Sunday, July 23, 2006


It rained this morning and cooled off - thank goodness. It was a beautiful day. I snapped a couple of pix in the flower bed this morning after it stopped raining but while everything was still wet.

I love this spiderweb in the lamb's ear.

I planted two mini roses that are doing very well.

I had lunch with Trish today. It was great to see her, although we were definitely in the crying baby section. Sometimes it just works out like that.

This afternoon I got an invitation from Susan - she is having a retreat at her farm and has told us we can invite another woman to come with us if we wish. I immediately emailed Trish and asked if she'd like to join me and she said yes. So, that will be fun. I'm not sure who all will go but it will be neat.

Susan invited me up in March for the tea in Hiawatha and she was a very gracious hostess, so I know this will be a fun weekend. I will love getting to share it with Trish.

Susan told Teresa and me about it when we all had dinner on Monday, so hopefully Teresa is planning on going.

I was planning to meet Terry and Nancy S. for dinner at the Anchor tonight at 7, but decided I had time to go out and get some fresh air before then. So, I headed out to Sandhills to take a little walk. There's a trail that's only about a half mile and mostly shaded, which I thought would be nice and give me time to get some things done at home before dinner.

I went and it was so lovely to be outside without the oppressive heat. I sat down at a picnic table at the start of the trail to journal for a bit.

When I got up and opened the mailbox where they put trail brochures, I found something unexpected - a letterbox. It had been added to by a few people - who obviously didn't really understand letterboxing. I don't either. I think you're supposed to stamp in them, but I didn't have a stamp and there wasn't one, so I did a quickie watercolor sketch in it since I had my watercolor set with me.

A little net research tells me that you're not supposed to just run across them, but someone had moved this one - obviously. Oh well, I plead ignorance. I tried to email the person, but they've changed their email so there's nothing more I can do.

HINT: People... get a yahoo or gmail account that you will ALWAYS have if you're going to do something like this.

Well, I wasn't really paying attention when I took off down the trail and a few minutes later realized I had not taken the short trail, but a longer one. I thought, oh well, I'll just see where this leads - if that one's a half mile, this one is probably a mile. I'll have plenty of time to get to dinner.

It was different, and there were some pretty sights, but the thing I wasn't prepared for is that large parts of it are in the sun. It wasn't horribly hot today, but it was warm. Fortunately, I was wearing a summer dress so it was cooler than slacks would have been. But, I was plenty warm.

They were out of trail brochures, so I had no idea which trail was the shortest of the blue or green that were my options. Then I came to a fork in the path and there was an orange option as well. I decided I should stick with the blue/green. Thank goodness I did.

This might be an opportune time to mention I have no sense of direction, not that you can have much when you're on twisty-curvy trails. I can tell directions when the sun is setting in the west, which it was, but that's not overly helpful when you can't see if the trails are going to go straight or turn up ahead.

Also, there's a reason they call it sand hills. There are some little hills - many of which I circumnavigated on the little trails, wondering how long this trail was and if I was going to make it to dinner on time. I knew my estimation that it was a mile or so was not correct because I'd had plenty of time to walk that far.

Anyway, I just decided to enjoy the walk and figured they would call me if I was too late for dinner. And, of course, being in nature, I had my cell phone. Doesn't everyone? What I didn't have was a hat or sunscreen but I think I escaped without any damage. I wear sunscreen on my face every day but had I planned to be out I would have put it all over me.

Overall it was a nice walk, although a bit longer than I expected.

When I got back to the start of the trail and checked - the trail was about two and a half miles long instead of the half mile I had intended to take. I had about 20 minutes to get to dinner. Sandhills is about 10 minutes from my house. I needed a shower after my walk that was much sunnier than I expected. So, I jumped in the shower and washed my hair, changed clothes, put on some lipstick, and got to the restaurant at 7:03 - not bad, if I do say so myself. I pride myself on being able to get ready to go quickly. Admittedly, I did have very wet hair, but I was there.

Hunting and Gathering

I spent the morning hunting and gathering. OK, that's a gross exaggeration. I did the 2006 version of it.

I went to the farmer's market for fresh fruit and vegetables, then to the grocery for what I couldn't get there, then to the bulk food store for vanilla, because they carry some made from beans grown in Madagascar, which is the best you can get. My second favorite is from Mexico.

At the farmer's market I got some fresh green beans and new potatoes, obviously grown here. I also got an eggplant. There were tons of zucchini but I didn't pick up any - I can never figure out what to do with them other than fry them and I didn't want to do that.

I also got some peaches - shipped in, obviously. I'm not sure why I can buy those at the "farmer's market." They're better than what you get in the grocery, but they're still not locally grown, which is what the concept of the farmer's market implies. Of course, I guess if people are unaware enough to believe those were grown here they deserve to be fooled. If we weren't so far removed from the reality of growing our own food, people would know better.

I had planned to have the green beans and new potatoes tonight, but decided to make eggplant parmesan instead. I went ahead and cooked the other, though, so they'll be ready for lunch tomorrow.

I've been working on computer stuff today. I have some website stuff I need to do for some organizations I'm involved in. I'm hoping that I can also motivate myself to work on my own, which is pathetic.

I have the last load of dishes in the dishwasher at the moment. When they're done, I will have everything clean from having people over Thursday, from cooking today, and all the dishes in my kitchen have been washed recently. All my cabinets have been cleaned. All I really have left to do is a bit more tidying on the counters, finding places for those really unusual things that don't have a logical place, and cleaning the floor. It sounds so simple but it seems to be more involved than I think. I keep trying to get it done and so far I haven't been able to accomplish it. Of course, cooking meals in there while this is going on makes it one step forward and two steps back.

When I came back from the bulk food store, which is out of town, I went by a furniture store in that area. Why is it that furniture sales people annoy me so very much? I'm just instantly curt and I don't know why. It's not like they've ever done anything to me - I've never bought a new piece of furniture in my life - but for some reason they just instantly put me on guard. I'm not as pleasant as I'd like to be and I don't know why. Something there I should examine I'm guessing.

I need to do something about my living room furniture. I like it, but it's worn out. I bought fabric to recover it, but finding someone to do that is no easy feat. I've been on the list for one person for almost a year now.

So, I decided maybe I'd just buy something new. I've looked at three or four places now. They all have really ugly stuff. Where is the cool furniture? Is there no such thing anymore? Something made with quality, with some wood - real wood, not fake wood - on the frame, something long enough you can stretch out on should you have the urge. I'm back to thinking maybe I need to find someone to recover what I have. That seems to be a difficult feat as well. Maybe I can find someone in Wichita. I think it's going to be another few years before I can get it done here. I'd like to get it done a little sooner than 2010 or so.

Oh well... that's my day in a nutshell. If the biggest problem I have is worrying about living room furniture I should just be grateful. So, I think I'll do that very thing and stop my whining.