Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Such a nice day

Today is my oldest daughter's birthday, though she has not yet made her arrival. During that pregnancy my mother-in-law said she dreamed I was having the baby, woke up and looked at the clock and it was 8:30, so the baby would arrive at 8:30, though she did not know morning or evening. It was spot on 8:30 pm, and you can bet I did nothing to influence it; I just got on with having her. So, it's a good day from the outset.

The eBay venture is going well; I went to the post office today with sales as well as a towel order. My post office clerk likes to squeeze the packages and chat about "you weave towels!", so the new packages are a new source of conversation. So far I've only asked my neighbor for help with a package once.

Not too long ago I sent my daughter an email with a picture:

I explained these cannisters and oil and vinegar bottles and condiment jars belonged to Caroline Lenore Smith Cox, the mother of my grandmother, Ethel Lenore Cox Rolf, who was the mother of my mother, Lenore Caroline Rolf Lytle, for whom my granddaughter was named. I also added that the first Caroline Lenore died in the 1918/1919 flu epidemic. 

I asked if my granddaughter might be interested. This was truly a stab in the dark; I've never known Caroline to have much interest in "family heirlooms", though she is an avid student of history. I didn't much fancy packing these up to ship anywhere, pending an eBay sale. I have seen sets younger than the one in the box on eBay with an opening bid of $300, so apparently they are of interest to someone. 

And today I had an email from Beth: she loves them and will be thrilled. I'm not kidding, tears sprang to my eyes.

In the same closet I came up with my spare sewing machine, and lugged it to the front room to photograph up for eBay. First I had to dust it off, and that was tiresome enough that I plunked into my chair for a rest. And then I texted Laura, Do you have a sewing machine of your own? The answer came back, No. Would you be interested in my spare sewing machine? The answer was Yes, Thank you for thinking of me!


Think I can't get much luckier? Kamaria texted me she is working hard to have my new "loom room" cleared by mid August. When I asked her a while ago, hoping to coincide with the shipment of thread, she didn't know, pointing out that's exactly when all the "children" go back to college. Her two boys and Laura. I'm not going to hang my hat on that, but it's nice to know it could happen.



Monday, July 26, 2021

I'm down to a nub

It began the usual Monday morning. I was out watering my flowers and enjoying them as much as I can. I think they know I put off moving until September simply to enjoy them. And the phone rang. My dentist office; can I come today instead of tomorrow.

There is a wonky tooth going on. Or, it's my sinuses, complaining about a bad summer. I made an appointment with my dentist to start sorting it out. I worked around leaving for the dentist with an hour to spare, for the thirty minute trip.

Why an hour? I generally get lost and have to call my sister. She has told me over and over, take the 224 exit. I know 224 is a valid route and I drive and drive looking for it, then call maphead (you know, her) and tell her where I am and she gives me directions to go back.

The difference between my sister's driving and mine: I drive by street names and numbers. She drives by landmarks. "Turn at the second McDonalds."

Now that I have been lost the last three times, I fixated on the sign at the exit. It is route 221. I told her tonight, no matter how much you insist on 224, that number is 221. And she said "Well, I've never really looked at it. I just know it is 224. They have it wrong, you know."

The dentist and I discussed the tooth. It will crap out on me, probably sooner than later. Sadly, it's one of those three legged molars. The dentist, Dr. Nate (they're all young and go by their first names these days), leaned back on his stool and asked "Do you want to have it pulled today?" Absolutely not! I have too much else to do.

I didn't get lost coming home, which included a stop at the post office and the drug store. I had a completely new post office person who took my package, did her keyboard punching and asked "Have you shipped to this person before?" I said No, and just then just happened to see tiny letters at the top of the credit card machine that said Somewhere, IL. 

"I do know I am shipping to Missouri" I said to her. She began rubbing her inch long eyelashes even harder, blinking furiously. She voided the transaction, huffed the papers together and into a drawer and began again, directing my package straight on to Missouri.

And so I was home at three this afternoon, bone tired. I still listed the rest of my books, and then had an offer for the vintage milk glass salt and pepper shakers.


It was a decent offer and I took it. I sent a thank you note for taking them off my hands, and told him the woman who gifted me them told me they were valuable. The buyer responded they were, ten years ago, but the value was down at least 40%.  I'm sure he's right. No question, it's a new world out there.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Found, in the last place I looked, and other adventures

St. Patrick's Day was four months ago, and the search for my Erin Go Braugh pin out of mind and memory, at least until the same time next year.



I put up for sale on eBay (I've finally mastered the correct spelling) a charming little wooden bowl I traded for at an art show in Atlanta. I used the bowl to capture odds and ends set aside.


Honestly, it takes more pictures than I have to show the artist's work making the bowl. Inside and out, up and down, all the imperfections of the tree's knot. I used to pitch in extra buttons, safety pins, rings I quit wearing and:


Back in the eighties, my staff came back from lunch with that little pin, for the boss who forgot to wear green on the day. It's missed few St. Paddy's since then. Perhaps only the last couple of years. It is safely stored with my earrings and not to be overlooked again.

