i know you hate us


At least that’s what the media says.  Once again most of the country will be rooting against the Patriots in the Superbowl.  Do we care?  No.

I confess that last night’s game–one of the best in playoff history–was too stressful for me.  At the four-minutes-to-go mark I fled to my bedroom.  Yes, I am a wimp.  I just couldn’t watch.  Oh, I would check for updates on Twitter.  And Banjo Man would run in and give me news of the latest score.  But watching it on tv?  Just couldn’t do it!

Let me just say congratulations to Rex Burkhead, formerly a Nebraska Husker.  Big Red Nation is over-the-top PROUD.

It was 1 degree when I woke up this morning at 5:30.  I don’t think it’s expected to get about 9 all day.  The storm is over, leaving icy roads all over the state.  The sun is shining and the driveway looks dry.

Banjo Man is still asleep after an exciting evening on the couch.  He’s all worn out from that game.  Because today’s a holiday, I imagine there are a lot of football fans who are sleeping in this morning.

We have two weeks to rest up and plan our Superbowl Party menu.



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a good day’s work


Oh, what a difference a day makes!  Eight trees down, with one more to go next week.

And yesterday’s sunshine has turned into a major rainstorm.  If this rain was snow we’d be looking at a couple of feet of snow with more coming down every hour…until later this evening when the temps drop and everything turns to ice.  We’re expecting a wind chill temperature of -0 overnight and tomorrow.  Winter has arrived.

We’re staying home, today and tomorrow.  And if you live in the path of this latest storm, I hope that’s what you’re doing, too!



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a manly-man morning


We’re having a lot of old, big, dead trees removed from the property today.  Last fall a large branch fell and missed Banjo Man’s head by only a few feet–it was a lucky miss for all of us.  And definitely a sign that we needed to get rid of the dead wood.

And then there was this, last March, remember?

IMG_0740 (Edited)

Banjo Man says it feels like Christmas morning.  There are four young men here and they haven’t stopped moving since 8 AM.  I’ve been sitting here at the window, drinking coffee and watching the limbs fall and the boys dragging them off to the wood chipper.

It brings back memories of weekend mornings in Idaho when Banjo Man would head up to the woods to get firewood.  I was always so glad I wasn’t a man.  I liked my job–watching the children, making bread, cooking up a stew.  In other words, staying home.  Staying indoors.  Staying warm.

Banjo Man never said, “You need to help get your share of the firewood,” and I never said, “It’s your turn to make the bread dough.”

Oh, he did teach me how to operate the dozer.  And I shoved my share of wood into the wood stove to keep the house warm.  I shoveled a lot of snow (we had 13 steps up the hill to the road and Banjo Man was often away on business), which I thoroughly enjoyed.

But I was always happier in the kitchen while the “men folk” were off doing the things that made them happy.

So for old time’s sake I’m going to make a big pot of chili, just in case the young men didn’t pack lunches.

Old habits die hard.





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shopping before the storm


Yes, I admit it:  I bought fabric today.  I’ve been working on a baby quilt and realized that I didn’t have the one color I needed to make it look perfect.

Today was my day with Mom, so I asked her if she wanted to take a ride to Mystic to a little quilt shop there.  We have some nasty weather coming up, and nasty weather = great sewing time.

I’d planned to start packing up my kitchen in anticipation of the insurance-sponsored remodel, but Banjo Man will not be available to help (it’s going to take both of us to empty the special treasures above the cabinets) due to having old, dangerous trees removed on Saturday (you can’t imagine his excitement).  And on Sunday there is–of course–football.

In other words, this is a good weekend to cut fabric and design baby quilts.

I did find some great fabric at the quilt shop, despite the owner wanting to help me pick it out.  I don’t like it when they do that.  Selecting the fabric is my favorite part of quilting and I can do it myself, thank you very much and please go away.  

Mom and I went out to lunch and then took our time heading back to her place.   The sun was shining and we pretended it wasn’t January.

After taking Mom home, I went into town to the liquor store and bought tequila (remember the title of this blog post?).

And then I made a quick trip to the consignment store to see if they had any dining room chairs (they didn’t), but they did have this:


I absolutely loved this pitcher.  Did I buy it?  Go ahead and guess!


