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Showing posts from November, 2006

Country Roads

Last week was not a good week for me and my family. Monday, I got the biopsy results back on my cat, Samantha. A tumor found under her tongue during an otherwise routine dental cleaning turned out to be squamous cell carcinoma. At the time, I knew nothing about the feline version of this cancer, but two days of Internet research left me feeling drained and saddened. My vet thinks he got it all. So does the lab. I’m holding onto that hope because apparently it’s about all Sammie and I have. The prognosis is not good otherwise. I’m having a hard time grasping all this. She’s so pleasantly plump and shiny, how can she be that sick?

By Wednesday I was getting a grip on my emotions, partly by allowing myself to be in a bit of denial. I kept chanting, “he got it all, he got it all.” We go back next week for a follow up exam.

Then Wednesday night my phone rang.

My sweet cousin, Flora Lee, who has been battling cancer of one type or another for well over twenty years and specifically breast canc…

Happy Thanksgiving!

Last Tuesday during my Thanksgiving gets no respect rant, I started my gratitude list as follows:

I’m grateful for a wonderful husband, a comfortable home that we own outright, two sweet furry little cats to cuddle. And news that my friend Mary Alice came through surgery for breast cancer with good lab results.

I’ve been working on adding to it. One thing I had hoped to add was good news regarding my kitty, Samantha who had a biopsy done on a growth removed from beneath her tongue during an otherwise routine dental cleaning. Unfortunately, that news wasn’t so good. We’re hoping that my vet got it all. He thinks he did. So I’m hanging on to that hope for now.

So here goes with a continuation of what I’m grateful for in my life this year.

A wonderful, compassionate veterinary staff, my 86 year old mom’s good health, the staff at the Health Center who give such excellent care to my Alzheimer’s ridden dad.

I’m grateful for a working furnace on cold nights and for family and friends.

I’m thankfu…

Office Project Progress

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After this weekend I feel like an archeologist. The past I dug into was my own and the site of the dig was my closets.

I found clothes from the 80’s. Stuff that I actually used to think looked good. Ha! I found a garbage bag tied in a knot and inside I discovered my old show bridle that I used on my mare Jenny. The tenth anniversary of her passing is next month. The silver has turned green, but the leather is in good shape. It’s totally useless, but I can’t part with it.

Like my wedding dress. It’s been preserved and boxed and takes up a huge chunk of storage space, but I can’t get rid of it. No one would want it anyway. The dress itself is quite small and looks like something from Gone with the Wind. So unless frill and ruffles and Chantilly lace come back in vogue, it stays.

But I did succeed in tossing a lot of stuff. Some of it hasn’t made it out the door yet, but it’s well on its way. I’ll be loading up my car with stuff for Good Will later this afternoon.

So, how much progress did I…

Office Project: Phase One

One of the reoccurring themes in my fiction writing is “letting go.” Accepting change and moving on. That’s probably because it’s become a reoccurring theme in my own life. I tend to get stuck and want to hang on to things as they are, simply because they’re comfortable. The known is always safer than the unknown.

But tomorrow I delve into letting go in a huge way.

I’m cleaning out my bedroom closet.

Actually, I started already. This morning I pulled all my clothes out that hang in there. It was like an archeological dig. I found several of those boxy, floral jackets with shoulder pads that were popular back in the ‘80’s. And to think I actually believed I looked good in those things! I also found a couple of cute dresses that I just don’t have the ambition to starve myself enough to get back into. I created quite a pile of stuff headed for the City Mission or Goodwill. Next, I have to get my husband AKA The Pack Rat to do the same. It could get ugly. Picture me in a tug of war with him …

What Happened to Thanksgiving?

As I was out and about yesterday, I saw it. A plastic Santa Claus in his sleigh pulled by plastic reindeer. It’s mid November, for Pete’s sake! The Halloween decorations haven’t been stored away long enough to collect dust yet. But here was a house already gearing up for a holiday that is six weeks away.

What happened to Thanksgiving???

Okay, I did see one lonely inflatable turkey on that same road. But it seemed dwarfed in comparison to the jolly old elf and his entourage. Thanksgiving gets no respect.

Why? I have some theories.

The original Thanksgiving revolves around the Native Americans and the pilgrims giving thanks for the harvest. But in this country today, how many people understand the importance of harvest anymore? Being a farm girl, I remember the relief in a full hay mow and grain bin. The silo filled with silage. The corn crib bulging with yellow ears. That’s field corn, folks. Not the sweet stuff you buy at a farmer’s market or the grocery store. This stuff is hard and feed…

Imaginary Friends

I am forty-seven years old and I have imaginary friends. There, I’ve admitted it.

I’ve always had imaginary friends, since I was a small child living a solitary farm life with one much older brother and no other kids around to play with. I had a “friend” who lived in one of our barns. In my mind the barn was a beautiful house. I had the floor plan and furnishings all laid out in my head. I could have become an interior designer. But instead, I write mysteries.

I still create imaginary worlds in my head. And I get to put my imaginary friends down on paper. With luck, I’ll eventually start seeing some money coming in as a result and NOT the guys in white coats coming to take me away. Ha ha.

My characters very often take over the scene. I try to keep them reined in to the general confines of the plot I have in mind, but they don’t always listen. And even when they play nice, they frequently throw in something I hadn’t expected. They’re always revealing things about themselves that I hadn’t …

My Winter Project

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Yesterday my husband and I had a rare day off to spend together. So of course we couldn’t decide what to do. There weren’t any movies playing that I wanted to see. He said it was too cold to go bike riding (although we decided later that it would have been fine).

We ended up at Lowe’s.

We’ve been talking for a couple of years now about organizing our closets. We live in a small log house with only two closets in the entire house. And since we’re both “collectors,” also known as Pack Rats, we have more stuff than we have storage space. The result is clutter. We figure if we can organize our closets, we might be able to fit more stuff in there instead of piling it in the middle of the spare room floor.

Our spare room has gone through several incarnations. It served as a large walk-in closet. Then we converted it to a sewing room/meditation room. Then it devolved back into a large walk-in closet again.

Now I’m determined to transform it into my office. Right now my office space is in one cor…

Old Friends

Wednesday, I played hooky from life and traveled a hundred miles each way to spend the day with an old friend.

Let me clarify…she’s been a friend of mine for a long time. She isn’t old. We’re at an age where we can get a little touchy about certain terms of endearment.

She used to live thirty-five minutes from my home and we would spend several days each week visiting and hanging out either at her house or mine. Now she lives two hours away and we see each other once or twice a year. But when we get together, it feels like time has stopped.

She still has horses including an adorable little Paint filly. We trudged through the mud with her dog running laps around our feet to give the horses “cookies.” Actually horse treats, but they know the word “cookies” when they hear it.

We went out to lunch and caught up on all the gossip. We commiserated about our roles as caregivers to our elderly parents.

And we laughed. A lot.

Everyone needs an “old” friend or two. The kind that knows your deepest, d…