Friday, January 31, 2020

Daily Notes- January 31


Prompt 28- Plant the seed of a beautiful dream.

If you know me- and you probably do not- I am terrified of water.  I have nightmares of drowning.     So this "dream" of mine--water.  Floating in water.  It is real.  Terrified and drawn to it-  at the same Time.......Water.  

I don't have much to say here.  Not at this Time.  But things are in motion.  Things I have been thinking about.  The Collage Prompts have accelerated and prompted this "thinking".   About ending this blog.  And at a Time when I have more people visiting the blog than ever.  Double digits. Ha!

I think it is the collages.

I have - what is for me--a busy day today.  So I have to get prepared (mentally).  New places.  Not the library, bank, post office, greenhouse or grocery.  New situations.  I have agreed to it- so I am halfway there.

And to the 59 people who visited that one day-  OMG!!!!  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Daily Notes- January 30


Today's Collage Prompt: A heartfelt offering to our glorious Earth Mother Gaia.

I am sending her a heartfelt sympathy card.  And I nearly covered all the images in pastels.  They were too shiny.  And I wanted a non shiny look here and tried to match the colors of the paper images (which cover the entire page) as closely as possible so it remained a "collage".  I really like the way the top third turned out. Love Gaia's hair. And I like the lower left corner.  Want to do more of that.

This is how I feel about Earth.   Even with all the harmful things going on- it's still blue. Still trying to heal itself.  And I feel like Time is running out.

So the painter was here and we have one coat on the ceiling.  Everything is covered in paint cloth.  I uncovered the couch and the computer and went looking for my desk chair.  It was in the hall by the front door.  He stays about an hour or two each day.  I think he has another job that he is working on so is "fitting us in" to his  schedule.  I can smell the paint and have my rescue inhaler handy.

I am going to the eye doctor on Monday.  See how things are.  It's my annual appointment.  I will need new lenses for sure as I have been rubbing my left eye and have scratched up the left lens.  I now lift my glasses up and then rub my eye but the damage is already done.

This morning I was thinking about this blog I write every morning.  Thinking about to whom I write. It has always felt like a person from the very first post so many years ago.  I can feel the person's presence but I have no name for them.  While I am typing I feel close to them.  Perhaps that is why I write everyday.  I wasn't going to write this today.  I was feeling like anyone reading it might think I was mentally unbalanced.   Perhaps I am.  One would think one was completely sane even if everyone else thought you were totally not sane.  and President.

G is wanting to go someplace  so we will go someplace and buy seed starting soil.  And I will start my seeds.  In my milk jugs. And set them outside in the snow.  The milk jugs work as little greenhouses and heat can escape- no caps-- and the holes in the bottom can absorb moisture- right now from the snow.  I usually dig a small hole and set my milk jug greenhouses into the holes- mostly so they won't tip over.  Perennial seeds can be sown in pots filled with soil and set, uncovered into the snow.  They will freeze and thaw and germinate.

Well, I have things to do and my nose is running and I need to find my hankie.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Daily Notes- January 29


A Living Collage.  The corner in my living room.  The faux wall painting treatment.  One of the new radiators. Just a smidge of the new baseboards (under radiator/behind ladder) Today he left the ladder in another corner of the room after he did some patching and sanding.   He's usually here for 90 minutes to 2 hours.  I was timing him today as I wanted to get to the computer to write to you.

And after I write to you- since the streets are snow and ice FREE right now- I want to go to the library and drop off books and get more.  Reports are that it will stay this way thru Friday when I am joining my coffee buddy for a walk in Town.  I will be wearing my no slip shoes for both events. Just in case. Because the sun might be shining but it's 31 degrees and water freezes at those temps.  Ice.

I have a brush on the windowsill above the citrus plant (bush)- which I think is a lime.  I am using the brush to take pollen from one open blossom to the others and picking up pollen from all of them and distributing it.  I watered the citrus yesterday with the cloudy solution of citrus fertilizer and water.  Wow. It had fermented and was powerfully stinky.  The smell dissipated, thank goodness. I have also been using a spray bottle that sends out a very fine mist which the plants all seem to be enjoying. Humidity.  Who doesn't enjoy some humidity?

I did three pages in the Washing Machine Pages.  It had been 11 days between pages.  So, that could mean 11 days between doing two loads of wash or 11 days between writing in the Pages.  11 days between doing laundry seems weird.  But I did do three loads the last time.  So I might have gotten everything.  I need to do sheets.  When I turn the mattress.  Well I am actually spinning it 180 and not turning it.  New ones don't get turned over.  Which feels so wrong to me.  Turn every three months. My former mattress (now in guest room) was flipped and can I tell you all- that was quite the aerobic exercise.  One time it nearly knock me over but the closet doors saved me. Kept me upright.

While pollinating the citrus blossoms, I noticed a very large number of birds congregating in the snow melted ground over the septic outflow pipe from the house to the tank.  Green grass there.  And the birds were enjoying it.  Pecking away.  Mostly doves-- and of course- squirrels.  A few blue jays. The crows stay down under the bird feeders.  G had a tough go of walking down there to fill the feeders- deep snow- but if you don't feed continuously- the birds don't come to your feeders.  So he made the effort.  He usually makes paths from the house to the feeders with the snowblower which is still in the repair shop.  We sure do miss the snowblower.  We can't get to the compost piles, either.

So that's all I have to say today.  I can smell the stinky fertilizer water.  Ick.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Daily Notes- January 28

Just words today as the iPhone and computer have decided not to communicate.  I had a photo of the Painter's equipment.

He's a quiet man.  Arrives and does his work and you have no idea he's even in the house.  He and Riley enjoyed each other's company when he was here painting during the bathroom remodel.  All the crown molding is down and gone.  The room looks better already.  He'll be giving the whole ceiling an undercoat tomorrow.  I have one more day to get things packed and out of here. Or just contained so he can throw a drop cloth over things.

I am reading.  The middle book in a trio.  One of the librarians is selecting interesting books- like the one about the woman making a robotic date for her sister's wedding-- and, well I happened upon book three and loved it so now I am reading one and two.  Romantic/drama/comedy?  But you get caught up in it and it's really very personal.  I have book three here so will read that one with more amusement now that I know the two of them were so not fooling anyone.

Was supposed to rain today.  Snowed a bit and then stopped. While clearing off the fireplace of family photos-- I found the small crystal heart my neighbor down the street gave me the day of G's heart surgery.  I carried in my pocket all the hours of that day and would hold it in my hand.  I had forgotten where it was.  But now it's back in my pocket.  Safe and warm. My neighbor drove me to the hospital each day to be with G.  Until I felt stable enough to drive myself.  It's a long drive 40 minutes or more in traffic.  I will always be thankful for her taking that time out of her busy day for me.

