Drawing to a Close

As September draws to a close, my time at physical therapy is also ending as of tomorrow.

It’s not that I am not appreciative of the exercises learned or of the pain endured to get my shoulder right again, but I’ll be sleeping a little later when it normally would have been a physical therapy day. Getting up that early brought flashbacks back to getting ready for work when we were in the city. I am hoping that I’d don’t need physical therapy again for a long while.

Kasia and I have been walking steadily more and more as the winds pick up and cold fronts come through. We are not getting any seasonal color change in the trees yet, but we walk to a point where I can brush her coat out and make way for her winter coat to come in.

I have shut some of the windows for the night.The only thing left is to find my autumn nightshirt for bed.

Good night!

I Must Have Been out of My Head….


There was a time when I didn’t mind cooking and happily used  a cook book in the process.

So while on Amazon, I saw Alex Guarnaschelli’s new cook book and figured “why not?” Alex was one of the few people on the Food Network. I enjoyed watching.

The book is titled  ” The Home Cook- Recipes to know by heart.” Sure, it sounded as though I could handle it. That was until I sat down after dinner and read the whole freaking book. I got tired just thinking about it. The recipes are excellent and look awfully tasty. I need to make some time out of my weekend to be able to work on this.

The recipes look really good. Why does cooking for dummies look like their recipes taste like dirt?

Just wondering…..

A Cluttered Desk , A Cluttered Mind

For those of you who read my posts and have worked with me, you could attest to the amount of things that were on my desk. Things were necessary for work, but of course I had my plants, a seven inch cut out of Queen Elizabeth II, a coffee maker , pictures of my Zush and Kasia hung up on file cabinet amidst office memos and so on..

Fast forward two and one-half years into semi-retirement. My desk is an empty sewing cabinet. My MacBook Pro holds a place of honor, as does a Penn State Christmas ball from one of my besties,Kathy. Then, after Zush left me, it became a partial shrine to her.Her paw print I made last year, the paw print the pet crematory gave me when she passed away, in addition to a ton of her pictures.

Being not truly retired, but occasionally working, there are papers and mail that come in and usually sit atop my desk until I get to the point where I just can’t take it anymore. I’ll be curious to see how long this will hold out.

It’s Oh So Quiet

It’s wonderful.

I was out front this evening and this was the view from our front porch. While standing there quietly, It’s incredible to listen to the twilight sounds accompanying the deepening and eventual darkening of the clouds and sky. It’s even the point where mosquitoes are getting a little tired of chomping away.

It’s trading the tourist traffic for people coming home from work. Soon the leaves will be changing and the sky will be opening up to more to see once the leaves fall. Pumpkins are out, as are the mums. Weekend people still come down. Those four or five days while they are working? Nirvana…sheer nirvana.

If I could just get a temperature drop to 65, then things would be great for down here at the”Undisclsed location.”

Have a nice weekend!

Quasi-Tech


In my current quasi-tech boycott of sorts, I decided to bang my head on the wall, figuratively speaking.

What else would an old American Studies major with two diagnosed cataracts do? I decided, after hearing all the praise about the book that Lin-Manuel Miranda based the musical on, to give this biography a whirl. I also read on line other people in academia who reviewed and gave this book high praise. I figured why not?

I knew the story of Hamilton from my studies, in addition to my time as a park technician at Independence Historical National Park. It had been a while since I sunk my teeth into a book which, allegedly, is so well written. I want to see what all the praise is about. Granted, I had studied Hamilton almost forty years ago, and have seen enough of PBS’s documentary behind the musical, and sing loud and off-key with the soundtrack, but I don’t know. Maybe it was the proposal of actually reading and being away from devices that drew me too it. Maybe it was a concept of reading while I can before the cataracts get so bad.

I’ll keep you posted as to what comes first: me finishing the book or the cataracts having to come out.   

“Film at 11.”

Summer? Fall? Make Up Your Mind!


