Monday, April 30, 2012

At the first communion...

 
Posted by Picasa

Dine Around At Lefty's

After our theatre club reunion, I slept until 7:00; does me good every once in awhile.  Went to Shop-Rite for essentials and came home to apply Resolve to the living room carpet in a wide swath.  This is where I sit to watch my daily T.V. for 45 minutes or so have my wine and nibbles.  It's pale grey (what possessed us?) and needed the cleaning.  Looks pretty good.
Did a bit of other cleaning and checked to see what I have for my luncheon guests tomorrow.  I'm pretty well stocked, I think, aside from dessert, for which I'll just serve fruit.
Walked the three doors down to Dennis and Leslie and we left for the Dine-Around about 6:15,  It was all the way in Barnegat, at Lefty's, and was a lot of fun.  I guess there were twenty people there and it was in a private room.  Betty and Ed W. were the hosts and provided champagne to toast Ed's birthday--his ninetieth.  Yes that's right, a decade less than a hundred--geez.  Aside from the fact that he's in a (motorized) chair (but more like a scooter than a wheelchair), there's no indication of his age.  Looks--I swear--more like sixty or so.
Had a fine time, especially since I was sitting between Les and Sid S., whom I like so much.  He had been in several LETCO productions until his health worsened--he was near death several times--and it was so good to see him looking better and stepping out. All the women got Happy Mother's Day balloons and there were lots of prizes (dollar store stuff) for the winners of the trivia questions.
Didn't get home until close to 10:00, but went to bed right away and got up at 6:00.
Dentist--new dentist--appointment today--ugh!
  

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Ventnor And Beyond

Drove to Venntor for the Plays And Playwrights meeting.  I was both pleased and chagrined to be told my play Tootie Looks At Real Estate, was selected for the June 3 presentation.  Why the latter?  Because I had to withdraw it.  Carl's and Dianna's wedding is that day and I have two family members participating as best man and ring bearer, so don't want to miss it.  It was an enjoyable session, though.  I was asked to read the part of "Melissa" in a short play by John P. and that was fun. 
Meeting lasted until after 4:00, then I drove downbeach to Betty's.  Noticed there was mail in her mailbox, which a friend had said she'd pick it up.  Called Betty and she asked me to take it; I'll let her know what it is and then send her what she wants.
Next, I went to the cemetery.  Darn--the azaleas, which were thriving yesterday, are starting to look a little peaked and so are the daisies.  Same with the gloxina at Jay's grave.  I gave them all a shot of Miraclegro and took a picture.  Hope they perk up.
I had brought with me a salad and a bunch of grapes I meant to eat there, but took them home instead and had them for dinner.  Skyped Ellen and we had a good chat--she had her hair cut and it looks great--then got ready for the evening event.  Picked Aline B. up and went to the Sweetwater Casino (not a gambling casino, but a bar and restaurant).  We were joined by Ellen V., Jeanne S.,  Lucille P., Julie S., and Tonya N.; for a short time, Tonya's husband, Bob, stopped in.  I grilled him about the Night Must Fall recording he had done and he told me a long story about how he had used daughter Emma's camera, a Sony, and Sony won't allow it to be transferred except on its own equipment or something.  I offered to have my son or son-in-law find out if one of them can do it.  We'll see.
Greatly enjoyed being with my theatre chums and hope we do it again.  We left about 9:30 after great talk and good laughs.
Slept late and didn't walk.  Have Dine-Around tonight.  

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Cemetery and Stuff

Walked at 7:00, went to exercise at 9:00, had breakfast, then jumped in the shower before the 11:00 Breeze meeting.  We talked mostly about covers and I came up with an idea I'll exectute and we'll use for the June issue.  Just on the bare possibility somebody from Sunrise Bay reads this--doubtful--I won't mention what it is until after it's out.
Went home and changed, then over to first, Canal's, to replenish my wine cellar (well, a wine holder in the dining room), then to Produce Junction where I bought two Gerber daisies, a gloxina(?), and a tiny pink splash, the last to replace a waning plant in the kitchen.  Got to the cemetery to find I had no digging tool, only two "claw" ones.  Had to use them to dig out a place for the daisies at Pat's grave, but managed, and they look pretty good.  I was pleased, too, to find the azaleas in beautiful bloom.  At Jay's I had great difficulty in putting in the gloxima because, incredibly, the roots of the Mexican heather--an annual!--I had put in last year still won't come out.  Had to put pot and all in the shallow hole, but I think I'll go back today after the Plays And Playwrights meeting in Ventnor.
Didn't get home until 4:00, which is when I had lunch.  Was pleased to get a call from Betty and son, Wes, thanking me for the gifts I sent and announcing new baby's name: Amelia Grace.  So pretty and I understand she and Katy are both doing very well.
  

