Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Excuses, Excuses...or Oh, My Aching Back

I guess I've taken another sabbatical from posting.  Habits are strange things, and I some how got out of the habit of both posting and browsing.   I can blame the garden for part of the change.  Each year, I have a desire to change things, and each year, I also have to rework mistakes.  There are the bricks lining the beds that I'm digging up, adding sand, and then replacing.  Ugh.  These activities are harder than they used to be, and I'm slower at getting them done.

 When I drag my aching back in, books call me, and the prospect of relaxing and reading is too much to resist.  

I love the ferns, their texture, and the color of new growth and the unfurling of the spirals!

We've had a rainy spring, and on those days, I tend to catch up on mail.  


Monday, April 04, 2022


Outgoing Mail  


Recently finished French Braid.  Not much going on as far as action, but a tender look at a family from 1959 to the present.  Lots of mysteries that were just mediocre, but served to keep my mind occupied.

The following is one of my favorite poems.  

Ars Poetica

A poem should be palpable and mute   
As a globed fruit,

As old medallions to the thumb,

Silent as the sleeve-worn stone
Of casement ledges where the moss has grown—

A poem should be wordless   
As the flight of birds.


A poem should be motionless in time   
As the moon climbs,

Leaving, as the moon releases
Twig by twig the night-entangled trees,

Leaving, as the moon behind the winter leaves,   
Memory by memory the mind—

A poem should be motionless in time   
As the moon climbs.


A poem should be equal to:
Not true.

For all the history of grief
An empty doorway and a maple leaf.

For love
The leaning grasses and two lights above the sea—

A poem should not mean   
But be.
I'm currently doing one of those clean/organize days.  All of the usual chores, plus tackling the upstairs crafting chaos in five or ten minute increments.  Slow, but making progress in between laundry and general cleaning and laundry.  

Friday, April 01, 2022

April at Last

Erin was in town for a few days, but is now back in Colorado.  We had a late lunch at L'Italiano, just the two of us.  Didn't take pictures (duh!) of all of us out to eat one night with Erin and Amelia, Chris, and B.E.  It was a wonderful visit!

 I've been behind on almost everything lately.  I'm not sure why, one of those cycles I go through every once in a while.

Spring seems to finally be here.  For real this time.  The pollen is coating everything, and no sooner to you wipe things down than it begins it gradual layering and before you know it, everything is yellow again.   

 Last several weeks of outgoing mail.  Looks like a couple made more than one collage.  April is National Card and Letter Writing  Month (I'm doing all I can to keep up as it is so not even going to try) and National Poetry Month as well.   

My sleeve or the belt of my robe...

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Small Talk

Small talk is often the way we get a conversation started.  Although some of these are great conversational topics, you need a segue to get into them.  :)


Tuesday, March 08, 2022

Marching On

I'm glad I participated in InCoWriMo this year, but I'm also glad to relax a little!  Still a couple of letters that have come in that need replies, but the pressure is off.  If I participate next year, I'll be better prepared; this year, everything was a scramble.  


The Silence is a layered story told in alternating timelines that unfold gradually. Slow paced and character driven, the 1967 backstory reveals the human flaws in two families, flaws that are exacerbated by the situations in which they find themselves.

Reviewed here.

An audiobook.

And of course, lots of mysteries, thrillers, etc.  I read every day; during breaks each day and for hours each night as I don't watch television.  Cathy reminded me of the film The Rabbit-Proof Fence, which also covers the policy of taking aboriginal children from their homes in Australia (like the way Indian children were taken here in America and placed in boarding schools).  I remember hearing about the film, but never watched it.  It is now on my list--either the book or the film.  

Have a good week!

Sunday, February 20, 2022

And So It Goes

Winter one day, Spring the next.  Sometimes in the same day.  

Things are in flux everywhere and in every possible way.  I'm torn between wanting to be an ostrich with my head in the sand and wanting to keep up with the news and stay aware and concerned about what is happening.  

I just saw this quote on  Sharon Davidson Art.  It reminds me again about resilience.  There is so much we can't control: climate, political divisiveness, spreading anger about...everything, anything.  Let go.  Walk on.  "...go straight ahead with the movement of life."

“Whether we like it or not, change comes, and the greater the resistance, the greater the pain. Buddhism perceives the beauty of change, for life is like music in this: if any note or phrase is held for longer than its appointed time, the melody is lost.

Thus Buddhism may be summed up in two phrases: “Let go!” and “Walk on!” Drop the craving for self, for permanence, for particular circumstances, and go straight ahead with the movement of life.”

— Alan W. Watts


Always the mysteries and thrillers.  Finished the Stephen King Mr. Mercedes trilogy: Mr. Mercedes, Finders Keepers, and End of Watch (although I read End of Watch several years ago, I had not read the previous books.  Also, I'd forgotten a great deal).  

Louisa Luna's 3rd Alice Vega installment Hideout.

