Happiness is Non-Essential Conversation

My daughter called this week and we talked for over an hour about non-emergency things; happiness is your kid growing up to be a kind, thoughtful, imaginative, interesting adult who wants to talk to you. Also this week, Krissie and I discussed at great length bed tables–you know, those rolling things that fit under and over your bed so you can work while you recline–swapping links and focusing on essential aspects; happiness is analyzing things that aren’t important just because you and your best friend are obsessed with the same stuff. Basically, happiness is non-angsty conversation with good people.

So, good people, what made you happy this week?

86 thoughts on “Happiness is Non-Essential Conversation

  1. It’s actually a mixed bag. I sent an email to our HR Rep asking her to retire me at the end of December instead of next year some time. I mean I decided, finally. She was not involved in any other dates I’d been considering. I copied the boss, so he can plan accordingly. Then I requested the last week of December off as terminal leave.

    I’m a nice guy, but sticking around past December 31 benefits others, but not me. It’s just time. I’ve started deleting all my emails at work, and any other files in my personal directories. I brought home my Mr. Coffee, and the skillet and George Foreman are next. Cleaning out my locker should be a happy time, too. I need a travel bag for the trunk with spare clothes and such. Monday should be an interesting day.

    1. Gary, Congratulations! You are ready to move on! Advice from my experience: (1) Be sure to bring home every last thing (even something obviously valuable that you overlooked at the last minute will have been incinerated by the time you ask for it). (2) Plan something that you could not have done while working for the first or second week of January.

    2. Congratulations! And best wishes for Monday (and the remaining 6 weeks, if I did the math right) that it isn’t TOO interesting.

    3. Good for you, hope you enjoy your well deserved retirement. Remember to sort out your health insurance and pension and other paperwork, bureaucracy is a pain, but even more so if you can’t refer back to emails, you don’t have anymore.

    4. Time to go while your health is still relatively good and you can do the things you want instead of the things others want. I thought when Covid first hit and everyone was suppose to wear masks and you talked about how the guys you worked with could not be bothered and were hostile about it, that it sounded too toxic.

      I second the suggestion that you plan something for the first few weeks. That gets you out of town during the period of “Hey, let’s get Gary to cover for us as an independent contractor (with no benefits, of course) since he’s available”. On that note, should you be tempted to work as an independent, add at least 50 percent to your current salary because they won’t be paying you benefits. And you need to pay your vacation and sick leave time, insurance etc.

      1. Thank you all! And yes, I have less than six weeks to straighten out everything. January… the only events I want to plan are trips to the mall to get in on the Senior Walk-Abouts. I’m wondering how long it will take to get into a “normal” diurnal rhythm, waking with the sun and sleeping before midnight.

        That “independent contractor” is actually officially being a P-14. No benefits of any kind. No leave. No contribution to retirement. 3-4 days a week, 1500 hours per year, max. Been there, done that. You’re right – I’d need a much higher hourly wage.

    5. I hope you have a wonderful 2022 planned that is filled with what YOU want to do, not what work requires or schedules demand. When I retired eleven years ago, I stopped wearing a watch. My time became my own. That freedom was wonderful. I hope you also have that feeling of a weight being lifted.

    6. I’m so pleased for you! Pulling the plug is liberating. From my experience, it will take you 6-12 months to adjust to your new life – and then you’ll wonder how you ever found time to work!

    7. Congratulations! You need to schedule time with your benefits / retirement department and be sure that all your ducks are lined up in a neat row.

      Check that you are activating Social Security and Medicare options as you want them. My company has always had a better plan than Medicare D, for instance. I seem to recall that you want to sign up for Medicare A and B even if you aren’t activating B immediately, and you’ll want to have them deduct any Medicare premiums from your Social Security automatically. It’s a true headache to try to sign up for B after A has kicked in, and I think penalized, too.

      Or, of course, all this may have changed since I retired! But check it carefully.

  2. Finally, we had a family movie night again: a picknick with take away (delivered) in front of the tv, watching Jumanji 2, following up the idea of dd, who earlier in the day was rather depressed because some friend-stuff.
    Ds stayed for most of the movie instead of videogaming with his best buddy, so that was a major plus. Glimpses of happiness.