Well, those last few items aren't going to pack themselves up.

We are taking a small pause in the collage challenge as our leader needs some recovery/rest/heating pad time.  Darned if I didn't miss it this morning.  I might have to sort paper.  But first I will finish my book.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Daily Notes- January 27


Not what you thought you would see here.  Prompt 26 was to choose one of the other participant's work --work that intrigues you-- and try to make something that collage artist would possibly make.
Dee. It's you all the way.  Edgy. Dark. Emotional. Powerful. As I imagine your book will be.

There was no happiness found at Goodwill yesterday.  In fact, the place looked very confused and disorderly.  Like it had been ransacked.  So many empty shelves and all the pants and shirts were  Spring/Summer.  I have what I need for those seasons.

So we departed for the grocery and the library.  I have, perhaps, found a new author for G.  He was reading, fell asleep, and then took up reading after his nap.  I read my book straight thru.  Grace wonders about my Reading.  I go for long periods with nothing to read and no interest in reading. Then I read like I am starving for words, sentences..  if I find a new author- getting harder each passing year-- I will read their entire collection of books.  One after the other.  I used to read into the night and until dawn.  But I can no longer do that.  My eyes get tired now, as I get older.

I, too, found a new author-  S. D Sykes.  The Medieval C.J. Sanscom whose books I love.

I remembered to buy baked pretzels.

The Painter was here this morning to do the second coat on the repair to the ceiling cracks. He'll be back tomorrow.  And will start taking down the crown molding.  I need to pack my grandmother's dishes into a box and then we can move the antique cabinet to the back bedroom.   And take apart the rattan table- again.  It comes down from the Attic- goes up and comes down.  A very busy table.
I should rename it the Traveling Table.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Daily Notes- January 26th


Collage Prompt 25.  These three pieces of paper have been traveling in close proximity waiting for a prompt that was "all about them".   And this morning- I was given permission to use images that have been congregating in the paper images box.  The very large red poppy.  I look at with each prompt. Trying to find a way to use it.  The frog.  The lovely strong silent Warrior.

And here they are this morning.  I made one other-  pasted it in the back over even-- but these had to be in the book.  I love them.  The book is getting full and will no longer lie flat.  So with shiny images- the taking of photos is getting more difficult because of glare.

The only comments I am getting on the blog these days- are from collage companions.  I think I have lost most regular readers with this challenge.  Though I try with these paragraphs to re-connect.

My husband says- "whatever happens was meant to happen".  A very untypical comment from him. But I will roll with it.  I like having an artistic task to begin the day.  Something to think about and puzzle over while I eat my cereal and read the newspaper.  I can already see how this paper collage will inform my work with cloth.  I was pointing in this direction (with uncertainty) but didn't understand how it worked. I am learning.

The sun is shining (and now it's not).  41 degrees (very warm for January in Maine) and humidity is 99%.  The black asphalt of the street and the white of the snow this morning.  Some brown from the trees.  Contrasts with my collage up top. This week's oil delivery was over $700.

I am thinking we will go to Goodwill after G finishes his exercises (for his back).  I have a "feeling" there might be something there today that I might want or need.  No idea what that might be. I go with an open mind.  I keep wanting to find a soft old 100% cotton bed sheet.  But I might find an old set of napkins or a dresser scarf.  Or even a tablecloth.  I also am always wanting to find just one more pair of corduroy pants.  Bean must have discontinued them when I wasn't paying attention.  I do have the ability to mend and repair.  So even though I will look well and truly strange in patched pants- I will wear them until I can't mend them anymore.

Just so you know- I am that way with friends as well.  I will patch us together for the long haul.  Which reminds me- my sweater has lost a button.

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Daily Notes- January 25th


Today's Collage prompt 24.   Story of Yourself.  Above, Below and Within.

I immediately wanted to use the wing chair.  The image is just the structure, no padding, springs or upholstery.  Just the bones.  Of a Chair.  That holds (within).  And in the back of the chair I wanted a loving mother and child.  One leg of the chair, in front, (below). Very prickly.  Time (the date due stamps) wanted to be in the collage. And the flowers. And the hand/arm holding cloth and flowers.  Our Fearless Leader will explain all this to me.  I like this one.  It feels genuine.

What a day.  Up so EARLY.  Retired People.  We get so used to not having to be anywhere and just drifting.  But today I had to Be At Work.  Class went along very nicely.  I just had to provide soil, pebbles, moss and advice occasionally.  Everyone created a lovely Fairy Garden.  Which is just a dish garden with a story.  A path, a fairy, something tall, flowers.  I made one for sale in the store.  I added one of the wooden mushrooms with the word "love"  written on it.

The Painter arrived solo- no helper.  So he just patched the ceiling cracks in the L shaped section of the ceiling. and will return to sand and patch a second and possibly third time.  The weakest point in the ceiling, I guess.  He assured me it will crack again.

I am thirsty.  My body cells must be low on water.  I am also tired.  Today was the first Time I have driven my car in what feels like months.  Isn't but feels that way.

I was going to read today but eyes feel dry and exhausted.  Yes, my eyes feel exhausted. I have nothing else for you- oh, I do have another class added to my Spring Activities.  Seed Starting. And the store no longer carries the Seed Starter the Pot Growers always purchased.  Damn.  I was going to give it a spin.  Not to grow pot but to see if it was fantastic for my vegetable seeds.  I really miss the Pot Growers with their low slung jeans and wallets on chains and only crisp 100's.  Where do they get them? And the way they parsed their questions prior to legalization.  "The Product" has tiny white insects on it.  The Product might be consumed so what won't kill the consumer?

The teens (working the cash registers and their cell phones) would ask me if I "knew" what the product was.  I said "I was in college studying Art in 1964 to 1968-- what do you think?"  It really wasn't "something" until closer to 66. Acid was more of a problem. Not for me. My dad was a cop. He'd kill me straight away if I messed up in ANY way. If I embarrassed him.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Daily Notes- January 24th


Collage Prompt 23.   Add another tree to your original tree collage.  I have been saving the right side page for another tree.  And today- I added one.  And I added pink.  As the collage process went on I was less mournful of the passing of Riley.  So, I could add happiness.  I even added reflection and berries to the second tree. Life goes on.  And they are reaching out to each other.

I was not happy with Prompt 22.  Creating a Valentine for something that is very meaningful to you. Even today- after seeing what other's produced- my mind is blank.  This might be the one I can't complete.

