#WeekendCoffeeShare : Sunday Afternoon

Coffee or Tea?

Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share! This is a time to catch up with everyone’s news from last week, plans for the next, and current preoccupations (see our host Allison’s Coffee Share page for this week at her blog: Eclectic Alli). The InLinkz for Weekend Coffee Share is HERE!

I appreciate your dropping by for coffee and a chat, this afternoon…or whenever you do arrive. My week has had activities in it. We attended a volunteers appreciation dinner on Wednesday evening, and on Friday we got together with my brother Tim and his wife for an early dinner; they had come into town from Minneapolis to attend a memorial service for one of Tim’s life-long friends on Saturday morning. A sad occasion, but a very enjoyable meal. As my husband said afterward, getting together with them is always wonderful. The time goes by too fast, and we are sorry to see them leave again. We are not snapshot people, but if we were, I would share a photo of them across the restaurant table. I miss them when they’re gone.

If we were having coffee together, this afternoon, I would tell you that I have not been feeling well for most of the week. I do think that I didn’t appropriate enough “down time” between the photography workshop and the Poem-a-Day activity during the month of November. Speaking of which, Minnesota’s governor proclaimed November to be “Speculative Poetry Month”. I have now written a poem for each day of the month, through the tenth of the month. This does not surprise me, since I note on the Revision notes at the bottom of this page, that I started this post three days ago. Also, very few of my daily poems (which one can find at theartofdisorder.blogspot.com) are speculative poetry. The prose poem written for 9 November is (“No Questions, No Answers”}, though. Several poems have written themselves in streaming mode, so far. Almost always pleased by the results…when not unsettled by them. Okay, it is unsettling. But I don’t delete all of them. “Lost and Found” and “Covert Activities” (the 7th and the 2nd) survived the cut.

During the past week, I have been taking a nap over the noon hour. Trying to get to bed earlier, but that’s actually when my mind gets into gear. Late at night and first thing in the morning. Now that winter has arrived, I am not out with my camera so much, but once the poetry-writing month has finished, I am planning to dig out my photo archives for April through the first week in November, review them, and decide what to delete and what to keep. Easier to do, now that I am no longer taking my camera to family gatherings. Sometimes one doesn’t want to exchange memories for evidence.

As evidenced by my prose poem for the ninth, I am rereading the science fiction novels written by one of my favorite authors. Good companions to Francis Fukuyama’s two Political Order books. I have found over these many decades that I am an optimist living in a dystopia. It’s…interesting. As my brother indicated in our conversation, Friday, I disappeared into my bedroom sometime before my sophomore year in high school (I was the oldest surviving child of seven) and was seldom seen, after, by family, friends, or anyone else. But I completed several of the study programs that accompanied our Great Ideas Today volumes, and I read an awful lot of books.

After our parents died, having passed my Great Ideas Today set (but not the accompanying Encyclopaedia Britannica study guides) on to one of Tim’s children, I received the entire set including yearbooks from 1951 to the last year the yearbooks were issued. I’m pretty sure. The ones from home actually still have my notes in them. (Yes, I write in books, although not other people’s. Unless absentmindedly, having forgotten the book is not really mine. My subconscious still believes that all books that I own, have read, or want to read, should be and therefore are mine. Combatting that, I now have 2000 or more eBooks; in the early days, we did not have DRM, and so a lot of mine are in text and HTML formats)

In addition to buying my own set of Great Books of the Western World, once I graduated from college and got a job, I first bought my own piano and a new cornet. I had an apartment upstairs of a handicrafts store on downtown Broadway, where the tenant across the hall also played cornet. We played duets from my technique duets book; at home, I played duets with Tim, who had a trombone and the technique book in a suitable key. Later, I played for some years in the community band, although I quit the college concert band after one semester.

Curious! When you left home, what staples of civilized life did you find you needed to replicate/replace in order to survive in good order?

Again, my thanks for dropping in! The Scampers have informed me that it is time to eat and are now patiently waiting for me to grab the food bowls and fill them.

It’s been fun! I look forward to our next visits!

Hugs & much love,


iPhone photo 2018-11-11, Lizl Bennefeld
Waiting for Supper

#WeekendCoffeeShare : Saturday Evening at Home

Coffee or Tea?

Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share! This is a time to catch up with everyone’s news from last week, plans for the next, and current preoccupations (see our host Allison’s Coffee Share page for this week at her blog: Eclectic Alli). The InLinkz for Weekend Coffee Share is HERE!

Welcome! I’ve opened the latest shipment of loose-leaf tea, and the cold-brew coffee concentrate for the week was made on Friday. Still running short on munchies, but there’s bread cheese again this week and veggie-brown rice crackers. I must beg your pardon for the background noise. The Scampers haven’t settled in for their after-supper nap, yet. They are cocker spaniels, and yet they howl.