Friday, April 27, 2012

This, That, And The Other Thing

Drove Walter G. to Mastercraft to get his car, which needed an alternator.  I was glad he asked me, as he and Susan have done so much for me over the years.
Finally heard a definitive answer about dates for Funny Money: It'll run from June 20 through the 24th. This is a pretty important change from our usual two evenings and a matinee; hope we get the audience.  Changed the library display to reflect the new information.  Having finally heard the end of Under The Dome, but continuing in a Stephen King mode, picked up another CD to listen to in the car, but soon realized I had just heard it a short time ago.  Was going to Shop-Rite in Manahawkin, so stopped into the Stafford Library (same system), turned it in, and got his Just After Sunset.  I've heard that before, too, but not as recently.
Did loads of wash and other household chores.  Corresponded via e-mail and phone with Mary Ann M. of Cranberry Creek, about various things proposed by her for the theatre company to do there, including a murder mystery next spring.  Have been in touch with Neil about Tara K.'s desire to do a children's program, too. 
Other than that, I know I had a full day, but can't remember what else went on.  Goes to show how exciting it was.
Breeze meeting today, which should be good and boring.
WIDER:   Here's a good example of what our "leaders" are heeding.  If even the New York Times has reservations, heaven help us:
 http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/14/books/the-world-america-made-by-robert-kagan.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Busy Day

Busy, busy day.  Just after breakfast, I went over to Atlantic County to Babies 'R' Us.  Got three adorable little onsies in preemie size for newby baby in Chicago, complete with a hat and cunning tiny foot coverings.  Added some things for the older sisters (5 and 3), then stopped at the dollar store for boxes.  Went to The Christmas Tree Shoppe to look at the chairs; they have some rather nice and very reasonable "club chairs," but I think one would be too big for the guest room space I have in mind.  Picked up a coupla things there.
Went across to Macy's with an eye toward something to wear to both the Kentucky Derby Party and Carl's and Diana's wedding.  Tried practically everything in the store on, but found nothing for the wedding.  I did buy a nice silk blouse which I'll team up with black pants for the party, and a pair of earrings.  Tried on a bunch of things at Boscov's, too, but found nothing I'd wear to a dogfight,* let alone a wedding.
By the time I got back, it was after 2:00.  Wrapped the gifts and took to the post office.  Stopped on the way at the library and Ellen told me the flyers for my Dionne Quintuplet presentation were in.  They're a little hard to read, it seems to me, but the pictures, which they must have gotten off the Internet, are good.  Nice, but---aagh!--the original date and time were listed, not the new one!  I pointed this out and was told it had been done at some central place and would be changed.  Geez, I hope so.
Home, I got a return call from Mary Ann M., from Cranberry Creek. Called her and agreed to send her something on the Dionne program, so she can put it in their newsletter.  Went out to buy onions.
Finally had a light lunch, but by that time, it was after 3:00.  Cleaned up a few things on the computer and did a wash.  Busied myself with this and that until dinnertime when I made a shrimp, onion, green pepper, and garlic stir fry--very tasty--then decided to run down to Manahawkin.
Went to Kohl's and tried on a lot of things, but found  nothing I wanted to wear to the wedding.  Oh, well, I do have more than a month.  Bought a few items in Wal-Mart, then went home.
I'm toying with the idea of going all the way up to Quakerbridge Mall in Mercer to see if I can get a dress that doesn't make me look like a pregnant hippo.  Hmm...
* An old expression and a weird one, but it conveys the meaning.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Errands And Such

Got an early Skype call from P. and N.; it's finally warmer there, I was happy to see.
I had toyed with the idea of seeing J. Edgar, which was being shown free at the library yesterday morning.  Decided to go: It was listed as starting at 10:30 and I got there about five minutes early.  Turned out that first, there was a "business meeting" of Friends of the Library, an octogenarian group if ever there was one, and that took a half hour.  There was then some fuss and bother while coffee was brewed.  Finally, at long last, the movie started (at 11:25), but I had to glare into silence two women in the back chatting away AND ask to have more lights turned out--.  Well, the upshot was, I stayed for about an hour, then fabricated an appointment in Atlantic County, and left.  The movie itself seemed a bit of a bore, although it was hard to realize that with all the distractions.  It did intrigue me enough so I requested a bio on Hoover.
Went to Target in Manahawkin to pick up a few things.  Saw a cute little outfit for the new babe, but decided to go to Babies 'R' Us in Hamilton today instead to get a "preemie size."
The northern dweller had some school obligations in the evening, so came in with sushi after her run and we had California rolls for dinner.  Very tasty.
Heard from Betty: Katy and baby are doing well, Katy out of an induced coma and baby out of neonatal intensive care.  No name yet.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Aagh!

Aagh! Now I can't remember how to get back to former posts!  I wanted to add to the menu at the First Communion, as it included pulled pork N. had made and lots of other things.  Can't seem to get back to it. 
Oh, the hell with it.  Nothing much happened after I posted in the late afternoon, anyway. 
But I'm frustrated with this new format!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Home Again

