• Felicitations Jim! This is working well for me as it's already the 14th here lol

  • That leap year thing. My birthday is tomorrow. So, I stay young for one more day. (If 80-ish is still considered young.)

  • I have seen my first butterflies of the year, as well as Robin, Forsythia, and turtles! Spring has sprung! We began April with a surprise heavy snow but it was gone within days. We had some 40s and 50, now we'll have summerish 60s and 70s. There's a Star Magnolia blooming on the corner, and we walked the botanical garden where the saucer Magnolias are budded out.
    there are daffodils, crocus, scylla, and snowdrops too.

  • Lots of rain and wind, but we missed the worst of this storm system, I think. Carpenter came yesterday and fixed the termite damage outside and inside. Roofers still haven't shown. Dark and dreary day.

  • Vitamin B6 can be helpful for sciatica.

  • My wife and I will be leaving on a three day weekend cruise. She has not been feeling well with sciatica nerve pain. We are taking this short cruise just to get back into the swing of things. I hope everyone else gets to feeling better.

  • DS doing better. Was able to drive me to eye dr yesterday. Not a good visit there - painful, Eye is bloody, sore and tearing. Looks worse than it is, but had a headache last night. Better today. Don't go back until June. Getting stuff done around the house. Patio almost ready for summer.

  • Beth, I hope your treatment , whichever you choose works for you.So sorry this is happening.
    Patsy, hope the leg gets better too.
    Also happy Vietnam Veteran's Day Jim, thank you for your service.

  • Happy Easter all!
    Wow, Jim that must have been quite an experience!
    I love the peeps dioramas@

    Well yesterday we got a bunch of snow...but it's a degree or so above freezing so it's a heavy sloppy mess. Our lovely neighbors shoveled the walk, so kind! I cleared my car, I may be going cross town to watch a friend's new dog while she goes to an appointment--the city has been clearing the main roads, so it should be ok, but she may decide to change the appointment because it is on the far side the opposite way.

  • Evening................HAPPY EASTER ALL!. Had a quiet day..........beautiful weather, cool nights very warm afternoons... everything is all green and new and blooms starting to appear here and there. Hope all of you are well!

  • And here is a photo of my old ship "Transcolumbia". I made several trips to Vietnam on her.

  • That ship striking a bridge in Baltimore and causing it to collapse reminded me of a similar incident back in my seafaring days. I was first engineer on a heavy lift ship called the "Transcolumbia". She was built with massive 30 inch diameter steel booms that could lift up to 200 tons. We were passing under a lift bridge with the booms in a vertical position. One of the booms struck the bridge as we were passing under. There was enough force that it actually bent the 30 inch steel boom but the bridge did not collapse. I guess they built that bridge a lot stronger. An investigation determined that the bridge was at fault. It had not been raised to the maximum height before our ship tried to pass under.

  • And consider that while using a cane, you don't get better, you get worse. Use it or lose it is very true. You're a fighter, so bite the bullet. Time is not your friend at an older age.

  • Beth: I am willing to walk with a cane, use a walker, a wheelchair, or whatever and keep what brain cells I have and not become mentally insufficient.... as did my MIL and couple of FOL friends I know. Deep anesthesia for older people is damaging - I was warned by my doctor daughter and my primary care physician and others.... and I have seen it happen already in the family. I will do my PT, strength training, etc. and try and keep my clear thinking in tact. I had knee replacement in that leg in 2018, and now I have femoral artery blockage...but my body has made new field of veins/arteries around it...............

    Hope you have a good outcome.... think you might be a bit younger than I.........


  • Beth, I remember one time a woman wrote to Dear Abbey that she wanted to go back to school for four years to become a lawyer. She was hesitant because when she got the degree she would be 44 years old. Abbey's reply was to ask how old she would be in four years if she didn't go back to school. If the surgery works you will be fine, no cane. If it doesn't work you will still be in the same situation needing a cane. A 65% success rate (think positive) seems worth trying. I don't like the idea of having to stay off you feet for three months but that seems better than being semi-helpless for the rest of your life.

