a heart is captive

a heart is captive

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Gemini Ice Storm

I pulled up my big girl panties, put on my llBean boots and ice cleats. Took a snow shovel, the ice scraper, car keys. I then shoveled down the back deck stairs. Bashing and cracking the thick crust of ice the had encased the powder snow. In some places the ice was 2 inches thick. This is one time being "weighty" helps. With cleats on boots I could break through the ice sheets and tread on snow. I crunched through the back dooryard until I found the car. The sun is shining and the back window was clean. I unlocked the car door and it opened like it was not entombed in crystal ice. I then slid into the car and started it. No doubt Toyota is a nice car. I did get stuck though. My cleats lodged in the carpet and my knee was wedged under the steering wheel. My cleats fell off the boot that was still out side on the ice. Ice is slick, slippery, no forgiveness for the sole of an uncleated boot. I was stuck! I was swearing, then I was laughing. MY GOD I was so funny! The car was on and I turned the CD on and the air was blowing and the defrost was on. I managed to work my stuck cleated booted foot so I could move enough to get off my hip and on my butt. I was successful. I took the cleats off & closed the car door. I saw the most amazing event. The ice melt under the layer of ice ---as thick as a pane of glass--- was moving and began to float the ice sheet on my window. I got out after putting the cleats back on since the ice on the ground was a skating rink, I chipped chipped a bit and within an hour I was able to move the whole ice sheet and break it off the window. I clean a bit off the head lights. Once the car was drivable I drove to the front yard. It is not parked for the Old One to get in the front seat but I need gas anyway and she can ride in the back seat to the gas station. I have the wipers freed up and it is 17 degrees F (-8C).
I did not hurt myself, I did not twist a knee or ankle. I did not fall. It is a good day. I hope the gas station has power tomorrow! Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Real conversation in NY between Pakistani/Indian prime ministers.

By Abdul Qudus humorist writer
>Sharif: Hello dehati aurat(village woman) how are you ? Manmohan: Hello chubby, the toady of Zia the hick, what is aurat ? Sharif: Oh, you know matiar(Woman in Punjabi), but our ISI goofed off ! Matiars do not have beard and turbans. By the way who gave you this turban, our Talibans must have made a mistake. Manmohan: Just like Talibans I like turban, but I do not like black & white, I prefer blue. Sharif: Oh, I see; can we talk about some business, like Kashmir ? Manmohan: Of course, yes we banyas(hindu businessmen) like business, I assume you are telling me you have decided to accept us as your most favorite business partner. Sharif: Not that yet, I was talking about Kashmir. Manmohan: Oh, Mian Jee you are such a charming joker ! But for a young man your memory is not good. Sharif: What do you mean Sardar Jee ? Manmohan: Pssssss, I am not a real Sardar Jee, this turban and beard is a disguise to show the world we respect & treat our minorities equally well. Sharif: OK, ok, I did not get your point about my memory. Manmohan: Oh, Mian saheb no one told you Kashmir was sold by Britons to Raja(my great great granduncle) for 45 00,000.00 rupees. Sharif: Now I remember in my school an old teacher told us that, he also said Kashmiris were also sold with the land. But how Civilized Britons could have sold Kashmiris too, I thought they abolished slavery long time ago. Manmohan: Oh, Mian saheb you make me laugh, Kashmiris were not sold as slaves, they were part of the package deal, they are called surfs. Sharif: So what are surfs ? Manmohan: My poor dear, I can not teach you the Russian history; you better get a crash course in history from a professor from Jinnah university. Sharif: Do you mean Quaid-e-Azam university ? Manmohan: Yes, that one, he was not really a Quaid(leader), otherwise you would be following him. Sharif: Then you think it is not an issue ? Manmohan: You got it chap. Listen I got to go, I have to report this to Sonia & her cohorts, you know I am just a show boy. Sharif: Just like that ? Manmohan: Yes, and please bring the handover papers of what you call AJK (Pakistani Kashmir).
Sharif: But, but.... Manmohan: No but, but.... just be an honest Muslim and give our land back to us, our official western boundary is River Indus. Sharif: Thank you for being so open minded, and understanding...... Manmohan: Any time my boy, we have some other issues to resolve too. Sharif: Alright sir, I will go and talk to ISI and Talibans, they are the rulers of Pakistan, I am just the figurehead. Manmohan: We know that, we have been paying them for quite sometime, bye.... Sharif: Bye, thank you for enlightening me.
to be continued.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Welcome all my Friends to the Show that Never Ends

I walked away from religion when I realized all I was wanting was just a little normal and not so much tragic, not so much horrible...I got tired for thanking god for something bad not happening...for then thanking god for not making the bad even worse. It was then I realized how nasty this god was if that was the best I could hope for with all my devotions and prayers.

I was pious and devout. I was not a fanatic but a quiet religious person...for decades I felt a contentment in the ritual that I embraced as not empty but full of the wonder of god. Until a small cat suffered and died for no reason except god willed it. I thought it was the will of god....then I thought....and thought some more that if this was the will of god this god was some nasty piece of work.

