Saturday, August 31, 2019

Rainy Friday Night

My daughter Steph, grandson Aaron wearing his jersey #89, and Aaron's friend and me, on our way to a Friday night football game.  Daughter Sarah is visiting and took the picture.

And yes, it's raining.  The game was delayed for an hour.  But the band performed well in their first home game and their half time show was worth waiting for.  The culture seems to be that parents sit in the bleachers and most students wander around, or in Aaron's case, toss a football with his buddies behind the stadium. 

This afternoon - Aaron's football game.  Aunt Sarah is happy to attend a couple of these events.

And I am happy to follow along and also eat some good food here and there during Sarah's visit. 

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Phone Calls

As seen at The Elusive Cow . . .

During the night I got four - four! - phone calls from France.  Mostly spread out.  One was labeled Fraud Risk and one Telemarketer.  I am not happy.  Tonight I am turning the ringer way down.

The Reds have drifted downward in the National League Central during the past few weeks, but I still enjoy the team and the stories.  My favorite player has 38 home runs for the year.  Eugenio Suraz may well beat some Reds records this year, there are lots of games left.

I have finished a glider cushion, complete with a zipper.  The hard part was the thinking about how to put it together.  Of course I thought too long and too hard.  That's my usual.  The cushion changed from a faded beige floral to a snappy red and white.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Elusive Cow

Yesterday - after getting her hair trimmed.  Nora and I went to The Elusive Cow, which is my favorite restaurant.  We ate fried portabello mushrooms, the absolute best, in taste, not in healthy food.  They are SO good.  Nora had a hamburger, I had red bean soup.  

Then to Victoria's Secret to pick up a couple of last minute back-to-school things.  A pretty unusual shopping experience for me but we did fine.  There are now new leggings.  I didn't know that's where to buy them. 

Today - school started.  Early morning bus stop and car pool.  Middle school and high school.  My heart is happy but a little nostalgic, especially since my daughter posted first-day kindergarten pictures along with today's photos.

The kindergarten Nora had a headband, pink back pack, plaid skirt,  socks with ruffles, Mary Jane shoes.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019


Not my tomatoes, not my pretty presentation.  Thanks, Sarah and Winnie, for the picture.  It looks like something from a magazine.  Pretty sure that Sarah cut the wood pieces.

I planted one cherry tomato plant again this year, just to see.  I have had no tomatoes that stay long enough to ripen.  The deer newsletter probably prints my address.

Today, I'm taking Nora to get her hair trimmed on this last day before school starts.  And then, lunch.  Before I pick her up, though, I need to check the air in my tires since the light has come on.  On the first cooler day, that wasn't even all that cool.  It seems to be a thing.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Rose Bush

This really fits the descriptor "rose bush."  It has thrived this summer with the early rains followed by heat and no rain.  And neglect, as you can tell by the weedy vine growing near the top.  I am thrilled by all the re-blooms that have shown up.

My earlier library book holds have been showing up one after another.  The latest is Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.  It's easily the best book I've read this year and it's the author's first novel, although not her first time published.  I went back and re-read the last ten pages just to be sure I read what I thought I did.  You won't be sorry you spent time with this book.

This is a chipping day, visiting my undone tasks and taking a chip out of each.  Not a bad way to spend a rainy day.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Old Woman

When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat that doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
     Jenny Joseph

Except that I won't, I'll go on wearing Life Is Good tee shirts with short sleeves in summer and long sleeves other times.

But, I will have the Door Dash delivery car come streaking to my door three times a day with French toast and Brussels sprouts, Impossible Whoppers, salmon and broccoli.  And sometimes mashed potatoes, green beans, corn, and cole slaw from KFC when I feel like I need more vegetables.

And then after four days I'll be sick of it all and the Kroger delivery car will come driving to my door.

In between times UPS will bring fabric and tread and new scissors and whatever else I need.

Reflections at the end of the day yesterday, which was a fun work day with a longer than usual commute.

But while I was dreaming of being lazy, my daughter Sarah was running a 25K up Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina, with an elevation gain of 4200 feet.  There were some ropes and ladders involved toward the summit.  Sarah was the third place female finisher.  And she sounded happy at the end of it all.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Nice Things

My daughter always says she can't have nice things, thinking of wrestling matches, flying footballs, rolling Hoverboard, all in the living room.  This was her flower bed yesterday.  She could be right.

Last night was the open rehearsal for Nora's band, capping off three weeks of band camp. Two weeks of nine to five and one week of nine to nine.  It was pretty amazing to watch them.  One hundred and sixty kids, all of whom survived heat and intense learning.  At the end, they all seemed so happy.

And in the end, the last day was cooler.  I was glad for my fleece as the sun went down.

