Happiness is Old Friends

That’s “old” in the sense that we’ve been friends for awhile, decades in fact. The kind of friend that you can not to talk to for a couple of years because you both get distracted and then you get in touch again and it’s like no time has passed. This week it was Patricia Gaffney, whose book The Goodbye Summer, was on Book Bub last week. We ended up e-mailing after midnight last Saturday, and it was just lovely talking with Pat again. Who is also lovely, in fact a bodacious mama. Happiness is good friends, good dogs, and good memories.

What made you happy this week?

99 thoughts on “Happiness is Old Friends

  1. I’m happy I felt less like throwing and smashing things this week. It’s an improvement; last 4 months have had a lot of Iwannasmashthingsrightnow-feelings. I don’t think it means it’s gone and left, but I’ll take whatever relief from it I can right now.
    I’m also glad I started reading Pratchett again. My brain literally sighed with relief. Eventually I’ll wanna read something else again I am sure, but for now, this is what I want.
    Still happy I had such nice voice-messages back and forth with Sib. Occasionally we don’t get each other at all, but this was one of the times we connected 100 %, and that felt good. It also felt great to wanna do things with clay again after our talk, even if the croco did not dry in exactly the same position I wanted it to. That still bugs me endlessly with clay – Sometimes I need to support the figurines to make them stand, or have their mouths open, or hold wings up, or other reasons to pile them up/prop mouth ful/make something to lean on by using tin foil, plastic, paper or other material, but it always has side effects. Something gets twisted, something takes a billion years to dry because plastic’s in the way, folds or bumps in the supporting material make imprints in the clay… most things I can fix, but not all. If anyone has any tips on how to handle this in a better way, please, please let me know.
    Hope you’ll all have a splended week ahead of you. Don’ to anything Nanny Ogg wouldn’t do.

    1. Oh, I understand that.

      I used to find a glass bottle due for recycling (Most beverage companies had switched to plastic) and I used to fling it really hard against the back garden wall.
      Then I’d pick up the pieces and put them in recycling. It was satisfying.

      Now I try to just jump up and down or shake my whole body a lot to release the energy.


      1. Maybe one or more of the pieces of smashed bottles that Sure Thing is suggesting would help (combined with supportive aluminum foil or cardboard underneath) to create a nice smooth concave or convex surface to hold the crocodile firmly in place while it dried. Double payoff from bottle smashing!

      2. I read many years ago that the person deemed most psychologically happy and satisfied with his/her job was . . . wait for it . . . the person who worked for Stueben glass works smashing the imperfect pieces. Apparently they destroy any imperfect piece.

        1. I had a year some time ago where I used to buy old chipped plates from the op shop and smash them on the concrete at the front of my house. Yes, deeply satisfying.

          1. Lian, I did the same thing in my garage at one point. Had to watch out for flying china chips, but it was deeply satisfying.

  2. Yesterday I realized the underlying “thing” that was causing a bunch of unrelated things to bug me way more than any of them should have. Not sure if I need to do anything about it, but just seeing it helped.

    Ate WAY too much yesterday, but it was all excellent and I enjoyed it. Next up, have some blueberries which must become muffins before they get too old for use. Not the worst problem to have.

    Hope for a swim, and possibly productive activities. Either way, there will be kitten watching and good reading. I am re-reading Jane Smiley’s “The Georges and the Jewels” series about a girl/young woman and horses. Like in Dick Francis, I find the horse content mildly interesting, but I really like the characters. Might be supposed to be YA, but also set in 60s so doesn’t feel super YA to me, except they are kind of short. And tend to end abruptly, but Jane does that.

  3. I saw my kids and parents for the first time since 2019 yesterday. They came to visit for my birthday. It was amazing to see them all.

    1. That’s wonderful, Diane. I have a trip to San Diego planned in October where I will finally get to see my parents, my youngest sister & grown niece & nephew, my step-daughter and her beau (who will be coming in from San Jose) and as a bonus, spend a couple of days with my friend/critique partner (who will be flying in from Sacramento). I last saw them all in February of 2019.

