Category Archives: Thoughts on a ________

Good Morning

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My husband is out mowing now – even though it’s too wet – because the rain has been such that there is NEVER a good time to do the job. It will have to be enough. Since the heat index today will be in the area of 110 degrees F., I’m glad he is out there getting the job over with now. (The weather people says it will get REALLY hot this coming week!) Right now, though, it is still cool enough to have the doors open and the ceiling fans on.

My zucchini and yellow crookneck squash plants are still looking healthy, but no actual veggies growing yet. The celery I planted is still alive and I have two more celery bottoms in water in the house. The onions continue to look good. I’ll go out later to see if we have more ripe tomatoes.

I worked on painting a new design of wooden earrings yesterday in my art room. I’ll post pics later.

I am hoping for a quiet day today.

I hope that YOUR Sunday is a nice one, too.

 

 

 

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Nice Morning

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I had a lovely massage this morning. I asked her to just leave me there and let me drift off to sleep, but she made me get up, pay her, and leave. Imagine that! She is truly a miracle worker. I feel a lot better.

It was getting dark as I left – at 11:00 in the morning!  I got home just before storming started. I shut the garage door, and closed up the house. It has rained, but it doesn’t seem to be severe at this point. We have more waves of storms coming this afternoon and tonight.

I chatted with our son in Thailand this morning briefly. There is 12 hours difference in our times, so we have to chat quickly sometimes. He sounded really happy. He said, “last night when i was falling asleep i was listening to the rain, and i think i heard some kind of religious singing from somewhere, maybe the nearby wat, and i was feeling the breeze from my fan, and i thought to myself how fortunate i am.”

We are on our official whole first day of the South Beach Diet today. (We started after lunch yesterday.)  So far, we’re doing fine, although we’re fumbling around some. We like the shakes, and the ‘ice crushes.”  Mine are chocolate, of course. :0)  I got home from my massage late for our morning ‘snack.’ We went ahead and did that, deciding we would delay lunch for an hour or so. I have keto chili in the crock pot for one of our DIY dinners for the week. I’m interested to see what we think of our lunch options.  I have found that their ‘peanut butter bites” (a package of small cookies) is delicious. I am trying to record what I eat and drink on the tracker on their website. It’s different that the other I have been using, but I’m determined to make it work.

I received one of the new wooden earring shapes I ordered yesterday, and am eager to get up to the art room to see what I can do with it. :0)

I hope you’re having a wonderful day.

 

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Weird Cravings

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And NOOOOOO! I’m NOT pregnant. I’m 73 years old, and even with our modern medicine, I don’t think they can pull THAT off – AND wouldn’t want to!!!!

The thing I really don’t like about cooking is figuring out what to cook.

I was like this when I was young, too. When my friends wanted to go out to eat, we would try to figure out what we were hungry for. THEN we would try a process of elimination, trying to name things we DIDN’T want…

I was trying to figure out what to fix for dinner tonight, deciding I didn’t want to be cooking at 7:30 or 8 when I’m tired. Suddenly, beef stew popped into my head.

This is really weird because I consider beef stew a winter comfort food. The heat index today, after the rain, is supposed to get to 105. We still have doors open, but will close up soon, since the humidity is at 95%.

I love microwaves. I was able to get out a package of stew meat from the freezer, defrost it, and then brown it while getting the rest of the ingredients together in the slow cooker.

Now, dinner prep for tonight is done and the dishwasher is running!  AHHHHH!

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Thoughts on a Monday 6-29-2020

Storyteller Travel

I LOVE the look of humor and character on Shoebill Storks.

We are having a super humid day today. It’s like pea soup outside. The humidity is 92% right now. UGH. That said, at least the sun is not a killer, so I’ve just come in from pruning our roses bushes and cutting things back a bit.  We have a super good chance of rain today. It is cloudy and looks like it could rain any time now.

We are waiting for our plumber to come.  We have a tankless water heater that gives us lots and lots of hot water. We haven’t had to worry about running out for years. Until lately.  You have to have full water pressure to get the hot water, and it takes a bit of time for that to happen. We get it when we first step into the shower upstairs, then halfway through our shower, we get cold water, like we used to have when the tank emptied. My husband thinks we may have to get a new water pressure tank for the well house. Hopefully, we can get what we need to get our wonderful hot showers again soon. Fingers crossed.

I hope that you have a good day.

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Friday 6-26-2020

Thrive Global

I’m feeling GOOD this morning. I’ve been eating very carefully since my illness and I think I’m at 100% this morning – no upset – no pain – AHHHHHH!

We have the front and back doors open this morning, bringing in a nice breeze. There is a good chance of rain today, but I’m hoping it will hold off until AFTER we get home from Lunch Bunch with our good friends. This week is the last week we have to eat at a picnic bench in the parking lot. July 1st the restaurant will open in some capacity, so next week we are back to our normal table. (We go early enough that there are usually only the two waitresses there with us, or someone coming in to grab a take-out, so I’m not worried.)  One of our friends is celebrating a birthday today, so it will be extra nice.

I finished weeding my raised bed square foot garden before I got sick, and that is still looking good. The squash plants are looking healthy, though they haven’t shot vines out yet. The little bitty celery plants are still alive. I’m going to check our tomato planters on the other side of the house this afternoon.

I’ve decided that one of the next projects will be pressure washing.

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We have two sets of outdoor chairs that are in serious need of a good cleaning. I will also do the deck, back sidewalk, driveway pad, front sidewalk, and front porch. This will probably take several days of work, but it has been a couple or three years since I did it last time, and so is needed.

I’m working on my Important Spreadsheet, getting through the first pass on it yesterday. I need to find answers to questions, and then I’ll finish that up, print copies for several places, send the URL to our son, etc. I will put it on my calendar to check for needed updates in three months, instead of six, next time.

My husband and I decided that we needed more help and motivation on our keto eating plan. Neither of us has built up good willpower and so we have gotten lax lately, gaining several pounds. We decided to do two months of the South Beach Diet

to give us a good push toward getting back on track and losing some lard. We have signed up and are awaiting our first month’s delivery. I’m HOPING that we will be well on the way at the end of the two months. Built into the program is DIY meals, so I will still be using the good keto recipes we like – just reminded of portion size and encouraged to NOT add things we shouldn’t. Fingers crossed this will stop our bad habits and make the scales stop frowning at us.

