Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Daily Notes- October 27th- 52 new cases of COVID in our Yellow State.

Christmas Cactus blooming in late October.  Welcome color on these chilly mornings.  Furnace running already.  Sweaters on.  Corduroy pants.  Smart Wool socks.  Lap throws in use. Dark by 4 pm coming soon.

Regarding the Christmas Cactus.  When I worked I mentioned in Fall classes to STOP watering the Christmas Cactus for the month of October and then begin watering to get flowers for Christmas.  It's the "feast or famine" principle of Mother Nature.  If plants think they might be dying- no water- they send up flowers (which contain seeds) to perpetuate the line so to speak.  I failed to water and then watered.  They got the message but too early.   And ..to clarify- if you water regularly- they might never flower. You have to scare them.  The red ones- are over 30 years old.  A Welcome Home gift from the Realtor.  We moved in on December 6th 1991.  Divided rarely- repotted even less often.  They like it that way. I do too.

Momma Rules for Christmas Shopping during COVID.  Make it. Bake it. Daughter is making the rounds of Goodwill for used clothing gifts and used books.  Nothing more is needed.  Well, a tree.  But that can wait till around Thanksgiving.  I just need to call in my order.  Hopefully, someone there remembers my name and I actually get a tree.

Paula out in Colorado is living thru the Fire and snow nightmare.  Los Angeles.  I can't imagine it. 

It's like the end of the world.  Disease, Fire, Hate. 

Today I am making Split Pea Soup for daughter.  I have two recipes.  One from Barefoot Contessa.  They are pretty much the same- split pea soup is pretty basic.  But Ina, holds back a quarter of the dry peas for an hour and then adds them.  Perhaps, less of a mushy texture?  We'll see.  It's more of a chopping recipe. Carrot, onion, celery and potatoes.  I enjoy chopping.  Especially if there is no "hurry up" involved. And I am happy to have that lovely baked ham end cut to add to the pot (and later cut into small pieces).

Storage Wars is on all day today.  And I have a new book to read.  I don't know which book I will choose. And Law and Order is on.  Yesterday there was zero for me to watch.  Zero.  I did watch a recorded NOVA episode on the alphabet.  How we went from pictures/marks to writing.  Every language's alphabet has the same source.  That was fascinating.  The origin of all the languages- the same source. And perhaps, with all our differences- all people from the same source as well.  It's something to consider.

Monday, October 26, 2020

Daily Notes- October 26th- Cold, Wet, Dark

How my husband rolls with coloring.  Boxes and jars full sets of colored pens and pencils.  He has to have a large table to spread them all out.  He's coloring a calendar I bought years ago.  Consults with me regarding color choices.  To the far left is a color wheel I gave him.  I think it might be the second or third one.  They get "lost".  This one is upright as I mentioned-- it's the last one.

An old friend from Germany days called from California where they live these days.  Her husband (also a friend) is in the hospital with a heart transplant after years of being on the list.  He had been walking around- alive- with 15 pounds of batteries that kept his old original heart beating while they waited. Now they wait to see if his body rejects the new heart.  They are so brave to be doing this- now.  She is not allowed to see him- be with him.  Any hospital stay is dangerous.

She relayed some voting news- I hope she got it wrong.  In one Texas county of very poor people- only ONE absentee in person voting site.  Must drive.  It's a drive thru.  These people do not own cars.  They are not allowed to walk up.  A way to keep them from voting.  My friend wants to drive there from California and offer rides all day everyday to poor people so they can vote.  It brings tears to my eyes. She was born and lived in Germany most of her life and is now an American citizen.  And if her husband wasn't in the hospital with his new heart- she would be on the road to Texas.

My husband is going into Town to pick up a new handle for the lawnmower.  The original cracked. He says I cracked it doing circles and curves in the lawn- what he calls "crazy stuff".   I examined the handle- it was rusted around the crack site.  I'll take the blame and continue to cut the grass next summer in swirls, circles and whatever.  Because......I always have done it that way.  When he worked and was never home. I also shoveled snow on the driveway in patterns.  But he has a new snowblower for this Winter.  I actually should learn how to use it.  Plan ahead for "any eventualities".  

Did any of you see the weather news this morning.  It is snowing in Colorado and there is a wild fire burning also.  The pictures looked like Hell On Earth. Dark skies, blood red flames and snow. Horrible.

I did the weekly grocery shopping.  So many cars in the parking lot but not so many in the store itself- perhaps they all checked out while I was standing in the deli line to have ham, turkey and cheese sliced very thin for husband's lunches.  I also got a a cut off from a baked ham to use to make daughter's request for lentil soup.  Or split pea.  I got dry lentils and split peas because- I don't remember which it is.

