Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Last installment of Fall In Love freebie

Was on the road today for several hours, including a meeting with paralegal about Medicaid application for my Dad. Got a couple other chores done then home, rest an hour, make dinner, clean up, Jeopardy and now here. Feel like I didn't accomplish anything. Actually wrote today's text while waiting for paralegal. I'm afraid it feels trite and anticlimatic. Today is the last day of my illustrated story, but I will continue to give you autumn themed stuff through Saturday. Then I'll have to hustle to get the first week of Christmas kit ready.

No traditional family thanksgiving for either of them this year. Her parents were away on a cruise and his were going to Texas to see his aunt. They had been invited to go to the aunt's house but he had patients scheduled for Friday so a trip to Texas wasn't possible. With Sammi going to see her family, it would be just the two of them. He suggested going to a restaurant, but she wouldn't hear of it. They would have their own little feast. She fussed over all the preparations, anxious to impress her future husband. But she needn't have worried. All those years assisting her mother paid off and everything turned out beautifully.

He arrived bearing a gift of autumn hued roses and a bottle of wine. They began the meal with a prayer of Thanksgiving. As they began to fill their plates, she suggested they start thinking of establishing holiday traditions. Sure. Like what? In addition to starting with a blessing, maybe we could ask each person around the table to name something he or she is thankful for.Hmm, how about having to name three things? I think typically the first thing people will say is going to be similar, that is, something about family and friends. But if we ask for three things, it allows for something more personal, and maybe something silly? Okay, I'll start, she said. She raised her glass and said, First, I'm grateful for you. They clinked wine glasses. Second, I'm thankful I didn't burn anything. And third, I'm grateful I don't have to work tomorrow! How about you? I am thankful to have found you and that you agred to marry me. Second, I'm grateful I have an excuse to not go to Texas. Love my Aunt but her second husband gets on my nerves. And, last but not least, I'm thankful you made so much good food 'cause I know I'll be eating well for days!

There is always much to be grateful for, even during the tough times. We should all take time, on a regular basis, to take note of our blessings.


Today I'm thankful for a better understanding of what should happen with Dad's financial situation and I'm grateful for your warm recception of my illustrated story spin on freebies.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Fall In Love freebie

Today's episode of Fall In Love:

It was supposed to be a quiet night of Chinese take-out and college basketball on TV. Sammi greeted him at the door and sniffed the take-out bags appreciatively; she would be joining them. She's in the kitchen and in a bad mood, she warned as she helped carry the food into the kitchen area. His girlfriend was lying on the floor, head and shoulders in the under sink cabinet. There were displaced kitchen supplies on the floor and several wet towels. Sink was leaking, Sammi explained. She thought she could take care of the problem and it is better, but there's been a whole lot of grumbling and cursing going on. He took off his jacket, threw it over a kitchen chair and knelt down beside her. Can I help? I just can't get this thingy tight enough, she complained. He urged her out and assumed her place to check out the problem. She explained the spray attachment had been leaking. She had turned off the water, replaced the hose, and was trying to finish up but couldn't quite get the connection secure. With a new washer and a more appropriate wrench, he finished the job. I'm impressed with what you managed, he told her. She was still a little out of sorts. I'm not helpless! No, you certainly are not. They cleaned up the mess and then she left to clean up and change.

By the time she came back, she was in a better frame of mind. She gave him a big hug, thanked him for his help and they gathered drinks and food to carry into the living room. When the game went to break, he said, I've got some news. Oh? My parents will be in town next week and I want you to meet them. Her eyes widened as her mind ran through scenarios of what could happen. Dad has a conference to attend and brought Mom along. They would like to have dinner with us Thursday night if that's alright. Ah, sure. Don't be nervous. They will love you and even if they don't, it doesn't matter 'cause I do.

Later, when she got up to get drink refills, he turned to Sammi. She's worried. Yeah, she wants things to go right, wants you to be happy and knows it will help if your parents approve. I guess. Hey, listen, I don't know if this is the best time to do this or not but maybe it will distract her? He showed Sammi the engagement ring he'd brought with him. She covered her mouth to suppress her reaction and just nodded her head.

