Thursday, July 20, 2017

Catch-Up

Wednesday was a catch-up day and I feel good about that. Left for Kimball at 7:00 and got home a bit before 8:00. Had breakfast, showered, dressed, and was out the door at 9:00 to attend the VCS (Ventura Council for Seniors) meeting. Elections were held and I actually had a challenger: Carol S. presented herself for the position of vice chair. However, after I expressed my willingness to continue, I was retained in the office. Carol actually apologized afterward, but as I told her, of course, there was no need, she had every right to run. Active in disability organizations in the area, Carol had been in a car accident when she was one or two years old and suffered major neurological damage. She is now in her fifties and has regained a lot of physical ability; however, her speech is noticeably affected, as are her facial expressions.
I was pleased to see Doris and Carole there and we made a date to meet next Wednesday to collect coupons for the vegetables and fruit market at the mall. I understand these are handed out to all, whether low income or not, in order to encourage healthful eating. Well, Zeus knows eating healthy is my thing, so it's right down my alley.
I met a woman named Diane there and we talked. I was interested in the fact that she said she had "lost all my money" several years ago and she now lives in some kind of "senior share" arrangement, but has to move soon. She seems intelligent and refined and I'd like to get to know her better. We exchanged cards and I was taken aback to see that hers includes "mindfulness counseling"--ouch. The last thing in the world I want to get into is that kind of touchy-feeling self-hypnosis stuff, but maybe we can be friendly otherwise--we'll see.
As soon as I got home, I changed, then took two large loads of laundry--including four sheets--to the laundry place. Getting them back and forth, and washed, dried, and folded took until about 2:00, with lunch in-between. Ellen called; she has a bone density test today and will stop in this afternoon.
The wash done, I took off for town and was glad to get my second walk in. I sat and read at the library for an hour or so, then walked back. Got gas on the way home--it now seems perfectly normal to pump it myself, so I guess I've turned into a real Californian--after a good day.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

At Ojai and Elsewhere

More good stuff going on. I walked Kimball (Betty opted out), then got home to make breakfast. We dressed and tidied up, then went to the 99 Cent store (lots of things are multiples of 99 cents) and Betty got little presents for her grandchildren. Took her for a bit of a scenic drive after, then we went to Ellen's, arriving at noon, as invited.
Greg was off and had invited a co-worker to see the house and join us for lunch. It was a delicious, perfect mid-summer meal: a salad of arugula, avocado, tomatoes, lightly dressed with vinegar and oil; cold chicken (not lunch meat, but cut from a roast); nicely done deviled eggs; multi-grain bread; chickpea spread; and iced tea and Chardonnay. There was chocolate and peppermint ice cream for dessert--the good kind from O'Connell's--in which I didn't indulge, of course. Greg's co-worker, who is moving to San Francisco shortly, said goodbye, and Greg went to his study to catch up on paper work, then El, Betty, and I drove into town. We strolled down Main Street, then into the leafy park for a bit. Got back to Ellen's and we gathered our things to leave. I drove Betty to Ventura station and got her on the train to Santa Barbara, where Carolyn picked her up.
Got home about 6:00 and went next door to Suzanne's to check on how often I should water her African violets (every two weeks). We had a talk about my concerns regarding some problems of my siblings. Suzanne is going to a retreat at the Mercy mother house, then to a birthday celebration for her 91-year-old aunt. After that, I called brother Frank to ask about Marybeth and we had a good talk. He still sounds slightly disoriented, but better than he did. He told me his license had been renewed, but only for a year.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Extended Family Time

What a very enjoyable day with extended family!
Walked Kimball, went to WinCo for cherries and spinach, then cleaned up a bit at home. Carolyn, Betty, Finn, and Claire came about 1:30 and we all went to the pool. I hardly ever go--it seems more trouble than it's worth--and I don't like to just sit there and bake. But with my company, this was great fun and they loved it. I brought a basket of cherries to the pool area, but Finn got hungry and I suggested he go back to my place, look in the fridge and cabinet, and get whatever he wanted to eat. He did, then came back later.
We stayed about two hours, I guess, came back and had some soda and good talk, then the younger three left. El called and we made a date for Betty and me to go to Ojai at noon to see her house. Betty and I chatted a bit, then went to the widder group dinner. We saw and talked to my friends, all of whom I'm so fond, but Nancy didn't show. She had intended to come and I'll call her to see if she's okay.
As ever, we had a good time with this group. Betty had been with me at a dinner before and many remember her. Didn't get home until after 8:00 and we just watched TV (me) and played IPad games (Betty). Turned it at 9:00.
I had thought Betty would be here for more than a week, but she's actually leaving to go back to the east coast on Saturday. After Ellen's, I'll take her to the train station for her to go back to Carolyn's and from there, to Stephen's and L.A.

