Happiness is a Good Kid

I spent three hours on the phone with my daughter talking about absolutely nothing. No business (we’re partners), no plans, just refinishing furniture and swapping memories and funny stories. A mega-chat. My kid is the best. And so are her kids. Her husband’s a sweetheart, too. But my kid? Nobody I’d rather talk to.

How did absolutely nothing or a lot of something make you happy this week?

72 thoughts on “Happiness is a Good Kid

    1. I’m working on one about a woman who sells her soul to Satan to make the NYT bestseller list.

      So, basically, I started with the piano already hoisted. 😏

  1. Sister-in-law and her family whom I really like (my husband is truly blessed with a relatively non dysfunctional family) came out from BC for Canadian Thanksgiving. We are enjoying the colour of the leaves in the woods at the cottage and the cooling of the river. I am baking pies, the only highlight in my limited baking/cooking repertoire.

      1. I’m making apple pies and sour cream lemon – the little girls can decorate the first with my leaf-making pastry kit and the latter is a crowd pleaser.

          1. It’s not lemon meringue. It is quite decadent. Made with sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, lemon juice, milk, butter and sour cream. And then whipped cream on the top.

  2. We are covid exposed, so hunkered down and quarantining until we can test. It’s annoying, but I really don’t mind our plans for today being cancelled. I decorated for Halloween yesterday and signed us up for Disney and Hulu, so the hubby has fun playing with that last night. That makes me happy.

      1. It’s sweet of you to remember and ask. I think that he is wonderful, super smart and capable, so I forget how down on himself he can be, because how can anyone that capable think badly of themselves… But we don’t see ourselves the same way others see us. So he is looking, and we are practicing interviews.

          1. Yes. My husband had his first bout of anxiety attacks when he job searched about ten years ago. Job search is all about being judged so very tough. Interview practice is a good thing. Are you using the CAR model or some equivalent?

    1. Oh, and had a nice surprise when I reluctantly did my monthly weigh-in. Almost skipped it: I knew two weeks of holidays must have put weight on – but was three pounds lighter, and past a psychological tipping point, which I’m enjoying for as long as it lasts.

  3. I got my 2nd Covid booster on Friday (the new one) and although many people reported fewer side effects, it is kicking my ass. Yay for a “robust immune response”? Still, with virtually everyone around me going maskless, I’m glad I got it.

    I’m happy that my friend is coming over to help plant garlic and put away the last of the garden (with her guiding eyes puppy, who will be adorable but no help at all), because I’m definitely not up to doing it on my own. And then it will be done. We had our first hard frost this morning, so the season is definitely over.

    A sort of happy is being told by my plumber that he has “a guy” who can probably replace my failed septic for a lot less than the $12K the official septic people quoted me. I don’t know how much a lot less equals, but hopefully something less panic-inducing.

    Also, the sun is shining and the leaves are changing. So there’s that.

    1. I’m so glad you got your booster Deb! My friend up the road (who is a nurse and should know better!) was poo pooing the new boost and is now seriously ill with Covid!

  4. Of course, I saw my baby boy married Friday night. The wedding was outdoors, and it was pretty chilly, especially when the sun went down. But it was a beautiful, small ceremony. Todd chose his brother, his step-brother, and his uncle for his groomsmen.

    Todd, Hannah, and her parents drove to South Bend, Indiana, yesterday because they’re having a reception for the bride’s family there today.

    You may recall that we had picked a more melodic cover of Dylan’s Forever Young for the groom/mother dance. Right before the music started, I said, “Which version of the song did you choose?” He said, “I picked Bob Dylan — it’s the best one, Mom.” Made me laugh. which was great because I was feeling teary-eyed at that point.

    1. Pam, Your son’s wedding sounds really wonderfully special. I teared up at the end of your comment, when your son went for his choice of the best version of Forever Young. Nothing but the best for Mom!

  5. Home again after our vacation, and the cats were mildly pleased to see us, which is the best possible response: they are admitting to being well cared for, and not holding our absence against us. I made the mistake of giving them (cheap) tuna as a special treat, and now they are turning up their noses at normally acceptable food, and hopping on the counter to see if more tuna is up there. (sigh) They obediently ate anything dearest sister and BIL gave them, including the less favored pate which was a purchasing mistake. This makes me feel like a bad pet owner, but then I remembered my dear friend, for whom all children ate, slept, behaved – except her own.

