Nana has tales to tell, and thoughts to share.

Archive for the ‘just living’ Category

Hot, Hot, Hot

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You get the idea.  It is a tad on the warm side today.    Hot, hot, hot.  Those who live in the Southwestern states would say, “Yah, but it’s a DRY heat.”  Don’t try to kid me.   Hot is Hot.  If I enjoyed hot weather I would move to Arizona.

Unfortunately it is not a ‘dry heat’ today.  It is MUGGY.  Which is worse.  If I enjoyed muggy heat, I’d move to Florida.

I am one of those who just melt as the mercury rises.  I’m as good as a wet dishrag.  An unmotivated wet dishrag.  I sit, I sweat, and I complain.  Lovely, huh?

I guess that is why it is a good thing  God blessed us with different types of climates; so us fuss-budgets could have a choice as to favored environments.  I have lived most of my life in the Midwest.  The northern Midwest.  I spent a pleasant time living in coastal Washington with its marine climate.  Not too hot, not too cold, it was just right.

Presently I live a shade north of the geographical enter of Minnesota.  I haven’t lived here long, but I have noticed that it is all about location, location, location.  All the bad weather stays south of us.  Big snow storm coming?  Southern Minnesota gets dumped on.  Tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, heat waves?  All south of us.

I wish I could say that northern Minnesota is always this paradise.  Once every decade or so the temps do hit three digits.   But for us fragile melty types, a great deal of the time our environment suits us just fine.

Yah, it’s a hot one today; but tomorrow promises thunderstorms.  Which means southern Minnesota will get the thunderstorms, and we’ll get some rain with a drop to more tolerable temps.  I may be a bit testy today, but I know it won’t stay this way long.  Praise the Lord for different climates!

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Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Daze of Summer

In the world of blogging, I have become quite active – less.  Nothing personal,  I have missed reaching out to you, it’s just that I haven’t had anything to reach out with.  My computer is just fine and dandy.  It checks e-mail, the news, the weather, and Facebook every day.  Sometimes several times a day.  My computer gives out information at the push of a button; but there seems to be some difficulty with the input of information.

I guess that makes me the problem.  It’s a software issue.  My cranial software seems to be on the fritz lately.  Actually its been on the fritz for several months now.   I have been in a lazy, hazy crazy daze  for some time.  Personally, I think it is survival instinct for me.  When life starts going crazy, I slide into my lazy hazy daze for self-preservation.

Suddenly I stop and realize that it is almost the end of June.  “Wait a minute… what happened to May and June? ”  Boy, if you aren’t paying close attention, time has a habit of sneaking right past one.  And during that zippity-do-dah race of time, a lot of things have taken place.  I know.  I have them marked down on the calendar.

So where was I?  Present, but not totally accounted for.  I could excuse my lack of mental activity I suppose.  Fibromyalgia tends to put one in a ‘fog’.  The medication I take does the same thing.  By nature I am a blonde.  Warm weather saps all my energy.  Okay, I admit, there haven’t been that many warm days this summer; but at my age, the internal thermostat seems to run independent from the outside temperatures.

Some folks have suggested that I need to exercise my mind to keep it active.  Blogging is supposed to help, until my mind shuts down and I can’t think of anything to blog about.  Playing mind games such as crossword puzzles and Sudoku are also good ways to keep the dendrites active.  I enjoy those little books filled with such puzzles.  I keep them in the bathroom, (multi-tasking you know).  Trouble is, I have a tendency  to stay in the bathroom a long time.  Then the dog has to bust through the door to check on me.

Anyway, according to my calendar a few things have taken place since I last posted.   Quite a few memorable activities that I really need to haul out of my haze and properly file them in long-term memory.

But enough about me.  How have you been?  Tell me about your summer and how things are with you.   God bless!

