#!$*& Squirrel

Last Thursday, I spent the better part of the day on my hands and knees planting iris from our previous home, as well as three plants my sister gave us as a house-warming gift.  I discovered that the dirt here is the pits.  It’s heavy clay filled with pebbles from house construction.  I pulled the heavy layer of mulch back, and dug holes large enough to accommodate three chunks of iris, added bonemeal and a little potting soil and nestled them into their new homes.

We left for a wedding in Cleveland the following day.  I hoped the weather would be kind to the plants because I really want to have this bit of my previous gardens follow us to the new house.

Monday night, Dear Husband was grilling our dinner and commented that some of the plants had been disrupted.  I said I’d take a look at it, and forgot about it.  The next morning, my sister was here to help unload the POD, and she said, “Look at that squirrel!  He just pulled that plant out and is rolling around with it!”   Sure enough.  It had pulled the plant right out of the ground, and when it realized it wasn’t tasty, ran off to do some more damage.

Every single plant that I had put into the ground had been ripped out!  I’ve re-planted them, but I think I need  to spray them with a red pepper spray to discourage visitors.  A friend on Facebook suggested scattering mothballs.

There was an old tennis ball in the back yard.  I thought it might have been a dog toy that came over the fence.  Now, I think it might have been for squirrel re-training.  If I’d had it nearby when I saw that miserable rodent, I would have winged it right at it!


I have reconnected with a friend recently whom I  met in my “chatting” days, ten and more years ago.  I was very new to using the computer as social media, and friends directed me to a program called “ICQ.”   You could say that this was a fore-runner of Facebook.  You were assigned a number, and you could share it with friends if you wanted to converse electronically.

Today, as I was working in the office, going through boxes of STUFF, I came across a notebook with information including ICQ numbers and nicknames.  So, for QT, here’s a list of names that should be a blast from the past!

Ghoster, Angie, Cali, Janie, Night Stryke, BuDmaNN, Buck, FireNIce, 6 pack, birdie, Brown Eyes, Contessa, cookie monster, blackadder, Darlene, DeSade, DocH, Dr. Morpheus, Highlander, TickleMeErnie, Fantasy, Fox, hayla, Huckfinn, JeanieUK, Jet, Lady Jade, Lady Gweniver, LaLady, Lexi, Lynda, Clark Kent, Male, Me2, Mountain Man, Damm, niner9r, Ray, Ruby, Rudder, Skydyvr, son, StrawberryNcream, Stretch, Sugar, suzieq, Sylvie, tessa,Tex20, TIgress, WildCat, Rachel, and DorieNRod.

I have Ghoster, Buck, Fox and his wife, Allison, Jet, suzieq, tessa and Tex20 on Facebook.  I believe at least one of our friends on this list has passed away, perhaps more.  It’s been so long since I talked to anyone on ICQ that I don’t know if it even exists any longer.

QT, I hope these names brought you some pleasant memories.


Moving Day #2

Or maybe that’s Moving Day # 4.  The van lines moved us to our new home on August 4th and we have been moving things around, and in place since then.  Tomorrow, the POD company will be delivering the last of our belongings.  They will move a sixteen foot long POD onto our driveway, and we will spend the next couple of days decanting it into our garage.

Most of what is in the POD we boxed up 16 months go when we first put our home on the market.  There are at least fifty boxes of books, and two sets of china in the pod.  Beyond some kitchen things and some winter clothes, I actually don’t remember what else we will find.  THAT tells you that we should be able to part with a lot of what will be delivered.

The food processor, the blender, a very large box (or two) of yarn and the china.  Oh, and a curtain rod for one of my quilts.  That’s what I hope I’ll find!

I’ll be back when we finish the unloading.

Diagramming Sentences

I visited Facebook this morning and found a post by one of my nieces showing a diagram of the opening sentence of Franz Kaftka’s “Metamorphosis.”  In the post she asked if her readers remembered diagramming sentences.  I do!

Actually, I find that diagramming sentences helps to provide clarity of thought when you are writing.  I rarely do it any longer, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to resume the practice.

What astonished me was that the National Council of Teachers of English announced in 1985 that they feel diagramming is a “deterrent to the improvement of students’ speaking and writing.”  Wouldn’t you think that anything that promoted clarity in the use of language would be beneficial?

I was not an English teacher, but I disagree with their opinion.


Our tiny lot is being groomed, today.  A crew has been pulling weeds, pruning shrubs, adding mulch and removing one eyesore of a plant.  When they are done with the garden, i expect them to mow the lawn.

Dear Husband hopes to be able to turn the mowing over to them.  We have such a tiny lawn, that we should be able to do it, but his heart is not in lawn care.  The lawnmower should return from the repair shop today, so we’ll see what happens.

While we were between houses, I farmed out my house plants and eleven pots of iris and other outdoor garden plants.  Once the men finish the gardens, I’ll need to get out and get the iris planted.  I also have three plants that my youngest sister gave me, in pots of her own making!  There’s a blue salvia, a bellflower, and a lovely variegated hosta that need to be planted.

I’ll still have the opportunity to get my fingers dirty, but I appreciate the push to get things into shape, today.


