Sunday, December 31, 2023

Winter Notes- Sunday, December 31st. Sunshine, 34 degrees and Green Grass. In Maine.

 Lemons Today   Postcards from Provence.

I am wondering how long it takes for him to do these paintings?  I like the background of worn slate.

So, Son is doing laundry- he sets a timer to go off on his iPhone.  I think the iPhone also lets him know when its time for meals and snacks.  I thought this was odd in the beginning but he can get lost in his computer games etc makes sense now.  And when he comes down the stairs I have a general idea of what time it is.  Like having a clock chiming the hour.

We have sunshine today.  The snow is all just a thing of the past..... It feels strange to be entering January with green grass.......would be stranger if the trees had leaves. ...but in a few years...that might also be something that happens.  Eventually my yard and house will be part of the Atlantic Ocean.  Yes, dear Readers ...the Ocean is that close...a few miles. 

Birds are visiting the bird feeders.  Street is quiet- not even one person out walking their dog.

I was up late reading a very "sexy, fun" book from the quote on the cover.  30 Days.  She wrote a second- 30 Nights --but none of the libraries in my search engine has the second book.  2015 isn't that long ago.

So...on to the PILE and choosing the book for today....I will not be finishing a book today as we have several football games to watch.  And Football Pizza to make... with mild banana peppers and pineapple additions.  We checked the tv schedule to choose the games we will be watching.

It hasn't taken us much time to adjust to each other and make plans etc... that we can both look forward to. We decided which games to watch and agreed on the ones we would NOT watch.

Well, the afore mentioned SUN has clouded over and I have to turn on lights.... 

Saturday, December 30, 2023

Winter Notes- Saturday. December 30th. Careful What you Say- It's SNOWING

 Another Image from Postcards From Provence.  Julien Merrow-Smith.

It's Snowing here in Maine- Not sticking as the ground is still warm-ish.  Son filled the porch bird feeders. We get regular the Bird Feeder Rule is "if you start, you must continue" especially in Winter.  If birds are feeding at one spot and then you stop---they go without food until they find another feeder or a Winter tree with berries.  Otherwise- they starve.

The ONE TIME I was asked (allowed) to do the Bird Class at the Greenhouse I was very strong in my thoughts about Feeding Birds.  My employer never let me teach that particular class again.  I also have water available near the Winter I carry my electric tea pot out to fill the frozen birdbath with hot water-  melting the ice.  It freezes again but ...the ice they peck is fresh.  In Spring, I dump and fill  the bird baths every day (with cold water) as they are ALL needing a BATH.

I know..."regular pain in the ass".  I am the poster child for the sign VIRGO.

So...what are you all doing?  Son and I are working on eating/finishing the Christmas Food. Thank Goodness we did NOT bake cookies...... 

Son has just had his Lunch and I had just finished my oatmeal before he came down.  We are not on the same meal schedule.  He has a four hour rotation????I am not sure about that.  I do know it's four separate meal times and one of those is a snack.  I think he has a reminder on his phone.  He feels my "no schedule" eating is worrisome.... as I am not eating the prepared food in the fridge as he expected... I do get around to every so often but not "regular".  But somedays, I just like TOAST.

Friday, December 29, 2023

Winter Notes- Friday December 29th- A Mouse, A Calendar and Groceries.

 Terrarium Building Kit.

I used to teach a class at the Greenhouse and we built Terrariums.  I think I have the glass bowl around here somewhere.  Very difficult to keep them alive. Everyone- me too- overwaters them.

I visited Staples and got a 2024 Desk Calendar and it is under my keyboard right now....  very smooth and new and each date block has the correct day number and lines for journal writing if I want- Or Book Lists.

3:15 and I needed to turn on the house lights.....

We got power back last night around 8:30.   Then Son went out and shut off the generator- he's getting to be quite good at it.  Husband was not.  I don't think he had the arm or shoulder strength to pull the thing that gets the generator going- we needed a push button starter.   We (son and I) continue the debate on the whole house generator.  Which I would need when he returns to California.  And I decide to remain in this house. 

 I was pretty sure I would (remain in this house)......but now I am not so sure.  Son is upstairs quite a bit so I am getting a very good "taste" of living alone.......and I might not want to live Alone in the Woods.  But I might be okay with a Cottage Community and a generator.  Depends on the neighborhood.  And the Neighbors.

Some Communities are quite snotty and like to play Bridge.  I can do Snotty but never have understood Bridge.  

Thursday, December 28, 2023

Winter Notes- For December 28th. written the night before at 11:02

 Another of Julian Merrow-Smith's paintings.

The power went out AGAIN.....this has never happened before (so many power failures in a row so close together)...and it's not the best introduction to Maine for the California Son.  He put up with candles for 30 minutes and then went out to drag the generator out of the garage and got it going ( I think it was raining also).........after a few hours the power came back...we think it was something on Middle Bay Road. To the left and around corner from here. We'll need more gas in the can if this continues.  

Son sat at the table in the living room doing a puzzle by candle light...and then noticed lights on across the I texted my neighbor to tell her the power was back on...they had gone first to the Library- so the tiny grand daughter could play (run around)..and then to generator. So no way to cook....  My neighbor was happy to be able to come back home.  Son and I were happy to have the power back-- upstairs where he has his computer and internet. ( he went right up)

We decided to move the grocery day to tomorrow.  I need milk for cereal and creamer for my coffee. And oranges or pears for my daily fruit serving.  I might also get red grapefruit to eat with yogurt and Bran Buds.  I also need oatmeal and Bran Flakes. We have a list.....and Monday is another of those Pesky Holidays when things are the Library.

I finished my book.  I am going to buy a copy to own and read whenever the mood strikes me. A good solid love story.... 

I put on a load of got interrupted by the power failure- during the dry cycle and not the wash. Thank Goodness.   Well, it's bedtime- past it good night.  Sweet dreams...

