Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Looking for a New Refrigerator?

I probably come across as an old coot waging a war on modern technology. I am not really. I do see the benefit of advances and I even admire those who embrace and run with them.

There are just some things I just don't want or personally need . . . even when having fantasies about my ideal kitchen in my ideal home.

    in Black Stainless Steel Full Size
This LG refrigerator has an ice maker (I worry too much about mold since I use very little ice), instant view door (constant reminder that you need to clean the fridge?). It has auto close doors, which I might like, and the fact that it is counter depth is a definite good thing in my book. It has a smart grid and is WiFi enabled.
Fine, but I am retired now and I have the time and a lifelong habit of writing my grocery lists on scraps of paper so I really wouldn't use that. I don't feel the need to communicate with my kitchen appliances. Just keep the food cold and I'm happy. It cost nearly $4000.

This Kitchen Aid refrigerator has a Sabbath mode -- not entirely sure what that is, but I don't think I need it. It does have "professional features that will leave guests awestruck." Seriously? It's not even counter depth. The main thing I dislike about refrigerators is how they stick out into the kitchen.

KitchenAid KBSD618E
But if I wanted to impress my family and friends, it would be by affixing the sales slip with its $9,360 price to the door with a kitschy magnet.

Now this Dacor model has 3D lighting so you never lose anything although I don't suppose you could really rely on a man to find what he's looking for all the same. It has not only an ice maker, but a dual ice maker. You can get standard ice cubes AND cocktail ice cubes, but I don't throw cocktail parties. I'm not sure if it is counter depth but it is sleek looking. However, if you need to know what's inside without being able to open the door and look, it has remote view cameras that connect via WiFi to an Android phone.

Dacor DRF427500Darn, I have an iPhone. I guess I will save the $10,500 for something else.

Monday, October 28, 2019

A Memory

I was little. I woke up and I did not feel good. I don't know why and I am sure I didn't know at the time. I didn't have the concept of or words for "Bad Mood"
but when I first read Alexander and The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst (as an adult to my children) I recognized my young self in that story.
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst - Used (Very Good, ex-library) - 0590421441 by Scholastic, Incorporated |Amazon

As a child*, I could be whiny and obnoxious when I was sick or feeling off.
My mother knew I wasn't sick and she was generally not the type to soothingly confront bad behavior. She might give it a try once and then threaten to send offending child to Australia by way of a swift but powerful swat to the rear end.

This is what I have a pretty vivid memory of: she looked at me in exasperation and said, "Well, you just got up on the wrong side of bed, didn't you?" That put me into a tailspin. When my mother was busy with my baby sister I quietly went back up to our bedroom.

There's a wrong side to get out of a bed? How do you know the wrong side from the right side? What side did I actually use?

Well obviously nothing to do but get back into bed and get out again. I remember going back downstairs and telling my mom that I had gone back and gotten out of bed on the right side this time. I maybe was a little confused that she laughed but my bad mood was gone.

* Okay, that's not just a childhood characteristic. I add this in case any of my family members ever read my blog.


Everything is a learning experience.

A Buddhist might say that I learned about impermanence. Our experiences are ever changing.

A developmental psychologist might say that I learned that I had a certain control over my situation. It may have been a magical solution, but I didn't absorb a story that I am helpless and at the mercy of a bad mood.

Ahh, those lessons you have to keep learning through a life time.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

New and Improved

Image result for not listening cartoon

I have been getting a message from Blogger -- try the New Blogger now.

We are making  changes to make life easier (paraphrased).

I avoid clicking the continue button to try the changes now. Unfortunately I know that the changes will come on their own.

I am skeptical, perhaps even cynical, about changes in technology having any kind of salubrious effect on my life.
Honestly, I am not one who always resists change. I often embrace it. For example, I would certainly embrace a change in the current political situation.

However, it is apparent that I no longer have the brain plasticity needed for adapting to changing technology.

A phone answering machine that could sit on my desk next to my landline phone was the last advance that I personally felt added some value to my life. Anything after that -- meh.

I get to the party late, usually kicking and screaming.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019


I have always needed my sleep. Under ideal conditions I go to bed, sleep for 7.5 hours, wake up refreshed and start my day. I can remember that happening a few times in my life.
Image result for sleepless meme

I remember visiting my cousins who did not have a strict bedtime in the summer.  They would be running around well after dark and I just wanted to sneak away and curl up in bed to sleep. I couldn't believe my aunt and uncle were so irresponsible as parents!

Once as a teen I was invited by neighbors to spend a week at their lake cottage. One night we all went to see some friends of theirs who had a horse farm. It was fun until adult conversation went on . . . and on . . .  and on. By one in the morning I was pretty sure my eyeballs were bleeding.

There are significant periods of my life during which sleep was elusive.
There was a long stretch during high school  and college when I would wake during the night and could not go back to sleep. Every night sound seemed magnified and designed specifically to keep me awake. One night I buried my wind-up alarm clock in a large box of outgrown clothing my mother had stored at the back of the closet. I had no trouble understanding the horror of Poe's "Tell Tale Heart."