The Greenhouse contact person called to let me know I have a long list of people coming in tomorrow morning to make a Fairy Garden.  I asked about certain supplies.  No, No, No.  Sigh.

I went looking here at home. I found a box in the garage with tree bark I had collected last year or the year before.  I also found a small amount of lichen I collected on our last few walks with Riley (for cloth dyeing) and a bag of tubular sticks from a wind chime I took apart.  Could make a nice fence. I also have a bag of small clear plastic balls. Ornaments.  Might have enough for each to get one. All the acorns Riley and I collected are moldy.  I could see if I can wash and dry them.  But perhaps not.... as few have ever wanted to add acorns to their Fairy Gardens. I have a bag of rubber, multicolor frogs.  But last February no one wanted them so we'll see.  I asked about rocks.  My former co-worker sadly replied- no rocks.  I don't want to give up MY collection of rocks.  In past years I would- but not this year.

They have very few little houses to sell.  I do not have Time to make enough houses for everyone so I won't bring any.  I will have to get them to use the bark to make a shelter for their Fairy.  But I am most disappointed in the lack of moss.  We always had a large box of it in the greenhouse.  Because I planned ahead.

So- the Best Thing about tomorrow might be the Bacon Egg and Cheese Bagel I get from McDonalds on the way to work.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Daily Notes- January 23


Collage Prompt: 22  Send yourself a Valentine.

There was more to the prompt but this is what I remember.  I know what is in my heart.  The good the bad the ugly.  It's all there.  Each day I have to decide how it will go.  Will I dwell on the past?  Will I seek the positive?  Will I let myself be happy today?

When I was making this collage I didn't notice (subconscious did notice) the eyes. Looking out.  I may remove the word intuitive.  I am that- but it doesn't fit here.

Yesterday we went out for lunch.  Not sure if we will go out of the house today.  We also picked up a library book for me- I now have four books in the cue.  Waiting for me to decided to read.  At the grocery I purchased a large clear plastic (ugh!) tub of perfect mandarin oranges with little stems and dark healthy leaves attached. Auspicious for the Chinese New Year on Saturday.  Grown in the USA.
I did not purchase anything to make for dinner today.  I can make grilled cheese sandwiches with baked beans.  G will eat that.  That's what I will do.

The neighbor down the street came by our table at the restaurant.  He was eating there as well.  He asked if he and his twin sons could come visit this week.  We said yes.   It will be an interesting visit.  Two six year olds.  But they will be interested in the living room being 80% empty.  "why don't you have any furniture?"

The boys are very good at making conversation- their parents expect conversation at dinner each day.  Most of it is imaginary and G finds it hard to follow. I just listen and make appropriate facial expressions.  Amazement at their legendary feats of adventure.  Serious expression when they tell of problems during the legendary feats of adventure.  And I try to answer the questions they pose regarding our lives which puzzle them. I often wait to hear them utter the "Maine Question".  "Where are your people???" Or better still "Who are your people?"  Because they never see us with anyone.

And now we no longer have the dog.  Who terrified them while intriguing them.  Riley loved them. They smelled very interesting.  And they moved about in haphazard ways which had the dog riveted. After an encounter- Riley would want to  return to the places they had been while talking to us.  Re-create the encounter and smell everything in depth.  Where their feet were- where they kicked the soccer ball. The stick they used.

The Painter was just here- he will return on Saturday to do some work on the ceiling cracks and remove all the crown molding.  And then we will most likely see him every day.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Daily Notes- January 22


 Collage Prompt 21- A treasure box of dreams and wishes.

Top left corner- an older couple crossing a bridge together (crossing a Life together), spices, a rainbow, Space which I think of as Eternity, down the right side the Moon, Saturn,  Assorted images that made me happy and the bare feet in sandals (always) and my fifth grade elephant and tools.  Both about my father.  He could make something out of nothing.  He grew up the hard way in the Great Depression.  His motto: if one has the tools you can create anything.

The Center- my dream of a new kitchen in this house or in a Future house.  Open. Just so very very Open. The room where I spend most of my Life.  The Center of Who I Am.

We went to see the Last Jedi.  We liked it very much.  I liked seeing Harrison Ford again.  And it closed the loop that began so many years ago when our very young son wanted to see the first movie- repeatedly and one parent had to go with.

The Sun is very bright today and it's 29 degrees.  We think that's "warm".  The Sun is creating long shadows in front of the trees.  The snow in the yard (front, side and back) is traced with animal tracks. So many of them crossing and running.  Riley would have been eager to get outside this morning to stick his nose in every indent- to sniff who and what was there overnight. He would have been very very busy today. Could actually be out there and we just can't see him.

I have bills to pay and mail to get ready for our daily trip out of the house. Post Office, Lunch, Library, Grocery Store.  G is doing his stretching exercises.  He didn't do them yesterday. Mistake. I need to buy more shortbread cookies.  Some cheese for grilled cheese sandwiches.  I found the bread in the freezer on the porch.  And I think I will make onion soup one of these days.  I have a recipe where the onions get cooked in the slow cooker and then the soup is made on the stove. G and I both adore onion soup. French Onion Soup.  With the cheese crouton on top.

If I haven't replied to a comment left here on the blog- I, yes me, cannot comment on my own blog. It just doesn't allow me to do it.  Crazy ass Blogger.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Daily Notes- January 21


Today's prompt is a reactive one.  To yesterday's what terrible thing do you fear.  Trump won hands down.  So today's prompt- what would you want to see if Trump was well and truly gone.  For me, that was word pictures rather than pictures.

The Sun today, here in Maine, in blindingly bright.  Sunglasses are needed if one ventures outdoors. A very cold Sun.  Very white snow and none of it melting.  Which is okay.  Fine.  It's a protective layer.  Bare Earth is never a "good thing".  And when the snow finally does melt- it goes deep into the aquifer I hope.  Snow is full of minerals.  Good fertilizer.

I did get the entire house vacuumed and I did Swiffer the house.  Recycling the pads I used on the floor.  I let them dry and then use them again-- the floor felt dirty but actually wasn't all the dirty..  And usually I just wrap an old cotton towel around the Swiffer pad and clean with that. then wash the towel.  Bar cloth.  That's what I use for all my housecleaning.  Bar Cloths. Just the right size.

I am going up into the Magic Attic in search of Yes! Paste.  I know I have a jar of it.  Somewhere. And my acrylic inks.  I am now interested in coloring some tissue paper and making a collage.