Monday, July 17, 2017

A Day On The Lake

Wow, a busy, active day, but great fun. Got up at 6:15 and after coffee and morning ablutions, I got to WinCo by 7:00. In case I was going to meet Betty and Carolyn at Ellen's, I wanted to have provisions on hand. Had breakfast, dressed, and got to Nancy's at 9:30, when she asked me to come. Met her daughter-in-law, Erin, and what a lovely young woman she is. I had already been acquainted with Nancy's son, Richard, also a neat guy.
Erin drove us to Casitas Lake, only about ten minutes away and Rich met us there. We got in the pontoon boat (flat-bottomed and very stable) and sailed (not literally; it has a motor) several miles down the lake. Geez, it was gorgeous--a perfect day, warm and sunny with blue skies, but a light breeze that cooled just enough. We toasted Nancy's birthday (79), then Erin made sandwiches and we devoured them along with Shock Top beer, which I like as much as Blue Moon.
We were out on the lake for several hours and just had a marvelous time. Hove to about 2:30 and I went back to Nancy's for just a few minutes, as I knew she was tired (she has chronic anemia, for which she gets infusions). We said goodbye, but not before Erin gave me ten fresh eggs from their two chickens.
Went from there to El's and visited with her for an hour or so. Carolyn called to say they'd just stick to the original plan, so she'll bring Betty to my place today. On my way home, my niece, Joan, called with some family questions and we talked for a bit.
It occurred to me when I got home that this was was first day in several months--about five, I think--I hadn't walked Kimball. Well, dammit, I wasn't going to slack off now. Changed closthes, jumped in the car and drove there, and got my walk in by 5:30.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Hair

Walked Kimball after a restless night. After breakfast, I decided to take my town walk because I didn't get it on Friday. Did so and found a beautiful wooden tray, with color insets and a small, round table. I bought them for a song, of course, and they look so nice in the apartment.
After lunch, I went to Macy's and got Nancy a gift card. Went from there to Penney's Hair Salon and spent the next several days in the chair...
...well, it seemed that long. I just hate having my hair done--and this was color and cut--it's so tedious. I must say, though, that both color and cut look great. It had been getting much too blonde and scraggly on the ends, so this was a great improvement.
While I was getting combed out, my brother Larry called. He was back in Miami after the service for Jack in Manahawkin. I had to call him back, which I did in the car after my hair ordeal and we had a good talk. He said the service was mobbed--Jack's former students and baseball players, which he coached, came in droves. The service was not religious at all, in keeping with Jack's "fallen away" (as we used to be labeled) status. His ex-wife was there, of course; they were more or less reconciled, at least as joint parents, many years ago. Larry said he had driven past my house in Sunrise Bay and it looks terrific. I was happy to hear that, but not surprised, as Eileen has been a good tenant.
Added a card and a succulent in a little red pitcher to Nancy's gift bag after dinner, then talked to El. She suggested I bring Betty over to the new house on Tuesday. However, she later thought I should meet Carolyn and Betty at her place today, after I leave Nancy's. I'm not sure yet what it will be, but I'm okay with either and she'll call me later.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

T.O.P.S. and Photos

Walked Kimball, then it was off to T.O.P.S. at SCAN. I ran into Marty there and found he doesn't do tutorials on Smart Phones, which I have, but on IPhones and Pads, which are different, so I won't be attending his sessions. Actually, I'm moseying around the phone pretty well and think I can handle it.
At T.O.PS. I got the news that I had lost another 2.8 for a total of 27.8 pounds down. Of course, that was two weeks worth, but I'm satisfied. The meeting dragged on for quite a time, as usual, but we finished by 10:00 and it was home for breakfast. I took a load of wash out right after, then had lunch, then Suzanne stopped in. She asked if I'd like to go to a photo exhibit by her St. John's co-worker at 5:00 and I accepted with pleasure.
Shortly thereafter, Ellen came in order to bring me Greg's old DVD player, which she tried to hook up, but without success. The T.V., for some reason, couldn't "communicate" with the DVD player. I shrugged, as I'm indifferent to it, anyway. El also filled me in on what the attachments to my phone case are and hung a picture for me. She left, I changed, and Suzanne and I went to Panaro Brothers Winery for the photo show.
In truth, I think my son-in-law's pictures are more interesting, but I enjoyed seeing these (seascapes and animals) and especially, to meet Suzanne's colleagues. As I told her, I was taken aback to hear her addressed as "Sister," but of course, she is a nun--I keep forgetting that.
Anyway, it was great fun and the wine was good, too. We got home a bit after 7:00 and I got a message to the effect that son Mike had called, but my phone couldn't get international calls--damn, I didn't realize that. Anyway, I called him back on Skype and we talked, plus I saw my darling granddaughters--Violet, who just turned 9 and Vivian, soon to be 13 and what a beautiful almost-teenager she is. Their mum, Paula, is in Las Vegas, but will be returning home to Singapore soon.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Various And Mundane

I had set the alarm, so got up at my preferred 6:15. Walked, breakfasted, did some chores, then finally turned my attention to potting the two plants I had bought the other day. I even planted the little succulents in the stiletto-heeled shoes I had bought at Goodwill for just that purpose. I can't decide it they look very cute or very stupid.
Went to WinCo for veggies and salmon. Had a big salad for lunch, as usual, then drove to town and walked the second walk. I was please that the book I had requested, another by Robert Wagner, You Must Remember This, had come in, so picked it up. I'm still in my Old Hollywood kick and this is fun to read.
When I got home, Betty called. She wanted to know if she could change her plans and come on Sunday instead of Monday. Actually, that wouldn't be agreeable to me, so I hemmed and hawed. She called back later and said she had gotten back into the original arrangement and will come on Monday.
Larry called to asked if I had called him, but I hadn't. He said he was just leaving the Smithville Inn with a friend of his. Boy, I loved that place; hope I can get there again. Today is the memorial service for Jack--sigh.
I've been having trouble sleeping lately, I'm afraid. I go to sleep easily, get up for the usual about two am, then toss and turn. Hope I can shake this.