Is the game back on? she asked as she returned with filled glasses. Not yet. Need to talk to you about something. Oh, it'll be alright, she replied, brushing her hair back behind her ear. She assumed he was talking about meeting his parents. He turned toward her and reached for her hand and as he slipped the ring on her finger asked, Will this be alright? She hadn't wanted to go with him to choose the ring, had just told him she was certain whatever he chose would be right. Now she looked down at the ring, threw her arms around him and kissed him. It's beautiful! She held her hand up to take a closer look. The ring was different from all the ones she kept seeing ads for. Very feminine, with an oval main stone, and lovely details. I never imagined . . . wow. She laughed out loud. I can't begin to describe it accurately, but I love it. He grinned from ear to ear. Sammi ran over with her camera in hand. I want a close-up she said. She had taken candid photos as he presented it and now took a close up of the two of them and one that showed the ring up close. Did you know about this? she asked, letting Sammi examine the ring closely. Nope, not until a few minutes ago when he gave me a glimpse. Glad I had time to get my camera. Just wait 'til you see your reaction!

Days later, as she prepared to go to dinner with his parents, she thought, Of course, it matters how one's prospective spouse is perceived. She wanted to make a good impression and be liked, for that helped make for a harmonious family life. He had told her not to get too dressy as they were going to meet his parents at a steak house his father enjoyed. He wanted her to be comfortable and just be herself. His parents were already waiting at a table for them when they arrived. He'd warned that his father often appeared gruff but the man stood and held out her chair with a smile. Introductions went easily and conversation flowed pretty well. His mother gushed over the ring and wanted to know how her son had proposed. She explained about the acorn and showed the acorn charm she was wearing as a necklace. His mother thought it was all terribly romantic. Naturally, she wanted to know when the wedding would be. His father, patted his wife's hand and told her not to rush them to make decisions. She found his mother easiest to relate to as they both shared a passion for teaching. His father would be an aquired taste, she thought. The man tended to be brusque and his sense of humor was dry. She had moments when she felt ill at ease but when it came time to say goodnight, his mother hugged her with sincere affection and said she looked forward to getting to know her better. His father's hug was brief and a little awkward but he surprised her by saying, he'd enjoyed meeting her and thought his son had made a wise choice.

At a stoplight on the way back to her apartment, he turned to her and said, And you were worried? My father never liked anyone I dated. Unbelievable!


Monday, November 27, 2017

Monday - about acorns - Fall In Love freebie

It was a freak accident involving a full laundry basket, door and wall. Hard to explain how I managed to smash the joints just above the knuckles of the fingers on my right hand. The ring finger bore the brunt and is still a little tender but nothing like it was on Friday. Ice, magnesium oil with essential oils to fight inflammation and rest made a world of difference.

Moving on, let's get to the next installment in Fall In Love:
The Botanical Garden was a peaceful place for a walk. While the trees showed more bare branches than brillant foliage now, there were still some blooms to be seen. Fall colored chrysanthemums, viburnum, bluebeard shrubs, and salvia created bright spots of color. Squirrels scampered around madly; some buried acorns for later, while others dug for acorns to consume now. Garden crews were pulling out supplies to set up the Holiday Garden of Lights that would be lit after Thanksgiving weekend. Their voices and those of other garden visitors carried long distances on the cool, crisp air.

Coming upon a bench near a birdbath, he suggested they rest a little. After a few minutes of casual conversation, he got up and walked over near an oak tree and picked up an acorn. Sitting back down beside her, he held it on his open palm, as if to present it to her. She raised an eyebrow in question. What is that? he asked. An acorn, of course. But what else is it? he continued. A baby oak tree. He smiled at that. It is indeed. Inside that shell are the basic ingredients needed to make a new oak tree, a new life. The acorn has been used to symbolize potential, strength, life, fertility, even immortality. Yes, she said, I knew of some of those symbolic meanings. Did you know it's also a good luck charm? For luck, prosperity, and power. I did not.

