June 1 #WeekendCoffeeShare : Wind and Rain and Sunshine

InLinkz Page for Weekend Coffee Share posts.
Eclectic Alli’s Weekend Coffee Share Post: Theatrics, Games & Potlucks!

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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16 September ’17 – A Wet, Rainy Weekend | #WeekendCoffeeShare

Cotillion Butterfly on an Irish Daisy

Welcome to my blog home for Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Diana at Part Time Monster Blog. (According to her tweet, three hours ago, their Internet is down, and so there will be no “linky” on her page, this weekend, or a coffee post from her.)

If we were having coffee together this morning, I would let you know that although it’s getting on toward lunchtime, my husband is out in the back yard in his new workshop, showing it off to a ham radio buddy. There’s Irish Tea, Tetley Tea (black), and Toddy coffee concentrate, for which I can heat water, milk, or both, as you like. I’m minding the dogs, eating cheese and unsalted almonds, and not paying much attention to the outside world.

If we were having coffee together, I would invite you to the back yard (right now, the rain is not heavy enough to require an umbrella) to show off the progress we have made, this week. Al and I got the last of the siding up, yesterday morning, and he’s gotten a good start on applying wood putty and sanding; we have the paint for primer and outer coat, but he’s decided that he also needs to paint the concrete floor before anything else happens. I am on a roll with getting blog posts written and poems tweaked, and so he’s volunteered to add the grocery shopping to the end of his list.

If we were having coffee together, today, I would tell you that I’m very happy I signed up for the workshop I’d mentioned. I finished my first week’s writing for the four-week Introduction to Japanese Poetry workshop I enrolled in, last month. This week’s assignment is to write more haiku, read some essays on haiku, and go back to writing haiku according to the guidelines presented in Week #1’s assignment. Two poems I wrote this week that I did not submit to the instructor for critiquing. (Only sent the best three of the lot.)

a Cotillion lands
on the Irish Daisy in my lens–
a cameo appearance

puppies, fast asleep
midst bowls and tennis balls…
my empty lap

Copyright © 11-16 September 2017, by Elizabeth (Lizl) Bennefeld. All rights reserved.

I have started (and stopped and started again) responding to WordPress daily and weekly prompts at my WordPress site The Art of Disorder. The weekly photo challenges I responded to are Waiting and Structure, and the Daily Prompt (today’s) is Recreation. I also follow the Ronovan Writes Haiku weekly challenge, but I have left them at QuiltedPoetry.net. The 20-day self-directed WordPress class on Everyday Inspiration has been completed and can be found at Lizl’s Quiet Spaces Journal.

This has been an emotional week, first to last. On Monday, Al and I attended my aunt Marion’s funeral and interment at the old church in a village on the rural mail route my father covered for so many years. Inspired by meeting two cousins from the West Coast that I hadn’t seen since 1969, and whose contact information I didn’t even think to as for, and the widow of a Marion’s other son, who died in 2001, along with their two sons. If we were having coffee together, I would tell you that I was able to get an email address for another cousin living in the same area, who had been in correspondence with my brother in Minneapolis, and she and I are now “Friends” on Facebook. A lot of my father’s siblings moved to the Seattle area and Alaska (Eagle River area) after the end of WW II and/or the Korean War and continuing. His youngest sister was only a couple of years ahead of me in school, although I did not know it at the time.

I would tell you about my discovery that relatives on my father’s side of the family have tried to get contact information for myself and siblings over the years, but my mother would not give out any information. And of course, she did not mention that requests had been made. Mother was a very private person, and that sense of privacy extended to protecting information about her children and following generations.

If we were having coffee together, I would enjoy just sitting with you in the shelter of the gazebo, a few steps from the woodworking shop, listening to the wind brushing the leaves of the hedge behind us and the raindrops that soon will be beating against the shingles of the gazebo roof. There is something about sitting in silence (or lying in bed near an open window at night), listening to the wind and rain, cricket sounds, and birds murmuring to each other in the dark, that washes away the muscles’ stress and the clamor of the next day’s activities waiting to be worried.

Thank you for stopping by, this weekend. I enjoy our visits and look forward to our getting together again.

Best wishes for your 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.

 

April 23 #WeekendCoffeeShare: A Wet, Rainy Weekend

Thank you for stopping by, this afternoon for coffee, tea or water. Today’s gather includes cheese (cheddar, swiss, havarti and marble jack, I think). I’ve eaten all of the almonds, but there are still a few apples to go with the cheese.

building in progress
Saturday’s Work

If we were having coffee together, today, I would take you to the back door and show you the progress that my husband and I have made on his workshop. I’ve done some lifting and carrying, and last night I helped cover the few boards that we could not carry back into the garage with a large sheet of plastic. Weighted it down with scrap lumber, so that it wouldn’t blow away in the strong winds.