  4. My local tea shop asked me if I wanted to show with them, which caused three separate half formed ideas to snap together in my brain. I got a good start on them yesterday and am looking forward to working on them again today. Turns out that projects with a specific endpoint are very motivating. I need more goals.

    And I opened my society 6 shop. I think I mentioned it last week, but achieving something still makes me happy.

    1. Loved that article! Also had an Irish Apple support guy for one of my calls to them this afternoon – we were commiserating about the heatwave. Well, lovely sunshine, but too hot to do much.

    2. That article is just hilarious. ‘Meanwhile, Hudson keeps interrupting proceedings to say things like, “You look like a princess, mommy” and “You’re so beautiful”, things that Americans with high self-esteem think are “normal” but which would not be tolerated by Irish mammies who know that all achievements are built on spite and self-loathing.’

      Thank you, Galway Tes.

  5. Ugh. Tuesday I prepped for Wednesday’s colonoscopy. Thursday I spent hours moving trash out of disabled daughter’s apartment before bringing her up to our home for a visit. Friday my wallet was stolen. Within minutes fraud alerts started coming in from my credit and debit cards.

    Then I read Sure Thing’s post and wondered why I was whining about my bad week.

    1. Oh honey. (((HUGS))) Never let “but somebody has it worse” minimise your feelings. Even if we do it to ourselves.

      It’s actually empathy becoming weaponised. When we talk about how bad we have it and somebody is dismissive it doesn’t give us room to process. So we end up always being reactive instead of processing and learning from the experience so that we can be proactive next time.

      There’s a definite balance between I’m unhappy because my situation is difficult and I’m unhappy because first world problems.

      You’ve had to work really hard a DAY after your colonoscopy. That alone gives you the right to a “Poor baby” as we learned from Faking It!!!

      1. Thank you very much for your kindness, Sure Thing. Actually, I think there’s a lot of humor in comparing the vast possibilities of “a bad day.” And there’s caring as well, as you say when you refer to Nadine’s “Poor baby” moments.

        I deeply enjoy the close yet ephemeral friendships we share on arghink. Picturing you waiting in line for petrol; imagining another arghinker listening to the planes overhead carrying victims of flooding; or, aching for another who is ill all touch me closely. It’s wonderful that Jenny’s books and her online presence have brought us together.

        The funny stuff is lovely, too.

        1. I think that’s it. We are not being selfish for feeling angry and fatigued.

          I don’t want anyone invalidating their own feelings.

          I feel for you as you do for me. So all the vibes and prayers going around multiply to higher levels of healing energy.

    2. No fun, but fraud software catches a lot of stuff very quickly, so that’s a plus. [Mine was triggered once when the bank said, “someone in AUSTRALIA is trying to charge to your card!” — newest Phryne Fisher; I told them that if it’s a book, it was likely that I’d ordered it. Second time was when I’d done all my online holiday shopping in one evening, mostly through Amazon, and the next morning all the different vendors processed charges at once. Third time was when I first had a Kindle and went through buying this, and this, and that, and this . . and eventually hit the transactions-per-evening limit.]

      I hope your bank caught everything quickly, and it sounds as if they did. You may just possibly have to review your expenditures with some customer service person to confirm any that are really yours (“No, I did not spend two thousand dollars at Coture for Toddlers.”)

      Hope this week has much less excitement!

    3. Can I add my “Poor baby” to the others? You are entitled to weep over having no shoes. Others lacking feet do not make yours any less uncovered. Good luck with the credit cards.

      1. Thank you all for your support! The credit and debit cards, license, Medicare, and health insurance reporting/replacing proceeds apace. The sticking point is replacing my COVID vaccination card; ultimately, my doctor may have to request it. In the future I won’t carry extra things like the vaccine card with me.

        1. I was advised to take a picture of my COVID card, which is now on my phone while the original is with my passport, etc. I felt dumb for not having thought of it, but I don’t instinctively use the phone for Everything.

