Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Sweetest News of All

Dad's going to be fitted with a pacemaker tomorrow.

I have always referred to myself as a techno-peasant, a phrase I first read years ago in The Adventures of Stout Mama by Sybil James. (a book I recommend hunting for especially to Chris and Donna and Peggy and Lori but not because anyone of them fit the description). While I'm enthralled by what can be done these days, I learn about technology eventually but it takes a lot of show mes.

Dad, on the other hand, isn't that far along. He's not much of an electronic gadget type guy. For instance,he has a nice collection of DVDs. There's usually a marathon of movie watching when company comes so someone can get it turned on for him.

Although he loves his computer, and email, and Internet searching for obscure facts, he manages to have more things go wrong with his computer than anyone I know. Luckily, he has an Army (and Air Force) of usually patient children and grandchildren, wives of grandchildren, and step kids and their spouses to come to his rescue.

Tomorrow, however, he'll be one up on all of us. After he receives his pacemaker at the Lubbock(TX) Heart Hospital, he'll have something none of the rest of us have. He's going to love knowing about something techie that we don't! I can't wait to hear all about it.

Thanks for all the messages and prayers. I hope you'll continue to keep an eye on his blog and welcome him back in a few days. There probably won't be one until he's home and recovering. He'll get a big kick out of it. He is always amazed when someone other than family members leaves him a comment.

For right now though, he's going to be okay and that's the sweetest thing I can think of to say today to complete this month's theme.

See ya down the road,

Saturday, May 30, 2009

I Didn't Lie on Purpose!

When I said the last post wasn't my blog for the day it turned out I was wrong. The day went nuts after that.

As many of you know, Old Newsie is my sweet Dad and he lives in New Mexico (I'm in Tucson). Luckily, my brother CT and Sister-in-law CC live there too because they were the ones who discovered he wasn't feeling too well and took him to the ER yesterday. From there he was sent by helicopter to The Heart Hospital in Lubbock, Texas.

Right now, he's resting comfortably and I spoke to him last evening. Apparently, his blood pressure has been dropping seriously low for a few days and yesterday he began experiencing chest pains. So they are doing a chemical stress test today. If they find blockages, they'll do an Angiogram. If not, they are talking about installing a pacemaker on Monday.

I was teasing him the other night because he's been struggling to finish this month's NaBloPoMo challenge. For those of you who have never done it, you should try it some time. Just getting a daily blog posted is an accomplishment but having to try to do it on a theme each time can really be a stretch. I told him I had faith in him and he'd figure out a way to earn his second I Did It badge.

Well, this was not what I had in mind! If you go to
Newsie's Lucid Moments, you'll note that - ever the conscientious Newsman - Dad posted both Thursday night and Friday morning - when he wasn't feeling well at all.

I just spoke to him a minute ago and he has found a way to deal with today's blog entry even though his computer is back at the house. I hope everyone who reads mine today will check in with him for the next few days and leave him a message. It would cheer him up a lot.

Thanks Friends,

Friday, May 29, 2009

This is Not a Blog Post! But it Sure is Sweet!

I haven't decided what to write tonight . But in the meantime, if you have not connected with Chris at Piecing a Life you are missing this incredible display. (click on the picture)


PS now back up and read my Thursday blog!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Acrostic Time

ome silly syllables seem sophisticated,

hen we write whimsical witticisms.

veryone, everywhere enjoys eccentric erudite entertainment,

xcept elitist, etymologically expert eggheads.

his tomfoolery tops off tonight's theme.

See ya down the road,


Little Sucesses Are the Sweetest

I got some really sweet news from my doctor yesterday. Almost all of my numbers are back down in normal range. Seems my frequent swimming sessions with Chica are beginning to pay off. Best of all, I have lost 5lbs since my last visit. I won't tell you how many more I have to go but I've decided to work on it in small amounts.

Saying I have to lose 25 lbs only sets me up for disappointment if it doesn't drop away rapidly. But if I only have to lose 5 lbs five more times it might not be so tough. We'll see. I'm feeling much better with regular exercise too so there's an added benefit.

With so many weight loss systems out there its very tempting to try the wonder cure of the month; the pills to take while you are walking, working, even sleeping. There are diet teas and diet candies guaranteed to melt the pounds away with no effort.

There have been many exercise and nutrition programs that work very well for some people and not at all for others.