He closed his hand and stuck it in his pocket and when he drew his hand out again, he asked her to open her hand. This isn't an engagement ring. That's something we'll choose together. But I want you to have this as a symbol of the new life we will build together if you will agree to marry me. Into her hand, he placed a silver acorn box and motioned for her to open it. Inside was a vintage acorn charm. She blinked back tears. I can't imagine a more beautiful proposal, she said. Yes, yes, I'll marry you. They exchanged a tender kiss and then she fumbled with the clasp on the chain that held the cross she wore. I didn't know whether you'd want to wear it as a necklace or put it on a charm bracelet, he told her. I'll get you a chain or bracelet . . . . She interrupted him with another kiss. For now, I want to put it on with my cross and wear it right away. Just then a squirrel paused a couple feet in front of them and cocked his head as he appeared to stare at them. Don't even think about it, she said softly. My acorn from my love. As if he'd understood, the squirrel turned his back, made one last look over his back and scampered away.


Saturday, November 25, 2017

Sorry - no post

Injured right hand - not serious but painful to PS. Back Mon 2 work toward finish of kit.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Turkey day prep and freebie

Imagine that most of you are busy with do-ahead Thanksgving preparations and, perhaps, guests. You will get to this post when you take a little break, right? We are keeping it simple this year as it is just the two of us. Dad doesn't eat turkey or the other items we are making so no point in putting aside goodies to take to him. Grandson, Tyler, got in from USC last night and it looks like we might see him tomorrow in time to watch the Redskins game with him. Like most young men, I'm sure he will find room for a little snack with us. I don't plan to post tomorrow, taking some time off from everyone except my husband, to reflect and be grateful for our blessings. Let me sincerely wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving. For those who don't celebrate as we do in the US, I hope you will just take a day to be grateful for your blessings.

Here is today's installment of Fall In Love:
It was the most beautiful autumn she could remember.But then love makes everything look better, doesn't it? All seemed to be going right. He was settled in his new office and very happy to be working with troubled adolscents. Her classes were going well with most of her composition students in the A-B range and her fiction workshop included two students with serious potential. As for her own novel, after months of stagnation, she was again making good progress. Love gives you wings! she thought as she doodled a winged heart in the margins of her date book. And more and more both alluded to a shared future. Yes, her world was as sunny as the vase of sunflowers gracing her table.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday again? More from Fall In Love freebie

Cleaned out a lot of paperwork over the weekend - but that was just ours. Have a stack of stuff to file for Dad. Never ends. Did a major job of cleaning the master bath and rewarded myself with a bath using one of those bath fizzies. Smelled so good! Got to try to make some of those. Paid bills and did a few more things. Always seem to be behind on my to-do list. Today its laundry and some cooking.

You have probably noticed that sometimes I get carried away and create large zips, while others times just a small amount. Today is another large one - in 2 zips. The previews are not indicative of element sizes, nor do they reflect what is actually in each zip. I just divided the items into 2 zips. That being said, here is today's vignette.

They had made plans to drive to a nearby state park and walk around to admire the fall colors and after, stop at a historic inn for a late lunch. That morning when he came over to pick her up, a drizzle had begun. Was she still up to going to the park? She produced umbrellas and put on her boots. No way a little rain was going to spoil their time together. Some of the trees had reached their peak and dropped their leaves but others were blazing with color. Due to the light rain, there were few people walking the paths through the forest so it was quiet except for the sound of leaves scrunching underfoot, raindrops and an occassional scurrying sound of small animals seeking shelter. They were so comfortable with one another now that silences did not bother them at all. They were happy to walk along, exchanging affectionate glances, or pointing out sights. The rain ended soon and they were able to fold up their umbrellas. Birds left their hidden perches and flew about. A fox took a leisurely stroll before perching himself upon an old tree stump where he proceeded to groom himself, unaware he was being watched. Just as they were turning back to head to their car, they spotted a fawn at the edge of the woods, daintily chewing some grass.


Have doctor appointments tomorrow so don't know if I will get a post up or not.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Since I was late posting Thursday & Friday (freebie)

such that the timing pushed them into the next day, I'm posting again.

