My hometown as seen from the Bay

My hometown as seen from the Bay
In a city by the water...

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Just plowing along

Weatherman says high temps are on the way again. Ugh!  I'm sure glad I have my a/c unit all ready to turn on in my bedroom.

I spent my morning (as usual) online looking around at stuff here and there.  Decided to get back to transcribing my mother's old letters from the 70's, 80's, 90's, etc.  So interesting to read the things I'd forgotten she wrote.  Depressing too.  I know for a fact that many things she wrote are false but I long ago came to terms with the personality traits of my mother.  One letter from the 80's had an enclosure from this convict she was writing to at the time.  A Penn. guy that she asked me to write to, as well. And like the dummy I am, I did (for a short time)  Figured out pretty quickly he was a jerk.  Which goes without saying since he was in there for murder!  Good lord!  I had forgotten about this episode and decided to look online to see if I could find any information on him or what he looked like.

Surprisingly, one of the guys imprisoned with him way back then was released and the paper did a story on his rehabilitation and how he didn't actually have a hand in the murder.  It showed his picture and (I think) the guy my mom was writing to.

I took a nap around 1 for about an hour and a half.  Some days (most days lately) naps are an absolute necessity.  When I got up, I forced myself to go back to the sewing room.  It's harder for me to get going on sewing projects later in the day.  First, though, I decided to clean up my cassette collection. Probably got a couple hundred (mostly old country) but a pretty fair collection of other music too.  I love listening to those tunes.

I finished two more squares. I like the one on the right okay but the brown one just didn't look like I thought it was going to.  I'm still having problems with color arrangement.
I didn't feel like fixing supper but I told myself I had to use that pound of ground turkey thawed out in the fridge. Made a pan of spaghetti using wheat angel hair pasta.  I prefer it over the other stuff now.
At least now I don't have to think about dinner for two or three nights.  Took a picture of my Port Townsend coffee cups, just because I had so few pictures to post today.
Fed Ex brought my latest Amazon Prime order this morning. I found a set of the 1967 edition of The Forsyte Saga. It's in VHS form but I'm fine with that as I have two VCRs.  I sure loved the 2002 edition I watched on Netflix.  Last night I surfed through Netflix to see what I could add to my list. Found quite a few things to keep me entertained.

Well, I can't think of much else to chat about today. Tomorrow I'm going to be on the computer most of the day.  Want to work on genealogy a bit, read the Leader, work crossword puzzles, play Scrabble, write emails, and just plain research anything that pops into my head.  Maybe I'll browse around on Pinterest too.  Oh, and song lyrics....I've been listening to some CCR on my cassettes and realized I don't understand a lot of the words. Time to look them up.  Ha ha

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Sunday morning

9:30 a.m. and I've been up for over 3 hours already.  Been puttering around the house tidying up, rearranging knickknacks, working a crossword puzzle online, checking out Facebook, writing a couple emails, and wandered around outside to water the beans and flowers, refill the bird baths, and check the locks on the gates.  Neither of them work real well.  They lock but it takes a lot of work manually to get the lock to snap in place.  I'm not going to waste any energy on them.

Yesterday when Sue was here to help me weed the area under my front window, I had her retrieve some green and blue glassware from a high shelf near the ceiling as I wanted to clean them and put them in windows.  I also had her move my sailboat mobile so it hangs over the tv and I can see it better. Sometimes you just have to dink around and put things in different spots.  At least I do.  She showed interest in an old teddy bear I've had since probably 1948 or 1949. Teddy was threadbare and homely but he'd followed me around everywhere I went throughout my life.  She asked if she could have it when I'm gone. (My kids mention things they'd like to have "when" a little more frequently as I age.  Ha!)  Anyhow, for whatever reason, I was ready to let old Teddy go so he left with her. I may have to have her bring it back one day, though, as I couldn't find a picture of him anywhere.
Here's a partial pic of my greens and blues.....

It sure felt great to see the afterwards photos of the weeding and landscaping that Sue did for me out front.

She arrived at noon so I spent the morning cleaning out the garage. Way too many spiders for my liking, but it looks a whole lot better.
Even though I had to sit down now and again to get a second wind, I still was suffering bigtime at the end of our work party.  We made a trip over to Airport Nursery to pick up four little plants and I discovered standing and walking was becoming an issue.  Man, I hate it when that happens!  While Sue finished putting the plants in the ground, I came in the house to change clothes, take an iboprofen, and put ice on my low back and left foot.

