Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Museum Pieces

~Yawn*... It's been warm n rainy all day. Stayin up all night doesn't help either, need more zz's... Hope I can stay awake for LOST! Really should just keep reading, but the eyes are red, already!

I don't usually dwell on memories, but ok, I'm bored, so here goes a strange tale from days long gone...

I've been making artfull, creative projects my whole life. What I really hate is getting back the things I did after the person's passed beyond life. I have a crateful from my parents house, n can't bring myself to sell any of it...
One of my more original early home-made gifts was crafted on a visit to Winooski Vermont, to my maternal Nanny's house, when I was about seven years old. The only toys in the place were plain, wooden blocks, which got boring after all towers were wrecked by the siblings everytime you made one. The only other activity besides walking through the parking lot was two-channel TV which my Dad took over. I did watch a ton of old "Star Trek" shows there over the years...
I was often beyond bored....

Nanny had a few sewing scraps hanging around, n I learned how to hand-sew early, mending n hemming. I took a scrap of pretty, metalic-peach fabric, n embroidered "NANNY" on it. It was kinda scrunchy, so needed to be stretched. Supplies were extemely limited... I looked around for awhile, then had a bright idea! I liked it!
I stretched it fitting perfectly on a piece of cardboard and attached the edges with a edging stitch. I wrapped it in a piece of paper, n presented my (no occasion) gift to Nanny, whose wide, amused smile I can still see today!
She made a big fuss over it, n really, it was just a little thing....

My Grampa passed onward one Thanksgiving Day when I was twelve. Ten weeks to the day later my Nanny went to join him. Several weeks later, their house was all cleaned out.
Jump ahead to fourteen years ago, my Dad left the living, n then five years ago (yesterday), my Mom went to join Dad. When me n Big Sis were cleaning out my Mom's old dresser, we ran into the gift I'd made my Nanny all those years ago!

Saved as a special, priceless artpiece which still makes me giggle today, now safely stored in my dresser... for prosterity: an apolstered, embroidered with "NANNY" metalic-peach
empty toilet paper roll!

For the person who has everything...!

Monday, November 28, 2005

Cyber Monday

Did everyone shop online today? Not me...
The kiddies'll be fortunate to get any expensive fun-stuff from me this year! The bank account is empty already... diff to shop that way... Need to come up with more creative solutions (with art)... Keep thinkin, keep comin up with ideas... But for me n many others, it's really "Tired Monday." * Yawn-* Turkey makes ya tired!
All I get to do online is search, research, n lotsa bloggin readin! I'm reading so many blogs now, I have to make appointments to keep up with 'em all! Some days I read faster than others. This is a slow readin week, due to swollen optic tissues and hives around my eyes, but I'm not too far behind yet. The eye strain migraines'll prob start up later in the week n drag me down.
JurassicPork actually wrote the shortest ACOTW column this past Sunday than I've ever seen over there, Good timin, JP! I'm also trying to get through some mag n book market listings, which is almost as dry as reading an auto repair manual (read that last week)... At least the motovation for the non-fictional reading hasn't left me entirely yet, the eyes'll surely give out first!
Reading boot-logs 'll do me in everytime... so my machine better hang steady this week! Don't wanna shop, but I'm window shoppin' for sure!

Friday, November 25, 2005

You've Been Punked!

"Punked!" Is apparently an MTV show, where they do rude things to people on camera, telling them they've been punked... as in meanly tricked = funny...(for the disher)!I've never seen the show, not having access to premium cable or satelite channels. I get the economical, bare minimum, basic TV set-up here...

My lil Sis had to explain this to me on the phone last night, cause I couldn't understand what she meant by everyone at Bro's house last night was punked on the phone as it was passed around to everyone in attendance. She also announced her n Big Sis would forever be remembered as "The Drunks on Turkey-Day" n they didn't care! They were apparently having so much fun they laughed for hours straight... n they had been drinking heavily. They did seem pretty rude, also! But we're all used to this behavior, as normal-party-mode for them, anyhow! One of them would say hello, then pass the line to someone else, so you'd guess n then be wrong who ya were speaking too, sometimes other people like their friends... very strange!

