Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Where did August go?  Where did the summer go?  How does time move so quickly?  Every year it seems to rush by faster and faster.  Maybe I'm just getting old.

I have had a stomach virus for the past couple of days.  It has not been fun.  But I think it is almost over now.  I think...

The one good thing of sitting around is I was able to finish knitting a scarf for myself.  I have a red coat for winter and this white scarf will go perfectly with it.  As soon as I block it I will show you a picture of it.

I took a chance and went to teach Bible study yesterday.  Again only Dottie and Debbie showed up and it again was a wonderful study.  We are almost finished with the book of Philippians.  I like this book a lot.  After the study I stopped at the post office and Rite Aid and then took Debbie home.  I had to just drop her off and leave because I started getting the stomach pains again and I knew I was going to be sick.

When I got home I ran for the bathroom and then laid on the sofa and slept the entire afternoon away.  I felt so much better when I woke up so I guess that is just what I needed.  Hopefully this will be gone by tomorrow.  I have a lot to do including going food shopping.  That is not a job for the faint of heart or sick of stomach.

Sunday on the way home from Target we stopped off at the farm truck in our neighborhood.  Joe got out and bought some corn and some tomatoes.  We haven't used the corn yet, but the tomatoes are wonderful.  The guy selling the stuff said that was the last weekend he would be there since summer was just about over and he didn't come after Labor Day.  How did it get to be almost fall?

Can you imagine it's 8 months ago today that I retired from the library.  How my life has changed.  All my doctors tell me my blood pressure and health in general is so much better.  I know for sure my stress level is down.

Tomorrow is the first of September and a day I try to celebrate.  I love September.  It is still summer for the first half of the month, but usually the heat and humidity goes down.  Although we are ending a sixth heat wave tomorrow and a seventh is due to begin in about a week.

Fall begins in September and I love the beginning of fall while it is still warm and beautiful.

And my wedding anniversary is in September.  Both Joe and I love this month which is why we chose it to get married.

So I am very excited about tomorrow and can't wait to show you all the cool stuff I have planned.  But to do that I have to get some sleep and hopefully feel better when I wake up.  So goodnight everyone and have a great last day of August.


Saturday, August 27, 2016


Late Friday morning Joe came downstairs and said to me, "I'm taking you out for lunch."  Lunch?  Really?  Yes really.  We talked about a couple of places and ended up going to one of our favorite places East Coast Wings and Grill.

Joe ordered a burger and fries and I got my usual five chicken wings and fries.  The flavor of the month was Golden Barbecue and I ordered that.  It was a honey mustard barbecue glaze and was to die for.  So good.  It was so good that I ate the whole thing and then said, "Oh, I never took a picture of it!"  Oh well.  

After we were finished we headed over to Target so Joe could get his topical punch mix that he likes so much.  I looked around the $1-$5 section while I waited for him to come back.  My back and legs are really hurting today and I didn't want to walk across the entire store to the food section.  I saw so many cute things there.

There was a lady who was putting out all the fall, Halloween and Thanksgiving merchandise.  I was trying to take pictures without looking obvious because she was sort of following me around.  Or I was following her around.  I kept running into her all the time anyway.

I love the little chalkboards.  And these ceramic animals are just adorable. 

I saw these witches socks and thought they were cute.  I tried to say I liked them really low because there were all these employees around and I didn't want them to think I was talking to myself.  I don't know if you can hear me at all.

They had these sparkly black trees and Halloween ornaments to put on them.  I liked them and wanted to get them, but I didn't.  I'm thinking about going back and getting them.  Thinking.

They had the Thanksgiving stuff out too.  I liked these little square plates, but I don't know what I would do with them.  There were three designs of pie plates -- the two you see and another blue and brown plaid.  There were several things that were blue and brown plaid.  It must be the color for the season.  On the shelf under these plates were pretty placemats.  They were light tan and had "Give Thanks" in gold.

I did get a few things though.  The big orange pumpkin is a chalkboard.  I can put it up in September and keep it up through November.  There are some more fancy folders.  And the two pumpkins look like marble, but they are made out of some composite material that is very light weight.  Again I can use them for the whole fall season.

 I'm excited to get my house clean and decorated for the fall.  Now if I can just get the energy to do it.


Friday, August 26, 2016


What a great night we had.  It was a lot of work getting things together, but finally this morning it all worked out and this evening we were off to Cairn University armed with brochures, notebooks, and a job description for any potential student interns.

