Today’s Concerns-Really?

As I watched the news yesterday morning, I realized how shallow we seem to the rest of the world. My heart breaks looking at the refugee children, crying and holding a stuffed animal while standing next to their mothers on the trains to Poland. The rubble from civilian office buildings is a daily image. It generates a real punch in the gut daily.

The next “newsy” blurb lasted longer than the reporting on the crisis in the Ukraine. That blurb subject was about the maternity wardrobe of singer Rhianna. Excuse me? Wardrobe? It seemed to me it was simply a bunch of narrow ribbons draped over her belly with no actual structure in mind. It strikes me it is pure sensationalism and attention seeking. I’m no prude and I have to ask, “Is nothing sacred anymore?”

And don’t get me started on today’s story about the effect of TikTok on young teens’ mental health. Some of us are raising kids to be emotionally immature and too sheltered. They are used to their parents doing too much for them, some are the center of attention in their homes, and their mere existence trumps the marriage as the primary relationship in the home. Google John Rosemond and read. He makes some interesting points. I believe children should be heard, listened to, valued, and know the world doesn’t revolve around them.

Not sorry America, I think the world events are much more important than a celebrity’s baby bump, TikTok, and the new music tour of New Kids on the Block. Sorry, guys.

Pat Sloan wrote an article. I’ve followed her for several years. I like her style, her heart, and her way of honoring people. The quilters of the world are acting. A quilting leader in the Ukraine is heading up the efforts to evacuate the children from Ukraine to Poland. The woman has a quilt shop in both countries. Often, quilts are made for refugees and given to them. After the tsunami in Japan a few years ago, another group of quilters asked for donations of a certain type of block, and led the efforts to sew the blocks into quilt tops, then layer, quilt, and bind them. They went to Japan and into the hands of people who lost everything. I was a good feeling, knowing the blocks helped people.

Pat Sloan designed a block representing the Ukraine, in signature blue, yellow, and white. She explains the symbolism of the double star, representing the strength of the Ukrainian people. For your listening and hopefully action, here is my quilter friend, Pat Sloan, with a call to action; let’s make a difference for the refugee children of the Ukraine. The link takes you to the video. Below the video is a link to download your pattern. There is also information about donating to this special UNICEF fund. Let’s do something we are assured will make a difference for 7.5 million children. When I make the block, I’m putting it on our front door. How about you?

There is a lot to do today! I’d better get to it, and organize my thoughts for the rest of the day. Thank you for listening to my rant, and I pray it spurs it prompts all of us to help those children. Children deserve better. They deserve security, love, constancy. Let’s help provide some of that. Blessings. See you tomorrow!

Hump Day, 2022

So here we are, the middle of the first week of 2022. How does it feel?

I’m pretty tired today. I woke up at 4:45 (yes, a.m.), and the restless night I had is catching up with me . . . at 8 a.m. It’d be easy to give up and lounge on the couch today. I have to resist that at this early hour, as I’d like to keep with my idea of having the house undecorated by Sunday this week. It was sweet, I asked granddaughter Addison if she’d like a couple items I’m not crazy about anymore. And she wants them! I’m happy I have something she’d like to have. It’s important for kids to have some thing from previous generations. I hope granddaughter Kayla will someday want something of mine.

I have a Grandma Book that poses questions for me to answer for one of them, maybe Addison will want it. We’ve had 14 years together, going on 15. I tell her how I’ll never forget Grandma Sandy handing her to me right after she was born. Grandpa’s and Grandma’s had the opportunity to hold her. Sandy brought this beautiful baby to me and said, “It’s your turn now, Grandma.” She smiled, and her brown doe-like eyes with awning-length lashes shone with her tears of joy. She was beautiful. And her heart was, too. I am so grateful we had a strong friendship, not the usual problem between the ex-wife, husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, etc. It was a gift for both of us. Sandy died of lung cancer about eleven years ago.

And now, this young woman is about to turn 15 years old. Wow. What memories! All good ones. She amazes me with her confidence. She’s all about sticking up for herself. I wish I had known about how to do that. It’s a gift to me at this point in my life. Yes, I say I’m late to the party. At least I made it. I’m grateful for that.