Well, I'm glad she explained it to me, because I went to see the much anticipated promised Turkey-Day pic of the JBI blog-master, Neo, which I'd already expected to be some sort of trick having known that blog awhile now, and surprize! Just like the famous unknown comic, Neo was wearing a large paper bag over his head on which was written "You've Been Punked!" I venture to guess it was some sort of MTV viewer challenge for the holiday... ??
Punking seems to be a popular activity this year...

The Northerner-family gathering went well. The traffic was moderately slow n heavy, but moving. My two grand-babies were entertaining and had a good time. It felt good seeing all the folks I'd been missing awhile. All my nieces n nephews are so adult now, n all good, like-able people. I got to bring back alot of meal left-overs for later, yay!
I still need to make my own pie for home. I'm going to need the stove on for heat anyway. We're in the 30-degree-range today. Down to the teens are forecast for this pm. Guess MB got several inches of white-fluff-stuff up in the Berkshires to drive home too. They'll get to go out n play in the snow. I'm not venturing out-doors until tomorrow. No driving heavy machinery for me today, took some allergy meds to speed up my reaction recovery. As soon as the dizzies go away I'd better start-up the excercising weight-drills, n start working off some of these mega-calories, but not today...
Then it's up early n out for Sat am for a truck inspection appointment.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Here Birdie, birdie, birdie!

With the Turkey-Day heading in and only one get-ready day left, it's possible I may not find time for awhile to post! I'm heading out of town to Metro-West for the big day, currently the weather guys are predicting an inch or two of some a.m. white-fluff-stuff to drive through on the way. At least there's no High school football game I need to leave in the middle of. Good thing, because before I leave I need to cook up a few things, n I really hate not watching the second half.

The Northern Clan'll be gathering at my Bro's house, where there's enough room for everyone to eat sitting down. I'm sure the babies'll have a good time meeting their adult second-cousins again n getting a great deal of attention from all. It'll be good to see the folks we haven't seen for a year n a half, even though the Florida division n the Maine-deer-hunter will be making separate plans.

I'll really need to devote some heavy-duty time to food prep. I just hope I don't scorch the home-made rolls too badly, my biggest challenge of the day. What's slowing me down today is it's impossible to sort cranberries n use the keyboard the same time... Thanx BBM for the supply of fresh fruit to spice up the pie, bread, n muffins this week. I love cranberries. I worked on the bogs for nine seasons before I attended college full-time. That's when I learned how to be creative with them. MB already made the sauce to bring for dinner.

I'll be watching Ted Kopple's last NightLine after the news tonight. There goes another fav soothing news voice to miss at my day's end. For 26 years his nightly follow-ups n unique stories gave me alot of current insight into world events. I've posted about topics covered on that show many times. I hope he gets to enjoy some of his retirement. He's certainly earned it. Excellent job Ted!

Have ya ever taken turns going around the Thanksgiving table giving a reason you're thankful?

I'm thankful for many things:
another year of life, people n animals to love, a fun family, good friends, my talents and abilities still intact, good food for dinner, and I'm thankful I had the ambition to begin my blog this year... ect, ...!

Have a very good Gobble day!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Gamma Rays

Tropical storm Gamma is the 24th named depression on the boards, more than ever before in all recorded weather history. Currently Gamma has 45 mph winds down near the Yucatan penninsula, is turning north, and it may head to the Miami Florida area as a hurricane by Monday! That's 2 days away...In Honduras two people were reported killed by Gamma.
Only another 10 days to hurricane season left, but as ya know, the tornadoes have been acting outside their season this month... NOAA

I wonder what'll happen with the naming method if the Greek alphabet gets used up n next year we have this many storms to name again... How about Chinese?

The food industry's been using Gamma-radiation to irradiate the germs off the fresh produce we buy at the market the past year or so.

I saw a NightLine News show on ABC 11/19/05 about New Orleans after Katrina to date. Engineers have yet to do permanent repairs on the levees so they still can't currently withstand storms. The Mayor was asking for a disaster extention, because once it's up funding will fall on the state's back and possibly cost each citizen of LA $1000 bux each to pay for the repairs. It'll be many more moons before the place gets halfway back, maybe decades at this rate. Garbage disposal of debris was said to probably take three years at the current rate of action. That's a long recovery road to take! Personally, I'd never want go back until those levees are secure! Why build up just to lose it again?

