Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Great Pumpkin

ConocoPhillips transforms a pumpkin-shaped 3 million gallon storage tank at its Wilmington, California-based Los Angeles refinery into Smilin' Jack, the world's largest jack-o-lantern. We went to visit the Great Pumpkin a few times when we were kids!

Soccer star

This is my niece Emma that lives in Oregon. She sings, she acts, she plays soccer. And she's delightful!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Twenty four years ago today my brother Robes and sister-in-law Kim were married in the Atlanta LDS Temple (on her youngest brother's 5th birthday!). We all enjoyed a wedding lunch at a hotel and then drove to Seneca, South Carolina (where Kim went to high school) for their reception. Funny story--Kim rode with her parents and Robes rode with my parents and Robes' keys got locked in his VW bug so he was late. My brother John arrived before Robes did and people thought he was the groom! It was fun to meet Kim's family that I had heard so much about for a few years and I enjoyed spending two weeks vacationing in the south.

Last week I had a clever idea and made a pouch for Kim out of a pair of Robes jeans (Levi 501's of course). The inside is the cool blue VW bus fabric (same as Jamel's pajama pants). I hope Kim got the package today on her anniversary.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Leaf Peeping

Before I moved to New England I had no concept of Fall. Remember--I grew up in Los Angeles: land of the one season.

When I was in college I remember one of my friends telling me that his mother was going to New England to see the Fall leaves. I thought you had to go somewhere special to see them. Then I moved here and as I tell people now, the leaves on your own street are beautiful! So here are a few photos I took this morning of some leaves in the front of my building on my very own street.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Wheat, oats, and powdered milk

Six months ago our local church leaders challenged us to get two weeks of food, water, and money by this weekend along with important paperwork we would need in case of an emergency. Confession: I was shopping at BJ's, Target, and the grocery store today.

Mormons are big into food storage. For years we have been encouraged to have a supply of food and necessary items. We had 1800 pounds of wheat in our garage back in the day (that meant each of us would have had 300 pounds of wheat to eat in a year). It's important to store what you will eat so I've put quite a bit of thought into this and had some help/encouragement from a friend who is a food storage super star.

I live in an converted school and my unit was part of the auditorium. I've got this great crawl space underneath my condo (you can see where they removed the auditorium seats!). And in my crawl space I have some shelves for my food storage. I just put all my things away (I still have some water in my car that I can't lift by myself) and I'm pretty pleased with what I have. I should have plenty to eat/drink in case there is an emergency.

I still need to get my paperwork together and get more water. And I want to create a spreadsheet so I can keep track of what I have. But I'm close and am feeling more prepared that ever!

Please pass the vienna sausages!

Lost and Found

I don't lose things very often, so when I do, I get really annoyed. I knew that I would find my hat somewhere in my condo and sure enough I moved a jacket that had been thrown on a table (I can't blame anyone but me) and there was my Red Sox hat!

I found it just in time for Game #3.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Lunch Lady

I am responsible for making arrangements for the emeritus professor's luncheon twice a year (preparing invitations, taking the RSVP's, choosing the menu, etc.) . The luncheon was today. I went over early with name badges and made sure that everything was running smoothly. The matrons (faculty and staff and wives of professors) luncheon was at the same time. The woman in charge of that luncheon invited me to join them so I did. I sat next to an older woman and got chatting with her (I know that's a shocker) and she was really delightful. She was born and raised in Ohio and graduated from Vassar and then got a Ph.D. at Radcliffe (in the 40's) -- in chemistry! I believe her husband has passed away but he taught chemistry and she did research in chemistry and she said they understood each other! I said she must have been a "shining star in Ohio" (leaving there and attending fancy colleges) and she smiled and nodded that she was. She took a chemistry class in high school and her teacher had never taught a girl before! It was really fun to hear her stories and I hope to visit her. In the meantime, I'm going to send my new friend a few of my photocards and she got some ink on my blog.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Dude, where's my cap?

I can't find my baseball cap (no, this isn't it--this is a picture of Jeff Windsor's cap that I took a few years ago for a scrapbook I made when they moved from Boston). I need my cap. My team is in the World Series.

I'll continue to search...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

TOOT your horn!

My middle-school niece played her baritone horn at the high school football game Friday night. She lifted two pound weights every other night for two weeks so she could bear holding her giant horn all that time standing in bleachers! Her brother and mother have listened to the baritone part of every fight song ever written for a month.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Red Sox Nation celebrates!!!

