Saturday, July 30, 2011


My mind still feels like it is on vacation, but doing OK.

    Losing It.

Bat pictureDo you ever feel you are going batty?  You write something down, reread it, and think, fine - done.  Two days later, you look at it again and you think, how did I do that, was I having a brain drain?  You find spelling errors or typos, even though you had used spell-check - or thought you did. You have gone over the top with placing commas, used wrong tenses of  verbs,  and run-on sentences have run amok.  You don't think you use to do this; you prided yourself on your command of the English language, yet you have used a word which sounds the same as another but with a different spelling and meaning.  Well, that is where I am finding myself now. How did I not catch this or that when I quickly proofed? "Quickly" might be the problem..  At this point, I should probably write, leave it alone for a day or so, re-read, leave it alone for another day, and then a week later, with a fresh perspective, do my last run-thru and publish.  However, by that time, I probably would have changed most of what I originally wrote and added some new errors.  Can't win, but don't judge me too harshly, I eventually correct myself.  I am just in my over-the-hill stage of life.

At my last job we received a letter that told us that payment would be anally. I have to admit that the missing "u" made my day. 

Tomorrow I will correct this post.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ain't What She Used To Be

A break in the heat and I am doing OK
Carafe Wine Glass
Wine Shopping

Since my daughter has chosen to live in the beautiful surroundings of California wine country, hubby and I have indulged in a little taste of the grape while on our visits.  Not that we don't do it in the less-than-fine wine country of Pennsylvania, but California  does have the edge.

In the past we have visited Sonoma and Napa Valleys, which have some of the most beautiful real estate in the USA. These places are so breath-taking, that you must hold a full glass of wine in each hand in order to keep your balance.

The Santa Cruz mountains is another beautiful
spot known for it's wineries.  The steep terrain can make one queasy, but the scenery is worth it. The majestic  redwoods are throughout  and there are 14,000 acres of of planted vineyards. 

A few years ago we stopped and did a tasting at Bonny Doon.  The personnel were happy (who wouldn't be if you worked at a winery called Bonny Doon) accommodating, and great fun.  We had a few sips that day and I felt I was in a scene from the movie Sideways.  BTW, since that flick, I have never drank Merlot. 

Bonny Doon
This year's wine tasting was a little different and eliminated that nail biting trip up the mountains to visit some of the more than 200 vineyards. In the past few years a group of those wineries have set up stores, restaurants and outdoor cafes in the middle of the town of Santa Cruz.  Although we missed the beautiful scenery along those curving  high-elevation roads, we did get to enjoy the very colorful aspect of the town itself.  Santa Cruz is one cool place!

We started out at Bonny Doon again, and for a small fee, we tasted 5 wines.  For those who have never had the pleasure of this experience, a taste is about 3 to 4 sips.  Everything was fine and festive (although, due to the crowds, it lost some intimacy it had at it's previous location, ) and we chose two different wines to bring home with us.  At our second stop on the tour, I got to try the first wine of the selection and started to feel a little woozy. Between both wineries, I had drank less than a glass, and I was already down for the count.  I took a seat and waited for hubby, but I was not feeling well.  They had to take old grandma home.  Was it my age, had I lost my mojo?  Woe is me.

We have plans in September to go to a wine festival in PA.   Here the wines are not as renowned, nor as good.   I may do better as it could be the degree of sophistication that threw me off.   I might just have been out of my element in California.  I don't speak wine talk, tend to spill when I swirl, mispronounce the pompous words, and really don't smell all those aromas they tell me are in there.   I guess that I am just a cheap date - one of the things that hubby likes about me. 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My Retirement - Where the Cool Breezes Blow.

Back home and doing OK

California Dreamin'

While most of the country was suffering though record-setting high temperatures, hubby and I enjoyed the cool breezes and perfect temperatures along the Monterey Bay, CA coastline.  The fog  creeps in (like little cat's feet) in the morning but by noon we are enjoying the warm California sun.

We watched the surfers in the early morning (daughter and son-in-law)

Visited the fish

Enjoyed watching the wonder in our granddaughter's eyes.

Did some berry picking by the sea

Fruits of our labor - Strawberries and Olallieberries

Yes, I said Olallieberries (cross between the loganberry and the youngberry, which itself is a cross between the blackberry and another berry (raspberry and dewberry, respectively).   Yeah, whatever that means.

And took in some of the cultural attractions.

Good time had by all!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Retirement- Inappropriate

On vacation and doing OK

What did you say?

Children are notorious for spouting out just what is on their mind.  How many of us just wanted to run and hide when one of our little ones said the wrong thing to the wrong person.  You sit there and cringe as the words come out of their mouth and you quickly try to think of something to divert attention away from the offending comment.  However, most people have been in that situation at one time or another and even if you are the one being being asked why your eyes are crooked or your teeth so big, you understand as it is out of the mouth of babes and therefore innocent.