One day during a prayer I head myself begging this nasty being to allow me some comfort in my hours of real suffering. Just a moment of peace to abate the fears. Just a feeling of peace to enter this torment. Nothing. I knew then that it was not that god was nasty. The simply was no god to hear. Or maybe god could not help me then what was the use....then I was back to a nasty god...then I settled on the Nothing. Once I embraced that concept that nothing was hearing me, that there was nothing that could influence my inner self but me( with a lot of work) I felt a huge burden lift from my heart, my stooped shoulders. There was fresh air as the door to the prison opened....the door was never locked and I just had to se the handle and open. It took s bit of time to leave the door way since I knew once I left I would never want to go back. Many had returned. But not me! If was to free myself I would do it like I did most of my life.... leave the past and never look back.
My imaginary religion was a great castle huge and beautiful safe....but there was always something sinister lurking in the courtyards.......Once I stepped through the door I walked to the meadow and the forest. I knew I was on my own. I could not ask for help. Then I laughed and said When did I ever get any help anyway?! Yes I was alone now. But had I not always been alone in the dark?
So dear friends that is how I escaped. It is hard to most people to escape. I am not bitter at those who stay but I am sorry for them but never would I encourage them to leave the castle. Most people can not endure life as a fully adult thinker responsible for all their actions and thoughts. I am now a kinder person because it is the right thing to do, not for some after death reward. I now live and relish this life since it is all I will have. I may recycle back. I am not sure of the other ideas that have invaded religions besides a god/gods/goddesses. There is no proof or anything god or not. Except what happened to me when asked for a simple thing as a moment of peace in the midsts of my storm way back when. I am content to live each day with its frustrations and troubles but I now know it is just the life and not some punishment or reward. It is easy to do the right thing and it is easy to be thankful for life each day.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Changes Back Again

Since I invited my elderly aunt to live with me when her home was taken away from her, I knew I would not ask her to become a vegetarian since she was 95. I thought she would not last the year once I saw how fragile and decrepit she was when I arrived in California to pack her up. After my own move, moving her from California to Maine, moving into a fixer upper, my own illness I would just suck it up and eat meat with her. I really thought she was a short term resident here. However she is now 96, recovered, and doing well. She is walking more, eating more, tends to her own needs like some 80 in good shape. I, on the other hand can not eat another bit of animal. So today I am making flarn (seitan) and will cook everything veg except for her meat.
I already get nauseous when I heat up her milk for cafe au lait. I kept my soy milk and use it in cooking. So it is just the meals that need to be divided. I think I can handle the extra work. I have eaten around the meat for a week or more now. To be honest eating the stuff has not brought about any longing to continue eating meat. Many former vegetarians said once they ate meat they were hooked again. Not me. I think about tofu with longing. I am trying the crockpot to simmer the flarn. I have not made it in a long time. Smells good.
It was easier for me this past year since I was exhausted with the stress of the last few years. Now it is easier to go back. Few people judged me, and if they did let them walk in my shoes. Another thing will be welcome my food budget will go down! Meat is freaking expensive! I just need to keep well so the little extra work is not hard on me. Thank goodness flarn can be frozen!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

House Update

I have begun painting the upstairs bathroom. I am using the same paint I used on the porch out front. I figured that a damp place should have waterproof paint. The floor was so ugly anything would have improved it. I am so happy I chose the color Stonehedge it is a greenish grey. Once dry it looks like slate with the subtle sheen. It is nice underfoot. Of course now it has cat prints in the Swedish blue I just painted the window sills with. It needed another coat anyway. It is hard to paint a floor in the damp weather and my window of painting opportunity is small. This paint takes longer to dry. I may have to paint with a space heater blowing in the bathroom a little later.
Today I wanted to play with the paint and do the walls. Punkee rushed the door and was upstairs and would not come down. So I swore at him and did what I could with him bouncing off the walls and meowing all over. I just had the new paint roller cover and could not find it, add some more frustration to the cat being in the cat free zone. So I decided to just paint what I could reach with my paint brush. After Punkee left foot prints on the floor I locked him in the hall. Now I am upset and into a flopsweat. I calm a bit while admiring the color as it goes on the door and other window sill. There is a warm breeze blowing through the wide open windows. The color is amazing. I love it. I am splattering on to the floor but it needs a second coat anyway....... Now the breeze turns cold or is my sweat causing it.....
The nice thing about this paint is it stretches, slip resistant, fills cracks, smoothes splinters, mildew resistant, and is water proof. It will seal the 112 years old plaster nicely. I rather keep the plaster since dry wall molds at a drop of a hat here and even old plaster is better than the new drywall.
The floor color is beautiful, Looks like slate and I will paint the upper hall floor the same color and the lower hall too. Now there is very old wood look linoleum over boards. This is brittle and does not wash well. So it needs to come up. I will fill the gaps since I see daylight from the first floor. This paint will seal the gaps once the gaps have extra caulk. I will have slip resistant floors....a good safety feature.
And all for the price of a can of paint.....about $54.

Monday, August 5, 2013

What the Internet Is to Me

Last night I could not get to sleep, so I was thinking about things....everything from what color to paint the floor to why many of my relatives are so crappy. I then drifted to the "community" I have on the internet. I am mostly at G+ and breeze into FB to check things out. I shop online, bank, get my news and weather, socialize and more. So the internet is where I live.
I am new to this physical area and there is no real "life" in these small communities where everyone was born and grew up here. To me this is not a virtual world since I am not different online than in person. And all of those I socialize with are real people. I have not hidden here. I am open and honest with my views and I am willing to change my mind when I am wrong during debates and conversations. I do know not everyone is as I am.... open and honest, but I get a feeling that those I socialize with the most are more like me than hidden psychos/slashers-stalkers.
So the old life of going to work and to other social places to meet and visit with people is not an option and it really no longer exists here anymore. To be new to an area is not easy, but with the internet I can bring everyone and all the things I do with me. I can share the new adventure with those I feel like I know. I am not too close to blood relatives and there are no old friends looking me up on the net from my long ago past. SO here is the best I can do. And that is great! I am older yet still young feeling I am not ones mother(except cats) no one's grandma so I am still learning and doing new things at my advanced old age. I will grow old gracefully and on the net since this is where life is now.
This is a wonderful invention and a scary place to be but it is all there is now. And I am OK with that.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Death Comes to Us All

Death will come to all of us. Anything that exists will cease to be at some point in time. Humans and the non-human people of our planet will all die. As will plants and anything that lives. All Dies.
I am the keeper of the Elderly of my family at this time. The Old Ones include cats and an Aunt and myself although I am not yet in the elderly category.

