Sunday, March 29, 2009

Bitten By The Bug….


   I have gotten bitten by the bug, and if you follow my blog at all you know how much I hate bugs! I actually feel, like this guy looks above! It started last Thursday with a sleepless night and a scratchy throat. My son was arriving from Bangor Friday afternoon and I was feeling like a Mack Truck just hit me. I had bouts of energy in between which was really weird.

    By Saturday night, it was kicking in pretty good. My son Kyle and husband Bob stayed up late and watched one of those shoot-em-up movies, guys like so much, and I went to bed early. The sounds of the guns and screaming from the movie didn’t even keep my eyes open. The great thing about this flu is I am getting better sleep than I have in years! The downside of that is, I’m still exhausted after 10 hours of sleep! Any single ache on my body that I would feel once in a blue moon is magnified 100 times along with the usual aches and pains of getting older! My sinuses are stuffed, my head aches, my body feels like it has been stomped on and I am in a heavy fog. The dry cough and the runny nose are just a bonus! My son left last night for another visit in Yarmouth and then he will be living with his big sister Carissa in Portland, until he finds employment and an apartment. His girlfriend Sarah, stayed back in Bangor. She will come down here after Kyle has everything in place. Meanwhile kid brother is living with big sister and friend Brooke…..say a prayer! So…I just wanted to check in even though I am in a state of slow motion and am not sure if any of this makes sense? Oh…forgot to say…I gave it to my husband. I heard the familiar cough about 5 o’clock this morning. Sorry honey! It sucks! See you all soon when I am better.image Is it me or is that picture blurry?tired Back to my Kleenex box and some good tea.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Trip To The City….

   A few days ago March 23, was my friend Sarina’s birthday. She lives in the big city, Portland, Maine. We made plans to spend the day together. I don’t do well driving into the city without supervision but I ventured out anyway! For years, the only place I could get to comfortably when I went to the city, was her house.  For some reason I have never ventured too far away from home if I am the driver. That got a bit worse in 1991 when I was in a terrible accident….but I digress. I headed out at around 9:00 a.m. Driving along Tukey’s Bridge I daringly snapped a photo while driving…stupid I know!  onmywayThe water was rough looking and it was a really cold day. Once I got there (without getting lost I might add!)…she greeted me in the driveway….probably thinking (whew! she made it!) She lives in the heart of the city….owns a three story apartment building and lives on the second story of it. It is a house she grew up in, a house that I have been going to since I was 16 years old. She inherited her parents home. Her parents were adorable and were immigrants, who spoke broken English in the cutest way….I loved listening to them speak. They met in Israel I believe. My friend Sarina was born there. Her folks were the cutest little Jewish couple you could ever meet. Maybe with her permission I will someday write a story about my experience with these wonderful people.

   Up to the second floor with my gifts for her we went. Greeting me, inside, were her two wonderful cats Callie and Grace! My friend Sarina LOVES animals…..particularly cats! She has been volunteering at a refuge/shelter for cats for years. If there is ANYONE that is an advocate for cats, more so than her, I’ve never met them. So, of course, I had to get lots of photos of these very special, sweet, loving cats that she owns. These are her children…truly. Callie is a kind of Calico cat who loves people & showing her bellycally1 cally2cally3 is very inquisitive….cally4 and doesn’t mind posing for the camera! Now Grace is a bit more shy it would seem. She has an adorable stubby little tail and when she sits looks like a Mack truck…..watching her walk is hilarious…………..She’s a manx.grace1 It’s like she is talking to you all the time. She has that look in her eye. “What was that down the hall?grace2 Do you have to take my picture now!? I really don’t know you that well.grace3 Are you deaf???grace5 Is someone here?grace6 It’s just that Callie! I need some desk time….I’m exhausted!gracedesk1 Ahhhh……that’s the ticket….right up my alley….no not Callie!….I said Alley!gracedesk2 Ok.. I’m good.” Isn’t she cute? So….I wandered around Sarina’s house and got some nice shots. They’ve done a redo in a lot of the rooms and it looks great.cherub New Tuscany style walls. That chandelier is original….nice huh? dining On to the study…..she wants to change out the color…study1 I actually love it!study2 A really nice window in the dining room….stainedglass off onto the porch for a view of the street from the second floor, they’re redoing all 3 porches….need repairs….ontheporch1 to the left…..ontheporch2 out front….ontheporch3 this is a big tree that comes right to the porch! Callie and Grace go out here and sun themselves in wicker chairs two stories up! I think I figured out why Grace had that spooked look on her face at one point. Look what was lurking in a corner of the dining room!…………………………….


