Friday, June 30, 2023

if our walls could talk...

This is an old post that I started writing a while back and never got back to it. Thought I'd post it today since this week and the next 2 will probably be busy. Daughter is coming into town and both my and DH's 78th birthdays are coming up in July. 

I imagine that each of us hang things on our walls that mean something to us. So, each of our homes would be different and reflect our own life choices, interests, or fantasies.  

Our abodes are an indication of our selves. Some are perfection, some are themed, some are eclectic. Mine seem to fall into the latter. I want clean, but liked the lived-in comfortable look... so a little clutter here and there is OK (actually a little dust is OK too). 

My walls and shelves have mostly family pics, tons of books, and pieces we've picked up while traveling or pottery pieces I've made/ships DH has built. 

We do have more 'art' (not expensive art, but still art) on our walls than I thought. There's 3 detailed renderings of ship building in the den, several framed cross-stitch pieces (made by DIL and a dear friend) here and there, maps of the US and the world in the office, and a print of an old English Stable horse behind our bed. 

Oh, and there's a bird print in the entry and this 'copy' of a oil painting done by Winslow Homer in the front room. Both of these  were my parent's and passed down to me. 

We bought this ship painting back in 1968 from a local artist right after we were married and had moved to Florida. It's been on the wall in every house we've lived in.

And I almost forgot DH's puzzles which he framed and we use upstairs in the guest room... all ship related. 

I like to see what the outside and inside of my blogger friend's houses look like... gives me more insight into they're personalities.  I've seen some and they're really lovely (our house is definitely not grand, but an average type home built in 1985). Some don't live in houses, but apartments or condos. Those are interesting too since I've never lived in those.

Oh, that's not true. When DH and I were first married and still in college, we lived for one semester in the married student apartments on campus. Then when he got his first job and we moved to Florida, we lived in an upstairs apartment close to the beach. I'd forgotten about that (55 years ago... maybe that's why).

I have 2 maps in our computer room (office - used to be our daughter's bedroom). One is a map of the world and one is a map of the U.S. On these maps I have pins stuck where my blogger friends live and also circles where I've traveled (states as well as countries).  We haven't traveled a lot... only been to 10 states (not counting the ones we pass through to get there) as well as Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, England, Ireland, France (only Paris and only for a weekend), and Canada (briefly in Vancouver). 

Going to close this with a few pics of where I sit in the morning to have my coffee... and where DH sits. I used to sit in the den when I watched the news in the morning... but no longer do that. Now I sit in the living room (see my feet in the pic). 

see my feet? 

close up of my view...
I can see the people walking their dogs outside from these windows


...and I can see DH having his coffee watching the news 
in what used to be a dining room but
  is now a TV/game room for grandkids

I would prefer to sit outside in the morning and drink my coffee, but we don't have a front porch... just a small entry porch. But extending it all the way across the front is on my 'wish' list... however, it is not a priority.

So, I guess I'll close this here. I'm in the process of cooking a roast and baking banana nut bread this morning.  

Update: The new 'Siamese' kitten is making himself known by showing up to eat on the back porch without his mama. He's a hungry little thing. I expect his mama may be leaving him more  these days... so he's out and about on his own. Will post some videos of him next time.

It's Friday! Have a fun weekend... and stay out of the heat! We were in triple digits all week, but finally back in the 90's today.

Hugs (virtual),


(Reminder: Tomorrow is July 1st! "Rabbit! Rabbit! White Rabbit!")

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Officially 'old'...

Well, we did it. Yesterday DH and I joined the local Senior Citizen Center. The reason we thought it was time is because the temps been in the triple digits all week and it's way too hot to walk the neighborhood. Yes, we could go to the mall - and do at least once a week - but needed another diversion. 

This way we have access to their gym and other amenities (like lunch for under $5). Of course they have activities too - like cards and games, a pool table, table tennis, dances, etc. - but to be honest, we're not really into those things. They do have knitting and crochet times - but they're like at 9am... and I'm barely functional until 10 (didn't used to be that way, but at approaching 78 in a few weeks, that's how it is now). Anyway, we signed up, so we'll see how that goes.

And you don't really have to be 'old'... as anyone 50 and over can join. It's taken us 28 years to bite the bullet. Actually, we thought about doing it in 2019. We stopped by and checked it out then... but  the pandemic hit a few months later and everything closed down. 

The place is really nice, huge and very modern looking. It's built like a large square with an open patio and garden in the middle. There's also a lounge and a library - as well as a Wellness Center. I think it was a good idea to join, but I guess only time will tell. 