The camera sold on eBay and I packed it up for shipping today. But first I opened the little access door to remove the battery. Lithium ion. A little pressure did not cause it to pop up. A little wiggle with the tip of the letter opener did not move it.

On to google to find a remedy!

First I learned the battery probably had swelled, a common problem with Nikon original equipment batteries. So, get something thin to slip in anywhere and ease the battery up a bit. Then needle nose pliers to get it up some more and finally, every day pliers to haul it out.

I accomplished step A, and prayed the needle nose's were out in the shed. And they were, in a box, encased in rust and almost immovable. They started life in my dad's tool chest, a hundred odd years ago. I left them on the porch, and came back with paper towels, a protective piece of cardboard and the can of WD-40.


This is after a good scrubbing with my trusty toothbrush tool. They worked well enough to slide out the battery. I must buy some steel wool to finish the job.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Learning a new sales platform

We know I show up here generally to bitch. I try hard to find nice things to say because you all are nice and seldom pitch a fit. This complaint is not so much about the cost of things as it is learning something new when the old was adequate! 

I'm getting ready to move. But I couldn't muster the energy to begin packing, until I figured out why I couldn't get around to it. 

I've accumulated stuff! How did that happen to minimalist me? What to do? Sell it. It worked twenty years ago, when we were tired of housing the family "heirlooms" and inquiries of mom's six grandchildren (we were aware of at the time) produced no takers. I sold it on eBay. Easy peasy.

There is so much to put on eBay, again. The left over heirlooms. The extra weaving thread. The books. Good lord, the books. So I began, a week ago, a bit every day, every other day. If I'm moving in September, I better speed it up.

There was a lot of beautiful 10/2 weaving cotton, the stuff that weaves lovely fabric. It came to ten pounds. I probably paid close to fifteen dollars a pound for it, which makes no difference when I just want it gone, so I put it up for six dollars. 

I immediately had an offer of forty dollars for it, from a weaver in Washington. We exchanged several emails; she is a lovely person, not one of those cheap artists who try to squeeze the last concession from a person. Which is why she offered forty dollars. The other lot of thread I have up will probably come down to the last man standing, upping the bids by pennies in the last minutes for stuff I bought for $20 a pound.

Anyway, eBay charged her over fifty dollars for ten pounds of freight. In an exchange of emails I said that was an obvious mistake and I would refund her the difference. And, USPS charged me $51.80 to take ten pounds to Silverdale, Washington.

I call bullshit. I call bullshit on these last two effing years, where we have done nothing, but costs have escalated dramatically. Mine have. Rent, food, drugs. Not income, though.

So I refunded her half of her purchase price, since I never thought I'd have such a decent offer.

And then I spent hours, until I researched on google, how to make an eBay refund. I had to search a competitor (?) to find the keystrokes in eBay. I hate them, too.

Back to business. I figured out the books. Media mail is cheap (relatively!), and I decided a dollar a book, take it or leave it. As many books as I can stuff in one tyvek envelope. Three books, three bucks. Five books, five bucks. Then if there is a good book in the lot, it will bid up. 

I've decided to sell everything but the fat man and mom's brick.


I'm still hanging onto the box. Maybe I'll shoot for the trash can on my way out the door.




Monday, July 19, 2021

Jumbled thoughts

Laura is in school five days a week, living in a dorm and working on her future. She is planning on being a Resident Assistant in a year, thus having her dorm fees paid. She still looks the same, and talks the same, and is only about two days a week. I am having difficulty coming to terms with not finding her between weeding jobs.

I did make a bit of lemonade from Brassard et Fils vacation schedule. The end of the warp is near; I'm weaving it off in natural. The plant goes back to work on August 2nd, and my thread order is in, so I assume it is one of many that will be packed and shipped that week. 

I realized the three weeks between now and then would be good to do some staging at 61. I want to get my living room rug down in my intended studio before the loom goes in. That will keep the loom from sliding about on the hardwood floor, necessitating some kind of mechanical stabilization.

After the rug, the loom should be moved. It will be more difficult than the first move, more tight turns. When it came into this trailer, even though it came up steps and over a rail, it only required the removal of the treadle cross member. I know much more disassembly will be required this time. Taking pieces off the loom will be much easier when it's empty; so I'm weaving as fast as I can.

Having identified all the moving parts of this plan, the only bit of extreme concern is selection of someone I trust to move the loom. John, the master house builder who moved it last time, is the first on my list. I have a call in to him, but haven't heard back yet.

My living room is full of empty boxes. With so much time between now and September, it seems foolish to seal things into boxes and then need them. And, I kept fooling about with EBay, trying to screw up courage to sell some of this stuff.