This new century has seen many deaths.
Most of them were murders by governments desiring to kill others in make believe wars. These people like to kill others since they can not imagine that life is sacred.

I am writing about those loved ones who have died of old age or disease. Most I have known die too early and it is such a tragedy to see the young die. Then it is the elderly who must depart this world for parts unknown. I do not have any first hand knowledge of anything after this life. And I will leave that as is.
Now at this moment a very nice cat is leaving this world. K3. He is a champagne blond circle stripe cat. He came to live with us in 2005... already an old cat. He was a nice cat although hated taking medicine. He was born in Texas and will die in Maine. We all moved to Maine over a year ago. He has been happy, well fed, and has had a lap anytime he wanted one. He dies now.

K3 told me a few days ago he was planning to leave. He sat with me for a long time and then got up and wondered around the house sleeping in all his favorite places…. bathroom sink, shelf in the bathroom, in the bay window of the day room, under the sofa on the sofa, under the chair and stretched out on the floor in the sun. I looked for him this morning and he came out when I sat in my chair. I held him for about 45 minutes and then he wanted off to the floor. Death is not sudden for many.

Each of us will take what time we need to pass over the Rim of the Known to the Unknown. We have known cockroaches who have taken days for the life to leave their tiny bodies. Some people roll over and are gone before we realize they were going. Most are in between.

Some time ago we abandon the Vet Put Down when we realized the Vets we had were just looking for income not real care for our babies. We felt ashamed at using their euthanasia, their coldness towards our grief. Like human doctors many now go into the business for the big bucks they can make off the suffering of others. Our animal companions are treated like the Humans now….a cash making machine.

So that is why I care for the dying at home. I am there to comfort, their brothers and sisters can see them and understand why they do not get up. Too many times I had cats meow for the lost ones who died at the vets and never came home. Now they can say their goodbyes and know where they have gone.
I will dig a grave in my new grave yard already with two elderly babies who have left us since we arrived in Maine. I am planning proper landscaping for the area where Sherin and Scholar now lay. Where K3 will lay when he is ready.
Death comes to all of us and when our loved ones die they stay in our hearts and rip a piece out of our being. It is the Tapestry of a life becoming unraveled, the multi-lighted sign with the missing bulbs and soon the sign will give more dark than give light as we live longer. It is the coat of many colors with holes that can not be patched and soon will offer no warmth.

I looked up Death Throes and this is not what K3 is doing. He is not suffering but letting the life leave him. He is close by and not alone. His life had value to his family and will be missed. And he will be remembered.
All life should have value, yet we human beings seem to take little interest in real life and relish taking life. We do not mind letting the living suffer, keeping people alive after they should have passed over. We use our science and technology not to make life better for all but to make it easier to kill many.
I watch my little kitty die before my eyes and will not look away from his last moments of being alive. I loved him all the way and I will be with him all the way. He has given me much from just living with me and I owe him my respect.
At 11:15am K3 departed to the next phase of life. He is buried.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

An update of my life.

So it is Summer and the last day of July. My first July in Maine. I love it. I have been painting the porch. I also opened the front doors so I can use the small porch for the trash cans. They are closer to the street, fit the space and it is nice to get them off the Big porch so sitting there is a pleasure... like an outdoor cafe. Today the floor of the small porch gets painted and then as weather permits I can finish the details. I can not get a glass door for the double front Tombstone 112 year old door for a price I can afford. So I will get it weather stripped and make a Chinese door quilt for it. I still need to remove the old wooden storm doors. I just need the light and access. The old doors still let in the cold so it will not be a great loss. I love having the exit work and the windows in the dark hall.
The colors were carefully chosen to look warm and pretty in the cold and grey days. So far it has worked. Burgundy and Tea Rose. Girly colors? No! Happy warm colors for an old house. Every house is white except for 3 on this street. My house is white with black shutters. So the Burgundy and Rose are pretty with the ferns, not some puritan colorings of boring and stunted.
I have some easy ideas for decorating this place. The plaster walls do not like even the lightest weight pictures so some of my art needs to be put some where else for now. I live for anachronism so I will have an inside out house. I will have a Christmas tree this year and not worry about the cats! I will show you later on.
So on this the last day of July my life is still interesting. The Old One is fine and enjoying herself. I have Daisy and I love her( she was my daughter in a former life )The sun is out and the clouds are decorative. The breeze full of the ocean.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Now and Then

This new century has not been a good one for me. 13 years into it and I can't see much good has come out of it. I am OK, I own my homes and cars. However I can not find quality products in the stores or online. I am in a new climate and need some warmer clothes. When I can see through the winter weight tee shirts I just bought and then hold them up to my old regular tee shirts I have had since the 1990s then I know quality has plunged down like an avalanche. Sizes of clothes is no longer consistent, I have no idea what size I wear until I buy it and try it on. I have no stores to shop in so it is all catalog and online now. I have shopped these catalogs for decades and even that is not helpful. So sizes are all over the place. Quality has nothing to do with price or label. Even the name of the color is not helpful anymore. So buying clothes is a crap shoot. Buying one or 2 sizes larger than recommended by the instructions is best since 8 times out of 10 they will be too small or too big, But mostly not designed for a human figure but for the neck of Jabba the Hut, the boobs of Dolly Parton and the arms of Olive Oil. Slacks are another area of concern. No more length just about 6 inches too long so it will fit a basket ball player. I guess I could hem them but.....
So clothes are no longer easy to buy from season to season. Warm clothes do not come in sizes over size 14. So I layer layering needs several sizes so one will fit over the other.......