Home again, home again, jiggedy jig.  Got up north (Jersey) about 9 am on Saturday and up north (Pennsy) about 2:00.  House was pretty much filled with the J. and N., the four boys, N.'s parents, J.'s Dad and wife, assorted friends, and visiting little doggies.  Later, the engaged couple, Carl and Diana came, along with J.'s sort-of-stepsister, Rachel, and her boyfriend.  Next day, we all assembled at the church for the mass and First Communion ceremony.  The boys acquitted themselves well and we went home to a big lunch: cold cuts, a number of salads (I brought my favorite macaroni salad; I have the best recipe for it, everybody says).  The landlord and his wife came, along with their son and his wife, good friends of J. and N..  J., Jr. and T's mom and her boyfriend came and we all talked and ate and enjoyed ourselves. 
Carl and Diana invited both J.'s mother and me to their June wedding; J. is going to be best man and little T. the ring bearer.  That should be great fun--it's been a long time since I've been to a wedding.
We stayed over two nights at the Sherwood Motel in Wellsboro and I got acquainted with the owner, Marcia C.  I was interested to hear she had lived in Japan for eight months--was working for Universal Studies.  Can't remember the name, but it started with an "O."  She also told me about the little theatre group there and gave me some of their brochures and info.  We left this morning about 8:40, after breakfast at the Wellsboro Diner.  Made good time and got back to Jersey about 2:00; I was home by 3:30.  Heard from sister Betty that her son, Wes and wife had their third little girl today.  There are some concerns, but baby and Mommy should be fine.
Called a landscaper guy and he's stopping in this afternoon to give me an estimate for pulling weeds, removing a bush, and so on. 
LATER:  Guy came, name is Eric, gave me a good estimate, I said yes, and the place will look better, at least in the front.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Stuff

Went to exercise, then spent a lot of time on chores and errands: Assembled the ingredients for the macaroni salad I'm taking up north, went to both banks for various financial transactions, did some stuff that concerns the Dionne program, and stopped at the library to find that my requested CD, The Bad Seed, had come in. (The other day, Susan mentioned it was one of her favorites and that piqued my interest. I also requested the book.) I then did something almost unprecedented for me: I sat and watched the movie in the middle of the day! Albeit, it was overcast and miserable but still--. Even ate my lunch in front of the T.V. and enjoyed it immensely. Movie came out in 1956
Finished up the macaroni salad and packed for Wellsboro. I must remember to water the plants and turn off the heat.
Walked to the clubhouse in the evening for the Sunrise Bay Singers' program and had an enjoyable time. Sat with Ray and Barb and chatted with lots of others. Was delighted to see Sid and Rae S., as he's been very ill with several ailment, but is doing much better. As I sat there last night with my friends and neighbors, I realized once more how glad I am we had made this move nine years ago.
NOTE: Found the Spellcheck, but still dislike this new format!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Dionne Quintuplets, 1936

 
Posted by Picasa
I have NO IDEA why the title below came out so large and in orange, but the biggest problem is, I can't find Spellcheck--damn!

BLOG SETUP HAS CHANGED!

Now what fresh Hell is this?!? The whole look of this blog has changed! It's terrible, horrible, a blot on humanity, I'll never get over... Oh, well, guess I'll live. Met Doreen T. at the Stafford Library at noon. She's the president or chair or leader of Friends of the Library there. She retired as a librarian,once worked in Spring Lake where Susan's from, and is a neat person. No children, but a husband and dog. I had brought a number of artifacts concerning the Quints and she was very interested. I won't be presenting there until Novvember, but was glad to meet her. Since I was in the neighborhood, I stopped at Shop-Rite and got ingretients for the macaroni salad I'm making for Sunday's First Communion party up--way up--north. We leave tomorrow morning and will stay over two nights. Stopped at the consighment shop; am still looking for a boudoir chair, but didn't find anything. Went to Staples and enlarged and duplicated some Quint postcards. Got home about 2:00 and made a big salad for lunch. Spent a lot of time writing out a description of the Quint program I'll do in June. Copied another letter Betty sent me in 1956. I'm trying to find out if NEA (Newspaper Enterprises of America) maintains its 1934 copyrights on Quint pictures and had a "chat" with somebody from Corbis, an outfit that seems to have taken NEA over--maybe. Heard from Jeanne S. and Aline and her sister, Susan, that they can all come for lunch on May 1. Called Creative Styling for an appointment with Leann and, to my horror, she's "no longer with us." (I've often heard this phrase when somebody leaves a shop or office; geez, people say it when someone dies, too. Well, maybe it is a little death in a manner of speaking.) Agreed to have Ashley do it, instead--hope it'll look okay. Have a list of things to do before our trip, so must get hoppin'. Okay, there are problems: I started new paragraphs her, but in the published version, all the text runs with no indentations. Plus, I have no idea where the spell check is AND I clicked on preview and can't see how to get back to compose. Damn, I wish they'd stop changing things that worked better before they started changing things...

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Met Betty for lunch at the Italian Gourmet, our usual place, and had a nice meal (salmon for both of us) and chat.
Actually galvanized myself to clean the kitchen counters and do a few other things around the house. Called Creative Styling to make an appointment for a cut and color and was taken aback to learn that Leann, my regular stylist, is "no longer with us" (that always sounds as if the person has died). Agreed to have Ashley do it instead; she's done mine before.
Pulled together some Dionne Quintuplet stuff to show Doreem, whom I'm meeting at the Stafford Library today at noon.
Attended Funny Money rehearsals for a time last night. I continue to be impfressed with direcor Neil, who's so energetic, dynamic, and committed. He also has a killer English accent; he has a lead role in the play. The acting is uneven, though, I'm afraid: Jeff and Erin are superb, but the other two seem less than ideal--as Brits and as actors.
Susan and I will go to Tonya's for horse-back riding this evening. (Well, she'll ride--I ain't gettin' near the big brutes.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Went to Kohl's and got three adorable little "onesies" for Leslie's new granddaughter, along with a cute talking car for big brother, Nicholas. Added a card and dropped them off to Les; she and Dennis are going up to see new baby today.
Squirted weed killer on the weeds between the spaces in the driveway and actually pulled a few from the front. I'm debating with myself whether to spend some of my tax refund on hiring somebody for this chore.
It's pretty clear Betty and I are losing our minds in tandem. I had told her I'd be down in Margate today for Harry S.'s funeral, as he and his wife, Mary, had visited Pat in the hospital shortly before he died. Betty said she was going to a talk last night at the Jewish Community Center in Margate, as it had something to do with a former neighbor of hers. Because I was going o be in Margate, we planned to meet for lunch. Hmm...for some reason, I checked this blog from two and a half years ago--I discovered that it wasn't the Stechers who had visited Pat, but Bill and Mary Scofield! Called Betty to tell her I wasn't going to the funeral after all and she burst out laughing. Why? Because when I called her, she was on Jerome Avenue, having just discovered there was no such talk at the JCC or at the nearby synagogue, either!
Well, we'll still do lunch.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

