Posted tagged ‘trash’

“The perfect antidote to dark, cold and creepy is light, warm and cozy.”

December 29, 2017

I had a bit of a shock when I opened the door to take Gracie out and to get my papers.  Snow covered the ground. It was probably an inch or less of fluffy white stuff, but it was still a surprise. My mother used to tell us it was too cold to snow, but yesterday was brutally cold, and it still snowed.

The dump was almost empty. I think there might have been only two other cars. The smart people stayed home, but I went. I froze the minute I got out of the car but then the man who works there told me to get back into the car. He emptied everything: bags of newspapers, boxes galore and several bags of trash. The poor guy was dressed for a polar expedition. His face was so covered only his eyes could be seen. It was about 12˚.

Today will be cold but a bit warmer than yesterday though I don’t think warmer really works here. Maybe I should say not as brutally cold as yesterday. It is 17˚ right now and could get up as far as 21˚. Deck weather?

My car gets serviced today, an oil change and a quick look over of everything else. I really want to stay home, but I need to get this done. I also have a couple of other stops so I’m doomed to face Old Man Winter.

Nothing much is happening. It is a quiet week. When I was a kid, weather like this meant a day of reading or playing in the cellar or playing board games. We’d set the games up on the living room rug and get ourselves comfortable. We’d play Sorry, Monopoly, Clue or cards. Our favorite card games were crazy eights and steal the old man’s pack. We all had the competitive gene from my dad so game times often got loud. My mother would yell from the kitchen about playing nicely or not at all, a typical mother comment. We mostly ignored it.

The sky is cloudy, the sort of color which looks cold, even steely. Though the house is warm a metal table here in the den is cold to the touch. Blasts of hot air from the furnace  seem to come one after another trying to keep the house warm. I’m wearing flannel around the house pants, a sweatshirt and slippers. Only my hands get cold.

The news last night showed pictures of sea smoke or steam fog which happens when very cold air moves over warmer water. It was a bit strange, even eerie, to see the smoke hovering over the white caps. I don’t remember seeing that before.

It is already colder than it was this morning, down to 12˚. I’m watching the news and the outside reporters look a bit like Randy in A Christmas Story. The weather lady is predicting polar like winds and maybe more snow. I am definitely going to layer my clothes and hunt for my hats and mittens. This is not the time to be fashionable.

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“Yes! Yes I do! I like Christmas! I love Christmas!”

December 10, 2017

Winter wonderland skipped us. We got rain the whole day, heavy rain at times. In the late afternoon, when I let Gracie out and brought trash to the car at the same time, we both got soaked. She wasn’t thrilled. My sister got around 6 inches of snow. I watched the news and saw the snow in Texas, an unusual occurrence in San Antonio. I laughed out-loud when a kid did a snow angel. Obviously snow was new to him. He did the angel face down.

Yesterday was a day of doing little for me. I made four or five trips carrying stuff like the displaced by the tree living furniture upstairs, wrote out more cards and went through catalogs but mostly I just sat. All the hauling up and down stairs made me tired. Today I have more energy and a to-do list. Gracie and I are going to the dump, to the small grocery store for bread and such and Agway for cat and dog food. I will decorate my wreaths and put them outside, and I’ll bring up bins from the cellar with the tree lights and some decorations. If I have any energy left, I’ll at least put on the tree lights. Tonight I’ll make myself a nice dinner and have some egg nog and watch Hallmark.

When I was a kid, Santa Claus had power over me. If I did anything wrong or fought with my brother, my mother threatened to call Santa. That was enough to get us to stop. I remember trips to Jordan Marsh to visit Santa. We’d take the bus to Sullivan Square then the subway to the Jordan’s stop. In those days Jordan’s and Filene’s had entrances from the stores to the subway. They were destinations.

I love Boston at Christmas time. The city is filled with people, some shopping, some just enjoying the festivities. The trees in the Common are lit for the holiday. Frog Pond is open for skating or for just sitting and watching the skaters while drinking a cup of cocoa. The giant tree from Nova Scotia is covered in lights. Small push wagons around the common sell roasted chestnuts and hot popcorn. Garlands hang from stores and street lights. People just seem happier.

My town was always decorated for Christmas. Swags of evergreen were hung from one side of the main street to the other. The store windows had trees and wrapped gifts and Santas. Carolers sang every night. The aroma of sugar cookies and bread wafted from Hank’s Bakery and hung in the air. The fire station was outlined in lights, and Santa was climbing a ladder to the chimney. I loved going uptown at night, and I still remember singing in the square.

I get excited for Christmas even now. I love the lights, and I could eat a dozen sugar cookies. Christmas music plays in the car and around the house when I’m decorating or baking. I sing along, out of tune, but that doesn’t matter. It’s Christmas!

“There are only ten minutes in the life of a pear when it is perfect to eat.”

