Sunday, February 26, 2023

Sunday Stealing

I crack myself up at the way everybody else just answers the questions asked, while I have to write a story for most of the questions.  I doubt if most people even read the whole mess.  They probably leave thinking, "Can't she just answer the question?"  

1. Do you ever have funny dreams at night?  Yes, every once in awhile.  They are only funny because they don't make sense.  A few nights ago, my dream was like this:  I was in my mobile home, looked out the north window that looks over our back yard and pasture, and noticed people in a car in my back yard; I knew they were up to no good.  Next thing I remember, they came in wanting to buy our house, and wanting to see the basement (what basement???).  I turned on the water in a shower that was in a corner of the basement and water came out of pipes from everywhere but the showers.  

2. f you could make a law for your country, what would it be?  The only thing I can think of is a law against assault weapons, but I think that's already in place, which shows you that such laws don't work for crazy people and outlaws.  

3. What would you do if you were invisible for a day?
I'm already pretty invisible most of the time.  I learned at a young age to be invisible to others.  But I would have no wish to literally be invisible.

4. If you could be someone else for a day, who would you be?  I suit myself just fine, and I'd be terrible at being someone else.

5. What would you like to change about yourself?  I wish I were nicer and cared about other people more.

6. What is your daily routine.  My morning routine:  Get out of bed around 4 A.M., go to the bathroom, send Gabe out to pee on the way to put my robe on.  Sometimes Blue the cat follows Gabe when he comes back in.  I feed them both, then do my day's portion of my one-year Bible.  At this time of year, I skip the OldTestament part because it's Leviticus, and I get nothing out of it for myself; it's a bunch of laws for the children of Israel.  I scan over it to make sure I'm not missing something that I'd get anything out of, but that's it.  As soon as I've finished that, I make two cups of coffee, which is a real treat considering I couldn't drink coffee for a year or more when my stomach was giving me fits.  Next I do my Wordle, surf the web including going to to check what's going on in the world.  Cliff usually is awake around 7 o'clock and I make his coffee when I hear him rustling around.  Most of my days are very much the same, so I won't bore you with the rest of my day.  You're welcome.
7. What would your perfect day be like? What would you be doing?  A perfect day would be in the spring, and I'd be outside in the garden quite a bit, with my dog and cat making me laugh at their antics.

8. How old were you when you learned to read?  I started school at age 5; in my  one-room school in Iowa, it wasn't called Kindergarten, it was called Primary.  I learned to read from the Dick and Jane books.  I do remember earlier, though, trying to figure things out in my Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes book.  I distinctly recall looking at the words Jack and Jill and realizing the sound the letter "J" made.

9. What is the most interesting thing you know?  The way my memory works these days, everything I know is interesting to me!  

10 What makes you nervous?  Constant noise, like a television or radio being on all the time.  Silence is beautiful to me.

11. What is your favourite flower?  Dandelions.  I can identify with them.  Dolly Parten sings a song, "Wildflowers don't care where they grow".  If you take a closeup picture of a dandelion flower, it is beautiful!

12. Have you ever ridden on a horse or any other animal?  I've had several horses, but the last one was the best:  He was a brown horse called Blue, because his whole name was Boogie Midnight Rhythm Blues.  He and I had many adventures.  By the way, he liked dandelions too.  

13. What time do you go to bed?  Usually around 8 P.M. until the days grow longer, then I try to stay awake until at least 9.

14. What time do you get up?  Usually around four.  I like my quiet early morning time.

15. What is something that is always in your refrigerator?  milk, eggs, cheese, condiments, etc.

Monday, February 20, 2023

Daylight Savings Time. Why can't politicians get together?

Back in March of 2022, the Senate passed the Sunshine Protection Act by unanimous consent.  Unanimous!!!!  We were going to stop going back and forth twice yearly and have daylight savings all the time.  The Sunday this was in the news, a group at one of the churches I attend assumed it was now the law.  Every single person, including myself, felt like celebrating.  As of last Sunday, they still thought it was becoming the law. 

And yet, I knew Daylight was returning in March.  Maybe because that would put us in DST and we'd never switch again?  But why hadn't I seen anything about this on the news?

