Thursday, May 28, 2009

This Tickled My Funny Bone

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

I love Lolcats--the imaginative captions amaze me sometimes with the inventiveness of the captions. Plus there's no such thing as a bad picture of a cat.

Today Denny will have finished painting the master bedroom and I hope to have all the old wallpaper adhesive scraped off the bathroom walls. I have to start setting up display tables and bringing things out to tag and price if I'm going to have this sale by the last week of June, especially since we'll be out of town for a week in June. No pressure! Time to start calling friends and family in to help drag stuff out and stick price tags on things and figuring out how to price antiques in today's depressed market. Because 60s and 70s items are the new "antiques"--Mom's collections are all actually too old for today's buyers. Because antiques are out, collectibles are in. *sigh*

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Heigh ho, heigh ho, a winnowing we go

I've already explained that Denny and I stay at my mother's house several days a week to avoid the 50 miles round trip commute from our campground. When your truck only gets 10 mph per gallon it's an expensive round trip. The new Ford diesel is more green emissions-wise, but it sucks up more fuel. Did we get anywhere with that?

Anywho, as Denny and I have been working on the house, things are starting to disappear. Not by theft, but by inheritance and by selling items. Yesterday the desk left, so I'm now working on a tiny plastic desk left here by my niece who had lived with Mom for a while. The same niece who took a lot of the bakeware, so that when I made some brownies the other week I had to improvise on a baking pan, forgetting most of them were gone. The casserole dishes have gone to another niece, Denny took the silverware to our son in New York when he delivered a band saw and a metal storage cabinet up there so we're eating with plastic forks and spoons. When family members ask for things I say "sure", forgetting that we're living here and might need them. I did ask that my brother-in-law leave the glider out back for Denny and I to sit in and relax after a long day working here but--I gave the blender/food processor to Darb and his wife. Now THAT was a mistake. Because now there are no frozen margaritas to sip while relaxing in said glider after a hard day's work. **SIGH**

Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Too Much Stuff

Denny and I are back in Kettering, trying to do ten things at once. Or rather I am; Denny is motoring right along with the painting. I'm having him stop after this bedroom so that I can set up for the estate sale. I'm hoping to have it by the end of June and it will take me every bit of that time to pull things from boxes, research them and set reasonable prices on everything. I know I won't do justice to the effort Mom made to collect all these things, but I'll do what I can.

Keys. How many boxes and bags of keys can one person have? Eight, minimum. Skeleton keys, clock keys, music box keys, NCR cash register keys, desk keys, luggage keys, who-knows-what keys. Brass, steel, and other. Price for collectors? Scrap metal? Combination of both? Sigh. That took hours today, sorting and separating. I was also working on her jewelry box. Gold, sterling silver, collectible costume, regular costume. And keys in the bottom drawer of the jewelry box. Did they go to something special? Who knows?

I swear I am getting rid of everything I have stored at Mom's for the last ten years. It all goes. I won't do this to my kids. They took what they wanted when we first sold our house--the stuff I stored was "my" stuff. Now, it goes. My brother found a piece of my art glass in the garage and said how beautiful it was. Yep, it IS beautiful but I've done without it for almost eleven years so I guess I can do without it forever. Purge and cleanse is going to be the name of the game before this is all over.

And then I can cry.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Hot and Grumpy

I've been spinning my wheels a bit this week, trying to put things on eBay for the estate. I did get ten items online, but it's a laborious process when you have to research to see what it is you have and what it might be worth and if it would do better locally with a dealer rather than online. And there are still piles and piles of things to sort through.

So once we arrived back at our trailer for the holiday weekend (and boy, we should have gone to Mom's house for the weekend and stayed at the campground during the week) I decided that I'm going to concentrate on setting table up at the house and getting "stuff" out to have the estate sale instead of trying to do research, gather items together all while washing walls so Denny can paint and trying to clear out a room at a time for said washing and painting. It's time to gather some help so we can have the estate sale so Mom's stuff can find a good home and so that I can arrange with the carpet installers and kitchen counter top installers and floor refinishers to come in and do their jobs. There's way too much here for Denny and I to be able to get the sale set up by ourselves. Summer is fast approaching and it's time to focus on one thing at a time instead of going off in six different directions at once. That is my pep talk to myself. Now we'll see how it goes.

