Saturday, July 2, 2022

Saturday 9: Back in the USA

I'm beginning this July 4th weekend by picking up one of my former clients and spending the morning with her at a local berry farm. They have a market, bakery, food stand, and a winery. She likes her wine so she is very excited. We are going this morning because it's going to get HOT as the day goes on.

Before I head out, I do want to join in the fun at Saturday 9. Thanks, Sam, for another great song and interesting questions!


Unfamiliar with this week's song? Hear it here
From the archives, with some tweaks

1) This song lists seven cities -- New York, Los Angeles, Detroit, Chicago, Chattanooga, Baton Rouge and St. Louis -- that Linda just loves. How many have you visited?  Chattanooga is the only one I've set foot in.

2) The lyrics refer to hamburgers sizzling on the grill. What toppings do you believe make a perfect burger?  Doing it myself at home, I like it simple with just cheese, lettuce, tomato, and ketchup. If I'm having a burger out at a restaurant I love a good whiskey barbecue sauce, bacon or mushrooms, and onion straws.

3) The original recording of this song by Chuck Berry has always been one of Linda Ronstadt's favorites, one she used to enjoy singing along with in the car. What's the most recent song you sang?  Row, row, row your boat. I was singing with my granddaughter (the kiddos are the only ones I ever sing in front of).

4) Linda performed The National Anthem at Game 3 of the 1977 World Series. The New York Yankees won both that game and the series. How is your baseball team doing this season?  The Pittsburgh Pirates are the closest team, but I don't follow baseball so I have no idea at all how they are doing.
5) On the sleeve for this record, Linda was photographed on roller skates. Emergency rooms report a spike in wrist injuries, with people falling off skates and skateboards and jamming their wrists catching softballs. Have you recently been to the Emergency Room or Urgent Care?  No. I've been blessed with good health and no less than graceful moments. 
6) It's July, so summer is in full swing. Bug bites are a big summer annoyance. Are you itching and scratching this morning?  No. I was last night but that's because I was picking tomatoes. Tomato plants have always made me itch like crazy and it finally makes sense since I recently learned they are in the same family as Nightshade.

Since this is our last Saturday 9 before Independence Day, let's ask some questions related to the holiday. 
6) The Pennsylvania Evening Post was the first newspaper to print the Declaration of Independence. What's the most recent printed media you have read (newspaper, magazine, newsletter, etc.)?  A newspaper, but only because my mom gave us a copy the other day. Our local newspapers have so little in them that we stopped getting them a few years ago. It makes me sad. I miss lounging around with a giant Sunday paper.

7) In high school, Sam was crazy about American history and got good grades. Science was her worst subject. In high school, where did you shine? In what subject were your grades not so hot?  I did well in all of my subjects, but I was weaker in math than the others. English (anything to do with reading or writing) and history were my absolute best subjects.

8) The first 4th of July parade each year is held at 12:01 AM in Gatlinberg, TN. Will you attend a parade or fireworks to celebrate the 4th?  No. I considered taking the grandchildren to our town's parade, which is very nice and quite long, but it's supposed to be 90 degrees and there is very little shade along the route. I decided that didn't sound very appealing. Our daughter and s-i-l want to take them to the fireworks in the evening. Tim and I will probably watch from home. We can see the highest ones from here...and we always have a lot of neighbors setting off their own.

9) Americans love to celebrate our independence. In fact, there are more than 30 towns all across the US called Independence. There are two in MN alone (one outside Duluth, the other west of Minneapolis). Please google it and let us know: does your state have an Independence?  Apparently not. There is an Independence Township, but no town that I can see.

Thursday, June 30, 2022

Thankful Thursday

I had expected to begin my day bright and early over at our daughter's as I waited for the kiddos to wake up. After that, I thought I'd have them all day while their mama worked, but...little Leah has been a real night owl this week, waking up in the middle of the night and staying up until it's about time for Mama to get up or go to work. Mama isn't getting much sleep at all. She's exhausted. She asked if she could have today off since she wasn't scheduled to work originally, but asked to work. So, an unexpected "day off"...I'm thankful for that!