Alas, our hopes are going down the drain, because the bill then went to the House of Representatives and died a slow death.  The House never even voted on it.

I don't know about your friends and neighbors, but everyone I talk to seems to want Daylight savings year around.  Something tells me folks in the House of Representatives just don't want to be caught agreeing on any bill sent to them by the Senate.  It doesn't even seem like a political question to me. 

Of course, it seems politicians have a record of finding a way to make everything a political question.  

I'm just getting this off my chest.  It makes me so angry that they refuse to get together on anything.  

Here's the site where I found my information.  I will accept any correction on this, as long as I can see the proof of it, as I'm really not familiar with the Insider. 

Sunday, February 19, 2023

Sunday Stealing

1. What is the best thing about your birthday?
That I'm still above ground.  When that ceases to be a good thing, I hope my time on earth will cease.

2. What is your favorite thing to do for your birthday?
If we do anything for my birthday, we usually eat out at some place I love.

3. What’s one thing you learned in the past year?
That I'm never going to be a sweet, gentle, giving spirit, no matter how much I'd like to be.  Inside, I will always be a spoiled brat.  I guess it's true, a leopard doesn't change its spots.

4. What do you wish for in the next year?
Peace, health, and security.

5. What’s the best thing about turning a year older?
That I still have my husband here, watching out for me.

6. What was the most fun thing you did in the last year?
I suppose my garden was my most fun thing.  

7. If you could understand any animal, which would it be?
a horse.  If I could understand a horse, I would know how to deal with them.  Not that I'm in any shape to mess with horses these days.

8. What is something that used to be hard, but is now easy?
Let's just say "easier".   Forgiveness.  The reason it has gotten easier is that I am aware of my own nature and realize everyone is different and nobody is perfect... just like me.  You can't expect everybody to live by your rules, so you forgive and accept them.  I have hurt people both knowingly and unknowingly; why would I expect someone else to be any different?

9. If you could only keep one thing in your room, what would it be?
An iPad:  It's a computer, but it's also a way to always have a book to read.  By the way, the book I'm reading now is the best I've read in years:  Demon Copperhead, intended as a modern-day David Copperfield.

10. Which person makes you laugh the most? Why?
My husband, hands down.  He's the one I'm with all the time, and he can always make me laugh.  I also watch some stand-up comedians who really make me laugh, although they are terribly coarse with their humor.  Last night Cliff and I laughed together at Jim Jefferies; I'm ashamed I laughed so hard at some of the extremely vulgar jokes, but laugh I did.  Bill Burr is my favorite standup man.

11. If you could go back in time, when and where would you go?
I don't want to go back in time.  I've had such a good time in my life, why would I want to do anything differently?

12. If you were to bury a secret treasure, where would you bury it?
I have no idea.

13. What is your favorite memory?
Childhood Christmases, trips to Colorado when Cliff and I could walk around a lot, sunrises.  I do love singing songs I wrote at church when I can see the people who are watching and listening understand and light up with smiles.  I always treasure those times as a memory, because I realize that at that particular time, they  get me.  Most of the time, people don't get me.  I am a strange person, so it helps to remember a time like that.

14. How have you helped others lately?
Oh boy.  My husband, I suppose.  I don't have a chance to help many folks, since I stick so close to home.  And I'm so self-centered, I often don't notice people around me needing help.  I could mention the charities I give to, but that's the easy way out.  Anybody can give a little money.

15. If you had to repeat a day over & over, how you'd want it to go?
My days are repetitive already.  Most days are very nearly the same, depending of course on the season.  That isn't a bad thing.

Thursday, February 16, 2023

Life is what you make it. I try to make it funny.

Before Cliff retired, I was always thinking that if we bought a camper, we'd be able to see the country.  One time we went to Tennessee towing a popup camper behind us and saw the Smoky Mountains.  That's as far as we've ever gone, I think.  The trouble is, Cliff never liked driving long distances and he doesn't like living in a camper.  He's always been pretty much of a home body.  There was a time we went to a lot of tractor shows, so I at least got to camp.  Some of the shows aren't near motels, so they have basic camping facilities.

