Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

I'm dressed for it.
No joke.

Same old story. Yeah, I can't believe it either, this time my leg broke. But these toenails man they are shiny!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

The State of Things, Gadgets and Gizmos

In every kitchen I have ever commandeered I have had one of these; the junk drawer. I try very hard when I open it not to really LOOK at it. I just go for whatever may be in there, like a rubber band. This morning I stopped and gazed. The thought occurred to me to just open the trash and dump the whole thing in there. I mean really, what IS all this stuff?

Tapes of multiple types, candles-( not supposed to be in here)- bag clips- transistor radios, remnants from living in California, you know earthquake country- night lights not is use- bulbs- scissors-yeah stuff all right.

For one thing it is a little bit of first aid stuff, and some tools and some gadgets and some gizmos, you know the essential junk of living. I did not throw the whole kit and kaboodle in the trash. Maybe I should have.

I did find a small candle that does not go in this drawer. I tossed out some junk like the pens that probably don't have any ink and straightened the rest of the junk up.

The candle goes in this drawer; cripes it could be a long day.

So what are the state of your drawers? It has obviously been awhile since I opened some of mine!

I need a job, this is getting bad.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Anonymous Rocks

Yesterday I was obviously in the dumps. We all have to work. I was just hoping with the broken feet and bum hip that I could trim enough from our expenses to stay home. Well we tried it and it's not enough. I want to thank everybody who left a comment yesterday, nobody will ever be able to convince me that bloggers are not one of the most supportive communities in this world.

There was a surprise comment from someone who is a mystery. The anonymous comment left us all speechless. One very talented writer and also someone who could just walk up and basically say, " it's plain as the nose on your face." Amazing. I like the ideas.

If you didn't read it here is the comment.

"You are a caretaker. Your housekeeping skills are amazing, your interest in nutrition is intense, your experience in the health industry and your ability to discern strengths and weakness is "your gift".
God has prepared you for the work he created you to do, I pray that you recognize that you are intentionally and wonderfully made, and move forward with your many, many, abilities.
Your whole "Blogger Persona" screams "In-Home Assistant". If you could get 5-6 clients who need occasional home care, e.g.: shopping, cleaning, meds, companionship, and just work independently with the main objective of supplementing the income, while providing a wonderful service to someone who needs a hand. Seasonally, you could disinfect homes when a family has had illness. For $$$ amount, you could go in, clean kitchens, bathrooms, change linens, and help a family resume their busy lives. You could do a seasonal cleaning and Christmas setup for the busy family. Never forget, that you live in God's economy, and he knows your needs and your heart."

OK bloggy buddies put your collective genius together and tell me how would I go about starting something like this? An idea has to have a way to be implemented. One of the things I really like to do is 'design and develop'. But to do this a lot of 'outside the box' thinking would have to be done, remember there is no budget to start up a business. Why let a little thing like that, stop a great idea?

What ideas do you have for a business name? How about prices? Advertising on the cheap? What about legal stuff? Can I just hang my shingle?

Are your creative juices flowing this morning? What say you?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Soul Searching

I have noticed what I think is a decrease in posting from quite a few of my favorite bloggers. This week I haven't posted either. I have been in a funk. I did not want to talk about the thoughts that are running a muck in my head.

There is beauty. If I just look for it.

There is bounty. To be bought for a price or just admired.

There are cute places to have lunch with a friend.

That have adorable atmosphere and also good food. Places that remind me of Santa Cruz.

And there is the reality of what is. Sometimes we have to get our heads out of the clouds and face the music.

A budget so inadequate that after the bills get paid (when I say bills I am referring to housing, utilities, and insurance, no others) there is no money for food. The fat has been trimmed, and it is not enough.

That is a budget that will not work.

My time of being a "domestic artist," is nothing more than a little vacation. My husband told me he did not need a housewife. It was not his intention to hurt my feelings. I can't tell you how much it did hurt. It hurt because I confessed to what I have always wanted to be since I was little. That "thing" that no one wants or needs anymore. The wife, the keeper of hearth and home. I suppose it can be justified if their are children but when the children are grown? Is there not still a house to be made into a home?

There is so much in my heart right now that I don't really know where to start. So many fears, a sense of things slipping through my fingers never to be regained. A sense of loss. Several years ago I studied to take the GRE, a test to go back to school for my Masters degree. I never took the test. Every time I took a practice test in the math I failed it. The vocabulary words were some I didn't even know existed and memory work is not my strong point anymore. After three months of study I just put it aside. Do you ever think about opportunities for things as coming by to be seized or lost? I have always thought that we never run out of possibilities, but I may have been wrong.