Happy Nana with grandson Phineas

The Black Hole in my Pantry

I know all about Black Holes in space.   I learned all about them watching Star Trek, The Next Generation, Voyager, and Enterprise on TV.  I have read dozens of Star Trek type novels.  Oh, I’m a die-hard Trekkie.  So I know about those nasty little things known as Black Holes.  They happen when a dying star implodes, and the gravitational reaction pulls everything in with it.  To where ever stars go when they die.  Basically , you want to avoid black holes in space because whatever goes in, never comes out.

Ominous.

Kind of like my pantry closet.

The apartment we chose to rent is  blessed with a good size kitchen.  There are enough cupboards for the dishes, and countertop space for all the ‘gadgets’.  Besides all that, there is a pantry closet next to the fridge.  When I first gazed upon all that space with the three big shelves just waiting to hold all my food, I was ecstatic.  When we moved in and I unpacked and moved into my new kitchen I was thrilled.  I had so much fun putting the food stuff away in my new pantry.
How pretty!
How organized!
How convenient!

Then we went grocery shopping.  Again, and again, and again.  Suddenly, no matter how much we shopped for groceries, we could never find anything to eat at meal times!  Where was all that food we’ve doled out money for?
In the pantry…
somewhere…
under all that stuff piled in the closet.

Boxes and cans and bags of whatever.  It was such a jumbled mess that I needed Mandy our Collie to sniff out where her dog food was hiding.  Having three, big, deep, shelves were great for holding a lot of stuff, but you couldn’t see past the first row of anything.   Suddenly I realized that a new organizational system was needed.  I needed a narrow shelf system where I could see all the little items lined up in a single row.

Thus began the hunt for a pantry shelf unit for the closet door.  Since the door has fancy panes in it,  is hollow, and it doesn’t really belong to us… we figured we couldn’t just screw the shelving unit into the door.  We needed one of those “over the door hanging shelf units”.  I’ve seen them before!  They would work perfectly!

I looked everywhere I thought might carry such a home-improvement item.  No such luck.  So, I went online and searched.  Persistence pays off!  There, it was pictured, exactly what I had in mind!   So I ordered it.  And waited weeks for it to come.  Finally it arrived.  In a not so big box.  Some assembly required I bet.  As I opened the box and dug out all the packing material, I found the nice, neat, tightly bundled packet of wire shelves and two-foot long plastic runners.

“Um…where are the ‘over the door’ hangers?  How is this suppose to work if the shelf runners just snap together?”  I took physics in college, I knew that those snapped-together-plastic- runners wouldn’t bear the weight of all the shelves.  So back to my computer I went to find the web site picturing my over-the-door-pantry-shelves.

You have to be very careful when you go shopping.  You need to read ALL the fine print concerning your purchase.  And you have to look CAREFULLY at the display picture to make sure you are getting what you want.

Eventually Handy Hubby jerry-rigged the shelf thing so we could hang it.

Now my pantry is organized, and I just might find something to cook for dinner tonight.

10,000 Lakes – Give or Take

I moved to the land of 10,000 lakes, and happen to live near one of those lakes.  It’s right across the street from me.  I get to enjoy it from the windows and balcony of my apartment building.  Enjoying the view of the lake is probably all one can do.  It isn’t a very big lake.  It doesn’t have any beaches, or docks.  It’s not conducive to swimming, or boating.  In fact, it probably isn’t really a lake at all.  I think it’s a pond.  A really big pond.  Big enough for people who are looking to  own lake front property and build big houses.

All the really good lakes must have been taken, because now folks are down to buying  pond-front property.  The “pond front” subdivision is relatively new.  Half a dozen houses just built or still in the stages of being built snuggle up all around this pond.  They aren’t lake cottages, or modest homes like the rest of the neighborhood; no, these are monster size homes.  Three levels, vaulted ceilings, granite countertops, four-car garages, and elaborate decks.

Now, there really is nothing wrong with having lake front property, or having a big house.  I have relatives who live in this environment, and they enjoy it very much.  When I visit, I enjoy it too.   There is one difference though.  Their  houses are not bigger than the lakes.  They live near real lakes, big lakes, with beaches and boats, water skiing, swimming, and fishing.  If I were rich, I would definitely have a home on the shores of the ocean, or the Great Lakes or  maybe even a big lake.  In the meanwhile, I am content to life across the street from the water.

