Mo Jo and Gidget and Ethel and Lucy go to the Eye Doctor (Krissie)

So  … my excuse for coming down here was to take Jenny to the eye doctor, where they usually dilate her eyes, rendering her unable to drive, and even give her a shot in the eye (squick!)  Unfortunately, neither Jenny nor I have any sense of direction, and I hadn’t been able to find my GPS before I came down this time.   Being responsible, we had both looked up the directions on our computers, compared notes, and took off with the assurance we would find our way there.  The last time we’d gotten lost and were half an hour late – that wasn’t going to happen again.

So, we left with twenty minutes to spare.  Uh … no.  We started down Route 206 and suddenly we were on i-80, which wasn’t supposed to happen.  But okay, next exit was 206 and we took it and sailed on down the road.  After a while Ethel er … Jenny hadn’t noticed any signs to Hackettstown, so I pulled over, looked at my phone and saw we were on the right road.  We persisted.  (Not always a good idea).  Finally about an hour later we pulled over, Jenny called her doctor to tell him we were lost in the wilds of New Jersey, and I checked Maps again.  Apparently the last time I checked I hadn’t realized that the place I thought was our end point had been our beginning point and we had to go back for half an hour.

So, I get the direction thing going on the phone and finally get there (just a few more wrong turns easily fixed), just an hour and a half late.  Okay, we’re there.  They were not pleased.  We sit for a little bit, Jenny looks out the windows and says “Oh, there’s the cutest dog …” and then she leaps up like Road Runner with an Acme Exploding Bird Seed under him, races to the receptionist and then out the door, saying a woman had collapsed.  We all rush out.  The woman is lying on the sidewalk, blood pouring in front of her, her ancient and darling toy poodle prancing around in concern.  (That was Gidget).  Jenny, whose priorities are clear, grabbed the dog, the nurse went to the lady, sent other sback for something to mop up the blood.  I scooped up her keys and an earring and her glasses.  She couldn’t get up — she’d tripped, probably, but she’d just gone straight down without trying to catch herself, and then hadn’t moved.  The blood came from her chin, and she was unable to get up because she’d just had two hips replaced.  We kept her company, I went back and forth with information (her name, etc), killed the bugs that were crawling toward her in her pool of blood, then took the dog when the doctor (who’d come out to check) saw Jenny.  The police came, the ambulance came, they were able to patch her up and let her go, and we reluctantly surrendered Gidget to her (after Jenny helped her to her car). She was very very grateful, of course, but we stayed and watched her leave – her license plate said Jo Mo (hence the Mo Jo because her name was Judy and her last name began with a V).

So the, after all that excitement we went to Target and rewarded ourselves with new 18 inch dolls and McDonalds, came back home and napped.

Ah, New Jersey!

I’m writing, Jenny’s making vast improvements on clearing out her house, and as usual I’m staying an extra day.  I always have too much fun to go home when I plan to.

Anyway, good times at Squalor on the Lake, and Milton likes me more than he likes her, ha ha ha!  (I’m going to steal him)

Oh, and it turns out I didn’t need to come down to take her to the eye doctor – he didn’t give her a shot in the eye or dilate her. Still, it made a good excuse, and I made her pay for McDonalds. Life’s an adventure.

Typical conversation in the car-

Jenny: If I were a better person I’d like wine
Krissie: If I were a better person I’d be a Lesbian.

We spent a moment brooding on our inadequacies and drove off down the road.

Heat Wave (Krissie)

