Monday, November 30, 2015


My friend, Marianne, is a great storyteller.  Just ask the kids in her Children's Department at the library.

April 18
Ahmed and Theresa asked me today if I was going to tell a story. Theresa clapped her hands and asked if it would be before she had to go home. Ahmed responded with, "Yes! I love your stories. It's like you are from there, it's like you live in them. The Halloween one, I didn't expect the ending and your voice scared me, you know when you turned out the light and used the flashlight and screamed at the end. I kept hearing that scream in my head all night and I couldn't sleep!

I answered," Well, Ahmed, you wanted to be scared. I'm sorry you couldn't sleep. I'm sorry you kept hearing my voice in your head." 

"I'm not, Ms. B, I loved it! You know what you should do? You should go all over, to all the places kids are, and just tell stories, all the stories in your head, all the stories in your special books. They would love it. Just tell stories." 

Theresa who overheard and was not to be outdone, said very conspiratorially, "Yes,. Ms. B, that's what you should do, but just make sure I'm always there!" 

Yes, I have my following. I have become The Pied Piper!


Sunday, November 29, 2015


Can you believe it is the first day of Advent already?  We had a really nice church service today.  So many people showed up.  Our newly elected Elder, Dr. Dave Allen, gave the message and it was top-notch.  So good to have a real pastor in the pulpit again.  However, my camera stopped recording during his message, so I have to post it in two parts unless I can figure out how to put it together.  I have to investigate that.

The church looked beautiful and Joe, Genny and I were told how nice it was and what good work we did.  That was unnecessary, but nice.

Joe and Genny lit the Advent candle this morning and gave the reading.  It's the first time in years that we did this and I'm glad we did.  It was very pretty and meaningful.

There was an Elders meeting after the service which Joe was invited to attend.  So I hung out with Dr. Allen's wife, Donna.  What a sweetheart!  I loved getting to know her.  We are the same age and like a lot of the same things.  We even read the same authors.  It's always nice to make a new friend.  I'm so glad that they will be back in a few weeks and I can spend time with her again.

Not much else going on today.  Joe is speaking for the next few weeks so we are trying to get some messages together.  He chooses what he wants to speak on and I type it up and print it out.  Then he studies it during the week.  It's been easy with the holiday season to find Thanksgiving and Advent topics.  I am hoping we have a permanent pastor by the time the holidays are over.

My movie today was "Tangled" (2011).  I told you I'm a sucker for animation.  I had seen it before, but had forgotten most of it.  It was a nice movie.

dream, lights, rapunzel, tangled

 And so now it is time for bed.  I have a big week ahead of me -- undecorating fall and decorating for Christmas.  And cleaning as I go.

32 days to retirement 

Saturday, November 28, 2015


I woke up around 7 a.m. this morning to a beautiful sunrise.  I grabbed my camera because I just had to get a shot of it.

I made out my to-do list for the day and promptly fell asleep for a couple of hours.  I woke up with the phone ringing and my friend, Genny, telling me she and her husband and daughter were at church and ready to decorate for tomorrow.  I was NOT ready.  I told her I'd be there in 1/2 hour -- and I was.  I got showered, dressed and out the door.  But I didn't have time to eat.  And to tell the truth, I didn't even notice until hours later.

Joe, Genny, Janae and I worked our little tails off getting everything done.  But now the church looks beautiful for tomorrow.

This is the welcome table which is the first thing you see when you enter the sanctuary.

We found poinsettias and wreaths to put in the windows.

I put tablecloths and candles on the tables for our fellowship time.

Here is Janae with the tree.  Her dad, Joe, and she did a great job putting it up and decorating it.  It looks beautiful with the gold ornaments and gold lights.

The communion table with a nativity scene, the Bible, and the advent wreath.  I still need to put a white candle in the middle.  I have the candle, just not a holder.  I'll go to Dollar Tree this week and get something.
 I had to leave after about an hour and a half to take Pumpkin to the vet to get his first shots.  I felt bad leaving the clean up to them, but they said it was OK.  They had to leave too because they had a doctor appointment.

On the way home I got another shot of the sky.  It looked like a watercolor.

As you can see it really clouded up.

The trees in the Arsenal really look like November now.  No pretty October colors any more

On the way downtown I was commenting how beautiful the skyline was.  Joe took my camera and got a shot of it.  It wasn't the particular shot I was going for, but it is a beautiful picture nonetheless.

We got down there and got Pumpkin a checkup and his first shots.  It didn't faze him at all.  The vet has three cats that live there.  They are the biggest cats I have ever seen.  I got a couple of pictures of them.  They are HUGE.

We stopped at Sonic on the way home and got something to eat.  Then went home.  I had to run to Rite Aid so I did that right away.  While I was there I saw the cutest holiday socks.  I had to get some.  Aren't they great?  I think I'm going to go back and get some more.  They had so many different patterns.

I had so much more to do today but I fell asleep.  But I did a lot.  

Yesterday's movie was "Help For the Holidays" (2012).  I had seen it before and it's one of my favorites.

