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Archive for August, 2009

I really hope Margaret will forgive me for submitting her blog here, but I know that if I put a link to it, half of you will not read it and the half that will not read it, really, really needs too.   And, since Margaret gets like 800 comments per post, I figure she will never get to mine to give me permission and when I click on her site for administrator, I literally get thrown back to WordPress. 

So here goes, Blog quoted from Margaret of Margaret and Helen

I remember an America where black men didn’t grow up to be President.

Margaret is it just me or did combing your hair become optional when going out in public?  I’ve been watching news clips of these town hall free-for-alls and we have definitely become a nation of tired,  poor, and huddled masses  clearly tempest-tossed, but without access to a good beauty salon.   Universal Hygiene – now that is something I could get behind.  And all of them are asking for their America back.  I wonder which America that would be?

Would that be the America where the Supreme Court picks your president instead of counting all the votes?  Would that be the America where rights to privacy are ignored?  Would that be the America where the Vice President shoots his best friend in the face?  Or would that be the America where an idiot from Alaska and a college drop-out with a radio show could become the torchbearers for the now illiterate Republican party?

I fear that would not be the America they want back.  I fear that the America they want back is the one where black men don’t become President.

I remember that America.  In that America people screaming at public gatherings were called out for what they were – an angry mob.   Of course, they wore sheets to cover up their bad hair.  Let’s be clear about something:  if you show up to a town hall meeting with a gun strapped to your leg, the point you are trying to make isn’t a good one.  Fear never produced anything worthwhile.

And what’s all this crap about killing your grandmother?  Are you people honestly that stupid?  This has become less an argument about healthcare reform and more a statement about our failed education system.  Margaret, I don’t know what plans you’ve made up there with Howard, but down here with Harold, we have living wills to determine how we will leave this world when the time comes.  Mine states that unless the feeding tube is large enough for a piece of pie, I don’t want to be hooked up to it.  Harold, of course, says his can only be connected to him if the other end is connected to a bottle of single malt scotch.

Now shame on me for making a joke about a serious subject, but if these morons are going to show up and scream at their elected officials, they need to educate themselves about the subject at hand.   No one is planning on killing you or your grandmother with rationed healthcare or death squads.  By the looks of the American citizenry turning out for these town hall meetings,  we’re doing a fine  job of killing ourselves with fast food, cigarettes and an overindulgence of ignorance.

The Founding Fathers couldn’t have seen this coming.  If they had, the right to free speech would have been conditional upon one’s ability to read.  But the  Founding Fathers didn’t plan on the likes of Palin, Cheney and Limbaugh.

I too long for the America I remember as a child, Margaret.  The one where men used guns to hunt quail and women visited a beauty salon at least once a week.  Oh, those were the days. I wish we had them back.  I mean it. Really.”

Thank you Margaret. 

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The doctor will be so happy with me.  He  wanted me to lose 10 pounds and I have lost 20, since January.  Not dramatic, but permanent.  How did I do it, you ask?  Well, whether you are being polite or really want to know, I’ll tell you, because it might help someone.

I have been up and down and up and down most of my life.  The first time, after the birth of my two daughters, there was this carmel chewy diet cube called AIDS.  Now, I realize why they would pull it and rename it (this was before the virus) but I do not find it under any name.  I lost a lot of weight chewing those cubes and as I got lower, I started  doing yoga.

I love yoga.  I have turned to it many times in my life since and, while I am not doing it nightly, as I would like to, I still practice many of the techniques I learned from it.  I can make myself warm up in an otherwise cold environment when I do not have adequate clothing.  Anyway,

I have done little white pills, and no carbs, and a space age diet packet thing in the 70′s.  You lose weight on it all, but it comes back.  So, this time, I just decided to cut my portions in half, or near half to start with.  Lost some weight, cut out red meat except occasionally.  Lost some weight, so cut my portions again.  Lost some weight, so cut out sugary food.  (even though this is what I want to be eating  Cake Wrecks .You see the point here.  You take it one step at a time.

I have a good friend who quit drinking.  He felt he could not preach to his son, who was having a drug problem, when he was drinking.  Well, he felt so much better that he quit smoking.  He felt so much better, that he started walking.  He felt so much better he worked on his diet.   You see the point here?

