June 1 #WeekendCoffeeShare : Wind and Rain and Sunshine

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storm clouds to the West of us
Storm Clouds

This has been a week of dramatics and dynamics. No rain at the moment, the wind speed is (down to?) 17 mph. Still looks as though the worst of the weather will miss us, here. I rather like thunderstorms. Ah! The wind has come up, and the rain has begun.

The Scampers, the Gazebo

If we were having coffee together, this evening, I would invite you to join me in the gazebo, where we have windows on all sides of the eight-sided building. We built with gazebo with two objectives in mind. First, we wanted to be able to watch the storms come through, no matter which direction they are coming from. Second, the gazebo is screened and well ventilated (deck floor and open eaves in the summertime), because I am allergic to both insecticides and insect bites. You missed helping me take the foam blocks out of the eaves/rafters. I removed the cardboard that covered the deck floor, so that there is air flow from beneath the gazebo, up to the top and out.

The upsets, this past week and more, has come mainly from WordPress eliminating community service and educational resources to concentrate on more marketable and cost-effective functions. If they are setting it up for a lucrative buy-out, I will be sad. In the meanwhile, I look to retaining and extending my comfort/support network of people around the world. I have very much enjoyed getting to know people and become comfortable in new friendships.

If we were together, having another cup of coffee, I would tell you about the communities I enjoyed on Usenet’s newsgroups, before they vanished. Also, most recently, the SFF Net newsgroups and web hosting, bending with economic and social trends, closed down. Their computer business (as opposed to the web hosting “hobby” activities) needed their resources. I had a membership and web site there since (I think) the fall of 1996 until my health made it difficult to continue coding my own pages. I am happy that so many of my friends from SFF Net found their way to Facebook, where we have maintained ties.

Change is a fearsome thing. When it imposes itself on my world, I must admit, my first need is to bend my world into different shapes to keep as much as possible in the same or similar places, serving the purposes that I’ve established to maintain my comfort and my self-identity. My mother was on the Internet into her nineties, and I was able to take care of her web site for her when she could not. There will be no such support person to take care of that for me. I have hope that as the Web expands, these forms of communication and networking will be maintained, providing communication and enhancing well-being as the population ages.

I would show you the latest pictures from my garden, its being too dark right now to walk into it and point out the wildflowers that have bloomed and those on the brink of doing so. My Plains Coreopsis are not in sight, and so I plan, once the rain gets started again with the promise of some days of precipitation in a row, to sow what’s left from last year’s wildflower seed packet in the garden and also along the side of the house where the tulips are currently drying out. (I must dig up the bulbs, later in the season, and separate them for replanting. I need to find guidelines on which bulbs to replant and which to discard.

Time has gone by so fast, and I must join Al for “puppy time”, so we can put the Scampers to bed. Thank you for stopping by. I look forward to visiting with you during the weekend! Best wishes to you!

Much love,

Lizl

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A quiet weekend | #WeekendCoffeeShare

Welcome! If we were having coffee together this afternoon, I once again would be serving hot Toddy coffee with milk. (Cold water in the frig and Tetley tea bags in the cupboard.) It’s been a rough few days with the allergies, and so I am staying inside, mostly. Exercise on Saturday consisted of uncounted time on the elliptical machine and five miles on the exercise bike in the gazebo; today, I quit after three miles on the exercise bike.

Limited time in the garden, which is pretty much not worth looking at, right now. The grasshoppers have gotten into it and eaten the few blue wild flax flowers that came up. They’ve now started in on the smaller poppies. The cornflowers and prairie coreopsis are doing well, however, and I have hopes for (what I think is) the sunflower plant on the south side of the house.

Still, I did get some photos taken yesterday and today before the allergies took hold. I sleep in a room with an air cleaner (HEPA filter); I forget from one year to the next how essential it is to sleeping with allergies. 😀

Sunday’s Flowers

 

Saturday’s Flowers in the Rain

On Saturday, Al and I went out to dinner at Denny’s, where I ordered the salmon (from the salmon skillet, which I cannot eat as on the menu) and steamed broccoli, which was kind to my blood glucose level. Then we went to Target to buy five of the last six cheap 2ft x 3ft poster frames which we are using, along with the two previously bought to try out, to frame the seven poster-sized photo montages from my parents’ memorial services and my father’s 100th birthday party, which was the day after Mother’s memorial service. Fantastic, having them available to me to look at. I am not hanging them all at once, but am propping them up or hanging them one or two at a time. It makes me happy, seeing the pictures across the decades of smiling faces. Memories of parents, their siblings and us getting together with them and their children. The holidays. The vacations that I missed, being the oldest and away at school and then working, by the time the next six of us were old enough to go on vacations. They did a lot of stuff I never even heard about, before looking at the photos with my siblings at these last family gatherings.