I did go to Weight Watchers many years ago but the problem was that they held their meetings across the parking lot from Friendly's Ice Cream shop. TOPS worked pretty well for me one summer but I couldn't ever get past the cute songs and inspirational stories enough to actually embrace the philosophy behind the group.

Then there are the truly wacky things people dream up.

I know that a healthy diet and moderate exercise is the best way for me to get rid of the more ample parts of me. I have also come to a point in my life when I know I'm possibly not one of those people who is supposed to weigh only 100 lbs like my Mother. That's okay with me. As long as I'm healthy, I'm not striving to look like Sally Field or Jane Fonda.

So I'm off to bed so I'll be fresh tomorrow to go do my water aerobics. It's nice to be able to work with a group who have the same goals. Better health. I will stick to the simple plan and I'll sleep well knowing I'm not putting chemicals into my body.

Organics are the way to go...

...well up to a point!

See ya down the Road,

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Talk About a Sweet Deal!

On the way home from a Memorial Day bar-b-que last evening, I suggested we stop at Fry's for some ice cream. After fantastic grilled chicken, veggies, hamburgers, hot dogs, and salads I was craving something sweet.

As we walked in the door, we spied several tables, grocery carts and plastic crates near the front door. My super powers came into play and I instantly used my

sense to uncover a

As Geezerguy stood helplessly by, I swooped in and began to gather, at super speed, pancake mix, hot chocolate, and other goodies. I only took a couple of each but then came the great voice from above.

"Attention Fry's Shoppers, take a look at our sale table near the front of the store. Everything on the table is now on sale for $.10 each. That's ten cents folks."I didn't even have to ask. I turned around and saw that my sweet trusty sidekick, who thought all we wanted was Blue Bunny ice cream, had magically produced a cart. Good thing, my arms were loaded down with:

8 boxes of specialty teas
10 packages of potato pancake mix
4 jars of borscht (which we love!)
1 tin of chocolate macaroons
1 makeup brush
2 bottles of all natural flea dip
11 packages of instant hot chocolate

None of the products were outdated and all the Kosher foods were made by Manischewitz which is, of course, a premium brand. When I asked, they told me they were extremely overstocked with Kosher foods and they needed to make room for other products. I guessed that this was a post Passover response to popular items once the season was over. Nice thing about being a Gentile that loves Jewish foods is that we eat it any time of the year.

So about ten minutes after we entered the store we went through the check out. Turned out the Ice Cream was on sale too although not quite as deep a discount. We paid $7.26 for everything. When we got home I made note of the original prices of all my purchases.

Thirty-five items total. The ice cream, normally $5.29 cost $3.86.

For the other thirty -four items which came to a retail total of $98.39, I paid a whopping $3.40!

Sweet, huh?

I gave some of the loot to Chica and there's an elderly gentleman here at the RV park on a fixed income so I think I'll leave him a bit tomorrow also.

See ya down the road,

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Something profoundly moving happened here in Tucson last weekend. 58 American soldiers were buried with full honors and deep respect. Many people, none of whom ever met these soldiers came together in a bittersweet ceremony to pay tribute to those who lost their lives in service to our country. Please read about this event in this article excerpted from the Cochise County website.

Soldiers from Civil War and Indian Wars reburied with full military honors

On May 16, 58 soldiers [were] reburied at the Southern Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery. They served in the U.S. Army in Arizona from 1862 to 1881.

The soldiers [were] buried in a 19th Century-style military cemetery. The plot was built especially for the remains of these soldiers that were found in Tucson. It is surrounded by a stone and iron wall similar to Fort Huachuca’s cemetery.

Where: Southern Arizona Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery, 1300 Buffalo Soldier Trail, Sierra Vista

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs [provided] period headstones for the troopers, and cemetery officials plan to erect a monument describing the soldiers’ lives during the Indian Wars. The troopers [were] laid to rest with full military honors a stone’s throw away from the oldest operating Army post in Arizona.

The soldiers’ remains were found a couple of years ago in Tucson during an excavation. Originally, the soldiers were buried in a military cemetery that served Fort Lowell in Tucson during the Civil and Indian Wars.

Research showed that many of the soldiers were part of the California Column. This was a 2,300-man brigade that marched into the territory from California in the spring of 1862. Their mission was to confront and drive out Confederate troops who controlled the southern part of what is now Arizona and New Mexico.

