Saturday, March 19, 2016

One a Penny two a penny

Only a week until Easter so begins again my annual hunt for authentic hot cross buns, which apparently have gone out of fashion like so many things of memory. I remember this Mother Goose rhyme : 
Hot-cross buns!  Hot-cross buns!
One a penny, two a penny, Hot-cross buns!
If you have no daughters, Give them to your sons;
One a penny, two a penny, Hot-cross buns!
Wikipedia says "The earliest record of the rhyme is in Christmas Box, published in London in 1798.[1] However, there are earlier references to the rhyme as a street cry in London, for example in Poor Robin's Almanack for 1733,"  


Imagine that, a child in the 1950's grows up reciting a poem from the 1700's and remembers it today in 2016.  As I ponder many things of the past, I wonder, am I getting that old that I think back more and more?  Perhaps.    Here in  the tenuous Minnesota spring time weather which can bring sun one day and dust with snow overnight as t did last night I wonder about all sorts of things.  From my Facebook morning posting, two photos a week apart. 
Back deck with new bistro set covered, snow
dusting overnight March 19, 2016

Back deck Bistro set covered with tarp as Jerry insisted
March 11, 2016, to my protest, he cautioned, "It will
still have some winter weather could have snow." He was
right of course, I go for the sun as my long rooted in  California mind is fooled once again
 I like to go outdoors for a  walk of 4-5 miles, adopting the habit of young European mom's I saw in Germany and Austria who put their kiddies in strollers and off they push around town for a mid day breath of fresh air.  Good for the soul to be out there, as friend Lisa says. We live in a lovely small town that is very amenable to walking, so I can easily cover those miles.  If I want to stay closer to home I can trot 1/4 mile down the street to the high school quarter mile track where round and round I go getting in a few miles easily.  


The other day walking, I thought about my late aunt Jinx and a gallon jar filled with coins that she left behind with the label, "Money we have found walking."  When we cleared her house after she passed in 2009, we found her jar pushed back on a closet shelf with over $300 assorted coins, apparently found here and there by herself or late Uncle John, her husband on their walks or in parking lots, or wherever.  I too used to find money frequently sometimes even currency.  And somehow I began to think that  today in all the miles I walk I never find money, none, not even a penny.  Was it that long ago that I would stop and pick up a loose penny on the ground, recalling, "a penny saved is a penny earned."  as others might just walk by, leaving the copper coin there. 


This reflects how rare use of cash is today.  While Jerry remains "old school" and likes to pay with cash, I seldom carry more than a couple dollars, instead use my handy ATM debit card.  That was another annoyance in Europe to be using different cash currencies in the different towns.  Last October in California at a restaurant with cousins and aunt, Jerry pulled out cash to pay the bill to the astonishment of my 80 some year old Aunt Pearl who asked wide eyed, "Do people still use money today?" 

Think about it, cash is rarely used.  Many are addicted to "points" they accumulate from charging  everything on plastic cards.  They consider accumulating points wise, a rebate, a bargain, I find them  annoying. For example our Verizon points, over 300.000 and not a thing worth our cashing them.  Most of their offers require additional cash for something we would not buy anyway.   So the Verizon points sit and pile up, useless.  We have used some points on other cards for cash yet the $100 or even $10 is not nearly what we have spent. 

We have never been charge card type people, which has likely given us a much  easier lifestyle today in retirement.  Often we hear these adds about consolidating debts, stretching the finance payments out and I am grateful that we never got into that lifestyle.  Other than our home mortgages, we did not owe payments.  If we charged anything it was paid for fully the next month when the bill arrived. We were frugal, savers, we did not waste our hard earned money and did not live beyond our means.  How different were we from others?  Yet, our frugality has afforded us a debt free retirement, a nice life style. 

We used to save spare change, coins that accumulated in purse and pockets went into a basket and then  periodically Jerry would roll them up into the  distinct paper coin wrappers and take them to the bank.  Today that basket takes longer to fill, as I mentioned I admit to seldom using cash so I have  less change to dump and Jerry often leaves his along with the tip at the restaurant, or spends it.  Not too long ago when he took the last stack of rolled coins to the bank, they had to open each and dump into the coin machine to count, a sign of the times.  The teller said it was now the policy because some unscrupulous people used to plug the rolls with  fake currency.   

