Friday, June 23, 2017


This has been the most perfect sleeping weather in a long time. I love good sleeping weather.

My only issue this time of the year is the breeze when it kicks up. Because I have casement windows in my bedroom, the entire window opens. That means the window shades get blown about by a good stiff wind and that causes problems. If I had double-hung windows I would open the bottom half and leave the shades half way closed so the wind wouldn't bother them. But in my case I can't do that, which is a problem. If the wind blows the shades the shades knock over my lamp, or if its only a light breeze, it causes the shades to keep hitting against the window frame, making a banging noise that can drive you crazy when you're trying to go to sleep. 

So...that means I have to open the window shades all the way, gathering them at the top of the windows where they won't bang around, but letting in all the light first thing in the morning. Oh these "first world" problems! I know - I'm lucky to have window shades...and windows for that matter. I shouldn't complain.

And I'm not really complaining, because despite the small inconvenience involve, I love, love, love being able to sleep so well, in such perfect temperatures with the blanket pulled right up to my chin. I'm enjoying it every night and happy not to have to use my air conditioner quite yet. And I hope it lasts a few more weeks at least...

Thursday, June 22, 2017


I was very lucky tonight to end what was a perfectly beautiful day with dinner at the Maidstone Club. I'm always happy to spend an hour or two in that beautiful setting and it seemed the ideal end to a lovely day.

The weather today was the bet it could be. There was no humidity but it as warm and pleasant. I spend the first few hours of my day running errands and doing some business, then joined some family members at the beach. I stayed about two hours and left before the sun did too much damage, only finding a small area of a light burn on one leg and one arm. (I guess I wasn't as far under that umbrella as I thought I was!)

Once I got home it was too beautiful to resist outside so I resisted the urge to do some necessary cleaning around my house and instead took the local paper and went outside to climb into the hammock. First I moved it to the perfect position, half in the shade to shield my eyes from the bright sun but half in full sunshine to keep warm. I read the paper, took off my glasses, and turned to the side to drift off to sleep, promptly rolling the hammock and ending up on the ground.

Its hard when something is that funny and there's no one around to laugh with, but I was relieved that there was nobody within any distance with a cell phone filming because it would have ended up on YouTube or Facebook or both. I enjoyed the joke in any case and was able to climb back in, find a better balance, and settled in to nap.

Of course that didn't actually happen because I had to get out and get dressed to go out in no time at all. No matter, it was a wonderful day of relaxation and appreciation for the place I live and the gift of a glorious day.

I attended a government event at the Club for cocktails and dinner and it seemed the perfect way to watch the day end. I'm willing to be tit will be some time before I see another day quite as perfect as this one was. So I'm going to enjoy the memory. 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017


I'm heading in to the city this morning on the 7:05am Jitney. (Don't you love the way New Yorkers always refer to it as "the city" as though thee was no other?)

Its always an adventure going in to the city. In a case like this its exhausting simply because its for the purpose of an appointment which means a long drive in, a quick stay, and a long drive back out again. In a case like this the walk to and from the appointment is the most important part of the day, lest the muscles completely atrophy from lack of use, stuck in that seat on the bus for six hours.

The Jitney has been a wonderful addition to life here on the East End and I'm grateful for it. I like train travel and generally speaking would prefer that to a bus, but in the case of the LIRR that doesn't stand. The crazy schedule, the long travel time, and the changing trains all make it a rather poor choice when it comes to going and coming from NYC. If there were a better option, I'd take it in a minute, if nothing else than for the freedom to get up and move around on the long trip. But there isn't, so the Jitney it is. Fortunately the buses are luxurious and the drivers generally skilled and its a nice option for those of us way out here at the end of the world.

So - off I go now, to head to metropolis and get things done. I'll be very happy to get back home tonight to cool, calm East Hampton and my own nice bed. A long day is always best followed by a good night's sleep...

Tuesday, June 20, 2017


And here we are again, back in this pattern of overcast and rainy days. Yuck.

I'm not minding the temperature mind you! I like it cook at night for sleeping and pleasant enough during the day for a sweater or at the very least, long sleeves! But I am missing the blue skies that are normally bountiful in June. I'm hoping they appear soon, But I know how these weather patterns do stick around, sometimes for a whole season. I hope not, but....

So what to do with this weather?

Yesterday I went to the bay with my daughter and her kids and sat near the water for an hour or so. It was pleasant enough despite the gray skies, but I was wearing jeans and a long sleeved shirt. Not exactly beach weather. Like I said, I prefer this actually to the hot and humid days to come, but it could have been a little nice had the sun been out.

I actually bought bathing suits this year. With my significant weight loss I decided to go all out and invest in a couple new suits so I can enjoy the beach and pool with my grandchildren this year. But so far, no good. Perhaps in another couple weeks I'll be complaining about being too hot. But so far, no chance. Maybe tomorrow the sun will finally make an appearance. I know its there somewhere....

Monday, June 19, 2017


These past few days, and for the foreseeable future I believe, we are dealing with clouds. Lots of them. The skies are rarely blue lately, rather being covered in gray or white and occasionally gifting us with mist or showers. It hasn't been fun.

I think we had enough rain in April and May to last for awhile and was looking forward to bluer skies and better, warmer days ahead. If this is a pattern to remain throughout the summer I'll be disappointed for sure. I'm still hopeful things will improve, but it seems as though we're in a pattern of overcast days and I seriously worry about what the next months will bring.

Well what will be will be as they say. They also say there's nothing we can do about the weather, and that's certainly true. So I suppose there's no point in complaining about it. Somehow it makes one feel better verbalizing the disappointment though, doesn't it?

Sunday, June 18, 2017


Today is Father's Day and it brings with it a bundle of mixed feelings for me.

I didn't have a great relationship with my own father. I think I was a disappointment to him. He never seemed to be happy with me and never showed any affection toward me so it wasn't an easy relationship. I loved him, but not with the intense emotion that most people have for their fathers, that was clear to me. I envied my friends when I was growing up because they all seemed to adore their own dads and those feelings were clearly reciprocated, and that was something I didn't have.

When I married, one of the most important things I looked for in a husband was someone who would be a great father to my children. I wanted for my own kids what I didn't have: a father to play catch with in the back yard, a father who wanted to be there for all their events and special moments, a dad who adored them and returned their love in equal measure. And I found someone who I knew would do and be all those things. He was a great dad.

When one of my kids had a sporting event, he would find the way to take off work and be there. When we had teacher conferences, he was there. When I needed help with transportation to various events because we had four kids and they were often going in different directions, he was willing and able to help. We talked early in our relationship about how family was more important than work and he always chose his children over his job. And I loved that about him.

When I discovered last year that his life was not quite what I thought it was, that he wasn't exactly the person I thought I knew, I was shaken to the core, just as were my children. This wasn't the man we thought we'd known all these years. As with all of us, he had feet of clay, and in this case it was devastating. Sadly, it eclipsed much of the good he had done as a father and my kids have understandably changed in their feelings toward him. And that makes me sad. Because whatever he did in his life, he was exactly what I wanted when I married him: a great father. So today I honor him and thank him for being the kind of dad I wish I'd had all those years ago when I was young. And even as an adult. Because I could have used someone like that in my life. Especially during years like this one.... 