On the Katrina theme I found an article at that Katrina has led to some new conversational sayings in the area which already had a few unusual phrases. They used to say hi with "Where y'at?" Now it's, "How's ya' house?" From pics I saw on the news last pm, looks like most of the houses are still wrecks n junk-heaps!

Now in that emotionally heated partisan debate , Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa. who's a Vietnam vet and, proposed that troops return home at the soonest possible opportunity. Aka, let's plan an exit which Republicans responded with a resolution for an immediate pullout of the 160,000 US troops now in Iraq. Defeated... no surprise! Does any of this make sense? Why would the house of Reps even think they should waste time debating this....

Meanwhile, tomorrow I'm lookin forward to some warmer over 45 degree sunshine to lure me outdoors, n a dinner out plan.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Hold Everything!

Just another frigid Friday ... Well, I'm hoping soon my cares are flushed away for the week-end to begin. Today the landlord is supposed to put in a new commode. I can't wait! There they are, finally back from Home Depot. I hope this doesn't take all day... You haven't seen how everything else he's done has gone right down that fixture...

Oh, here's a thing I used to have alot of fun doing well, after I got used to the rules, n trained the brain. Read the color, not the word, as fast as you can.

This was an email attachment I got awhile back, but I used to make my own charts when I was a kid playing with perception principles. Wonder what I did with that old book I made...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Who's Got the Power?

We're having a scitzophrenic weather day.

Halfway through November in New England it's over 60 degrees outside, the heat is off, and the door n windows are wide open! The clouds are whipping by at a rapid clip, windy and gusting near 30 mph. It's alternately been cloudy, pouring rain, then suddenly stopping, clearing, and sunny a few minutes before repeating the same cycle over again three times!

The weather dude predicts the temp will drop under freezing again by tomorrow night, where the normal zone's supposed to be this time of year. Guess it's in the 20's in Chicago right now, n here it comes!

They said the air over us today is the same weather system which caused at least 35 tornadoes, damage n deaths yesterday, some on the news in Davis County Tenn.

Am I supposed to feel the evil in this wind?

I actually dashed out to the store n got a new wiper blade during a clear weather patch. It was already overcast lookin like rain again when I got back five minutes later n installed it.

The local power company is warning the public that this winter in deep cold temps we may be subject to "possible rolling black-outs" when natural gas supplies get strained, as they've been since Katrina. The power will be shut-off one to two hours at a time in certain areas. What will that do to the business economy, info systems, n never mind the heat?

Most systems rely on an electric thermostat to fire-up the burner. I have electric heat up here, while down-stairs is propane. That power-out time represents a lot of heat loss here, which'll make it difficult to maintain above freezing in here with no wall insullation. The temp is only on to keep it above freezing on normal days, due to the high cost n lack of funds.
It's enough to make a wood or pellet stove very appealing. Of course those have to be approved by the town inspecter, n there'd have to be a stone or brick area three-feet away from everything, and flew-pipe hook-up to safely have one. This Apt. is out of the question for a wood-stove.
I usually use hot water bottles, layers of clothes, n turn on the electric oven n bake food to get warm. That would be a big bummer not to have without power. Say I had to be somewhere but the power was shut off so I couldn't warm it up in here to take a shower n dress when I need to. This could really ruin a whole day! Not a pleasant thought, so I'm hoping it doesn't get as bad as the past few winter seasons.
Toyota just came out with a one-person concept car shaped like a leaf n powered by photon-radiation-light. Looks like more fun than a segway, n operates like a video game. Cute lights. Why can't that be funneled to heat homes? Something needs to be done with the "normal' power problem situation, quick!

Sunday, November 13, 2005

How Fast It Goes

I've returned successfully from my 300-mile week-end field trip to the Berkshires. The leaves are all down n brown throughout the mountains. Got stopped on the way up in Irving just a few minutes before my destination, by a Statey going 58 in a 40 zone. I looked him in the eye and explained I didn't see the 40 sign, and thought it was still a 55 mph zone. I would've down-shifted if I'd seen it, then commented I was unfamiliar with the road. All of which is true. It pays to treat officers like regular people, plus he prob noticed the zero speed-tix on my record in 25 years. Was I SOooo relieved to get a warning! Of course on the way back all the cars were on my butt because I was going the speed limit through that town, had to keep pulling off the road to get them off my bumper...

