Tuesday, May 20, 2014


A new week is upon us.  I have been having a great deal of fun with my new printer and getting ready for a visit from my friends daughter from South Carolina.  I have been taking it kind of easy since the problem with my back is not going away on its own ~ low key activity basically which has been fine until I leave the house and try to walk more than 20 feet and then I have problems.

Such was the case Friday evening when I excitedly set out to check out the Opera at the Whitney Center for the Arts.  I was invited by an acquaintance who was singing with her husband,  I have seen some opera, but, I think I would have been in for a treat.

The trouble began before I was even a block from my house.  Pain shooting up my back, down my leg with each step.  It seems to be the norm lately which in my estimation really sucks!  I pushed myself to go on, each step agony.

I made it another block and would be in the park and closer to my destination, that is what I kept telling myself with each and every step.  I felt like the little Train who Could...until I couldn't, which happened about halfway through the Park.

I wasn't sure if I could make it to the bridge on the other side ~ I was almost there...counting steps, praying for an end to the pain.  When I made it to the bridge I would have done a dance if I could have, but it was not in the cards.

I walked down the little hill to the store to pick up some gum and a water.  There was a line so I got to stand still for five minutes and my pain subsided for a blessed minute.  I left the store feeling more confident I could make it to my destination.

Back on the bridge, I could see the Library, which was close to my destination.  So close, yet so very, very far.  The sky was quickly darkening, the sprinkles were getting heavier as I assessed my situation.  I now had five minutes until I was late for the beginning of the show.

Ordinarily that would have been enough time to be just a minute or two late, this was no ordinary day however.  I looked toward the library and looked to my left ~ the Park and home, couch, heating pad, relief. Either way it was going to be painful, so I opted for home.

I didn't really want to sit and suffer as had a new experience so I surprised my son when I walked back through the door.  He knew I was in pain to opt out of a new experience.  I had been excited and looking forward to it all day!

It seems to be getting time to call the doctor I think.  I, as you might know, hate doctors,  to be in a pain situation, and believe me, I can block out a good deal of pain, and to be considering calling my doctor means that we have Trouble with a capital T and I am like an Ostrich with it's head in a hole trying to ignore a problem even exists.

My light duty means that I get to do small tasks and take baby steps.  I always have plenty to do to keep busy and lately I have been pleased with the status of my chore maintenance for the most part.  I had until Monday to clean Tom's room and get it ready for company.

I woke Saturday feeling better after a bad nights rest.  The pain seemed less.  The true test would be walking so I decided to take a shower and get out and do my errands before the rain arrived.  While I was out, and feeling okay I decided to see if I could get my haircut.

After the last fiasco and the subsequent problems which arose after I took hold of some scissors to cut the front which the last hairdresser did not do, breaking a major long standing rule #1 which states that I must never touch scissors and cut my own hair with good reason!

I can't draw a straight line, cut a straight line or cut my own hair.  Proven fact and one which I was getting ready to break again unless I let someone else do it.  I had one option left and headed to Abbey Cutters to see if Teddy was free.

He was and we had a wonderful hour chatting and laughing.  I met Ted when I was about 13 or so, hanging in the Coffeehouse next to his shop which I used to regularly frequent in the search for my Father.  One of my Father's friends hung out there too and he was "helping" me find him.

I have a feeling he was helping my Father avoid me instead and that "relationship" held it's own adventures and challenges which are for another time.  Anyhow, Teddy is a Downtown fixture, implant from NYC and an aspiring writer who cuts hair to make a living.  I trusted him and let him work his magic ~ which he did!

I went home feeling amazing and ready to tackle anything ~ including the housework.  Instead I found myself surrounded by amazing friends and family having a heck of a fun time laughing a continuing to enjoy the day!

Since Tom doesn't use his room anymore since he adopted my living room as his own, it wasn't that difficult .  I woke up Sunday morning and grabbed the blankets and sheets off the bed and went down to make tea.  I blew a fuse right off the bat, which enabled me to gravitate down cellar to flip the switch and start the laundry.  All before tea ~ not a bad way to begin the day.

Monday came and I was ready as I was going to be.  I had an appointment at 2:00 so I got ready early so I could do my "new" hair.  I hadn't even had a chance to get dressed the day before since it was a non stop day of activity and people again.

It was cloudy and I was worried about rain so I stopped by to show Teddy how awesome my new haircut was and how much I loved it before it got rained on!  He was as excited as I as I thanked him profusely for working magic!  I was early for my appointment, which was necessary it seemed to have time to chat with people I encountered along the way.