Today it was "Mars Needs Moms" (2011).  I had never seen it before.  I thought it was cute but not wonderful.  I did love the animation though.  I'm a sucker for anything animated.

And with that, folks, I have to end and get to bed.  I won't be able to get up for church otherwise.  Have a good night, everyone.

33 days to retirement 

Friday, November 27, 2015


April 16

Just got back from my ultrasound (an experience!).  A man in the radiology waiting area who had been fasting since 9 last night began talking to me about food.  The Chew was on.  There was some kind of glop made with goat cheese, and he had plenty to say about it, none of it good.  Then he proceeded to tell me of the tuna sandwich he had planned to make when he got home, but after seeing the goat cheese mess, decided against it. 

Then, "You look like you cook.  Do you?"  Does my face say I cook?  Anyway, I told him I do, and then followed a discussion about the goat cheese.  I told him it is very good and better for one's health than other cheese.  He asked me if I would eat the mess we just saw. I told him probably not, but I would have to see it in person. 

When I came out from my test, he was still there.  He saw me and said his tuna sandwich was looking good about then. I always have a book. Today, I didn't. 


Thursday, November 26, 2015


Happy Thanksgiving everyone.  Hope your day was wonderful.  I had a nice relaxing day at home.  I slept late and even took two naps during the day.  I just couldn't seem to stay awake and I'm ready to sleep again.  So I didn't get any cleaning done.  I did, however, make a great meal.

It was a beautiful day -- sunny and around 70*F.

 This time last year the apartment house in the back looked like this:

Look at it today!

We know there is someone living on the second floor but are not sure about the other two floors.

I decorated the back door.  That will be changing soon to Christmas.

 I found this cute little kitchen towel.

One thing I'm thankful for is my dishwasher.  For many years I had to do dishes by hand.  I did two loads of dishes today and there's another load waiting in the sink.

I brined the chicken.  I hadn't done that before but it worked out really well and I will do it again.

I made two pumpkin pies -- a custard one for me and a spicy one for Joe.  Mine was good, but I had never done the spicy one and it didn't really turn out all that well.  I will make another one using a different recipe for Joe for Christmas.

I know most people eat in the early afternoon, but we didn't eat until about 6:30 p.m.  The sun was just setting.

The chicken was roasting, the dressing was baking, the asparagus was boiling, the gravy was heating and the potatoes were being whipped.

Finally it was all ready to eat.

Everything was wonderful.  I hadn't made stuffing from scratch in about 20 years and wasn't sure I remembered how.  But it turned out great!  I added celery, onion, mushrooms and craisins.  I'm glad there is some left because I could eat it every day.

My movie today was "'Tis the Season for Love" (2015).  Another good one.  I didn't realize how many good Christmas movies are out there.  And there are so many more I want to watch!

It has been a long day and I am so tired.  Making dinner took everything out of me.  I'm glad I didn't have to drive anywhere because I don't think I could have made it.  My eyes are closing and I have to go.  Work tomorrow but at least I have the weekend off.

35 days to retirement

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


It's so hard to give thanks in ALL things, yet this is just what God calls us to do.  So I am going to give some thanks here.

I am thankful for my husband, my family, my friends, my home, my job, my church and my church family.

I am thankful for love -- both God's and my family and friends.  How sad that some people have no one to love them.

I am thankful for a roof over my head, clothes on my back and food in my stomach.  Millions of people do not have these three basic things.

I am thankful that even though my health is not the best, I have a doctor who discovered what was wrong with me and is working with me to make me well.

I am thankful for my recovery from cancer and for God bringing me through so many operations and medical procedures.  A lot of the time I just wanted to give up, but He brought me through them all.

I am thankful for tears as well as laughter.  We wouldn't appreciate the good without the sad.

I could go on and on and on but this post would never end.  So I will just stop here.

We had a short day at work today.  However in order to get out early we had to start work early.  I woke up 15 minutes before I was supposed to be at work, screamed, threw clothes on and ran out the door.  I didn't even stop to eat or feed the outside cats.  I was only 10 minutes late and several others came in the same time I did.

It was a slow day as I thought it would be.  But 20 minutes before we closed people were coming in to use the computers.  They were upset when we told them it was too late.

We left at 2 p.m. and Diane and I went to Shop Rite to finish up our shopping.  Well, she finished up and went home.  I did the whole two weeks shopping.  It took me 1 1/2 hours but I got just about everything.  I couldn't find straws or lemon juice, but I know I can get them at Rite Aid during the week.  And I saved $36 in coupons.  Whoo hoo!

Joe helped me unpack the car and put the food away when I got home.  Since I hadn't had breakfast or lunch I was starving by now.  It was around 4 p.m. and I made us each a hamburger and put some potato chips on the plate.

After we ate, I was so exhausted that I laid down on the sofa and went sound asleep.  I was woken up around 6 p.m. by the phone ringing.  A woman wanted to take a survey.  I'm afraid I was a little rude to her.  I thought it was 6 a.m. and asked her what she was doing calling so early and did she always wake people up out of a sound sleep.  She said she'd call later and hung up.  Then I realized it was evening.