Skipping ahead to December, here is what I've decided to do. Most people want Christmas kits, no matter how many they have. Since it's going to be a busy month for everyone, rather than starting from scratch I'm going to use 4 starter kits I previously made under my Sher Scraps 4 CU line. Each includes a doll (Poser figure), a couple papers, and some elements. Each package will be my starting point; I'll add more papers and elements to make a mini kit from each. Below is a preview of the starter kits as I sold them to give you some idea of what is coming.

***Oops! Thata preview should have read 7. Thought I'd changed that.

Today it's a road trip in Fall In Love freebie

Today we did a couple errands, dropped in to our favorite pizza place to get a couple slices for lunch and went across the street to see Dad. Oddly enough the little shopping center that is home to New York Pizzeria is on Newtown Rd and just across on a side street is the nursing home. John went on back to see Dad while I exchanged a few words with the social worker. She had told me last week that she would arrange a haircut for Dad. He doesn't have much, like a low halo above his neck that is now duck fluff, but he does have some beard that needs to be trimmed. Turns out the barber went to get him and found him in bed. When he told Dad why he was there, Dad just pulled the covers up over his face and ignored him. Getting child like. Today he was in the wheelchair refusing to eat his lunch sandwich of chicken salad. He doesn't like chicken, fish, so many things. Instead he was slowly munching on some Pringles from the can I brought him last week. He did seem to recognize us but didn't say much. His hearing aid wasn't in and he didn't know what he'd done with it. I brought him the small bag of peanut M & M's he'd asked for and he had to get into those. We thought he'd try to eat the whole bag but he only had one then carefully folded the top of the bag and stored it away. When we left, I bent down to kiss him goodbye and told him I love him (I always do) and he surprised me by saying, I love you too. Dad usually doesn't engage in emotional responses.

Once home I didn't do much but fix a light dinner and work on Fall In Love. I'm happy to hear you are enjoying my little experiment. I think of each installment as a vignette. Today's took a bit longer and ended up being too large for one zip to be comfortably downloaded, so I split it in two. Tomorrow's graphics are ready, just need to do some text. Then I'll get busy doing housework - a lot - so Sunday I can bake fruitcakes.

I made an error in labeling these a and b in that b fits the first part of the story and a is more for the second. But you will figure it out.

Until tomorrow.

Friday, November 17, 2017

More of Fall In Love

Sorry I missed posting yesterday. You've heard me mention my Aunt Sissy and her boyfriend, John. John had called a couple days ago with some bad news about Sissy's health and also that of her son. We arranged a dinner with them at a place that's about an hour and half away. Picked them up in the afternoon and headed out. But almost dinnertime isn't a good time to be on the roads, especially when there is construction going on all over lately. Took us over two hours to reach our destination. The trip and dinner gave us time to find out more about the health problems and offer support. Sissy had a knee replacement over the summer and had continued to have a lot of pain. More tests and x-ray studies were done and, as she put it, the hip on that side was "all eaten up with arthritis." She will have hip replacement done in February. Around the same time she had that diagnosed, she heard from her son and learned he will be having open heart surgry next month to replace a valve. It seems that when docs were giving him chemo and radiation a few years back for a mass on his chest, it damaged his heart. Last night my son called and in talking to him I learned his MIL is a candidate for a lung transplant. When it rains, it pours.

I think there are periods when my father doesn't recognize people. You know how babies smile as a defense? Several times now I've gone to see him and he smiles at me like that. Not my Dad's smile, not like he knows me. He doesn't speak until I do and then it's a general response.The other day when I went over to take him some things he'd asked for, he was asleep with the tray table across his bed. Woke him gently and he had that expression he gets when the nurses wake him for meds or vital signs. I spoke to him but he didn't reply so I just started putting the items on the tray table, talking like everything was fine. I'd brought him a couple drinks, chapstick, and some Pringles (doc said okay to give him a little of what he wants now and then). I was putting things away and only when I touched the Pringles can did he speak: "Don't go away with that." His fine motor movements are failing so I opened tha can for him and he began happily to munch and stare at the TV. So we watch Frankie and Johnny together without another word from him. Eventually he snuggled down in the covers and went back to sleep.