Finally I did, and listed my camera first. I am so grateful for all the experience I accumulated twenty years ago, when I sold the baskets and blankets my grandparents brought back from their great trip west in 1936. Every trick of the trade to part me from them before the auctions ended came down the electronic path to my inbox. 

How EBay has changed in twenty years. Before there was a bid on the camera, there were offers to buy. I turned them down. Now there are bids. Watching the bidders sort each other out is so amusing. So, I put up my college alarm clock. It's actually one hundred years old.  I located a repair date of 1922. Pays to be the granddaughter of  a horologist. Bids have begun.


Life goes in, in the midst of empty boxes filling the living room and auctions running on the internet and plans coming together or not, properly or not, perfectly or not.



Thursday, July 15, 2021

Done and dusted

At least I don't get frustrated any more. As my "recovery" from the traumatic brain injury progressed, and I realized how much of my brain I had lost, setbacks frustrated me a lot. Too much. Sometimes my face would be a sheet of tears. That was a long time ago.

Tears and rage are useless pastimes. Nothing is happening except self abuse. I let go wanting what I no longer have. And I also figured out when I can do things. You know. Stuff that must be done.

I'm good from breakfast to lunch. That's when I weave or keep doctor appointments. I'm OK from lunch till supper. I weave some more, do something that interests me, read a book. After supper I watch some Netflix, see if my fingers will knit, write a blog, read blogs.

Last night I was busy until after supper, when I set out to put up a second page on my web page. That was a disaster. Like I said, I made such a mess of the job I just closed down the web page, hoping for that old salvation of not saving the work to get me back to square one the next day. Where the Towels Live did not happen yesterday, at least not on my web page.

And so I started after lunch, following the directions a line at a time. That's always the solution. Pictures are up. Still a glitch; the link to Where the Towels Live at the top of the page does not work, but will later on. The link at the bottom is live and good, so go for it.

I hope they are all there, though I know I didn't post all of multiples I received. They are up fairly alphabetically; that's how my computer saved the pictures. If you want something changed on yours, let me know. I can do it now.

If you want your towel(s) posted, send me the picture. Kelly opened her package and sent me a picture:







Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Double take

About six weeks ago, or more, I had a warm and fuzzy memory of "the old days", when two good friends and I went to lunch once in a while. The lunch happened around my birthday, in the beginning. We lunched other times in a year, but we hit on my birthday often enough they brought me a gift.

One of us is an accountant, and her life went topsy turvy at the beginning of the last administration. Tax law went to the wind that year, and it was summer outside on a patio before she broke free, and even then she was distracted. The next year was even worse for her, and two of us lunched alone. 

The next year was no better for her, and then we know what happened and no one lunched out. So, earlier this year I thought of the lunches, and arranged for us to go to lunch today. "Be there or be square!" It was too pleasant for words. We even toasted my birthday.

They are very old friends, but as I looked at them today, it is like this. We have been friends a long time, but I am old. They are caring for friends and relatives my age, who need care. I did ask if they knew a reliable way to have old records shredded. I've lost track of that service, and have far too many records I don't need to move again. 

One of us, being an accountant, has a shredding service and offered me the excess room in her bin. And, she said, when it's time to get them into the bin, she will come and move them; I'm not to touch them. I'm really beginning to feel older than they are.

Speaking of time passing, Maurice Brassard et Fils are on vacation until August 3rd. Cest la vie.


When I came in from lunch I had a visual mystery. I even asked myself, has the Gerbera daisy planted a bit of itself in the zinnias?


I leaned over and gave its stem a little tug. It definitely was attached to the pot of zinnias. Then I took a good look at the Gerbera. No, not the same plant, but definitely the same orange.




Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Grumble, grumble, grumble

I began this post last night, and got as far as the title when something distracted me. Of course, I had no memory of beginning until I sat down to compose this afternoon.

Before I forget, my distraction was trying to set up the back page, Where the Towels Live, on my web page. It was after supper, which I have already proven is prime mind disfunction time. Nevertheless, I persevered. Then I did not save it and went to bed. 

I actually had a plan at that point. If I did not save my mess, it would revert to the original format and I could start over some other day. I have not looked yet to see if that was a good plan. Right now I have to weave. I now need to spend my time weaving.

Back to the grumbles. I probably have mentioned them all and they're done. I have my credit card. I've ordered thread. All's well in Peninsula. 

This is not a grumble, but a magazine I love to read, in my hands, turning pages, is Vanity Fair. The current issue, though, is heavy! First the pretty young woman story, Dua Lipa, a song writer/singer from Kosovo, who despite her heavy credentials still had to pose probably unclothed under improbable coverings. 

Then long research pieces, first on the origin of Covid-19; another thoroughly researched piece on retail mogul Leslie Wexner's assets literally swallowed and used to finance Epstein; a chilling column on Gavin McInnes, founder of the Proud Boys; another on Robert Kennedy, Jr. and his anti-vax movement; another on the break up of WeWork.....