The Raabe/Shuck family up in Sioux Falls is about to grow again. Alex and Meagan Shuck will have another baby girl in May! We have so many birthdays in that month! The Babe’s Mom Liz was on the 5th, Mine is the 22nd, the Babe’s is the 24th. I better get to the fabric store for this little one! I think I owe Kenna a quilt, too (and Cory and Amber Davis’ Trisha, too). This Grandma loves to make stuff for babies. And toddlers. It’ll all get done some time.

Psychologically, we know if it’s cloudy outside, that makes a dome over this part of the earth and the weather becomes a bit warmer. It defies logic how our moods lift with sunshine and blue skies; after all, the cold deepens with clear skies! We have sun, blustery winds, and WCI’s of minus to minus 15 below zero. Wow! Lots of people go to Arizona, Texas, Florida or Mexico during this time in a Nebraska Winter. I don’t blame them, really.

These temperatures don’t do a lot for my arthritis, my broken ankle hardware, or my ailing shoulder. At the same time, I’m grateful I don’t have Rheumatoid Arthritis. It’s terribly crippling. See? Yes, we can find positive things when we’re not feeling well, we are tired, we feel the ravages of aging and injury. I’ll be fine. I’m certain of it.

I want to straighten up the area around my sewing machine today. I didn’t quilt my cardinal quilt but want to get it done and displayed this weekend, too. Goals, all help a lot. I’ll get stuff done. We’ll be ahead of the game before we know. Small steps. Patience. It’s all part of our process of the word for my year. “Progress.” I have lots of ideas, lots of plans. Stick around, and I’ll share them with you! Stay warm today, stay inside if you can. We’ll see each other tomorrow!

It’s WHAT Time?

So, it’s 5:22 a.m. on Tuesday, November 23, 2021. Yes, that’s a.m. I had a cortisone injection in my shoulder yesterday and it woke me up because it’s very stiff and sore. I’ve been awake for over an hour, trying to go back to sleep. But now, there is coffee, ice pack on my shoulder (cannot find my cool flexible packs. Drat!). What does one think about at this hour?

Well, for one, even with less sleep, I’m well rested. What was different yesterday? I didn’t do much but get in end of the year dentist appointment, a visit to the ortho hand, arm, and shoulder guy (a genius if you ask me!), and write about some memories of friends. OH! And I sent my kid book file to another illustrator. I hope to hear from her today or tomorrow. Wouldn’t it be grand if she could get to it? And then, I could get to it! Hope. There is always hope, isn’t there?

I started reading a beautiful story yesterday, “The Sewing Machine,” by Natalie Fergie. It’s about two families, three secrets, and millions of stitches. I’ve already read 87 pages. It is reminding me of how much I love sewing. It’s also told me I need to do something about it. I haven’t touched my machine(s) for over a year. They will require oiling, and come cleanup. I need to piece the rest of a quilt together, and then quilt a panel of a winter scene, in greyscale, with red cardinals on some of the branches. It’s going to take the place of the poppy quilt, which will be taken down and on sabbatical for a time.

I have to hear the rhythm of the machine again, feel the feed dogs grab the fabric, while I control the speed it feeds through. The rows will be sewn together, then I’ll put it on my board downstairs to see how the rows all look, one after another. I bought a little 11 x 14 ( I think) painting of a tree, with a pair of cardinals. The caption is “What I love most about my home is who I share it with.” A small bush at the bottom has “Dan & Kathy” written on it. It’s part of my truth, and that’s why I need to quilt the wall hanging quilt and get it up on the wall.

I’ve also thought a little about finally making our felt , sequined Christmas stockings, which would be decorative only, since we don’t do gifts. After making stockings for everyone and their dog (just about), it’s time we have some. The Babe’s has dogs all over it, and about six ornaments to match. Mine is a Father Christmas, dressed in winter-white regalia. It’s beautiful. Yes, it has to be done. Even a start. My hands have missed the activity.

My writing? I’ll still work at it, just not every day (save for the blog. I won’t stop that.) I think my creativeness will really kick in after the holidays. I’m going to enjoy the season, and start some new traditions. Even if they’re just for me!

And I’m genuinely happy for some folks who have completed NaNoWriMo already. I will not finish, unless I do nothing for the next seven days but write feverishly. I could, but would not get anything else done.

I have my completed chapters printed off and placed in a 3-ring binder. I will likely write many more by the end of the year, which will not be that far away. We have New Year’s Eve plans at the VFW Post 2503 with friends. It will be fun.

