Thursday, June 30, 2011

What I Read #50

Hot Mahogany by Stuart Wood: Another Stone Barrington novel. This time Stone is invloved with antique American furniture worth millions. Lance Cabot's brother, Barton is a dealer in this antique furniture. A piece worth several million seems to be missing. Stone is trying to find it. Along with his cop buddy Dino, Stone travels to upstate Connecticut not only to spy on the people he thinks are involved in the theft, but to shack up with other men's wives.
This novel is typical Woods. Fast paced, and humorous, it's a quick and entertaining read.

Happy Reading,

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Weird Phone Call

I just got a strange, and somewhat comical phone call. Someone called in regards to my son's ex wife. Now, bear in mind, he was married to this witch for about 5 months way back in 1999. Big mistake, and one that he PAID dearly for. Who ever this caller was, wanted information about this woman, quoting many last names, indicating that she has been married numerous times since being my brief daughter-in-law.
My response amused the caller. I said that she was no relative of ours. That she was married to my son very briefly way back in 1999. A hard lesson, but he learned it! I went on to say that if this guy found her, just take her out and shoot her. He would be doing the whole world a favor. And, if she owed him money, good luck! He might as well kiss it goodbye 'cause he would never see it. Oh, and "if you find her, just eliminate her, please!"
He was dumbstruck, but I am betting that he doesn't call back here again.
It's too weird when ghosts from the past rear their UGLY heads. Her's was one UGLY one I would just rather not be reminded of.

Lookin' for some Peace,

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

What I Read #49

Spider Web by Earlene Fowler: Another great novel in the Benni Harper series. There is a sniper loose in San Celina, causing chaos and confusion. Benni's husband Gabe Ortiz, police chief of San Celina, and his officers are having no luck finding any clues to who is doing the shooting. But the shootings seemed to be targeted towards law enforcement officers.
All of this, combined with the arrival of a mysterious person from Gabe's past, makes for an interesting read. Every one of Fowler's novels that I read seems to get better. They bring back thoughts of a happier time when my late wife was living. Earlene Fowler was her favorite author and Benni her favorite character. She got me hooked on them, and now I anxiously await each new one.
I donated my wife's Fowler novels (she collected them all) to a small, nearby library. It looks like I will have to add this one to their collection.

Happy Reading,

Summer Solstice

Today is the beginning of summer. It is said to be the longest day of the year. This brings on some feelings of wonder to this writer. Now the days will star getting shorter, light will not last as long, and before long, whether we want it or not, fall will be upon us.
Do not despair! There is still plenty of sunshine and heat out there. I just got back from my walk a few minutes ago. I'm glad I got up and got going early, because today promises to be a scorcher. Highs in the mid 90's with thunderstorms expected off and on later. Looking ahead, it is supposed to cool down later in the week. This is good for me, but my brother and sister-in-law are coming for a week, and they just aren't used to cool in the summertime. The last time they were here, it got down in the 50's at night, and they went around closing windows
and doors. When I make up their bed, I will have to remember to add an extra blanket for them.
As I grow older, it seems like the days pass so fast. I can remember as a kid, being raised on a lake, that Big Bro and I spent lazy days lolling in the sunshine and water. Swimsuits went on upon arising and we lived in them until bedtime. Days lasted forever. Now, they speed by. Time itself hasn't changed, but my internal clock sure has. Now, as I watch my little grands grow, and look at Kiddo, who is off to college in just a few short weeks, I marvel at how rapidly time has
Can we slow it down? No, all we can do is enjoy each day and all that it has to offer. Live, laugh, and love. That's really the three most important verbs to live by at any age.


Monday, June 20, 2011

37 Things About JE. (Not My Real Name.)

1. I descend from Irish/German. Both family lines have been in North America at least since 1843.

2. I am the youngest of two boys. I am the shortest in height, and look the oldest, which probably pleases my older brother.

3. Both parents are gone now; when they were alive they were fantastic parents,who really loved each other.

4. I collect nothing anymore. To much dusting. My late wife and I collected Nativity Scenes. Now all but a couple remain in boxes in the garage.

