Sunday, August 21, 2016

a quiet weekend...

Saturday Julie decided to join me in the bath. As you can see, she is fascinated with the water. She hears the tub running and makes a b-line for the master bath.

Contemplating the water...

                                     Testing the water...

                                                                                        Letting me know if it's alright...

 Yes, she is a funny cat. But we love her...

We also had a strange visitor outside Friday in the pouring rain. This little guy just jaunted on up and made himself at home eating the rain-filled plates of what once had been dry cat food. DH and I watched him from inside hoping he wouldn't stay too long. And the feral cats who were keeping out of the rain on our back porch watched him carefully from their vantage points.  No one ventured out and luckily he didn't venture any closer. 

We had a pretty good video of him (or her) walking about and eating, but for whatever reason couldn't seem to get the video downloaded to my computer from my iPhone. So this pic was taken off the video and isn't terribly clear. We don't see skunks very often (thankfully).

I'm cooking some farm-raised Scottish salmon this weekend. It's my favorite. I try to experiment and eat different kinds of Salmon from Central Market, but this one works best for me. DH doesn't like Salmon. He'll eat catfish or Halibut, shrimp, crayfish, and oysters, but no Salmon. So he'll have some hatch chili sausages for supper. (I'm not much on sausages myself... don't mind some cut up as seasoning in red beans, etc. but not just straight sausages.) 

And it is Hatch Chili Pepper Time at Central Market! We bought Hatch Sauce, Hatch fresh peppers, Hatch roasted peppers, Hatch cheese, and Hatch tortillas. And I made the best all-fresh Hatch Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas the other night. I'm going to make another batch this week while the Hatch peppers are still available and freeze it for later.

And it must be getting close to Fall, as I'm craving me some red beans and rice...

I have to mention this here as I was thinking about it a little while ago. One of the blogs I read (Musings) asked if one was allowed to go back 500 years into the past or 500 years into the future, which would one choose? Found this difficult to answer. Not sure I'd want to go either way. Now perhaps it would be intriguing to go back, but not quite so far. I would have liked to have known my great great grandparents and their families. As for the future... I don't know. I guess it could be interesting to know how the world will be 500 years in the future, but with all the Armageddon scenarios, I'm a bit hesitant.

Have a wonderful Sunday!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

just Tuesday in Texas

Boy, Baton Rouge, Louisiana is really hit hard! I heard originally that they had 20 inches or rain, later 31 or something unbelievable like that. DH's brother and his wife and adult kids all live in the Baton Rouge area. Some of them have had to be evacuated. But luckily they are all OK. We spoke to them yesterday. 

And I called family and friends in New Orleans and the surrounding area. They are fine too. I was told that Baton Rouge took the hit. It's hard to believe this... as having grown up in the area, it's New Orleans that gets the flooding because it is so much below sea level. Baton Rouge has had it's problems in the past with hurricanes causing some flooding, but this was basically just rain (continuous rain). I remember it flooding on the LSUBR campus when DH and I were in college. But nothing like this...

Please pray for them. This much damage is hard for an area to recover from... 

Let's see. What else is going on? Of course there's politics, but I won't go there. 

I did go to my pre-surgery appointment this morning. They poked and prodded, took an EKG,... and (what seemed like) a ton of blood. Hopefully all is well enough for me to go on with my cataract surgery. My bp was 110/78 - which is good, but surprising low for a doctor's appt. Don't like doctor's appts so usually my bp goes up a bit the day of the appt. I was expecting more of 130/80 or more. However, I took it again when I came home to double check and then it was 98/51... so I guess its just low today. 

I can do this...

Nothing else of any interest going on. DH bought me some goggles at Home Depot. These are to keep me from rubbing my eyes (a habit with me) after cataract surgery. They should work as they're pretty big and bulky... but they do fit snug where I can't get my fingers underneath. 

Oh, and when searching pinterest for pictures, I came across this one and had to laugh. 

I'm sure this is probably a true pose for most cats... but not our Julie! She loves water! Likes to hang her head under the faucet and let the water pour over it. She also loves it when I take a bath... she hangs over the tub, passing her paws through the water, dipping her head in, and almost literally falling in. She also loves it when my hands are all wet from washing dishes... for me to wipe them all over her and get her soaked.  She is a strange one.

Well, enough for a Tuesday post. Enjoy your week!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

sleepless night...

It's 1:30 and I'm awake - one of those nights where my monkey mind won't stop thinking about 'things going on'.  I did sleep for a few hours, but then woke up thinking again. 

