Saturday, October 3, 2015


This time tomorrow I will be high up in the wide blue yonder traveling to Las Vegas.  I am not a flier.   In fact, my first flight was to Las Vegas for the same conference about 11 years ago.  Although I've flown 3 or 4 times since, I don't feel any more calm than I did for my first flight.  At least the element of surprise is gone.  But this time I will be presenting at the conference and I'm not feeling overly confident about the presentation which I will be doing with a coworker.  In most areas of my life, I feel relatively removed, uninformed, out of touch.  Which is my own doing but regardless, I feel that way.  As a result, I feel as if this presentation will be seen as amateurish and insipid.  I don't feel as if I can get up there and speak for an hour on the subject matter.  I don't need to - my co-presenter and I will be splitting up - but usually, I feel informed enough that if pressed, I could talk about advising for hours (if someone was beating me with a whip to keep me going).

But I think that feeling this way is having a positive effect on my flight-nervousness.  My partner and I can go over the presentation - and over and over and over it because we will have the time - which should keep our minds off of flying.  And if I'm anxious about the presentation, there really isn't any room in my brain to worry about flying.  So it's all good. And we're going to Vegas.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Full of......spit!

Oh crap.
Not what I wanted to have as a title but…..  the next time some guys spits and it splashes on my toes, I’m going to crap on his feet.  Literally.  Since when is it nice or appropriate to spit?  Has it always been this way? I am so tired of walking behind some guy as he hacks up a lung and then just spits.  Without looking to see if someone might be behind him.  Or beside him.  Or if the wind is blowing.  Whatever.  I’m sick of walking on campus and stepping in spit all along the way.  It is disgusting – disgusting sounding, smelling, looking. 

The crap that gets yacked up?  I don’t even want to know.  But its ok, right? I can’t believe that people complain about kids wearing their pants down around their knees but I’ve never heard a word about all the nasty spitting that goes on.  Seriously, tobacco juice on my feet?  And it’s not just spitting from chewing tobacco.  It is just plain spitting – just walking along and spitting.  Or sitting and spitting.  That is what handkerchiefs are for.  Or spittoons……maybe we should bring back spittoons.  Have one on every corner, by every entrance – since people don’t smoke and we no longer need as many butt receptacles.  Whatever, but the hacking and spitting needs to stop!

Monday, September 28, 2015

An anti-cooking blog.

There is a reason I don't do recipes and things on my blog.  The reason is, I suck at cooking.  But tonight there was a trifecta of cooking disasters..........why, on a Monday evening after work, I think it is a good idea to experiment, I don't know.  But I did.  I made caramel sauce for apples.  I don't really like to dip my apples in caramel sauce but there was something to good, so rich and so autumny about it..........  It turned a lovely shade of amber - which is what the recipe said it was to do.  It boiled, I stirred, I added whipping cream, it frothed.  I set it on the hoosier cabinet to cool. And I couldn't wait to taste it.  
Bleh. It tastes like brown sticky charcoal.  It tastes like that burnt crap you get on the outdoor grill. It is d.i.s.g.u.s.t.i.n.g.  
So trooper that I am, I thought I would go ahead and make a batch of grape jelly.  Out of the grape juice I made last night from the Concord grapes I bought at the wine festival.  What a beautiful shade of deep, deep purple.  I'm not not sure how it will taste but it looks good.  But I used a new brand of canning jars and haven't heard one single ping of the jars sealing.  So I'll check later tonight.  All of the jars may just be going into the fridge.  And my cooking/canning/baking will be done.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Airing of the quilts.

I spent the weekend with my mom and daughter.  It was a great time from beginning to end.  An unexpected pleasure was an Airing of the Quilts in one little parks in Titusville.  The weather was perfect for such and event and there was a perfect breeze to truly 'air' the quilts!  

Sometimes we plan and plan and plan for the perfect weekend, the best trip ever or the vacation of a lifetime.  Other times, the stars align in such a way that the perfect weekend is a surprise.  And this was one of those weekends.

Yesterday was a day that you find in the transitional period between early fall and the heart of autumn  There was a chill in the air but yet it was warm enough to sit on the porch and sip on a mug of coffee.  That alone, makes the weekend notable.