Here I am again much older thinking about school. The first hurdel is that same test. I think I would be a good teacher in a college. But then I get filled with doubts and fear. Really? Would anyone want to hear what I have to say? Could I even do it? Could I pass that test? I have never failed anything before, what would it feel like to fail? I am getting older, not elderly but older, that half a century mark. It is harder to keep up with technology, it is harder to keep up period. The world has always moved at a fast pace, but it seems to be in warp speed. More power to the engines Mr. Scott!

In medicine I realized that I am part of the group who is being phased out. With my years of experience a hospital can hire two new grads. I don't practice medicine by the numbers, or the computer, or the most recent studies. I practice by what I see, and I know what I am looking at. Empirical practice, the human in your gut "knowing," the kind of medicine that is being phased out. The truth is, I don't even like the kind of medicine that is practiced now. It's not worth the headache. Nursing is becoming so automated and regulated that we are becoming not much more than medication dispensers and bandage changers. The computer tells us what times to be in what places giving what drugs. The computer gives us our assignment and a "work list," it keeps track of your times. Being on time with the computer is what is reflected on your review. This is because most of the emphasis these days is on timely drug administration, as if that is all a nurse is, as if that is all a nurse does.

I used to come to work and get my assignment and write it down. After report I assessed my patients and after checking my MAR's could plan out my medicines. Some could be given together, or closer and usually I could get everything given without giving one medicine here or there every hour. That way I had time to actually take care of people. When you spend time in your patients room you find things out. Sick people need hands on care. Now it seems like the idea is to spend the least amount of time in the patients room. Some things can be taken care of right then, others need the doctor and that means some phone calls, writing orders, taking them off, etc... all those things take time.

New nurses think that I make myself work. They try and tell me if I would "get organized," I could sit on my butt like they do. I bite my tongue. If I went into their patients rooms I could find as much "work" in there. I am from a different time of nursing, a different kind of practice.
It's a fight to practice like that. The stress comes from management that just sees numbers. Numbers and statistical outcomes, studies and legal- cover your ass-protocols, keeping to the the check list. The stress comes from having hospitals run like a business, on a schedule with no room for the human element. I can't do it anymore. I don't want too; and it's all I know.

Welcome to Walmart would you like a cart? I can do that.

How do you change your career at my age? I am not old enough or rich enough to retire. I have to work. I cannot afford the luxury of doing what I really love to do which is be a home maker, not if we want to eat. I am fat, I like to eat. I can eat less but nothing is not a good plan. Our housing situation is pretty cheap, we couldn't rent an apartment for this much. So this is it. I thought I could trim enough from our expenses to stay here, but it won't work.

I could teach maybe. If I could find something to teach. How can I teach nursing, when I hate what it is becoming? Maybe I can, by making them see they have human beings in those sheets. I'm afraid I would talk a good percentage of them into finding other careers. All of the ones who do it for the money!

How can I teach nutrition when I am fat? No one would listen to me, they listen to the skinny-skinny equals credible. I don't think that all this skinny is healthy. Somewhere in the middle is probably right. Women are getting too thin. We are even wanting our little babies and children to be thin and that is ridiculous.

If I could pass the test, what would I teach? That is the biggest 'if' I have ever seen.

So here I am, with all these thoughts to sort out. I am thinking that I am probably not alone; with thoughts running amuck," because you have been quiet too.

I will leave you with a good thought. No matter how hard things are getting here at home in the good old USA, they are still good. If we but lift our gazes from our own front door and set them across the seas to lands devastated by famine, or chronic states of poverty, or starvation; we look at our lives full of wealth and can only give thanks for our plenty. The poorest of our poor are still rich here. We live in a land full of every good thing.

We live among a people who still value each other. We are still free, perhaps not for much longer; but for now we are still free.

For now there are still options for us. The courage will come, it has too, there is no other option.

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Philosophical Morning

Recently as in the past three or four days I have been in the mood to devour books. Sometimes a book should just be eaten whole in one sitting and truth be told that is my favorite way to read.
Twice during this adventure and in separate books I came across a new word I did not know, "sybarite- one who loves luxury". The context in which this word appeared did not seem to be in a setting of wanton luxury but of real home life. It spurred my thoughts.

