Tuesday, November 28, 2006
I Can't Open It VIII
This time Millie can't get a stuck spoon out of the dishwasher silverware basket, can't open a bottle of mouthwash, can't get the hand lotion out of a bottle, and can't open an Advil bottle. She needed pain relief but the Advil bottle thwarted her!

This time Steve explains the steps to take to open each bottle and Millie tries again to open each one. Watch the video to see how she does!

Alternate version: Flash.

Scope, Dove, Advil.

Monday, November 27, 2006
It's that time of year when I start packing for Florida. I'll be leaving in about two weeks, so the JOB of getting my things together has got to get done soon. It's a job that I do not look forward to, I think about it more then I do it.

I stayed home today, pulled out the boxes, garment bags and luggage - now all I have to do is fill them up! Every year I say, "I'm going to take less this year," I know, the less I take, the less I have to handle. Those are the facts, maam, just have to put that into practice.

In between packing I take a break, sit down and make some necessary phone calls, call to suspend Massachusetts telephone and call Southern Bell to start Florida service, call The Boston Globe to stop service and call Sun Sentinel to start service and on and on that goes.

You would think that would be easy BUT what I ran into today was, "we have a heavy volume at this time, if this is not an emergency call back at another time." I tried again and finally got through - the person spoke English with a heavy accent, so I had to ask her several times to repeat what she was saying. It took me a good half hour to accomplish something that should have taken, tops fifteen minutes. I'll make my other calls another day.

Good Times in the HospitalEvery season in Florida is different, some winters are cool, hot, rainy and even cold. Two winters I spent time in the hospital. Some winters I have seen wonderful shows, others not so wonderful. The flea markets are always fun and there's always Mah Jongg.

I know that one big reason this season is going to be different is because a few of my best friends will not be going down. Two of the "girls" are physically unable to make the trip. Another friend and my two cousins are going to do some traveling.

One of the "girls" that is not able to go this season was a great influence on me, I'm not a clothes shopper and she would drag me out to the store, that's how I would buy some clothes.

Another "girl" that won't be there this season would find the most interesting things to do, museums, art shows and college programs.

In the past I would spend quality time with my cousins, go out to lunch, dinner, movies, plays or they would have me over to their home for dinner.

I'll miss them all. so I am not only getting ready physically, I'm getting ready mentally.

I want to end this post on a happy note so what I am happy to report is, "the Mah Jongg game is still in-tact. Those "girls" will be there for me"!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Steve Basting a Thanksgiving Turkey

I want to wish everyone a very wonderful holiday season. Here are some thoughts on what Thanksgiving means to me.

Today is a gift, which is why it's called the present.
Honesty to and within yourself is part of what defines you.
Ascertain your unique role in life.
Never expect more of others than you yourself would give.
Know that with tough questions, there are no right or wrong answers; only right choices.
See that your passions determine your priorities.
Go and live each day as your defining moment.
If you want to know the opinions of others, ask.
Values help determine your path in life; don't say or do things that are inconsistent with yours.
If you measure yourself by others, you will only lament what you don't have.
Never fear change; embrace it but hold onto what shouldn't change.
Give thanks for what really matters in life; the love of family and friends, health and happiness. For having this, we all lead rich and fulfilling lives.

Wishing you all a joyous, healthy and meaningful Thanksgiving. Thank you all for being part of my life.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Last week I attended a book review featuring Frieda Arkin who at 86 years old has written her second novel, "Hedwig and Bertie" which has been very well received. She wrote her first novel in her fifties and since then has written a number of cook books. She read from her book and then answered questions from the audience. I always find that the most enjoyable part of the presentation.

There were a number of "girls" there that I have not seen in a few years. I would see then at the local community center where I attended a class in "Yiddish." As time went by the group would tell jokes with a Jewish flavor and hardly spoke Yiddish, at that point I stopped going, it was not what I was looking for.

Well, when I got to talking to them, they told me that they still go to that class and how great it is now. There is a young woman in her sixties (that's young) who contributes a great deal to the group and, "I should go." They were so enthusiastic that I just had go see what was going on. I went this past Monday and sure enough it was a lot of fun.

One of "the girls" told a story about her father who was a house painter and that reminded me of a funny story which I managed to butcher in Yiddish.

It had to be in the early 40's when my neighbor had a painter come in to do her apartment, he painted all the rooms, including the bathroom. In those days as I remember it, if you wanted to maintain the toilet seat, you painted it!

Well, he painted the toilet seat and when the neighbors daughter came home from work, you guessed it, she went to the bathroom and she sat on the freshly painted toilet seat!! Need I say more!!

If I hadn't gone to hear that author, I won't have seen "the girls" and I won't have gone back to the Yiddish class.

One of my mothers favorite saying was, "If you don't go out, nothing will happen." How true!!

Monday, November 06, 2006
Saving Memories
I read an article in last Sunday's Boston Globe by Beverly Beckham, and what a timely article it was.

In When memories are merely jogging in place Beckham wrote:
"When my daughter turned 21, I didn't write about it, and she didn't write about it, or paste a coaster in a book or preserve it in any way.

And so it came, it went, and it's gone.

Most days are. We live thousands of them and recall just a few. Pictures capture some. And words. And song.

And sometimes something as simple as a matchbook cover or a ticket stub will bring back a day, or at least a part of it."
Recently I posted a recipe for potato pancakes and mentioned how I have been trying for years to make them like my mother's. When I spoke to Steve about what he thought would be a good photo to put up, he asked me if I had a picture of my mother cooking. That got me thinking about the pictures I have of her, and I realized that I have very few pictures of my mother, and those that I have are mostly formal pictures taken on special occasions.

My parents did not have a camera, that was the furthest thing on their minds. My mother stayed home, kept the home fires burning, and my dad worked hard just making a living. Fortunately my aunt had a camera so I do have a few childhood pictures, very few.

Maybe it was just my family that did not take pictures but I think that's the way it was, way back then.

Shoe Factory

When pictures were taken they were mostly group family pictures and no one smiled. This picture is of a shoe factory in Lynn, Massachusetts. My father-in-law is in the first row, fourth from the left.

Apparently the photographer did not say, "cheese."

When I was in my twenties, I was the proud owner of a baby brownie and started to save memories.

Wedding Toast

For our wedding, we hired a professional photographer.

After I was married, we got a camera that took photos and slides.

Lots of pictures were taken of Steve as he was growing up, birthday parties, vacations and family get-togethers.

Pots and Pans

Not many candid shots, but there were a few. ;-)

The more I thought about it, the more I was remembering the pictures that we took and finally I thought of a photo that was taken of my sister-in-law when she moved into her new apartment.

Minnie was a single lady who didn't cook much but she wanted to make us "a dinner" to celebrate her new place.

Hot Stove

As you can see from the picture it was a big deal for her to do it. That's what I call "a good candid shot." Wish I had more of those.

Aren't we lucky today to have so many ways to save memories - cameras, scrapbooking, blogs and video blogs and who knows what else is just around the corner.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006
I Can't Open It VII

Millie Garfield from My Mom's Blog has trouble opening a can of whipped cream.

Other format: Quicktime.

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