Monday, April 27, 2020


Two Governors of two states gave recent updates.

Vermont Governor, Phil Scott, a Republican (old-school variety)

  1. Thanks Vermonters for making the difficult sacrifices that are helping to contain the virus. (Gracious)
  2. Wants the economy to open but public health and safety have to be the first priority. (Compassionate)
  3. Outdoor construction sites and indoor construction sites in empty buildings are open with up to 5 workers who must maintain physical distance. (Cautious)
  4. Some outdoor venues such as garden stores can reopen but must allow only up to ten customers at a time.
  5. Physical distancing and wearing of masks in public continues and most likely  will be the standard until an effective vaccine is approved. (Realistic and listening to advise)
  6. Anyone coming from another state needs to self quarantine for 2 weeks.
  7. Fields endless questions along the same lines of "when will things be normal again" without losing his patience. (Patient)
  8. Commends front line workers and once again thanks all for efforts to contain the virus. (Sympathetic and gracious)

Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis, a Republican (Trumpian variety)

  1. Maintains that the virus affect mainly older people, most cases in continuous care facilities and nursing homes.  Afterall, this is God's waiting room.  (Sarcastic)
  2. Allows localized authority to open beaches and boat launches, hold church services. (Shifting responsibility)
  3. Declares Florida in great shape with a great strategy to reopen the economy. (willingness to take any credit)
  4. Too many empty hospital beds so elective surgeries can resume May 4. Adds that healthcare workers who have tested positive for the virus visited NY. (so don't blame Florida)
  5. Notes how people are reacting with fear and anxiety like he has never seen and asks doctor on stage to address this psychological phenomenon, not in a caring way.
  6. Irritated with reporters' questions about unemployment benefits and blamed an "inherited" system that was not worth the high cost to the state. (Impatience and blame shifting)
  7. Thanked the staff of host site, a hospital, and commended them for not being hysterical in addressing the situation. Mentioned a different hospital administration that had asked for more supplies in anticipation of a surge that didn't happen. (Not much of a team building strategy)
  8. And then, there is this.

Stay safe, stay well, and don't drink the bleach.

Friday, April 24, 2020

The End of My Fabric

Some time last spring I had the Kondo bug and I cleared out piles of fabric. I had enough material here in Florida to sew up a couple dozen masks. Validation for the thought "It might come in handy someday." Oh, well.

Still, after the mask making I had just the smallest odds and ends left over. Why is it so hard to let go of those scraps of fabric? And yarn? I can't even knit anymore from carpal tunnel, but you'd think my yarn stash was gold coins they way I hang on to it.

Well, it is an unusually rainy day here today and I really wanted to make something. I used up the fabric for a couple of mug mats and these bowl cozies I saw on pinterest.
I use mug mats all the time.

Remains to be seen about the bowl things.

I would not use these in the microwave because I don't know that the material and thread is all cotton.

This is a crafty thing I did with the girls I was working with way back in January. It was an effort to clean out yarn and fabric scraps too.

My grandmother used to say something about idle hands and the devil's workshop. Must have left an impression.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Keeping Sane

Okay. I read this in the news: 5 steps to make you feel more in control during a quarantine.
I am not really in quarantine per se, but I am living alone and physically isolating so I thought it might be useful.

1.  Take a shower. I was a bit surprised that needed to be said, but there was the extra kick of ending with a few seconds' blast of cold water. Well, maybe. I have been feeling groggy some mornings.

2.  Change your clothes. I have a couple of pull over my head dresses that I find quite comfy or I have my yoga pants and a tee. I have enough to do clean every day and a load of laundry or two each week.

One of the street crew ran over my mailbox and I did have to run into my bedroom to throw on a bra before he knocked on the door to tell me about it. Otherwise if I tweeted it would be something like LIBERATE THE GIRLS!

3.  Make your bed.

4.  Spend 10 minutes a day decluttering.

5.  Get some fresh air.

I must be a control freak OR mentally healthy because my reaction to these suggestions is "DUH!" And don't think I don't know who is putting me into which category!

I did have a lovely conversation with a spider that was hiding behind my yoga mat this morning.

In sanity. - Lolcats - lol | cat memes | funny cats | funny cat ...

Friday, April 17, 2020

"Rainy" Day

It was very windy and very cloudy yesterday. We even had a few sprinkles -- enough to send the street destruction crew home early. They are putting in new waste water pipes down my street but it just seems to me all they really do is move dirt around and send it flying through the air.

It didn't even get above 70°F -- so cool in comparison to what it had been. I made a big pot of chicken soup. What else can you do on a cool day spent inside? I made some naan bread as well. Then I had to clean all the flour mess out of the kitchen.

And I assembly line whipped up some more masks, with thanks to Kay for mentioning using strips of tee shirt for the ties.