There were lighter pieces interspersed, but insufficient to keep this average reader's mind off the awful. One of the last pieces is on the remake of the out takes of the last Beatle collaborative effort, a simultaneous filming of the making of the album Let it Be. It's fun and happy and way in the back.

I've started a blue, called Dusty Blue, on the warp. I'm very close to the end, maybe one more color after this. I'm close to the end of the very big warp that Laura wound on in May. I hope I can hire her again for the next warp. She's currently dormed up at Akron U, getting two requirements out of the way. Both are maths; she'll do well. 

So, I'll leave you with a shuttle of Dusty Blue.



Sunday, July 11, 2021

Another fine mess

On the Monday, 4th of July holiday, I had an email from my bank. It said they were fairly certain I had not made a purchase of $14.99 from a sporting goods shop in Reno, Nevada and consequently, my card was deactivated. If it actually was me, reply OK. If not, reply with the other button, the card will stay deactivated and the new card will come in the mail in five business days.

This happened a year ago, when I stupidly left the card in bag I threw away. The new card arrived in three days. A year ago I probably had nothing pressing to buy with the card. It is four business days since I pressed the button. No new card.  

I need thread! I am two colors from the end of the warp. Worse, I have such a limited selection of colors for weaving. Worse yet, I do not have enough thread to put a warp on the loom. Yes, thread comes fairly quickly from Quebec. But I order it with the credit card I no longer have. 

Yes, I have another credit card. It's from another bank, with twice the credit limit of my compromised card. I shredded it long ago. I don't need to know I could buy a new car with a card. I could use my debit card, but if it ever is compromised, that's a bigger world of hurt than needing a new warp.

Tomorrow is the fifth working day. I have work to do. I hope Visa and the mail person do, too.


Today has been rain the entire day. The little weather report along the bottom of the screen shows a grey cloud and says "Rain off and on". The actual weather has been rain, on and on. At five at night it has stopped.

I have a beautiful pan of supper in the oven. Stuffed peppers by bread crumbs. I made it up as I went along. I needed bread crumbs, so I over toasted some specialty dark wheat bread with honey and raisins, then ran it through the little chopper gismo with blades.

Then I sent a big onion and four garlic cloves in after it. I mixed all that and poured on enough olive oil to make it think it was sticky. When I got the peppers out of the fridge, I found the rest of the mushrooms and added them to the stuffing. Over the whole top, a little spaghetti sauce from a jar.

I set the timer for an hour and it's a few minutes shy. I'm hungry. Here's hoping I did well enough.


Friday, July 9, 2021

On a mission

I circled town on errands this morning. Dollar store, post office, AmVets to drop off a donation and finally, Kriegers for real pie crusts. Before lunch of the last fake crostata, I had a new one in the oven.


The real deal. I put the gluten free in the trash, with no regret.


And the real crostata will begin being lunch tomorrow.


I asked Becca if Toby is settling in. She sent two pictures.


He has oversized window sills that actually fit him. 


He has a bed to share and a person to lie on. It's especially important to lie right on the legs.

That's it; just to let you know all's right with my world. 

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Gluten free and pumpkin (towels that is) and other things

I believe I mentioned that Laura and I went grocery shopping Sunday morning. This is such an abnormal shopping day for this structured old lady. Holiday weekend! Sunday! Very, very small grocery store! To my surprise, everything on my list was in stock, except pie crusts. The ones made by a local bakery, and, as my sister disdainfully pointed out to me, that use lard. "Why do you think they are so good!"

Well, no pie crusts. I already had four containers of blueberries in the cart. After Laura reported the pie crust shortage, she produced four gluten free crusts she found in the freezer. I used one this week and dug the first quarter of my crostata from the pan yesterday. I ate another quarter today. It is food, and doesn't taste bad, it's just w.r.o.n.g.

First, the crust did not pick up with elasticity. No, none of that. I gently lifted the sides away from the pie pan and folded a one inch band around the blueberries in the middle. It cracked and tore indiscriminately, in protest of being used ad hoc.

I put it in the oven at 425 for 30 minutes. It was bubbly, but the crust was very blond and pale, no shade of brown at all. I pulled up my chair and watched it remain so for the next fifteen minutes, while the purple juices bubbled all around the outside, through all the cracks in the "crust". I removed Blondie from the oven and set to cool.

The next day I attempted to cut it. It's only a pie crust, but needed close to a jackhammer to turn into four quarters. For two days I have savored it, forming my best opinion. It's more like a cookie, a thin sugar cookie. I've read the list of "real" ingredients, and none are any I have or would have need of. Something also is very grainy and does not melt in the mouth. Selling them as "pie crust" is a fraud.

