Friday, January 29, 2010


Friday's Winter Storm
At 10 p.m. we were over 8" and still snowing; we have bets on 10". Anyone east of Arkansas and in the path of this storm, get ready! It seems this storm is intensifying, especially snow, as it moves east. According to weather models, Tennesee, North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic states are in its path.

1. Landscape Light, Dogwood with Christmas Lights Background

2. Flag Scene

3. Flag Landscape Scene Including Windmills

4. Flag Scene Straight Out of Camera SOOC)

5. Windmills

6. Snow and Many Angles Straight Out of Camera SOOC)

7. Husband Retrieving Mail and Newspaper

8. Landscape Lights Adorned with Snow Caps

PHOTOS: All made by myself with my bruised big toes barely out the front door, and holding the screen with my elbow as I tried to compose interesting shots.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

This, That, and Something Else

Monday, we finally made the postponed trip to Branson's Outlet Malls for shoes. It was very windy, cold day marked by clouds and sun with snow flurries, which may be the precursor of Thursday and Friday's forecast---not pleasant-- rain, ice and snow, in that order.

After brief discussion Sunday, and a glance at the 10 day forecast we decided Monday was the best day of the 10 days for our Branson trek. We left at 10 a.m. and arrived at 11:30 a.m. in front of one of 3 factory outlet malls in Branson. My trusty GPS navigation system, Jezebel, put me right in the middle of the complex of stores.

Out of Harrison on Hwy 65, Jezebel's cursor which represents our vehicle appeared to be tracking in Never,Neverland-- no roadway, yet we were headed right and no fussing from Jezzie. Finally we figured it out when Jezzie miraculously was on Hwy 65 again. The road on the GPS said NEW HWY 65. Apparently, NEW Hwy 65 out of Harrison was routed and paved after the mapping to connect to NEW HWY 65 into Branson.

As I have a weird sense of humor I thought it very humorous this techie marvel was not infallible but still got us to the right place. And sometimes it doesn't. It is only as good as the software which is only as accurate as the mapping and computer input persons. That is why my home is shown in the middle of a gully [no street] several blocks from its actual location. I had to personally remap my home!

I learned college students were employed to map rural locations during spring or summer breaks. Instead of actually driving the roads in small towns, they obrtained various local maps and in some manner input the information. Unfortunately our city map is not accurate, either.

Branson is still in the hilly Ozarks and this mall was built on several levels. Fortunately, parking was arranged in sections, where you did not have to climb stairs or ramps, something Husband and I dreaded as we both dread much walking and climbing.

The Easy Spirit Outlet Store was in front of our parking space--another great omen for the day. Originally, there were two Easy Spirit Outlets in Branson. This location was not the one I previously visited. When I entered, I asked about the other store. The clerk said there is only one there now. Another good omen! I somehow picked the right outlet mall of the three to visit first, and as it turned out, the only one we had to visit!!!

Husband found a pair of Nunn Bush shoes in the Easy Spirit Store and then a short walk away was a Red Wing Outlet Store where he found his insulated, waterproof boots. Previously, Easy Spirit Stores, featured shoes for women,and had no shoes for men. I'm not sure what has changed, maybe Nunn Bush and Easy Spirit merged. Nunn Bush stores were originally men only shoes.

I bought three pairs of walking shoes at Easy Spirit. Another positive of the day is I have lost enough weight my shoe size is one half a size smaller, but still requires a Wide because of arthritic, gouty big toe joints. In fact I probably could have gone down a whole size, as the heels of the new ones still slide up and down. as did the original size I was replacing.

Coincidentally, I discovered why my big toes were sore. I mentioned this in a previous post [Ouch!, Oh My Aching Body Parts!]. I seem to have either dropped something on them, like a frozen package out of the freezer, or stubbed them both. They are bruised and blood is under the nail. Guess I'll be losing both nails. No big deal. It has happened before. It takes 9 months to regrow the big toe nail. I've done it before. and it is not painful!Hmm you can have a baby in 9 months, too. At my age, I'll settle for new large toe nails and no pain.

Another subject I'll throw in. I've alluded to having both an adoptive and biological family several times, most recently in Honest - No Fingers Crossed. I have had a few asked for more about my biological family, I feel I need to explain I've considered their privacy seriously, as well as that of my adoptive family. Finding a biological family is a very emotional event to all concerned; the out come may be an unbelievable reunion, or it may be complete rejection, and all sorts of things in between.

At some point I may write about the process and reunion but it will be very general so as to protect the privacy of all concerned. If you are interested for personal reasons, e-mail me. I'll be glad to share the process and advise you of pitfalls.

Now to my football passions. Since my COWBOYS could not make it past the second round of playoffs, which was as predicted, I have a hard time taking sides. All the teams appealed to me, but the Vikes/Saints was particularly difficult. How can you not cheer for a 40 yr. old QB who just completed his best season he ever had? Or how can I not cheer for a team from a city having been totally devastated by a natural disaster, including the sports Dome, and never made a trip to the Super Bowl. Or how about a team that that seemingly was out of the running for a playoff spot but all the variables came together to for them and they made it to the second round, only to lose to the Colts? And the P. Manning is one of my faves, too.
So we now know the final two: Colts vs. Saints? I still have a dilemma, But it should be one heck of an aerial display.

The deep clean of my house, now that most aches and pains have lessened, was well worth the cost. One room was not touched for several reasons., I am devoting one hour per day working in it. Maybe by the time the house cleaner returns, it will be in much better shape. Since most of house is now deep cleaned, she only comes every other week for 4 hours. If I can keep it in some kind of order, she will have time for such things as cleaning the refrigerator, etc.

Yes, I am still working on Part 3 Get Me to the Church on Time. It's more difficult to remember the exact sequence of some important events. I may have to wing it because I'm almost sure Husband doesn't remember, either. He professes he doesn't think he said, "I do!" But it will get done.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Honest- No Fingers Crossed

In the interim, while I am composing Part 3 of the saga, Get Me to the Church on Time, I decided to accept Arkansas Patti's tag. I may not completely comply the rules, but maybe I'll get close enough to keep the blogger police away.

If you have not visited Arkansas Patti's blog, The New Sixty, you are missing good stories, from animal rescues and other pet stories, to unusual employment situations; she is a good read. I am grateful my ramblings are read enough to merit the attention and Arkansas Patti always has appropriate comments.