Hurricane, or rather, Tropical Storm Jose’ not withstanding, there has been some subtle changes in my neighborhood. Sure, most of the flowers that have been planted have seen better days, but also there has been a little shift in the color palette.


The pastels of spring have made way for deeper, richer colors. My neighbors hav given me my first mum of the season, which is being held in a place of honor on my deck where I see it daily and appreciate it.


For the folks who follow this blog with any regularity, you’ll know I am not a fan of the heat of summer. You see, it’s a job to keep me, let alone the flowers, from fading in the heat. Fortunately, through August, we have had rain at least once a week. Our lawn has never been greener. Unfortunately, with the next four days as an example, our temperature is duel to be in the eighties. Really? September 20th?

My sweater is waiting patiently for a 55 degree day, as am I.

Laptop Mocking

Yesterday I wrote about not checking in on Facebook.

What is worse than that is my laptop sits here and mocks me.

I used to sit and be more religious about posting on the blog and checking my email. Uh, ok, maybe later, which becomes two days later.Once upon a time that would have never been me. I would sit in front of this laptop until my fingers would feel as though they were falling off. I just don’t have the inclination I used to have about being on line. Quite frankly, again, my shoulder, along with my forearm, is dictating what I am doing. I probably would be on more, especially if I could figure how to hook up my heating pad on my desk chair.

It’s funny that I no longer sit plastered to the keyboard. You realize things that you could be doing, or, more importantly, SHOULD be doing. I surprise myself in that, when walking past my laptop, I don’t feel the guilt that I should be on there.

It’s a good thing.

Face What?

With my current shoulder issue, pain has done one incredible thing.

I am not on Facebook that much any more. Whoa!

I never thought I’d be able to say that, but the pain in my shoulder, along with an issue in my same side forearm, makes it slightly irritating for me to manipulate a keyboard. I look at the computer, and think I should be on it. A second goes by, and then I think “Nah”. I really don’t miss it. I cruise on Facebook twice a week. It’s enough to read the highlights. I pay attention to my friends and issues that touch me. That’s it.

I’ll keep you posted on this recent development. I’d like to think that, at 57, I can have many varied interests, and not obsess over one or two.

Adult Beverages

It’s the end of a long week. The 5:30 a.m. wake-up call doesn’t help much on physical therapy days. We said it was time to go out for a cocktail and dinner.

We came back to the spot where we came during the week in summer as it would be quieter in September. I know Kasia wasn’t happy: she ate and was walked before we left. Time for us to kick back.

Have a good weekend!

Times with Kasia

I look at the above picture and think , “pretty girl.”

A lot of people say the same thing to me. I don’t think that when she doesn’t want to let me spray her hot spot medicine on her. This has been a recent development. I don’t know what is going on in her head. All of a sudden she sees a little spray bottle in my hand as an enemy.


We go out four times a day, on average. Since she has been having hot spot trouble, I have been trying to get the vet meds on her, but it hasn’t been easy. We had a cooler snap of weather, and it seemed she was doing better. Now we had rain yesterday and today, with corresponding high humidity, and low and behold, Kasia is scratching again.  From oatmeal and coconut oil shampoo to medicated ointment to spray, well, I am stumped. I just hope the cooler weather comes and stays soon!

The Beat Goes On

 I had a chance to enjoy 2 “days off”, which translates into two days without physical therapy. Getting up at 5:30 a.m. is rough, although I guess I need to acclimate my body back to an early start now that school is back. The end result? No physical therapy equals sleeping in. It was especially nice this morning while it rained.

Autumn is working its’ way to our Undisclosed location. It’s quiet during the week, roads are less congested, leaves are slowly starting to change color, and open window welcome a delightful breeze.

In short? It’s my kind of season. You knew that , right?

Sixteen

Tonight, I am watching a documentary on HLN network by the Naudain brothers. It is on 9/11. It wasn’t intentionally the subject of the film : in fact it was supposed to be about the life of a rookie firefighter.

