Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Middle Name Meme


The Rules:

1. You have to post these rules before you give the facts.

2. Players, you must list one fact that is somehow relevant to your life for each letter of their middle name. If you don’t have a middle name, use the middle name you would have liked to have had.

3. When you are tagged you need to write your own blog-post containing your own middle name game facts.

4. At the end of your blog-post, you need to choose one person for each letter of your middle name to tag.

5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

My middle name is ALICE.

1. A--Alluring--well, I can dream can't I?

2. L- Loyal--I'm a very loyal person to friends and family.

3. I--Inquisitive---I like to know everything. (Okay, so nosy works too, but there is no N in Alice.)

4. C--Creative--Probably should BE my middle name--I love anything that takes creative work--writing, sewing, gardening, photography, etc.

5. E - Hm, this is a hard one. I'm not very energetic or eager. There's a word that means really, really joyful but I'm not sure how to spell it. I'm sure it starts with an E though (well, semi positive.) Maybe this makes me Evasive.

I would tag someone but the E tagged me, the C won't give her middle name, I don't know any Ingrid's or Isabel's. I know people with A and L but they don't have blogs. So everyone can read this with relief that they haven't been tagged!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Back home again. . . .

The picture on top is of me at Niagara Falls. I'm sure everyone wonders how I ended up in New York when I was going to Michigan. It's simple if you know how my family takes a vacation. Our plans are apt to change and evolve as we go along. We did head for Michigan and spent the first night there. Our destination was to Greenfield Village in Dearborn--a super living history museum.

We got a late start on Wednesday and didn't get anywhere near Dearborn until about 10:30 at night. Everyone was exhausted and we just wanted a place to lie down and sleep. We'd stopped at a travel center and gotten a discount hotel book. Since the last time we were in Michigan we'd stayed in a semi-luxury hotel (discount convention rates), we had no idea where to find anything reasonable. Going with the coupon, we ended up at the nightmare motel.

Our first red flag was the number of men and women pacing back and forth from door to door. Knocking, whispers, clandestine meetings in cubby holes by the ice machine. (Once you pay your money, no refunds.) We weren't sure if the motel was an oasis for drugs or worse. We got inside the door and locked ourselves in--prepared to tough it out.
It got worse.

We discovered when we found the bathroom that instead of there being a wall around 3 sides of the tub, there were none. The tub and shower were in an open pit with two shower curtains--one opening up into the sleeping area. I don't even want to go into the why's of that. I'm sure I don't care to know!

We turned off the lights to take showers--in case there were cameras hidden somewhere. It was that kind of place. We were supposed to have two double beds and a pull out couch. But, when we pulled out the couch to make a bed it hit the wall. You could make a bed--one that sat up like a hospital bed. I ended up on that. Once the couch was out, it cut off entrance to the bathroom to anyone else. Good thing we could climb through the peek a boo tub!

By morning we were all itchy and got out of there pronto. We also declined the free breakfast. It was not the best place we've ever stayed. As we got the van loaded, we realized someone had walked their dog and he or she had used the bathroom right by the driver's door. It was not a Holiday Inn. As we left town, we realized we'd wandered into a shady part of town. I'm sure our angels worked overtime that night.

Once away from the weird motel, we went to Greenfield Village. It's such a fantastic place. This was my second trip and I enjoyed watching the boys see all the sights. We went though every building in horrible heat. The only house we missed was the Wright Brothers. They had some kind of play on the porch each time we went by and we never seemed to arrive as it was open.

The boys got to record their voices on a tinfoil machine just like Edison, make brass candlesticks and print up a poster on an old fashioned printing press.
Our plans had been to stay another day and go to the museum. Instead, we decided to head toward Niagara Falls. It was a long drive across the top of Ohio and on into New York. It had been years since I'd seen the falls but they were lovely

Everyone wanted to go on the "Maid of the Mist" so I gamely gave it a try. Boats aren't really my thing but I surprised myself. Felt queasy as we waited to launch, but then forgot to feel sick as I gave myself up to the experience. It was so neat to ride almost up to the falls. That was a high point of the trip for everyone.
Looks like a storm is heading in so I'll continue soon. . . .