And now I have time to link up with blogging pal, Rebecca Jo @ Knit By God's Hand for Thankful Thursday. I'm thankful for that, too, because cultivating an attitude of gratitude is one of the major priorities in my life.

So, let's take a look at what I'm thankful for this week.

** Everything worked out for our daughter and s-i-l concerning the hearing about their niece. The mother was trying to slip a custody agreement by them that would have left her with primary custody (and therefore control of all money from the late father's estate) but would have left our daughter and s-i-l open to being stuck with custody (and no financial support) if she felt like not being a mom for a while. She also wanted child support from them! So yes, very, very thankful the attorney was able to get the case dismissed before it even began.

** The property taxes are paid for another year.

** My appointment with the breast surgeon was...nothing. She just reviewed my mammogram and sonogram results with me. Again. Restated that I have to have another sonogram in October and then meet back with her to discuss it in November. She said the cysts are so small you can't feel them and she couldn't even see them in the mammogram images. I think the whole thing was about my PCP passing me over to her for managing that particular issue. 

** We've been so good for so long when it comes to going out, spending extra, etc. that we decided to treat ourselves tonight with Chinese take-out. An obscene amount of Chinese take-out to be exact, but we couldn't make up our minds what we wanted and we both love Chinese leftovers so we just got all of our favorites. It was such a treat and so delicious! (And will be for a couple of more days!)

** I have an official date. My training for the new job begins next Tuesday.

** After a week of getting near daily text updates from the church about new Covid cases among members, the reports have finally stopped and everyone is on the mend and none were seriously ill.

** I'm thankful to have dodged the Covid bullet.

** The way God continues to lead me to great Bible studies, challenging me, and being patient with me when I am slow to learn...or rather, slow to let go of sinful ways and get my obedience on.

** The ever-deepening faith, peace, and joy that are the result of the changes I make.

** Predicted big storms continue to miss us.

** I finished a journal yesterday and get to start a new one today. I love a new journal.

** I haven't been spending very much time online this week...and I don't miss it.

** Of course, as always, I am very thankful for each one of you! 

Monday, June 27, 2022

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Just for today...

Outside my a perfect summer day, sunny with a predicted high of 76 degrees. After yesterday's crushing humidity, it's very welcome. I'll be able to get Colton and Leah outside to play today.

Thinking about...having the kids all week again. My daughter is training for her new job again this week and today she and her husband have that hearing about their niece. (Pray for a good outcome there, please?) Since I am the main childcare for her until she starts her regular afternoon shift. So my own training is on hold. I'm hoping to begin on July 5 if my daughter is done with hers. My mom is stepping in while I have an appointment on Tuesday afternoon and our s-i-l's mother is taking them for a while on Wednesday for the same reason.

I am thankful...I missed church last Sunday because of Father's Day. Since then my phone has been blowing up with updates to the church's prayer chain about more and more people who have tested positive for Covid. Yesterday they cancelled Sunday school and I opted to stay home this week, too. Maybe it will feel safe next week.

I am mom's home and yard as it was when my paternal grandmother lived there. The big trees in the yard that were brought down by the tornado in 1976. The old apple tree with the big branch that went straight out then straight up, that would hold 4 or 5 kids playing horse. My cousin's little clubhouse that was really an old tool shed and how much we girls always wanted in, but weren't allowed. Inside I remember Grandma's rocking chair with the arms carved like swans and my late grandfather's red leather chair and ottoman that opened to reveal small toys. The ever present scent of Camay soap and tomato soup and Ritz crackers from the cracker tin for lunch. The tin "monkey swing" hanging from the beam in the basement. The mattresses on the floor beside the iron twin beds in the kids' room upstairs...just in case any of us fell out of bed. It was a good house to grow up in.

In the kitchen...thanks to my grandson, lots of peanut butter sandwiches. He is on a kick right now. Also, lots of grilled meats and veggies...fried zucchini, "crack" zucchini, cabbage steaks, salads.

