Rabbits In the Rain

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Rational me knows that the appearance in my backyard of crows and magpies and jackrabbits and squirrels and cats and ducks (yes, there have been ducks!) is completely random and entirely insignificant.  There is no sane reason for me to be counting these creatures and keeping track of their arrivals and departures.  But I do.

Weird superstitious me believes in omens and portents and prophecies of doom and assigns grave importance to…well….pretty much everything.  Because you never know, right?  If the cosmos is sending me messages I would like to be receptive, not oblivious.

Let me tell you about the crows.  It’s been a crow summer here.  These big black shiny creatures swoop down four and five at a time onto the grass and squawk at each other like mad things. Magpie conversations seem almost polite in comparison.  They are devious and mean looking.  One in particular, perched somewhere in the big pine tree in a neighbors yard,  eventually lost his voice I guess, or moved on.  For weeks he just would not shut up.  But now he has.

So What Does That Mean???  One for sorrow?

Maybe somebody shot the bastard.

Anyway.  There are no crows today.  Today is W’s birthday.  If you’ve been paying attention you will notice my last post was on MY birthday three months ago.  I am fine.  Just finally doing things worth writing about and not having time to write about them because I’m too busy doing things.  I feel like I sat on my derrière for the first year or so of my retirement and now I’m not doing that so much.

My kitchen and living room are cleaned up, painted, decluttered and tastefully decorated. Ha!  Notice there’s no pictures of that so you can’t dispute the tasteful part.  Instead I have shared jackrabbits and white spray paint on our pitted driveway through the kitchen window.  That probably means something too.  Like I should stop gazing out rain streaked windows and get on with the rest of the house.  I’ve taken a few ‘before, during and after’ shots. And then some after-after ones after I changed my mind again.  We had a garage sale the end of July and got rid of a lot of stuff.  The garage has now become home for what remains until my daughter picks it up and it gets donated to some poor unsuspecting charity.

It’s been lovely to have lots of time and no deadline getting the painting done.  The house is old and there are always new challenges and surprises.  I am now an expert at concealing gaps on wooden window and door frames and baseboards, imperfections which showed up when we painted them white, with sealant.  House glue!  Awesome stuff.  Hallway, three bedrooms and main bath to go!  All in various stages of work in progress.

The crows have been worrisome, but now I think maybe they were not trying to give me bad news.  Because after all my doctor visits and tests  and consultations, I finally have a medical diagnosis.  I will save that for another post, and don’t worry, it won’t have to wait for some random relatives birthday.

Unless the crows freak me out again simply by being their normal bird brained annoying selves.  It’s their fault this post wanders around all over the place.   At least I got it done.  Longest break ever.  But I think I’m back.

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Sharing My World 50

Coffee Wars Front Runner in Action

Coffee Wars Front Runner in Action

SHARE YOUR WORLD – 2016 WEEK 7

What are you a “natural” at doing?

If natural abilities show up in childhood with a minimum of encouragement, perhaps mine was related to music.  I never had much of a singing voice (my sister got all the talent there) but I had an ear for music and perfect pitch and could sight-read pieces and play them on the piano with ease.  In teachers college when I finally showed up to try out for the special music class they asked me what in the world I’d been waiting for.  Not much ever came of all that talent.  I haven’t touched a piano in years.  I get supremely annoyed if someone sings off-key or hits a bad note.  I like to listen to classical music and jazz once in a blue moon, and sometimes switch the sat radio to tunes from the 1940’s  They’re so bad they’re good.

Now I’m a natural at making soup.  It’s a much more useful ability.  My mom must have passed on to me part of her talent for throwing a bunch of stuff together without a measuring cup in sight and ending up with something delicious.  No recipe, difficult to duplicate, always a surprise.  Edible music to warm your soul on a cold winters day.

Would you prefer a one floor house or multiple levels?

The house you need/want/prefer is constantly changing as your life and circumstances change.  As much as I have always loved the idea of living in a six-story castle with turrets and ballrooms, I’m afraid all those stone staircases and drafty halls would kill me now, never mind the responsibility of servants and groundskeepers and film makers wanting to use it for a movie set.  A grand old three-story mansion with an attic would probably do me in as well.  I’m too old for haunted spaces and fireplaces with dead birds stuck in the chimneys and entire rooms made in to dusty old libraries.  I’ve also given up my dream of having a cathedral ceiling with windows everywhere and a cozy artists loft.  Even our three bedroom bungalow is feeling too big for the two of us these days.  I’m ready for something smaller with no stairs anywhere, not even up to the front door.  Flat as a pancake and easy to clean.  Sturdy shelves for my books and a corner for my art supplies and a kitchen almost too small to turn around in, but big enough for soup.