And 2 more pics that I found on Pinterest that I liked: 

all grandmas should play video games
(and I do - with granddaughter)

Hugs (virtual),


(Sad note: lost one of the kittens Sunday night to either a coyote or bobcat. Neighbor said she saw bobcat in the area...)


Saturday, June 24, 2023

Backyard antics...


Mama and kitten at our back door

This video is of the mama cat and her kitten outside the back door. (Remember to hit the arrow twice and enlarge the video by clicking on the square on the bottom right side.)

These two videos are of baby coons that come with their mom to eat on our back porch...

 and I have a few pics of the possums and box turtles:

looking in kitchen window

helping himself to cat food

also comes to eat the cat food
 and any strawberries I throw out

And I do have this pic of Shadow (grey feral cat) that is chittering at a squirrel up on the roof...


Guess that's about it for today. I will close with a pic of granddaughter holding a crab while on their vacation at the beach last week. 


Hope you all have a good weekend! Stay out of the heat if you can.

Hugs (virtual),


Sunday, June 18, 2023

Father's Day 2023... and a very short video

Happy Father's Day to all Dads out there!

I wrote this about my dad on Father's Day 2019,
 so I won't repeat it... just a recap.

Today June 18, 2023 all kids have called/texted DH, etc. 
I made some gluten-free banana nut muffins
 (with chocolate chips) for our breakfast.
They were surprisingly good! 
(GF because they're made with almond flour)

... and just to let you know 
we have a new feral kitten on the back porch!

(Remember to enlarge by clicking on square 
on right side and click twice! Video is short...)

Hugs (virtual),


Friday, June 16, 2023

Funny, but not so funny story...

I'm not sure if Red Lobster's Crab Fest is something people are familiar with, but even though I've never gone, I've heard that it was really good. So, a while back 2019 (pre-pandemic times), I used some of my reward points to get 2 Red Lobster gift cards  to use the next time Crab Fest came around. Well, of course we didn't go during the pandemic (don't even know if Red Lobster was open then). But this year (this week) when they advertised CrabFest, I thought, "Great! We finally get to go."  

Well, turns out that I can no longer find where I put the darn Gift cards! I thought they were always in the same place, but apparently not. So... no Red Lobster for us. We did end up sharing some chicken nachos at Chuy's instead. I will continue to look for those cards. They are around here somewhere.

Also, we just finished watching the 15th season of "Heartland". I have to say that I love this series. It's like a good book that you can't wait to get back to. There's supposed to be a 16th season, but it won't be around until 2024 (or that's what I heard). I may just have to start the series over... it's that good.

But our daughter put us on to another series that although a bit different, (still family oriented) is pretty good. It's called "This is us" and I do like it. I'm not sure how many seasons it has... maybe 6.

I don't know about you, but so much on TV today seems stupid, or violent, or just plain sad. I'm not into reality shows (unless it's cooking - enjoy Paul Hollywood's shows). These 2 shows (Heartland and This is Us) although not without some sad times, are basically uplifting and show how although all family members don't always get along, they generally pull together when necessary. Maybe this is naive, but comforting.

On another note, my high school (class of '63) in New Orleans just had it's 60th reunion this past week. No, I didn't go. My best friend who lives here went (and tried to get me to go with her). But no, out of a class of about 200, the 5-6 people that meant anything to me - she was the only one I knew that was going. But she did send me some pics taken at the events... after 60 years, there was only one person that I recognized. Maybe I should have gone. I certainly do need to go back and visit family, but the reunion somehow didn't seem the time.

old pic I found of me from 1963 (18)

old pic of me from 2018 (73)

...and now for some great pics of the beach from family members who are right now enjoying a vacation at Gulf Shores:

waves on the beach - son said no swimming
as rip tides were bad

beach at Gulf Shores

granddaughter and gator

Yes, she's holding a gator. She is fearless. But again, when we were growing up in Louisiana, it was normal to own a baby or young alligator.  Back then it was legal to buy the young ones at the beach in Gulfport or Biloxi. Our neighbors had one in their backyard for years. It got loose in the neighborhood once - this 5 ft gator!  We thought it was funny... and luckily did no harm.

Guess this is enough rambling for the moment. Wishing all you fathers out there a Happy Father's Day this Sunday!

Hugs (virtual),

Friday, June 9, 2023

Summertime: Pizza! Jury duty! Ham's Orchard! Grandkids!

Papa John's half pepperoni, half cheese
with cheese stuffed crust!

This evening (Monday) we're having pizza! No cooking - which is great as I had a migraine this morning. Woke up with my eyes messed up (which is the beginning of an aura) and it progressed to a weird headache. I usually take an extra-strength Tylenol and  use an ice wrap... and I did, but it hung around for a while. Ended up taking a second Tylenol and it eventually went away. 