Winter Notes- Thursday, December 28th. Working on my Desk Top Calendar.

 Sometimes we see ART on blogs and can't SEE the SIZE of it.  These images on a screen could seem be page sized but are actually WALL SIZED.  

My eyes are very dry.  House AIR is drying them.....this is not new- it's a Winter Problem- I have drops but need to have them on the dining table- breakfast, newspaper and eye drops.

Any OTHER YEAR--that would not be a problem- the drops would be right there.  But I don't get out of the house like usual any more.  Just on Monday. If it is not a Holiday.  It was...I didn't...and my eyes are dry. I have a bottle of drops by my Reading Spot.... in the living room... I'm going to get them......

I was adding a few images to my December desk top calendar. before coming here... daughter always got me a fresh one each Christmas. Not this year...I am going to have to ask Son to make a special trip past the Office Supply place (Staples) on Monday .  To buy one. Because decorating, drawing, writing and pasting things to a surface under this keyboard is now HABIT and I would miss's part of what I I live my Quiet Life.

I remembered to eat supper.  Yesterday.  It was good.  Then I washed my dishes.  I think I will put eggplant on the shopping list- but first we need a shopping list to be taped to the microwave door.  I think I want to make some breaded fried eggplant to eat next week- after or with the Christmas Food.

Shopping List was on the Microwave....

My Christmas Card arrived in North Georgia.  Minus a few sparkles. Brother emailed to ask- where do I put them?   My reply--anywhere. That's how I do it.

I am reading a book- The Lost Recipe for Happiness.  Barbara O'Neal.  2008.  So well written that I forgot to go to bed. The book before this one- Main Character Energy was so good- I am going to order a copy from my local independent book seller.  When I get a chance to go there.... I will order both books.

I am getting my new wall calendar for 2024 ready to hang on the wall-- I bought it at the grocery store..  My doctor's appointment. That's it for stuff to write on the new month/year so far.

I think 2024 is going to be a very very Quiet Year.

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Winter Notes- Wednesday, December 27th. Another Dismal Wet Rainy Day.

 Another picture from the same artist as yesterday.  Red Pear this Time.  I have a drawing of a red pear somewhere.  I should go looking and I should also make a New Year Resolution to at one a week. I have a vague feeling I saw some of this Artist's work years ago and that is why I have the Pomegranite Drawings.  Possibly why I have a Pear.  It seems likely........and now I find this artist again. Like Fate has a hand in this re-discovery. A Nudge. In Hallmark speak- a Godwink.

We had a Family Meal together yesterday.  There was the usual bickering... but now I realize it's just the way we deal with each other......because we are all, consciously or un- trying to be the "best" at anything. I usually give up on that......older and slower and just not really trying anymore.  Who cares if I dice onion better than you do????

After the visit to the new kitchen next door I am really WANTING a WOLF RANGE with Red Knobs..... which is 20 years TOO LATE.....I just don't cook anymore.......I'm happiest with a grilled cheese sandwich with the addition of a whole lot of sweet pickle slices.  Finally at 77 I have lost my appetite for food. I miss meals etc.....just not hungry.  I did eat TWO Desserts at Christmas Dinner.

My Additional Medicare Coverage sent me the listing of all charges made...for husband.....pages and pages and pages. Lots of them denied. And they sent my new card.  Just mine.  So much washed over waves of memory....the bad days and the worse days...all in the past but I am in a very fragile place right now....just going yo finish reading a possibly good romance.......hard to say at the halfway point- things are moving very very slowly.  I could still be disappointed.

My eyes are dry...from salty tears or just dry Winter house.....Hallmark was even a disappointment yesterday.  I need to find a new source of entertainment.. to Kansas City Football.  Difficult to say why things are going so badly....for some teams and not others.... Lamar Jackson and the Ravens!!!! Locally we all love Zappe. 

Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Winter Notes- Tuesday, December 26th. Misty ( 97% humidity) and 42 degrees. House Lights on.

 I found a website where Julian Merrow-Smith does an oil painting each day (or perhaps just several a week) and puts them up for auction to highest bidder.  There is a web site, Postcards From Provence- which is a daily painting blog.   I selected this image because of the Pom.

My Artist Model Pom is still on the kitchen counter waiting for me to draw.....sketch...paint or whatever.

This painting was already auctioned off...when I discovered the site.  To say I love the image would not be close enough to how I feel about it. It makes me very happy.

So...dinner with the neighbors was wonderful.  Their Christmas Tree was lovely as usual.  One of the twins played Christmas music for us on the piano.  Grandmother had died a few months before my husband.  So A's father and I talked about grieving a bit.  He seems as lost as I am.  But he has a new puppy to care for and I have my Son visiting......the puppy is young and very curious.

What is lovely is that the older, so much larger dog (Twins pup) has taken on the duty of protecting the puppy and teaching it manners..  It was wonderful to see......they go out together and the older dog corrals the puppy back into the house ....

This post disappeared for a bit and I had to get it back here.... son is doing laundry and has just finished eating lunch.  I just finished eating breakfast.  One in the afternoon.

At around dessert time the couple next door to me arrived and joined the conversation.  Later they walked me home (son had asked to be excused after desert) and I got to see the results of all the banging and noise of the work being was well worth whatever it cost them.....gorgeous.  The Wolf Cooktop with Red Knobs......stuff I dream about.  The husband does something similar to what my son does.  

So now I KNOW the next door neighbors I complained about (the noise and hammering at 7 am)  And I like them.  Everyone had watched the Bernstein program on Netflix recently....with mixed reviews.  Carol (my new friend) told me to do the intro thing to Netflix- watch the movie and cancel....  I am sitting here smiling.....if I ever get Netflix.....I am keeping it....Just for the Chef Table series. Both couples found the program disappointing as none of them liked the way it ended....what did you think ..if anyone reading this saw the program?.  