After our walk and exercise, I finally assembled parts for the library display window. Glued different-colored paper to the foam board I already had, then put copies of programs on that. I'm not sure when Funny Money will be, so I put "coming soon" info in. Added some framed shots from previous productions and set it up. I realized it needed more, so went to Staples to order a banner with "Little Egg Theatre Company" on it. Had to leave off the info, then go back later. Talked to the young woman about it and she suggested various formats; you can also add some of their clip art, font design, and background color. I try to put a picture on here of what I selected. Had to go back later to pick it up and shelled out $26. I'll ask our treasurer, Tonya, if I can be reimbursed. I don't think she'll see a problem with that, as the banner is reusable, but I didn't ask first and if necessary, will eat the cost. The display needed still more, so I combed various sites for pictures and sound several I framed and will add today.
Heard back from said Tonya about Susan's proposed horsey ride, and we're going after dinner on Thursday.
Invited Jeanne S. for lunch next week and will also invite Aline and her sister.
Saw in the paper that Harry Stecher has died. He went to school with Pat and when Pat was in the hospital a few years ago, Harry and his wife stopped in to see him (their son was having heart surgery there). The funeral is tomorrow in Margate and I'll go.
Finally, at long last, got the ancestor stuff I used for Frank's book off the dining room table and put away. Now I have to tackle the guest room. Besides that, the outside desperately needs weeding. Oh my, what a tough life I have...
WIDER: So, so refreshing to see anti-bullshit like this:
"In the militarist society in which we live in these latter days of American Empire, all soldiers are “noble heroes” who have signed up at “great personal sacrifice” to “defend our freedoms,” and we are all expected to pay homage and a great deal of our hard-earned money to support them, both in their brutal efforts to subjugate people in desperately poor parts of the world, and (when they leave the service, either to take jobs in the private sector or to live out broken lives if they were wounded) as veterans."
That's from one of my new favorites, "This Can't Be Happening." Here's the site:
http://thiscantbehappening.net/
(Note: Jim, I thought I had done what you said to make a link, abut I'm afraid it wasn't clear to me. I'll keep practicing elsewhere.)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Picked up Aline a bit before 1:00 and went off to the clubhouse for opera. Mary Ann showed two short ones: Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, my favorite. The usual goodies were served and I had more than my share.
During the intermission, I was left open-mouthed when Aline casually sat down at the piano and played a beautiful aria from another opera. Later, she played show tunes and, very well, too, I thought. Good grief, I didn't even know she played! Anyway, she made a big hit with the rest of the audience.
When I took her home, we sat in her driveway and talked and talked and talked, for more than an hour, in fact. Got to know her better and I really like her.
I just noticed an e-mail send by Lucille P. several weeks ago, inviting LETCO members to a get-together on April 28 at the Mystic Casino (not really a casino, but a bar and restaurant). Don't know how I missed it, but I wrote back to say I'll be there. Will ask Aline if she wants to go.
Have finally pulled together some things for the library display window. I don't know the exact date for Funny Money yet, so I'll just add a "coming soon" notice.
Heard back from Tonya about taking Susan to her place to ride one of her horses (as for me, I'd rather stick a fork in my eye). We made a date for Thursday after dinner, so I'll tell Susan.
Had my regular Sunday night Skype call from Ellen, who's been off a week and is now facing BACK TO WORK DAY--AAGH! However, she can now count down until summer, so can look forward to that.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Met Ellen V. at noon for lunch at our usual place, Applebee's. I had a Caesar with chicken--very tasty--and a Blue Moon. Of course, we talked and talked (for two hours, in fact) and I gave Ellen the costumes I had borrowed for Night two months ago. She'll take them back tomorrow; I couldn't go, as I'm picking up Aline for opera.
We hashed over the theatre company, of course, agreeing that Desi can be a real pain. I think more highly of Neil G. than she does, and would love to be directed by him; she didn't care for Tara, whom I hold in great esteem, either. Ellen already knew we couldn't get the rights to OC and have switched to Funny Money. Neil will use the same cast.
Stopped earlier at the library and suddenly remembered I have the display window for April and March. Because I don't yet know the date Funny Money will be staged, I decided to make a montage of past plays along with a teaser such as "...Now we're looking forward to our next production, the hilarious FUNNY MONEY!" or whatever.
I'm still listening to Under The Dome on CD, King's mammoth book. Also got a book I had requested called Defying Hitler, by a German who did just that during WWII. (Now how do we defy our ever-more-powerful and diabolical "leaders"?)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Oh, heck, I must as well add yet another post for the day: I noticed at St. Teresa's yesterday that an American flag is displayed. It occurred to me that churches--at least Catholic churches--didn't show flags at one time. I looked it up on the Internet and learned the practice started during World War II. Oh, yes, I remember what went before that. It didn't include secular flags in church.
It seems to me that any person espousing religion (I guess any religion that believes in a being both divine and benign, but certainly Christian religions) should protest a flag in a place of worship. I understand that the bible records these words of Jesus: "My kingdom is not of this world." Doesn't that mean--or shouldn't it mean--that He desired the separation of church and state, the assumption being that his "kingdom" is of higher worth?
I don't go to church and don't believe the dogmas; I can, in fact, be described as agnostic, if not that other adjective that dare not speak its name. However, if I was suddenly struck with a bolt of belief, I would never go to a church that has an American flag in the building.
Why? If you have to ask, you'll never understand.
Finally, here's the project.

