Archive | April, 2013

Shower Doors

30 Apr

I decided to give the bathroom a really good cleaning today – mirrors, pictures, removing everything from the counter top and wiping it down, getting the pipes under the counter, and then I tackled the shower doors.

I hate shower doors. If they are clean, they give you no privacy, and if they are dirty – well, they are just dirty. We have a well, and hard water, and the entire shower is in constant need of a good scrubbing, even when you’ve just finished. We had three daughters and they zipped in and out of the bathroom, like a college dorm, not to mention the dog shoving the door open to see what was going on. This could be a bit awkward when The Squire was the Occupant.

Our wallpaper has blue gingham accents, and I suggested hiding the doors behind a curtain suspended from a tension rod. We already have a curtain hiding the toilet, which the architect cleverly put directly in the line of vision of the dining room door, so this would not be a Big Deal.


Perhaps if I suggested cleaning the blasted door is his job, we’ll have a better response next time the matter comes up. We’ll see.


28 Apr

Yesterday, The Squire climbed a ladder and replaced one of the flood lights that shine across our back yard. Unfortunately, in the process he dropped the glass from the old one, which shattered when it hit the ground.

Luckily it was made of safety glass, which breaks into small, relatively harmless pieces, but I was a bit concerned that the birds might be attracted to the shiny bits, and since I go barefoot most of the summer, that I might step on a piece and cut my foot. No fun.

I spent a fair amount of time today with the Dust Buster, vacuuming both the driveway and the grass under the light.

Luckily, we have no close neighbours.

Sweet Oblivion

25 Apr

Due to some changes in my meds, I have put on a good bit of weight over the last few months. I managed to find one pair of jeans at the local thrift store, and I pretty much wear them until they walk into the laundry by themselves.

Tuesday, as I was going into Bible Study, a friend mentioned that I must have just come from doing yard work because I had mud on my knees. Those who know and love me – or even just know me – realize that yard work is not in my vocabulary. I had no clue, but I was rather pleased that the jeans seemed a bit loose in the waist, and hoped that the strict diet I have been following might be having some effect.

Last night, I dragged a box of summer clothes out of the attic and after several tries, I finally found a pair of slacks to fit me, so I dumped the jeans into the wash.

I discovered today that I had been wearing The Squires pants for the last week.

The Klutz

21 Apr

The opening hymn this morning was Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken, which was our processional hymn when The Squire and I got married. The rector didn’t know that, but it was quite obvious I was not feeling well, and he knows I’m German, so he began singing Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles in my ear, just to make me laugh. We both sobered up by the time we got halfway down the aisle.

I had a great deal of difficulty moving around; at one point the rector had to almost lift me up bodily when we knelt for one of the prayers. When I go up and down steps, I am always careful to put my left foot down first. Except this morning, when I stepped off the altar on my right foot and nearly fell into a parishioner.  So graceful. Fortunately, the man managed to reach out and steady me before any damage was done. I just hoped everybody else had their eyes closed in prayer as I tried to somersault over the communion rail, but no such luck. Well, they are all used to me, so nobody pays much attention.

Several people asked me how I was feeling, or told me I looked as if I was not doing well as we were shaking hands at the church door.

Good days. Bad days. Thank God, the good ones still out-number the bad ones.



19 Apr

As much as I love him, I must tell you The Squire does not appreciate spiders.

This morning when I watered the papyrus in the living room (almost warm enough to put it outside, now) I pulled off a few dead “flowers”. Having been warned at Christmas not to put them into the fireplace, I carried the flowers into the kitchen and dropped them into the trashcan. A while later, I heard a screech and a thump from the kitchen, and rushed in to find The Squire leaning against the counter, holding his chest, and laughing hysterically.

He had opened the trashcan and been scared out of his wits by the biggest spider he’d ever seen! IMG_0005

Poor guy. Snerk.

Country Living

17 Apr

Yesterday afternoon I finally finished up a basket of ironing that has been sitting around since the flood – well, Christmas, anyway. As I put the empty basket in the hallway before I went back downstairs, I heard an odd noise. I checked to see if I had left a pin or a bead in the bottom of the basket, and then realized that the noise was coming from overhead.

Snakes in the attic. Shades of Voldemort, and all that jazz. They make an odd dragging noise as they pull themselves across the floor boards. Even if you’ve never heard it before, you know.

When The Squire came home, he took a look upstairs, but you certainly don’t get any results whispering, “Here, snakey, snakey, snakey” so that was a bust. Well, the attic is not very well insulated, so I’m sure if it hasn’t already left, it will when things heat up.