        2. We were warned by the Head Manager of Nurses at our site not to lose ours, even though we are on the e-system, because it will be nearly impossible to track the people staffing the temporary sites to get their signatures.

          I got vaxxed at the converted People’s Park Cafe at Moses Mabhida Stadium. I’ve made copies of my card and had one colour copy and one black and white copy stamped as certified as a true copy at the police station. Will laminate as soon as I’m back at work.

          Mostly calm here. Lots of riot clean up going on.
          But Delta variant is kicking the country’s behind.

        3. Update: I had my COVID vaccinations at the pharmacy at the local supermarket, Safeway/Vons/Albertsons etc. They emailed me yesterday to give me a link to my online vaccination record. May be worth checking to see whether yours was recorded in a similar way.

          1. Ann, I have the online V-Safe record and a printed record of my vaccinations. I would like to have the card because I won’t have to explain anything when I’m (someday) in a situation where someone asks for it.

            Also, the V-Safe record only appears on my phone if I’m connected to the internet. My experience is that connecting to airport wifi is more miss than hit.

            Thank you for your suggestions!

        4. I used my phone and printed a copy, stuck it in a plastic badge holder with a neck chain, keep that one in the car. When I go shopping, I wear it around my neck. Plus I still have the picture (and the original).

    4. That’s an awful week by anyone’s standards, Elizabeth. You’re allowed to complain. I can’t remember who said it, but “misery is not a competition” is a quote to live by.

  6. I spent several happy days at a family reunion. It was great to see cousins and meet their kids. It was held at an Uncle’s farm and it is very calming to sit and stare at a field of plants. I made tentative plans to road trip some of the way across the country next year with one of them.
    It is funny that my Dad and each of his siblings had 4 boys and one girl. As kids, we girls had to band together in defense from the boys.
    The only bummer was we were hoping from a break from the heat and it was hotter there than at home. Blech.

  7. Happiness definitely is reconnecting with an old friend. When we have one of our sudden email skirmishes, Jen, it’s like five minutes passed since the last one. You are such a joy to know!

    1. I know. I got so lucky the day I met you.
      Even if you did eat my ice cream.

  8. Old friends are amazing. My best friend and I have been friends since 1983, when she was introduced to me via my soon-t0-husband. When we got divorced in 1987, he kept the house and I kept the best friend. I definitely got the better part of the deal.

    Not much happy here this week. I got sick for the first time since Covid in February 2019. I didn’t love wearing masks, but I did love not getting sick. (And even vaccinated, I still wear the masks most indoor public places.) Bronchitis, I’m pretty sure, although I’m going to the Convenient Care to be on the safe side. I am supposed to go camping with friends next weekend, which WILL make me happy, so I have to lick this by then.

  9. I’ll not complain about my week. I have books to read, food to eat, a bed in which to sleep, and a job I’ve held for 25 years next March.

    I also now have a blog. I mean, I had a blog (LiveJournal) for years, but I can’t seem to use it quite as I’d like, nor use it to share pictures, which is quite the point. The meme of my blog is endurance – the title is Some Things Must Be Endured and the posts have enduring in the titles and topics. And pictures.

    One of the things I’m enduring (*cough*) is my own cooking. Since I resumed Atkins-ing in April, I have prepared four slightly different preparations of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Chili. The most recent just this past week, while there are four Rubbermaid containers of the previous batch in the freezer. Batch #3 (it of the frozen portions) contains Italian sausage and really stresses the diet. Batch #4 stuck to 93% lean beef, and I can eat pounds of it and the diet smiles. It even contains corn! Also, the leftovers fit into a four liter Rubbermaid container, which is down to less than a liter. My leftover ribeye steak? It’s in there!

    I need to switch to chicken and tuna for a while.

