Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Break in the Weather

Tropical Depression 8 (sounds like a psychiatric disorder) skirted by us this morning as it headed up the coast to the outer banks of North Carolina.  It brought a bit of rain and lowered the temperature, we may finally have a day not in the 90's.  Then Thursday into Friday Tropical Depression 9 heads into the Gulf of Mexico, makes a 90º turn and goes across Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.  Lots of rain forecast for that one.  We need it, it's been a very dry summer.
We're busy getting organized for our next trip, we're off to Japan to see our daughter and then taking her with us for a few days in Cambodia. I have always wanted to see the temples of Angkor Wat. This is going to be new territory for us, we usually travel in Europe. Having our daughter living in Japan has finally given us the incentive to go there.   Interestingly enough on our way to Cambodia we have a lengthy layover in Korea and we've signed up for a day trip into Pusan, they run the tours from the airport for those who have long layover.   Mac was stationed in Korea many years ago, but that was up on the DMZ so he says he doesn't know Korea at at all.
Our daughter has a bunch of stuff planned for Japan including a visit to a volcano, a Japanese baseball game and a train trip to Nagasaki.  In Cambodia Mac has arranged for a private guide for the time were there.  I'm starting to count days till we leave.


Saturday, August 27, 2016

Saturday at the Little House

Another week has flown by and considering the weather they can just keep on flying.  Still in the 90's, 66 days in a row, and even though it's the lower 90's. it's hot.
Nothing very exciting, finished my throw, have a couple of paintings started, little ones of Koi fish and a boat painting I'm trying to finish.
We went out to lunch yesterday to the place down the road at the marina.  Calamari were eaten, mussels were devoured and a hamburger was shared.  the Calamari and Mussels were great, the hamburger was ok.
The restaurant has an indoor air conditioned dining room and an outdoor one with fans.  All the tourists were outdoors, locals ate inside.
Rewatched Skyfall  this week.  Probably our favorite James Bond movie, the latest one wasn't nearly as good.  Love Judi Dench as M.
Finished a couple of books: A Few of the Girls by Maeve Binchy, a nice little collection of short stories, The Night of the 12th by Michael Gilbert, a good mystery set in a boy's school and Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult, I don't usually like her very much, but this was pretty good because it had a lot about elephants and I love elephants.
Busy Saturday morning, laundry done and hanging on the line, bread made and finishing in the bread machine, lawn mown and me, hot, dusty and waiting to jump in the pool.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Finally

It's done!  Finished it this morning.  It wasn't hard, it's just that I tend to be hyper and it's hard for me to sit and do anything, I like to move around.  Except for reading I seldomly sit still.  But it is done and I'm quite pleased with it.
Had rain again yesterday and it was a bit cooler, but much more humid which means it was flat out miserable.  Can not wait for summer to be over.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Monday, Monday

I don't like Mondays even though I don't work any more, there's just something about them.  And this one started way too early.  I had to be at the doctor's office first thing to get a B-12 shot and boy did I need it--I don't think they've gotten my thyroid straightened out yet, even though they've doubled my medication dosage,  I have no energy whatsoever.   The B-12 helps though.
Anyway, got to the doctor's with about a minute to spare and they informed me that I also needed a fasting blood test, lucky for them I hadn't eaten anything yet.  The doctor's nurse gave me the shot and I thought the usual Phlebotomist would draw the blood---she's so good, I never feel a thing--but no, the nurse was going to do it and boy was she heavy-handed, got the needle in, but could hardly make the blood flow.  She was reaching for my other arm when the Phlebotomist took over, thank goodness, soft, soft hands, I felt nothing.
So now I have pinpricks in each arm, but one arm is bruising and the other one you can hardly see anything.
Not a good way to start the day.
We had rain twice over the weekend, that's the first rain in almost a month, boy did we need it.  Tomorrow I need to mow, they saying, though I don't really believe them, that it's only going to be 89º .  I hope they're right.
Off to do another round on my crocheted throw, beginning to wonder if I'll ever finish is.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Bits and Bobs on Friday