Onward:

I've had three very good shows, and my web page shows low stock under eight of sixteen selections. That means three, two or one left. Serious effort has been exerted, and today I put up the eleven finished pumpkin towels. They are on the TOWEL tab, too, with a link to the sales page. There are five weeks to the next show, and I will finish the grass green and perhaps another set. I'll be in good shape for the end of the season and whatever I sell from the web page. Here is the grass green:



I gave Becca the completely current vet records for Toby, with his week old rabies tag. I pointed out his chip number and his birth date, which is May, 2011. I also realized that I began this blog the week I rescued him; my first post. My blog is ten years old, with 1,683 posts. That excludes the many, many posts I deleted as "offensive" to someone. Interesting, this past time.



Monday, July 5, 2021

Toby leaves home

Toby just left, on Laura's lap, bound for Becca's apartment. Becca is my oldest grandchild, the first, born on the last day of September, almost thirty years ago. She doesn't appear often; she came well before my blogging days. When I had custody of her siblings, Becca was legally an adult

Finding Toby a new home is a lovely win-win-win. I am so allergic to cats (and to dogs) that having one for a pet is not fair to the pet. They are exactly that, pets, and entitled to, as my cat-whisperer brother used to say, being fussed. And I can't. Petting or grooming a cat means, first I cannot breathe, and last, my lips swell to half again as large.

Technically, Toby is my cat. I'm the person who picked up his little four week old self in a parking lot in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and transported him back to Ohio. He literally inhaled his first meal of wet kibble. When he went to the vet the next day he weighed just four pounds, which put him at four weeks old. I always told him his mother left him behind because his legs were so short.


He befriended our two cats and two dogs. Then there were my three grandkids added to the mix, and Toby did not suffer for hands to scratch his ears. When I moved with the girls to the trailer park, "my" cat came with us. But his last two years have been pretty bleak. He knows who among my visitors will fuss him up, and he doesn't allow them to leave without at least one good petting session.

And so we could have carried on for a good long time, except I'm moving again, this time to a house with a Coton de Tulear.  (I borrowed the picture from the internet.)


Toby and the dog have met, and it was not happy. It happened when I was in rehab for my shoulder repair, and the grown ups did not know how to introduce cats to dogs and vice versa. I could get the job done, but there is a better solution for Toby. A cat friendly home.

I told Laura I would be rehoming Toby. And my grandchildren, who have known and loved Toby since he was that four week old kitten, put their heads together. Becca wanted him, badly. I said "OK, let me know before the end of September; I'll drive him up to Cleveland."

My phone rang today; Laura, it announced. "Gramma, I'm at Becca's and we're cleaning her apartment for the cat! Can she get him tonight, when she brings me home."


They arrived at eight p.m. and made a Toby sweep of the house. Everything was loaded into Becca's cute little car.


"Wave good-bye, Toby." And so he's off, to live in the clean apartment of a nice young woman who will pet him every day.

Sunday, July 4, 2021

Three down, three to go

 I remember reading a few blogs before bedtime last night. I was cross eyed tired from my day outdoors, at the fair. I hope I refrained from commenting! I did go to bed at nine in the evening and woke a bit before eight this morning, ready to take on a new day.

Grocery shopping has been injured this month. Normally I would shop the last week of June for this month, but Laura was in New Orleans, then had an orientation day at Akron U, then I was at the Peninsula Flea yesterday. Everything was shifted to today. Last night I texted to confirm, and received a pathetic reply: she was sickly and in bed.

I resigned myself to going it alone. I literally was reduced to the last half bag of noodles and quarter bag of frozen corn for dinner last night. For tonight I faced the last can of butter beans. Nothing ventured, however, and I texted Laura this morning. Yes, she was on her feet and would come, wearing mask.

Amidst all the usual palaver, Laura asked my rehoming plans for the cat. She thought Bekka, her oldest sister, would be interested. Later in the day I texted Bekka all the details, and yes with a capital "Y", she would love to have El Gato. I asked her to work out with Laura some convenient time to drive the whole outfit to downtown Cleveland.

There are one and a half show stories to share. At the second show a woman stopped to stroke the towels and was on the verge of buying one when she abruptly changed her mind. "My kids destroy everything!" she exclaimed, and returned her selection to the pile. I picked it up and told her to take it; short of an open flame or a butcher knife, the towels are pretty indestructible. I still use a thirty year old towel. She protested, I insisted, and so off she went with the towel challenge.

This Saturday commenced slowly as usual; we are at the end of the show. But a woman did literally rush up and demanded if I remembered her. Of course I did, and inquired into the state of her towel. She declared it more than satisfactory, and went on to purchase eight towels for her kitchen.

CW commented on the probable model train display hoisted overhead, and I said I would ask about it. No one I could ask came into view over the weekend, so I have a picture instead. I will ask at the next show, and in the meantime, perhaps you can deduce from the picture.


Before the show began, Beth showed me a fabulous purse she had purchased in the Shenandoah's, on their vacation earlier in June. The purse is exactly my style, and I embarrassed myself assuming it was for me. That past, I could only exclaim on its loveliness and utility. All the little circles are rolled leather strips.


