Saturday, February 17, 2007
Sat. Feb.17, 2007
Today the picture puzzle I received from the puzzle master site was people ice skating on a large span of water.
That brought back so many wonderful times when I was younger and ice skating with my friends on the Barge Canal , plus on many large ice patches that were found near our homes. There was just the large woods between our home and the Barge Canal and my fathers family owned most all of these woods. So, we often played either swimming in the canal, or ice skating on this canal. It was a great fun place for our family and all of our friends. When we were young, our Parents did insist that we only went there with someone older. An Uncle sometimes accompanied us, as did our older brother. Eventually we became the older ones watching out for our younger brother and sisters.
We never had loads of money back then as my parents had high medical bills to pay. One day one of my much older Cousins gave me a pair of black ice skates that she had owned since she was younger. They had the one runner with the pointed tip. My first pair of ice skates. I knew that most girls owned white shoe ice skates and the boys usually wore the black shoe ice skates. That never stopped me from feeling so very lucky to receive these black shoe ice skates. If you can suddenly love someone more that you have always loved, then that day was one of them. I was flying high- soo very happy to be able to finally go ice skating with the others.
When my feet finally outgrew these black skates, an Aunt gave me a pair of white ice skates that another cousin my age had outgrown. She always took good care of her things, so these skates looked brand new. They had the fancier tips on the blade for easier stopping and changing directions with. Today they probably would have been listed as figure skates. I wore these skates for many years. I had let my younger brother have my black ones. So, now he was able to start going skating with us.
Starting out I first learned how to skate forward around in large circles. Once I had accomplished that and felt steadier I started trying out more movements. It was fun learning how to do figure 8`s and eventually learning how to skate backwards without worrying about falling. All this took lots of practice. Looking back, I still remember how much fun ice skating was. I never became more than a normal ice skater, but Oh! how I did enjoy it.
Years after I was married and had kids old enough to ice skate, my mother gave me both sets of ice skates to take home, the black and the white ones. Everyone at home had outgrown them years before and they were just stored away and mother felt since they were first given to me, that they should go to my children.
Every winter we had a large ice rink form in our empty lot next to our home where our kids and some of their friends used their sleds and ice skates. When my kids were little there were a couple of cheaper style ice skates for them to use. These skates were flat with double runners and braces and straps to hold them onto the bottom of their regular shoes. Older people will remember these, but many of my grandkids and none of my great grandkids have probably ever seen or heard of them. They were called learner skates. The double runners allowed them to move their feet without falling, making it easy to learn to ice skate. The land next to our home lots was a bit lower so the rain and melted snow flowed there both from the road and from the property where our home was built.
After the other children were older , just the youngest daughter was still ice skating on this winter formed ice rink with her girl friend and one of her girlfriends younger brothers. A few years later this friends other little brother , who was just 3 years old learned how to ice skate on our small ice rink. I can still picture him out there ice skating with the others. He was soo small that the first few times he came over I watched them a lot fearing he might fall and get hurt. He seemed a natural skater and soon was skating better than his older brother. I wonder if he ever skated after he grew up? Maybe learning when he was so little gave him less fear of falling and helped to make him feel more secure. Or maybe falling so much when learning to first walk and learning those falls weren`t so bad let him grow up with this fearless feeling. Maybe it was just having faith in his sister who was teaching him. This sister was practically raising her younger brothers and had to take them most every where she went. So, while I thought it very unfair of her parents to tie her childhood down this way, I was so proud of her as I never once heard her complain about having to take them along. She was the kind of loving sister every family should have as long as she wasn`t being made to fullfill the mother`s roll with them.
Once all my kids were grown and there was noone left to use the God made ice rinks, I started banking up the soil for a few feet from the road to prevent the water from flowing and caring the car oil off the road and onto our property.
Isn`t it nice to remember those fun times gone past.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Wed., Feb. 14, 2007=Valentines Day
Valentines day started out with many old memories of those gone by. .