Troops from the California Column occupied Tucson on 20 May 1862. Various California units were stationed there until April 1866. Other remains represent the 1st, 3rd and 6th U.S. Cavalry regiments, as well as the 8th, 21st and 32nd U.S. Infantry who served at Fort Lowell during the late 1860s to the 1880s.Two of the soldiers were U.S. Army Indian Scouts, and one was a “Buffalo Soldier.”

See Ya Down the Road,

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Sweet Reminder of Yesteryear

Geezer just decided we should go to the Drive In tonight and enjoy the breezes while we laugh at Ben Stiller.

We had our first date at the drive-in in North Adams, Massachusetts about 43 years ago. I wonder if he remembers what movie we saw?

So he's packing the lawn chairs and I just packed the fried chicken.

Clancy gets to go too.

We're off.

See ya down the road,

Saturday, May 23, 2009

...Me and My Big Mouth

Okay, everyone who actually read my blog yesterday raise your hand. 1,2,3,...17...37...79...814... Okay, maybe I counted a few of you more than once.

Well, in any case, if you did read it, you'll remember my saying that things appeared to be going better this year and that we were off for the weekend to visit Dad. I was very proud of how well I packed the Jeep, none of us was crowded. Clancy was sweetly sitting like a queen in the back section where I had placed her serape and sheepskin body pillow ( yard sale finds) on top of the suitcases. She could see out very well while still being close enough to be petted by her beloved Sage and Chica.

We started out by having a bite to eat at our favorite truck stop here in Tucson Triple TTT (exit 268). Sinfully delicious and excruciatingly sweet, deep dish apple, cherry or peach pie. By eating then, we could take advantage of the cooler evening and night temperatures and by switching off drivers, get to Dad's house, in Eastern New Mexico, a little after midnight. Leaving the restaurant I sat in the front with Geezer while Sage and Chica shared the back seat. I don't travel well in the back but I promised Sage that once it began to get dark so I couldn't see the blurry images out the window I'd trade places and be able to take a nap in the back.

Happily we chatted for about 45 minutes until we got just beyond Benson, AZ, which is roughly 40 miles from Sage's house. Geezer pulled into a rest area and Sage and I climbed out of the car to trade seats. That's when we discovered the smoke!

A call to a well known Emergency Roadside assistance provider and soon we were being towed back to Benson. Of course, by the time we got there it was after nine o'clock. The garage owner graciously gave us a ride to a motel and we spent the night there. After breakfast at Denny's this morning, we got word that we had leaks in the transmission fluid lines between the radiator and the transmission . Fluid had coated just about everything below and that was what was burning and dripping quite freely. Unfortunately they didn't have the part and it's a holiday weekend. So he cut the line at the leak and clamped it so we could drive back to Tucson. We'll get it permanently fixed this week.

The four of us, plus Clancy, were disappointed and I hated having to tell Old Newsie we weren't coming as we've all looked forward to this trip for some time. We'll try again after I have my surgery.

Arriving home, we decided to make the best of it and headed to the municipal pool. We've really wanted to go there for a couple of months.

Uh... it was closed and will be tomorrow and Monday. It will reopen on Tuesday when Geezerguy and Sage go back to work!

As we made alternate plans to go to the Swap Meet tonight, Chica received a call from a friend. She had been hospitalized in San Antonio after being injured in a bad accident. She was placed in an induced coma, for nearly a month. Her face has been badly disfigured and she is feeling very poorly and depressed now that she is back at home She can only eat pureed foods while she heals. This phone call was the first Chica and Sage had heard about the accident. Her husband had been with her most of the time. They needed a friend.

So Sage and Chica picked up some ice cream to take over to see their friends.

We had planned to go to New Mexico and when the Jeep broke down I wanted to know why. Obviously, God needed us to return to Tucson so the kids could reach out their hands in a sweet gesture of friendship to someone in need.

Please keep this young woman in your prayers she has a long road ahead of her.

See ya down the road,
(probably at a repair shop)

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Sweet Life

Living full time in a 32 foot Winnebago has its ups and downs, ins and outs, and tos and fros.

There are moments of absolute terror. One was the day we were frantically trying to cross an overpass to safety on the other side of the I-10 in Western New Mexico, when we were slammed by a wall of wind, rain, and dust strong enough to push us against the guard rail on the wrong side of the road. Somehow we managed to get across the bridge and pulled, almost blindly off the road into a wide area next to another RV.