I’m at Crusie’s. I came down to drive her to the eye doctor (she might have to get a shot in the eye – at the very least she’ll be dilated and god knows how hard it is to drive dilated. (And no, I never had babies so I’m not thinking about dilated cervices and childbirth). Stopped at Hobby Lobby on the way, beating myself up as I did (I know, I know, morally indefensible, but it’s the only one in the state and there are some things that can’t be f0und elsewhere. At least I didn’t give those judgmental bastards very much money). Anyway, listened to the end of DIRTY by Kylie Scott and it was excellent! Then started White Hot by Ilona Andrews, a book I’ve been waiting for, forever, and it’s as good as I hoped. Went through cloudbursts with zero visibility, got down here about 4:30 (left at 9 am). So good to be here – I was really in the mood to be here. Well, I always am, but for some reason I was particularly psyched.
We went to Applebees, came back, talked talked talked and then headed to bed. I know, not terribly exciting but I thought y’all would like to hear how we hang out. “You know you’re good friends when one of you comes to visit and you both nap.” That’s Jenny and me.
Today we wait for the arrival of her brand new iPad Pro. I’m so excited – more than she is, I think. I’m about to do some writing (this is procrastinating) and later we’ll crochet and watch tv – tomorrow the eye doctor. Life is good.
Funny thing – the moment I arrive Milton must sit beside me. He ignores Jenny but has to cuddle with me.
In fact, I seem to draw small children and pets to me – that is really a glorious compliment!
Anyway, I’ll give you updates, but basically we’re going to eat and shop and crochet and watch television, rinse, repeat. It is such a fucking treat to have a BFF, and I’ve actually got two – a legacy one and a new (30 years or so) one. I live in a tiny town and a tiny state where I don’t really have anyone to go to the movies with, go shopping with, except Richie, who keeps me divinely happy but sometimes you just need another woman. Crusie in NJ is worth half a dozen in Vermont – I go for quality, not quantity (though I’d accept quantity too – I’m just a nice, friendly person).

And you know, I’m not sure I need to reinvent my fabulousness. I’m pretty fucking fabulous already.

As are we all. I think maybe we don’t need to reinvent as much as recognize. Though maybe it has to do with the time in one’s life. We started this 5 years ago, when Jenny and I were looking at 65 and Lani was newly divorced. It was time to reinvent ourselves. Jenny moved, Lani … er … made a mistake, but she’s golden now, and I needed to get out from under a cloud. We’ve gone through a lot of shit in the meantime, but we really are fabulous.

So – let’s claim a bit of fabulousness every day, because we all have it. Name one fabulous thing about yourself. It can be tiny or huge (I’m not talking body parts). I’ll start.

I have great hair. It’s no big deal, nature gave it to me, but still, it’s wonderful and I celebrate it!
Not sure where this will go – I’m making it up as I go along. Maybe Wednesday will be our official Claim your Fabulous day. Or hell, maybe every day. Gratitude, always an important thing, is implicit. But sometimes you just gotta celebrate!

All About You (Krissie)

But first, a word from our sponsors.

Amazon, bless them, has my FIRE series on sale for the month of June, and I strongly recommend the first and the third books. The second is good, but 1 and 3 are great, at least for me.  (Left to right those are 3, 2, 1).  (They’re only $1.99 and if you prefer audio you can buy the Kindle book and add audio for another $1.99, giving you a stellar audio book for only $3.98!  See, I like to save you money.)



Yeah, those look awful.  I need to work more with WordPress – like most people I just learn enough to make it work and then stop.  Anyway, the links are as follows:  Consumed (hot sex in Italy and an RV)  …  well, shit, I can’t make the links work.  Just go to Amazon.


And now, back to our scheduled program …

Hello, my darlings. It’s steaming hot! I live in Vermont for a number of reasons, and cooler weather is one of them, but every now and then we get a scorcher. Ugh.

So, I made progress last week. And then i got to play on the weekend – finished a regency dress for the AG doll and almost finished a dress for Ali the Fierce (my granddaughter). Back to work today, then pack, and tomorrow I head down to Crusie’s. She’s got another eye doctor appointment, and we’re going to see “Wonder Woman” and crochet and sew and talk and work. It’s going to be glorious.

I get to listen to the new Ilona Andrews book – the sequel to the one last summer, which I adored. OK, it would be nice if I had names. Lemme check. ah … BURN FOR ME was the first, and fabulous, and WHITE HOT is out now. Loved BURN FOR ME so much I’ve read it twice, and there are lots and lots of new books by great writers I could have read instead. So I’ll listen to WHITE HOT while I drive (after I finish up DIRTY by Kylie … Scott? Won the Audie for best romance and it’s good.)

