Eastern Utah
EMAIL ME AT: mgypsy97 at aol dot com

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Where's the rain?

The forecast is for thunderstorms and lots of rain today, which will please  my garden and me!  So far the sun is shining, and what clouds there are seem to be moving on.  Usually by this time of the morning I have watered the plants, but now I don't know what to do.  I guess it wouldn't hurt for them to be watered and then rained on, all in one day!

 It looks like 2020 is only going to get worse, and we will probably all be glad to see it go on Dec. 31.  I just hope 2021 won't be as bad, although it will depend on the new president to steer us in a better direction.  We need a Franklin Roosevelt in these times in my opinion.  I don't see one on the horizon though, so we have to make the best of what we have.

I'm trying to clean my living room floor but have to work around a big old black lab who remains firmly and happily on his doggie bed in the middle of the room.  I've cleaned all around him and since he's been good and hasn't tracked on the wet floors, I'll just wait for him to decide to get up.  He's in his "terrible twos", you know!

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Last Day of Heat Wave

At least I hope it's the last.  Since we have the entire summer to go through, I think we are likely to have more triple digit days, but I hope not many and not often.  I only take Rocky out first thing in the morning and it doesn't cool off until after dark.  Also, he won't even go out into the back yard while it's so hot.  We have some rain predicted in the next few days, including thunderstorms.   I hope the rain doesn't pelt down and harm my garden plants which are growing nicely with the high temperatures.  A nice soft rain would really be good for them!

It sounds as if some areas want to lift the lockdown, which I hope isn't premature.  I dislike staying isolated as much as anyone, but I will do it willingly until officials (that I trust) tell me it is safe to relax and get back to a more normal life.  "That I trust" is key here - I don't trust many officials since they are pressured by the stagnant economy to entice people to get out and spend some money.  Over 100,000 people have died from the virus (probably a lot more), and to tell you the truth, I think lives are more important than a thriving economy right now.  But what do I know.

The TV continues to perplex me.  I can usually find my way to the science or history channels, which is what I prefer to watch.  Since the TV is across the room (actually not very far) I can't read what is on the screen so I have to walk over to see it.  And the remote is small with faint (to me) lettering, so I have to get it into the light to be able to read it.  I ask myself if it is really worth it and the answer is definitely "NO", but it makes my children happy that I have a TV.  They tell me to watch comedies and happy movies - I have never watched those kinds of shows (not since Johnny Carson left the air), but prefer documentaries and information.  Actually, I'd rather read a book but that is becoming difficult as well.   Whoever said "getting old isn't for sissies" sure got that right!

I'm still walking a mile a day on my treadmill, and am pretty proud of myself for hanging in there.  I should up the mileage, but I'm afraid I would then find excuses to skip a day here and there, so I'd be better off sticking to what I will do faithfully each day.
I almost forgot to mention that today is my "baby boy's" second birthday!  Happy birthday Rocky!


Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Keeping Cool

Right now at 4:30 in the afternoon, it is 101F.  It is pretty stifling as I found out when I went out to get the mail.  Rocky was happy to come back inside and take a nap on the couch!    I've been watering my garden as soon as I get up in the mornings, and then take Rocky for a walk - then I eat breakfast and try to stay indoors for most of the day.

I think I mentioned I bought a TV set, even though I've never been a tv watcher.  I think I'm just so bored from staying in isolation that I am buying things I don't need.  The TV wasn't all - then I needed a nice stand to put it on.  Jeannie, Donald and the girls came by last night and Donald put together the stand that I bought for the TV to sit on!  Right now it is in front of the fireplace which will be ok until the fall turns cool and I want to have a cozy fire.

Click on the photo to enlarge it a bit.

I don't know if you can see this very well because everything is black - black stones in the fireplace, black tv, and black stand.  I see my image is reflected in the tv screen!  I don't know yet what to put on the shelves of the TV stand  - it will have to be things that Rocky isn't interested in.

This weather sure saps my energy but there isn't anything I really have to get done until later in the week when the temps will come down quite a bit.

Take care, and stay cool if you are in a hot zone as Sacramento is right now.  And this is still May, so what will summer be like?

Monday, May 25, 2020

Giving up cooking

I have always been a good cook - nothing fancy, but good down-home style.  I don't cook much anymore, and the last two meals I've tried have turned into near-disasters.  So I'm done, although I won't get rid of all my cookware, recipe books, etc. just yet.  I think it's age, and living alone.

Rocky and I have stayed in all day after a quick walk early this morning.  I just went out to check on and water the garden, and I tossed the ball for him to chase a few times, but I think he is as glad as I am to get back into the house.  And this isn't even the worst of the heat that is expected in the coming week!  One of the most wonderful things about Sacramento is that it is almost always cool up until Noon, and today was no exception.  I was able to stay cool with the ceiling fan running, and doors and windows open.  But I'm thankful for the few hours of a/c I'll use each day.