I am awaiting an order of wooden shapes for earrings. I am in communication with a nice lady who likes these –

 

but would like them 2″ in diameter, instead of 1″, as they are on the website. She also wants them in hot pink and white. I can’t wait to get started! :0)  I also ordered some other shapes, so will dive in and see what other fun I can have.

Feeling better is making me think of spending time in my art room. Hopefully, I can get upstairs today…

Have a wonderful Friday!

 

 

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Thoughts on a Tuesday – June 23, 2020

Our forecast is ‘Downpours this morning and scattered thunderstorms this afternoon. Chance of rain 100%”

 

Jimmy Nyakora via Scene and Heard – Match Box Quotes

Other than the downpours and thunderstorms, I’m hoping for a quiet rain. I have no big projects for the day. I wanted to finish weeding my veggie garden, but it looks like that won’t be in the cards today. My husband planned to mow the lawn, but that probably won’t be happening, either. All that will be waiting for us when Mother Nature decides to cooperate.

Our DirecTV system has a nice feature where you can pause a program and it will record it for you until you want to resume watching later. This causes a ‘buffer’ to form, where you can then fast-forward through commercials. We are totally addicted to this feature.

My husband and I have a running ‘discussion’ about why the feature doesn’t always work the way he thinks it should. It will hold about 40 minutes on pause, and then it starts playing. (Hopefully, we have it muted, or else it sounds like the TV is possessed, coming on by itself and talking erupting in the living room while we are in our home office.) Either way, the buffer is filled up and the TV plays. Sometimes the buffer is retained and sometimes not. We cannot see a pattern.

It REALLY irks my husband. He is careful to set it up at night so that we have a full buffer in the morning and he is able to zip through commercials to his heart’s content.  When, for some unknown reason, gremlins have done their work and the buffer is ‘gone,’ he gets frustrated and angry. Our ‘discussions’ haven’t solved the problem. He refuses to call DirecTV to try to get an answer. And so, the ‘discussions’ continue…

We MAY have another raccoon. This would be #6 this season.

Getty Images

The sweet things won’t share, or we wouldn’t have a problem. They eat EVERY seed in EVERY feeder, and many time trash the feeder in their efforts to chow down. My husband will set our humane trap tonight and we’ll see if we capture another member of this year’s family to relocate with the others.

Foundation Pest Control

I mentioned that it MIGHT be the squirrel family we have this year. Yesterday I saw THREE squirrels at once being quite active and athletic on the feeders. That’s the first time I have seen three at one time. One was sitting in the shovel bird feeder, eating the seeds we leave there every day. A second was at the main bird feeder, hanging from his back legs as he avidly ate as much as possible using both hands to grab seeds. A third was in the gallon-sized clear bottle that sits on another feeder in our window. He was all the way inside the bottle, filling his cheeks.

Mourning Doves-Shutterstock.com

We usually have a pair of doves who sit on one of the electrical lines that cross the back of our yard. I haven’t seen them lately. I hope they are okay.

I hope that you are having a really nice day.

 

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Yippeeeee!

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Things are quiet so far today, and for that I am truly thankful.

I’m planning to head out to my garden after lunch to catch up on the weeding in my veggie planter boxes. I’m going to TRY to transplant two celery plants I started in the kitchen recently. If I have time and energy, I’ll do more weed killer spraying. This is all dependent on our weather cooperating, though.

Our forecast is for 100% chance of rain this afternoon. We had a good shower yesterday, and more is forecast for tomorrow. I should have expected all this rain. We just finished repairing our irrigation system. :0)

Yesterday I vacuumed the first floor tiled areas (kitchen, pantry, utility room, dining area, and two half-baths.) I also did PART of the carpeted first floor area yesterday, finishing it up this morning. I’m always amazed and disgusted at how MUCH dog and cat hair, plus dirt, plus ‘whatever’ I get every time. I’m lucky to have good vacuums. I refuse to vacuum more than every other day, though, so animal hair reigns here.

I was really tired when it was time to fix dinner. My husband twisted my arm :0)  and we called in and picked up fried rice for each of us. The restaurant is still on take-out only, and has simplified to offer only the medium size, so we have plenty for dinner tonight, too. That said, I’m planning to make a loaf of keto bread this afternoon.

I hope you’re having a fine day today and doing something FUN.

 

 

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Saturday – June 20, 2020

Citizens State Bank

“A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.” — James Dent

The sun was out earlier here, but now it’s overcast. We have an 80% chance of storms today – the first day of summer. All people and animals are good today, and we’re hoping for a quiet weekend.

I pre-ordered the latest paperback “In Death” series book by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) awhile back. It comes out in July.  To celebrate this, I’m enjoying my dive into the world of Eve Dallas, Lieutenant in the NYPSD in the year 2058+.  I’m picking up details I missed the first time, as well as just enjoying inhabiting her world – so different from mine. I’m re-reading book # 23 right now (out of 50) and will be ready to add the newest book to my collection when it arrives. (I’ve also pre-ordered the paperback of #51 which will be out at the end of December.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are due for a rainy weekend. I’ve been working hard in the yard, trying to keep the weeds at bay. I see evidence that the ‘wild’ would simply take back the land we have enjoyed for over 30 years now if I lost my determination to win the war. The civilized part of our yard looks pretty good now. My next focus will be on weeding my veggie garden and my flower planters around the yard. I’ll enjoy it if I get a bit of a break from the work this weekend.

I heated up the leftover spaghetti with meat sauce I made this week for dinner last night. I used the spaghetti made from chickpeas (brand name Banza) that has half the carbs of regular pasta. It’s still a splurge, but I sure enjoyed it. I made garlic toast for my husband with hot dog buns, and used the keto bread I made for mine.)  My husband said, “This was delicious. Thank you!” :0)  We will have leftover pork chops tonight with a side salad.

Animal Wellness Magazine

I will continue the longer, slower sessions of gentle yoga I started yesterday. I’m concentrating on relaxing – harder to do these days – and S_T_R_E_T_C_H_I_N _G everything I have slowly and thoroughly. I’m feeling better because of it.

I hope your first day of summer is a nice one, too. ENJOY.

