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HELLO??

Is it becoming more and more apparent that I am not a blogger?  I’ve always thought I wanted to write, but as I age, it seems more and more that there is nothing to talk about.  Nothing to share with this “outside world.”  Not that anyone reads this!  I should rethink this process.

Spring is coming to my area.  It’s going to be really warm tomorrow.  REALLY warm, apparently.  Odd for this time of year.  I don’t like heat, but I can stand one day of it.  Maybe I’ll get outside and weed that little garden patch by the back door.  My violets are getting buried under that stupid buttercup weed stuff.  The solomon’s seal and hostas are flourishing, but they’ll do well anywhere.  There’s a bleeding heart lost under there, tho, and it bears searching out.  Hoping the slugs haven’t eaten it.

My quilting projects this past winter were next to nothing.  I guess I just wasn’t in the mood??  I managed to get a special little top done for my sister, but that’s about it.  I have so many “kits” I could be working on, and I will.  As soon as the mood strikes.  The lure of pretty fabric to play with will get me back to the table.  I know of online quilters that can turn out 2 or 3 quilt tops per month.  HOW???  They have been blessed with super cutting and piecing skills.  It’s a struggle for me.  My arthritic fingers don’t help the process any, either.

Mahi mahi for supper, with creamed peas and new potatoes.  That sounds so good!

QUILT HAPPY

Feeling excited today because I have finally “bit the bullet” and sent some quilt tops out to be professionally quilted.  I used to do them by hand, but arthritis has prevented me from doing this any more, and quilt tops were piling up in my sewing room.

I have sent 5 to a quilter in Wyoming, and 2 to a quilter in North Carolina.  The one that has come back is gorgeous.  I wasn’t crazy about it to begin with, but having it quilted…and then washed for that “vintage” look…has made all the difference.  I wish it were bigger so I could have it on my bed.  As it is, it will make a sweet quilt for my littlest niece when she gets her “big girl” bed.  Which means I can enjoy it for another year.  :-)

I started a quilt top a few days ago, a kit of prepackaged fabric and a pattern.  After days of cutting, I began sewing the pieces together tonight, and I came to this conclusion:  I don’t like it.  I don’t like it at all.  And I don’t want to spend the next month putting it together.  Life is too short to spend time doing something you don’t want to do!  I have beautiful fabrics and lots of patterns to choose from that I know would give me joy at the creative process.  Can’t wait to get started on something new tomorrow!

My father-in-law passed away last Sunday.  He was 91, very frail, and while we knew he wouldn’t be with us much longer, it was still a surprise.  And we didn’t have the chance to say goodbye.  I adored this man.  I like to tell my husband that his father was one of the main reasons I married him.  He was special.  He was Italian.  Does that explain a lot of it?  He had four sons, and no daughters.  I think his two daughters-in-law were very special to him.  He always made us feel that way, and we doted on him.  It was a love-love situation.

And while his passing makes me sad, it’s another issue that makes me sad tonight.  His memorial service is tomorrow, and no one from my family is going to be there.  Not one of my three sisters, or my brother.  Why is that?  Don’t they know how important that is to me….to my husband?  How does HE feel, knowing they don’t deem it important enough to show up for his sake?  I KNOW how he feels….hurt.  They all live in the area, so that’s not an excuse.  One sister didn’t even respond to the knowledge of his passing.  She didn’t call…send a card…FB me.  Nothing.  And yes, she definitely knew about it.  They were acquainted with my FIL, as he attended many of our family parties and gatherings.  He even spent Christmas with us, as Christmas Eve was his family celebration.

It’s hard not to feel bad about it….sad about it.  I don’t get it.  These people are in their 60’s….they are not kids with a different sense of what is “proper.”  I’m hurt by their indifference, and I think I may be holding a grudge for awhile.

Anti-Aging

My 67th birthday is approaching.  Whoever thought I’d be that old?  Certainly not me!  I must say, I come from a good gene pool, and nobody thinks that I look my age.  My grocery store made me show proof of age when I wanted to take advantage of their 7% off on Tuesdays for those over 55.  That made me feel good.

I think I have my hairdresser to thank for a lot of my “young” look.  If my hair were left natural (and I’m tempted) it would be a silvery gray instead of a warm brown with highlights.  One of my younger sisters has let her hair go natural and I gotta say…she looks 70.  Her twin still colors and looks 55.  So.  My husband doesn’t want me to stop, and since HE’s not gray yet, I guess I won’t.

Looks aside, I am taking steps to keep my brain active.  I have subscribed to Fit Brains, and will be getting a daily work out on their web site.  I think it’s a good thing.  I enjoy that type of thing anyway, and it certainly can’t hurt.  They had a “sale” price on the site at $75 for one year….$109 for two.  I signed up for two.  It was a one-time fee, while the other was recurring.  I don’t like recurring charges….I like to be in charge, and I’m afraid I’d let something slip by me that I no longer want.  But maybe this web site will help me remember.

Beautiful Day

After an extremely mild winter, spring has arrived full force here on coastal Washington.  We’ve had several days of temps in the 70’s, and no rain to speak of in the last week or so.  Everything is budding and blooming and growing.

We celebrated this sunny Saturday with a trip to Home Depot’s nursery section.  While I drooled over dogwood trees and lace-leaf maples, I restricted my purchases to a few pots of rosemary, a bleeding heart to replace the one I mistakenly pulled last year, some sweet pea seeds, and a lovely cream colored hydrangea.  I am blessed to have a husband who will take care of all the planting for me.