Saturday, June 17, 2017


I'm incredibly jealous of all the Facebook posts of peonies this week. Apparently they are blooming in every
body's gardens except mine.

I've been attempting to grow peonies for years now and I think I've give it the last try. They are one of my favorite flowers, with their huge, lush blossoms that can singly fill a small vase and are spectacular in a bunch. I love peonies! Sadly they are among the most expensive cut flowers to buy so I can't simply feed my desire with a trip to the florist every time I have a case of peony envy.

I've planted quite a  few of them over the years, and none of them have appeared again once they went into the ground. I would read everything I could about how to plant them, and where they like to be, and how much sun they should get, all to no avail. The last time I planted I bought five of them, all from a highly recommended dealer, and I put them all in different places around the yard, thinking perhaps I just hadn't found the perfect spot yet. It took a couple years, but lo and behold about three years ago one actually appeared in front of the house and has given me blossoms every year since, and seeming to slowly grow larger every time it came up. But then this year - nothing.

I have no idea whether the deer are decimating them or whether they just tire of my inattention and inexperience with them, because I have never claimed to be much of a gardener after all. But regardless of the reason, I have no peony bush this year and I give up trying. I think I just need to be happy with my lilacs and irises because the peonies don't seem to like me very much. I know I'm not the most doting caregiver, but honestly - I would love them, that's for sure! What more could they possibly want? From now on I'll just need to be content with photos...

Friday, June 16, 2017


The weather has returned to the ideal temperatures and blue skies we expect this early in June and I'm enjoying it much more than I did the earlier part of this week when it was so hot.

June is quickly passing already and I fear the summer is going to do the same. With my daughter's family arriving today I'm already thinking about how the days will fly and soon she'll be gone again. Funny how it works that way - the time is never long enough when we're with people we love, is it? So we savor the moments we have and wish they could last, knowing they don't but wishing they would. Its a dilemma of epic proportions for sure.

Wouldn't it be great if we could manipulate time? The things we don't enjoy we could speed up through, like the commercials on our recorded TV shows. And the things we love we could slow down and make last so much longer. What a wonderful thing that would be!

Well we can't, so I'm just going to enjoy this time while I have it. And I may not find as much opportunity to blog in the next month or so. We shall see!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Exciting day

This is an exciting day for me. Every year this is a day I look forward to. Its not the same date every year, but this day has come pretty regularly, every June, for quite some time now.

Today my daughter and her children arrive from Pennsylvania for an extended visit. They'll  be in my house for a couple weeks and then in their own for the month of July. And, as it does every year, August will come far too quickly and these weeks will become yet another memory of a summer with my grandchildren.

I'm very fortunate that she has the freedom to come for this nice long visit every year because it gives me a wonderful, easy "vacation" from my normal life and brings me lots of quality time with my daughter and grandchildren. Not every parent/grandparent has this privilege and I know that. And I savor this time every year knowing that.  Because not only is it a great, intense visit with them, but I get to see more of my other children and grandchildren during this time because they all want to be together while they can. And that makes it great for me as well.

I love that my children like each other, and I love that my grandchildren look forward to their time together too. Its a special blessing to have a family that wants to be together. Its not always the case. So starting today, I will be spending as much time as I can with them all (my own life schedule does actually still go on, unfortunately!) and drinking in every moment if it all. And every year I wonder if it will be my last. Because you never know about these things! And that's a good realization to have, because it causes us to never take a moment for granted.

And I don't.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

What a world

As I type this, I'm also listening to the news reporting on the shooting in Virginia where the Republican congressmen were practicing baseball. And I think "what a world".

I am reminded of similar days when I was here in this house watching history unfold before me. I remember the Challenger disaster. I remember John Lennon's death. I remember President Reagan being shot. And I remember the Gabby Giffords shooting. And I still shake my head that there are such terrible people in the world who would decide to take things into their own hands and attempt to take lives. Who do they think they are?

Fortunately none of the victims today are in danger of dying. Apparently this shooter wasn't very skilled. But hearing that one of the congressmen had his eight-year-old son with him and how the others protected him in the dugout during the melee, well, its just awful.

This on the heels of my ambulance call at 3:00 this morning where a woman was attached by her husband while she slept in her bed. And thinking about her small children standing in their kitchen listening as she described the horror to the police. Will they be forever scarred?

What a world indeed. I feel fortunate t o live in a place where this is not the norm and shakes us to our core. I'm fully aware of the fact that there are other places in this world where this kind of violence is a normal every day occurrence. And I'm taking today to focus my prayers on them.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


I was sitting at my desk in my home office over the weekend and I saw two people walking past my house with suitcases. They were the rolling ones that everybody owns now - carry-on size and easy to maneuver - and I wondered where they were heading. The house next to us for all the years we've lived here rented rooms every summer so that would not have been a surprising sight up until this past year, but that property recently changed hands and I don't believe there is anyone living there at this moment. So it begs the question - where are they headed?

Its very possible that someone further down the road also rents rooms. Or perhaps they've rented an entire house for a week, who knows? But I wouldn't have been surprised if they had come back to knock at my door. It's been a pretty common occurrence all these years as the house numbers do not make any sense (the house to my left is #12, mine is #16, and the house to my right is #28) and people often are lost. I was watching for signs of them but they didn't reappear.

The season is certainly upon us now that the weather has perked up and people are happy to come enjoy the sun and the sand. We can't really blame them, even if it is inconvenient for those of us who have to give up some of our space when they do. This really is a little bit of heaven right here, so we need to share...

Monday, June 12, 2017


Yesterday afternoon I was listening to the New York news and the weather people were talking about how hot it was in the city. It couldn't have been more perfect here on the East End. In fact, the weatherman was giving out temperatures around the region and when I got to Montauk he added "thanks to some natural air conditioning..." and I smiled. It was perfection out here.

That "natural air conditioning" was in full force all day. There was a wonderful breeze and the sun was bright and the sky was blue...heavenly. As someone at church in the morning said to me "That's why they pay so much money to come out here to escape!" So true.

Today they are promising some humidity. One of my least favorite words.  Hopefully the breeze stays and the humidity won't be as oppressive as it can in August. It remains to be seen.

But so far so good. June is shaping up to be a nice month. And when we get those perfect days, like yesterday, I'll gladly take them.

Sunday, June 11, 2017


Yesterday was a rare empty day for me, other than a quick baby-sitting job in the late morning. So my day was relaxing and uneventful for a change.

It began by climbing out of bed at 6:30 and dressing in jeans and a flannel shirt. It was supposed to get warm but mornings are still pretty cool this time of the year. I gathered up my recyclable things and headed to the dump a few minutes after seven to get that duty over before the normal weekend hordes arrive. I separated my glass and tin things, my magazines from my newspapers, and tossed one bag of non-recyclables into the various bins provided. In less than five minutes I was back on Springs Fireplace Road heading home. Then I collected the laundry and started my first load in the washing machine, made my usual bowl of cereal, and sat to read the paper.

