Saturday, June 18, 2011

random thoughts

I was talking to my sister the other day. She is moving to Arizona because, among other things, she really needs to see blue sky. Many people have a problem with the cloud cover in the northwest. Fortunately, I am not one of them. To me it is like a warm comforter, cozy. Yesterday the sun was out all day. Yes, it was beautiful. But the air pressure changes when it is warm, really warm. I had problems with my sinus and just didn't feel well at all. Of course the pollen count was up too. But these two things often go together. Today I feel better because the sky is overcast. The pollen count and air pressure are down. I won't be moving any time soon.

We are getting ready for company. Some dear friends who live in Taiwan will be coming to visit next week. It will be so good to see them after many years. He just retired and is finally able to travel. Hopefully there will be many more visits in years to come. I have already done some deep cleaning and will give the floors a good polish just before they arrive. But these friends are not picky. They are coming to see us, not our home. I just hope I can get the weed eater going next week end to spruce up the lawn a little. Our mower is in the shop and won't be ready for about 2 weeks. These friends have always enjoyed our garden and it is extra incentive to work outside.

The squirrels have been driving me wild again. Last year they repeatedly knocked the glass top off an old crock I use as a table on the deck. I ended up putting a heavy pot on it, seemed to solve the problem. Turns out they are after the salt/brine that has seeped into the crock from when I used to make pickles in it. They still lick the sides of the crock. This year they have been digging in my potted plants. I have gone out several times to find plants nearly uprooted. I guess the soil is soft and easy to dig in. Anyway, I ended up placing shells and/or stones around the top of the bare soil. I don't think they will be digging in that, but we will see. These critters are amusing to watch, but they are a real pain as well.

My research into our family genealogy has been going on since the first of the year. To give credit where due, my cousin Mike has been doing research on my dad's side of the family for some 20 years now. He was gracious enough to share those results. I have spent way too much time in adding to his findings and delving into mom's line, first using only the Internet, then Amy purchased 6 months worth for me. Boy do we have a lot of identifiable ancestors. So far, I have identified no less that 12 individuals on the passenger list for the 1620 Mayflower, tied into the European nobility on both sides of the family, and pin pointed the dates and state of immigration for most of those who came over from the British Isles and Europe, some 19 pages of them, all but two prior to 1750. It is a mixed bag of folks. Some escaping political or religious persecution, some looking for land, still others just needing a way to make a living. These people all brought with them stories that could fill volumes, as attested by the printer ink I have gone through (I don't have that much space on my hard drive).

My intent is to use this vast amount of information as the basis for gifts. There is enough there to last for many years. In fact I have already given a small gift of the direct paternal family line as a graduation present to one family member. So if you are related to me, you can count on receiving at least a branch or two off this forest of a family tree. We are related to Lady Godiva, King Henry I, William the Conqueror, Charlemagne, Antony (as in Antony & Cleopatra), and so many, many more notables. But it is the stories of those who laid it all on the line to settle this country that intrigue me most. It reads something like our own family version of "How the West Was Won", a real study in American history. I will spend time this fall, after the 6 month subscription is over, putting material together for Christmas gifts. It should be fun.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

53 years and counting

Time flies in more than one way. Not only has it been more than 2 months since my last post, but today marks 53 years since Richard and I vowed to love, honor, and cherish one another till the Lord took us home. Some of those years were pretty rocky. Some were exhausting. Yet it was those same hard times that have mellowed us like a fine wine. We are closer now than ever before. We depend on one another. We are each other's best friend.

Richard can no longer get out to shop. We don't have disposable cash anyway. So he drew a couple pictures of me as a gift. I like the less colored one best. Which one do you like?

I am fixing a steak dinner with all the trimmings as my gift to Richard. This is something he loves and doesn't often get. We will eat on the deck surrounded by roses. I will put on some quiet music. It will be secluded and intimate. What more could you ask for than to share a good meal in a lovely setting, with the one you love?