The silver threads among the gold have once more been beaten back.  It's a personal decision for each one of us, but I choose not to go grey or white.  I will keep my ash blonde till the bitter end and then ask that someone pack a Miss Clairol in my casket.
Finished reading The Kite Runner and was utterly overwhelmed by it.  I cried.  I don't give 5 stars on Goodreads to many books, but I gave it to this book.  Such a sad story, written well.  I will go looking for more of his books.
One more book to read before The Blind Assassin, and it's Leaving Time by Jodie Picoult.  I usually avoid her books, but this one is about a medium who helps a girl search for her missing mother and it's stuffed full of information and jokes about elephants.  I'm a sucker for books about mediums and I love elephants.  So far I'm enjoying it.
Songs playing on my MP3 today while I exercised:
Sister Golden Hair by America
Heart of Glass by Blondie
Relax by Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Here Comes My 19th Nervous Breakdown by the Rolling Stones
Walk Like An Egyptian  by the Bangles
Had to run, well not literally we're 5 miles from one, to the store to pick up some bacon and linguica.  We're having bacon/linguica and eggs for lunch today.  If you don't know linguica it's a wonderful Portuguese sausage.  We like chorizo which is a good Spanish sausage, but linguica is even better.  And what's better than breakfast for lunch!
Still hot here, setting new records each day and still no rain.  The only place that weeds are even growing is in the garden because Mac waters it each day.
Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wednesday at the Little House

Wednesday afternoon, slow day, bit under the weather, not bad, just not right.  So I'm having a very quiet day, lots of crocheting and not much else.
Changed my header, Mac painted it to sell, but if it doesn't sell by the time I get the bathroom painted it's mine.  Otherwise he'll be painting one for me.  Just love the colors.
I'm always on the wait list for books at the library and sometimes will go months without making it to the top of the list.  But all too frequently all the books I've been waiting for become available at the same time.  That's what happened this weekend.  I now have 4 books to read in 2 weeks and 3 of them are at least 500 pages.
I immediately started  Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson, she wrote Major Pettigrew's Last Stand which I loved, and I wasn't disappointed, really enjoyed it. Not great literature, but a good story well written.
Then I dove into Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfield, the story of psychic twins, one reveling in it and one very reluctant.  It was good, but not great and I hated the ending.
Next up is The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.  I've been meaning to read this one for a long time, so I'm looking forward to it.
The last one is The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood.  I started it, but put it aside to read the others first.  You just can't read an Atwood book in a hurry, so I'll wait.
Almost done with my grey themed throw, just 7 rows to go.
About time to fix lunch so I'm off.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tied a Record

Well we did it, tied the record for the number of days at 90º or more in a row, that being 56 days and there's no end in sight.  I don't know for sure, but I'm betting that most of those were 95º or better.  It was 95º yesterday, 96º on Sunday and who knows what it will be today. We've only had one measurable rainfall in the last month, believe it or not, even the weeds are dying.  And my Mimosa tree is looking very sad.  Mac waters each day, but even still, things are dry. Right now at 1pm it's already above 90º with 88% humidity.  Won't grumble too much, just run the air conditioner and watch the dollars fly out the window.
Sent Mac out to take butterfly photos, he says he has to do it in the morning, later in the day they all disappear.  Not too many flowers now, Rose of Sharon, Lantana and Zinnias.  They really like the Lantanas.

Gulf Fritillary


Swallowtail















Checkerspot






Tropical, use to be rare here, but each year we get more and more

Dragonfly




Monday, August 15, 2016

A Big Thank You

A big thank you to my Mac who bought me something that I've needed for at least 13 years.  He bought me a stair basket.  Usually I just lay stuff on the stairs in hopes that someone will be heading up there someday.  Because we don't use the upstairs during the summer that might be quite a wait and the stairs can get pretty messy.  But no more, now I have a basket to store things neatly in.
He also let me sleep in this morning and left a flower on my nightstand for me to wake up to.  How's that for being someone pretty special, thank you!!!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Why Does Everything Look Fuzzy?