Can you feel it when a sneeze is on the way?  Do they burst right out, or do they take a while to wind up?

We have a lot of fans in our new home, and plan to have more.  While the air-conditioning is out, sitting beneath a ceiling fan has saved us many an afternoon.  But, I realized that occasionally the fan makes me sneeze, especially in the dining room with the ceiling fan on a “high” setting.  What is it about air rushing past you as you eat or drink that might make you sneeze?

Out of the blue two days ago, I started sneezing.  I must have sneezed ten times before it stopped.  Usually I am one of those people who sneeze three times in a row.  I wonder why we have habits like that?  I really need to surf the subject, when I have more time.

For now, I’m going to blame cleaning supplies and the dust of a house that has not been well-cleaned for years as the cause of most of my sneezing.


Not the rainy day kind, but the kind you step under to start your morning.  We’ve been staying at a “budget motel” while waiting for our belongings to be delivered to the new house.  Tonight is our last night, and we’ve been here two weeks.

Dear Husband is a tad bit shorter than I am, so this didn’t bother him much, but our shower has apparently been designed  for those who are about 4’11″ tall.  I have to tilt my head back as far as I can to wash my hair.  The flow of water is fine.  The temperature is fine.  My only complaint is that the shower head is a bit low.

Now, I understand that I could have turned around and dropped my head forward, but I’m a bear of little brain, and I’m very much a creature of habit.  It took me until today to figure out the other options.

I was at the new house, cleaning, today, when I realized that Dear Husband is going to have the opposite problem with the shower head in our new bathroom.  It’s been hung high enough so that someone about 6’4” could wash their hair without having to bend their knees.  Again, good water flow and temperature, but the height of the fixture might be a problem.

I guess I’ll have to put a trampoline in the shower.  ;-)

Done and Dusted

…as one of my Scottish friends used to say.

We’ve sold our house and bought another, smaller, house.  I started cleaning in the kitchen today.  I thought all the shelves should be cleaned and covered with a layer of shelving paper before the boxes arrive.  Actually, we stored some foodstuff, rather than throwing it all out, so there is already “stuff” to put away.  As I cleaned, I’be been thinking about how I plan to use each cupboard.

We also made a Hobby Lobby run and picked up extra shelving “hardware,” lights for the bathroom, and bumpers for the cabinet doors.  I forgot to get “Crazy Glue,”  and a clear or white shower curtain.   The “Crazy Glue” is for our vinyl covered wood cabinets that need a tiny bit of mending.  I’d rather glue the loose parts down than replace the door to every cabinet.

I ended our mail hold, and arranged for the  forwarding to our new address,  And, we had a lock specialist come to the house to re-key the doors and to add dead bolts,  The seller told us that he had lost all the keys to the house.  He’d leave the door from the mudroom into the garage unlocked when he left, and just lock the large garage door!  I feel better having everything re-keyed and bolts added, but it sounds as though we are in a very safe neighborhood!

Appliances come tomorrow.  I’d better get to bed!


I am a great lover of NCIS.  I watch both the original and NCIS-LA, but I really like the original.  For a long time I ran NCIS episodes while I pieced quilt tops.  Now, we have a new version of NCIS coming our way, based in New Orleans.  Scott Bakula is the main character.  I really enjoyed him in Quantum Leap and Enterprise.

I should surf because we know that NCIS New Orleans is going to be on Tuesday nights, but they aren’t saying what time.  I wonder if NCIS LA is going to continue, and if so, will it still be on Tuesday?  Would you leave NCIS in the 7:00 spot, followed by NOLA and then L.A.?  Or, would you start with NOLA, go to the original, and end with L.A.?  Can you see it: All NCIS! ALL the time!

I’ll be sewing up a storm when we get to reruns!


My youngest niece, who is a grown woman, is visiting.  She and one of her girlfriends arrived on July 3rd, and the two of them and Dear Husband spent the day and evening on Lake Michigan for the Fourth of July.   They took in the fireworks off Navy Pier in Chicago, and were home close to 1:30 in the morning.  I had the pleasure of playing in my studio all day!

I spent some time yesterday teaching beginning quilting to the girlfriend.  S. has never sewn, and wanted to start a simple Log Cabin pattern. We talked about color layout, and designs that could be created with Log Cabin blocks, and then made a trip to an area quilt shop to buy fabric. S. has never used a sewing machine, so I hope that her mother will be able to instruct her on how to use their sewing machine.  We covered how to cut the strips, and how to sew the pattern.  I had her sew part of a block on my machine.  I sent her home with completed samples, a spare cutting mat, rotary cutter and ruler.  I washed the fabrics for her last night, so she will be ready to start cutting strips tonight. when she returns home.  I’ll work with my niece this week, who wants to try her hand at one of the star quilt patterns.

My niece has come to give us a hand packing boxes.  We’ll be working in the basement and garage, trying to get as much cleared out as possible.  I’m very glad to have the help.  The job is dwindling, but still seems very daunting.  We are moving some things that we probably should be pitching, but we wanted to see what kind of room we had in our new home before giving things up.

It’s a lot of fun to have 20-somethings around.  It’s very refreshing to see the world from their point of view!