Saturday, March 25, 2017

Vacation Time

Recently it got to the point where the most frequent communication to me on FaceBook was, "Just got another friend request from you.  Change your password, you've been hacked."  I know it happens, but three times in six weeks.  I simply have run out of ideas for passwords.

I closed my Facebook account.

And you know what?  It's nice to go out for a morning walk or a bike ride instead of being glued to the computer screen.

I am also running out of steam for blog posts.  So, time for a vacation.  I will check in on my reading list from time to time and maybe post on my Act 3 blog.

Perhaps I will start getting out more and find something worth blogging about here eventually.

Monday, March 13, 2017


I am always striving for balance in my life, but today I am talking about physical balance. I often read that many people start to have problems with balance, seemingly as a consequence of aging.  Falls and resulting injuries (like a broken hip) can have a detrimental effect on the quality of life and even sometimes are implicated in deaths due to injury.

I am in the demographic -- according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over a third of those 65 years or over false act year.

Actually, I am well ahead of the curve.  I have been falling since I was two when I tumbled down the full flight of steep cellar steps and broke my nose.  When I was a little older my mother actually had me practice leading with my bum as I fell so I would not break an arm.  My mother had a dread fear of one of her children breaking an arm and she figured I was the most likely candidate.

I guess the early training worked as I have yet (knock wood) to break my arm.  I have bruised my bum though!

And I have taken some pretty spectacular falls, but I am not attributing any of them to age.  It's all about natural born clumsiness.  Still, I think it is a good idea that I take yoga and a balance Pilates class.

I have added mindful meditation to my routine as well.  I have not broken anything other than my nose, but I don't want to press my luck so I will do what I can.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Sharing an important find

Confession: I struggle with a weakness for potato chips.

Well imagine my delight when I found these at the local Publix grocery store.
I was just so excited I had to share!

Nutrient-dense!  Gluten free!  Certified non-GMO! Small batch cooking!  Obviously made with love. They do taste good!

Alternative health food is a thing now, right?

Thursday, March 2, 2017


I signed up for some painting classes through Sarasota County's Adult Continuing Education Program.  Eight lessons for $130 -- can't really find a better deal than that.

The added bonus is that I did learn quite a bit.  I am not planning on quitting my day job and sailing down to the Florida Keys to become  a full time artist by any means.  However, I am finding that I enjoy learning something new and I enjoy painting enough to want to keep working at it.  Eventually I will turn out something I think worthy of hanging on my wall.

Yesterday, the subject was painting boats with a reflection in the water.

One more lesson to go in this series.  Unfortunately the instructor announced that he would not be continuing to through ACE.  I don't know yet whether there will be other classes but I plan on checking that out.

Saturday, February 25, 2017


This will be the fourth year that I have volunteered at InStride Therapy.  I work on Thursday mornings when kindergarten and first grade students from area schools come on field trips to learn about the care and feeding of the horses and participate in associated literacy activities.

Little Red is the star attraction.  You can see he was all gussied up for this season's debut. He's a handsome pony and he does kind of know it.

Saturday, February 18, 2017


I had a cold right after I arrived in Florida.  I blamed it on airport germs and got over it in the usual  week's time.  Then I got another cold about two weeks ago.  What?  This is unusual for me.  And this one seemed to want to hang on but I convinced myself I felt better after ten days.

Well, Thursday night was a real bother with a hacking dry cough that kept me awake and miserable.
I didn't really feel that bad.  My nose started running again.  Another cold?  I decided to have this checked up so I called my doctor and she squeezed me into her schedule.  She diagnosed bronchitis and prescribed some kind of medicinal cocktail.

I have never had bronchitis before and can't say I like it very much.  I am going to assume the medicine is working, but I sure am not.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

This made me laugh

New uses for mason jar lids from Real Simple Magazine, February, 2017:

The outer ring parts to mason jar lids can be used as a makeshift muffin tin.  You set six rings ,wide side down, on a baking sheet and place  paper muffin/cupcake papers in each and fill with the muffin batter.

 "Cant't find the muffin tin?"  But here are these six jar lids just laying around so no problem.

This is not a kitchen I can even comprehend.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Joys of aging

Pretty much every week I receive some flyer in the mail notifying me about the availability of one hearing aid clinic or another.  This is the case whether I am in Vermont or in Florida.  As far as I know, my hearing is pretty good.  Last time I had it checked I was told I had the hearing of a teenager and I assumed that meant it was good.  It has been a while but I have not noticed much change. I keep wondering if I am targeted because of my age or if someone is referring me.

This week it was something new.  "Join us for a FREE LUNCH & informational seminar on the benefits of preplanning your cremation."  Good grief.

Something is always coming up that veers me, however momentarily, from my efforts to live my life with mindfulness in the moment.

Which reminds me that I recently read a review of The Perpetual Now by Michael D. Lemonik.  It is about a woman who develops a severe amnesia as the result of an illness.   She lives perpetually in the moment since her memories are erased entirely about every fifteen minutes.  I think I really don't want to live in the moment quite that much.

And now I am feeling the willingness to get out and explore, perhaps entertain a new relationship.
I wrote a poem to Mike about that.

Dating Dilemma

Growing old with someone
involves a mystical mirror.
Looking in, I saw you
as I see myself --
the sinewy muscles,
dewy fresh skin,
lush, full lips
ripe for kissing,
even as it fades, a hint
of boundless energy.

Oh, how memories softens
sharp edges of reality --
the "good old days"
and getting through the bad.
The brutal fact remains --
so sad to say --
we are not bottles of wine
nestled in Chateau Margaux,
aging to perfection.