  10. It’s been a low-key-productive kind of week. Had a couple of calm days of Day Job, resulting in much work owed *to* me and very little owed *by* me. Did some significant pre-publication work on a novella collection and got that assembled for pre-order. Secured a few days off in October which means I can now book flights to Florida to see the parents for the first time since November 2018. And accomplished several hours of outdoor work which has, incrementally, improved matters.

    Also we had a quarter-hour of actual RAIN, which is so uncommon in summer I had to sit and watch it happen. Fortunately it occurred before I was due to sign on for work. 🙂

  11. Meditation class by my philosophy teacher went on via Zoom yesterday. I’d also got accepted to participate in Sunday’s Q and A session. Just before meditation class I finally connected with my friend I hadn’t spoken to since the upheaval. So that was good.

    Today, my yoga teacher held a zoom prayer/ritual for positive vibrations in the midst of chaos. I’d attended some at some other places before but this was creating a special vibration for peace.

    I then participated in Zoom Q and A and I came away from all of the higher order activity with a sense of a shielded aura.

    I’m so grateful for the teachers in my life.

  12. I’m struggling to be happy in this persistently dreary and muggy weather that’s settled over New England, but this post reminded me of how one of my best friends from college recently decided we needed to do more than just email once a year, so we’ve been doing video calls every three months. We live on opposite sides of the continent, but have seen each other a few times by way of college reunions and the like, and it’s always easy to pick up again where we left off (even though we have years of stuff to catch up on). Our next scheduled call is in a couple weeks, and remembering that makes me happy.

    Plus, my youngest brother, also living a long distance from me, will be in my area for work this week, so we’re going to hang out for a few hours at a friend’s house on a lake to relax and catch up. It makes me happy that the baby brothers who were only 8, 10 and 11 years old when I left home at 18, and were something of an irritant for the teenaged me, have turned into adults that I enjoy being around (and they don’t hold my teenage years against me. Much.).

  13. Dinner at my son and daughter-in-laws and a board game after. I’m still in a honeymoon period with being able to be with friends and family again. I don’t know when I’ll take it for granted again, but it sure isn’t yet.

  14. Today is National Ice Cream Day in the U.S. so I’m declaring my long standing love affair with the frozen delight as my happy for the week.

  15. The late-season strawberries are enormous: they look like an illustration of abundance. There will be more jam, as well as a heaped bowl with blueberries and Greek yoghurt every night.

    Had a walk with a friend on Monday; and a garden visit from another on Friday. She also came to the allotment, and helped me get clear on my plans for that. Then film night with Pam – ‘The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert’.

    And my garden makes me happy, plus the allotment. First sweet peas, French beans and courgettes this week.

  16. I’ve been kind of ‘blah’ for awhile now. Like I need to be yelling, “Snap out of it!” to myself. But my local progressive group is meeting in face to face this week for the first time in forever (pizza restaurant with a patio) so that should help.

    And, I’m missing having a dog around. Fortunately, Rafa, a foster in rescue, is coming for a visit later this week for several days. Also, there’s a possiblility of a dog coming into rescue that I could foster to adopt. Hope equals happiness.

  17. I gave my first lecture of the new semester this morning and then, wait for it… actually remembered afterwards where I had parked so I wasn’t wandering aimlessly around the carpark in the rain, pressing my unlock key repeatedly and listening for a distant beep, while telling myself I’m the world biggest idiot who has not learned a damned thing since I did the same thing 20+ years ago at this same university.

    Win! Monkey learns!

  18. The 150% humidity has subsided back down to normal, and the Summer Hell temps have gone down 10 degrees F.

    That is enough. I feel normal, hence happy.

  19. It was a pretty good week.

    My so-first-world-its-painful problem of the PVR part of my satellite tv receiver dying was solved after 3 extra days of tech support. I can pause live tv again. I’m happy.

