Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Flea and Me

The Despicable Flea

The Flea and Me
Have battle done.
It was hard to say
Who had won.

It bit.
I swore.
It bit again.
I swore some more.

Scratch and itch.
Itch and scratch.
But, at last,
Flea had met its match.

War Wounds
Do not waste time.
Do not give in.
Pick up the phone,
And call Orkin!

Right now!!

Call Orkin Today!
We battled for a month with fleas.  They were the result of three outdoor cats that roamed the neighborhood, infesting all the yards and plants.  Orkin is awesome.  Excellent service.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Wednesday Words: Last Week

Cocktails of the Deep South: Four cocktails placed on very old bar in the deep South.
Source: rkirbycom
Joe heard the coffee filter through yesterday’s grounds and grimaced.

Gloria.  Life with Gloria had been filled with dancing, martinis, late nights in nightclubs.  Joe had  muscle in the city back then.  People knew his name, gave him respect. 

After Gloria, life went sour. Joe took a slug of the coffee and spewed it on the desk.  Sour and bitter.

Ashtray: No description
Source: vivechugh
When Gloria had sauntered out the door, Joe was squashed like a bug, a mess on the sidewalk with cigarette butts.

Gloria.  If only.  If only Joe could get a break

A knock at the door caused Joe to look up from his coffee and cigarette.  Gloria slinked through the office door.  “Hey, Joe.  ‘Member me?”

P.S.  These words are from last Wednesday; this alternate story occurred to me.  So I gave it another shot.  Thanks, Delores.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Wednesday Words: The Garden

zucchini / courgette: zucchini / courgette
Source: Ayla87
The sun filtered through the garden, breaking through the dense foliage.  The twining squash vines sported hearty zucchini, which (as we know) would muscle its way through the other vegetables. 

Blue butterfly: A blue butterfly (Lycaenidae) on a trefoil flower in the Dolomites, Italy.
Source: micromoth
Butterflies were dancing over the blooming lavender and dahlias.  Over in the corner, isolated from the serene garden, were two gooseberry bushes.  Brooding and sour, they knew it was only a matter of time before they would be picked and treasured.

Gooseberries: Succulent gooseberries ripening in the sun
Source: Newsham

For now,  all was at peace.

Many thanks to Delores@thefeatherednest  .  Please go to her site to read other contributions!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Where is...?

After what has seemed like months, I have unpacked my ever-rotating suitcase.  Laundry is folded and put away.  My blog is starting to appear in my brain and ideas gently unfolding. 

There are problems.  They all start with “Where is/are….?”

My toothbrush and whitening tartar reducing toothpaste?  Can’t find them.

Aquage™ shampoo and contioner?  Dang—those things are expensive!

Those trinkets and gifts for our family?  WHERE did I put them?

The list is much longer and more pathetic.  No reason to embarrass myself.

Basically, it all reduces to the simple facts:  Either they are lost, or I will find them the next time we travel.
Suitcase: A blue suitcase.
Source: mzacha

Monday, July 22, 2013

Life in the McKinley Pack

Give and....


Grandma and Grandpa has been watching Sunshine and Bright Eyes for four days and nights.  No wordy posts for this Monday!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Samuel Takes the Test

Coloured Blur 2: Blurred swoosh of coloured light on black background, in primary colour. Blue.
Source: xymonau
It is time. Nana stewed the day after the Baptist Church incident. 

Nana realized that Samuel was ready to go to the school, EDUCATION FOR THE GIFTED AND CREATIVE.  His father Nathan had done well there, after all. 

Samuel recognized the school immediately and swallowed the gall of panic.  Think, man, think!  But events moved too quickly once the doors closed and Samuel was in the company of Nana and her friend, Dr. Anna. 

Primary Coloured Drops: Red, yellow, and blue drops of water.
Source: SeeVee
After brief introductions to a saccharine insipid Miss Bethany, Samuel was given instructions: Create as many colors as he could with the materials provided.

Samuel found himself in a pleasant circular room, softly illuminated overhead, with white board walls and tan seamless flooring.  He noted a large mirror curving around part way…Oh, seriously?  One way mirrors?!  So old school....  

Walking slowly around the room and running his hands along the white board, Samuel observed several things:  the walls had no seams; he could just reach the one way mirror if he stretched enough; and, there were three floor level heating vents with no screws and a metal mesh covers.

In the center of the room was a solid round white table made of some strong resin in one piece.  There was a similar chair, again with no seams, screws, or nails.

Next to the table were five cardboard boxes, filled with supplies.  Samuel squatted down by them, eyeing them carefully.  He began to remove each item one by one, making mental notes.

Boxes large kindergarten-type crayons in red, blue, and yellow?  Do they think I need this many?