  3. Finally, we had a family movie night again: a picknick with take away (delivered) in front of the tv, watching Jumanji 2, following up the idea of dd, who earlier in the day was rather depressed because of some friend-stuff.
    Ds stayed for most of the movie instead of videogaming with his best buddy, so that was a major plus. Glimpses of happiness.

      1. Means you get double hearts – which, BTW, appear to have gone back to normal for me

        Jumanji 2 was a big hit with both me and DH. It was when I started to appreciate that The Rock has a sense of humour 🙂

          1. For some reason I have no ‘reply’ option to Amyll, but I’m pleased to hear Jungle Cruise is decent – we have plans to watch it at some point soon 🙂

  4. I am playing #SecretSantaNZ2021 on twitter. A 1000+ person game of secret Santa. I have my assigned giftee, presents must be sent by 26 Nov, opening day on 16 December. It’s about doing something happy-making, not spending lots of money. Anyway, my twitter feed is full of people sharing what they love, giving hints, finding new people they like the sound of, it’s a nice antidote.

      1. Not always and not everyone 🙂 Trust me, we have our share of arseholes too, and inequality, an absolutely broken housing system, waterways affected by dairy farming and so on…but yeah, I’m still happy to live here.

        Although this also cracked me up last week – watch at about 25 seconds. There was a protest at our parliament, and the protesters knocked over the barrier fencing blocking them off parliament steps and the row of police officers there – then the protesters politely put the barriers back up again. Too funny.

  5. DH and I had a movie night too. We watched Free Guy, and enjoyed it quite a bit. I also enjoyed my conversation with my Dad – but then I always do. He sang a bit of a song to me. I didn’t recognize it, but when he told me it was from Porgy & Bess, I sang Summertime back at him. He also sent me a gag gift – a ceramic cat statue to be put over a box of tissues, so that you pull the tissues from the cat’s butt. We all laughed about that.

    1. Since animals often check each other out by sniffing each other’s butt, I think placing the tissues there is a fine idea.

  6. Despite having the speaker on my mobile suddenly stop working, it actually paid off that I had (for the first time ever) bought the insurance for my new phone. Relatively low fee to replace the bad phone AND a currior brought a replacement over same day plus changed out the SIM card and transfered all the info over. An overall positive week despite total madness at work.

  7. Went out to dinner twice, the first trips since October 1st surgery. For one woman at the first dinner, this was her first in-restaurant experience since the start of the pandemic. Happy to be connecting with friends!

  8. I’ve long wanted a bed table that would span the full width of the bed and that I could roll down to the foot of the bed when I’m not using it. IKEA used to make a console table that some people added wheels to fot this purpose, but by the time I saw photos of this idea, the table was no longer being produced

      1. Diane, My daughter got the sort of bed table you’re looking for online last year. It’s strong and does its job. The only shortcoming is that it doesn’t roll well on (very low) carpet, so I put down long strips of nonskid plastic (rubber?) mat on top of the rug.

  9. “Happiness is your kid growing up to be a kind, thoughtful, imaginative, interesting adult who wants to talk to you.”

    I love this. I’m a bit sad that my kids are growing up. I always feel like I need to hang on to their childhood, that I miss too much because I’m at work or writing. But this gives me something to look forward to. Thanks, Jenny.

    1. Melissa, I am also really enjoying my adult daughters – and sons too, although they are not quite as communicative. Funnily enough, it’s my daughter in England that I communicate with the most. We send texts, voice messages and have video calls using What’s Ap. I don’t miss their childhood at all, really, because they are all such great people now.

  10. Happiness is lovely autumnal days with lovely walks, and then the opportunity to hide away and do some sewing/quilting (which is what I’m going to be doing once I log off here)

    We’ve had a few days of what I always think of as ‘Disney style’ autumn weather – the glowy, sunny, not too cold, and definitely not wet sort, that can often fail to appear in real life autumns. But we have some, and it’s doing wonders for my mood. I’ve being trying to take photos.

