Sunday, November 12, 2017


Tons of pictures!  
Been so long since I posted that some of my plants were still green after the first dusting of snow.
We've had several dustings since, but not much more than what you see here has stuck around. 
The birds knock a lot of the seed out of the feeder, which is fine.  They're kind of feeding the grouse for me most days. 
I deliberately left the dead plants. 
They were frosty but still a tiny bit alive a couple weeks ago.
This is what I see almost all day long now--bird party! 
Funny--a couple weeks ago they mowed one last time. 
He was bundled up with parka, hat, and gloves. 
That's the last we've seen of the mowers. 
Hasn't been enough snow for them to shovel or plow yet, though. 
Just bird party...
...after bird party... 
...after bird party--LOL! 
 Annie loves it, as you can see.
This is why I left the dead plants in the planters.  The sparrows spend a lot of time in the planters now and use them as perches.
Even the girls occasionally park themselves in a planter now and again. 
Sadly, I have only been counting six grouse lately.  One of them must have been caught by the hawk or something else.  :( 
I have not been blogging lately or doing much more than what I have to every day.  Been in a long fibro flare that doesn't seem to go away.  I suppose this could be my new normal--never know.  A little extra chair time is appreciated by Annie, though.  :) 
Nowadays Annie comes running most of the time when she hears my footrest going up!  Never would have predicted that a few months ago, eh?  :)  A few weeks ago I started giving her a pet when I give her the canned food treat.  At first she cringed and ducked.  Now she sometimes waits for that pet before she starts to chow down.  And Annie used to wait until I had left the pantry and sat down before she'd enter--then she began coming in with me and hugging the wall--now she's almost underfoot on the way in.  :)
We've had just enough snow to coat the ground a couple times, but it's almost all gone again. 
I love fresh snowfalls.  As long as it is this cold (we've even been in the single digits already) we should have some more of that beautiful white stuff!  :)
Speaking of--it was so cold for Halloween that they couldn't take Liam around.  Never got above freezing for a high that day.  I wasn't feeling that well, so I stayed home--but Leah sent me some pictures.
Ian was Thomas The Train.
 Liam was a skeleton.
Their front steps... 
...had their skeleton sitting on them (might have to enlarge to see)... 
...and the cool pumpkin light... 
...that changes colors.  (I love that thing!) 
The weekend before Halloween was ValleyCon.  Dagan and Leah's group always does a Stargate suite.  I love the way they fix the door so you have to enter through the Stargate portal. 
The bar and tables and benches. (That's what was stored in my garage.) 
Looks pretty cool! 
This year the guest star was Christopher Judge who played Teal'c on Stargate SG-1 so they made up an appreciation plaque to give him. 
He was my favorite character on the show. 
I know McFamily got a picture with him but I don't have a copy.  If I get one I will pop it in the blog so you can see it. 
I have an assortment of shots from Leah.
Big brother Ian helping Liam sit up. 
Sleeping Liam. 
Ian and Liam together in Liam's play mat. 
This picture cracks me up.  They look so alike. 
Another day--Liam fell asleep on the play mat--surrounded by so many fun things. 
I am always glad to have visits and Gramma time with the boys!  Forgot to take pictures all day, but grabbed a video of Liam before he went to bed, too.  He had been smiling like crazy--before I got the camera out, of course.  He makes lots of little noises just like Ian did.
With daylight savings time plus my sleep being hard to come by some nights I have actually been up for sunrise a few times.  Highly unusual--LOL!
For about a week I didn't even really work on letters.  
Mostly been watching the hungry birds...
...and some great TV shows.  ;)
In the mornings while I am at the kitchen table doing journaling and catching up online Annie was wanting me to go to my chair--silly girl.  So I decided to start rolling over a chair by me with a cat bed on it in the mornings--like I did for Karma all those years so she could feel closer to me while I was at the table.
Annie, of course, at first took it as a rejection.  That I was trying to block her from a few drive-by pets.  She'd race around the apartment having a cat hissy fit--LOL!  But eventually she caught on.  And now she sometimes comes up and sits next to me in the chair where I can easily reach over to pet her and give her some attention.
And she can see the birds better, I think, too--LOL!  Every so often she bullets off the chair to the patio door.
Let's see--I did order some new ink for dip pen calligraphy and got rid of the old thicker india ink from the early 90s.
I had pre-ordered another Brush Letting book a month or two ago and it finally came.  That's all I need now.
This one groups together letters of the alphabet by the similar strokes.
Has a lot of step-by-step instructions.
Shows the basics of the bouncy lettering everyone is using these days.
How to embellish them a little.
A very simple alphabet...lower case...
...and upper case.  And a lot of practice worksheets at the end of the book.
And I started the daily brush lettering drills again on November 6th.  Serena and I are doing them together--halfway around the world apart--LOL!  (She's in Australia.)
I'm using the tracing paper this time.
As for the pointed nib dip pen calligraphy (which I am going to wait a while to work on learning until I have learned the large and small brush pens half-ways decently)--I did order a few nibs to play with.
But that may be a while yet before I start on the dip  pen calligraphy.
Dagan turned 43 years old on the 2nd of November!!  (Those of you around four decades ago will be just as amazed and delighted as I am.)
Well, I may be more tired and sore, but am very contented and have nothing to complain about.  (Not that I couldn't, of course--LOL!)  I guess that's it for today.  Mostly pictures and not much chatting.  But at least I posted--LOL!  Been meaning to every day for over a week!  Hopefully will be back sooner next time.  But if not, don't worry about me.  Annie and I are just fine and dandy.  :) :)
"Never be so focused on what you're looking for that you overlook the thing you actually find."
Ann Patchett