  • Beth I think the biggest question is if the operation fails will you be worse off than you are now? If not, it seems there's little to lose by trying it seeing as the alternative is needing an aid to walk. And to be fair 35% is actually a low failure rate for a complicated surgery; might not seem like it but there are many many operations that have a failure rate way over 50%

  • Been a while since I visited. Had my epidural December 27, it helped a lot, but was hard to know as pain in hip became unbearable. Had left hip replaced January 19, all was going really well, I thought, but xrays on 6 week post surgery visit showed I had broken a bone in my hip, so I was told to stop 50% of my PT exercises until I saw the doctor this past Thursday. The broken bone is not going to heal on its own. I now need to decide if I want to have surgery to repair it, or use a cane to walk the rest of my life. I keep going back and forth about it. The surgery is very complicated with a high failure rate. I would have to stay off my feet for up to 3 months. Decision has to be made by April 17 and surgery by April 20. After that, too late to do anything. Doctor really wasn't much help in deciding. I HATE the cane! I can't carry anything, need someone to help me all the time with the simplest chores. I need to be more independent. But the failure rate on surgery is over 35%, not good odds. So I go back and forth. Today, I am thinking I have to try it. Tomorrow I may think it is not worth it.

    Saw the discussion about daily papers. I have read the Rutland Daily Herald for over 60 years. About 5 years ago, they got rid of the Sunday edition, 2 years ago, they got rid of the Monday edition. Now there is a physical paper Tuesday through Saturday. I used to subscribe, but then I got a carrier who threw my paper in snow banks, was late 3 times a week and I would have to buy a paper on my way to work even though I had one coming at home. Now the Tuesday thru Friday paper is $1.50 but they want $3.25 for the Saturday edition, just because it has the grocery flyers, so I stopped buying Saturday. I may go back to subscribing since I moved and it will be different carrier. Costs less than half of what I pay for 4 papers a week if I subscribe.

  • Ha! So happy birthday today! 🙂

  • It;s the Leap Year thing again. My Birthday is today.

  • Turned 85 - don't feel any older.

  • Felicitations Diane! Hope you have a great year.

  • Thanks Jim. Like your new photo. DS somewhat improved, not out of the woods yet.

  • Diane, Happy birthday. Have a great day and I hope everything turns out okay.

  • Diane--hope DS will be ok.
    Patsy-- sounds like a good decision, hope the therapy , exercize etc helps out.

    Jim, I enjoy reading about the old times too. when we read about them travelling, it shows how much more difficult it was. Even back in the thirties...I was looking at a 1930's newspaper in connection with genealogy, and found it reported "out of town" visitors from our city as notable occasions. ie Mr. and Mrs. Jones 34 first st. received a visit from Mr. and Mrs. Jon Smith of Madison. Nowadays it takes us 15 minutes to get there but it was a day trip in the past.

  • DS still experiencing dizzy, fainting spells with nausea/ I've really been worried because I count on home for so much.
    A little rain here today - ornamental fruit trees blooming and fig tree has leafed out next door. We were afraid it had died, it was so bad looking at the end of last year.

  • Sounds sensible Patsy.
    DS had a visit to ER - high blood sugar - working on it.
    Got some paint for patio chairs and wrought iron on front stoop - so have chores to do.

  • Happy Hump day..................gee the time is flying...............

    Surgery for Friday cancelled....got some advice, talked to some people, and decided at 84 I was not willing to take the risk of 5-6 hours of anesthesia................gonna get back to the PT, the gym, my walking and let my leg keep growing new arteries and veins like the x-rays show............. several MDs advised me against it............and I was edgy anyway.... will keep on keeping on.

    Haven't read the board..... oops, doorbell.............BBL

  • "... most people smoked...". You've got that right. I am reading some old Perry Mason novels written in the late 1930s. When people come into his office he offers then a cigarette and then he also lights one up. In just about every chapter he sits down in a room or in a car and lights a cigarette. Or, he points at things with his cigarette.

    It is nice to read novels written long ago to see how different things were. Did you own a car in 1900? There were no gas stations so you would stop at the general store to buy a can of gasoline. Whne starting a 1940s car pull out the choke and the hand throttle (the knobs with a "C" and "T" on them). There are so many different things described in those old novels that most people have forgotten about.

  • Hope he comes home soon Diane

  • DS in hospital overnight - dizzy spells and nausea.

  • Rained and stormed all night. Bathroom ceiling leaking - where it has already leaked over the years. Will call roofer on Mon.

  • Interesting story about your brother, Ann.
    Slept fairly well - dreary looking this am.

  • night all..................going to go pile up and read a book ----- TV tonight is all politics...... just tired, didn't sleep well last night.

    Sweet dreams everyone!

  • Life was harder 50-75 years ago... people worked long hours, unsafe places, etc. Food was sometimes scarce or not what was needed.... most people smoked.............and medicine wasn't as great as it is now............doctors were expected to take care of about everything.....not a lot of specialization. Explains a lot.
    My sister and I have looked at pics of our mom when we were small..........and she looked older and frumpier and worn than she did in her 50s-70-s. times were hard - and there was a World War and rationing.................and few of our "modern" conveniences that make life a bit less stressful. Aren't we blessed!