This weekend we're seeing the "occasional" campers; those who don't know the unspoken although sometimes written rules of camping. One is; don't drive above 5 mph on a gravel roadway within the campground due to the great amount of dust stirred up by higher speeds. Another is; teach your children (and yourself while you're at it) to respect the boundaries of other people's campsite--you don't cut across campsites en route to your destination. Third; if you are planning on leaving at 5:30 in the morning, back your truck up to your rig the night before and don't turn on your rattletrap truck until you are ready to hitch up and leave.

Hmm, I think a nice glass of a 2004 Shiraz Grenache is called for at the moment--I seem to be a tad wound up tonight.

Happy Memorial Day weekend, Happy Anniversary Darb and Net and safe travels this weekend everyone.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I was cleaning out a cabinet when I came across an envelope of photos. Inside I found some pictures of The Nickelodeon Soda Fountain, the ice cream store my parents opened after months of hard work. The Mexican onyx soda fountain was originally displayed at the Chicago World's Fair and eventually made its way to Middletown, Ohio where my father discovered it. My parents took the marble bar apart piece by piece, spent hours cleaning years of melted ice cream and syrup goop off the onyx and eventually created a small piece of restored history to a shopping center in Kettering. It's where I learned to make a nectar soda and the world's best chocolate malt.

In the picture you'll see an early 70s version of my younger brother. Sadly, most of the pictures were lost and those that are left are blurry and dark. It was a fun place with nickelodeons, penny candy, stained glass lamps and a good neighborhood crowd of customers. Lots of memories....

Friday, May 15, 2009

A Trip Back in Time

Friends Don and Vicki had recommended Wagner's Village Restaurant in Oldenburg, Indiana as having a terrific family style fried chicken dinner, so tonight Denny and I took a drive that way. Entering town we noticed right away that the street signs were written in German first, and English in smaller letters underneath, an indication of the pride the townspeople have in the German heritage here.

Oldenburg was settled in the 1830s by German immigrants and 1851 the Sisters of St. Francis convent was founded. Denny actually has a cousin here at the convent although we haven't seen her in years due to her advanced age. The town of Oldenburg itself was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983 and has the nickname "The Village of Spires" due to the tall church spires along Main St.
It's a quiet little place, but there are some neat buildings if you enjoy various styles of architecture and well-preserved buildings.

Wagner' Village Restaurant

The Sisters of St. Francis Convent

This fire hydrant painted like a nun was across the street from the convent

This attractive pub would have gotten my business if we hadn't just eaten. Look Don--taco night!

I couldn't decide if this had been an old livery stable, an inn, or a firehouse.

The main storefront here was "The Guten Tag", but I loved the architectural details of the building.

This sign on the side of the building with the Guten Tag store provided historical information. Guess there were no unions back then, huh?

The current firehouse in Oldenburg.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Rain, Rain, Rain, Rain

Boy, have we had rain, with more predicted for the next two days. It's pretty obvious that we are not going to be playing golf or geocaching this week. I figure we'll come back to this campground possibly one more time before the summer is over and the estate business is done, so we'll get a shot at both then.

Patches was dying to go out for a walk yesterday but this is what we found when I opened the door yesterday afternoon.

Notice what a smart cat she is; Patches didn't even ATTEMPT to get down off the steps. I figure there was a good inch and a half of water outside our door. And it rained a lot more last night.

So Denny and I are getting our rest and relaxation in, come h*ll or high water. Heh.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Rain, Sun, Wind, Rain

It's a day fit for man nor geese beast. Denny and I had planned to play golf today but rain combined with a strong wind does not make for fun golf, so we're indoors today. I figured this meant I was supposed to get some housework done, so I tossed a load of laundry in the washing machine, pulled up Pandora on the computer for some housework music and started scrubbing the floors. Don't have Pandora on your computer? Go to and create your own play list of songs simply by typing in an artist name or a song title and Pandora will create a "station" of songs of a genre similar to your song/artist. For this morning I went with Neil Diamond since I have a small floor area. Back in the day of the big house, I would have inserted Sly and the Family Stone and bebopped and hip-slung my way around the house getting my chores done.

