Tuesday, October 25, 2016

What's On!

It is now October -- autumn, my favorite month of the year.  There is a crispness in the air which makes we want to settle in to my usual autumn lifestyle.  What does that mean?

It means reading.  I love to read and have flirted with tablets and e-readers and while I still use them from time to time I really just love books.  Right now I am reading "A Man Called Ove" by Frederik Backman.  It is all about Ove who has endured a good deal of sadness and loss in his life.  After the loss of his wife, all Ove wants to do is die at his own hand.  However, life has other plans for him, it seems.  While it sounds like a dire book, it is actually pretty comical and I am enjoying it.  I would recommend it, so far.  I will see how it ends.  I doubt Ove will die and his or anybody else's hand.

It means stitching.  I haven't cross stitched in quite a while.  In fact, I haven't done any stitching in quite a while but I am getting the urge to start something.  I have some lovely bird pictures that I would like to complete.

It means cooking.  I don't cook anymore.  I cleaned out my pantry the other day and you can't imagine the amount of expired food I had to toss so I guess I am not very good at stocking up either.  But, on cool evenings I sure look forward to a nice pot of stew or goulash and cornbread.  And pumpkin bread.  Love pumpkin bread.

It means art, to me, as well.  I have been dabbling in the craft of cardmaking and I have been enjoying it but I have also been coloring.  I have a couple of coloring books and love to sit down with them and my pencils and just lose myself in the art of it all.  Last night we had to run a couple of errands and I found myself at Michael's looking for some art supplies.  I added a Prismacolor Premier blending marker to my stash as well as several more pencils.  The blending marker came with several other little items -- a pencil extender, two erasers, a pencil sharpener, a colorless blending pencil and an ebony pencil --a nice little set.  I also added a water brush to the mix so I could try it with my water color pencils.  Nice little purchase there.  Then we went to Barnes and Noble.  I had two coupons so I bought a coloring book, an adult dot-to-dot book and a new book by Jennifer Chiaverinni -- "The Christmas Bells".  I love her books and am working my way through the Elm Creek series.  This isn't part of that series but I am sure it is going to be delightful.

I have also been looking to order some cozy clothes.  I am still in shorts and t-shirts but I know the day will soon come where a flannel shirt will feel wonderful so I have a nice little list started to place an order.  Yes, I order most of my clothes -- it is just easier that way and since I am a little, white haired lady with gimpy knees, I don't have to pretend to be a fashion maven.

So, there you go -- a glimpse into my little world of autumn!

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Sometimes I Wonder

yes, sometimes I wonder -- about the world around me, politics, art, literature, humanitarian efforts, religion -- and sometimes I just wonder about......my brain.

I sometimes wonder if I have ADHD.  Not because I am physically hyperactive because trust me, I am not active -- at all.  (That is actually a problem.)  My brain, however, is never still.  My family thinks I am crazy because I can be sitting there, minding my own business, thinking about whatever I am thinking about and I break into a conversation (usually with a question about whatever I was thinking about) and expect them to know what I am talking about.  Can't they read my mind?  What is wrong with them?

I was always a prolific daydreamer.  When I was in junior high school I used to sit in our gorgeous school library during study hall and look down the street at the houses.  The school was located in a historical district

and the houses were all mini-mansions (and some not so mini)

and I would make up stories in my head about the families that lived in each house. They were all lovely families with well-kept secrets and mysteries and lots and lots of money and gorgeous clothes -  probably not so far from the truth, actually.

I don't do that anymore.  Or, at least I didn't think I did.

We are taking a new route home from Bean's in the afternoon.  It takes us through a neighborhood very much like the one we lived in the first 16 years of our marriage.  Yesterday I found myself looking at the houses and making up stories about the people in them.

Hmmmm.......is this a sign of ADHD, impending senility or literary brilliance?

Yes, I think so!

Monday, October 17, 2016

October Surprise

If you have been following politics surely you have heard the catchphrase "October Surprise".  I assume it refers to Wikileaks email drops.  Some places I have heard it refers to impending war.

Here is the truth, at least in OUR reality.

October Surprise

New roof $26,000
New HVAC  $12,000
Eye surgery $10,000

Oh, the new fan works well and the pull chain works fine after further review.

And to think that October used to be my favorite month.  I  might should rethink that.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Joys of Homeownership

Happy Sunday, all! I hope today is being good to you.  It has been a lovely day thus far in spite of the fact that things are falling apart at a rapid rate around here.

Bear in mind that our house is only 12 years old.  It was new construction when we purchased and we have been the only occupants.  We were thrilled that everything just worked and we had no desire to knock out walls, re-do tile or add anything on.

It has been fine except now age is creeping in and things are getting wonky.  We have to have a new roof.  Now, that has nothing to do with age but rather the extreme hail storm we had in the spring.  Huge hail.  Destroyed roof.  However, since we live in a gated community we have an HOA which is a good/bad thing.  It keeps us from having to deal with turquoise paint and pink flamingos in the yard but on the flip side, everything we do we have to have "approved".  It wouldn't be bad if our architectural committee didn't have "control issues" and "power issues" and, well, you get the picture.  So, we got the almighty approval and got on the docket with the roofer.  We will have a new roof in December.  Yes, December.  I am underwhelmed and just hoping we aren't solidly into ice/snow by then.