5. I like music related art work.

6. Milk makes me ill. But I can eat ice cream; go figure.

7. Coffee is my drink of choice. No latte or mocha, just coffee, fresh ground, please.

8. I try to walk every day. And watch my diet very closely.

9. I enjoy Opera. My favorite opera is “La Boheme”.

10. My favorite composer is Bach.

11. I am a certified Paraprofessional in Special Education .

12. I have gone through many heartaches and have survived..

13. After 66 years of living in the Midwest, I still live in the Midwest: Indiana.

14. I take medicine for high blood pressure and high cholesterol/triglycerides.

15. I have smoked tobacco and marijuana (once.). I quit smoking in 2000.

16. I hope I never stop learning and growing.

17. My fears – snakes, wind, dying alone.

18. I love to read. I would choose a book over most activities most of the time.

19. Things I haven’t ever done (so far) – , been arrested,( even for a traffic violation,) bungee jumped, or had a passport.

20. I love to garden; not the mowing or weeding, but planting things and watching them grow is fascinating.

21. Some of my favorite things – thunderstorms, a back rub, Netflix, Margaritas, and other things which would make this blog "not safe for work." Beside that, my kids read this!

22. I continue to operate on the advice of "Make a joyful unto the Lord."

23. I never heard of blogs until 2006. Now I am ‘quite into it’ and enjoy the opportunity to write and ‘meet others’ through their writing.

24. I have your basic "Procrastination" wiring. It drives those around me "nuts" but they adjust.

25. I am Protestant, Methodist.

26. I am ambidextrous, but write right handed. Eat left.

27. I have a small hump at the base of my neck.

28. I can’t operate the X Box 360 or Play Station that my grandson hooks up to my TV.

29. I taught English at a 2 year college for a while.

30. I am aggravated by ignorance, rude people, and drivers using cell-phones.

31. I make crocheted stuff, my own greeting cards,and I have even made a few quilts.

32. I tend to ramble if I talk too much.

33. I speak some Spanish; I do English well; my choice of subjects to teach.

34. I don't like hot and spicy foods; I love Ice Cream!

35. My favorite mustard is Dijon.

36. I think it would be fun to meet people with whom I blog, and my pen pal in New Zealand.

37. I want to see Nova Scotia before I die.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

What I Read #48

Bleachers by John Grisham: For 34 years Eddie Rake coached football in Messina. Now Coach Rake is dying of cancer. In his last days, word went out, and former players began returning to Messina to hold a vigil.
This is the story of that vigil, and the memorial service that took place after Coach passed away. It is a bittersweet story of several men who, as teenagers, played for Rake. They gather in the stands of Rake Field, drink beer, and reminisce. Some have become successes, some have not, but they all have the glory days of high school football in common. This is the time to share that commonality.
I was moved by this book. It brought back memories of my high school time in a very small community. The game of choice there was basketball, instead of football, but the feelings of the community were the same. For several years, we had a losing team, then Coach Piper came on the scene. He succeeded where other coaches failed. This novel reminded me of those days where our Tigers, my brother included, brought home trophy after trophy.
A feel-good read, this is a short book. Very unlike you expect from Grisham, but in the same flavor as his Playing for Pizza.

Happy Reading,

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Quote That Touched My Very Soul Today!

I read this this morning and it's been on my mind all day today. When I think about it, it really touches me right where I live!

"There comes a time in your life, when you walk away from all the drama and people who create it. You surround yourself with people who make you laugh. Forget the bad, and focus on the good. Love the people who treat you right, pray for the ones who don't. Life is too short to be anything but happy. Falling down is a part of life, getting back up is living."

Walking away is never easy, forgetting is even harder.


Common Sense and More!

Mellodee, a fellow blogger over at "Mellodee's Musings" wrote an entry about a runner/jogger in her Austin, TX neighborhood that was hit by a car and killed. It was determined by the Austin police that the jogger was trying to cross against the light at a busy intersection and got hit by a car. Anyone familiar with heavy city traffic knows that this is a "no-no."
It seems that whenever something like this happens, the driver of the vehicle is to blame. Well, since I have begun walking, I can say that this is not true at all. I have seen pedestrians try to beat a light, a train, and vehicles. Bicyclers don't obey the laws of the road, and joggers press their luck by jogging in the street, during the busiest times of day, and seem to think everyone should watch out for them.
Mellodee thinks, and I agree wholeheartedly with her, that the following rules should be posted in every town, newspaper, blog, internet service, etc. They might just save some lives. (But only if the city officials enforce them.)

1. Follow all applicable traffic and pedestrian laws.

2. NEVER attempt to "beat" traffic or a stop light.
3. Do not assume that you have the right-of way at all times!
4. PAY ATTENTION!! Don't get lost in "the zone", always pay attention to automobiles, motorcycles, bikes, pedestrians, and your surroundings in populated areas.
5. Use common sense and do not expect others to watch out for you! Your safety? Your responsibility!