Money, yes, I always stooped to pick up a penny, coins.  And yet today, no spare change drops from pockets.  It's probably a good thing people do not drop their plastic cards, that would be a terrible find in the hands of the wrong person.  How different life is today from when we skipped along chanting and holding up and down our fingers,
"Two shiny quarters,
Before the day was done
One bought a sucker,
Then there was one.
One little quarter,
I heard it plainly say,
"I'm going in the piggy bank
For a rainy day!"
Pocket change

And that's it for today, when few anticipate the possibility of that rainy day.  We were raised differently in different times, when money was cash, one spent what they had or less.  And yes, tragic circumstances, misfortune can foil the best laid plans, but still saving money, planning was a good thing.  I am glad we did.  

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

March comes in like an albino lion

View out front from  living room this morning
Most all snow was melted by Saturday,
here my shadow taking photo out back
Oh, what a difference the MN weather makes in just four days, welcome to  the north where Mother Nature is not to be trusted. As these photos tell the story, from  a few days to today, things change.  Here is treachery recognized and accepted by long time locals who tell me, "it's early"  "not spring yet" and once more they are right.  This is tiresome to me having grown up in southwestern PA and then spending most of my life in northern California, where now trees and shrubs are already blooming to welcome spring.  While I do appreciate 4 seasons and yes, I know it hasn't been that long  nor tough a winter, I am already done with it.  I thought I was getting ready to pack away both my long tall and short Uggs, other boots, and all winter gear.  Because Saturday was glorious, the balmiest warm day, when I didn't even need a jacket as I logged in a few foot miles around the local nearby high school  track before we  drove down to Lansing Iowa.  As usual, the weather conned me.  And although we only had a couple inches  of snow, I find it amusing.  Snow was iffy, if we had been luckier with our river bluffs, this would have stayed south and swept east, but nope, we caught the white.  The snowfall though slight  meant I canceled my morning drive to the Y for my Tuesday pretzel class aka yoga workout, having to do so at home instead.  It was rather treacherous on the roads, several schools wee closed or delayed opening, as that voice tells me, "don't go out looking for trouble, stay in your safe warm home, nothing you need to do out there."  My intention with  remaining home this winter was to accomplish all sorts of projects, most of which remain in various pending states as of today because I can become easily distracted and  do  a little at a time, flitting as I see fit, not very disciplined because I don't have to be.  
Binders of recipes along with part of my
cookbook collection

One binder page open
At least, One task  nearly done now was to reorganize or finalize the filings in my collection of recipe binders, photo here of the collection with cook books.  I am an uncontrollable clipper of recipes as are many of my friends.  We talk about our shared affliction, especially those of us now at our "age."  WTH are we doing this for?  In my case, if I cooked one recipe a day from my collection I wouldn't finish in 40 years and I do not expect to survive that long.  Well at least they are in binders, still when I look for a recipe as I did yesterday in preparing chicken thighs, I cannot find it easily. I will end up using my trusty tablet and searching onto the Cook's or Cusine sight.  Turns out that particular recipe was not here but in a collection of my Cook's Illustrated and Cuisine magazines which are accumulating on our Four season Porch which serves as my walk in wine storage cooler in cold weather.

I sometimes ponder what in the world, why bother. And then I go on and toss some, rearrange others, and even go so far as to consider creating an index, a table of contents on a data base so I can readily find the recipe or tip I want when I want it.  But, as  happens I have more ideas than implementation efforts.  I always have been the idea person, the manager, the one who could think things up, I had staff to implement.  Ahh,shades of my career days, some of those skills are not so much in use today as I am my own staff.  