The Honest Scrap Award

1.I must thank the person who gave me the award and list their blog and link it.
2.I must list 10 honest things about myself.
3.I must put a copy of Honest Scrap logo on my blog.
4.I must select at least 7 or 8 other worthy bloggers and list their links.
5.I must notify the bloggers of the award and hopefully they will follow the above three requirements also.

I hope whoever created this will forgive me for altering the 4th and 5th requirements because anyone who reads this may claim the award. Most of you are on my blog list and therefore are linked already by clicking on your blog title.

Now to the 10 things I am honest about:

1. I spend/waste way too much time on the Internet. Besides my personal word processing, personal finances, and photo editing, I read newspapers, do research and play a few games, while pots boil over or dry or I burn a biscuit or popcorn to smoking black charcoal in the microwave. UGH! lots of cleanup!

2. I hate dieting and view it as a restriction or deprivation one of life's greatest pleasures. I've tried to convert my thinking to 'changing a life style'; that just doesn't cut it for me when there is a pecan or coconut pie is in the house and one inch rib eye steak on the grill.

3. I am an unabashed dog lover; my husband has accused me of loving the dog more than him. That may be a tad exaggerated, but my veterinarian bills have often exceeded my physicians, prescriptions and associated other medical expenses; let's say several $100/year minimum.

4. I am politically aligned slightly right of center, so no one cares about my politics until campaigns begin. No kidding, ask any person who claims to be independent. The professed far left liberals and right wing conservatives turn their noses up at you until vote getting time. Then are you ever harassed by land, air and sea!

5. I hate most vegetables--the ones that are supposedly good for you. Turnips are the very worst and stink up your house. I can tolerate some vegetables--not turnips-- if slathered with various rich sauces so they slide down quick before you taste them--this includes broccoli, cabbages, kohlrabi. I like fried veggies like okra, squash, onions, eggplant. Starchy veggies I generally like better, but are generally taboo if you diet --corn, potatoes, avocados, peas, dried beans. I liked tomatoes until Doc said no more salt --toss the tomatoes, except fried green tomatoes. I think I've made my point.

6. I love southern gospel, Broadway/movie musicals, and some opera-especially contraltos and tenors-no country&western. I love the musicals of Lerner and Lowe, Rogers and Hammerstein, favorite opera is Carmen, with lead Marilyn Horne. Favorite tenor: Pavarotti. Now I am craving the Susan Boyle CD.

7. Football is my favorite sport. I have been a Dallas Cowboy fan since the team was born and went 1-16 or something like that its first season. Its best coach and QB in my humble opinion: Tom Landry and QB Roger Staubach. But during football season I am watching any team flinging the football: high school, college (my alma mater Univ. of TX), NFL, Arena. I've been known to even watch reruns late at night. Most Texans love football. I was in a marching band in high school. The band followed the team. I absorbed the essentials of the game, sitting in the stands, waiting for half time.

8. Being a native-born and raised Texan, I tend to some exaggeration which I define as emphasizing as defining the truth. Therefore, take these 10 truths with a grain of salt.

9. I have no heroes; therefore I am never disappointed when it is revealed they have feet of clay. If I had to define heroes, it would be more common folk: like the single mother, whether truly single or divorced, who somehow manages to raise one or usually more children to responsible adults and those children rise up and honor her.

10. Part Cherokee, I have several traits attributed to persons of Indian descent: difficulty in forgiving, and worse, if someone commits a grievance against a friend, they might as well have done it to me. I don't trade with them and avoid them in all situations. I've known the aggrieved person to forgive and forget before me.

11. Bonus-1: I am adopted. My parents adopted me as an infant as their first child, they had a son, and then adopted another baby girl. I had a typical Texan conservative, comfortable lifestyle. Because of a host of unusual medical problems, at age 64, I was able to meet my biological family. I have a half sister and two half brothers, one recently deceased. There are a host of aunts and uncles, most of whom I've met plus a an untold number of their children and grandchildren.

12. Bonus-2. I am religious but definitely no saint, and I hope not sanctimonious or hypocritical.

So there you are--hope it was not too boring. And YES I am watching a football game--my second of the day. Who am I for? This year: May the best team win, which of course, whoever wins is the best team today!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Ouch!, Oh My Aching Body Parts!

Wednesday was the elated anticipated day for the house cleaner's deep cleaning our home.

We seem to be collectively clutterers. Both of us are allergic to dust, so we are confronted with the dilemma to remove, or let lie. The dust allergy is actually a microscopic fierce looking mite which leaves its even more microscopic body wastes mingled amid the dust to torment us.

Our house had not been thoroughly dusted since June when we allowed a lovely church teen to dust for a donation to her mission trip to Panama. We were going to give her a substantial donation, but she had made known she wished to earn her money. I admire young girls and boys who are willing to work for their needs. She worked 4 hours . I did not wish to be accused of violating child labor laws, but think we allowed her to feel she earned our donation. She was elated with the amount.

Today's housekeeper literally cleaned ceiling to floor, moved furniture, open windows from inside and cleaned the area between window and screen, vacuumed carpets and floors; wet mopped final flooring.

I worked along side the housekeeper moving clutter, primarily piles of paper from my many activities scattered and stacked all over the house/ Of course there are stacks of paper for city council papers, personal finances, TeleCare, EOBs of health insurance filings and medical copies of medical visits and procedures, and I keep a a personal file of my medical records which becomes valuable if you are referred to specialists. Mixed in these stacks is the proverbial backlog of filing. I am drastically reducing filing which I dislike.

Additionally I helped her moved furniture. All this activity which does no sound physically taxing, left me aching from literally from head to big toes. How my two big toes could become so sore, is beyond me, because I dropped NOTHING on them! My back which is why I avoid housework, especially and motion that is coordinated back and forth leg and arm motion, i.e., sweeping, vacuuming, mopping. Also changing bed linens is back breaking as well breath shortening.

The housekeeper was a wisp of a woman. She worked steadily eight hours except from a 30 minute lunch break. She is returning Friday. I hope my next post won't be from the hospital or morgue. I have not been this tired in a long, long time.

She said I exaggerated the dirtiness. If we had not thoroughly dusted since June, she said my house was tight for the amount of accumulated dust, especially since we also have and indoor/outdoor dog. In fact once she gets us caught up, she thinks we will only need a housekeeper once a month! I was elated, not because I'd save money, but because we weren't as dirty as imagined. Kinda silly, but true.