Joe always likes to be early unlike his wife who tends to get places just on time or a little late.  We were early tonight.  An hour early.  And that was even stopping at church to get chairs and signs for our table.  To be honest, we left very early because we didn't know how rush hour would be.  And we did sit on I-95 for awhile at one point.

We set up our table in one of the resident halls.  It's a new building and it was VERY nice.  The chairs along the walls were very comfy.  I know because Carolyn and I sat in them knitting through most of the night.  Our table was right under an air conditioning vent and it was cold.  It was warmer sitting against the wall.  And we had time to talk.

After we were there for about 45 minutes Pastor Ralph and Carolyn came in.  It was so great that they came all the way from New York to do this with us.  It helped a lot.

We didn't know what to expect.  We prepared for about 100 students and I think there was double that amount.  I am hoping someone out of all of them would be interested in coming to help us set up a youth ministry.  Or even do some worship music.  Or just come to be a part of our congregation.  At least we got our name out there.  I had bought 100 little notebooks and pens with our names on it to hand out as a give away and they were all gone and more people were coming to the table.

Joe said he was so happy to get the chance to sit with Pastor Ralph and talk to him between people coming to the table.  He said he is enjoying getting to know him and he thinks Pastor Ralph is going to teach him a great deal of things.  He is so looking forward to working with him.  He was talking about the time he spent with him all the way home and all through dinner.

I think it was a really productive evening.  I'm so glad we decided to do this.


Thursday, August 25, 2016


My friend, Marianne, meets kids from all over the world in her job as head librarian in the Children's Department.  And you never know what these kids will say.
June 5
One of my Muslim boys approached our reference desk, leaned over and said to me, "Ms. B, can I tell you a secret?" 

"That depends on what the secret is. Sometimes, I am bound to tell it. Be very careful what you want to confide in me." 

"Ms. B, it's okay. I want you to call me by my real name, Jeffrey."

"Jeffrey? Your name isn't Jeffrey." 

"Is too!" 

"Is not! I know your real name, and it's not Jeffrey." 

"Ms. B, I want you to call me Jeffrey and not tell anybody. They won't know." 

Megan overheard this and asked, "How can Ms. B call you Jeffrey and no one will know about it? If she calls you Jeffrey, everyone will know, right?" 

"Ms. B, I want you to call me Jeffrey. It will be our secret. No one will know." 

"Why do you want to be called Jeffrey?" 

" Because I like that name. I like Jeff. Yeah, I want that name."

"What name is on your library card?" 

"I don't have a library card. My brother uses his for me. So when my mom comes in to sign the paper for the library card, she won't know I put Jeffrey down because she can't read English. Then I will be Jeffrey! Please, Ms. B, call me Jeffrey. Call me Jeff. I want you to call me Jeff." 

"Well, how about Ms. Megan, then? Is she supposed to call you Jeff, too?" 

"No, Ms. B, only you. Only you can call me Jeffrey or Jeff. It will be our secret!" 

Someone obviously wants my undivided attention!


Wednesday, August 24, 2016


How is that possible?  Didn't I just retire a couple of months ago?  Is time speeding up?  And why can't I remember what day it is?

All week I've been off.  Are any of you like that?  Today is Wednesday, right?  I think.  But I thought yesterday was Wednesday also.  And last Friday I was sure it was Saturday.  I kept saying I had such a short time to get the bulletins done for Sunday morning.  I think this is what happens when you get senile.  Ha, ha!

Well, I'm glad I have another day in the week because time is just flying by.

Yesterday I had just two people at Bible study again.  And it was great.  It seems that a smaller group has more interaction and ideas and comments seem to fly across the table.  I just feel sorry for those who are missing out.  But Genny had a doctor appointment and Donna has decided to drop out of the group.  In just a couple of weeks though, Carolyn (the new pastor's wife) will be joining the group and I know she will be an asset to us.  I'll be finishing up the book of Philippians soon (4 more lessons to go) and then for the few weeks before we quit for the winter I want to do the seven churches of Revelation.  I think that will be an interesting study.

After the study Debbie and I went to Shop Rite and I did my week's worth of grocery shopping.  I hardly ever eat beef, but decided to get a pot roast for dinner.  It was expensive and we ate the whole thing.  I am not the best cook so doing a roast is not something I do often.  But it turned out OK.  I made mashed potatoes and had some fresh corn that I also bought today.  The corn was sweet and wonderful.  We are getting into good corn season now.