http://pix.kg/p/445030030508%3A462670833/sct

(I'm afraid I don't know how to just have viewers click on the line; it has to be copied and pasted.)

It's a kind of ancestor journal I made for my brother, Frank. I had done a similar one for my sister on our mutual birthday, but this includes more. I show some representative pages: our Irish and German antecedents first, then our parents' info, their marriage, etc., then Frank's birth (fourth child of six). Besides photos and a narrative, I included copies of documents, such as our great-grandfather's 1823 baptismal certificate from Alsace-Lorraine, with a translation, and our father's listing in an engineer's book, citing his bachelor's and master's degree. There are about forty pages in all, ending with Frank and his Marybeth. Anyway, he liked it a lot and so did his children.

The pictures are more easily seen if you make them full-screen--see bottom right.
Got a call-back from Noreen and we had a very pleasant conversation; she sounds like the kind of person I like. Said I'd like to meet with her to discuss my pending Dionne Quints program at Stafford Library and we decided I'd see her after her "Friends of the Library" meeting next Thursday.
Finally got abound to making an appointment for another dentist and will see him on the thirtieth of this month.
As is my custom twice a year, I switched tableware to my spring/summer set. I know it's weird, but for some reason, it gives me a little lift--something like acknowledging warm weather, which I favor.
Picked Leslie up at 10:45 and we went to the memorial mass for Barb D.'s father. I always thought St. Teresa's was quite beautiful, although modern isn't usually my speed. I found the service interesting. I still know the words and rituals, of course, even though I grew up with the Latin version, but was mildly surprised that some responses have been slightly changed. Somebody told me later the original Latin had been more closely translated. It occurred to me that people from other cultures might find the Catholic practices bizarre or amusing, as we might view a ceremony of the Zulus. Anyway, I enjoyed it, although not in a spiritual sense and certainly not enough to attend with any regularity.
After, there was a nice luncheon in the church out building, catered by Scojo's. I enjoyed being with my friends and the lunch was tasty. There were mounds of food and--a nice touch--take-home boxes, so we all helped ourselves.
Leslie came in to chat when we got home and we had a good visit. She has a new little granddaughter--Amelia Antonia--born on Thursday who, unfortunately, has a heart valve defect and will have to have surgery in a month or so.
Tried to transfer pictures of "the project" onto the computer so I could post them here, but wasn't able. Hope it's the batteries, which I'm recharging; will try again today.
Drove to Manahawkin late in the day. Went to Kohl's for socks and The Home Depot for a "grabber." However, I found it was twenty bucks--highway robbery, as my other cost ten--and didn't buy it. I'll probably go back for it later, but I was annoyed at wheat I saw as a doubling in price. (But was it the same thing, Mimi, and how long ago did you get the old one? No, it was different and about eight years ago. Okay, 'nuff said.)
Made a date to meet Ellen V. for lunch today and will give her my costumes to return to Surflight then.
This is a RED-LETTER DAY for my twin: Thirty years since she's had a drink--yay!