Sandwiched between Wednesday and Friday is the installation of a fiberoptic telephone line for extremely fast Internet. Our local phone company is installing underground fiberoptic lines in in the entire city. My section of town is completed and we are getting a free 90 day trial of what is said to be as fast or faster Internet as cable companies. Our current DSL rate continues.

All the above translates thus: my section of town is the first guinea pigs to get the kinks out of the system, but being the techie nut that I am , I'm looking forward to the challenge.

So there will be an interlude in my saga of Get Me to the Church On Time. There are 2-3 more parts. The next one is almost unbelievable.... It will be difficult to write as it involves repeated identical episodes in a short time frame. I will have to spend time formatting it in a manner it can be followed.

[PHOTOS: Internet]

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Path to the Alter Is Not Straight: Part 2 Get Me to the Church on Time

In Part 1 I failed to mention this 13 year span between my Life Companion (LC) and myself was NOT a "going steady" relationship. In fact, at some point LC was dating and engaged. He received the proverbial 'Dear John' letter which will play into a latter part of today's post.

Before you empathize with him, he was having periods of great adventure, too. He was not a brawler, but he loved the taverns and beers that sailors enjoy and met local girls in every port. Most American Navy ships were welcomed by the local economy (and females). It meant a boost to the local economy. The European ports still remember the US rescued their countries from tyranny, especially France. I remember he mentioned "the girls in New Zealand" were unusually beautiful....hmmmm.

Although I was never engaged, I had one or two male companions, one of which I might have accepted engagement if he had asked.

Desperately wanting grandchildren, my parents occasionally engaged in matchmaking, even before this 13 year romance. No doubt their criteria and mine were worlds apart.

An early attempt at matchmaking was arranged by two sets of parents, mine and a preacher family. Plus we were escorted by his parents. YIKES! how old-fashioned and embarrassing was that for me among my peers. That match was a shot in the foot from the git-go. I was not going to be any preacher's wife and have preacher's 'always in the spotlight' kids.

Another young man pursued me with great encouragement from my parents. He had buck teeth and a very nasal speaking voice I could NOT tolerate. In my too critical evaluation I imagined a lifetime of listening to nasal tones turned me off after only a few dates. A meter reader for the local natural gas company, he was simply BORING!!! I, with missing eye-teeth and a prominent facial birthmark, was not a pin-up gal; admittedly my youthful skin deep criticism was unkind, if not downright tacky. This was during my college years; he even came to Austin to visit me while in college.

Another suitor was the son of an insurance agent with whom Dad did business. I knew he was either gay or bisexual, but said nothing. In those days I'm sure his parents were pushing him to marry. Nothing was ever said. He dutifully dated me several times. I lost track of him.

My family seemed resigned to the fact I would be an old maid, spinster, or some other term designated for women who failed to attract a husband. It never occurred to them I enjoyed the freedom of the single life, not tied to the apron strings of my parents.

Having always been an inquisitive, cerebral person, I enjoyed pursuing every avenue of intellectual learning plus I developed extracurricular activities like bowling leagues and horses. I pursued avocations of photography, art in several forms, music, to name a few. I joined professional pharmacy and business or civic groups. I attended pharmacy conventions. This zeal and zest for learning can also be at odds with domestic life. I am not known for keeping a reasonable balance in all phases of life. Excess seems to define me.

[To this day I have a yearning to learn every new idea that comes down the pike, i.e., I taught myself to build computers, as well as use them in my 50s. I built a darkroom and completed a photography correspondence course in my late 30s and continued in this field with workshops in Vermont and NC in my 40s and even seminars in my 60s and 70s for my love of photography.]

Not all these pursuits were fulfilling and quickly abandoned, but how would I have known had I not tried?

I tried my hand at women's softball. My short legs and flat feet were detriments to any dexterity I may have had . I was a very good hitter, but soon as I got on base, I was replaced with a runner who scampered around the bases like a jack rabbit, not my tortoise crawl.

For a long time I continued membership in my national pharmacy sorority and rose to a national office.

Freed of the teenage peer pressure, I reconnected with high school friends who were single. We often traveled together. One friend, whose husband was in Germany, and I toured, guess where? Arkansas!

Amid these frenetic activities and profession, LC and I continued to write each other now and then. Each time I announced receipt of a letter my family would prod me about contents, like maybe, just maybe, I might not be destined to spinsterhood.

Quite frankly I was amused, and privately, gleefully laughed at the time others spent lamenting my continuing single status.

I do not remember exactly how we became engaged. I believe we discussed it in letters and agreed in letters, although it may have involved collect-to-me phone calls. He said he had an engagement ring to mail to me. None of these letters or phone calls were day after day, --more like weeks apart.The long-distance collect phone calls were not cryptic and short, ofter over an hour in duration. I've often joked I had to marry-I could not afford the collect calls!

>Needless to say the news of my engagement was ecstasy to my friends and family-I was escaping spinsterhood. I was pretty blase' about it myself, as we didn't discuss a wedding date. At the rate we did things a wedding date was another 12 months of letter negotiations. Again the military controlled your time, all the time. The military did not care if you ever married: that was another dependent to support.

It took at least 6 months to agree to engagement and receipt of the ring. Because of the time lag in communications, it never occurred to me why LC's Mother had the engagement ring. It was a lovely ring and nearly fit. I had a minor adjustment in size upon receipt.

Besides LC's Navy duty, his Mother was ill and he was frequently summoned home when there were crisis in her care. Part of his salary was dutifully sent to his Mother for safe keeping or use. He was his Mother's pride and joy. His brother and sister warned me, that when LC was in his Mother's presence, anyone else in the room might as well not be there. I'm glad I was forewarned!

I knew of LC's Mother's health problems since I first met him. In 1956 lupus erthmatosus was somewhat rare, often misdiagnosed, disease, an autoimmune disease seen in women more than men. In the area of his SC home, there were several women with it, a somewhat unusual statistic. She had a severe case. In order to receive medical care and because of the rarity, she had an agreement with the Univ. of So. Carolina Medical School to treat her as a study case for the rest of her life. In this same time frame the drug, cortisone, was being used in trials. She had access to this drug under the conditions of her treatment which otherwise would have been unavailable.

Sometime in the later part of our 13 year courtship LC's Mom developed breast cancer and was fighting two diseases. She had some periods of remission from one or both diseases. By the time we were discussing engagement her cancer had metathesized. But she was a fighter. Many times she was carried to Charleston seemingly without hope, only to rally and go home.

After our engagement she had a crisis with the cancer which was spreading. She was rushed to Charleston. LC again was called home. He requested I fly in Charleston to meet his Mother, because it looked like she was approaching the final days of her life.

