Books by the old Leather Chair
- Snow In The Summer
- My Bible
- The Power of Silence
- What Comes Next and to Like It
- Encore Provence
- A Year in Provence
Friday, November 28, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
From One Woman this Thanksgiving Day
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
I shared how very - not normal - I have been feeling. He said it was probably a combination of three things. Swollen gland usually means infection, strong antibiotic for 10 days - they always make me feel bad, and the sinus or whatever virus that has been going through this family. Also since I have Sjogren's Syndrome and am plagued with dry mouth and eyes - was told that may be why the gland was swollen and infected.
So thank you for thinking of me and have a happy Thanksgiving in whatever way you are celebrating.
I continued on to the country after doctor appointment. My special friend had a plate of lots of good eating and her special coconut cake. Her and twin sister had prepared a luncheon for 50 relatives and friends that would soon be arriving. I was invited but headed back to my city cottage.
Sharing this evening from One Woman on her Journey Through This Life.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Lunchtime and grandma still not in normal health. We decided on a cheese sandwich and soup. I called it toasted and she called it grilled. Guess toasted is in the toaster and grilled is in a pan on the stove.
We settled on grilled. Her comment as she was eating "grandma you could be a chef".
Oh my, you know that made me smile.
My grandchildren are always passing on simple words and they are not aware how they bless me. They always seem to come at the right moment.
Also as time goes by - it does not take much to please this One Woman. A smile, hug, saying "I love you" or telling me I could be a chef.
Caitlin just arrived for another day with grandma. In hand a gift from her mama to me.
AND WINTER CAME by ENYA. If music can heal - this will heal me. Jamie, thank you.
Kind words are such a blessing, if one but knew the pleasure they bring
Monday, November 24, 2008
What are some of my difficulties? I have a problem of sitting still. I envy people who seem so relaxed and can sit for hours. I am well organized and everything always appears neat and taken care of. I have a number of lists of things to do. They are on my desk and in the kitchen. You would think I was running a business instead of One Woman living in the smallest home she has lived in. Now I want something even smaller and sometimes think of wanting to be an aging female Thoreau. Maybe I have lost it!!! Do know I am more at peace surrounded by nature.
One of the reasons for the title of this journal "My Journey To Mindfulness" is I am trying so diligently to do one thing at a time instead of multi-tasking. In the past I would never talk on the phone without roaming. I would be straightening a drawer, dusting and just pacing the floor. When I was eating I would sometimes be glancing at something that needed to be read or sometimes be watching the news.
I find it very difficult to still my mind and relax. That is one of the reasons I like to garden. Also read when I can make myself sit still. Winter months are good for this. But I find I am restless.
My new interest in writing my journal and photography should be good for me. My stepfather use to make the comment that I had to many interest. I would marvel at this man that could sit for hours at his desk or a table tinkering with a clock and my mother could sit for hours and quilt.
For as far as I can remember I have always had a project. Guess that is one reason for me planning another project. I do have a good trait that I can plan in detail something and if it does not come to be it does not bother me. I had someone remark once that if they put all that thought into something, it would bother them if it did not become a reality.
When I was looking at homes in this area and thinking of a move I could visualize living in the home and where I would place items. In my mind the landscaping and gardening was also created.
I obsess sometimes to a fault. When I do not have the full information it truly bothers me.
If I have all the information - like health concerns - then I am fine and can accept what is happening. I stay concerned about my children, my grandchildren and close friends.
I plan to far in the future. Having different options in my mind for different things that might happen. This is good as I age but then again I do it to a fault. I try to take one day at a time and not look back. I do not do to well at this. I want so to be good at this aging process and I do not think I am doing to well, at the moment - hope to improved.
So, what are some of your imperfections? Can you confess like this One Woman?
Peace Is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh is a book I pick up often. Maybe not often enough.
Some thoughts from One Woman on her Journey Through This Life
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
The words were hastily scrawled on a piece of cardboard: "Yard Sale Today, Everything Must Go." Beneath it, in smaller letters, were the words "Free Dog." Yes indeed, I thought, everything must go.
I intended to look at the glassware and skim through the books on one of the tables, but my eyes were drawn to a large, comfortable-looking dog in the backyard. He scratched and yawned, revealing two rows of teeth that could in all probability take care of a good chunk of meat whenever they were allowed to. The dog looked over the horde of bargain hunters, decided they posed no threat, then plunked down in the sun for probably the fourth snooze of the morning.
