Saturday, May 31, 2008
I do tend to hang on to things way too long and cleaning out HAS to happen at regular intervals. However, it has long been my experience that the moment I decide to throw things out, take them to Goodwill, or give them away, then I need them. I even remember giving a whole bundle of clothes to Goodwill only to discover that I had given away a pair of red pants that I decided I still needed. I rushed over to Goodwill and bought them back for $6! And there was the time I gave away all my sewing notions, lace, yarn, etc. Then I began teaching first grade and yearned for that box of notions for the art projects that we did.
I guess that is Murphy's Law for me: the minute I decide to throw something away, the wheels are set into motion for me to need it again--sooner or later!
Write about your notions on being a pack rat. Do you save things that you no longer use? Or do you clean out things on a regular basis--and never look back?
Friday, May 30, 2008
No pictures this time! But I do look forward to sleeping late on weekends and then getting up leisurely, going for a neighborhood walk and then back home for breakfast. The pace is slower on those mornings and my approach to the day is more relaxed than it is on weekdays.
However, tomorrow is Saturday and we will get up early, load up birthday presents and goodies and drive to Son #4's to help celebrate Miss Ella Bella's 2nd birthday. No sleeping late and leisurely day, but it is so worth it to get to spend more time with family!
Now it is your turn: write about the joys of sleeping late and leisurely days. Or take a turn at writing about spending time with family.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
My husband took the picture on the left yesterday. The lady in blue is a personal trainer but also a good friend named Rebecca. Rebecca is a wonderful help when I have questions about strengthening specific muscle groups. She was a marvelous help through both of my hip surgeries and I was back to the gym in record time because she even came to my house and helped me with exercises at home--terrific massages also!
Talking about Rebecca as a friend reminds me of how many other friends I have made at the gym over the 12 years that I have been going there. Max often precedes me on those machines you can see in the picture, and he can push or pull double the weight that I can. I often tell him that he is a tough man to follow!
Helen has long been my inspiration in exercise. I first met her when I began going to this gym and figured she was about my age although she could run circles around me and was as limber as a pretzel. One day, as I was admiring her flexibility during our stretches, our talk drifted to our age. We compared years and I discovered that she was about 15 years older than I am. My mouth fell open and I decided then and there that I wanted to "grow up" to be like Helen! She is still 15 years older than me and we still meet on the side-by-side treadmills where we catch up on family news and exercise progress.
The dressing room at the gym is also a place where I have found good friendships. Our little 8:00 a.m. group has decided that there are few problems that we cannot put our collective heads together and solve. And those women continue to amaze me! One is a very talented artist. Another woman is just five years younger than I am and still participates in the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii each year! Another surprised us recently by telling us that her book had just been published. We did not even know she had written a book! Her book is Journeys of Heartache and Grace: Conversations and Life Lessons from Young People with Serious Illnesses. Here is a picture of my very own copy--autographed by the author!
Going to the gym is a wonderful way to start my day, boost my metabolism, keep my body in good working order and catch up with friends I have made there.
Now it is your turn to write. Journal about your attitude toward rising early in the morning, exercise and friendships you have made along the way.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
I keep a calendar on my kitchen table where I can consult it each morning and prepare myself mentally for the day ahead. See attached picture--although only I can decipher the lines, the arrows, the small print, color codes, and notes that often adorn the margins. I also use the smallest Post-It notes to insert temporary notes or changes in the schedule.
The calendar is small and someone recently mentioned to me that I needed a larger Day Planner with numerous lines for each day. My reply was a distinct 'NO' because this almost-checkbook-sized calendar is easy to slip into my purse without adding weight, carry in my pocket if necessary, and pack into a carry-on bag when I am traveling. In other words, it works for me.
I am a stickler for knowing what my schedule is each day. If I have to change, I am okay with that, but I do like to know what is going on each day. I am not a very good "fly by the seat of my pants" kind of person. One of my sons called the other day and complained that he was on a trip with people who made up their schedule as they went along and it was really bothering him. He said that he liked to know early in the morning what the plan was for the day. I could relate to that comment myself, and I could also remember hearing him (even as a young boy) wake up on weekends and want to know what the plan was for the weekend. Guess he inherited that trait from me. Sorry about that!
Write about your way of dealing with time and with schedules. Do you need a plan for each day or are you a "go with the flow" kind of person? What meaning does the word "time" have for you?
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
*Link the person who tagged you.
* Mention the rules in your blog.
* Tell about six unspectacular quirks of yours.
* Tag a new set of six following bloggers by linking them.
* See last item in fuchsia at the end...
So, after much thought (about 5 minutes), here are my six unspectacular quirks:
1. I LOVE to hang my clothes outdoors to dry even though my husband claims that his underwear is "crunchy" when it comes in all fresh smelling off the clothesline.
2. I am a stickler for time schedules. I make up my daily schedule each morning and getting off schedule sometimes rattles me. I think I passed this quirk on to at least one of my sons!