    Anyway, rested and relaxed and happy for my own bed, with a couple of quality books still left to read. And some See’s chocolates that didn’t get consumed, so today has a lot of promise as well.

  6. My youngest brother recently stopped having to travel for work, so now he’s traveling for fun and decided to do a series of dad-daughter trips instead of going alone. So this week was the first, and he and his older daughter traveled to my area and we had a nice evening together. They live halfway across the country from me, so we don’t see each other often, and the last time we were going to have a sibling reunion (with my two other brothers), I had surgery and couldn’t go. So this visit made me happy.

    I’m also happy to have finally figured out digital book formatting and even uploaded my holiday novella, which got its title from a suggestion here (A Dozen Days of Death), but I can’t for the life of me remember who suggested it or even when it came up, so if that person would like a copy of the book, just drop me a note Gin at ginjones dot com. Oh, and I’m REALLY happy with the adorable cover done by Kim Killion. If anyone ever needs cover art (or comparable graphics services), she’s so good and fast and easy to work with and quite reasonably priced. You can see the cover here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BHR3KJQ3/

  7. It was my son’s birthday yesterday and as he still lived with us ( the only one now that his sister is off to Uni), we took him out for a nice lunch in a neighbourîng small town. We had a lovely meal and the best chat.
    Yes, kids are the best and when they are adults, you can relate to them in a completely different way.

  8. This is the first day of my birthday week celebration so for starters, I went to the Apple Fest near Syracuse and found some Christmas presents. And if you’re wondering, I picked up a little something for myself as well.
    A book I ordered just showed up on my doorstep, two days earlier than expected so yay for that. In case you’re wondering about that too, it’s Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune. I liked it better than The House in the Cerulean Sea so decided to splurge and get a hard copy of it.
    And to complete my celebration for today, I have a large chai latte at hand and will shortly be having a Zoom visit with my siblings.

  9. I am not happy. I am not unhappy. I am… meh.

    My garden has been Nickelodeaned – an outbreak of green slime (algae). The new seed pods in Seble and Harvey Too were affected. I may have rescued the mini jalapeño from one of them by scraping off the algae and transplanting to a Kratky jar with an aeration system, so there’s that. Teresa has my Arugula and Swiss Chard and may be a total loss. It all just emphasizes that one must periodically (monthly?) completely clean out the systems and change the water.

    Balancing that is that I already cleaned out the two 12-pod units and I have a great crop of romaine and salad greens and one tomato plant in them. My Jenny-vese Basil plant is doing well, too. One of the wild strawberry pods has germinated. I’d nearly given up on those.

    Ex-SIL is employment-challenged and off his meds again. What that means for the dotter and their four kids…


      1. “…one learning experience after another.” I feel like I should have a BS by now. But I chose hydroponics so I wouldn’t have to deal with BS or other fertilizers.

        Happier now. A second air pump and tubing and so forth was delivered this afternoon, and I’ve been playing at aerating my gardens. I should make a video of air bubbling up through the roots of the mini jalapeño in a Kratky amber Mason jar.

        “Boys and their toys.”

      2. I made a video of air bubbling up through the roots of the mini jalapeño in a Kratky amber Mason jar. I added it to Green Slime is Not to Be Endured on my blog. I actually videoed for two minutes but trimmed it to just 10.5 seconds.

        Photo comparison shows that yes, Señor Mini Jalapeño has grown some millimeters taller and started new green shoots from the main stem. Rescue success! (It’s a pet rescue. I named it. It counts.)

  10. Happiness this weekend is four errands run (winter blankets to the cleaners; Home Depot; Goodwill; hazardous waste) which means Unwanted Stuff Out of House and Horrible Creeping Weedgrass Trying To Grow Through Driveway Lavishly Poisoned.

    Also my husband is installing a new kitchen faucet for us today. Previous was only 4 yrs old but water pressure therethrough had dropped 50% and we never liked it anyway, so … new faucet. Imminently. 🙂

    Also Randy Rainbow’s memoir was on sale today so I snagged it off my wishlist.