And that's it for another show. Done now until the first Saturday of August. Off to weave more towels.


Thursday, July 1, 2021

More news and then some advice

Today will be busy. I'm not sneaking in a post; this is part of the day's plan. In half an hour I must take El Gato to the groomer, and not a minute too soon. He's leaving me clumps of hair to pick up. I see I should leave off here and get him confined.

Big changes coming. To start, the towel ordering source will be my website, Everything Old is New Again. I'll update the blog to reflect that later today. I am pleased as punch to do this; the web is so clean and straightforward, and for me at any rate, makes ordering easier for international sales.

What's bigger than the web site, you ask. Well, I'm moving again. I've wrestled mightily with this for the last two years. I want to leave shoveling snow and lugging groceries up a flight of stairs. Two years ago I initiated a move to Regina, for independent living. There I could find company, and leave the cooking to the cooks. And we all remember two years ago, when the world stood still.

Instead, I came to rely on Laura, to run the vacuum, very occasionally mop the floors, and keep me company in the grocery store. I always knew where she lived; I was the transport. Since graduation from high school, a year ago now, she has lived with Kamaria, except the several months she rented a studio apartment in Kent.

Every time I've asked her current plans these last several months, she says she is living with Kamaria and/or helping Kamaria. This last time she was helping Kamaria move from Kent back to 61, the Peninsula address she purchased from Janice and me.

Kamaria asked me to move in with her a couple of years ago, when her own mother passed on. That was a tough struggle for me, but in the end I said No. I hesitated for some time this time, but it was nerves holding me back. When I asked this time she said Yes, conditionally. She had to run it past her boys and Laura. That answer also was Yes, so in I go.

I will move the end of September, into "my" old room, and the studio into Mom's old room. "My" lovely new bathroom will be mine, and will be the "downstairs bathroom" all day every day. That's about it for that news. 

On to my web pages. I am excited, and hope to make something of them. I would like to keep up Where the towels live, but I'm reluctant to do so until I receive permission. I will only publish where you live, or where you said you live or where I think you live, or where you want to live. There will be no names disclosed, or web links. What say you? 

And finally, here's a little tour around my garden.


Here's the pink mandevilla. Of the three, it's lagging. The next time I must use kitchen water on them, it will include the monthly dose of MiracleGrow.


The white mandevilla makes buds almost hourly. This batch are on the other side of the plant!


The red is another prolific bloomer. They keep me happy.


The Gerbera daisy keeps surprising, too. I've never had one this busy supporting blooms. There are nine Gerbera's in bloom and two you can see coming on. There is another on the other side.


This is the pot of zinnia from store. Many buds, but only now beginning to bloom.


This pot of zinnia are from last year's seeds. I have not begun dead heading them.


And just see the pot of wildflowers, from the store. The little blue flowers are on a stalk that resembles pinks, except it's a very tall stalk, not close to the ground.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Another weekend, another show

I am stunned at how easily I fell back into the requirements of show life. I could not be doing this without help, either from Beth or from the farm hands. But once my tables are set up, I'm good to go until the end.

I streamlined my set up completely. No poles to hold up the sign. It's pinned to the front of the table covering. There is Beth, unloading the family heirlooms to her table. We each had a decent day.


I do hope I did not cut off my nose to spite my face! There are only seven of us in the barn, adequately spaced. There are three along the back, and the vendor in the middle sells cards and paper items (I never promised you an art show).

The front and back barn garage doors are open. Last week the cross breeze sent her paper lanterns flying. She resolved it by closing the back garage doors to within a few inches of the floor. Her lanterns were safe, but we sweltered. On packing out I suggested she find a way to secure the little devils this week, as we suffered dreadfully for her that day.

This Saturday was even warmer than last, and the current of air was pleasantly cool. All was well until a sudden gust sent the lanterns flying. Before she even collected them, the vendor stormed back to our door and hauled it to the floor.

That lasted as long as I could stand it. Before I put the door up, I did go over and tell her that if she put her lanterns in her left, in front of the closed door, and displayed her other items in her right, all would go well in future. For the time being, I suggested she go out to the drive and select a few large stones to put in the bottom of the lanterns to weight them down. Her best solution was closing the door. When I sweated, I opened it, and so we carried on for four hours.

I had an email this morning from the director asking me to switch with lantern lady. I agreed, and also told the director my solution of booth rearrangement or stone weights. I think lantern lady will have the same problem this coming weekend, and the door will be left up. On my authority.


Beth brought a lovely fist full of wild flowers, and a Stella de Oro.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Goings on

Only a month ago I was at my first craft show in, umm, almost twenty years, my small stint at the township craft bazaar on the eve of Covid notwithstanding. And this week I looked at the calendar more closely. The next Peninsula Flea show is this weekend!