 

 

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Thursday – June 11, 2020

Photo via J. Robert Bennett

Isn’t this a wonderful photograph? I don’t know who the photographer is, but Robert Bennett devotes a lot of his time to protecting wildlife and posts the wonderful photos he finds.

Depositphotos

We have had a busy morning. We caught Raccoon # 5 in our humane trap overnight, so we drove out to the spot where we relocate raccoons and he leaped into the small stream with great energy. (My husband put the trap in the middle of the deck floor, but this one apparently moved it so much trying to get out that he got close enough to our grill to trash the cover.  We will just live with the trashed cover until next year, since the damage is at the bottom of it. ) We are HOPING that this is the last of the family and that we are now free of the sweet, but destructive critters now – at least until next year…

While we were out, we went to the clinic to get the lab work needed for our doctor appointment Monday. Of COURSE, they didn’t have authorization for MY lab work when we went in, even though they called to confirm the appointment for Monday. I have a GIFT for having my paperwork, authorizations, etc. lost, or the statistics that should apply to me, NOT…. I have hoped that I would finally get old enough to outgrow this ‘gift” …

We are finally out of the intense rain we have been having. The weather is gorgeous right now. Sunny, nice temperatures, and low humidity. We have our doors open and are really enjoy airing out the house and enjoying the breeze.

I plan to spray another container of weed killer today, plus do some weed whacking. All the rain followed by sunshine has caused a huge spurt of growth that we are trying to keep under at least reasonable control. My husband just finished mowing the yard a couple of days ago and it already needs to be mowed again.

First, lunch!

Have a wonderful day!!!!

 

 

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Thoughts on a Sunday 6-7-2020

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Our Sweet dog Molly is better with the antibiotics and pain/inflammation medicine we got from our vet. She is sleeping now, but actually barks to be let outside and then barks again to come back in – playing the ‘system’ of getting a treat for doing that – over and over. I’m playing right along. The swelling on her mouth has gone down a lot and she actually smiles at me when I hug and pet her. Each day is a gift now.

Molly Resting

 

I worked out in the yard early this morning, since the heat index for the afternoon is forecast to be 105 degrees F. My husband had asked me to spray weed killer on the north side of our shop. I mixed up a 2-gallon container and hosed everything down there, plus around my garden and under my planter boxes. I have just put Benadryl Ointment on the tops of my feet and my ankles because they are acting like I must have walked through poison-something-or-other. :0(

I also used our heavy duty tomato cages to prop up our now really bushy tomato plants in both brick planters on the far side of the yard from the main garden. We now have little bitty green tomatoes!  I hooked up the hose and gave both planters a good drink. We haven’t hooked up our irrigation system for the yard because we have been getting a good amount of rain until the past few days. We are due to get the remnants of Cristobal tomorrow evening, so all should get a good drink.

These are the yellow crookneck squash and zucchini plants I put in the garden recently. They are looking happy, but haven’t started sending out vines everywhere yet.

My husband had a second stroke recently. We went to our primary doctor, who wanted him to have tests, but he refused. He said to me, “Last time we did it YOUR way (meaning testsa and doctor appointments), so this time we will do it MINE.” Needless to say, I’m not happy about this, but he is adamant. (If you look up the word “stubborn” in the dictionary, you will find my husband’s picture.) So we will HOPE that he doesn’t have another stroke for a long time (the time between the first one and this one was almost one year.) I will continue to try to keep him as healthy and happy as possible.

Rick James-Quotefancy

I hope you are having a wonderful Sunday. Take care and stay safe.

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Thoughts on a Sunday 5-31-2020

Penny Yaffe Krakow

We are having another gorgeous day with lots of sunshine and low humidity – a wonderful combination!  Since we have gone from dark, gray, cold, rainy weather day after day to bright, sunshiny, soon-to-be-hot weather here, today will have two projects:

PROJECT ONE:   Changing from winter closet to summer closet.

 

Depositphotos

My closet doesn’t look this bad, but it will take a lot of moving to get cold weather clothes out and hot weather clothes in. I will try, over the next few days, to try on each thing, making decisions about what to do with the things that don’t fit. Some of the things –

  • I like, and MAY fit with more lardage loss (I will put these in with the cold weather clothes)
  • will be folded up and included in the next donation to the Disabled Vets in Fort Smith Thrift Shop
  • will be thrown away.

The remainder will be organized as well as possible, in the hope I can put my hands on things quickly and easily.

PROJECT TWO – cleaning out the garden.

The day is perfect for work outside.  My lettuce and spinach are starting to bolt, so it’s time to harvest what I can and compost the rest.  I can at least pull the plants, but it may take a day or two longer to put the garden to rights. I plan to check the co-op in town next week to see if they have anything I would like to plant.

I hope that you are enjoying a beautiful last day of May, too.

 

 

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Thoughts on a Saturday 5-30-2020

“Zeus – Whose Eyes Contain Galaxies” – Micaela Rakos-Journalist via Penny Yaffe Krakow

I can’t say enough about this photo. I get lost in his eyes.

Mother Nature is smiling as us – giving us a perfect day today! The sun is shining and it is 72 degrees F. right now. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh!

I will go out soon and see what’s what in my garden.  My friends at Lunch Bunch, plus the 2 waitresses at The Pizza Barn, were pleased with the lettuce I gave them yesterday. We may already be at the end of the early spring garden, though. The lettuce and spinach are starting to bolt, signaling the end. (Lettuce and other greens are cool weather crops. When the warm temperatures come, lettuce moves from leaf production to flower and seed production. Very often the flavor of lettuce changes and it becomes bitter.)  I’m going to salvage what I can and pull out the rest of the plants.

Bolting Lettuce – Gardening Know How

I’m still dancing around, 3 inches off the ground, because I sold a vase on my SassyGlassByLinda shop on Etsy.  (I sold the daisies one in the middle.)

My customer should get her vase Monday. I’m enjoying nice mental pictures of her unwrapping it. It’s the highest compliment there is when someone likes what you do enough to want it for their own, or buy it to give it to someone who means a lot to them. :0)

It was GOOD to see our friends at Lunch Bunch yesterday. We have been having lunch every Friday for over 17 years now – only interrupted by the Pandemic. The Pizza Barn put out some picnic tables with benches and umbrellas in their parking lot so that they can offer not only carry-out, but also the ability for people to eat outside until the restrictions are fully lifted and we can eat inside again. It is priceless to be able to actually share a meal in person with people you care about, catch up on what has been happening, eat and laugh together once again. (Next time I’ll try to get pics so I can share them with you.)