The other sewing I do is clothing. I haven’t sewn for me in years, but I plan to. I have had such success on Keto, I was able to purge a lot of things from the closet. I shared them with a friend, and she’s happy to have new clothes to go on a trip to Hawaii with. I’ll go for it. Sharing is what it’s about. I have a ton of fabric and patterns, so something should fit this less lumpy body. We will see how it all goes! Should be fun.

Thanks for reading today; I’m going to set a schedule for cooking on Thursday, to make sure the ginormous turkey will be done in time for our meal. Our newer gas stove has a temperature probe in it for roasting meats. It’s never wrong, I’m amazed. BTW: it’s only 8:15 a.m. I’ve already had a little cat nap. Going to be a great day, I look forward to the sunshine and warmer temperature today. Have a beautiful day, and we’ll see you tomorrow!

Good Monday Morning!

Here we are, holding our clean calendars for the month of October. Have you ever considered what possibilities lie in a nearly blank slate? Well, in theory, that is. None of us has a blank, virgin-like month ahead with no mental notes as to what we need to do, do we? Mine isn’t like September was, but it was a good month.

This month, I have a bunch of de-cluttering tasks I’d like to do in the next two days. My mental checklist has now become real. I wrote it down on a note-pad I have notes in for a lot of projects; Moving Veterans Forward Nebraska, Passwords Notes, TO DO Lists, and reviews of albums I’ve written. This one, however, will make the month go much easier. Clutter will be busted (burst?) and I won’t get distracted by my messiness.

I’m proud of the fact I’ve lost 5 more pounds on KETO (actually Dirty, Messy Keto); I now have a large wardrobe of jeans that fit again, and many that are too big. I love that best. I’ve had a battle with myself for my whole life. Now, ego has nothing to do with trying to lose. It has to do with what’s good for my body and (dis)abilities. Fibromyalgia, scoliosis, severe arthritis, severe chronic pain, and asthma are no fun. All that with 35 more pounds is miserable. The cooler air kicked up the asthma and arthritis. I need to dig into my passions (writing, quilting, sewing, learning to paint) to take my mind off all that. At this point, whatever else I can lose will be a bonus. Maybe 25 is a good number.

If you are just starting, don’t give yourself 60 pounds to lose all at once. You’ll get too discouraged and probably quit. It’s all human nature. If we were to give a child 18 years of learning all at once, they would not succeed; it is too much to wrap your head around, no matter how bright they are. If we gave a new music student a classical pianist’s hardest music, they would lose interest, get discouraged, and not want to go on. Set a lower goal – 5 or 10 pounds – and give yourself a lot of wiggle room, say a month. If you lose 15, you’ll be enthused and want to do more. The new tasks you have incorporated into your day will become habits you are dedicated to completing for your day to go well.

Baby steps. You eat an elephant one bite at a time. It’s all about perspective. Looking back, some of the jeans I can wear again were purchased the last time I lost a chunk of weight. It was the early 2000s. Are boot cut jeans back in style yet? Skinny Jeans are still ok, right? I’ll wear whatever I want. As long as they fit, they’re fine in my book. I’ve really come to love leggings and have many pairs. They fit like they should now, and are still serviceable. We’ll visit that again after the next 25 pounds are gone. And since I can sew, I have the fabric already for newer clothes. It’ll work out! If I could use all the fabric I’ve gathered over the years, the Babe would have a heart attack! It still could happen. If you’ve ever known a quilter or seamstress, you’d understand.

This blog # is in the mid 700s. I’m so proud of that, too. You know, for a woman who grew up in the 60s, that’s kind of hard to say out loud. It goes against all we learned as kids; women were supposed to be “meek,” submitting to men in every way, and never calling attention to themselves. Knowing your place was important during that era. But, late bloomer that I am, here we are. It feels good to finally admit you own yourself.

There are many areas I joke and say I lived my life backwards. Graduated, had kids young, went to college, graduated at 44, raised 3 kids alone, bought a house (a house of my own!), and proceeded to get married at 46 (I told the Babe to tell his friends his fiance just graduated from college. Lots of laughs!), and we’ve had a beautiful life together. I’m grateful down to my bones. We’ve survived so much, including each other (some days); Breast Cancer, Ischemic Heart Disease (thank you, Agent Orange), moving, ex’s, loss, gains, and life in general. Nothing’s been better than all of it. It’s called real life. No dysfunction left, it’s the real deal. And I’ll say until my dying day, it’s all been worth it. Every tear, every disagreement, every disclosure to my best friend, every fear shared and conquered.