Posted in family, quilting, rhode island, shopping | 4 Comments

this and that

Just a few odds and ends to mention on this cold January morning:

We’re expecting our first big snowstorm Saturday night.  When and if the snow turns to rain is the big question and will determine how many inches of snow will need to be plowed from the driveway.


The Funny Grandson called last night to excitedly report a sighting of an osprey fishing in a creek in his Texas town.  He watched it for quite a while.  As you know, he is interested in all “birds of prey”, but especially enjoys the ospreys that nest near the lake house.


Remember him from last August?


Here’s something to make you shake your head:  Son #1, who teaches Advanced Placement U.S. History, brought his cd player into class last week.  More than a few of his students asked, “What is that?”


Oh, dear.


136 days until summer.  Who cares about snow?  Not me!



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the masked singer

This is the craziest show on tv right now and I have to admit that once I turn it on I can’t stop watching.

masked singer again

the_masked_singer 2


On Fox on Wednesdays at 9:00 PM, the show features six heavily costumed “mystery” performers each week.  One is voted off–and unmasked–each episode.  Clues are given to each performer’s identity and the panel tries to guess who they are.  They will eventually whittle 12 performers down to one, the winner.

It’s hilarious.

Some can sing.  Some cannot.

I personally think “The Lion” is Nicole Kidman.  Do you?




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what’s on the wall in january


Stitching the cold winter away.

This isn’t the best picture.  The colors are so much prettier in person.  But still…is this going to end up as another one of my quilts that everyone secretly hopes they don’t receive as a gift?

Here was my inspiration:


From Kaffe Fassett’s new book.

I would have loved to have made this is similar colors, but for the past five years I’ve been determined to use the fabric I have and not buy more (not that I always keep this vow, but I really, really try).

I have used up blues and browns and reds in recent years and now have a fabric closet piled high with golds and pinks and yellows and purples.


It has taken many hours to put the various fabrics together in a hopefully pretty way.  And I know no one will have one like it!  At least I can say it’s a one-of-a-kind creation, right?

Today was my “Taking Mom Out” day.  We headed north to the Newport Creamery and ate hot dogs and hot fudge sundaes before snow flurries urged us to hurry back home.  I absolutely love hot dogs, so today’s lunch was so good.  

Hot dogs and snowflakes don’t go together, but what the heck!  We weren’t complaining.

I’m going to sew more blocks now…see you tomorrow…


Posted in family, food, quilting, rhode island | 2 Comments

time for a break


When my friend Barbara called to ask if we wanted to join her and her husband on a jaunt to Newport Sunday to see a collection of grandfather clocks, I thought that was the best idea I’d heard in a long time.

And I’m not all that crazy about clocks.  My grandfather was and he had a lot of them.  I never did see the appeal of all that gonging and ringing and bonging going on every fifteen minutes.

Banjo Man has been working too hard.  Twelve hour days in his office and long, physical weekends cleaning out the workroom have worn him out.  Not that he would admit it.

“And of course we’ll have lunch,” Barb added.

Lunch?  I love lunch.  I was all in.  I told Banjo Man, “You’re taking a vacation day.  No computer.  No ladder.  No hauling of furniture.”

So off we went to the oldest library building in the United States, the Redwood Library and Athenaeum, established in 1747 by colonists in Newport who wanted to make knowledge more available to the residents of the island.


The Redwood’s exhibition is “the greatest single presentation of Clagget clocks ever assembled,” according to the library’s magazine.  William Clagget came to Newport from England in 1714 and soon established himself as Newport’s preeminent clockmaker.


I cannot even begin to imagine what his clocks are worth.  Most of them have stayed in the families that originally purchased them in the 1700’s.  One came from the Metropolitan, two others from the Sturbridge Museum.

The library also has an impressive portrait collection decorating its walls.  Banjo Man was awed by spotting four original Gilbert Stuart paintings.  That made his day.

And then there was lunch at the Brick Alley Pub, a favorite local haunt with great food.


Why am I the only one who looks happy?

Believe it or not, we were all having a good time.


Why is she making a face at Glen?  He must have teased her.  He always teases her.

