Sunday, June 30, 2019


Yesterday Hubby Tony and I took a picnic lunch to the park. We chose a table overlooking a nice lake and got out the food. Halfway through our meal Tony commented on the squirrel under the table. I looked down and there was indeed a squirrel....approximately 18 inches from my feet and headed my way. Yikes!

It's scurrying freaked me out, so I pulled my legs up so my feet were on the table bench and continued to watch what the little rodent was doing. It ran towards the lake, then decided to double back my way. When it came within a foot of me it stood up on its haunches and looked directly into my eyes.

The critter looked really well fed, and I'm guessing it was so used to getting food scraps from people it no longer had any fear of humans. However, when it didn't get any scraps from our table it scampered away and disappeared over the fence that led down to the lake, never to be seen again.

Thank goodness.
Yes, it was really as close as it looks

Five years ago today: Sneaky, Sneaky, Sneaky!

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Almost Healthy

The last time Hubby Tony had the guys over for poker he served chicken skewers, crusty bread, and cole slaw for dinner. Dessert was a decadent chocolate cake topped with scoops of vanilla frozen yogurt.

The leftover yogurt lived in the freezer for a couple of weeks. One night I decided to finish it off and free up some space. As I took the lid off I took a good look at the front. A seal on the right side of the label said it contains live and active cultures. I was skeptical of the claim. How could a culture live in freezing temperatures?

Turns out my skepticism was misplaced. According to the National Yogurt Association, that seal meant that my frozen yogurt had a minimum of 10 million cultures per gram when it was manufactured. I also learned from the Yogurt Association website that when yogurt is frozen
"The cultures go into a dormant state, but when eaten and returned to a warm temperature within the body, they again become active and are capable of providing all the benefits of cultures in a refrigerated yogurt product."
So since the yogurt helped improve my gut microbiome I didn't have to feel quite so guilty about all of the extra calories I ate.

Five years ago today: When Grandma Goes To Court

Monday, June 24, 2019

Puzzling Non-Parity

Today Hubby Tony and I were watching the USA/Spain FIFA Women's World Cup game. (Which the United States ended up winning 2-1).

The play by play announcing team did a good job, but I noticed that it was composed of one man and one woman. During halftime the studio commentator team had more females than males, but after the second half stated and they switched back to live action I began to ponder why the on-air team for a major woman's sports event couldn't be completely female.

The tournament has been held every four years since 1991. In more than two decades you'd think  there would have been one or two professional woman soccer players who were interested in performing at a professional level behind the microphone, too.

Five years ago today: Rain On Me

Friday, June 21, 2019

The Onset Of The Season

The Beach Boys singing "Good Vibrations". Is there a better way to celebrate the first day of summer?

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Sounds Like A Pretty Impressive Place

I was laying in bed half awake when my phone rang and woke me up the rest of the way. I didn't recognize the number, so instead of answering it I muted the ringer and went back to bed. When I eventually got up there was a voice mail waiting for me.

The voice mail was from an animal hospital in a time zone to the east of me (which explains why the call came in so early). The message started off with the name of the hospital and an instruction not to be alarmed, but they needed to ask a question about "Georgie", a pet who was there to be neutered. Immediately I realized that they had called my number by mistake, because I definitely had not dropped off a pet to be neutered.

I decided to call them back to let them know they hadn't reached the official pet owner. When the associate answered the phone she asked if I could hold for a minute. I agreed. The on-hold script featured a voice actor with a deep, smooth voice. He talked about the hospital's commitment to providing an environment where animals feels comfortable and safe, that they follow Canine and Feline Behavior Management Guidelines, have separate dog and cat entrances and waiting areas, pipe relaxing spa music into the rooms, use aromatherapy to reduce stress, and offer up-to-date pain management methods (with pre-operative, mid-operation, and post-operative pain killers).

I'm not sure, but I think that the pets that are lucky enough to go to this hospital get more compassionate care than some humans do.