It looks like I am going to have to buy a new computer, and I sure hate to spend the money.  The cursor jumps all around the page and everything seems to be going wrong with it.  I'll get another Mac as I could never go back to a Windows based computer, but I sure wish I could find one that is just a plain computer and no fancy bells & whistles.  And I swear sometimes I want to throw it up against the wall when "Siri" asks me what she can do for me today.  If anyone knows how to dismantle, delete, or otherwise trash this annoying entity, please let me know. 

Stay cool!

Sunday, May 24, 2020

The Garden is Expanding

Steve came over today and worked on a couple of garden plots I needed to clear.  The rototiller needed a new spark plug, so he will bring one next week.  In the meantime he did a lot of manual labor with the shovel!  I am going to use one of the plots for pumpkins - and hope to give at least one to each family of grandkids by Halloween!

It was so nice to see him, and he brought the two kids with him.  They are always a pleasure to have around.   He pulled a lot of ripe cherries from the tree, and I had forgotten how delicious they are.  I have an apple tree but the apples it produces aren't very tasty - also there is a plum tree and blackberry vines, and I'm hoping to enjoy the fruits of all of them this summer.  Last year I was so busy with the move and just getting things in place, and I missed all the fruit from trees and vines.  

It is only May and Sacramento is expecting an extreme heat wave next week.  The temps will be 99, 103, 104, 104, and 96, before going back down to the 80's.   This subject to change, of course, and the temps  could go even higher.  I will have to get up early in the day to walk Rocky before it gets too hot.  Our days usually don't get extremely hot until 11am or Noon, and it looks like we will have some cool overnight temps next week (in the 60's).   I will need to water my garden heavily and early on those mornings.

I won't ever admit it to my family, but the TV I bought is a total waste of my money.  Fortunately I didn't spend a whole lot on it.  It's a nice one,  but I simply have never been a TV watcher and I'm too old to start now.  It does get youtube which I use a lot on my computer, but I prefer it on the computer.  The saying "You can't teach an old dog new tricks" is as wise now as it ever was.

I was sitting on the deck in back a while ago and got to thinking about my life.  I am so thankful to have had such a good life, with good family and a few good friends.  I also have to add the good dogs I've known!   It is great at my stage in life to have lots of good memories, and very few regrets.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

I'm so excited!

Don't laugh, but in about an hour or so, Jeannie will pick me up and I get to ride with her to a couple of stores, where she will pick up her orders.  We will stay in the car, but hey, it's an outing!  The best part is that Rocky will be going to her house while we are gone so he can play with her girls!

I have been working in the garden but in short timeframes - not all at once.  For one thing, it's getting hot, and the sun in blazing hot when you are out in it.  The temperature is actually not too bad and there is a lovely breeze, but the sun is relentless.  I've been pulling grass and preparing soil in my third plot so I can begin to plant some more veggies for the summer.  Anyone would laugh at how little I accomplish at one time, but throughout a day or two I have cleared some space that I plan to sew carrot seeds among others.  I also want to plant pumpkin seeds soon, so that I can give them to my grandchildren for carving this fall.   But I still have a lot of work to do. 

I am really so tired of this whole pandemic, but at the same time not eager to get back to the way things once were.  I will be glad if we have a break without new cases, but I expect the short break to be followed by another onslaught of virus.  So I won't go out and celebrate any time soon, if ever.  I do hope there will be a short time that the craft brewery will be open and I can take my family for an evening out.  Maybe we can even go to Straw Hat Pizza,  although I often wonder if some of the places I love have gone out of business.  The very worst part is that if action had been taken when it was obvious this thing was going to spread from China, way fewer lives would be lost, and way less economic stress.  I will never forgive the politicians who allowed the spread of the virus until it was too late to contain it.  They have blood on their hands!

I just looked up the 15 day weather forecast, and for four days next week we can expect 100, 104, 104, and 107 degrees!  The saving feature is that the overnight lows will be in the upper 60's, which usually last until about Noon, and it normally cools off when the sun goes down.   This is the part of summer I don't like and never will.  I'd much rather be wearing a sweatshirt to take the chill off!

Have a nice weekend, whatever your weather forecast!


Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Will it ever end?

I often wonder if this is real, or if it's all just a bad dream.  Since I am alone with Rocky, I've quit being so paranoid about constantly disinfecting every surface.  I figure they are my germs and I am ok with that.  I do wash my hands a lot more often, but I don't think I've sprayed Lysol for a couple of days!