Which brings me to the meandering thoughts that circulate round my head with ever increasing frequency, why bother?   I have no descendants to enjoy nor be interested in my collections.  So when I am gone to the here after, this will all be tossed.  I'd like to think, someone will get some of these and find them useful, iconic, or who knows. I often do as I buy on impulse an old recipe book or two at an estate sale.  I wonder about the person who used it before, especially when they have noted something as good or added their modifications, or the page is dogeared, stained from years of use. I smile and remember that someone enjoyed this same recipe and well, here I have it now.  But reality is ,this just won't happen here with mine.  Which is where I could  get off into a pity party of poor us, no family to share with, and so on. Nope, not going to go there, would do no good, instead, I try to keep busy, now maybe I'll put this on the blog.Well, there more time has gone and now time to get to thinking about dinner, so it goes, a snow day and some minor tasks accomplished.  For this I am glad to be retired, time is all mine..  
Partial collection of my binders of clipped recipes
  
Feet happily clad in warm soft German socks from
Regensburg, my trip in Nov/Dec.  Ahhh, easy living. 

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Valentine's Day 2016

Back yard squirrel pair
Valentines Day is here bringing a warming trend finally from our past couple weeks of arctic polar freezing sub zero temps which  had me lamenting,"remind me why I thought we should stay home this winter?"  Maybe now I have my lasting dose of winter and will be happier in Florida, in the motor home, even if it gets chilly in the south.  Meantime, today felt definitely warmer at 15 degrees when I went to get the Sunday Pioneer Press from Pump 4 Less.  It was already snowing though which is expected on and off all day.

Jerry blew most of the snow out of the driveway with the leaf blower already.  He is recuperating well from the sinus surgery and after this week when he returns to the ENT the last of the packing can be removed from his nose and perhaps he will be able once again to blow it.  Relief is expected from recurrent sinus infections which he endured too much of the last year. That's another thing, we stayed home and hopefully now  will have most of our medical appointments out of the way. As our late neighbor Frank said  years back, "good thing we are retired because we can go to all these doctor's appointments."  Still we are blessed that we have outstanding medical care here from Mayo where we live, many people do not enjoy that luxury. 

Valentine's roses
 .  Jerry took my car to the car wash Friday and returned with his traditional Valentine's dozen red roses.  I am not a chocolate person so he knows not to buy that for me.    They are lovely but opening fast and so will not last long, nevertheless, I love roses.  It took me less than an hour to notice them, he had even trimmed the stems, selected a vase, added the package of bloom stay and set them on the dining room table.  I noticed them after about 20 minutes, how easy it is for me to become oblivious to surroundings.  Paying no attention, otherwise absorbed, who knows why, but once again he sat back and got a chuckle at my expense.  

 I want to share this Valentine's poem that I found in 2011 and have updated to 2016 marking our years together, and our lifestyle.

"Reserved Seating for Valentine's Day"

It's all been said, It's all been done;
Forty eight + years of chocolates, flowers or "I forgots"
Find us seated in comfy recliners, feet up.  
Our eyes scan commercials that portend chocolate diamonds and open heart pendants 
Are the only perfect gifts to portray unending love.
When really it comes down to the comfy recliners
And we who remain happily seated there
Over the years.  

Candid shot of me moving the vase of roses.





Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Groundhog day and the voices in my head

About 8:35 this morning front drive
The weather warnings have been ominous, snow was on the way, a southern wind would blow it up this way and eastward.  Often the Mississippi River Bluffs here shield us from a lot of bad weather. This winter has been rather mild, in fact, all weekend I was able to get outside where the sun  was shining and  balmy  mid 40 degrees temps were refreshing.  It was nice to get in some walking miles.  So although the sun was not shining this morning it looked like I would be able to get across the rive to the Y for my yoga workout.  Jerry shrugged his shoulders and said, wait and see.  On yoga mornings I do not have to leave until 10 o'clock, so  I waited and did a load of laundry meantime.  Thinking that if the weather services predicted correctly this time and most of our snow was gone, melted the last few days, perhaps I should snap some before pictures.  All the while I was hoping the forecasters would be wrong.
Back deck, 8:30  this morning


Back yard down to shop and motor home house,
the white remnant of snow is slight about 9:00 AM

