Thursday, August 27, 2020


 Hello, friends.  How was your day?  This day went so quickly.  I ran some errands and got nothing done around the house.  But that's the way it goes sometimes.  I'll just plunge on again tomorrow.

I had to run to the bank and of course it is all drive through these days.  I was surprised to see that I was the only one in line.  It didn't make much difference though because I had to sit in line for 5 minutes before I was even acknowledged.  Then the girl who came on the screen asked if I had a deposit slip.  Uh... yeah.  Everything was ready for her.  She said she would send the canister to me.  I had to wait another 5 minutes until the door opened for me to retrieve it.  I sent it back and then waited.  And waited.  And waited.  Finally it came back and I took the receipts and left.  When I got home, I realized there was a receipt missing.  Obviously this girl did not know what she was doing.

I mentioned last time that I would tell you about going to see the new doctor.  My appointment was at 9:30 a.m.  And even though I was running late, I was going to just make it.  But when I got to the hospital, there was no handicapped parking available.  I drove around hoping that someone would pull out, but no such luck.  I finally found a spot about in the middle of the lot and parked.  I called the office and told them what had happened and asked if I should still keep my appointment or reschedule.  They told me to come up, so I did.

Of course the lady scheduled after me was taken first.  I had no problem with that.  Finally I was taken back and had blood pressure, pulse, etc. taken.  The nurse was so sweet.  Finally the doctor came in.

I liked her from the beginning.  She was pleasant, but very knowledgeable and kind.  She explained everything to me, answered all my questions and after examining me said it would surprise her very much if my cancer had come back.  She thinks the tiny lump under my skin is scar tissue since I had surgery in the same place three times.  But because of my cancer history and cancer running in the family she wants to make sure.  So in two weeks I will have a biopsy.  Assuming all is well, I can then go on with my life and enjoy my fall.

Speaking of fall, where did the summer go?  At least it has seemed to be a long summer to me.  Many years it just flies by.  But I am ready for some cooler temperatures and beautiful colors.  It was 97*F (36*C) today.

On the news tonight the weather station showed a picture of Rosetree Hill in Media, PA.  It was so pretty, that I snapped a photo of it off of the TV.  Wouldn't you like to wake up to this view every morning?

Joe got a haircut today.  All of his long curls are gone.  But it looks so much better.  The barber did a great job on him.

And now I am going to get off of here and get myself ready for bed.  I am so tired.  Hope you all have a good night's sleep.

Until later,


Wednesday, August 26, 2020

WHAT I'M READING -- HELLO SUMMER by Mary Kay Andrews (2020/4)

Hello, friends!  Hope you are having a great day.  Yesterday I went to the new surgeon.  I liked her a lot!  I will be telling you all about it tomorrow, but let me say the news is good.

Instead today I want to tell you about the latest book I read.  It is "Hello Summer" by one of my favorite authors, Mary Kay Andrews.   I have read so many of her books and have loved every one of them.  This is her newest one.  I read it on the Kindle and basically that is why it took me so long to complete it.  If my tablet or phone was out of power, I couldn't read it.  In spite of this, I still love my Kindle,

Mary Kay Andrews can't write a bad book.  It is so good I didn't want to put it down.  She writes with Southern sass and she always has a murder in her stories.  You have to do some detective work.

This story is about a family that owns a newspaper in a small town on the panhandle of Florida.  Conley, the main character, had wanted something more.  So she moved to Atlanta and was working for a major newspaper there.  The book begins with her goodbye party in Atlanta because she had gotten a great job in Washington, DC.  In the middle of her party, she finds the newspaper she was going to work for has gone bankrupt and she no longer has a job  So since she has given up her job and apartment, she heads to the only place she can think of to go -- home to Florida.

Conley's sister, Grayson, is running the family newspaper. so their grandmother (the family matriarch and owner) forces Conley to become a reporter for the struggling paper.

Right after she gets to town, Conley witnesses a car accident that kills a senator from Florida.  So the book revolves around her investigative reporting skills.  She tries to figure out if it was really an accident or if someone tried to kill the Senator who had a lot of family secrets.  Because of all this work she is doing, she brings the family newspaper back to life and at the same time falls back in love with her high school sweetheart.  But this is more than just a romance.  Or a mystery.  Oh my, the ending!