Well, it is really dark in the house and I have to go turn on all the one o'clock in the early afternoon........a very SOMBER DAY.

Monday, December 25, 2023


 I managed to have saved an image for TODAY.

We did a Full Day of European Traditional Pierogi Making and Cooking Yesterday.  Results were Delicious!!!!!  I got to add a few tips to son's management of the entire meal.  And I offered to crimp the edges of each filled pasta rectangle.  My Artistic Abilities.

Today the house smells of onions and butter...We smell the same.  I took two showers and hope my hair isn't stinky.....we are invited down the street for Christmas Prime Rib and other delicious food and drink. Gary and I went last year and I met the Twin's Grandmother.  We had a delightful conversation.  She has passed as has Gary so- today's lunch with be more subdued.  Missing them both.

Overcast today with no sunshine..... 44 degrees.  Lovely for Maine.  A large percentage of the small Maine Population is still suffering the losses of the recent wind and rain storm.  Bridges still out. Houses that flooded and ruined the small amount of gifts under the and friends being missed because they are still missing in the flood waters....  It's a Snowless Maine December......

We are not doing a Tree or Gifts.  In Truth, just being together is gift enough for all of us.

Football games yesterday and then some saved Hallmark Movies.  Ones I love.  Then to all a Good Night. 

Wishing you all a DRY, WARM and Happy Christmas......

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Winter Notes- Sunday December 24th.. Clouds but no snow at 40 degrees in Maine.

 Son was up early.  Prepping the Traditional Christmas Eve Food.  He had baked two potatoes for the Pierogi stuffing I like.  I just mixed the potato with a small chopped onion skipping the butter I used to add- as it made things a bit too difficult (slippery) to tuck inside the noodle dough covering. 

I watched a Hallmark movie before bedtime and then set another to record- spin on Bethlehem. A woman in distress with a newly adopted baby and no rooms at the Inn..  I liked the actors.  Which, in this new rendition of "what Joanne will or will not watch on Hallmark" makes all the difference.

I have a NYT's bestseller waiting to be read- 7 day loaner.  Heaven and Earth Grocery Store.  I haven't tried Demon Copperhead again... I am not in the right headspace for that story. Might never be unless I submit to THERAPY.  Lots of Therapy.

My eyes are dry.  The house air is dry. I woke up several times during the night thinking it was was NOT.  A restless quality to my sleep.  Anxiety?  I don't know what it is..but I am slightly off center. I need to start a new shopping list and add dry eye drops.....this is a Winter Problem.

Yesterday I made coffee twice and forgot both cups on the counter.....walked away.  Did come back eventually and reheated the second cup and just finished it (cold) 20 minutes ago. This is not new behavior. This is what I do....have done, will continue to do.....

Son is now mixing dough (noodle) in his big mixer- very squeaky.  He is in charge of the meal and I am just doing the potato filled ones...  I don't think I used the mixer......but...I actually don't remember.  It's bee a few years since I made this Christmas Eve Meal.....

Bengals let me down last night.  Patriots are a sure bet to let me down today.

Saturday, December 23, 2023

Winter Notes- Saturday, December 23rd. Chilly Morning. 32 with Sunshine.

 My eyes are TOO DRY this morning so, difficult to see what's what in the picture files.  But this looks good. I have a lot of this kind of pine tree in the yard...not that many pinecones (if any)..... Here in Maine the grass is still green.  And it looks very little like the Usual Maine Christmas.  LOTS of ACORNS. Called a Mast Year.  In the past...the yard would be full of deer late in the evening and early in the morning...eating acorns.  I saw one.  One far.

Last evening ALL my neighbors had a fire going in their fireplaces....festive but made it difficult for me to breathe. I tried sleeping in my bedroom but the fire smoke somehow traveled in thru the drier vent in the bathroom... so I had to carry my bedding out to the couch....the same couch where I slept (sort of) while G was in the hospital bed- trying to get out of it between 3 and 5 am... I fell asleep and woke up to morning sunshine.  It's such a gift these days- to be able to sleep...... 

I thought about that and then just pulled the down blanket over my head and went to sleep.

I called and checked on my Annual Doctor's Appointment.  My first with this new doctor.  January 2nd at 3 pm.  I forgot to ask if they had COVID shots.  My friend uses the same doctor and she said they were very very busy the day of her appointment.....everyone there sick with COVID it seemed.  My friend had something else.  A cough, ear infection and something else.  I hope she is feeling better.

Today we are having Football Pizza.  My son loves the scheduled food events..... smiling....I tend to live an Unscheduled Life but eat Scheduled Meals.... I did not know this about I do. Live and Learn.

Friday, December 22, 2023

Winter Notes- Friday, December 22nd. Mail was Delicious Today

 Trees that I made...  Upper right corner is now on it's way to Georgia and my Brother and Sister in law. tomorrow you get to see what they sent me-- just arrived seconds ago!!!!  It had to be flatter than the ones with the stars as this one went in the mail... the ones with plastic stars will be delivered in person.

This is a handmade card from Paula in Colorado.  She also supplies me with tiny left over balls of yarn from sock making..... that I use to pair my beloved sweaters.  I am so touched that she sent me trees.  I actually sighed when I opened the envelope and saw the little trees.  So...ME!!!

As usual, something has gone haywire with the centering.  But I am not in the mood to fix it now. so we will just go with it...There is one more gift from my brother and sister  ( let's just skip in law from now on) I rather like having a sister.

So, that is my outgoing and incoming mail for today.  Son shopped for the Christmas Eve Food. He is making Pierogi for us...with all his fancy machines- which I now realize- I actually have in my cupboards and forgot owned- Kitchen Aid accessories.  He forgot the detailed home... so as he unpacked his shopping bags I checked the items off...He got everything.

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Winter Notes- Thursday, December 21st. Did some Art Work.

 I am not quite ready to try sending images to the desktop.  But I will, eventually, take a picture of one of the cards I made today.  They are all the same but not exactly the same.  A set of four.  