Friday, April 13, 2012

As I usually do, I unpacked soon after I got home from Baltimore and couldn't find my cell charger. Called Frank, he looked, yes, it was still at Patrick's--darn! Actually, because I don't have the fancy kind that do everything but wash the dishes, I could easily just have bought another for ten bucks or so, but Frank said he'd send it.
Had another go-round with Comcast. This time, I got a bill for $245. Called and found they didn't want to talk to me because Pat's name is still on. Got a copy of the death certificate and drove to their crummy place in Manahawkin. Groaned when I thought of the other times I was there: jammed with people, no place to sit, and a blaring television extolling Comcast. Was pleasantly surprised to find only the last was true, changed the name and had the bill explained quickly. Clerk's name was Betty, and she was certainly around my age, and--unlike those involved in my earlier encounters--was very, very pleasant and accommodating.
Took the other death certificates to the safety deposit box, which I should have done a long time ago, and got some stuff done in the house.
Was surprised to find out from Tonya that we're not doing The Odd Couple after all-- couldn't get the rights. Neil has decided on a British comedy called Funny Money instead and will use the same cast.
As I told her I would, I called Doreen from the Stafford Library Friends to discuss the Dionne Q. program, but I haven't heard back from her.
Today, will pick up Leslie and go to the memorial service for Barb D.'s father at 11:00.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Back from Baltimore! A quick synopsis: Met Betty at the Northfield Days Inn about 3:00 on Monday. Because her house is in disarray while the bathroom is being renovated, she suggested we stay over there. We went over to Boscov's, then Muckie met us for dinner at the Shore Diner.
Got an early start on Tuesday, first going to Muckie's to leave my car. After losing our way a a few times, we arrived at The Ritz Carlton Residence, right on the waterfront, by 11:00.
The place is pretty impressive: huge, beautifully appointed, and staffed with a multitude of smiling flunkies. Patrick and Susan, the three children, and the nanny now live in a large rental, but are considering buying a bigger one. They put brother Frank and Marybeth, Betty and me in a first floor suite and, bey, a family of ten could live in it: a big foyer, huge living room, dining room, kitchen, lounge, three bath and every amenity. Susan went out and bought all kinds of breakfast, lunch, and dinner ingredients, as well as wine and beer, to stock the place. She took us across the street to the art museum restaurant, where we had a delicious lunch--pan trout and a local beer for me--and a good time. Kelen, 3 1/2, was at nursery school, and we took Gabrielle, 2 1/2 with us, with Jameson, 9 months home with Nanny Connie. I tried to grab the check, but Susan got to it first (good thing, as it came to over #200).
Back, we awaited Kelan, then his Daddy, who has a pretty gruelling work day at Johns Hopkins. An exciting development there is that he's on the team assembled to perform full face transplants. Interesting, when I mentioned I had just read Roger Ebert's autobiography, he said one of the team members had performed one of the surgeries on Ebert's face. Unfortunately, that failed as had the others.
I went out for a walk along the waterfront after lunch. Frank had planned to join me but, unfortunately, he had thrown his back out and couldn't do it. Got up early on Wednesday and did the same, although it was much cooler and very windy.
Patrick, poor guy, drove to the D.C. airport to pick up Maureen, Swarupp, and the two children (Ezekiel 3 and Leila, 2),coming in from California. Plane was late and they didn't get in until 2 am.
I got up early and walked again, but it was cool and windy and I stayed on the street. We were all together on Wednesday, the adults mostly sitting and talking, the children tearing around wildly. Had good talk and good food. Frank loved the book I made him--that was the project and I'll try to post pictures here later--and so did his children.
We said our goodbyes about 2:00, then went on our way. Called Helen C. from the car and met her at the Crab Trap for an early dinner. Got my car at Muckie's and was home shortly after 7 pm after an enjoyable visit.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Moseyed around, then assembled the salad, showered, and dressed. Took the pineapple plant over to Susan, who had a houseful of company (relatives), most of whom I've met before. The plant made a big hit and Susan put it on a small tiled table in the sun room that adjoins the kitchen. If I say it myself, it looks terrific. I was urged to stay for a bit and have a glass of wine. I had plenty of time, so how could I refuse? Couldn't, didn't, and chatted for a bit before I said goodbye.
Left for northern climes at 2:00 and was there an hour later. I had put must of the components of the salad in separate containers--it tastes fresher when they're assembled just before serving--so put all in the refrig. Helped the hostess prepare, the other company came, and we had nice time.
Others were the host's brother, whom I like a lot, his son, wife, and their two children, and DIL's parents, a nice, convivial group, all of whom I know. Dinner was delicious: ham, corn casserole, mashed 'taters, homemade biscuits* (I've never made them, but the hostess does all the time--must try it), my salad, and other sides. One guest brought a fruit pizza for dessert--I have every intention of finding this recipe on the 'net, and making it for the next party. It's made in a a regular pizza pan, but crust is of cookie dough. There's a white icing-like layer over that, then strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, and kiwi arranged in a circular pattern. Sometimes spectacular creations like that look great, but the taste is indifferent--this was an exception--very good, and is a terrific warm-weather dessert.
Was going to stay over, but we ate early and it was still light out when the party was winding down, so changed my mine. The host and hostess are leaving this morning for a few days in Virginia, anyway. Will see them when we drive to the far north the week after next.
May not post for the next few days, as we're leaving for Baltimore and I may not have easy access to a computer--not sure.
^She kneads and rolls out the dough directly on the counter, first, of course, sprinkling it with flour. Why didn't I ever think of that? Will do with my next pie crust.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Boy, active Mimi turned into passive Roe yesterday. Aside from talking to Betty and firming up our plans for Baltimore, did very little except re-pot the pineapple plant I got Susan and cut up veggies.
Other than that, I spent a lot of time on the computer, to wit:
I was going over some old letters and came across a long one from my close friend Joan Welsh. (Oh, I usually don't use last names, but Joan's been gone so long and had no family, I decided to.) Joan and I met at St. Nick's in freshman year in high school and became very close friends. She lived with her parents on Texas Avenue, so in Star of the Sea parish. Joan had the lead in the senior play--she sang--although she was very much overweight. Someday I'll write about her and her parents, a relationship so different from mine it was remarkable to me, and very fraught.
Anyway, the letter was l-o-o-on-g--eighteen hand-written half-pages--and I had copied the eoriginal, which was dim, so I re-typed it onto the computer. It was wonderful to read. It's dated November 18, 1956, a month before I turned 20. (Yes, children, I'm an old lady.)
The letter mentioned my sister, Jeanne P., and Jane M., to all of whom I sent it. But it also talks about Mark H., Cassie W., Bill D., and so very many others, all gone now, some for years. Joan herself died about eight or ten years ago.
I have a box of letters to me from that era--after I had moved to Florida. Maybe someday I'll assemble the whole story, but not now.
Anyway, reading Joan's letter after these years gone so quickly by, I had such an eerie sensation of being two people at once--my present self and that girl I wish I had known better, the young Rosemary. Now she's gone and so are so many of my friends and classmates.
"O lost and by the wind grieved/Ghost, come back again..."
Thomas Wolfe knew what the heart knows.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