What do you think of when you think of luxury?

A bubble bath without interruption? Some wonderful dish of luscious dark chocolate maybe 70% cacao? Perhaps a fine fabric soft under the hands or a place by the sea?

Are your thoughts of what is luxury about things which you don't have or do have?
Are your ideas around places you can go to, or where you find yourself right now?

My thoughts have been on a journey back to something. One finds at the half century mark in life certain freedoms not experienced before. For one thing just living to this point, and acquiring a few strands of silver hair imparts some credibility to ones person. The other wonderful aspect to this time in life is the freedom to become a bit eccentric if one desires. We can blame menopause or any other host of mid life nomenclature that would define these behaviors. Personally, I prefer to label it individual preferences.

In my youth I was caught up in the woman's movement and "hippie-ness" as were many, it was the time we lived in. You were completely out of vogue if you had not read Gloria Steinem or attended some small group that discussed "Our Bodies Ourselves." There was a lot of frustration and anger in the world then, women especially were upset. A host if issues were laid out, equal pay for equal work, etc...etc...

My mom used to shake her head and say, "it's a man's world." Being young I wasn't sure of any of it, but the angry women seemed to have a passion for their beliefs and for a time I threw my hat in with them. But something happened during that time. I felt adrift and too small in a world that was too large and very scary. I really had no ax to grind. I was not angry. I had not experienced injustice. I found the whole "explore yourself" mentality to be weird and well--just not my cup of tea. The ideas of liberation were the antithesis of romance. The destruction of home and place. It took me years to sort that out, I was after all choosing to go against the mainstream, to pick up my hat and toss it into the ring of domesticity.

Being domestic is a calling is it not? Making a home is so much more than scrubbing the toilets and the floors. I wondered what kind of mothers the feminists had. Did these women ever come home to warm cookies and soft hugs? Were they tucked in at night with a story and a kiss?

My mother gave me a home. I remember tables full of wonderful home made food. I was especially fond of her buttery mashed potatoes and home made custards. Our house would have never made the cover of a magazine but it was cozy and comfortable. Yes, our toilets often needed a scrubbing but we got around to it, weekly anyway. It seems the new standard of our day is to have bathrooms that are ever ready for a magazine shoot. Not very realistic. We also have huge designer kitchens and then eat in restaurants all too frequently. Everything in the environment of the home has taken on sterility. The home however was meant to be a fertile place.

Where am I going?

On a journey that I won't finish in one blog post. It's a journey that I have been on for some time. Back to my roots I suppose, at times I think I am becoming my grandmother or a woman like her. I would be quite pleased to be like her, as she was a woman of greatness in my eyes. My grandmother was a matriarch in the real sense, she kept the family and extended family together. She taught us rich hospitality and gave us wonderful get togethers that made the holidays a real celebration. I do not remember many packages or presents but I remember every meal around the damask covered table, with Grandpa ceremonially lighting the candles.

The holidays are coming soon. Are you feeling the stress already? Are you going to participate in the madness?

Last year I did very little spending. It was a great relief. I enjoyed the season so much more, and I did it by not going to the stores. If I go to the stores I will be swept away. The marketers are much smarter than I am, they seem to know that I needed all these beautiful objects before I ever saw them. If I don't see, I won't want.

The TV has been off now for many months and like the main character in "Brave New World," without the daily dose of soma all of us seem to be waking up, in this house. My thoughts go around ideas of creating things instead of consuming them. I have even been taking a look at my clothes and wondering about making them. If I did, would I have the courage to make what I would REALLY like to wear? Like Mrs. Whaley and her Charleston garden who always wore a blue dress? Would I really like to be a non-conformist? Do I have the courage?

How about you? What would you REALLY like to do? When is the last time you stopped rushing about long enough to even ask yourself that question?

Life is too short not to have at least a few of our dreams come true.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Celebrating and Sightseeing

Yesterday I drank some coffee, dark rich French roast brewed very strong, and it put some zip in my tired bones. I put the cousins in the car and took them to town. Ridgeland Mississippi has some lovely places. One of my favorites is The Gardenworks, a local nursery par excellance, with an overflowing plethora of gorgeousness.

From any direction you can view plants and arrangements you'd love to have at your own place.
For a fee of course you can.
The front entrance, sporting a new, rather colorful paint job.