Today it's back up in the 80°F + range. I may regret having a big pot of soup for several more meals.

The dirt is still flying and the heavy equipment is rumbling and shaking my house. I need a mask for more than virus protection as I nearly choked going out for my mail.

It's still quite cloudy, but some sun slips through once in a while.  I stopped to smell the gardenias on my walk around the neighborhood.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Easter Memories

Easter. I have often had a "bah-humbug" attitude about that holiday.

Perhaps it started from early experience. This is my grandfather's house in Pennsylvania where we lived when I was little. His grocery store was attached on the other side. Later my aunt and uncle moved here so we continued to visit here until the mid 70's when my aunt ended up moving in with my parents in VT.

An early memory of finding my Easter basket hidden behind a chair by the front door where a long phalanx of ants had already found it so that what should have been a delightful assemblage of jelly beans and a chocolate bunny was a swarm of large ants. Of course I cried and upset the adults.

I don't remember if it was the same day, but it had to be Easter because this church down the street was so crowded that I remember my father and I having to stand on the steps outside. My mother must have been occupied with a new baby because she was not there and my father had taken me to church without a hat. I remember that a strange woman plunked a hankie on my head! It made me mad because she embarrassed my dad!

If you are thinking these minor incidents were not enough to ruin a holiday, let me assure you that they are not the only negative associations.

However, the kind efforts of my neighbors to make sure I had a pleasant Easter day softened me a little.

I remember the foods my mother would spend a solid week preparing. It all had to be ready by Saturday evening and displayed on the dining table so that the priest, per Ukrainian tradition, could come and bless the meal.

I found some pictures online:

It all looks so familiar and yummy in my memory. I didn't keep up with any of the traditions.

I guess Kevin and Amy might have memories all associated with the grandmothers. The last time I made Easter baskets Kevin was 19 and he made a disgusted remark about not being a baby anymore. I cried for hours.

Pretty much the sum total of my decorating.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Easter Bunnies

I was sitting at my window yesterday morning sipping my morning coffee.
I thought I saw my neighbor out for a walk, but no, he was carrying a basket. It had to be the Easter bunny. He went out of view but then fairly quickly was returning. I found this outside my door:

He does exist!

A little while later, I heard a tap on my door.
 This was sitting on that same little table, still warm and melty-gooey!

Then around dinner time there was another rap on the door. I found this plate.

I may not be seeing so much of my neighbors but it's so nice to know they are there!

Wednesday, April 8, 2020


I don't have a family to feed now, just myself. I am finding that if I am careful about planning I really don't have to grocery shop all that often, maybe once a month. I am using vegetables with a good shelf life and frozen. I am eating less bread and that is a good thing.

I keep a double list --  wants and needs. It is only when that needs list gets burdensome that I will go to the grocery store. Funny thing that I have noticed is that at first my wants list was long last month. This month the entire list is very short.

When I was doing my laundry I noticed that I really could replace worn out underwear and pajamas. Well, hardly a necessity, especially at a time when I could completely be going without and who would know most of the time!

I don't even know if the clothing stores are considered essential services so are open here. I really have been a hermit I guess.

I did make a resolution to NOT shop online. That was a hard one because I know it keeps people working, but the people who are most at risk at the minimum wage workers packing things in warehouses, not the CEOs who are getting rich.
Personally, I feel that if someone is risking serious illness to provide a service I need to look them in the eyes and say thanks.

John Prine -- COVD 19 made him an angel

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Another week down

My coping efforts continue. This past week I watched this video about the Olsen mask that Kay had posted on her blog. Then I used some cotton fabric scraps to make some masks.

Leftovers from a baby quilt.

The pattern is a bit more complicated than some but it does have a pocket for inserting a filter.

Because of the construction on my street, I really could not do much in the yard during the day. However, I noticed that my landscape plants are not doing well and so I spent time doing research. I apparently have quite the infestation of  aphids and/or white flies. Plus some kind of sooty fungus on one  shrub. I do not have a green thumb by any means. I do have a little bit of neem oil, but I am sure it's not enough. I am not sure that a trip to the garden center would constitute essential activity. I'm pretty sure that all the plants shudder when they see me walk into a plant nursery anyway.

I also took a look at my financial statement. That was depressing. I guess more than the need to keep distance will be preventing me from hiring a gardener any time soon.


Rest In Peace, William H. Withers,
singer/songwriter, 1938-2020

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Locked In

Florida's governor, as of yesterday, has issued the "Stay at Home" order.  He had said he was waiting to hear from Trump about what he should do. Meanwhile, many other governors of hard hit states took a more proactive stance.

Well, I have been under my own stay at home constraints. Not all work has stopped around here.

This morning.


View from my bedroom window last week.


I am living in a dust bowl and a pandemic. Double house arrest. Introversion skills finally come in handy!