I asked Peggy to come across the street for first pick...she frames all the cards I make and give to her... I love going over there and seeing them....when she is on vacation and I am picking up mail.  She selected the first of the four.  Signed and numbered.  I need to make and send one to my brother and his wife.  They sent an email with one of the older cards- in a frame....Which is very lovely to see.

These new cards are not what I usually do...but I am not who I usually am.....and possibly will not be that version of myself ever again.  I am not someone's wife.  I am just me. Floating free.

My hair is getting longer and more curly as the weeks go by.  The few people who have seen it- like it.. and ask me to let it grow and not get it cut short again.....they also like the "temporary" replacement glasses.  Not red. So. this is interesting..  I might no longer BE who I was........ visually.

Feels strange.  But then everything feels strange.  Really.  Everything feels strange.

Well, it's time to start watching TV- I record the cooking shows on PBS.  I watched a half hour of them making soup yesterday....Nothing I would make.  Then I watched a recorded Movie- Christmas Groundhog Day take off.....every day she woke up and it was the same day.......till she got it right

I am waking up trying to get each day right......trying is the important word here. Sigh.  But I made ART today...even if it's just a few cards....felt great.  Green trees--not brown ones.  I had to search every fabric storage tub to find green shiny fabric...but I found it.  Merry Christmas.!!!  To Me.

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Winter Notes- Wednesday, December 20th. Sunshine and Electricity.

 So...the heat is back on....well, it was with the generator as well, it's the power grid. We did the Library and the Grocery- though the Library was always open....we could have gone sooner. The bridge to the next Town over is closed- water coming up over the road.  Some Towns are under water today. 

Like not having power or heat in December isn't BAD ENOUGH- now your house fills up with cold water....

Power came back on after dark last night--also after we filled the generator with extra gas. Sigh.

No way to empty it.  I suggested working a reverse suction thing- my dad would know what I mean.  to move the gas from the generator back into the gas can...  Son just looked at me like I had lost more of my marbles...HE feels like I am losing more marbles every day.

Library was fun today- I didn't find many books but still have quite a few I haven't read yet.....on the shelf. I saw Carol- a co-worker when I was first hired at the Library ...and also Steve who was the Library Director when I was hired.  Lovely people.  Both of them.  Happy to see them.

I bought dried sweet apricots, pistachios, and shortbread cookies.  For myself.  Holiday Snacks.

All, that all..Santa isn't stopping at our no one is buying anything......though Son could use a reflective vest for night time walks.  I could NOT find the one I wore when walking Riley at 11 pm each night.  We did find Riley's vest...sigh.

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Winter Notes.....We have Power Again...It's been a TRIP!! Generator etc. 300K without power.

 Gosh...where to begin.....the power went out... we had to haul out the generator and figure out how it worked (minus husband)....but before that....we went to bed with no lights and no heat........I actually gave up and went  to bed at 5 pm... my son saying "it's five pm!!!"  and I said....I don't  care.   I took my little battery operated book light and read a book bundled to the chin in TWO down comforters..... I got out of bed at around 9 am today.   We figured out the generator.....we figured out the refrigerator- (needed the generator to go faster) but I lost all the ice cream and a few other items..... and now the generator is FULL of gas so we need to run it till its empty.  No way to empty it.  

I carried a heavy bag of ruined freezer and fridge food out to the garbage men this morning.... they waited for me at the bottom of the driveway- I must have looked demented as they had worried expressions on their faces.

We also smell of gasoline.. but with the generator we got hot showers.....glorious hot showers.

But it's over for us and daughter got power back yesterday (did not share that info).......son was just sitting and reading emails when he looked out the window and said- "oh, Peggy has power"  and we both realized Peggy did not have a had POWER!!!!   He has now gone upstairs to chat with a friend in Las Vegas. to just clear his head.....this has been intense...for him...I just roll with  it after so many years of this CRAP.....I am calling the Generator People....putting out the big bucks for the whole house thing...... anyone buying this house will want to have a generator already installed.  Selling the small generator we have - someone will be thrilled to own it.

In the coming days we'll be cooking and baking and making detailed notes for the NEXT POWER this is Maine.  So many old, sick, half dead trees lining the roads...tangled into the power lines....just waiting for a good 30 mile an hour wind storm....people died...hit by falling trees or a fall off their roof trying to remove a fallen tree....... tomorrow I think we are baking cookies.... but I will think about those father's, brothers and husband's... so very very sad.

I have one sentence- underground power lines...Please!!!!

And here I am writing to YOU!!!!  My friends from everywhere.......possibly watching the news and not seeing  posts and being I am writing this like just minutes after the generator shut off. and the internet came back to us....I might actually watch some's been three days.....My neighbor with a generator filled my thermos with boiling water so I could make tea at home.......and offered me a hot her house  but bathrooms were the second rooms we put on the generator- after the boiler.. Priorities. A hot shower...necessary!!!

I haven't even started on my cards....I am guessing they will arrive in the New Year when and IF I get going on them..... it's very late....December 19th.  Time either moves very very slowly for me- or seems to skip ahead at blinding speed.....I feel  like I am moving out of step with everyone else.

Sunday, December 17, 2023

Winter Notes- Sunday December 17th. Waiting for Rain

 Might have had this image already but...this old computer is getting ready to die.   It's like everything or person in my Life right now has a ticket for some other destination..... sigh. Computer, car, husband.

Next thing the Library will cancel my card.  But I just renewed it?????

I keep getting the SAME bills from the NEW oil company in Boston- I paid them....  I have to go into the bank tomorrow to see if the checks arrived and cleared.....I am developing a DEEP and Overwhelming Dislike for Boston Propane.....

Hospice sent me information on six different programs relating to grief..... It is nearly impossible to miss someone who was never actually HERE for ME.  We shared the same address.  I am now trying to work on bills and other things...passwords that he kept there a program for that????