  11. I have 2 lovely daughters. 1 is ill & we live together. We argue sometimes but mostly we enjoy good talks and television. She does most of the cooking.

    My eldest daughter lives in KY so we don’t see her often. We do talk on the phone at least twice a week. We also have skype game times and skype holidays.

    My granddaughter (early 20’s) has also started calling a couple of times a week.

    They’re all the best and I am happy to spend time with them.

    1. If your granddaughter calls you twice a week, she certainly is the best. I wish my niece had the time for that.

    2. She is the sweetest. She has some social anxiety issues. She finds it easy to talk to me so she calls to process her workdays. And sometimes just to talk.
      She’s a very gifted artist and I struggle to accept that she settles for retail work instead of pursuing something in the art field. Her generation has beeb affected by seeing slightly older people get degrees that they then can’t find appropriate jobs for.

  12. I didn’t cross anything of my to do list. I will this week.

    Election’s in a month. The suspense is killing me.

  13. I’m still recovering from surgery and still not feeling good. But my lovely partner has been very supportive. He’s been just hanging out with me, doing the cooking and shopping, and being a very restful presence.

  14. Last night I went to the small local theatre that my friend and I have subscribed to for decades. It felt so strange to be back there, but I really enjoyed taking another step back to real life and reestablishing my relationship with my friend. I’m still not sure how I feel about the play we saw, but it certainly felt good to be out. Now we just have to find a place to eat before or after the next show.

    A store I once visited twice a week usually marks things down for the sale table on Fridays. Ever since my doctor’s office moved out of that suburb, I haven’t been able to get there before the selection was completely picked over. This week I got there and discovered 2 or 3 of my favorite items were on sale. I felt like I had won the lottery and only wish I had bought more than I did.

    1. Oh man. I don’t know why getting one’s favorite things on sale is such a wonderful experience, but it’s one of those little things that just makes an okay day into a delightful one. Congrats!

  15. Dinner with a friend in the middle of week. Food was good, company even better.

    Booke my flight to the US for late November. Will spend American Thanksgiving with my brother, SIL and youngest niece. Also a side trip to visit eldest niece.

    Late afternoon walk with DH and the dog. Sun was shining and the fall colours were stunning. I was unable to adequately capture the light through the foliage on my phone’s camera, but my memory can fill in the blanks when I look at my photos.

  16. I talked to my Dad – as I do every Saturday morning – and he was much more chipper than he was last week. On the downside, I was talking to him as he was in a hospital ward, having gone in this week for various issues. He should be released in a day or two. I was very happy to hear him smile – and to imagine his rueful grin at the donut he was given for his birthday. He was happy for the consideration, but he’s not a fan of chocolate. And the donut was covered in chocolate icing and sprinkles. Oh well! At least my sister brought him his all-time favorite – angel food cake with peaches. Happy Birthday Dad!

  17. After last Sunday’s surprise birthday party for my husband, our son and daughter-in-law stayed on for a few days and enjoyed the increasingly lush display of autumn leaves. (And here I’d anticipated a dull fall because of the drought.) Anyway, daughter-in-law was introduced to driving and did well. Much hiking and leaf peeping. Son worked remotely, 3 AM to noon, and still had energy for the rest of the day. Husband wrote a thank you letter to every person who attended his birthday party.

    Incredible luck — my appointment to meet a new doctor today was canceled — so I wasn’t weighed! Yay! I need to take off 4 pounds. Husband is up by 15. We’re getting serious. Loss will happen. Daughter and grandcat are still here, so we’re happy.

      1. Thank you, Gary. I know that different diets work for different folks, but I’ve had luck with the diet designed to drop sugar numbers and stave off diabetes. (I don’t have that problem, but my husband does. His doctor gave him the choice of dropping 15% of his weight or going on insulin.)

        This is the diet where I only eat animal/bird/fish protein and fat (including dairy) and leafy greens. For my weight goal, I need to limit myself to 2 ounces of protein at every meal. I drink lots of water.