I had decided to go  to the Y and get my pretzel twisting weekly yoga fix; it's the class I will never fully master, always something of a challenge and yet one that I can gauge has tremendously benefited  my flexibility, strength and balance.  I really dislike missing my routines and after all, living here means winter sometimes.  By no means am I a native Minnesotan, more like a Californian though raised in western Pennsylvania.  And although I really like four seasons, too much winter is not a good thing.  Any weather that restricts my activities is not a good thing to me. So I  proceeded to proceed, got my yoga mat ready to go when the clamor started. I could hear a small voice in my head, you know those naggers, as it got louder, "Patty, you do not have to go looking for trouble, just stay home."  And Patty replied, " oh don't be a scaredy cat, a wimp."  "Don't go looking for trouble, Patty."  The voice became duet as I recalled these words told me often enough by Mom and later in my life by Aunt Jinx Mom's sister who survived her.  There is a Polish saying that if one will just  let trouble alone it will make it's way elsewhere, something like that, so they invoked their Americanized corollary, "don't go looking for trouble."  Today I sometimes say "I don't need to go looking for trouble" when I refuse an invitation to go out at night, I am not fond of driving after dark, especially in winter. It's not that we live in an unsafe area at all, actually here in the Mayberry like setting we are blessed.  I realized that here this morning, I was hearing advice from Mom and Aunt Jinx, was that just a deep phobia or a warning to heed.  While I mused about  this, I went to get my sweat pants. 

And then I looked outside and a few flurries had started.  Better to wait a second or two.  I know now it was a good thing to heed those voices.   Within 20 minutes the snow began in earnest and then picked up a kick.  Jerry said, it was coming from the south.  He pays unusual attention to weather, watches and streams the weather channel, and delights in the computer research and models of what's moving where in the air currents.

 

I posted these  and more of the rapid increase with this snowstorm onto Facebook earlier. The above photo is about 5 minutes into the start and the whitish stuff is coating our previously pristine front drive and walk and down the street.  Well, I'm thinking it might not be too bad, I can drive in this, and then, the clouds opened up and down came the  snow.  Within  twenty five minutes snow was accumulating, carpeting the grounds and  walks.  The following photo is our previously pristine back deck now getting carpeted. 

 

It didn't take long before it was a white out all around, making it  appear as though we lived inside one of those snow globes, you  have seen.  One like they make in Bavaria today and sell, I had learned on my Danube Christmas Markets tour in December that they invented the snow globes and the older ones are quite valuable.  Bavaria is a glass making are of renown in Germany/Austria and home of some of my ancestors. 

This next photo is taken from our front picture window out toward the front drive, now invisible, and compared to  90 minutes earlier, things are looking bleary.  I admit it is sometimes a good thing to listen to the voices.  Mom would be happy.

 
Speaking of Mom, today is/was her birthday, also posted on FB.  She would have been 92, but she left this earth at 80, in 2004, suddenly.  Helen was the baby of her family of siblings and the one who would die the youngest except for the infant brother.  It was a blessing though a shock, she had just been diagnosed with Alzheimer's and the years ahead were not going to be good.  She was spared a debilitating long drawn out eking away of the  body although there was some dementia that was creating a havoc in her behavior.  I shared this photo of her at about 3 years  of age on FB too today, the only photo of her as a child of which I am aware, and retrieved from my late Uncle Carl, her brother. For some reason when I try to put the caption on these photos, Blogger moves them around to where I do not want them.  A pox on Blogger!  


The very last photo is the last time I saw Mom alive in Pennsylvania, taken at her kitchen, she was lecturing me about something, I think she might have been saying, "well, Patty you do not have to go looking for trouble!"
By the way the MN State Patrol has closed Interstate 90 here because of blizzard conditions and Highway 61 has some shut downs too.  Our city has not yet sent the snow plows out, so this really is  a mess and the worst snow storm this winter.  Our roads are normally all kept clear immediately.  

Saturday, January 2, 2016

2016 Happy New Year new blog post



 Something frolics in the snow all around our property and hillside, who was skiing?
r

Trying to not fully ignore this blog which has been replaced by Facebook, to which it is much easier & faster to post photos directly instantly from smartphone  and tablet, blogging is yesterday's method.  Still blogging provides much more room to write than FB, yet most all people with whom I stay in touch are on FB, few read blogs.

 We have a white frozen Wonderland for this New Year and I have been out exploring tracks in the snow.  I think this white carpeting means the end of my Rosemary plant that thrived in the small back flowerbed. Now if pics will upload from this tablet, here goes.
What creatures came up to the front window, we did not see, likely in the darkness
While we were at ease downstairs enjoying the massive 60"TV

This first photo at the top,  is the giveaway clue along with this hint, they seek tasty treats of any foliage that has survived our so far mild winter, now in our first snowfall.