    We’ve been collecting seeds from our sweetpeas today, with the thought that since some of them are *still* flowering they may be some sort of wonderful mutant, and therefore the seeds should be harvested to keep the magic going next year.

    Also, I second Melissa’s comment above. My kid is only 3, but the reminders, in real life as well as social media, to ‘enjoy every minute now while they are young because it doesn’t last’ are pretty much constant, so it’s valuable to have a reminder every now and again that, yes your kids will get older and your relationship will (and should) change, but that does not automatically mean that they will (insert dramatic gesture here) abandon you forevermore once they hit adulthood…

    1. My kids are in their early 30s and it’s much more fun to spend time with them now as (mostly) equals than when I had to be The Mum. They have their own income and space and choose to spend time with me so there’s fewer expectations and more jokes. (I’m fortunate, I know.)

      1. See, this is what I want (in the natural course of things). I want to raise decent kids, but also be the kind of mum that they actually want to spend some time with when they have other options, lol

  11. My book group has started meeting in person again and we had a lovely evening catching up with and other and discussing books. Went on a last minute outing with a friend yesterday afternoon and it was lovely to see her. We always have interesting conversations. She also has a neuro atypical kid and its great to be able to talk about DS without judgment – he had a tough week at school and had to be talked down off the ceiling several times. He’s increasingly able to get himself on track which is a positive development.

    I planted most of my spring bulbs and my precious hellebores. Temps are still above zero so still time to get the last 40 bulbs or so in the ground. I still have flowers blooming in my planters – very unusual for my area.

    School is delivery a grind this term but I keep reminding myself that it’s almost over. Given that Covid rates are creeping up, I’m glad the students insisted on Virtual classes instead of in person. Long days online but two of my classmates and I text regularly during classes – electronic form of passing notes.

  12. A family weekend trip to Indiana University to see my daughter. This was the first time my son came and got to see her college. My heart is full.

  13. Neither my mother or I were/are phone people, but we could talk for half an hour on our weekly “we’re grocery shopping tomorrow at 10, right?” call. It makes me happy to remember those calls.

    Just had a lovely time reading Good Book Thursday, which I usually do on Sunday. Gin – if you don’t mind VERY dated stuff (one heroine wears a frock to clamber about the hills, hero very macho, etc.) try some Mary Stewart, if you have not read her years ago. Some are better than others, I suggest “This Rough Magic”. Super cheap on Kindle.

    Getting really good Indian food for dinner tonight to celebrate DH turning 70 (70???!!!).

    Still lighting a candle in my pumpkin most nights, which makes me exceedingly happy. I was late carving this year, which is making it last longer than usual.

    btw, some hearts red, some grey. clicking on red ones decreases likes. I’ll go like them from work tomorrow, as I don’t have this issue there for some reason.

    1. Ooh, yes, Mary Stewart. I should check them out, and that’s EXACTLY the mood I was thinking of — adventure, suspense, maybe a touch of romance but not primarily romance. Does anyone still write/read that style? Thanks for the suggestion!

        1. Snap I was going to say Dorothy Gilman. Marion Babson as well her Brimful of Coffers series if you like cats or Bejewelled Death

      1. Dorothy Dunnett’s mysteries have some of the same feel as the early Mary Stewarts. Also early Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels (Peters writing with a supernatural element in the story) plus Phyllis Whitney perhaps. All 1960s and 70s.

          1. I third the Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Michaels and Mary Stewart suggestions. I read a lot of Phyllis Whitney at that time, but didn’t think her stuff was as good. And although I think she might have been mentioned on Thursday, I’d also add Charlotte MacLeod.

      2. Early Ellis Peters. I haven’t read her Brother Cadfael series, but as a teenager I enjoyed her contemporary romantic suspense/mysteries, I remember.

