Monthly Archives: September 2020

Sadness and Gladness

The two are intertwined at times, it seems.  Ever been so happy about something and then something happens to bring you to the depths of despair?   I’ve had that happen to me a few times in my life.  It happened to me all in one day recently.  I have some very happy news that makes me so glad, but first the sad news.

Years ago, when I went to college, I met one of the best friends I’ve ever had.  Ball State had orientation for all new Freshmen and  I was a little worried about not knowing anyone when I went there.  There I was in a roomful of students, all seeming to know each other and talking together. I am a rather shy person and negligent about starting up a conversation. I really don’t know how it happened but Mary K.  and I started talking and I immediately felt a connection with her.  One thing, she loved to laugh and her laugh was so infectious, it made you want to laugh. Well, after I met her and we began to go around together, we laughed a lot. We laughed all through orientation. The Freshmen had to stay overnight and Mary K. and I  had beds near each other and we talked and laughed almost all night. Some of the girls told us to be quiet, but that just made us laugh all the harder.  Then I found out Mary K. was going to commute to Ball State from her sister’s house in Hagerstown. Well, I was going to commute with two other people and we’d go right through Hagerstown, so why couldn’t Mary join us?  And she did. For a year and a half we drove to college together in good weather and in bad. We sang “Blue Velvet” together much to the chagrin of our fellow passengers.  We met at the student union to eat together with one of our other friends.  We even had a history class together where, I think, the professor took a shine to Mary. He talked to us a lot.  Later, I married and had a baby. I dropped out of college and lost track of Mary. This professor managed to find my phone number and called me and we talked a while and then he asked for Mary’s phone number, but unfortunately, I didn’t have it.  I hope he found it.

When I was twenty-five, married with two children, Mary and another commuter friend, Kenny B.,came to visit. It was like old times, but that was the last time I saw Mary for a long time.  She later married a college professor and was living in the mountains in California.  She spun yarn  and made baskets and purses. She had a business of her own and was doing very well.  Then one day on our answering machine there was a voice saying, “This is a voice from the past.”  It was Mary K.!  She and her husband, Winston, were traveling through our city on the way to Moundsville, West Virginia where Mary grew up.  Moundsville was beloved by Mary and she taught me the high school song which we would sing together on our way to college.  She was going to a reunion, whether a high school or family, I’m not sure. She came from a large family.  So they came to our house and we went out to eat and had a wonderful visit. She still made me laugh.  She asked if I could visit her at the campground the next day before they left, but we were having work done on our house and our contractor was coming the next day so I couldn’t go. That is my biggest regret because that is the last time I saw  Mary K.

Years, decades went by and Mary and I reconnected on Facebook. She showed the things she had made. Our politics were the same.  We didn’t message each other often, but it was nice to know she was there. Then, just the other day I thought I’d go to her Facebook page as I hadn’t seen anything about her for a long while. The fires were burning in California and I wanted to know if she was alright.  On her page were condolences about her death!  She had last commented in January and just a few days later she was gone!  I didn’t know.  I felt so bad. I tried connecting with someone on Facebook to find out what happened. I still don’t know. I do know a light went out when Mary passed away.  A little bit of my heart is now taken.  I don’t want to believe it, but it’s true. My best friend from college is gone and I will never again hear her laugh.   Sadness came and stayed.  I still cannot believe it’s true.  Rest in peace, dear friend. We’ll meet again in Heaven.

Soooo, that was the sad.  Here’s what happened on the same day I found out about Mary K.’s death.  You know we’ve been looking for a Labrador puppy without much success.  One day a  few weeks ago, I heard David talking to someone on the phone and he came in where I was and asked if I’d like to drive to Fort Wayne to look at some puppies. A breeder there had four chocolate Labs and two black labs.  Well, of course I wanted to go. So that Saturday we drove the three hour trip to Fort Wayne to see some puppies.

When we drove up to the house, there were several young children in the yard with some puppies.  I got out and immediately a little chocolate Lab ran up to me. I said, “That’s the one,”  because that is how I’ve always picked my dogs.  Then a little black Lab began to chew on my pant leg.  Let me tell you the conversation David and I had had the night before. David wanted a black Lab and I wanted a Chocolate Lab and I jokingly said, “We could get two!”  I knew that was not possible and we’d have to make a decision before we got there. So we tried to decide which we wanted and knew it would be hard. Now I was in a pickle.