By 9am the laundry was folded and my house was pretty clean, so I decided to take a little time to go enjoy the beach. It was still chilly enough to stay in my present wardrobe so I grabbed a book to read, threw my beach chair into the back of my car, and drove the mile or so down Egypt Lane to the empty expanse of sand that we all love here on the East End. Much to my surprise I found familiar faces there - my son and his family has already planted themselves on the sand close to the water, so I asked if I could join them.

I course I have no idea whether they liked that idea or not. They were too polite not to say "Of course!", but perhaps they were looking forward to that private family time. I decided I wouldn't stay long lest it be an imposition, but it was nice to spend some time with them and the kids. I didn't get any reading done, but the hour I spent there made my whole day a lot better than it would have been.

A small blessing - with big rewards.

Saturday, June 10, 2017


Today I have a rare page on my calendar. Its completely blank. 

Well that's a slight exaggeration - I do have a ribbon-cutting ceremony to attend at 6:00 tonight in Southampton. But other than that there is nothing....NOTHING on the page. And I'm not sure how I feel about that.

This represents one of the worst things about being a single person. Because it would be fun to have a day like this if I had someone to spend it with. We could take a drive, or do a project, or even have a day of binge watching some televisions show we haven't seen (although with good weather a day outside would be best). But somehow, none of that is as much fun when you're on your own. 

I can hear some of you saying "That sounds like heaven to me!" but therein lies a difference among people. I am not, by nature, a solitary person. I don't enjoy being alone. I like having another person around to talk to, laugh with, share ideas with - whatever. My times of solitude are often sad ones because I long for another person to be in the room.

I know that's not for everybody. I have family members who love being lone. In fact, they rarely entertain and have no interest in a busy social life. That's not me. I love entertaining, I love going out, and I love being with people. I like meeting new ones and I love being with old friends. Although I am shy so going out alone is not so much for for me. I like to be in the company of at least one person I know!

So - I don't know what today will bring, but I think I need to find some way to entertain myself. I'll let you know how I make out!

Friday, June 9, 2017


I've been listening to a CD in my car this week that has me enchanted. Its not because the artists are particularly good, although they are fine. Its not because of the orchestrations or the voices. Its because of the messages. Which leads me to think about music and the effect it has on our lives.

It seems as though music is always there for us, doesn't it? There's the song that reminds me of my first crush because it was popular then and the Beach Boys were young and cute and it all worked together to make a music memory for me at the tender age of 13. Then there's the song that was playing when I was driving to the doctor for tests to determine what my cancer was and how it was going to be treated. Whenever I hear it now my stomach is instantly in knots again. And of course the song that was sung at my wedding when I walked down the aisle, all full of hope and love.

Thursday, June 8, 2017


How wonderful was it to see the sun appear yesterday afternoon? I found myself actually feeling more upbeat and energized, and by last evening, as the shadows were beginning to inch across the field across the street, I found myself still at my desktop computer working on things that I've needed to get done for weeks now. I simply needed the sunshine to inspire me and suddenly I was able to accomplish it all. Its a wonderful thing!

More good weather is promised for us in the near future so I'm expecting to get plenty done as there is much on my plate. The time has come for making strawberry jam, and cleaning my house, and planting flowers, and planning ahead....yes, I need to get busy now. The clouds have lifted and the world is brighter. No excuses.

As I sat at my computer last night looking out the front windows across to the field I admired the bright green grass and the beautiful light reaching across the lawn, poking through the trees and hitting the undersides of the leaves on my red maple as it dipped lower into the sky. It would have been a perfect, peaceful scene were it not for the traffic building in front of the house. But it was a hint of things to come. Now that the rain has stopped and the sun is out, the hammock is beckoning in the back yard where its quiet and warm and I can forget about the rest of the world. This weekend I think I'll be enjoying myself right there, under a tree, grateful that for a few days at least, sunshine has returned to Bonac, and we are all glad. 

Wednesday, June 7, 2017


So the weather folks are promising that by the weekend we could be in the 80s temperature-wise. With yesterday's temperature never getting above the 50s I think it may kill us all! A thirty degree swing in a few days? Good grief! I can already imagine the panic. What to wear!? I'm still in sweaters! Now I'm going to need linen! 

This has been a spring like no others here in the northeast and I'm expecting its not over yet. It may be 80 on Saturday but will it stay? Who knows? I do know this: I need to sort through my summer things and try to figure out what I have to wear to an event Saturday night if its that's hot out! Because I'm really not prepared.

Weather out here at the end of this very long island is always unlike anywhere else, we know. But this year has broken records, literally. So we'll see how the summer unfolds. And right now I'm trying to dry out enough to think about outdoor dining and baseball games. At the moment that's still a stretch.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017


Seriously, I'm thinking about building an ark.

So far there is no flood in my basement so I'm hesitant to complain, but honestly, enough is enough with this rain! We had such a tease this past weekend with the beautiful sunny weather, and now, back to gray skies and rain, rain, rain. I'm ready for the rain to be gone.

I'm thinking an ark might not be a bad idea. I mean, why not have a little insurance, right? If I built a boat in the back yard, maybe not big enough to hold all those animals but enough for my family to travel on, what's the worst that could happen? We'd have to find a place to moor it and use it in the harbor this summer? I wonder how long it would take me to make.  As any good NCIS fan knows, Gibbs has built more than one beautiful boat in his basement, and I don't even care what mine would look like. It could be ugly as far as I'm concerned.

I'm grateful there hasn't been any sign of water in my basement yet, but if this weather doesn't take a turn soon, its inevitable that I will. I'm not sure I could handle that. Seriously, I've been hit with just about everything this year from an unfaithful husband to replacing hot water heaters and washing machines, so what else can karma possibly throw at me? A flood in the basement! There 'ya go!

I'm hopeful that isn't in the cards for me, and life in general has been looking up, so I'm just going to keep the faith and say the sun will come out....soon....

Monday, June 5, 2017


My home office continues to perplex me on a daily basis. I simply cannot seem to keep it neat and clean.

Now I would never hold myself up as a great, neatly organized person. I tend to let clutter accumulate until I can't stand it and that motivates me to get clean up and de-clutter things. But nowhere is this more of a problem than my office. I think its because its in a space that's separated from the rest of the house, i.e. unseen most of the time. Its a sun porch off the living room so no one has to walk through it on their way to anyplace else. Its a destination. So...when something suddenly needs a place to go, and there is no place for it, that room seems the logical space to stow it. Its like to repository for lost things, the "lost and found" division of my house if you will. For instance: I have multiple half-completed knitting projects. Where should I store them? I know at some point I'll get around to each of these bags of yarn and needles so I don't want to throw them out, but it could be years, literally, before they're used up and gone. I'll stick them in my office. No one will see them there. So that's an example of the thought process that evolves around all the things sitting on the floor, or in the cabinets, or on my desk out there in my office.

The only time it bothers me is when I am out there. So here I am at my computer desk, blogging, and being bothered by the papers on my desk, the files left out, and all this stuff all over the place. If I turn around, its there. If I look to the side, its there. In fact, I have to climb over some things to get from my desk to the door. I am really pathetic. (Just to clarify though, this photo is not my house! I'm not quite this bad!)

