Saturday, May 30, 2015




We’ve matured together like fine wine, ripened like sun-kissed grapes, rounded like the most luscious fruit, become mellower and sweeter and more intriguing.  We’ve grown in knowledge and character, in depth of quietude and serenity within ourselves.

Seven years---that's three-hundred and sixty-five Saturdays, one for each day in the year---imagine posting and coordinating a group and keeping up with all the attendant links and colours and people involved---pink chapeaux doff to Beverly, our inestimable Hostess, for bringing together such a wonderful, far-reaching group of people, whose interests and lives we've shared, and more than a few who have become fast friends.

Seven years is also the prescribed frame for miracles, for growth, for apprenticeship and learning and service, for the completion of things, the storing-up, and the rounding of the times to new eras.   We’ve seen this turning of the seasons, and we’re still here, still together, still liking each other, still keeping in touch.

And I SWEAR we haven’t AGED A BIT!

Friday, May 29, 2015


Desperate for a post without the “K” word.   A list from my journal of definitions; several are my own doing, and all the rest gathered in  unremembered bits and pieces.  If any are yours, sing out---I totally believe in Credit Where Due.

Pinecushion---that wonderful carpet in a forest that goes “critch, critch,” as you walk.

Cashtration: The act of buying or renovating a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.

Bozone: The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas or common sense from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of abating. 

Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted  where you wonder how they got up there.

Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late

Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease.

Decafalon: The grueling event of getting through the day eating only things which are good for you.

Glibido: All talk and no action.

Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.   Var.: a form of idiocy-by-propinquity.

Arachnoleptic Fit: The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.

Beelzebug: Evil in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.

Umplet:  A little lump in the rug that you have to sort of gudge along toward the edge with your feet.

And my absolute favorite, from years ago:

Disconfect:  The ability Moms have to remove germs by picking up your dropped cookie and blowing on it.

Says Rachel, off to sort through boxes whilst searching for some Ruth, a bit of Feck, two spoons of Hap, quite a bagful of AIM, and a pennyworth of WHACK, cause I'm pretty much out.  

Wednesday, May 27, 2015


With the countertops not scheduled to come before late next week (or the week after), Chris has made a bit of work-room for me, neat and handy:


The new fridge is a marvel---you swing open those two doors at once, and it’s like opening Aladdin’s Cave, with all the colours and veggies and jars and good things inside.  I think the most precious thing to me about it is the SPACE---the leftover room which, contrary to my usual proclivity, I am NOT inclined to fill, just for filling’s sake.  The wide shelves and the big deep door balconies are just right, with just the needfuls and a few more for good measure, and I feel like those TV cooks who make a big half-sheet of puff pastry and step right over to the fridge, confident that there’s a shelf all cleared and wide enough to hold it.  I watch and think just ONCE they'll be like me---scrambling to hold the pan balanced, moving pickles and a Tup of tuna and a baggie of last week's who-knows-what, and THEN having to tilt the pan slant-wise on top of the eggs.  

And now---Riches.

I’ve put up only ONE curtain for now, leaving the other window with all the morning beams coming in through the Weatherbush and grapevine.   I know these aren’t a dazzling white like everything else, but I was charmed by the scatter of leaves to echo the ones waving in the breeze outside, and by the tiny puffs of pink silk embroidered posies in just the right shade.   I turned off the light, just to get the effect of those green leaves outside the window---isn’t that pretty?

So, with 12 square feet of shining vinyl sheeting to chop and stir and prepare in, a sweet guy who’s doing everything he can to move this along and to make do whilst we wait, and such a dash of pretty---I’m WAY ahead of the game.

Sunday, May 24, 2015



It's holiday weather here today, with the warmth of the sun and bright skies and the snap of flags in the sunshine, with the smoke of a thousand backyard grills raising delicious scents into the Spring air. I awoke to the silhoutte-gleam of sunshine across the room, a hopeful sign for all the activities and memorial services and celebrations of this long Spring weekend.

But weather hasn't much to do with the feelings that surround this special day, this day of remembrance and honoring and taking stock of our nation's blessings. The placing of wreaths, the little flags stuck into the earth of countless graves, the floral tributes, the handful of limp posies clutch-wilted in a child's hand, the tears of remembrance---those will quietly and reverently go on even as the scent of charcoal drifts up and the promised rain comes down.

I have a deep-imprinted vignette in my memory-collection, of sitting there in a hot scratchy dress several years ago, to see my dear Mother-in-Law receive the folded flag "With the thanks of a Grateful Nation." And so we remember GrandDaddy, in all his twenty-something years of service, and I keep a secret, heartfelt gleam of pride for our other servicemen and women, and those we'll never know of as we sleep safely on their watch.

And just looking at the flowers in the picture above, the two tall, stalwart reds and the smaller, just-as-strong pink, I think of all our sisters and daughters in uniform, the strong, brave women who step up to the mark, who serve standing proud beside the men whose strength and bravery have stood true for centuries. We feel a surge of gratitude, of pride, of thankful praise for all the ones who take our well-being and our freedom so seriously that they live and die for it, and for us.

And so I say "Thank you," to each and every one, and give a prayer of thanks for all of our service-people, past and present---those standing proud in uniform today, those who have served, no matter what the term, those who have retired from their service, but remain ever soldiers, those lying beneath the brave small flags, and those in unsung graves around the world, known only to the angels and remembered in the hearts of those who loved them.

TAPS for remembrance.

Friday, May 22, 2015


With what you’ve got.

Another delay on the countertops, with delivery at some nebulous point at the end of Time.

Hope we don’t have to change this lovely long-sought PINK for an Autumn colour scheme.   But look on the bright side---there's always a ready supply of SAM'S boxes, and Chris is mighty handy with a magic marker.  