Roses- many times over the years, large rectangle shaped green planter filled with tulips, another pretty round plant holder with a lighthouse on one side and a water scene going around the outrside and was filled with Holland tulips ( he knew I liked Tulips), my first ever rose bush, many boxes of chocolates ( which he helped eat, but he also shared any I bought for him), boxes of Chocolate covered cherries, boxes of Mints and other kinds of candy, 3 different heart shaped necklaces- my birthstone, Diamond , fancy shaped Gold, oh yes there was a fourth one smaller gold one, an angel pin with my birthstone, another angel pin with a single diamond, a beautiful butterfly knecklace with tiny diamonds around it, many many many cards- all signed with "my one and only" and so much more.
All this was brought to mind thanks to our good friend Walker. By now, many of you know he sent me one of his gift packages for Valentines Day . I hope he doesn`t mind if I write one of the lines from his card. It meant a lot to me.
"If it`s ok with you, I would like you to accept these chocolates in Walt`s name".
What a wonderful thing to say. I know if Walt could, he would also like to thank Walker for that wonderful thought in his memory.
Well, let me start with how that day the package arrived started.
I saw out mailman sitting in the mail truck in front of my mailbox tipping the package over and over and finally I saw him using his cell phone. Thinking he must have a package he doesn`t know where to deliver, I decided to go get the mail he had just placed in my mailbox. He had left the mailbox door open. When I reached in to get the mail, he said nothing, so I figured the phone call must have solved his problem and I started heading towards the house. Suddenly he said, wait, this is for you. I was thinking I hadn`t ordered anything and wasn`t expecting any package. When I got back to the truck, I saw that the package not only had my name and address, but also Walkers. I said- I see it is from Canada. He said thats why I was confused. He didn`t know if he needed my signature or not, then he handed me the package with a card to sign laying on top of it.. So, I signed the card and headed back into the house. I laid the package on my kitchen table and stood looking at the package for a few minutes- wondering what could be in it. When I opened it there was a carton that once held a virus protector- same MacAfee that I keep on my computer. Cute idea Walker. Again I wondered what might be in that carton. First I read the very cute Valentine card with it`s nice thoughts. What Walker had written made me feel so Happy it brought tears to my eyes. Walt may be gone, but he will never be forgotten. I felt so close to Walt right then. Such a pretty velvet like heart shaped box with a ribbon and filled with Chocolates, so much like what Walt might have boughten for me.
Such a wonderful thoughtful thing for someone to do for a friend they have never even met.
Walker, I hope you don`t mind seeing your name written here, but everything I write here is usually printed off to keep in my Life`s history for others to read in the years to come. This is one happy time I want them to know about. My kids also thought it was a very nice thing to do.
Now for a lighter tone, your carton reminded me of a Christmas years ago. One day my stepson stopped by and asked me if he could make a peanut butter sandwich. He said he had a hankering for it, but his wife said- we have no kids, so we don`t need to buy any peanut butter. A couple months later it was Christmas. I bought a jar of peanut butter, wrapped it and packed it into a small box. This box went into a little larger box packed with those foam peanuts, then into amother larger box, which continued up to a large box also filled with peanut foam. I forget how many boxes, but must have been at least 5 of them. When he finally got to the last box and saw the jar of peanut butter, he was all smiles and gave me a huge hug. He looked at his wife and told her it was all his. I hadn`t thought of that in years. Wonder if he still remembers it. That was back in either Christmas 1969 or 1970. Funny I should remember it after all these years.
Hope everyone had a nice Valentines day, whether it was spent with a loved one, spent thinking of years gone by, or just thinking of future years ahead to enjoy.
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Tagged by Hillgrandmom
Her tag had to do with appearance.
All I can say about my appearance is that I dress simply unless I am going to a wedding or some other important doings. You might think it weird to see a 75 year old woman wearing barrets in her hair. But Thats what I do when I am working in my wood shop with all the electric tools and saws. I can`t take a chance on my hair falling in my face or blocking even a speck of my eyesight. When I was a teenager we dressed in jeans. I stopped wearing them after I got married. Then a few years ago, after my husband died, ( I still have trouble with that word "died") , I bought more tools and started working in the wood shop. I soon realized how hard it was to remove sawdust from dress style slacks and dresses or skirts were a danger around machines. So, that is how I went back to wearing jeans again. Jeans are the best for working with wood. I still don`t feel comfortable wearing jeans away from the house, with the exception of to my Families homes. I am somewhat particular of how I look. Have to look neat and wear clothes without stains on them. The colors must go well together. I buy items that can be interchanged to make more outfit looks with them. Guess this comes from the way I was raised as a kid. I seldom wear more than just lipstick unless it is a special occassion I am attending.