After clothes house hold items are the next on the list of next to useless no matter what the price. A brand name used to mean something but now everything is made in China and most likely by the same companies that are making everything there......

Computers once had a certain cache but now they are all alike except for price. My first new computer was the iMac bondi blue. Had it 10 years. Came with everything needed already on the computer, Easy to run, turn it on and it worked no funny business. Now even Apple is made in China and comes with not much pre-installed even though it is two or three or four times the price of other makes. Apple abandons its products and leaves their owners twisting in the wind (like my G5). Whatever mystique they had of being a fine product is just hype now, all made in China and too expensive for what you do not get now. There is no great easy to use computer out there....I thought there would be by now since all the world is run by computers. If I was not connected to the net and living in the middle of nowhere I would give up on computers however I shop 90% via the computer and have things delivered. From cat sand and food to coffee and flour....so I am hooked on this addictive drug. However even in the stores there is not much of a choice in quality price yes but not much difference from a cheap product and the middle product. I can not afford the high end stuff..that is for the 7% who have all the money.

Groceries have caused the biggest secret hit to the standard of living. Every food and cleaning product has lost contents. There are no quarts or pints and it is not even in metric. We all watched coffee dwindle to 10 ounces to the pound some are 9 and 3/4. Now even a gallon of paint is not a full gallon. Ice cream is not longer a half gallon and few things are sold in pound packages anymore 12 ounces is the new pound. Since no one mentioned the peanut butter going to 15 ounces it was able to slide to 13 and 12 ounces. Cat food lost a full ounce per can and when one is feeding 17 cats that adds up to some one going hungry or more money needed to buy the same amount.
It is not easy to see until you start to read labels and by then it is too late. We are paying more for less. Business is reaping the profits. While we wonder why that was used up so fast or why the pain is not covering the wall.....how can you calculate gallons needed when the paint is no longer in gallons or even metric!
Life is getting weird. I notice these things since I pay attention. Nothing is as it seems anymore and nothing is really better. A new computer is the same price and is not any better when it needs to have more installed to have what it once had already there 17 years ago. The good old days are real and over.... way over... and now it is just a down hill slide. But no one sees this as a problem except me.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Spring Projects

It is nice weather and I need to continue fixing this house. I am on to a small major project. I am creating an office/play room for me and turning the current are used for the office space into a peaceful shrine area. The hall way to nowhere is now the office it is 37 inches wide and 10 feel long. Anyone who knows me knows it is a snug fit. It is DARK since there is a storm door over the front door and all manner of padded stuff to block the the wind since the storm door is a joke. Once I get a real glass door to go over the antique door then some light will get in there. I am painting the downstairs entry hall ( which is the same place BTW) A yellow color called Wildflowers. My BFF loves yellow and I always fell wonderful in her house so I love yellow too. Anything to add some warmth and humanity to that black space of doom. Since I have a whole house of Nellie furniture I need to use it where it fits. I have my mother's old desk which I will paint and make beautiful in the hall office/entry/stairwell place now. It fits at the end of the narrows.

Since the creep who had this house before me cheated and put fake phone jacks and fake electrical outlets all over; I need to get new jacks and outlets. So this "room" has the phone jack and the plug for fax, printer, computer and the like.

However the downstairs almost guest room has outlet and working jack. So I am moving the office into the guestroom. I need to keep the huge heavy ship bed in the room. good thing it is a twin. As soon as I can I paint that oak! I hate the look of OAK. But anyway I need to move the moveables from the hall/office/entry. Then paint the far wall and side walls wildflower. I will move a Chinese looking red and yellow chest of aunties there (it will fit with space); move the Chinese looking black chest of auntie's into the living room where the red chest is now and then the desk will fit in the little room that will be the office and play room. I need to paint that room, too.

It will have 2 wall deep reddish orange-ish and two wall in a color called Mother Earth. Mother Earth will also be in the living room and day room. The Day room also will have the same red on the bay window wall. I have the curtains already and it will look nice. The office will have the same curtains. A silk taupe/ brown/cream-gold plaid..... they are beautiful. The new playroom has sun all day from morning to night is the warmest room and 2 windows and a great view for each window.

I am also starting a new garden hobby indoors..... Terrariums! Auntie has these giant jars and we have cats who munch plants so terrariums are the perfect answer...plants under glass! All the first stuff is ordered and it will be fun.

So the new projects will begin today first cleaning the area out so I can get to the walls it will be an easy
(FLW?) painting job since it is a small area. The cat Buddha is on order, the picture of my saint( FDR) is ready to be hung and the incense is ready to go. As I find other dead people pictures they will go up on the ancestor wall and have their incense too. It will look good.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Kitchen Quest

I have always designed kitchens. I started as a teen when I became interested in interior design. I loved to cook and still do. However my quest has always been for a simple functional kitchen that is not a monument to monument materials and taking up so much space. Over the years I have kept notebooks with the details of what I loved, liked, and hated about every kitchen I saw or lived with. I have clipping from magazines since 1960s on of kitchens. I lived with a refugee kitchen for 5 years and now know what is important and what is useless for me to function in. I do not need a huge stove. I use at the very most two burners and only to boil pasta or the Aunty's eggs. I used to just use the tea kettle for hard cooked eggs, but soft cooked is another story. So all I need is 2 burners (really only one). I do need an oven since I rather bake my own bread. I could try the toaster oven to bake the bread but I have not as yet and have not baked in a few months. I would like an oven that has a side opening door and at a non back breaking height. Bending over to lift something from an oven is hard and dangerous with cats and easy to burn my knees. The racks pull best from the front and then I need to bend over the open door and reach in to pull the rack...NOT designed by anyone who cooks.