Behind the Wire, the latest DI Declan Walsh book by Jack Gatland.

More in the Grimm Up North series by David J. Gatward.  I read these like candy. 

Currently reading Carville's Cure:  Leprosy, Stigma, and the Fight for Justice by Pam Fessler.   I was curious about the leprosarium in Carville in Iberville Parish, but I did not expect this nonfiction account to be so fascinating.  I can imagine at least three movies and/or documentaries being made about Carville and some of its patients, doctors, and Daughters of Charity nurses.

Mail:  Keeping   up with InCoWriMo has been a bit of a struggle, but it has been fun finding more in the mailbox than usual!  

Recent outgoing mail:


Melissa Hughes 

Kristi Anderson
Penny Wilkes


Thursday, February 10, 2022

Catching Up

 What a week.  My husband has had a stomach flu, and between caring for him and worrying, my normally relaxed schedule has been chaotic.  He's finally doing better, but he was as sick as I've ever seen him and had to have an IV because of dehydration.  Whew!  At least it wasn't Covid.

I did decide to participate in InCoWriMo this year, but I'm now behind and I sent at least one postcard out without a stamp.  I was waiting for my new postcard stamps to arrive, but guess I, uh, forgot that they had not yet arrived!

To Bryce Eleanor 

To Jolisa

Love our mail carrier!

To Melissa
To Susan
To Omega

Whew!  I still have letters to respond to, but now I'll have more time to get them done.  


Dust Bowl Girls-nonfiction about a girls' basketball team in 1930's.  Very good.

Mr. Mercedes - audiobook by Stephen King.  Creepy and suspenseful!

A Divided Loyalty--an Ian Rutledge novel by Charles Todd.  Love this series.

At Home on an Unruly Planet--nonfiction.  Excellent!

Wednesday, February 02, 2022

A New Month

Books/Reading:  I'm trying to catch up on reviews on my other blog.  I got so behind on reviewing in December and most of January, but I have been working to finish as many reviews possible and maybe be back on track in February.

Currently reading:  At Home on an Unruly Planet by Madeline Ostrander-- nonfiction about the loss of "home" and what home means to us.  The floods, hurricanes, and wildfires with which the world must now contend are more devastating and more frequent, and the stories of those who have lost everything (sometimes over and over) and how they face the aftermath of these catastrophes is a compelling and heartbreaking account that requires amazing resilience.  

The truth that must be acknowledged is that even if we are not in those particular areas, we are all vulnerable to climate change and global warming--if not right now, we will be sooner than expected because it is happening faster than originally predicted.  The book has some marvelous examples of the resilience of some communities, but the governments around the world and locally should be making preparations for the future.  


 The last of January's outgoing mail.

At the last minute, I decided to participate in InCoWriMo--and send something in the mail each day that the mail runs in February.  This is a challenge, but in addition to the people I already write, there are plenty of names of folks on the lists for InCoWriMo and Send I'm going to try.  It has been about 4 or 5 years since I've attempted one of these challenges, and we will see how it goes.

Saturday, January 29, 2022

January has flown by

Books/Reading   some of January's books:  Billy Summers by Stephen King(audiobook) , The Lincoln Highway (audiobook), Jack Gatland's Declan Walsh series (went wild and read books 1-8), The Raven Spell by Luanne G. Smith, The Dying Day by Vassem Khan (another audiobook).  I liked all of these. :)

Since I had the audiobooks, I also used the listening time to do chores, to work on my mail art, or to embroider on the apron I spilled bleach on a while back.  

Here is the apron hanging with the laundry, awaiting the next audiobook and more stitches.  As usual, nothing pre-planned, just keeping my fingers busy while I listen to a book, and no fancy stitches because they require thinking.  

My Deep Pocket aprons are great and I can keep my phone and kindle with me as I go about my day.


I love this article by Bonnie Jeanne!  Just a snippet:  


Suggestions From a Mail Enthusiast

She wants you to raise those little flags on your mailbox

I love my job. I get to deliver mail to people in the town where I live in all its splendor, all year round. The summer traffic is intense, and I am not great at left turns onto the highway, but most postal routes keep us turning right, so that is helpful.

While I am not fond of large, heavy packages that are hard to fit in my little mail truck (I mean you, kitty litter and bottled water!), most of the time I get to deliver fun packages, or so I assume. I hope you all are ordering more than just paper towels and other mundane household items.

Sadly, I don’t get to take a lot of fun outgoing mail from the mailboxes I visit. Those little flags on your mailbox need some exercise! And I have some suggestions.

I was already thinking of adding two of her suggestions to this post, but then I found Bonnie Jeanne's article, and she does a better job of it than I would have! Do follow the link and read the whole article.

I'm almost caught up with my own mail.

 Bonnie Jeanne and I have been corresponding for a year now.

postcard to Thérèse

postcard to Teresa E.

Postcard to Mila,
who has a new job at a French bakery

postcard to Max,
with another pun