Then, a couple of weeks ago our ceiling fan in our bedroom died.  It is remote controlled, no pull chains, and apparently the thingy in the fan went out and there is no way to make it work.  We researched a new part to make the remote work.  Apparently they quit making that new part.  So, we went out and bought a new fan today.  Why you ask?  Why today?

Because sometime Friday our air conditioning went out.  My husband thought it was a capacitor.  He replaced the capacitor.  Not the problem.  He called the hvac guy.  The guy said they could come but being a weekend it would be twice the amount of money and they couldn't fix it until Monday anyway.  He said to try to hang in there until Monday and they would be out.  Nice guy.  Saved us some money.  It is 90 degrees today.  Upon further review, my husband thinks the yard guys, who seem hell bent on destroying everything in the path of their lawnmowers, has cut the freon line because there is very apparent damage to the compressor box.  Now, these lawn guys have messed up window facings, they have broken yard decor and they have actually ripped the gutters off the house.  I really don't like these yard guys. 

So, we went to Lowe's and bought a new fan and a spanking brand new 12' ladder so he could get to the 14 ft. ceiling.  We made sure we didn't buy a remote control fan but rather one with a pull chain.  It has taken him six hours to install this fan.

The pull chain doesn't work.

The joys of home ownership.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Latest Card and Trip I Forgot About

I think it must happen to everybody.  We forget things.  Maybe we are tired, too busy, just ditzy but we forget things.  Seems I forgot an entire trip we took. 

Early September we were invited to join our daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter in San Antonio to celebrate our daughter's birthday.  We ate good food, had good fellowship with friends and visited a local mall, North Star Mall, to see a fanastic Lego display.  Pictures can describe it better than I can.

Sorry about the sideways photos -- I don't know how to turn them around. It was a really amazing display and I would love to see it again when half the population of San Antonio wasn't there.

And now, for my latest card --

A cute little birthday card for a cute little girl.  Hopefully one of these days I will grasp the concept of getting the elements straight and centered.  But, until then, this will have to do.

Today has started out better.  I have been off social media for most of the morning which is a good thing.  I took my blood pressure and it was quite normal.  I have gotten laundry done, the card finished, a gift wrapped, the dishwasher unloaded and reloaded, I am dressed and enjoying the rain.  It has been raining since about 5 a.m. We need the rain and the lower temps are very refreshing.  Sunshine this afternoon - sounds like a good day coming up!

Happy Friday, all!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

A Month?

I cannot believe it has been a month since I have posted anything.  What can I say?  Have I been busy?  Yes.  Have I been lazy?  Yes.  Do I really have anything to talk about?  No.

I guess everybody has lags in their blog lives and I have had in the past as well but never this long.  So, let's see, have I been doing anything at all?

Well, first off, I have been keeping up with politics on Facebook.  It is awful.  It is ALL awful.  I have to say that I am depressed and defeated just seeing what is going on.  I need to quit paying attention to it but it is hard when that is all that is on my FB page.  So, I posted a picture of a kitty.  Did it help?  No. Not a bit.  In past elections we had the crummy stuff and then after the fact life went on.  Is that how it will be this time?  I am truly not sure.

I finished a book by Frederik Backman entitled "My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She Is Sorry".  It was a slow start for me but it picked up and, like many other books I have read. it became difficult to put down.  It was funny and sad.  I rarely cry over a book but I shed tears over this one.  It goes without saying that I identified with Granny and I have my own Elsa so, 'nuf said.

I have been busy with Girl Scouts a bit.  Last week we made dog toys for donation to a local human society.  It was fun.  The girls learned to braid.  Not sure if the dogs are going to appreciate their efforts but the girls had fun.

I went to our annual church dinner last night.  It is held at a local Mexican food restaurant called Joe T. Garcia's.  The food was good, the fellowship outstanding, and the weather cooperated.  A good time was had by all.

My mother in law fell in September and broke her hip.  She had surgery and after a week was placed in a rehab center.  She is still there.  I think she is getting too comfortable there, even though she doesn't like it.  So, all the visiting and laundry is keeping us busy.

I have made a couple of cards.  My grandson had his first piano recital last week.  Has only taken lessons for four months and he was outstanding. I didn't know what to take him for his achievement -- flowers didn't seem right -- so I made him a card.  I should have taken a photo.  Today I made a card for my eldest granddaughter who is having a birthday party tomorrow night.  I will take a photo of that when it is complete.

Other than that, there isn't much newsworthy going on.  We had fall for a few minutes and it is pretty summery again.  That is ok.  I can handle it, at least it isn't 107 degrees.  Hopefully I will emerge from this depression I have gotten myself into soon.  It is exhausting and annoying -- even for me! I am sure I will feel better after November 8.  Or maybe not.