I bought something from Etsy for the first time ever.  I wanted a gold tassel to go with my silver one.  So I went searching and found a beautiful one at The Southern Elephant.

 Her things are so pretty.  So if you are looking for jewelry, check her out.  It wasn't very expensive either.

Well, since it's after 2 a.m. I had better go to bed.  I have to get up to drive Joe to the VA Hospital tomorrow for another doctor's appointment.  Then I want to attack my cleaning before I leave for evening Bible Study.  See you all later.  Hope you have a good day.



Sunday, August 21, 2016


And I am loving August.  I am having the best summer in a long time.  Even with the heat, I am loving being home from work.  Retirement is the best.  And people were asking me what in the world I would do to keep myself occupied.  I don't have time to breathe!

Yesterday Joe and I both had some energy and so we attacked the house.  We got three loads of wash done.  I cut most of the grass and when my back gave out, Joe finished it for me.  I straightened up the patio.  It has more work to be done on it, but it's a whole lot better than it was.  I even got a bit done on my messy living room.  Things are moving right along.

Today Joe preached his last message in Colossians.  Since our pianist was away, there was a worship team from our sister church Grace BFC who came to help us out.  They were great!  Such nice young people.

After church we went to Target so I could get printer ink and paper.  I go through ink so quickly and it's so expensive.  I found a good deal on black ink, though.

While we were there we went to the food section.  We were going to pick up only a few things, but saw a lot of good deals.  I picked up a box of Pumpkin Spice flavored Life cereal.  According to a review I read it is supposed to taste like a pumpkin pie.  I am going to taste it tomorrow and see if that is true.

I also found my Chobani Almond Coco Loco yogurt.  And it was cheaper than it was at Shop Rite so I was happy.  I gave a container to Joe yesterday and he loved it.  But he can't eat too much because it has a lot of sugar from the chocolate and he's diabetic.

We also got some bacon wrapped herbed chicken breasts for dinner.  I made them with some  roasted potatoes and peas.  They were really good, but I splurged on them so we won't be having them very often.  They were expensive.  I just wanted something different.

 So another busy week ahead.  Hopefully more yard work tomorrow, Bible study Tuesday, VA Hospital and evening Bible study on Wednesday, going to Cairn University to recruit students to help with the youth ministry on Thursday.  Busy, busy.  And I love it.

Here's another one of my necklaces.  I don't wear it very often because it's bulky and heavy.  But I like it.  I actually got it at a flea market a few years ago.

And now it's time to go to bed so I can get up and busy tomorrow.  Have a good one everyone.


Saturday, August 20, 2016


Notice it says "cooler" not "cold".  I am not ready for cold weather, but I could use it just a mite cooler.  It only got up to 89*F today so the heat wave is broken.  But it's going up in the 90s for the next two days and then the high 80s.  At least it's better than it has been.

I went back to my knitting a couple of days ago.  I had to stop about a month ago because the arthritis in my hands and arms got too bad for me to handle the needles.  When I am in severe pain and have to take pills to be able to sleep, the knitting is not worth it.  But I am better now and will try to finish up before the next attack happens.  I never know when that will be.

I'm hoping that the third time's the charm.  I was doing it with thicker cotton yarn and larger needles.  It was coming along good and then I lost count.  I started messing up and the side started waving in and out instead of being straight.  So I ripped that out, bought new yarn and needles and started over.

The second shawl was made with smaller needles and finer yarn.  I was doing good, but had a hard time seeing the stitches because the yarn was so fine.  Then the arthritis happened.  When I went back to it, I had no idea what row I was on or what I was doing.  So I ripped it all out and started over.

Now I am using a little thicker yarn but the same small needles.  It is something I had and I have to get rid of some of the yarn I have in the house.  I have so much!  This time it is coming along beautifully.  I have still made some mistakes.  Some I was able to correct, some I ripped out rows to get to it to correct it.  But most I just fixed in the next row as best as I could.  I took some pictures of it so you can see.  Last night I finished part 2 of the 5 parts to this shawl.  It is the 2016 mystery shawl where you get part of the pattern each week for 5 weeks with no pictures so you have no idea what you are knitting until it's finished.  Since it was finished the end of June it now has a name -- Thistle Rambles.

I will show you each step as I finish it.  It should be interesting to see how it changes each time.