Once my husband retired, I figured he'd surely want to travel a bit.  I'm not saying he refused to travel, but I felt guilty knowing he was doing it for me.  I always knew he would rather be home.  We've been to Colorado several times, Minnesota at least twice, and even through Wyoming once and into Canada (pretty much wasted effort on our part).  We took a train to the Grand Canyon for our fiftieth anniversary, and that was a fun way to travel.  However, we are living only on Social Security, which doesn't give us a lot of travel money.

It's the same with bus travel.  Now that Cliff is older, he really has no urge to go anywhere, especially if it's going to cost all of our savings.  One time we had decided to go on a bus trip to Maine with a group; wouldn't you know that's when Cliff found out he had prostate cancer?  So we cancelled it to stay home for his radiation treatments.  

Both of us have aching bodies, and because of my knees, I can't do a lot of walking or standing.  I have to think it over before even going to a museum, wondering if they have seats where I can sit down if I have to.  But I still have ideas about a bus trip.

Most bus trips I've wanted would cost the two of us $5,000 or more.  We have that much and more, but it's our rainy day fund; one hates to be without anything for emergencies.

Cliff and I talk more about our deaths than you would believe.  Our grandchildren hate us saying anything that starts with "When I die...", but it bothers us not at all.  Cliff is positive I'll live longer than he does.  I'm not so sure; I've seen very healthy, much younger people who exercised and ate the right foods, die in their 30's, 40's, and 50's.  You never know.  He just says, "All right, you just wait and see."

So I've found a way to counter all that baloney.  I start telling him what I'm going to do when he's gone.  I'll sell his tractors first thing and go on the darnedest bus trip you ever saw!  Then I'll hire somebody to build a decent chicken house and have chickens again.  Oh, and I'll buy a couple of goats for pets (he hates goats) and maybe milk one of them, and`I'll buy myself a golf cart so I can ride to the woods without my knees hurting.  

In fact, maybe I'll find an apartment for the elderly in Kansas City, forget the animals (except for a dog and cat) and ride busses to all the good places!

Oh, by the way.  yesterday when we were watching the Chiefs' parade, I took a selfie of myself in front of the television trying to get a picture of me with the Chiefs.  It wasn't too convincing.

I love Travis Kelce's smile

Later, I remembered my photographer friend from Kansas City and mentioned that I should have asked him to put me in a picture; he's a master of photoshop and can get it done in a matter of seconds, it seems.  He took the hint, and here I am standing right by Patrick Mahomes, looking over his shoulder.

Isn't life fun?

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Happy Valentines Day

If you know me, you know we don't make a big deal about holidays, birthday, and so forth.  When Cliff gets up this morning I'll tell him how lucky he is that he got a truck for Valentines Day.  He got me a bag of Ghirardelli candy a week ago and I had it gone in five days.  I told him that was my Valentine gift.  I'm so smitten by those foil-wrapped, globe-shaped candies that I can't stop eating them, which is the only reason I don't go ahead and let him buy them for me every week; he does offer, every time we're in a store.  It kills me to say no, but I don't need to be buying a whole new wardrobe.  I'm still carrying my seasonal extra weight around anyhow.

We had a nice visit in Creve Coeur, a part of St. Louis, visiting Cliff's youngest sister and her husband.  Between the fact that her husband had some long-lasting medical problems and the Covid situation for two years, we hadn't seen them forever!  Cliff's older sister drove her car and we rode with her.  We went and came back in the same day, but had fun seeing all the things they've done in and around her house in the past two years or more.  Maybe now we can see them more often.

Cliff's older sister, Rena, took this picture and I took one for Rena so she'd have a picture she was in.

As you can see, I had my #87 lucky shirt on the day before the big game, although the number is rather scrunched up, the way I'm sitting.  Sunday when the Eagles got so far ahead of the Chiefs, I dug that shirt out of the dirty clothes and put it on for luck... and the Chiefs won!  No, I'm not superstitious, just having fun with it.

Cliff will have his favorite food for dinner after while:  spaghetti!  I've been standing in the kitchen making the sauce, then making a lemon pie (one of MY favorites, my sister's recipe).  I think I'll stay seated for a while until my knees stop complaining.  Later I need to spend my half-hour on the recumbent bike; Cliff's on it right now.

