Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Sunny Days

I've been unable to post or check much of anything for the past week or so because my laptop had to go in for major surgery.   Being without it was real suffering, I tell you!   It is amazing (and a little scary) how much I depend on on-line endeavors during the course of my day.   I missed it a lot.

I have it back now, with a new logic board, and I hope it will work better now.   The laptop is nearly 3 years old and almost out of its extended warranty and it hasn't been right from the beginning.   It would be nice to have the kinks out before the warranty ends, but I suppose the odds of that are slimmer than I'd like.

Well, Kim, you are for sure my lucky 'winner,' not a huge surprise there!   I would have sent a little something to Laurie, too, but s/he was a no-reply blogger.    I'll gather up the package and get it in the mail sometime in the next week or so.   It makes perfect sense to me, you have been a most constant friend and bloggy companion for years of this journey, and I hope we be continue to be blogland friends for years to come.  :)

It is finally, finally Spring here, or so we hope.   The weather this weekend, after a week of snow and freezing temperatures, is mild and the sun is shining.   It is simply glorious.   Although it has been mostly in the 60's, we had one day in the 80's, almost warm enough for me to complain about the heat for a change!  My granddaughter and I noticed that the cardinals have never seemed quite so red, as if they, too, are going all out as we celebrate this marvelous weather.    My outdoor list of projects is already growing -- too bad I still haven't finished the list of indoor projects that were supposed to be done over the winter!   Instead of working on chore last weekend, the Littles and I played four-square and I took a couple of long walks --- and I don't have even a glimmer of regret.  :)

A friend and I have been eating at a vegetarian Indian "street food" restaurant this week -- the most delicious food, even though I had no idea what I was eating!   I stopped at an Indian grocer, too, and we've been snacking on a variety of spicy-salty chickpea treats.  I got some spices, too, and will experiment with a few simple dishes.  First up was okra stuffed with spices, which was absolutely delicious and not even a bit slimy like okra often is.   We loved it!   Next attempt will be a simple dal (lentil) dish.   I love trying to cook new foods, I don't do it as much as I used to, but the Littles are starting to be more adventurous so I can usually find someone to share my results.

I hope it is sunny in your world!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Michigan Spring and a Giveway

It snowed two nights ago and most of the next day.   I had to chip ice off my front porch earlier this week.  We had temperatures of 15 degrees last night.   When the sun came out, briefly, yesterday afternoon, I watched two bunnies and a dove eating birdseed in my backyard.  My tulips came up but have been nibbled back down to the ground.  Several more inches of snow were predicted for last night and today -- so far it's just freezing rain, but we'll see.  It has been a very cold and dreary week.  Another beautiful Michigan Spring.  :)  Time to make another pot of soup.

I found out that my favorite boss died yesterday, former Detroit mayor, Judge Roman Gribbs.   We worked together for thirteen years and did some temporary work together after that.  He was 90 and, the last time we talked, several months ago, he expressed so much gratitude for his life, his family, his wife.   Working with him for 13 years was the best job I ever had.   

I started my Blog almost 9 years ago, on April 11, 2007.   There have been so very many changes in my life since then.   I've moved to a different house in a different city and now I am working my way toward selling this house, too.   I've had good bosses and bad ones -- one very good and a couple very bad.   I've gotten out of a terrible relationship and spent a lot of time alone.  I've left two jobs and gained a bunch of new hobbies.   I got all three amateur radio licenses.  I learned to target shoot, climbed a rock wall, did some fly fishing and zipped on a zip line.   I joined a search and rescue group, ended up on the board of directors, and took national courses in search management and planning.  I made a bunch of crafts and cooked and baked a bunch of food.   Somehow, the less I've had to do, the busier I seem to have gotten.  I've met some really nice people.   I've gained and lost the same ten pounds over and over and over again.  I've discovered that I am still capable of loving someone again, which was something of a surprise, but also that loving someone doesn't require them to love me back.  I've seen one of my children move to Louisiana and back again to Michigan.   I've watched another child move from New York to Michigan and then to Louisiana.  I've added a lot more gray hair.  I've spent time with friends and siblings and done little bits of traveling.  I've enjoyed two grandchildren who are growing up way too fast, and gained a grand-dog.   Through these nine years my health has remained good enough to not complain about, and I've never gone hungry or been without a place to sleep.  Indeed, life is good.