I am going to take a nap.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Daily Notes- October 25th

The desk to my left.  I was watching Alton Brown's Quarantine You Tube show yesterday.  While it's mildly fun - they were drinking far too many dirty martinis on the second episode. So when my attention flagged, I sorted my very cheap set of tiny pens into a yogurt jar and colored images I had drawn in pencil in my notebook.  I am forever making lists, drawing sketches, copying interesting quilts I see on the internet, writing recipes.  The pens have a very limited supply of ink.  They are 3.5 inches in length. As they give out- I toss them and just "make do" with the pens/colors that remain.  I am using a Sharpie for the black.  No tiny black pen.  Lots of purple ones- ick.

The pens originally were my husband's pens.  He wasn't using them so they became my pens.  I kind of like the ease of use of them- from the Dollar Store.  So there is no expectation of excellence.

Today's Sunday Food section of the paper had two interesting items.  Make Your Own Bagels and Make Your Own Flour Tortillas.   Both recipes are lengthy in Time but not in Effort.  But what really got me mad was reference to a PBS show on Mexican cooking.  Not here in Maine. Oh, no..... not in Maine.

A very very large Trump sign has recently been affixed to a homemade billboard on my road.  I get to drive past it on my way home from every trip into Town. It was there in 2016 but was hand painted. It's the only Trump sign in the entire neighborhood.

 I took great happiness in ripping my name and address off a large stack of political mail on heavy shiny paper before dumping the large pile into the recycling can.  All- un read.  I  imagine the recycling boxes up and down the street will contain much of the same on Monday evening. Wish they had spent the money feeding people or paying their rent.

Football today.  I didn't plan ahead to make pizza dough but I can do that as soon as I hit publish. I made pasta sauce for husband last evening while he took a shower.  He cleared the driveway in anticipation of snow.  Got all the tomato boxes emptied and stacked away. Moved soils into the garden for the Winter. He had already gotten the hoses drained and into the crawlspace under the house.

Shingles shot arm didn't really get to aching until second day. It's plenty sore now.

That book- well it pulled itself together in the final pages.  It was okay by the end.  Nicely finished. Musical Chairs.  If anyone wants to give it a go.  I haven't chosen a new book to read as yet. I may wait till tomorrow to chose.  Football and Law and Order.  I'm good for the day.  Hope you are as well, dear ones.

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Daily Notes- October 24th. Are we in the fifth circle of Hell yet?

I stepped out on the front porch to take this picture.  The red shrub right of center is Purple Smoke Bush. The leaves on the large Smoke Bush print so nice on steamed cloth.  On this small leaf variety- no.  My yard is very colorful.  I had to open and close the door quickly as the very clean white w/ grey stripe stray cat was on the porch.  I am always afraid he will run inside the open door. He's been neutered. He seems very lonely.  Very astute hunter.  Always something in his mouth that he captured.

The Sun is nowhere to be seen today.  I have all the house lights on. Need to take off the shirt and pull on a sweater.  I do have on wool socks.

I got my 2nd dose Shingles shot yesterday at 5 pm on the dot.  The muscles in my arm are sore.  But that's all. I slept very well.   The Pharmacist gave me the shot (over $200 without insurance) and said that the soreness is caused by the material added to the vaccine- which makes it's intake into the system more complete.  Never know what sort of information one can get even getting a shot.  I had Shingles once.  That was enough for me.  

Breakfast of Champions today- Bagel followed by a gluten free coconut cookie.

I was happily surprised to get an envelope of fabric pieces in the mail.  So lovely.  Thank you Liz.  I have an envelope in the mailbox out by the street coming back to you.  And I need to buy washi tape.  That was such a nice touch.  My return envelope is held closed with Scotch tape.

I am reading book three.  Musical family.  Woman living in a falling down Summer house that she doesn't take care of. ... she hardly takes care of anyone including herself.  I am close to the end.  They are all going to do "mindful eating and meditation" and I guess it will all end happily ever after (when they stop drinking and smoking weed) and they fit into their wedding clothes. New York people in Connecticut.  Farmy Connecticut. Who knew???  This book-- number three- could have used a more aggressive editing. There are side characters more interesting than the ones highlighted. 

Would I read this one again? No. Recommend it to you- No.  I am wondering if book three is the first book this author wrote?  That happens.  Publisher figures it will get purchased and then we'll say what????