What I Read #47

Perfect Peace by Daniel O. Black: When Emma Jean Peace gives birth to her seventh son, she is determined to fool the whole community by raising that son as the daughter she always wanted. Never giving it a thought to how it will affect the child's life, she showers "Perfect" with everything she hasn't given her sons. Even love.
When "Perfect" discovers "she" is a "he" it not only shatters Emma Jean's dream, and life, it becomes the talk of the small, black community of Swamp Creek. Why did Emma Jean do this? Has she lost her mind?
Despite criticism and cruelty within his own family and the community, Perfect, now Paul, rises above it all as he grows up. But will he ever find perfect peace?
In this novel, Daniel Black has opened up rural, black Southern lives, baring them raw. The uneducated, yet hard working people of the mid-twentieth century were a complex breed, and Black has shown us just how complex.
I was captivated by this work. The further I read, the more I wanted too. Black is a dynamic voice for the plight of his people. This poignant story lets us know just how dynamic he is!

*Note: All images of this book cover must be copyrighted. I couldn't download one. Sorry!

Happy Reading,

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

What I Read #46

Playing The Game by Barbara Taylor Bradford: I know what you're thinking...more "chick lit." (Excuse me ladies, that is not political correct, but you get the idea). Well, let me tell you, folks, this was a very good read, and interesting to boot.
Annette Remmington is the owner of her own art dealership. She deals in "high-end" art that only the very rich can afford. One of her clients inherits an estate filled with art. He calls in Annette to appraise the paintings and sculpture. And she finds an obscure Rembrandt worth millions.
But that's not all she finds. But, my friends, you gotta read on to find out just what and who she finds.
The art dealt with in this novel is real, even though the characters, time, place, etc. are fiction. I learned a lot about art and what makes it either of value or worthless. Put this one on your summer reading list.

Happy Reading

Friday, June 10, 2011

Fractured Friday Stuff!

On Wednesday I told you readers that I bought a French coffee press and I love it. My sister-in-law told me last evening that some guru in the Dallas area said that using a French press releases some enzyme in the coffee that raises ones bad cholesterol. Darn, as if I didn't have enough of a fight with that stuff (the cholesterol, not the coffee), now I gotta worry about using the French press. Well, I decided "to heck with that," we all have to go sometime, right? And I still like my French press and I'm gonna use it. The only thing I don't care for, is the dregs in the bottom of the cup, but I just dump them out when I get down that far.


Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Random Wednesday Stuff

I have risen early every day since(and including) Sunday. I feel better physically and mentally from not laying in bed forever.

Yard work is progressing, slowly but surely, though it would go faster if it wasn't so d**** hot and humid out there.

Prof and her beau are splitzville. I feel sorry for her going through this crap once again.

Only 73 more days until Kiddo leaves for college. It will be a glad/sad day around here.

My two little grands are growing up so fast! The Divine Miss K is almost 3 already, and RJ turned 1 last week. He looks so much like his daddy.

I started Weight Watchers today. My points allowed aren't unlivable once I get used to weighing and measuring everything.

I liked it better when my Best Friend, Curley, didn't work so many days a week. It limits our yakking time.

I haven't heard from fellow blogger, Mellodee, in over a week. Maybe the Southern heat has gotten to her. Where are you Mel?

My schedule of events for the next few months includes too many dr. appointments. Heart, ear, eyes, teeth, prostate, annual physical, blood work. Ugh! This getting old is not for sissies, and it's d*** expensive. (But, alas, better than the alternative.)

I begin exercising in earnest today. Walking will be my exercise of choice.

I still get to drink as much black coffee as I want.

I am not going to talk my diet to death, just will keep you up on the latest losses. (That's the whole point, anyway, and I intend to exercise bragging rights.)

Prof wants a new job. I keep praying every day that one is on the horizon for her. Not because I want her gone from here, I just want her happy. She's been sad long enough.

There's too much drama in life.

I bought a French coffee press and I love it. Now I want a bigger one. Mine is only 1 cup!

Well, coffee is brewed and waiting. I need it!


Sunday, June 05, 2011

What I Read #45

The Brave by Nicholas Evans: The story of Tommy Bedford, a young boy from a dysfunctional British family. Tommy hides is discomfort with his family by watching American westerns on TV. Fearing that they will be snubbed my their peers, Tommy's parents send him off to boarding school at age 8. Here, he is bullied, yet learns to fight back.
When his sister, an accomplished British stage actress is offered a part in an American movie, Tommy is "hijacked" and goes to Hollywood with her. This is a move that changes his life forever.