What we couldn't see or hear was the 18 wheeler caught by the same solid wall of water and wind. That skilled driver managed to avoid hitting us as he maneuvered to within a few inches in front of us.
Then the lightening started and we were certain we'd be struck anytime. The storm passed us and about six other high profile vehicles in the small turn out, after the longest twenty minutes of my life.

Cautiously, we got out and checked to make sure everyone was okay while casting a leery eye at the dark sky still to our West. We just stood outside and took in the sight of downed limbs and debris spread all over the highway. We laughed nervously and bid each other good luck as we got back into our trucks and motor homes. Three of us decided to call it a day although it was barely 2PM. The sky was still getting darker. When we spied an RV park less than a block from where we had stopped we made a beeline for it.

There are moments of total frustration. So unbelievable we stare at each other trying to figure out what else can possibly go wrong. Last year was one of those moments.

  • In February, we had to have an RV windshield replaced in Yuma Arizona.
  • In March, we lost our roof in Mohave CA. Yep, the whole roof. We got to spend most of the month we should have spent with Buttercup and Jugglesorcerer in the parking lot of an RV dealership in Fresno.
  • In April we did have a good month in my sister's back yard awaiting Skooba's wedding on May 11. Two days later we headed to South Dakota and had the best Workamping job ever. Great fun great people.
  • On June 7th a rock spit out of a lawn mower hit the windshield.
  • In September we got the RV windshield replaced. We headed to Coffeyville, Kansas. Geezer worked for and made some decent money.
  • In December as we were about to leave just before Christmas we experienced trouble with the Jeep. Got a new radiator.
  • On Christmas Eve we got the jeep back, hooked up and took off only to get 1 mile down the road before the RV began overheating dangerously. We canceled our plans for Christmas with friends in Tulsa and got it fixed.
  • Got it fixed and went to Tulsa and for New Year's the plan was to buy new tires. We did also an entire front end job, tie rods and a bunch of other stuff.

2008 it t'werent that great!

But... we got to see 4 sons, 2 daughters-in-law, 1 sister, 1 brother-in-law, 3 nephews, 1 niece. one Dad, a whole bunch of old friends and quite a few new ones.

2009 is turning out fine.

  • In January, we got to Dad's .
  • Got a new windshield for the Jeep for our birthday presents.
  • Saw Dad and Lady B, 1 Brother and 1 Sister-in-law.
  • February, we came to Arizona and discovered we could do limited boondocking for a couple of months and have a great time doing it.Ran into more old friends, made some new ones.
  • March, we connected with a good clinic and began tuneups and overhauls on both Yarntangler's and Geezerguy's chasis.
  • April connected with the Santa clause School in Denver CO and Geezer was accepted for this coming season.
  • All Spring have had a chance to be with another son and Daughter-in-law. even got to see Star Trek!
  • This past week we bought new tires for the Jeep and in about an hour we'll pack up Clancy, Sage and Chica in said Jeep and head to New Mexico for the weekend to visit with Old Newsie and Lady B.

This is a kind of freedom that we dreamed of for so many years. We just decided 2 weeks ago to make this trip and here we go. That never would have been possible 5 years ago. Yes this really is the sweet life.

What did you ask?

Why aren't we taking the RV?

Oh heh heh... It needs a new Windshield!

See ya down the road,

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What's that Sweet Sound?

With all due respect for those who are longing for the sun I must relate this wonder-filled event.

It's raining! Here in Tucson Arizona, after more than a week of very hot temperatures it is raining. I woke up to the sweet fragrance of the rain and the relaxing sound of it falling on the roof of the RV.

I'm going to get some crocheting done today and let Geezer have the computer since he tells me he never gets any time on it. But I do want to share a couple of favorite Rain poems that children will like.


April Rain Song
Langston Hughes

Let the rain kiss you.
Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops.
Let the rain sing you a lullaby.

The rain makes still pools on the sidewalk.
The rain makes running pools in the gutter.
the rain plays a little sleep-song on our roof at night -
And I love the rain.

I Like it When It's Mizzly
Aileen Fisher

I like it when it's mizzly
and just a little drizzly
so everything looks far away
and make-believe and frizzly.

I like when it's foggy
and sounding very froggy.
I even like it when it rains
on streets and weepy windowpanes
and catkins in the poplar tree
and me.

See ya down the road,

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

New Idol - Not a Surprise!

Way to go Kris Allen!

What a sweet victory!

Congratulations !