Five years ago today: Just Another One Of The Crowd

Monday, June 17, 2019

Nothing New Under The Fashion Sun

I was at the mall the other day, and almost laughed out loud when I saw that the mannequin was wearing a fanny pack around her waist! How 1980's.

Back at home, a Google search revealed that the correct term for the accessory is now 'belt bag' or 'waist bag', but it's still the same thing with a different name.

Years ago I had several fanny packs. Eventually I got rid of  all of them but one, an orange and black nylon model with two zippered compartments-the large main section and another thin one on top. It comes in handy to hold my cell phone when I do yard work.

I'm rarely on the cutting edge of fashion, but if I wear my fanny pack out in public I guess I would be.

Five years ago today: Phone Vs Phone

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Happy Fathers Day

Wikipedia says that a Dad Joke is:
A short joke, typically a pun, presented as a one-liner or a question and answer, but not a narrative. Generally inoffensive, dad jokes are stereotypically told by fathers among family, either with sincere humorous intent, or to intentionally provoke a negative reaction to its "dagginess".
In honor of Father's Day, here are some good examples:
  • My wife is really mad at the fact that I have no sense of direction. So I packed up my stuff and right.
  • What do you call an elephant that doesn't matter? An irrelephant
  • I bought some shoes from a drug dealer. I don't know what he laced them with, but I was tripping all day!
  • If a child refuses to sleep during nap time, are they guilty of resisting a rest?
  • I thought about going on an all-almond diet. But that's just nuts
  • Did you hear the rumor about butter? Well, I'm not going to spread it!
  • What is the least spoken language in the world? Sign language
  • Want to hear a joke about construction? I'm still working on it.
  • Why can't you hear a pterodactyl go to the bathroom? Because the pee is silent.
  • I could tell a joke about pizza, but it's a little cheesy
  • If you see a robbery at an Apple Store does that make you an iWitness?
  • What’s an astronaut’s favorite part of a computer? The space bar.
  • What's the best part about living in Switzerland? I don't know, but the flag is a big plus.
  • To whoever stole my copy of Microsoft Office, I will find you. You have my Word!
  • What’s Forrest Gump’s password? 1forrest1
  • What do you call a fish without eyes? Fsh.
  • What did the buffalo say to his son when he dropped him off at school? Bison.
  • When does a joke become a dad joke? When it becomes apparent.
Five years ago today: Deliberately Discourteous

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Blues Win!

The first period was nerve-wracking, but the Blues scored first and never looked back.

Five years ago today: Clean And Pristine

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Hummer Time

Over the weekend Son Donald came for dinner. He brought me a belated Mother's Day present - a beautiful hanging basket filled with red and yellow petunias and calibrachoas.

I immediately put the basket on the deck, hanging it on a portable shepherd's hook next to the red bud tree. Ten minutes later we were all in the kitchen, where Hubby Tony pointed out that there was a tiny hummingbird sipping nectar from one of the blooms. I watched as it flitted from flower to flower for several seconds, then flew off.

I haven't seen the bird since then, but since the basket will be there all season I hope it comes back.

Five years ago today: Service Is Denied

Sunday, June 9, 2019


LGB (Let's Go Blues!)

Our city's St. Louis Blues played their first National Hockey League season in 1967. They've made it to the Stanley Cup finals several times, but have never been able to win. This might be their year, though.
  • In Round 1 the Blues defeated the Winnipeg Jets four games to two
  • In Round 2 the Blues defeated the Dallas Stars four games to three
  • In Round 3 the Blues defeated the San Jose Sharks four games to two
Now they're in the final round, playing against the Boston Bruins. The Blues lead the best-of-seven series three games to two. Ever since they won their game on Thursday the potential of bring home the Stanley Cup has been the talk of the town. People are wearing their team logo shirts, which in other years have already long been put away. The newspaper is full of ads with a team tie-in. Businesses all have Let's Go Blues signs. The song 'Gloria' by Laura Branigan is this year's team victory song, and when someone says "Play Gloria!" you know exactly what they're talking about.