  • Happy Birthday June!

    We continue to have lots of sunny weather, warmer than historical highs, yay! I have seen my first Robin, Sandhill Crane and Redwinged Blackbird, of Spring. Have actually been walking outside.

    I miss coffee and the paper in the morning, we had a pretty good one here, now it's online, not as good, I don't subscribe.
    I agree, people in their sixties and seventies look and act younger than the older people we saw when we were young.

    One of those life is as strange as fiction things happened here. One of my brother's long time friends died suddenly, and had him listed as contact person. My brother had ignored some calls from an unknown number for part of a day and a night . It turned out it was the Medical Examiner notifying him of the death and seeking next of kin information and arrangements. The brother came from Alaska and started they making cremation arrangements and he and my brother began to clear out the house which was filled with the stuff accumulated in 40 + years from the family's parents who lived their lives out in it, and those things of his friend. The house was in a trust which would divide house sale proceeds among the 4 siblings. It was assumed the contents and bank accounts would go to the brother with splitting to be arranged between the others.

    My brother was calling around to various friends of the deceased to let them know of the death, when one of them, a woman said to him; "You do know we were married don't you?" NO he did not, it changed almost every thing with her supposed to get house contents and accounts, not the brother. They had already filled one dumpster. She said their marriage papers were at the house in a paper grocery bag--there were dozens of bags of paper and some had already been thrown out,and they could not find them, so she had to send to Chicago for replacements. She had to prove the marriage, and get a lawyer and start probate, and arrange for the house to be emptied. She lived separately although they were still friendly and visited each other . She has two children, (not by the friend) and a full time job.
    So my brother continued to help empty the house, and to find a couple other people to help move, and or buy some of it. He will be paid by the estate. There were nine heavy duty tools, such as table saws, and drill presses packed into a garage. There were 7 or so looms from floor size to table size to lap size , because the mother had been into weaving. A room full of so- so books. and tons of other stuff. 3 dumpsters going on four. He had known various girl friends during their forty years or so friendship but had never heard of this one. Amazing!
    This is the third friend that died in the last three years that he was listed as contact for and he ended up helping families with final arrangements and estates. They were all single (except for the surprise wife!) men with out of town relatives. Be careful what you sign up for 🙂

  • I think 70 years old today is the new 55 years old. All my family and in-laws are well into their 70s and 80s and they still look fine. I was watching an old Grouch Marx show from the 1950s - "You Bet Your Life". Old people looked a lot older back then. There was a woman on who said she was 78 years old. My goodness what a dried up wrinkled old prune she looked like. I told my wife that if I were to run away with a younger woman, it would be her. That got a good laugh.

  • JUNE; HAPPY BIRTHDAY, keep on adding them on, geezerhood isn't so bad! LOL!

    Hello everyone - not much to share..........just marking time til the surgery..........trying to stay healthy, one SIL has covid. EEK.

    Goodnight, sleep well.....................

  • Well it's the 7th here, so felicitations June!!

  • Maybe leap year goofed up the calendar?

  • My birthday is actually tomorrow, March 7th. I'm not sure why it is showing up on this site as today.

    This will be a "biggie" birthday, as I will turn 70 years old tomorrow. This just doesn't seem right. When I was a kid, anyone who was 70 was considered ancient.

  • June, Happy Birthday. Have a great day.

  • Hello to all from Belleville, Illinois where spring is starting to make its appearance. Crocus are blooming and some of the daffodils are starting to open up. Sis saw a robin the other day ... so that is a good sign of spring!

    With all the crazy up-and-down weather we've been having, I wasn't sure just when we would start to see spring.

  • Ha.. Just got my 1st scam text of the day
    My package has arrived at the UPS warehouse. They need to verify my address. Jeesh

  • Morning all............doing the "medical thing" involved to get ready for the upcoming surgery episode. Unfortunately, our local hospital has been bought out by HCA and it is one "we are having problems with our system" after another.... wish they had never......................but then it's all about the almighty DOLLAR!

    We have crazy weather = one day rain, a day of "slight frost", a day of wind, a day of sun, warm day in AM and cool later or vice versa.... craziest end of winter I ever remember.... was in high 70s several days lately and 40s at night... weird.
    At least no floods, wild fires, tornadoes, etc................so guess we are blessed and should be thankful. I am!

    I got some good news this week - GREAT-GRANDSON #7 IS DUE IN EARLY SEPTEMBER! I have 2 "greats" I haven't met in person as yet - they are scattered all over.............my middle daughter's 6 kids are the parents of all of them.