        No snacks. No nuts, berries, fruit, grains, sugar, flour, or anything that grows underground (like onions).

        The first 6 weeks in May to June 2021 were hell. But the results were immediate. I lost 30 pounds by the start of August. I’ve been able to keep that loss off by returning to the diet after every trip or special occasion.

        It’s none of my beeswax to suggest a diet to you, but I’m doing it because you’re eating something similar now. Yes, you’d have to drop staples like beans, but all your in house gardening fits the diet. And, you’ve sounded discouraged lately; maybe switching your diet would help. (I’ve hit lifetime twice with Weight Watchers and now can’t stick to it.)

        1. I was nodding along with you until I got to ” No nuts, berries, fruit, grains, sugar, flour, or anything that grows underground (like onions).”

          No onions? No garlic? All the rest of that, sure! But no shallots? And only 2 ounces of protein per meal?!?

          Okay, funny story. I went to my FNFL last night (it’s after midnight, so that counts) to pick up some lean protein and water. As I passed through the bakery/deli section which is of course placed where you have to transit it to reach the rest of the store, I smelled an aroma I haven’t smelled in years. It was a Ukrops Apple Spice Cake. They only ever make them in October, something to do with harvest, not Halloween. I bought one. 3 pounds or 48 ounces or 1,361 grams. Every 3 oz. serving has 340 calories, 49 net grams of carbohydrates, and 240 mg of sodium. It’s full of flour and refined sugar and every bad thing on the list… and I’m going to eat it. Slowly. (I blogged about it.)

          I’ll offer to share with the grandchildren, but they mostly hate apples. If it was banana bread, I’d have to fight them off. The dotter won’t touch either – she’s Keto.

          If I followed your diet, I know I’d lose weight. The thing is, other than underground foods, that describes my diet, mostly. I’ve had to make adjustments for the sodium limitations, and even Atkins lets you add carbs back in. Also, I eat bigger portions of meat, fish, and fowl.

          About the diabetic thing? I beat that. I lowered my A1c from over 11 to under 6. I’m off the diabetes meds completely and if I check my glucose levels (at least weekly), they’re always in the 80 to 120 range (except immediately after a meal, when you expect higher numbers). Diet kicked its ass!

          1. Cool. You definitely know what’s right for you.

            As you can tell from my husband’s weight gain (down 30, up 15), there’s no guarantee that the diabetic diet will keep weight off. He has returned to his 800-calorie-a-day mantra.

            By the way, I decided on 2 ounces of protein by what I’d need to lose 15% of my weight from my start weight of 203 pounds. There’s an online formula for that. The diabetic diet didn’t give an amount.

            Finally, probably the real reason we lost weight was because we were doing it together. Covid helped by keeping us out of restaurants and away from social gatherings.

  18. Yesterday my sister and niece flew home. Today is the first day in 3 weeks that I haven’t been sick, traveling, or having company. Lots of it was great, but I am just beat, and it’s making me very cranky. So I guess the happy is that I have room now to ride out the let down and rest up.
    Also, really beautiful Fall weather, leaves, bon fire, full moon, seeing friends again, lots of good stuff.

  19. Today is Thanksgiving in Canada. Have cooked three days in a row for three thanksgiving dinners. Guests on Saturday who were staying for five days, she had day surgery and needed to heal before drive home. Sunday was vegan/carnivore thanksgiving dinner; two vegan pumpkin pies, cranberry sauce and vegan dressing or stuffing whichever word it is in your family. Today is white and dark meat turkey roasts, more stuffing, cranberry sauce, etc. DH is in gravy heaven. Will be up five pounds by tonight! Neighbours invited us for “not” turkey dinner on Wednesday night. She is a really great cook. Yeah.

  20. I have a friend who had a hip replacement one and a half weeks ago and who is already out and about. I need to make something to take to her, but she’s a far better cook than I am: for instance, she simmers beef bones for 48 hours to start a broth prior to making a stew or soup.

    Any suggestions for a food gift? She doesn’t want sweets.

  21. It’s my birthday. My. Son his fiancee are coming and doin some cake tasting. Her mom is also coming. I am so stressed I will probably celebratene, next week. So much cleanin g and dog hair.

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