Friday, July 31, 2009

Mom's jewelry - where is it?

Recently I was speaking with a friend of mine that was going to her 40th school reunion. We were discussing what it may be like, who gained, who lost and I had offered to her any piece of my jewelry collection, while modest, it would be something new for her to wear.

As she graciously thanked me, she told me of the story of receiving some of her mother's jewelry when her mom had passed away many years ago. I asked if I could see it and she told me it was in the safe deposit box. Well golly, I exclaimed, get it out of there and wear it. Take Mom with you. Make new memories with those lovely pieces.

So I ask you - where is it? In a austere, cold dark box in a bank? If yes, then get it out and celebrate! If no, then you are already celebrating!

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Three Girls!

So Camp continues, my three nieces from St. Louis had their very first sleep over with me. It was great to spend our time just hanging out and sharing their thoughts hopes and dreams. We talked into the late evening and even watched a video - girls night out. Really bad and silly.
The following day it was sleep in, for them at least I finished Jessica's big girl blanket finally. It was a crochet piece in a patchwork quilt pattern. Then it was Shelby's turn to pick out a blanket for herself. After lots of books, and even a trial swatch of a red pattern subsitiuted into blues, she decieded on a a StarBurst pattern.

The rest of the day, we had breakfast,brunch, lunch. In a meal as that anything goes - even fudge!! It was then off to the library to drop off books and, but of course, borrow more books paper and cd and takeaway and a cd of music. We then left to so go to Milford to birthday shop at Mood Swings though it had closed early. Sad - so - I took them to the beach and we walked the beach for a bit. Great day outside. After our little adventure at low tide, we all went to dinner at the Outrigger. It's on the Sound, and we sat out on the deck for a lovely dinner. I must say we were the only table showing we were having lots of fun on the Monday night. We had lots of laughs, a bit of silliness, and most of all great memories. Thanks girls...... love ya Aunt Patty

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Helpful Business or Not?

Sunday was our annual family picnic. It's a big event with just about everyone able to attend this year. We begin around 10am and conclude the day in the early evening. So not a big deal except that I was between "camp" guests, had laundry running, and needed to get groceries for the second group. I have a klutzy habit of my mind being three days ahead of my body so I can bump into stuff. That day in one of my "Patty's school of grace and charm" moments, I stepped off the concrete patio and semi-twisted my ankle. Didn't think too much of it until I needed to take off for those couple of errands.

My ankle began to throb - ouch alot. I was in Shaws grocery, had just checked out and forgot to turn in my coupon. The checkout attendant looked at me and said I had to go to the Courtsey desk to turn in the coupon. The Courtsey desk was at the other end of the store. I asked if she could take care of it, nope, and was more concerned to know the event that lead to my ankle hurting and said "thank goodness you didn't fall in the store". She promptly walked away to chat it up with a fellow attendant. I just stood there. No one else was in line, just me.

Helpful - I say not. It's really a sad time to witness how little some folks care about their fellow human being. Instead of singing the praises of this attendand and Shaws, it's another example how NOT to do business.

PS the ankle got some much needed ice and a few asprins, and is all better, thanks for asking!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Great Time!

For those of you that have kids or access to kids, make a date with them to do some fun things. These are my youngest neice and nephew, Savannah and Seamus. Aren't the cute! this was just before the fireworks this last Saturday night at the park.

We had lots planned but had to play it by 'rain slicker' as to what we could do. On our first day, besides lunch at "Steve's" here in the center of town (it's now a tradition), and a trip to the Lucy Robbins Welles Library for some books and movies. Each of them signed up for the chores around the place so we could always have plenty of time for fun. I couldn't get out of the cooking and driving, they kept the baths cleaned, bedrooms pickup, did the recycling and trash. They did assited in meal preparation and with the planning and the grocery shopping. Though we did have to use my MasterCard.