Taxes are cheaper.

Feeling Bummed

I’m feeling a bit bummed lately.
Maybe it’s the weather,
Maybe it’s a lack of exercise.
Could be the lack of sunshine.
Probably a Vitamin D deficiency –
You know how those endorphins and serotonins
get all out of whack sometimes?
I’m definitely out of whack.

I have no energy or desire to do anything,
So I just sit

Brain dead.
Writers’ block.
Nothing to say.

I haven’t been in a very good mood either.
Feeling non-social.

Don’t mess with me,
Just leave me alone, please.

Well, not all alone…
Funny, when you’re feeling like
this it’s when you really need to have
folks around.
Folks who “have your back”,

And will stand with you
No matter what.

Someone who can help you see
That there is beauty in the world.
Today is done,
And tomorrow is a gift of a brand new day.

Sometimes I feel like a little lost lamb.
I’m all alone,
Stuck in a bad place.
I need rescuing,
I need help.
I need someone who cares about me,
Who will seek me out
And lend a helping hand.
Someone who loves me and is willing to
Search for my lost soul.

It’s nice to know that He is always with me,
Even when I feel bad.
He won’t leave me in my despair.
He comes to me when I need Him most.

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name;
You are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
And when you pass through the rivers,
They will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
You will not be burned…
For I am the LORD your God.
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”  Isaiah 43:1-3

Nothing like a ray of SONshine to brighten a
bummed spirit.

Lydia Came to Play


Lydia came to my house the other day.  Momma needed to go grocery shopping, and handling two and a half  kids at the grocery store can be very tiring for everyone.  So Lydia decided it would be nice if she went to Nana’s house to play while Peter and Momma went to the store.  Nana thought is was a nice idea, too.

Baba had to go run an errand, so it was just Lydia and Nana together at Nana’s house.  And since Lydia had a cold, Momma said we had to stay inside to play.  Lydia decided to just wander around at first, looking at all the things she has become familiar with at Nana’s house.

She noticed that Nana had a new plant on the coffee table.

” That’s a funny looking plant!” laughed Lydia.

Of course Nana had to tell her all about it, which in turn led to looking at all the stones in Nana’s special dish of stones.  Lydia decided that the polished Petoskey stone from Michigan was the prettiest.  Being a native Michigander, I had to agree .  I told Lydia how MY Baba found that stone and polished it up a long time ago.  Lydia thought we could use all the polished stones for money.  So just as Nana was gearing up for a game of shopping, Lydia’s eyes the couch and off she goes to play a new game – Lydia’s version of  Hide and Seek.

Oh!  Well, if Nana is going to be taking pictures, let’s take full advantage of the opportunity to make silly faces!


“Look at this silly face, Nana!  It will knock your socks off!

“Yes Lydia, that face certainly knocked my socks off!”

Once Nana put the camera down, Lydia decided it was time for something else.  She asked Nana about the strange pink and blue things she found in the kitchen drawer.  Nana explained that they were plastic lids to put on soda cans so we could close the cans if we wanted.  Lydia didn’t understand, so Nana had to demonstrate.  We needed a can of soda of course, so Lydia and I split a can between us. (I took most of the soda, and added lots of water to fill Lydia’s can)  We put the lid on Lydia’s can and sat down at the table for our snack of raisins and soda.

Lydia just looked at the can, trying to figure things out in her mind.  She wasn’t so sure she wanted to try taking a sip.

“Lift the can up like this and take a sip from the spout .  It will tickle your tongue.”

Well that was enough of a challenge for Lydia.  She hoisted the can and took a sip.

“I does tickle my tongue.” laughed Lydia. ” But why do we want to close the lid on the can?”  Uh-oh.  Here comes the whys!

“Um… Well, to keep bugs out for one thing.  You see, bugs like soda too, and every once in a while a bug gets to crawl inside a soda can to take a drink.”