That reminds me that I look forward to seeing the family home, redone by Eric (brother) and Cheryl (his wife), who’ve bought the house and have been putting it to rights. I am excited to see it, having been quite impressed by what they’d already done with it the last time we’d dropped in there.

It would be fun, I think, to have regular “coffee share” times with the family members who still are within this thirty-mile area. I wonder if you get together a lot with your various family groups. We all seem to have scattered, us kids, getting together with the in-laws’ families, but not our own. Sort of like being orphaned.

Al and I turn seventy-one, this year. I am concerned that we will have trouble maintaining relationships, getting together face to face, scattered as we are from New England to California. I could, if I had to, handle a trip by rail; I had too much trouble with air quality traveling by air, the last time I flew East, which was in 2007, I think. Not sure that I could do it again and be able to walk off the plane at the other end of the journey.

Again, I was late getting to this, getting together for a visit, and I must move on, now. The Scampers are eating their supper, and I have to look to getting organized to fix supper.

Be sure to stop by Diana’s Part Time Monster blog for her post and the Links button where you can find links to other WeekendCoffeeShare posts of the week.

Best wishes for you, your family and friends, during the coming week!

Lizl

#WeekendCoffeeShare | Saturday, 17 June | Rain in the Forecast

Good Day!

If we were having coffee together, this morning, I would make a cup of Toddy coffee for you from my home-made coffee concentrate and water, milk, or cream.  I’ve also got ice water and hot water for tea (Tetley teabags) or instant cocoa. The back yard is sunny, and there’s a light breeze. The eastmost cotoneaster bush makes a nice shade for sitting and visiting, camping chairs on the paving stones in front of my garden shed with a step stool taking the place of a coffee table.

If you haven’t had breakfast, I could put something together for you. My own breakfast took place about three hours ago. On Thursday, we went shopping, so that I could cook meat for meals for the next three or four days. I got burger patties, but then my husband decided that he wanted pizza, and so I had hamburger two days in a row. I also roasted chicken breasts and pan-fried a tuna steak. Since I am supposed to be controlling calorie intake as well as carbohydrates, I limit the meat portions to 2 ounces, which has turned out to be quite enough. Tuna is good cold, or, as with this morning’s breakfast, hot, with poached egg on toast.

poached egg with pan-fried tuna steak and a slice of millet-and-chia seed g-f bread
Breakfast: Poached Egg, Toast, Tuna Steak (2 oz.)

I have been waking early, this week, but taking naps during the day, and that’s worked out well. It gives me “thinking time” before dogs or husband wake up. And centering/praying/meditating (not sure how to label it), followed by checking my blood oxygen level (SpO2=94%) and pulse rate (56 bpm). Then I check my blood glucose level (115 mg/dL), the weather report (80% chance of rain, thunderstorms), and the morning news briefing (oy vey!). My blood pressure is almost always low, and so I only check that periodically.

The work on the woodworking shop has gone slowly, this past week. Al and my brother-in-law picked up a door and locks for the workshop, and we are to be installing that today. Al is pretty sure that the two of us can handle the lifting and holding in place. There are several other tasks that can be taken care of during the rain days that are forecast for the week. I should have taken a photo of the glass window in the door. (Hope I remember to take a picture to show for next weekend. It’ll look its best with the light showing through it. Not stained glass or anything fancy, but not plain, either.)

We have the Tyvek building wrap still in place after the storms went through. The neighbor’s willow tree, however, dropped a large branch on top of my new wildflower garden. The garden, which is 12.5 ft. long and 4 ft. wide, has a lot of different sorts of clover in it as well as Oxalis (wood sorrel); since my annual and perennial wild flax is growing up amidst it, I hesitate to pull anything in bulk. Blooming so far are the California poppies, Wallflowers, Sweet Clover (ate a lot of that as a child), Oxalis, and (I believe) Baby’s Breath. I had no idea that the last mentioned is a member of the carnation family!

