Thursday, November 29, 2018

Thoughts On An Afghan, An Embroidered Pillow, And A Blue Suit

Finally, after more than two and half years it is done. I'm not a crafts person, but I enjoy meeting up with the women in the crochet group and I also really enjoy crocheting. I loved making the squares, getting all the fun colors together, and then trimming each square with black yarn. 

But then came the hard part: Putting it all together, all those squares, black on black. It was very difficult for me to see, even after I had my eyes fixed. So I did something I don't usually do, I gave up, put it in a drawer and let it sit there for a long time. 

I didn't pick up a new project, I wanted to finish this one first. But it was hard.

Then I thought about my mom, who like me, was not into crafts either. For as long as I lived at home, there was a beautiful pillow case, a large one for a decorative pillow, embroidered with wool yarn in a chevron pattern, that my mom made. It was almost finished. It was in a drawer.

My mom would say all through my childhood, "I'll finish that pillow some day." As she aged, she would say, "I'll finish that pillow before I die, you'll see."

The pillow never got finished. 

My only brother sadly fell victim to prescription drugs and later to heroin and cocaine. He had been a very handsome young man who used to go to work wearing suits and ties, and then became this wreck of a human being. 

He would say to my mother, "Don't worry, some day soon, I'll wear that blue suit of mine again. I will clean up and you will be so proud of me." Then he died, at the age of 40, of an overdose of heroin. 

I don't know what happened to the blue suit. 

As I procrastinated with my afghan, my thoughts wandered back to that beautiful pillow, to the blue suit, then to death, no second chances, and other not productive places.

Until I picked up all the little squares and began to put them together. That must have been a year ago now, but it doesn't matter. It's done, I seized the day, I saw it through, it's far from perfect, but it's done. And I'm happy!

Tuesday, November 27, 2018


Faith: The Chewy man came, but only with a small package. I knew that couldn't be our food, so I was a little worried.

But when mommy opened it, there were packs of snacks and dental chews and then she gave me two BONES! Ahh, just for me, me, me.... I must have the best mommy in the whole wide world!

Me: You know better than that Faith, you know that one bone was for Samson and one bone was for you.

Faith to herself: I don't think so. I better get the other bone and hide it. 

Faith can't figure out how to carry both bones, so she has to leave one. She picks up the other one and brings it outside.

Samson, who only has a moderate interest in bones, sees the bone Faith left, picks it up and proceeds to chew on it.

Faith hears him chewing and runs anxiously around the house, back and forth. I find her in the hallway, listening.

Me: I know he's got one bone, why can't you just chew on the other? Why do  you get so upset for nothing? 

Faith: Nothing?! That's MY bone!

Me: Let's go and see if he'll give it back to you. Unlike you, Samson is such a mellow dog, he probably won't care. 

Faith: Mommy said you have to give me back MY bone!!

Me: Not exactly what I said.

Samson continues to chew and says nothing.

Faith: Mommy, could you PLEASE help me -- that is MY bone.

Me: OK, since you ask so nicely I'll go outside and get the other bone.

As I leave, Samson, who doesn't like me to leave, gets up and follows me outside.

Faith wastes no time - the bone is HERS!

Much to my surprise, Samson accepts the other bone and they both lie down together, chewing away. Peacefully....

Friday, November 23, 2018


Dark clouds clouds gathered and a little rain fell the night before last. 

I have longed for cold weather and rain for more than six months. I know, of course, that rain and floods have destroyed so much on the East coast and in the South that I hesitate to even post how happy I am about this. 

On our walk this morning, I saw these dark clouds to the west and sunlight covering that hillside in the background. It looked gorgeous in real life, much better than I captured in this picture. 

Turning to the east, the clouds broke up to let some light in from the sun rising behind the mountains.

Casting deep shadows across the landscape.

This is the only picture I edited in Photo. I made it a little lighter because I liked the junipers against the sky and wanted to better see what it looked like.

Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving. I meditated on how thankful I am for my family, the one that raised me and is no longer with me, and my American family who is very much in my life; all my friends, and, of course, Samson and Faith. I am also grateful for the peace this country life offers me 

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Lazy Fall Pictures By My Phone From My Car

Yesterday, I was in town running errands. On my way home, I noticed many trees were decked out in pretty fall colors and some had already lost all their leaves. 

I felt bad I was a little late in noticing this, but feeling tired, I decided to just stop and take pictures with my phone of the trees I found on my way home. 

Unfortunately, there weren't many, but then trees with bare branches are beautiful too, so I felt that even in my lazy mood, I was doing OK. 

And trees with just a few brave leaves left were even more interesting.

As some of you know, I haven't posted much here lately, mainly because of troubles with my Type 1 diabetes. After almost 30 years, it is beginning to catch up with me. My up and down blood sugars have resulted in me being even more tired than I usually am and I've had to fight feeling guilty and  slightly depressed about my inability to accomplish what I both want and need to do to take care of things around here. 

But then two things happened: First little Gracie wrote a song telling us she missed us and was worried, which made me post right away. Even though I had many emails from friends around the world, asking if I was safe from the fires, I hadn't considered that my friends on the blogs may have also been concerned.

Second: The minute I took out my phone and took a few pictures, I knew that being creative was key to feeling good. 

So now I know what I have to do -- think of others, be creative, walk more, love more and maybe sleep more too --without guilt. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2018

This One Is For Gracie, Samson's Girl

who wrote him a song to let him know she was worried about him, what with the fires and all. We are OK here, the fires are far away, we were under Red Flag Alert, but we are safe and no more alerts. Winter is coming to the canyon and Samson and I can't wait. We wish we had some of that snow you got. Faith says she's glad as long as the snow stays away.

So, sweet Gracie, here's a picture of Samson. He's a bit upset because his table broke. He has had that picnic table to stand on and look bigger when the coyotes come by, he has slept on it, Faith too, but it has truly been his table. And now it's gone! I had to take it apart and the neighbors helped me get it out of the dog yard. He doesn't know it yet, but he will get a new table soon. 

Faith Says: Thank you Gracie for thinking of us and for writing us a song. And what a good song it is. Samson says he will write you soon. Meanwhile he's sending you his picture. We both loved the picture of you for Halloween. Stay well, we are both sending you our love. (Samson's bent out of shape because mommy took his (our) table apart because it broke just a little. But he'll get over it. She also took his best chair away the other day, so he's not happy right now.) 

For those of you who don't know: Gracie is Samson's girlfriend. They were about to get virtually engaged when Errol got ill and then that sort of fell by the wayside. Gracie lives on this blog:

in Maryland and they have a loving friendship now.

Visit there to see her Halloween outfit and read the song she wrote to Samson. So sweet!


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