Folks, have a beautiful day. It’s going to be in the 70s all week, and we’re going to enjoy every moment we can outside. It’s time for those nasty little black bugs you can barely see, but they bite hard. (No-See-Ums, biting midges, their bites are worse than mosquito bites and can last up to two weeks). They drive us inside. Maybe I need to got the deck and patio with something. Google, here I come! Thanks for sharing time today, see you tomorrow!

Thursday Thoughts

One of the most impactful things Dad ever taught me is to look at things from every different angle you can before deciding on something. In most things, it is prudent to do so. I like that he would tell me to think of where the other person may come from. It has always served me well. As young kids, they expected us to think things through. They, meaning the parents, teachers, coaches, etc. Maybe we didn’t have a stress-free life as kids, but I think we all can operate as reasonably intelligent adults.

Sometimes, someone may remark, “Gee, I didn’t think of it that way.” That’s a clue you may have opened their eyes to a fresh way of thinking. It’s easier if they’re open to changing their way of doing things. If they’re not, it’s much harder. Consensus is easier to achieve with more open-minded people. Face it. Change is hard. People resist as long as they can.

It gets frustrating when someone digs in and belittles your decision or choice and later claims they supported you all the way. The excuse is “Well, things were different.” With some people, it’s just not worth being right. It’s best to know you are and move on. I’ve had to do that a lot about a lot of things in my life. Moving away to a different neighborhood is a big deal in my family. No more, because I’ve done it. Three times. Mom still lives in the same house she and Dad purchased in 1949. That’s seventy-two years in the same house. It has to be some kind of record.

Photo by Ivan Bertolazzi on Pexels.com

We have to learn to be comfortable with our decisions. We need to accept full responsibility for the consequences of our actions. All of them. We have a responsibility to admit if we do something bad. Or good. We sometimes learn more from the poor decisions than the good ones. It’s possible. A balanced person never forgets the lessons they learn from the poor ones. And they know not to beat themselves up over them.

I had another Zoom call with Sam, my book coach today. I’m eager to add more description to my second chapter and flesh out the first scene of the third chapter. Slow and steady wins the race. I read something a couple days ago stating it takes three years to write a book. At first I scoffed at that. *Word of the Day – Scoffed! When I think of starting a year ago, January 2019, it’s not so off the mark. That’s about what I’m looking at now, at the current rate. I do like having smaller sections to rewrite.

I have about 40K written in my first book, These Walls Do Talk. I want to finish it someday I see it as a part of a trilogy. It’s not lost work it was good practice. I think back to a conversation Sam and I had once that touched on having manuscripts that will not be the ones to publish. It’s a very common occurrence among writers. That does not surprise me. Among quilters, there are many projects that never see the quilting and binding added. I have a beautiful example of one. I did not finish the first quilt ever made. I kept it as a reminder of how it was to just start learning the craft. The most important thing I learned was the famous quarter inch seams are to be critical. Otherwise, nothing will align properly. I have some rows that look terrible. You can fudge on a seam while dressmaking (I have frequently), but in quilting its unforgiving. Come to think of it, I should put a binding on it and drape it on my studio chair right here. It will remind me there is a learning curve with everything creative. And to be humble.

Goldie Could Enjoy My “Humility” Quilt.

I think I should dig that quilt out and finish it. Just because. I can look at as a failure. I don’t like the colors. It was a practice piece. I can also use it to help me see how much I’ve learned. All the quilting skills I have are self-taught. There were a few classes I took, but most of it is self-taught. With lots of books and magazines.

I’m glad to know how to look at things differently. It’s helped me be grateful, despite having a body ravaged by some weird ailments. I could have become bitter about what I lost at age 44, but I am grateful for what I can still do independently. I am grateful to have a husband who tells me, “whatever you want to do, honey,” when I have an idea for another quilt, blog, or project. We work well together, he encourages me. It stifles a lot of women to have little support for their creativity. My only problem is finding the time to do all the things I’d like to do!