Since I had the means to make such trips, I did. My parents even suggested we just get married "somewhere" while we were there. I never knew if their thinking was charitable so his family, especially his mother, might enjoy the moment, or they secretly thought the engagement was going to dissolve into spinsterhood. Anyway, that did not happen nor was it suggested.

I returned to Texas, still engaged, but no wedding date. However, miraculously his Mother rallied, even returned home.

However, I never regretted this trip, because I received several tender letters from his Mother during the interim before we finally married. Since she died two months after we married, these letters are most of what I personally knew of my mother-in-law. I'm sure none of the often cruel caricatures and characterizations of a wife's mother-in-law would have characterized LC's Mother; I believe she would have been a wonderful mother-in-law, even if my presence in a room, might not ever be acknowledged, as described to me.

We began to negotiate a wedding date. I say negotiate, but it was not so much between us, but negotiating the intricacies of Naval duty and leave requests which can be cancelled after granted. His ship was in port at Norfolk VA between assignments. It was going to be designated a reserve trainer ship for the Naval Reserve at Fort McHenry. Baltimore, MD. At least I knew where we would live for awhile.

All things seemed to be working together for setting a wedding date. I think we started looking at dates in the summer of 1968. We would set a date, but almost immediately the Navy interfered with some unexpected assignment, and there may have been additional crises with his Mother; these details are a bit fuzzy.

By now ecstatic friends and family were dancing the rite of exorcising spinsterhood, and planning bridal and wedding showers.

I don't remember how many dates were set in late 1968, and cancelled, but friends and family began to wonder if this marriage was ever going to happen.

Through it all LC was non-plussed with his Z personality, Que' Sera, Sera. I weathered the first few postponements with humor, but began to be a tad edgy when I began to lose face with my friends and family.

As 1968 faded into 1969 we finally set a date for February 21. I began serious planning for a small informal church ceremony. I was footing the bill. And I bought a wedding ring. His leave was approved and his Mother's medical problems were in one of its stable periods.

Before I end this post, I'll interject a smaller subplot: the engagement ring. LC was the ultimate jokester and sometimes engaged in hyperbole himself. I never questioned its origin, cost or its authenticity. Although I did not select it, I accepted it. After we were married, he continually joked he got in a Crackerjack box. Finally, at some point he or someone in his family told me it was the returned ring set of the Dear John author. Frankly, to this day, either one might be true! I do not know, and probably won't know the day I die. LC's humor sometimes includes tantalizingly telling half the story, and leaving the ending for days, months and years later.

We neither one are wearers of our rings till-we-die persons. His ring interfered with his almost all his jobs. He almost lost a finger when it became entangled in some apparatus [He also has an partially amputated finger from a childhood accident.] Our rings are in a drawer together. I wore my rings until I gained weight and it would not fit. Now, arthritis joints would not allow me to were rings. However, I hope to get around to seeing if it can be "stretched" enough to wear.

Both of us do not believe wearing rings guarantee fidelity....which is a matter of commitment in vows and heart.

PHOTOS: Using old ring boxes, a ring holder and red silk remnant; on camera flash with new flash defuser.

TO BE CONTINUED..... [MISSING! One Fiancé! Part 3: Get Me to the Church on Time (not the best music rendition link)]

You Tube My Fair Lady Soundtrack

Monday, January 18, 2010

When Type A Meets Type Z: Part 1 Get Me to the Church on Time

He was grinning ear to ear [he still does 41 years later], a tad tipsy and thought he could dance. The location was a local bar in Austin TX where USAF men hung out. Hmm, come to think of I was not tipsy and I thought I could dance, too.

In the mid-50s there were a few who considered certain kinds of dance evil instead of art form. I find that somewhat humorous as some Biblical New Testament translations describe the Apostle Paul as dancing.

In 1956 this is how this non-alcohol conservative oriented single student met the man who would become her life companion (LC). Yep! in a BAR, named Louie's!

I did some experimentation in a few forbidden activities when I escaped my parent's constant supervision. I never learned to enjoy alcohol except a few wines. My Dad lost a sister and brother-in-law to fatal alcoholism, and another alcoholic brother-in-law (my favorite uncle) was divorced by another of his sisters. It was not so much religious belief as life experiences with Dad, whose family made wine for communion use in his youth.

Smoking marijuana was the biggest NO! NO! in my day, followed by LSD. As a student in pharmacy I perceived experimenting with unregulated drugs a fool-hardy, life-threatening, dangerous game of Russian roulette. My soon-to-be profession probably deterred my participation in anything more hazardous than an occasional beer or wine.

My roommate had a bar maid job at Louie's to supplement her meager allowance while attending the University of Texas. We lived off-campus in university approved housing which enforced curfews and restrictions of our activities. [Dormitory rooms were reserved so fast I never had the privilege to enjoy dorm life.] Approved housing was NOT cohabited by males and females in those days.

I rode the bus from our off-campus residence to the downtown bar to accompany her home after 11 p.m. In retrospect how much defensive protection two single female collegians were at that hour, is a moot point. In our "we will live forever mode" we thought it was impermeable.

LC and I dated off and on for the years LC was stationed in Austin. He then was transferred to Big Springs, TX, the end of the world to him, and 206+ miles from Austin--might as well have been a continent for two persons without vehicles, living on limited allowances. Long before we had any serious intentions of life together, he said, quite unexpectedly, "don't bury me here!"

Big Springs is very deceptive name as its location is west Texas where there is little water and mainly sand dust, lots of it. It doesn't take much wind for a sandstorm, so severe it damages car finishes, windshields.

When I was in a high school marching band, we accompanied the football team to an out-of -town game in west Texas. A sandstorm enveloped the playing field. My lips were so cracked they bled. My musical instruments (flute and piccolo) had to be refinished inside and out. Imagine rubbing sandpaper on every surface, including yourself...that is the damage a sandstorm can do.

Neither LC or I owned vehicles, so romance was mainly old fashioned handwritten or typewritten letters (gasp)....anybody seen a manual or electric typewriter lately? Neither of us had money for frequent long distance phone calls. Remember this is the late 1950s--no computers (although rumors were rampant of its development), hence no Internet, no e-mail, no VOI (voice over Internet), no video. It is really difficult to imagine those times, today even as I write this.

Soon he was transferred out; we lost track of each other. But a little seed had been planted in two hearts, which neither of us recognized.