    Everything is beginning to bloom here, and the spring/summer birds are returning.................I saw 2 "v"s of sandhill cranes heading NW last week, a bit early for them to be heading north, especially with the weather bands moving across the country, but guess nature knows things we don't. I love to hear them calling...

    Just marking time till March 15 - trying to behave and not do any damage (wow, just hit me "Beware the Ides of March" - LOL! oh well,.......................................

    Hard to believe 2 months are already gone............2024 is in "zoom mode" for me anyway.........

    OK< lunch time.....................enjoy you day all......................

  • No newspapers here for me anymore either. I was down to the local paper and realized the only thing they covered was the local sports and people complaining about everything in the letters to the editor. I now just check the obits online.

    Jim You can check Gardfield every day here for free: https://www.gocomics.com/garfield/2024/02/29

  • Garfield: Current status/scheduleRunning/daily

  • The protagonist in one of John Grisham's novels owned a small town newspaper. He mentions it as having a gold mine. I guess with the advertising and subscriptions it more than paid for itself and the few employees that it would have.

    When I was a small boy, a second newspaper started in my small home town. It only lasted a few months and then closed. They said that to stay in business they would have to get advertising from out of town and they didn't want to do that. Many people said it was a better paper with many more small local events such as kids having their own ice skating contests etc. The Letters to the Editor were often a succession or interchange of clever retorts, amusing and light sparring with words.

    There is something of nostalgia in going out in the morning in ones bathrobe to pick up the newspaper. I wonder how Garfield is making out?

  • Hearst owned the weekly that I worked for in Texas. It also was found4ed in the 1800s and continuously in operation, the only thing that saved it to that point. Not sure if they even publish a paper paper anymore - or just have the on line one in conjunction with a newspaper in the next largest cuty, Newspaper business along with the book business has totally changed. Also movies I would say. Computers have done a lot of good, but we also lost some of the human touch.

  • The days of finding a local paper at the end of the driveway or in the bushes in the morning seem to be over. My sister used to subscribe to our small town (population ~ 15,000) weekly newspaper even when she moved away. The paper was founded in 1852 and since 2021 it no longer exists. A conglomerate took over all the small town papers in that part of the state and closed them, saying that people could get the same news on line at their web site. True, but the site is just a mash of news concerning scores of towns with hundreds of clickable links, not really just the news of your small town. No editorials, letters to the editor, etc.

  • re: local papers, etc. Our local paper has discontinued EDITORIALS, COMMENTARIES, AND LETTERS TO THE EDITOR, AND QUESTIONS TO THE EDITOR COLUMN.
    If you don't follow sports, and local who shot who and got arrested and what's for sale, nothing much to read. I discontinued my subscription....first time in my LIFE I have not had a newspaper in my house. What they do print is about the size of the sale flyers for the grocery stores and expensive. Their on-line paper is blahhhhhhhhhhh and not worth paying for.
    I hate it.............I miss the local news, no obituaries, no local input from readers, no opinions................

    Well, spring has sprung here in No. Central Florida, the azaleas are starting to bloom, my yellow jasmine bush is producing flowers, the trees have small spring buds/green sprouts, guess our "winter" is over......unless we get an unexpected cold snap. Will be in the mid 70s here this afternoon.

    My kitties, Puddin and Sweet Pea are loving the warmer weather, on screened patio watching all the birds in and out. I have tons of birds............and they "watch bird tv" and love it. Hard to believe they are 4 now.

    My "baby sister" turned 80 last Thursday, so we are both now Octogenarians! Wish we lived closer together, but neither of us wants to move.... she has been in her house since 1954 and I have been here 20 years by myself. Thank heavens for Facetime, we get coffee and get on facetime every afternoon and try and understand the world.

  • I still check the on line site of a local radio station from my old town in Texas. Mostly the obits. I was managing editor of that town's weekly newspaper - it has changed conseideralby and vecome incorporated with the larger town;s newsoaper, ?their on line site has no info to speak of. Do not read the local newspaper .

  • Jim I still subscribe to the weekly newspaper from my old hometown. The paper comes in the mail. Sis and I both enjoy browsing through the newspaper. The thing that we look at most are the obituaries. Many of our classmates' parents (and sometimes our classmates) have died ... and we wouldn't know about it if we didn't get the paper.

  • Anyone read the newspaper this morning? I don't blame you. I think I am the only person around here who gets the local newspaper. It costs $4.50 per edition. I like to read the funnies and my wife looks at the horoscopes. I remember way back when the New York Daily News was $0.08 and the New York Post was $0.10. I was glad when the Daily News also went up to ten cents so I didn't have to wait for the two cents change. Even when the price went up to $0.35 I would grab a paper and leave a quarter and a dime (pocket change) on the counter. Now I guess I would have to leave a $5 bill and wait for my $0.50 change. Madness.