What was your favorite subject in school?

You might expect me to say art, but I didn’t love it because it was so structured then, with too many rules and often disappointing results.  I did love English, or Language Arts, and composition.  I hated how we were made to do book reports though, dissecting everything to death.  It was like explaining a joke until it was no longer funny.  In high school I thoroughly enjoyed Latin.  That was like having a love affair with words.

Complete this sentence: If only the rain..

…..would soak the world with joy and wash away all the pain and hurt and hate.  And maybe sweep some obnoxious mouthy morons down a sewer grate.

What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

It is getting easier every day to know what I can and cannot eat to keep my diabetic readings stable.  Last night we dined out.  I had Chicken Parmesan, sweet potato fries and five ounces of Merlot.  Perfect.  Except for the blatant absence of vegetables.  But sometimes I make a meal of nothing but vegetables, so it all evens out.

We have packages of coffee, both beans and ground, that we are trying half heartedly to use up by brewing a pot of coffee in the morning.  It’s coffee brewer vs. Tassimo, and Tassimo is sneaking in a lot of wins.  It’s just so much easier than measuring out water and scoops of coffee and having the coffee sit there and get stale and then poured down the sink and spilling the filter full of wet grounds on its way to the little green compost bin.  Life is just so hard when you have nothing of consequence to do with yourself.

There is this one thing though.  W has asked me to do one of my collage pictures with a fishing theme.  He wants to hang it up at camp, although where exactly is a mystery because the walls are already covered with photo boards and other fishy things.  I said ‘what if you hate it?’ and he said ‘I’ll hang it up anyway’.

I’m grateful he has shown an interest in my work, other than to ask me what the hell I’m planning to do with all this shit.  So that’s my next project.  When we move to our tiny little pancake house we will be having one hell of a garage sale.

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Sharing My World 49

Sunshine on giraffe in my junky world.

Sunshine on giraffe in my junky world.

SHARE YOUR WORLD – 2016 WEEK 6 

There are a lot of questions this week, so I’m going to attempt one word answers.  This will be a first.

What is your favorite word? Coffee.
What is your least favorite word? Hate.
What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Art.
What turns you off? Stupidity.
What is your favorite curse word? Frack.
What sound or noise do you love? Rain.
What sound or noise do you hate? Rage.
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Psychic.
What profession would you not like to do? Executioner.
If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Greetings Earthling.

Welcome, and well done, you.  Pick up your halo over there to your left.  The souls you’ve been missing are waiting for you over here on our right.  Debriefing in ten.  Next assignment to be revealed when ever you’re ready.  Should you choose to accept the new challenge, buses back to earth depart from the other side of the gates every thirty seconds.

You knew I couldn’t keep up the one word answer thing, didn’t you?

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I am grateful for coffee, art and rain.  We are having the most delightful winter weather!  I never thought I would put winter and delightful in the same sentence, but there they are, twice.  I have doctor appointments coming up (what else is new….they seem to never end) and possibly a Family Day Weekend visit to the great white north. Although even up there it is no doubt less white than they’re used to for February.

I am grateful this is a short month and spring is close.  We have decided we will not have lawn care this summer because it is ridiculously expensive and the exercise will be good for me.  (W goes east for most of the summer). He is going to visit his parents in March and bring back one of the lawnmowers from the cottage.  There’s at least three of them there, maybe four.  I don’t even care what the reasoning behind that might be.

Well, that’s gone a bit beyond next week.  What will be will be.  I predict I will now have another cup of coffee.  This psychic stuff is easy.

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Wet Wednesday

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Last night in a restaurant parking lot in the pouring rain.

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Our back door, snow shovel and broom on guard.  It’s hard to take pictures of falling rain, especially in the dark.  This morning there’s sheets of ice everywhere.

We slid along water reds and greens, the changing lights captured in the canvas of wet tar.”
― Ruth Reichl, Delicious!

Rain Stories

Rain was a popular subject for primary school children learning to read in the early 1900’s.  I am basing this assumption on these stories from the Ontario Readers Primer, authorized by THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION (that part was important enough in the book to print in all caps bold) published in 1920.

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How lucky am I to possess books that are almost a hundred years old? Even if the stories are blatantly sexist.  Wimpy little girl afraid of the rain vs. bold adventurous little boy having fun.