See ya down the road,


I wonder how many people are blogging about Blogger today? For the past few days, everyone I know has been encountering weird glitches, colors changing, fonts and formats with apparent minds of their own, and publishing snafus. Interestingly enough, everyone of of the blogs I was waiting for last night failed to arrive. Yet when I switched on this morning, amazingly they had all posted exactly three hours ago. I think those working on the NaBloPoMo challenge can simply consider it a glitch since we all posted before midnight.

Oh well, I'm not complaining, actually. I've gained so much since I began blogging and since several of my family members and friends chose to do it also. We've all been able to share stories and relate funny occurrences that we would have forgotten to mention in a usual phone call or letter awhile back. It's been sweet to be able to keep up to date with some of those friends we might not have heard from otherwise.

I've been thinking about what it has done for Geezerguy and me and even my father, Old Newsie. All of us have been more focused. We find ourselves remembering wonderful things that happened long ago. I'm reading things about my Dad and his family that I'd never heard before and hope he'll write more about my beloved Granddad.

I'm also hoping Geezer will start talking about some of the things that he did as a boy when I didn't know him or his family. He had some pretty sweet parents and still has a brother out there. My brother, Denis has recently gotten into the act and I expect great things from him once he gets his groove on. I truly think, all kidding aside Dad, that blogging has helped to keep us sharp.

There's also an added bonus when you get your older parents involved. You don't have to call everyday to make sure they are okay, which is sometimes annoying to them. You often know how they are feeling by the tone of their blogs and the stories they tell. Of course, you'll call them anyway but how many times have they told you they wished you would write to them more so they'd remember what you told them. It works both ways.

My Mom was a champion letter writer. The kids and I checked the mail everyday for her long letters that often came a couple of times a week. Full of news and sweet stories about the birds or chipmunks in her yard, they were often bedtime stories for the boys. She could fill pages with what she was going to get canned that week along with the recipes.

Oh how Mom would have loved Blogging!

Seniors have so much to say that we would love to hear. If your folks have a computer, help them start a blog. They will thank you for the outlet where they can tell all those stories you groaned about when you were a kid. You know, the ones you hoped they (or you) would never recall about that time when you(fill in the blank) _____
Your children will gain so much from what Grampa and Grandma have to say even if some of it turns into ammunition to use against you! And the Grands will love getting comments from the kids.

(Thanks to Crispy Gypsy for this picture.)

See ya down the road,

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sweet Moment

Sweet little Shawn Johnson won this season's Dancing With the Stars trophy by less than 1% tonight.

As I watched her during the excruciatingly long reveal, it was one of the few moments that this talented, 17 year old betrayed her age. There she stood, an Olympic Gold medalist, scared and shaking, obviously certain that the handsome debonair Gilles Marini would walk away with the prize.

While I too was sure Gilles would take home the disco ball trophy, I was delighted when Shawn and her partner, professional dancer, Mark Ballas, heard their names. He, in fact, looked more thrilled than anyone in the room. Gilles for his part was a gracious and generous runner up.

Shawn has acheived quite a lot for a girl so young and I offer her my congratulations. The feeling of accomplishment is probably more exciting tonight than even the financial compensation which should certainly get her through any good college.

Wouldn't it be sweet if more young people became interested in ballroom dancing? Shawn could become a role model and encourage more teens and even pre-teens to do what she has done- push her way out of her comfort zone and take on a new challenge. The dedication and discipline necessary to dance a perfect Viennese Waltz or Argentine Tango would most assuredly carry over into the everyday lives of students. I saw a news story yesterday that reported public schools around the country that are offering, and even requiring, dance classes as a means of teaching respect and social values.

Most folks my age learned, at least, the fundamentals of the Waltz, the Cha Cha Cha, and the Fox Trot when we were kids. Some went to dance classes( I managed one season at ballet and social dance class before choosing to become a Brownie) but many little girls learned in the sweetest manner of all- on Daddy's feet.

To the tunes of Lawrence Welk, and Liberace, and listening carefully to Arthur Murray count the steps for us, we would dance. Often in our prettiest long nightgowns, and sometimes wearing Mommy's crinoline half slip pulled up like a strapless ball gown, we would dream of being a princess just like Grace Kelly, as we danced with the real Prince Charming in our lives. While pretending to be Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, it never occurred odd to us that once the show was over Daddy/Prince Charming would tuck us into bed and kiss us good night instead of waking us up.