  • Wonderful things those knee replacements. Have it done and in a week you can play tennis, run in marathons, etc. My wife had one and now she walks slowly bent over using a cane. What about playing tennis and running in marathons, etc. "Well, everyone is different" is now what they say. They never said that before they talked her into having the knee replacement. Before she used to get a knee injection every few months and would stride through the mall with 25 year old grandkids trying to keep up. Now she sometimes uses a walker or even a wheel chair. Getting a knee replacement should be the last thing one does.

    Patsy,I sure hope everything works out for you. Be careful and I'm sure they can fix things up.

  • Hello all...............ups and downs and all arounds here. Found out I have a pretty nasty blockage in my femoral artery in the right leg with the knee replacement. I have been having problems with that leg and going to PT to try and strengthen it, but has lost muscle mass and strength, so they did a sonogram and found a blockage. Went in to have it repaired, but doctor got in intravenously and found out that it was bigger/worse than shown on the scan....sooooooooooooooo off to the other cardiac surgeon, and I am now scheduled for a big operation March 15th (soonest opening) in my groin area to clean, repair and strengthen the artery.
    Am now walking with a cane when I leave the house, am afraid of falling. I am terrified it is going to rupture or tear or something before they can get it repaired.... not very happy around here, but at least it is something that can be fixed.
    Won't be able to drive for several weeks after, and no lifting. oh well, like I said, at least they can fix it....

    Haven't read the board, hope all are well..............we have got all the spring flowers/trees budding and blooming here, we really have had NO winter to speak of..... Azaleas, yellow jasmine, dogwood budding, as are peach, pear trees etc. If we do get a freeze, it will all die back.

    Middle daughter and SIL came down for a couple of days, he needed to check on his 87 yr. old dad who is a bit ornery and very introverted. Poor John, dad wasn't very helpful with what John was trying to do to help.

    2 daughters and their hubbies here doing well, and the 9 grandkids and 6 great grands too, so am blessed.

    Today is my sister's 80th birthday, so we are both now octogenarians - with all that allows....LOLOLOLOL!

    off to read the board and catch up........ need to think about dinner, haven't the faintest!

  • We had a bout 3 days of sub zero, and a week of icy roads but now we are having a record breaking sunny and warmer February--it is sunny and sixty today. We keep saying "Can't last" but it's sure been nice, mostly 35-45 but usually it could be20s teens and subzero even. We walked outside today in the West side park we like so well.
    Vinnie was quite sick last week, but on the mend. We have been lucky, staying well, and have not yet caught any of the flus going around.
    I heard some fantastic harpsichord music recently in a local church designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the musician was a nationally known player and also a very fun and informational speaker.
    Patsy, I hope you leg will heal soon.
    Jim, the ship sounds amazing!!!
    Diane--lucky you to be having outside flowers so soon. I do have a vase of nice Valentine flowers so I'm not entirely deprived.

  • Hey Diane, I may have something for you if you're interested. Please email me at gmail with my userid if you're up for a bit of a challenge.
    We're aiming for 36C tomorrow, which will be our hottest day all year; it's really dry here so keeping my fingers crossed there's no fires. Had a few changes on the property; we rescued a German Shepherd who has certainly shaken things up a bit! He's only almost 2 and very smart. Had a weird year with the chickens, no chicks at all, been a very long time since that happened. Also had my very first egg eater, which was a bit sad.

  • Not a great week,but getting better. From now to the end of the month should be fairly warm. I expect to see signs of spring. My favorite time of the year, and I always look forward to the first flowers and getting my patio set up with blooming plants. The wrought iron on the front small porch needs touching up. I may try to do that this year. Used a brush last time and scraped all the peeling paint off, so shruld be able to just spray this time. If DS doesn't take over. He doesn't get that I enjoy these little projects, even if they take me torever now. Don't have any genealogy project - anyone have something they'd like to know about their family? No charge and I don't keep the records once I've finished.

  • Diane I know what you mean. When I lived in Dupo, there were wetlands not far from my house, so a lot of birds passed through the area. My bird feeder was a very popular place. I don't see near the variety of birds where I live now.

  • One thing I miss about Texas is the birds. We were in a migration path there - here there are very few birds. A pair of cardinals, pair of mockingbirds, pair of Blue jays, doves, and the occasional hawk or gull.

  • Jim: don't think I could take a cruise on a ship that big with that many people............and obnoxious kids I'd want to throw overboard.....that's why I prefer Holland, quieter cruisers, less hysteria...want to just "chill".......not be frantic.
    Glad you two enjoyed yourselves, but that ship is like a "floating city"............yikes!

