Three Quarters & Counting

After days of frustration (in December 2011) with Google’s Blogspot, I was forced to search the Internet for another venue.  I had  a lot to learn because WordPress appeared new and different–and “yours truly” is “three quarters and counting.” ~~ Two years of earlier blog information can be found at TabTeardropTravels. ~~  Now I have a brand-new laptop computer–with Windows-8–and I’m being challenged again to learn how to prepare and publish blog messages.  (In my humble opinion, Windows-8 will turn my brown hair gray!!)


New laptop computer !!

FYI: “Old Faithful” (laptop computer) died last Thursday (sudden and no warning).  I’ve been without computer and Internet until this hour (6:00 PM). Monday is my day to go to the chiropractor and do my grocery shopping.  I bought a new laptop at Sam’s Club.  This… has Windows-8 so I have a lot to learn.  An enormous change !!  ~~  More info later.

Postscript, Wednesday, October 31, 2012: Windows-8 is radically different from everything I’ve previously experienced (over 30 years working with computers).  Any project I undertake requires minutes–or hours!!  I’ll be working on e-mail (example) and the page suddenly disappears (and it takes time to “find” it again).  Bottom line: I may not tackle another blog message very soon.  (This postscript added from the computer while I am/was at work.)

Two Thousand Minus Four !!

Conservatively, I have two thousand items that need a new home!!  Today I sent a box–via FedEx–to the buyer of four of my collector’s plates.  Hallelujah!!   Only one hundred (or more) collector’s plates that need a new home.  ~~  It will be a “landmark” day when the buyer picks up thirteen large boxes of health and nutrition books (over two hundred).  Then I will have some “wiggle space” in the room that has wall-to-wall boxes of memorabilia.  ~~  Within the next month, the many bags and several boxes of items for Operation Christmas Child should be at the Processing Center.  ~~  Truthfully, my depression may subside when I’m able to tackle those (wall-to-wall) boxes currently beyond arm’s reach?!?!  I’m so weary of all the clutter!!  I feel I can’t invite anyone to the apartment because I don’t want them to see the volumes of “stuff” I have retained (and judge accordingly).

Perhaps you can sympathize with me and appreciate why I choose to spend so much time in my backyard garden?!?!  I really need to “downsize” but not a week goes by that I am not buying something for the yard.  This past week, I shopped two Goodwill stores and bought planters and plant stands.  (How could I pass up a large planter for $2.00??)  Recently I got an exceptionally good buy, at Tuesday Morning, on attractive large planters.  I had looked at them–for months–priced at $26.00 each.  On my recent trip, I found them at the Mooresville store, marked down plus another 70% off.  I bought the four available planters for less than one at the original price!!  Hallelujah!!  This week (at Tuesday Morning) I bought more garden items with “70% off ticketed price.”  ~~  Because I wanted to shop the second Goodwill store, I drove to Lancaster, South Carolina (something I rarely do).  I discovered the K-Mart is closing (“going out of business”) so stopped and headed for the garden department.  I bought four bags of organic planter soil, and several bags of bird seed.  I’m already so anxious for Spring so I can arrange planters, fill with soil, and plant flowers and Topsy-Turvy upside-down tomato plants!!  ~~  After reading ideas in a book about “container gardens,” I’m eager to do something “unique” with the planters and plant stands.  ~~  Chide me about this acquisition: At Goodwill, next to their dumpster, I saw a disassembled, broken baby crib.  I instantly recognized the rectangular metal springs would make a perfect trellis.  In my mind’s-eye, I see Scarlet Runner Bean vines twining around links (and far more attractive than the macrame rope used for a trellis earlier this year).  ~~  Yes, I’m anxious for Spring!!

Another outside project: Attract deer to water, salt lick, and feeder.

Recent backyard project

Over the months, I have “recycled” things I hauled from California to North Carolina. Galvanized pipe for Topsy-Turvy upside-down tomato planters, and trellis created from PVC pipe. This trellis (moved from an earlier location) has metal pipe frame and metal loops and bows decorations.  Backyard enhancements created at nominal expense (“loops and bows” from Goodwill). Some of my plants were purchased from the “mark downs” at the back of Lowe’s garden center. This Honeysuckle bush was rescued from discards here at the apartment complex. It had been out of the ground for several weeks so I’m giving it a lot of “tender loving care.” I hope it flourishes and provides lots of blossoms, next Spring & Summer, for Hummingbirds.  ~~  Speaking of Hummingbirds: One was inside my apartment briefly.  With the front and back doors open, it found its way out.  ~~  Visit this earlier blog message.