I have seen this film by Jules and Gideon Naudet two prior times. Each time I see it, my eyes are opened to another aspect about what happened sixteen years ago. I remember being in my office and passing a computer screen showing one of the planes hitting the first building of the World Trade Centers and thinking it was photoshopped. Watching this documentary, I appreciated the poor people on the street who saw it, along with people trying to leave the area and how frightening it was. I thought I was afraid being downtown trying to get home, and here were people jumping to their deaths from the buildings. Tragic!

This film also made me respect, even more than I had, the first responders. They show the firemen they had interviewed, and who died afterward, due to cancer they contracted at the World Trade Center site.

Tonight, as before, I’ll pray for those who passed away, those injured, and all those who lives were touched by this event. It also brings to the front of my consciousness this quote:

“Those who do not read history are doomed to repeat it.” – George Santayana 

Working through the Pain

I had physical therapy this morning and, as usual I came home beat!

Rather than resting when I got home, I took Kasia for a walk down to the bay. Maybe it’s the current state of distress in Florida that drew me down, but whatever it was, off we went.


It was a very pretty day. I was pleasantly surprised by the cool air. As Kasia was on limited walks when she sprained her back paw, I decided it was time to stretch out legs. It was of no surprise that it was a long walk for us both. It is funny, because with Zush, walking was always at the drop of a hat. I guess Kasia has become too comfortable in the house, and we both need to get and keep moving. The pictures in this post are a few of the sights we passed today. Have a good weekend and send prayers and good thoughts to those in harm’s way due to Mother Nature this weekend.

Weather or Not

I have been praying for Houston during their troubles. Now I have added Florida to the list. When will it stop?

As someone who lives in a state where hurricane has been known to hit, to me, storms are scary. Watching the Weather Channel, I wonder how we would react, sitting bumper to bumper in evacuation traffic. I feel sad for them, as your home and belongings are left behind. You wonder , if you come back, what you’ll come back to. Watching people call the Florida Attorney General and report price gauging makes me wonder, although I know the answer; don’t people have a conscience ? Taking advantage of people in the most stressful of situations is just downright wrong!

Keep the hurricane evacuees in your thoughts, and send some prayers or good thoughts their way!

For the rest of the nation, I would only wish more people would realize that Mother Nature isn’t fooling,

Return of the Gerbers

If you have been reading this blog with any regularity, you’ll know that this was the year I tried to raise Gerber daisies. The photo above shows a tiny bloom, but more of what I call Gerber lettuce.

From the end of July through Labor Day, the view on my deck was basically pots and pots of Gerber leaves. I let them be, and watching the rainfall amounts, occasionally watered them. The plants were definitely alive and green, so I had decided to let them be.

This past week I have been treated to…,


and also….


…among others.

Patience is, most assuredly, a virtue!

Vegging

Just got home from caregiving for my friend, who is 94 years old.  I am also due to work with him tomorrow, too.

It’s exhausting. It’s also incredible that even with my Mom gone 5 years, you can fall back into caregiving so easily. Part of the reason is rather simple. I try to treat them as I would want to be treated at that age. Usually, they are lonely and are happy to  have some one to converse with, as opposed to talking about them, over them, or ignoring them. After that, the rest is rather easy. Cook for them, clean up for them, help with whatever they need. My motto, or mantra? ” There but for the grace of God go I.”

I am ready for bed, as tomorrow is another busy day, complete with a 7am start at physical therapy for my shoulder. In the meanwhile, I am vegging out watching Oceans’ Eleven before bed.

Good night!

Rain

For those of you who read my posts, you can remember a post I did during August when I was patiently waiting for rain to cool us off.


Well, Thank God we are not Texas, but it’s like a fall morning here today. It’s a good day to be in and cozy. I do feel sorry for folks on Labor Day weekend vacation… It’s a chance you take this time of year.


Please be careful if you are in a car, regardless of weather. Enjoy your Labor Day, and be around for next years’.