Friday, July 27, 2018

Friday's Fave Five, 7-27-18

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1. Due to several reasons, not the least of which I am giving a workshop during our inservice week at school, I have gone in several days this week to get a good bit of my room ready.  I made a new bulletin board which unfortunately did not get photographed.  I also put up this one, a classic, which reminds me fondly of the days when I would hand my creative daughter $50 and say "Go fix up my classroom."  This is one of her beauties.  It's one that can be recycled from time to time because the kids love it.  I'm glad to have gotten a lot of the classroom work done and also to have this opportunity to smile at past memories.

2. Rib is doing better.  I've not had to use narcotic pain reliever for two nights now.  I'm still sleeping in a chair for most of the night.  I will forever now have empathy for someone who has a broken rib.

3. Due to rib situation, classroom work, and preparation of this workshop, as well as other things, I am splurging and have hired a former student to help me clean my house this afternoon.  She is working as I write this.  Nothing makes me happier to have a clean house that I didn't do.  :-)

4. Still thinking about the fond memories of our beach vacation.

5. My sister was in town, having taken our folks for to a reunion in Indiana, and so I was able to spend some time with her.  She's safely back in Dallas now, after a not-so-fun plane connection issue. 

And that's my approaching-end-of-summer week.  It's always good to mix productiveness and rest.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Friday's Fave Five, 7/20/18

Beach Version 2018
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1. We spent July 7-14 in a house at Pawley's Island, SC.  The opportunity came up rather quickly.  We just wanted to go somewhere, anywhere, to breathe different air for a few days.  I was scanning the internet when a sale popped up for this property.  A cancellation had occurred and the owner was offering a 20% discount to re-rent it.  We snapped it up and had a great week in a creek/marsh-front house, only a few houses from the north point of the island - easy to either boat or walk to the point, from which we could see marsh on the left and ocean to the right.  
View from walkway to the dock
View from our back deck down to our dock
2. Both our children and their spouses, as well as Mike's sister and husband, spent the first couple of days with us.  Brother-in-law then left his boat with us for the week - a great treat that led to some good fishing opportunities.  Our daughter-in-law proved to be the best fisherman in the group - she caught enough for us to have flounder for supper one evening.  We really enjoyed using the boat.

Daughter and daughter-in-law both love fishing.

Mike catching a flounder - having a good time even if it did have to be thrown back.
Flounder, fries, hushpuppies, corn, and slaw.  Great beach meal!
3. Wonderful opportunities to observe birds - the best in years.  We constantly saw shorebirds from our house - several kinds of herons and egrets, other shorebirds, songbirds, and more.  We also took several trips to Huntington Beach State Park, about six miles from our rental, which is known for premier birding on the U.S. east coast.  

Great Blue Heron on a sandbar as seen from the boat.
Little Blue Heron (immature) at Huntington Beach State Park.
I call this one "Praise Jesus!"  :-)  It's an anhinga, and they like to
dry their wings out this way.
A marsh hen (Clapper Rail) as seen in our back yard.  These are very secretive
birds, but this one peaked out often looking for food before scurrying back
into the marsh.  We got many good looks at this bird that is usually heard
rather than seen.  We also got good looks at. . .
. . .three Clapper Rail chicks who sometimes came out with their mother,
but always hurried back into the cover of the marsh.

Roseate Spoonbills.  Lifers for us.  For some reason there is a large invasion of these
into the Carolinas this year.  Note that the end of the bill looks just like a spoon.
Black-crowned night heron, another secretive bird.  Mike spotted it first.
Another lifer on our lists.
Painted bunting, singing its heart out from the top of a tree.
 I believe it is an immature due to the yellow wash on its breast.
An adult male bird would be solid red in that area.
Mixed flock at Huntington Beach State Park.  I call this picture "Church Potluck."
Tri-Colored heron in the marsh behind our rental.
4. After family left, we had a few days to ourselves, and then dear friends came for a couple of nights.  So it was a great vacation, save for one thing. . .

5. A diagnosis.  On Sunday of the vacation, I "face-planted" onto the dock while getting out of the boat.  It was a really hard fall, and rather awkward with the whole family looking on in horror thinking Mom has killed herself.  I had pain in the chest area for the rest of the week, but for the most part it was mild and only affected me with certain movements and bending over.  It seemed to be healing over the course of four or five days, and by the time we got home I didn't even feel it, and forgot about it, until about three days ago.  This Tuesday the pain came back with a vengeance, incapacitating and much worse than during the vacation.  Went to the dr. yesterday - I have a broken fifth rib, not displaced, which means it's not nearly as serious as it could be.  Dr. said I probably bruised it last week, and then some normal movement caused it to crack this week.  So I am learning how to deal with the pain of a broken rib.  BUT - it still goes on FFF because I am relieved to know what is wrong and that it can be managed with rest, ice, and some pain medication.

Thank you for putting up with all my bird pictures!!

Friday, July 6, 2018

Friday's Fave Five 7-6-18

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1. Fourth of July festivities - Our church had a really nice cookout/service/fireworks on the evening of Tuesday the 3rd.  Probably 250 people or so were there, and it was a great evening of fellowship.  On the Fourth, our son cooked steaks at my folks' house for all of us as well as my daughter-in-law's sister and husband.  It was a good holiday!

2. I have collected Cherry Ames books for years - not so much lately, but nevertheless a collection I am glad to have.  At a thrift store recently, I picked up this gem.  First edition, hardback, excellent condition, dust jacket in good shape for being over 60 years old (1955).  Oh, and it cost me 75 cents.  :-)
3. I just finished baking eight pans of chocolate chip cookies.  :-)  With this heat I squeezed 20 cookies on each pan, which means they don't look quite as pretty, but they taste the same.  I had to bake five dozen for Vacation Bible School next week, and baked more for several other people.  And I used my brand-new KitchenAid mixer for the first time.  Wow!!  My sister said there was a learning curve, and she was right.  But it's worth it.  Once the ingredients are in, they practically mix themselves.  I will really enjoy this.

4. Lots of rain means our new sod is looking good!

5. Loving these summer months and enjoying the rest they include.  I will have more to say about that in a future week.