Since we ate such a late lunch we had a late dinner.  I made breaded flounder filet and mixed vegetables.  Joe had a pumpkin bar for dessert, but I am saving mine for breakfast.

Tomorrow is the big day.  I was invited to my sister's house, but I'm just not up to it.  I plan to sleep a lot, eat when I want to, watch the parade on TV and just generally relax.  After this weekend it's full swing into Christmas and we all know there's no relaxing there!

My movie today was "Naughty or Nice" (2012).  This is another movie that I saw the middle of but neither the beginning nor the end.  It was nice to see the whole thing.  The main character, Krissy Kringle, is confused with Santa Claus and receives his mail including his Naughty or Nice list.  She figures out how to use the book and finds out all sorts of things about the people around her.  It's what she does with the information that creates the story.  It's really cute.

Such a lot of things to do tomorrow:  pies, chicken (not turkey, yuck!), clean the kitchen, try to make a dent in the living room, and napping.  Oh the joy of being able to take an afternoon nap.

Hope you all have a great day tomorrow.

36 days to retirement 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


This saying is so true.  I found it especially so today.  I had to go to the main branch of the library to choose my health insurance.  I had put it off thinking I was leaving the beginning of December.  Now I had one day to get everything done.

I started out and almost immediately was stuck in traffic that was worse than anything I had seen in a long time.  I was literally just sitting there.  I had left in plenty of time but it got later and later.  I finally called work and told them I would be very late.

What was the problem?  A state trooper was shot on the Vine Street expressway.  Lots of streets were closed as the police were chasing four suspects.  It ended with a fiery crash on Vine Street.   I have never seen so many policemen.  The link to the story is  here.

Then I went around the block twice before I found parking.  I went to the kiosk to pay and I couldn't figure out how to use it.  I ended up paying $7.50 to park for 3 hours rather than the 30 minutes I was actually there.  But that's done now.

The way back to work was hard too.  In all I must have spent around an hour just sitting in traffic.

So much is going on in the world right now.  Shooting a policeman, bombing, suicide jackets.  The world is going crazy!

My movie today was "Hats Off to Christmas" (2013).  It was cute even though it was so predictable.  I'm glad to be back to my Christmas movies.

 I felt so sick to my stomach when I got home at 8:30 tonight.  I just laid down and went to sleep instead of making dinner.  Joe had a really bad headache so he went to sleep too.  I never did make dinner.  I woke up a couple of hours later and made myself a baked potato so that I could have something in my stomach to take my medicine.  I'm really tired so I am going to end this and get some more sleep.  Tomorrow we go in to work early (8:45) but we get out early too.  I'm looking forward to that.

37 days to retirement 

Monday, November 23, 2015


And it is coming fast.  I am so thankful that I get out of work early on Wednesday or I would never make it.  I am so not ready.

I thought I would take today and catch up on some things that have been going on.

Last Tuesday it was Boss' birthday.  I got everyone organized and we threw him a little party.  I got him a cake, Bob got beverages, and Diane and Doug brought in snacks:  chips and dip, cookies, etc.  He wasn't surprised, but he did enjoy it.

You can see our new part-timer, Matt, in the background.  He works two days a week and it seems like every time we have a party, it is Matt's day to work.  It's become a joke at work.  "Oh look, Matt is here.  Let's have a party!"  Ha, ha!

Today there were six library assistants in.  We didn't have enough work to keep us all busy.  We even ran out of chairs in the workroom.  A lot of the time we were scrambling trying to find something to do and in the end just ended up sitting there talking.

Denise, another of our part-timers, brought in a chocolate cheesecake that she had made.  Oh my it was good!!!  But since I am lactose intolerant I am paying for it tonight.  No one wanted to be the first one to take a piece.  Finally I gave in and cut a tiny piece for myself.  Then everyone else starting taking a piece.  It's about half gone and in the fridge for tomorrow or Wednesday.  

The cats are still fighting although at times I catch them sleeping together.  It is so stressful.  I just want the fighting to stop.  I end up yelling and then crying.  And then Pumpkin comes over and cuddles up to me and purrs or Snowy comes for pets and cuddles.  These cats are driving me crazy.

My latest Halloween to New Year's movies have been:
Saturday:  Nanny McPhee (2005).  I knew it was popular but had never seen it nor read the book.  Oh... my... goodness!  It was FABULOUS!!  I was so enthralled with it.  I'm only sad that I can't watch it again for the first time.

On Sunday I watched "Nanny McPhee Returns" (2010).  It also was a great movie although I liked the first one better.  I loved the surprise ending though.  I thought that was really cool.

Today it was "A Boy Named Charlie Brown" (1969).  Although I am a huge Peanuts fan, I wasn't impressed with this movie.  Maybe it was because everything was so predictable.  The best part was the Spelling Bee but other than that, everything could have been skipped over.

 It's back to Christmas movies tomorrow.

And it's off to bed for me now.  Until later...

38 days to retirement