I got the TiVo settled.  No more urgent messages....of being cancelled.

I still need to get my car out of the garage....onto a tow truck and shipped to a place where it can get fixed. And possibly sold.

Everyone says I should drive's been 18 months...I am not going to drive it. Where would I go? In Maine?  We don't even have a movie theater any more...... not that I ever went to see movies.

Son and daughter went out to eat and explore downtown....they got me four raspberry jelly donuts.  And news that the Donut Shop was closing right when they visited and would not open again until February. I ate one donut and wrapped and tucked the other three in the freezer. for later...... January and February.

Sigh....I watched some cooking shows....some Hallmark Christmas Movies.  Just a bit of news.  Rudy has a large house in Florida that he will have to sell and a New York apartment.  He could also try and collect some of the cash Trump owes him.......good luck with that....but I hope Rudy has one adult child with an extra room for him to sleep in going forward...... I think there is a grief seminar for that.

Saturday, December 16, 2023

Winter Notes= Saturday, December 16th. Sunshine and 41 degrees at 9 am.

 I am thinking about ham.

I am up very early today- well......before my usual time getting up. do NOT understand why I am up.

I did get all the storage containers holding quilting cloth into husband's closet- I removed the bars that held hangers.  Son DID want his father's jeans... and quite a few of his shirts.... Lots of husband's jeans were rolled at the bottoms so- now unrolled for son's height.  I think I got most of the jeans from Bean when I was working- they usually were twenty five cents each.  Stuff customers returned.

I held back ONE very deluxe pair of corduroy pants- dark chocolate brown. Might fit me.  Might need tucks.  And I don't give a damn what I look like anymore..... who looks at old women anyway???

I still have TIME to get my homemade cards that I have room to work in the sewing room.

I found some more shiny fabric I can use for the trees.

I am VERY tired.  I never did find a chart for the stages of SORROW.....but I am moving thru some and then backwards......I tend to have periods during the day of crying.....mostly due to the paperwork... I have a list of things to get DONE..and the BOSTON Oil Supply Company keeps sending me invoices for things i already paid......seriously pissing me off.

I watched one Hallmark Christmas Movie and started a second.... I set it to record as it looked sort of interesting but I was getting sleepy.  

It's Saturday so Cooking Shows on PBS.  I have some stuff in the washer- waiting till I have enough for a load........Daughter came by and emptied a cabinet where I had- unknown to me....stored half a million empty jars for chocolate fudge sauce.  Which I eat straight out of the jar.  Self Medicating at some point....not lately though........we had been looking for empty jelly jars...I must have put them in recycling......Daughter makes a layered cookie and cream dessert in the jars that I requested for Christmas..

She is still on a NO wheat diet so......she will join us for Christmas Meals but bring some of her own food. Christmas Food  (regular) has wheat flour so she will buy some Alternative Things and bring them to Christmas Eve Dinner.  But I think Christmas Day Tacos will be okay.... We do love our Christmas Day Tacos.. I might make the Boozie Chocolate Bundt Cake.....she won't eat it....but I do love it.  With vanilla ice cream.

 Son and I are invited to Christmas Dinner down the street.... Prime Rib. so all of that needs to be worked out.  Scheduled.

Friday, December 15, 2023

Winter Notes- Friday December 15th. How did I miss another day?????

 We've had the mushrooms before---- I missed posting yesterday.  It's like a memory loss hiccup or something. But here I am now...  the sun is shining and it's 30 degrees.  Next week we will get into the 50's on Monday.  Or...on a happier note---I could have been too busy to post.....I like that spin on it.

If you want to experience Global Warming- come visit Maine.  We're on the front lines.  30 one day then 50.

I called TiVo and...well, in order to get anywhere I threw in the "my husband is dead" card.  And well, it worked. The account is in my name (now) under my credit card (now) and the 3 month backlog--for when husband's card was hacked and Visa shut him in the past... and will be billed to my card.

I had a flash back to the Time husband's card was hacked and that very difficult conversation with the credit card guy....I cried...he was so us both thru it.  The Beginning of the End.

I watched Round and Round again.  The Jewish Holiday Groundhog Style Movie on Hallmark.  I liked it again.  I made Stanley Tucci's mom's pasta sauce with carrots and tomatoes.... from the Netflix series he hosted.  I have it in the TiVo.  I love my TiVo.  I didn't have the petite diced tomatoes...I had the bigger chunk tomatoes.  So the sauce isn't quite the same- but still very very delicious.

Son and I discussed the  "thing" about adding a poached egg to food.  The cooking shows on PBS did that yesterday.....adding a poached egg to a bowl of soup.  I love poached eggs....but neither of us liked them in soup.   

I need to add Parmesan Cheese to the shopping list taped to the front of the microwave.

I carried one of the sewing room storage containers to the bedroom closet (husband's closet) check if it fit.  It fit.

So today I will be listing the contents on each storage container, taping the list to the side of the container and moving them into husband's bedroom  closet which is empty.  And then I will have ROOM to walk around in the sewing room/office.  And it won't seem like I am working in a storage locker.  I need to move husband's pants to the Goodwill Box...Son is too tall for the pants and Daughter already took what she wanted.  I thought about trying on pants but ...husband was shorter than I am and...why???

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Winter Notes- Wednesday. December 13th. Sunshine and 32 degrees

 Something with Holiday Spirit today.   We used to have stockings but I think one year husband gathered them up with the wrapping paper on Christmas Morning and put all of it....into the garbage. Never saw the stockings again.

My Lunch Buddy and I are having lunch today- 11:30.   I am getting OUT of the HOUSE.....

I spent some quality time emptying a few shelves looking for something yesterday.....I found a lot of things longer seem relevant.  Like old magazines.  Perhaps I wanted them for images....for the notebooks I filled with writing..... Now the recycling box is full.