Our first full day had a detour in the morning to one of my clients for couple of hours at Steve's School - not to be confused with Steve's for Lunch. Then off for our picnic at UConn and to see the Barns and animals. There are some 200 cows, 35 pigs, great horses, and assorted other livestock and poultry. Here we are checking out the Holsteins and my favorite, the Jerseys. After all our viewing, it was off to the UConn Dairy Bar. Husky Trak for me and Savannah and chocolate for Seamus. YUM YUM! On our way back we took a Ferry, mind you the oldest continuous operating ferry in the US no less! We were the only passengers on our crossing and the kids thought that was really special (lucky Aunt Patty!).

Saturday was a big day - we ventured into the past, how life was lived back in the 1830's, so many years ago. The simple life, in a simple town, Old Sturbridge Village. The kids were really cute when asking about no running water, and they had a chance to see it being pumped out. No indoor pluming, though they visited the out house. We picnicked on the grounds, and had our big jug of lemonade with us! That was really good as the day was quite warm - like being summer. (those of you readers not in New England - this is our first couple of days of summer!). We saw the blacksmith shop, saw how the grain was milled and even went below to the water wheel to see how a tiny stream of water could move such a great wheel. The Potters house was filled with all sorts of wares and the kids were right up front with the wet clay. Thank goodness for the wet-ones handi pak! Around one corner we were met with some sheep and took a time to baaaaa with them. We took a boat ride on the river, and then we were off to the craft house. There they each got to make dipped candles.

We were on a tight schedule - while I drove they napped and upon arriving at home we unpacked with military precision and repacked the car so we could have another picnic and see the fireworks. Parks & Rec does a great job and it was a wonderful show! It's about 40 minutes long - ask the kids it was so wonderful. (Mark the calendar now - it's the 3rd weekend in July).

What was one of the best parts of the trip was "thankful time". At dinner and just before bed, we did a few moments of sharing what we were thankful for in that day. I hope they take home "thankful time". I have been doing thankful time, I don't remember when it started so it was a long, long time ago. It was fun to hear their perspective of the same day and see from their eyes what it was important to them. Here's some Thankful thoughts... for the blue bubble gum ball, pickels on the tuna sandwich, Miss KC didn't run away, Mac&Cheese, mommy and daddy and brother and sister, oh yeah all the realitives and we actually named all of them, lots of cousins and aunts,uncles and grandparents. leggos at the Library, "yellow" - don't ask!, for the little toys in Aunt Patty's grab bag, really good treats like blue jello. I guess you can see we had lots to be thankful for - most of all - we were all thankful for the time and memories we could make together and they are already booking more time with me. Priceless.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Camp is open!

In just a short while, two campers will be arriving! Mother Nature seems not be cooperating, in that we went from amazing blue skies this a.m. to totally grey clouds with what looks like some serious rain.

No fuss for me, I've arranged some indoor activities and chores and errands to take care of today. We will get to have lunch at Steve's, check out a couple of movies and books from the Library, plan our meals and picnic for the next couple of days and then go to the market to get the ingredients and voila! A super great time for all of us.
Stop by and watch for pictures and updates. I'm excited to be able to enjoy my niece and nephew for the next couple of days.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Ennui or Not?

For those of you wondering what the heck - its the new word for the day! If you are wondering here's the entry in Merriam-Webster. A FYI - I like this site as it has the audio pronouncation.

I can say I am NOT ennui. Are You?

Ennui is related to one's level of consciousness and focus. Actually I was surprised to see the amount of studies that have been preformed at trying to obtain a better understanding. According to a study done with college students, those individuals that had a high positive self-awareness, i.e. awareness of their own internal states—reported lower overall ennui. In contrast, those who showed a lot of negative self-awareness—characterized by judgmental ruminations—had high ennui. My niece with her PMAs from Hoby is not one to have or become ennui. In another study as related in this article of Scientific American, the personality characteristics attributed to high ennui are generally not great ones to put on a resume or how to attract and influence friends.

So what to do? Get yourself in the groove (am I dating myself?) and make the day! Whatever it dishes up (today was a lulu), take a moment to laugh, smile, dance, and feel good. Whenever I feel good(most of the time), I don't have any ennui in my life!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Ship or Boat ?