At this point I need to interject Cupid's arrows are unpredictable in any romance, but military romances are probably the most unique. Distance,assignments and limited modes of communication are factors. The usual dating routines were, well, different.This romance spanned 13 years more or less; but I am getting ahead of myself. During this time span LC was honorably discharged from the USAF, was in active reserve a short time and then enlisted in the Navy.

I remember a Valentine's Day banquet we attended many years after our marriage. They played a bunch of silly games (pardon me I'm not a baby-wedding-Tupperware-Pampered Chef-game shower player). One oral game was a 20-question topics like the first movie you attended together, her favorite color, favorite love songs, etc, etc.

Early into the game the movie question doomed me and another military wife. We looked at each other and laughed. We were gonna lose. Her husband was flying fighter jets in Korea and my husband was in the Navy on a tincan ship no telling where. There were few if any "firsts," much less movies because most of the time our courtships were known by separation. How were we to know each other's favorite love song, color or food, separated by 1000s of miles of ocean and sky?

Which brings me to the title of this post. Remember the personality types A & B? Well, I am an A with a tad of B intermixed. LC is a B- with 100% Z if there were a Z. If you don't think there were major adjustments at ages 33(me) & 34 (LC), think again. Adjustments are still necessitated in our 70s!

His life was planned minute by minute: show up for duty and draw a paycheck. Food, clothing and shelter were provided in addition paycheck. show up for work, do the job (put in the time) and draw the paycheck. Lower ranks advanced primarily by longevity. At some point he decided to get his GED which was required to advance further; he achieved it, a major accomplishment in initiative and completion.

On the other hand, I was freshly graduated (1960) in a profession with few women; I was intent on making my mark in a male oriented world. Nothing infuriated me more when women, as much as men, would say, "I really would rather my prescription be filled by a man!!!"

I digested several barrels of nails I've chewed to keep my temper and retort in check. I've had people return when the male pharmacist was on duty. There are other funny, and not so funny examples of a female working in a male oriented world but that is for another time. I somewhat understand discrimination.

LC and I had been single for 34 and 33 years respectively. LC almost married but for a Dear John letter, but that is another story, too. Without hyperbole, it is safe to say we both were set in our ways--maybe set in concrete. We were both southern but culturally a shade difference. His home was in South Carolina was near the Gullah (Charleston area) culture and often referred to himself as a sandlapper. I was a Texan and that seems to be the only term I needed to describe myself.

In the intervening 13 years, LC saw the world, and occasionally wrote me letters to which I replied. He was familiar with most of the Mediterranean countries and made an around-the-world tour for which he has several certificates and medals. He liked New Zealand and France among the many countries his various ships made port.

LC had my parents' address so I would eventually get the letters. I have every letter he ever wrote me. I would use whatever return address was on the letter to reply. And if you think either of us were great correspondents, his letters are neatly stored in one old greeting card box.

In the same intervening13 years I graduated from the University of Texas and set out honing my trade at various employments, primarily Dallas TX drug chains. However, I had the opportunity to return to my hometown and work in an independent pharmacy, which I accepted. Although this time proved to be boring, dull and unchallenged (after Dallas) it led to another reconnect with LC.

In one of the disconnect periods of our 13 year "courtship" if you could call it that, I decided to try to re-locate him. I had a number of friends who worked as long-distance phone operators in the only local phone company. One worked the night shift which was apparently boring duty.

After a long discussion of how to find someone, she agreed to try during the less busy hours of her shift. She located LC's brother with little difficulty, as I had LC's home address and knew he had a brother and sister. In 1960s there were few Cowards to go through in Scranton SC phone book. She got LC's phone number from his brother. Astoundingly, he was stateside in Key West and headed for Beaumont TX for some kind of ship repairs.

We chatted several times before his ship embarked to Beaumont. I traveled to Beaumont and it seemed we seamlessly, easily picked up where we left off the last time we saw each other.

He continued to call me COLLECT and we had long conversations. Yes, not surprisingly ,he called me from a bar where he was trying to dance on the bar...

Photos: my snapshots w/dime store camera, b/w film, freshman year at University of Texas at Austin. LC taken around Lake Austin; myself in my dorm room


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Separating Close Friends

A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close
NIV Proverbs 16:28]

I usually do not blog on Sunday as I am occupied with personal Sunday routines, today being an exception. I am still recovering from a double-whammy of sinusitis and bronchitis followed by gastrointestinal distress of unknown origin, possibly a reaction to a therapeutic iron dosage for anemia. I am passing the time reading and commenting on blogs as I've done in my short blogging hiatus.

One blogger with which I share the same given name has blogged about a subject that really touched my heart; the often heartbreaking effect of gossip, especially totally false, not-a-word-of truth-in-it, malicious gossip. Now that I ponder the last sentence, the words "malicious gossip" may be an oxymoron. See I'm Still Above Ground.

I am no saint and have been guilty more than once of participating voluntarily or involuntarily in this destructive behavior; no matter the subject, the behavior is destructive. Conversation so easily becomes gossip, especially in casual and personal settings; we become nearly unconscious participants.

Remember the childhood game we played called "Gossip" where one person whispered a sentence to his nearest contemporary who repeated it to the end of the class? The first and last sentences usually were worlds apart. What a lesson that little game taught, although I certainly did not "get it" at the time.

Since being in the small town public arena as an alderman, I have come to temper my speech with words like heresay, rumor, second or third hand information when I repeat anything. It is most difficult to dissect my constituents' stories as they are colored by their own perceptions as well as those who may have repeated tales heard in the local coffee shop clientele.

I am obligated to check stories out, my findings are amazing. Usually, there is a modicum of truth in every story, complaint or gossip, but that truth has been tempered and twisted by the perceptions of the various repetitions of the event.

I have innocently been portrayed in absolutely false terms. One of my personal and political friends told me what she heard I first declared myself a candidate for office. 'She is the personal friend of the Mayor and a drinking buddy of the Mayor.' I laughed at the absurdity. I am nearly a teetotaler who gets a buzz from one wine cooler which I have NEVER shared with the then Mayor. I was a supporter of the Mayor but never a personal friend.

In my professional life some person, whom I probably refused to sell a prescription drug without a prescription, a common problem which I never did, but some pharmacists did, turned me in to the Texas Board of Pharmacy as doing that exact thing. An inspector anonymously tried to buy Benadryl from me. I refused, almost before he finished his request; I could be rude when asked to violate the law. I found out from my employer he was an inspector. Benadryl in the early '60s was available only by prescription.