Not quite sure she can believe everything Nana says, Lydia asked: “Did that happen to someone you know, Nana?”

“Oh yes.  I had a friend who set his can down on the ground and a bumble bee flew inside his can to take a drink.  Then, when my friend picked up his can to take a drink, both soda and the bumble bee fell into his mouth.”  Now I tend to embellish stories just a tad, and the more Lydia asked me to tell it again, the story grew more intense with actions and adjectives.

Oh, we were having a great time, just Lydia and I.  Not long after our snack and story time, Bubba came home and so did Momma and Peter.  And Momma brought us all a treat – ice cream cones!

What a nice day it was when Lydia came to play.

Coffee Anyone?

“More coffee?”

“Don’t mind if I do!”

How do you  like your coffee?  Black, with cream, with sugar?  Is your coffee  an early morning necessity, an after dinner relaxer, a brain-cell stimulater, or a cold-rainy-Saturday-afternoon-sitting-by-the fire-with-a-cup-of-coffee-and-a-good-book?  Or, maybe you don’t like coffee at all.  You still might find something interesting if you keep reading.

Coffee has been around for a thousand years or so, and has been consumed by folks all around the world.  Coffee has run the gambit from being a spiritual experience, to being an AMA  health hazard.  It’s that caffeine, you know.  For quite a while I have heard how drinking coffee was not good for you.  “It’ll stunt your growth, kid!”  Have you ever noticed how these health warnings are like a pendulum?  One day it’s good for you, the next day it’s bad for you.Tomorrow’s researchers will once again discover that it is good for you.

So, if you are one of those who like coffee (caffeine especially),  there’s a new study that claims it’s “all in your genetic code”. Yup, scientists have even named the little bugger that makes you crave coffee, tea, soda, and chocolate.  You can’t argue with your DNA, so I say, “Indulge!”

 

As good as coffee is as a drink, it just happens to be good for a bunch of other stuff too.  Stuff I never even thought of!  For example; did you know that coffee is a stimulater of hair growth?  No, your hair won’t grow more just by drinking coffee;  you have to apply it topically.  In other words, rub it into the top of your head.  When washing the hair that you already have, you can rub  coffee grounds through your wet hair, then rinse.  It will leave your hair soft and shiny, dandruff free, and highlighted.  Your dog will appreciate a good rub down of coffee grounds after his bath.  His coat will be soft and shiny too.

Coffee grounds have been used for centuries as an exfoliant for skin.  Pat grounds on skin, massage, rinse.  Besides sloughing off all those yucky dead skin cells,coffee grounds stimulates new cell growth.  Since coffee grounds are acidic, it will help constrict your pores, provides a protective layer, gives the appearance of firmer, younger skin, AND helps fight acne!

Plants like coffee too.  Coffee grounds make good fertilizer for acidic loving plants.  Work it into the garden soil to add rich nutrients to the soil, and at the same time keep bugs away.  Coffee grounds are wonderful for your compost pile as well.  They help in breaking down the various ingredients into rich mulch.

Naturally there are some folks who just don’t like coffee or coffee grounds.  Ants don’t like coffee grounds one bit.  If you were to sprinkle coffee grounds around your house, why those ants would be so offended they’ll never come visit your house again.  If you sprinkled coffee grounds around the ants’ home, they will pack their bags and march away.  Slugs and snails do not appreciate the coffee grounds in your garden.  They will go else where for their meal.  And believe it or not, cats don’t like coffee grounds either.  They will refuse to use your garden as their litterbox.  Oh, and one more… fleas don’t take kindly to you giving Fido a coffee ground rub-down.

 

We all know that freshly brewed coffee is a heavenly smell, and just because we have emptied the coffee pot, doesn’t mean the nice smell is gone.  No, those spent coffee grounds can continue as a deodorizer in your freezer, as a sachet in your closets, and for cleaning smelly hands.

So, keep that coffee pot brewing.  Enjoy that cup of coffee.  It’s good for you – in more ways than one.