It’s like that geico eyes on the dollar bills commercial staring at you! Can you imagine how Callie and Grace feel with this watching their every move!? Time for lunch and we decided to go to a place called Saltwater Grille in South Portland. Good food…a little pricey for lunch. We each had an absolutely delicious haddock sandwich fried in garlic dill crumbs on a Focaccia bread roll. I’ve been on a diet for some time (slow progress) and I had not had bread in a long time. This was the softest bread!! Ouuuulala….was it ever good. I savored each bite….and the haddock was divine. The grille is nestled in next to the ocean. Here are some photos.saltwatergrille Typical Maine restaurant on the ocean. grilleview1 That’s the South Portland bridge….we had to cross to get here. And a little to the right some lobster traps on Casco Bay.grilleview2Then inside the grille is a lovely tall fireplace that was aglow on this chilly day.insidegrille  Sarina said I should have gotten up and taken pictures….I know….she was right! Hate that! As you walk in, there is a little aquarium that seems to be set up for children to sit and look at, with chairs made to look like sparkly lobsters. lobster1

lobster2 Cute huh? As we were leaving the grille, we noticed these two medium sized white poodles (I think) and they were walking all around the parking lot, almost getting hit. Well….my friend Sarina, the animal lover, didn’t think that was right….frankly neither did I. We stopped at a couple buildings to ask about these twin dogs to no avail. Finally, we spun around and went back to the restaurant….dogs following us….spiraling in and around the parking lot. I tried to get photos of them but they were fast. Sarina got out and asked a couple going into the grille to inquire about them. She headed out herself to investigate.poodlepatrol The couple met her at the door and simply said they belong to someone who lives right here….where?…they didn’t know. We left but were both upset at the ignorance of people letting their dogs roam around in traffic like that. It was out of our hands….poor pups….hope they don’t get hit. Sarina wanted to show me Bug Light Park down the road. While entering we saw many things. One was a Russian ship poised in the harbor.russian To my right was a steel monument in the form of a ships bow. It was huge and reminded me of our bath shipyards.grayship Further down the road we saw something that made Sarina screech! Oh my God! They moved that building! I can’t believe it!   housemove1 This, according to her, was down the road a bit and was moved up here by Bug light park.housemove2 It is an historical old building that I knew nothing about so I did some research on Google.  It is truly amazing that they were able to move this 1800’s house. Some of the brick along the side was missing. There was a pile left on the lawn back where it used to be. Would you believe I got so carried away with this house I forgot to take photos of Bug Light Park! If you go to google and type that park in plus Portland, Maine, you will see it. I tried to link it here but it did not work! It was a fun day. We headed back to her place. I was thinking, it’s been a pretty good day. I got to spend the better part of a day with my good friend Sarina. We get inside and I feel the urgent need to use her restroom. Maybe the fish was not such a great idea? I must say at this point I avoid at all costs using someone else’s bathroom. Kind of a phobia with me but this was serious business. Everything goes fine at first. Then….a glitch. The john doesn’t seem to want to cooperate. Luckily the plunger is handy….right next to the toilet. It’s just a little bit of TP showing but it won’t go down. Oh please God help me get out of this one. Sarina is hollering to me and talking about something……”yes I’m coming”…..she wants me to try a tapenade her husband made for her birthday. I come out….I go back in….that water still looks pretty high to me. I flush and I plunge….water still high. I finally alert Sarina. As she is coming closer, I flush, and unleash the flood gates of hell!! Oh my freaking God NO!!!!!!!!!! The two of us are grabbing fresh beautifully folded large bath towels off the shelf to soak up the water on the floor. Swishing and slopping and skidding around we went as fast as we could because she lives on the second floor and the first floor may very well be getting some of that flood any minute if we don’t!! Oh God I hope not. Her dryer just died and until she purchases one she is going to the Laundromat!  It was just water but still it was one of the most embarrassing moments of my life. There is one that is worse but you won’t catch me writing about it here! We both decided it would be funny to add this to my blog. (Isn’t she sweet?)……but I deleted the pictures of me plunging the toilet and the bucket of wet towels…..I just couldn’t do it……sorry Sarina! I finally left….with my face very red and dropped her off to pick up her car at Sullivan’s Tire in town….she was having work done. She directed me to leave Sullivan’s, go to the light, take a left, and when I saw the sign that said Falmouth North, take that right. I left….she was getting her car so I was without supervision which is not good. I took the right before the sign….(nervous still from the bathroom caper) and  realizing I was lost, I came back out to the main drag….noticing the sign up the road. Duh! Meanwhile this vehicle comes by to my left….tooting and waving and putting their right blinker on several times. You guessed it……it was her and I already knew where I went wrong but it was nice of her to escort me to the sign….20 feet or so away from where I was….especially after all I had put her through! I got turned around once more at another intersection in the city and figured it all out…..same scenario…..turned around….took the right route. When I finally reached my little town I had a HUGE sigh of relief! I will probably not go to the city again soon without adult supervision or at least a map or borrowed GPS system!! I think it is her turn to come out here. Yah….that’s a much better idea….don’t you think?spider1