I am hoping that the space launch will happen today. I have watched, glued to my seat, each time we attempt a launch. I still remember watching the grainy, incredible pictures of our astronauts actually walking around on the moon. (That happened in 1969 – the year my husband and I married.)  I’m hoping the weather in Florida will be cooperative today, giving us the chance to send our astronauts to the space station ourselves, rather then having to rely on others.

I hope that you have a beautiful Saturday, too.

 

 

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Denial

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I’m going to have to switch gears for the coming week, starting today – hopefully.

I’ve been working outside, whacking down weeds, cutting back trees, spraying weed killer and ant killer, etc., in an effort to keep Mother Nature from reclaiming the totally wild, wooded land we bought around 33 years ago now. (We built our home on top of this ridge line in 1987.) This is a full-time, never-ending job, and I have to say that we grow some really healthy, impressive weeds here. Some of them are taller than I am!

Last night, while my husband and I enjoyed a much-appreciated evening on the deck while grilling our dinner, we talked about the fact that the ‘weed trees’ were again encroaching on our view of the valley below. The slope of our land is impressive, too, and there are totally rocky places where it is treacherous to even think about walking. This is where the weed trees are. I am going to attempt to cut these down, a few at a time, over the coming weeks to try to reclaim our view.

This gives you an idea of what we can usually see.

 

That said, here is the 10 day forecast for our area –

 

Maybe I should be trying to built a raft or boat instead of thinking about weed whacking….

The end result of a forecast like this is I want to take a nap. I feel super lazy. I can’t even get excited about playing in my art room right now, though that could change once I’ve finished my coffee.

The only thing I PROMISE I will do today is make a ‘sausage-egg-and-cheese bake’ for our dinner tonight. This is a wonderful keto recipe from Suzanne Ryan of Simply Keto.  My husband grinned and gave a happy thumbs up when I told him what I planned to make today.  Actually, I’ll promise another thing – I will do at least 35 minutes of gentle yoga stretches today.

Otherwise, I’ll have to fight my natural inclination to stretch out in my chair in the living room under my snuggly throw and take cat naps (with at least one, if not two, actual cats!) today.

I hope you have a happy Sunday.

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 5-20-2020

source unknown

I have found this to be good advice – smiles are contagious, and they make you AND the recipient feel better.

That said, I just had words with my husband. He was in our home office, working at the computer, so I decided I would use the opportunity to vacuum the 1st floor carpeting. Suddenly, he and Amber, our 95-pound yellow lab,

were in the living room with me. They decided to go out on the back porch, but we had the door open, creating a nice breeze. I was vacuuming and suddenly was hit with 95 pounds of dog flying into me, trying to go after the ball my husband threw for her. I scowled at him, and he grinned sheepishly at me, after helping me up. The SECOND time the dog came flying past me, getting tangled in the cord, I put her out on the porch and shut the door. I finished vacuuming and put the dog bed back down in the living room. I opened the back door to allow husband and dog back into the house. The next thing I knew, the dog was flying for the ball into the front of the living room into her bed, sliding about three feet with the slobbery ball and bed. I then told my husband in no uncertain terms that I had vacuumed in the living room in order not to bother him in the office, and that consideration seemed to be only going one way this morning.  He agreed, grinned again, hugged me, and sat down to read in his chair. (It is now time to look at the picture and suggestion above again.) 

National Geographic

We trapped Raccoon # 3 of the season overnight and so took a trip to relocate him first thing this morning. I have a nice mental picture of him finding the two others we have relocated so far this season and having a happy reunion far enough away that they won’t return to our home. My husband cleaned out the humane trap, had to replace the plastic bowl we use to hold the bait because the raccoon trashed it, and refilled our bird feeders. We have no idea how large the current raccoon family is. We’ll see if we get all the bird seed cleaned out tonight.

We have had two absolutely perfect weather days,

Clipart Library

and I can’t sing high enough praises. I like rain, but it starts to be depressing when you get day after day of cool, gray, rainy weather. I am smiling at the sunshine, trying to encourage Mother Nature to provide more of this.  Since it’s supposed to be nice today, I’m planning to do some weed whacking in the area behind the shop and beside the veggie garden, where my husband can’t use the riding mower. When I get that all cut down, I’ll also spray some weed killer right around the big trash barrels that hold the ingredients of Mel’s Mix for the garden, plus around the propane tank that serves the shop. I’ll take some pics when things are presentable.

I hope that you are safe and well, having a happy day.

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Thoughts on a Monday 5-18-2020

Marabou Stork-photographer unknown via Penny Yaffe Krakow

 

If I come back to the world as something else one day, I either want to be this Marabou stork (above) or a shoebill stork (below.)

San Diego Zoo Animals and Plants

I love both of these birds. They are ugly – and they look like they have a sense of humor – like they’ll say something to make you laugh any minute. A great combination!

The sun is finally shining here!!!!  We have had an entire week of rain, storms, gusty winds, gray days.  It was SO nice to have to put on my sunglasses when we ran a couple of errands earlier today!

I fixed a big salad this morning. I will offer to share it with my husband, but he has some things he really likes, instead. I will eat part for lunch and the rest as part of my dinner. It’s wonderful to be able to use spinach and lettuce from our own garden in it! :0)

My husband is going to try to mow the yard later today, if it will dry up more. We are actually watching the grass grow now that the sun has come out.

I’m going to play in my art room this afternoon, trying to finish up a new idea I had.

Have a fun day!

 

 

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Active Morning

National Geographic

We caught the second member of the raccoon family overnight that not only cleans out each and every seed in all the feeders, but trash the feeders, as well. We have a humane trap that allows us to ‘relocate’ the raccoon elsewhere, hopefully far enough from our house that he doesn’t return.

On the way down the driveway, we noticed leaves all over that indicated we had yet another gusty storm last night. At the bottom of the driveway, we found that the robot we made was leaning over, caught by the two chains we tied on him and attached to trees. One would THINK that when a robot weighs 150 pounds, one wouldn’t have to worry about him blowing over. We learned the hard way many years ago that it is REALLY difficult to stand up a heavy robot that has fallen off the driveway down to the slope beside it. Thankfully, it is now an easy thing to pull him upright.

