Don’t Tell Anybody!

26 Sep

It seems as if any time I find a product I really, really like, the manufacturer discontinues it. Certain soups, candy bars (OK, I honestly don’t need candy, but still. . .) you name it. And now, General Foods has all but discontinued my favorite coffee.

I have enjoyed Orange Cappuccino since before I left Blue Cross in 1983. I even introduced my Mum to it, and she enjoyed it, although she claimed it was too expensive at $2.59 a can. (See my post on August 15, 2018) I’m really glad she didn’t live to see what it sells for today.

The Squire bought me 40 cans some time back, and I have nursed them along, limiting myself to a cup a day. Alas, I am down to two cans, so I went to the Wal-Mart website to order another batch. They still carry it, but they now want $44.99 for SIX cans, plus nearly $8 for shipping.

That, my friends, comes to over $8.00 a can! My Mum would keel over in a dead faint. Actually, I did pretty much the same thing, myself.

No explanation as to why this coffee is suddenly more than twice the price of any of the other flavors. The Squire is more than willing to buy it for me, but I can settle for Hazelnut. Some of the other coffees are so sickening sweet thet make my dentures ache, so Hazelnut it is.

Still I wouldn’t object to find a few cans of Orange Cappuccino in my Christmas stocking.

One Gawd-Awful Mess

19 Sep

A little over a year ago, we had some storm damage at our church, and any really good thunder-boomer would cause a leak over the pulpit. After many conversations with Church Insurance, we finally got the money to replace the entire sanctuary roof, rather than just patching the leak.

Last week the roofing company came out, removed all of the old shingles, and started putting on the new ones. When The Squire went over the next morning to unlock the building, he discovered the crew had not covered the roof when they went home. And it had rained HARD the night before.

He could see daylight through the roof. Those two white stripes, one just behind the beam in the foreground, and the sort of double one – – between the second beam and the red wall are open spaces.

He could also see the reflection of the windows in the water that had pooled in the pews.

Fortunately – as these things go – most of the water came in toward the front of the church, and the roofers had covered the altar with plastic to protect it from bits of debris, so there was little damage to back of the sanctuary. The grand piano and the organ were spared, as was the robing room, but a number of pews were damaged and the parquet floor is curling and cupping, and the carpets were a sodden mess. OY!

As it happened the same company also does flood restoration, so they were able to clean up their own mess, and have promised to pay to have the wood floor and the pews redone.


1 Sep

Most mornings we are glad to see a single deer in the clearing, and delighted if there are two – usually a doe and her fawn. This morning, there were SIX deer out there!

There were two does and a fawn, but they were soon joined by three bucks, all chasing those poor ladies all over the place, including into the woods between our home and the house next door! This is a dreadful picture of one of the bucks, but it was still very early in the morning, he was in fairly deep shadow, and we couldn’t get too close for fear of scaring him away.

This is a much better shot, taken before the parade started, and they are standing in a sunny spot.  Both does are here, but one is standing behind the other; the only way you can tell is that there are too many legs! 

No You Can’t

27 Aug
Sometimes you need more than enthusiasm.

A Very Clever Fellow

25 Aug

The Squire is a great guy to have around when you have a problem, always able to come up with a solution.

I’ve been working for eons on a cross-stitch cover for a prie dieu for the church I attend. (Given my age and the size of this project, this probably wasn’t the smartest thing I’ve ever done, but there you are.) A friend offered a standing embroidery frame, which is much appreciated, but I couldn’t figure out how to put my fabric on it. She had stapled her project to the rollers, which didn’t appeal to me.

Enter The Squire.

I had considered getting some clamps, but he pointed out those wouldn’t hold the fabric evenly all the way across. He found a strip of carpet tack left over from some other project, and attached it to the top and bottom rollers, then used a scrap of the old carpet to press the Aida cloth down onto the tacks. This way, I can remove the project and put it into a regular embroidery hoop if I want to take it with me, and then easily reattach it.

Very clever, that man I married.

But It’s Too Danged Hot

14 Aug

A friend and I were discussing which we would give up first – running water or air conditioning. We decided on the latter.

Big Bucks

8 Aug

Several weeks ago we were completely out of bird seed, and I asked The Squire to pick some up when he was in Fallston. He came home and I heard him dump seed into the trash can we use as a seed bin. “How helpful of him”, I thought. When he came inside, he announced he’d gotten enough to last a while. “I’m not sure it’s our regular brand, but it was a lot less expensive, so I got three bags.” NEVER, never buy bird seed you can’t see! It is honestly junk. Some cracked corn, a bit of millet (canary seed) and mostly milo. The only birds that will touch it are starlings, grackles, and red-wing blackbirds. Finally, in sheer desperation, I have been filling a kitty litter bucket halfway and dumping the seed out in the “back forty” – the Baltimore Gas and Electric right-of-way behind the barn.