3. I get up early (5:30 a.m.) at least 5 mornings a week to journal first and then exercise--even though I am retired. It just starts my day off right!
4. I LOVE to sleep late (about 7:00) on weekends!
5. I am a pack rat and hate throwing things away because "someday I might need it!"
6. I am relearning how to oil paint and am having a grand time smearing paint on canvas, good shirts, shiny new easel and everything nearby--such fun! Maybe I need to revisit my finger painting days also!
* Now my plan is to write about these six quirks the next couple of weeks and provide pictures when appropriate and available. Then, I challenge each of you, dear readers, to do the same.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
This morning I went to the gym and did the treadmill, the Nautilus elliptical machine and all kinds of exercises to keep the ole body fit and working properly. One of my friends pointed out how well my hips are working compared to a couple of years ago. I am so thankful that I had the surgeries but I am really thankful that it is a year later and I have all that behind me!
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
But Miss Ella Bella is a real joy! She runs--never walks! She laughs with glee at the simplest things like rolling a soccer ball down the hall and having me roll it back. She loves to clean things--the picnic table, our car when it sprinkled on it, the kitchen table after eating.
She enjoyed going shopping with us and had to have her purse over her arm just like mine. In the car she was always on the lookout for COWS! She loves cows and announces her sightings of cows in a VERY LOUD VOICE so that we would not miss them! We stopped by the roadside and watched one near the fence eating grass. Ella Bella watched for a minute and then announced: "BIG tongue!" Yes, that cow did have a very big tongue. Ella talked about the cow's big tongue all during dinner and gave several demonstrations of the way it licked its upper lip!
She loved story time with her granddad.
She was a great help in the kitchen. She learned how to snap fresh green beans, make Mickey (er, excuse me--she LOVES Minnie!)Mouse pancakes and then she helped make yummy brownies for the neighbor down the street who had surgery. She also very efficiently helped load silverware in the dishwasher after each meal.
The last day we were there I was taking pictures of flowers for possible painting projects and she had to take one picture "all by herself!" Not bad for a young 'un! Maybe she is a budding young photographer--or maybe I will paint it for her!
Most amazing of all are her computer skills. She has an ABC program at http://www.starfall.com/ that she loves. We had to call her mother to tell us how to find it and then we were able to access the program several times so that she could do her ABCs. Amazing!
Monday, May 19, 2008
I still think Junk Mail is a shameful waste of manpower, paper, postage, increased cost of items, and additions to our landfills. Yesterday I found another recommendation to curb the catalogs that come to our house. I went to www.catalogchoice.org and checked many of the catalogs that come, unsolicited, to our house. One response from a major business in our area came back marked "denied." The explanation is that this company has refused to be involved in the opt-out process. Guess that means I will still get their expensive mailings which will go into my recycling.
I do hope that the catalog delivery to my house will diminish if businesses opt to honor my wish not to receive their mail!
Sunday, May 18, 2008
God For Us, we call You Father,
God Alongside Us, we call You Jesus,
God Within Us, we call You Holy Spirit.
You are the Eternal Mystery
That enables, enfolds, and enlivens all things,
Even us, and even me.
Every name falls short of your
Goodness and Greatness.
We can only see who You are in what is.
We ask for such perfect seeing.
As it was in the beginning, is now,
and ever shall be.
By Richard Rohr, Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, NM
Thursday, May 15, 2008
This morning at daylight all of our neighborhood was out surveying the damage. Each yard was carpeted with leaves and many, many branches were down. One neighbor had a tree broken off similar to ours, but it landed square in the middle of her new SUV. Another neighbor had a car window broken out by a falling branch. Several houses had large branches on their roofs and one neighbor thought the corner of his house was damaged by a falling branch
As the morning progressed we listened to the sound of chain saws as people began to clear and clean their way out of the mess. We were leaving town, so we left our mess behind knowing that our clean up would be delayed a bit because we are going to take care of Son #4's little one for several days. We are there now and have had a delightful evening with her. She is almost two and talking up a storm! She could tell us what she wanted and where things were. She was VERY definite about her bedtime--she did not want to go, but only fussed about 2-3 minutes and then was out like a light! Whew!
I am so grateful that the storm only damaged a few trees and left us and our house relatively unharmed. I sat up much of the night thinking about how bad it could have been in light of the spring storms across the country and giving thanks that we were safe! And I am also grateful for the chance to enjoy being with Miss Ella Bella for a few days.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
I recall Granddaddy Riggs as a little old man who did not say much and followed my grandmother, Mammy, around and did what she told him to do. I thought she was very bossy and seemed to treat him like a child. I even thought that he might not have been too bright. The two pictures to the left are the way that I remember Granddaddy Riggs. I suspect his health was beginning to decline in those years and that is probably why we do not have many pictures of Granddaddy Riggs in our family photographs after that time.
