Thursday, August 17, 2017

Gone Fishing

Son3 and Girlfriend3 are visiting with us through August. She is from Switzerland and has never been in the south before so we are trying to be good hosts and show her how life truly is here, and it is taking a lot of time, albeit fun time.  While they are here we are also having an extended family, family reunion and I will have some additional family staying with me. I can't wait to see everyone! Throw in a little time at the lake place and my days are disappearing.

As they say, time and tide wait for no one, so I am taking and enjoying this time they are here to the fullest, and one way I have time in the 3-D world is to limit my time on a computer. Please forgive me for not commenting on your blogs. I will still be reading them, but may not comment. It doesn't mean I don't enjoy your posts, I do, but I am choosing family time!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Crazy Train Tuesday

Though the crazy train posts have been very cathartic to me, I have realized that Mom might hear of them accidentally since this blog is open to everyone and very public. Even with her driving me nuts sometimes My Beloved Sister and I are fiercely protective of her, and would do anything in the world to spare her from anything that might harm her, so I have removed them and have them privately for MBS and I to share just between us.
Thank you for your comments on it, but the train is no longer running.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017


Today I went to my aunts funeral. Uncle Bob and Laura were fortunate to have met each other after the deaths of their respective spouses and spent 30 plus years together until this final separation.  She was a very gracious woman, interested in all of us, and I don't think she ever thought of us as almost family. She embraced us and became part of the tribe.

At the funeral today, I met her daughters who are definitely a reflection of their mother, and I wish I had met them and spent time with both of them before today.

While I was at the service, I listened to the minister who was saying such nice things about Laura and it gave me pause to think what I hope people will remember about me.

First I hope people will remember I laugh__a lot! I find humor is almost everything and I laugh easily, and silently, and often inappropriately. My sons always say they can tell when I find something hysterical because my head is tossed back, my eyes are squinted, my mouth is grinning from ear to ear, my body is shaking with glee and I am not making a sound, except for occasional gasps for air. Don't know why I laugh this way. It just happens. All. The. Time. (All 3 sons do a pretty decent impression of me laughing, but then they crack up while doing it and they are not silent laughers.

I hope they will remember how much I love music, except for contemporary country and western and rap. Give me some old Charlie Pride or Patsy Cline and I am fine with country. This CW cross over stuff drives me insane and reminds me of Barry Manilow songs. It is basically the same song with the same riff and only the words change. (OK add Barry Manilow to music I don't like)

I hope they know I like to watch birds, dragon flies, butterflies, sunsets, moon rises, moving water, fluttering leaves, flowers (except for one particular shade of orange azaleas which truly makes me nauseous) and sunrises. I am a night owl and see very few sunrises so I really do relish seeing them when I am up early enough to enjoy them. I am very thankful for wintertime because sunrise comes at a decent hour! I have been known to sit on the  freezing deck at the lake place wrapped in a blanket just to enjoy the sunrise.

I enjoy theater, movies, kid performances of any kind, small intimate dinners or large parties (but only if there is some space around me. I am kind of insistent on having my very own social air space with no one intruding on it. I am very claustrophobic, and start suffocating if anyone is in "my space'.

I hope they remember I love hearing the bird's songs and children in the neighborhood playing outside. Sometimes I will open the door and sit just to listen to the giggles, yip and yells that come with kid play.

And mostly I hope they remember that I love people, individually and collectively. I love to people watch and appreciate the intricacies and peculiarities of people who are just living life, unaware I am sharing the moment with them. I love people I know who are part of my every day comings and goings. I love my family, both  my "obedient" family (Son 3 had heard the term immediate family when he was in kindergarten, and this was his take on it) as well as my extended family.I love those close friends who serve as a second family, friends who are not quite that close but equally essential, friends I have not seen for  while, old friends I have not seen in years, childhood friends who have come back into my life recently (Yes, you Mary Ann and Charlotte), friends I never see but remember fondly,and this group of Bloggers whom I have come to know even if we do not share a 3-d friendship.

So maybe I need to laugh more often, love more openly, listen to music loudly, dance badly (cause that is how I dance) sing either in or out of tune, and live boldly. We only have a short time on this planet.

Oh yeah, I also hope they remember my favorite word is verklempt!

                                           And I really like this song. It brings me joy

Monday, August 7, 2017

Positively Monday

Today I am positive it is Monday and I am working on my negative attitude!
Last week was a bad week which still had lots of positives but I am busily self absorbed and feeling petty today so I am not counting them and instead just saying I am positively thrilled this is a new week!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Christmas Countdown

I am going to start a " Christmas Countdown" post every other week until Thanksgiving. Some of you are probably much younger than I am and time is not whooshing by as rapidly for you as it is for me. School here begins next week, Halloween junk is already out in stores, I will blink twice, close my eyes and it will be Thanksgiving and I will be in a panic trying to get all the work that goes
into Christmas done so I can simply enjoy the holidays. So I started my Christmas prep accidentally last night.