And this morning our grandson had his first jury duty. You have to be there (downtown) for 8am. That alone is hard... both the 8 am and the downtown. The jury duty itself isn't so bad... can be interesting - depending. Anyway, he wasn't picked and was home by about 10:30. DH and I have done numerous jury duties over the years. I never minded the duty, only having to go downtown. 

I began writing this Monday afternoon, but it is now Tuesday and DH and I went to Ham's Peach Orchard this morning. Thought Tuesday would be less crowded (not like Friday and Saturdays), but no... it was packed... with families of kids picking blackberries and buses from nearby retirement homes shopping, eating fresh peach ice-cream on the rockers outside, and staying for peach pulled pork sandwiches in the covered area out back!


DH's brother and his wife love pickles... that's the reason for all the pickle pics. They are coming up here in August and will want to visit Ham's for pickles, peaches, and home-made peach ice-cream (I'm not a pickle lover)  DH and I bought peaches, ice-cream, fresh shelled pecans, a home-made pecan pie, and peached pulled pork sandwiches. 

a slice of that pecan pie

That covers Monday and Tuesday... Wednesday and Thursday we have our granddaughter with us during the summer. Here is a pic of her playing Animal crossing on her Nintendo switch at our house. 

Her Switch is blue. Mine is yellow. We have been visiting each other's islands.

So, the summer is here. Busy and hot... 92 F at the moment. But I am learning to enjoy each day and what it brings - as more and more I realize that this is it - in all it's tragedy and glory - and how lucky I am to have been given the chance to take part in it.

I also saw this on Facebook and thought...

how true...

As always, thanks for reading. 

It's Friday! Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Hugs (virtual),


Thursday, June 1, 2023

Summer is upon us...

Summer is here. School is out. Thinking of things to do with granddaughter 2 days a week: teach her to cook, work with clay, drawing classes, games, walks, etc.  Need to find ways to discuss thoughts and ideas, share beliefs and experiences.

This week first we had her learn to make pancakes (which DH was happy to eat), then we walked the mall - (that child can talk non-stop). Then we went to Chic-Fil- A for lunch, grocery shopped, ice-cream, and then TV and video games until 4.  I think my Amazwatch said 8,000 steps! (way beyond my usual 2000). Was I tired? Yes, but it was a good tired.

Something else we did this week was buy a new mattress. Our old one was about 30 years old... it was a Serta coil (firm) and really still looked like new (except for a few indentures on DH's side - he is 6 ft and about 220 - so that's expected after all those years). But it's unbelievable at all the options you have when buying a mattress these days. There's coils, memory foam, hybrid, sleep number, adjustable, water, etc. There are even 'cooling' mattresses and mattresses that vibrate.  

We ended up with a basic adjustable coiled mattress (firm) with comfort top . The last one worked and held up well and DH does not like foam. At the last minute we got the split-king mattresses in order for me to raise the head (which I used to do with 5 pillows, but now can do automatically with the push of a button). 

And we discovered another advantage to the split- king  -  you don't notice it when your partner moves around during the night or gets out of bed - as you did when you shared one mattress. Since we both get out of bed at least 3 x during the night, it's a definite advantage.  (Now the disadvantage is getting those split-king fitted sheets on!)

And one more new change this week, we finally got a cleaning service to come in and do a thorough clean of our 3 bathrooms once a month. As we've aged, DH and I have struggled to keep cleaning our house on our own, but now at 78 (or will be next month), we can do the dusting, vacuuming, mopping, etc. still - but with our backs occasionally acting up, can't get down to clean showers and tubs well. So we finally bit the bullet and called a service that sent out the nicest woman who did all three bathrooms thoroughly in 2 hours.


So... life goes on... day to day... and although not particularly exciting, good non-the-less. My tomatoes are getting bigger, but no cucumbers so far. We're in the 90's today and will probably continue so. Our Texas summer is upon us. I hope you are enjoying the beginning of summer in your part of the world. Please blog about it if you want to share. I'd love to know how the summer is treating you. 

Hugs (virtual),


Funny note: I wish I had got it on video so I could have showed you, but of course I didn't...   One of the box turtles that inhabit our yard came by to feed off the dry cat food on the back porch... and the mama cat had her 5 kittens out on the porch with her. The kittens saw the turtle and went over to inspect him (or her). But as the turtle walked away into the grass, the kittens followed in a line behind. It was funny. Looked like a little parade!


 Yes! I forgot to say "Rabbit Rabbit! White Rabbit! this morning!