When it is something you really want, you practice.  You pick up the instrument and you start with Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and, when you want to lose weight, you practice for the time when you turn around and go, “I did it.  I’ve lost weight, I’m still losing, my blood sugar is good, my blood pressure is great and my blood counts are excellent.”

So, soon I will be back on the treadmill and I’m working up to the weights again.  I love lifting weights.  My energy is coming back and I’m cleaning up my downstairs studio.  I feel like I am living again.

Just thought you should know.  Good luck to you, too.

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Xup had a great blog on First Impressions, First Impressions « XUP, and mentioned first impressions in choosing hair dressers.

Since, I have an eternal problem with hairdressers, I figure maybe this is my problem.  First, and I do not want to appear bigoted about heavy people, as I have been one of those half my life, I will say that when I have picked a beautician who is in her forties, overweight and graduated from beauty school within th elast two years, it is NOT a good decision.  Of couse the beautician who is 40, has cut hair for years and has died blond spiked hair wasn’t such a good idea either. 

She was local and I was delighted; for two years she gave me the best cut I ever had, then one day, I got home and realized she had only cut half my head.  Literally, she cut the right side of my hair and not the left.  I went back three months later and she did it again, so that was that.

I now have a nice young girl at WalMart, who cuts my hair.  Good ones never last long there but I can hope.  She wasn’t there the last time I went in and I took the 40 year old overweight newbie and yup!  Bad haircut.  I had to come home and do some snipping myself.

And, that is never a good thing.

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I’m not sure how Global Warming makes it cooler, but our climate is not normal this year.  The nights are so cool that the tomatoes are not doing well at all.  I was really looking forward to playing summer Santa with the folks at mom’s Senior’s home. Last year they all flocked out when I arrived with produce. This year I do not have enough even for us. 

The tiny red hot peppers are growing like wild though.  The twin orphan fawns even eat the chili peppers but not these baby hot peppers

red hot peppers

Then there is the last redish/pink/white rose I got before the twin baby fawns.

redpinkrose

And, the last yellow rose I had.

yellowrose

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Good Grief!!!

Geeze!!!   Boys and Man/boys are noisy playing cards!!!!

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They say that people who are social live longer.  I cannot help it.  I am a loner and I have always been a loner.  My brother was six years older than me and my sister, 10 years older, grew up in the next state.  We lived on a half acre with empty lots on both sides and farmland in back.  Mom was very protective and there were not many other kids on our road either.  I am used to being alone.

I am sitting here watching the males of the house playing cards.  Since Gaffer came home, the table has been clean awaiting the nightly game marathon. It starts by 4:00pm.  EMT gets home from work by 6 and joins the game, no matter what it is.  Risk, Monopoly, Clue are favorite board games.  Pinochle is being taught to JCountry right now. 

I have no desire to join their game.  Anytime I have been forced to play, usually because they are short a person, I have spent my time, in my head, wishing I was doing something else; something that seems productive to me. 

Personally, laying in the grass watching patterns in clouds is more productive.  Usually, it becomes more productive because I run back inside and grab my camera and do a series of sky photos. 

My last series of photos, involved looking up into trees.  I think I have five good shots now to paint from.  The series before that, involved shadows.  So far, I believe I have only one shadow painting to do.  It needs more work.

I do enjoy an evening, or day, laughing and socializing with good people.  We had a wonderful evening, sitting around the fire in the back yard of my oldest daughter’s neighbor’s yard, not long ago.  I think most of my “good evenings” involve a campfire.

Maybe if they played cards outside, I would enjoy it more.  I have wonderful memories of playing chess and cribbage, by the fire, with my brother. 

Or, perhaps it is just that social people, who are playing games, feel as if they have lived longer.  I usually am saying, “will this never end?”

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It is miracle Saturday.  I don’t usually get online on a Saturday; let alone one that is rainy.  So, I thought I would share a bit of my life with you.

When I do get online, one of my favorite blogs is Crazy Aunt Purl.  I have secretly been thinking about living in L.A. a lot lately.  I have no idea why; okay, there is the warmer weather, but I would HATE the traffic.  But, Crazy Aunt Purl wrote a most moving blog on August 17; when the gardeners her landlord hired totally destroyed her garden.  It was an act of vandalism, as far as I am concerned.  My heart  sunk when I saw it, I can only imagine how she felt when she came home and discovered it.  Her rows of beautiful corn, I have four stalks that have yet to reach knee height, and her pumpkin vines are now just like four sticks sticking up, with one tiny pumpkin sitting forelornly in the mud.  How mean can someone be, to do that to a person, after that person has worked for months to put food, they grew, on the table?