Have a beautiful day. Enjoy the precipitation we’re having in Gretna, NE. I wish those fires in Colorado would have a gully washer fall on them. The destruction is terrible. Be Open. Think Differently. Love Without Restriction. Be Safe. Be Kind. Be Careful.

Morning, Sunshine!

The weeks I have “homework” due for a conference with Sam, my book coach, I need to be working on the next homework in the four days before the Zoom meeting. I need to be refining my story, editing my next words, and have a head start before the meeting, a couple days of goofing off, then frantic activity. Remind me next time, ok?

I’m actually going to work on a quilt after this blog posts. Then tomorrow, I can get going on Chapter 3. My character Katie is going to be a busy girl, discovering her self-worth and finding her voice. It’s a lifetime of work, all condensed down to mere pages. I need to choose words carefully, make sure each one is the best I can find. I’m learning so much.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I adore sunflowers. I need to find my sunflower wreath for our front door, I think it’s in a storage bin in the basement. If it’s too mushed, I’ll just get a new one. It’s time for one, probably. One in, one out. Have you seen how many people are downsizing, getting rid of clutter, things they don’t use, finding out they don’t love most of their stuff. We’re doing our best. I’m the holder on, probably. The Babe lets go much easier than I do. I must say though, when we emptied his house before we got married, besides the new furniture he bought, he didn’t have many clothes at all, the ex took everything of value. It was a sad situation. I’m glad those years are so far behind. We’ve been over some mountains together. Lots of challenges.

I have two beautiful kimonos we’re hanging in our entryway. Our neighbor gave one to me for watching their daughter while they traveled back home, to China itself. It was a nice surprise. The other one is very old. Dad brought it back from his stint in Korea. I believe they went by boat in those days. A total of over 6,000 miles. How long and boring that had to be. I doubt he cared, though. He was going home to his wife and baby son. I have bamboo to hang them from, and need to press the kimonos (carefully) before hanging them up. They should be beautiful. Photos to follow!

I’m hoping to spend time outdoors this afternoon, as it’s going to be a beautiful day. All week will. Some lows may even be below 50 degrees. I’m not ready for that as of yet. The flowers are not nearly finished up yet, either. I have a new hooded sweatshirt to wear, that I’m eager to share with you, but I’ll save the surprise for the first day I need it. It will be selfie worthy. In the meantime, please have a great day. Know I appreciate your time, and hope you enjoyed it. I’ll be back again tomorrow, and will see you then. Be safe out there.

Friday Fun

Hello from the home office in Gretna, where the magic happens. This is a day to finish up things for the work week and think of something wonderful to do over the next two days you have off the job, and refresh for next week. It’s a whole new game for us retired folks. Since school has started, though, we need to begin picking up our granddaughter after school on certain days so we can get her home with Gavin. So far, so good, on the school days. I hope they continue. The masks are required, and I think these two are old enough to understand it’s a must if they want to keep in school. I think they missed it a great deal. Our grandson in Virginia will be remote learning until at least November, then it will be reevaluated. Cross your fingers, pray, and wear your mask, people!

New Stacked Stone on Fireplace. Well Worth It!

Isn’t the new fireplace nice? It’s amazing how changing to stone from ceramic tiles made such a difference. Yes, there is a board standing there until everything dries, it’s not part of the new look. I love that the trades (hopefully) will see a revival. We will always need someone to do this type of work. Electricians, plumbers, concrete finishers, block and brick layers are all desperately needed as are auto mechanics. It’s a shame the mantra of the 1980s, “You can make more money sitting down than you do standing up.” Yes, tech jobs do pay tremendously well. I had one myself. The salary depended on your skills and abilities, not your sex. And now, it suddenly occurs to the educators and others that we need schooling in those areas. Not a surprise, really.

One place I wouldn’t want to work is the United States Post Office. My former husband retired from there over ten years ago. It was a good job, being a letter carrier. He had an old walking route while I was still married to him, and he did a good job. Back in those days, you had to sort your own mail, and bundle it according to your stops. The carriers seemed to know when someone moved, or if you had a wrong apartment number on a letter, they had sense to see that and still deliver the letter instead of returning it. That doesn’t happen now.