It is such a good book.  I didn't figure out who did it either.  I like books like that where I think through the entire thing trying to put it together.

If you can read only one book in the next few months, then this is the one to read.  There's so much more to the story than I could tell you in this blog.  And I don't want to ruin it for you either.  I can't imagine you would not enjoy this book.

Now that I have you all intrigued, I am going to run off and try to get some things done today.  No doctor appointments, but some errands to run later.  And lots of cleaning.  Always lots of cleaning.

See you back here soon.


Tuesday, August 25, 2020



Hello, friends.  It's a beautiful morning here in Philly.  Hope it is where you are too.

I finally got out in the garden yesterday.  It is in bad shape.  I hope I can get it cleaned up before Fall comes.  There is a lot to do.  Here is one side of the yard.

And here's the other side.

I can work only 15-20 minutes at a time before the pain in my legs and back gets too much to bear.  So it will be a little at a time.  But...  look how much I got done!  I decided to begin by unearthing my lilac bush and one rosebush.  Here is the before covered with morning glories.

And here it is after 20 minutes of hard work.  (And I do mean hard.  Bleeding hands and tons of mosquito bites to show for it.)

What a difference!  It's only a little bit, but if I go out every clear day for 15 minutes, it will get done.  After I finish with the yard, I will work on the patio.  I am looking for cute fall items to put out there.

My next-door neighbor has been coming over daily and watering my tomato plants with Miracle-Gro.  His veggies are doing so well and he wanted to share the wealth.  Such nice neighbors!  When I went out he was there watering them and told me to take a look.  Here was a surprise for me.

These are close-up photos, and they aren't very big, but hurray!  I will probably have three or four tomatoes by the end of September.  We have such warm September days that they have plenty of time to ripen.

That's it for today.  I am on my way to see the surgeon this morning.  My oncologist (the one retiring) called me yesterday morning and told me to not worry about things, that it looked OK to him but better to get checked out.  That made me feel better.  Hope the surgeon feels the same way.  I am not looking forward to that long walk from the parking lot to the hospital's front door.  It's uphill and does me in.  Oh how I miss valet parking!

I'll end with a photo I forgot to show you the other day.  Look at these ominous clouds over the houses across the street!  We are supposed to have the end of one of the hurricanes tomorrow.  I have a feeling I will see an even darker sky then.

Have a good day, everyone and I will be back soon.


Friday, August 21, 2020



Hello, friends.  Hope you had a good Friday.  I have been spending much of my time in the hospital having tests.  Had two more yesterday and now have to go see a specialist next week.  It goes on and on.  But today I didn't have to go anywhere and it was nice.  I actually got to read about 4 chapters in my book.  Only 10 more chapters and the epilogue to go and then I will share it with you.

Today I thought I would go back in my old photo albums again and show you some pictures from August 5, 1979.  That's 41 years ago.  Wow!  I don't know where that time went because it sure doesn't seem that long ago.  I went to Olde City with some friends.  Unfortunately I used to keep these pictures in one of those magnetic photo albums and the color has drained away.  They are now in an album with just paper pages but the damage is done.  You can still see the pictures though.

This first one is the Second National Bank of the United States.  It opened in 1816 and was a bank until 1836.  Its main duty was to regulate public credit and to establish a sound and stable national currency.  Today it is a portrait gallery.  I have spent many hours in there looking at the paintings.  The one of Washington is huge and a spectacular painting.

Here is a horse and buggy ride.  There are still these kinds of rides in center city.

Of course this is the Liberty Bell.  It is in its old building.  A new state of the art larger building was erected two blocks from this site.  Everything is now climate controlled and there is an interactive space to tell you all about the bell.

Across the street from the Liberty Bell is Independence Hall.  It's been quite a while since I was in there.  I have to make sure I visit it once things open again.

This is the Betsey Ross House where the first flag was made.  Or so the story goes.  It is really interesting inside.  You can see how people lived in the 18th century.  I remember how tiny the stairs are in the house.  I could not get my entire foot on them.  People must have been much smaller in those days.

Elfreth's Alley is the oldest constantly inhabited street in the United States.  Since 1703 there has always been someone living in these houses.  In fact, the son of a lady I used to work with lived on this street.  One of the houses is a museum.  I must go see it sometimes.  I've been outside, but never inside.  It is so narrow that no traffic can go through it.  If you are having something like furniture delivered, the truck has to park on another street and the people carry the furniture to your house.