G is sorting his colored pens and pencils and deciding what to color today.  Yesterday was word search day.  Today coloring.  I have cloth on the table.  A set of strips to hand sew to the edges of a "collage cloth" I made a few months ago- yes, it must be that long ago.  Late October, perhaps.  I had wanted to dye cloth brown /black to sew to the four sides.  But I have not managed to do that.  All cloth dye work stopped while Riley was so ill.  After the grapes nothing much happened.

And now I have the Daily Collage and I have books to read.  Suddenly the library has many books that I want to read which makes me happy.  But I  can't read as much as I want.  My eyes are dry and tired.  So...... we are going to try to see the new Star Wars movie today.  G is checking on times. 3:30.
And my clock up top read 11:11 so I stopped to do a bit of mindful thinking.  Always a good sign when I look up and see 11:11 on my clock.  Positive reinforcement.

The garbage truck just came- we had only recycling.

Monday, January 20, 2020

Daily Notes- January 20


Today's Collage Prompt: What do you need to banish?  Get rid of it. NOW.

I think this one holds no secrets.  When I first found the split face I knew what image I would insert into the open space.  Took awhile to find.  An autobiography.

Hard letting things be "unhidden".   But I've come a long, long way and still have miles to go.....

Beautiful Day today.  Not snowing and the sun is shining.  Twenty three degrees.  I am planning to drag out the vacuum cleaner hose (central vac) and work on the accumulated dirt and dust bunnies on the floors.  I may even Swiffer.  Let the happiness reign.

G has an eye doctor appointment and needs to buy replacements for the parts of the sink drain he broke yesterday trying to get a dropped toothbrush out of the drain at our daughter's house.  It was way past the drop-off point in his mental day.  When clear thinking is not really possible. If he doesn't get a move on- today will be a repeat.  My voice is just a noise he ignores.

I think a few of the collage participants will be making Trump centered work today.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Daily Notes- January 19th


Prompt 18.  The Center. Of who I am.  Eyes, Heart, Hands.

Hand painted cloth.  Not dyed at that Time in my Life.  Machine stitched when I was good at that sort of thing.  The eye itself is collaged to the fabric surface.  This is the inside of the front cover of my collage book.  I didn't want to add anything else.  This will be the first image anyone sees looking  at this booklet.

Daughter sent over one of her guy friends to help us with what looked like 6 inches of new snow.  It was light because it was so cold last night.  The three of us got it all up.  Steady shoveling until it was done and then the guy waved and left.  Refusing money.  Hardest parts are the apron in front of the double garage doors and the end of the street by the road.  I got all the walks and decks and I did lots of the driveway.  Then I had some cold coffee, a cookie and a mango.

Football.  No pizza as I forgot about football when we were at the grocery.  I usually buy the dough. I do have tons of chips so we could have nachos.  I have cheese and salsa.

I have been taking Riley's leftover melatonin the past few nights.  Feeling rested in the mornings. No dreams.  Which is always a very good thing.

Not much else to say.  It's quiet.  I am quiet.  Reading books.  Sorting paper images.  No emails.  Nothing much going on.  Oh, I stopped crying.  Just like that.  One day I noticed I hadn't been crying. And today the shoveling guy asked about our dog- and we were both okay saying he'd died. And I was very okay saying he would have LOVED this snow.  Been all over it. Okay a few tears just typing that but not sobbing.  Riley loved snow.

It's okay.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Daily Notes- January 18


Today's collage prompt.:  something you own that you couldn't do without made into collage.

First the collage- and then the real thing.  This is a scarf (?) long piece of discharged cloth that had different treatments done to it (thin lines of gold paint) before I got it in a donated bag of scraps.  I liked it for some reason and discovered it's very versatile.  Right now it is over my shoulders, up around my neck, keeping me warm. At the beach it wraps around my hips like a long skirt.  I can tie it over my chest and it covers me from chest to just below the knees-- great for getting out of the shower. It is useful as a winter scarf.  It can be used to carry things.  Practical if I ever break my arm.  I have no idea what it's made of- but since it is warm to the touch- I think a natural fiber.


The real thing draped over a chair.  Discharged with bleach I assume.  Gold paint.  White dots (I added them).  If you see me- this cloth is nearby.  I packed it for every trip we used to take. It's not pretty- if fact it's pretty strange looking.  But I would be lost without it.

G and I finished shoveling snow off the apron of the driveway- big snow coming tomorrow, so they say.  And G shoveled a path to the compost bins.  I had a five gallon bucket of compost needing to get to the bin. Back porch got shoveled and we identified all the foot prints from wild life visiting  the back of the house.

We also tried a new seafood restaurant in Town.  G had baked haddock and I had crab cakes. Our waitress was helpful and we had a nice conversation with her.  Expensive but we'll return.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Daily Notes- January 17


Prompt 16 for today: A protective talisman; guardian for your inner realm.  He is quite powerful. And I am quite prickly.  Setting barriers.

As you can see the learning curve for using my pastel crayons was pretty darn quick.  I even went back and did work on the one from yesterday.  Today- hard to see where the magazine images start or finish.  There are six magazine images here.   I like this.  I like blurring the lines on the collage.

It is sunny and very very cold today.  We must continue to shovel snow off the driveway- the snowblower is in pieces in the workshop at John Deere.  Many little things were broken but not noticed right away and parts needed to be ordered and sent. Repeat as necessary.

We did quite a bit yesterday- G an I- the biggest job was the snow the Town plow deposits at the end of the driveway.  Very large amount.  Very heavy. And G cleared in front of the mailbox- "if it isn't clear we don't deliver" is the post office mantra. Thank goodness there was still soup for G to eat. I had soup from Panera (they sell it at the grocery store) but I forgot I had it. I will eat it today.  I might make biscuits.  Haven't done that is a gazillion years.

I have two loads of washing to do so will have time to get at least three pages written in the Washing Machine Pages.  I am feeling more like myself today.  No crying and it's past 2 pm. Daughter is going to read this and text me about the "happy light" again.  I just repeat- I miss my dog.

So I got my haircut (yesterday).  I took a shower (this morning).  I changed my clothes.  I did my daily collage.  I helped G with his pencils.  I had the good 2% milk with my oatmeal (not the fat free) and that was a wonderful thing.  The day is looking good.  I'm in a good place.  Talisman is working.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Daily Notes- January 16th


Prompt 15.  Something about my own original work and how it corresponds with my collage work- I don't remember exactly but this is what I made. What I recalled.  I didn't write it down. I thought I would remember....... I may start drawing more on my pages.

The image at the bottom middle is from a magazine. Above it a slice of postcard.  The rest is me- pastel crayons used in my left hand- I am right handed.  So a lack of control.  Had to be loose.  The pastels are the older ones in a wooden box.  Just what was on the table.  Next to the glue stick. A very strange assortment of colors.  Unorganized use of the pastels.