I had my son's dog over the weekend when he and his family got their house ready for viewers, as well as they went looking at a couple of houses themselves.  I hope they pick something closer than where they are now, but of course, it's not my choice.

Their dog, Sammy, and my Rocky usually kept an uneasy truce, but by the final day I think they were both tired of each other.  Sammy was delighted to jump into their car when they came to pick him up, and Rocky has gone back to his mostly sweet self.  The only real problem I have with Rocky is that he sometimes chews something he shouldn't, and it is always an item that I don't want messed up.

I'm still walking a mile on my treadmill nearly every day.  I miss a day about once every two weeks which isn't bad, in my book!  I also try to walk Rocky twice a day and we both benefit from that.  I don't walk him far - usually just about 6-8 blocks, but twice a day adds up plus he has the big backyard to play in.

The garden is coming along and I have quite a few small green tomatoes already.  I just shake my head when I look at the garden I carefully planted, and in which seeds from last year germinated and are growing vigorously.  The problem is that I'm not sure exactly what the plants are.  I can recognize swiss chard, and I have a couple of other varieties that look like salad greens.  I'm going to pick a  bunch of leaves this afternoon and make myself a nice salad for supper, and hope the greens taste okay.  

Not much to talk about these days - hope everyone is staying safe and sane!  This is really a test of sanity for me.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Male Posturing!

No, this isn't about the person "some people call the president".  I'm talking about the posturing of dominant male canines.

My dog Rocky, a 2 yr old male, is an alpha.  There were two black lab males in the litter and I asked for the least dominant, but I got what I got.  He is mouthy and pushy and I deal
with it pretty well most of the time,  This weekend we are hosting Sammy, my son's dominant male mixed breed, part pitbull and looks like a pitbull.  He is very well mannered, nice and easy temperament, and he's trying to get along while he misses his family, especially my grandson Liam. 

Steve is trying to sell his house and look for another in a neighborhood up in the foothills - a fairly new neighborhood and an excellent high school which is the most important since my grandson will be entering junior high in just a couple of years.  So in the midst of a pandemic, they had their house professionally cleaned and sanitized, and there are strict rules for anyone coming to look at it.  They must wear a mask, gloves, put booties over their shoes at the door, and whatever else the real estate agent tells them to do.  Steve & Meg are lined up to look at houses in their desired neighborhood, so it is a busy and complicated weekend for them.  They and their kids are staying in a loft apartment that one of their friends offered.  Sammy, the dog, doesn't fit anywhere in any of this process, so we've had canine company for the weekend.

I would never have believed Rocky would  be so dominant.  Yesterday I was just beyond the constant worrying that a play fight would turn into a real fight, so I have a bottle of hemp oil for dogs on hand, and I dosed them both with it.  Meek as lambs, they were, at least until it wore off several hours later. 

Steve & family will come by later to pick up their beloved canine buddy, and things will get back to normal for Rocky and me by this evening.

Here are photos I took shortly after the wonderful elixir took effect.

By the way, this all started two days ago on Friday, the day I was at my lowest ebb with this lockdown and self isolation.  I probably should have taken the elixir myself and let the dogs just have at it!

Friday, May 15, 2020

Is it me, or?

I have long been wondering why, in light of the financial problems in our country (as well as the rest of the world), are we spending money on a "Space Force"!  What is more important to people - colonizing the moon, landing probes on the planets, and reaching the stars; or should the people of our own planet Earth, in wealthy as well as in poor countries, take precedence.  You can be sure that whatever money has been allocated for all this space exploration, is teeming with waste, fraud, and abuse!    There is a portion of the federal budget that is totally unknown and off limits to citizens and even most politicians, and I don't think that is right and shouldn't be lawful.  Whatever happened to the idea of transparency in government, and how our hard-earned tax dollars are spent.  Are we still paying for these dark programs in the midst of a global pandemic, with so many Americans out of work and going hungry?  One of these days, or even years, there will be a revolution against all the secrecy and graft in government, and I hope I'm around to witness it and to cheer it on.  And I hope the perpetrators hang!

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Little House on the Prairie

While I was walking on my treadmill this morning I started thinking about Laura Ingalls Wilder, and her mother.  I'm sure her mother had it worse in many ways, living out on the prairie with no people nearby.  But she had kids and I guess her husband kept her company when he wasn't working and trying to build a homestead.  How DID those pioneer women do it!  Many came from eastern cities and probably didn't have the slightest idea what they had signed on to.  So here I am, isolated although there are people on all sides, people who wave and maybe call out a "hello", but there is no real social contact at all.  At least if you are following the rules and guidelines, which I do my best to follow.  I don't know about you, but I'm almost ready to cave in and hope I die quickly and be done with it.  

The worst of all this is that if I actually live through this phase, the next one, and the one after that, might possibly be worse.  I sure didn't expect my "golden years" to be like this.

