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What The Hey! Wednesday!

Since all this verbiage comes from the same mind, I appropriated the title from my other blog Out Of Time Designs for both of my wednesday posts.  It will probably end up being a mish-mash of randomness, even more random than the usual flotsam and jetsam that floats between my ears, so here goes.

Today started out quietly enough, coffee and the morning emails, a shower and then…I walk into the living room and find the living room door wide open with the frigid air pouring in, making Duke Energy very happy.  My (indoor) cat was on the porch looking like she swallowed the canary, but luckily as I walked up to the door she realized she was in enemy territory and zipped back into the house.  After closing the door I yelled at the (big) kid who walked out and left the door open.  And then yelled at the cat for thinking she could go out without claws and a chaperone.

Next I walked into the guest powder room…a place I very rarely use, only to find that the arm connected to the flushing mechanism (toilet) is broken and no one has thought to tell me about it. Okaaay….put that on todays list.  Then I found I had to buy some price tags for the jewelry I was taking to consignment, so that meant a trip to Hobby Lobby, in the mall, at peak Christmas shopping time.  While I was patiently waiting for this older gentleman to pull out of his parking space it seemed I was apparently keeping someone much more important from her appointed rounds and she let me know about it.  So far I don’t like the way this day is going.  And the weather is cold, cloudy and dreary.

But thankfully, it turned itself around.  I found what I needed, got to the checkout and was waiting in line, wool-gathering when I heard someone talking about making snowglobes with the kids.  It took me back nearly 40 years and my mind wandered, thinking (with a smile) of past projects and little kids. I chatted with a couple other mothers in the two lanes and we compared projects.  Someone asked if I missed it and my instant answer was “Nope, now is MY time!”.  She looked at her daughter and  said that I sounded like her grandmother.  I was glad to have an ally, even if unseen, now I don’t feel so selfish about feeling that way.

So I left there went to the grocery, encountered an extreme couponer who said she has only been at it a month and she is getting tired. Honey, I get tired just cutting out the damn coupons, never mind the binder and saving papers from the whole Tri-State area!  But we had a nice chat and I left there with a smile.  I had a few other places to go (Home Depot and the consignment shop) and in both places I met people who made me smile. By the time I got back to my street the sun was shining again, and the day was back on track.

Now if only I could do something about those three tom-cats circling the house like sharks on a Sidney beach….

Happy What The Hey! Wednesday!

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 I love Fiddler On The Roof, and I love having traditions.  When I was a kid my family had quite a few, but as I got older and then married it was harder to keep the traditions of my youth. Even though Tevya bent the traditions a bit for his girls he was still a believer that it is the glue that holds society together.  I totally agree with him and this could be a whole subject of itself. This post, however, is about the beginning of a new tradition that a friend is starting for her granddaughters, and to which I was invited last Sunday.

Patty (the grandmom) is a fun lady who never met a stranger.  She can talk to practically any person regardless of age or circumstance.  She manages a farm with her husband Jim, is active in her church, brings produce & family raised meats to several farmers markets, and runs her own business on the side.  Her granddaughters work in the business and have several friends who work there as well.  So Patty thought it would be fun to have a tea party to celebrate her granddaughters birthdays with “the girls”.  It was a nice mix of fun teen-age girls and adult ladies (also fun) so no one was left out.  Patty arranged the tea at the Parkview Country Inn,  located in the quaint town of Augusta, Ky.  They have a wonderful website with lovely pictures of the inn. I took a few of my own photos but to get the full effect you have to see it in person.

After we were seated we were served a bounty of treats by Phil, resplendent in a festive red shirt and Christmas tie;  his wife Jenny is the fantastic chef who whipped up our delicious treats.  I understand that in a ‘regular’ tea only 3-4 items are served but this tea consisted of nine different items!

The list follows with savory items being served first and then sweet:

Golden Coins Cheese Bites

Bistro Beef Bites

Ham Pinwheels

Turkey Salad Puffs

Orange Nutbread and Spread

Christmas Scone with strawberries and cream

Mini Cheesecakes with fresh raspberries

Lemon Curd Puff Pastries

Mini Apple Pies

We each had a pot of tea at our place setting and we served ourselves the tea.  As each new treat came out we oohed and awed over it, thinking surely that it couldn’t be topped.  Of course, everyone had their favorites, and mine were the wonderful Ham Pinwheels. I don’t know if I could tease the recipes from the cook but I did taste brown sugar, apple butter, and a hint of maple….yummy! The bite-size portions of the food fools you, and the taste tempted me back for seconds.  We all ate more than we realized and were drowsy and full before we knew it.  The talk was light and fun; mostly school and the coming holidays.    I thoroughly enjoyed myself and hope the younger generation did as well; hopefully they will continue this tradition allowing them to touch base as the years roll by.  Altogether it was a very pleasant and fun way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon.

