbed a cup of coffee and turned on morning news
6:55 am - Kissed hubby goodby as he headed to work
7:15 am - Turned off news (ugh) - do I really care about Arnold, Newt, and that dude from France?, grabbed anothed cuppa coffee and bowl of cereal and check email.
7:22 - Done with emails (where did all my friends go?!?)  Started writing this blog
7:26 - Blog time!
8:15 - Grabbed another cuppa and started chores... made bed, put out a load of laundry (how can two people dirty so many clothes...), unloaded dishwasher (how again...), fed cat, looked at dog who Jim already fed, filled the bird feeders, put first load of laundry into drier and put another load (again, how...)
9:00 - Grabbed another cuppa in a clean cup because the previous one is sitting cold somewhere in the house and continued with blogs.  If anyone tries to tell you that blogs are not time consuming, they are kidding themselves!  But I love them.
9:30 - Phone call with Julie
9:45 - Fold clothes, put out another load (again, how...)
10:00 - Heading out to mow grass.  This is a biggie for me because Jim is at work.  He usually gets the mower going for me.  Cross your fingers!
11:30 - Time for a water and left over fried chicken (compliments of WalMart) break.  Turned drier back on to fluff clothes because I was outside too long (come on, admit it - you do that too!  Don't you?)  Mower started right off!  Five sections done.  I think everyone has a different method of mowing.  Since we have so many trees and "areas", I tend to section my mowing off by trees or terrain.
12:00 - Got sidetracked by my Nook - reading John Grisham's "The Confession"
12:20 - Sister called
12:30 - Returned to mowing
1:15 - Another break.  Took bird pictures and posted them on my blog.
1:45 - Returned to mowing
4:15 - After numerous breaks, I'm DONE!  Jim came home around 3:00 and helped finish
4:30 - Jim discovers our 21 year old cat, Shelby, curled up in a pile of leaves, close to death.  We've made her comfortable and hope she is not in pain.  She's lived a good life.  It is going to be hard to let her go - and that is all I plan to say on the subject.  Can't dwell on it.
4:45 - Heading for a much needed shower!
5:15 - Margarita time
5:45 - News
6:15 - Supper of chicken and rice casserole
7:00 - Television and then bed
I am soooo damn tired!

I think I missed a load of laundry somewhere... Pretty sure I missed a few potty breaks too.

Hope everyone had a great.  They are calling for rain for the next countless days.  Am glad the grass is mowed!


We have four feeders filled with seed and two wired baskets filled with suet hanging from our trees.  Yet this greedy guy decided he wanted the humming bird’s sugar water.

Humming bird trying to get to the feeder with another bird sitting on it
My little humming bird putting on the brakes when he sees he has a freeloader at his feeder

Bird of unknown origin sitting on the hummingbird feeder
What’s with that “Don’t mess with me look?”  Now that is just mean.  He isn’t even going to share.
  Humming bird drinking from feeder
All is right in the world again (for now).

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The loves of his life...

I'm going to admit it to the world.  Jim is having a love affair.

If you ask him, he will say I am the love of his life.  And there is no doubt in my mind that is true.  But... he is having a love affair - and his secret is out

Her name is Iris and the love affair has been going on since before I met him.  I should have known he couldn't give her up for me.  She tried sneakinig up the sidewalk when she thought I wasn't looking. 

When I caught the brazen hussy dripping wet from a shower, she just shook the water droplets at me and went on

He knows I am on to him and doesn't care *wipes a tear*.  He's even threatened to relocate her from her current home where she is not doiing well!  How dare he!

I tried to talk to Bailey about it, but she didn't even pretend to care.  I think she is in on it.

If only I could have gotten a picture of him sniffing these pretty little girls.  The evidence would be overwhelming.  The  thing is, they even have beards.  What oh what does he see in them?  I just don't get it *sniff, sniff*

My only consolation is that I know her beauty only lasts a short time and then she will shrivel up, and his fascination will be over - at least for a while

The sad thing is that as soon as FloozieFlag fades, her cousin Chio from Japan will take her place.  I've seen it happen year after year.

And after Chio's glory fades, their distant cousin, Lily, from Asia will take their place.  I guess I'm just going to have to live with it and learn to do a little sniffing around of my own.

Whiskey pretended to care but then went back to his reading without a care in the world.  I should have known the guys would stick together.