A side note here.  My brother Larry is celebrating an anniversary on his blog.  Stop on over to and wish him well.  I know he would appreciate it.

Until later...


Friday, August 19, 2016


June 5
More boys want to volunteer, some of them our miscreants. I have a very thorough screening process. I give the children an application which they must fill out and get signed by parents. On the top of the application I write that they must call for an appointment for an interview with me and I write our phone number. I tell them they can not call me the same day, they must wait at least 2 days before they call me. If they do not follow the directions I have given, I disqualify them from the volunteer acceptance process. 

Today, Jamal wanted to volunteer and get the application. I began writing my instructions on the top of the application. His brother Ahmed, who was waiting for HIS interview today (he's the one who gets into fights), proudly told his older brother what was going to happen. "See, Ms. B is going to give you a very special private time for a meeting with her, but you will have to call to arrange it. She is writing down everything in her very special handwriting: Cursive! It is very important so she uses her important handwriting, Cursive! See? Look at Ms. B's special beautiful handwriting! I wish I could write Cursive!" 

Of course, all the children crowded around to see Cursive!


Thursday, August 18, 2016


I feel as if time is just rushing by.  Yesterday I wanted to get so much done and I just ran from one thing to another all day.  Almost nothing got done on my list.

It began with waking up with the phone ringing and one of the guys at church needed us to go over there and give him a key to get into one of the buildings.  So we got up and dressed and went over there.  We were there for about an hour and then headed over to 7-11 to get breakfast sandwiches.

I went back to sleep after breakfast and woke up to do a few things around the house and then Joe wanted to go to the post office to pick up a package.  So off we went.

We came back and I did a little bit more before having to make an early dinner to get to Bible Study on time.  I still had to shower and change my clothes so we didn't quite make it.  We were two minutes late and the other two people who attended were sitting on the front steps waiting for us.

After the Study we came home and Joe went right to bed and fell asleep almost immediately.  My left foot and ankle are swollen so much and so painful.  So I took some pain killers, turned on the Olympics, and fell right to sleep again.  I've just woken up.  My list of 20 things to do has just 5 things crossed off of it.  Some days I just crash and I guess this was my day.

I have been very bad about my diet and I think that is one reason my foot is so swollen.  I've been eating these wonderful Prime Rib flavored chips from 7-11 and drinking iced tea.  Bad for me!  I have got to get back on track today.  And I was doing so well too.  I just have not been able to get back where I belong since vacation.  It seems to be just running all the time since then.

I was going to meet Genny at church today and clean, but when Joe and I were over there yesterday, Jim was there cleaning.  So I can call her later and tell her we don't need to do that.  Maybe I can clean my own house instead.  It's still bad, but I'm making progress.

And best of all when I was cleaning yesterday (the little time I did) I found my camera!  You know I did a little happy dance.  It is now safely in the case and in my purse where I can find it.  I am a happy camper.  It was, of all things, under a cushion on the sofa.  How did it get there?  I have no idea!

I thought I would show you another favorite piece of jewelry I have.  Joe gave me this pretty lavender heart for Christmas a couple of years ago.  I wear it a lot because I really like it.

So since it is now almost 2 a.m., I am going to get myself together and go back to sleep.  Tomorrow is another day and I hope to get back on track with everything.

Until later...



Tuesday, August 16, 2016




 And Day 8 of the heat wave here in Philly.  No rain and no rain in sight.  We were supposed to get a severe storm tonight, but it passed us by.  We need the rain.  The heat wave is supposed to last until next Monday when it will drop into the 80s and best of all the humidity will end.

Sad news.  I lost my camera.  I have been looking for it for two days now.  I am so lost without it.  I know it is in the living room somewhere because I took a picture of my necklace on Sunday to show you.  That's the last I remember having it and I have no idea where I laid it.  I thought I put it back into its case and put it in my purse, but the case is empty.  *sigh*  I will keep looking.  I need my camera!

So since I have no new pictures to show you, I thought I would give you two more from the family reunion.  Here I am with my sisters.

(left to right) Audrey, Angela, Elaine and me.  We are in age order with Audrey being the youngest and me being the oldest.
 And thanks to Elaine, here are my brothers.

(left to right) Ronald, Joe, Henry.  Henry is the oldest and Joe the youngest.  Only my brother Michael is missing.  He comes in age between Henry and Ronald.
Joe (my husband, not my brother) and I had dinner tonight with the new pastor and his wife.  They are such nice people and I am happy I am getting to know them better.