If we were having coffee together, this evening, I would tell you that I am quite tired. Slept most of Friday, but then stayed up late to catch up on chores. The six-week photography workshop I was enrolled in came to an end on the 21st. There has not been enough of a break between the photo workshop and my next extended project. Ten days was not long enough.

November (the National Novel Writing Month) is one of the months that I participate in an email group that provides daily prompts for and encouragement to write at least one poem a day for 30 days. We also do National Poetry Month (April) as a group, but I think that I do the NaHaiWriMo haiku challenge in February under my own steam using the NaHaiWriMo prompts when I don’t come up with my own.

Last weekend, I deleted one of my seldom used Blogger blogs. I now am using it to post a daily poem, related photograph, and a “theme” word of some sort. I got warmed up with poems/posts starting with Monday. I had been putting those poems, for previous challenges, on my writing site, but found it too cluttered. I have since imported those posts to my QuiltedPoetry blog on WordPress and intend to go through my writing site to clean out/reorganize/rewrite posts and pages as necessary. So, if all goes well, 30 poems for November’s poetry writing challenge will be found at TheArtOfDisorder.blogspot.com at the end of the month.

Sleepy Scampers

If we were visiting together, this evening, I would mention that I/we have undertaken a general junk removal effort in the house. There are boxes and boxes of papers that are going to a commercial shredding company. I already have gotten rid of the majority of CDs that held back-up files from approximately 23 years of freelance work; I dumped the CP/M floppies when I switched to DOS and then Windows.

The beginning of the week seems so far behind me that I do not remember it very well. We did get to the early voting venue on Monday, the first day for early voting in our town. It’s a large room with high ceilings, and although there were lines, they were not terribly long during working hours. I do not trust the mail overmuch for mailing in an absentee ballot, and the lines “on the day” are in a smaller space and much longer. I am happy to have done my homework; filling out the ballot went quickly.

Thank you for joining me for a visit, this weekend. I am happy that we had the chance to make contact.

Best wishes for your week!


Birds in the Branches
The View from our Back Yard
This Morning

#WeekendCoffeeShare : Such a week!

Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share! This is a time to catch up with everyone’s news from last week, plans for the next, and current preoccupations (see our host Allison’s Coffee Share page for this week at her blog, Weekend Coffee Share).

Tea’s Ready

Welcome! There’s a selection of tea leaves and coffee concentrate, as well as some coffee that I can reheat for you. For nibbles, there is bread cheese, which microwaves nicely, and some veggie&rice crackers.

If we were getting together for coffee, this weekend, I would tell you, while I gather together the makings, that I am feeling very tired. At season’s change, I am having trouble breathing, again. The past few days, I have taken an antihistamine (4-hour dose) in the evening, which has allowed me to go right to sleep and sleep through the night. I hope that with a few more days of this, I will be feeling rested, again.

On the agenda for the coming week, we have early election opportunities until seven o’clock in the evenings, and I would like to get that taken care of early, since there is snow in the forecast, beginning Wednesday. I am discovering that we have all too many appointments for December, but November is relatively free. Aside from Thanksgiving Day. The other of us has found that our favorite restaurant is again featuring hot, homemade-style turkey dinners from now through the end of the year. I expect that we will be there often. Also, this is eggnog season. Any special foods for the fall and winter holiday season? My sisters-in-law have been getting together to make potato lefsa in advance of the holiday dinners.

Cotoneaster Berry with Raindrop

I am missing the photography workshop. Yesterday and today, I went out into the rain and soggy weather with my camera, and I came back with some photographs of fallen leaves and raindrops on the bushes. (I did some hunting around and found a variety of cotoneasters with fruit that turns black as it ripens: Cotoneaster acutifolius. It grows in our zone.)
I have decided (again) to try getting my poetry and stories organized in a form that will allow me to print pages to file away for safekeeping. My sister is in the midst of organizing and editing the letters that Mom and Dad wrote to each other over the early years. I, myself, have not retained any correspondence sent or received, but I do have poems that I would like to preserve. Over the years, early on, poems of mine were published, and I have some of those books, but others were sold in one-off chapbooks with poems selected by topic or customer’s choice. I kept none of those, and when I switched from CP/M to DOS in the early nineties, a lot of that stuff vanished. I do still have a poem from primary school and a notebook filled with poems written during college in the 1960s and for years following. Mostly haiku. Have you saved keepsakes, letters, postcards, photographs, and such from earlier years? Is it important to you that you do so? Do you wish that you had?

I hope that your weekend goes well. Keep safe! And if you are anticipating Halloween activities, enjoy! (Looks like they’ve pulled the word “snow” from Wednesday’s weather forecast, here.)

I do plan to read more Coffee Share posts, this week. Not so many naps! 😀

Hugs & much love,

white cup, black tea

Weekend Coffee Share : 21 October 2018

Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share! This is a time to catch up with everyone’s news from last week, plans for the next, and current preoccupations (see our host Allison’s Coffee Share page for this week at her blog, Weekend Coffee Share and Linky-List button, where you’ll find links to other participants’ blogs).