Lewis welcome robot 

If you look carefully, you can also see one of the two owls we made for either side of the driveway.  Each sits atop a pole. (We have a closure we could swing shut to block entrance to the driveway.)

So this morning we have pulled the robot upright, relocated a raccoon, and I’ve started regular chores. We will have lunch soon.

I’m going to try to check my garden veggies today before the forecasted rain begins. Once it starts, it’s supposed to continue until the end of the day tomorrow.

I hope you are having a good Saturday.

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“It’s Raining, It’s Pouring…”

PictureQuotes.com

I love rain, but I would rather be on the inside looking out at it.

We just got back from doing our errands for the day. It’s 40 degrees with a cold rain. We didn’t have many, but we DROWNED doing them. It’s a very good thing we are not water-soluble. I’m having a cup of coffee now, trying to warm up. A wonderful day to be inside. :0)

I’m feeling good because our veggie garden is under good control right now, plus we got the yard mowed and weed-whacked before the rain started. I can enjoy the inside days with a clear conscience – happy to be warm and dry.

I’ll fix our lunch and then I’m looking forward to spend some time in my art room. I’m painting some wooden earrings which will have posts, and I have some ideas (thanks to my good friend, Marsha)  for some things I can create with my Unicorn Spit paint and put them in the local shop booth I share with my friend, Carla.

When I saw how cold and rainy it was this morning, I put ingredients for a beef stew in the slow cooker so we can enjoy some hot comfort food tonight. It’s odd – our weather forecast is for cold and rainy today – but WARM and rainy the rest of the week, including thunderstorms and possible severe weather. Mother Nature is being quite active lately.

I hope that you are weathering whatever shutdown restrictions you have without too much discomfort. Gradually, things will reopen and we can adapt to the ‘new normal.’

Take care and stay safe.

 

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Life of a Slug

 

Yesterday I emulated a slug.  It was a wonderful day.

 

Life Time Athletic

Arkansas is reopening, so I was able to have my first massage in three months. AHHHHHHHH! Each part of my body let out a big sigh as my therapist, Lynn Moody, found another tight or sore spot and eased our the kinks. I tried to get her to just let me sleep there when she finished, but she calmly, sweetly, told me I had to get up and go home, and gave me an appointment for next month. :0)

When I got home, I fixed lunch. We ate, and I thought I would drink a cup of coffee and watch the news on TV. The next thing I knew, it was an hour later.

I did only what was needed yesterday, taking another nap in the afternoon. The life of a slug is sweet!

Today Lunch Bunch is trying to meet at the Pizza Barn. It rained overnight, and it’s looking like it might rain again. We were planning to eat at one of the picnic tables they have put in their parking lot, but that might not be in the cards. Kay is calling to find out if it would be possible for us to eat inside if it’s raining. The jury is still out on whether we can finally enjoy a meal together or not. I usually hug them – but I’m learning to hold my hands behind my back to remind myself to take care of each of my friends.  If not this week, then maybe next week. Till then, we’ll just have to say, “Hi” on the phone.

I’m hoping to get up to my art room this afternoon, since it looks like the work in the yard and the garden might not be possible. I want to start painting a new group of wooden earrings – these with posts – so I can add this option to my Etsy site, Eyecatching Earrings .  I’ll show you pics when they are listed.

Today is rainy, windy, and raw. I’ll get together the makings of keto chili in the crock pot for tonight.

I hope you can find some joy today.

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Thoughts on a Tuesday – May 5, 2020

Simply-Beautiful

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Some really good friends of ours celebrate an anniversary today. I wish them many, many more happy years together.

Last night my husband and I cooked out on the grill for dinner. Severe weather was forecast, but we decided we would go ahead with it, hoping we could finish before the rain started. We have an LED rope light that we strung around the deck top, and I plugged those in while we sat and talked, enjoying the cool down and the breeze while the meat cooked. The lights instantly make us feel festive!  We got our dinner cooked, and I stored the grill cover on the back porch as we went inside, having lost one before in the same situation.

As we sat down in the living room with our dinner, the rains started. They came in waves, sometimes quite hard. It was loud, too, with lots of lightning and wind. I closed the garage door, finally shutting the front and back door due to the blowing rain. It was quite something.

This morning the sun is shining and all is quite beautiful. It amazes me that it can be so fierce during the night and so lovely the next day. There are leaves and small branches all over the front yard again. (I just cleaned up a big bunch from the last storm.) I have not found any damage yet. Our tomato plants are still looking good. I’ll give them closer attention this morning, as well as check on our garden veggies to see if all is good out there, too.  I’ll try to get some pictures to share with you.

I had a wonderful thing happen this past week. I received an order for a set of glassware on my painted glass website.

I was slow acknowledging the order due to our severe weather causing Internet problems. I wrote the customer, apologizing for the delay. He was very nice, saying they had the same problem where he was. He received the glassware yesterday. I wrote to see if they arrived safely and if he was pleased. He said, “Hi. I just opened them and they are wonderful! Thank you so much. I will be using them a lot.”  Needless to say, I’ve been walking about 3 inches off the ground, grinning like a nut…

My friend Kay from Lunch Bunch called me yesterday, asking if my husband and I wanted to meet this Friday, having our lunch served outside at the picnic table our restaurant has set up. This will depend on the weather cooperating, of course, but I said an enthusiastic “YES!”  Fingers crossed Mother Nature will be in a good mood.

I hope that you are having a good day today.

Hope is in the air!

 

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 4-29-2020

in an email from my friend Marsha

We have had a busy couple of days.

Yesterday severe weather was forecast, including rain, high winds, large hail, and flying hairballs to start around dark. I took old sheets out and covered up the veggie plants in my garden, plus my tomato plants, protecting them as much as possible. The bad weather came, with lots of lightning, wind, rain, etc. I didn’t know if we got the hail. This morning I uncovered everything, and we seem to have come through with no damage to my sweet veggies!

I’m doing several loads of laundry to change the dirty, dripping sheets into clean, dry sheets ready for the next time.

 

I am really relieved. If we have a quiet, nice day tomorrow, I’ll work on cutting down the weeds and then spraying weed killer UNDER my raised bed boxes, as well as around the perimeter. I’m not sure if we need more mulch to spread under the boxes. I’ll know more when I have the weeds under control.