    All of you having awful weather, I feel for you...........I watch the waves of it, one after another......frightening. We have actually had a very mild winter - was 72 here yesterday.

    June: re "bookstores" on know of 2 here anymore...........guess maybe that is why the FOL sales are so popular...lots of good reads at really great prices. 5 days this past Oct. they made over $175,000 - awesome.

    Diane:. thanks but not my knee, it's in the thigh.......above the "fake knee" - all this time I have been "cursing" the knee replacement.....not the cause.

    Been watching the Mardi Gras parades in Mobile on WKRG live feeds - they are holding their breaths daily with the weather moving through South.........tomorrow will be all day coverage of activities/parades, etc. Hope the weather doesn't wash it out. Lord, I loved Mardi Gras as a child and teen..............I really miss it. Thank heaven for TV.

    Am really enjoying my winter bird population.........lots of little birds, cardinals, buntings, blue jays, doves, and of course the ever present black crows, boy are they greedy and noisy.
    Sadly, our hawk population has diminshed, they are "clearing" uphill to build more houses, and the habitat for the birds and deer is shrinking every time they put in new streets.

    Noon, gotta eat something.............. stay well, safe and dry everyone!

  • Patsy, sorry for the knee trouble - be sure and update us.
    Gray day here, rained in the night. I know because I was awake.
    I have a new "talking" scale. Announces your exact weight in a rather loud, course female voice. But it had gotten to the point I couldn't see the reading on the really old scale I was using. I weigh every Mon am. Happy to report right where it should be this am.
    DS had to get a new phone - something went really wrong with his. He was happy to find the cloud had saved all his numbers and most vital info. He lost photos and music. Fortunately he had transferred most photos to one of his computers. He spent all day talking to the phone, sometimes not so politely.

  • Good Monday Morning all................. need to go read all the latest on here...have been pre-occupied. Medial stuff.

    The leg which has a knee replacement has for quite a while been bothering me...heavy, tired pain, etc. Been going to PT twice a week thinking muscles needed strengthening............but just kept getting worse. Had heart and leg scans for arteries and veins..found an abnormality in that right leg above the knee area..
    Last Wed. cardiologist went in to "clean it out" -right femoral artery - and found it was much larger obstruction than showed on scan and did nothing as it must be done surgically.
    Am being referred to a vascular surgeon, seems it's gonna be a much more extensive fix than originally thought.
    Am anxiously awaiting to hear from vascular surgeon for consult and plans to "fix" me. I am terrified it is going to break loose or leak or worse before they can fix it...................has not been a good 5 days.

    now, to go read all about all of you....................................

  • My wife and I are back from our two week cruise on the Icon of the Seas. It is a nice ship. It has a lot more bars and snack places than other ships and a lot more small swimming pools. Seeing descriptions of it on line reminds me of people who add exclamation marks to the ends of all their sentences i.e. It is a nice ship!! It has a lot more bars and snack places than other ships!! And it has a lot more small swimming pools!!

    It seems that this ship is geared to family adventure. There were far, far more children on this ship than on any other ship that I have ever been on, at least ten times as many. In the dining room there were children at the closest eight tables near my table. As long as you don't mind children running around and screaming it is okay.

  • Hello to all from Belleville, Illinois where it is an unseasonably warm but overcast day. Today's temperature will be in the upper 50s.

    My, we haven't been a very chatty bunch lately! Hope all are well.

    I just heard that a new independent book store will be opening in downtown Belleville. I certainly wish them luck. It's awfully hard for a small independent book store to survive with all the internet competition and the mega chain stores like Barnes & Noble. I'm not sure just when the new store is opening, but I will certainly check it out when it does.

  • The ship is not fully loaded so it is much less crowded than other ships I have been on. There are 12 elevators in each elevator lobby. You press a button in the lobby for which floor you want to go to and when the elevator comes it goes to that floor. There are no floor buttons on the elevators. It is really fast.

  • JIM .. Just saw an ad on FB for the Icon of the Sea. It can hold 10,000 passengers. A bit crowded....??

  • My wife and I will be leaving tomorrow for back to back one week cruises on the new cruise ship Icon of the Seas.It is Carnival Cruise lines newest and biggest ship. It is a different class from the previous Oasis class and has a lot of newer and different features. Tomorrow is its inaugural or maiden voyage so it should be interesting just cruising the Caribbean.

  • Dreary today, but in th 60s. Might have one more cold spell before we can say winter is over. Got christmas packed away, maybe for the last time. I have this thought of a small tree with pinecones and acorn decorations, so I picked out those and packed where I know today where they are. Will I know it next Dec? My brother in N. AL was iced in for days. He has a handicapped ramp and it was a sheet of ice.