It was more fun with Sly.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A Walk Around The Campground

Spring has finally arrived and I for one was more than ready for it. Denny and I took advantage of the sunshine yesterday and today to start exploring our campground as this is our first visit here. So far the only drawback is lack of clear cellular phone coverage, but then again, maybe that's not such a bad thing.

My friend Vicki always does a picture that she calls "the view from our front door" when they arrive at a new campsite. The picture below is actually what I see looking out our rear living room window of the trailer. The air is crisp and clear here--the Midwestern heat and humidity of summer has yet to arrive to blur the edges of the scenery.

Most of the private membership campgrounds have cabins available to rent to members and their family and these have a nice view of a channel off the main lake.

If there is a lake or pond on the grounds, then there will be Canada geese. Not all of them return to Canada, Coll! This pair was watchful, but not too concerned by my proximity.

Walking near a covered pavilion near the clubhouse I noticed a robin on a picnic table with a worm, so I assumed there was a nest nearby. Checking the rafters of the pavilion, instead of robins I saw this mourning dove on her nest.

Knowing that the robin was there for a reason, I continued to scan the rafters and found the robin's nest and three impatient little robins awaiting that worm.

Even past its prime, a pink dogwood tree is beautiful.

I'm still learning the new camera--what appears clear in the viewfinder doesn't always come through as a sharp image on the computer. More practice is required. But dandelion fluff is always fun--how tempting it was to pick the stem and blow the seeds away.

A Happy Mother's Day to all. Love you Mom.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Feline Alarm Clock

Ownership of a cat (is there such a thing as owning a cat?) insures that life is never boring. Patches entertains us in myriad ways but she also has her not-so-cute quirks and the one that is most irritating is her alarm clock mode.

I set my coffee pot to go off at 6AM each morning, even though I'm usually awake well before that. I lay still, because I know that restless movement will activate the alarm cat into full on "get up" mode.

It starts with Patches coming in and using the litter box for #1. Much scratching in the litter ensues and then she disappears into the living room. Ten minutes later, she returns to use the box again, this time for #2. If it's particularly aromatic, there will be little scratching and a hurried exit from the room, running as if chased by the Hounds of H*ll.

Next, the alarm cat returns to the bedroom to scratch at the day-night shades over the windows, knowing that will garner her a quick "no" and the first indication that Mom is awake and capable of getting up to feed her. This is followed by the delicate tightwire walk up my side, starting at the ankle and moving up towards my hip, as she somehow changes those soft little kitty pads on the bottom of her paws into pile driving pointed pistons with a force of 50 pounds behind it. As I roll onto my back to knock her off and ease the pain, Miss Patches then sits on my abdomen, supplying just enough pressure on the area of my bladder to make it absolutely imperative that I get up immediately. *sigh*

I stroke her head to deactivate the alarm and get up. The system works.

Monday, May 04, 2009

For My Women Friends

This was sent to me by my ex-sister-in-law, Phyl, who I've always loved as my own flesh and blood. I post it here for those of you who have become my "virtual" friends and family. Fair warning--you will cry.

Friday, May 01, 2009

People, People, People

Buy a Class C motorhome for $70,000 to $90,000 and add a membership to a private campground organization that specializes in natural forest preserve settings for another $1,000 to $14,000. Pull your new RV into one of those member campgrounds, hook up your utilities and then proceed to close every blind over every window so no one can see in and you can't see out.

You'd be surprised at how many people do this, too. The Class C pictured below with the windshield covered and the blinds drawn in the middle of the day is not unusual in this lifestyle. It makes me wonder why they even bother to come here?

Onward and upward. Denny and I decided to single handedly do our part to stimulate the economy by spending our tax refund, plus a little more. This is what we treated ourselves to: new LaZBoy recliners in a material that won't show claw marks like our previous "pleather" rocker/gliders.

Ah ha! The first hummingbird of the season just lit on my window feeder. It is now officially spring--the heck with robins!

Lastly, Patches hiding in the flower bed foliage at Mom's house, trying to catch a squirrel or sparrow. Actually, Patches has become quite timid, possibly from us moving her back and forth between our trailer and Mom's house. She goes from having the freedom of being unleashed in Mom's backyard to having to walk on a leash at the campground and I think it is getting to her. That's all I need on my plate--a neurotic cat.

Th-th-that's all, folks.
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