    2. I used to read every Isabelle Holland I could get my hands on. She died in 2002 and none of her books are on Kindle.

  14. I actually got my garden cleaned up, dressed and mulched (with the help of my young and strong lawn guy) and bonus he carried into the garage my quite heavy iron furniture. It’s vintage and I love it (it has spring seats and sort of a fan shape backs – very Martha Stewart). Got it at an auction years ago and now I have a patio for it. I usually never get all my garden chores done but I was away on biz most of October so I came home with a sense of urgency to get it done while the weather was still pleasant. Just need to get some but not many spring bulbs in. I always get too many then I vetch about it. Anyway, I feel like I got passed the hardest chapter 5 of The Artist’s Way – the one where you have to get everything bogging down your writing done. And the thing is, I really feel relieved, lighter and my thoughts more focused on my WIP. Well, until I have to clean the kitchen again!!

    1. Well done. I would “like” but the heart is red and it will decrease the number. I’m going to start the Artist’s Way again.

  15. I’ve enjoyed getting to know the “little girl next door” (who is now thirty-ish and living in her own house) as an adult, especially as she’s picked up my own love of quilting. Not necessarily through exposure from me, although I did do a little quiltmaking with her, so she had the basic skills when she decided to take it up as an adult.

    My big happy is that this weekend I’ve finally — for the first time in about six months — felt like quilting again! It just dawned on me that a friend’s first grandchild is due in the next few weeks (yeah, my brain really hasn’t been functioning as fully as I thought it was) and I should make a baby quilt for him. I’m not up to anything fancy, but a search of #ChristmasQuilt on Instagram inspired me to do a simple Irish chain in Christmas prints (I have a long history of sending Christmas quilts and decor to that friend). Maybe a matching quilted stocking too, but not until the baby quilt is done.

    1. Congratulations on reconnecting with your craft! May you have many hours of satisfaction from it.

  16. I’ve had some enjoyable chats at the allotment – and found someone who wants all the plants I want to get rid of, which is excellent. Even my Bishop’s Children dahlias, which are all orange or scarlet.

    I’m also happy to have made a start on the big winter clearing at the allotment. And, like Frances, I’ve been enjoying every bit of sunshine. Oh, and I got my booster jab on Monday and was booked in by my now retired solicitor – it was fun to see her again.

    1. PS. I’m happy every day when I look at everything that’s still flowering in the garden – cannas, nasturtiums, cobaeas, passionflower, salvias and roses. The cherry tree’s finally dropping its leaves, but everything else is still lush.

  17. I talked to my Mom yesterday, which was fun. She’s starting a new job soon, which she’s excited and nervous about. I also went out for dinner and karaoke with some friends in Manhattan on a Saturday night which turned out to be ridiculously expensive but also tons of fun. I’m starting to (tentatively) feel like I actually live here.

  18. I got my booster shot. For which I am very grateful, although the post-shot reactions have been kicking my butt. I’m happy that my now-former housemate came and got hers too (we’d gotten our original ones 3 days apart 7 months ago) and then stayed with me for the weekend while I felt like crap. (She mostly doesn’t react to this stuff, bless her.) It is always nice to see her, and it was particularly nice to have company through the fever and chills.

    1. Oh, and I’m happy because my 2nd cozy, Doggone Deadly, is finally coming out on Tuesday, after a 2 week delay due to supply chain issues. Jenny, I’d send you the info to post, but my computer died a couple of weeks ago and your email was lost with all the others.

      1. Which variety of booster did you get? I need to sign up for mine, but I had a six-day reaction to my second Moderna shot, and am a little worried that the same thing would happen after a booster. (I’ve heard no reaction stories from people who had the Pfizer shot, and didn’t know anyone who had the J&J one.)

        1. I had Pfizer, I was fine after the first, and tired and headachy for a day or so after the second. My partner and one of our kids was fine, the other kid was more like me. It is all Pfizer here, and reactions appear to be similarly mixed across the community, but very few stories of longer reactions.

        2. I had Pfizer. I had some reaction after the initial shots–mostly sore arm, swollen glands (after the second one I had swelling and tenderness in the gland under the arm that got the shot, which lasted for a couple of weeks, and I seem to have that again after the booster), with chills on night two after shot two. This time I also ran a low-grade temp, and had chills on the second night again. But I’m at about the 48 hour point and other than being tired (which might be the crappy sleep because of the chills) and the one swollen gland, I feel more or less okay. Hopefully that’s the end of it. We’ll see. But I’m really glad to feel at least a little bit more protected again.