Last night there was a deer out in the clearing, so large I thought it was a horse, until he raised his head and I saw the antlers. He was joined by a second, slightly smaller buck, both of them munching along the path left when I swung the first bucketful of seed across the lot. At least, somebody likes it! I’ll have to keep carrying it out there until I run out of the darned stuff. I may have to send The Squire back up to actually buy more of the darned stuff!

The War of 1812

5 Aug

A friend sent me this story. I hope you enjoy it!

 Yesterday, I wore my Vietnam Veteran cap to Wal-Mart.  There was nothing in particular that I needed at the world’s largest retailer; but, since I retired,  trips to “Wally World” to look at the “Walmartians” is always good for some comic   relief.    Besides, I always feel pretty normal after seeing some of the people that frequent   the establishment.
But, I digress. . . enough of my psychological fixations.

While standing in line to check out, the guy in front of me, probably in his early   thirties,  asked, “Are you a Viet Nam Vet?”

“No,” I replied.

“Then why are you wearing that cap?”

“Because I couldn’t find the one from the War of 1812 . . .”

I thought it was a snappy retort.

“The War of 1812, huh?” the “Walmartian” queried, “When was that?”

God forgive me, but I couldn’t pass up such an opportunity . . “1946”, I answered,   as straight-faced as possible.

He pondered my response for a moment and responded, “Why do they call it the War of   1812 if it was in 1946?”

“It was a Black Op Mission.   No one is supposed to know about it.”

This was beginning to become fun!

“Dude! Really?” He exclaimed. “How did you get to do something that COOOOL?”

I glanced furtively around me for effect, leaned toward the guy and in a low voice   said, “I’m not sure.  I was the only Caucasian on the mission.”

“Dude,” he was really getting excited about what he was hearing, “that is seriously awesome! But, didn’t you kind of stand out?”

“Not really. The other guys were wearing white camouflage.”

The moron nodded knowingly.

“Listen man,” I said in a very serious tone, “You can’t tell anyone about this.  It’s still classified ‘Top Secret’ and I shouldn’t have said anything.”

“Oh yeah?” he gave me the ‘don’t threaten me look . . “Like, what’s gonna’ happen   if I do?”

With a really hard look I said, “You have a family don’t you? We wouldn’t want anything to happen to them, would we?”
The guy gulped, left his basket where it was and fled through the door.   The lady behind me started laughing so hard I thought she was about to have a heart attack.   I just grinned at her.

After checking out and going to the parking lot, I saw dimwit leaning in a car window talking to a young woman.
Upon catching sight of me, he started pointing excitedly in my direction.

Giving him another ‘deadly’ serious look, I made the ‘I see you’ gesture.  He turned   kind of pale, jumped in the car and sped out of the parking lot.

 And these people VOTE!  

What a great time!  Tomorrow I’m going back, wearing my Homeland Security cap.

Then the next day I will go to the driver’s license bureau wearing my Border Patrol  hat, and see how long it takes to empty the place.

Whoever said retirement is boring?  You just need to wear the right kind of cap!

See you guys at Walmart

Always Read the Directions!

25 Jul

My weight had always been pretty steady – I weight 132 when we got married, and 140 when we celebrated our 25th anniversary – but several years ago, I suddenly started gaining. Ten, twenty, thirty pounds, and then forty! And we had not changed our eating habits at all. Gack! In fact, I was very, very careful stay below 1,200 calories a day, but the scale just didn’t budge.

To top it off, my blood pressure also climbed, but I simply put that down to my excess avoir du pois. My dad’s death was attributable to to hypertension, so this really, really concerned me. My GP put me on medication, but again it didn’t seem to make much difference.

A week ago, I had to look up the one medication both The Squire and I take, and discovered the side effects can include both weigh gain and high blood pressure. All those papers I had gotten from the druggist had simply been tossed into the recycling bin with my ever even glancing at them. As a shirttail member of the medical profession, I, of all people should have know better!

I betook myself to the store and asked the pharmacist if he had a spare copy of the handout for this med, and by the way, how long have I been taking it?

So now I am on a different pill, and hoping that I can drop a few pounds, now that my body is not fighting back. The Squire? He hasn’t had a bit of trouble. No particular weight gain and his B/P is still 171/20.

The fink.

Mutter, Mutter

18 Jul

This morning I heard a strange whirring/clicking sound when I went out to fill the birdfeeders. I figured is was some sort of “critter” so I walked very slowly around the corner of the house to investigate.

The heron was crouching by the side of the pond, either talking to himself, or channeling his inner “fish whisperer”.

When he saw me, he rose to his full height and stalked off across the yard to flap down into the stream. He continued to stare at me over the edge of the bank, so I finished my chores and went back inside. I watched from the bedroom window as he came back up and returned to his place at the water’s edge.