I was cleaning out a drawer in my kitchen and found last years Christmas cards bundled in the bottom of the drawer. I separated photo cards from regular cards and stuck all the photos on my freezer in the laundry room to enjoy for a bit. Then I took all the remaining cards and separated them into 2 piles. Those that could be turned into boxes and those that couldn't. The latter went into the recycling bin and the former went to my work desk (AKA my kitchen table) to become gift boxes for Christmas. I truly did not mean to begin this project at 2 am, but yes I did it anyway.

I tend to have multi presents for each person in the family and I like everything wrapped and bowed and looking pretty under the tree. Many of the presents I give are either freebies or homemade items and a lot of those are very small items. I would never purchase boxes for them so I make them with leftover cards each year. Since I have many gifts on hand, instead of just storing them, I prefer to have them boxed and taped. Amazingly even though they are adults Sons 1, 2, and 3 are not beyond a little snooping. These boxes help with the peeking issue tremendously.

Begin by opening the card so the inside is showing and place it flat on a work surface. Measure and mark a border using a ruler and ball point pen around the four edges of the back of the card (side with the message). You need to press hard while drawing your line as it will create a scored line for the next step. Do this for the inside front of the card but make it about 1/8 inch larger. Now cut the card at the center seam and you will have the beginnings of a box top and box bottom.

You will have to decide how much you measure based on the design of the card. Some are naturally thicker boxes and some are thinner, just because of the card design. If the card has a border on the design I use it as a natural measurement. If not I just wing it, centering the design of the card (maybe) and make it whatever size I need.

When you do your measuring you will have 4 little squares on the corners of each end of the card pieces. Cut up to your measuring line from the bottom end  and down to the measured line from the top end  and it will create 4 small tabs. (The bottom end will be the end the where the card was signed)
If your card has a vertical design the end will be the shorter side, if it is a horizontal design the end will be the longer side (I have used both types in these photos)

The one at the right is a vertical card, and the one below is a horizontal design.

Now begin the actual assembly part. Fold upwards at the pencil lines to create the 4 sides of a box.

Flatten the card and put dots of glue on the four corners of the top and bottom flaps (See illustration with marked glue spots. The glue placement will be the same for either horizontal or vertical card designs, just remember bottom is always the end the where the card is normally signed)
I highly recommend using a glue stick for this.

Now fold the tab inward and press to adhere the two surfaces. Do this on all four corners and you will now have your box bottom. Do the same for the front of the card making sure to fold toward the inside front of the card so the design will be visible on the top of the box.
Trim as necessary to make everything even and enjoy your free box.

I took a picture of a few of the items I have for Christmas gifts, just so you can see what will fit in these. Here you can see a bracelet and necklace set, retractable tape measure, usb powered computer fan, gift card (I want the Levy's gift card!)  and small  wallet. If you look closely you will notice handwritten notes in the box tops of some of these. Since these will only be given to family members who have already seen all the cards, I am not worried about the greetings. If I were making these to give to random people in my realm I would make them from unused cards leftover from last Christmas or would buy a box of cards with a pretty design from the dollar store.

So now I have a few gifts boxed and taped and stored in my gift closet. All these pretty boxes will need is a tag and then they will be ready to go under the tree, which will free up some time that will be badly needed come December.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Crazy Life

I am going to be hanging out in the 3-D world with some of my favorite people for a while. Trains are still running full speed and there are wonderful things happening each and every day, but instead of being Anne in the Kitchen next week I am going to concentrate on being Pip's Annie. Playing with her is first  and most important on my to-do list, so blogging will have to wait. I will still be reading your blogs (after her bedtime) but please forgive me if I do not comment as often as I normally do.

                                                    Have a great week__I know I will!

Positively Monday

Good things happen every single day and I try very hard to stay positive. Don't get me wrong I whine and complain with the best of them, but I try and reflect on the day to find what the best thing of the day was. Even the worst day ever has something good in it.

Monday: I had a seriously lazy day and it was wonderful. It was a totally self indulgent day (with the exception of a few Mom issues)

Tuesday: Had a long phone conversation with My Beloved Sister and we were laughing so hard I snorted coffee all over the kitchen table

Wednesday: Went shopping and managed to make it out of the store before heavy rains hit, then arrived home in time to sit in my driveway for about 30 minutes waiting for the storm to pass, but got to see some incredible lightening in the valley. (Some days are harder to find positive things than others!)

Thursday: We had a lovely dinner with Mom. She eats much better and more food when she is with us, so I try and have a couple of meals each week with her. A nearby lake has food trucks and an outdoor market a couple of times a month, so we shopped the market and bought our dinner. There were no empty tables so we just brought it back to the house to eat, then took Mom back to her house.

Friday: We talked briefly about going out to eat, but I had bought corn from a vendor at the Thursday night event. TheHub and I ate corn on the cob and sliced tomatoes for dinner, then sat on the deck with a glass of wine and listened to the crickets and katydids while we talked.

Saturday: I needed a set of twin bed sheets for the trundle beds at the lake place and a comforter for Pip's bedroom at my house. I went to Bed, Bath and Beyond with coupons in hand and found one of those bed in a bag sets that was on sale, but was missing the pillow sham. Score for me! I got it for 1/2 the sale price then used my 20 percent off coupon.

Sunday: Game of Thrones returned: 'nuff said!