    I was enormously vindicated earlier last week when Revenue Canada corrected their mistake from last year and applied the tax payment I made in 2020 to my account instead of Paul’s and gave me back the money I paid (so the double payment) in 2021 when they said I hadn’t paid my taxes plus the late fee plus interest. I knew I paid it in 2020 but I paid it out of an account we don’t use very often so when I checked my bank records for our day-to-day account I couldn’t find the payment and thought I must have hallucinated paying it. And I got an apology from my husband who thought I had forgotten. That was almost as good as the money.

    I have been stuffing myself with cherries, that’s always happy making.

    1. Bingo! Re: your tax payment. My husband and I file our taxes jointly so any amount due us is sent as a paper check as we have separate checking accounts and don’t want to confuse the IRS. Too late. The last round of checks from the government went out in March we received a letter that it was in the mail (or so we thought) so we waited and one month went by then the next and next month. We called the IRS (USA) and talked to Mr. ID number, no names please, he informed us it went into an account with last numbers of four digits and wouldn’t give us a bank name of whose account it was. Bare in mind that over the last many years our banks have been sold a few times and we no longer memorize the account numbers. So he transferred us to the next in line if we wanted to pursue an investigation and was told the lines were full and to call back the next day. Longer story short my husband pulled his bank statements from March and discovered the money was deposited to his account (he only checks off the amounts paid not deposits because there all the same). It was a good thing he checked the accounts or the consequences would have been unreal. Misogyny at work.

      1. The funniest part is that while he got a refund. It’s not like they applied my payment to what he owed.

  20. I get to see my parents for the first time in over 3 years. We last saw them for my mom’s 78th birthday in 2018, and then our time was sucked up by the terminal illness of my mother-in-law. But we were finally going to see them again for my mom’s 80th birthday, and then Covid hit.

    So after everyone finally got fully vaccinated, and they were comfortable having us in their house, we drove 900 miles and arrived last night, in the middle of torrential rain.

    But we’re here and they’re doing well. So that makes me happy.

  21. I have begun to gather items for a donation to Goodwill. So far, the load includes five of the five liter Rubbermaid containers, the tallest ones visible in my blog post. Also, four desk fountains which I’ve not enjoyed for a year. I might miss the Buddha. All of the so-called “portable air conditioners.” The one fan still in the box. A few ball caps. There will be more as I get more motivated. Probably most of my DVDs. (But not Buffy.)

  22. I spent the day a friend’s house in the country where we had a light lunch, talked about all kinds of things, and watched her chickens for quite a while. The weather was amazing after all the humidity we’ve had lately. Really just a lovely day.

  23. A happy birthday with a small family party including a cousin who’s spent the last year and a half isolated across the Bay, so things are getting back to normal. Three kinds of pizza and an ice cream cake.

    I’m also happy because it’s the anniversary this week of the discovery of the Rosetta Stone, and the launching of Apollo 11.

    Also happy to learn that Cleveland’s Plain Dealer decided to “completely ignore” politicians’ “false statements and stunts.”
    The paper’s policy to “not take the bait and give these false statements the oxygen they need to flourish” is going well:
    Readers responded quite favorably to what we are doing, and rest assured that people are not complaining that they miss Mandel’s hate-filled invective.


    Enjoyed Judge Parker’s sanctions hearing of the Kraken lawyers — worth it for the entertainment value alone. Apparently submitting six hundred affidavits of nothing much — not actual evidence of wrongdoing or in fact evidence of ANYTHING — does not impress busy judges.

    New contact lenses tomorrow — the optometrist’s office has texted me, emailed me, and phoned me to remind me of the appointment. Don’t worry, I plan to be there!

  24. I am going to France to see my mum for the first time since Christmas 2019 and The French authorities have decided not to ask double vaccinated people coming to the UK to do a test before they go. Of course, the UK on the other hand will ask mz to quarantine when I come back but I’ll take the small win for now.

  25. Sang a recital yesterday, singing for an audience for the first time in 2 years! It went well, it’s so fantastic to sing in a large room, in this case a big stone-walled church. Found a fun black dress with sparkles, actually tried to curl my hair. It was a dose of the diva life.
    I think if you actually make to full-time divahood, you have to curl your hair all the time, so this may be enough of it for me.