I’ll also use the push-around weed whacker to clean up the area beside the garden. We have the lawn mowed after finally getting the new belt installed, but my husband didn’t have the time to mow around or beside the garden.

I took pics of our rose bushes before the storm. It’s a good thing, because ALL of them are bent clear over after all the wind and rain.  I am going to try to find some things to prop them up while they try to recover.

 

 

 

A small sign of things starting to get back toward normal was that the company that sprays for bugs for us called and sent out Adolpho to spray the inside, plus around the outside of the house for everything – including elephants. When you live outside of town in a wooded area on top of a ridge line, one of the things you take seriously is the creepy, crawly things that will suddenly erupt without constant heavy duty spraying by professionals. We have Tri-Hill Pest Control, 1308 Zero St, Fort Smith, AR 72901, (479) 782-2847.  Adolpho is the man who comes to help us. We can’t say enough about him. 

Besides uncovering plants, washing sheets, and meeting the bug man, I have made us lunch and baked another loaf of keto bread. I can’t say enough about this recipe from MyKetoKitchen.com

I’ve tried a lot of recipes for bread, since that was the thing I had been missing the most. I wanted one loaf of bread that I could slice and eat instead of eyeing my husband’s roll with dinner. I wanted one that I could slice and put in the toaster while my husband had regular bread – and one that I might even be able to use for a sandwich, if I felt the urge, such as when we want a comfort dinner of grilled cheese sandwiches and soup for dinner.  I wanted the yeasty smell and taste of regular bread, as much as possible.

This one does all this. One loaf lasts me approximately a week. It doesn’t rise as much as regular bread, but it tastes good to me. I don’t feel deprived watching my husband eat regular breads – rolls, bagels, toast, sandwich bread, hot dog buns, etc. I will eventually branch out, trying other keto recipes for all of these various things, but this has really helped me in my efforts to stay on keto and lose the lard.

I hope that your day is full of hopeful things, too.

 

 

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Feeling Lucky

My husband and I just came back from running some quick errands. I can’t get him to wear a mask, so we keep our errands to an absolute minimum and move in and out of the store very quickly to avoid exposure as much as possible. I’m feeling grateful that Arkansas is one of the states that did not require a complete lockdown.  Sometimes we can go through a drive-through or call and get curbside service at one of our favorite restaurants. We got a rotisserie chicken today, so I don’t even have to cook tonight. I’ll make a salad to go with it, using our head lettuce and spinach leaves from our own garden.

Several states are now in the process of trying to carefully reopen their economies. Arkansas is one. I’m interested to see how this works. I think that people will need to think for themselves about what is a safe situation. My husband and I are in the high risk group. so we will probably continue to do what we’re doing, avoiding exposure as much as we can until further notice. If we see something that we consider safe, or consider the risk worth it, we will expand to new things again.

I feel lucky that I can continue to plan my days here on top of our ridgeline, filling it with things I SHOULD do – like household chores and exercise – as well as FUN things, such as writing my blog and playing in my art room. It just doesn’t get much luckier than that.

So far friends and family have managed to avoid the virus, or have HAD it and don’t know it. I hope this continues.

I’m am hopeful that we can open our economy carefully, getting good people back to work, getting a start on putting our world back to normal.

natural life via 2 STAR art

 

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 4-22-2020

Garry Dano – I Love Elephants with Elephant Addict

How could anyone feel ‘down’ after seeing this sweet baby elephant?

We are having storms this morning. We have lost power once briefly and Internet once so far. Rain, wind, hail, and flying hair balls are predicted all day and into the evening.  I am worried about my veggie plants and my tomato plants. Fingers crossed that we DON’T get the predicted hail.

I am thankful we have a warm, dry home. Usually we play ‘doggie doorman’ all day long, but both doggies are sound asleep as I type. Both cats are inside, too. And, of course, the gold fish are safe from harm.

We started a project last night of replacing the long board that is on the outer edge of our deck, trying to shore things up a bit. We got part of it accomplished, and planned to go to the local hardware store to get a replacement board today. So much for our plans. We will hope we can continue the fix tomorrow.

Meanwhile, we are trying to sell an old riding lawn mower. A man just called and is on his way out to see it – in the middle of this weather. I’m hoping that means that he really wants a mower and will be delighted that we can sell him one cheaply that works. Fingers crossed!

123RF.com

I finished the painting I started several days ago.

 

The weather has really thrown a wrench into our plans for the day, so I’m not sure what I’ll try to accomplish today.

I got two stars yesterday because I FINALLY did my elliptical trainer in the morning and my yoga in the afternoon. I will try to do that again today.

Penn Fitness Warehouse

 

Bored Panda

I could really tell yesterday that I had stiffened up in my yoga practice. I have to prove to myself over and over again that I really need to do this at least several times a week, if not every day. I’m a very slow, stubborn learner.  Here’s hoping I earn my two stars today.

Please take care and stay safe.

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Thoughts on A Tuesday 4-14-2020

New Animalbook

  • I seem to be UNABLE to stop touching my face!  I’ve tried several things without success. As much as I pull on my nose, I should look like Pinocchio!
  • I am using every excuse in the book (and even inventing some new ones!) to cheat on my diet and exercise.

Fat Animals-Rollin Wild by BMC-Nasim Biswas-2018

Each day I ‘start over’ in my mind, looking forward to exercising and eating right. Maybe TODAY I’ll get going again!

  • My sweet veggie plants and new tomato plants made it through another freeze. As far as I can tell, this is the last time I’ll need to cover everything. I have the first load of sheets in the washer to get all clean and dry for when they are needed again. If the weather warms up (it’s 40 now) I’ll try to get a good start on getting the TEENY, TINY weeds out of my veggie garden today.
  • My goldfish have done their trick of dirtying up their aquarium again, so cleaning that is on the agenda for this morning. Happily, I am able to get everything out, clean the aquarium and put all new stuff in it in about 35 minutes now.
  • I have an idea for a painting rattling around in my head. I’ll try to get up to my art room today to get a start on it.
  • Bacon-wrapped keto chicken is on the menu for tonight. I’ll fix a nice salad – with spinach and lettuce from our garden – to go with it.

I hope you are finding good ways to spend your days as we all hope that we can put the threat of the virus, as well as financial worries from the economy being shut down, in the rear view mirror.