The refrigerator is another problem. I hate the one I am forced to use. I can not reach to the back of the 2 top shelves. The pull out bottom freezer is not as handy as I once thought a bottom freezer would be. The french door is a nightmare and I hate the refrigerator over all. Not a handy or useful feature I would keep from it. I do not need a big refrigerator and this one is best for a large family, not me and an Old lady or just the sweetie and me.
so it needs to go.

The sink is a double sink with no useable space larger than a saucer at the bottom. The faucet/tap does not stick out far enough to fill a kettle, nor is the section in the middle useful or appreciated. One sink with a tap that can service a kettle or large pot is desired.

I find I rather use an electric skillet to cook in rather than the open flame of the stove. The open gas flame is a nuisance and I hate the idea of setting the pot holder or cat on fire.

Counter space is just another word for a place to junk up and cats to lay on. The ones I have here looks generous but were installed by a moron and they tilt forward just enough so things can roll off. Plus they are too high. I decent work table will let me do all manner of cooking, bakin, and crafting when the mood strikes me.

So what I want and need is a work counter to plug in the various electric things I want and have....skillet, rice cooker. food processor, crock pot, toaster oven, microwave, coffee pot, tea kettle. However I do not want them all in the same place. I want a coffee/tea area with toaster oven, and microwave to warm my milk for my coffee( Maine is cold and I like warmed milk) maybe a small fridge for the milk butter jam bread.
Then I need an area to wash up the dishes, plug in the skillet, crock pot food processor waffle iron (whatever is needed for the meal in question). A work table can be the eating at table. And a pantry to hold the food, appliances, and dishes. Some drawers for the towels and flatware. One junk drawer and I an set.
Everything thing is big and bigger and biggest.

My room to accommodate all this is also the main entrance to the house so this room must look nice all the time. I have many ideas and am radical enough to do it my way~

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Good Enough

I live in my own world of good enough. I am painting my bedroom a deep shade of chocolate brown- over the 112 year old white plaster walls that if I had any real money should be redone. There are a lot of places that are good enough painted since the drapes cover the area up, or a piece of big furniture. The plaster is not smooth but has little dips that are hard and maddening to get the paint into, tiny, tiny little dips; but step 2 feet away and those white spots are gone. So good enough. For the other rooms a different roller head will be used, more nappy, for the texture that can't be seen. If I was like my Mom nothing would ever be done since I do not follow all the steps. I do not do all the prep work and will paint over some dust. I barge right in a do it and it looks good enough for my lifetime.

I really do not care what others think when they buy this house. They will not like the color anyway. The person who had this house before me was not even up to my level of good enough. He was a beef-witted person who had no sense of aesthetics. The rumors about him may be true.

I use the good stuff, wear the fancy stuff and do not save anything anymore for special occasions.....everyday I am alive is a special occasion. I will let the dishes go if I am tired and just go to bed. I will not vacuum now if the weather is rare and the porch is calling me. I do watch the stars and moon and sunrises and sun sets. I even watch the wood rats come and eat at the feeder. If I let the chipmunk and squirrels eat why not the wood rats? I feed the pigeons & starlings along with the more showy birds. They are all my cousins on this earth. I share what I have.

It is Easter tomorrow and even though I am over the religion bit, I like the idea of the Spring festival of flowers, decorated eggs, bunnies, and even the Jesus story is nice. I watched my favorite Jesus story yesterday and may watch it again( Jesus Christ Super Star). I will not dye eggs this year since I need to still get this house up to good enough, but next Spring? I will try. And the eggs I buy are already a nice brown color. The cats( inkee, sherin, & sidney) like a scrambled egg in the morning and I oblige them.

So what else is good enough? Ah that is still yet to be done to that level. But soon this house house will be good enough and look nice. And if a person is welcomed and served something nice and the chat is good is than not Good Enough?