My home -- Most would consider my home over crowded with my horse Collection-- pictures, steins, cups, mugs, clocks, lamps, statues of all sizes and made from many types of materials, even coal and St, Helens ash, -- well it would take a lot of space to tell whats in my collection. Cakeplates, horse turkey cutting board, large horsehead stapler, Oh, I could go on and on. A cousin and her husband , from out of town, stopped to see me last summer and here was her reply " Your house is so filled and yet you managed to keep it looking so neat". Think I owe a lot of that to my Design and Mechanical Drawing Teacher I had way back in High School. She had this phraze she was always saying " everything has to look balanced-- if you put one tall item on one side you will need either another tall item or two shorter items to ballance the other side so the weight look matches.
I like the yard around my home to be kept mowed and planted my Rose bushes so they also give a ballanced neat looked in front of the house.
Relationships-- I prefer people who can be trusted, who don`t go around slamming others behind their back. People who prefer talking about what bothers them without screaming so the whole neighborhood knows every word. ( Used to have a neighbor like that till she broke up with him and found a more polite fellow). Can`t tollerate those who think they are perfect and never wrong or their kids are perfect. Noone is always right and noone is always wrong. Being able to admit when wrong is an important trait to have. You soon learn to be right sometimes and wrong other times when you grow up the middle child in a family of 7. I had three brothers, 3 sisters, three older and three younger. Caught right in the middle. Lost my younger bro in 1994. I never judge people by their looks or smarts, just by their character and actions. As they say, you can`t judge a book by it`s cover, you have to read the contents. You can`t judge a person without taking the time to know them by their behavior, their kindness or lack of it, their manners or lack of, honesty and their being able to be trusted and how they get along with others.
hillgrandmom, hope this answers your tag ok.
Now that is done and I can forget about being tagged. A big relief to have it done.i
Who tagged me?
A few weeks ago one of my wonderful blog friends asked me to do her tag. I agreed to do it as soon as I found more free time as I was spending so much time with therapy and home exercises to regain the use of my right shoulder and arm. Plus at the time typing with my right hand was next to imposible. So, I promised i would do it later.
Well, somewhere I wrote down who the tag was from and what the tag consisted of. Problem is I can`t locate that piece of paper. So, I would greatly appreciate having the person who taged me a couple weeks ago, please let me know the subjects the tag was supposed to be about.
Once i make a promise, I feel the need to keep that promise. Sorry it has taken me so long to remember I owe this tag post.
I will be waiting to hear from the one who tagged me. then I hop I can do the tag ok.
Friday, February 09, 2007
Past few days, Feb. 9,2007
First I want to clear up the name of the old computer I had forgotten the name of.
Remembering that old computer that I first practiced on. It was a "Texas Instrument" and called a "Ti 99A". think it was a 99, but the # might be wrong. It was called a computer, but couldn`t be connected to the internet and the machine couldn`t program anything for you. It had lots of small casset style games etc. that you could buy to play on it. They might have been called modules instead of cassets. You could also buy empty ones and program your own games, puzzles or whatever you wanted to do.
I did make up a few new ones while I was using it which I gave to my bro when I returned his machine. It didn`t have anything like Windows on it.
I did get a lot of practice using it and finally updated to a newer model computer with Windows on it. My first machine was a cheaper model which after a lot of problems, and a lot of money spent trying to get it fixed, I finally bought a better one- my first HP.
Since then I have bought this HP computer I have today. Bought this one in May `04 and had nothing but trouble with it till in March `05 it quit completely. When I sent it back it was the Hard drive that was defective and finally just quit working. I had the other HP for almost 5 years and it was still working, just not enough memory for the things I wanted to do. those 5 years was the reason I stayed with HP when I bought the new one. They replaced the defective hard Drive , less than a year after I bought it and so far it has been a good machine. Maybe I should be knocking on wood for good luck as it is almost 3 years old now.