Chalk, lots of yellow, blue, and red chalk?   Hmmm…an interesting choice of medium…

Now, let’s see what else: Empty cups, jars of thick peppermint paste, boxes of tongue depressors, Elmer’s glue, tempura paint in primary colors…Don’t they realize what I can do with all of this? 

Paint Palette 5: Variations on an artist's paint palette.
Source: ba1969

Samuel began pacing around the supplies and glancing at spots in the circular room.  He climbed up on the table, standing tall over the room.  Then he looked directly into the one-way mirror.

Miss Bethany cleared her throat.  “Clearly he is overwhelmed.  Look at his stillness, at the lack of expression.  Let’s get him out of there…”

Dr. Anna spoke quietly, “No, I think we need to give him time.”  Another doctor concurred, followed by murmurs of consent.  “Samuel is, after all Nathan’s son, Dr. Nana’s grandson.”

Nana said not a word, keeping eye contact with Samuel.  ‘Oh, Samuel, they do not know what you can do…’

say cheese: little four year old smiling
Source: bies

Samuel smiled, a sweet 3 ½ year old smile.  Let the games begin…

He jumped off the table.

What will Samuel do next?  What do you think will happen?  Where will Samuel go from here?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Wednesday Words: Pamela

Pamela had always been a gregarious child, her grandma said with just a bit of pride.  Grandpa called her Munchkin which made her laugh, because she was anything but small or weak.  Tall as a man and just as strong, Pamela could handle just about any physical challenge.

Pamela had always been a gregarious child, her grandma said with just a bit of pride.  Grandpa called her Munchkin which made her laugh, because she was anything but small or weak.  Tall as a man and just as strong, Pamela could handle just about any physical challenge.

Wikipedia, God bless 'em
The moonshiners in the back woods often tippled back a few samples of their work, which set them carousing and singing bawdy songs at the top of their lungs.  One afternoon, Grandpa mentioned that he wished those n’er do wells would get their comeuppance someday.  Pamela gave thought to his words.

When dusk was just dipping, Pamela wrapped herself in a burlap sack and darkened her face with charcoal.  Gazing about the barn, she noticed some ancient tools and buckets.  There in the corner was a rusted bed pan that Ol’ Aunt Pitty has used before she died.

Source: freepages.history...
Armed with the pan, Pamela crept silently up to the camp where the carousing men were staggering around.  She leapt from the brush with a roar.  Stunned, the men were speechless as Pamela battered them with the bed pan until some fainted

“GET THE HELL OUTTA HERE!” Pamela roared.  They ran.

Pamela destroyed the still and jars of moonshine.

There would be no more carousing near Grandpa’s farm.

P.S.  Oh, Delores!  You are messing with our minds!
        The underlined words have been given to us by Delores @thefeatherednest.  Please visit this site to read what some have written in the comment section.  Also take a look at the participating sites in the right sidebar.  Fun reading.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sunshine and Fate

Cows: Cows
Source: kodakgold
It was fate, down-right fate.  Taking Sunshine to this Consignment Store where bling and style lined each rack and each shelf, was fate.

Grandma told Sunshine they were looking at purses and cool clothes while they waited for Bright Eyes to
finish her dance class.  With only ten minutes to go, this seemed a safe option.

Entering the door that rang with an old fashioned bell over the door, they found that bling did exist and in great quantities.  But there was something else.

In a place of honor was a pair of women cowboy boots.  Of course, boots are made of leather (if they are true cowboy boots).  These boots sported the hide that once decorated a rust and white cow.  These boots were soft and pretty.

Sunshine cried, “OH, NO!” and ran to embrace the boots. 

“Oh, Grandma!  Please tell me these boots are not made from a horse!  ‘Cause Spirit’s girlfriend horse had fur JUST LIKE THIS!”  She cradled the boots.  She gazed at Grandma, with wide blue eyes glistening with tears.
Spirit Stallion of the Cimarron poster.jpg
Per Wikipedia, God bless 'em

Then she looked accusingly at the two women who ran the store.  “I am an animal lover, and horses are almost human!  Are these made from a horse?!”

The two women were horrified at the very thought.  They reassured Sunshine that those boots were made from a cow; boots would NEVER be made from horses.  EVER!

Grandma distracted Sunshine with a blingey purse, but the seven year old gave the women an evil look that said, “You’d better be telling the truth.”