  1. I think you figured out the bird feeder issue from last winter Rita. It's a great idea just leaving it on the little table. :) I love seeing all the birds. Are those quails? The kiddies are so adorable too. Ian looks like he is great big brother. They are really cute together- and I love those Halloween costumes. :) Sorry to here about the fribro and hopefully it will settle down so you can get back to doing those fun lettering things. But Annie looks like she is become a good friend. happy new week. Stay warm my friend. Hugs-Erika

  2. You've made Annie's life so much better. And it's so great she now is showing you affection. Best move ever! It was also cold here Halloween. The boys, however, walked the neighborhood for two hours anyway. But we noticed there wasn't nearly as many kids as previous years. Crazy weather this year. It was so hot and humid here for so long it felt like summer in October! But for the past week it's been unseasonably cold. I have a feeling weather will never be the same as it was 5-10 years ago. And I'm afraid the hurricane activity we had this year will become a normal spring occurrence. Scary stuff.

  3. The grandbabies looked good in their Halloween outfits. Too bad it was too cold to go out.

    I love the calligraphy you have been doing. And of course, I can't forget to say how far Annie has come in just a few months' time. Sometimes all it takes is constant caring to bring them out of their shells.

  4. Such cute pictures of your grandsons. Looks like you had a fun Halloween. Stay warm. I heard that more snow and cold weather is coming your way!

  5. Here I am - late again having had to catch up a bit! You really are doing so well with your lettering - I have showed hubby - he keeps saying he needs to practice and thats as far as he gets! Snow already - brrrr!! Its' been lovely to see your family photo - those boys are growing up so quickly!! Pleased that Annie is settling in so well - she really must love being with you! Hope that you feel better soon! There are lots of good films out at the moment so they are bound to be on net flicks soon so that you and Annie can snuggle down early on these dark evenings! Big Hugs, Chrisx

  6. That really was a long and varied post, Rita. I love the pictures of the boys, the birds, and of course, Annie. I am so glad to hear she knows she is loved and appreciated now. I do hope your fibro flare goes away soon. You left me such a wonderful comment on my Eye blog, and I have read it a couple times, just to make sure I didn't miss anything! Thank you, dear one. :-)

  7. If I were a little bird, and had two little wings, I'd fly to you Rita! Love all the bridies - and I like how Annie enjoys that!
    The boys are sooo cute !
    You are are really happy granny Rita!
    Have fun with the handlettering!
    oxo Susi

  8. Cute pictures of the boys. Glad Annie has warmed up to you - to the point of being a pest sometimes, I'll bet. Two of our four cats come in the house sometimes and both like to jump on my lap for cuddle time - "move that laptop outa my way" they say and I do! Love the calligraphy you've been doing. I played with that for awhile a LONG time ago.

  9. The boys are growing so quickly ♥ They look adorable in their Halloween outfits. I haven't started feeding the birds yet but bought the food this week. Hubby frowns at the bag every time he walks by. He hates the mess they make.
    I have been fighting the fibro monster lately too so I'm not as active as I'd like to be. Fortunately I can get a lot of knitting and crochet work done while I set it out .
    Feel better ! ♥

  10. Wow how time flies...looking at your little cutie grandies... they certainly are growing fast. Love the Halloween costumes. It's a shame they couldn't go out to show them off.
    Annie looks so relaxed and at home now. Learning your routine and giving you such comfort. I love the photo of her watching the birds. We've had an arctic blast passing through these last few days, so my bird feeders have been very popular... Well until a sparrowhawk flew in and then all forms of ciaos happened. The hawk even landed on the decking rail at one stage and as I was spluttering out that he was there to my he flew at an incredible speed!
    Great to catch up. Have a great week and hopefully that snow won't arrive too early!

  11. Kids, birds and cats - I'm in heaven! Sweet sweet shots.

  12. We don't have snow yet. In fact, we may not get as much snow all winter as you've already had lol Bird-watching and cat coziness are wonderful cold weather activities.