Monday, August 13, 2007

The "Maverick" brothers
My nephews Bret--dark hair and Bart--blond
This was a long time ago! Bart has an almost two year old daughter and Bret is almost through college. Time sure flies. . . . This picture won a First Prize one year in the fair.
All in a day's work. . . .

Had a long list of plans for today and I'm happy to be able to say I checked off almost all of them tonight. Of course, I had to x out a few right from the start.

When I realized that I had to add on garden chores to the list, I knew my writing time would go.

So---the day went something like this: rushed next door to put in a load of wash, cut all the broccoli in Sister #2's garden, came home and blanched the broccoli, had to stop to go to the Dollar Store for freezer bags and canning jar lids, ended up going to three stores before I found jar lids, home, put the broccoli into the freezer bags and into the freezer, started bringing in tomatoes to can.

This begins the tomato hours---wash off tomatoes, drop in a pot of boiling water to loosen the skins, drop into cold water so skins come off, chop tomatoes into pieces and put in jars, put in salt, seal and start boiling in the canner. In the interest of multi-tasking, I worked on the entries for the fair at the same time. The deadline for photos and artwork entires is August 15th. I'd do a jar or two of tomatoes, let the rest cool and start filling out the blanks.

Tomatoes done, fair entires done, I wrapped up a box for a friend and collected all the library books and vidos that would be due before I get back from Michigan. Got dressed (brief hassle as the well went dry--all that canning) and we had to run water in from the cistern. Went to town.

Stopped to have my glasses adjusted. Waited in line. On to the post office. Waited in line. Then to the store for drinking water. Waited in line. Went to the library. Took my time in the air conditioning finding some books to take on the trip. A cool surprise--a DVD of "Perry Mason" had come in. I've been on the waiting list for three months. I know what I'm watching tonight--if I can stay awake long enough.

Home, helped get supper, ate and then started working on emails. For some reason there are always emails before I can feel like I can leave for any length of time. Now all I have to do tonight is pack, change litter boxes, clean the kitchen, iron clothes for church on Wednesday morning (we'll be out late tomorrow and I won't have time) and I sure hope that's all!! I'm ready for a vacation.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Looks like it might getting ready to rain. Moisture would be a welcome relief from this heat wave. When you don't have air conditioning (I don't), any cooler air comes as a refreshing change.

This has been the hottest week of the summer I'm sure. Everything seems to take longer to accomplish. Writing is best done with a fan blowing right on me. An added benefit is that I can't hear anything else going on which can be good and bad! It's easy to block out the kids but what are they doing that I can't hear??? Sometimes ignorance is truly bliss. Like Saturday when Miah decided to find out if it really was hot enough to fry an egg on the hood of the car. It wasn't - quite. He found out cleaning egg off is harder and takes longer than putting it on.
Despite a rough week, ending with a funeral on Friday, we had a fairly relaxing weekend. Jenny came out on Thursday night. She did the "portrait" of me at the top of the page. I don't know where she got the long granny gown with flowers or the fuzzy slippers. That's more my winter sleepwear than summer!
We took time out this weekend to mark out what art work the kids want to enter in the Fair. We will not be entering the drawing above! We also got out the latch hook kits and refocused on finishing for the Home Arts entries. Miah, Jarrod and I all discovered one astonishing fact---we'd forgotten how to latch hook. We had to read the instructions on back of the kits to get back in the swing. We are all working on cats. Miah has a baby tiger. Jarrod a surreal blue cat. Mine is a kitten with a ball. I read the instructions wrong so half the ball is a gray that should be on the kitten's head. Like Jarrod says, if I don't have enough yarn, I might have a pink headed kitten!
With the heat comes cucumbers. I've made 38 quarts of pickles up to yesterday. I thought I was done. Today there is another bag of cucumbers waiting to be pickled. Back to my vinegar, garlic and dill . . .