I focused my attention on some interesting looking glasses with etchings of sailboats on them and decided to take all six. As I reached into my purse for some money. I realized I was being watched by an elderly gentleman whose job, I presumed, was to mind the table in front of him. I handed him the money and pointed to the etched glasses. He removed the short stub of a cigar from his mouth and said, "Do you want the dog too?" It seemed like an odd question. I had momentarily forgotten about the poor animal in the back yard, who was now blissfully lost in sweet slumber.
"Do you want the dog, too?" came the question again - this time with an edge of impatience.
"Oh my, no, just the glasses" I replied. The old man looked at me as if I had insulted the queen. His eyes lifted occasionally to meet mine as his work-weary hands carefully wrapped each glass.
I reminded myself that the good thing about a yard sale is that you don't have to feel obliged to buy anything, and you certainly are not obligated to take the family dog, even if it is free. "Why are you getting rid of him?" I asked, hoping not to appear too interested. Through his parched lips "It's Time". A chill went through me and I knew that this giveaway was perhaps the dogs last chance at a longer life. I didn't ask any more questions.
To get my mind off the dog, I picked up a vase with a picture of a goose on it. The vase had a chip near the top but the man still wanted a dollar and some change. Before I could give him the money, he had maneuvered himself out of the his chair and limped into the backyard to unleash the day's real bargain. The dog, as if on cue, came lumbering over. He was quite a friendly mutt. He looked like he might like to shake my hand, pat me on the back, and say, "Well ma'am, I am mighty happy to make your acquaintance. When do we leave?"
The elderly gentleman was seated once again and shared that the poor old beast went by the name of Ralph.
Ralph and I continued to make eye contact. Ralph followed me to the edge of the yard and watched me as I got in and closed the door of the car.
I passed the same yard later that afternoon. There were few shoppers at this late hour and most of the junk was gone. But not Ralph. Ralph sat obediently next to the old man now, his future still uncertain.
There sits man's best friend, I thought, with probably a decade or more of loyal service, companionship, and unconditional love, and he cannot be given away.
Now, several days later, I reflect on the possibility that if we are lucky, our fate will not be in the hands of others someday. If we are lucky, we will be loved and cared for and valued until the day we die. Who among us is destined to be that lucky, I wondered.
My thoughts are interrupted by a soft tapping sound on the kitchen floor.
"What's the matter, Ralph old boy?"
Written by Helen Loring Smith who lives in Kingston, Mass.
I do not remember what magazine I tore this out of - but I found it touching.
From One Woman on this cold afternoon.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Thich Nhat Hanh
Thoughts from One Woman on this cold Friday morning.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I hoped it would go away. I had my little girls on Saturday night as mom and dad had a wedding to go to. My son returned them to their parents on Sunday as I did not feel up to driving them home.
Monday I had the thought, could this be a tooth. Nothing was hurting but my neck was really swollen. So Tuesday morning trip to the dentist and an x-ray was done. Seems I have an infection under a tooth by the bone.
I have never had teeth problems. I have all my teeth, and just two crowns and three fillings so I was surprised, especially since there was no pain.
Long story made short I am on a strong antibiotic and then could not get an appointment for consultation with surgeon until week after Thanksgiving. The dentist shared the tooth needed to be removed and he did not feel comfortable doing this procedure.
At the moment I have a severely swollen neck and do not feel too well. Forgive me for complaining.
Just miss being on computer and this is the first time I can remember that I just do not feel like going online.
I have always had Thanksgiving dinner at my home. In earlier years my parents always joined us. Sometimes other members of family and friends.
This is the first Thanksgiving I will not be cooking and thought of taking family out to dinner. Now I am having thoughts of just being home and not going anywhere.
I know this is not that big a deal considering all that you can have. But I do not like it!!!!
Monday, November 17, 2008
I love books. I always have and always will. Even if I am not reading them I have to be surrounded by them. On shelves, tables, beside my chair, beside my bed, on my desk and on and on. I seem to find comfort in their presence. All types of books, serious, humorous, mind stretching, lessons to learn, biographies, cookbooks, old sellers, and best sellers.
I usually have three beside my chair with bookmarks in them. One for pleasure, another that is teaching me something, and one of my old friends that is yellow with age and many passages are underlined.
I can remember on long winter days surrounding myself with my cookbook's and reading them like novels. After my divorce, I read my Bible constantly. Would read for hours and underline passage after passage that spoke healing, wisdom and a way of hope for the One Woman.