Pregnancy -- certainly one does not sleep for two. It only gets worse once the baby is born. But as the kids grew I found I could fall asleep in seconds and not rouse until the alarm and/or the first sound of stirring children. Sleep deprivation will do that for you. Maybe I wasn't so refreshed upon waking but at least I was dead to the world for a period of time.

Then kids become teens -- a whole new style of sleepness develops. And job stress can do a number as well. Part of my early retirement was from being so consistently sleep deprived that I felt sick far too much of the time -- job stress plus helping with care for my mother who had dementia really had me at a breaking point. Oh, and let's throw in perimenopause.

night, quotes, and sad

Retirement did not cure my sleep problems. Bad habits and poor sleep hygiene were firmly established. I ended up going to a sleep clinic and being sent to a behavioral change group therapy program and the university. It worked.

But, of course, this comes up now because I am experiencing those 3 a.m. wake up/can't get back to sleep periods. It started with a Code Red Weather alert that there was a tornado threat in the immediate area of Ashwood Drive. Gee, that was ominously specific.

Now that I am older and wiser, I know that a.) I have tools to understand and deal with periods of sleeplessness and b.) everything changes. This is not a permanent condition.

I find that if I stretch and let my arms go up and wide to accept the day, I feel immediately more refreshed. Yesterday a yoga instructor suggested adding a grateful for thought to this routine and I do feel ready for my day.

Related imageGoogle Image

(Sometimes I get the feeling that people around me just want to slap me up side my head.)

Friday, October 18, 2019

A few pictures:

It took me a while to get wifi up and running. That's a whole other blog post, but who wants to hear another convoluted Comcast tale of woe?

I took a walk on the beach while in South Carolina. (I believe on Fripp Island.) Low tide scenes:

Kind of looked like a scene out of some outer space movie. Most of the debris caused by Dorian has already been cleaned up.

Here is where I slept in my step daughters' lovely brand new home:

Antique, yet comfy bed.

On Sunday we took a horse drawn carriage ride through historic Beaufort, S.C.
It was really interesting hearing the stories our docent had to relate and to realize how deep and wide the history of any given place can be. Old homes in this district were so beautiful as well, but of course I had neglected to bring my phone.

If Don is around I don't leave the house without his asking, "Do you have your phone?" so I thought I was getting better about this, but how quickly we revert to form!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

A Long Ride, Safe Landing

I have been in travel mode for the past week. I'll admit that I was a little nervous about a solo car trip from Vermont to Florida. I have done it before but the thought of that was then kept creeping in. I decided to not make a straight shot out of the trip but to take y time and make many stops along the way. It felt like a vacation as a result.
Image result for road trip meme

I spent the past weekend with my step daughter at their new home on St. Helena Island -- South Carolina low country.  There was a lot of fresh fish and seafood, time on the beach, an historic tour of Beaufort, and endless throwing of tennis balls for their two border collies to chase after.

It's beautiful there -- so many beautiful spots to see in this country -- in a soft and subtle way. This is where movies -- The Big Chill (one of my all time favorites), The Great Santini, Prince of Tides (Pat Conroy territory), and Forrest Gump. Now I want to watch those movies again.

Gossip: locals loved Tom Hanks. Barbra Streisand -- not so much.

So I am Florida now for about a month before I will return to for holiday hoopla and a bunch of appointments of one kind and another. I have pictures that will available at a later date.

I am settled in now and will spend some time catching up with blogs.

Saturday, October 5, 2019

What's a Week End?

I attended the stage play Pride and Prejudice last night with two friends. As you no doubt know it is a good story and there were some modern twists in the play that did not distract in the least.


We had a frost last night but the day was sunny and gorgeous -- not warm but beautiful nonetheless. Unfortunately, I spent part of the day attending a funeral of a teacher and former colleague. The fact that he was only 57 years old made it very sad. He was obviously well loved and obviously lived his life with gusto. It was a beautiful service, quite a tribute to the man. Still, sad.

My good friend who fell and shattered her hip seems much improved. She is doing occupational and physical therapy and appears much stronger. I watched her walk using the bars and she is able to transfer herself into bed. I do keep reminding myself not to break a hip though. It is just a horrible, painful process of recovery.

One of my former students works at the rehab facility so I ran into her while on a visit to my friend. She's had the job for nine years now and has been able to buy a house. It is such a treat to run into a former student, especially one who seems to  doing well. 

You can' help but wonder what happens to people who pass through your life and spend a bit of time there before moving on.


I had lunch with my sister. She works for a guy whose father is doing my trust. The lawyer (father of her employer) could not get over how much alike my sister and I are -- same expressions, same mannerisms, same laugh, and am I as smart as she is (HA!)?  My sister and I don't see it at all although this has been mentioned by others before. 

Thursday, October 3, 2019

It's Around the Corner

Fall sort of snuck up on me this year but there is no doubt it is here now. The chill is in the air and the leaves are turning. It's a pretty time of year. I am sure I will enjoy it as I travel south.

I noticed signs for ski and snowboard sales, a sure sign of another season to come.

Halloween decorations are out on lawns. Candy selections and pumpkins are already kind of picked over in the stores. I did see Santas lined up on a shelf next to skeletons at CVS yesterday.

No way the holiday season sneaks up on anyone anymore.