        3. This year I had Covid in January followed by my Pfizer shots in February and March and my Pfizer booster shot in October. In every case I had the gastro intestinal reaction – nausea, inability to keep food down for a day or two, but no fever or swollen glands or sore arm. Lord knows what kind of immune system I’ve got. My husband had Covid in January, too, but got the Moderna shots and only felt tired – no bad reactions.

        4. My parents had the Moderna first (my father reacted badly with the second jab) and had the Biontech/Pfizer for the booster. Both felt had a feaction and felt like ghey got a cold, but it only lasted about a day.
          All of us 4 got the Biontech/Pfizer and reacted with similar symptoms of a cold/feeling groggy but to varying degrees. DH and DS almost didn’t notice any reactions, dd and I noticed more, but it wasn’t bad. Similar with colleagues of mine (from noticing nothing ar all to mild but a few felt it badly).

  19. My biggest happy is that my replacement transit pass arrived yesterday. This will make a huge improvement in my life because due to an injured knee on one leg and a very bruised set of toes on the other, I haven’t been able to walk while wearing shoes. I have been loading more and more cash onto a full fare card and that has kept me from getting out of my apartment as much as I need to.

    Frances in Wales’ mention of ebay also brought a smile because I had been wondering where I could find a checkbook cover to replace the one I lost. My Mom gave me one with a holder for your ID on the front that really improved my life. I put my transit pass in it and it was big enough that I didn’t drop the pass when I took it in and out of my back pack as I used it multiple time each day. I didn’t think that I’d be able to find a replacement because people don’t pay by check much these days, but I have had good luck finding discontinued items on ebay in the past. Thank you for the inspiration!

    I had lunch with my friend Claire this week. Reconnecting with some one you haven’t seen in a long time is such a treat.

    I’m enjoying my newly opened jar of pineapple-jalapeno jelly a little too much today. I really like the combination of sweet and hot in the same bite, but it really tempts me to eat more carbs than I should in one day. Oh, well, at least I only bought one jar so that the temptation will only be of limited duration.

  20. I am happy for a colleague who has found another job, which he needed to do–except we have only 2 more weeks to work togethernad I will miss him. He’s been there for the 12.5 years I have, and plays the role of little brother, which no one else does.

    I am very happy to have remembered Louis Untermeyer’s name as the editor of a book of children’s poetry [circa 1959] I wanted and was then able to find on Amazon. I think the ‘zon is evil, but it does find things I “need.”

  21. I had a busy week, Monday planned only to change the sheets in the guest room upstairs and ended up washing six sets of sheets and three comforter/quilts sets. Tuesday was go to the bank day and read a notice the bank would be closed Thursday Veterans Day. On the way to Wal-Mart Wednesday noticed all the flags flying at the Monument. I had books to be picked up at the library and decided to go Thursday. You would think I would have paid attention to the clues because all the town offices were closed that day including the library. Friday we had a super soaker with lots of wind, still had power but lost the internet. So no phone service, no Netflix or Amazon but could access my Kindle. The new roof is sure getting a workout. Saturday thanks to Ann from reading her comments in Argh I was able to sign up into the Navy log. Thanks Ann. Today I baked Snickerdoodles.

    1. Good for you — VERY pleased to hear about the Navy Log. You’re most welcome.

      [Wherever she is, my mother is smiling.]

  22. Update from Working Wednesday, recapping that for those who missed it:

    On Tuesday, I finally asked the crush out: “Would you like to go to Show A with me?” I did not us the word “date” as I discussed what to do with my shrink earlier that day and she thought using the word would freak him out. Yes, I probably should have spelled that out because first he said yes, then we discussed when to go (Show A runs for a month), and then he wanted to invite “the entire gang. And actually did so later, and at least got some interest from two others.