That said, I've seen worse. As an ambulance volunteer I've been in thousands of homes over the past 27 years, and I know that mine is not even than high on the scale of cluttered. I've been in homes where there are paths to bedrooms, lined on either side with piles of newspapers and magazines. I've been in home where the smell could knock you out if you weren't otherwise so occupied with a patient. And I've been in hoarders homes that were difficult to navigate from door to couch or bedroom. So I know I'm not that bad. But right now, sitting at this desk, I really wish I had the ambition to start cleaning up out here....

Sunday, June 4, 2017


Paying bills has become one of the most stressful things in my life this past year. Like I said in a previous post, I feel as though I've taken a giant step backwards in my life and every month I need to face that reality again. It stinks.

Much of my time, when I sit at my desk to pay my bills, is spent thinking about what I can do without. I've already cancelled three magazine subscriptions and lowered my cable bill by deleting some service, but still I need to find ways to live more frugally, and that's hard. I don't live a lavish lifestyle by any means, and occasional luxuries are hard to give up. I look at the bill from the florist and wonder if I need to stop buying geraniums to fill my outdoor pots. This may be the last summer I indulge in that pleasure.

Then I realize I don't really have to have flood insurance on my house. I know I live in a flood zone and I know with sea level rise my chances of getting flooded have increased significantly, but after all, it hasn't happened yet, and I'm not required to have it, so perhaps that's something I'll let go. That particular bill is not due until early July so I have a few weeks to think about it.

Then there's still my cable bill. I know there are other options out there that could save me money, but it means losing some of the things I most enjoy about my television - local coverage on local channels. I hate to do that because honestly, its what I watch the most. But...maybe its time.

I can't give up my utilities, although some people would say a land line is now a luxury since I have a cell. I think I'd give up the cell first to tell you the truth. I hate the bad reception on cell phones, not to mention the dead spots that haunt me when I'm driving down the road. So if I were to have to choose, the cell would go for sure. Its purely luxury.

Heat, electric, water - well I'd be hard pressed to let them go. So here I am still pondering: what else can I give up? I'm beginning to appreciate why folks move into condos.

Saturday, June 3, 2017


Yesterday I was excited to participate in the dedication of a new historical marker on Main Street in East Hampton. It's been erected in honor of May Groot Manson, who was a leader in the suffrage movement, and since this year we are celebrating the 100th anniversary of women gaining the right to vote, it has been placed in front of what was her home at 117 Main Street.

The discussion around the new marker centered on a number of things, but mostly on her and what she meant to the movement. She actually organized a march down Main Street that will be recreated in August, and I'm excited about the opportunity to participate. 

One of the areas of conversation centered around the fact that it was the society ladies that really got the movement off the ground. May was a part-time resident here, her other home being in New York City of course. It was her encouragement that prompted many other well-heeled ladies to join the movement, bringing prestige and notice to the fight, just as people with well-known names today can bring attention to their own causes. Thus it has always been!

Someone questioned why it was that society women were the ones who brought the nations leaders to the table and who brought the notice necessary for the movement to be successful. It wasn't difficult for me to imagine. I thought about my great-grandmother who was no doubt down here on Accabonac Road washing clothes, cleaning the house, taking care of children, cooking food, mending socks, etc, etc. Did she have time for things like marches and rallies and protests? I don't think so. But the ladies of leisure, who had other people to do those tasks for them, certainly did have the time for them. And they were smart, talented women who needed a way to channel their energy. Surely they had more of it than did the local ladies of East Hampton who no doubt went to bed exhausted every night.

Someone (a man) once made the comment to me that because of the way women were oppressed for so long and not allowed to be entrepreneurs or CEOs, there was "hundreds of years of wasted brain-power" and he wondered if we wouldn't have cured cancer by now had things been different. Interesting question. And interesting to study history and see just how women were able to make a difference in the world despite their limited freedoms. Inspirational ladies for sure.

Friday, June 2, 2017


Well I had no internet yesterday. I have no idea why - it seems as though every once in awhile my internet just goes away and eventually comes back. I checked all my cables and my modem and all that stuff but couldn't see anything wrong so I ignored it for the day. And now, today, its back again. One of the mysteries of modern life I guess.

So what did I do instead of wasting time on the internet? I wish I could give you a list of things. But with cell phones we're aren't without it for long now are we? I left my house at 9am and didn't return until 7pm and throughout the day I simply checked my emails on my cell phone, never out of touch and only missing the chance to blog when I was at home. I wouldn't attempt that task on anything but a desktop - I need a full-sized computer for this kind of thing!

And - I missed the chance to rejoice in the first day of June, which is one of my favorite months. No June tunes, or June poems, or June anything to talk about today, because the 1st day has passed and now its over. June is here and its beautiful.

Only in June is the grass this green, the flowers this bright, and the skies this blue. Its a lovely time of the year. And today is a wonderful day. June. 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017


Its hard to believe that tomorrow is June 1st when I'm still so cold in my house at night these days! Not sleeping - its actually this has been delightful sleeping weather - but trying to sit and watch TV or read at night has been downright uncomfortable lately!

I actually like these temperatures. I love wearing sweaters and socks and being toasty warm instead of overly hot, but I cannot bring myself to turn on the heat at this time of the year, so evenings are really cold. As much as I bundle up I often cannot get my hands warm and my nose is cold and I just feel as though its November instead of May. I'm hoping that June sees a change in this trend and we can enjoy some warmer weather ahead. Not hot mind you, but a bit warmer than this!

I know - I'm never happy I suppose. I laugh sometimes because I remember my mother saying she had a "very small comfort zone" of between 65 and 75 degrees. I thought that was silly at the time, but here I am feeling the exact same way these past few years. I wonder if the things we mock in our parents come back to haunt us in some kind of cruel generational karma, with patterns following our parents' lives that we never expected. There is certainly much more to DNA than we realized when we're young!

Poor Mom - I wish I could have her back and apologize now. I also wish she could warn me of what else is to come should I be lucky enough to live into my eighties the way she did!

Come to think of it, I'm only sixteen years away from the age she was when she died. Now that's a sobering thought, isn't it?

Tuesday, May 30, 2017


Well it was certainly not the normal Memorial Day yesterday. Instead of a warm, sunny afternoon in the back yard we spend our day inside, freezing in the damp house with no heat on, trying to make the most of a dreary, rain-soaked day. And we did.

I'm always reminded of my father on these bad-weather Memorial Days. I think about the stories he told of snow falling overnight in the battlefields of Belgium, waking only to try and assess who may have frozen to death during the long, cold night. And I also think about the newsreels we watched in the 1960s every night on the evening news. We saw our troops in Viet Nam, slogging 

through muddy rice paddies in full combat gear, or lining up in the pouring rain as they went to the mess hall or ran to the helicopter, always looking wet and tired and as though they'd prefer to be anywhere else in the world in that moment. The images are still with me, and when the rain falls on us as we stand for the ceremonies on Memorial Day I think of them. And of my father in WWII.

It was a somber holiday yesterday, perfect for remembrance and reflection. We enjoyed family and had some fun, eating together and playing games at the kitchen table. But it certainly wasn't the warm and happy gathering of Memorial Days past. And that was OK. It was a good day.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Never Forget

           Memorial Day 2017 - A grateful Nation Remembers

Sunday, May 28, 2017


Well today turned out to be a better day than anticipated but tomorrow is not looking good now. Sigh...