Since the Babe and I got married in 1998, we have received weird mail, it’s as if companies made up more people at our address by using our last name in conjunction with my three kids’ first names. Seriously. Frank Raabe is one. No one by that name. Still, we get one every so often. Those mailing list companies make so many assumptions when they’re eager to sell off names and addresses. And we received one for Rebecca Raabe. Nice name, but we have no one by that name either. Sheesh!

This expresses my studio and craft rooms perfectly

There are days when I get irritated at myself for the creative clutter I have. Not enough (yet) to go through each and every item for each and every hobby or interest, but I get irked nonetheless. Sorting and culling the herd will be a winter project. No, it’s not hoarding, but my daughter and sons have commented there are more boxes of stuff to make stuff than of clothes, kitchenware, and decor. See if I’ll have them help us move again! Lol. No, it’s to the assisted living place next move. I mean it.

Speaking of moving, I think Mom holds the world’s record on living in the same house for the longest. She and Dad married in 1948, had an apartment, then moved into the house in which she still lives in 1949. Seventy-one years living in one house. Wow. She was 20 when they moved in. Just think on that. So, in her life, she only lived at three places: growing up, brief apartment living, and our home. At first they rented three rooms upstairs to a couple from Offutt. There was an actual second kitchen upstairs, one room living room, one room bedroom, and they shared the bathroom. Seventy one years in one house has to be a record.

Can you imagine sharing a bathroom with another family? Even when I got married in 1970, furnished apartments were very common. Kitchen, living room, bedroom furniture came with your rent. Good and bad. Someone else’s old lumpy mattress? Often it was like the one we left at home. People didn’t spend what they didn’t have. The hygiene patrol would probably have a heyday with this.

My studio/office/craft room, it’s where the magic happens!

Hope you have a beautiful rest of the day. Take time to appreciate your surroundings. Appreciate yourself, too. I’m off to do laundry and quilt. That Poppy masterpiece may be finished yet. Thanks for reading today. I appreciate the time you spend with me. See you again tomorrow. Be safe. Wear your mask, wash up. Let’s just do what we need to do and get through this. It’s the quickest way to make our own way into the future. Don’t live in fear. Be confident we are only temporarily inconvenienced by wearing masks. It won’t be forever. Use civility. Use compassion. Use kindness.

Fun Friday!

It’s a good Friday out there! The Babe says it’s really hot, the dogs do not want out. It’s a mid-morning nap on the couches for them. Works for me!

It’s going to be a great, FUN weekend!

We had early mail call this morning, too. All for me, and not a bill in the stack! Adding music to my collection always makes me happy. Two new favorites (along with all my established favorites!) are Dayna Jones and Ray Scott. Dayna’s music is so uplifting and makes me feel happy. Her voice is beautiful. Strong and gentle at the same time. Trust me, she does it. South Dakota has another great product. (The Babe is from Sioux Falls). You can’t go wrong.

Ray Scott has many great stories and I enjoy them in the background while I write. Stories in songs are similar to stories in books, yet very different. The story a song tells is often shorter than four minutes, yet can tell of a lifetime. A story in a book or a song can give you pictures of events in your imagination. Movies often spoil that for us, in my opinion. I love imagining a story in my mind. Or a song. His songs are great for that.

Writer’s Digest is a publication I enjoy as a writer. I have so much to learn, and I know that. I’m hungry for wherever I can learn more and more. I do believe I’m headed in the right direction. I have a lot of good guidance from a lot of new friends. Support is so great in creative communities. With my experiences with quilters around the world, I have seen how generous quilters are. They want to swaddle everyone in a beautiful quilt made just for them. They are such givers, I love to see it!

We had the absolute joy of celebrating Gavin’s birthday last night. He won’t be eight until Tuesday, but family was in town and it was so fun to see him play with his cousins. There was no more happy look than a boy who just got a brand new bicycle. It’s a great story, about the bike. There are no 24 inch bikes available in Omaha. None. Everyone has bought one to ride during the pandemic. With that in mind, our son in law did a commute out to Denver for his job on Monday. They don’t want the employees flying, they feel it’s safer driving between location. I have to agree with that.

I-80 stretches west, into the plains of Nebraska. With Lexington, NE in his sight, he spied a WalMart. Stopped in, and found the very last bike for a boy in the exactly right size. Things like this are no coincidence, you know? He sent a photo to his wife, and he bought it on the spot. Anyway, Gavin is in seventeenth heaven. Or at least in eighth heaven for now. It made my heart happy. Don’t we all need our hearts to be happy right about now? Good job, Dad!