  • We like Gus's diner which isn't far from us, it has 50's decor and good food, scroll down to see cute area with red stools.

    Lying, yes it happens way too much, Rudy Giuliani being found guilty because of massive evidence of his lies about Georgia election workers and fined $ 150 million, Fox admitting deliberately and knowingly lying about the 2020 election and the 2020 Dominion election system and having to pay 787 million...Still lots of people and media lying about the election and other things. Good thing courts look at actual evidence and don't give much weight to political speeches, editorials, and false news broadcasts.

    Barely going out, there are a lot of very rutted icy streets in the city, Thankful many drivers do the smart thing, slow down and keep their distance--but of course there are still some of those reckless people who drive faster and cut in and out. In the few times we have gone out we have seen a number of two and three car accidents and some cars off the road.

  • When I was a small boy at the lunch counter in Woolworth's, I saw a lady order a club sandwich. I was impressed at how classy it looked - three slices of white bread with the crust cut off and joined together with a frilly toothpick. Real class. Now if I order one it is any type of bread, even rolls, and the crust still on. Bummer.

  • 14 of the Most Charming Old-Fashioned Soda Fountains Across America:


    I know we have some in Wisconsin

  • I wonder if soda fountains still exist somewhere, a place where a guy could take his girl for a milkshake? I guess a guy and girl sitting on stools at a soda fountain sharing a milkshake is now pure Norman Rockwell.

  • Hello to all from Belleville, Illinois where it is very very cold.

    We do have some snow on the ground, but the biggest problem has been the wind. Just a few days ago we had wind gusts of close to 50 mph. When it's already bitter cold and the wind is that strong, it is miserable and dangerous to be outside. Thankfully my furnace is working and my water pipes haven't frozen, so I am quite willing to stay indoors and wait for better weather.

  • Oddly snough, a man I worked at the TV station with and knew well, Howell Raines, was the editor on that NYC story. The young black reporter was his protege, and he was completely taken in. Neverthe less, he lost his job and reputation and I'm not sure if he ever worked in Newspaper again. I know he has written several books.

    Cooler here today and more cold temps expected.

  • I watch some news in a cursory way because my wife either has the news on or HGTV. Freedom of the press may be the cornerstone of democracy, but what happens when that press becomes an agent of one political party and/or prints lies? The New York Times won a Pulitzer prize for one story that the reporter admitted making up a lot of the "facts". It is a sad state of affairs.

  • Happy New Year!
    We had two less months of winter, but now were getting slammed, about 15 inches of snow in three days, followed by sub-zero weather for this week. Luckily neighbors on either side have helped DH with the snow clearing. His car is starting, mine is dead. I should have been starting it every day and I didn't.
    the plowers have been out, but there is a fair amount of ice under the leftover snow on many streets. Luckily we don't have to go anywhere. I am sure the starting services are backed up--debating when to call.
    Try to limit the political news I see, but DH is a news junkie nowadays so I get his venting...People on my facebook bring some politics too, but not a whole lot.
    Older brother has lost his third old friend in about two years. This one was only 64 and fairly fit, found on a walking trail in their neighborhood, probably heart. I knew him, he was very intelligent with good sense of humor, no partner, no children. Bro is getting to be an expert at finding and notifying out of town kin and helping them make arrangements at a distance. I don't know how he does it, he is so good at helping people.

  • I stopped watching the news about 4 years ago. I get a little bit from a couple on line sites: AP, google or Yahoo. If there's something I want to know about it's easy to find. DS also will mention things. Much happier not knowing.
    Finished up a genealogy project for a cousin yesterday - just have to mail it off. Started another for a relative. Also got a couple chores done.
    Dreary today and colder weather expected.
    Have a good week, all.

  • Good Morning..................happy Friday....................

    All you folks living in the blizzard, frozen warning world today, please stay in, stay safe, warm and well!

    Dreary here, but no danger warning yet today....hope it stay that way.

    Anyone besides me to the point that you just don't want to turn on the TV news or read the news......... what a mess of a world we have now...................... sad..................(think our alien neighbors are sprinkling "crazy dust" on our planet?)

  • Evening...................spent the day reading weather alerts and dodging storms, tornadoes and lots of wins..... know that DIANE did the same last night. Luckily, none of the twisters sat down near here...but was quite a nail-biting day.

    Hope you upEasters who are now getting that mess with all the snow come out OK................been a harrowing 24-36 hours.
    Sister in Mobile came through OK too.

    Goodnight all........................