Stay safe and well.

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Thoughts on a Thursday 4-9-2020

David Zinn Art via Penny Yaffe Krakow

Even though I want to bite him in the leg at times, I’m thankful this morning that my husband and I are riding the pandemic out together. Even though I am trying to reach out to the others who mean a lot to me via text, email and phone, REAL HUGS are hugely important to me. So I hug my husband; hug my dogs, Amber and Molly; hug my cats, Smoke and Abby, every day. I don’t hug my 2 gold fish, but we smile at each other.  :0)

I’m even grateful that I work my head off each day, trying to tackle a different part of my house to heal. I’m a slob, and I hate housekeeping, but there is a sense of accomplishment when an area that was a mess gradually becomes an area we can enjoy spending time again.  (We’re looking forward to having our lunch on the screened in back porch today!)

Today’s project is two-fold: 1) weed whacking the areas my husband can’t reach with the mower. We have gone from looking like no one had lived here for several months – with 8-inch-or-so high weeds, to an area that is starting to look not only like someone lives here now, but also like someone cares. My husband was really steamed that he had to mow in March – an affront to fairness in his mind – but he has now mowed twice since then, wanting to feel happy about the yard again.   So I will use the hand-held weed whacker to clean up the edges, the area under the deck, etc. where he can’t reach, and then clean everything up with the leaf blower. 2) The other part of today’s project will be buying and planting tomato plants! (Yeagers Hardware is open and they have plants today.) I will visit my veggie garden and see how things are going.  (Pics later.)

I am hopeful we will get past this awful time and once again we will feel free to HUG our friends without putting them in jeopardy.

I hope you have someone to hug, physically or virtually, today.

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Perspective

Back to Nature

In these days of worry over COVID 19, my perspective continues to change.

My priorities have changed, and continue to change. Things that used to bother me don’t even register now.

It’s raining again, so I’m thankful we have a warm, dry home.

I’m reaching out to friends and family to make sure they are safe, catch up with what is going on, and share the love.

One of the priorities for the day was finding something I can wear over my face in the few times we go out in public.

We’re not planning to go out until we need to, but we now have a group of painting masks to take with us and wear. I’m not sure my husband will use one. (He continues to be his stubborn self – crisis or no crisis.)

I am  hoping I can visit my veggies this afternoon. I would like to do another harvest. If I do, I’ll take some pics to share.

I watch our animals – seeing that nothing has changed for them. They continue to live their lives, not only enjoying one day at a time, but one moment at a time. I am trying to learn from this.

My biggest wish right now is that people will soon be able to go back to work soon.  I am hoping that this will devolve into a more ‘regular’ flu worry, where we can get a shot for the ‘season,’ and just be normally careful. Our country needs to get back to normal as soon as possible.

Be safe.

 

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Friday 4-3-2020

via Jeff Jett – LinkedIn

I’m feeling very lucky that so far, we are safe from the virus, in a warm, dry home with our pets. We have food and water, a throw to take a nap under, books to read, paint to splatter, and some good hugs – even with social distancing.  I just enjoyed a chat with our son who is across the world from us. He is thinking about starting a YouTube page with videos on how to meditate. He is so calm and happy. I hope he does this, so he can pass this gift he has found on to others.

One suggestion on a way we can help each other through this time of economic uncertainty –  if you are in the position to do this – pay the many good people who do things for you the normal amount you would pay them, even if you’re not getting the service, to show how very much you appreciate them.  If you are not in a position to pay them, consider calling them to check on them, showing them you are thinking of them.

It’s rainy today, so we’re staying inside.

Yesterday we had to go to the hardware store because we had a leak in the well house. We were able to find the replacement parts we needed and were able to fix the leak. We were going to change the tires on the truck – from our snow tires to the regular ones – but we seem to have a reprieve for the moment due to the rain. ANOTHER reason to enjoy the rain! :0)

Today I’m planning to go up to my art room (my friend, Marsha, says I should call it a ‘studio.’) to have fun painting some wooden earrings for myself.

I hope you find a fun, satisfying way to spend your day today.

Stay safe.

 

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Timing Is All

Very Well Family

We went out to get supplies this morning. Just as we were coming out of the store, the rain came down. By the time we had all the bags in the truck and I had returned the cart, we were both dripping. We stopped at one more place, getting even wetter, if possible, and then came home. Of course, as soon as we came home, the rain stopped. We put things away, made lunch, and then both fell asleep in our chairs.

The sun is shining now and you would never know it happened. It almost makes me feel as if I dreamed the whole thing! Such is life in the exciting Lewis household these days. Timing is all.

I am trying to have a specific goal for each day, particularly since we are trying to stay home and limit our exposure to the virus. Today the goals were replenishing supplies, paying bills, catching up the bookkeeping, and cleaning out the aquarium.  The first two are done…

Be safe.

 

 

 

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Thoughts on a Friday 2-27-2020

Patrick van Bakkum Photography via Penny Yaffe Krakow

My heart simply melted when I saw this wonderful photo, so I had to share it.

I FINALLY finished the initial yard work for the season this afternoon!  We have been battling true champion weeds – and LOTS of them, even though we spread weed killer in the yard. I finally finished pulling all the weeds out of the rock bed that goes around the base of our house. When things get back to normal in the world, we’ll get more bags of rocks and spread them. In the meantime, my husband did what HE calls spraying for weeds in the bed today. We’re due for rain tonight into tomorrow, but once we have a dry day, I plan to hose down the rocks with weed killer in a more serious fashion. I also trimmed the edges of the grass, weed whacked around the back yard, and then used the leaf blower to clean things up before our rain this evening.

I’m going to do a long, slow session of yoga stretches and then take a long, hot shower to try to get my body to quit yelling at me. I’m tired, but the main thing is that the back of my legs didn’t like all the getting down on my hands and knees to pull the weeds out of the rocks.

We called in for lunch, and my husband did the curbside pick up, and got our mail while he was out. I got a roast in the crock pot and we’ll have that, plus the leftovers from the squash casserole recipe I tried yesterday. It was really good.  If you’d like to try it, the name is, “Low Carb Yellow Squash Casserole” from  allrecipes.com.  My husband was kind of expecting the casserole his mom made years ago, even though he knows we are trying to eat low carb, low sugar, etc. He asked what the ‘crunchy stuff’ was. When I explained that this recipe substituted almonds for crackers, he decided he liked it a lot. :0)

I hope you had a good day and that you and your loved ones are staying safe.