It won’t be all fun and no work this weekend. I can listen to my new tunes and do some planning for the next two months. The Babe is on board. He’ll pick up my slack if I’m not available to do some things around the house. My days will mostly revolve around writing, analyzing, learning, and making progress. I am looking forward to having to work against deadlines with Sam, my writing coach. It will be another adventure to share with you.

Boy, Does This Resonate With Me!

I’m reading a book right now called “Personality Isn’t Permanent.” I’m a perfect example of that. I became someone who was hiding inside myself for many years. I did not know she was there. The more of her who emerged, the more surprised I was. It took many years for me to stand up for myself. It’s no problem for me now with some people. Others, I’ve still got work to do. But not as much as thirty or forty years ago. It’s a work in progress.

The older I become, the more I love living. We make mistakes, and they are no longer so devastating. No one who truly loves us criticizes us for them. After a time, with the distance of hindsight, you can identify your own rock bottom. Drugs and alcohol don’t necessarily have to be involved. If they are, I think the bottom is deeper and more prominent. Getting out is what’s important. If you slide back in any way, you can adjust your direction. Just keep showing progress, however tough it is. Apply this to all aspect of your life, and I believe we will all have a good one.

This kind of growth happens for my character, Katie. She is much stronger than anyone ever thought, including herself. You will see this in her story. Someone told me once, “You have to watch out for the quiet ones.” That was me, one of the quiet ones. No more. Stay tuned for more information about our writing adventure.

As always, I appreciate your time spent reading my blog today. Stay safe out there, wear your mask, wash your hands, be kind, be thoughtful, and be a good example. Help our world become a better place. See you tomorrow!

#250!! Super Saturday!

I’m amazed this is blog post #250. It’s been a journey since last summer. We’ve had the loss of a beloved pet, the Babe had a heart cath and endless healing at the site. It was a very long couple months healing him up. Hard to keep him still long enough to heal. The day he got his wound vac to help it heal, he decided Lexie needed a friend. And we adopted Goldie. She has done wonder for us after the loss of Roxie. In between there were numerous trips with Mom to appointments, obligations, and in between I had time to write. I enjoy it a lot.

I appreciate people who tune in to read, other bloggers who offer comments and ideas, and especially my friends who support my late in life endeavor. Thanks to all of you. It’s been such a busy day today. The Babe went to the store, then cleaned some areas of the carpet that needed it. Between a sick dog (Lexie doesn’t like her new dog food) and a puppy who sometimes waits too long, it needed cleaning. In between time, I actually pinned a few quilts together:

The fourth quilt was a little crooked, so I put it aside for today. It’s time to quit when you start to have things go badly. It’s funny once you’re learned how to do something like quilting, and you know when to stop. Writing is much the same way. But yesterday, the technical issue with the printer was huge and frustrating and challenging. Other things depended on getting it to work, so I couldn’t set it aside.

How many of us are going to see our Mom’s tomorrow? Mine is going to brunch at my brother’s home, and I’m going to call her in the morning. She’s kind of funny to read, doesn’t want a big deal made out of things like Mother’s Day and her birthday. Yet, she’ll plan a party for herself. You never know whether to take the lead, or just show up. Hard to tell always. She did relinquish control to us last year for her 90th birthday, so hope she learned we actually can put things together. Mom’s are funny sometimes.

So, what am I going to feed my Babe from South Dakota since the meat supply is supposed to dwindle due to the pandemic? He is not fond of too much chicken, or pork chops. Beef is his absolute favorite. Especially steak and hamburger. You can take the boy out of South Dakota, but you don’t dare try to take the beef from the boy from South Dakota. What will we do? Suggestions will be welcome. I’m all for having brinner (breakfast for dinner), a salad with cottage cheese (forget that for the Babe). I’ve even had a bowl of cereal for dinner.

I’m going to finish reading a book I’ve been reading for awhile. When I finish some other things, there is one I really want to read about a local murder and scam by a woman who made it look like the victim was still alive. The story is fascinating but the lead forensic investigator is the son of an old friend. I’ve known him since he was about three years old. He is brilliant, and found the evidence to convict this murderer. More about that later.