Congratulations Shawn, and thank you for the sweet memories.

See ya down the road,

Monday, May 18, 2009

It's Strawberry Time!

Is there anything as sweet as a fat red juicy luscious strawberry?

Yes, there is ; there are tiny wild strawberries growing in secret places all about the world. When we were kids the places didn't have to be kept as secret because there were hillsides or fields near almost anyone's home if they lived in a small town. Now those hillsides are covered with houses and the fields are covered with pavement. So if you know of a spot, only your closest family and friends are likely to be let in on the location.

When we lived in the Willow Street house in Adams we could climb up to the Pinnacle and bring back a small pail full of berries for our cereal. That was the same hill where we went sledding during the winter, never suspecting the hidden treasure beneath the snow.

When we got home from school Mom sent us for more and she made shortcake for dessert; real biscuits, the berries, and Poor Man's Cream. Poor Man's Cream was actually stiffly beaten and sweetened egg whites. In those days we didn't know raw egg whites could be dangerous . We only knew it was so yummy we'd fight over who got to lick the beaters.

We were camping on the West side of one of the Great Lakes (Dad will tell me which one) one time when I was about 13. I normally woke up very early with nature not just calling me but usually yelling quite insistently. Going to the bathroom was such a chore when we were sleeping in a tent. Wait as long as possible, then convince myself to get out of the warm sleeping bag, find my clothes, make sure there's nothing sleeping in my shoes, creep out of the tent as quietly as possible. (If I missed my footing or made a single sound, Scrabblebuff would wake up, at the last second, wailing because she had to go too.) Then running as fast as possible to the latrine.

Naturally, by the time all of that business was finished, I'd be wide awake and dawn was just about to put on a show over the lake. We had discovered a hillside covered with wild strawberries over looking the lake the day before so I grabbed my all purpose, Girl Scout issue soup pot and went to pick some for breakfast. When I'd picked about half a pot I heard someone calling to me. There in the mist rising from the lake I spied a canoe with two young men in it. I went to the shore to meet them and they paddled close to the shore but didn't get out. In thick French/Canadian accents, they asked if I had fraises in my pot.
Of course, I had no idea what that meant so I showed them my berries.

Well, what do you know? Fraises were strawberries! I offered them some and the older man handed me a cup to put them in. I gave them most of what I had and they were effusive in their thanks. I waved good bye and they paddled off. I filled up the pot again and wandered back to camp. Daddy had just gotten up to start the fire and the coffee. He told me to watch it while he took care of his morning "Walk".

Imagine my surprise when he came back a bit later with my two French canoeists who were carrying fresh fish for breakfast! Mom got up and made fried potatoes to go with the fish and we had fraises with milk and sugar together. Mom's French was rusty but useful. We discovered
they were a father and son and were spending the summer exploring the entire area by the inland waterways. They had been out for more than a month and had a month to go. It was a wonderful morning and one I always remember when I eat strawberries.

Encounters like that were part of what made me want to travel. Geezer and I still meet French Canadians along the way, especially in Arizona and occasionally we still get to share a meal and a story. If a canoe paddles by this week I even have strawberries.

See ya down the road, Yarntangler

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Sweet Cool Bargain

Geezer and I usually can weather the weather fairly well but today was not just hot, 101 degrees, but it was also muggy. It tried to rain a couple of times this afternoon but all we got was enough to make the windshield spotty.

Chica and Sage came over after church and we had lunch sitting outside in our "Arizona Room", which was actually cooler than inside with the air conditioner on. I made a really simple 4 bean chunky dip to go with chips and avocados. It was really good and Clancy didn't get much to lick out o the bowl.

It was sweet just sitting around talking until both Sage and Geezer fell asleep at the same time. Chica and I talked a bit more and then decided we should wake up our men and get them animated once again. Chica did it by suggesting a third trip to see Star Trek for them and Sage woke up enough to agree.

Once they left, I suggested a movie would be a lot cooler this evening than TVfor us too this evening. So we looked in the paper and discovered a second run theater with great prices. So we went to see Nicholas Cage in Knowing. It was an okay bit of escapism which got generally mediocre reviews. To all my new Mom friends, this is not a film to take your kids to see. The special effects were done very well.

This theater only charges $2.75 for Seniors and all Tuesday shows are only $1.50. We've decided it will be a great place to spend the hottest part of the day once a week. This next week we'll go see Slum Dog Millionaire.