This old lady…

This old lady has to pace herself!!  The digging of heavy red clay is tiring!!  I have carried each shovelful to the edge of the woods.  ~~  It is a BEAUTIFUL day and I forced myself away from the previous blog message so I could dig dirt from edge of cement slab footing for the air-conditioner.  I want to add another trellis there and plant Morning Glories next Spring.  I added mulch/compost there and more around the Honeysuckle bush.  ~~  “Maintenance” has had a BIG project in the adjacent backyard and until a few days ago I had to look at piles of red clay in my yard, and the neighbor’s yard.  (The drain pipes were full of roots and the gutters could not carry away the rain water.)  So-o-o-o-o, there have been shovels, rakes, pitchforks, etc., available to “this old lady.”  Furthermore, in an effort to repair the destroyed lawn, trailer loads of mulch, and compost are positioned nearby.  Hear ye, hear ye, it has been imperative that I take advantage of the tools, mulch and compost while it is available!!  “Maintenance” is overjoyed to share with me because many (many, many) residents call them to plant a rose-bush, or dig out a Honeysuckle bush (etc., etc.).  “Overjoyed!!”  ~~  Compare the pictures of my back yard two weeks ago with today.  Trellis’ have been removed or repositioned.  The pink pails, and Topsy-Turvy  baskets (with dying plants), have been removed and their soil added to the hole dug for the Honeysuckle bush.  The Bluebird house–weighted into the recently acquired planter–has a new foundation and recently planted Pansies. ~~ “Yes,” I have spent a lot of time (and energy) in my yard the last couple of weeks!! (Click each picture to enlarge for more details.)

My request !!

Be Thou My Vision.

Be Thou My Vision (Hymn)

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Be Thou my battle Shield, Sword for the fight;
Be Thou my Dignity, Thou my Delight;
Thou my soul’s Shelter, Thou my high Tower:
Raise Thou me heavenward, O Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
Thou mine Inheritance, now and always:
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of Heaven, my victory won,
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.


Be a Part of Reaching 100 Million Children

Because I haven’t documented details of my mini-vacation, and I haven’t published pictures from the trip, you haven’t read about my visit to Samaritan’s Purse and Operation Christmas Child International Headquarters in Boone, North Carolina.  It was inspirational to enjoy a tour of the facilities.  ~~  On that trip, I browsed Dollar Tree, Ollie’s, Walmart, etc., etc., and bought an enormous number of items for shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.  (Fourteen bags of merchandise transferred from the car to my apartment!!  Seriously!!  They were added to the bags, and boxes, of items purchased earlier this year.)  ~~  Here is a gentle reminder that we all have to participate if we want to help Samaritan’s Purse reach their goal.

In the interest of full disclosure, searching the web, I found a link titled Campaign Against Operation Christmas Child.  I “campaign” for the project, obviously others don’t share my sentiments!!  In my humble opinion, the acts of kindness have been maligned.

For your information

For all of my interest in health and nutrition; despite **trying** to live a healthy lifestyle, I have been sick for about a month.  Whatever I “caught” on my mini-vacation has lingered.  I may never get around to publishing details, and pictures, of my recent trip.  I apologize!!  ~~  One important objective of the recent trip: An appointment with my holistic health doctor in Wilkesboro.  One hundred fifty miles from my apartment, and one hundred fifty dollars from my bank account,  provided a five-minute conversation with the doctor!!  (Unhappy!!)  ~~  From my weekly chiropractic appointments: I’m experiencing more pain than relief.  (Very unhappy!!)  ~~  A wave of cold air has blanketed much of the nation.  (Burr!!)  I’ve activated the heater in the apartment–but I’ve been wrapping up in a blanket (mindlessly watching television).  ~~  Tomorrow–all day–employees and volunteers are gathering at a South Carolina State Park for a prayer retreat.  I’m dreading the outing!!  (I’ll dress warmly and take a blanket!!)  I love the “outdoors”; I love my coworkers BUT, health-wise and weather-wise, I’m a reluctant participant!!

Postscript, Thursday, October 11, 2012, 1:30 PM: FYI, I’m “at work” but am “under the weather” from exposure to the elements yesterday.  I was wrapped in a blanket most of the morning.  Gratefully, it warmed up about noon but the wind was cold blowing off the lake.  BUT, today, I’m at my desk ready for the occasional visitor and frequent phone calls.

Postscript, Sunday, October 14, 2012, 3:15 PM: So-o-o sick!!  Too sick to even work in the yard on an extremely beautiful day weather-wise.  Yesterday I aggravated my fragile health by working in the shaded drafty entry outside the main building at JAARS.  It was Open House JAARS Day.