Thank you for reading today. I do appreciate it. See you here tomorrow, and I hope you have a good rest of the day, and a pleasant Sunday. See you then!

Marveling It’s Monday!

So this is the view from the office today. You can see the streak from an airplane above the trees and there is enough shade yet for the pups to take a nap in. They love being outside! I do too.

Can’t See This Too Much. Fresh Air is the Best Therapy for Your Soul.
The Finch Family Was Rude Last NIght!

However, the neighbor up above on the beam over the table isn’t too nice. While arranging my stuff to work, I discovered we needed a clean up on – well, Table 5? The Finch Family left some gifts for me. Ack! Note to self: Move the table away from the nest to avoid incoming. There, now where were we?

This is such a perfect time of day. It’s just warm enough to be comfortable, especially in the shade. In some ways, I was flashing back to summer mornings when I was a kid in South Omaha. Of course, when I was in 6 – 8 grades, the girls had to go to Mass and sing every morning. Yes, every morning. There was no sleeping in ever at our house. Not weekends, not summer. If we were out too late from the night before, Mom woke us up earlier.

We had no air conditioning the whole time any kids lived at home. Don’t know how Dad, a night worker, slept during the day in that oven of a house. With maybe just a window fan. Anyway, the days were pretty much all alike, kind of like now. Get up, Church, breakfast, change clothes, play. Or read, or whatever you were going to do. Riding bikes was a lot of fun with my friend Peggy. We imagined we had cars, or were part of the Cartwright family on the Ponderosa. It didn’t matter. We used our imaginations and had fun. It’s funny now to think of it. Oh, or be Ricky Nelson’s girlfriend. That was a good one. Swoon!

Goldie, the Office Manager

My productivity took a nose dive yesterday after lunch. When that happens, I need to sit in the recliner with the heating pad on my back. Hate when that happens. Had a nice short nap, and just did some reading the rest of the day. I have four quilts to quilt, three need layering right now. Poppies, Psychedelic Flower, Hibiscus Blocks, and a Wintery Cardinals Quilt I bought last fall. Those are all about the same size, and I’ll only need one King Sized Batting cut in fourths for them all. That makes it so much easier. Hope to get those all layered and pinned this week.

The Babe brought up a good subject. If one of us becomes sick, we probably should have the room ready for the patient. We have a full little apartment downstairs, minus a kitchen, but have a refrigerator, bathroom with a huge shower, and a queen sized futon couch in the craft room. Now, that means I’d need to straighten up the craft room. It is disorganized, and I’ve never finished moving into it. A day or two (depending on how my back holds up) will accomplish the task. I’m hoping to start that this week.

I don’t know that the bed needs sheets on it as of yet, but maybe that’s what he’s going for. I suppose either way, I need to get the bed ready for the Babe, since he’s probably the one who will vacate the upstairs, regardless of who gets sick. Meals on wheels? Room service? I’m not sure. We’ll have to see how he works out that little detail.

Our dog Lexie is worse than a kid. When she decides to be naughty, she’ll drink out of the big bowl she shares with Goldie. Then she sticks her paw in it to spill it. That’s OK outside, but I frown on that in the kitchen. She knows we love her, she just has to be ornery once in awhile. That’s the Raabe in her. Come bedtime, though, she snuggles right up next to my side, and I’ll often wake to find her head laying on my stomach. I’d like to think it’s because she loves me, not because I’m extra fluffy as a result of quarantine weight gain/ Maybe a little of both?

Lexie is in charge of Security!

I’m off to do some research on Alcoholics Anonymous. I purchased their 75th Anniversary Edition of their Big Book. It reminds me of the Missals we carried in the 60s to Mass in the Catholic Church. It has a ribbon page marker like they had, it’s a plain black cover, and the edges are gilded in red metallic. It’s beautiful. There is a companion book called “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions that I hope to learn a lot from. It is research to figure out how to deal with the family created to write about.

There will be some work on Chapter 10 of the book, too. And embroidery on the little hedge hog picture for baby Cody’s room. Looking forward to the rest of the day. Thank you for spending this time with me, I hope you have some goals for the day, even if it’s to work on your Quarantine Tan. Sunscreen, please! We all should use it. Hope to see you tomorrow, and we’ll see if this day went according to plan! Enjoy!