Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Onion Trickery

No more carved pumpkins for us. Too much work. It's much easier putting a flameless candle in this lantern.

I think.

It's new so I'm not really sure how it's going to look. I should probably test it out before Halloween night. I have high hopes. 

I'll let you know how it turns out.

We had Thanksgiving burritos for dinner. One of the ingredients in them are browned onions and as I was browning the onions, it reminded me of a story Mom once told me.

Dad (the Man's dad) worked a 9-5 office job and liked to come home to find dinner ready and put on the table a few minutes after he got home. Most of the time Mom managed to do this but every now and then dinner wasn't quite ready when Dad got home. Not a good thing.

So one day Mom was out shopping and got home late. Dinner was not going to be ready in time. She had to think fast and make it seem like dinner was close to being done. 

She had an idea.

She started frying an onion.

Dad walked in, smelled the kitchen and all was right in the world. He thought dinner was coming along just fine. She never did use the onion that night.

Every time I smell an onion cooking it reminds me just how smart Mom is. 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

An Unwanted Visitor

Velvet pumpkins are everywhere and I jumped right on that bandwagon. I've picked up all kinds of colors: orange, burgundy, green, brown, bronze. 

Love the texture and softness of the velvet.

On another note, we had some excitement at the library today. 

The phone rang and the person on the other end of the line wanted to talk to our programming coordinator, who works in the Reference area. I called her extension and she didn't answer. I tried an alternate line and she didn't answer that one either.

Hmmm, what's going on down there?

I knew she was in Reference so I asked the person to hold on a little bit longer while I went to look for her. 

When I got down to the Reference area, she wasn't anywhere to be found. I noticed the door to the Director's office was closed so I knocked and then started to open it. 

"Close the door! Quick!" I heard, as I walked in the office. Looking around, I saw lots of boxes on the floor, stacked up everywhere. 

"What's going on in here?" I asked. 

"A chipmunk got inside through the chimney!" said the Director and the programming coordinator at the same time.

"Phone call for F on line 1," I said quickly and skedaddled out of there. I am not an animal control officer. And I was not needed in there. At all.

Later in the day, I found out that they had finally gotten it outside by creating some sort of maze/pathway with all the boxes. It turns out it was actually a flying squirrel. In the library.


Monday, October 16, 2017

Pretty Little Hearts

Some little pretties that I made over the past winter. 

I made a bunch of them for Valentine's Day last year and still have some left over. I give them out randomly to people I love, or someone who's done something nice for me, or sometimes just because.

I love felt. I love beads. I love putting them together.

There's something very satisfying about handiwork.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Tap, Tap, Tap

Last summer I noticed our neighbor had a string of something shiny hanging off the back of his house. I had no idea what it was or what its purpose was.

The next time I saw him, I asked.

It was a plastic necklace of gold miniature playing cards with beads interspersed.


Why? I asked him.

It's to keep the woodpeckers away, he said.

So that's why we have woodpeckers, I said. They've left your yard and flocked to mine.

Gimme one of those necklaces.
So we hung up silver stars and my neighbor came over with some gold playing cards and we are now woodpecker free.

We may look a little crazy but there's no more tap, tap, tapping going on in our yard.

Interesting little side note - my neighbor told me they are looking for sap, not bugs. They tap, tap, tap to find the sap.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Momma Knows Best

My new fall wreath.

A little out of focus but still pretty.

A momma and her {very} young girl child and baby sister visited us at the library this morning. Girl child was only a little over two years old and absolutely precocious.

Momma thought story hour started this week but it didn't. It starts next week. Momma was a bit disconcerted that she mixed up the dates but with two little ones on her hands, it was totally understandable. Been there, done that.

They wanted to choose some library books but Momma forgot her library card. She ran home to get it and came back so girl child could get her books. They came up to the desk to check out the three books they had chosen - one big book and two little books. When I was finished checking them out, girl child wanted to carry all three books. But the big book was pretty big and Momma didn't think girl child could carry all three. Girl child insisted on carrying all of them so Momma let her try. Girl child picked up the two little books and put them under her arm. She picked up the big book and it immediately started to drop toward the floor. Momma grabbed the book and girl child was off, going down the stairs. Where she promptly dropped the two little books.

Silly girl child, Momma knows best.

So K's dog, Brady, has picked up a mild case of fleas. 

I suspected he did when K showed up one day 

{oh yes, I forgot to mention that K has bought her own condo and moved out of our house}

with bites all over her ankles and the surrounding areas. I commented that they looked like flea bites but she assured me they were bug bites she got when she walked Brady one morning. I reiterated that they really looked like flea bites but she kept insisting they were mosquito bites.

Yeah, right.

Fast forward a couple days and I'm sitting in my living room. I was doing some needlework and saw a black speck on my thumb. Before I could identify it, it jumped. As soon as it jumped, I knew. And then I jumped.

The Man dragged out the vacuum and went crazy all over the house. 

I immediately texted K to tell her that her dog had fleas. And to check his skin for tiny black seed looking things. She examined him and texted back that she had found some. Gulp.

One call to the vet for tick medicine, a big bottle of flea and tick shampoo, and multiple loads of laundry with lots of vacuuming later, the fleas are gone.

Silly K, Momma knows best.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

To Autumn

My little reading nook on the back porch.

It's been fairly warm this fall so we've been able to sit outside and enjoy the lovely weather we've been having. There's a beautiful breeze that flits across this corner of the porch. It's almost always blowing. Best seat in the house on a hot day - shady and breezy.

Mom loves sitting out here too. She's coming home on Saturday and we are so excited to see her! The house feels empty and dark without her. I tell her that she must make lots of noise (no, she doesn't) and shed lots of light (yes, she does) to feel that way when she's off visiting one of her daughters.


I had to memorize a poem when I was in college for a poetry class. It was our final exam to recite the entire poem. The recent warm weather we've been enjoying reminded me of the first stanza. There are two more stanzas if you're interested in reading the entire poem but I've only shared the first one here.

"To Autumn" by John Keats

Seasons of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Reminiscing with Dad

A little fall vignette.

Not the best shot. It was a dark, rainy day and the light was not right. Shooting from the other side was worse. Blown out. Too much light from the window.


But I love the cranberry velvet pumpkin.


Had my dad over for dinner the other night. 

We got to talking about aging (that never goes anywhere good) and how much things have changed. We reminisced about days gone by and how simpler things were years ago. He told us about all the corner stores there were in the city he grew up in and the Man told us about corner stores in the town where he was raised. He told us about a candy/soda shoppe that only sold ice cream on one side and had a candy counter on the other side.

That sounded pretty perfect to me.

It was a different time back then. Big box stores didn't exist to the extent they do today. It seems like Amazon and Wal-Mart are taking over the world. The little mom and pop shops are getting harder and harder to find. It's pretty rare to find a shop with the owner running it. Dad said most of the stores from his childhood were run by the owner, who would sometimes be the only one working.

Then Dad said something that made me tear up. He said, "I feel like the world passed me by about 25 years ago." And the look on his face was wistful.

I wanted to tell him to let it. Things are more complicated now. It's tiresome trying to keep up with all the changes. My attitude is to keep up enough for life to work but that's it. I embrace some digital things, but not all. I'm on some social networks, but not all. And I shop at some big box stores, but not all. I try to buy local and from the mom and pops. Just because the world is racing by, it doesn't mean I have to run with it.

And finally, I'm going to reminisce with Dad as much as I can. He's comfortable in those memories and so am I.

Love you, Dad.