By this time next weekend I'll be in Las Vegas.  I have mixed feelings about this - looking forward to an informative conference with plenty of interesting sessions and networking with peers across the country.  If only I didn't have to take an airplane.

This week will be spent finishing up my presentation, stocking up on food so that my son doesn't starve over the four days I will be away, and getting this packed in the smallest bag possible.  I hope to get some sewing done.  If the weather holds out on Saturday, maybe I'll have my own airing of the quilts.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

This is home.

You don't see signs like this every day.  Sometimes I dream about living somewhere else but then I notice something that reminds me why I love living in the middle of nowhere.  

I really love where I live.  I can't say that I love my house - but I love where I live.  I'm in the country but I have neighbors if I need them.  I live on a little one lane road but am within a few hundred yards of  my church.  There is plenty of room for goats, chickens and ponies.  And there is a beautiful little creek running along the bottom of the hill on the property.  Although the nearest grocery story is about ten miles away, it is worth the drive.  It isn't like most of the chain grocerty stores you find : this store is run mainly by Amish.  Across the parking lot from the grocery store is the equivalent of a Walmart - without all the aggravating choices.  If you can't find what you are looking for at either of these stores, then you don't need it!  There is also a gas station attached in this little 'plaza' with the cheapest gas in the valley!

About a mile or so up the road from the grocery store is a little town with all the kitschy stuff that you would expect to find in a quaint little town that is trying to keep itself on the map.  There's a great little cafe that serves food from locally harvested produce as well as locally brewed beer.  There's also a cool little coffee shop, a meat market and a candle shop.  

Basically everything one needs can be found within eleven miles of my home. There are rivers and mountains and dirt roads and ponds and fairs and church dinners and everything here.  And while sometimes I think I would love to try to live somewhere else, I'm perfectly happy right where I'm at.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Welcome Autumn!

"Come, little leaves," said the wind one day,
"Come over the meadows with me, and play;
Put on your dresses of red and gold;
Summer is gone, and the days grow cold."

Soon as the leaves heard the wind's loud call,
Down they came fluttering, one and all;
Over the brown fields they danced and flew,
Singing the soft little songs they knew.

"Cricket, good-bye, we've been friends so long;
Little brook, sing us your farewell song-
Say you're sorry to see us go;
Ah! you are sorry, right well we know."

"Dear little lambs, in your fleecy fold,
Mother will keep you from harm and cold;
Fondly we've watched you in vale and glade;
Say, will you dream of our loving shade?"

Dancing and whirling the little leaves went;
Winter had called them and they were content-
Soon fast asleep in their earthy beds,
The snow laid a soft mantle over their heads.
George Cooper (1838–1927)

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Junk drawer memories.

This afternoon I was searching for one of the many drillbits that I have purchased over the years and as a result, ended up rooting through the 'junk drawer'.  This is a wide, shallow drawer in an island that sat in my kitchen for years and years.  A search, that should have only taken a few seconds, deterred me for quite a while.  I could write the entire history of the past 18 years just by looking at the stuff in the junk drawer.  There were the baby nail clippers that I used on my 3 youngest.  Actually there were two clippers - which is ironic because if I recall, when I needed them I could never find them.  There was a dropper bottle of Kanka that I purchased for my oldest son the time he had a nasty canker sore on his gum.  Given that Ryan is now 28 years old (Oh My Gosh!!!! 28??), I wonder how effective that stuff is now.  I found a bunch of hinges, chop sticks, screws of every shape and size and a Nokia phone - which was the first cellphone we ever owned.  There are new additions - such as the box of chalk; there are things I don't remember ever owning, like these little metal things with holes in them.  There were bottle caps, bolts, seeds, batteries and gross, black stuff.  There was fabric paint, a long lost lid to my pressure cooker vent, balloons, needles and even a drillbit.  Unfortunately not the drillbit I was looking for.  

I didn't do what I'm sure another, more fastidious person would likely do.  I didn't empty out the drawer and clean it - not even the black icky stuff.  I've had too much change for one month, I'm not ready to give up my memory drawer.