I did get the cerise towels off the loom and hemmed and made a serious dent in my basket of yellow bobbins. However, yellow towels will remain a twinkle in my eye until the July 3rd show. 

The village shops always took advantage of this end of June, first weekend in July for superior sales by piggy backing on the national art show in our township, the Boston Mills ArtFest. The ArtFest has been cancelled, last year and this. I presume these two weekends are highlighted in the village to keep up the ArtFest tradition, not to mention the thousands of visitors to the park who include Peninsula in their list of great things to do.

Beth will be at the show again this weekend, and probably bringing Caroline, for a "taste of the old weaving days", as if that poor child weren't once labor in her mother's restaurant. Any reason is good enough for me; I love the two of them, and the company.


Of course I've monitored my little gardens, rain and shine. There has been plenty of the former (and more promised for Saturday). One pot of zinnias is blooming. I took that picture last week.

I called Laura earlier this week to arrange a shopping day next week. To my surprise she said she would not be able, she would be out of town. Then she said Oh, I'll be back Thursday; we could go Friday. Ever Grandma, I asked where she was going. New Orleans. Who with? By herself. "Don't worry; I have an itinerary and everything!" OK.

On another topic, I surprised myself. I set up a website. The little square has me in its clutches. I looked at the website they sponsor. Like Facebook's marketplace, it had me flummoxed. On the other hand, I have grands who are coders, so I sent the link to Blake. Do you understand this, can you help me? I have a website and he is in charge of fixing it when I screwup EverythingOldisNewAgain  dotshop. It simply kept falling into place.

I need to do more work on the title page, but the inventory for sale is in place. Please take a peek, and I'm up for suggestions. 

Friday, June 18, 2021

Lost and found

As stultifying as I find them, I attempt to maintain routines. Routine signifies, to me, the attempt to maintain order in the face of growing incompetency. Loss of order means I'm no longer competent. It's frightening.

I spent the morning weaving. I'd like another color to take to market in another week. Cerise is the current color. I'm down to the last row of bobbins, six, to finish the length. Then of course, the finishing, which also takes time. The time and motion measurer in me knows the cerise will join the inventory, but the skeptic wonders what else will interfere.

Last week I could not find my sunglasses, that lovely wrap around pair I've worn since the cataract surgery. My general remedy is to remember the last time I wore them, and try to retrace steps from there. I forgot this remedy, and just dithered. I even looked them up on Amazon, but the fifty dollar price tag made me pause.

There were some obvious places, and I looked there. I had little faith. The place for my sunglasses is on my head or in my purse. The point is being able to find them, no matter what. The same for my keys: in my hand, in the ignition, in my purse. Fortunately the very few times I could not locate them, they were in the door lock. 

I was folding laundry this week, and I saw the glasses, in the tool bucket. Now they are in my purse. I remembered leaving laundry in the dryer when I left for an appointment. My firm rule is finish the job at hand before leaving. Put it away. A place for everything, etc. It's the rule that steadies my life. But when I came home from my errand, apparently the sunglasses lived on top of my head, and to prevent falling, I stashed them on top of the tools while I got something from the dryer.

Even worse than the sunglasses, I only removed what I needed from the dryer that day. So, when I stepped from the shower yesterday, there was no towel on the rack, but out in the dryer in the hall. If I went out for it, I risked letting the cat into the bedroom before his time. Fortunately, you are not me, yes?


It's raining and too cold today. That means I needn't water, and it also means the right of center citizens hereabout will continue denying climate change. It won't be on their conscience. I am sleeping in a flannel winter nightgown in June! My next step will be the unconscionable job of wrestling the goose off the shelf behind the winter coats.

I have so many pictures to post I may need to join the Sunday Selections of Elephant's Child and Drifting, to post my extraneous pictures. But, not yet. The pot of zinnias up there is from from hand harvested seeds.  So far I see red and purple on the way to blooming.


These seeds I purchased. So far just leaves. I remain astounded by the pot of Gerbera daisies, up there. New blossoms unfurl their shy little heads daily. I deadhead them often, and new flowers look up. The Gerbera on the step above was a birthday gift, March 31st. In spite of a new pot and new soil, and a small jolt of Miracle Grow, my only reward is staying alive.


And I'm so pleased with my mandevilla, as you well know. Even a downed blossom makes me smile. Filled up by the rain like a little fairy pool, to sit on the edge and splash the feet.

Back to the loom. I'm listening to A Woman of no Importance. I must remember the chapter I'm on; it's one of those muddled books; the recording begins somewhere, but not chapter one. When I found chapter one, it reads chapter thirteen, so it's not a matter of that stupid skip function to jumble songs. It's a test of remembering, as if I need one more challenge.



Tuesday, June 15, 2021

The Big Picture

I just took the last blueberry crostata for the month out of the oven. Yum, for lunch tomorrow and the next several days.