Several things are going on that have me - I won't say worried, but concerned. So I spend part of the night thinking about what I could do, praying, and generally allowing my mind to jump from one thing to another - so sleep doesn't come... except in spurts. Sooner or later, I end up either in the computer room (like now) or sitting in the den with the cats having a cup of tea and watching old 'I Love Lucy' reruns.

We've had a couple of surgeries in the family recently. And even though they are all doing well - these are on my mind - as well as other family matters regarding kids and grandkids. Families are wonderful things. I love them all dearly, but you never stop worrying about them. We pay for all those wonderful moments of joy with... the occasional dark night of the soul. I've always believed in 'you do what you can, and leave the rest to God'. But sometimes... it's hard to hand over the burden. 

OK, enough of that. I also had my pre-surgery appointment this week where my Eye Specialist went over all the details and info needed before scheduling my cataract surgery. They measured my eyes and discussed the type of lens I will be needing. I've known the last few years that I would have to have cataract surgery eventually and have been putting it off. However, it seems that my cataracts may now be encroaching on my narrow angles and my doctor believes that I shouldn't put it off any longer. So... we are scheduled to do it at the end of this month (sigh). And although I'm fully aware that it's not a serious surgery and is done everyday, I still hate the thought of someone working on my eyes

...and it also means my pottery (because of the clay dust) and my exercise (aerobic/yoga) will have to be curtailed for the month of September (sigh again). But what can you do? These things happen as we age... and we deal with it, yes? 

I did learn something though.  Apparently I have astigmatism in both eyes. Didn't know that. One is not enough to do anything about, but the other will require a special lens. Reading about astigmatisms (yes, I googled it), I learned that when you have these, it may cause headaches if too much time is spent reading. I read every day and definitely every night at bedtime and frequently wake up with a headache. Another thing I didn't know. It always amazes me how I could live to be this old (71) and yet never heard of this. Guess it's like they say, you never stop learning.

OK, on to another subject: You know from previous pictures that we have quite a few black feral cats that come and go in our back. Well, we also have one black and white (half grown) and 2 very young Siamese kittens.

This half-grown kitten is watching a blue jay in the tree above him

This Siamese kitten's mother has 2 black and 2 Siamese kittens with beautiful blue eyes

Sorry the first picture is not clear, but I take them through my french door windows and the raccoons keep the windows all smudged with their little paws.  This Siamese kitten was playing with the yellow ball between his paws. (You might have to enlarge the pic to see it) Our inside cats share their toys with the outside ferals (believe me, they have plenty enough to share). But occasionally some toy will turn up outside that we don't recognize and we wonder where they found it and who brought it into our yard. Once we found a small stuffed animal that we'd never seen before. We suspect there's a toy thief amongst us...

raccoons smudging windows

young raccoons beating the heat in feral cats' water bowl

all trying to fit into water bowl

We have to change the water several times during the day due to the raccoons bathing in it. But we don't mind. It was 107 F yesterday and although we haven't looked,  most likely the creek out back is dried up. At one time we put out a small plastic kiddie pool for the outside critters during the heat, but they still seem to prefer the water bowl...

I told DH last night that if we ever down-sized or moved, one thing I would insist on would be a window over my kitchen sink so that I could continue to look out on all the critters that make life so entertaining.

Happy Weekend to All!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Sunday thoughts...

This may be a strange topic for a blog, but I know that some people collect crosses. I don't, but I know those who do. Well, I was going through  some things we inherited recently 
and among those things were 2 crosses.  

This first one here is not one of the two inherited ones, but it is one that I found a few years back at either an estate or garage sale. Something about it fascinated me. And it has writing on the back.

These other two are the ones that we inherited.

This is a Lenox ceramic cross

and this next one I think is a stained glass one that was possibly hand-made.

Don't know why this would actually interest anyone, but since I was thinking of these today, I just thought I'd share.

As I said, I don't collect crosses, but I do collect rocks.  I have quite a few around the house, so...

I will show you my 3 favorites: 

The one on the right that has Sea Wall Beach written on it I picked up at my all time favorite beach in Maine in the summer of 2000. The black one on the left is from Dingle, Ireland (they had a huge number of flat black rocks on that beach in 1998). I had a smaller one too, but can't find it at the moment. And as for the one in the center I have no idea where it came from. But it's the best rock to hold in your hand and rub between your fingers... almost waxy. 

And that's my post for the day! Almost supper time...

I did make a batch of chocolate chip/peanut butter cookies for DH this morning... and am about to go fix us some sliders for a quick Saturday night supper. 

chocolate chip/peanut butter cookies

and I'll close with a pic of Tux/Smudge and Julie snuggling together on the bed this afternoon...