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Paul & Lydia…..

   When I was a teen I found a vintage photo of my parents on their honeymoon. Decoupage seemed to be all the rage back then. I found an old piece of wood in my folks basement and I glued the photo to the wood and put many layers of polyurethane on it until it looked like glass. Little did I know that was the only photo of them that I can find to this day but they still loved it. I still have that. DSC04001 A snapshot in time. The time was January 8, 1944 and it was their wedding day and my mothers 28th birthday. It was a simple wedding, nothing fancy, as my dad was heading overseas and they only had a short time to be together….I think it was 3 days. When I look at their faces in this photo, tears sometimes well up as they looked so happy.DSC04002 That guitar was never far away from my dad’s arms. They both loved music. He had that old Gibson with him in his hut in Italy and entertained in many USO shows while “over there.” He brought back many souvenirs from the war and almost all of them were monogrammed with his and her initials or just hers. I have cigarette cases and little portable ashtrays and little trinkets here and there in my home that were tokens he gave to her. I have most all of their letters to each other. Some are a little hard to read as they make me blush. Many letters to his mom…my grandmother Eva were written. She was a school teacher and almost demanded he write her every day and he did. Some of them are priceless. He took many photos while away and someday I’d like to get them onto a cd but for now they are in a box.

   After he got home from serving in WW11, they started raising a family. They had two boys….then me….then my little brother. They were taking bets on me as to whether I was a boy or girl. My folks really wanted a girl after two boys. My uncle Sidney was in on the betting and had said all along it was going to be a girl. He won the bet. He was a funny man. He sure liked his bottles of beer but he was a good man. He stood up for people and was never afraid to speak his mind if the situation called for it. If you didn’t like it well….too bad. He didn’t do it in a mean way….just a matter of fact way. He wouldn’t stand for others putting down good people for no reason and I liked that about him. My father spent many a Saturday afternoon at Uncle Sidney’s house playing music and drinking beer right there at the kitchen table, two houses up from mine.