I never grow tired of visiting Newport.  The colonial homes, the Gilded Age mansions, the chowder, the museums, the shops, the cobblestone streets…what’s not to love?





Posted in family, friends, rhode island, travel | 2 Comments

cb strike

cb strike

This is a British detective series based on the novels by J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame.  Only she uses Robert Galbraith as her pen name for the series.

I loved the first three books.  I’m on a waiting list–a lonnnnnnng waiting list–for the fourth book, but I’m too frugal to buy the Kindle edition for $14.99.   So I wait.  Patience is good for me.

Anyway…when I discovered there was actually a tv series I was thrilled.  When I learned it was only shown on Cinemax, I was not so thrilled.  What to do, what to do…

Luckily Cinemax offers a free 7-day trial, which leaves Banjo Man and I plenty of time to watch the seven installments.  Heck, we watched the first two last night when we were tired of college football.

We’ve agreed to meet in the living room at 6:30 tonight to watch two or three more episodes.  It’s a cold night, but we have a warm living room and leftover fried dumplings and Spicy Chicken from yesterday’s trip to the Chinese restaurant near Home Depot for dinner.  So, as my dad would say, life is good.

And do you know what other good thing happened today?  We called a plumber to fix our kitchen sink (I’ve been washing dishes in the bathroom since the day after Thanksgiving) and he is coming on Friday!!!!

Let me repeat that:  he is coming on Friday.

My joy spilleth over.

Washing dishes in the bathroom sink was way too much like camping for my taste.  I detest camping.  I can find nothing good to say about the experiences I’ve had in a tent in the Great Outdoors.  “Hell” is a good word to describe camping.

Hell. On. Earth.

So…back to my torn up kitchen…I’m sure the insurance company’s contractors will arrive some day to install a cabinet and put in a new, huge floor, but as long as I have a working sink and faucet I can wait for that February day to arrive without getting hostile.


I showed my mother this picture over lunch today.  We went for a drive and ended up at Denny’s, in Coventry (the waitress remembered us and once again bent over backwards to make sure my frail, 92-year old mother was comfortable and well fed) where we ate turkey and stuffing and potatoes.

Mom was very happy about the plumber coming on Friday, too.  Though I’m not sure she really understood this picture at all.

So now it’s time to leave the office and get ready for Episode 3 of “CB Strike”.  If you’ve seen it, let me know what you thought!

For more info on the books, click here:  https://robert-galbraith.com/







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happy ’19

It is an unseasonably warm day here, in the 50’s.  Rainy and wet.  Gray.  The first mug of coffee tastes really, really good.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Did anyone stay up until midnight?  We certainly didn’t!  After a cozy dinner with old friends down the street, we drove the few hundred yards home and crawled into bed.  Once again the ball dropped without us.

And today is football.  Lots and lots of football, though I have to say I’ve found the bowl games pretty disappointing.  As Will says, there’s not much excitement this year.  Do you feel that way, too?

But first, before Banjo Man settles onto the couch and I start assembling fabric for a future quilt (I have an idea in my head but I’m not sure yet, so it’s time to spread a lot of fabric around the room and see what fits the vision), we’re heading down the road to–wait for it–Home Depot.  Yes, again.  My husband has been waiting for days for me to go to good ol’ HD to get more flooring samples.  And I’ve been stalling, due to a bad case of post-Christmas exhaustion.  I just cannot get up the energy to load myself in the car and drive anywhere or do anything.

Banjo Man is frustrated by my inertia.  So this morning he suggested we both go to Home Depot!  And go to our favorite Chinese restaurant and eat dumplings!

Well, that’s one way to get me in the car.  He’s a devious man.

I’m listening to my new Rosanne Cash cd, which is my main New Year’s resolution:  listen to more music, play more music, learn more music.

Oh, yeah, there’s also the treadmill and the yoga dvd’s and the vow to eat salad, blah, blah, blah, but this year I’m mostly filling my little world with more music in every way possible.

(I’ve also vowed to reduce the amount of plastic in my life and now have a recipe to make my own laundry detergent, so stand by for the future eco-saga.)

Here’s to a new year filled with whatever brings you joy!  We all need more of that.





Posted in books & music, family, music, rhode island | 2 Comments