I've noticed for years that my left foot is bigger than my right. I think a lot of people have that. What I don't understand, however, is the big ole cyst/lump thingie that swells up on the outside of my foot when I stand too long.  Kind of in front of the ankle.  My walker is on loan so I debated about pulling out my dad's ole cane, but I opted instead just to stay off my feet for an hour or so.  I'm good at that!

I tried to sit down on this old shower stool I have  to pull weeds but my "new shoulder" is still very sensitive to stretching and pulling so I'm limited to what I can do. So aggravating.  I feel pretty much the cripple with a new right shoulder and new left knee -- both don't feel new to me!  And I'm suspecting my knee will never feel right again.  I'd been told that having a knee replacement would make all the difference in the world and I'd feel wonderful.  Nope.  Not in my case.  I'm still taking steps one at a time GOING DOWN but I can usually walk normally going up.  Have noticed, however, that I need a hand rail BOTH WAYS!  On the other hand, I am thankful I'm still up and moving.  I am suspecting, though, that the day isn't too far off when I'll want to have a walking stick with me when I'm out and about. Or a cane.  I remember my dad fought against using a cane in public when he really should have been using one.  He went through the same thing when he graduated to a walker.  During the last phase when a wheelchair was needed, I think he was resigned that age was winning the battle.

Well, I've got the whole day ahead of me to do as I please.  Since I've got a tv in my sewing room now, I think I'm gonna work on quilt squares patterns.  Genealogy keeps calling my name too so I'll most likely play around with that throughout the week.

Here's the latest picture of Jacob. Such a busy little bee.

And my first grandchild, Catie, is busy at Renton Days Celebration with her booth. Sure hope she sells lots of stuff.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Keeping Busy

I had a strange night of sleeping last night.  I slept but yet, I didn't sleep as well as I would have liked. Kept waking up every hour or two and that always allows me to ponder the dream I'm in the middle of.  Heaven only knows what goes on up there when I don't wake up until morning.  At any rate, it was kind of a fun dream (mostly).  Seemed to be doing a lot of laughing and getting into situations like Lucy and Ethel used to.  Some guy I was with (I think he was just a friend but I didn't recognize him) was especially entertaining.  We were in an elevator in a building and it was raining on us.  That was only one of several events that took place as we traveled together.  Weird.

I think my old dog, Buster, showed up too. And babies are appearing frequently. Probably because of the newest member of our family.

I was thinking this morning that my cough seems to be going away but alas, it was just a quiet interlude.  Been having a lot of those --- thinking I'm well and then getting it back. I probably should use that inhaler more than I do.

Anyhow, the lack of a good nights' sleep has made me kind of drowsy and listless today. Took two short recliner naps but didn't want to spend too much time in the chair 'cause I want to sleep tonight.  Just another side effect of growing older, I suppose.

I did manage to get two more quilt squares cut and sewn. I have a ton of material to play with and I'm using purples first.
Since I'm not really that good at making quilts, I'm playing with the idea of making small wall quilts for gifts this Christmas.  I'll start with 4 squares and see how it comes out.  I've got this terrific quilt book called 'Marsha McCloskey's Block Party' and it has 120 patterns in it, each demonstrated with color photos and step-by-step directions.

I still have to go slow when I'm choosing color schemes, cutting with the rotary cutter, and then matching up the various templates to make each pattern.  The more complicated ones slow me down as I have no confidence in keeping things straight.  I did make myself one quilt using some of the patterns and while they're no where close to being "right on", they're good enough for my enjoyment.

I finished watching the 2002 edition of The Forsyte Saga on Netflix last night.  Soooo good!  I found the 1967 edition on Amazon Prime so I sent for it today.  Can't wait to see it.

Not too much planned for the weekend. My oldest daughter is coming over tomorrow to help me weed out front and clean out the garage a bit. Sunday will be relaxing in front of the tv to watch golf.
Keep thinking I need to clean up my genealogy notes too.  That hobby will go on forever, I suspect. Always more stuff to work on.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

This is so Pathetic

I know I have to accept the fact that my body is not going to tolerate the outdoor chores I used to be able to do.  I just can't seem to get it through my head that even when I wake up feeling kind of chipper, the project  I envision getting done is out of reach.  I appreciate the fact that my teenage grandson is nearby and willing to keep the grass cut.  Although this year with no rain, it's really an issue of keeping the dandelions cut.