It was the middle of the week and it was supposed to be a quiet evening. The plan was to go for pizza, then just hang out. But when he arrived at the apartment, she was standing in the open doorway looking upset. She had her cell phone to her ear but shut it down when she saw him approaching. I've been trying to reach you. Have to cancel, got to get to the hospital. She reached in to grab her purse off the table the girls kept next to the door and yelled back to Sammi. On my way. Be sure to lock up. He followed her to the elevator. Are you alright? Whats going on? On the way down, she told him about the call she had gotten from the roommate of one of her students. The girl had tried to commit suicide. As the EMTs were taking the injured girl out, she had asked the roommate to call and say she couldn't attend class next day. You must mean something to her, he said and let her know he would take her to the hospital so she wouldn't have to worry about driving. Why me? Because she has no one else, she answered for herself. The student had come into her office one day on a pretext, cried and told her she had been raped at a party. The girl was at odds with her parents and at nineteen could say no to them being called. She'd listened, consoled, and helped the student get the care she needed, even personally taking her for her first appointment with one of the school's therapists. She thought things were going okay.

He listened intently, told her she had done all the right things. But he knew she was feeling she'd missed something and was somehow at fault for what was happening now. At the hospital, they had to wait for permission to see the girl. When the doctor learned who they were, she was allowed to visit for just a few minutes while he waited outside for her. When she came out of the room, her posture seemed a little rigid, her face tense. She shook her head when he started to question her and they left the floor in silence. In the elevator on the way down to the parking lot, tears began to stream down her face but still she waved him off. It was only after they gotten into his car that she reached for him. He let her sob for awhile until she regained control and explained what she'd been told. Her student had been going to therapy, doing all that was suggested; had been holding up. Then she got a call from Student Health Services telling her she had contracted a sexually transmitted disease; that triggered her suicide attempt.

What can I do to help? she wanted to know. We need to eat first, keep you healthy or you won't be able to help anyone. Then we will discuss it. They gave up the idea of pizza and stopped at a sub shop instead, getting him a sub and her a container of cream of broccoli soup to take home. Back at the apartment, Sammi wisely stayed out of the way. They ate and then talked for hours until he insisted on making her a hot toddy to drink before she headed off to bed. At the door, she sat the mug down and threw her arms around him. Thank you! For what? For being here, for helping me, but mostly for being you. A long, tender kiss ended the night, leaving her outlook a little brighter.


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Tuesday freebie - late

About a week later, he picked her up to go to dinner. On the drive to the restaurant, she thought he seemed cool and distant and she wondered if he was about to say goodbye. Conversation just wasn't flowing as naturally as it had in the past, so while they sat sipping wine and waiting for dinner, she decided to ask what was going on. What? he asked looking befuddled. Something is wrong. Are you trying to find a way to tell me you don't want to see me any more? Because . . . . Before she could say another word, he reached for her hand, looked directly into her eyes and said, Nothing could be further from the truth. But there is something on my mind.
When she encouraged him to talk, she learned that he was struggling with a decision about a career move. When he'd completed his training as a clinical psychologist, he'd taken the first job that came along in his field. He had a lot of loans to pay back and thought it the best decision at the time. But he wasn't really happy working for a state run program for addicts. He felt the majority of the patients he saw were there because therapy was required for them to receive methadone to replace the street drugs they had become addicted to. I want to work with people who will sincerely work to improve their issues, he explained. He had just received a couple job offers and was trying to decide what he wanted to do.
Talking over the pros and cons of the offers, he realized he did not want to take the one out of state. While the working conditions and positions were about equal, the one out of state would pay better. But money wasn't the main concern for him; he realized he didn't care about making less if he could remain in the city and have her company.


Going out of town on Wednesday (today) so not sure if I will be able to post or not.