They nodded silently.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Hands upon Hands

My Grandmother's machine

Old hands upon little hands
Brand new sewing machine
All the parts to remember!
Feeder.  Presser Foot.  Fly wheel….
First a straight line on paper,
Then red thread on fabric.
Awe at the top and the bottom.
My mother's machine

Great-great-grandma hands,
Great grandma hands,
Grandma hands,
Mommy hands,
Janome Magnolia 7330 Sewing Machine w/ FREE BONUS & 5 Yr Ext Wnty machine
And now
Daughter hands.
A stitch in time

Daughter's machine

Friday, July 12, 2013

Disturbance of the Force in the Sock Drawer

Source: tick..tick...tick
When the Sock Drawer heard the history of the new foreigners of the Drawer, they were astounded.  Until now, the only foreigner had been the flashlight in very back of the drawer, and he appeared to be sleeping most of the time.

Caution was the order of the elders.  Take care when approaching.  But the young socks did not listen, as the young do not.  The glowing numbers from the round object with aqua blue attachments drew all with its mystery.  The persistent tick-tick-tick at first was amusing in its regularity.  The glow produced just enough light that the socks were entranced by its rhythm and shimmer.

Spontaneous dance began, slowly at first and then emerged as 1-2-3 and 1-2-3.  Soon the entire drawer was whirling about to the rhythm, each with their mate.

Then the unthinkable happened.

The singles socks swung into the mix, the male socks broke off from their mates and continued the 1-2-3 with the single socks. 

Non Skid / Slip Grip Socks For Women / Men - Hospital Socks
The older socks gasped and sought out the Elder Sock with the rubber tread.  She moved slowly the front of the crowd.  A fury of angry lint flurried about her.  THIS must stop immediately!  All obeyed without question. 

A conflagration of the Elder Sock, the Woolen Argyles from Scotland, along with a few old Christmas Socks was held in the far corner by the flashlight.  Wisps of lint rose, and static crackled.  Really?  Do you think we should?  Oh, this has never happened before!

It must be done!

The plan was explained in such authoritative terms to all that not one sock could dispute it.

The ticking circle was wrestled into and slightly through the open crack in the drawer.  The peculiar square was pushed with great effort.  Then all socks moved to the back of the drawer, followed by great momentum to the front.  The drawer opened just a smidge.  Repeating this great effort, the round ticking circle worked its way through the opening.

Gathering beneath the blue object the socks pushed up and up.  With a whish the tick-tick circle flew out of the circle, landing on the floor.

For some time in the days that followed, the tick-tick-tick could still be heard.  When it abruptly stopped, the younger socks mourned.  The older socks sighed in relief.

P.S.  The previous post from the Land of Sock Drawer was this:
and this

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Wednesday Words: Dennis

Holding small white umbrella: Hand holdning small white umbrealla (used for flash) isolated from the white background
Dennis lives his entire life beneath a self-imposed umbrella, cutting off the rest of the world.  

Silence reigns, attacking his sanity.  

The tang of his silent life is bitter, almost effervescent in its taste and smell.  

Seeing the world hustle and bustle beyond him, Dennis struggles from encasement, as if gum hardens into a resin shell after as it drops upon his personal aegis.

P. S.  Many thanks to Delores at thefeatherednest for providing "Wednesday Words".  This week was a real challenge!  Please visit her site where other participants are provided!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Stones in a line

San Marcos, CA cemetery 
Surrounded by green

Beneath gnarled olive tree

Three stones.
Old stones—
1920s old.

“Baby” carved in the first stone

Below it, “Baby” in the second stone.

At the bottom of the line of three,


Old stones—
Lonely stones.
Forgotten stones.


Monday, July 8, 2013

The Joy of 9

Kevin listened for the first ten minutes and then his eyes wondered.  “The red head…she has the greatest pair of…” 

The lecture was called “The Joy of 9”*.  So far Kevin felt no joy.

….Let’s consider why that works.  Call  the first number you consider  as ‘x’….tripling that x gives you 3x…when you add 6, that makes 3x+6…Triple that will make 3(3x+6), or 9x+18…….

“Oh, Debbie.  Sweet Debbie, how I love your…”

….do an example like this: 3, 456.  Adding the digits together and we have 18, and 18 is a multiple of 9.  And, guess what? 3,456 is a multiple of 9!  What about 1,234?  Its digits add up to….

Kevin’s gaze swung over to the girl sitting in the row below him, Karen.  She was doodling.  Not only doodling, Karen was doodling semi-porn doodles.  “Dang!  She’s good!”

While he watched, the Joy of 9 continued.  …How about a bigger problem: 91,787+42,864.  If we add those wonderful numbers together correctly, we will arrive at 134,651.  If we check our answers, we add the digits to get 20; then add 2+0 and get 2… 

M_4(n) = \frac{n(n^4+1)}{2}.\,
The Joy of 9 lecture concluded with “…and the resulting number is 9…therefore…”

Kevin and the class staggered out the lecture hall.  Kevin caught up with…

Who do you think Kevin will choose?  Will he borrow someone’s notes?  Will he pass the next exam?