I did something today that was a first for me and I've done many a weird thing.  After going grocery shopping and getting everything put up I went to go get changed and take my contacts out.  I put the contacts up and put my glasses on only to find that everything was blurry in my left eye, which is to say everything was blurry because I only use my left eye for vision.  I closed my left eye and my right eye wasn't blurry.  So I took my glasses off and nothing was blurry.  Thought there must be something on my glasses so I went and cleaned them, put them back on and everything was still fuzzy so I decided something was bothering my eye so I put drops in it, but still blurry.  Wondered if I'd picked Mac's glasses up by mistake, but no, they were mine.  I was getting worried, when I noticed that without my glasses I could still read things.  Well silly, guess what, you forgot to take the contact out so every time you put your glasses on it did indeed makes things fuzzy.  Shamefully I went to the bathroom and actually took my contact out, put my glasses on and lo and behold I could see.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Saturday in the Swamp

Don't know what temperature was predicted for today, but boy howdy, it's hot!  I know we have quite a bit of summer to get through, but I have noticed that the angle of the light coming through our windows is changing and it's getting dark sooner, YEAH!
Yesterday was middle child day, today is Left-Handed Day.  Mac and I are both righties, but our daughter is a leftie.  It sort of runs through both our families.
Lefties are different, they make up only 10% of our population, but our last 5 presidents were left handed, many artists were left handed ---Michealangelo, DaVinci, Dürer, Raphael, Rembrandt, Klee, Picasso--, many entrepreneurs --Bill Gates, Steve Jobs--sports legends--Rafael Nadel, Pele, Babe Ruth--many musicians--Paul McCartney, Sting, Mozart.
So lots of talented people are left handed.
As a teacher I always enjoyed having left handed students, they were different, nearly always creative and quick learners.  They say that lefties are more prone to having ADHD and dyslexia  problems and I did see some of that too, but they were always such interesting kids.
So, which hand do you use?

Friday, August 12, 2016

National Middle Child Day

It is indeed National Middle Child Day.  Mac and I are both middle children, he had 2 older and 1 younger brother and I'm the middle of 3 girls.  Sometimes it was hard being in the middle, there was nothing new you could do that your older sibling hadn't already done and of course you weren't the baby any more.    But that was ok, I found my own path, my older sister was the rebel, I was the peace maker, she made scenes, I was the funny one, she got in trouble, I was the good girl.
Middle children hate conflict  and Mac and I personify that, we'd run a mile to avoid a fight.  I'm always willing to compromise.  They say we're good team members, but I'm not and never have been I prefer to work independently.  I'm probably bossier than most middle children, but then we had to speak louder to be heard.  They say that middles make good teachers and I was a teacher and I'd like to think I was a good one.
Lots of famous middle children, Bill Gates, Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, John Kennedy and oh dear, Donald Trump, though he comes across as more of a first born. Fifty-two%  of our presidents were middle children, being able to negotiate is an important middle child skill.

What was your birth place?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Suffering From the Lazies