Books have aways brought me joy. I can remember as a child receiving my short list for Christmas and devouring them in a few days. Finding a corner in my small childhood home or I can even remember reading in a neighbors tree in the summer time. I have learned late in life to seldom share my special books because when they are not returned it troubles me. If someone is truly interested in a book I have I would rather buy them a copy and then I am not worried about them returning it. I can remember a comment one of my youngest daughter made to me regarding borrowing one of my books. She commented she did not like to borrow my books because some of them were like a diary where I had underlined special words or made quotation.
Now that no family is with me I can read whenever I want to. As a wife, mother and working years ago, there seemed to be no time to pursue this pleasure.
My saddest memory regarding my books is when as a young woman I married and packed my books away to store for a few weeks. They were at my parents home and when I returned to retrieve them they were gone. They had given them away. That is painful to this day and it has probably been 50 years since I lost these friends.
It gives me pleasure to see some of my children's love of books, especially my son's extensive library.
From the memory of One Woman on her Journey Through Life
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
One more piece of the puzzle fell in place. Electric company just called and said there will be no problem putting current to this 1200 to 1400 feet off the road property and no extra cost. That was something I did not think I would hear. So water department contacted and also gas company. Now health department about septic system approval. Then the big one is sitting down with my builder and showing him my sketch.
We will go to the material supply source and get estimates.
So it will be interesting to see if this is going to be a dream or a reality. I may have a shelter next Spring instead of a chair under a tree.
Oh, I almost forgot I saw a dozen wild turkey coming down the road but could not stop car and get my camera out fast enough.
Also wrote a neighbor that joins my woods on my back line to alert him that family will be in those woods and I want no deer hunting.
As I read some of my postings I have the thought - I sound rather simple and boring.
Some afternoon thoughts from this One Woman on her Journey Through this life.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Caitlin I am proud of you. http://blondemomblog.com/
I did a couple of loads of wash, vacumed and some dusting and finished reading "The Big House".
I enjoyed this book but it seemed to make a lot of past memories surface.
As the day went on I seemed to become very blue. Many thoughts of past, present and future.
I truly thought with the creating of this home and garden that I would settle into city life and live happily ever after. Well that is not happening. I am becoming very restless and I do not like it. I know the time of year is contributing to this. Also I thrive in a state of doing. Happiest when creating homes and gardens. I have created 3 in the past 10 years.
I strive so for balance and maybe this is a part of being a Libra which is the sign of the scales.
It is difficult to make new friends as you grow older and at my age and given the fact that throughout my lifetime most of the people I felt the closest to were older then me and the fact that I have continually put myself in new enviorments every few years - now it seems I almost stand alone. In a new location and with my interests being home, family, gardening and nature - where does that put me. I shared with my son recently that lately I feel like I am invisable.
He smiled and said that well known people travel places where they can enjoy this. So maybe it is an asset that I have not realized.
My son encourages me continually to get out of my enviorment. Go the the library, book store,
yoga lessons and on and on. Just seems it is becoming more difficult for me to want to go anywhere. I do not like crowds or large gatherings of people. I have shared bits and pieces throughout my journal. My grandchildren will certainly know some about their grandmother's personality. I probably would have been a good Thoreau.
My youngest daughter encourages me to do volunteer work (I did try some of this) find a new church home (this has been a big part of my life in the past) and I am not led to do this.
Thoughts entered my mind yesterday if I would be anymore lonely looking out my window at the fields, woods and wildlife then looking out of this city cottage window at the cars whizzing past and the city sounds?
I know my children are tired of me sharing and I do not blame them. But I know my answer will come for direction as it always does.
I also am well aware that when I can stay outside and garden I am the happiest. So with my new interest of writing and photography I will have some added interest for the winter months.
Back to yesterday. About 4:00 pm my son called and told me he was going to a wine and cheese open house at his accountants office and invited me to go with him. I tearfully shared I just do not like these gatherings. There is not much that has not touched my long life. He went on to say it was right after work at 5:30 and he would only stay about an hour and he would call back at 5:00 to see if I changed my mind.
Well I did change my mind. At 5:30 he pulled in front of my cottage and helped me in his car.
Long story made short, it did pull me out of the pit of gloom I was in. Each room and there were about a dozen of them represented a different country. Wine and cheese from that country. Enjoyed the different types of cheese. Also with a dry mouth condition I do not enjoy dry wines. But a local winery from my country area had some fruit wines. I bought a bottle of peach and another of strawberry. Will be good to make smoothies or at some time when I feel like a touch of summer.
So my good son, your mom thanks you. You are the best.