The Red Sox are headed to another World Series!!!
(Globe Staff Photo / Bill Greene)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Weekend update

My friends Leah and Judy joined me for a weekend trip to the Berkshires (in western Mass). We stayed at my friend's wonderful home that she generously lets us use. We got there late Friday night. Yesterday we started the day at a local farm stand with cider donuts and then headed for upstate New York (one of my favorite places to take my camera) and had a marvelous day. We had a late lunch at a diner, did some antiquing, drove through lots of small towns, and enjoyed the beautiful Fall colors. We were hoping to meet three handsome guys and smiled when three guys walked into the diner wearing leather chaps and jackets (they left their motorcycles outside)! I was hoping to find one of my favorite antique shops that I stumbled upon a few years ago just outside of Saratoga Springs. Thanks to my inner-GPS we found it...a few minutes after closing time. The owner let us browse and shop for an hour. I found some cool things: another typewriter for my collection, a cool rectangle wooden box (to store toys or fabric maybe), some fabric for $4/yard (a New York deal) and a vintage dough kneader with red handles! I enjoyed finding one of my favorite red barns and taking more photos! It was a wonderful weekend of friends, food, fall, projects, movies, relaxing and rejuvenation. The last picture is the view from the house. What a great weekend! We were all sad to have to return to reality.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

the VIP

Here is a picture of the Very Important Project (quilt) that was delivered tonight. My friends were very happy to receive it!

Very Important Project

In August of 2006 a friend Laraine, who used to live here, emailed a group of people suggesting that we make a blessing quilt for some friends during a challenging time. She gave the specifics for the project and suggested that people mail their quilt squares to her or give them to me. Tragically, a few weeks later Laraine was in a car accident that left her in a coma with severe injuries and her teenage daughter paralyzed. A week or so after the accident Laraine died.

I wanted to be sure the quilt was completed so I asked Laraine's family to send the quilt squares that had been received to me and I would make sure the quilt was finished. (A year went by...) My friend Anna asked a few times if she could help with the project and that got me going. First I finished my quilt square (a heart) and I got a few local friends to finish their squares. Then Anna came over and helped me organize the squares and pin them together and I did the sewing. Tonight my friend Julie let me use her machine (with her fancy walking foot) to do the machine quilting and she helped me with the binding.

This Very Important Project has been on my list of things to do for thirteen months and tonight it is finished. I will post a picture as soon as it is delivered.

I am sure Laraine is happy that the quilt is done and will be smiling when it finally gets delivered.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Red Sox Nation

I took this picture at Wilson Farms. Pretty clever. GO RED SOX!!!

Weekend Report: the conference was good; the speakers were all very inspirational. I skipped out on the Black & White Ball last night (visited a friend in the hospital and watched part of Season 2 of "The Office" instead). I'm sure I was one of the top ten oldest in attendance. Church today was amazing. Elder Holland's talk was great. My visitors are gone and I might take a nap and then whittle away at my weekend list of "things to do".


My friend bought me a cupcake from this place today as a thank you for picking her up at the airport recently. Yum!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Swingin' singles

I'm going to my first ever singles ("education") conference this weekend ( I keep telling myself I'm going for ME...especially when I heard my friend's college-aged son is attending. The conference is at MIT, the Black & White Ball is at the State House and church is only two hours (instead of the usual three). Jeffrey Holland is the keynote speaker and that alone will be worth $55! Who cares if I'm the oldest one there?

Thursday, October 11, 2007


This vacuum doesn't get much use but I dug it out of the closet tonight to do some sprucing up for weekend guests.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Squash words

I'm wishing I could squash some of the words that came out of my mouth today. I told the automotive repair shop guy that I was tired of seeing him. What I really meant to say was this is the 4th time in a month that my car has been in the shop and I'm tired of the hassle and expense but thank you for repairing Bluebell.

Note to self: think before you talk, think before you talk, think before you talk...

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Monday, October 08, 2007

The last cone...

I went to Kimballs at noon today for my last ice cream cone of the season. [I thought they were closing today but they are actually open until October 14th!] I chose gingersnap molasses (in your memory, Valerie) and it was delicious. I am enjoying a nice rainy Fall holiday; sorry to all of you on the other coast that aren't enjoying Columbus Day today.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

The winners

These guys are the winners of my 500 blogs drawing! I visited them today and told them in person. I've got a few ideas for their prize...

Saturday, October 06, 2007

500 blogs

Sung to the tune of "500 Miles" performed by Peter, Paul & Mary.

If you read the blog I'm on
You will know that I have blogged
You will know that I have blogged 500 times...

Leave a comment today and I'll draw a name tonight at midnight and send a prize to the winner!

Friday, October 05, 2007

The circus is in town!

I missed seeing the elephant parade yesterday but captured this photo of the train today.

My older brother used to say, "We did everything there was to do in L.A. twice." That included Nan taking us downtown to see the circus animals parade from the train station to the arena where the circus was.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Familiar phone number

My phone rang at work today and the west coast number looked familiar. It was my youngest brother calling to say he was in the same time zone as me! He is working in NYC for a few days. He called me later today and we had a fun chat.

This picture was taken when he visited me in May.