Friday, January 18, 2019

Snow, Rain, Plummeting Temps

Hi Dear Folk,

It's freezing snow and cold today, they say some rain then a freeze up, not my favorite, I prefer straight snow.

That cold I got last week didn't seem so bad but left me from day to day saying I think I'm better, then, no I'm not better and a total depletion of energy.



I have done some fun lunches with friends over the past week.  A friend had me over to lunch and gave me some beautiful sage green toile fabric, two different patterns. I love it. Also a beautiful scarf she bought for me while on vacation.



I took another friend J. to the doctor's that's about an hours drive each way, after that we went out to Red Robin for lunch, got to chat and catch up with each other.

I've also been planning with a friend a 60th Anniversary for older friends who are originally from what was Rhodesia and South Africa. They spent their honeymoon near Victoria Falls, how romantic is that? The dinner is  being held at a restaurant, so about 48 people.  We've been sending out invitations and working on that.  Tuesday we visited the Country Club and went over the details with the events coordinator.  Pretty laid back and easy which is what I like and while we were there we had lunch.

I've been working on a simple shawl, just crocheted with odds from my yarn collection, something to throw over your shoulders in the evening and keep warm.  Not too complicated.  Just love the rhythm of sitting crocheting by the fire.  I'll use my Celtic shawl clasp.  It is very much Joseph's coat of many colours.  When one gets older you become what you always said or thought you wouldn't.




The Philadelphia Flower Show is in March and I've been thinking about attending that.  This year's theme is Flower Power.  Also a show that comes to Philadelphia each year is Shen Yun and I would like to see that.  It looks most colorful and that is needed right now in the depths of winter.

The Boy asked me, "How's retirement mum?  What are you doing with your time?"  I found it a hard question to answer.  I think the hardest thing for me in retirement is not feeling guilty for not having to account to someone for every minute of the day.  On the other hand I do like to look back on myself and feel I have accomplished things with my time.  Finding the balance and especially in the winter months when you quite feel like hibernating.

I did clean out one cabinet in the kitchen that held the meds and vitamins etc.  So much was old, really old and out of date, that I've got two totally empty shelves and one sparse shelf, if you knew my house you'd know that never happens.  My sister said somehow she landed up taking some old meds and got really sick from it, that was a motivating factor.  I put it in the trash, but Mr. B. said your not allowed to do that and pulled them out. I guess they have to be returned to a pharmacy.

Now I'm determined to use everything up as I go along before I add more. Plus medications are so stinking expensive over here I'm not wasting a thing.  For instance the doctor prescribed me a nasal spray to help with my sinuses, that was $129, fortunately I only paid $15 with my prescription plan.  But this year I have a terrible health plan, #45 made all sorts of cut backs on the Federal assistance to health medical insurance.  (Friends of mine call him that #45 and I thought that works for me.) So when the pharmacy phoned and said we have your prescription ready for pickup, a refill on the nasal spray I had to say sorry you'll have to re shelf it, I can't afford $129.  Plus I do have some left.

That medication really helps me, with my allergies and sinuses, but I'll just have to wait until May, when I go on Medicare.  I feel like everyone in the States just cobbles their health care together in what ever works for that year, because next year it's all changed yet again.

I received one pot of the French ink that I ordered but for some reason the second pot I ordered has not arrived.  It has a pen stand indented in the glass bottle, I've never seen that before.  I'm looking forward to writing with this fun colour.  I think it's meant to be the oldest company still making ink.



I also received my icing nozzles.  I succumbed to pure Instagram advertising, of an item promoted by the Shark's, lets's hope it lives up to expectations.  Now to make cupcakes and icing and have a go.

Have a great weekend.
Christine

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Kosti Ruohomaa, Night Train At Wiscasset Station and Dull Days and Dirth

Hi Dear Folk,

Welcome to all new folk who are following my blog, I do appreciate you stopping by and spending time here.  This will be my eleventh year of blogging and I obviously enjoy keeping on online journal of my life and do it for that reason.  If you enjoy my blog A Little Bit of British, do become a follower, and add me as one of the blogs in your blog list that you enjoy reading.  That would be great.

So here I am in today with a head cold.  Even had to break a luncheon appointment because I am not feeling up to it and I was looking forward to that.  I took one of those tablets that you drop in hot water with high doses of vitamin C to try and ward off what I knew was coming, hope it works somewhat.