Monday, March 25, 2013

An Idea I have had for Decades

The world is an ever changing place, and to meet the challenges as quickly as possible to avert major economic and social hardships new solutions to the problem of affordable housing need to be started now. Everyone deserves a safe, clean, secure place to live. Yet the industrialized nations also need to limit their carbon footprint.
In Europe and North America there are far too many homeless people, and far too many isolated people struggling to make ends meet in over priced apartments, living with slobs for room mates, or needing to commute from reasonably priced housing to the city for their work. New housing uses more resources than needed per individual for an environmentally friendly lifestyle. Simply put individual houses and self contained apartments use more resources. Also there are those who need to travel to jobs as itinerant workers or temporary workers, but still need reasonable and secure homes for shorter periods of time or a home to come back to.
The new age solution is an olden days staple- The Boarding House. A modern take on the old boarding house is a workable solution to many social and environmental problems in today’s society.
First, what was a Boarding House?
A Boarding House was a two to four story house that had rooms on each floor, each floor having a bath room and toilet room to be shared by those on the floor. The rooms were furnished; some were spacious with a separate sitting area, some were smaller with just a bed, dresser, closet, an easy chair, table and lamp. All the room rents included two meals a day- Breakfast and Supper. Some had Tea time and sack lunches available.
The residents and the owner/operator ate in the dinning room, with fixed times for meals. There could be a common room for receiving visitors, conversation, music or other activities-like card games, jigsaw puzzles and the like.
Single men, women, couples with-out children, widows, widowers, retired elders, and traveling business people frequented these places. Long term residency was common with some Houses having extra rooms to let on a weekly basis. Today a mix of people will also be residents.
Retired, widowed, young adults starting out, and those in between need a safe, secure, and friendly place to live. With wages falling, the idea of ownership of a house or setting up house in an apartment has become the impossible dream or the nightmare of living above one’s means for many people; as well as isolating and using more resources than needed for a comfortable life.
The Boarding House of today and the future would cater to individuals of similar needs such as Vegans and Vegetarians. A mix of ages and genders is optimal for a family like setting to keep individuals from becoming isolated and the related ills with isolation. Structure of a home-like atmosphere as well as the freedom of independent living combine to become the ultimate safety net to avoid homelessness and reckless behaviors. It also allows for individuals to put money aside, live a more green lifestyle since less resources are needed to accommodate the 8-20 people in one house rather than individual apartments & houses, lessen commutes, thus traffic congestion. A Boarding House gives security to the residents - how many people have some one that can be called in case of emergency? Who will know if you are over due getting home from your day, or not up for breakfast? Who will know if you were living alone? An example of why this matters is a colleague of mine- an unmarried woman who had a small home did not show up for work after a 3 day weekend. After calling her phone number it was decided to go to her house and the police were called and she was found dead of an apparent fall in the bathroom- had she lived with someone or was a resident of a Boarding House she would have had someone hear her calls for help, been attended to, and not died.
Boarding Houses should be owner operated and not corporate chains. This as a cottage industry would employ people, add to income and create a more friendly, caring society.
With all the modern technology -wifi, cable, cell phones, head phones, people can live with each other and still have a nice amount of privacy. If the idea of shared bathroom facilities are incompatible, then the new smaller all in one bathrooms can be added to the remodeling and retro fitting of buildings that could be converted into Boarding Houses. An ideal is to have these boarding houses in the cities, on the public transit systems, in mixed use neighborhoods. Areas of cities that once were mixed commercial can be revitalized with residents and vacant areas adjacent to the houses can be gardens where flowers and vegetable can be grown by the residents and owner.
There are many levels of service that a Boarding House can provide- laundry, meals of course, internet, cable. The idea is to have less space and resources used by just one person- such as a 4 room apartment ( bedroom, living room, bathroom, kitchen) and all the paraphernalia that goes with housekeeping contribute to a more green society.
Making meals in itself is a time consuming process that needs special equipment, planning, shopping, and clean up. Many single people either don’t eat correctly leading to illness, obesity, over thinness, or eat out adding to the cost of living and added cost of the useless complete kitchen space in the rented apartment. Sharing meals has been proven to bring people together, creating compassion, camaraderie, better nutrition and mental health.
The convenience of a Boarding House is no room mates from hell and no isolation. The people who will work in service to the house- an honorable, useful job- can get room and board with a small salary for their time and work. Running a boarding house is like running a family- there is cleaning, cooking, shopping, paying the bills as well as the joy of a friendly home and companionship. With these chores out of the way the residents can be relieved of the added stress of a household albeit a one person household- in the times of job insecurity and dwindling paychecks.
Boarding Houses can accommodate pets, and other essentials of living well. The cost to live in a Boarding House should be less than an apartment with as much opportunity for privacy. The responsibility of the residents is to be clean, tidy, have cordial behavior to all or out they go- unlike the room mate on the lease!
Unlike a co-op living arrangements where everyone is suppose to pull their share of work, and we all know they do not, the Boarding House takes care of the cleaning, cooking, and laundry. The resident keeps his or her room neat and tidy, leaves the shared bath room ready for the next user, and the common rooms also neat and tidy. Responsibility and a safe, affordable home- a win-win solution for many of societies people as well as the developed world using less of the finite resources.
The Modern Boarding House is one solution for Europe’s and North America’s housing and societal ills in the face of dwindling paychecks, isolation of single individuals, land use, and the decline of the current standard of living of the Western world. It will be much easier to relocate for work, sit tight when unemployed, and still not face living on the streets. Change should now start to be for the better. It is time to come full circle.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

A little slice of life ( mine)

When I look at all the retro items for sale and bringing high money, I like a lot of it but stop fast when I think for me in my home it will just look like an old lady lives here like I saw when I was y'alls age. Crap, that is just what I need is to be reminded I am closer to the grave than most of you.
I feel like I am living with a teenager though....this old lady stays up late watching TV and sleeps 'til 10 and has breakfast at 11:30am. I am popping up at dawn and dragging me to bed after 8 since I was able to convinced her to got to her room by then, but I still need to clean the place before I can go up. I am dying here people. This is one of the big reasons I hate cable....one is a slave to the time the program is on or one needs to get all manner of electronic crap to to record stuff...I rather rent or buy DVDs and watch when I feel like watching.
Last night I did see a super episode of Dr Who, I do not have it in my set so I need to get it (I hate commercials but love the time outs to hit the head) Was that Timothy Dalton as a Time Lord? I really enjoyed the show but hated dragging me up at after 11pm. The years I spent in the theater when we did not get home until 5am are long over and I now know why the old guest director left the early!
My Circadian Rhythms are out of whack since the time change and being in a Northern latitude when the days get much longer fairly fast is not helping. I pop up at dawn, the new wall color is helping and will help once it is finished.
I feel busy in the mornings and late afternoons. I like a movie or an episode of a program at 1pm. supper by 5 and up stairs to relax, shower and read by 7. I am at my best with this schedule and need to be at my best.
So I have a person who has done her own things at her own times all her life living with me. I need to move her into my schedule since I am the one who does all the work. I feel like I am being a bit disrespectful but if it is not my way it is a nursing home for her.
I am ready for Spring. Winter was nice but I need a bit warmer weather to get my outside tidy and looking nice.
So this slice of life is brought to you by me!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