Finally, when I blog I am conscious when writing about people other than myself. The post about a 3rd grade bully (female) was from personal memory--what happened to me as I remembered it. I hope it was accurate, I poured over the words a long time, as the girl went on to a troubled life and adulthood. Further I use no names or alter names as I did my post about my third grade teacher, now deceased.

I will be posting Monday one of a series of posts I have been working on leading up to my husband's being one day late for our wedding. It is humorous, but I am trying to portray events with kindness and understanding, although I admit it certainly wasn't at the time. I spend the first episode explaining what different worlds and lifestyles from which we evolved. I've rarely, if ever, used his name.

Hopefully it's humorously fair, as fair as a Texan, who loves exaggeration, can be!

Thanks, Carol, for sharing how destructive gossip can be. It is like the proverbial pebble thrown in a pond; the ripples envelope a larger number of people than the initial event.

[The Holy Scriptures contain many warnings concerning idle speech. A link to one such collection is here. I am sure the many Sages of the ages also have remarked on this common malady of mankind.]

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Time-out For Shopping!


Time-out for shopping!

Only if living in a rural, remote area, like the Arkansas Ozark hills and mountains, do you appreciate the joy of a shopping trip to a city with multiple choices.

Today, Jan 13, husband (H) and I are traveling to Branson to shop the outlet malls (3) and maybe a different Walmart Super Center!

We both are looking for footwear. H wants some warmer boots and shoes than he has purchased at the local WalMart. I am interested in some walking shoe replacements in the Easy Spirit brand.

There were two Easy Spirit outlet stores last time I was in Branson. Surely one remains. After two knee prostheses implants, I was advised to only wear walking shoes--not a thing of beauty, but definitely comfortable. I usually buy 4 pairs, in assorted colors. It has been nearly six years since I have purchased shoes.

There are Easy Spirit, Rockport, Nike, Reebock, RedWing, SAS and many other brands of shoe outlets, so I should not have any problem, other than the vast amount of walking. These outlet malls are huge. Branson has three: The Shoppes at Branson Meadows, Factory Merchants Mall, and Tanger Factory Outlet.

As a child I loved to go to a shoe store. Dad usually took me shopping for shoes. It was fun as it was about the only time he shared with me alone.

I'll report back Friday.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Persistence Pays

Persistence pays or it maybe described as stubborn refusal to admit defeat.

After working until after dark Friday night our plumber and husband (H) decided to return to the task at hand Saturday. The silcock/spigot/faucet in the old concrete block building cleared Friday night, so we had a water source from which to collect water for toilet flushes.

The plumber arrived at 8 a.m. H and I were still drinking coffee made with bottled water and dumping stored water to into toilet tanks to flush toilets. Since the plumber returned so bright and early H was energized to return to the weary task of hunting the frozen blockages. Out in the frigid 3 deg. weather they went.

They focused on areas where the water service line exited the concrete block building and entered the manufactured home, as well as various pipe joints underneath the house.

My job was to inform them when water began to flow from open indoor faucets.

Time lagged on; I visited my blog list, posted an update of our tribulations. I answered numerous phone calls checking on our welfare and one lengthy call concerning a city matter at about 11 a.m. This last call went on and on from one subject to another, my fault as much as the caller ,as we discussed several other subjects. I was bored into inattention to my assigned duties.

What else was there to do while waiting for water to run? During this last call, H came in the house briefly and left again.

Shortly after H exited outdoors and under the house, my conversation ended. I decided to stretch my legs and walked around. Lo and behold I witnessed water running in the bar sink, the kitchen sink and the master bathroom. The running water was not noisy so I did not hear it.

I figured that was H's reason for coming in the house. But I opened the back door, and gingerly stepped on the somewhat iced stoop. I called to the guys under the house. No response, so I returned to my own agenda.

Near 11:30 a.m. H, looking dejected and weary, came inside and sat at a table near me. As I pecked on my laptop I said, "I see we have water." H doesn't hear well, said, "No, not yet and we quit for the day; I've turned everything off again."

Realizing he misunderstood me, I repeated, "Yes we have water. I saw it and even tested additional faucets, both hot and cold taps--we have WATER."

I could see his mood change. After I convinced him, he moseyed out to the city drop box and turned the water on. When he returned to see the faucets running water, he immediately called the plumber [a personal friend] to inform him, we had water.

H and the plumber were two weary, happy, frozen persons at the moment of sharing the good news they had succeeded.

His previous trip in the house was to check if water was flowing and it was not. I guess it started immediately after the phone call terminated.

We have one busted pipe but it only provides water to front and rear outside spigots. Fortunately, it has a shutoff valve. Repair/replacement can wait until spring and summer.

Saturday night indoor faucets were opened to allow water movement in the water service system.... and are still heck with the water bill!

Happiness is the sound of flushing toilets, swish-swish-swish sound of water in dishwashers and clothes washers, cool water and ice from the refrigerator/freezer dispensers, and the cleansing sound of hot and cold water for showers.

These Arkies have learned a lesson: Do not ignore Mother Nature!!!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Lack of Attention to Detail Lesson

Still frozen and without water in the Ozarks. This is turning out to be a painful lesson of inattention to weather and detail.

At this time inconvenience is the only problem. We are hauling water for toilets and buying drinking/cooking water.

The plumber is here again this morning, but I am beginning to think warmer weather may be the cure. The low last night was 7 degrees and wind chill 0 degrees. What was frozen is still frozen; that is a given.

We are arranging showers at a friend's house so we don't go to church smelling . We have clean clothes but if this drags on I'll have to go to a laundromat.

As a side note, we once had a gentleman who attended church in obviously tattered clothing and an odor that caused me to gag if he sat within four pew rows of me. Once he came in late and sat next to my husband. I had to put a Kleenex and my hand over my mouth and nose to finish the service. It was very hard to have a charitable attitude. The church provided him clothing and some items for bodily cleanliness, mainly SOAP and deodorant, but he failed to get the message. Maybe he had no water. I don't know what became of him; he disappeared from the congregation.

Friday (15th) I've employed a house cleaner to deep-clean the house, but she requires water! I am exciting to have someone to do this for me, and then I plan to employ someone twice a month to keep it that way, as long as finances allow. I have already begun sifting mounds of paper and pitching unneeded records.

Stay tuned! to the epic adventures of Golden Agers As the World Turns...........without the gold!!!