I would also, if you don’t mind getting a bit wet, show you the tulips at the side of the house. They’re pretty, even closed up against the wind and rain. There has been enough rain and warm that grass is growing happily in the back yard in great profusion. This means that the rabbits are switching to new grass for their meals from the tulip leaves that they’ve preferred, mainly because that’s what’s been here and beckoning. It does appear that the temperatures will not be low enough to kill off my germinating wildflowers in the back garden, even if we do get some snow, this week.  We are going to look at the garden shop to see if there is fencing (still easily lowered for weeding) that the dogs cannot get through or over. So far, they’ve mostly been tromping down the sown seeds, but now they’re putting the sprouts in danger.

Closed Against the Cold

If we were having coffee together, I would be tempted to worry about my feeling tired and a bit down, this past week. I have been having some trouble concentrating. Especially, I am forgetting to eat, or, remembering to eat, I forget to take my diabetes medication. As a result, I’m trying to work out a method, having forgotten my morning meds until noon, too many days in a row, for remembering what I am to do, first thing in the morning. I have been going to bed and immediately to sleep, this week, much earlier than I am used to. But I am tired. When I wake up, still before my husband, I get involved in taking the dogs out, because it’s later than it should be, and they are desperate. Once the dogs are outed, fed, watered and taken out, again, I sit down to read the news, or even make my breakfast, but I am both too distracted and not enough awake to register the fact that I am indeed not following a proper routine. When lunchtime rolls around, I do notice my pill caddy sitting on the table beside me, and sure enough, the morning pills are still in there. On other occasions, I have forgotten what day it is and checked the wrong bin on the caddy.

I am thinking, perhaps, a series of appointments in my phone calendar with alarms to ring when I am to stop what I’m doing and check to see what I am supposed to be doing. Ah, my!

The poetry writing has gone well, this past week. I’ve got one day’s poems to get up on the relevant blog, and I’m only behind one day in the writing. I am so fortunate that at least my husband enjoys and appreciates what I write and tells me so. We even talk about some of the poems. I am grateful that we share interests enough to understand and respond to one another’s activities and interests.

Thank you for the time that we’ve spent together. I look forward to our next weekend coffee share. Take care, and have a good week!

Lizl

P.S. Emily is our current host for Weekend Coffee Share. Please visit her blog (HERE), where you’ll find her post for this weekend and the link-up to posts by other participants. Enjoy!

Snowy Sunday | #WeekendCoffeeShare

Cotoneaster branches in the mid-morning sunlight
Snowy Sunday Morning

It’s just about time for afternoon tea, here. I’m happy that you’ve stopped in for a visit. The puppies will be waking from their nap, soon, and then things will be lively, again.

The week has been disjointed, here, as I have met with the dietitian and tried to implement the suggestions for variety, but failed miserably. My body does not like carbohydrates, and so I must cut most of them out of my diet, again. My weight loss has stabilized, now, however, within the “overweight” range, rather than “obese”, and I expect the pounds to continue dropping off, since I am maintaining the 1400-calorie diet. Just rearranging menu items a bit.

Yesterday, we took advantage of a local sale to buy (finally) replacement flooring for our kitchen. The previous tiles have been cracking and chipping off in pieces for the last few years. Since my husband has been planning (although the sudden, prolonged cold and snow will set back his timetable) to start work on the spring construction and carpentry in building his workshop in the back yard on March 1, if I don’t get the kitchen flooring installed before that project starts, it will be another twelve months or more before it’s done.

On Thursday, we made a run out to the town where the family home is, to pick up some more items that will allow my brother who is buying the house from Father to begin needed repairs and renovations, so that he and his wife can move in, once the purchase has been completed.

I must tell you that I am so pleased by the way the siblings are working together, accommodating one another’s needs and wishes regarding property to be discarded or divided. Great troupers, one and all.

After having given away my Great Books of the Western World, purchased in the late 70s, to the family of a son of one of my brothers, I have ended up with my parents’ well-worn set, purchased in 1960 or earlier, I think, since the first volume of the yearbook, Great Ideas Today, was published in 1961. My parents continued to buy the yearbooks into the mid- to late 1970s, which is when I bought my own set, and also bought the yearbooks as long as they were published. I believe the series ended in 1999 or 2000. And so I now have the complete and total set (although one volume of Shakespeare was almost totally worn out over the years) of Great Books, Great Ideas Today, and the 10 accompanying study guides, which my parents bought, but I borrowed singly as requested, once they were no longer in regular use. I am glad. I had begun to regret having given up the set, once it was housed elsewhere. Now, I have the books in which I originally had made notes while reading. So, just as well!

The snow has fallen, but is melting off somewhat. My puppies are beginning to stir, and so I must close this. I hope that your week is filled with satisfying activities and welcome surprises!

Bests,
Lizl

This week’s WeekendCoffeeShare Linkup and Post from our host can be found here: NerdInTheBrain’s blog. Enjoy!

P.S. Earlier this (Sunday) evening, my brother who lives in our home town called to let me know that our father, Roy, had just died, and he asked me to call siblings to let them know. The brother who is the executor is, of course, the one who has not been reachable. Talked or IM’ed with everyone else. Three and a half months, approximately, since Mom’s death. Dad had said only, when we were there on Thursday, that he was tired. But he’d been detached since Mom died.