    1. No, I think if you make to full-time divahood, however your hair looks is admired along with your voice.

  26. We cleaned a rug. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but it was a process. It normally sits, undisturbed, under the dining room table – which I’ve been using for the last year and a half as my desk. We unplugged my “office”, moved the table and chairs off, took the rug off to get at the pad. We vacuumed, rotated and straightened the pad, and did the same for the rug, before putting the table and chairs back. I can now run my bare feet over the rug without being grossed out by the dust and debris under the table. So, that makes me happy.

    I think it falls under the category of self-care – making sure my environment is welcoming.

    As part of the process we moved some boxes of things I had stored in the corner. And prior to putting them back, I took them out and looked them over. And as a result, I pulled out a long-dormant project and started working on that. I’m fairly close to finishing that quilt top, and looking at it makes me happy.

  27. Happiness is old friends. Heartbreak is old friends dying.
    One of my oldest friends died unexpectedly Saturday evening. She might very possibly have been the closest friend I had…
    I got a message from her boyfriend yesterday via her whatsapp telling me he’d come home from visiting his grandmother and found her dead in bed. It’s not yet clear what happened, why… how… except that it was not suicide. She had been unwell for a while, but hospital etc waved it off as nothing to be worried about, possibly gastric ulcers but she got meds for that last Monday and seemed to be recovering…
    Now, she is gone.
    She was 33.
    I’ve known her half my life. My whole adult life. We never met, because of distance and circumstance, but we’ve had very close contact for years and years and years. She was always happy for my happies, and comforting and supportive when the going was hard. She talked books and loved dogs and cats and painted miniatures and ate chocolate even when it made her sick, because she loved it so much. She hoarded books, played roleplaying games, sent me My Little Pony songs when she wanted to cheer me up. I never needed to pretend I felt better than I did when I talked with her. I never needed to be someone else than me. She was always there when I was sad. She was always there when I was happy. My brain refuses to think, accept, that she is not there anymore. She has to be there. Somewhere.
    I feel strongly I need to flip that switch now, and live for her, too. To find the meaning, purpose, drive, power, strenght, whatever it is to LIVE. Because she didn’t get the chance to crawl up from her own depths and do it for herself. She was a butterfly that never got the chance to break out of the cocoon, spread her wings and fly.
    I will miss her so, so, so much.
    Rest in peace. <3

    1. This is SO sad, Shass. But I love your decision to live more LIVINGly to honor her (I know that’s not a word, but there wasn’t a word I knew of to express it.)

      I lost my sister and my oldest neighbor last year, and both have affected me, but not as much as losing a treasured old friend. My sympathies are with you.

    2. Shass, I am so sorry for your loss. It sounds like you were wonderful friends.

      Living well is the best tribute you can give her.

    3. This is so hard. I’m so sorry. She sounds amazing. (Also, hospitals: “nothing to be worried about” eye-roll! My best friend is a doctor and I admire the medical professions but but but but!)

      1. I love that she ate chocolate even though it made her sick and that she sent you My Little Pony songs. Your description brings her to life for me. Certainly, you brought each other a lot of happiness.

    4. Shass, I am so sorry for your loss. She sounds like a true sister of your heart, and this is devastating. Please take care of yourself, and reach out here when you need to.

    5. When my best friend died at only 42, everybody told me that I would “always feel him with me”, which I don’t. BUT……………….

      Every time I do something brave, I know he is proud of me. Every time I remember to let people see the real me, I remember how much he appreciated me (nasty sense of humor and all). Every time I am tempted to judge somebody based on their appearance, I remember the party he took me to where I looked at one person and thought, “I could never have anything in common with anybody who would voluntarily do that to their hair!” Nick said, “I think it is kind of endearing.” So I stuck around long enough to discover that underneath a hairdo that made my eyes hurt, there was a kind, generous, loving person who liked me and was very funny. And he managed to be that way despite teaching remedial math to surly high school freshmen five days a week. All of which I never would have discovered if Nick hadn’t encouraged me to take a second look. And I am absolutely positive I never would have made it through cooking school if I hadn’t been able to call Nick once a month and wail, “I’m so lonely!”