Friday, January 08, 2010

Perils of Living in the Ozarks - Foto-less Friday

We arose this morning to frozen water lines somewhere. A few nights ago we cracked several faucets, which usually keeps the pipes from freezing: something about moving water does not freeze?

It is 4/5 degrees F with wind chill of -9/10 degrees F. WE BOTH FORGOT TO OPEN FAUCETS ON THE COLDEST NIGHT OF THE YOUNg NEW YEAR!Old timer's Alzheimer's is setting in.

There is a concrete block building on the property that was intended to be an one room fishing cabin and single car garage. It was plumbed for water and a toilet. A washroom deep sink was installed with an old fashioned free standing faucet, [otherwise known as a silcock, similar to graphic]. The stump for the toilet was connected to an old septic tank.

We inherited an antiquated plumbing system with the property and the building. we moved a double wide manufactured home on the property.

The building, plumbing and concrete septic tank were probably built in the time of Noah. They do not meet any building codes.

The city water system, which is probably 50 years old, enters our property to a concrete drop box and runs to another concrete drop box equipped with freestanding faucet (silcock) which also served as shut-off connection. This silcock valve control has rusted off---thank goodness in the open position. A garden hose could be connected to provide an outdoor source.

The water system makes a 90 degree turn into the concrete building to the inside silcock and then exits to another connection under our house. This is definitely hillbilly engineering.

Previously when the water system froze, the trouble spot is the concrete building silcock where exits the crude concrete floor. The concrete's surface was not finished: feels like walking on creek gravel.

So (H) is out looking for one of our plumber friends who has a kerosene blower heater that looks like an horizontal stove pipe. [similar to graphic] .

We had a gallon of bottled water to make coffee this morning. Otherwise, we both might not be fit for conversation. In fact, I made extra cups. We will need it.

It's crisis time at Nitwit1. We can handle this one, let's hope there is only one.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

The Haunted Clock

A ditty I sung in elementary choir, My Grandfather's Clock has an interesting history which you can read here.

Lyrics to Grandfather's Clock
by Henry Clay Work

"My grandfather's clock was too tall for the shelf
So it stood ninety years on the floor
It was taller by half than the old man himself
But it weighed not a pennyweight more

It was bought on the morn on the day that he was born
It was always his treasure and pride
But it stopped, short, never to go again
When the old man died

Ninety years without slumbering
Tic toc tic toc
His life's seconds numbering
Tic toc tic toc
It stopped, short, never to go again
When the old man died.
In watching its pendulum swing to and fro
Many hours he had spent when a boy
And through childhood and manhood, the clock seemed to know
And to share both his grief and his joy

For it struck 24 when he entered at the door
With a blooming and beautiful bride,
But it stopped, short, never to go again
When the old man died


My grandfather said that of those he could hire
Not a servant so faithful he'd found,
For it kept perfect time and it had one desire
At the close of each day to be wound

At it kept to its place, not a frown upon its face
At its hands never hung by its side
But it stopped, short, never to go again
When the old man died


It rang an alarm in the still of the night,
An alarm that for years had been dumb
And we knew that his spirit was pluming for flight
That his hour of departure had come

Still the clock kept the time
With a soft and muffled chime
As we silently stood by his side
But it stopped, short, never to go again
When the old man died"

Although this interesting song was also in a elementary music book for piano students, I basically forgot about it until an event in my married life refreshed my memory.

Shortly after we married Feb. 1969, my mother-in-law died in April of the same year. We both knew she was terminally ill with metastatic breast cancer. Following her rites my father-in-law [FIL] wished to accommodate his children with tokens of their childhood.

My husband [H] chose a kitchen Ingraham clock which was his grandmother's. The lovely antique clock was similar , but not identical, to the photos, snagged off the Internet.

FIL's admonishing words was the clock struck 13 times the day/night the grandmother died. Not given to superstitions and ghost stories, I gave little credence to his story. He was prone to exaggeration much like myself. [My definition of "exaggeration" is the truth emphasized and amplified!]

H was a gunner's mate assigned to a reserve training ship moored at Fort McHenry. A two week training cruise for reservists was part of its duties. H's duties included this cruise.

We carried the clock home and H set it up on a dresser, leveled and wound it. It promptly began to keep time. He took care of its weekly winding. However, when he was away on cruise, it fell my duty to keep the clock running.

No problem! How difficult could winding a clock be, as long as the spring was not wound too tight. Since it was an 8-day clock I figured I only would re-wind it once, and H would be home in time to re-wind it again.

This clock was a cherished relic of my H's family, so I knew to treat it with respect. I took the large brass key and gently wound the clock. There were two springs to wind, one for the clock and one for the bonger plus a key for each; bonger is my word for the striking mechanism. It counted the hours on the hour, and bonged once for the half hour. The sound and tone was not melodious; it almost had the sound of a funeral dirge.

After respectfully (I thought) winding the clock, I gently touched the pendulum to start the mechanisms in motion. Nothing! I gently touched the opposite side of the pendulum. Nothing! Maybe I did not hold my mouth right. I checked the pendulum to see if it was stuck. Nope.

I quit for the night resolved to re-level the clock after work the next day. I found a small level and hurried home to resume my clock duties. I spent hours the rest of his tour duty, leveling and touching the pendulum. Nothing!

Fearfully I waited for him to return. I informed him I broke the clock. He went over and touched the pendulum. It immediately started tick tock, tick tock. I was astonished and joyful it worked, but genuinely SPOOKED!

I washed my hands of the clock lest it hex me and my side of the family. As long as it resided under our roof, H was in charge of the disobedient, spooky clock. He never had a problem. We had it cleaned a few times and refinished it once.

A few years back we were returning various items we both had taken for each side of the family. As we do not live close to either family, it seemed proper to return family treasures to younger family members on each side.

I placed THE HAUNTED CLOCK at the top of H's list. He inquired around; his only niece decided she wanted it. I figured it needed to reside somewhere on his side of the family. Maybe it would not be so biased and cantankerous!

We delivered the HAUNTED CLOCK to his niece on a trip to NC. I remember she took it home and it started to run. Maybe H helped her set it up. I don't remember. Later, we made another trip to NC. His niece came to his sister's house for a meal. I inquired about the clock. IT HAD QUIT ON HER. No amount of leveling, cleaning or coercing would make that clock run. She now agrees with me, it is haunted. It will obey only H.

I'm glad it is out of our house. I deemed I avoided an unneeded streak of bad luck because of a haunted clock. It will gather dust languishing in someone else's home for eternity!

