Wednesday, April 29, 2020


Hello, friends!  I hope that you are all doing well.  For two days I had no headache.  Wonderful!  Then today it came back.  But not nearly as bad as before.  I was able to take a nap and sleep it off.  What a relief it is to not have a headache after 10 days of it.

Yesterday I was feeling pretty good, the weather was wonderful, and I decided to get the grass cut.  The yard was a mess!

I started cutting with my weed whacker and then saw a bee.  Then another and another.  How wonderful!  I haven't seen bees in ages.  So I stopped cutting and sat down and watched them.  Such wonderful little creatures.  I tried to take photos of them, but they were too fast for me.  I'd no sooner focus on one and it would take off for another place.  I saw a couple of wasps too but we won't talk about them.  I am not a fan of wasps.  We have had our run ins with them in the past.

After awhile things seemed to settle down and I went on with my cutting.  There were two kinds of flowers covering my lawn.  These sort of light purple ones.

And then some more blue-purple ones.

I hated to cut them down but they will grow back.  And the yard needed a cut.  I will make sure I plant more flowers for the bees.

I took this short video to show you the yard and let you hear the sounds of spring here in northeast Philly.

But another reason I was outside was to see a flyover by the Navy Thunder and the Air Force Blue Angels.  They were flying over New York, Philly and New Jersey as a salute to all those fighting the COVID-9 virus and those taking care of them.  What a thrilling site.  The aircraft went right over my house!

I heard some kids yelling, "There they are!" and looked up just in time to see them.  It was so thrilling!  It was the first thing I've looked forward to in weeks.

I also got some pictures from our local news station.  I thought you would enjoy seeing them.

Here they are flying past the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.

And flying by the statue of William Penn on top of City Hall.

The Navy F-16 Thunderbirds.

Over the Delaware River.

The Air Force F-18 Blue Angels.

Flying over center city.

It was a wonderful thing for them to do.  And so exciting to see them.  It reminded me of the years I spent working for Naval Air.

And so another day of the stay at home is in the books.  We are half-way through the seventh week with no end in sight.  I have a feeling that when we finally do reopen it will be a different world.

Hope you have a good evening.


Friday, April 24, 2020


It's the end of another week.  The sixth one in our shut-down.  Our governor says that because Philly and the surrounding counties have the most cases of COVID-19 that we will be the last in the state to open.  Maybe as late as September.  I hope it will be earlier since I would like to celebrate my sister's birthday with her in July and Joe and I want to get at least one day down the shore.

I haven't posted my pastor's message from last Sunday, so I will put it here.  I didn't get to church because I wasn't feeling well, so Pastor's wife, Carolyn, filmed it.

My headaches have continued.  Yesterday it began at 9:00 a.m. and lasted until 10:00 p.m.  Some parts of the day are worse than others.  I am nauseous with it and feel as if my head is splitting in half.  Since the doctor's office was closed, I decided to call the pharmacy.  The pharmacist said it did not sound like a reaction to the new medication and thinks I came off of the old one too quickly.  In other words, I am having withdrawal symptoms.  Oh my!  I called my doctor this morning and left a message but she hasn't called back.  The headache was somewhat better today, but still there.  And still feeling too sick to eat.  (Maybe I will lose the weight I gained by staying home!)  It finally let up around 7:00 p.m. and I was able to make and eat dinner.  The first decent meal I made Joe this week.  But now I know I will have another headache tomorrow.  Hopefully each day will get less until I am free of them for good.  The new medication is doing a good job of bringing down my blood pressure, but at what a cost!

I have been watching one episode a day of "Call the Midwife" and "When Calls the Heart" on Netflix.  Even though I've seen them all before, I enjoy them as if it was the first time.  I also watch the original "Star Trek" but not every day. I'm such a fan that some of the episodes I can say the line before they do.  I have the scripts memorized.

I also started reading the book of Genesis in the Bible.  Yesterday I was reading about Noah.  I thought to myself that he and his family were in the ultimate shut-down.  And they were locked into the ark for over a year!  I sure hope our shelter in place doesn't last that long.