Anyway, that is how they grow, with tender loving care, in Sunny L.A.  This has been a cool year and this is how they have grown in rainy, cool, Indiana this year.

baby watermelon

Let’s just hope these striped babies are well hidden from the two orphan fawns that are eating my ripe tomatoes.

My pumpkin patch is creeping out into the grass, which is now impossible to mow without cutting the pumpkins.  It originates from the top o the picture (where the tomato cages are and is growing out to the bottom of the picture, and on the right side, even growing up the side of my studio.

pumpkin patch

And, here is one of my baby yellow pumpkins in this patch.

pumpkin yellow

To end up, I will show you what IS tornado damage.  The expert came out to one house and declared it to be straight wind but my yard was damaged with things falling in a circular pattern throughout.  I have very thick hostas in front of my studio.  I was going to thin them this fall, but this is what I have on one side now. 

damaged hostas

You can see the progressive damage as the wind whipped around.  The sticks at the corner of the studio were full grown hosta just as the one under the window is; even though it is also beaten a bit.  This is one side of the door, the plants on the other side of the door were barely damaged at all.  The tree to the right of this building, past my garden, had a large limb ripped off and it went to the right.  The limb on my roof was knocked to the right, and all around my yard, they were knocked down in that swirl pattern.

My next door neighbor was home during the storm and he heard the freight train sound, so I am presuming the eye went over their house.

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It’s so beautiful out today.  I love this property, with all the trees waving in the wind and the two fawns that have taken up residence (I think their mom might have died in a car crash).  Poor babies are eating all the red tomatoes and yellow roses.  They do not like the pink roses.  Pink must taste bad.   They wait for the tomatoes to turn red.  Actually, not just turn red but be soft and ripe.  It is now a game of wits between us to see who gets the tomato at the proper maturity.  They won the other night and got the three I planned on picking the next morning.

This morning I opened the door to let irritating Chihuahua out and a rabbit was sitting in front of the door munching the grass.  Probably the same rabbit who is eating the blooms on my melons.  I do think mother nature is winning this year.  Between the late blooms, due to cool weather, and the animals, I’m not sure what we are getting out of the garden other than peppers.  Anyway, the rabbit would NOT move.  Just refused.  I knew the Chihuahua would take out after the rabbit and I wanted the rabbit to have a chance and also not to beat the tar out of the dog, so I said “shoe.”  The rabbit munched away.  I knocked on the inside of the door.  The rabbit munched away.  The dog actually went back in the house (we were on the porch) and laid back down and the dumb rabbit was still munching away.  I think my wildlife has gotten tame.

I have two gardens this year.  I planted vegetables in the very sparse rose garden, where a bunch of roses came up in the beginning but didn’t do much with the cool weather.  I took care of them this year too.  But, I have two new plants that are doing great.  One is a yellow rose and one is varigated and I just love it.  Will post a picture later.  The vegetables were doing great too, before the orphans took up residence.

And, then we have the square foot back garden and the pumpkin patch that is invading our yard.  These are some of the numerous blossoms.

pumpkinvines

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Sorry, for the long absence. We have the log off our roof now. That’s good. I reformatted my computer, hoping to improve my Dial-up Access, but that is not working so well. I never get on to AOL with the first try and, when I do get on, other things seem to be constantly running and keeping me from doing anything.

So, I am writing this at night, hoping to have a solid minute online to actually upload it.
Husband left town for a few days to pick up eldest boy, Gaffer. His ride from Duluth, MN fell through and he had no way to get home. He has his permit and IS getting his license when he gets back if I have to take him.

You have no idea how exciting it is to have a husband gone for three days; until you have had one home with you, twenty-four hours a day, for twenty years. Since, I am an artist and work out of my home, and he has been disabled and unable to work for that long, it is just way too much togetherness.