This novel by the author of The Smoke Jumper and The Horse Whisperer is certainly different from his other books. I found the story hard to follow at times because it kept jumping from when Tommy was a child, to when he was an adult. The only way to tell when the time frame changed was when his name went from Tommy to Tom or vise-versa.

Though I enjoyed The Brave, I didn't think it compared to some of Evan's earlier works.

Happy Reading,

Saturday, June 04, 2011

What I did Today or "I Am Pooped"

Today I decided to work outside. I went to the stores and bought geraniums, spikes, salvia, impatens and mulch. I laid down the black vinyl sheeting that goes under mulch. Then I put down mulch. I planted my salvia in pots and in the ground, and I planted the impatens in a pot with a spike. The I planted my porch boxes with geraniums and spikes. I got out the new birdbath that I brought home from Texas. I put together the new water feature, and set around the other pieces of yard art. I weeded, fed, weeded, and weeded some more.
This evening, I am sore. I am so out of shape from being a slug all winter and spring and not doing much but crafting and reading. But, I am proud of what I did, and how it looks. Of course, it is a work in progress and needs more mulch and a lot of TLC. This was just on the east side of the house. I haven't begun to work on the front, or west side, and the back always just gets a "lick and a promise." But I want to make it pretty, too. It's mostly shaded, so I can find plenty to do all day long out there.
Got to go take some more Tylenol.


Thursday, June 02, 2011

What I Read #44

Mourning Gloria by Susan Wittig Albert: Another China Bayles mystery. The town of Pecan Springs is in a turmoil over a arson-homicide. China is in the throes of helping Sheriff Blackie solve the ugly crime.
Join China and the gang as they go about operating their businesses in downtown Pecan Springs. Be aware that China's husband, McQuaid, is out of town, giving China even more freedom to spring into action as her own personal investigator.
Discussed in this novel are many plants as usual, only you will find that some of the most innocent plants that even you may have growing, have psychoactive properties. These discussions make this an even more entertaining read.
Whittig-Albert has again brought the reader to the fictitious Texas town of Pecan Springs, and makes it and the people living so believable that you want to visit.

Happy Reading,

Wednesday, June 01, 2011


Since early on, I have been a car affectionado. The very first car I remember from my childhood is a 1951 Chevrolet Bel Air Deluxe. It was dark blue with a white top. It was a two-door coupe. Dad always liked nice cars, and was financially able to trade every 2 years. I remember a 1957 Oldsmobile Super 88. Charcoal gray with gobs of chrome. All of our cars sported white sidewall tires, too. We had a 1959 Ford Galaxie, too. Dad was on his way into work one morning and the local vet ran a stop sign and T-Boned the Galaxie. Insurance insisted on having it fixed, but it was never right after that, and besides Dad never was a Ford fan. A 1960 Pontiac Ventura replaced the Ford, and we never owned another "Found On Road Dead."
I learned to drive when I was 12. I learned in Mom's 1958 Chevrolet. I was allowed to drive, with Mom on the country roads around where we lived. If I was really nice, and played my cards right, I could usually talk Mom into letting me chauffeur her to Grandpa B's, taking the "back way" which was all country roads, and was about 20 miles.
When I legally began driving, I bought my first car. A 1954 Plymouth Savoy. Boy, I thought I was living. It was a two door, and a standard shift. It only had one thing wrong with it; when the temperature got below freezing, it wouldn't start. Well, Dad drove it to work one day for some reason or another, and when he came out of the office, it was colder, and the Plymouth wouldn't start. He insisted that I trade it off the next day, and helped me do it. I moved up to a 1957 Chevrolet. Every guy's dream car. Wish I still had it. Wow! Black with a white top.
Other cars I owned while in my bachelor years were a Volkswagon Beetle, a 1963 Nova, and a 1966 Chevy Impala Super Sport. Ah! Those were the days.
Car shopping now a days is not nearly as much fun. For one thing, have you ever suffered from sticker shock. I remember paying $3600 for my "66 SS. Brand New!
Another thing, all the cars look pretty much the same. What ever happened to being able to tell not only what kind of car, but exactly what body style it was? Now I can't tell a Chevy from a Toyota or a Nissan or Honda. They all look alike!!! Aren't car makers interested in class and style anymore. Where is their imagination and ingenuity?
I long for the day of Tail fins and chrome. Real steel and metal, not so much plastic. There was something to say for the old "boats" of years gone by. They had class, they had style, they were comfortable to ride in. Yes, they used gas much faster and were not eco-friendly, but we have lost something that was near and dear to my heart.