A Weekend of Fear

Yes, it has been a hard several days. I made an important decision and need to talk to the person in question. I am on a roller coaster of emotion if she says no. I need to wait until Monday. I admit I need help in this house. I am in pain at times that nothing makes go away. I have modern medical money makers to thank for the muscle damage I have. So I wait and have these impossible conversations in my head, which is nothing new. I have done this since childhood, as an only child I had no one to talk to. And I did not invent an imaginary friend until a few years ago and he is not much help at this time. Although he did push me a bit to make this decision. As much as I tried I could not do what I thought I could do, or used to do. Times have changed so much. I was using an interesting website last night and my bit of money I get each month was worth $10,000 in 1932! I was watching a movie from the year and plugged in the numbers. Today I can't rent a flea bag apartment for the money I get!
So getting a village girl to come in and be a house helper is impossible. She needs more money than I have to just make her ends meet. Society has become so fractured that people rather do nothing than stoop to be a house helper....unless it pays very well......then, even then, there is a stigma or something to be "in service". In service... what we all do in a way when we work for someone else.

If there were real universal health care in this country then I could hire someone and not worry about the benefits I can not pay that a human being needs. If there were a real mind set change in this country then others would not feel that "in service" was somehow beneath them as honest and useful work.
Society has changed so much that it is really not better. Not really. We are isolated from the neighbors and uncaring about the needs of others that we could be of service to. I was a nanny for a summer, then a primary care giver. I also am educated and was a college teacher for a while too. Now I am alone and overwhelmed with duty and my own desires for my end of the road life. I never wanted much and now I am holding on to what ever I have so I do not fall into the abyss. I hope there is good news on Monday.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Bits and crumbs

So the speakers are upstairs, as is the new space heater still in its box, of course mine that was not working decided to work the day before this replacement came in.....the table is downstairs and I painted a swath of wall with the sample paint.... it is a chocolate brown... my curtains look very nice with it, I will need to remove them, buy 2 gallons of the paint so when the TV and table for it arrive the walls will be done. (The curtain are a lovely pale blue and ivory damask, the bed set is the same damask in ivory. I have extra items( shams) to recover two chairs and the ottoman and make a slip cover for the tv when it comes. The room will be so pretty, Chocolate, ivory, and blue. Dresser is ivory too. I have the most amazing pictures due in for decor. Owls. I love Owls, I will just need to frame them and hang them.)

That means dragging the ladder upstairs and taking down the drapes....the snow plow just made a pass...it is a blizzard out there. Of course I can't go out tomorrow since it is a holiday and the Post Office is closed and after I made the orders I discovered they used post office and not ups/fedex....so many things will be waiting for me and I need to get there before their 2 hour lunch time between 11 and 1:45 on Tuesday. I am determined to get my bedroom pretty so I have a little sanctuary when I am tired.

I am also baking a cake thingy using a quick bread recipe from an OLD cook book. It will be a revamped carrot spice cake. I have several boxes of mincemeat and it makes a nice addition to a quick bread I am adding a shredded carrot and more spice never can have too much spice. Then cream cheese frosting. These old recipes have less oil and shortening in them. I do not like the greasy taste of the 1970s carrot cake. So I went back. Any one remember Prudence Penny?

Well just an update in the life of me.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Secret Weapon

Punkee got to sleep in fairyland with me last night. I chose him for the mouser in the cat free zone. He is sweet and my baby. I raised him, bottle fed him; he was never a chubby cute kitten but long & lean and his black and white coloring was haphazard. He began life as a feral kitten. I knew his mother and sister but they are another blog. Since the mouse being no fool also chose the cat free zone to occupy, I needed to bring in a cat. The other night I heard and saw the little brown bastard! My little love was the choice, a simple guy with no bad habits. He was a perfect sweetie last night. Once he sniffed around the rooms upstairs he settled into the bed and we slept. With no mouse sounds we all slept well. I will again bring him up tonight. I would rather the mouse go back outside than kill it. So If Punkee can be a deterrent like a nuclear bomb that is a good thing. Mouse goes away to live the life of a mouse and Punkee earns his keep as a cat. I just realized my baby is 10 years old this year! How time flies! Most of my furchildren are 10+ Several are 20 years old this year. I have no regrets for not having people children. So far I have never know one child of those in my cohort to be worth while. And Only one in my family actually speaks to me. I was ready whoever to be a wonderful Auntie, but never had the chance. So my cousin's son is my nephew. So I love my fur children...no regrets.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