He also washes cars.  Mine hadn’t been washed since last fall.  Fortunately it’s a pale grass green color and doesn’t show all the pollen that’s covered it in the last month….it just doesn’t shine.  Well, it’s all shiny now, bless his heart.

And it’s so nice outside, we may barbecue for dinner!  In April!!

It’s been 3 years since I’ve written a post.  Is it time to start again?  I’d like to.  Maybe if I make myself write SOMETHING every day, I can get back into the swing of things.

RANDOMLY…..

I think maybe I am not cut out to be a blogger.  I’m certainly not as prolific as I was in a former life.

There is sideways rain this morning.  Light and misty, bearing in from the ocean with a vengeance.  The four days of sunny spring weather we had before this, was really nice.  I don’t think we’ve ever had more than 4 days of nice weather in a row.  No matter the season.  The joys of coastal living in the Pacific Northwest.

We’ve had a bird house hung from the large fir tree in the front yard for years.  Chickadees check it out every year but never move in.  This year hubby moved the house to the birch tree next to the garden, and the chickadees are happily nesting.  I guess it proves the old adage:  LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION.

Had three books come in from the library on Friday.  Feast or famine.  Now I must read like mad to finish them in the three weeks allotted.  One of them is a John Sandford (and none of them are heavy reading….) novel…a Virgil Flowers novel.  Virgil is a cop…described as a country boy with shoulder length blonde hair.  I’ve never seen Virgil this way.  I see…and hear…him as Nick Cannon.  I KNOW.  It must have been something in the writing that brought Nick to mind, and so it’s his face I see when I “read” Virgil. 

I googled my maternal great-grandmother’s name the other day, just for fun, and bingo….all sorts of information from rootsweb.com popped up.  I have never played around with the geneaology stuff, so was delighted that all of this information was there without any effort on my part.  I was able to trace all the way back to 1690 when my 6 greats grandfather was born in Ulster, Antrim county, Ireland.  His parents came there from Scotland in some mass migration of Scots to Ireland in the late 1600’s (I’ve yet to read more about that), and apparently there was a mass migration of Scots/Irish to Virginia in the early 1700’s…which would explain why the rest of my ancestors were born there.  HOW INTERESTING.  I think I will have to dig a little more.  I’ve always known my grandmother was Scots….I guess that explains why I’m now so comfortable in the Presbyterian church….LOL!

On another note:  One of the things I learned when checking out this genealogy stuff is that my grandmother had been married before!  If my mother and her sisters knew this about their mother, they kept quiet about it.  And I’m not sure why they would…so I’m really thinking they didn’t know.  Unfortunately, none of them are alive to ask.  According to these records, grandma was married at 17 to a distant cousin (from what I could tell), in 1916.  Three years later she married my grandfather, and there’s no record of what happened to poor Jackson.  Did he die in World War 1?  Or of pneumonia or flu?  Killed in a fight at the local bar?  Did they DIVORCE?  That would be practically unheard of in rural Arkansas in that day and age.  Rootsweb showed no death records for him….but I’ll search a little more.  I have to chuckle…thinking that our relatives could have intentionally kept secrets like this, never dreaming that one day that information would be out there for any and all to see.

We are going to Walla Walla next month for the annual W2 Hot Air Balloon Stampede.  I guess you ain’t seen nothing still you’ve seen stampeding hot air balloons!  Apparently there are hundreds of them launched into the skies each morning for three days, and they are lit up at night.  There is also a horse race, crafts fair, car show…something for everyone.  My only regret is that because of liability issues, they no longer offer rides in the balloons.  I’m SURE I would have been brave enough to try that.

The arthritis in my hands continues to worsen, and the days after I’ve spent a few hours working on a new quilt top (cutting, ironing, sewing the pieces), my hands will barely move.  It saddens me…and scares me more than a bit…that I am going to have to give up the one thing that’s given me such great pleasure over the years.  Turning out hand crafted and hand quilted treasures for all the family occasions has given me such joy.  I’m trying Capzasin topically, and even Absorbine Jr. (which I can recall my father rubbing into my legs at night…I used to get horrible leg aches as a child).  Both work somewhat.  I see ads on TV for different drugs, but when they tell you “may cause tuberculosis, lymphoma or lung cancer”…I shy off. 

It’s Italian day on The Chew. I love Italian.  My husband is Italian.  Well, half.  Unfortunately for me, that half is his father.  His father doesn’t cook.  His aunts all live on the west coast, so I’ve not been able to benefit from cooking in the kitchen with Frances or Mary.  Such a shame.  So I buy cookbooks.  And watch the cooking channel.   Mario Batali and Lydia Bastianich are cooking up something delicious as I type.  The recipes are all available…as well as video clips…online at The Chew.

I see the doctor next month for my 6 mos. checkup.  I’ve gained 5 pounds in the last 6 months.  (Not ALL of it from Italian cooking.)  I am wondering about Weight Watchers online.  Thinking that if I don’t have the discipline to go to actual classes here in town, will I go online?  I don’t know.  Jury’s still out.

My husband built a raised bed for the garden this year.  We usually just stick a few squash plants in the ground and try to keep the slugs away.  I’m not a gardener.  The dirt around here is a hard, packed clay, and unless you improve it with compost or peat moss or something, you’re not gonna get a spade through it.  Hence the raised bed, filled with bagged dirt from the local Home Depot.  Now…what to put in it?  And do we need more than one bed?  Lettuces for sure…and raddishes….green beans….cabbage….maybe some beets….kale.  Squash can still be planted outside the bed(s).  We’ll see.  It’s time to get going on it…that much I know.

And I also know that I need to get back to my housework.  Floors to mop…rugs to vacuum….laundry to fold…sheets to change.  It’s Monday!

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