*This lecture was partially derived from The Joy of Mathematics by Professor Arthur T. Benjamin.   Words have been changed from the lecture to avoid copyright infringement.  No insult was meant or implied to Dr. Benjamin.  My husband would hang on his every word, while I would be the one dozing off.  

P.S.  My husband reads stuff like this, even has a video of Professor Benjamin presenting the real lecture.  He watches videos like this.  And, he tries to share the ideas with me. 

The next time a program on “Joy of Quilting” I am on that like fly on molasses.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Last Year...The 2012 Olympics

Did you see this? I didn't. Source

Last year I missed the London 2012 Olympics.  All of it, if you don't count the BBC commentators giving their summary of the day's events.

My sweet grandson Benjamin was 6 weeks old then (Have I ever mentioned him?) and I was in Switzerland for almost three weeks during the Olympic time.  The balance of the day was spent with the new parents and their new baby.

But, when twilight came, I took the #10 bus back to an apartment my daughter had arranged for me.  (Why didn't you just stay there?  At their house?)  Their own apartment was the size of a kitchen drawer and I might have had to throw up a tent on their tiny balcony.

When I finally settled down for some Swiss-German TV, the choices were limited and so was my understanding.  It wasn't until I returned to my own home, after the flame had been extinguished and the flags carried out of the stadium.

This video with Mr. Bean/Rowan Atkinson was all I needed to see anyway.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Wednesday Words: Cyrene

Fashion: Model in three versions
Source: Ambroz
Cyrene glided into the classy bar.  Thank God for Cougar Dating service!  She patted the red rose pinned on her low cut dress.
Ah, there he is! The old guy with his own red rose on lapel!  Cyrene licked her tongue across front teeth, checking for lipstick.  Her bicuspid fangs were less obvious since the dentist trip and whitening had removed heavy tobacco stains. 

He sat there, a dithering old man.  His rheumy glassy eyes and a slack wet drooling mouth, Edward Saint-Germaine appeared every bit the wealthy old man.

For a single moment, Cyrene felt recalcitrant about moving in for the kill, but that quickly passed.

P.S.  These words are courtesy of Delores at myfeatherednest .  Please check the right sidebar for other Wednesday Words participants!

P.S.S.  I left out rodeo by pure accident.  Oh, well.  Next time I will do better.  Sorry, Delores.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

A Cafe' to Remember

The Road of Adventure
Memories of good restaurants cling to everyone, triggered by simple smells, quick visual flashes, some notes of music.  Maybe sautéed onions with bacon bring back that little Mom and Pop place near the childhood home.  Or, is it the exquisite fresh baking bread that reminds one of a marvelous by a favorite coffee shop? The oldies on radio summon up a summer vacation when there were many summers to come.

Whatever the sense might be, everybody identifies with a familiar  place locked in the memories of good places or unique experiences. 

What about a remote place, located in the middle of a desert wasteland?  And, if that restaurant has an unusual name, would you stop there?

The Entrance
RoadKill Café, 504 W. Highway 66, Seligman, Arizona, is such a place.  “Unique” isn’t adequate to describe this place.

Their motto is:  "You Kill It, We Grill It!"
The mission statement
Located on Route 66  just off Freeway , the town of Seligman, AZ, has kept its old West and small town flavor.   The menu offers many fine entrees, such as "Splatter Platter", Deer Delectables, Bad Brake Steak, Fender Tender, Caddie Grilled Patty, Swirl of Squirrel, Big Bagged Stag, Highway Hash, Almost-Crossed-the-Road-Chicken, and other delights.

Trip Advisor
The chocolate malt is the best, though.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Tuesday by David Wiesner

The love of a good book knows no bounds, absolutely none.  One without words, done by an exceptionally creative artist storyteller is doubly loved.  Triply, even.

Tuesday is written by David Weisner.  Describing the book would be doing it an injustice.  But I will say that toads/frogs are strange creatures who seem to manage the impossible in nature.  How a mud puddle in the middle of our farm driveway would suddenly burgeon with tadpoles which morphed into frogs and then disappeared, I could never figure out. 

Recently Diane Tolley from On the Alberta/Montana Border wrote about the mysterious appearance of amphibians/toads/frogs in a place that never had them.  And then, they disappeared.  

If you have not read her posts or are unaware of this blogger, please visit her.  Diane shares her life growing up on a ranch and her love of adventure in her wonderful posts.  

I do not have an answer for her.  But I promised her that I would share this book and link it to her post, Toad today, Gone tomorrow  


This following animated version is delightful!  Please click on this link and see the video!  Thanks!  DOROS Animation: Tuesday