Sunday is Hubby Tony's night to cook dinner, and he wanted a hockey tie-in before tonight's Game 6. Since there aren't a lot of blue foods he got creative, making some tasty Boston Baked beans (which we demolished!), and a spinach salad with blueberries and blue cheese.

Dessert was a chocolate hockey puck cake drizzled with blueberry syrup (and sherbet, just because).

It would have been nice to finish the series up tonight, but the Bruins ended up winning 5-1. Now all the excitement will be transferred to Wednesday night, when I hope the Blues will come out on top.

Five years ago today: Tear It Up

Thursday, June 6, 2019

No Hubby, No Go

This week my job was to have salespeople from three pre-selected companies come to my house to give me estimates for their products. I started setting up the estimates on Saturday.
  • Company #1 had a nice form on their website that let me choose my own date and time for the estimate. Just a couple of minutes after I sent the form through cyberspace I got an email confirming my choice.
  • Company #2 did not let me schedule online, but they had a nifty pop-up contact form. I entered my contact information, sent it off, and got a call back within a couple of minutes. The representative verified what I was looking for and suggested some appointment times. I chose the one that worked the best with my schedule.
  • Company #3 had a similar contact form on their website. Once again my phone rang almost immediately. After greeting me, the representative started the scheduling process by saying "Our company policy requires both homeowners present when we come to the house. Will that be a problem?"
I was really taken aback by the question. I replied that it would be a problem, because I was in charge of the project. The representative apologized, but repeated it was their company's policy. I had a couple of choices--continue to insist that they come out and talk to me only, or cross my fingers behind my back and agree to their terms. I chose the latter. (Asking Hubby Tony to come home from work to sit in on the presentation with me was not a choice.)

The first two appointments went off without a hitch. It was interesting to see how the companies tried to differentiate themselves. Of course each had the best products on the market, and their competitors was filled with flaws. The day before Company #3's appointment I got a reminder call, which again advised me of their company's policy. For the rest of the day I pondered how I should approach the topic when the sales representative walked in the door. Did I go on the offensive and insist on getting the information I was looking for, or apologize for being alone? Eventually I decided on a combination approach. As soon as the rep mentioned the topic I was going to apologize for Tony being gone, then immediately indicate I would record the presentation with my phone app so he could listen to it and be up to speed in on all the details.

In the end, the rep could have cared less that I was by myself. He was a nice guy, gave me a great presentation of his company and products, wrote out an estimate for me, and told me to contact him if I had any additional questions. He did offer a discount that was only good if the contract was signed on the spot (which I guess is the reason they insist both homeowners are there), but Tony and I wouldn't have done that anyway.

Five years ago today: Instant Garden

Monday, June 3, 2019

Seedlings, Shoots, and Sprouts

At this time of year Mother Nature is busy producing new vegetation. Which means I have to keep busy making sure that vegetation is growing only where it belongs.


We have a large maple tree in the front and back yard, and our neighbor to the left of us has one in his front yard, too. That means there's a lot of helicopter seeds flying through the air in the late spring. After they land the 'wings' quickly disintegrate, leaving no evidence of where they landed. Until a tree sprouts up. See the four arrows and circles in the photo? Those are wannabe trees that weren't there yesterday. They're all gone now, pulled up and tossed in the compost pile.

It's time to get some mulch on this bed!


Years ago I bought a six pack of white alyssum at the garden center. They grew well in the west-facing bed by the front door, getting three inches tall and spreading out to almost a foot in diameter. Since that time they've self-seeded and come back prolifically each year.  If I didn't cull some of the sprouts the bed would be completely covered with the tiny white flowers.  For example, you would think this is one cute little plant, right?  It's actually three individual ones. Two of them got pulled up, leaving just one to spread out.


I don't remember planting purslane in this flower pot, but the surface of the soil is covered in hundreds of its tiny shoots. They're actually doing better than the impatiens and the coleus I put in there this year, so in this instance I may just let the seedlings take over.

Five years ago today: Computer Assistant