On this week's agenda...

  • Monday: Babysitting
  • Tuesday: Babysitting and an appointment with a breast surgeon. I had an abnormal mammogram a couple of months ago. A sonogram showed I have a complex cyst in each breast. The consensus was to just do a follow up in 6 months and keep an eye on it. Then I got a call to schedule this appointment. I'm not sure why.
  • Wednesday: A gyno appointment and maybe our son-in-law's mother is going to keep the kids that day.
  • Thursday: Babysitting
  • Friday: Babysitting
  • Saturday: I'm not sure, but it's 4th of July weekend.


Saturday, June 25, 2022

Sunday Stealing: If...

Welcome to Sunday Stealing, the meme where the questions are stolen, but credit is given. Thanks, as always, to our hostess Bev, who finds the questions each week. If you like what you read, why not join in the fun? 

Stolen from the book "If"

1.  If you were to be granted one wish, what would it be?  I would wish for my grandchildren to grow up healthy and happy in a world that is safe and full of opportunity.

2.  If you could spend one night alone with anyone in the world who is currently alive, whom would you select?  My husband. If he's not available then just send my grandchildren over.

3.  If you could spend one night alone with anyone in history, whom would you choose?  I've said it before and I'll say it again, Teddy Roosevelt. The man was just larger than life and lived life full-tilt enjoying it no matter where he was or what he was doing. He would have some pretty amazing tales to tell.

4.  If you could physically transport yourself to any place in the world at this moment, where would you go?  Maybe Greece. Or Italy. Or Spain. Those are the top 3 places I'd love to see.

5.  If you could have lived through any war in history (without actually fighting in it), which would it be?  I really don't want to live through any war, but if I have to choose...the Civil War, I guess. I'm interested in the history of that time so it might be interesting for that.

6.  If you could eliminate one type of insect permanently from the earth, what would you get rid of?  Ticks. Most bugs serve some purpose in nature. I can't think of one for ticks.

7.  If you had to eliminate any single type of animal forever, which would you choose?  Snakes! I know they serve a good purpose and it would change the world if they were gone, but yeah, don't care. 

8.  If you could have an elegant dinner alone with anyone presently alive, whether you know them or not, who would you want it to be?  I can't think of anyone other than maybe my husband. I'm not really the elegant dinner type. I'm pretty casual and don't love being fancy-schmancy at all. 

9.  If you could alter one physical characteristic of your mate, what would it be?
  I don't know...maybe his weight, but only because it would be healthier for him, not because I have a problem with his weight.

10. If you could change one thing about your childhood, what would it be?
  I would have had the chance to know my birth father and half-siblings.

11. If you could have any room in the world become your bedroom, which room would you choose?
  Either of these would more than do!

12.  If you could alter one thing about your physical appearance, what would it be?  Definitely my weight.

13.  If you could have stopped aging at any point in your life up to the present, how old would you wish to remain?  I'm good with now. It takes us women a while to grow comfortable in our own skins and with who we are. I like this time of my life and wouldn't want to have missed it.

14.  If you could suddenly possess an extraordinary talent in one of the arts, what would you like it to be?  I have always wished I could sing.

15.  If you could have permanent possession of any single object in the world, what would you want it to be?  A beach house.

Friday, June 24, 2022

Saturday 9: Better Now

Saturday 9: Better Now (2018)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) In this song, Post Malone tries to assure his ex that he's better now ... but he's not. He's still hurting. Have you recently told someone you were fine when you weren't?  No, I can't say that I have.
2) He and his girl were so close he introduced her to his extended family, and now his aunts and uncles wonder where she's gone. Have you remained close to an ex's friends/family?  I never had an ex that it had gotten to that point with. I married young.
3) He sings that he never meant to let her down. What about you? Have you recently encountered anything -- big or small -- that didn't live up to your expectations?  You mean other than the politicians?