Moiré non,


Saturday, May 16, 2015


My Mammaw had a saying for the passing of time with nothing much happening---“Well, things rocked on, and then . . .”   And I must say, things seem to have been rocking mighty slowly with the kitchen plans, but I do realize they’ve practically gone into warp speed, compared to most renovations.

So here’s where we are, two-weeks-today since the demolition, and five since we cleared out the kitchen for a possible date “soon.” 

I’m moving in a bit of tension-easing limbo today, after having slept for FOURTEEN hours.  Not many words to be had, and too much to say.

The dollhouse kitchen of my childhood dreams.  I'd collected enough paint swabs and swatches and enough of those colour-cards from the ninety-eleven home stores around town to paper the walls with THOSE if need be.   I told my painter "Sweet 'n' Low packet pink" and I think she nailed it.   There’s even a pink breaker-box.  

And so, moirĂ© non, til the counter-tops arrive and I get those pink drawer-liners and silky-flowered curtains and all the other little preliminary anticipations into place. The sink is sitting here awaiting the countertops on Monday, and the new fridge arrives on Wednesday.   I planned my last kitchen with all the anticipatory joy and wishfuls as I did my first---this time just the way I wanted it, in pink and white, and everything to hand.

  I wish you as fulfilling a Pink Saturday as you’ve ever had.

Thursday, May 7, 2015


Life and clutter and STUFF are interfering with any kind of communication as we alter and build our nest, so perhaps a little focus on the Mama Cardinal building her own home outside our window, and a happy thought from the first Spring of LAWN TEA:

My little cardinal family is back in the big round Luck Bush that covers the sitting-room windows. They've re-furbished that nest for three years now, threading in new string and bits and bobs, coming back from bird-Ikea with all sorts of new furniture and appliances. I was so afraid this week's intrusion of the window-washers into the edge of their territory would frighten them away---the first year they nested, they'd not been there long when house guests over-enjoyed the little show. They pulled up the blinds and threw back the sheers to press interested faces to the glass time and again, causing the little fellows to flit in alarm.

But these guys were a gentle presence, moving the limbs carefully, talking softly as they shined, inside and out. And the birds returned almost as soon as the men moved the ladder and themselves a couple of yards down the wall.

M'sieu et Madame Rouge have raised their family twice now in the widescreen view with no interruptions or harm, so they just return, do a bit of Vernage, and settle down to roost. I've loved their trusting propinquity, their gentle song, their firm devotion to nest and chicks. And their own joy in the day is quite contagious; just a quiet cup in the small blue chair, as the sun peeks through and they talk over their schedules---what a nice way to start the morning.

They have quite the sense of fun, as well. A couple of summers ago, they had become used to my presence, and would come quite close, especially if they saw the hose being reeled out. They do love a damp ground for worm-catching, and are quite fond of a bath, as well.

From my journal of July, 2007:

My cardinal family came to join me today, as I sat out in the arbor, watching the slow sweep and rain of the sprinkler on the thirsty plants. The guy bird perched atop the wire of a tomato cage, watching the slow patter approaching. He flew the couple of feet to the top of the cucumber fence, and sat, letting it rain upon him time after time. I could almost see the smile on his little face.

The lady bird, however, was a rowdier sort. She found a puddle and frolicked away, flinging the water, flapping her wings, shaking her head, and when the spray was due to come her way each time, she faced it joyously, her wet-draggled face feathers taking the onslaught. She played there for quite some time, each blast of the fountain across her face giving her the happy look of a goofy old dog in the window of
a fast car.

I hope the Summer to come is as pleasant for them.

Monday, May 4, 2015


THE BARE NECESSITIES:  Coffee, tea, a gingham tea cozy, a sippy straw for the young one, a cocktail glass, some spices, the cinnamon-sugar shaker, a Book-On-CD for the Bose, sugar bowl, the ancient Rubbermaid of Sweet’n’Low, which has been with us through four houses now, and assorted stuff set down with nowhere else to put ‘em.

 Nothing left but rubber gloves.

I’m sure I mentioned that Chris decided that now would be the best time to clear out and put to rights THE ROOM, and started dragging out lugs and boxes and bags and great piles of things two weeks ago.

Anybody with any interest in the original clear Flintstones mugs, there are more than six dozen.  Just come get ‘em.

 Though he’s made fantastic progress with disposing of countless bags of STUFF to garbage and Goodwill, this is still our path through the house. I insisted on at least a wide enough berth for the guys hauling up the discarded cabinets and debris.

Hoarders called, but they changed their minds.

You can see, above and below, that we’ve invested quite a bit of our retirement funds into the coffers of the companies SOLO and CHINET.

Needfuls for when I might need ‘em.

Like bones in an elephant graveyard.

Still sturdy and beautiful.   I wanted to keep the top ones and paint them, but Caro and Chris insisted that I have all new everything.

A sad vignette of nothing in particular.   You can see the papers stuck in the back, from when this kitchen was added on in 1990, the year we moved to Indiana.   Sort of a full circle, somehow.

Before.   How little we knew, and I hope that does not become a mantra in the next few weeks.

I’m truly ashamed of how I let things pile up and let things go, but I’ll never apologize for what was covered by something I could not move.  Those aren't dust bunnies, they're wild Jackalopes run amok.

I swear, this room was put together out of Legos and rubber bands.

But solace awaits upstairs:  Caro has invited us up for an early Cinco de Mayo supper tonight, and I just go up to “her house” and look around at the serene, quiet rooms.

And the Fairy Dell on the back lawn has grown to about 40’ by 50’---it’s covered in violets, and invites me to come for a soothing stroll anytime I want.

Like til June.

Friday, May 1, 2015


Not all SuperHeroes are easy to spot.