Some more sharing on another gloomy morning from this One Woman on her Journey Through This Life.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I remember so well the day I noticed my youngest daughter sitting on the steps that led to the upstairs bedroom. She would sit on one step and then scoot up to the next step. She was doing this instead of walking up the steps. I just thought she wanted to do this instead of walking up the stairs and did not comment on this even though I saw her do this several times during the day. Soon after that she came to me and said "mama I can't put my barrette in my hair"
I commented "what do you mean" she shared she could not squeeze the clasp. I put the barrette in her hair and immediately I knew something was wrong.
We had moved to the country farm home a number of years earlier but since she was 11 years old I still took her to the pedatrician in Nashville. I called and had an appointment the next day. She was checked, many questions asked and I do not remember if they did blood work at that time. I do know that my baby girl was admitted into Vanderbilt Children's Hospital for more tests.
The results Guillain Barre. Another name is French Polio. I had never heard of such a disorder. It surely unsettled this mother. It turned out to be what they called a mild case but the constant fear of how far it would progress never left me. I read everything I could pertaining to this disorder.
Even though it was mild it was disturbing that summer to see my healthy young daughter become thinner and weak concerning her walking and arm skills. It progressed during the summer and then suddenly started going away. The good thing was this was the end of the school year in the Spring and she was well enough in the Fall to return to school.
Who knows what makes memories arise from out of our consciousness. During the night this memory surfaced. I realize more and more that I have some deep memories that are surfacing on their own. Some of them happy, some sad and some very painful. We all have our stories, special memories and dreams.
Some more sharing on this One Woman's Journey Through This Life.
Monday, November 10, 2008
If one advances confidently in the direction of his dream, and endeavors to live a life which he imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
Henry Dvid Thoreau
Sunday, November 9, 2008
there is no way I can hide my weakness.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Ten thousand flowers in the Spring
The moon in Autumn
A cool breeze in the Summer
Snow in the Winter
If your mind is not clouded by unnecessary things
This is the best Season of your life
Friday, November 7, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
I can remember the day I tasted a piece of this pie at my mother's. I know it has been close to 25 years ago. My mother's younger sister had left off several pieces. I tried this and thought this is the best I have ever tasted It has become a family favorite.
So many years later with a recipe card that is so stained I have to retype - here goes.
Thank you Aunt Johnnie
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tbs flour
3 tbs cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
1 large can evaporated milk
4 large egg yolks, beaten
2 tbs melted butter
2 tsp vanilla
Sift together sugar, flour, cocoa and salt. Add milk beaten egg yolks, butter and vanilla. Mix well. Pour in deep dish pie shell and bake 425 degrees for 10 minutes and then 325 for 30 to 35 minutes.
Spread meringue on pie. Bake until slightly brown.
Best Ever Meringue
8 tbs sugar
1 tbs cornstarch
1/2 cup water
3 egg whites ( sometimes use the 4 left over )
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
Combine 2 tbs sugar with the cornstarch in small saucepan and add water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick and clear. Beat egg whites with salt and vanilla until soft mounds form. Add 6 tbs sugar gradually, beating well after each addition. Add hot mixture in a stream and continuing beating until meringue stands in stiff peaks. Spoon over filling. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes until golden brown.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Now on to my next project. I will continue to check out cost and feasibility of my Thoreau Cottage at the edge of the woods. Time will tell if it will be a shelter or a chair I sit in at the edge of the woods. Either way I will have my camera, binoculars and a pad and pencil in my hand. I do not think all three at once. But there will be peace in my heart and a smile on my face.
But there is no way I cannot write about my faith and
there is no way that I cannot make an entry on what I witnessed last night. I enter this for my children and especially for my grandchildren. It comes to mind and makes me smile that my older grandchildren who are in college are commenting "grandma I am getting to know you in a way that I did not know you - because of what you write and share".
I thank God for what I witnessed last night.
I thank him for allowing me to witness this historic moment.
I do not have the words to describe the emotion that I feel. I have wept in a way that I thought I could not weep anymore. Tears of thankfulness and tears of joy.
I feel such a pride and love for this young man that is going to lead our country.
I am so thankful.
Our world has hope.
I felt deep in my heart that he would win. If I had been wrong I think I would have lost much hope and wept a different kind of tears.
Obama has my continual prayers for his wisdom and safety. Oh what a monumental job he has ahead of him. So my children please pray for him. I have never asked you to pray for a leader before.
Some special thoughts from One Woman on her Journey Through This Life