Went to visit my eldest grandson for his 2 years-old "family" Pahty. The fuel prices have dropped off to approximately $2.30 per gallon, still, making the trip is most of the gift. It's your presence, not your presents, that count. New toys are always good though...

I was the only representative from the mom's side able to attend. Of course they live much closer to the dad's side of the bunch, who were there. They're fortunate to still have some great-grandparents n great-aunt. I am the elder generation on my side. We'll see more of my siblings, nieces, n nephews at the next upcoming national holiday. I guess he'll get a few additional gifts at Thanx-Day like the rest of us pooled-together-birthday-folks like me n my bro. Only a couple of weeks away now. Xmas time, next month, is a whole diff pool bunch, which the younger grandson will end up in.

I'm kinda depressed because both of my sisters aren't coming up from FL for any holidays at all this year as originally thought. It's been five years since my birth family has been in one place at the same time. I'm sure it'll be fun anyway, but it just doesn't feel the same...

Anyhow, it was good to see the little guy having so much fun, beginning to talk up a storm, n growing older so quickly. How fast it goes, n before ya know it, they're graduating high School...

Friday, November 11, 2005

Thankyou Veterans

Raise the flag n salute! A sincere thanks to all of you. There'd be no flag to wave without your efforts.

I'll personally pray for all of you, to your health, and that you'll be properly supported and rewarded by the government for time and sacrifices you've given for our U.S. to be a free country. You've made it possible for us all to be here in this reality.
I'll pray for all the troopers past n present who didn't make it through their tour of duty alive. I respect and thank all of you. May the afterlife show you mercy. May you always get the respect you deserve.

I don't agree with the political descisions that began recent war actions. That doesn't mean I think troops haven't done good work to a good end, for you have. It's the politicians who decided for us all I don't agree with. They enabled the Patriot Act to let non-military people to decide the focus of who and what should be fought when, and without enough wisdom to verify the facts of effective results. May future actions be decided with more sensibility for all your sakes.

Vet's Day means lots of folks got a week-day off. Most 10 holiday jobs, though, make ya choose between Vet's day n the Fri after Gobble day. Then there's all the service sector's low-paid jobs, where it doesn't matter what day of the week or holiday it is, ya gotta work on all of 'em! As though you all don't deserve the same treatment, and you do, but got to do what's required to get by. The work-force is running the normal show, entertainment, retail, food, medical persons, law enforcers, and more.

Enjoy the parades n war stories. My dear departed dad was a Korea era vet.

Finally finished my project today, on to other tasks. I'm getting ready for a field trip out of town Sat n Sun for a B-day celebration.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Home Science

Been keeping quite busy this week. Prob'll be days before I'm read up again, been doing off-line chores 2 days, n not done yet! So wound up n tired, was still up after 3am trying to finish using my very slow scanner. More HD n RAM memory for the circa '01 machine might help... Pics take so much room in there, need to make CD's again.

I always have to unattach and store the scanner away so the (heavy) cats don't lay down on it. That's what happened to the last one. They think it's their special warm, smooth, bed. Well, it gets them down off the TV! The fuzzy one thinks my puter time is her special attention time, well she did learn to paw the keys when I typed while a kitten... I have to hide all my PC cables n wires also, because like little kids they can't be trusted when they want something and believe you're ignoring them. I'm always trying to put the fat fluff-ball on a diet, n she's always on my case because of it. She's chewed right through thick power n monitor cords before, while I was using my PC! An expensive compulsion she has to punish me... That explains some odd-looking piles of plastic files all under the table n next to the chair... So basically, when I sign outa the machine, before I can leave the house, I must hide everything with a wire beyond her reach. Other folks don't know how spoiled they are just getting on n off the puter in a snap!

I finally found the "flaming bushes" (local slang name, in pic) MB was talking about. Not the kind Moses saw, but the bright red. Did some raking although you can't tell now. It's been pretty windy out there, n the leaning over the street oaks are only half-done dropping their loads. Leaves were so deep on the walkway and road it was getting hazardous. I always try to get to it before the heavy rain comes it to prevent the storm drain from backing up, which is always dangerous for the traffic, my truck, n my house.