Its been a very busy weekend with ambulance calls and certainly seems to be the beginning of the crazy time for emergency services. We do half of our yearly call volume in June, July, August and September, so now it truly does begin. There are simply too many people here from now until after the weather cools down again and there's no getting around it. I'm not sure what the answer is to the dilemma but I know its a strain on everything around here, these summer months. From the hospital to the volunteers to the police department, we all suffer, and the traffic just makes life miserable/. This has been my life since I was a child growing up here, but its worse than it was then, and becomes more intolerable every year. There was always inconvenience and there have always been crowds, but now, well, even the most stoic of us become frustrated and by August we're done. 

I've often said if I could, I would take the month of August and go somewhere. But I don't have the means and I'm not sure I'd know where to go. But I just may find some trips to take in the coming years during the month of August. A couple weeks at least would help to take the edge off.

This is only the beginning. We have a long, long way to go now.

Saturday, May 27, 2017


Well this morning dawned bright and sunny and its a small gift in the midst of this dreary weather we've had lately. I remember hearing the rain when I was up at 1am and then this morning - happily only the song birds were busy, bringing the sun up when I was getting dressed.

At 7am I left for a trip to the dump and then the grocery store, hoping to stay in the rest of the weekend for the most part. I came in with my two bags of groceries only to hear my ambulance pager going off so I headed out to take care of someone in an automobile accident before the traffic got too bad. Too late. The traffic coming home was dreadful. But, by 9:30 am I was back in my kitchen, gratefully eating breakfast and planning out the work for the day.

I have a good schedule of housework, yard work, and cooking to do, and I shall keep myself pretty busy all day. I'm grateful for that because I find holiday weekends to be particularly lonely now that I'm single, and I try to stay as busy as I can for that reason. But with the traffic to deal with its not easy because I need to stay busy at home. Where its lonely. Sort of a vicious circle if you know what I mean.  And so it goes in this single life!

But no matter really because its a beautiful day. And when all else is done, when my cooking and cleaning are complete and I'm feeling the walls close in around me, I'll head out to my new hammock, attach the brand new pillow that arrived for it yesterday, and lay in the sun enjoying the blue shy that's been such a rarity lately. And I think at that point I'll know: all's right with the world.

Friday, May 26, 2017


The best way to describe the weather here this week is damp. We've had rain and overcast skies and drizzle and mist and all sorts of wet stuff in all kinds of forms. And its getting old now. But they're not promising anything better to come.

I'm dreading a rainy Memorial Day weekend. It means all the cars will be on the road, looking for something to do, rather than being parked at the beach or in a driveway while its occupants are sun bathing in the back yard. Instead they'll be looking for places to shop, or sightseeing, or visiting local museums. Good for the store owners and cultural spots, but not for traffic.

I anticipate spending most of the weekend at home.  I have no reason to go out other than church on Sunday so I may hang close to home. If I need to go to the grocery store it will be at 7am when most the world is still asleep.

Monday of course is the parade. I haven't missed one in 65 years that I can remember. No reason to break that record.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

As expected

Yes the trip to NYC went pretty much as expected yesterday. I was exhausted when I got home.

The Jitney ride in was OK - lot of traffic during rush hour of course, but we got in only a few minutes after scheduled arrival time. But once in Manhattan things were crazy. There was one taxi ride that nearly sent me over the edge. Those drivers are so aggressive I can barely stand it. At one point the taxi was jockeying for position against a city transit bus and I swear to you, that bus was within six inches of my face. There were other skirmishes just as close, with big trucks and other taxis, everyone trying to get in front of the person next to them and no one seeming to want to back off. Yikes. It was a hair raising ride from 45th to 60th and down a few blocks from Madison to 3rd. 

I always love going by the park. I love the handsome cabs and I'm always amused at the way the different drivers pimp out their cabs with artificial flowers, trying to get the attention of anyone looking for a ride through Central Park. We did it once many years ago and it is a favorite memory of mine. The park is peaceful and green, a spot of tranquility in the midst of a crazy, noisy, busy city that has to be experienced to understand.

It was a busy day that even involved a tram ride to Roosevelt Island where my friend lives, and ending with a long drive home, once again during rush hour. New York City is a great place to visit. I'm glad I don't live there.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017


I'm spending the day in NYC today and I'm always a bit apprehensive when I do that. I am not, by any means, a city girl.

Sometimes when I'm in the city I'm so overwhelmed by it that I want to run into a corner and hide. Literally, I wish I could find someplace to just cower because its all so huge and impersonal to me. Then every once in awhile I make a very personal connection in that huge impersonal city and that warms me no end. Like the time we were in the front row at the Lincoln Center theater and the orchestra conductor turned around and had a conversation with us because my grandson was with us. Suddenly the city was a much friendlier place than it had been. Of course it doesn't take long after one of those nice encounters to see someone sleeping in a doorway that everyone walks by as though they were invisible. And suddenly anonymity returns.

It is an amazing place, and I do enjoy an occasional foray into the streets of Manhattan. You can literally find anything you want there, and if you can't find it there it probably doesn't exist. I love the energy of the place, and the amazing experiences you can have there. And sometimes, once in awhile, when you come from a small town where everybody knows your business, a little anonymity can be a very nice thing.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


I will admit that this has been the most confusing time of my life.

I remember so well those teenage years when the questions never stopped: Will I have a family some day? How many children will I have? Will anyone ever want to marry me? What will my career be? What should I study in college? What do I believe about God? What is my purpose in life? And on and on and on....always questions about the future and the present - never about the past.

Now my questions are often about the past: Did I make too many mistakes? Did I marry the wrong person? Should I have pursued more education? Should I have waited to start a family? Should I have moved to another community? Again, lots of questions...but mostly not about the future. Because at this age, our future seems to be determined by our past to a large extent. And our past is what generally predicts our future.

I'd like to think there is still time to do something different with my life because I don't feel as though I've accomplished much with it so far. But it seems as though time is running out. And while I thought I was doing something important in my life, now I question that assumption and as I said in my first sentence, confusion abounds.

I do believe that God can still use my life for good in this world.  Perhaps I haven't lived up to my potential at this point and maybe I've failed to do what I should have been doing all these years, I don't know. But more important at this point is how do I figure out where to go from here? And what to do with what's left?

Oh the questions never end. And the confusion never wanes. What a weird time this is for me! I'm hoping for clarity one of these days. But maybe this is just the natural order of things. Its just difficult to go from feeling content and fulfilled one day to realizing so much of what I knew and loved was nothing more than a fantasy the next. And that certainly doesn't create contentment and peace now, does it?

Well...maybe in the next life...

Monday, May 22, 2017


The best thing I can say about the weather this past week is that it was glorious!

The definition of glorious: having a striking beauty or splendor that evokes feelings of delighted admiration.

Yes indeed - it was glorious spring weather: warm but not hot, no humidity, cool at night - what's not to love about that?

It seemed to be a long time coming this year. For whatever reason that "in between" time of cold but no snow, wet but not ice, just went on and one and we felt as though winter would never end. I have never before put my gas fireplace on in May - we've had it for about 7 years now and this was a first. But it was so cold some evenings that short of going to bed I had to do something to warm myself up. I was glad to have the fireplace so I didn't need to keep the heat on.