I don't remember how many of us were in my high school marching band, maybe someone else does.  I'm pretty sure there were probably only about 160 of us in the entire high school.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Sequins and Beads

No creativity here, but the zen-ness is nice.  Catch a sequin with the needle, catch a bead, stitch down.  Repeat and repeat and repeat.  Maybe this stocking will be ready for this Christmas.  Maybe not.

Back in the day, I enjoyed stitching the Bucilla calendars with sequins and beads.  I gave them to my grandmother, who had few sparkles in her life, by choice I think.  I hope she liked the calendars, at least she said she did.  She would hang them in her kitchen.

My grandmother's life was simple.  Corn flakes, then shredded wheat when the corn flakes ran out.  Then corn flakes again  .  Sugar cookies in the big tin, then molasses cookies.  Then sugar cookies again.  Pink peppermints in the drawer, then white peppermints.  Then pink again.

She never had hot water in her house, she would heat water for bathing and dishes on the stove.  I remember the excitement of the new electric stove replacing the kerosene stove.

She made it a habit to never eat between meals.  It just wasn't done.  Except for one memorable time when the ice cream truck came by and she got ice cream bars for both of us.  So out of character, both the treat and eating it then, in the afternoon.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Tiny Pink Flower

For Easter, my neighbor brought me a small plant in an egg-shaped container.  Now, in August, there are a couple of reblooms.  The pink flower is about the circumference of a dime.

Thunderstorms this early morning, and finally rain.  I would have said I was sleeping lightly, but I missed a lot of it.  The street has big puddles.  The beds are watered.

My dreaded eye  doctor appointment is over.  Things are stable.  Pressures are good.  Come back in six months.  I can stop looking at this calendar date with dread.  I wish I wasn't like that, but I am.  I just dread doctor appointments, and especially this one.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019


The nicest lunch date yesterday.

I asked Aaron where he'd like to go for lunch, anywhere in his larger neighborhood.  He considered and chose Applebee's.  Boneless chicken wing appetizers.  Chicken tenders as the main.  The guy likes chicken.  He had boxes to take home.

At the end the waitress thanked him for being so polite.  She said that his grandma should be proud.  And I am.

Nora's band camp this week is 9 am to 9 pm so she is busy, no lunch date with her.

Grocery shopping is a must today.  My whole wheat bread had mold yesterday.  My packages of low fat cheese sticks and Baby Bel lights are empty.  My reduced fat whole grain crackers are no more. The produce drawers are almost empty.  The little containers of CarbMaster cottage cheese are almost gone.  I can do well and feel well with the Dash diet, but it does require a little more shopping.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Football Jersey Repair

My favorite kind of mending.  Triangle tear on a football jersey back that would only get worse as it got tugged on - the season is still young.  I told the mom that the mend wouldn't be beautiful but that no one would glance at her son and say, "Oh, your jersey was torn and mended."

Last week I fixed a jacket and said the same thing, "It won't be beautiful but . . ." and the woman said, "You always say that but it always looks good."

My flower beds are a disaster.  It hasn't rained much for weeks now.  And I haven't weeded.  In a couple of days it should cool down, maybe the rains will come, and I can get to weeding.  And when fall comes, plant some pretty fall things.

I've read The Nickel Boys and will take it back to the library today.  It is an uneasy read, but I knew it would be.  Definitely worth spending time with. 

Monday, August 19, 2019


I picked up a quilt to take to baby quilt group this morning and under it was fabric for four more pillowcases that Ginny, one of the members, is donating to a youth group home.  And so, I was a little late to the meeting, but not too late.  Pillowcases are quickly done.  Ginny said she has 78 pillowcases now.

All my pillowcases used the map fabric, donated by Ginny.

I'm thinking it might be fun to make Christmas pillowcases for the grands to use during the holidays.  Surely they aren't too old - maybe I will even make some for myself.

The days are hot and I am lagging.  Strictly mental.  Putting things off.  Not even big things or hard things.  But, I have a new library book to start on - The Nickel Boys.  I've heard that it's a great read, and the return is two weeks instead of the usual four.  When that happens, it means lots of people want to read that book. 

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Quilting With Joanne

Another collaborative baby quilt with Joanne.  Her package came from Maine, the quilt top and backing fabric plus some fabric for future quilts, all packaged so tightly and neatly.

Her black and white backing fabric had just enough, just enough, fabric for the binding.  She chose black and white to help a tiny one's development.  This time I used free motion quilting, swirls and loops.  Joanne's daughter suggested quilting up and down the quilt and Joanne suggested following the black and white, and both of those things happened.

And so, tomorrow, I will have three baby quilts to take when our group meets.  That never happens.  Thanks, Joanne.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Pizza Picture

I keep running across this picture of Aaron at The Gruff and decided to just add it.