Mom offered to come, and stay and keep me company. I have to wonder how often she actually listens to me, since I repeatedly say, “I love to be alone.” Of course, she does not and probably wanted company herself, but husband took our only reliable car and there is not a bed here she is comfortable in and, once you have read the rest of this, you will see why she is probably glad she stayed home.

Yes, things are normal around here.

The first day EMT took JRock to school, almost. His truck, the one they worked on all weekend; the one they dropped the engine and replaced a seal and all kinds of goodies on, well, it broke down between here and town. The restaurant owner, where it is parked, is kindly letting it sit there for a few days. I got the call, and went to pick the boys up. So, while he is at work now, I do not have access to a car. No problem!

That day, the icemaker quit working. Okay, fill the stack of small yogurt containers with water and freeze them. No problem!

My plan to clean my downstairs studio, while husband was gone, went well. I emptied it the first day, onto his bed. Today, I put things away where they belong, cleaned off his bed, went out to the outside studio and got the couple of containers that belong in here. I do have three containers I have to sort through yet, but it is not piles here and there. I had no idea how much room I had down there. I still have empty cupboards I can fill up.

However, I may never go down there again after what I found, this evening.

EMT works with making knives and doing leather goods. He was looking for some copper, to decorate a knife holder with, and I thought I might have some in my downstairs studio. And, since it was now mostly clean, I could find it. I got down on my knees, searched the cupboard, only had rods and tubes, nothing flat; closed it all up, stood up and spotted a snake. YES, A SNAKE. A snake in my studio downstairs. A snake in the room that used to be my mother’s kitchen.

EMT is deathly in hate with snakes. He won’t even watch them on tv, but I yelled for him and all without telling him why; rat that I am. It was a little snake, and I didn’t think, I was just afraid to lose sight of it and not be able to find it again and then I would have to sleep in the car or on the roof.

The snake was thinner than a pencil, mostly, and probably a foot and a half long. It’s hard to tell when they won’t quit slithering.

He comes down and says, “Get out of here. It’s a copperhead.” We have copperhead here. We had a nest in the gully, the second summer the boys were here. I think EMT burned it out. But, they seem to be plentiful in Brown County. Hence, all the people so proud of this fact that they name their properties, “Copperhead Ridge” “Copperhead Hollow” etc.

Are you ready for this? EMT then killed the snake with the side of a folding table. Whatever works! He then picked it up with his leatherman and put it in the garbage and his brother took it out. After he killed it and turned it over, he says it was probably a black snake. I don’t care, it does not belong in my basement, and how many friends did the darn thing invite in? He searched the basement for more. Found a hole it may have come in and plugged it, but no other snakes. Very brave for a kid who absolutely loathes snakes.

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It was very quiet, at our home last week. No tv blaring, no air conditioner blasting, no microwave buzzing and dinging, no toaster shooting bread in the air (we have a very energetic toaster), no internet, no lights, no shower.  Okay, there were drawbacks too.

Early Tuesday, our area was hit by a tornado.  Irritating little Chihuahua and I were home alone and the wind blew and limbs were horizontal and the sheet of rain was so dense you could not see through it.  It came up fairly quick and I watched the window, with one eye, while I got her harness on (she can be really slippery) and I moved a few things away from the window, and was ready to head downstairs. 

Once, when I was a child, a tornado went over our house.  It was one of my few pre-school memories but I remember the sound like a train was roaring overhead.  I was also in one in Gettysberg, PA, while on vacation.  That time was like this, except we did not have golf ball size hail. 

Other than several trees down, and one very large limb on our roof, we were pretty lucky.  We didn’t even lose a lot of food.  Our cheap, little freezer from WalMart, was pretty packed and I put everything I could in there from the fridge freezer and it held.   The neighbor lost half their roof as a huge tree crashed through it.  The roads were closed with hot wires and trees.  We had a level 2, stay off the road order and a water boil order.

By Thursday, the weather was heating up and husband needed airconditioning or I was going to suffocate him myself as his breathing, or attempt to, really gets loud when he has trouble.  So, we were off to Indy for the cheap seats and air conditioning.  Us, and the two boys watched two movies and ended up eating two, not so cheap, meals.   The lights came back on Friday evening. 

The things you really miss without electricity: showers and ice and an oven or microwave.  I told them, if it happens again, we should just break out the tent and camp in the yard.

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