Monday, November 13, 2017

I'm short a few spoons today

Are you familar with Spoon Theory? Those of you who have chronic pain conditions probably have heard of this. For those who have not:
My apologies but I was in bed most of yesterday and some of today. I've run short of spoons and will have to postpone today's post of zip 4 Fall In Love.
Thank you for understanding.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Cold weather, comforts, and freebie

We finally have November weather but what usually happens here in Tidewater is that we enjoy seasonal weather for a few days and then, just before Thanksgiving when you're going to have the oven going, temps go back up, some times even into 80s! Yesterday we had the heater going and it's always sort of musty and dusty the first few times it comes on. Gave me a sinus - threatening to go into migraine- headache. Took sinus/allergy meds but the left side of my face just continued to be extrememly painful. Felt like someone had hit me in the face with a baseball bat. Thought about going outside and cutting some rosemary and dumping it and bay leaves in a big bowl of hot water to try steaming. Just couldn't get up energy to try it. Took a Tylenol - something I try to avoid doing. No relief. I was sipping a cup of hot tea when I spotted a tin of Cooling Relief sent to me by Tosha. It's a magnesium cream with peppermint used for pain. Why not try it? I applied some of my temples, forehead, behind the throbbing left ear, and along my cheekbones, being careful not to get too close to my eyes. In minutes the pain had diminished and slowly disappeared altogether. I was amazed even though I've had good results with the magnesium roller blend I bought to help with sleep and headaches. Magnesium supplementation throught the skin is really helping me with several health issues: migraines, sleep disorder, and fibro. When I couldn't find any more of the magnesium roller blend purchased, I set about creating my own version. I knew what the ingredients were, just not the proportions. It seems to be working as well for me as the purchased brand. My brother is still traveling so I haven't heard from him to know if he is getting relief too. If anyone is interested, I'll be happy to share my recipe. It isn't difficult to make.

Tosha applied for a business license and changed her business name from Essential Scents by Tosha to Fountains of Eden. She is continuing to expand her product line and was just picked up to sell her products at a Fredericksburg pharmacy. Visit her here:

Running late with this post because I got involved in an on-line conversation with a friend.

Today's segment of Fall In Love: (PS Sorry about formatting etc. Trust me, I know this isn't proper way but Blogger has it's quirks so I'm keeping it simple.)

Days grew colder, leaves fell like rain and pumpkin patches sprang up around town. Their phone calls became more frequent and longer. One Saturday, he called to ask if there was a movie she'd like to go see. She mentioned she was cooking - had just started a pot of chili - and invited him to dinner. I don't know how to make a small amount and the company would be welcome, she told him. He arrived carrying a bouquet of sunflowers. When I saw these, he said, I thought of you and the sunshine you've brought to my life. She beamed with delight and things were going well until she started setting the table. She asked if he would mind getting the sweet tea from the fridge while she pulled the corn muffins out of the oven. If you would rather have beer, she said, I think Sam has some of that Samuel Adams seasonal kind in there. There was a moment of silence. You didn't tell me you live with someone, he said. I'm sure I must have mentioned Sam, my roommate, she replied as she turned towards him. His expression was cool and guarded and she wondered why. Sammi? I never told you about Sammi? There was no glint of recognition. Then she understood. Sam, Sammi, is Samantha who teaches art foundations and shares the apartment with me, she told him as she took the tea pitcher from his hand. Tell you all about my wonderful, wacky roommate while we eat, if you'd like. He gave her a slight, lopsided smile. Sorry, for a minute there . . . . It's okay, she replied, we're still figuring things out.


Friday, November 10, 2017

Day 2 of Fall in Love

Continuing our autumn romance:

Days later, he called to invite her to a movie based on a book they had discussed. The weather was turning cool and while many trees were still green, others were beginning to show fall colors. Following the movie, they walked to a nearby coffee shop to discuss the film. She commented on all the pots of mums popping up all over the place and how soon pumpkins would predominate. Did he celebrate Halloween, she wanted to know? They both reminisced about childhood Halloweens and how sad it was things had changed so much. Over coffee, he encouraged her to talk about her work at the university. She had a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and taught both basic composition classes and a novel writing workshop . He loved how her eyes lit up when she talked about the value of story. He too believed in the importance of the written word but knew few people with whom he could discuss the value of literature and it's place in society. Driving her back to her apartment, he told her how much he enjoyed her company and would like to see her again. She replied she was glad they had met and would look forward to seeing him again. Please, she said, feel free to call me any time.


Please note: my free Dropbox account is about full so it's time to remove some files again. Holiday Tea will disappear sometime this weekend, so if you want it and haven't downloaded it yet, better hurry..