There's been a light rain all day today.  Tomorrow is the Chief's victory parade; Kansas City even let school out for that, and so did our little town of Wellington.  Yesterday was like spring, but that's over for a few days.

I think that's all I have to say today, so I'll bid farewell for now.

Friday, February 10, 2023

What happened on the way to the grocery store?

We leased a Honda in March of 2020; the end of the lease was coming up, so we decided to buy it.  We loved the gas mileage (38 MPG) and Cliff loved its get-up-and-go.  In the 33 months we leased it, we only put about 25,000 miles on it.  Cliff's biggest problem with it was that it was so low to the ground, he had difficulty getting in and out of it.  But I was content with it... of course, I don't drive.  

When we bought it, we got it for about $8,000 less that it would have if we hadn't been leasing it... toward the end we were getting emails making us very nice offers; we paid cash, because we figured we didn't need any more payments.  It was a good deal, if you don't count the $250 monthly we paid Honda Finance for 33 months of leasing it... money, by the way, we really didn't miss each month.

Cliff really would love to have one of those big fancy pickup trucks, but we don't have that kind of dough.  One evening the oldest grandson came over and he and his grandpa got to talking about trucks and their ridiculous prices.  Arick asked him if he could settle for a small truck.  I don't recall how the whole conversation went, but Arick told Cliff he knew people who had one and really liked it.  

Yesterday morning I looked in Consumer Reports to see what they said about small trucks.  They seemed to think the Ford Maverick was a good little truck.  I did some googling and found out Ford isn't even taking orders for them because they can't make them fast enough.  Just our luck.  

We were planning to go grocery shopping, so we looked at the websites of local Ford dealers and found one slightly used Maverick available in Blue Springs.  We decided to drive by and take a look at it.  We knew we could get a good trade-in for our almost new Honda, and perhaps it he wanted to buy it, we could get affordable payments.

We have always bought most of our vehicles spur-of-the-moment; At least three of them were chosen by me, looking out the window and saying, "Hey, that's a good-looking used truck!"  We once bought a Cadillac across the river when we stopped to look for a used car and I pointed out a nice one:  "Look at that good-looking car!"  

Cliff almost spit all over himself laughing.  "That's a Cadillac," he told me.  "We can't afford a Cadillac!"  

"Well," I said, "it won't hurt to ask.  After all, it's a used Cadillac."

The fellow who owned that dealership back then told us to drive it home for the night to see how we liked it.  Next morning there was a big puddle of oil on the garage floor, so we sadly took it back and told him about it.  He said if we wanted it, they'd fix the problem.  I don't know how many years we had that car, but we'll never have another car with such a smooth ride; we still talk about those good old days.  We even had a hitch put on it to haul our popup camper.

It was my idea to go looking for a truck; they say history repeats itself, and I guess it's the truth, because it took us the whole day, but we came home with a cute little "truck" that is only four inches longer than our Honda Accord was.  However, it is higher off the ground and has a quieter, more comfortable ride and more head room and foot room.  Cliff likes some of the little bells and whistles it has.  We'll be using more fuel than with the Honda, but not enough to break the bank.  I told them we needed a payment under $350, and ours will be considerably less than that.  It's a 2022 model but has less miles than our Honda did.

That red light looks huge on such a small vehicle!

The end.

Sunday, February 05, 2023

Sunday Stealing

Three names you go by, other than your given name:  Sweet Pea, Mosie, Mom

Three things you like about yourself:  My cooking skills, memories of childhood, and my love of Jesus

Three things you don't like about yourself:  1. Sometimes my words hurt people when I don't intend them to do so; I need to think before I talk.  2.  Judgemental thoughts that come to my mind about someone when I know I'm no better than the person I'm judging.  3.  my laziness. 

Three parts of your heritage:  British, Scottish, and hillbilly.  

Three things you are wearing right now:  A soft, warm housecoat, house slippers, and  my wedding band; I just got out of the shower.  :D

Three favorite bands/musical artists:  Dolly Parton, Merle Haggard, and Gene Watson.

Three favorite songs:  Coat of Many Colors, Choices, and Great Day to be Alive.  Now to be honest, nobody can select only three; these just happened to come to mind.  The same goes for the previous question.  