Monday, January 04, 2010

A Tailess Tale on a Snowy Evening

I have conflicting opinions of telling this tale from Luckie's perspective, or my perspective, so will attempt to combine the two in a scenario that makes sense(?)!

NitWit: I purchased a rather pricey Chipmunk toy ($9.99+tax. approved by AKC) as a Christmas gift for Luckie. Blowing $10+ on dog toys or treats for Luckie is not uncommon, but usually there is quantity to the purchase.

Since I've been fighting a respiratory infection, Christmas Day was a bust. I languished the day away, alternating between sleep, wheezing and coughing fits and spasms. Christmas for Luckie was pushed to the back burner of my supersaturated, drugged mind.

The day after Christmas (Saturday) I remembered to give Luckie her toy, which she immediately adopted as her favorite toy of the moment. I was so pleased she bonded with her toy, not knowing I would regret that thought. She carried Chippy everywhere, mercilessly squeaking its nerve-wracking noise box.

Sunday morning I remembered I wanted a picture of Luckie in her scrungie collar with Chippy. As I began assembling my camera, Chippy, scrungie and items for the picture, Chippy had a peculiar look.

On inspection the entire tail was missing. Luckie destroyed the tail in less than 24 hours! Furthermore, the tail was nowhere to be found. This was no small skinny tail; to date it has yet to be found.

Husband said Luckie probably ate Chippy's tail; after all she eats real chipmunks (not exactly eat in human sense of word, but Luckie can tell this part).

His statement provoked my vision of humongous vet bills for gastic obstruction surgery--one more aggravating thing to worry about!

In previous blogs Luckie has been described as partnered with me in Foodaholics Anonymous. She steals and eats any attainable food stored or mindlessly left at her reachable level. These forays include whole loaves of bread, Russell Stover chocolate diet candy, defrosting meatloaf, and many toy parts.

Until the 1000 year ice storm in early 2009, real chipmunks' lives were imperiled if they unfortunately invaded our fenced yard at inopertune times when the chipmunk patrol of one-Luckie--was on duty. When we lost 7 huge trees, squirrel and chipmunk populations dramatically decreased.

Now why did I think this toy would have a better fate???

Luckie: Yeah, faulty theory! How am I supposed to differentiate between cheap and expensive toys? Come to think of it, how am I to know which foods are mine? Food is food in Foodaholics Anonymous. And you keep putting me on those stupid diets, so I suffer along with you. Revoke my membership. Dogs live to eat.

Besides this so-called toy fooled me into thinking it was the real McCoy, a gigantic chipmunk dinner for Christmas, beats turkey, but then I like turkey, ham, bacon, baloney.....sigh. At last, I thought you had come around to my way of thinking.

When I bit into that gigantic Chippy, and discovered it was polyfiber-filled, instead of....well let's not get too descriptive and gross for the readers. Let's say I would make an excellent female Dracula.

Upon discovering Chippy was a well-designed fake, I lost my cool and amputated its bushy tail. Where is it? I'll never tell, and you'll never know! Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

And you really don't want me to tell you where you can put this @%## scrungie but it ends in "where the sun don't shine." [Here is fittingly descriptive, humorous song .]

NitWit: So Luckie and I have arrived at an impasse to this tailess tale.

Sunday (today) we arose to a beautiful blanket of snow, about 6 inches, and still falling in the evening. It is primarily granular snow. After midnight I noticed large flakes.

Dressed only in my nightgown, I grabbed my camera and stepped out the front door to capture a night snowstorm. Although not exciting composition the snow is entrancing in the photo. Because the yard night light and camera flash combined to with snow to create and capture a prismatic, moving image that looks like cotton balls.

1. Night Snow Scene
2. AKC Chipmunk Toy
3. Tailess Chipmunk courtesy Luckie amputation
4. Luckie Scrungie

Friday, January 01, 2010

Starting Anew 2010 - A New Decade

Happy New Year 2010!

Since I am beginning a new decade of life, it is appropriate the ritualist, traditional resolution thought process begin with defining the process as BEGINNING ANEW, not STARTING OVER. There is a more positive, optimistic ring to ANEW, and negative, defeatist ring to STARTING OVER.

In retrospect and review :2009 and 2000-2009 were divided positives vs. negatives.

1. In this decade I discovered my biological roots and developed a positive relationship with a new set of relatives. The search was fraught with needless anxiety and uncertainty, especially the idea of acceptance on my part. Positive!

2. I re-evaluated my belief system and made a difficult, but fruitful decision concerning faith, leaving a comfortable but dead-end setting for a challenging, exciting, rejuvenating new concept. Positive!

3. In this decade I realized my mortality because of increasing age and faster declination of health. In fact 2009 seems to be a year filled with medical appointments and little else. (mixed Positive/Negative)

4. I tested new waters in retirement. Never to be one to sit by the window watching the birds, I discovered the satisfaction of public and volunteer services. I ran for City Council--three terms. I helped establish a senior calling service, TeleCare. Positive!

5. Endurance of some domestic turmoil. Negative!

6. A personal vacation scaled down to an enjoyable level! Positive!

7. Finally, 2009 was exceedingly successful in that I finally accomplished on reoccurring resolution, losing weight (25 lbs.) and maintaining within +/- 3 lbs. for 6 months. Positive!

I'm sure I missed a lot of subjects but the above 7 are highlights. I could add the phenomenon of blogging, but it is continuing into the new decade. Where it leads, no one knows.

Now I am facing a new decade. At 73, how many more decades are there in my life? I suppose quality, not quantity, is the most important factor!

So, in 2010, the first year of the new decade, I am resolved:

1. To start ANEW the effort of losing an additional 25 lbs. This will be harder and require more diligence. But I will not be disappointed if the scales show less than 25 lbs. but a loss, nevertheless. Intertwined in this effort will be renewal of my exercise program.

2. To search ANEW for opportunities in public service, volunteerism, and faith. I believe these altruistic goals keep me in the mainstream of life, despite aging.

3. To resolve ANEW to enjoy simple pleasures available "right under my nose."

Of course there are less lofty goals such as resolution of messy housekeeping, poor cooking skills, etc.

Now that I've completed the New Year ritualistic seance, I can settle down for the beginning of the last hurrah for the football season: a multitude of bowl games and eventually the Super Bowl!!!

So much for lofty expections!


Postscript: I just found this interesting quiz on Amber Star's Serenity Days.
Thought you might like to participate:

I am an

What Flower
Are You?