Frustrated that I cannot get these in the right order, so an off kilter array to this post.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

PA trip in June

One evening sky at Mt Top
Hill incline to Mt Top
As the final days of our two weeks here back home in PA approach departure day, I ponder when is the best weather to visit.  No matter when we are here we get rain and here atop the hills at Mt Top RV that means puddles, lots of puddles and PA like potholes in the  drive around.  The Mix family who bought this place last year, seem to have a good thing going, but could use some advice on how to run an RV spot.  Still it is the only game around and we are glad to have the spot to park.  I have channeled or awakened  my long latent mt.goat persona on the hills I  climb up and down each morning on my  4 to 5 mile walks.  I can feel the difference over two weeks in my stamina and speed, as well as my glutes and calves. Hills do wonders for workout intensity. I have the Mt Top final incline down to 2 minutes which is darned good for the road. These things I know from my Samsung Gear Git.  Still I prefer my zumba classes back home for work outs.  Here it's just me and the birds singing loudly as I am walking along up and down hills.  I have seen my first lightning bugs of 2015 right out the bedroom window in the tall grass and pines and the brilliant display was a sight to enjoy. That was on the dry days, and the humidity that follows the rains in Western PA.  

This trip we had the sad but not fully unexpected death of one of my classmates who had been ill with cancer and congestive heart failure for some time.  We had almost a mini class reunion yesterday at the funeral home.  So goes life, or so it ends, he was 70 and as another friend comment"drew the short straw."
PA gals back seated ,Carlie; front seated Pam,
back standing Dayna, front standing me
We are the Golden Girls of Ken Hi
 It is always a good time when we gals gather together and talk like there's no tomorrow, it's like we never lost time or space and have always been together.  Jerry is a token guy who sits and says little, observes, drinks his beer.  The women are all single so no male companions to talk with him. There were others at other gatherings, but I just did not take photos other than fast FB shots.  We had some nice visits with relatives and my long lost cousins.  Each gathering involves food, sigh.  Despite the fun and talk, I think this is my last long stay here, I find myself bored, restless and tired of the traffic, the awful roads and streets, the humidity when the rain stops and the over all dismal slumlike shabbiness of the town where I grew up, back when it was the good old days of the early 60's and late 50's, when the mills and Alcoa flourished, the town had a population of 20,000 some and crime was unknown. Back when it was Little Chicago and the mafiosos ran things, the good old days of safety. Today it's drug low life infested.  Even the newer Pittsburgh Mills Mall has more closed stores than open, and offers little except chain restaurants and movies.  Macy's there is unlike any other in the country, bargain basement old bargain clothing.  JCPenney's is almost a step up from Macy;s.  People including my old home of New Kensington have nowhere to shop, Walmart and K mart?  That's it.  So very devastating and sad, yet pot new to me. No wonder they are devoted to online shopping Amazon and QVC.  And this time I use the experience as a lesson in gratitude for the lovely clean safe area of MN where we live.  I vow to never again complain about our Valley View Mall and stores, they are 1000% above this.  I tell my friends it is their turn to come visit me, we have the extra bedrooms.  They need to make a journey to God's country to experience better living.  