But now I think the fireplace is off for the season and we can rest assured that the potted plants will be OK. I'm happy to say I've put the wool sweaters away and only have a few lighter weight ones out now for the cool of the evening and morning. O think we're most definitely on our way to summer now and that's OK with me. I'm ready for the change. (I'll feel the same way in August, but then I'll be looking toward fall!)

Sunday, May 21, 2017


I think the most stressful thing in my life right now is the process of paying my bills.

When we were first married bill paying time of the month was always very stressful. But we lived so frugally and had so little money it was just life to us and we did what we had to do, paying a little at a time until things like the drug store or the auto mechanic were paid off, doing what we had to do to make ends meet. I thought it was very stressful at the time!

Those were much easier days I must say.

Now I struggle again every month to pay the bills, mostly because there are so many more of them now, and because I can't keep up with them. Life was simpler before owning a home, that's for sure. Now I have to replace broken appliances, do maintenance on all kinds of things, and try to keep my house looking presentable enough, all while working with way less income than I had a year ago. So every month I sit at my desk and try to decide what to pay. Its like stepping back in time forty years and I hate it. "This bill I can pay a portion of..." "Maybe its time to let the cable go...." "I wonder if I can do without this now..." "Do I really need flood insurance?" These are all thoughts that run through my mind and I truly ponder as I sit with the check book, looking at my bank balance on the computer screen, trying to figure out how to make it all work.

In some ways I've stepped back in time to the place I was when I was first married. Only this time I'm A. not seeing any improvement in the future and B. in it all alone. I'm thinking about selling my house. I never thought it would come to that. But hoping I can find a way not to. There've been enough changes in my life this past year without having to move now. I try not to ponder that thought too long.

Who knew that at this point in my life I'd be back to square one again? Life certainly does take interesting turns now, doesn't it?

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Busy season

This weekend is a perfect example of what's wrong with the busy season here in East Hampton. There are simply too many things on the calendar to try to squeeze in. Today is a perfect example.

This morning there is an EMS Breakfast at the hospital in honor of EMS Week. I always try to attend but this year, impossible. We have a village street fair all day along Newtown Lane and Main Street and I hope to spend a good deal of my morning there.

At 1:00 I have to attend a memorial service at St. Luke's Church. At 3:00 the newly restored Life Saving Station in Amagansett has its official opening. I want to go there! I must attend a retirement party at 5:00. And I think there's something else on my calendar in that time frame as well. I know I can't do both so although its written there I can't retain it because my mind is too cluttered.

To top off my day I'm on ambulance duty at 8pm for the rest of the night. And I'm tired before I even start. Not enough time to really enjoy any of these events, and that rather stinks now, doesn't it?

Its only the beginning. In another week we'll be saying goodbye to May and jumping into June and then things really begin to heat up. I think I need a vacation from the summer already... 

Friday, May 19, 2017


The lilacs are beginning to wane now. Its one of the saddest days of the year for me.

The scent of lilacs is like a gift from heaven. Its full of nostalgia and the headiness of spring and I look forward to them blooming every year. When I was a girl my grandmother had three kinds of scent that she wore: when she dressed for dinner she put on Shalimar. But for every day, she had bottles of something called "toilet water" which was a light scented thing that women used regularly - referring to the term for their cleaning up and getting ready for the day back in Victorian times - toileting. It was the last thing she used every morning before being ready for the day, dabs behind each ear and one on each wrist. Her toilet water came in two scents: lily of the valley and lilac. I used to take the tops off those little glass bottles and smell them, drinking in the wonderful fragrances, and to this day my lily of the valley and lilacs bring all those memories right back to mind. I'm sitting in my grandmother's "dressing room" (who has those anymore?), watching her put on her scent of the day, and letting her dab some behind my ears as well. Those are wonderful memories because my grandmother was one of the people I knew loved me unconditionally and completely and I loved her right back.

So my lilacs are special to me. They are Grandma Warren, the dressing room, the little glass bottles, the whole thing. And I grieve when they wither away for another year.

I put a bunch of them in my white enamel pitcher yesterday and plopped it on the coffee table on the back room. I think I may get one more bunch out of this year's crop, which has been abundant. If I do that will mean I had them in my house for two whole weeks - a banner year for lilacs. 

And then, I'll be dreaming of the day they come out again, next May, right around Mother's Day to remind me of the strong and wonderful women I had in my life. Lilacs can do that to me. 

Thursday, May 18, 2017


My morning walks are especially enjoyable at this time of the year.

In the summer, its too hot and I'm happy to get them over with so I can shower and wash the sweat off for the day. I hate heat and humidity so summer is not my favorite time of the year. Winter is so cold that walking is often a challenge when the wind is in your face and it bites your cheeks and waters your eyes. I warm up quickly, but its so dark when I set out that its just not conducive to enjoyment. Its work in the summer and winter,

But spring and fall, well those are totally different stories. Right now there is a little bite in the air but I'm wearing lighter work-out clothes and I'm comfortable in the cool morning air. Its light out by 5am and my natural body clock kicks in so I'm up and ready to go by 5:30. The streets are quiet then and its such a treat to walk through the village neighborhoods, noticing the latest flowers to bloom and the new color someone has painted their house. Every day there's something new to see, and passing the same folks every day on their own morning walks is nice when you can see them coming and nod as they pass. The crowds at the Hampton Jitney stop are growing with the season and they are there reading their papers and hanging on to their briefcases, waiting for the early bus to arrive. And the smells - the smells are amazing from the eggs and bacon coming from Josh Pappas to the lilacs in the yard I'm passing. And I haven't even mentioned the birds yet. There's nothing quite like the early songs of the birds.

Sometimes there's a mist that hangs over the earth - the fog that rolls in from the sea to cover everything in a veil of gray. Not a heavy fog, just a light covering over the ground obscuring the road and bushes. Its magic in the way it changes everything and I'm fascinated by it. But its gone quickly and not everyone gets to see it - its a special gift for early risers.

It is a great time of year for walking outside in the morning, enjoying this place we call home before it wakes up for the day. The sky is ablaze with the early light and the grass is never greener. What a way to greet the morning.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Well yesterday turned out to be an absolutely beautiful day so I decided to take advantage of the sudden improvement in the weather. 

Southampton Hospital recently did a "renovation" on its Memorial Garden. This area was created many years ago as a place for meditation and relaxation for family and staff - really for anyone needing a break from the often stressful times at any hospital. As we all know, hospitals can be stressful places! (As someone who has spent many days there keeping watch over a loved one in the ICU, I know it very well. What a wonderful thing it would have been to have this little oasis in place back then!)

Anyway, the garden had become a bit overgrown and not terribly inviting so hospital staff and volunteers joined together to clean it up, remaking it into an amazing space. And yesterday I made a point of arriving early for my volunteer shift, leaving enough time to walk through the newly opened Memorial Garden. And was I ever glad I did.