*While this is not the recipe for the Christmas Scones we were treated to, it would still be fun to bake these for the holidays.  Remember to serve with (real) whipped cream and strawberry preserves.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Yeah, I know what you are saying.  Why does she have a picture of Superman on a Thanksgiving post?  Well, here goes-I am not doing the dinner this year, that torch has been passed on.  So instead of running around like a chicken turkey with its head lopped off I have lots of time to think about Thanksgivings past.  Stay with me as we visit a Thanksgiving very early in my  marriage.

It was the sixties, and while my husband and I were not one of the Great Unwashed, we were a bit more liberal in our clothing and hair styles, as well as our politics.  At the time I had not been handed the Holiday torch, so we went to his cousins home for dinner.  Even though we were in our late twenties we were stuck seated at the kids table (!).  I remember hearing the cousins wife mention, sotto voce, that [they] “certainly, weren’t like the rest of us”.  At the time it stung a bit, but then it was forgotten.

Years went by and that wife had children…as did the rest of us.  A few years back that particular cousins child was married, and the wedding and the reception was …unusual. Instead of the Wedding March strains of Star Wars heralded the bride.  And at the reception the bride made her entrance carried on the back of the groom, and the cake was cut with chainsaws.  In my late 50’s and well past the hippie stage at this point, I silently thought back to the Thanksgiving comment of the grooms mother, and smiled to myself.  Then the newlyweds finally had a child of their own.  And what did they name this grandchild of two very conservative grandparents? Kal-el, of course!  Now I know that movie stars and the products of  very small gene pools have been giving their kids weird names for a very long time.  But that is not what we are talking about here.  These are normal Midwestern Republicans that thought mini-skirts and shaggy hair were subversive.  Again upon hearing the news I silently reflected on this odd turn of events.

Now in my mid-sixties many Thanksgivings have come and gone.  Families have grown and split off into ever widening circles.   This year our family has changed significantly but we will still be gathering for dinner.  This time my grand daughter is hosting with her fiance, which will bring a whole new set of relatives into the stew stuffing.  I will get to sit back and watch how things unfold in this new family; musing about all the differences we share that really aren’t so different at all.   The fact is we are all trying to carve out our place in this world while still being tied to our roots.  And I feel it gets harder with each passing generation.

As I give thanks this year for the many blessings I have, I include the freedom to be as different (or not) as I want.  So with a nod to Kal-El and his grandparents, and a silent thanks that I was (and remain) my own person, I say Happy Thankgiving to all!


Don’t Waste Your Time?

         Recently I had a conversation with someone about a new craft product I was trying out.  I concluded that after a day long trial of said product I didn’t like it very much.  The person I was discussing this with asked “How much did it cost you to find out that you didn’t like it?”  With this person it was all about the money; the fact that I had spent x amount of money only to find out that I didn’t like or want what I bought.  To him it was a waste of money if I wasn’t happy with it, and by extension I should not have spent it in the first place.  The  question is-how do we know before hand.  I am not clairvoyant (and neither is this person who has wasted his share of money on bad ideas) so if we want to know we have to try.

If we all took the position of “wait and see” none of us would be using computers, driving cars, getting married or raising children. While driving and blogging have not been too traumatic for me, marriage and raising children has not been without its unique stresses.  I believe there is a reason that the universe does not allow us to see into the future.  If we knew that after investing a large part of our life in a relationship and having it turn and bite us in the butt, would we still invest time in that first kiss?  Would we as readily say, “Sure let’s meet for lunch!”  or take that spontaneous road trip?  Life would simply pass us by. And what a shame that would be;  experience can certainly be painful, no doubt. But who hasn’t heard all the platitudes about raindrops and rainbows-funny thing is they are true.  If I had seen into the future infidelities would I have even accepted that first kiss? Very doubtful…but I am glad I did because other than a kiss from one of my children it was a kiss without compare.  I would have one less sweet memory if I only did what I was sure would get a “return” on my investment of time.

I feel that the only true waste of time is when you have an experience (good or bad) and do not take the opportunity to learn from it.  When we ignore what life is trying to teach us because it may not have the ending we want, we are squandering our time as surely as our government squanders our tax dollars.  Are we going to fall along the way-most assuredly we will.   Are we going to royally screw up our lives and possibly many others as well?  Unfortunately some of us will.  But an even bigger loss is not acknowledging our mistakes, ignoring what the universe is trying to teach us and hiding our heads in the sand.  That is the true waste of our time and our lives.