Willow Tree Branch in the Wildflower Garden

 

If we were having coffee, this morning, we could just sit together in the quiet for a while, relaxing to better enjoy the time away from everything but the now. And, perhaps, flowers.

As with previous weeks, this one involves appointments. Last week, Al had a dental appointment, with another scheduled for the last week in June. This week, I have a blood panel and another couple lab tests coming up, followed within a few days by an appointment with the diabetes educator. Sort of a six-month check-up, I guess. I believe that things are going quite nicely in that regard, and so am looking forward to visiting with her again, and also to the meeting’s being quite short. I have no questions. I am enjoying the ADA online community; I am not a participant, really, but I get a lot from reading the posts, the questions and answers.

Best wishes for your weekend and the week before us!

Lizl

 

WeekendCoffeeShare, originating with Diana at Part Time Monster, is hosted by Emily at NerdintheBrain.com, where you will find her current post and the InLinkz icon, leading to links to other #WeekendCoffeeShare participants’ posts.

 

#WeekendCoffeeShare, 27 May 2017: A Holiday Weekend

If We Were Having Coffee Together, this morning, I would have pictures to show you from this past week. We could sit in the back yard, but Al is putting shingles on the roof of his workshop, and I’d hate for him to be distracted.  We could, however, have cookies from Tim Horton’s, dropped off unexpectedly by a neighbor. There was a delivery, evidently, at his wife’s office, but because of the holiday weekend, there was nobody else to eat the baked goods, and so we were the recipients of muffins and cookies. Al will eat the muffins, though, on his next coffee break.

A Morning Treat from the Neighbors

(The neighbor stopped to visit with Al, and so Al’s taken a coffee break, now, with the muffin that has nuts on top of it—upper right.)

I’ve been pulling weeds in the garden, off and on, where I can distinguish between wildflowers that I want and weeds that I don’t, even if they do flower. So far, I have identified a couple of plants that I am almost positive are blue wild flax. So few that I am tempted to order a quarter pound of seeds from the online company I got the seed packets from.

I would mention that our “new” soil is sandy loam that is devoid of organic material (aside from the millions of White Campion seeds that arrived with it). I have been adding spent coffee grounds to the soil in hopes that there will be some substance to hold moisture, rather than the rain’s just running off and flowing away into the storm sewers. That’s supposed to be a good soil for growing wild flax, assuming, as I am, that the watering still needs to be addressed. Good drainage, I’m figuring, is the point of it.

Wild Flax (?)

Other than that, I took a tour of other flowers, including the last tulip. There are more tulip plants, but some were eaten at by the rabbits before they could bloom, and others did not produce fully mature buds, and so no flowers to bloom. I do love the dandelions, however, and the cotoneasters are flowering. And I found a small group of wild violets that were not touched by the lawnmower when Al did yard work, earlier in the week. I’m also letting my chives flower, because I love the flowers, and I don’t use chives in bulk, and so will not be bothered by the plant’s energy put into reproduction.

I expect that we will be going to the Memorial Day services at the hometown cemetery on Monday. (I must find out what time the services will be and whether we will get there for the services or just stop at the graves. This will be the first year that final preparation of the cemetery grounds will not be personally overseen by my father. My mother had a page on her web site (which I’m maintaining for the time being, In Military Uniform, with pictures of those of us who served in the military. Of the five, Chris and Matt are still living. I wonder, sometimes, if I should link the obituaries to the parents/sibling’s web pages on Mother’s web site. I do hope that there will not be a thunderstorm over the cemetery on the day. If there is, we may rethink our plans.

I’m glad that you’ve stopped by. I have enjoyed the visit, even though you are not in the chair beside me. It’s nice to be able to talk and know that someone else is listening/reading.

Best wishes!
Lizl

P.S. Weekend Coffee Share, previously guided by Part-time Monster, is now hosted by Emily, whose blog post is here at Nerd in the Brain, with an inLinkz button that provides links to other Weekend Coffee Share participants.