Well, back to the search for the camera.  Oh little camera, come out wherever you are!


Sunday, August 14, 2016


It was hot today.  It got up to 103*F (39.4*C).  And that was the air temperature.  Add in the humidity and it was over 110*F (43.3*C).  I wasn't going to go to the reunion.  But my cousin posted on facebook asking everyone to please come if only for an hour.  So I decided to go.  Originally they were going to meet from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. but because of the heat shortened it to 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Joe and I left around 11:30 a.m. and got stuck in traffic on I-95. We turned on the news station on the radio and found that there was a military funeral procession and that was what the holdup was.  Once we got past that exit, it began to move again.  But it still took us to after 1 p.m. to get there.

And what a time we had finding the place.  We went into the wrong entrance to the State Park and ended up driving on footpaths.  We stopped and asked a man how to get to the pavilion and he had no idea what we were talking about.

Fortunately my sister called at that point and told us we were on the wrong road.  Joe punched the address she gave us into the GPS and we took off again.  We found the park, but not the picnic grounds.  We drove around and found ourselves out on the highway again.  I drove a bit, found a place to make a U-turn and went back to the park.  But it was a different entrance and we were totally lost.

We finally found the park office and pulled into the parking lot there.  Joe went to see if he could find information of how to get where we wanted to be, but the office was closed.  I called my sister again and she came to get us.  She said it was a relief to get into an air conditioned car for some escape from the heat.

While we were waiting for her I got out of the car and took some pictures of the grounds.  It was so pretty.

And of course I got a picture of Joe.

We finally got there and went over to the picnic tables.  Several of my cousins came up to me and gave me hugs.  Elaine was there but none of my other siblings.  They came very late.  My sister Angela got a late start and she was the one driving.

Elaine and I were just going to the ladies room when they drove up.  My sweet niece Stephanie wanted to go too, so we headed over to the building.  Going down to it was treacherous for me, but climbing the hill to get back....  Well, let's just say I'm not in shape.  REALLY not in shape.  Whew!

It was so great to see all my brothers and sisters again.  The last time we were all together was my dad's funeral 17 years ago.  And Joe had never met some of them.

Me and my niece Stephanie (my sister Audrey's daughter).

My sisters Angela and Elaine.

My sister Angela and her husband Ray.

My sisters Audrey and Elaine.

My brother Henry.

Henry and Elaine.

My brother Ronald and Joe.

Ronald, Angela and Elaine.

My brother's girlfriend Lena, Henry and Ronald.

Ronald, Henry's girlfriend Lena and Elaine.

Elaine and Joe

Stephanie, Audrey and Elaine

My brother Joe and Stephanie

My dad's sister, Aunt Sis, and Elaine.

My nephew Chris (my sister Angela's son).  He's my only nephew.  All the other kids of his generation are girls.

A Good Humor truck came around and Audrey flagged it down.  A lot of people were buying ice cream and water ice.  Especially the kids.  Elaine too.

Elaine and Joe

Elaine, Joe and me.  My cousin's daughter has her back to the camera.
 I know this is kind of confusing but my brother Joe is not to be confused with my husband Joe.  It was kind of confusing to me!

A lot of my cousins were there.

My cousin Debbie and her husband Brian.  Debbie and I are a few months apart in age and grew up together.

My cousin Eddie and Joe

Elaine is pointing me out to Aunt Sis.  My cousin Chuck is beside her.

My cousin Butch next to his sister Debbie.

My cousin Eddie and his sweet daughter LeeAnn.
I had no idea who a lot of the people there were.  I asked my brother Henry.  He didn't know either.  "But we're related to them somehow," he said.  I said, "Can you imagine all of these people came from our grandparents?"  He replied, "They didn't go out much."  Ha, ha.

We were in a nice pavilion and if it hadn't been so hot, it would have been nice.

At one point Joe gave me his hat.  He said I looked better in it than he did and he gave it to me.  It is cuter on me than him.  *wink*

Finally around 4 p.m. we had had it.  It was just too hot and I was starting to feel sick.  So we headed home.  Elaine left an hour later and she said just about everyone was heading out.

That's our car back there and we were so happy to crank up the air conditioning as we headed home.

We went home a different way and it took a lot less time.  I was so glad that I had gone.  It was a fun time.