With a lot of dull very soggy days we have a dirth of sunlight, the only brightness of light is when I light the fire in the afternoon which is as much for the ambience as the warmth, along with a few candles it does lift ones spirit.


Mr. B. watching the game, with Miss Tuppy.

I have been keeping up with my diary and my journal, also the fountain pens and the letter writing. Reading poetry and re-visiting some books that have sat on my shelf for a long while.  One is Night Train at Wiscasset Station.  It's mostly to showcase the photographs of a Maine photographer Kosti Ruohomaa.  Who was born in Maine to Finnish parents.  The writer is Lew Dietz who travelled along with him at times.  He said "As I see it I wrote the words and Kosti the music."  The forward is by Andrew Wyeth.


He caught a way of life from the forties and fifties in his black and white photographs.  This book was a library discard, but as soon as I saw the wonderful photography I knew it would join my collection.  He died young in his forties because he was an alcoholic.  His photographs were in several leading magazines of the time such as Life.  He travelled all over, but always returned to the family farm in Maine, his roots.


I love his photography he just catches a mood, wrinkles, warts and everything; which is how my son, the photographer tends to take photos of his mother.  No beautifully posed pictures, but the true gritty reality of old age, and when I object he says, "But that's a great photograph look at the light." and I say "Can't you just take a photo of me when I'm looking my best not all these down to earth shots." The ones that get filtered out and stay in the archives of your hard drive.


One time Rob posted a photo of me on his Facebook, my sister saw it and said "You should have him take that photo down, that's an awful picture of you."  My sister was right, it was, but it was reality.  Everything today is edited and airbrushed, so to view these wonderful photos of a Maine way of life that even at that time Kosti thought was slipping away, is delightful.


Here is a write up on his life in the Bangor Daily News Kosti Ruohomaa

I like Dietz's writing in this book of the Mainer's way of thinking, who these folk are "... they are inclined to pity those who never see snow."

Christine

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

2019 Thoughts To Live By, Things To Do

I've been jotting down thoughts I want to keep in mind and things I want to do in 2019

  • Live the moment, Live the day, Live your life
  • Joy is not dependent on your circumstances
  • Perfectionism is the death of creativity
  • Seize the moment, find your inspiration
  • Random acts of kindness
  • Write letters
  • Use fountain pens every day
  • Read more





Monday, December 31, 2018

20th November 2018 Tea Lunch

Hi Dear Folk,

Seems appropriate to close out 2018 with a tea scene.  My friend Candyce came over for lunch.  I used part of a beautiful set I bought at the thrift while out together.  I could say that I am not buying anymore china. I think I maxed myself out. This set is Royal Ivory, Made in Czechoslovakia. It is delightful.  Probably from the 1930s.


I always love a pattern in the center of a bowl or cup, besides on the outside.  Loved these paper napkins/serviettes from IKEA they are most whimsical.


Paired up with an old teapot.



Well it's been a marathon.  I will try to live in real time next year.

Good night all fellow bloggers.

Goodbye 2018.

Christine

13th October 2018 37th Anniversary Day at Longwood Gardens

Hi Folk,

Dear Boy treated us to our anniversary day at Longwood Gardens and Lunch.



We arrived by 10:00 am






Walked down to the wild meadow area for a conducted wild flower walk.  An old Pennsylvania Farm House.








Italian style fountains with French style gravel seating area.






Just one room of the largest privately owned organ.


Isn't this beautiful.  I kept walking around saying, just right for an afternoon tea or how about a wedding.



Bonsais




Musical light show at night.  It was rather chilly, but delightful.


Christine

30th September 2018 My Aunt's Beautiful Garden

Hi Folk,

My whole European excursion is winding down.  Sunday lunch with my Aunt and Uncle.  It is always a delight to visit with them.  We had a delicious lunch and so good to catch up with them.


My aunt's garden is beautiful, truly an English country garden, and yes with an absolute cornucopia of roses.




My uncle's vegetable garden he's trying to expand it but I don't know if my aunt Jeanette will let him.


Exquisite.

Christine

29th September 2018 Reunion The Bull, Much Hadham

Hi Dear Folk,

Here we are gathered together for our reunion at The Bull Pub in Much Hadham.  We had such a lovely time.  The food was rather slow in coming but was excellent so you didn't mind the wait.





Graham is my oldest friend we've known each other since I was two and he was three.  He lives thirty minutes away from me in the States.  He got together the reunion with some of our old friends.

Christine
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