  • So, Did we have Christmas? Not much happening New Year's Eve - minimum fire works as City is cracking down on neighborhood displays.
    Expecting bad weather tonight, DS says. I expect I'll sleep through most of it.
    I'm having all kinds of trouble with bank and credit cards. Evidently had a fradulent charge and now they keep turning down purchases. I've been to bank once, and today had to deal with a utility account. No fun.
    Getting a little done each day - and trying to eat right.

  • Happy New Year from Wisconsin! We had a nice dinner out (some of the best ribs I've had in a while) at our favorite supper club (yes, they still do exist). We didn't stay up late but some fireworks woke me up at midnight. Unusual for here since we're outside the city.

    We have a lack of snow this year, only a dusting on the ground. It's been a very strange year weatherwise. Hoping this next year is more normal.

    Finished "undecorating" today, inside and out, so it's all put away until next year. We weeded out some more stuff which helps with storage.

  • Hello to all from Belleville, Illinois where it is a cool gray day.

    Diane I went to Wal-Mart the day after Christmas and bought a small artificial Christmas tree from the clearance aisle. The tree I've been using was left behind by a previous tenant and after many years of use it has become very sad looking.

    It's normal for me to be up after midnight, so that's not an issue for me on New Year's Eve. By midnight I am usually in bed, but stay awake and read for a while before turning off the light and going to sleep.

  • Happy New Year everyone.......................hope it's better than the last, but I have my doubts considering the state of the country and the world...............but one can hope.

    I didn't stay up for midnight either...............fireworks in neighborhood was less than years past....but I just took out my hearing aids and went to sleep before the "witching hour". Cats too.........they weren't as "squirrely this year"

    Flu, RSV and covid appearing more and more here...........imagine it will get worse with all the travel
    ing that was done over the last 2 weeks....School starting back up, so it'll be interesting to watch.

    Weird warm weather here and my azaleas are beginning to bloom, about 2 months too soon. If we have a freeze they will be done for this year.... always enjoy them so much, remind me of home. Mobile, The Azalea City...................

    Wishing all a very pleasant and happily eventful 2024...................and good health!

  • Happy New Year from the Symphony of the Seas in the Caribbean.. At our ages my wife and I no longer stay up till midnight to see the new year in. For us it is just one month changing to another.

  • Happy New Year everyone. (Still 5 hours away, but hey)

  • Here it seems like Christmas never was. Except for the tree still standing. Last year I will try to put one up. I will get a small prelighted one - I'm holding out pine cone and acorn ornaments - always wanted to do a tree with just thos and some icicles.

    Blaming it on the cooler weather - knee has been painful for days.
    When I spolke woith my daughter in NYC she had Covid for the 4th or 5th time. Not terribly sick, but miserable.
    Like Patsy, hoping for a better 2024 - and I am also thankful for each day.

  • Morning all.....................Dec. 29 - gee, where did 2023 go? Year just whizzed by for me.............

    Christmas OK, went to youngest DD Lisa's on Christmas Day for Brunch - her Swiss in-laws in for the season, and was lovely to meet my daughters SIL and her husband...their 2 daughters arrived today and they will be here through 1/11 - was lovely.
    Chistmas Day went to eldest DD Chris' home on Christmas Eve - just 5 of us and she did lazagna, make your own salad and French Garlic Bread...was most enjoyable and not a huge work job. Chris is the one who had the brain aneurysm 21 years ago..... (gee, long time) and she is amazing. Her son Michael and his wife were there.
    Our family has much to be thankful for...............

    don't know if I posted, but my ex-husband passed away Nov 10 from multiple cancers and illnesses. He fought hard, like he did most of his life....... we had 44 yrs. together.

    Am dreading New Years Eve....I have a fireworks-crazy neighborhood and the poor animals just don't know where to go or what to do. I shut down, turn on a good movie, pile up in bed and pray for 1AM to come and quiet.
    Hoping 2024 will be a nicer year, but not sure that will happen............news is not good, politics are stinky and dirty, and am already tired of the campaigning..................oh well, it is what is has become.............

    Hoping for a healthy year ahead....at 84, things are slowing down and I am fighting what I can............I accept every day I get with a thank you and look forward to each new morning I am given.

  • Merry Christmas to all from Belleville, Illinois where it has been a gray rainy day.

    I went to my Sister's house for brunch today, but only stayed a couple hours. That's about as long as I can handle her active noisy grandkids. I truly appreciate my nice quiet house.

  • Merry Christmas to all from the cruise ship Symphony of the Seas. Amazing how most of us remember the HTML code we had to learn twenty years ago to jazz up our auctions. I wonder how many of the younger generation know HTML code or even what it is.

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