Friday, May 6, 2011

Still going strong

You might remember a post from a little over a year ago about our visit with my beloved Uncle Cy.

Now at age 90, he is still going strong and doing things his way.

The below photo appeared in the Washington Post.

Severe Weather Flooding

Cyril Forck, 90, catches a small perch from his backyard deck, which is usually 50 feet away from the edge of the Mississippi River, on Mud Island in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, May 4, 2011. The National Weather Service is predicting a 48-foot crest of the Mississippi River on May 11. (AP Photo/Lance Murphey) Lance Murphey / The Associated Press
Way to go Uncle Cy!  Love you!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

B... bu... but we have squirrels!

I've always loved my beautiful Azalea bushes. 

They are a low growing splash of color, delighting me each Spring. 

So imagine my surprize when Nancy at Porch Days wrote about her 12 foot Azaleas.  I was sure that had to be a typo!  But look at the pictures she posted today!  Gorgeous, TALL, Azaleas.  Now, Nancy, there is no way I can compete with those beautiful Azaleas.

But, we have squirrels. 

Minding my own business

Ok, you probably have lots of squirrels too.  Squirrels are everywhere!  They drive me crazy. 

 They clean out all of my bird feeders.

Finch? Canary?  Anybody know?

There was a time a couple of years ago that I blogged about cute little squirrels, making up stories.  But I quickly got over that fascination.  Now I just open my windows and yell at them to go away.  I guess I should be nicer to them, but they keep scaring my beautiful birds away.

Please don't yell at me anymore!  Please...

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Build it and they will come…

Almost a year ago, the State of Missouri and City of Jefferson City approved the building of a controversial pedestrian walkway across the Missouri River.  Why controversial?  The price tag of $6.7 million, versus the benefit.  There were those who hailed it as a way to bring additional traffic into Jefferson City, “enhancing state and local tourism and the economy”.   There were others who declared it was essential for the safety of bikers and hikers who wanted to get from the KATY Trail into the city.  Those who declared it was a luxury that could not be afforded during these hard times did not have a very loud voice.  The walkway opened to great fanfare in March of this year.

walkway leading to the bridge

My opinion is that this is a perfect example of those who have, getting more, and those with little, losing out.  They who have, had the lobbyists, they had the private donors, and they had the desire for a luxury.  So they got it.  It is ludicrous to point to tourism and the economy in these hard times as a way of justifying spending $6.7 on a non essential project. 

But build the walkway they did.  And as the old saying, “build it and they will come” goes… they built it and we checked it out.  I may be against something, but once it happens anyway, I’m not one to refuse to check it out.  I tried to keep an open mind.

So here is what I found:

The new pedestrian walk way is a great way to spend a sunny Spring afternoon with Grandkids.

Jim and Reagan walking across the bridge

The view is unique – allowing us to stop and look across the river in an area that otherwise would have been impossible.

view of the Capitol Bldg. and train tracks

It is safe.  The heavy chain link gave this scaredy cat a sense of security.  We even allowed Allen and Reagen to run off some of their pent up energy, while we followed at a more sedate pace.

Reagan & Allen walking to the bridge

Although safe, my mind did take a moment to dwell on the convenience it might provide to someone wanting to do harm to themselves.  It would not be that difficult to scale the 4 1/2 to 5 foot fence.  But those dangers are around every bend of life.


It was noisy and almost scary at times.  The traffic is only a few feet away and some of the big rigs are downright threatening sounding.

It will not bring much, if any, economy to the area.  Most individuals walking the trail were recognizable as locals.  They were beginning at one end – walking across – and then turning back.  We waved at them each way.  The bicyclists were doing the same thing.  I wonder if anyone will bother to do a trumped up study to determine the increased tourism the bridge didn’t brought to the area. 

Although I enjoyed the walk, it wasn’t special enough to do a second time, unless other grandkids are interested in taking the walk with us. 

How could $7.5 million have been put to better use?  Let me count the ways… they are too numerous to even begin listing.  The walkway is a sad testimony to the priorities of some of our society today – not all, but some. 


On the bright side, though, we had a great day with Reagan and Allen while their mom and dad got away to celebrate their 13th anniversary. 

The rain is back this evening.  I refused to whine and complain.  Nope, won’t whine and complain.  Dang I’m tired of shivering!