I have been doing a lot of knitting and crocheting.  I hope to do a post about that next week.  I ordered new knitting needles and some yarn from Amazon.  It is supposed to show up on Sunday and then I will start yet another new project.  I have three going on now.

So what have you been doing to pass the time?  How locked down are you?  Pretty much everything is closed here.

Another thing I did yesterday was cut my hair.  Short.  Very short.  It was half-way down my back and way past my shoulders in the front.  It kept getting in my eyes, my mouth, etc. and bothering me.  And then when the headaches began, the weight of my hair made me feel worse.  So I began with a little bit.  Then more.  And more.  I ended up really butchering it.  I have cut my hair before and it looked fine.  This time not so much.  I do not have a picture of me because I look awful.  I figure in about three or four weeks I will look much better.  My hair grows fast so by the end of the year it will be where I wanted it when I began to cut it.  Yes, about six to nine months to grow back.  But the good thing is hair does grow.

And now that I've rambled on about a lot of things and it is getting late, I'm going to end.  I want to get up fairly early tomorrow and get some things done before the headache starts.  One thing I must do is cut the grass.  Or should I say violets since that is what is growing out there.  Maybe I will have enough energy to work some on the patio too.

Have a good evening everyone.


Wednesday, April 22, 2020


Hello, friends!  I hope you are all doing well.  I have been fighting a migraine for the past few days.  One of the worst I have had for several years.  I called my sister the pharmacy tech and asked her what to do.  She suggested items I did not have in the house.  But... my next-door neighbor said she had some Excedrin Migraine medicine and put some in a sandwich bag between my doors for me.  One of them knocked it out of me in about 90 minutes.  What a relief.  I still have a headache each day but not that bad of one.  I don't know if it is from allergies, high blood pressure or the new medication I am taking.  It might even be from my eyes since I am having difficulty with my glasses.  I accidentally bent the frames.  Or my hair falling in my face all the time.  I was going to get my hair cut right before Easter.  Well, you see where that went.  I am thinking about taking a pair of scissors and cutting it myself.  I've done it in the past.

Having a headache, and before that being on medication that made me sleep all the time, I haven't been reading all that much.  And I really haven't had the time to read either.  But I finally finished one book.

Years ago I belonged to a Christmas Around the World book club from World Book Encyclopedia.  For about 25 years I received a book each fall telling about Christmas in a different country.  I still have all of them and when I want a "feel good" book I will pull one of them off of the shelf and read it.  Is there a better time to want to read a feel good book?  So the one I chose to read was "Christmas in Scandinavia" from 1976.

You can see the beautiful woodcut designs on the front cover.  They are scattered throughout the book also.

The book begins by saying "Winter in Scandinavia is a gloomy time of darkness and piercing cold.  Lakes and streams freeze solid, snow lies heavy on blue-black firs and silver birches, and drifts high against houses.  Icicles hang in thick fringes from the eaves, and a warm, brightly lit home offers a welcome haven."  Doesn't that just paint a beautiful picture in your mind?

At the end of this first chapter it says, "The coming of the Christmas season today with its lights, decorations, and traditional foods brings a much needed respite from the rigors of winter and the fervent longing for spring.  A feeling of gaiety, it is a time of well-deserved leisure and fun, of feasting, parties, music and dancing, of visiting friends and relatives -- illuminated by glowing candles, firelight reflecting on polished copper and pewter, and fresh flowers -- contrasting sharply with the menacing darkness outside."

And it goes on just as beautifully throughout the book.  The chapters are:
Lighting up the dark
Lucia's day
The pre-Christmas whirl -- Shops, markets, and fairs; The Danish Christmas plates; The Christmas Seal tradition
The Christmas tree
The goblins of Christmas -- Christmas is for the birds!
From candles to bonfires
For a joyous Scandinavian Christmas...

And what beautiful photos it has.

The Christmas goat is a popular symbol of the season.  Here is a picture of one from a Christmas craft fair.

St. Lucia's Day opens the Christmas season.  Here's a cute little Lucia girl bringing breakfast of tea and Lucia buns to her parents.

At the end of the book is a section with things to make, things to eat, and Carols to sing.  Again beautiful woodcuts at the top of these pages.

Each book also comes with an Advent Calendar and six recipe cards.