Daddy told me that Granddaddy Riggs was first married to Minnie Little in Paris, Texas, and they had three children. Minnie Little died shortly after the birth of Katherine (Kate), their third child. The older two children in the family were Ralph Smith Riggs and George Record Riggs. According to Daddy, the children were kept by a Mrs. Bettison in Paris, Texas, until Granddaddy Riggs married Maude Ophelia Hancock (we called her Mammy) and then the children later moved to live with Granddaddy and Mammy in Amarillo.
Granddaddy Riggs moved his new wife, Maude Hancock Riggs, to Longview, Texas, and that is where Daddy was born. The birth certificate for Daddy states that his father was working as a traveling salesman for Simmons Hardware at the time of the birth of his son. Daddy said that Granddaddy Riggs met Mr. E.W. Hardin, the founder of Amarillo Hardware Company, in St. Louis, MO, when they were both working there. Mr. Hardin encouraged Granddaddy Riggs to move to Amarillo to work for Amarillo Hardware Company as a traveling salesman in the early days of the company they moved to Amarillo shortly after Daddy was born in 1906. At first they rented a house and then, about 1908, Granddaddy Riggs built a large home at 1410 Monroe for his family.
The picture to the left shows the newly finished Riggs home in Amarillo. Mammy wrote the names Kate, Newton (Daddy), and Maude (Mammy) on the picture. Granddaddy and Mammy raised their children in that house and Mammy stayed there until her death in 1959. The house was remodeled in later years. The porch on the left side was turned into a sun room and a portico, driveway and garage were added on the right side.
Granddaddy Riggs worked as a traveling salesman for Amarillo Hardware Company in the Texas Panhandle for a time, and then opened a car dealership in Amarillo. The 1910 census lists J.N, 35, living at 1410 Monroe Street with his wife, Maude, and children: Ralph, 14; Record, 13; Katherine, 10; and J. Newton, 2. The 1910 census states that the occupation of J.N. is “Commercial Traveler.” The census also indicates that he owned his home and did not owe any money on the house. By 1920 the city directory shows that he owned Panhandle Motor Company. He was also part owner of a hardware store in Dalhart, and was elected a County Judge in Amarillo in the 1930s. During his years in Amarillo, he also acquired a number of real estate lots and property in the city.
According to newspaper articles in the archives of the Amarillo Globe News and the Amarillo Daily News, Granddaddy Riggs was a busy and productive man in his younger days and was quite an active leader in civic organizations. He was Chairman of the Victory Loan Committee of Potter County in 1919 and is listed as an organizing member of the Amarillo Lions Club that year. He was elected eminent commander of the Masonic Lodge in 1920. He was president of the Lions Club in 1922, president of the Amarillo-Panhandle Automotive Association, and was a director of the Tri-State Fair Association in 1923. He was elected president of the Board of City Development in 1925, was a Panhandle Council Boy Scout sponsor in 1927 and was president of the group that year. He was Potentate of the Khiva Shrine Temple in 1929 (see picture to the left). He was quoted in a 1938 newspaper story entitled “Plains Drummer” describing the life of traveling salesmen in the Panhandle.
Thursday, May 8, 2008
Next I went to my mother's for a special Mothers' Day Luncheon. It was lovely with delicious food and even better desserts! Yum! Mother had just had her hair done and she looked beautiful. I am so lucky that she is close and happy to be where she is at this time of her life. Here are a few pictures from the luncheon.
And for my last thankful item: a friend is taking us out to eat at one of my all-time favorite seafood restaurants! Yippee! I don't have to cook dinner tonight! Thankful to have a cook's day off!
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Thursday, May 1, 2008
1. Send a letter or visit junkbusters.com and "opt out" from the five main list vendors. If you tell these vendors not to rent information about you or your household, you will cut back on Junk Mail from hundreds of companies. Junkbusters' website gives you the address and even a draft letter to send.
2. Call your phone companies and tell them you want to opt out of "CPNI sharing." Unless you tell them not to, phone companies generally have the right to sell all the information about you that appears on your phone bills: they can sell the number you call, the time and duration of the call, anything on your bill. Marketers use this information to target Junk Mail. Read more about CPNI sharing at epic.org/privacy/cpni.
3. Tell the credit bureaus to take you off their "pre-screened" list. These lists are the reason you get so many credit card offers. (When I get a credit card offer, I personally fold everything up, put it in their prepaid envelope with a note to NOT send anything else to me. I then mail it BACK to them--it has cut back on my credit card offers!) Call this number (1-888-5-optout), and tell them you want to opt out. You should stop getting the offers in about six weeks.
4. Make sure you have registered your phone number with the "Do Not Call" database. Call 1-888-382-1222 for this service.
The newsletter urges us to start our plan today to feel protected and safe. I am beginning today! I look forward to receiving a lot less Junk Mail--and Junk Phone Calls--in the future!