4) Post recently announced he will soon become a father for the first time. Do you know anyone who is currently expecting a baby? Nope. I think Leah's our family's last baby until her generation grows up and starts having babies. All my friends are in the same shoes.

5) Before making it big as a musician, he supported himself as a wedding DJ. Think back to the last wedding you attended. Did they have a live band or a DJ?  A DJ. I can't remember the last time I attended a wedding that had a band. I suppose cost is a consideration. It's too bad. We had a live band when we got married. Guitars, drums, keyboard, lots of brass. They played everything from polkas, to Big Band, to country, to rock. They were amazing!
6) Not satisfied being a successful musician, Post has branched out and introduced his own rose wine, Maison No. 9. Will you replenish your beer/wine/spirits this weekend? No, not this weekend...or any time soon. We always have a pretty good stock of wine from our trips up to the wine country along the PA/NY border.
7) Post Malone has more than 70 different tattoos. He designs them himself and is so into ink that he has tattooed his friends. Would you trust a friend or relative to do your body art (tattoo or piercing)? Or would you go to a licensed professional?  I don't think I'd want a family member or friend to do it...just in case something went wrong. I wouldn't want to have it become a problem between us.
8) In 2018, when this song was popular, Sears filed for bankruptcy. In the 1970s, Sears was known as the place "Where America Shops." As of 2021, there were only 23 Sears stores left. Did you ever shop at Sears, either at the store or through the catalog?  Of course! They were one of the main places my parents shopped and most everyone else in the family did, too, because my aunt worked in a Sears catalog center, so....discounts! Then when I got married my hubby liked shopping there for tools. I don't think we really slowed our shopping there until the kids were teens, so the early 2000's.

9) Random question: What's your favorite way to spend an evening at home alone?  Playing around on the laptop, watching a chick flick that Tim would hate, maybe reading a good book.

Thanks to Sam @ Saturday 9, for the music and questions.
If you enjoyed your visit, why not join in here?

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Thankful Thursday

Welcome to Thankful Thursday! I'm linking up today with our hostess Rebecca Jo over at Knit By God's Hand. There aren't any rules, we just share the things from the past week that we are thankful for. So, if you get inspired by everyone's lists, please join in the fun. There's always room for more gratitude...and another friend!

This week I am thankful...

** I have been babysitting my two youngest grandchildren this week while their mom trains for a new job. We've been together all day each day. Tomorrow is the last day. I have just loved having them all to myself and soaking in each sweet memory as they just keep growing and next year Colt will be in kindergarten all day and Leah will start preschool. These days are precious.

** My daughter reports that the people at her new job are so nice that her anxiety, which has often proved to be crippling in job situations, hasn't reared its head at all!

** I, too, am going to begin a new the same place as my daughter! She sang the praises of the place and people so much and encouraged me to apply so I finally did this past Monday. I would probably be training now, as well, but they've been understanding of the fact I have to babysit my daughter's children while she trains. I am going to be working in a memory care unit again, which I absolutely loved and have missed. The big change is that I'm going to be a caregiver rather than an activities aide. I'm starting part-time to see if I can physically handle it. If I can and I enjoy it, I may ask to go full-time...which I can do with only 4 days per week.

** One of the elders at my church tested positive for Covid this week. He has Parkinson's Disease so it's a big concern, but thank the Lord, he is doing well and his case seems to be fairly mild. Praying it stays that way.

** The pastor friend I mentioned last week has left this world. He never regained consciousness and once the ventilator was removed he slipped away quickly...just as his family asked everyone to pray he would do. The faith and strength of his wife and sons have brought so much comfort to their church and friends and family. The obituary actually said: 

Rumor has it that Jeff K died on Sunday, June 19, 2022. Don’t believe that for a single second, because right now, as you are reading this, he is more alive than ever before. Jeff’s Lord and Savior, Jesus, has taken him home and he is most assuredly alive and well. 

How cool is that?!

** Peaceful days in these crazy times. There are so many examples each day in the news of how we are not guaranteed a safe and peaceful tomorrow or even a tomorrow at all. Tough economic times highlight how quickly our relatively luxurious way of life (compared to much of the world) could disappear.