Gee, I wonder where that expression came from? "Knock on wood for luck"? I remember hearing some laughing and knocking on their own heads pretending there was nothing in their heads (no brains) just wood. It used to be a joke, but I never hear it anymore. Just another old saying that seems to be disappearing over time. Oh Well, I could just cross my fingers and hope it continues working fine in the future. I once told a friend I would cross my fingers for good luck for him, even told him I would cross my toes too, but then my shoes wouldn`t fit. That brought the smile I was looking for and made him feel better.
A few days ago I saw ants in the bathroom by the tub. I have lived in this home for over 50 years and never before had ants in my bathroom. I had bees once, but never ants. I remembered reading that ants won`t cross vaseline. So, I cleaned good up tight to the tub and using my finger I spread a tiny bit of vaseline all down the tub edge where it sat on the floor. I have seen only two ants since then and they were in the sink. Think they must have came up the water pipes since my cellar floor is only about 2/3rds finished and still has dirt on the end where the well is. But, I have never seen any ants ever in my cellar either. Seems odd after 50 years with no ants. Must be this crazy weather we are having this year. I still see most all the birds at my feeders that came in the summer just the Humming Birds and the little yellow ones have left.
After taking care of the ant problem, I went to cut a large roll in half with a sharp knife. My hand doesn`t hold smaller items well and the knife handle twisted and cut my first finger on the left hand, not a big cut, just deep enough for it to bleed bad. I was able to stop it by wrapping it tightly with a wide bandade.
The next morning I went to take a shower as I had a Therapy sessions to go to for my right shoulder. I suddenly heard this loud ruffling noise and couldn`t be sure if it was coming from the other room, or from the cellar. I was hoping it wasn`t from the cellar as how could some animal big enough to make that noise get in the cellar . I went out of the bathroom to see where Sassy was. She wasn`t laying in her favorite place in the laundry room by my back door. She wasn`t laying on her bed in the middle room. Then as I passed the bedroom , taking another look in the laundry room, I saw her ear tips showing over the bed. She had climb over my bed and was laying in the tiny open spot between the clothes closet and the bed. I sure wasn`t sure how I was going to remove her from there. While I was trying to figure that out, I noticed she had wet at the foot of the bed before she climb over it to hide. Something sure must have scared her bad for her to act this way. She has never gone into my bedroom. She does have cataracs on both eyes, so who knows, maybe she saw a shadow that wasn`t so clear to see. I will never know. The reason I couldn`t tell that the noise came from the bedroom was where she laid behind the bed is a heat register and her banging around that register caused me to hear the noise also thru the heat register in the bathroom. Puzzle solved. But then I had to mop the bedroom floor good and finally encouraged her to climb up onto the bed for me to get her out of the bedroom. Once this was done, I went back to take my shower and the hot water removed the bandade from my finger. I looked at it and it wasn`t bleeding, so I stopped worrying about it. Then a couple minutes later I suddenly noticed there was lots of blood spots on my towel. I had knocked the cut open again and had to put another real tight bandade on it to stop the bleeding. Here it is four days later and I still need to wear the tight bandade, but it is healing ok, just a bit slower than I would have liked. After moping the floor, I had to go to therapy and my shoulder and arm was paining from the extra workout it got from moping the floor.
I have kept the bathroom door closed every since she climb into the tub a couple weeks ago. Now I also need to keep the bedroom door shut tight to keep her out of the bedroom. Wonder what she will do next? I worry a lot because I read on the net that the Border Collie has a life span of from 10 to 14 years of age and she will be 11 years old in March. The hair on her face has a lot of gray where it was white just a year ago. She is looking like an old dog, but still wants to play like a younger dog. I sure depend on her for security living here alone. She is a wonderful watch dog and won`t allow anyone , but my family, to come in my house until I tell her it is ok. She is very protective of me.