So – writing books, reading books, sewing, coffee on the deck, great cats around me – life is good. Easy drives, visiting Crusie, Wonder Woman – life is even better. Gotta notice when things are going well. I have some nagging anxiety about Daniel and Tim (the kids) but it won’t do any good to be anxious, so I’m not thinking about it.

I’m just going to live my rich life and enjoy things.

How about you? Name three or four glorious things in your life that you can embrace. Hell, I suppose sewing isn’t that glorious but I love it, so for me it is.

And what’s on your agenda? I’ll try to take photos in NJ. Oh, and if anyone loves Richard Thompson (brilliant, wicked British musician) anywhere near as much as I do, Sirius XM is broadcasting a newly recorded concert today at noon on The Loft (my channel of choice).

But then, no one loves Richard Thompson as much as I do.

Memorial Day (Krissie)

I am so freaking tired! I was out visiting Sally, and we were on the go every day, it seems. Friday we went out for lunch, wandered around downtown Ann Arbor (me in a rented wheelchair), visited with my god-daughter’s very energetic young sons (and we’ve spent every day with them).

The next morning I got up at seven, packed, went to the airport, got on one plane, flew, got on the second plane, arrived in NH to have Richie drive me back (3 1/2 hours) to Vermont, fell into bed after midnight.

Woke up this morning at 8:00, rushed off to have breakfast with my babies (grandchildren), then we all came back to the house where I gave her the doll I got for her, then we brought all the AG dolls down and had a tea party, and generally chased around after them, having the best time in the world. (While I had tea, Richie and Alex made castles in the sand and then had a battle, until Ali went out and stomped on everything like Godzilla. By that point I was pretty exhausted, but I soldiered on and went down down to the other grandparents’ house while Alex rode his go-kart and Ali splashed in the wading pool with her cousin. She was so tired she kept falling asleep and then waking up again, and I followed (hobbling) her into the house where she played for a while, then when we went out again she asked me to pick her up.

Well, my replaced shoulder is killing me, my knees are getting worse, everything hurt from yesterday crammed into an airplane, but if my granddaughter wants me to carry her I will walk across hot coals for the chance. So I carried her back outside, took her to one bench, and then brought her back to the glider where I wrapped her in a blanket and proceeded to tell her a story of Princess Ali of Nepalistan and her magic bunny, Percival. (No false modesty – I am brilliant at making up long, involved, world-building stories for kids). She fell sound asleep, was down for the count at that point, but I stayed for dinner and then came home, exhausted.

But I’m helping someone put on a lunch today, and I promised to bring bread, and I doubted I’d find good, fresh bread at the store, so I threw the stuff for a Honey-Wheat bread into the bread machine and went to bed.  Woke up at midnight, took the loaf out, put the ingredients in for a buttermilk cornmeal bread, and went back to sleep.

Woke up this morning (far too early), started another loaf (whole wheat potato bread), then drove back down to the farm (the other grandparents) for breakfast. Ali wanted more of the princess Ali story, I gathered a new follower (Leila, Ali’s and Alex’s first cousin), so I sat and talked with all of them (and the grown-ups). I’d given Ali Kate’s old copy of The Paperbag Princess (fabulous book) and it was now her favorite book. She had to hear it every night. Yeah!
(For those who’ve never read it, the Paper Bag Princess ends up wearing a paper bag due to some misfortune, the prince comes to rescue her and says she’s smelly and dirty, and she says “I’ll rescue myself. Who needs a poopy old prince?” or words to that effect.)
Now I’m back home, the third loaf is done, and in ten minutes I go over to BJ’s house to help with a lunch for 20 people, and when that’s done I can come home and crash crash crash.

And that’s absolutely all I am going to do this week. I’m tired!!!!

So, what’s on your agenda? A nice cookout where the men do all the work? Time with grandchildren? I can’t even think about doing another thing – I’m barely hanging on as it is.

But tell me what’s going on. Anyone have any special plans for summer?