The man with the puppies had eight children of his own. I was asking the children if they’d be sad when the puppies were gone.  Years ago when we got our dog, Samantha, who was several kinds of breeds, I drove up to the house where the puppies were and out of this little house came a whole tribe of children and puppies running with them. It was so cute.  Samantha ran right up to me and she was my dog at that moment.   Seems puppies and children go together.  Molly came from a household with several children.

While David dealt with the papers and paying for the puppies, I held them and fell in love.  We had bought two Labrador puppies and had to wait two more weeks before we could get them.

Did I say, “puppies?”  Oh, yes, I did. You see while driving up to see the puppies I said once again “we could get two,” and David said, “I’ve got the money in  my pocket for two.”  I wrestled with that for a while because  I knew two puppies would require a lot of work.

But in the end, love won out and here is what I ended up with.

This is Lucy Cocoa Belle.  “Lucy” for short.  She’s a handful, but look at Molly.  She loves her.

This is Honey Sugar Dumplin’, Sugar for short. I was going to call her “Honey” but David said when I called her he would think I am calling him!  So, she will be called “Sugar,”

Molly has been smiling ever since we came home with them.

She is so interested in them and is being so nice with them.  I must admit I was a little concerned since she’s been an only dog for a while.

They play hard and then collapse into a deep sleep.

Asleep right at my feet.

I know I’m going to love them.

“Me, too,”

So sadness and gladness both came on the same day. I’d like to think Mary is looking down on us and laughing at the new puppies just like I am.

Here’s to best friends forever and doggie best friends. Bye,

 

 

 

 

Entertaining Myself

I read a blog the other day, Yarn Harlot, where she told how when she and her siblings were young, her mother would tell them to entertain themselves. They came up with some very inventive ways to entertain each other.  I had to laugh because my mother was the same way except she told us if we couldn’t find anything to do, she’d find something for us to do which usually meant “work!”  I would hide out and read or play with the kittens in the barn or do anything to keep out of the house.

So during the quarantine days I have found many ways to entertain myself.  One day I made some blueberry pancakes which David loved and I didn’t and I decided to feed mine to the chickens and Molly.  I wanted to see how they all would react to the pancakes. First the chickens.

These two are the “bosses” of the chicken yard and think they will get the most if they stand the closest, but it doesn’t always happen that way.

So once a piece is thrown, the running and grabbing begins. Every chicken manages to get at least one little piece. Even the younger ones who are still learning the rules of the chicken yard.

It’s really a free for all, but I try to throw the pancake to every chicken so each one gets a little piece. They love blueberry pancakes!

Now Molly gets a pancake.

Here it comes, Molly.

Closer, closer. She stays seated like the good girl she is.

Take a bite. Now Labradors have a soft mouth which means they don’t bite down hard on anything unless they are actually eating. It was bred into them so they would not chew up game after it has been shot and they bring it to the hunter.  Molly forgets that I am not a hunter and she really can eat this thing.   She won’t bite it.

“Well, am I going to get to eat that thing?”

Chomp. She took it.

And she chewed it all up and wanted more, but I only had the one pancake for her. Sorry, Molly.

Well, that was entertainment for about ten minutes.  So I still have to fill the days with other things and surprisingly, I have no problem doing that.

This is one thing I am working on, but I can’t show you much of it as it will be a gift, maybe.

I made a pair of socks with left over yarn and I love how these turned out. I’m trying to use up some of my yarn before I buy more.  It’s fun trying to match up yarns that will look good together.

I’ve finished this pair and am on to another.

There is always bird watching.

“What is down there?”

Frankenbird is still around. He/she is growing, but still no feathers on that head.

We are getting so many tomatoes off my four plants. There are about twenty here now. I try to eat a lot of salad with tomatoes, but I think I will have to make some tomato juice before they rot.

We had this vine grow up on our porch steps. We thought it was a morning glory, but the flowers on it are tiny white ones so I’m not sure.

We have this Autumn Clematis coming up in very strange places where I know I haven’t planted it. We think the birds must have done some planting themselves.

Just a picture of the sweetest dog in the world.

The garden by our back door is flourishing and we’ve had some bird families in the birdhouses. Molly torn down a wren house we had on the fence. Thankfully, the wrens had already hatched and flew away, so David put the house back up, only higher so hopefully the wrens will come back and nest again.

David and I took a very exciting trip today.  I have a wonderful surprise to tell you in my next blog.  Hope to see you then.  Have a happy Autumn. It’s here, whether we are ready or not. Bye.