      It still doesn’t seem fair that Nick didn’t live long enough to find a life partner or achieve his more elaborate goals, but in time I have been able to remember how many people he changed for the better rather than how much he never got a chance to do. And that is what I wish for you: that the sharp pain of your loss will diminish over time until it no longer overpowers your joy in the time you had together.

    6. Oh Shass, I’m so sorry. There’s nothing more devastating that to lose somebody you love like that, and she sounds wonderful. I am so, so sorry.

  28. I am VERY CRANKY. This is at least partially because of the non-stop rain. Everything is damp and the paper keeps getting jammed in the copier. The other part is likely having all the kids gone. I think, as much as I complained about them, that after a year I was used to their sporadic company. Even if I only saw them five minutes a day, I knew they were there. I think the boys are gone for good now, but my youngest girl may come back from college next year. Or not. It’s hard to say with her. Anyway, I thought I was going to LOVE being alone again, and I think maybe I am not.

    Yesterday I set myself two tasks – after canceling an outing I had planned. I would take out the trash and fix the radio fence for the dogs. Pip is usually pretty good about stayingin bounds but after a couple of weeks of no radio collar she is beginning to push the boundaries and next thing I know I’ll be chasing her two miles down the road in the car. EVERY time I went out the door to work on the wiring, it began to pour. I did finally finish at 8 pm, very soggy and not the way I wanted it. But at least it was done. And then I took out the trash. But I guess it wasn’t trash day today, because the trash was still sitting there this morning.

    I made myself a task board this weekend because one of the things that is bothering me is that I have over committed myself to helping others and none of my own shit is getting done. I’ve had hardware to hang a barn door for my downstairs bathroom for over a year. It’s got a curtain and while I don’t mind the youngest child hates it. And really I think the “barn” door is going to look fabulous so I want to get it done.

    That’s just one of a hundred little projects. So I made a list. Do one thing for someone else (sewing zippers on jackets seems to be popular this summer) Then do one thing for me. That might not work out for the dog I’ve brought home to train for my friend. That really needs to be an every day thing, but the list should help. AND I’m not going to feel guilty about putting the dog in a crate so I can go upstairs and sew. Well, I will feel a tinsy guilty, but I’ll do it anyway.

    Just writing about getting things done is making feel a little less cranky.

    And can I be just a little uncharitable? This is really not nice of me because some of the people I’m doing favors for would be happy to do OTHER things for me, just not the things I need doing. It just would be really nice for someone else to say, “I’ll do that for you.” for a change.

    Yes, I need to learn to say no. Yes I need to learn to accept payment for my skills. (I do from strangers. I’m usually up to my neck in wedding dresses in the spring and those I charge for.) I do not charge my friends because they are like family to me, so it’s not their fault I’m CRANKY. It’s my fault for not setting boundaries or being clear about what really would be a help…

    Is this long enough? Because I could go on…

    1. Don’t feel guilty for crating the dog. Learning how to be in a crate and calm is an important lesson and a well-crate-trained dog will view it not as a punishment but as a nice safe hidey-hole.

      A task board is a good idea. While my dad is away, my mom is doing a major clean up, like going through old paperwork that’s been boxed up for years and cleaning out drawers and stuff and she was feeling discouraged the other day so I told her to make a list of every drawer and box she’s been through so she could see her progress. I think it helped. I’m glad she’s doing this because she is a borderline hoarder and I do not want to be the one cleaning up after her.

    2. We’ve had so much rain this July, just about every day, that mushrooms are sprouting in the yard.

  29. I signed up for a virtual book discussion thru the Free Library of Philadelphia,
    Phillip Rucker & Carol Leonnig for ‘I Alone Can Fix It’ with Andrea Mitchell as the moderator.