Don't think I moan about
growing old...No.
I mourn the loss of
shared memories,
shared illusions preserving
that reflection of youth
because, frankly,
men my age
are just so darn old.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

The Elegance of the Hedgehog

I have just finished re-reading The Elegance of the Hedgehog  by Muriel Barbery, translated from its original French.  We will be discussing it in next reading group.  I had forgotten this but I was reminded by someone with a better memory that I was the one who picked it.  I am wondering how it will be received.

Our last book was The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  Funny, I remember exactly who recommended that one.  It was also a second reading for me.  I remembered the story and I think Kingsolver is a very good writer, but I did not remember the brilliance of the structure of the book.  Perhaps it takes a second reading to be fully appreciated.  My fond assessment of the book was a minority opinion, however.

I suspect that will also be the case with Barbery's book.  Si très français, which I say with the utmost fondness. It was a difficult read in the sense that I had to look up words and references to philosophy, yet the story was fairly simple.

I have a small fear that I may be asked to leave the book group. This happened to my sister in her book discussion group. She was told she had the tendency to think too much about the books. I tend to go on about the writing rather than the story. Maybe it was the way we were raised. Others seem to find us rather odd sometimes.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Breath In, Breath Out, Repeat

I do a mindful meditation.  Focus on the breath.  When thoughts come, notice and then return to the breath.  Notice what is going on in the body and send breath to any place of tension or pain.

I am looking for a place of clarity and total letting go.

Although lately not so much, sometimes I get there.  I tell myself I will hang on to that.

Sometimes I wake up in the morning and I think what a beautiful day.  I am just going to enjoy it.
I have a cup of coffee while watching the sun rise and listening to a flock of tiny little sparrows chirping as they flit around the bushes in the yard.

But I always end up turning on my computer to check emails and read blogs with my second cup of coffee.

The NYT headline flashes in the upper right hand corner of the screen.  My stomach knots and my breath catches in my chest.  My inner Dorothy Parker screams out Oh what fresh hell is this?

For my own health and well being I need to resist.

But I also need to resist the lure of watching the crash and burn, to convince myself that this too shall pass.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


I will not be anywhere near Washington, D.C. on Friday, but if I was I wouldn't attend the inauguration of our next President.  Nor will I be watching it on TV.  I am making Friday a media free day entirely.

It's not that I don't accept the election results or that I am hoping that he fails.  That would be cutting off my nose to spite my face.  Republicans of the Congress and Senate have been doing that for the past eight years and it has not been  pretty.

KARMA, Baby. Sweet Karma!

I will not be watching out of sadness that my vote counted for nothing.  I won't even pretend to grasp all the nuances of the Electoral College system.  I know I have not been able to successfully explain it to foreign friends.  I do know that, once again, my vote was in the majority but yet somehow I lost.

After the inauguration, I will use whatever is in me to stand up for all people in this country to have access to adequate health care,: for people to have food to eat (without demanding that everyone become a sensible consumer of only organic produce and only Vermont maple syrup -- so, see, I am not unreasonable); for people  to be safe when they go to school or work or out to have a good time no matter who they pray to, who the love. or who they vote for or where they live; for people to have clean water that won't make them sick or give them rashes no matter where they live.

That's not so awful, is it?

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Wanna Know a Secret?

If you spend much time on the computer cruising the's an actual have no doubt noticed all kinds of tempting promises.  The secret to younger looking, skin, the secret to a flat stomach, the secret to getting out of debt.

I see a lot of "the secrets to a clean house" and "the secret habits of those who always have a tidy home."

The big secrets for a clean home include making the bed each morning, hanging up clothes and putting away shoes, always putting things right back where they belong, cleaning the kitchen each night, dealing with mail/paper each day, and wiping up even the smallest little mess immediately.

Big secrets, huh.  Wish I was the genius who wrote all that.

If you want a clean house, clean every day.  Real Simple (which is where these tips came from).

Monday, January 9, 2017

Restless Nights

Some mornings I get up,  run a hand over the sheet to smooth it it out and my bed is made and I am on my way.

Other mornings, not so much.
It looks as though I was trying to create a tornado out of the bed covers. I don't think it shows how really twisted up it was.  I wish I could remember what I must have been dreaming...or maybe it's just as well I don't.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Warning, warning! on the safe side and heat it up on the stove?

Maybe if one is so lacking in common sense, one should be protectively banned from even walking through the kitchen?

I recently bought peanut butter with one listed ingredient: organic dry roasted peanuts. But of course there was the necessary warning: **Contains peanut ingredients.

Now I know food allergies are a serious thing and I by no means dismiss this as a problem.  Just that I suspect anyone who has had an allergic reaction is not going to pick up a container of peanut butter and say, "Oh, it doesn't have an official warning, maybe I'll give this a try."

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Horoscope for 2017

I am thinking it's a good thing that I am a Gemini.  Twins being my astrological sign helps me adjust easily when I move from one life to another.

Today I am sitting on the breezeway enjoying a very pleasantly warm breeze and some sunshine and it probably would not have even taken a week for me to slip into my Florida self except that I have been fighting a cold.

There was the thought in my head as I navigated crowded airports that there were so many people and, therefore, so many germs.  Talk about opening the door and inviting a cold right in!  Now I am inviting it to just go right on out the door and move on but it seems to be enjoying tickling my throat and clogging up my sinuses -- mostly just at night the past couple of days.

So my horoscope for 2017, or at least one of them, predicts slow changes, new romance, financial stability, personal/career growth, and possible online romance or new online business.  There are some changes.  I am wondering if there is a way to speed some of them up?