Julie in front, Tux in back

Saturday, July 30, 2016

TGIF... and pie and cats!

It's a hot dry Texas day and I really have nothing special to blog about. This morning DH and I grocery shopped and this afternoon I made him a blueberry custard pie. But that's about it. So I thought I'd just show some of my favorite pics.

Ghost's profile
Like so many of us, I have tons of pictures of my cats. This just happens to be one I really like.  Ghost has such a great profile.

Ghost and toys
And this one shows up the green of her eyes! 

Julie relaxing on my kitchen counter

This is one of my favs of Julie. She is such a silly little cat.

Ghost (as a kitten) jumping on Julie

This is another pic I like and have it on my kitchen wall. Ghost loved to play with Julie when she was a kitten. 

Studious Tux as a young kitten

Tux (Julie's brother) is a laid back quiet cat... even as a kitten. He let Jack (his brother - now deceased) take the lead... and he followed him around like a 2nd appendage. We worried what would become of Tux when Jack died. But he's done well. 

pensive Tux

But Tux will never be a leader. He tries to take Jack's place as the alpha male, but he worries a lot and needs attention. He is always in my lap and is easily annoyed if my attention wanders - by my picking up a book or cell phone. 

Tux in the towels

But he is a sweet cat, doesn't fight, and loves being close. We named him Tux when he was a kitten as he had the typical tuxedo markings, but sometimes we call him "Smudge" for the smudge of black on his left cheek.

And then there's Rose, our 21 year old kitty. She spends most of her days now sleeping by the Aga, but does sit in the windows occasionally.

Well, that's about it. Nothing too earth shattering, but at least a bit down to earth and calming after the last two weeks of political craziness.

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

holding on to the thread...

Thinking about life... nothing specific... just how it goes. Have been reading a strange book, "A Spool of Blue Thread" by Anne Tyler. It's interesting... not especially enthralling, but very true to life -pertaining to relationships within a family. Part of the summary on the book's back says "... Abby and Red and their four grown children have accumulated not only tender moments, laughter, and celebrations, but also jealousies, disappointments, and secrets."

IMO Tyler is a good writer as she seems to capture not only the conversations that are so true to family life, but the feelings hidden behind the words both said and unsaid. On some level, relationships within a family are so simple and straight-forward. And on other levels, there are always the unsaid feelings that linger - some justified, some not. But love exists in and among the tangles of life... and despite everything, seems to pull everyone through.

It makes me think of my own family... how everyone interrelates. Some simple, some complicated... yet love seems to pull us all through (if we let it). Each of us, our parents, our children, their spouses, their parents, and our children's children... not to mention other family relations and extended families - all have their own story (their own history). 

And none of us really knows the other's whole story... what they've gone through or are going through. We may know part of it - what they've chosen to tell us or what we've seen, but we can't really relate because we didn't experience it. So expectations to understand are unfair. We try. Sometimes we fail. 

IMO what we have to do is choose to trust... and continue to love. I know trust isn't easy. It's difficult and it's scary. But considering the consequences of not trusting...  

So how do we all 'come together' as a family? I don't know the answer, but it seems to me that if there is a basis of love running through... like a thread... then if we hold on to that thread and trust it to hold us,  then it will.  

Simplistic? Perhaps. But it works for me. I'd be curious as to what works for you?

Have a great week!

Friday, July 22, 2016

iPhone troubles...

iPhone in rice

After dropping my iPhone in the kitchen sink last Sunday morning, I immediately dried it off, took off the protective otter box, shut it down, and and stuck the phone into a bag of rice to dry it out. 

Wednesday morning (almost 3 days later), I took it out and turned it on. It worked, but there was still a bit of water smudges that could be seen through the screen (which didn't bother me), but... the darn recharger no longer fit in the recharging slot!  Now I would have to check it out with Apple or Sprint - or both - because I can't recharge it. 

I'm pretty sure we bought the replacement insurance when we signed the lease, but think there may be a deductible?  (DH and I have had the new iPhone6's for about a year.) I would appreciate any input from anyone else who has had this experience. My daughter said that she had to pay $200 to have her iPhone replaced. 

Update:  Went to Apple Thursday morning and had them look at the phone. They took it in the back and did "something" to  it - cleaned out the port that holds the recharging wire??? Whatever they did, it worked and it now fits and recharges! Hooray! 

(I had put the phone back into the rice on Wednesday night and the water smudges disappeared too! So hopefully all is well??)

Happy Weekend to all!