Took THE PROJECT to A.C. Moore in Manahawkin and the lovely lady named Amy put it together for me. It looks great, but now I'm a little worried about the weight. Frank's going to have to take it back to California and boy, is it heavy. I think he'll have to take it as a carry-on. Well, I'm not going to worry about it.
After lunch, drove to Produce Junction and got a plethora of vegetables, as well as another pineapple plant, which I'll give Susan (although it's not very Eastery) and two begonias in red and yellow for the one with whom I'm spending Easter. Said one invited me to stay over tomorrow night and I will. Talked to Betty and we've firmed up plans to got to Baltimore; I'll stay at her place on Monday.
While in Atlantic County, also stopped at Canal's for wine, went to the cemetery, then to Santori's for fresh feta.
Saw an article in The Press of A.C. to the effect that our sterling officials here in Little Egg have announced an 80 percent increase in salaries which will raise the tax rate, of course. The chief financial officer is due for a 61 percent increase! Plus there are all kinds of other fiscal shenanigans, including the fact that a contractor charging $95 is no longer rendering services, but is still being paid. This after five police officers have not been called back since the layoff last year. (I wonder if there's some time of oversight agency in the county or state which investigates this kind of highway robbery.)
Hmm... I often think the crooks and liars who get fat off municipality teats purposely announce an outrageous increase like this, then make a great show of concerned reaction to public opinion. They hold hearings, listen with solemn attention to their constituents, confer, then come out with some reduction in the increase.
"Wow, great, we won!" rhapsodize the taxpayers, we got them down to only a fifty percent increase!"
Still screwed, but it seems like a victory.

Friday, April 06, 2012

ALL DAY! Yes, all day I slaved over The Project, from right after breakfast to EIGHT O'CLOCK AT NIGHT! I stopped only long enough to go to A.C. Moore and get more necessities for The Project (It looms so large and is such a pain in the ass, I think of it in capital letters.) Anyway, it's finished, thank Zeus. That is, my part is finished; I have to take it back to A.C. Moore to have it assembled.
In the meantime, Bob S. came back and finished the sprinkler stuff. He charged me considerably more than he has other years, as he had to replace two sprinkler heads. They were surely run over by the lawn services' lawn mower, so I'm going to call them to see if they're reimburse (fat chance, I'm afraid).
Opened the mail to find a "Report of Your Visit" sheet. Very convenient, except that it said I had been referred to rehab 3 x per week. What? Went over there and of course, it was a mistake. I don't know how that could have ended up on my report, but it's been expunged. No real harm done, except it was a hassle and took another half hour out of my day.
Also in the mail: a mortgage statement that confirms my mortgage is going down by $126 a month. Oh, this is so nice of Chase--what great guys and gals!

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Most of the day was devoted to this project I'm doing. Geez, it's only about halfway finished. Never again!
Bob S. came after lunch to turn on the outside water. For five or six years now, Bob, who lives several streets over, has been doing this for me and a number of others. Why have him instead of the lawn service? He charges $25 and Meticulous Lawn $65--'nuff said.
Yesterday, Bob ran into some snags, though. I thought he was here a surprisingly long time and went out to see him sitting on the D.'s front apron drinking a bottle of water. Barb was out there with him and we chatted for a bit. It seems two of my sprinkler heads had been seared off, probably by lawn mowers and he had to go buy new to replace. Anyway, he's older than I am (!!), pretty rotund, and was huffing and puffing, so I urged him to call it a day. Said he would and will come back tomorrow.
Called my dear niece, Carolyn, in Santa Barbara, to get phone number of other niece, and we had a long, lovely chat. Called other niece, Maureen, for info for the project. Went to Staples and A.C. Moore late in the afternoon yet more chores regarding the project.
MUST finish the core basics today!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Met Betty for lunch at The Olive Garden and we had a pleasant meal and talk. We both had a few bucks left on the gift cards brother Larry had given us for our milestone birthday in December and now they're finished up.
Stopped at the cemetery on the way home to water the mums at both graves. I should have gone to Santori's for fresh feta, but didn't. Was asked to bring salad for the northern couple's Easter dinner, but maybe I'll think of a different one rather than the same old green I usually do.
Betty W. came to the door and dropped off an invite to the monthly Dine Around at the end of the month. She and her husband are providing champagne and when I called to respond, Betty told me we'd toast his ninetieth birthday. Ninety! Makes me feel downright virginal.
Got a call from Jeanne P. from Florida and we had a nice chat. Jeanne is a fellow survivor from HSHS and it's always good to hear from her. Her grandson is graduating from Rider and she wondered if I know any good places to stay around Lawrenceville. Unfortunately, I've been gone for ten years now (yoicks!) and don't have much current info. Advised her to go on Rider's web site or call; they should be able to provide suggestions.
Got a message back from Donna T., who asked me to make a few small changes to the "Blowin'..." piece I'm doing on her for The Breeze. No prob.
MUST spent the day--and several subsequent days--on my project.
Fear not, gentle reader: Said project will be revealed when I get home from Baltimore next week. I'm sure all six hundred--uh,six dozen--um, six....
Well, if ANYBODY's reading this, you'll find out later.
WIDER: It's been a while since I've added serious stuff to his blog, but hey, this is serious:
"Evidently, it’s our fate — increasing numbers of us anyway — to be transformed into intelligence data (just as we are being eternally transformed into commercial data), our identities sliced, diced, and passed around the labyrinth, our bytes stored up to be “mined” at their convenience."
That's from Tom Engelhardt and the rest needs to be read, too.
http://original.antiwar.com/engelhardt/2012/04/03/data-mining-you/