May 1, 2017

My patience is exhausted so I’m putting Mother Nature on notice. Make up your mind. Is it spring or isn’t it? My heat went on for a bit this morning, and I had to add another afghan as I was cold. The gray sky has returned, and it rained earlier this morning. My dance card has a bunch of house stuff to do like the laundry. It overfloweth. I have some trash and recyclables which I need to move to the trunk. Tomorrow will be dump day, but I have to get a new sticker first. Be still my heart!

When I was a kid, I could eat hot dogs every day. The best were barbecued, but that was on the weekends when my father was home. During the week, my mother fried or boiled them. When she fried them, she’d make cuts across the dogs so both inside and outside got browned. I used yellow mustard and piccalilli. Toasted buns were the best.

 

During the week, my mother served some sort of meat with potatoes and vegetables. The vegetables were frequent flyers, the list of what we liked was limited. We had mashed potatoes, corn, peas, carrots or some sort of squash. Butternut was our favorite.

My mother made great brownies. They were always frosted with chocolate and sprinkled with jimmies (the Boston/New England word for chocolate sprinkles). I liked the harder, outside edges.

Bananas were my favorite fruit. They were the easiest to eat. Just peel. I also liked them on my cereal though they always sank to the bottom. My mother used to peel the apples for us because we didn’t like the peel. I didn’t mind it when I got older. She’d cut the oranges into eighths and take out the seeds. We loved watermelon but ate it only in the summer. I don’t think it was available winters. I didn’t like the seeds in grapes. We used to pick pears off the tree in the next yard. I think they were never as I remember them being hard to bits. Blueberries came in a pie and strawberries in a shortcake. Pineapples and coconut came later. I think coconut is my favorite now.

I think my laziness dictates my meals. I don’t often make dinner. Lunch is a sandwich or hummus, or something equally easy. Cereal is sometimes dinner. I’m into Frosted Flakes, and I still add bananas.

“Happiness is when you are content with who you are, what you are, and where you are.”

April 28, 2017

The morning has already been a strange one. Gracie woke me up at seven. It was legitimate. She ran into the backyard. I got the paper. Notice I said paper. The Boston Globe wasn’t there. I put my coffee on and sat down to read the Cape Times. I heard a rumble. It sounded like a big truck on my street, but then the rumbling started again. It was thunder, mighty loud thunder. My lights went out. It was only for a few minutes but was a major nuisance. I had to reset my CD player, my microwave and my coffee maker which had totally stopped in mid-brew. It took me longer to get everything on time than the electricity had been off.

After the election, I decided not to be the political news junkie I had been, but that was like my making my yearly New Year’s resolutions which I never seem to keep. I can’t stay away from what is happening. The worst is yesterday’s Trump comment, “There’s a chance there will be a major, major conflict with North Korea, absolutely.” I wonder, though, how enthused South Korea is about all this since they just received their bill from President Trump who wants South Korea to pay around $1 billion for the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery. South Korea said no. The Korean nuclear problem is, of course, Obama’s fault. Flynn’s disregard for the law is also Obama’s fault. Building the wall has now become a metaphor. We should have known Trump meant building up security around the border.

I have to go to the dentist this morning to have my teeth cleaned. I have a few errands after that. Gracie and I went to the dump yesterday. It wasn’t on my list, but the trash in the trunk needed to go. It had been a bit long. I had to open all the car windows.

Gracie and I went to the dump yesterday. It wasn’t on my list, but the trash in the trunk needed to go. It had been a bit long. I had to open all the car windows.

When I was a kid, my father used to drag the trash barrels to the sidewalk on the morning of the trash pickup. He’d get mad if he found the empty barrels still on the sidewalk when he got home. We didn’t really care when he blustered at us about our laziness. We looked interested, but it was a blah, blah, blah thing. That’s a skill kids learn early.

I’m back, and I am a bad mother to Gracie. I put her in her crate and left. When I got home, there was dog poop on the PeeWee pads I keep down for the cat. There were a couple of small piles off the paper and a trail into the kitchen. Gracie was standing in the living room wagging her tail for all she is worth. It seems I closed but didn’t latch the crate. Gracie is a nervous wreck loose in the house when I’m not here. She loves being safe in her crate. I was just surprised Gracie figured out what the pads were as she never used them.

It’s time to take off my outside clothes for my comfy clothes. I’m having Chinese food for lunch, leftover from dinner last night. Gracie is happy, Maddie is sleeping. All’s right wit the world.

 

“Shut the door not that it lets in the cold but that it lets out the coziness.”

February 16, 2017

Last night we had a sprinkling of snow, less than an inch. The sun was out when I woke up but has since given way to clouds. The melting has stopped. Cold is creeping in, and it is down to 32˚. We’ll have flurries today.

Yesterday it poured most of the day. Gracie and I went to the dump, and, of course, it started to rain just then. I got wet.