Oh and the best part? After you spend $4.00 on a big bucket of popcorn you also get a free refill! Sweet deal huh?

See ya down the road,

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Good Son

Mothers are not supposed to have favorites among their children. I'm not sure who made that decree but it couldn't have been a mother. Of course, we have favorites! No matter how many sweet kids we have, we always have a favorite. It just isn't the same kid all the time!

Or maybe it is. I believe that in every mother's heart there is a special sweet place for each of her children. None is more important than the other, for to make one part of a heart more important would be to weaken the heart.

Now that doesn't mean that today, at this exact moment, one of the kids can't take top spot for a few minutes. He or she does something extra sweet or extra laudable and so he/she gets the extra praise, smile or hug.

Growing up, my kids competed for what they dubbed "The Good Son Award". It was an imaginary trophy named after a strange movie that starred Macaulay Culkin.

I'd come home and find that one of the four had done the dishes -a strenuous chore involving much heavy lifting of plates, cups, and cereal bowls from distant hidden realms like under his bed, or in the closet. Then he hauled them over hazardous terrain; scaling piles of dirty socks, maneuvering around unidentifiable barriers in their bedrooms, avoiding the precariously placed skateboard at the top of the stairs.

Eventually, he would traverse all the way to the kitchen then to risk arm and hand in the mostly unexplored regions of the dishwasher. There he would struggle to arrange the objects in a somewhat creative manner and seek out the Cascade that caused sparkling dinnerware. Most difficult of all he would have to actually remember to then turn on the dishwasher.

I'd arrive home, discover the miracle along with dishes I'd forgotten I owned, and ask, "Who did the dishes?" From in front of the TV screen where a fierce battle was being waged by Link (always referred to in our house as FOFL) to save Zelda, would come a triumphant cry from Sage Words. "I'm the Good Son!"

On another day, Skooba manage to get our old car running for a few more weeks. When I thanked him he'd remind me, "I'm the Good Son!"

I've mentioned my penchant for buying yarn at thrift shops. What I left out is how many times that yarn comes in huge loose masses in big plastic bags. JuggleSorcerer twisted his ankle and couldn't work as a cave guide for several days one time. Coming home from a volunteer job at the museum I was astonished to see he'd rolled at least eight large balls of yarn from that knotted tangled mess. "I'm the Good Son!" he said with a lopsided grin. (he is still the champion yarn ball roller in the family and Buttercup takes full advantage of this talent.)

Lone Duck helped us clean up the debris after we lost our house in a flood in late November 1995. As we were trying to scrounge furniture and other necessary appliances from thrift shops and rummage sales before Christmas, we came home one day to find an enormous Christmas tree on our front porch. Although he never admitted to it we found out (Thanks Jessi) that he'd cut it down in the woods behind his house. So while he didn't claim it that day even Skooba knew he was the Good Son that time.

They still call me once in awhile and surprise me with something they have done for us or for someone else and I still tell them they are the Good Son of the hour.

A few years ago, I found copies of that old movie in Wal-Mart's $5.00 bin. With Buttercup looking on and keeping my secret, I bought four copies. I wrapped each one in different paper and added a tag which read, "This is your special Christmas gift-don't tell your brothers."
Imagine the hilarity when(as expected) they didn't listen to their Mom but simply had to brag - 3x each!

Two of my boys have blogs, two don't. That doesn't make the bloggers better sons than the non-bloggers. It just means I can draw your attention to something so sweet it had me in tears this morning. Please go here to The Tao of Dethwombat to read Sage Words very modest blog on May 14th. it's about something he has worked long and hard to achieve. Be sure to scroll through the comments to find one from Lone Duck. Then go here to Cheese and Quackersz to read Lone Duck's blog from May 16th and again look in the comments for one from Sage.

What I'm doing next might get me in trouble with all four of my kids but it's time. So here is a picture of four babies with my sweet boys real first names. See if you can guess which one is my favorite Good Son.

Jamie, Ray, Noel, Eric
The Good Sons

"Of all the rights of women, the greatest is to be a mother." - Lin Yutang

See ya down the road,

Friday, May 15, 2009

I Heart Tucson! (at least her thrift shops)

I am a Thriftshopaholic! One of the first things I did when we got to the desert, back in February, was grab a phone book to see where there were charity and second hand stores. I was in ecstasy when I counted thirty-nine listed in the yellow pages. "Sweet Mother in Heaven!" as Nana used to say. Savvy as I am, I guessed that was only the tip of the iceberg and I was right.