The pastels improved with the addition of the white crayon.  This is the first page of the additional pages sewn into the center of my collage book yesterday or the day before.  A sort of grey flecked typing paper.  I think we used it with the big office copier.  The copier I use now- small and simple- doesn't like this paper. Not thin and smooth enough.

We went to see Little Women.  I cried thru the entire movie.  I also cried during the preview- they had a movie with a dog- Call of the Wild. Little Women didn't have a dog and the story was the same but so different in the way the director filmed it and it was very emotional.  I was named after Jo.  Little Women was her favorite book.  My mother that is.  She tried to name me for all the other sisters starting with Amy but my father said no and finally said yes to Jo.  In the movie, and the book, I found little to love about Amy.  And I wonder what my mother saw that made her love that sister best.

Thinking about my mother is never a good thing.  It's a really really bad thing.  I will go see the movie again.  Cathartic.  Just to see Jo.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Daily Notes- January 15th


I think that might have been the first time- in a long time- that I didn't post on the blog.  A whole day missing.  I was busy thinking.

This morning I disregarded the instructions on the booklet making.  I made one of many pages and sewed it into the middle of the booklet (if it falls apart- it falls apart).  I did use red thread and ran it over a candle to wax it. I know that is not how waxed thread is made but it certainly made it easier to get the thread through the pages.

And I made additional red squiggled paper and finally pasted down this prompt.  In doing so I discovered this painting of giant crows in a parking lot - upper left corner.  Love that image.  If we were titling our pages this one would be "Collage Community".  It's right smack in the centerfold of the booklet.  I also squiggled additional pages (in other colors) for the "Future".


And because I was looking over my pages to see if they needed "something more" or "less"  I added this rusting spiral to the fence and rocks.  The spiral seems to be reaching out to the fencing.  And the line between the rocks and the sky is connected-  that space bothered me. But all the small thin images didn't work.   This spiral seemed "heavy"  enough.

2019 was the HOTTEST year on record-  for as long as records have been kept.  That means more carbon in the air.  Less trees to absorb it.  The Blue Planet won't be Blue if this continues.

We are going to the movies to see Little Women.  Just deciding to do that small thing together so hard.  We couldn't go to movies for almost a year.  Not together.  Someone, one of us, had to stay home with Riley.  Just deciding to see a movie and just's very very hard.  When do you think I will run out of tears?

Monday, January 13, 2020

Daily Notes- January 13


Prompt 12- The Gift.

Another search and a "gift" that was unexpected.  I found an envelope full of delicious images. I would not have looked in the bookcase for them- I was looking for something else entirely and then got sidetracked into "'cleaning and straightening" .  But here they are.  The green man at the far left for G.  He has so much magic.  The bee image to his right for someone.  She was wanting more bees.  The women at the lower edge and far right.  To this community of women and collage artists.  Having such a Wonderful Time.  Top right- a field of crows and a single crow.  I had been looking for these two pieces of paper.  So a gift to me.  The golden eagle watching over all of us. There is also a very tall man of stone- upper middle- who out there was looking for that?

None of this is pasted down.  I wasn't sure if that was what I wanted to do.  But perhaps I will always be reminded of this challenge when I see these images.  I can send images via the internet.

Another interesting football game or two.  The Teams one thought would win- did not.  Green Bay is moving on- the Team of Wisconsin and G's parents and beloved brother.  I hope they were watching up in Heaven.

Daughter purchased Comic Book Tights on our shopping trip last Friday.  Red, bright blue, yellow. Cartoon figures- classic ones. She just sent a picture- they look amazing and she, of course, is very very happy she bought them. Wearing them to work today. Bam!!  Sorry but I can't think of anymore cartoon words right now. Kapow!

I made chicken soup for G yesterday (again) and I also finally baked our Pumpkin Pie.  It was such a nice experience.  I always forget how much I enjoy making a pie.

Yesterday's email held so many lovely messages-  you are all so dear to me.  The real gift.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Daily Notes- January 12


Prompt Eleven.  A Benevolent Dream Spirit leaves you a gift.  What does it look like?  Hardly like a gift.  I was sent on a search for an image of the dark sky and a moon after I found the starry sky and golden Earth.  The dog has been wanting / trying to be included for many days now but didn't fit the prompt.  Not a dog I know.  A small red dot over his heart and very direct eyes.  I didn't add the red dot on his chest it came with him. Very definitely a him.  Balance with the last letters torn off.  find balance.  The bird also very insistent.  No trimming of the white paper.

I have no idea what this means.  But the number 11 has always been very........magnetic for me. I walk past the microwave or the clocks and if I look, have to look---- it's 11:11 or 1:11.

So- I am resting now from the struggle.  And it was a mighty struggle.

It is dark outside the window.  Shades of grey white, red brown of the shrub branches and black out there. 14:31.  We got rain.  No snow or ice.  38 degrees with 95% humidity.  The lamps reflecting off the antiqued yellow walls makes it feel warmer- not.

We watched the Titans destroy the Ravens last night.  Everyone wondered what it would take to defeat them.  Now we know.  His name is Henry. Number 22-  That's the new face of football.  He even threw for a touchdown.  Red shoes.  Can run like the wind.  If he's playing- I'm watching.

Well, G wants chicken soup so I'd best get cooking.  We had football pizza last night.  Was great. I want to bake a pumpkin pie also. We'll see.  Find balance.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Daily Notes- January 11


Prompt number 10. I was supposed to consider "new paper" that has entered my life since the challenge began.  But this piece of paper was insisting it was Time for it to enter the booklet.  This bird.  Drawn and collaged perhaps 10 years ago (by me) with dictionary pages.  It had joined itself, somehow to the remaining branch of berries from the Tree we made that first day?  In the first days. The papers tangled together.  And as Fate would have it- the bird's length would not fit on any other page- only this one.  The photo thingy cropped the width of the page spread- his tail does indeed end on the very edge of the page.

So my collage for day 10 is this Bird.  Culled from a notebook.  Lost and now found.  And I've provided the bird with berries to eat (as he brought his berries along as a sort of packed lunch).  After adding the bird- the abstract strips of paper from another of the early prompts has become a forest of sorts.  I added the strip of zigzags for the bird to perch.  Matisse's Woman Reading is now canopied by the branch of berries.  A story being written by coincidence.

I am intrigued by the same materials being used and one side of the spread seems darker than the other.  Perhaps the background color the pages in the booklet? Yes, that is what is happening.