The soil in this neighborhood is not the stuff farmers can write home about. Someone told me this area was a dump of some sorts. I believe it too.  I can live with that. Nobody on the street has a particularly nice looking lawn so I fit right in.

The way this house is built, I have one window that looks out on the street. That window is in this room I sit at on the computer so I am often gazing out at passing walkers, dogs, deer, cars, kids, etc.
Underneath this window is a small garden area. I was the first resident of this house and this is how the front entrance way looked then. (2008)
Here's how it took shape after I started to envision my cartoon-like garden spot.  Yeah, clutter is the name of the game.  I never did have a good sense of design.
See that tiny little bush by the green watering can underneath the crooked birdfeeder?  Well, that thing took off and grew with blue flowers.
It was pretty enough if you could keep it pruned back but it didn't take any time at all for it to consume the whole area so you  couldn't  walk on the bricks.  The bees, of course, thought it was delightful but I had enough of them swarming around the front and back yard enjoying the dandelions.  All the flowers were drying up so I decided to go out there and start lopping off the branches which were higher than me and approaching the roof.  I kept at it until the yard was full.
Hunter was here mowing and when he saw how much I had cut, he said it would have been easier if I'd just had him saw the tree down and we could pull it across the street to the scotch broom block.  I hadn't really thought about removing the tree but after I cut off a lot of the branches, it did look like a piece of junk.  He retrieved the saw from the garage and managed to get it out for me.
I took a look at the pictures today of the area and compared them to how they looked before I had a hand in landscaping.

I know this area can be salvaged but it's going to take time. Weeding is first, of course, and that is one of the chores that I have to do in stages (sitting down if possible).  I hauled those stones from a vacant lot nearby that the builder had abandoned.  Grass and weeds were growing up around them so I made several wheelbarrow trips back and forth thinking I could make some kind of rock wall.  It's not exactly what I had in mind but my back is not going to let me do a whole lot of rearranging now.

The whole time Hunter and I were outside working,  the neighbor's dogs on the other side of the fence barked and yapped NON STOP!  It was hard enough sweating and toiling in that sun without having to listen to them.  The neighbors, of course, were off for the day again.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Just Thinkin' about my Dad today

I posted my dad and his twin brother's graduation picture on Facebook today after my cousin, Cindy, asked me if they were identical or fraternal.  I had to Google it as I wasn't sure.  Google said even twins who are the spitting image of each other can still be fraternal as it all depends on whether there was one sac or two in the womb.  You can find out with DNA but since dad and Jim are both gone now, I guess I'll just assume they were fraternal. I've never thought they looked identical anyhow. That got me to looking at my old photos and I decided I'd post a bunch of them through the years.
                                                                John & Jim at 5 months
                                                              Probably around 1 year old
                                                          Maybe 3 or 4 years old
 Teenagers with their bikes. One of my favorite pictures. That's my bedroom window next to them
                                                   Teens hiking on Mt. Walker
                                                            Jim's graduation in 1942
                                                       John's graduation in 1942
                              John, George, Jim, Lyall in 1960s at Chetzemoka Park kitchen
                                         Claude, John, Jim, George in about 1992
                                          Family picnic at Chetzemoka about 1993
                                                          Jim Elva, John in the 90's
                                               Jim shortly before he died in 2008
                                                 John, about 3-1/2 weeks before he died in 2009

I took a 2-hr nap today so I'm feeling kinda groggy.  Last night I was up past midnight watching a movie on Netflix. 'Tracks' about a girl who walked across Australia.  Normally I never stay up that late but the neighbors with the yappy dogs were gone all day and night and finally returned at 10:45 pm.  Those dogs yapped and howled the entire time. I'm going to have to have a talk with them, I think, as I can't even leave my sliding glass door open and it's starting to agitate big time!

Hmmmm...just saw a deer hopping like a bat out of hell up the street.  And comes this large black dog chasing like a greyhound.  I wonder who's gonna win that race.

Hunter came over to help me take these very old casters off this very old desk I have.  He's gonna help me sand it down and tomorrow we'll go see about new casters so it will roll better. I think the ones on there now were from an old crib I had in 1964.