My love of Reading has always fed a need to write.....not a book or anything like that....but pages and words and feelings etc....writing. the process of it here on the desktop or on the Washing Machine longer needed as I can set the brand new machine going and walk away.....  the new machine changed me...and now I no longer write anything on any pages.  This writing doesn't exist on paper.

My book... Charm City about two older (well, here they consider 40's old)  meet and get along. I am at the point when I think they will no longer be getting along.... family has decided to interrupt.

There is something I want to write about...but can't.  Now that I know both my children (are they still called that in their 50's?) read these posts..I have to type and then delete...or explain myself.....sigh.

Watched Round and Round on Hallmark.  Groundhog Day with Jelly Doughnuts.   Rom Com.  It got a bit confusing as more and more characters got involved....but I am happy I recorded it.  Will watch it again. The new movies this year are better than usual.  So that is a bonus.  Well, I need to drink my coffee and read the newspaper.   I did make a Christmas Tree but Son said it looked wrong for the tree to be brown. Well, a bronze/green.  But he thought it looked like a Dead Christmas Tree Card.  There was glittery multi colored threads..... sigh.  I like it.

Monday, December 11, 2023

Winter Notes- Monday the 11th of December. Shopping, Library and Post Office checked off.

 I think it rained quite  a bit last night.  Son said he heard it....I slept thru it.  Some other adult is "keeping watch" and I am on furlough.  The Weather People on TV blew the whole thing up....but we are on the coast and the ocean is still warm.  In the 40's today.

Football yesterday.  Some good games and some not at all.   A bit of a problem with TiVo - but they would not answer the phone or email us back.   As Tivo was recording but refusing to stop we missed the first hour of football...but did see Patrick M have a Real Hissy fit on the sidelines.  I don't know if he was given a penalty for it..son says it's usually a FINE........

No one looked at my eye...or I didn't notice anyone looking.  They might have thought it was a pigment thing....who knows. Further down on my cheek now.  Son says it is getting lighter.

Still reading Charm City Rocks..... good book....

I took a few minutes to open boxes already packed with stuff going...away...... but not to Goodwill.  I decided to make Art Cards for the neighbors......because they are giving us "space"....... I wouldn't mind  if they visited....but I DO want to share something nice that I know how to do....ART.  And I let Son pick out this year's Pomegranate Artist Model for the annual Poinsettia Drawing Business.... I skipped last year but wanted to get back into it.  The model dried up and shriveled.  Last year. that might have made good art.

I have a green tinged shiny silver cloth and some multi colored mixed yarn that is only missing sparkle but that could be in the sewing room..sparkle...So a tree shape, some "garland",  a stem..... and perhaps some beads.......I'll use what I can find Project Epic Digging.  Don't know what I will use to sew on- possibly watercolor paper.  I will sign and date them the way I used to sign and date the others from years ago.  I made the mistake of not kepis  one for myself (but do have the ones I sent to my Dad).  :I've and Learn.......we bought MORE Deep Dark Chocolates..... the jar is full. They had some filled with caramel... but son put a halt to more Candy Buying.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Winter Notes- December 10th. Two football Games and Sunday Pizza.

 More Marjorie Thompson.

Chilly here in the house today...Feels like an open window somewhere.

Two football games and now the third one.  Kansas City- not appreciate KC.  But the Buffalo Bills- ugh.   Son has gone to sort his freshly washed socks etc.  He's saving himself for the later game.

Sunday Pizza had new to us (here at home) toppings.  We should have put the tiny sausage balls on top to get crispy.  Might need to put the cheese down first and then toppings.......always trying to do a better job. During the reheating -- I could be talked into picking out the sausage balls and putting them on top.

My book Charm City Rocks...damn fine book.  Good characters.  Good romantic possibilities.  And a Steinway Grand Piano.  Not even half way in...many things can and will happen.

My EYE bruise continues to lower on my right cheek.....Still dark all around the eye socket. A significant amount of blood settling in the tissue.....over time.  Nothing hurts.  Pressing into the bone under the eyebrow- hurts.  I am going to grocery tomorrow- will see how many people stop stare and point.  It's significant...... this eye of mine.  

I am feeling like SOUP will be my choice for the coming WEEK.  Sigh.  What kind of Soup???? I need celery.  I have carrots and onion and one potato.  Might need a second potato.  Might actually enjoy Baked Potatoes...sour cream..chives....sounds good.  What I really want is Fried Breaded Eggplant.

I could also go for a big pot of pasta with a meatless that all week.

It's a huge undertaking to prep and then bread and cook.....last time I did it...was the first week of COVID. Old School COVID.  I had the tv tuned to the classic rock station (on tv) and was dancing and cooking..... I recall it being a very happy day....exhausting...but happy.  And of course there was the Pantry Supply List we were all case the grocery store had NO FOOD.  Oh, those good old days.

What are you all eating?????

Saturday, December 09, 2023

Winter Notes- Saturday December 9th. Cloudy with a bit of chill. 50's in a few days.

 Majorie Thompson.

Son is worried about the gas generator if the power goes out.  He checked it and it's empty.  All the gas cans contain "old gas" which I now know has a life expectancy (in the cans) of 30 days.  Not two years. How long husband had gas in the cans. and never used any after setting the lawn mower on fire.

The place where one can get rid of hazardous fuel is closed until Spring.  Son checked. 

I paid bills today.  Son took them out to the mailbox- I wasn't even going to try to walk out. Suddenly I am feeling very OLD and ...unsteady.......

Son and Daughter went out to buy the correct type of snow shovels for most of yesterday.  One was in the they only had to buy one more.  Son also got a better pair of winter gloves.  They were gone forever.

Today Son went out to buy a new video game.  And have lunch. Drive the California Car. I was asleep until noon. Well, off and on asleep.  All this Widow Stuff is knocking me to the ground emotionally.  Hard to seem interested or peppy. I have  Christmas cards (from past years) but no interest in writing and addressing could change.   I could send them next week.  I could. 