All About You

OOops I’ve been having too much fun. I’m out in Ann Arbor, having a lovely time (though I was crippled yesterday and slept all day). I’m having a great time with Sally’s grandkids (pictures to come) and we’re going to a mega quilt store, etc.
So, this week I will sleep late, do a little work if I can (Sally sleeps late) and we will sew together and maybe even write together and watch K-dramas and anime (we’ve already seen Howl’s Moving Castle) and OMG they have a Steak n Shake here!!! Just one visit and I’ll be happy!
We might get out to a movie too. They have a lovely place – set back, with only one neighbor in sight, and yet so close to shopping it’s dangerous (at least for me). But anyway, this is a week of indulgence for me.

What’s on your agenda?

All About You (Krissie)

Photo on 1-16-17 at 9.56 AM #2 Ah, me! (Which, incidentally, is what Juliet says at the beginning of the balcony scene). I’m full of quotes today. I looked at my image on Photo Booth and I looked soooooooooo old! But then the line from “Gigi” popped into my mind – “Am I getting old?” “Oh, no, not you!”
And now that song will be in my head all day.
I’m working on hauling out my office, but it’s a huge job. I need to figure out how to break it down-it gets too overwhelming. I keep grabbing boxes full of stuff and finding twenty differents places for things to go. I probably need to find ways to break it down, and yet, storing, tossing and giving away is a no brainer, but a lot of the stuff simply needs to go somewhere. Probably because my office is downstairs, I toss everything in there if I have to do a sudden cleaning (it’s always wrapping and present center during Christmas). I need to figure out how many receptacles I need and where to find ’em. I have one for giveaways, one for “to-file”, one for memorabilia (my mother’s writing, etc), trash, of course, one for office supplies …
Okay, bird by bird. I managed to write three days last week – I’m hoping for five this week but four will do. Things are always pulling at me. I’ve decided I can’t start swimming again – it’s too expensive and takes too long (25 miles away). (However, I’m seeing more surgeon tomorrow since it’s been a year since my shoulder replacement and it might be a good idea for the shoulder, in which case I’ll figure it out). So it’s gonna be writing in the morning, working on the house in the afternoon and sewing when I get the chance.

My pal Mort (Maggie Shayne) has a system where she breaks her days into segments – I think they’re two-hour ones. She puts them in spiritual terms, but I’m just trying to be as simple as possible. If I could implement that it would be perfect – one segment for writing every day (always with the option for keeping going), one segment for the house, one segment for fun. I’ve got to put some thought into it – how much downtime in between, etc. I’ll work on this and let you know how it goes.

Tomorrow the rest of the pets! I found a cat video on Amazon (as in, video for cats, with squirrels and birds) and our babies when crazy. Thunderpaws kept looking behind the flat screen, trying to find the squirrel, Lulubelle sat on the rug, transfixed. It was a hoot!

What’s on your agenda? (And no, I’m not getting old, right? Older, sure. I like that. I just wish it could go both ways).

Furry Family #2

SONY DSC First off, we’ve got Sylvester, the Cat, who lives with Betty from Maine. We had a Sylvester and Tweety – two factory kittens Richie brought home (he’d also taken the mom to the vet to be neutered so she wouldn’t keep having kittens). Then my Sylvester walked through an oil pan that Richie had used to change the oil in the car, and then left oil paw prints on an antique bedspread (the cat, not Richie). Henceforth he was Oiler.
FullSizeRender copy Then we have Cindy, who clearly loves dogs. The first photo is Bill, a wild soul they found covered in ticks who likes to cuddle (sans ticks, I assume) and the granny dog Ruby, who just crossed the Rainbow Bridge at age 18 and is still deeply missed. FullSizeRender copy 2 Then there’s Penny, a wanderer who preferred Cindy’s family to her original one, and last but not least IMG_1582 copyhere’s Jack, a rescue from 2004. Cindy’s a Good Woman.

More tomorrow – gotta write. Oh, and Mini-me is snowed in at the ski area she works for in South Lake Tahoe with no power, waiting for the roads to be cleared. It’s been an adventure for her. She has no critters because her husband’s allergic, but when they lived in England (in Kent) a neighbor kitty would drop by quite often, one with black mark under his nose whom they called Hitler. He was a very friendly cat, though, and not out to annex any nations, so it was okay.