Friday, July 31, 2009

Cooler Weather and Grape Britain!

We are heaving a collective sigh of relief here in the Willamette Valley as cooler weather has moved in and we can now get out and about without fear of melting or worse.We had some errands to run yesterday so we left early.I had not left the apartment in days as it was too hot to wear real clothes.Too hot to be out in the sun.Too hot to do much of anything with highs above 105 for a few days there.I needed to have a pro-times blood draw for the blood thinner I take for atrial fibrillation,pick up 2 books on hold for myself at the library and drop stuff off at a local thrift store.So off Steve and I went.We took my favorite route over to the lab for the blood draw.This route takes us through a part of downtown Salem with some older homes of various architectural styles.Victorian homes,bungalows,hacienda styled homes and various other styles are present.As we passed by a small,pink hacienda styled home Steve commented that he liked it.I said that I did not as I have never cared for that style very much.I then asked him why he liked it's little pink self.He said it reminded him of those pink,sugar wafer cookies!I laughed heartily and thought I should have fed us both breakfast before we left.:-)I then made a mental note to purchase some of these little treats when he gets his disability check on Monday!I wonder if they come in an all strawberry package?I guess we shall find out!As we continued on I began to eagerly scan the right side of this lovely tree lined street for my favorite home on this path through downtown.There she was!Still lovely and tall in all her purple Victorian glory!A real painted lady in the heart of downtown Salem!!The house is a pale,lavender gray color with dark plum and dark,blue gray trim and a purple front door for impact!I squealed with delight as if seeing her for the first time.Her beauty never fades to me.She's the prettiest home I've seen in Salem I think.Just on the heels of our sugar wafer conversation I asked Steve"I wonder what my love of this purple house says about me?!Quick as can be he shot back"it's reflective of your love of Grape Britain!"(He knows of my long held affinity for all things British.:-))I asked him to repeat as I was not sure I heard him correctly!Did you say Grape Britain?That's what he'd said alright.He never fails to amaze and amuse me.In times like these a little humor goes a long way!
God bless and keep each of you~

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

How Did I Survive California?

It's 108 degrees here in the Willamette Valley as I type this at nearly 5 pm.Previous records are dropping like too ripe fruit in an unkempt orchard.It's been a year of extremes of weather here and that seldom happens.Generally speaking we're not prepared for these types of extremes in this gentle clime.It makes me ponder the first 30 or so years of my life spent growing up in Sacramento,CA.And it makes me wonder how I ever survived the heat there?And then I recall a childhod spent under shade trees and swamp coolers.And I recall a young adulthood spent working in air conditioned offices and coming home to apartments with central heat and air and shaded swimming pools.And I know that's how I survived.Would I want to go back to that life again?No way.I have learned too much about God,life and myself since following His clarion call to Oregon in 1991.And one of the many things I have learned is how to survive the heat waves that come into my life unbidden in this normally temperate place I now call home.Hope all of you are staying cool where you are.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Oh So Hot :-)

We're in the midst of a summer heat wave here.It's been in the 90's for about 3 days now.Last night as I went to bed it was still 89 degrees outside at about 9 pm.So glad we have purchased several stand fans and window fans over the last few years as we have seen them at garage sales.They are really helping to keep us and our cat Shadow nice and cool.We have no AC's in this complex so we do what we can.We nap in the afternoons.I think siesta is such a great"invention!"We stay well hydrated with plenty of water(avoid alcohol and caffeinated beverages as they will only dehydrate you more).We close up our patio door and bedroom window(s)before the heat really hits(here that is about 5 pm).And we close our bedroom mini blinds and patio door's vertical blind so we do not get glare from the sun shining on vehicles parked outside.We take our walks EARLY;like about 7 am.If possible I would go at 6 but Steve thinks 7 is even too early!:-) I use baby powder liberally after my shower(Johnson&Johnson Lavender&Chamomile;purchased brand new at a garage sale awhile back for only 50 cents and it's a big container!Thank you Jesus!).I keep fruit and flower scented body sprays and splashes in one of my vegetable drawers for a quick cooling squirt when needed.I cannot believe I just confessed to that.LOL :-) Oh well.I have done this since I lived in California and find it really helps!All these things combined help us(me)stay cool here when the heat is on.Thankfully these heat waves do not last long generally.However,they are talking about triple digits in about a week here so I am glad my arsenal is well stocked and ready!And remember,God is always good even when the heat is on in our lives and in our locales.:-)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Bookish Thoughts and Such

~Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore.~
Henry Ward Beecher

This quote was on an Incredimail stat sent to me by a friend this morning.Oh my,she does know me well.The stat had a wonderful image in the background of a bookstore.I immediately saved it for I know I will use it and hopefully often!I have loved all things bookish since childhood.As I grew up poor I did not travel or have much adventure in my life.But in the pages of books I could visit distant lands if only in my imagination.And visit these far away places I did.I have often told my husband (as we passed by the local Borders Bookstore usually)that if money were not an issue in our life I could probably get in a fair amount of trouble in bookstores.:-) LOL So I shop for books at thrift shops(only rarely)and garage sales(quite often when possible!)and on occasion I have bought new(for the lowest price I could find)when it was a book I really wanted and knew my chances were oh-so-slim of finding said book at a garage sale or thrift shop.I have also availed myself of our local library on many occasions.I can look at their catalog online and then log in and request the books I want.They notify me via e-mail when they are ready for pick up!And speaking of books,I spoke with one of my older sisters over the weekend.She had a birthday so I called to wish her well on her day.As we chatted we somehow got on the subject of books and she proceeded to tell me she helps keep Barnes and Noble in business and will often buy books 4 at a time!Though we grew up somewhat together I just did not know there was another bookworm in my family(or writer of poetry like myself!).:-)That kind of thing often happens in families riddled with divorce like mine was.Add to the fact that she is 10 years older and had a different dad and get the picture.I must call her again.Our chat ended before I could find out what books she bought recently.I am currently reading Vinita Hampton Wright's"The Soul Tells a Story."And I am re-reading a book by Ken Gire called"Windows of the Soul."And an e-book called"The Divine Artist"by Stephen Bennett."All great reads and wonderful writers.And speaking of writing...I had some thoughts while writing in my journal this morning.I was pondering my journal keeping history and how I had attempted a diary in childhood and a journal in my 20's.My 30's were my lean years as far as writing was concerned.I seldom did it.And when I attempted these past journal keeping endeavors my journals were filled with so much anger and hatred and other dreadful(to me) things that I did eventually throw away said journals.And with their removal much of the toxic emotions began to leave as well.Hallelujah!I am now nearing the end of my 40's(November 30 I will turn 48)and I have been regularly keeping a journal for a few years now.And it's been a joy.Life's trials have smoothed off many of the rough edges both without and within.Many journal pages now resound with praise to the only One who could make such a change within my soul.And I rejoice in Him and know that as life continues on within the pages of my journal that He will continue to give me cause to write down His praises for that is the kind of God we serve and love.

Saturday, July 11, 2009


I appreciate having a roof over our head(I really do).I even love our 658 square foot apartment.Though small it has many nice features.A ceiling fan for one thing.It also has a small patio out back and a laundry room within it's small walls which houses our second hand laundry set.I love not having to go to a laundromat.But one of the huge pitfalls we've discovered since living here for a year and a half is the neighbors.There many rude neighbors.Sad but true.People who are well old enough to know better have littered our front door area with their dropped cigarette butts;they have even dropped them from the floors above onto our daughter's head and left burn marks in the rug we use to wipe our feet before entering what should be our refuge.Then there are the neighbors just to the west of us who play their stereo so loud at all hours our bedroom walls vibrate with the sound of their"rap **ap."It would bother me if it was country or heavy metal as well.The point is not the type of music but the volume level at which they play it and the time frames.I do not think they work so it is not an issue of them getting off work and unwinding at 2 AM!But early this morning(sometime after 1 AM)really won the rudeness prize.I was awakened from a sound sleep to the sound of my husband having to shout(and shine a flashlight at 3 small children out in the night playing in the sprinklers just outside our bedroom window.They were all about 10-12 years old.No adults in sight and they were laughing and shouting and generally making a huge racket.He shouted more than once for them to go away and they finally did.Sadly in the time we have lived here I have had to e-mail the office's on-site management far more often than I felt I should have to.We have even had to call the police a few times.And then are the times we have close up all our windows on even nice days like today as the neighbors are all out smoking and I am coughing like crazy which annoys my husband.It's times like this I wish we were living our dream of life in the country away from neighbors of any kind.And in a place with enough land to grow some fruits and veggies.Nothing like apartment life with rude neighbors to turn us into a couple of misanthropes.:-)We both long to live in a place where all we hear at night is the sounds of crickets.Sounds nice,doesn't it?Makes me sigh with longing.Perhaps one day God will grant us the desires of our heart on this.:-)Until then I shall continue to be grateful I have a roof over my head.

Friday, July 10, 2009

So Funny

My husband and I(seen above on the day of my complete Mary Kay makeover given by daughter April)have been walking in the early morning hours(7 is early for Steve :-)).We both want to do what we can to lose weight and reduce the stress that comes from living life here on this earth.So we walk.Some days are good days and we walk with few breaks at all.Other days(not today ironically) we have to stop a few times(he has COPD and I have atrial fibrillation).One of the things I love about Steve is his joy in life and his well honed sense of humor.As we walked today and enjoyed the morning his humor was ever present.We had just walked past a vehicle that had some type of sticker on it.He said we should place it on our/my back.What did the sticker say you ask?This is priceless...It said"Caution!Makes frequent stops!I told you he was a funny guy.:-)It's one of the many reasons I married him and why we've been married for over 16 years.


Thursday, July 09, 2009

Prayer Needed for My MIL Evelyn

My mother in law Evelyn was just diagnosed with skin cancer today.She is scheduled to have it removed on August 5th at 8:15 AM.She is 80 years old and I know would appreciate prayers on her behalf.Thank you all so very much.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Happy Independence Day!

Independence Day Fireworks

on barge in Willamette River


Wishing each of you a wonderful day of celebration tomorrow as we celebrate our nation's freedom and independence.It's so much more than a day for feasting and fireworks although it is often celebrated in such a manner by most of us.:-)People fought and bled and died to gain us the freedoms we enjoy as a nation(no matter how often it seems they are being taken away we still enjoy more freedom,I think,than many nations around the globe).So have a blessed time tomorrow as you enjoy time spent with friends and family.And remember to be safe as you do.

Love and Blessings~Sharon