I've been on both - though one does wonder what is the difference between them. I've been on a cruise ship, sailed on yachts, and raced sail boats in college. They are both used in the water to carry people and cargo. The picture is of the "HMS" Rose and I was on the ship for this snappy! We we going from London to France back in 1996.
In general - a boat can fit onto a ship but a ship can not fit onto a boat.

A ship needs a crew to run, while most boats may need only one person to run it.

Ships can carry lots of cargo, boats can't really carry much - some maybe a swin suit or two.

Boats tend to manuver quite easily, while ships are another story and may take a tugboat to bring them in.

So is that enough? Per the National Martime Museum the difference is :The Historic Ships Committee have designated a vessel below 40 tons and 40 feet in length as a boat. However, submarines and fishing vessels are always known as boats whatever their size.

Go Figure? Isn't life grand - By the way - either boat or ship - expensive and fun!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

HSO and a new Star is Born

Last evening I had the opportunity to sit at the Chubb table at the Talcott Mountain Music Festival last night. What an amazing treat! Thanks Lori. It was Hartford Symphony Orchestra conducted by our beloved Maestro Edward Cummings.

We sat up front, well worth being that close to see the muscians, and perfect placement to watch the concluding fireworks. Of course it was a patriotic theme to the night. Selections from Francis Scott Key, Jerome Kern, Edwin Bagley, John Philip Sousa, Frederick Lowe, Charles Ives, Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Tchaikovsky, and Irving Berlin.

There were two pieces that were very special to me. First, the Armed Forces Salute - this is where each of the songs of the Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy, Airforce were played and those members of the audience that served were asked to stand and be recognized for their service. Wow, it was very powerful, solemn yet proud moment. One of our table guests stood up for the Army - WWII. My dad and brother, Mike were in the Navy. There was a moment for those that didn't return. For whatever reason that they decided to serve our country, thank you for your service, thank you for protecting our way of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

As for pursuit of happiness, mark down this name... Raymond H. Clark, III. His composition called "Cost of Combat" was premiered by the HSO last evening. What a treat for us and for this composer! To get to hear, 'for the first time', a new symphonic piece is a real treat for me. When I closed my eyes and listened, the music took me to the fields of battle, to the relief of winning, and the dawn before the storms of fighting. There were highs and lows, and overall made you feel good. It is a big piece, not long in time, but in how all the lines of music, notes for all the instruments come together to tell a story. Mr. Clark was in the audience and was asked to come to the stage and tell us about this piece and his future plans. An engaging chap, who told us that the music just came to him one night, and in less than a week, the composition was complete. What talent and the audience just loved him! By the way, he will continue to help out at Bloomfield High School when he can, but he's off to begin college this fall, yes... this musical genius is only eightteen years old. Ray - thank you for sharing.

Happy Birthday America!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

You don't need to relocate Seattle to get the rain

If you are reading this and reside in CT, you know what I am talking about. We have a Flood Potential for today and the weekend! Happy 4th! The folks in Seattle are not getting the rain ? Seems we have done a flip/flop.

Did someone do something to Mother Nature lately? The amount of rain is just amazing - I mean like every day! The CT River is only this high in the spring with the snow melt. One of the reservoirs is at record height for this time of year. In CT we only expect to recieve about on average from 32 to 64 inches a year. We got some 8 inches last Friday and my 'ducky' measureing device outside needs to be emptied every day!

Heck I'm not all by myself on this one. Our elected officials have issued a report Rev 3/16/09 regarding what we will have to do to not only protect property, but to deal with the consequences with wastewater treatment; dams, flood plains, the roads, ----- Go Get 'em DEP!

Any way - my plants are not growing, the tomatoe plant is getting yellow and the herbs are not flourshing. Though my association must be saving $$s as the lawn is only mowed once every two weeks.

So I bring out my own Sunshine - go to the Library - stop by and pick up a Museum and Attraction pass and give yourself a stay-at-home-vacation! There is so much to do and you may just surprise yourself.

Anyway Happy 4th!