Pumpkins always announce fall and start me baking pies.

Sweet potato pies to be precise. The Hunny declared me to be a "real housewife." I haven't been? The man loves pie!

These impress him of course, but do not seem to elevate me to the status of a "real housewife."

The secret to his heart is right here.

The man loves pie. He eats bread, but he loves pie. He does eat a lot of bread.

Just a little digression with food, but we are still perusing the nursery. These make ME drool. I would love to have a dozen of these lovely pots. Potted plants require a lot of watering but they are so pretty. Man loves pies, woman loves pots...yep that's about the size of it.
Very cute...

yes, definitely pretty...
Catching the cousin, catching some shots...
that could really be inspirational.

This is a quite attractive little arrangement and it inspired me to go home and fix up the area at my back door. In the south everyone walks around to your back door to come in. I have had so few folks come through my front door that I can count them on one hand, and that's in ten years.

Pansies, somebody should write a song about these happy little flowers.
(Somebody did.. courtesy of Lynne...)

. "Little purple pansies dressed in yellow gold.

"Growing in a corner of the garden, old.

"We are very tiny but we try, try, try.

Just one heart to gladen, you and I."

Another gorgeous pot, what a color!
We also went to some other places that are really cute, some of my favorites. I'll show you that tomorrow. A cute shop and a very chic restaurant. Speaking of restaurants, we went to a Mexican place last night (birthday girls choice of course) to celebrate Kayla's 19th birthday. One of the cousins mentioned it to our waitress and so she was adorned with the fancy sombrero and sung to with gusto.

Kissed by her Papa.

She loved every minute of it!

Happy Birthday sweetie.

Monday, October 19, 2009

We Have Had a Time!!

This is one adorable baby boy. He is mostly quite engrossed with his mama and nursing but there are the occasional times when he can be cuddled. He is an absolute delight!

(These are my new glasses never could get the others to fit right.)

My grandson the Marine and his new bride. He is a love and they are in love. They are planning a wedding in June next year but got married 4 months ago. Better than living together first don't you think?

Be still my heart. This little three year old girl has wrapped up my whole heart in her little hands. She has stolen me completely with her precious sweetness. She is a delightful well behaved and incredibly intelligent little girl; not to mention pretty.

The last day, Papa holding him for just a few more minutes before they left for the airport. We cried, you know we cried.

My Hunny and his youngest son and the grandson.

Somebody is being silly.

Somebody is being thoughtful and what incredible eyes, they really are that blue!

For the footsie lovers...

So much love in such a short time.

I am so in love.

We STILL have house guests! The cousins extended their stay by a few days and will go home on Thursday which is Kayla's birthday. You would NOT believe the quantity of groceries that have gone through this house. 20 half gallons of milk alone! I have been cooking cooking cooking. Baking baking baking, washing washing washing, and then falling into bed with a smile. I do admit to being tired now. I have been reading a lovely book, "The Gentle Art of Domesticity," it is a nice read by a BLOGGER! She is so much more and I am not surprised that she has published this lovely book. What I like about it is her take on those of us who love our homes and the work we do in them as "domestic artists," nice huh? Yeah, I am a bread artist, among other things. It is nice quiet read and pleasant for regrouping. I actually do need a bit of rest and some new inspiration as I have been in the giving mode full throttle for several weeks now.

God has answered all my prayers for the family reunion and it was a blessed event! There were no cross words, no ugly comments, and everyone truly had a great time. This house was full of laughter and great times of reminiscing. The photo books came out and funny stories retold.
The time spent with my grandson was beyond any price. He has spent some hard years of growing up, not remembering the love we once had for him and he has returned. I could hardly contain my self when he looked at me and smiled and said, "I love you Nannie," the little boy was there in the smile of the man. When the girls were young the three of them were virtually inseparable. Through circumstances we could not control we stopped being able to visit him for about 10 years. Restoring his memories and the special times were so healing and it was a great joy to us all! There is hope in those hopeless situations!

I enjoyed getting to know our daughter in law, she is a very special young woman and an excellent mother. I had a hard time with the kissing thing but understood her concerns. I did steal some kisses on the backs of their heads and other "safe" places but tried to abide by their wishes. We all have to make our way in this life. Someone in her family had passed on an incurable illness to another person and they made a blanket rule. She admits to being a germaphobe but she also is very interested in nutrition and we had a lot of good conversations. She is going to read "Nourishing Traditions" and we talked about baking bread a good bit, it was a very pleasant visit. She drank whole milk while she was here and her baby plumped out right before our eyes. in one week he got new fat rolls on his little thighs, just so squishy soft and luscious!