Well, I had my last therapy session today and was given more exercises to do at home. My Insurance won`t pay for any more therapy and that is why I am quitting them. With the exercises I was given to use at home and since they taught my daughter how to tape the shoulder for better support while it still is healing, hopefully I can do ok at home on my own. For $50 a month, I can continue to go and use their equipment on my own if I need it. Anyone can go there for exercising and use any of their equipment by joining. If I have problems later on, I might join. Just have to wait and see how well I can do at home. I do have the movements back and now am just trying to get the strength back in the shoulder and arm. I am hoping that the more strength I get back, the less it will pain doing the exercises. Time will tell. I`ll just have to keep working hard and have Faith and learn better patience. I was told today that I had done very good because I had worked so hard. They said I was a Hard worker and they were pleased to see how well I had accomplished with the therapy. They always acted surprised to see someone 75 years old willing to work so hard. Told them that I had a lot to work hard for. I want to be able to get back making things in my wood shop. My Dr once asked me what kind of things I did in my shop and asked me to bring in some pictures to show him. So my last apt. I showed him a few of the items I had made, plus the garage door I had painted the farm scene on. He looked surprised and told me I was very artistic and he thanked me for bringing in the pictures. Now, Coming from my Dr that is a compliment . He is usually so serious and not one to give that kind of compliment. I know I am just an average worker and not a professional, so I was surprised at his pride in my work. But, it did make me feel good to have someone outside of my Family and friends complimenting my hard work.
When I was leaving Therapy this morning, I thanked everyone for all their help. One of the young fellows said " It was a pleasure helping you. You work so hard. Hope you come back to see us again. " Then he must have realized how that sounded as he added on " I don`t mean here, I hope you never have a need to come back. Hope to see you someday on the street". His face got a little red like he was embarrased at what he said. I told him I understood what he meant and thanked him for all his help. All the young ladies and young lads that worked there were very nice and always trying to help me succeed. I am so greatful for their kindness and their not wanting to cause me any pain while helping me. Such a pleasant group of people at this therapy place.
Saturday, February 03, 2007
My Run away mind from Computers to cars.
Ever stop to think of how confusing it was the first time you used a computer? Did you wonder if you would ever conquer that monster, or did you take one look at it and then and there decide you could conquer it if you just put your mind on it?
When I bought my first machine it had windows 95 on it. Oh, maybe I should mention that before I ever bought my first computer i had played with the old machine my brother used to use. It wasn`t a computer, but did work a lot like one. I forget what it was called, but some kind of tec machine. We played games on it and could even make up some new games to play on it. It had little tapes you could play or make new ones. Next to a computer, it looked like a toy. But it wasn`t easy to use and was sometimes more confusing to learn than a computer is. , but I did enjoy it. It must have been the beginning of the computer idea even though it didn`t have anything like windows on it. You could type with it. Some of the older people may remember what it was called. I could call my bro and find out, but guess it really doesn`t matter. That one of my brothers was the only one of it`s kind that I ever saw or played around with.
Once I got my comp with the 95 windows on it, I started checking everything out, but I didn`t have the internet at that time. I like learning new things, so I found it interesting enough to start trying out new ways till I hit the right way to accomplish what I wanted to at the time. Once I mastered the 95, My daughter paid to put me on the net as a Christmas gift. She added cable TV for her Dad and internet for me. Who knows when I might have decided to get on the net if she hadn`t just went ahead and signed me up and paid for it. For the next few years, every year she would give her Dad and I each a money gift for Christmas , for our Birthdays, on Fathers and Mother`s days --to pay for another year.I went on the net and then I found I needed a larger comp as I didn`t have enough room on that machine. So, I bought a new computer with 98 on it and had even more to learn. A few years later I was having trouble so we removed the 98 and put in Me. Then I got into doing much more on the machine and needed even more room, so a few years later, here came computer #3. This new one came with XP on it, so here I went learning all over again. I am sure many of you remember this experience of newer windows and more to learn. Today I think of how much faster it would have been if I only knew back then that you could learn off the net. I learned computer use the same way I learned lots of other things-- by trial and error. Thanks goodness I was careful what I tried , or was it just luck that I didn`t mess up my computers while learning?