Been baking to stay warm (n eat). Went to get out spare stored flour, n somehow through plastic storage bins n 2 layers of twist-tied store bags, the little, new, japanese micro-weevels wrecked two, unopenned 5 lb. bags of flour! Nothing like being stopped in the middle of making pie pastry to realise you couldn't use what ya thought was a safe bet... Those critters are even worse than Indian Grain Moths, cause they're difficult to see. No, I didn't contaminate what was already getting done. But I had to store away what I began for another time. So two days later, I finally finished making my experimental squash pie n an applesauce tart.

Everything in my oven is a pain-staking science experiment. Without the thermometer, which the numbers have burnt off of, and elaborate, self-designed, remove-able, re-usable, tin foil "scorch-guard" insulation, there's no way to bake anything with only a top broil heat-element with on-full-blast n off. I'm always busy while waiting n never use a timer, just look at the clock, so sometimes it's very challenging to remember to turn the oven on for bout ten minutes every fifteen or so in order to maintain a particular temperature range.

Yum, that squash-souffley-like pie filling hit's the spot as my veggie today...
Nothing here is quick n easy.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Movies of the Day

TV movies of the week have come along way, baby. Tonight CBS is playin "Category 7, the End of the World" for my bedtime story. Just what I need, more disasters to contemplate! Ya just can't see the Eiffel tower (puter generated image) crash enough times... Sometimes seein Randy Quaid tellin everyone to watch out, here comes a twister, can seem like the end of entertaimment as we know it! Actually, now Randy is in a full head n body brace... which is a little amusing...

If I wanna see a good one, I'll watch "Armegedon" again. I've slowly been going through all my video movie boxes n re-watching the good ones for kicks this year. Series after series: Dune, Jurassic Park, Star Wars, LOR, Matrix, Tomb Raiders, Terminator, Star Trek, ect... Tons of (VHS) videos... I really can't stand it when what I have makes it to network TV with all the fun dialogue dubbed over.

I'm just depressed that the DVD player needs replacing, laser keeps jammin in the middle of movies, saying disk unreadable, so all the newer movie titles I have in DVD gotta be played ala puter or nevermind. Nevermind Harry Potts, or Spidey, or nat'l Treasure...

OK, now on the movie, twisters are rippin apart pyramids! The effects are so campy n fake, with the shaky-cam's lame! Not quite as bad as the soap operas which show an accident happened without any crashing pix, but close. N here we go again, they're blaming it on God n the Revelation scriptures, what a non-surprise. And joy, it's a continued (multi-night) movie series!

Looks like I'll be back searching the old vid boxes...

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Leaves n Berries

More leaves, anyone? I can't decide if these are good enough to use for postcard images or not... so may as well put 'em here. The bright orange n pink seed-berries are from trumpet-flower vines which are native in this area. The contast between the berries n the leaves gives ya a very good idea of how dull the leaf color is this year. I haven't adjusted anything with the puter, except for size. Better stop playin n get back to this week's project...

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Leaf Me

Here're some leaves from around my yard today. The sample includes: ecliesiastic, oak, lilac, maple, ash, and bamboo. I looked for the best I could find, n this was it! Previous years were much better pickins!I had the scanner hooked up today anyway, working on another project. The strong winds this pm are carrying most of the leaves quickly away down the hill.

I finally almost see a little color out there in the couple a hundred trees across the street. I found my first faintly red-tinted Maple leaf this fall thus far on my deck yesterday, only one. The rest are mottley-brown and yellow. In the past this maple tree has displayed brilliant yellows and oranges used in popular family photo backgrounds. One oak tree leaning over the road is loaded with rusty-orange-red-brown, but the rest are still green, n dropping their leaves green or dead brown.
The color has been very dim. It was also like this here in '91, the year of hurricane Bob, so perhaps the persistant rain-storms n lack of sunlight conspired to rob the usual effects.

I remember one long ago autumn filling up a 9x12 manilla envelope with pretty leaves every shape n color of the rainbow, and sending them to an ill, hospital-bound person who'd expressed missing the colors. If it'd been this year's batch, they would not 've seen any good ones!

Bland, without spice! Like chicken soup without garlic and tyme. Missing the joyful, loud, natural color show I've been spoiled with many years.