What's been gifted to the community on this small plot of land next to the old hospital entrance is a beautiful, colorful place of serenity and peace in the midst of a busy, frightening place where sometimes the fears and realities of life can be overwhelming. I walked along the brick paths marveling at the beautiful tulips of different types and color ranges, interspersed among the small azalea bushes and other greenery. There were benches and tables, comfortable teak chairs, and a lovely water feature that produced the most relaxing sound of running water - and I felt as though I were miles away from the hospital - there wasn't a white coat in sight anywhere! What a wonderful gift this Memorial Garden is, for staff members to enjoy on their lunch hours and for visitors to escape to at all times of the day. And what a great community effort it was - yet another gift to the East End by some of the residents who give back so generously. If anyone is nearby, make sure to stop and enjoy it for a few minutes... or more....   

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


The temperature has been downright cold lately and many people have talked about putting their heat on. Its May for goodness sake so I won't go that far, but I will confess to turning on the gas fireplace to take the shill off a couple times in the past week. I'm pretty aware of expenses these days so I don't leave it for long, lest I pay a big price for it when the gas bill comes, but its difficult to sit and enjoy your house when your hands are freezing and you can't warm up unless you go to bed.

But they are calling for summer temperatures later this week. Talk about being bi-polar! A little something in between would be nice, right? I could us some nice high 60s or low 70s before the 80s appear. I need time to adjust to the change and to adjust my wardrobe. I need to get used to the idea that I don't need a sweater to leave the house for a few months at least. Nothing like jumping into the season!

We never have a nice long spring here and its not unusual to have hot weather surprise us, but this year is exceptionally odd with such cold weather sticking around for so long. Its going to be a shock for sure when I suddenly need to open all the windows and get rid of the quilt on my bed. But then, the calendar says its time so I suppose its good for us to catch up.

Monday, May 15, 2017


Many years ago now, my mother said something to me that I'm only now remembering. It was after my father died in 1998 - probably a couple years later - and it was the day after a holiday, but I don't remember which. She said something along the lines of "It's never lonelier in the house than when everyone has been here." I think that puzzled me at the time but yesterday I realized that was exactly the way I was feeling.

I think we adjust to being alone for the most part. We become accustomed to the quiet, the silence of an empty house. We tend to leave the television or the radio on for company and welcome the mail man arriving with a package, but all in all its something we are used to. But then suddenly the house is full again. Its a holiday or some other special occasion and everyone is "home" again. Its a reminder of the happiest days of your life, when your family was all home and the house was alive with activity and craziness. You remember the best parts - not the difficult ones - and you feel more alive than you have in awhile because there is life in your house: laughter and noise and general activity. There are voices and there is love and its everywhere, from the spilled food on the floor to the humming of the dishwasher. Its what you remember, what you had for so long, and what is no longer your reality. And it makes you happy.

And then just as suddenly as all that activity and fun arrived, its gone. Everyone leaves. You pick up the crumbs on the floor, you unload the dishwasher, you brush off the kitchen table and put away the toys, and there you are. Alone. Again.

I love those moments when everyone is here and I wouldn't change them for the world. But they do remind me of the things I miss. I know it will pass, but it does make me a little melancholy for awhile. And yesterday, as I sat on my couch watching something or other on TV and smiling at the memory of something one of the little ones did or said, I suddenly remembered my mother. And I wished I could go back and stay with her a little bit longer, after everyone else had left, and keep her company for just a little more time. Funny how we don't realize these things until its too late.  

Sunday, May 14, 2017

On being "Mom"

Every year Mother's Day is a day I reflect on my own mother and how much she shaped my life and made me the person I am today - and how much I miss her now that she's no longer with us. But this year I'm taking a different tact and want to talk instead about what it's meant to me to be a mother myself.

I could never have imagined one year ago what this year would bring into my life. Of course, the circumstances were already in place, but I was unaware of them and therefore blissfully ignorant as they say. (Blissful ignorance has its benefits, but I prefer the harsh light of truth, which is exactly what I got...sadly with both full barrels...) Because of these events, this year I look at Mother's Day as the true validation of my life. Because without my children I'm not sure how I would have coped with any of what transpired.

Each one of my babies was a true blessing. They were all concieved in great love - I adored their father! I threw myself into every pregnancy with abandon, studying books about childbirth and preparing by sewing and knitting and creating a place for them to come home to. They were as different and as special as they possibly could have been, each was a beautiful baby and all delightful little people as they grew, bringing me new joy every single day of their too-sort time in my house. Each one began, and continued, with their own personal strengths and special personality quirks, and each one has grown to be an amazing adult, bringing me so much joy and meaning along the way. I love being their mother and I adore them all. I was blessed to be chosen for the task of raising them and could do it all over again in a heartbeat - this time with the wisdom of age and lots of experience, hopefully doing a better job for their sakes!

When the horrors of this year unfolded, from the very beginning, they were there for me. They've done as much as they possibly could to ease my pain and make my life move in a forward direction. They've been there every step of the way and they've seen me through some of the most unimaginable pain and deepest, darkest days, and they've taught me many things along the way. All the same time suffering their own pain and trying to cope themselves.

I've learned so much about myself, and my children, during this difficult year. I've learned that I need to stand on my own feet and not depend on them for things they aren't capable of, despite their most earnest intentions and desires. I've learned that children can only understand so much about their parents, who have more life experience and less time ahead of them than they do.  And I've learned that as much as they want to, they can't always be there. They have lives of their own, and that's as it should be. Its what we want for them after all! So I've learned to lean less and stand taller alone.

But most importantly I've learned that they are amazing, strong, loving adults who will step out of their own comfort zone to help me whenever they can. I've learned that my life, which I sometimes look at with disappointment, was worth so much more than I thought it was simply because my life produced theirs. And that alone gives me the purpose and validity I thought I lacked because I didn't have a career or in some other meaningful way give back to the world. I may not have invented the cure for cancer, but I made the world a kinder, better place because of these four people I gave to it. Not to mention the ten grandchildren that also came from my own humble beginning. Who knows what any one of them might do in the future? Maybe that's my cure for cancer!

This year has made me a better person, a better parent (I hope), and much more aware than ever before of how very lucky I am to be mother to these four. And I thank God for that. Happy Mother's Day indeed. And thank you to Amanda, Elizabeth, Joshua, and Tyler for letting me be theirs. 

Saturday, May 13, 2017


Yesterday I had to attend an event in Southampton at lunchtime. Driving home I hit the back roads through Water Mill and then Bridgehampton, trying to avoid the weekend traffic that was beginning to build up on what was a beautiful day. I hadn't gone far when I was struck by the huge, very bright blue sky peeking out between some clouds.

The sky doesn't often grab my attention, but this was an unusual exception. The color was so bright and the clouds so beautiful that every corner I turned it was more beautiful. I reminded me of the description of Montana as "big sky country", because along these back roads there was so much of it to see. There were farm fields that stretched to the horizon and then, the big, blue and white expanse of sky that just shouted "Look at me!". It was distracting enough to make me take my eyes off the road too often, but thankfully I was pretty much alone on these back roads in this day.

By the time I got to Wainscott I had to stop at my favorite spot, the field across the old Osborn farmstead that looks to the pond and then to the ocean. Its one of the most gorgeous places in all of East Hampton town and I always take it in when I pass by. The day that vista disappears may be the day I give up on this place, that's how much I love it. It embodies old East Hampton with a beautiful old, modest farm house standing guard over open fields and water views, just as it was everywhere here a hundred years ago. 