Welcome! The tea is hot, and the coffee is cold-brew (with or without milk). No nibbles, tonight, though, unless you like hazelnuts.

If we were getting together, this evening, I would tell you that I am quite tired. The six-week photography workshop, led by Andy Ilachinski, has come to an end, and I am going to miss the people and activities. My husband and I have spent some time, this evening, talking about it: simplicity and silence. Those two characteristics describe my lifestyle, and also my husband’s to an extent. Although he likes to go out among people nearly every day.

For myself, I feel as though I am drawing more into the quiet as the days and years continue to roll past outside the windows. The workshop, even with its limited membership, involved much more exposure to and interaction with people than I am used to having since retiring from my freelance work. My freelance work, aside from the photo art, which I sold online, was people intensive. I am still luxuriating in the silence. The lack of interruptions. People contact being voluntary. This past week, I chose to go with my husband to the annual business meeting of our member owned and operated marksmanship center in a neighboring town. Enjoyed being among people and visiting before and after the meeting, but happy to be home again with time to unwind before going to bed.

I would mention to you my preoccupation over the past six weeks with photography, the weekly essay and accompanying exercises and background reading. I found myself with a reluctance to write during the past month and a half. I think that being focused on the workshop activities shut down other creative functions for the time being. I am wondering how long it will take to shake off the intensity and widen the filters.

I am considering a review—a redo—of the workshop at a more leisurely pace, incorporating my writing with the photography, since that has been my normal mode of creativity over the past fifteen years. Farther back than that, since before I began having health problems, much of my time was occupied by playing piano and recorder.  Two things from home that I found I could not live without, upon graduating from college, were the Great Books of the Western World and my own piano.  And then, when I became allergic to smoke, I began to acquire my own library rather than borrowing books from the public libraries.

Well, thanks for dropping by. I have enjoyed visiting with you. Looking forward to reading your blog, tomorrow. The time has escaped me, and everyone else has settled in for the night.

Best wishes for you, this coming week!



Weekend Coffee Share, 12 October 2018

cup of black tea on a table
Time for Tea

Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share! This is a time to catch up with everyone’s news from last week, plans for the next, and current preoccupations (see our host Allison’s Coffee Share page for this week at her blog, Eclectic Ali, with links to other participants’ blogs for this weekend).

The Scampers are sound asleep on the love seat across from me, and the other of us is at the marksmanship center, taking his turn as Range Safety Officer for the twice-monthly Ladies Night activities. So, we have hot brewed coffee, homemade cold-brew coffee concentrate and filtered water, and tea in green, black, and oolong varieties.

If we were having coffee together, this evening, I would tell you that I have been enjoying the six-week photography workshop I’ve been participating in. Sunday will be the beginning of the final week. There is enough study material to occupy me totally for the rest of the winter. It is much more involving, in many ways, than either reading books or writing. In the same way, I enjoyed playing sports, but not being a spectator, I suppose.

The week apart from the workshop was exciting as far as the weather went along. We had cold, rain, sleet, rainstorms and a snow storm that left us with inches of the white stuff, fallen leaves, dead flowers, and cotoneasters with branches weighted with ice ’til they swept the ground. There has been a lot of rough weather across the country, this week, and I feel fortunate that for us, at least, we will be getting a warm-up, so the snow can melt and we can finish up the final house refurbishing before the snow comes to stay. The other of us has the front painted, ready for us to put the outer window back on; he painted the window frames, cleaned and reset the glass.

It is a good thing that we are not together in person for our coffee time. I have my season’s change stuffy nose, a bit of coughing, and raw throat. Glad that I got my flu shot early, again this year.

I would tell you that I am rereading a favorite series of books while I wait for the next novels of series in progress by favorite authors. I am rereading Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Darkover novels. Currently, I am in the middle of The Alton Gift, which is, if I remember correctly, the first of the Children of Kings story arc. In light of ongoing activities in the “real world”, the previous book, Traitor’s Sun, served as a mirror that reflects a distorted world.

I can’t face rereading Fukuyama’s Political Order and Political Decay. The first book, origins of political order to the French Revolution, was tough enough, but helpful in understanding what was happening currently. We, personally, determined to give no hostages to fortune, as the saying goes. One does what one can and does not lame or maim oneself because one cannot do more or what is needed at the moment in a specific circumstance. Many individuals, many gifts.

If we were having a cup of tea together, this evening, I would be apologizing for fussing about and offer you an apple. A cool, juicy apple. Or, if the other of us left any in the fridge, some sea salt and caramel ice cream (which is not on my diet).

I extend my best wishes to you and yours for the coming week. Do not go on a walk-about in 40 (or 140) mile-an-hour winds or stories-high waves. Keep warm, keep safe!

I have again enjoyed having this chance to visit with you. Looking forward to reading as many coffee share posts as I can.

Hugs & much love,


In Case of High Water