Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I'm opting for hibernation -- jcarolek

It's getting cold here in VA. I am reluctant to turn on my heat quite yet, as it just does not SEEM late enough in the season for forced heat in the house. So the thermostat hovers around 58 and I bundle up with layers of clothing to keep warm. And as I sit here stubbornly shivering, I recall times in my youth when I was cold... so cold I thought I could not bear it, and yet I did. And these thoughts help me realize that 58 isn't really cold, it's just a little on the chilly side.

When I was in high school I walked to school. Not living far enough from school to ride the bus and not having a parent who considered it appropriate to drive the kids to the various schools the six of us attended, we walked. My route to the high school was 1 1/2 miles. Back in those days, I carried my books and my violin

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Well, I never SAID I could dance! -- jcarolek

My son and his bride had a lovely wedding. The rain held off, for the most part, until after the celebration, waiting until we were all inside in the reception to actually start falling in earnest. Guests managed to get to the church before the bride, despite many getting lost. It was helpful that the bride's own arrival at the church was delayed by about 15 minutes...

I sang in the choir for this celebration. I was honored to have been asked to do so and thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. About six members from our choir joined

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

His eyes aren't crossed! -- jcarolek

I was scared that first time. I was ready to go, for sure. I'd been carrying the ever-increasing weight for nearly nine months and had struggled with the fears I'm sure most soon-to-be-new-mothers experience. We were living from paycheck to paycheck, where the paycheck was incredibly small and where choices had to be made as to whether to buy food or gas. If food was the answer, then the bicycle was the mode of transportation for that week.

We had no medical insurance to cover mother or child,

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I'm just guessing -- jcarolek

This weekend I have been working hard trying to get last minute things done before my son's wedding next weekend. Well, hmm, I'm not actually DOING anything for that occasion, but more am getting things done so I don't have to DO them next weekend. I washed everything that didn't run away when I approached... windows, bedspreads, sheets, curtains... you get the idea. I got the annual caulking event completed so my windows will be ready for the winter months. I did a little touch-up repairs and painting on some walls. Today I sanded the last post on my front porch and the only piece left to treat before the front porch is complete. I'll get that finished by Tuesday at the latest.

Now, I am relaxing and working on a fun job. I am copying the MANY VHS tapes from my travels in CA

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Hunting for the mule -- jcarolek

Today I worked on my front porch all day. OK, maybe not ALL day, but from just after noon until nearly six this evening. Last weekend was spent pressure washing the decks front and back and this weekend is for treating the wood with a fresh coat of protection. Railings take forever, but the results are pretty good.
I had just cleaned my brush, fed the cats and dog and was heading into the house when I heard my phone ringing. I answered to find my pond association president on the line. "Judy, your neighbor across the pond,

Friday, October 3, 2008

There's just something about -- jcarolek

On Sunday I went to see a performance by the Virginia Choral Society. It was, as always, a wonderful performance. Audience members ranged in ages and attires, from the very young to the very old, and from the "Sunday best" to the "just got in from mowing the lawn" attire. We were all there to hear some music and, I suspect, many of us knew someone performing on stage.

The program called for "music of the 60's 70's and 80's" and sure enough, the 100+ mem

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

You may cross now -- jcarolek

This morning as I was driving to Northern VA for work, I came to a stop behind a line of cars. The short delay was caused by a school crossing guard, holding the traffic back so that the school buses could make their way into the school driveway. I was taken back to my own elementary school days when, as a fourth grader, I had the awesome responsibility of being a school crossing guard.

In those days, children served in this role. Fourth, fifth and sixth graders were eligible to apply for the unpaid positions, and I honestly have no idea upon what criteria the selections were made. I just know I was very proud of myself for being selected. I attended the crossing guard "training," earnestly practicing my "positions."

Position 1: this finds the crossing guard facing the street, both arms extended from her sides, doing her best imitation of a fence. All would-be crossing children are to obediently