Three things you want in a relationship:  Someone who truly loves me and puts up with my weird self, for better or worse.  That's all, and I was lucky enough to find him.

Three of your favorite hobbies:  gardening, playing on the Internet, and reading.  Fifty years ago I would have said riding my horse, milking cows and raising their calves, and going for long walks.

Three things that scare you:  The state of the world:  So many people taking drugs, so many killing others, and power-mongering rulers of most countries.

Three of your everyday essentials:  pets, some time to be alone, and books (including the Bible)

Three places you want to go on vacation:  I don't really care to vacation these days.  Travel east, travel west; after all, home is best.

Three careers you have considered/are considering:  I'm 78, and really never considered careers.  I'm not much of a planner. 

Three things you want to do before you die:  I believe I've accomplished everything I've wanted already.  Now I just enjoy living each day, hoping to do no harm to anyone through words or deeds.

Three things you want to do really badly right now:  Be a better person than I am and maybe write one or two songs that means something, the way I used to. 

Friday, February 03, 2023

Warmer weather is coming

We've had quite a cold front this week, with nights in the single digits.  Thank goodness the weekend will be more normal, with high temperatures in the 40's, 50's, and even 60's for the next ten days at least.

I have been enjoying our new mattress since day one, while my husband said he was glad I liked it, but it didn't seem any different to him.  Then I mentioned to him that I like to lay in bed even when I wake up early because it's so comfy, he said, "You know what?  I don't think I've been waking up sore all over like I was!"

Sure enough, after being aware of that fact, he said he definitely hurts less in the mornings.  Hallelujah!  We are both getting something out of that mattress.

Wednesday was Cliff's appointment with the audiologist.  She put him in a booth to see how well he was hearing and understanding single words and sentences; when they came back, she said he only had 3% hearing in his right ear before the implant, and now he has over 80% hearing.  More good news is that we don't have another appointment for two months.  After that, if he wanted to get an implant in the left ear, he could.  He's not so sure about that, because then he'd have things on both his ears to fiddle with when he has to put his glasses on or off; it's even worse putting on a mask when he goes to the doctor:  He knocks off the round thing (sound processor) off his head and has an awful time getting it back in position.  In spite of the little inconveniences though, make no mistake... he is glad to be hearing again!

I often wonder how many older folks don't even know about Cochlear implants after they get to the point that a hearing aid won't work any more.  Spread the word, my friends!  Medicare pays for it; I imagine there will be some out-of-pocket expense eventually, but we've never had one we couldn't pay... and believe me, we don't have a lot of savings, nor do we have any investments.  And we have no other income except our Social Security.  I've spoken to people who thought Cochlear implants were only for deaf children.  However, anyone who can't be helped by hearing aids is eligible for the implant, and insurance would pay for most of it.

Another little plus concerns Cliff's tinnitus:  as long as he's using the sound processor, he doesn't have tinnitus.  When he takes it off at night to go to bed, the tinnitus is back, very loud; that doesn't bother him, since he has no problem sleeping anyway.  Of course he's totally deaf without the processor, so I can listen to the Alexa device playing songs in the night if I can't sleep, and he doesn't even know it.  You can find the answers to some questions about cochlear implants HERE.

Cliff has an app on his cell phone that helps him turn up volume and such.  He does still have a bit of a problem hearing certain people on the phone; with some phones, the call will automatically go direct to the sound processor, similar to the way his calls went directly to his hearing aid.  However, he had to use a bluetooth device along with his phone to get that done, and it wasn't working well:  He could hear the other person, but they couldn't hear him.  I felt he should get whatever kind of phone that would work directly with his implant, so we went phone-shopping at T-mobile yesterday afternoon.  At his appointment we had asked the audiologist to make a list of phones that would work like that, so we'd know what phone to buy.

I have to laugh at my husband, because he's always making fun of people who pay over a thousand dollars for a phone, and now he is one of those folks!  No more $400 phones for him.  I'm sort of jealous until I remember I really don't use a phone that much, except maybe looking at Facebook on the road, or reading a book on it when we're waiting for an appointment.  At home I read on the Ipad.

I believe that's all I have for today.