But right now- I have TEN books on the shelf to read... and the Monday Library visit is just 2 full reading days away.  I have to figure out which of the ten is worth reading.

The Heist book was excellent right to the end.

Friday, December 08, 2023

Winter Notes Friday, December 8th. Sunshine but a bit chilly.....

 Not warm enough here in Maine for these guys.....

My right eye is black and blue today.  Doesn't hurt but wow- looks like I got punched. I was going do a photo

Watched An American President last night.  Michael Douglas.  In the first few scenes he looked really tall then he didn't. I walked past him in a Monte Carlo Hotel lobby years ago- the 80's....and he was tall.  I turned and watched until he started down the steps....and was gone.  My Life.

Anyway.  (movie was just as great as I remembered it being) I have a black eye.  A really good one.  All the bruise blood settled as the day went on and I wasn't paying attention. Looks like I got punched.

The only thing causing me a bit of distress is the side of my right hand... pretty banged up I guess even though there is nothing to see.

I had some of the steamed rice Son made in his Fancy Rice Cooker... with peas..and some Mozzarella. Tasty but not that nutritious.   I had yogurt and bran buds for lunch.  Not hitting all the food groups.  Will try and do better today.  Though there is very little to zero in the produce bin.  I polished off my soup yesterday as well...gosh I ate a lot  The Soup was full of vegetables.

I need to start working on Art to paste on the desktop calendar..... Well into the second row and I only have two images pasted down. And I haven't draw anything.....  My Lunch buddy is still sick and went to see our doctor......everyone coming in has COVID.  Heads Up!!! Wear your mask.  Don't touch anything... and then touch your face.......

Thursday, December 07, 2023

Winter Notes- Thursday December 7th. An Accidental Day

 So...Blue not Red.  

I went out to put a few bills in the mailbox and when I turned to go back shoes- extra grippy..stuck and I FELL.  My glasses broke. (yes I hit the ground with the side of my face---one eyebrow)  And I wasn't sure i could get up off the ground (shock)...Just from the land mass that is me and the fact that I am 77.  But I did manage to get up and walked to the house and mentioned to my son that I fell.

He looked up from the puzzle he was sorting and gasped....I did NOT know my right eyebrow was bleeding.  He got me a towel wrapped bag of frozen peas and then called his sister....panicked.

I am fine- he went into Town with my broken glasses and they took the lens out and fitted them into a pair of left over frames for $36.  Gray that matches my hair.  Not bad.  The right lens is scratched from the fall.

I can see to type this and sort of watch tv.  I had to call the eye doctor's office to get them to send over a new prescription....even if it's the SAME prescription.  So, I will be wearing NOT RED frames.... I think if I had gone in they might have made adjustments to get the lens the correct distance/placement.  

I keep fussing with the glasses.  But without tv.  I have a second pair to wear for reading, sewing etc- close work.  The Heist book is getting into it..... all the women are saying yes and all the men are saying no.  Different.

Well, the keyboard is great but the screen is I'm done.

Stop...I am fine...A few aches and pains but nothing broken except my glasses.  Lenses were in good condition.  The right arm broke off.  Right lens scratched. Side of right hand bruised. Eyebrow with a cut.

It's been hours and I can move around like usual...the huge black wool coat saved my body yet again...

Wednesday, December 06, 2023

Winter Notes- Wednesday, December 6th. Very very COLD according to my Son.

 I forgot to write down the artist's name....I got the image from Little Somethings.

We ARE NOT riding bikes here in Maine.  And I am VERY thankful the OIL TRUCK arrived yesterday and filled the tank...for Miss Joanne (true they called me that).  We are back to a very (laughing) toasty 64 degrees.  I have on a wool sweater and wool socks.  Thermal shirt under the sweater. indoors.....Maine.... And the SUN is shining today!!!!

I didn't get a Ticket with the OIL so have no idea how many HUNDREDS of DOLLARS the OIL COST.

I watched NEWS (ugh) and continued reading To Have and To Heist.  The lead gal did measure the hot guy for a suit  (second favorite page in the book so far)... and he did buy her a dress (and a make over) so she could pretend to be a Wedding Planner at a fancy party....... she even said she could get the Bride an Elephant.  There are a number of side characters matching up...this is what this author had in her first book- and each of them...then had a book.  We'll see.  The Hot Guy keeps getting hotter and then disappears for pages.......I miss him when he is gone...even though he rarely has anything to say.

So.  I found a recipe to make the Vietnamese Pickled Carrot Strips.  Now to get out the fantastically sharp and dangerous machine that slices carrots and human fingers.  Been there and Done that. I bought it specifically to cut carrots into thin shreds....and DID almost shred one of my fingers. Years ago. It's been waiting for a bloody second chance all these years........ I hope I can find the finger guard.

I watched a PBS show once and a woman on the show was shredding carrots on the same machine and talking and not paying attention and I was on the edge of my couch seat waiting for the blood. Nope.

Water that I am supposed to heat to boiling and then put in the freezer to chill for one hour.  White vinegar, salt and carrots.  Let sit to pickle for Three Days. In a Jar.  Okay.  simple recipe.

I think I also HAD the intention of making SOUP.  I DID reheat a large bowl of "old" soup that Son had not decided was "expired" even though I am pretty sure Homemade Soup has an Internal expiration date.  I ate a bowl of it yesterday and didn't.......have any "issues" so I will have the remainder today.  Then decide on what sort of Soup to make for next week.  I have three Potatoes.  A bag of small Onions.  Three big Carrots.  Celery. Several cans of beans and diced canned tomatoes.  I might even have half a bag of frozen corn. 

Well, now that I wrote all that...(he reads this blog)...he might race down the steps and grab the jar of "expired soup" from the fridge.........I had not REALIZED that my two adult children READ this BLOG each and every DAY.  Now that I know....I have to type, read, delete, type, read, delete....and it's taken the FUN out of typing this thing.  Because I am not always telling the truth...... 