 

 

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Thoughts on a Thursday 3-26-2020

Since it finally quit raining for a bit here, we are scrambling to get our yard under what passes for control around here.

My husband used the riding mower a couple of days ago to cut the grass (mostly weeds) for the first time this season. We had spread weed killer earlier, but this spring has been a perfect one for all the weeds that have ever been in our yard, encouraging them to burst forth as never before. Some of the weeds were over a foot high! It took my husband twice as long as usual to mow, but he got it done, leaving huge amounts of cut grass everywhere. The next day he used the push-around weed whacker to get big places he couldn’t reach with the mower.

That left it to me to wield the hand-held weed whacker to get what is left, trim and edge the sidewalks, around the planters, under the deck, etc.. This spring has also encouraged the weeds to come up in the rocks we have around the house. Usually we can simply spray weed killer on them, but this year they are so prolific we actually have to pull what is there first. I did the front yard yesterday. My body is complaining pretty loudly today, but I’m going to try to get the back yard done today.

laughtard

When I finish, I’ll schedule a half hour to 45 minutes of gentle yoga stretching to get these old muscles stretched out again. I’ll schedule the elliptical trainer for days when I’m not doing so much in the yard.

I’m finding it difficult during this time to stick with my keto eating plan. I love the basics of it, but find I’m craving comfort type food during this stay-at-home time. I realize it’s probably just another excuse, but I ate some Blue Bunny New Freedom No-Sugar-Added Ice Cream with my husband last night.  It’s better for my husband, but it’s bad for me, as far as carbs go. It also has maltitol, which we should both be avoiding. “Being good” is difficult. Being good when my husband keeps bringing things I need to avoid into the house makes it more challenging. Being good during a pandemic is an even larger challenge.

Today I found a Low Carb Yellow Squash Casserole that sounds yummy. I’ll make that to serve with our leftover hamburger patties for our dinner tonight.  I will also make a loaf of bread from a favorite keto recipe so I can have some tonight.

It’s funny what each of us considers something that is ‘necessary’ to do in times when you are encouraged to stay home and avoid unnecessary contact with other humans. Apparently washing his car at the local car wash is a necessary thing for my husband, since he has just left to do it. I’m not even sure it’s open, though it is designed to be a place where no humans are needed. We will see if he comes back with a clean car or not.  Mostly, he has complied with staying home, so I’m trying not to fuss at him TOO much…

I am grateful that we are still healthy; have a warm, dry home; have food and water; and have Internet, books, TV, music, DVDs, art, pets, AND to-do lists to get us through this crisis. May we come out the other side as soon as possible and get people back to work.

Stay safe.

 

 

 

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Good Morning!

Nature Heaven

It is NOT raining today!  It’s cool and gray outside, but I’ll take it! My husband is grumbling that, as soon as our yard dries out, he’ll have to mow – in MARCH!  We haven’t even taken our snow tires off the truck and he’ll have to mow!

Arkansas has officially joined the ranks of the states calling for closure of a lot of things. We called and picked up burgers from our Lunch-Bunch-Friday Pizza Barn. They were figuring out how to offer curbside service and doing a fine job.  A local Facebook group is providing a list of restaurants that are offering call-in and pick-up services now. We will try to support them, as well as small business people in our community, as we all try to get through this.

Meanwhile, since we are staying home, one would THINK my house would now be spotless. Hahahahaahahhhahaha!  No such luck. I still am a champion at finding things that have higher priority than cleaning.  I DID scrub the fish and the aquarium –

 

I am working on starting a new shop on Etsy for my hand-painted glassware. I would appreciate it if you would tell me if you like “Classy Glass,” “Sassy Glass” or “Something Else” (all suggestions welcome) as a name for the shop.

We got a notice from the census people a couple of days ago. My husband found that they directed him online to fill out a form. It was quick and easy. We saved the confirmation from them just in case it is needed in the future.

I hope that you are staying safe and happy.

 

 

 

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Nuts!

Nature Valley via Penny Yaffe Krakow

Cancelling appointments and not-strictly-necessary errands, social distancing, plus worry for economic repercussions from the coronavirus have me feeling stressed and a bit nuts. I find myself feeling overwhelmed, but having trouble actually sitting down and finishing tasks. I get started, then I think of something that might be more important. I switch to that, and think of something else. I definitely need a button I can push that allows my body – and particularly my brain – to ‘reboot.’ I feel like the sweet dog in the photo who has gathered all the sticks, but now isn’t sure what to DO with them…

One positive thing I’m doing is gathering another donation for the Veterans Thrift Town in Fort Smith, AR.  We have been donating to them for years now. Every time we go with a donation, they are very friendly and helpful. Someone helps me get the bags and stuff out of the vehicle and happily give a receipt. The store is clean and well organized. I am happy we found this good group.

Another positive thing today is that we drove to Ft. Smith first thing this morning to sign our tax returns. I always breathe a sigh of relief that it is over for another year. We dashed into Walmart on the way back and are now in for the day.

I’m adding to my online shops. I’m making sure my shops are up to date. I’m thinking of starting a new one in the next few days. People are staying home more due to the coronavirus and might do more online shopping as a result. Right now I have –

Hand-painted wooden earrings

Hand-painted tote bags

Hand-painted note cards and stationery

and ArtFire – with everything else I make.

I’m thinking that I will start a new Etsy shop with my hand-painted glassware.

Meanwhile, I start to the kitchen to get a refill on my coffee and notice a ball of white hair on the tiled floor next to the back door. I also notice that the cat has pulled my hair-washing towel down on the floor. I pick that up and hang it on the chair back again. I put the cup down, go get my cordless vacuum, and end up vacuuming not only that area, but two half-baths, the dining area, the kitchen, the utility room, and the walk-in pantry.

As I walk back from hanging up the vacuum, I stop, pick up the hair washing towel and hang it back up on the chair  and put the lunch dishes in the dishwasher. Then get out pork chops to thaw for dinner and pick up the hair washing towel again. At this point, I put the cat out, get my coffee, and come back to the computer…

I hope that YOUR day is more productive than mine. I MEAN well, but the results of my activities so far are less than desired…

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