We have rain today.  Snow melting as temperatures rise into the high 40's.  Snow. Wind. Ice Storm coming tomorrow.  We have been told to go to the grocery for food and water if needed.  If the power goes out as they are suggesting.  This is when I wish we had a gas stove.

I listened to PBS and the history of hillbilly music.  Gene Autry.  My little record player (in a small plaid suitcase)  my records- red vinyl.  Gene singing.  I still have the little record player case.  My father had taken the record player parts out of it and used it to store his haircutting supplies.  When he passed I brought the little case and the haircutting supplies home with me.  Would have been happy if it was still a record player and my little records were still inside.  Teddy Bears's Picnic.

On the PBS show last night: someone singing You Are My Sunshine with verses I had never heard before.  I think my mother sang the song to us when we were babies. I sang it to my babies as it was the only lullaby I knew.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Daily Notes- January 10th


Prompt Nine I believe.   The whole page came together quite fast.  It seemed to me like the papers for this had gathered themselves together.  All I had to do was trim and decide how much of Bob's song I wanted on the page.  The entire right side is a photographed collage from a magazine page.  I trimmed what would fit and wanted the bird to be flying toward the open hand.  I am very happy with this page.


The two pages together.  Sorry about the glare from the table lamp on the furthest right rock.  The glare also darkened the lower left side of image.   I like the way the two look together.  there might be something in the box of images to fit into the space between the rocks and sky- or not.  Time will tell.

I have been out of the house for hours- road trip with daughter.  And a second visit to Goodwill in a few days.  I did get an LLBean camp shirt.  The old fashioned one- no darts.  It's a larger size than the others but will be nice on a very hot day working with the tomatoes on the driveway.  It's a funny green.  Not bad funny- but odd and even a bit mysterious.  Perhaps was washed with something that had fugitive dye.

I must find FOOD.  Daughter didn't want to stop for food and it's now 4:30 and I am very hungry.

Thursday, January 09, 2020

Daily Notes- January 9th


I drew a nice thick black line across a two page spread. Repeatedly. Pressing hard. Showing you only the one side. It may be enough and I can add or cover the right side with another day's prompt or have it ready for the next tragedy.  The papers on the left had been added when we were putting three circles on random pages.  This circle was appropriately red and angry and the legs and heads (a brown paper bag from the local music store is actually a page in the booklet) seemed appropriate to my anger over the plane crash in Iran.  None of my business.

The day began with G finding my bowl of cooked oatmeal in the microwave.  I didn't eat my breakfast yesterday. Surprise.  I did eat my breakfast today.  Fresh oatmeal.  My head and heart hurt.

I am trying to find something to encourage my reading When Women Were Birds to the end.

As I looked out the bedroom window I noticed the tree shadows in blue gray stretched across the snow- reminding me of all the painters who have painted trees and their shadows rippling across white snow.... across white paper or canvas. And all the blank white pages in her mother's journals.

Perhaps just thinking about that is enough reason to continue reading.

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Daily Notes- January 8th


Reverse of yesterday's prompt. Find an image that expresses you perfectly.  Use it in a way that speaks to an important part of yourself rarely seen.

G had a doctor's appointment this morning- I go along to "remember" for him.  In the waiting room a magazine not often seen there and this image- it was for windows.  The two were warm and safe inside and it was cold and snowy outside. It spoke to me.  And I added the cottage by the sea, the water view.  They both look safe and happy.  What I have always wanted- to be safe and happy.

After the doctor visit (no new prescriptions or tests) we stopped at the library to pick up books.  I was stopped by a very attractive woman who I have spoken to off and on for years- do not know (remember) her name; was a customer at the greenhouse and library.  She came right to the point and asked "Are you still quilting?"  I said yes.  "But nothing large anymore- smaller more abstract things right now".  "Good" she said, "don't stop" and off she went.  And I attention to odd events, Joanne.

The Christmas Tree is outside.  In the snow by the garage until the snowblower gets back home and a path to the bird feeders can be made.  I washed all three of my "daily sweaters" by hand in the kitchen sink- they had all gotten dirty during all the cooking and baking of the holidays.  I have on one of the extra wide (but cropped) sweaters I purchased years ago and failed to return in time.  If I don't notice my sideview in any mirrors (image of circus tent)- I am very happy with this black one.  Cashmere- warm- not fussy-basic.  A modified cowl collar that is almost like the shawl collars I like most of all.  The second one is a terrible grey.  Not slate or silver.  A muddy grey with an weird pink tinge.  I have never worn it. My daughter says I should wear it when doing kitchen chores.  But it's hard for me to wear clothing that makes me feel sad.

It is getting dark out.  My neighbor thanked me for dragging her recycling container back up her driveway to the garage.  She has "new" knees and snowy surfaces are really a challenge.  I was going down to get mine and hers just took an extra 2 minutes.  Why not?  The wreaths just went on.  We didn't take them down today.  One heavy awkward thing was enough.  I need to flip the switch for the two reindeer.

I am reading a new author- in the first few pages she writes that her dying mother is leaving her all her journals.  After the mother dies, the writer goes to the house and finds the journals.  Many, many of them.  Opening the first one- intending to read- she finds blank pages.  All the journals- only blank pages. And then in the book itself- the one I am reading --  blank pages.  So many that I thought they were all going to be blank but eventually words...  Then we got called into the doctor's office.

I am going to read now and find out what this was all about.  "When Women Were Birds" Terry Tempest Williams

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Daily Notes- January 7th


Prompt Six-  Image uncharacteristic to my tastes but still appeals to me as a stand alone statement. Pair with an image that holds it's own weight.  The rocks are a bit too literal but I think they work.

Wire fencing keeping people inside or outside.  These two found each other as I sorted the box for the- well, lots and lots of times.   It speaks to me in emotion not so much in words.  No Target circles needed here.  I am still fussing with Prompt 5.  Adding and then removing things.  Till it's right.

I am now thinking I cannot find the carved eraser stamps because I would want to use them- too much-- in this project. So, not finding them solves that problem.  Collage speaks in images not words. Sort of a universal language anyone from anywhere could understand....  If we have pasted down a coherent set of images.

The tree, itself, hasn't left the house yet.  It's a heavy tree and will take all the strength of the two of us to get it out the front door.  And then I will sweep the needles into the compost pail.  The tree itself goes into the back yard where small animals and birds find shelter from the wind. And the needles will compost there.  When I was younger and stronger of body (the soul stays strong), I would cut each branch away from the center and layer the branches over the compost pile.  Letting the needles drift into the pile as they dried.  This year's tree is too stout.  I would need to use a hand saw. I cannot.