Family memorial granite bench at Greenwood.  
One of my purposes this trip was to see the commemorative family granite bench I bought as the memorial at Greenwood cemetery, where I go to see my graves.  There are no headstones, all flat brass markers for ease of mowing the huge cemetery.  Sale of granite memorial benches is a new addition and I jumped at the chance.  I am so glad I bought this as a marker commemorating my ancestry, one side  is engraved Konesky  the name which my late uncle shortened from Kochanowski in becoming more American.  My grandfather thought that "nuts,"  He could not understand how educated people couldn't just spell their name right.  Here he was an old coal miner who stole a cow to get passage money to come to America and he could sign his name, what was wrong with them?   It sits alongside the road and looks over the hill.  I think they would have liked it.  Whoever sits there will notice the names and perhaps stroll by the gravesites.  
 paczki,  fresh tomatoes and straw
berries from farmers mkt
Today was one of several outstanding local farmer's markets, something I miss in MN.  Here the markets are abundant with cheap buys farmer direct with produce, fruits, as well as every type of ethnic food the valley offers.  At home in MN the farmers markets are nearly the same price as the stores and sometimes not as good quality. Here the farmers are happy to sell direct and share the lower cost with consumers.  Today;s reward was fresh picked juicy strawberries, small but vine ripe tomatoes, lovely kale and baked goods. I'd have bought more ethnic foods but I had the misfortune of  a woman who seemed to be ahead of me at each vendor and who took forever to make her purchases as she examined and talked.  I had my impatience going so passed the Syrian food  vendor when she was there. My special treat the polish donuts of my childhood, just like my grandma used to make, paczki, indescribable fried donuts, nothing like a real one.  But as I told the baker every year I get one and enjoy it,  He said," buy a dozen and freeze them", nah they wouldn't be the same then and besides I  would forget about them and they would go to waste.   Besides I make one last for  2 or 3 days, very filling.  Well thanks to the hill climbing I can eat just about anything I want and not gain weight but I am always aware and with less capacity until I am full, it;s not a challenge.  

This is my erratic blog posting, much more on FB.  This is my reminder too why I will be unlikely to journey to PA for another year and not for as long a time.  It's time to count my blessings for not staying here my whole life.  I would have known nothing different and would not have become who I am today.  There is a reason for everything though we seldom know it at the time and though we may continue to wonder why this side of the grass.  Life goes on and forward and we flow with it or we are swept under and away, twisted and turned and not ever content or satisfied with our new challenges and what we have overcome.  Huh?  Where'd that come from?  One last photo, PA puddles, seems to fit this last paragraph...
Some puddles after the PA rains, Mt Top RV,
 my inner Patty had to splash


Saturday, May 23, 2015

May 23, 2015 and Memorial Weekend

Steve two months old
50 years ago this morning Steve was born, a small baby they said at 6 lbs, 6 ounces, but it was a difficult birth for me.  I still recall the agony and have never understood those women who claim giving birth is such a  wonderful experience. I remember the old nurse at McClellan hospital yelling at me to shut up that she'd had six babies and it didn't hurt that much.  I said, "good for you, bitch"  or something like that.   I think back to the dreams I had then and settle into the moments of today, this Memorial Day Weekend.  50 years later,  and the multitudes of life events.  Steve left this earth December 2008 and our lives took a steep turn there, it was and remains painful.  One wonders why some of us are given heavy burdens and surely we will never know all the answers on this side of the universe.  

So Memorial Day weekend when we  decorate graves here for relatives who have passed on and we pause to remember, it  stirs deeper.  His birthday was not often over Memorial Day weekend as it is this year.  We  remember and always will and wonder. We remember those long Memorial weekend camping trips to Stumpy Meadows in Georgetown, California with  many friends to the group campsite that we reserved annually.  Many of those friends have also ended their earthly journey.   

1966, Jinx, Baba, Mom
So many relatives and friends  have gone on and it is expected  to lose the older generation, my grandparents,  Mom, Aunt  Jinx, Uncle Carl, Aunt Marge, Uncle John, Barney, Florence (MIL), Bob Wiley, Phil Malnick, and more.  I remember my father, whom I never knew, a WWII pilot gone with his crew June 1944, I would be born in November.  Life would have been different I know if he had lived. As we remember Steve, we consider he is at peace.  I have accepted long ago but that does not mean I no longer wonder. So over this Memorial
Day, along with flowers to the graves and observance of  military taps played at the cemetery, why remains the unanswered question.  No answer it just is and so it will be for us to remember always. 