I've been meaning to blog, truly I have, but each time I sit down to do it my hands get tired, my brain dries up and nothing gets done.  Can't blog about my cat, she sleeps 16+ plus hours and does all her running around at night, we find her balls and other toys scattered around in the morning.
Still hot here, today will be the 50th day in a row that we've had 90º+ weather.  If it keeps it up and there's no reason why it shouldn't--except I wish it wouldn't---we'll break the record for consecutive days at 90º +.  The record is 56 days, set in 2011, and we were here for that record too.
Not a lot going on, had to order stronger readers to go with my contact lenses.  The lenses are for distance only.  I know that some people wear one lens for near vision and one for far, but one of my eyes is so dominant that my brain ignores the other eye, consequently I  only wear one contact.
 It was getting to the point where each morning I had to make the print bigger on my computer, then when I put my glasses on at night I had to reduce it again.
Then I've been fussing around trying to get my thyroid mediation straightened out.  My half a thyroid has gotten even lazier than me, which might explain why I'm feeling so lazy, and they needed to up my medication, but my doctor was on vacation and we had to wait for him to get back.  Picked up my stronger dose pills today, we'll see if that helps.
Have started work on an embroidery project, which will go faster when I get my new readers.  Also started a new painting, boats.  I like painting boats and lighthouses.
Then my yarn got here from Amazon and I started my new throw.  Here's a picture I took Monday, but I'm much further along now and should finish it this week.
Read a book I didn't like, Childhood's End by Arthur C. Clarke.  We tried watching the tv show, but it was awful, but we were curious about it.  So I got the book, which I'm sure I read years ago when I read a lot of Science Fiction, but really did not care for it.
Also read a collection of Agatha Christie short stories from the early 1930's and they were quite a disappointment.
Now I'm reading Liane Moray's new book Truly, Madly, Guilty and I'm not sure I care for it much.  So a bit of a reading slump
That's my week, hope you're having a good one.


Thursday, August 4, 2016

For My Sins I've Been Skinned

Not!  My visit with Milisandre went  well, burned the hell out of my face and neck, but nothing was sliced off so I don't have to see her for 6 months, yeah!
Lots of running around yesterday, pool supplies needed, propane for the barbecue, pick-up contact lenses, and get fresh veggies.
My yarn came in from Amazon and I'm going to make a small version of the large Granny Square throw.  It will be done in white, multi-colored grey and grey.  Hope to start today.
Just finished a book I need to talk about, The Big Rock Candy Mountain by Wallace Stegner.  He is probably my favorite author, he writes about the American West in the early 1900's and the families that inhabited it.  Angle of Repose  is my favorite book by him and he won the Pulitzer Prize for it.  He probably should have won for this one too.
It's the story of Bo Mason. a man never satisfied, always looking for the next big thing as he moves his family through the  American Northwest and Saskatchewan, Canada.  His wife Elsa  despises most of what he does, but loves him and after leaving him once knows she has to be with him.  It's also the story of his relationship with his 2 sons Chet and Bruce, a tortured relationship that in ways resembled his own with his father.  This is a fictionalized autobiography and Bruce is very obviously Stegner, the moves, the family dynamics, etc.  I cannot recommend this book enough, it was wonderful.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

A Break in the Weather

Finally a break in the weather.  The whole month of July was in the 90's including a couple of days at 100º.  But yesterday it rained, a big, fat thunderstorm that dropped our temperatures to the 70's.  It would be glorious if not for the fact that rain brings higher humidity.  It is August though, so I'll just grin and bear it.
It was cool enough for us to do our morning walking so I only have to do one set of Aerobics instead of two, that's nice.
Watched a funny movie this week Hail, Cesar by the Coen Brothers.  A homage to early movies and it was fun to try and match the scene in the movie  to the movie it was playing off of.  Scarlett Johansson as Esther Williams was a hoot.
This week is one of doctor visits, yesterday for 6 month check-up, that went well, and tomorrow the Dermatologist and that means that parts of me will be burned off and some possibly sliced off.  Are we having fun yet.  I wasn't  a sun worshipper when young, yet here I am with lots of sun damage.  Of course a good part of my genetic heritage is Irish and the Irish grow skin cancers recreationally.
I have several craft projects planned, I just waiting for Amazon to get my supplies to me.
I sold a painting last week, shock, excitement, pride.  Mac has sold 7 in the last month, but this was my first sale in a while.  Just a small painting, but I'm so pleased.
Clothes hanging out on the line, so humid I don't know if they'll dry and bread in the bread maker, it's a good Tuesday.

Tuesday in the Swamp

The house is once again filled with the smell of Gingerbread, I baked a load of little men, even wore my Gingerbread Apron, but I'm too ...