So, no time like now for the cherry custard recipe. Custard is comfort food. Don't let this put you off: my most enduring memory of custard, way past my grandmother spooning it into my little mouth, is of my dad. Over the few weeks of his last decline, he ate only custard, three or four ramekins a day. I believe he would have had nothing to eat, except for the pills. He and mom had a deal. He could die at home if he would take all his anti-seizure meds, and he swallowed a lot of pills in a lot of custard. That was long ago, in February, 1978. He called Janice and me "daughter" when he spoke, because he couldn't remember our names. I don't remember what he called our brother or mom. Anyway,

Baked Custard: (this is the basic recipe, in the event you need a good one)

4 eggs

2 cups of milk

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

pinch of salt

I made cherry custard by omitting the sugar, vanilla and salt, and substituting a small jar of tart cherry jam.

All ingredients at room temperature. I use the glass mixing bowl for the baking pan. Crack four eggs into the bowl. Froth the eggs well with a beater. Next time I will use the hand blender to chop the cherries smaller. Many sank to the bottom, which was OK, but a lot more in the custard would have been nice.

Add the milk slowly, continuing beating the eggs and jam. Put the bowl into a pan of water and put into a preheated 350 degree oven. If using ramekins, it takes about twenty minutes. In my standard mixing bowl, it took an hour to set. The custard is done when a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.

I will make this again, over and over. I will experiment. I will use only half a jar of jam next time. For maximum servings, I would slice the custard in half and each half into thirds for serving. The slices lift out reasonably well. As I said, it was very tasty and was gone in four servings, so I will be a tad less piggy in future.

An amazing picture. I happened to glance up from the table and there it was. It hung about for perhaps five minutes, not moving. I don't know how long it had been around. It didn't hurry off, but it did look carefully around between every bite. 

I tackled a long overdue project this morning. I know I said I would sell the books on line, but the site I found offers about a dollar a book. My book avarice has declined, but is not yet under control. So, I decided to tidy the area, see how much room a year and a half of books consumes, and then make other decisions.


You may recall, the original lot consumed half of the front of the shelf, standing, and the other half lying in the side. I moved it all to the back and commenced a new row standing.


The project required close supervision of the cat. 


There is ample room to acquire more. At least a year's room on that shelf. I keep the box because ...

I received a birthday gift, probably the year before Covid. It has a lovely, lacy little adornment on top. I remember my friend's husband telling me how much time he spent crocheting the lace, and there was a lovely little gift inside. Later there was such a falling out over the gift, and nothing I could do would set it right. I keep the box visible as a reminder of the value of a friend and the cost of losing one.


Saturday, June 12, 2021

Remiss, negligent, or both

It was difficult to pull myself together enough to write about the show. Now we are a week later and I still am gone incommunicado. What is wrong?, I hope you have asked.

Little or nothing, in fact. I joke sometimes about "terminal ennui", and I would accuse myself except I have spent a lifetime of the opposite behavior. Perhaps I was bone tired and needed to sleep. I don't think so. I simply need to find a constant source of people who will interact. Time to investigate groups again.

I know we should stay united on the issues that brought Biden to the presidency. Again, I should look for people to support and participate with. I feel little happened during "shut down", and we should be reuniting behind causes. Again, I know of nothing to jump into, and need to begin researching the best new fit for me.

One bit of history I've thought of, lately. I wonder if the Palin effect could happen to the former president? 

There have been some home front developments. I took El Gato to the vet for annual vaccinations, plus. My vet is admitting a controlled number of patients to the office. I still prefer the routine of handing over the cat carrier and waiting in the car. Toby was updated on vaccinations prior to going to the salon for another close shave.

He also was prescribed an antibiotic for presumed urinary tract problems. It is sprinkled on his food daily, beginning today. As I was making my own breakfast, Mr. Cat came out of his room and planted such a look I knew he could only be referring to dose one. I hope this does not become a contest.


This car pulled into the vet. I wish I could identify it. Here is a close up of the insignia. Any guesses?


We had daily rain this past week. That has meant flourishing plants and no watering by myself. Here are some wonderful pictures.


The Gerbera, and little more to say. I cannot remember one that bloomed so profusely.


This is a silly shot; the pot of wildflowers holding a downed white Mandevilla. The glass lady stands guard.


A nose dive into the zinnias. There is a little flower bud in the very center of each green shoot. Soon the pot will be waving with blooms, and zinnia are among my favorites.



Every mandevilla is a beauty. The pots are beginning to fill in and have lots of blooms.

And on that note, off to lunch and some weaving. Lunch is cherry custard. It is so delicious that I will consume the entire batch, four eggs and a quart of milk, in four lunches. All I can say is, if interested in "jam custard", just do it. Eggs and milk are completely forgiving. After your mixer froths the eggs, add the jam of your choice, then the milk, and just bake it up. Mine took over an hour to produce a clean knife to the middle.