What would I be doing today with all my time if I hadn`t bought that first computer, or hadn`t ever gone on the net and met so many wonderful friends to be in contact with. Would I have been able to handle losing Walt and living alone? Would working in the shop be enough if all I had was an empty house to look forward to once
I left the shop? I am sure I would have stayed working in the shop till I was way too tired to think, and that sure would have been dangerous. One should never work with electric saws and other power tools when one is over tired. But would I have cared if there was noone else to care about my life? I must give all my family a lot of credit for the way they were constantly looking out for me. I am sure they did it in the beginning because losing their Dad must have made them realize they could also lose me someday. But, here it is 4 1/2 years later and they are still keeping watch on how I am doing and what I am doing.
Yesterday I decided to try driving my own car. When a daughter next door saw me taking my car out of the garage she came out asking what I was doing. I told her I was just driving down to the bank and stopping at Hannaford for a few groceries. She kept saying take my car, take my car. Mine is a standard with no power steering, requiring me to use my right arm more, while her`s is an automatic and has power steering to make it less work to drive. She even said if I wanted to warm up my car then to just let it sit in the yard running for a while. But, I needed to prove to myself whether I could do it yet or not. I didn`t give in and took off with my own car for the first time since I dislocated and messed up my shoulder on Nov. 11th. I took a longer way so there wasn`t any sharp right turns to pull on my arm. Today, my shoulder is aching some from driving, but I did find out that in an emergency, I could drive my car if it were necessary. Now I won`t mind going back to driving her car till the shoulder is fully healed. I just had to know If I could do it if the need arised.
Well, back to therapy on monday for some more strenuous exercises. Some make my shoulder tell me off, but still I am doing better all the time and that makes it all worth while. I am slowly getting more range movement and more strength in that arm. Again, I think, would i be working so hard and putting up with more pain if I lived alone with nothing to look forward to? I might not have. But, I keep thinking of the day when i can get back making thingsd in my wood shop and to ever do that again will require that shoulder and arm working properly. So, I will keep fighting.
Yesterday a brother said to me he was amazed at all I am still able to do with my arthritic crooked fingers, bad back, double vision, etc.. He knows the pain they sometimes cause. Sciatic nerve has put me flat right in bed a few times. My answer to him was "What else can we do. After all we have both our Father`s and our Mother`s determination to succeed and keep going on doing things. They were never quiters. My Mother was still on a Bowling Team in her 80`s and running her own home until she broke her hip in her late 80`s. And my Dad was still a mechanic repairing vehicles for extra money the day before he died at age 73. We grew up watching our parents staying active. I once walked in on my mother hanging wall paper all alone when she was older than I am now.
I guess I would feel like a failure if I wasn`t able to still accomplish anything. I know the day might come when I will have to give in and admit I am unable to keep up everything, but until that day arises, I thank God for what I am still able to do.
When I started this post I was thinking of my computer days. I sort of got off track. But thats what happend when your mind starts thinking of one thing which leads to another and before you know it your whole train of thought has changed.
Got a few inches of snow today and it looks more like the olden day Christmas times. Didn`t have to shovel which was good as my shoulder wouldn`t have handled it just yet. My wonderful future son-in-law brought over his snow blower and did both my driveway, front sidewalk and the area by the mailbox. He even brought in my mail saying he did it so I wouldn`t need to walk out in this weather. I did go out later to get my newspaper (he would have gotten it if I had mentioned it). He also took my car to the station and filled up the gas tank for me. One thing I can`t do is work the gas pumps with my hands. So, others do it for me. Even if I don`t drive it till spring, I still need to be able to start it up, warm it up and back it in and out of my garage to keep it working better thru the winter. Having had a mechanic for a Dad, I know better than to just let my car sit still in the unheated garage all winter without at least warming it up every so often and driving it up and down the driveway a few rimes to turn the motor over and warm up the oil etc.. My Dad was a machinist at work, but a mechanic evenings and week-ends till he retired, then he continued doing mechanic work at home.
Boy, it sure is dark out tonight. Even the snow isn`t reflecting any light, but then we don`t have street lights on my road. I did get my double motion light over the garage doors working again, but they still need a little more adjustment. I like them coming on the minute I start to step out my door and so far I have them adjusted to come on as I walk off my porch steps. The next good day, I should get out and do more adjusting. To reach them without using a ladder on the slippery driveway, I use my paint roller with the long extension handle. I can move it, but can`t tighten it, so the wind will probably jar it again before winter is over, but I don`t want others climbing the ladder now either.