Tuesday, December 05, 2023

Winter Notes- Tuesday, December 8th... Cold outside and Inside.

 I think, as this image proves....I need more winter Color in my garden.  In my Yard.  I especially like the purple down on the surface and that orangey grass behind.

I did one task today before breakfast.  I emptied the "expired" sauce bottles in the pantry cupboard. some from years ago- many years.   

Still no oil delivery thought the employee who referred to me as "Miss Joanne" many times....told me the truck has a ticket.  Whatever that means.  I think I have now rounded the Age Corner and now qualify s an old woman...perhaps a bit flaky.  Or more than a bit flakey.

I think Old Flaky Miss whatever women...can play along....

I am reading a book......To Have and to Heist.  Sara Desai.  I am on page 72.  Our girl (the main person so far) has walked in on an over 80's couple having sex and she had to call for an ambulance.  Then she was rushing to help a friend trapped in a building and was held back by a guy in the pitch dark garden.  She is not sure what he looks like but gave Readers a very detailed description of what he feels like.  Good start.

I have read her other books...this one is different.  The book mentioned on the cover is The Singles Table. At a wedding....All the unmarried people get to sit at the same table.  Stare at each other.

Similar to a Hallmark Movie where all the "children" sit at one table- thru the years.  I am saving that one for - is December now isn't it????  I can watch it now.  I have watched some of the new 2023 Holiday or two, I might watch twice.  I am also surfing the Christmas Movies offered by Lifetime as they- same actors- get a bit shall I say it?  More like the book I was describing. At the beginning of this post.  A bit more spice for Miss Joanne.

Monday, December 04, 2023

Winter Pages- Monday, December 4th It snowed!!!

 Snow coated branches out front.  Magical.

Son had a quick breakfast and is now out shoveling the walks.....yes.  You read that correctly.  The California Boy is shoveling snow. Wearing boots and a knit cap. Like a Mainer

I CANNOT BELIEVE IT.  and can't stop smiling.

So I need to get going, eat breakfast etc as this is Monday and we do Grocery. Library today. We have a schedule.  And Meal Planning etc.

I was going to stop at the Bank--- but what I want will need a Death Certificate- which I have--but I am a bit fragile right now- it's all sinking in...and I just would like a normal day today without crying.

So the Bank and ordering checks with just my name......on them....can wait.  

Leaf Blowing Guy showed up and took care of the leaves- We had a nice chat. He is going thru some stuff stood for awhile and didn't talk...because- going thru stuff is hard enough without having to talk about it.  

Saturday, December 02, 2023

Winter Notes- Saturday, December 2nd. Dark, Chill in the Air. Dismal.

 Trouble in the Picture File this morning..... Computer having some "memory loss".

Not that I am doing much better.  Realizing that husband hadn't gotten the Fall Cleanup done in the garden beds....which have now turned black and look like a Bad Halloween Winter.  And no magical being had come to do now son and I are just looking at it all- and the cold and wet outside...and neither of us is really wanting to go out there. And do anything about it.  We are like minded about it.

The guy who was "supposed" to come take care of the leaves.....with the very expensive Leaf Blower I gave him.......has not showed up....will probably not..ever...I think he might have sold the leaf blower....

I haven't even turned on any lamps.....I am at that point in this episode of my Life when I am not really wanting to do much of anything......not even think.  Certainly not "feel".  Though feelings do come in waves and it is not always something I want..... or enjoy.


I now really really hate that word.  As it proceeds people telling me what to do. 

If I was able to DO.....I would.  I am NOT.  I am not sure what this is in the menu of Grief.  But I am sure it has a title and subject line description.  It also means people are distancing themselves....which is fine. Which I am sure I have others who are now doing unto me.

Friday, December 01, 2023

Winter Notes- Friday, December First. Sunshine and nearly 50 degrees outside. Rain coming.

 A visit to the ATTIC to find this sort of thing....Wooden Smokers.  And the dozen or so Nutcracker Soldiers.  Son says he isn't interested in Holiday Decorating, a Tree or Gifts. Just like his Dad.  Must be genetic. need for me to go hunting.

My (Our) neighbor across the street... drove over (yes!) deliver two kits for potting and growing a Christmas Amaryllis bulb. One for me and one for my son.  We just potted them up after much searching in the Garage for clay pots. The bulbs came with plastic pots.  Where are all the clay pots????

Son has taken a few more items from his father's closet.....he's gotten a taste of the COLD here in Maine. And the LL Bean Thermal Shirts are looking pretty good.  No one wants Dad's pants so they are on their way to Goodwill.  I have half his closet empty.  The Goodwill box is FULL.  So I won't be cleaning out anything until after the box gets emptied.

Worked on my desk top calendar art.  Looking good.  Festive.  Pretty.

Son is cleaning out something in the kitchen.  Walking over to you need this? sigh. How do we really know what we need and what we don't need?????    Until we find it missing.

The Super Nice Fancy Rice Cooker made some really excellent rice......I was impressed. I am thinking I will use my (new) Miniature Air Fryer to make something today...tater tots? French fries?  Or I could finally make myself Poached Eggs on Toast.

I picked up the book I started reading---and abandoned days or weeks ago--and I read for awhile before bed....... I have TEN books on the Library Book Shelf....unread.   I am falling behind. be perfectly truthful......Hallmark is BORING.  I think I outgrew most of the movies in the past 12 months..

Son keeps arriving to show me something he has found and I yes or no it.   The Goodwill box is full. We are measuring for one of the tables upstairs to become my new desk with a new larger Apple Desktop- the one he used when he was working.  In California.  He thinks the one I am using is an Antique. Like me. I think it's from 2004.....or there about.  Nearly 20 years...... of super service...this old Apple.  With all it's stickers like "if there were dreams to sell. What would you buy?"   Tell me in the comments.