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In this case the smart males all seek shelter and the silly female goose doesn’t. Girls just can’t win.
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Isn’t that delightful? The pages are well-read, faded and stained, the cover is worn and falling apart and the binding disintegrating and barely holding everything together. It’s one of the things my mother felt was worth saving, and it is one of my treasures.

How To Amuse Yourself While Waiting

My November Day Eight
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While waiting this morning at the lab for W to get his blood work done, I saw a poster like this one across the room. The small print was too far away to read, but what would I need to read it for? I am smart and can figure things like this out. Right?

P   Pull something.
A   Agonize over the possibility that you just pulled the wrong thing.
S   Stop pulling random things, you moron!
S   Start running.
Ha! Pretty close, hey?

If you are ever in a burning building with me you will be safe as long as you can run fast.  Beyond that I’m not making any promises.

It’s a rather gloomy overcast day with wet snow and rain and a biting wind.  Perfect for lighting a gingerbread candle and staying the hell indoors.

Hope you’re snug and warm and having a relaxing Sunday afternoon.

Rainy Tuesday

From somewhere on Facebook; mom-isms made in to inspirational posters.

From somewhere on Facebook; mom-isms made in to inspirational posters.

Today is Tuesday and today it rained.  My dad used to answer our pestering-kid questions wanting to know WHEN something was going to happen by telling us “a week from the next rainy Tuesday”.  This answer always made me sigh and roll my eyes and stop asking, but it also made me promise myself that I would keep track of the days of the week and note when it rained and thus be way ahead of the game.  Of course I never did, and if that Tuesday from the last rainy one ever did roll around I would have long forgotten what the question was anyway.  Which was no doubt his intent.

So that’s what I was thinking about this morning when I got up early and went out in the rain and off to the lab for my 8:15 a.m. appointment with the doctors requisition slip for fasting blood work stuffed in my bag.  I had eaten nothing since about 7:00 p.m. the day before.  Unfortunately I had also had almost nothing to drink.  Perhaps somewhere in the back of my little pea sized dehydrated brain I got the prep rules for this mixed up with those for surgery where you can’t even have water.  And because it was earlier than I usually take my meds and I would probably be home in about twenty minutes, I did not take my diuretic.  And I had no coffee.  And the last thing I did before leaving the house was use the bathroom, because mom always made us do that when we were going somewhere, whether we needed to or not.  Obviously my parents were both very influential people.

Can you see where this is going?  I swear there were no check marks at all in the little urinalysis box on that paper, but after I happily gave up three vials of blood the nurse handed me the dreaded styrofoam cup with my name on it.  Saying I didn’t think I’d be able to do it just got me that mom look.  So I asked for some water and headed off to the bathroom.

I was in there for a good twenty minutes.  I drank enough water to drown a horse, until it made me gag.  Then I started to sweat because it was damned hot in that tiny room with my hoodie on, but why take it off when I’m going straight home, right?  Who the hell ever thought peeing in a cup was a good idea?  I couldn’t do it.  I came out with the empty cup in my hand and told them I was going to sit in the waiting room for a bit.  They said they were wondering what happened to my sample, and would I like some water?  Double gag.

Alternately reading emails on my phone and watching the clock from 9:00 to 9:30 with still no urge whatsoever to urinate, I felt like a complete failure.  Asked to do ONE SIMPLE THING and unable to get it done.  Not knowing if giving up was an option.  Would they let me come back later?  Would I have to get another requisition?  What would happen if I smashed the damned cup and told them all they were ridiculous?  I was definitely not living in the moment, and fervently wishing to be somewhere else.

Finally after another fifteen or so minutes of extreme discomfort from all that water and embarrassment for being there so long and senseless frustration with myself I had some small degree of success.  I wonder if that might have been the most minute urine sample ever submitted for testing, but opted not to stick around to find out.

I drove home in the pouring rain, took my medication, drank two cups of coffee and then headed off to the pharmacy to fill my prescriptions and do some shopping and pick up the mail and guess what?  Could not wait to rush back into my house to use the bathroom.

The moral of this story is to always be prepared for whatever is happening being the opposite of what you thought you wanted to happen and have faith that everything will work out exactly right a week from the next rainy Tuesday.  And this Tuesday, even though it is indeed a rainy one,  doesn’t count because the rule is it has to be the NEXT one.

Glad I got that all sorted out.  And you wonder why I don’t like to leave home.