    To which I was all:
    “Um, fine, but one of them told me he and his wife were busy for the next 2 months and the third one never responds to me about invites, so good luck trying there.”
    “I don’t know if this is clueless and/or actively trying to avoid a date situation here.”
    “Welp, maybe that’s my answer, isn’t it.”

    I mean, really the question isn’t whether or not he likes me or is gay. I am sure on the first being yes and the second being no. The amount of exploding hormones when we hug pretty much answers those for me. The question is whether or not he would actually want to do something about the former, especially if I take the lead on it since asking someone out freaks him out. Would he be up for it or just go all “I’m not ready” or whatever?

    Then the next day, crush gets the idea that the whole gang should go to Show B, a one-night only show this Saturday (the one I auditioned for and did not get in, a theater friend of ours did get in), and “the gang” elects to go to that one instead of Show A, declaring that they are too busy the rest of the holiday season to cram in Show A and don’t want to see 2 shows in 2 nights. So we end up doing that instead yesterday, and he and I shall be seeing Show A alone together next Saturday, presumably.

    I also spent a good deal of time trying to persuade him to audition for the show I’m auditioning for this week. I highly doubt he’ll do it (blah blah work is demanding and we’re short staffed, it’s a high-traffic weekend at work and he’d have to pull a musical audition out of his butt oh, literally tomorrow as in, that’s the only time he’d have to work on it and then would have to audition that night), but I tried. Whatever, I guess. I may have less incentive to want him in the show if the date doesn’t go well anyway.

    We shall see how this goes. I am planning on bringing up the entire “would you be willing to date me romantically and see how this goes?” question on Saturday if things go well. This time NOT asking, “wanna go on a date with me,” more “Is this ever likely to happen and would you want to or are you too freaked out?” Or at least we’ll see if I get up the nerve and figure out what to say. But I’m about ready to address this Once And For All and then we’ll see if he’s up for it to happen, or not and I need to just drop it once and for all.

    I know, it shouldn’t be so hard, I should have someone who actively wants to be with me, and takes the lead ,etc. However, Mr. Perfectly Gets Into Relationships has still not come into my life for two decades, and I still want to know once and for all if what we have between us is going to be something someday. So we’ll see.

    1. I really hope it all goes smoothly for you, and that you get a clear way forward one way or the other.

    2. Let’s hope for a positive response. If it doesn’t work out at least you tried opening communication instead of feeling like a stalker

  23. I’m am currently sitting in my nice warm chair in my nice warm house watching the snow fall. The warm part makes me happy.

    On Tuesday we bought and assembled an electric fireplace for the basement. It replaced the hideous glass TV stand and supplies much needed warmth since Paul is often up at insane times of the morning and doesn’t have to get the furnace going.

    I’m happy I got most of my fall chores done before this, it looks like we are staring at several days with snow, and that the weather has been mild. I just have to get the winter kits into the vehicles and we’ll be ready. Well, at least prepared.

  24. Happy I didn’t put off my Covid boost (Pfizer, no reaction) as cases in my county have really increaed.

    Being amused by the post office. I had a package that was supposed to arive on Friday but was shifted to the wrong local center. They apparently figured that out and it’s where it is supposed to be. Didn’t get a mail delivery yesterday and tracking says it’ll be delivered today by 7PM (they’ve not delivered on Saturday but have on Sunday a couple of times. They’ve got an hour and a half left. I’m easily entertained.

    Got the minutes done for our election board meeting to adjudicate provisional ballots. Ten pages- I’ve been chipping away at them for days. They are done.

    Also raked some leave. I can find the dog poop now.

    1. Well, it didn’t come on Sunday or today. On a more positive note, Deborah Blake’s latest has shipped.

  25. Well, I did predict last week that this one would be another week from hell. We lost my aunt, my mother’s twin sister. But she was, after all, ninety-nine and would have been one hundred in April, and she just faded pretty quickly from kidney failure. It could have been much worse.