The Remodel Dream

How am I doing? I am dressed nicely, make-up, jewelry, matching outfit in all two layers. Cats are cleaned, fed, & coffee is on. Parts of the floor are clean and my mind is racing about with the remodel of the kitchen......this kitchen is hard to work in and the sink is a huge looking double sink which is not as big as it looks when a pot of modest size needs to be filled or washed. I have disliked double sinks for about 40 years....ever since the square inch flat space reached a whole 7X7 inches around the drain. This sink is deceptive & at the window, which has a great view except the sun is in my eyes from about 9am to sunset. I have a real problem with sun shining in my eyes like that. I can not reach the window to wash it either so it is a mess since the cats like to sit on the wide sill and soak up the sun. It has a shade but it is rolled up and needs a ladder to reach and I like the warm sun streaming in here. This is Maine and the sun is not that evil Texas sun but a nice, warm, and friendly sun.
I have a dream for this room. I have it on paper too. I am checking all the parts to see how much it will cost and since I am not into that high end professional stove for $6000 I think I can work wonders in this space for a lot less than a stove.
First I keep the flooring. I have cats. The Kitchen Door is the entry way to the house everyone comes in this door. There is a grand porch leading to an old double window entry door. The space is huge but there are 8 (eight) doors and windows.
The previous remodel was done by an idiot. The counters slant just enough so everything rolls off or tips over if its center of gravity is high. The cabinets are stock from the discount place particle board Oak look. I really do not like Oak. That dislike has kept me from buying a lot of nice antique furniture. A good thing. I could paint the cupboards but they are still not useful.
There is not that much space inside really. There are slide out shelves in them which at first is very nice but they are on a different measurement system than anything sold here in the States so cans or boxes or bowls or plastic storage containers do not fit and space is wasted. Bottles and such cannot be stored upright on the slid out. Below the slide out shelves it is also too short for the bottled and anything tall like a cheese grater to fit and things still tip over since those shelves also tilt with the counter's list.
Of course I can not reach the top shelves nor to the back of the lower shelves. The easy shelves I can reach for cooking are not near the stove.
I have been designing kitchens since since Home Economics in high school. I can draw the floor plan of every kitchen I have been in since Pacifica. I have a box of kitchen clipping since the 1960s. Most are committed to my memory. I have drawn and measure every kitchen I have lived in since I started cooking. What features I liked and what did not work for me.
I do know this...... I want a kitchen that does not look like a kitchen......Even my more gourmet cooking adventures have been noted on what I used/needed to the everyday adventures. I use 2 cook top burners. I mostly use the toaster oven and the big oven to bake bread..... and cookies if I had my cookie cutters. I made the most and best cookies in the kitchen with the east counter top. I used the kitchen table, it was the right height to roll out the gingerbread. I use the food processor when I can get it out and on the counter near a plug. I use the coffee pot and electric tea kettle. I hand wash the dishes so I need space for them to drain until I dry and put them up and I need shelves that fit my standard plates, bowls, and glasses.
This room is 14X14. I want to remodel it under $4000. Of course I need to save up the $4K first. But I know what I want and will use. And granite counters, viking ranges and huge refrigerators are not what I need or want...to be continued....

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Lovely Day

My driveway is a rutted mass of quicksand. I need to smooth it out and will eventually, While shopping I was chatting with an old man at thee checkout line,and when I left the store I saw him sprawled on the ground, his groceries all over, his coffee cup at least upright, The wind is so strong that it caught the door of his very big trick and knocked him to the ground. I helped him up put his stuff back in the bags and put them in his truck. I put his coffee in the cup holder( the lid was tight and only shook out from the drinking hole.) I stood with him, my arm around him to keep him steady while we chatted. I wanted to see if he was OK to drive and calm him before he left. I then walked him to the drivers side and helped him in. He did not live far. I could not drive into my parking area and had to park in the back slog through the quicksand and through the house and make two trips up the back way ramp. Even the lawn is quicksandish. However the sun is out now. I plan to smooth the sand ruts as soon as I do not sink in 2 feet.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Thank-you Obamacare People

To shame and stigmatize the overweight is in the news! This is news? Not to anyone who is a fatty. We have been shamed and stigmatized and humiliated all our lives and if we started as chubby children it has colored our whole outlook on life and I , at least, have always felt like an outsider, an alien from planet fat and very unwelcome...even in my own family. My aunt Vera always called me “my fat niece”( or my fat fat niece), my uncles were no better. My own sister was as cruel as they could get. So now the government wants to institutionalize the shame and stigma so there is nowhere to go for respite except death.


We have been shamed and stigmatized since we first showed our faces and bodies in public. Being overweight is such a crime against humanity that we are shunned and humiliated in public and in media. I have been all my 60 years.

So the Obamacare people are concerned about the high cost of our health due to over weight and want to penalize us.

Have we not been penalized enough during our lifetime? Clothes are hard to find, The fit of each garment is an impossible combination of not fitting me. Chairs, seats, school desks check out aisles, side walks, streets, the seas are all too small for me
For me, my whole life was has been spent being made ashamed at what I am. And no mattered what I tried, what I lost it was never enough. And I was never successful so I was further stigmatized as a complete failure.

So the government wants to shame and stigmatize me into becoming slender. Thank-you for your concern for the money spent on my care. I am not (nor have been ) ill of any of the fat related illnesses. I have had the flu and colds, measles, chicken pox, mumps, & pneumonia. I went to the doctor for the pneumonia and was lectured for the entire time for being too fat. I had pneumonia because I was fat. Ever time I was sick I avoided doctors because the lecture have always been the same. So the medical cost for me are nil.

However my mental health is poor. I am depressed and suicidal many times and you know why? Because I dread each day I need to see people, go out in public, have to deal with others since all my life I have been and I am instantly judged as lazy, stupid, and ugly. Many people even point that out to me…. complete strangers too.

And no public money has ever been spent on me. And dear people if I ever happen to develop any of the money draining illnesses I will simple kill myself rather than have to deal with the rude cold and frankly nasty medical people I have had to endure all my life. Suicide is better than living a life always being shamed, humiliated, and stigmatized. Don’t worry I will decrease my surplus part of the population.