I prepared G's favorite pasta sauce last night while he was checking the Christmas lights for dead bulbs etc. We will have working lights to put on the tree next December if we are not obliterated by an Iranian nuclear bomb before then (they are well and truly more dangerous that North Korea).  These are thoughts I am having lately.  One million people filled the streets. Just imagine that. One million people in the same town center.

So, Time shifts.  My paperwhites have produced their first fragrant white flower.  My orchid has opened it's first white blossom.  It will be a few days until it is opened fully.  But these two make Winter seem less dark. The World less dark. An optical illusion.

Monday, January 06, 2020

Daily Notes- January 6


After midnight.  Covered all the Jackson Pollack.  With brown gift wrap paper.  The back side. The front side had these chalk snowflakes.  A bit of a mistake prior to the covering of Jackson's painting gives us the blue oil crayon.  Mostly covered up.

So....finally I am happy with the "make a tree" collage prompt. And I could go to bed and actually sleep.


This morning's prompt.  A diagonal line with two images that look like they could have a dialogue.  The top image is of women protesting the cutting down of cherry trees on the mall in Washington DC.  They chained themselves to one of the trees.  And today's young women. Yep. they could talk.
Instead of figurative, I went literal.  Sorry, but that's me. I had the women chained to the tree in the bag of scraps I was using. Had to go look for the modern young women.

Watched National Geographic channel last night.  One Strange Planet and then Mars.  There were two rovers that went to Mars.  I wasn't paying attention or it got no press coverage.  There is going to be a third Rover.  In 2021.  And they are training men and women to travel to Mars after the 2021 rover finds out if it's feasible- there is a cave they might live in out of the dust storms.  Mars, I guess, is a dead planet.  It disrupted it's atmosphere (global warming) it's just wind storms and dust.  The rovers are  collecting evidence of how it will go for Earth if we keep on keeping on as we have been.   It takes two years to get there (for people) and two years to wait to come back.  So they'll be gone 6 years I guess.  Or longer if they are the Martian and get left behind.

Happy to see  a friend in New York will be collaging with us.  You should enjoy it.  And D- I was going to try using the pleats as is but now I might open them up- who doesn't like "extra" fabric?  And they are big fat pleats.

The snowblower needs work.  Won't be coming home for awhile as they need to order parts.  Hard to tell what is happening here for weather.  Rain or Snow.  It's very cold. Very grey.

My paper whites (planted on Solstice) are tall now (which is why I needed a tall glass vase for them) and each stem has a flower bud.  One of these mornings we'll have blossoms.  They have a lovely fragrance which some people find over powering. I may be one of "those" people.

The orchid table looks nice and fresh.  They like to be rearranged after they get watered and fed. Two little orphan bulbs I found in the garage are now sending up little green leaves.  I have no idea what they are.  It will be a Spring Surprise.  I did wash yesterday and reheated it in the dryer for a short time and then folded it- all before breakfast.  I'm going to make a second cup of coffee and, sigh,  take the ornaments off the tree.  It is Epiphany.  The 12th day of Christmas.

I will miss the cheerful lights and sparkling ornaments.  The living room will be well and truly empty when the tree is gone.  We even picked up boxes from the liquor store and the drinks cabinet is empty.  But I kept the boxes close by- just in case I need an emergency Gin and tonic.

Sunday, January 05, 2020

Daily Notes- January 5th


The Collage Prompt was to use something you liked in your booklet.  I had picked this collaged flower out of one of my very old journals.  Heavy paper to heavy paper with glue stick- things come off easily.  The page I pasted things down on is a bronze wrapping paper with a shiny surface.  the matt side is folded over to the right of the flower itself.  And I added Target dots.  Every page will have Target dots as a unifier.  For the flower- years ago- I painted pages from a sewing book and then ripped them apart and made things out of the ripped paper.  I also used ink to make the leaves etc.


My tree.  I actually like it but my husband said it was terrible.  And had been much more terrible before this.  I would like to cover up the Jackson Pollack on the bottom.  It was a good idea that didn't work as I imagined it.  But let's just think of it as a autumnal ground cover shall we?  I stuck the little circle there but I have a picture without it.  But not right now, it seems.  Now that I see it here the little Target circle is coming off.

We went to Goodwill and I got three half price linen shirts.  Good colors that I needed.  The red one is fantastic. It has a circular design in the same color over all.  So "interesting" surface as well as color. Texture.  Last night as the Patriots were losing, I went and got the very messy basket of Goodwill linen shirts and shook them out, folded in the sleeves and then rolled them into tall cylinders.  I stacked them, ends up and down and then took notice of the colors I had.  What I needed. One purchase was a white linen shirt with many fat pleats in the front.  If it had been my size I would wear it- I love how it looks.  But I am thinking I will make something special that will benefit from pleats in the design.

As I look at my tree, I am hoping one of the coming prompts gives me some reason to cover up some of the Jackson.

Saturday, January 04, 2020

Daily Notes- January 4


Playing catch up today on which is sponsoring a collage booklet challenge for the month of January and I am late- tardy for class- and worked very very diligently this morning (just finished) and there were tears and a tantrum but it's all okay now.  The first prompt was three circles (or more).  I decided to collage the circles from magazine flower images, library date due stickers (from when I worked at the library) and the target circles.  Mostly to cover up the name and address of the store where the bag came from.


Prompt Two was to tear an image up and then rearrange it on a page in your booklet.  This was a very nice Matisse of a woman reading on the full two page spread.  You are seeing the center.  I added a small amount of date due and Target circles and the shiny torn strips- continuity.

I have to go to the collage site to see what today's prompt is and then get busy.  But I am pretty excited to have my booklet made and days one and two done.  It's a specific image that you want to use with three additions of small things.  So I will go back through my collection of images and find something.  And add three things to it.

I feel good about the continuity thing.  That will be important to my sensibilities as we work thru the rest of January.

It's supposed to rain.  We have almost a foot of "frozen in place" snow and ice, so rain is exactly what we need today.  G and I are NOT very sure the Patriots will win today.  But we'll be watching.  No pizza today.  I forgot and we just didn't want to go to the grocery store again.  G has soup. And I have leftover tomato rice, cheese and black beans. I don't think I have any avocado left.  But that would be appreciated.  And we are out of onions.  So many recipes call for an onion and I just can't make any of them until we buy an onion- even pizza.  Needs an onion.