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Got two doctor's appointments out of the way: eye doc at 8:15 and was treated to a video on cataracts. Mine are growing, but still not too bad, and I'll be damned if I'll get them done now. I asked Dr. D., after she gave me the obligatory caution that infection cold follow cataract surgery and I could go blind, if I could take Ativan to get through it. Probably, but I'd have to inform the anesthesiologist.
The great news was that the tiny holes in the backs of my eyes which were spotted years ago, have remained stable and should be no cause for concern. (Was she kidding? When it comes to my eyes, I can turn anything into a cause of concern.)
I dislike the fact that the drops they put in affect my vision for a large portion of the day. They did, but cleared, of course, by the afternoon...
...which saw me (heh, heh) at my next doctor's appointment. That was at Dr. W.'s, whom I like so much. I was annoyed to have to wait so long, though; appointment was at 2:30 and I didn't actually see him until 3:30. Ordinarily, I'd have plenty to say about that, but Dr. W. is such a sweetie and he apologized for the wait, that I simmered down. I'll simply make mine the first appointment of the day from now on.
Besides, he gave me all kinds of good news about my blood test results. He carefully went through each item--they test for everything but beri-beri, it seems--and explained why the numbers were so good. He still loves my heart, too.
Excellent and now I'm finished with the medical stuff, I fervently hope, at least until September when he wants me to get another blood test.
Got a slew of errands done as well, including stopping at the library to 1. pick up Suttee, by Cormac McCarthy, which Roger Ebert recommends in his autobiography and 2. change the time of my Dionne Quintuplet program to 3:00 pm (on June 5),
Lunch with Betty today.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Spent most of the day working on this project I've embarked upon. Don't want to mention what it is yet, just in case the news leaks (good grief!), but it's a pain in the rear. Drove to A.C. Moore to get something I need for it and that was about the only deviation from this I permitted.
But--ah-h. Susan called in the afternoon to see if I wanted to go to the Mystic Island Casino (not a real casino, just a restaurant/bar) with her and Walter. Hey--does a bear...that is, is the pope...I mean, isn't my favorite expression "Never turn down an invitation"?
Darn right, I'd go and we had a nice time. Had a pub burger--excellent and as rare as I like it--and two Coronas--yum. Good talk and good time and I was home by 8:00 o' the clock.
Ellen had called by phone, and I skyped her to see she was on the phone with her northern dweller sib. No prob, I just signed and addressed Easter cards in the meantime. After she finished, we talked for a time and I went to bed shortly thereafter.
I'll leave for eye doctor's appointment shortly. This is the one I dread, as I have such a fear of blindness.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

GUESS WHAT?! I WON 6 MILLION DOLLARS IN THE LOTTERY!!
Yes, it is April Fool's Day...
Spent dark, gloomy yesterday mainly on domestic chores, too boring to mention. I did drive up to Barnegat late in the day to my new favorite thrift store. This is also a consignment shop and is several cuts above most. A few weeks ago, I bought a chair for my bedroom for forty bucks and yesterday, I found something I've been wanting for YEARS. I've been pining away for it and have looked in Bed 'N' Bath, Macy's, and other big stores, but the ones I liked were all so expensive...
What is it for which I hankered? Why, a blanket holder, of course. This is in maple, which matches the bedside table in the guest room, so is just perfect. I got it for $16.95 and I'm very pleased with my purchase. Now I want to get an occasional chair for that room, also in maple. Naturally, I'm not going o buy it new, which I consider a sheer waste of money, but will keep looking at the gently-used places and house sales.
Two good things came in the mail: a big fat check from my mortgage company for overpaying escrow or something. I appealed to my financial advisor and he told me to apply it to the principal. (I will, but damn! I'd rather kick up my heels with it.) Said company also wrote that my mortgage will go down by $126 a month, starting in June. Why? I dunno, just out of the goodness of their hearts, I guess, but I sure don't care--I'll take it.
Even better: a letter from Atlantic Imaging to say my mammogram showed no abnormalities. Although I've had no sign of any problem (read "cancer"--why can't I just write it?), being a pessimist a heart, I'm always uneasy until I get the letter.
Got a call from my cousin, Tom, Jr., to tell me he received a letter to the effect that the job at Rider was taken by someone else. I had put in a word for him, but unfortunately, they had dozens of applicants--Tom said he was shown two large stacks--and it's a damn tight job market out there.