This would be a good day to do some work in my garden since it is cloudy and not too hot, but so far I've avoided doing much except take Rocky for a walk and do my treadmill.  Thank goodness for that treadmill!  It's so boring I don't walk more than a mile a day on it,  but I'm quite proud of myself for doing that.

Since everyone is trying to stay safe most businesses, such as hairdressers, are closed.  So after years of wearing my hair short it is getting close to being long!  I cut my bangs every other week and with my vision problems I can only guess if they are straight.  Lord only knows what I look like when I step out the door.  Hopefully, the people who might be walking on the other side of the street wont notice!

I hope some of you leave comments about what you are doing to get through this.  I know many of you are creative and knit, crochet, paint, etc.  Are you still at it, or have you become so bored you have stopped or switch to something else.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Mother's Day

Today is Mother's Day in the United States, and it surely doesn't feel much like a celebration.  But I just got the most beautiful expression of good wishes from one of my daughters-in-law, and it really made my day!  I send my greetings to mothers everywhere.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Heat Wave!

We are experiencing an early heat wave (in the 90's) but it looks like there will be more moderate temps in a few days.  I don't like the heat, and I don't like running the a/c.  I did turn it on yesterday in late afternoon because Jeannie was coming over to walk on my treadmill.  I generate a lot of heat and I only walk a mile -- she likes to walk 4+ miles so I try to keep it as cool as possible for her.  Rocky has been pretty listless lately, and I try to walk him early enough in the day that it isn't so hot.  Fortunately Sacramento cools off considerably overnight - into the 50's for the rest of May.  Even in the hottest of summer we have cool evenings.

My garden is thriving, although not in the way I had planned.  I planted 19 tomato plants in two garden plots.  Little did I know that what I planted last year would come up again this year! So I have something growing among the tomatoes.  I think they are some kind of leafy green veggies but I can't identify them.  They sure look healthy!  I think the next few days will be overcast and cooler, so maybe I can get out there and do some tidying up.  I don't know whether to let the healthy-looking plants just try to co-exist with the tomatoes, or what.  I am probably so far past my prime that I shouldn't even try something as ambitious as a vegetable garden!

Jeannie has been trying to come over as many evenings as possible to walk on my treadmill.  I'm so happy to see it get used - I am still at a mile a day, whereas she walks 4 or 5 miles; I do mine at 3 mph, but she can walk much faster.  Since we both have taken the threat of coronavirus seriously, we could both become very out of shape and subject to weight gain as well, so the chance to walk is golden, to both of us.

I wonder if many of you are experiencing the same things I am, especially those of you who live alone.  I just can't keep interest in housekeeping or cooking, although I do keep up with the laundry.  I try to do a couple of jobs every day that aren't really that critical - like cleaning the tops of the ceiling fan blades!    Somehow, it is satisfying to know they are clean and free of dust, whereas my windows could sure use a good washing!  I know I will never recover from the effects of the Wuhan virus, even if I don't catch it.  The isolation and lack of group activities will leave a lasting mark, and things will never be the same.

I hope you are all able to keep occupied and not let this crisis overtake you - we all need to be determined to have some control over our lives.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Hangin' in There!

But just barely.  Lately I've been feeling depressed about the current situation, and don't know when we will ever get back to "normal", even if it is a new normal. 

Jeannie & Donald and the kids visited me last night, and it was the first time Donald has been out of the house since this all started.  At least I walk the dog every morning, although not a very long walk.  My d-i-l, Megan, is coming by with her two kids this afternoon.  I asked her to bring their dog, Sammy, with her because Rocky would love to have a playmate for a change.  I see his personality changing a little at a time, and I don't like it.  We need to get back to a normal life and outside contacts.  I guess it will happen, sooner or later.

My treadmill was a bit "off" the past few days, and I was so happy that Donald could fix it when he was here.  The mile a day I walk on it, plus the few tenths of a mile I walk with Rocky, is what keeps me relatively healthy and sane.  I've recently found myself almost in despair, but hope I've shaken that off.

It has been pretty warm during the day so I rarely do much in the garden.  I do try to get out to water the plants but need to spend some time pulling weeds that are starting to crop up.  I'm so looking forward to the appearance of tomatoes, although one plant called "Venus", has a few small tomatoes growing already.  I haven't had much energy to plant anything else, but need to find some motivation soon.

I remember how in the past I've always loved looking up at the night sky, and seeing familiar stars and planets.  I don't have the vision to do much of that anymore, but I do love looking at Venus in the west.  What a beauty! 

I'll be back soon, I hope.  There just isn't anything  new happening and it's hard to find something to write about.

Take care, and hope to talk to you soon.