Last night since I was up late, I did two loads of laundry.  I got up at 6 a.m. (cause my body won't do what I tell it to anymore) so I folded the clothes and had my household chores done early.  Decided to make a quick Walmart run as I wanted to pick up a small TV for my sewing room. Figure I'm going to be spending a lot of time in there so I might as well make it cozy.  I also rearranged my cutting table to open up the room more.

I've got a really cool quilt book that allows you to follow precise patterns step-by-step with diagrams and pictures.  A huge help for someone who struggles with directions.

Well, I think I'll go throw something in the oven for supper.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Cooler Temps on the Way

I sure don't do well in the heat.  I thought my bronchitis bug was on the way out but it seemed to kick up again when our second heat spell started. At least I'm assuming that's what caused the episode I'm experiencing now.  The inhaler does help, I think, but I am more than ready for this congestion to go its merry way.

I cancelled a dentist appointment but am still having to wait before I schedule another.  Today I took the twins in for their eye exams and decided I might as well make an appointment for myself while I was there as it's been about three years.  Hunter's eyes are okay but Maddie needs glasses. Which means contacts, as well, I suspect, since she's a runner.

Hummingbirds sure are buzzing and diving around a lot this week.  I enjoy watching them.  Wish I could say the same for the neighbor's dogs. They moved in a few weeks ago and have three small yappy dogs THAT NEVER SEEM TO SHUT UP!  If I go in the backyard or if the neighbor on the other side of them is in their backyard, the dogs go berserk and yap, yap, yap!  They run up and down the fence line clawing at the wood and several times (I suspect when their owners are gone) they've taken to howling like coyotes IN UNISON.  The first time I heard them I thought they must be in some kind of distress as the yowling was unreal.  But nope!  Just plain ole spoiled dogs!  What a nuisance.  Especially if you're feeling under the weather or trying to take a nap.

I thought I would give them something to yap about so I had Jenni drop off Sammy for the day. Sammy is a barker (who also drives me nuts!) so I thought I'd let the neighbors notice that too many dogs barking is RUDE!  I always make Sammy come indoors if he starts barking at the neighbors when they're outside.  Well, I don't know what his problem was but Sammy didn't come through for me.  He went out on the deck and barked once. The neighbor mutts went bananas and this is what Sammy did in reply...   NOTHING!

See how brown the grass is?  This is how it used to look at one time.
Went to a graveside service for my old friend, Susie Bishop, on Saturday.  I sure am going to miss her. She was one of a kind!
Afterwards, I went to a reception at the Huntingford place overlooking Oak Bay. Man, what a view.
My class was holding a reunion picnic 8 miles down the road so I stopped in there for about an hour and a half.  Only about ten from my class were there but several of the host's neighbors came so it was a good crowd.  It was way too hot but I managed to get a couple of pictures before I headed home.
                                                                  Ruth on the right
                                     Jud Gammage, Bruce Chesterfield, and Don Edney

Yesterday, my cousin Ann and her daughter, Katy, came to the Sequim Lavender Festival and then drove up here to say hello. We took a drive down to the beach for sandwiches and lemonade. Unfortunately, the Hood Canal bridge was open for repairs or something? on the way home and they didn't get back to Tacoma until 9:15!  Ugh!

Katy's lost 70 pounds and Ann has lost about 30 on their low carb diet.  I think I need to get with the program too.

Carol Rustad sold her folks' place in PT after remodeling it and it was picked up the same day it was listed.  The before and after photos online of the inside are fascinating. Google 1225 49th St, Port Townsend to see the Zillow photos. Here's a picture of the house as I remember it (a neighbor painted this picture for them).

Mary and Andy returned from their San Diego vacation on Saturday.  They had a wonderful time. The twins loved it too. Hunter got treated to lunch for his 15th birthday at Hooters!
Jake was mighty happy to get back to his own bed. He slept 14 hours the first night. They recently bought a tarp for their backyard as the sun is on that side of the house in the afternoon and it gets way too hot.
Am thinking I want to redo this office space.  Change the stuff on the walls, clean out the closet, and try to figure out a way to store paperwork and files so they're not "all over the place".  Gonna have to think on it.  May start by moving the tv and vcr into the sewing room. That will give me a lot of space to work with, I think.  The sewing room has become a favorite place to hang out again. I play my old cassette tapes for entertainment and it takes me back in time.

Well, that's it for now. I may drive into PT on July 30th for my sister's birthday.  Got a lot of places I want to see and take photos of.  Maybe visit some cousins too.  And cemeterys.