So I am thankful every single day for the things we take for granted...clean drinking water, plumbing and running water, reliable electricity, plentiful food (even though it might not be what I want), more than enough clothes, medical care, a safe home, the freedom to vote, express my opinions, own a gun, read what I want, and worship as I choose.

** Our son-in-law's parents paid to have an attorney look over the papers the mother of their niece had drawn up and wanted them to sign.

If you remember, the niece is the 4 year old daughter of our s-i-l's brother who passed away in April. The mother had been out of the picture for the most part, having walked away 2 years ago. She came back as soon as she heard. She has been fairly decent about letting the family see Sarah, but she has also gotten her hands on most of the stuff left in the house and the money that should go to Sarah.

Anyway... the attorney drew up some papers on their behalf because (and I don't really understand this) the mother was basically trying to get child support out of our daughter and s-i-l!!! If she and her attorney agree to the new papers it will end there and hopefully they will get to see their niece. (They have realized they are in no position to take her in.)  If she refuses the new agreement papers, they will have to go to court. It's a mess so I'm really glad they have an attorney on their side.

** Just like every week, for all of you. I am so thankful and appreciative of the beautiful and inspirational post some of you write, the funny things others of you share, and always, always, always, I am thankful for your friendship, support, prayers, and wise words.

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Summertime Wednesday Hodgepodge

Join in the fun here.
1. Something you learned from your father? My dad had two rules that were pretty much the guiding forces of his life and they've definitely influenced me. 1) If you don't have something nice to say about someone, don't say anything at all.  2) If a job is worth doing, it's worth doing well. I wish a lot more people followed those rules these days.

2. Do you like onions? Raw or cooked? How about onion rings? What's something you love to eat that calls for onions?  I only like onions when they are cooked (onion flavored things are okay). Since I am from southwestern PA, I love pierogies and if you're going to eat pierogies, they need to be served with butter and onions fried in that butter. Oh, and yes, I like onion rings...if they are cooked until they are good and crispy.

3. It's officially summer (in the Northern hemisphere)...your favorite and least favorite things about the season?  My favorite thing is that there is so much to do and yet the pace is slower and more relaxed. My least favorite thing is the heat and humidity.

4. When you think about the summers of your childhood what are two or three things that come to mind?  Being outside all day and only coming in at night when the adults made us. All the kids in the neighborhood hanging out and playing together. I hate that it's so rare to see kids outside playing these days. I also think of the two weeks I spent at my grandparents' home every summer...playing in the creek, hunting fossils, going to amusement parks.

5.  A hot mess, the heat of the moment, beat the heat, if you can't stand the heat, catch heat, in a dead heat...choose a 'hot 'phrase and tell us how it applies to your life right now.  I'm going with "hot mess." The temperatures are back in the 90's this week and I'm babysitting my grandchildren while my daughter trains for a new job. It's too hot to play outside so we are stuck inside watching movies and trying to stay amused. They have stuff everywhere! Today was a lonnnng day, but one down and only 2 more to go! LOL

6. Insert your own random thought here.  Well, I am going back to work. I got the call that my background checks came back okay today so I'll do my drug test and paperwork on Saturday. I will probably do my training days next week.

What will I be doing? I'm going back to a nursing home, though a very exclusive private one this time. The atmosphere is soooo different than the last one I worked at. Everyone is so friendly and nice and you can tell people actually enjoy their jobs. I will be in the memory care unit again, but I won't be an activities aide. They didn't have any openings right now. I'm going to be a caregiver, basically, an uncertified nursing assistant. It will be very much "hands on." I'm only going to be part-time, working daylight every other weekend and then one or two afternoon shifts during the week to get my hours. It won't be too bad and I'll still have lots of time for Colton and Leah, which was my big concern.

Saturday 9: Back in the USA

I'm beginning this July 4th weekend by picking up one of my former clients and spending the morning with her at a local berry farm. They...