   When not working, or at Uncle Sidney’s or elsewhere, my folks would sit at our kitchen table on a Saturday and play music all afternoon. My mom had a great voice and belted out old tunes while my father strummed that old Gibson. There was almost always a quart of beer under the table and a glass on top. My mom might have one and my father had the rest and more! They sang and sang and it was the happiest time of day if you walked into that house, which many did. There was a song I always requested that my mother sing…..for years I asked for this song because I loved how she sang it. She would put a lot of guttural and animation into the performance of the song! I loved it! That song was Bill Bailey. That became one of the most requested songs for her to sing at many dances and gatherings over the years. My father had a sheet music collection. He had hundreds of pages of sheet music. Once the word got out, many people he knew, and some strangers that just heard about it, started bringing him music. At some point, either a family member or friend or stranger, purchased an old copy of the original Bill Bailey that was decoupage onto a piece of wood. That hung in my folks house for years and now it hangs in mine.


DSC04007 You can see it here in my kitchen and I cherish it. I love the idea of old sheet music on wood but I don’t see it that often. Good memories are carried on in my home from my parents who really gave me such a wonderful gift in music. When I hear a banjo or an old guitar or any of the songs they once sang I am brought to my knees in gratitude for those two wonderful people. It will put a smile on my face quicker than anything else and it will bring on the “Ugly Cry” as Oprah says too….depending on where I am at that day! I know I have written about this song before so bear with me…..there WERE other songs but this one was a special one as you can see.:)

   Eventually my dad purchased a beautiful candy apple red Gibson Les Paul guitar. Today, my nephew Adam, has that guitar and plays it in Nashville. He and wife Carey are a duo just like my parents were. He is a music producer and their studio is in their home. Here’s a photo of them at a club performing and he is playing my dad’s Les Paul.


   More on them at another time…:)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

When I Open My Eyes

   Kathleen, from asked if anyone out there in blogland had anything they like to collect? At one time I had 50 to 60 old powder compacts and I loved them. I ended up having to sell them and now only have one I got from my cousin For a while I collected old hats. I have very few of those left. Over the years I began another collection that I still have, which are vintage purses. Every morning when I wake up and turn to my side, this is what I see….


   I took an old wooden cup holder and painted it antique jade, the color of my trim on the bedroom windows and hung my collection here. The walls are sea foam. It gives me comfort to see these every morning because I enjoy them so! Each one has a bit of a story but I won’t bore you with all the details…………

purse2 This one is probably my favorite and in the best shape and it belonged to my grandmother Eva Mae.purse3 This beautiful sparkling blue one I got in trade for working for an older man on my road. I looked it up on Ebay and vintage purse sites to get an idea of what it was worth and we came to an agreement! I love the clasp on it. purse4 This brown silk and beaded purse is what they called a beggars purse and I absolutely adore it….the feel of it and the look….it’s just so soft and feminine.purse5 This one is not as old as the others but the beading is spectacular as is the mother of pearl top. I got this one at a yard sale for 5.00!! What a deal huh? purse6 These are two that also belonged to my grandmother, the leather one’s a bit worn but I love the art deco and art nouveau clasps. The detail is beautiful. purse7 The mesh metal 1920’s purse is great and the white rose one was given to me by my sister in law and is actually new! Doesn’t it fit in nicely with the rest?purse8 This black beauty is another yard sale find for guess what?….yup….5.00!! I try not to spend more than that for one item at yard sales! I love the art deco rhinestone clasp. purse9 And finally…a lovely black velvet purse with intricate silver beading and an acorn shaped clasp I got on Ebay and the green crocheted beggars purse was purchased there too. I hope someday to add to the collection but I will have to figure out where they are going to go! The cup holder is full! So…you get to see what I see every morning when I wake up. It makes me smile…..:) What do you all collect? Enquiring minds want to know?

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