Now we go to the other end of the spectrum - adults with no sense.  After a man that I became related to 44 years ago spouted out a totally nonscensical remark to some children that took me back and had me reeling, dear son-in-law piped in and said "It is really hard to be a man, we just can't help ourselves."  "Being one step before Neanderthal", I said.  "Yep, that's it" he said.  Now I get it; it just had to be explained to me.  In a few million years they should be evolved.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My Retirement - What happened to "Less is More"?

Getting tired and run-down but I'll be OK

Plans gone astray.

View the Headaches and Migraines Slideshow PicturesThis was my year to cut back on things, less planting, less planning, less anxiety, less, less, less of everything.  Easier said than done!  I am sitting here, still anxiety ridden, still have too many plants to care for, and have plans coming out the wazoo.  How did this happen.? After much introspection, I realized it is who I am, and at this point of my life there little chance that I will change, but I need to get a handle on things.  So I am going to take a break from blogging for a few weeks and sit back and relax, relax, relax.  I will check in on all the blogs that I have come to enjoy and look forward to reading, I just won't compose until I have something to say.   However there are so many good things on my plate and new adventures to experience that I am sure in a few weeks I will be back and feeling healthy.

Thank you all for reading my nonsense. I am so appreciative to my followers for taking the time to visit my blog.  I will see you in September, if not before.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Retirement - Cool Girl

Hot summer and I am doing OK

The "In Crowd"

Most people, at some point of their lives, want to belong to the hip, cool crowd.  We want to be popular and accepted.  As we mature, this becomes less important as our values change.  Being an individual and being true to ourselves and beliefs are more what we aspire to be.  However, there is always that yearning to be accepted by some one or some group.

There is a comedian named Kathie Griffin who has a show called "My Life on the D-List.  I have never watched the program, but I have seen her on other talk shows and she is not my cup of tea. I find her foul-mouthed and cruel.  However, the title of her show is funny and we all might have related to this at some point in our lives, especially in our younger years.

To many people I have appeared to be an extrovert, but deep inside there has been this lump in my belly that screams "I'm scared".  I have used a sense of humor to hide this dark secret.  Over the years, I have learned to be comfortable with myself and although I lack confidence in many aspects, I find that I now fit my britches very well.  Wish it happened sooner. 

As a teenager and young woman, I was never on the "A" list. Once or twice, I may have hit the border line B-;  think I belonged on or around C; know I touched the D and maybe E or F,  so I guess I traveled in many circles. I look at the C group as being sort of nerdy, naive but opinionated, doesn't walk between the lines bunch of people. It is a real comfy place to be.  This group does not have to be perfect, but we are inventive, Miss or Mr. America we aren't, but we are Bill Gates. We can move up the list as Bill did, but where can you go if you start out in "A". 

Now though, in the latter part of my life, I look at my smart, funny friends and see that yes,  somewhere along my life, I moved up.  This is the greatest group of people ever.  Our friendships have lasted almost 40 years and we have had a wonderful time.  Our kids admire our closeness and think we are cool.  Cool, I finally made it, or maybe I always was and didn't know it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

My Retirement - A Party of Friends

Holiday is over and I am doing OK

Good Times

willow tree pictureI have been a very fortunate person.  I came from and am in a loving family, always had a friend, worked at places where I met terrific folks and yes, life has been good to me.   I was never a part of the jet set, never drove a Cadillac, never traveled to exotic places, but home has been where my heart truly is. My children are educated and on their own and I am proud of the job I did getting them there.  My siblings are so special to me and we have a deep, loving relationship that is supportive and kind.

Yesterday I sat under the shade of my willow tree with some friends and family, listening to music, having a little of the grape, laughing about the ordinary things in life and having a good time.  How grateful I am for my blessings.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

My Retirement - Land of the Free, Home of the Brave

Big Weekend and I am doing OK

Of Thee I Sing

I am fortunate to live in a very historical area of the US. Brave soldiers fought and died on this land to bring about this great experiment known as America. I am surrounded by the ghosts of the past wherever I go and swell with pride at the sacrifices that they made for all of us who reside in this land of freedom.

My county tis of thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty,
Of thee I sing.

Cemetery near Valley Forge, PA
About a mile from my home there is a cemetery where twenty-two Revolutionary War soldiers are buried. I drive by this site many times a week and only stopped by a few times to reflect.  There are no names written on their graves, they are unknown, but not forgotten. On Monday, there will be a ceremony at the site which will be attended by local town councils and a core group that gather every year to remember.

Land where my father died,
Land of the Pilgrim's Pride,

Soldier's huts at Valley Forge

Not too far down the road is Valley Forge Park. This was where Washington and his troops of about 11,000 men encamped during the winter of 1777-1778. Many died because they were ill equipped with supplies of clothing and food. In June they left to pursue the British who were heading toward New York

This is Washington's headquarters where he stayed along with his aids. His wife Martha also joined him for a few months that winter. The building is 80% original.

The park is a beautiful place to go to reflect and be thankful for the country that we love.

From every mountain side


Let Freedom Ring!