So each time we go for an appointment anywhere we stop at new thrift shops. Now, when you live in a 32 ft. Winnebago, stuff has to really jump out at you and take hold before you cave in and buy it even at bargain prices. I buy seasonal clothing for us but only if we really need it and costume items if I have brought a donation bag from the closet with me.

We both buy books but right now Jim gets more of those than I do since I'm kind of stuck with large print for the time being. To be totally honest, I have a carton and a shopping bag full of to- be- reads. I do come out ahead on books, however, since we have similar likes. Eventually, I'll read most of what he gets. I found an article today about some Brits who managed to get a pretty good deal on free books an entire warehouse full. While not technically a thrift shop, I still could have brought a lunch and spent the day there.

I do like to look for vintage greeting cards, not because I collect them but because I enjoy their sweet charming artwork and even their schmaltzy poems. I send them to my family and friends who probably don't understand why and just think I'm cheap. If they do too least that card came in the mail and didn't disappear in 21 days from your computer.

But right now, I go to thrift shops looking for yarn. As I've said before, I make scarves, hats, shrugs, neck warmers, afghans, bottle holders, credit card purses, gift bags, book markers, ornaments and even Genuine Victorian Style Cell Phone Holders for gifts, for shelters, and to sell.

I haven't as yet gotten into truly recycling yarns by unraveling sweaters and scarves etc. but I do feel I'm using a product that was meant to be used before it was donated. It won't go to wasted no matter what the color. Most of the yarn and crochet thread I buy at bargain prices is still brand new. Occasionally, I come across a project someone began and, for whatever reason, never finished. I've re-purposed granny squares and crocheted flowers into scarves and hats. I've even found ways to use vintage doilies to embellish other items. Best of all for a crocheter on a budget, I've uncovered bags of soft sweet yarns I couldn't have afforded otherwise.

This morning I scored a bag of 14 brand new skeins of bright colors the teens love for skinny scarves. I knew they would pair up well with eyelash yarn and other specialty yarns Buttercup got for me a couple of years ago. Each had price stickers that read $2.69. That comes to $37.66. I paid $12.50 for the entire bag which also happened to contain 2 crochet hooks and a pattern magazine marked 5.99! Pretty good ,huh?

Still, I've been out classed as far as saving money on yarn goes. Rochard has a wonderful blog called The Used Yarn Chronicles. I seriously doubt I'll ever do as well as she does. She managed to meet all of her yarn needs last year on a budget of only $20.00!

But please don't tell Geezer that, I've got him bamboozled and he thinks I'm the bargain queen!

See ya down the road,

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Can a Visit to the Dentist Fit the Sweet Theme?

The old Geezer has to have a tooth pulled in about an hour. He is not in a very sweet mood at the moment. It's hot, he's been helping to gut a park model all day, and his tooth hurts. I'm going with him in case for any reason he can't drive home. It hasn't occurred to him yet that I can't really see very well at the present time but it will.

Don't worry I won't end up driving. But my poor sweet guy has a dread of dentists for good reasons stemming from his childhood dental visits with Dr. Yell. I did not make that up it really was the dentist's name. So I'm going for moral support.

That's me being sweet today.

But, speaking about driving while visually impaired, I just heard about a book that both Scrabblebuff and I are going to have to read quickly. It's called The Widows' Adventure by Charles Dickenson . It's about two elderly sisters driving from Chicago to California. One's blind and the other can't drive-so she gives directions! Sounds like something my sister and I might do!... Well, maybe not. Anyway they are about to release a movie, made from the book, this year starring Diane Keaton. So I want to read it first.

3 hours later:

Just got back from the Dentist. They had to pull the tooth, the root, and because the root was curved around the bone, a piece of that went also. Guess I'll have to be extra sweet to Geezerguy for a few days.

we waited at the pharmacy for his prescription, I had him pick up the next Dean Koontz paperback we both have been waiting for -Odd Hours.
Since I know it will distract him from the pain that will be hitting him pretty soon now that the numbness is wearing off, he gets to read it first. See? That's pretty sweet,right?

Oh...and the air conditioned waiting room, at the dentist's office was definitely sweet. While I waited, I finished another extra long, super soft scarf to sell and began a matching hat. Several people complemented them so that was sweet as well.

Sorry, Jim, Sweet wasn't my idea!

See ya down the road,