Two days later, and I'm starting to get my energy back.  And two days later, they finally found the body of the barge employee who had fallen in the river.  Sadness.

I missed having Nora along on our adventure, ordering the soup of the day.  She is having a good time at band camp, according to the updates I get.  Next week is the big week, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.  I can't even imagine.  Plus this evening, there was a bassoon lesson.  That girl likes her music  And, marching band counts as a PE credit.

Last weekend Aaron started some trombone practicing of his own.  He said that people will be expecting a lot from him because of Nora.  He could be right.  That boy starts middle school this year, sixth grade.  In his middle school, sixth graders are in their own section.

Aaron's fifth grade social studies teacher teaches his students how to use combination locks, since that was a middle school stressor for his daughter.  How nice is that?

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Carew Tower

Today, I am tired.  But yesterday, that was a busy day.

Aaron and I ate lunch at our favorite, The Gruff, at the Kentucky foot of one of the Ohio River bridges.  Fries ordered as soon as we sat down.  That boy is always hungry.

I had planned to drive across the river to a parking garage, but Aaron asked to walk across the bridge.  We did that, seeing helicopters flying around and a fire truck pulling an inflatable boat.  We later learned that an employee had fallen off one of the parked barges, no word yet.

Aaron was a bit reluctant about the Sky Wheel, a huge ferris wheel.  He decided to try it since the seats are enclosed, air conditioned even.  Not much rocking.  He declared it good.

While on the wheel, he noticed Carew Tower, which has an observation deck that he enjoys.  We walked a few more blocks,  went up the big elevator for 45 floors and a tiny elevator for a few more.  It was $9 for us to go on the deck, and it was cash only.  Oops.  I had $7.  Then we cleaned out my coins and came up with the $9.00.  It was a clear day and the view was amazing.  We admired the bends in the river and talked about the difficulties of steering barges around those bends.

A trip back across on the trolley would have been nice, but I had no singles, so we trudged our way across the bridge again.  We never did visit the waterfront park on the Cincinnati side, maybe next week for that, and I'll be sure to have trolley money. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Baseball Game

Last night at the Reds game.  Note the river with the boat behind the stadium.  And the white bridge.

I was with church friends and I always enjoy a Reds game with them.  The game started, the evening came in over the river as it does, my favorite player hit a home run.  At the top of the eighth inning it started to sprinkle just a few drops and I decided to leave because I had parked across the river and don't like to walk across the bridge too late.

Just when I got to the escalator, it started to pour, just pour.  I rode to the bottom and waited under an overhang there.  Thunder and lightning.  Rain bouncing off the concrete.  Some people had the weather app on their phones and reported that there was a weather cell just over the stadium.  Fifteen minutes later, the rain stopped as quickly as it started.

I followed a family across the bridge, the game started up again, and the Reds won.  Nice night.  

Tuesday, August 6, 2019


My curtain sewing project is finished.  One flat curtain, one scalloped curtain, one Roman shade.  To probably not be repeated, but in retrospect, not a hard project.  The hardest part was following new directions and adjusting for window sizes.

My favorite is the scalloped valance.  By the way, it's folded in the picture, the white lining that is showing is from the folded curtain behind it, not from the front.

It feels a little strange to not have curtain sewing on my to-do list.  But, some glider cushions await.

The strange thing is, I don't do these home dec projects for myself.  Maybe I need to think about that.

I am excited to by going with a group from my church to a Reds game tonight.  I've decided to just park in Newport and take the shuttle across the river instead of walking over the bridge.  Only glitch is, there's a good possibility of thunderstorms in late afternoon/early evening.

The nice thing is, I live close and can just monitor the game start time.  It's not like I'm traveling several hours to get here. 

For Reds fans:  Luis Castillo struck out thirteen batters last night.  And the Reds are comfortably out of the basement in their division.

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Jersey Repair

Looks like a regular football jersey, and it is.  But it had elastic around the sleeves and my grand guy was unable to raise his arms when his pads were in place.  I removed the elastic, and I can tell you that the jersey was not meant to have that elastic removed.  At least with this practice jersey, gray thread and gray jersey, it wasn't so hard to see when picking out all those little stitches.  The other jersey, black thread on a black jersey - oh, my.

Something in me loves to do this kind of repair for my family.  I love it when the repair looks just like it should.  In this case, very functional.  The sleeves slide over the pads and all is well.  The kid can raise his arms.

The first pre-season bowl games are tomorrow.  And yes, it's hot.
Fancy Fair is Kentucky's annual political speaking picnic and it's this weekend.  I saw pictures of signs saying "Moscow Mitch."  Some day, I'd like to go to this event but not in this polarized political climate.  I did drive through Fancy Fair once on my way from a meeting at Murray University.  Fancy Fair is a small town, not at all what I expected, population under 500.  On the far western side of the state.