Archive for April, 2012


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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