I’m ignoring my lists. The last few days I have been lazy and have crossed off nothing, except the trash and the dump from Saturday’s list.

Winter is a time for hibernation, and I think I’m hibernating in my own way. My days are routine. I mostly stay inside. I find ways to keep myself occupied. I watch TV. I read, and every now and then I randomly clean. I live in my comfy clothes. Afternoon naps are common. The phone rings and strange phone numbers from all over the country appear in the corner of my TV. I don’t ever answer, and they don’t ever leave a message. They interrupt my naps.

Spring training has started. The Globe is filled with baseball stories. I read them all. Thoughts of baseball conjure green grass, warm days and steamed hot dogs.

I hate commercials, but I don’t hate them all equally. Some I hate more than others. The Dole fruit cup commercial where the haughty woman says to her husband, “Oh, they are drainers,” is the worst. She looks at the other couple as if they are plague carriers instead of drinkers of sweetened fruit juice. I change the station.

The catalogs stopped for a while, after the Christmas sales were over, but now they’re back. Some I toss right away into the recycle bag. Others I thumb through hoping to find a treasure.

It’s time for lunch: chicken noodle soup from one of my favorite places, Spinners. The soup is perfect for a cold winter’s day. It warms the innards.

“Winter is not a season, it’s an occupation.”

December 10, 2016

The day is mostly cloudy with only a bit of blue. It is really cold. Last night was in the teens. Right now it’s 24˚. The weather will stay cold until Wednesday when we’ll be back to the 40’s.  I’m going off Cape today to see the play Mame. My sister and I do a play then dinner every Christmas season. My mother started the tradition. One of the plays she took us to was Death of a Salesman with Brian Dennehy. It was superb but was the fodder for jokes about Christmas cheer and the season to be jolly. I love this tradition.

I wanted a band to greet me when I got home yesterday from my errands. The Christmas boxes are wending their way to Colorado, the trash is dumped, and the last present bought. I even stopped and picked up clam chowder for dinner. It was delicious.

Last night I made the fudge for my sister. It didn’t look right, but I put it in the fridge expecting it to harden. When I checked it later, it was soft. Around 1, before I went to bed, I checked it and it was still soft. I knew I did something wrong, a first for me with this fudge. I figured I’d make it this morning but then realized I wouldn’t have time. I made it last night. While stirring to the soft ball stage, I realized I had read the thermometer wrong on the first batch. A silly mistake! By the time I was finished making the fudge and cleaning the kitchen, it was close to 2, but I am glad I am not disappointing my sister. This batch hardened.My mother often forgot one of our presents hidden in the house. When we’d open the gifts on Christmas morning, she’d remember because it was missing. Sometime during the day, a brand new present would appear under the tree. I remember one year she forgot the ice skates she had bought me, not the white ones I already had but an antique pair with straps you attached right to your shoes and a single blade with a curl at the ends. She had tucked them behind my other presents as if I had overlooked them. I didn’t care. I liked the surprised of this really neat gift.

The sun is now out but the day isn’t any warmer. I’ll bundle up.

“Even though it’s dark and cold there is always a shade of light.”

November 27, 2016

The turkeys know they are free to come out of hiding. Yesterday I saw 14 of them taking their time strolling across a lawn, stopping to scratch for food or just standing there looking majestic which is quite a feat for turkeys to pull off. I got out of the car and used my phone for pictures wishing I had my camera with me. They began moving away one by one from me while still looking for food. I watched as the stragglers caught up with the rest of the rafter then I drove away.

It rained on and off as I shopped yesterday. I didn’t go to many stores, but I still managed to spend a bit of money. My last stop was for a few groceries and lunch. I treated myself to a quesadilla, a pulled pork quesadilla with a side of guacamole. I bought Gracie a special biscuit. I bought all the ingredients for a chocolate cream pie for game night tonight, but we’re not having a game night. I don’t dare to make the pie anyway as I’d eat it all.

Today is a lovely day, sunny and seasonally warm. My dance card has only a single item, the dump. I’ve already filled most of the trunk and have only a couple of bundles sitting by the front door waiting to be put into the car. Gracie will go crazy when she sees me going outside. She’ll know it is dump day.

I put a new plastic on the dog door. The old one was disgusting. Gracie now stands on the deck and looks through the clear plastic to the kitchen. I have no idea what she is looking for, but whatever it is makes no never mind. She comes in when she sees me. This morning the plastic was on the ground. The four screws didn’t seem to hold it. Two of the holes were bigger than the screws, but they were the same as on the old plastic which held for years. I must have forgotten the trick of making the screws stay in the holes. I tried again this morning and screwed them back into the plastic. I have high hopes.

Some of my neighbors have their houses lit for Christmas. It makes me anxious to have my house and deck lit. I love the way the colored lights in the front and the bright white star on the gate shine through the darkest of nights. I sometimes sit in my car just looking at my house and yard.