Friday, January 03, 2020

Daily Notes- January 3rd


Spirit Cloth mentioned her new house has pale yellow walls.  All of the rooms.  I have these faux painted yellow walls for a few more days or so after having painted them the week prior to 2000's New Year.  The painter will need to work on them- the faux was oil based.   Here on the mantel a favorite purchase from years ago.  I have a pair of them. I tend to buy two for symmetry.  The star is one I folded- origami- that Winter a few years ago.  This one using a page from a book of maps.

One bookcase is packed away.  One entire dish cupboard in the kitchen was re-imagined and now contains so much more and looks more spacious.  Another group of bags and boxes was delivered to Goodwill.  The bookcase to the left of the fireplace holds Hummels collected over many many years of G traveling in Europe.  They will need careful cleaning and then packing.

And I need to stop somewhere to ask for two boxes to store liquor bottles.  I have quite a few bottles- none opened.  And in that same space a Chinese Tea Set and an Irish Tea Set and other small items from foreign travels.  Those I can pack also.  That's my task for today.  I have tissue paper.  Boxes out in the garage need to be opened and taped.

On my morning walks with Riley on Garbage Days in early November- we selected "good boxes" from our neighbor's recycling- they all seemed to be doing early Christmas shopping in November or were just avid shoppers.  And I stopped in at work in the days they were getting in the Christmas stuff and got a few good boxes- nothing too large.  Neither G nor I could carry a large heavy box up the stairs to the big Attic. Smaller ones- we'll see how that goes but my way of doing it is to lift a box up two steps and then another until I get to the top.  No carrying them in my arms.  I am "tippy" enough on stairs- without adding a box.

Watched BBC news on the Australian fires.  I didn't know Australia dug and shipped coal as a major element of their economy and the economies of other countries.  And burned coal in their power plants.  They may have created their own hell on Earth.

The big truck is here to pick up the snowblower.  Hope they can fix it today.

I have to use the touch pad as my mouse has stopped working.  Sorry if  I didn't correct all the mistakes!!!

Thursday, January 02, 2020

Daily Notes- January 2


My first sheet of dots.  Colored.  And an image of the color way/design of my collage book.  The one I am making this month.  I have been sorting thru stacks of magazine tear-outs from years of tearing out pictures.  I used them in my journals but also had a tub of them ready for doing future journal pages.  I liked to have a picture pasted to the pages and I would write all around the pictures.  So many very nice pictures in those many many journals.  Easier to remove from the oldest books.  I used more glue stick in the more recent years.

I also plan to draw and paint a few things to use in my collage book.  And yes, this is the Target logo/bag design.  With multiple sizes of the circles.  These days it's just one big circle.

The food cupboard- well, I looked in the left side where G's stuff is stored and found a full, unopened box of MY cereal.  Yes!  The Magic Food Cupboard!!!!! Well, just this once- there is nothing else in there.  Later today the Polish pottery dishes will get stacked in the very back.  While the Painter is here.  Painting. Everything. White.  Except for the dark brown hardwood floors.  Which look delicious with the white.

Very very cold here in Maine. No sun.  Everything out the windows is brown, black or white (looks like the collage stuff up top and my home- a theme).  A squirrel was on the window sill this morning, little paws on the window, standing, belly pressed to the glass- wanting to come inside or wanting me to feed him. I wasn't quick enough to get his picture.

We will be going out for a ride in the car later.  I called in a prescription for my inhaler and we need a few additional food supplies.  G has soup to eat but I need something to eat that is warmer than carrot sticks and hummus. We have eaten almost all of the Christmas food.  G has announced that there are NO More Cookies.  And he would like me to make more.

But first job today is emptying one of the units next to the fireplace. I have boxes and newspaper for packing and tape for closing the boxes.  And in a few days, the tree needs to be undecorated and taken down.  I usually wait until Epiphany.  The 12th day of Christmas.  My knowledge of these things/dates isn't all that great  so if any of you know the exact date- please let me know.

Wednesday, January 01, 2020

Daily Notes- January First 2020


My Solstice Paperwhite Bulbs have grown so much.  And each grouping has a few swollen flower buds at the tips.  I can look down into the glass vase and see the white roots growing in the stones and water I give.  New growth in Winter.

We went to bed before midnight and got up late- the Sun already filling the bedroom with light. I wanted toast for breakfast- something crisp and crunchy. No bread in the house.  So I climbed up on the kitchen ladder and looked deep in the cupboard where cereal is stored.  Way back a rolled up bag with just enough for one bowl.  Wheat and Bran shredded biscuits.  Followed by a buttery shortbread cookie.

The climb up the kitchen ladder also brought me to the boxes and jars of things no longer fresh and no longer necessary.  Wheat Bran. Old Tea Bags  Other things now happily tucked into the compost bucket.  I used the brush to sweep the cupboard clean and later today the heavy Polish Pottery will be shoved to the way back to be stored during the painting of the cupboard it fills in the living room.  More decorative than useful. But still loved.  By me. I need boxes for the liquor cabinet.  Which is full of bottles.

I spent a wasted hour or more reading comments on a "tidying" post.  One hundred and forty four LONG comments.  People have quite a bit to say about getting rid of things.  My eyes feel "greasy" meaning I have worn them out reading on a screen.  A phone screen.  Not the way I want to go forward in the New Year.  Tidying the drinks cupboard???

I noticed I need some additional felt tree ornaments for next Christmas- white with green stitches on the edges and red button ornaments.

I made a very nice pot of chicken soup for G yesterday.  And did two loads of wash while writing my three pages in the journal.  I folded the first load out of the dryer but the second needed more time as it held heavy lined pants that G wears for snowplowing.  Under his ski pants.  He is wearing the new orange waterproof gloves.  Loves them.  Good gift.

Our contractor came to plow our very long driveway and 10 inches of snow yesterday afternoon.  Our snowblower stopped working and will need service tomorrow.  Not open today.  We think a belt snapped.  We felt well and truly TRAPPED with no way out.  We could walk out to the street but the car wasn't going anywhere.  We each tried shoveling.  I made it down the sidewalk --- one shovel width down the driveway to rescue the recycle can that got hit by the garbage truck.  Still full of papers.  The snow was just too full of water and very heavy and G had gotten rid of all the good shovels (that could push snow off the side of the driveway like a small plow) and kept the one shitty plastic shovel.  The man makes strange decisions.  The snow slipped right off the plastic shovel.

Anyway the driveway is clear of snow- the grass along the edges- where the plow scrapped is toast and we can drive out in an emergency.  When G spent half the Winter away from home on business trips- I hand shoveled that driveway after each and every storm and still got to work on time- well, once it was too deep at the end and I couldn't get out. Someone from work came and picked me up. And I used the no longer here shovels to push the heavy snow- not lift it.

I will not dwell.   But it's really hard not to.