I'm having a giveaway to celebrate my nine year blogivesary.    The way it looks now, the prize will include one of my favorite candles, a braided bracelet and a zipper pouch I made, and a button from my search and rescue group.
Just as with most of my life, there are no rules, only guidelines.   One thing for sure, once a winner is chosen,  I will be happy for you, whoever you are, whether you are a long time follower or someone brand new.  There is room in my life and my heart for both categories of people.   The prize will go to the random choice of whomever comments between now and April 11.     I hope it will be you.  :)

Friday, April 1, 2016

One Quarter Down, Three More To Go

April already, the year is a quarter done.   Where did the time go?   It flies by faster the older I get.   And I cherish the good times more and more.

My Grands were on Spring Break this week so we were able to find a little time for fun.  My granddaughter decided that she wanted to learn to make her favorite sweet treats, and one of those treats was a recipe that I have often made for them - lava cakes.   She came over one afternoon and we shipped them up for her to serve her family, who were appropriately impressed.   They are a simple cake to make with a great presentation since the little cakes cut open to reveal a flood of chocolate "lava."  She did a great job, to the satisfaction of all.  Too bad we gobbled them down too quickly to photograph!

She also wanted to start learning to sew, so she practiced on my machine by stitching paper mazes, first with just the needle, and then with thread so that she could see what happens when you forget to put the foot down or move the paper.   She finished her first practice session by making a little stuffed doll-size pillow and was proud as punch.   Next session she will make a little fox pillow from a cute piece of printed fabric that I ordered from Spoonflower -- they have so many cute projects on that site!   I have been eyeing the "it must be bunnies" fabric since one of my screen names is "bunny queen" . . . seems like something I ought to have, no?

I have owed my grandson a special day since his birthday last November, and this seemed like a very good week to get started on that.   So we planned a day at the new Legoland about an hour's drive away, with a visit to the nearly new aquarium at the same place, Great Lakes Crossing in Auburn.   All told, we spent 8 hours of fun.   We saw a 4-D movie, went on a shoot-em-up ride through Lego dragons and spiders, and saw the city of Detroit built entirely out of Legos.  There was a test area where kids could make vehicles and run them down a variety of test tracks,  pits of Legos for building, and a wall where kids could stick Legos to make a design wall.   But the coolest thing, from a 12-year-old's point of view, is that employees all wear a mini figure on their name badge and they are willing to trade; he brought several of his duplicates for just that purpose.   He enjoyed checking them out and making trades for figures he doesn't already have.   He came home with a Lego Trump and a Lego Batman.   Cool beans.

A friend and I went to see Batman v Superman -- the reviews weren't great but I love superhero movies so it was fun for me.    And of course there is always work to do with and for the search and rescue group, as we try to spread the word of the service we offer and to improve our skills so that we will be ready when called.

My backyard is flooded, it is definitely trying to be Spring here even though snow is predicted again this weekend.   I am still working on cleaning out closets and basements and need a handyman for a few repairs but am having trouble finding anyone who wants the work.   My goal is still to list my house and move this year, but it doesn't seem to be moving any closer to completion.   Still, there is no real urgency and I know it will happen in its own time.   For now it is enough to watch the bunnies pairing up in my back yard and enjoy what each day brings.  

Speaking of time flying by,  my 9-year Blog Anniversary is coming up this month.     It just doesn't seem possible that it was that long ago that I started journaling on line.    There will be a giveaway, of course --  I am a well established Slacker, but I'll try to get that up and running in the next week or so, so I hope you'll stay in touch!  :)