And finally a fife and drum corp that was performing on Independence Mall.  I always enjoy listening to the fife and drums.

Hope you enjoyed this trip through the past.  I have to find some more photos to share with you.

Have a good night and I HOPE to be back tomorrow.


Monday, August 17, 2020



Hello, friends!  I hope you had a wonderful Sunday.  We had such a great Sunday service yesterday.  Our pastor is away so Joe did the Bible Study.  Then we had a guest speaker for the service.  Our next-door neighbor, Mike, came over to do music for us.  He is such a great guitarist and vocalist.  We really enjoyed it.

We went to Wendy's drive-thru for lunch.  We haven't been to Wendy's in a long time.  And when the bill came I understood why.  It was over $20 for lunch for the two of us.  Expensive!  And all we had was burgers and fries.

In the afternoon we both took naps.  Neither of us had slept well the night before and were dragging.  In fact we slept so well and were so full from lunch that we didn't bother having dinner.

And now today is another wonderful day that God has given to me.  I am feeling pretty good so I hope to make the most of it.

Let me tell you the third and final story from the magazine I finished a few weeks ago:  Country Home from May 2001.  This story is called:

Lisa stopped in the hallway, picked up a dust rag, and wiped off the old cardboard box she'd just carried down from the attic.  Somehow, in more than a year of renovating this house, she and her husband had never seen the box before.  Tucked under the eaves, it had finally revealed itself to her, and she hoped it would provide the information they were looking for.

The couple had immediately fallen in love with the old house.  They'd started the renovation upstairs, redoing the room down the hall as a nursery in anticipation of their first child

Lisa picked up the box once more and carried it into the bedroom, setting it next to her favorite chair.  Carefully she opened it, and its contents made her asp.  Inside was a trove of history.  Old newspaper clippings, yellowed with age.  Black and white photographs with crinkled edges.  And a scrapbook, a bit musty, but still intact.

Putting her feet up on the ottoman, Lisa opened the scrapbook and read the first clipping.  "House wins architectural awards," the headline said.  Of course, she thought.

She unfolded the clipping which pictured several rooms in the house.  There in the bottom right corner, she couldn't believe what she saw: a picture of the master bedroom, furnished seven decades before.  A massive four-poster stood right where Lisa and her husband had put theirs.  A wing chair sat by the fireplace, and a desk stretched in front of the windows.  The styles of furniture were a bit different, but the elements were almost identical, as though Lisa and her husband had furnished the room with guidance from the house itself.

Lisa's eyes rested on the final photo, a picture of the original owners.  They were a young couple with three small children, the mother holding the littlest one on her lap.  The family looked eager, full of hope.  Lisa leaned back, rubbed her stomach, and smiled.  "I've felt it all along," she said to no one in particular.  "We've come home."

And here are the photos that go with the story.

Such a lovely room.  I have so enjoyed sharing these stories with you.  I will have a new magazine for next week that I hope you will enjoy.

At church we are studying the book of Romans and I thought I would share those messages with you.  Let me begin with the introduction from back in February.  Ah, where did the year go?  I have meant to be doing this on each Sunday, but I never seem to get to posting on Sundays.  I hope you will enjoy this video.

Now off to get breakfast.  I will eat it watching the PBS show "Victoria".  I found the series on Amazon Prime.  And even though I have seen the entire thing on PBS, I am enjoying it all over again.

Have a good day, everyone.


Saturday, August 15, 2020



Hello, friends.  I really meant to get back to you before this.  And I really meant to get out into the yard and do some more.  But things just didn't work out that way.

We had a lot of rain this week.  Lots and lots of rain.  Working outside just wasn't in the plan.  So that didn't happen.  But let me show you what got done earlier this week.

The grass was about halfway to our knees.  Joe got out there and started whacking it down.  I really don't like him doing that because his allergies are so bad.  But he put on a mask and went out.

I insisted on taking over and between the two of us we got the grass under control.

We are overrun with morning glories.  They are pretty, but seem to choke out all of my plants.  You can see the job they did on the stand for my gazing ball.

I took a few minutes to clean it off.  Looking much better!