I found this mournful yet fitting verse online, no author was cited......I know we did our best and as a friend said, Steve was a happy little boy.     
Steve 1974 Van Damme State Park

  I will lend you, for a little time,
A child of mine, He said.
For you to love there while he lives,
And mourn for when he's dead.
It may be six or seven years,
Or twenty-two or three.
But will you, till I call him back,
Take care of him  for Me?
He'll bring charms to gladden you,
And should his stay be brief.
You'll have his lovely memories,
As solace for your grief.
I cannot promise he will stay,
Since all from earth return.
But there are lessons taught down there,

I want this child to learn. 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Techie gadgets and more access to my mind

Back when I created this blog I never thought I would run out of things to say or write here, but  changes happen and as quickly as technology changes sooner or later the change flows to our habits.  If we are wise and want to keep up. we go with the flow.  If we want to cling to old times, ways, habits and not learn we dig in our heels and proceed in our old familiar rut and we become as obsolete as the black and white tv's of yore.  The changes remind me of my late mother in law who  was always behind the times, having stalled somewhere in the early 1950's and refusing to learn more or expand her horizons.  She muddled through the rest of her life up to 96 years  in a muddle of being out of touch, backwards, left behind, bewildered.    

Old habits like this blog do not give up easily and from time to time, the blog specter haunts me, as a thought crosses my mind, "now that might be worth blogging."  It was once an easy way to communicate and ponder or to document my ponderings. Not so today as I have changed tactics to accommodate these mental flashes in the moment.  It is easier to  snap the  photo with my smart phone and share on Facebook in the moment and are we not supposed to practice being in the moment?    I don't have to sit down at  the keyboard and log in to the blog, type and edit and ponder, all I do is snap, click, share the photo and the thoughts and  into cyberspace, sharing with many more than ever frequent the blog.  

 After my March 31 health scare, I became even more of a rabid fitness freak and decided one of the monitors for activity would be my next techie purchase.  So it happened that I have acquired  my fitness watch monitor, also by Samsung,  my Gearfit.  My  simple post onto Facebook asking for recommendations about a month ago gave me rapid responses that most of my friends were using the Fit Bit wrist monitors.  Several gals at zumba use that and yet wear a watch besides.  That very day as I would head off to purchase my new  gadget, Fit bit issued a massive recall on their  wrist monitors, some had burns from the  applications.  Again several Facebook friends alerted me about the recall and I had read that morning's news from my Wall St Journal, also on my smartphone, that Fitbit was recalling these particular devices.  Either there was a sensitivity to the  nickel in the stainless steel or some  claimed they had a radiation type burn from wearing their  wristbands. 

 Nevertheless I was sure as I drove to Sam's and Best Buy that I would buy the Fitbit  and one that would sync to my smartphone where I already had a Health app to monitor steps, track health indicators, etc.  I  do not always carry the phone with me and really a wristband would be so much handier.  Sam'sClub was my first stop where there were several options and I was still favoring the Fit bit but decided to drive over to Best Buy where even more  varieties awaited.  Yes the Fitbit would sync with both my PC and my smartphone android.  There were so many options but do I really need to check my Facebook notifications and email on my wrist?  Probably not, yet I saw no sense in wearing a wristband and watch so I would get that combination and of course wanted the heart monitor and the various  fitness applications.  Something about the fitbit besides the black strap was not attractive, the watch option was bulky looking and the smaller one would be difficult to read without cheater glasses.  Then I  saw the Samsung Gear Fit and decided it was for me, I am  quite happy with my Samsung Galaxy phone and have been impressed with quality of our Samsung TV's.  The Samsung display is much more attractive,  a touch screen and I can change the wallpaper to match my outfits.  All it lacks is some bling on the plain black wristband, but it also is small enough to adapt to my wrist and does not look bulky nor require reading glasses.  

I have had it now for almost a month and really like it, in fact wear it all the time, addictively.  It can even monitor my sleep patterns but I have decided I am not comfortable wearing it to bed.  I already know I am an active sleeper, I travel in my sleep as well as getting up and down several times a night for bathroom calls. I check my progress and find most days I  rack up over 11 or 12 thousand steps where my goal was 10 thousand. It does prove that one burns way fewer calories than expected and that is why many who claim to be exercising are puzzled when their weight stays the same.  We really need to work our bodies hard for long periods of time to burn up calories, for example 3021 steps or 1.3 miles only consumes 83 calories for my body.  Proof that both food restriction and exercise are needed to maintain a healthy weight.  I congratulate my self on my physical over achievement.  The Fitgear also gets my text messages which is handy and runs 3 to 4 days without needing plugged in to recharge.  And so another techie gadget has become a part of me and taught me more applications and fitness awareness.  By the way, the cardiologist  gave me a good to go and keep it up on Thursday and said to come back after a year.