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Catching up and start of new free kit

Last couple of weeks have been busy and emotional. My brother and his wife finally arrived. They had just cleared up the problems relating to getting Thom's pump refilled and were preparing to fly back to Ashville, N.C. where they would pick up their car then head up to Virginia. Roberta woke to excruciating pain. Turned out she had a dental abcess so bad it required surgery and a bone graft. Naturally, it was some days before she was able to fly. We had much to deal with regarding Dad's finances and possessions. Going through the house to decide what items should go to which family members was very emotional.

Dad was, of course, very pleased to have Thom and Roberta visit him multiple times while here. We noticed some odd things with Dad during recent visits but Roberta remembered similar instances with her mother before she died and I've since read articles detailing the same things. The worst was during Thom's first visit when Dad told them June had died and he'd been a pallbearer. They were silent, not knowing what to say, then Dad continued, "But I know that's not true. She's here." In his nursing home, he meant, but she isn't. We are seeing some of the skin mottling the articles talked about - mostly its been his lips having a bluish tint, social withdrawal, and selective hearing.

A few days before Thom and Roberta were to head home, my husband and I drove down to Columbia, S.C. to see grandson, Tyler, at University of South Carolina. Using my Nonna intuition, I filled a doubled brown paper bag with some fruit, stape goods like spaghetti, sauce, boxed mac n' cheese, cocoa packets, microwave popcron, and a gallon bag of homemade chocolate chip cookies (his favorite). The day we went down was cloudy and it took forever due to construction and then, when we got on I-95 2 accidents held us up for hours. Next day temps were up and it was humid. Too humid to want to walk around campus. Tyler and his friend, Alec, introduced us to Old Chicago Pizza. For lunch (our treat) Tyler had something called a Hangover Burger which included bacon, a sunny side up egg, and hashbrowns! Alec and John split a deep dish pizza with almost everything on it. And I got delicious manicotti. USC had a football game (away) that afternoon so the guys invited us over to Tyler's apartment to watch the game on TV with them and other friends. We declined and went back to hotel to rest and watch a movie on Showtime. Once the game was over, Tyler called and we picked up him, Alec and Alec's girlfriend, Katie, and went to dinner at California Dreaming. Very nice. It's in an old railway station where trains still go by on tracks behind the building (hubby loved that) and turned out to be right behind the quad where Tyler lives. I could have made a meal out of the fresh croissants with honey they serve with meals. But the loaded potato soup wasn't to be missed. We enjoyed and refused to think about what our credit card bill is going to look like with all the meals, hotel, and other travel expnses. It was worth it. Next time maybe I can at least visit the library and bookstore on campus. Those are not to miss for an academic lol.

Thought I'd be up to posting again by Tuesday but needed more time to recooperate and take care of a few things here at home. Also, I'd had a hard time deciding what to do about a November kit. Yes, it's autumn now and sure, Thanksgiving is this month, but it all seemed so ho hum, you know? Too many years digiscrapping I guess. One of you commented that you like how I "twist" things a little. I like that you appreciate that. I want to give you something nice to play with but I don't want to be bored by doing the same old stuff so I try to entertain myself too. Thinking about that, I think I may have found an acceptable theme for this month and hope you like it.

Today we start "Fall in Love" an autumn themed romance. Here is the beginning of our illustrated story.

* They met at a mutual friend's Goodbye to Summer party. Both quiet, introspective people, they quickly discovered they had much in common: preferred small gatherings of close friends rather than large noisy parties, loved sunsets, books (the real, old fashioned kind), long walks on the beach, visits to the mountains in autumn, and much more. They sat on the beach in front of their friend's house, gazing at the sunset, talking as if they had known each other forever. Driving home, she thought about the man she'd met and wondered if sunsets might be proof that endings can be beautiful too, signaling the beginning of something even more beautiful.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Quick note

It's been kind of a rough day - emotionally - um yesterday that is. Your comments really made me feel good. And I got a photo from my son of him and his wife dressed up for Halloween for their workday at Patient First. Just have to show you. They went as characters from How To Tame Your Dragon:
Dragon tamer (Jeremy) and Toothless the Dragon (Berkeley)
How cute is that?