Then I went over and cleaned out the earthbox with the two tomato plants.  I pulled out all the weeds, got the fairies and mushrooms situated, and looked for tomatoes.  None yet, but lots of flowers.  I hope I get some fruit soon or it will be too late in the season to get anything.

The fern in the pot had a lot of dead leaves on it.  I cleaned that up.

And then I pulled up all the weeds along the fence and straightened the solar lights.  Joe changed the flag for me.

I hope it will be a nice day tomorrow so that I can do some more work.  So much to do out there.

One reason I didn't get out in the yard besides the rain is that I was in the hospital getting a test done.  One of several before I have a procedure on September 9th.  The test was on Wednesday.  On Tuesday night I so wanted to stay up to see the meteor shower but I fell asleep.  It was a fasting test, so I guess I'm glad I slept all night and didn't think about getting a midnight snack.

I may not have seen any meteors, but I did see the sun rise the next day.  Yes, the test was that early.

And I was very glad when it was done and I could get dressed and go home.

I had taken two Pop Tarts with me so I had something to eat as soon as I got back to the car.

So that's what's been happening this week.  Now I have to go back to cleaning the house.  And baking.  And putting the church bulletin together.  It never ends.

Have a good evening.


Monday, August 10, 2020



Hello, friends!  Hope you are all doing well.  It is another hot day and Joe and I have just come in from working in the yard.  It is a huge job.  I took some pictures and plan on doing an end of the week post rather than giving you a picture here and a picture there.  All I will say is that it now looks as if someone lives here rather than an abandoned building.

I have found a new vlog that I absolutely love.  It is called "Renovation East" and is filmed by Andre a man who lives in Eastern Germany near Berlin.  He has bought an abandoned house and is completely renovating it.  If you are into renovations, you will enjoy this.  He posts once a week (usually on Sunday) and the videos average 10-12 minutes.  I showed it to Joe last night and he liked it.

I want to respond to some of the comments from my last post.  About the ice cream, that was totally my fault.  The people in our store do not bag your groceries.  You do that yourself.  I should have put it in a double bag, but I didn't think of it.  Our trunk was very full and I shoved it in there and put it on its side.  Live and learn.  I have no one but myself to blame for that.  

I am not upset that I went to the hospital twice.  I have faced cancer and death several times and since then things like that don't bother me.  Too much else going on in life to be bothered by things like that.

And with that said, let's read another story from my Monday magazine.  Today I will share the second story:

Jenny had spent summer nights on Aunt Mary's sleeping porch ever since she was 7 years old.  Back then, she was scared of night sounds and Aunt Mary would sit in the rocker and read to her until she fell asleep.

Now at 15, she no longer feared the darkness.  She would lie wide awake watching the shadows of moths against the curtain.  She felt safe here, as if nothing could touch her.

Jenny pinned the curtain shut on nights when she wanted to feel cozy and private.  Other times, she threw it wide open and lay with her head at the foot of the bed so she could feel a sprinkle of rain.  She never told Aunt Mary who would have scolded her.  "You'll catch your death of cold," she'd say.

Jenny loved it when Uncle Jim mowed the grass in the evening.  On those nights, she would stretch out and breathe deeply, imagining she was in a meadow in England.

Out of all those nights in all those years, she'd only missed two on the porch.  One was a time when a wind storm shook the branches of the oak trees so violently that Uncle Jim escorted her inside.  The other was an evening in July so unseasonably cold that Aunt Mary wouldn't let her stay out.  "There aren't enough quilts in the world to keep you warm on a night like this," she said.

Being on the porch had helped Jenny face her fears.  One night when the moon was full, Billy Henderson hid in the bushes and made spooky noises.  "He's harmless," Aunt Mary said when Jenny ran inside.

Now Jenny lay on the bed, listening to the song of the crickets.  Next year, she'd have her driver's license probably her first kiss.  But here she was still a girl and there were times when her feelings surprised her.  I don't think I ever want to leave, she thought.  Sometimes it seemed, the scariest thing beyond the curtain was growing up.

And here's the pictures that go with it.

One more story to go.  I'll bring that to you next week.

I hope you have a great evening.  I'm going to hop in the tub and then make dinner.  Hamburgers and fries.  Easy tonight.  See you all later.