I love living in the country.

The Shot Heard ‘Round the World

16 Apr

With most of the rest of the world, The Squire and I sat in shock in front of the computer screen last night, watching the Boston Horror unfold.  Yesterday was a holiday in Massachusetts – Patriots Day, the anniversary of the Battle of Lexington and Concord, and the beginning of the American Revolution, the original “shot heard ’round the world”.

There isn’t much for me to add that hasn’t already been said. One spectator happened to be looking in the right direction at the right time, and saw a trash can explode, and the police found two more devices in the area. The was a report this morning that they had “visited an apartment” in the course of a search, so perhaps there were clues in the unexploded bombs. General opinion is that this was a “home-grown” event, not an international one, but the public is just going on what we’ve heard. Obviously, a police and FBI investigation has to be done “close to the chest”.

The race itself draws people from all over the world, and it was uncomfortable seeing national flags dropped to the ground and disregarded. Don’t worry; we will pick them up and treat them with the respect they deserve, but we are busy tending to the wounded and maimed right now. Maybe some of them are your citizens.

At one of the news conferences, a reporter actually asked either the mayor or the chief of police – can’t remember – if this was a government plot to “deprive us of even more of our civil liberties”. I have to say, the answer she got was a lot more “civil” than she’d have gotten from me!


Getting Older

15 Apr

The Squire and I have spent the last several days schlepping from accountant to lawyer to accountant, and back again.

Well, it’s not all that complicated, actually. We don’t have a large enough estate to worry about taxes, and we don’t have to account for every little thing in our possession. Everything automatically goes to the surviving spouse. After that, the house is to be sold, any debts paid off, and that money divided into seven shares. One share goes to our home church, and each of the girls gets two shares. As for the money is our investment accounts, ten percent goes to the church, and the balance divided between the three girls.

I learned a new term – “per stirpes”. That means that if any of the girls predeceased us, the money will go automatically to their children. No need to identify the kids now, or any other complicated business. Should one of the girls die, we can – if we wish – name their children as beneficiaries, but that isn’t even necessary.

Any personal items can be listed on a sheet of paper -they do not need to be part of the will, simply because we frequently purchase or dispose of jewelry, furniture,  etc. and we don’t need to keep updating the will.

Very simple. I highly recommend it.

Getting Old

8 Apr

Well, lots of things are getting old. Between us, The Squire and I have had The Plague since mid-January. I got it first, and in spite of sleeping in separate rooms, etc., he came down with it next – and it stayed and stayed and stayed. The GP put him on an anti-biotic, and when that didn’t work we tried another one, plus a Z-pak and a codeine cough syrup.

The Squire seldom takes meds, and the codeine knocked him for a loop. The first couple of days he was not to be trusted with open flames or sharp objects – I was going to make him eat his meals with a spoon – and certainly wasn’t to drive.

I had to go to a meeting, but told him I would take the trash out to the road when I got back. When I got home, the trash was by the mailbox, and The Squire was upstairs, looking morose. He had tried to help, bless him, and decided surely he could navigate his own driveway, even in the condition he was in. Ha!

He managed to back into a tree, and did almost $2,000 worth of damage to the car. (Of course, it can cost you that now just to replace the side mirror, but it was the principle of the thing.)

We have been reduced to a one-car family, and it’s not easy. We live miles from anyplace, and the car we are using is one that doesn’t “fit” my husband. A half an hour, and he is in  pain. Well, at least he doesn’t drive unless he simply must.

Our financial advisor (doesn’t that sound posh?) called to remind us that I have reached the age where I must begin to withdraw money from my IRA, so with one thing and another, we decided we might was well update our wills, which were last done in 1977. Having lived through the mess my mom left behind, we weren’t going to do that to our kids. Besides, we are a blended family, and that can lead to all sorts of complications.

The lawyer who handled our “case” today is the daughter of the fellow who was my boss when I was still married to the Late and Unlamented. I remember her as a three-year old, in a ruffled dress!


The Best Boss

1 Apr

No matter what denomination you are, Holy Week is always a mad house for the Altar Guild. More “costume changes” than an Ice-Capades skater.

Saturday morning, we were all gathered at church, changing things from black to gold and white, filling candles, polishing silver, carrying flowers from the kitchen, arranging and re-arranging, and all that goes with it, when the rector disappeared.

He popped back in later with an Edible Arrangement (R) for us, as a thank you for all the hard work we had put in during Lent, Holy Week, and the entire Church year. I have been a member of the Altar Guild since Noah got off the ark, and this is the first time anything like this has ever happened.

Bless you, Matthew!