I have three other books I am in the middle of.  If only I had time to read.  I am headed to the cardiologist today for my regular checkup.  I have to wear a mask, but otherwise everything is the same.  I know I will have to wait, so this might be the perfect time to pull out one of those books and get some reading in.  If my headache isn't too bad, that is.

And with that I have to leave and get myself ready to go.  I hope you all have a great day.

Until later...


Saturday, April 18, 2020


Hello, friends.  How has your Saturday been?  Not much going on here.  I actually spent a great deal of time going through my knitting patterns and trying to decide what to make to use up some of this yarn I have.  I ended up with patterns for two summer tops.  I also ordered new knitting needles in the sizes I needed, and a cake of yarn.  They are coming on the 26th so I am holding off starting these patterns until I get them.  Can't wait to show you the yarn!

It is not as if I have nothing else to do.  I am still working on my temperature blanket which is coming along beautifully.  I really love it this year.  I am also making a stole which is so pretty.  I will be showing you pictures soon.

But the pictures I want to show you today are from August 1985.  So long ago.  It is from a trip I took to the Philadelphia Zoo.  This is before I had a car.  I used to hop onto two buses and be there in about an hour.  I did it quite a bit because I love the Zoo.  But these days, the neighborhood has become changed and the fee for parking and the entrance to the Zoo is so expensive.  I haven't been there in years.

Let me show you these old photos.  I found so many old photos and I will be showing them to you now and then.  It is so interesting to look back on things.

Can you see the peacocks by the fence?

Such a lovely lake they have.

Here is an otter.

Another picture of the otter.

Camels.  They are saddled because you can ride on them.

My favorite animal is the polar bear.  They are in an enclosure that has windows below the water where you can watch them swim.

Another shot of the polar bear.


A wolf.

Here's a rhinoceros.

Giraffes.  It's hard to see, but they are there.

Here are some crocodiles.

A Galapagos tortoise.  This is always a popular spot at the Zoo.

And finally a llama.

I have a hard time believing these were taken 35 years ago.  Really?  And they turned out so much better when I made a digital copy of them than the originals are.

There were a few other photos too that I didn't put up.  My friend Debbie was with me that day.  I have a picture of her that I took and a picture of me that she took.  They will never see the light of day.  I will say, though, that at 31 years old we were both much thinner than we are now.

Hope you enjoyed your trip through the Zoo.  Maybe you can visit in person sometime.  It's much different these days, but still a wonderful place to go.


Thursday, April 16, 2020


Hello, friends!  The sun is shining although it is only 42*F (5.5*C) outside.  The weather report just said it will go down near freezing tonight.  This is April weather?  But at least it can't last forever.  Spring is here and summer won't be that far behind.

My yard looks springlike at least.  I went outside yesterday and took some pictures for you.  The only thing I did not get was the pink hyacinths.  They bloomed, were beautiful, and then went away.

I keep saying I have to get out there and cut the grass.  But I really have no grass.  The yard is covered with wild violets.  Very pretty.  But it is getting so high.  The weather this week is going to be cold, so I am waiting until next week to bring out the weed wacker.

The tulips were so pretty, but that terrible windstorm we had the other day left them battered.  They are still beautiful to me, though.

Tulips are my favorite flower.  I love reading about how in Holland at one time people would give a fortune to purchase a single bulb.  Tulip fever it was called.

There are a few grape hyacinths sprinkled here and there around the yard.  They are a much deeper purple than in this picture.  Try as I might, I could not get them to photograph in their true color.

But what I am most excited about is for the first time my lilac bush has flowers!  My sister gave me a plant a few years ago.  It was just a stick and I had no hope of it living.  In fact, there were four and three of them died.  But this one held on.  And now look at it.

I am beyond thrilled with the four flowers that it has.  And I saw buds for other blooms coming.  I love lilacs.  Growing up my grandmother had a huge bush in the yard.  She would cut large bouquets of this wonderful smelling flower to bring into the house.  Spring would always smell of lilacs.  Such wonderful memories.  I can't wait to recreate them.

Hope you enjoyed this view of springtime and that it gave you a smile.  I will be bringing you more garden pictures as we go along and more plants come into bloom.  What a wonderful time of year.