I have so much to catch up on. I have missed you. I have no idea what has been going on at your blogs. My e mail box had several 100 messages in it. I really have not had time or the space to be on the computer. Even tonight the laughter is floating up the stairs, and I should be down there. But I wanted to come up here and say hello. Since I began blogging I have never had this long of a "break" well fuggeddbout it! I'm done with this break thing!!!

Helllooo Debbie, Jojo, Coffee Man,Heidi, Connie farmlady, Cathy, Kathy, Becky,Becky, Becky, Karen, Susie, Angie, Rosie Kate, Mental mama, Grandma J, Peach, Trish, Chris, Kelly, farmchick, and all of you on my blog roll and any others that pass this way often. I have missed visiting your blogs and that lovely quiet connection into other lives that blesses me in such a unique way. I can't wait to come and visit you, hugs hugs hugs!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Interupting the Blog Break

We are having a blast Everybody is great! The big kids the little kids...everything. My heart is just popping with joy.

My littlest granddaughter loves me to the moon. She told me so sitting in my lap outside in the swing. I have stolen kisses, just had too. She is soooo precious. We made bread together this morning.

She loves to help with everything.

I love her so much. I'm going to bawl crocodile tears when they leave. I have brought home a ton of real estate magazines.

Is this adorable or what? My grandson's new wife is a photographer these are pictures she took. she has taken tons of them and they are all great. Can't wait to show you more! I am still on break but had an opportune moment for a quick little update.

More to come on the weekend.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I Think I Might Be Dead--Dead Tired.

The only one with any sense around here is the kitten. He has been living the life of Riley while I have been cleaning every inch of this house.

This man is almost dead too. He has been working hard too. We had let our place go to the dogs I tell you! When did it happen? Is it getting new glasses? Where did all this dirt come from?

The bathroom turned out great if I don't say so myself. I told the teenager to leave it alone and not clutter it up with a bunch of crap.

This was the curtain I had which kind of influenced the paint color.

Pop even built a platform for this airbed. I saw they sell airbeds now with platforms that inflate.I did NOT come home and tell him that. He needed the plywood anyway. The grandson and his wife will be in here. That sounds so weird! My grandson is 19 years old and he got married!!

I did not get the cabinet painted, it was too wet outside. but shoot I did paint the bathroom and the little rocker, (picture to come later), and clean every dad gum thing in this entire building and lot! I was out washing the carport walls this morning and all the outdoor seating and the floor out there. It is great to take a scrub broom and the hose and just have at it. I wish I could use a garden hose in my house. I could live in one of those little cement houses like they have in Colombia. How cool would that be? Need to clean? Just get the mop and the garden hose. Spend the rest of the day in the hammacka. Don't I wish!

The problem with being such a maniac about having things right is that it hurts. I could use some morphine. I don't take drugs anymore though, with my new health nut kick; I through all my prescriptions away a couple of months ago. Which is why I titled this post, I think I might be dead. I'm alive but delirious.

The daughter in law is a germaphobe. Oh Lord help. She told me she is. We are not allowed to kiss the children. GIMME A BREAK! Are there any relaxed parents in this generation of mom's?
OK well I don't allow kids to walk around eating and drinking all over my house either so we should get along just fine!! Actually we will, but I never heard of anything like that in my life. No kissing.

She will not find one speck of dirt in this house though, I kid you not. Get your white gloves!

To be blunt, I will be on a blog break. Hunny couldn't hook up the computer downstairs and it's in the room where his son is going to stay with the little family so it's over and out for me! How am I going to relax? (Renfield laugh, twists hands, eyes twitching.)

You should see all the food I bought. Holy cow. Even a little basket of goodies for the little girl. All the baby stuff, swing, bouncy seat, port a crib, and all of it scrubbed and washed. A new dolly for the punkin.

The little crib fit in the cubby.

Have you ever seen the commercial of the guy riding the lawn tractor and talking about his debt all the while smiling like an idiot? He says "somebody help me." Ughhhh that would be me, my feet are freaking out. We will be having company until the 16th. I did not schedule any automatic old posts or anything. So I will just be gone... sobs... sniffs...

I hope you miss me I'll miss you.