    Staargate! And how exciting to be at an event with Christopher Judge! We're binge-watching SG1 right now :)

  13. I put a letter in the mail this morning and asked what brush lettering is and here you are with the answer. The mail carrier hasn't even been here yet. Great costumes for the kids. It's sweet that Annie is getting into the habit of wanting some love when she gets her food. Every evening when I pick up the supper dishes, Franklin kisses my cheek.


  14. Oh my what a bloody great post, you are so creative unlike me I am not, we don't get snow here in Newie and of course photos of Ian and Liam are always welcomed.

  15. happy belated Birthday for Dagan! So great to see Annie feeling more at home. And look at how big the grands are getting! I hope you fair well through the winter, I know that has to be tougher on the fibro, I would think. It is terrible for my arthritis and I am still fairly young! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving next week!

  16. I don't know how I missed this post, but I'm finally here.
    Your snowy weather is an appropriate introduction to the upcoming holidays.
    I love the bird congregation outside your door! My cats would really go crazy watching it. I'm so glad to know that Annie is finally comfortable in her environment.....and clearly she's showing her appreciation by being much more affectionate.

  17. Rita when you make a post woman you make a Loved hear ing how things are going with you... But i'm not sure i can remember everything... lol So nice to see your little birdies... so glad you are feeding them and they entertain Annie.. A belated Happy Birthday to Dagan and the boys look happy and healthy... You are doing so well with your lettering... I commend your sticktoitness....spellcheck doesn't think thats a word but i do... :) Hope you feel better Rita.. Hugs! deb

  18. I love all the bird pictures. I've put suet out but I thin it's too close to a chime as no one seems interested and we're on our third day (which was the time frame at my old house, but those birds knew to come looking). My ferals have started using their straw house sometimes - I'm not sure where they spend the night but during the day sometimes they're in and a lot of times on top of it. I count them every morning just lie you count your grouse. 3 of the regulars were missing this morning - I had to leave early, they may have comje later, and one of the first regulars in MIA all the time these days. Hoping she'll show bac up.

    Wonderful pictures of the gkids - boy has your oldes grown!!! Time flies with little ones, doesn't it? Blink you're eyes and they're teenagers. Seemed to take a lot longer when I was raising mine.

    Have fun with your calligraphy - hope your flare eases up.

  19. Dear Rita, so good to know that your fiber flare isn't keeping you from doing some of the things that are essential to your contentment--like holding the baby and looking through the new book and examining the nibs and simply looking out the window at the birds--you and Annie!

    The quotation you added today at the end of your posting is so relevant to where I am right now in my life's journey. In my Morning Pages today, I wrote about all the things that have been happening and that make me feel that contentment you wrote about. I've given up trying to schedule and establish deadlines. I'm truly trying to live in the present and to embrace it--as you do. Thanks for being an inspiration. Peace.

  20. Anonymous10:43 AM

    I just love all the photos!! Thank you for sharing.
    I'm sorry you've been having such a flare, I do hope it's not your new normal. ♡♡

  21. Boy, lots of photos today! It's nice to see all that has been going on in your world. I can't believe you have snow. It's 70 degrees here! I love all the birds at your place. It must be so much fun to watch them.

  22. I think Annie loves you now--& so do I!!

  23. Birds make wonderful company. ;)

  24. Annie is adjusting and she has a perfect environment with you ! The weather is awful, bitterly cold, my bad arm is really suffering as is my usually happy mood. LOL. I can only imagine what your fibro must be going thru...hang in there! What a head of hair on that baby..just wait if they ever have a girl she will be bald:) Happy Birthday to your miracle Dagan:)

  25. Yay, your all day bird parties look like such fabulous fun..I love birds so much, such a treasure to see them enjoying themselves! Love the cat watching the show..too cute! Wonderful photos..magical and sweet!
    Have a magical wkd!

  26. Those birds sure are party-goers! haha I love seeing pics of them. I figured that was why you left the dead plants out there....they do make good perches. I hope the remaining six grouse manage to stay safe.

    I love that Annie enjoys being up beside you now. She is definitely loving her new home. Great that she will sit on the chair beside you too.

    Ian made an adorable Thomas! Hehe at the little skeleton too. So cute! It was nice seeing photos of them and the video...I can definitely see the similarities between Ian and Liam especially in the video.

    Nice ValleyCon set up! By the way, I looked up Christopher Judge and I think I do remember him from some Stargate episodes that I did manage to see years ago.

    I love Sumi ink for sketching and brushwork. The brush calligraphy book looks like it will be very beneficial. I love that we are doing drills together. I'm slowly getting the hang of it, I think.

    Belated birthday wishes to Dagan! I hope he had a lovely day and may he have many, many more.

    Nice quote...makes sense.

    I mailed off a letter on Thursday to you so let's see how long that one takes to get to you.

    Love and hugs xo

  27. The birds are abundant at your feeder. You must have the right food and right location for them! Calligraphy will be a fun thing to do. Looks like you have a nice assortment of materials to work with. Ian and Liam look cute in their costumes!


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