    1. Wow. That’s a lot of very smart people and a hotcake of a book. That should be great.

  30. I’m struggling a little with happy this week. The COVID situation is escalating down here again, and most of our states have closed their borders to each other again to contain it. I’m in favour of this as a health response, but it does mean my hours at work have been slashed down to the minimum again. Thank the goddess for historically low interest rates or I’d have to fret about the mortgage.

    I have been able to write something new for the first time in months though, so that’s something to be happy about. And I saw Black Widow last week, which made me smile. Such a great character, and she deserved more than one movie, but they finally got there.

  31. I went to a concert on Sunday with my best friend, and 10 other friends turned out to be there too. It was great.

    And one of my biggest happies was getting an appointment for my covid vaccine. We’re in NZ and have no cases in the community, so, totally reasonably, we haven’t been high on the global priority list for vaccines. I didn’t expect to feel as relieved about the appointment as I do.

  32. Welcome to Temptation is $1.99 today (Tuesday, July 20).

    If you don’t have a kindle version, today is the day!

    1. Thank you for the information. You can never have enough Temptation. I bought my first copy in MS Reader format (.LIT) from Fictionwise. Fictionwise was bought and stripped for parts by IIRC Barnes and Noble. My next copy was from Kindle. The final copy is part of a 7-in-1 collection of “Crusie’s Greatest Hits.”

  33. Old friends…

    I ordered flowers today for the Celebration of Life this coming Saturday for my best friend since high school (44 years this spring) as she passed suddenly back in April.

    I had moved far away from the usual hour’s drive that separated us four months earlier and I’ll admit I didn’t put too much effort into seeing her before I left due to varying emotional and life-changing issues that led to my departure.

    I will regret that to my dying day and will be asking for her forgiveness when we see each other again.

    Make that call. Visit. Send flowers for no reason.

  34. I have been experimenting. The new confuser came with some very interesting software, so I took some pictures and edited them into a very short clip, titled Enduring My Own Cooking. The link is my name, above.

    1. That needs some work. The white titles are hard to read against the light background, but the big problem is that I can tell some slides have more than one line of title, but only one line is visible.
      I admire your determination, if not your measuring capability. 😉

      1. MAiK, no argument. I couldn’t find a tool in the movie toolkit that would let me set or change the color of text. I could have dropped out of the program to edit the pictures in something as simple as Paint, and the letters would have been much more visible.

        But that’s why we experiment – to find out. And all things being equal, I figured anyone seeing the pictures would figure out what went on without the text. One more picture – the tomato/vegetables/onion/hamburger slurry in the pot – would have cinched it.

        Too late for that pic – The Crock of Sssssoup is in five Rubbermaid containers of a pound and a half each. It’s not really soup, but I’ve used the I Can’t Believe It’s Not Chili name a bunch. I’d love to pour it over macaroni, but I can’t afford the carbs, yet.

          1. I didn’t say it’s not chili. It’s just a name, like the margarine, except in this case, the reason for disbelief is that it is chili. I don’t think it would win any prizes in a chili cook-off. I’m definitely not vegetarian, and I love the stuff. It’s great on brown rice or pasta (except for the carbs).

            The name is a double negative. “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Chili” = “I Can Believe It’s Chili.”

          2. I thought about a new picture of the Sssssoup in a bowl. Then I ate a 244 gram serving for lunch. Now there’s one container, 700 grams, and the rest of the one lunch came from, roughly 456 grams. I don’t know what I’d garnish the bowl with. My water crackers (all four of them) are at work. My 647 bread is just a bit high in carbs. Just a scooch. I could sprinkle grated parmesan cheese all over it, but good grief, the sodium!

            I’ll do it. Then I’ll redo the video clip, using pics with black borders on the bottom so the white text is plainly readable. I’ll check into dubbing sound as well. Just call me Cecil B. deGary J.

  35. I adore Pat Gaffney’s books. She creates the best, most believable, characters.

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