    The happier part is that my cousins composed an obituary for her that my mother would have been delighted with (except, of course, that it meant Aunt Ruth is no longer with us). The local paper had my aunt and her husband as the subject of several stories around Veterans Day in recent years, because they were Very Senior Citizens and both Navy veterans. Every time they’d run one of these, my mother would tell her sister that SHE was feeling Left Out because these stories never mentioned HER and they were, after all, TWINS — even TWINS in the military — and Aunt Ruth would point out that the reporter was more interested in her wartime romance than her sister — all very sisterly! So the obituary says a lot about the twins growing up, and it’s very positive. My cousins have been emailing me scans of pictures and we’ve been identifying them as quickly as possible, and I have attached them to my family tree at Ancestry.

    A life lived over the last hundred years goes from the Roaring Twenties through the Depression and WWII and the Cold War to the domesticated Fifties and right on to the present . . . .

    If anyone’s interested, the obit is here:


    1. The part about your mom being mistaken for AWOL because someone saw your aunt walking around San Francisco is funny! I can see why people loved hearing about the war time romance too. That’s a great photo of your aunt and uncle. I hope your memories of your wonderful aunt always bring you joy. Thanks for posting 🇺🇸❤️

      1. My favorite story is that when Aunt Ruth and Uncle Jim were honeymooning, November 1945 in San Francisco, my mother went in to the city and had lunch with them. She was going on to Hunter’s Point, so Aunt Ruth asked her to pick up something from the WAVES quarters. She arrived at the base, and someone called out to her, “Ruth! Ruth! Where’s Jim?” She turned her head, and called back, “Oh, I’ve left Jim!” — which she had; she’d left him perfectly happy honeymooning in San Francisco — and then whisked into the WAVES quarters, where he couldn’t follow her. So she visited her friend and took care of her errand, and when she was leaving the building, there were half a dozen officers from the Pennsylvania waiting at the front door to beg Ruth to give poor old Jim another chance.

    2. Ann, You are so lucky to have grown up knowing such a smart, energetic woman. I understand where some of your initiative and researching obsession come from. Those were some days . . .

    3. What a satisfying obituary. Thank you for sharing.

      My mother’s twin brother died earlier this year, 10 years to the day after my mother died. He was 94. I found solace knowing the twins are together again.

      1. Yes, we all feel the same — they married and didn’t live very close to each other, especially after Uncle Jim retired and they were in his home town of Muskogee (no direct flights from the SF Bay Area to Tulsa airport), but their twin bond was always very strong.

  26. I am so sorry you lost such a wonderful person.
    My Mother in law and her twin sister were born in a covered wagon in 2019 in Texas. It was a premie birth and their mom died of septicemia, leaving the dad with 4 boys and two babies. He took them to their aunt to be raised.
    Their stories of growing up delighted me. I loved them both so much. I know you have as many wonderful memories as I do.

    1. That sounds fascinating. But do you really mean 2019? 😉 I was guessing 1919 but did they still have covered wagons that late? Something for me to research!

    2. I suppose some of it is nostalgia, but they really were a wonderful generation. I was very lucky to have them.

      (Should just add that my father’s mother lived to be a hundred, 1885-1985, and she told us that her very youthful doctor, making conversation, asked whether she had come to California by covered wagon. She said, No, by train! — it was her father-in-law who had come West by covered wagon a generation before.

  27. A small happiness was achieved by finally dealing with the New Phone Clusterf**k. Got some clutter out of the house. Did some minor house and yard work. Watched ‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’ twice. Picked up fancy takeout with the husband last night, drank posh chardonnay, and watched the latest James Bond.

    1. That sounds lovely 🙂

      We watched 10 Rings the other night and really enjoyed it. We will watch the new James Bond at some point.

      Today I am starting to wrap Christmas presents – this makes me happy for multiple reasons, not least it means I’ve actually got them in the house non-last-minute (present-buying is one of the stress-y things for me about Christmas – and we also have both DS’s and DH’s birthdays in December, so the run up to the 12th month is… interesting for me, lol)

  28. I’m on the red heart train now. Except for the last three posts which are grey. Very odd. Happiness is deciding to make my boys’ suit vests for Christmas. Quick and easy even though I’m having to re-draft a pattern. Should have them done by next week.

    1. Yours is the first grey heart I’ve seen in quite awhile. I was actually able to turn it red!

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