I'm attaching the photo here for everyone to enjoy. I wish it did it justice, but there is nothing like the real thing... 

Friday, May 12, 2017


I am becoming to have a great deal of empathy for people who commute every day. 

I worked in Sag Harbor for a couple years but not every day, so I can't really compare that to people who drive to and from work over twenty minutes or more all...the...time. But this week I have been to Southampton or Hampton Bays every single day. And its getting to me. 

Not only is the time on the road becoming tiresome, but the gasoline usage is really annoying! I don't particularly enjoy filling my gas tank. I never used to mind it so much when I started driving nearly fifty years ago now. But those where the days when a nice man came out of the gas station, you exchanged a few friendly words (because you were a regular and he knew you), he cleaned your windshield and often the back window as well during the time the pump was working, and it cost about $5.00, hardly a dent in the spending money account.

Now things are different of course. I have to get out of the car, wrestle with the hose, punch in lots of numbers, stand there in all kinds of weather because the pump can no longer be set to pump and walked away from, and by the time you leave you've spent more money in five minutes than you have during the last two trips to the grocery store combined. Its just not fun anymore.

So between the time dealing with traffic and the gas usage, I'm sure I don't want to commute to work, ever. Fortunately at this point in my life I am guessing that won't be a necessity.

Thursday, May 11, 2017


My internet has been down for a couple days now. Or maybe its just my computer that wasn't working. I'm not really sure which - but I wasn't able to get into my blogging site in any case. It was frustrating.

I love writing but I hate doing it longhand. I have only really been able to write a lot since computers/word processors became a home necessity. I started a book quite a few years ago and had quite a bit of it written. But I lost it along the line somewhere - through a crash of a hard drive I believe.  But blogging has met a great need and I'm enjoying the simplicity of writing a small essay every day and just letting loose with my thoughts and concerns as they come to me. There's no thread other than East Hampton in my blogs. And that makes things simple.

I would like to write a book though. I need to learn how to save everything whenever I write though. A zip drive? Is that what's its called? I need to learn how to use one of those. And I need to start writing again. I already have a book in mind. Its fiction, but based on my great-grandmother's life. She was the daughter of the lighthouse keeper at Montauk, and her memories have been passed down through the generations. I think they are the basis of a good read.

Now....the internet....I still don't understand it...

Wednesday, May 10, 2017


Retail can be very frustrating.

I decided to try to get new slipcovers for my Pottery Barn dining chairs rather than get rid of them because they're good chairs, sturdy and well made, and who can't use a couple extra chairs now and then? So I went onto the website to see about getting a couple new slipcovers. I searched every where but this particular chair does not seem to exist anymore. So I called customer service. Perhaps they would know about this style of chair. No luck there either. Apparently they are no longer making this chair. So what, I ask myself, was the point of buying slip covered chairs, with the understanding that the slipcovers couple be replaced, if they are not going to carry those slipcovers by the time you need new ones? Seems a bit silly, doesn't it?
Sort of like a bait and switch in my mind. Sell you these, then later sell you more because you can't get the thing you need to use these anymore.

OK so now what to do? I wonder if I could dye these slipcovers to make them look better? Or, I wonder if bleach would take out the beige color and then they'd be white? I hate to ruin them and they do say "dry clean only" but I seem to think it might be worth a try. After all, if it doesn't work I can get rid of them, as I was trying to do to begin with. But its annoying, the whole thing.

I think I'm going to try bleach first. Who knows? It might work! And if not, I may try dying them a darker color. But I'm only going to try one at a time...then again...maybe I can find a similar size chair on another website that has a slipcover that may fit. I need to do a little more legwork on this one. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017


Part of getting new furniture in to my house involved moving old furniture out of it. So the bench left yesterday - on its way to my daughter's house in PA this weekend. 

I have five chairs to get rid of. They are all good chairs but they're a mish mash of different styles bought at yard sales or handed down. So I out the on Bonac Yard Sale, which is a Facebook site here locally where you can buy and sell items like you would at a yard sale in your front yard. Its a great site and easy to navigate. So far, I've sold two chairs. I still have three left. One I don't mind holding on to for my back room. If I get rid of it I'll look for something to buy on the same site myself - something in an upholstered piece, small and easy to move. Of I'll look for something at Home Goods or Pier 1. I hate to just throw out the chairs I have if no one wants them, but I'm not sure what else to do with them. 

I've never bought a house full of new furniture. I've purchased new pieces over the years, mostly couches and upholstered chairs, but very rarely and never done a whole room. Instead I have to match what's still good and try to find other pieces to fill in around the stuff that's standing up well and I can't see throwing out. Its a matter of money and also conscience. My parents were children of the depression so that mentality certainly does get passed down. And its not a bad thing! In fact, I've recently been trying to replace my saran wrap and aluminum foil with re-usable containers so I don't create as much waste. What goes around comes around as they say! My grandmother, who used to wash out and re-use plastic bags, would be proud of me! (I won't go quite that far in terms of food storage, but I do re-use good plastic bags when I can!)

So - out with the old and in with the an extent. The new has to match the old that's staying. I wonder if there's a life-lesson there as well?!

Monday, May 8, 2017


OK so the furniture is all moved into place and I like the space in terms of the way things fit. The new table and chairs are perfectly proportioned for the area I have and the old table went into the office to await an overflow crowd.

Now to repairs. There is one captain's chair with the set - the kind with arms - and one of the arms is broken off. So yesterday I sent about beginning the process of fixing it. I toyed briefly with the idea of taking it to an expert but then thought better of it and decided I could save the money and do it myself. With some borrowed clamps from my brother and a new bottle of wood glue, I began the process. I've never attempted such a thing before but I've seen it done. How hard could it be, right?

Well it wasn't easy. Not that it was complicated - it is not complicated at all. But I needed at least one more set of hands.  With a clamp, two pieces of wood to act as protectors of the chair on either side of the clamp, and the two pieces of chair to hold in place, it was impossible.  After twenty minutes of trying every possible way to held everything in place while turning the screw on the clamp (yes, I tried duct tape) I gave up and got rid of the two wood pieces that were meant to keep the clamp from making marks on the wood of the chair. The arm will just have to deal.

So that was yesterday. Today I undid the clamp and admired my work. Then I had to screw the arm into the repaired piece, turning the dowel until it went in to the now tighter hold that it has to be in, and went about trying to clamp the end together, again holding the arm and the piece that had come off, three things in all that needed to all line up and fit together. This time only a ten minute process, adjusting and re-adjusting as the clamp was tightened. Now its sitting there for the next 24 hours to set up and my chair will be done. I went online and ordered some wax sticks in the right shade to fill in the crevices and make repairs to the table and chairs where they're a bit scratched or worn. That and some Old English ought to do the trick! The seats, thankfully, look brand new. Otherwise I'd need to shop for new fabric and get the staple gun out. Small favors....

I will soon have a nice old (1950s), new dining room set for my kitchen. I've never owned a brand new dining room set in all these years (married in 1974) but this is close. And I'm enjoying it. And feeling very independent!