I stopped and had a hot dog with Ernie the Hot Dog Vendor and it did begin to rain a little.  I stood under his umbrella as I ate and he flirted with me.  I love older gentlemen, they know how to make a girl feel good in a harmless way and Ernie was on a roll yesterday!

I had a great visit with my Doc.  I think I even kept him awake during his low energy part of his day.  We had a great talk and I got some good pointers on a couple of issues I was having ~ now if I can just implement them!

Miss Tori has been planning the trip North since October and the trip almost did not go as planned.  After she smoothed out some bumps everything was back on and was flying into Albany at 2:00 on Monday.  I left the doctors appointment I had called home to see if she had arrived yet.

Tom answered the phone like a girl and I thought it was Tori.  He was playing with me however because when I got home she hadn't arrived yet.  That was a good thing as I really needed to lay down before she did arrive.

Moments before finding this out, as I approached my gate, a long lost friend stopped outside my house, back in the area once again we caught up for a moment before I went in to check on my company.  The day was better and better ~ except Tori wasn't here yet!  I had been tricked by my own son!

I checked the computer and saw that she had landed eight minutes before ~ I had an hour to myself before beginning the hostessing gig.  I really wasn't sure what to expect.  Not knowing if Tori was like her Mom and planned every minute of her visits or if she was low key.

I also wasn't sure if she was planning on having dinner here either.  I had planned on Shepherd's Pie, one definite meal we had discussed and always a favourite here.  I decided to play it by ear and Tom and I watched some t.v. in my room to wait for her to arrive.

Right on schedule Tom asked me if I heard a knock ~ I hadn't but went down to check and found Tori on our porch wondering if we were home.  Tori settled in, got into some shorts (it was freezing out!) and we caught up a bit before I began to chop and saute and peel and get the meal in order.  She had been thinking about Shepherd's Pie for days I guess and was glad I was making it.

We needed to get some coffee since Tori is a coffee drinker and we are not.  One thing I never have in the house ~ so we planned on taking a walk to get Ice Cream and wander down to Family Dollar for some coffee.

Of course my body gave out on the way to King Kone.  Lovely, I pushed through the pain and treated with a hot fudge sundae just to make it more worthwhile.  Knowing that our journey was not over, ice creams in hand we made our way through various parking lots and short cuts to the far end of North Street.

To say I was grateful to arrive back home would be an understatement.  I got through some work on the computer and decided I needed to lay down two hours ago.  I convinced Tom to heat up my heating pad while I got into my P.J's which he kindly did.

They came up and hung out with me for a little while.  I wasn't tired, I was just in pain.  After a reheat on my heating pad the two of them left me to my pain and I could hear them downstairs making popcorn and was amazed that I had such an awesome son.

I normally would not go to bed that early with guests in the house and Tom stepped up and was being a gracious host indeed.  He brought me up a cigarette and made me a bowl of popcorn as well, always thoughtful!

I thought I heard Tori go to bed a few hours later.  I woke early, realizing I should get up and surprised that Tori wasn't up.  Tom was in the kitchen when I came down, getting a drink before going back to his couch.  I walked into the living room to find Tom on the couch and Tori on the love seat all curled up.

I wonder why I cleaned the room?  Now I have two 20 somethings sleeping like babes as I type away IN my LIVING ROOM!!!  It should be an interesting week.  I am only half upset about the takeover of my living room.  I am now wondering if Tom is going to switch Tori to his schedule or if Tori is going to normalize Tom's schedule!!

The sun is amazing today and I am hoping it is going to be an awesome day.  I will probably put off calling the doctor as I have to be true to my procrastinating self  ~ I may just do some porch/sun time and get a jump on my tan ~ now that would be ideal!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


My Mother's Day continued to get better with the arrival of the boys.  They had an few mishaps throughout the day and postponed the Mall visit for later that evening.  We sat down to eat and the green beans did have a nice crunch to them so I did redeem myself with that one!

The roast was good if you avoided the line of gristle and the gravy was one of my best to say the least.  All in all it was a delicious feast.  They even enjoyed the cheese platter I fixed up last minute ~ Patrick joked that I was being fancy when he saw the cheeses and the crackers ~ the boy does crack me up!

It got to be 9:00 so we headed to living room for Game of Thrones.  I think Bruce enjoyed it despite not wanting to watch it with Patrick, something which I had forgotten about when I turned it on.  We may have another GoT fan in the making.

I was thankful I had gone to bed early the night before.  There seemed to be no sign of the pain that had afflicted me the evening before making me retire around 9:00.  I was keeping my fingers crossed that that particular pain would keep away.

On Monday it was back again.  I had an appointment in the afternoon as the pain increased in my back I thought about not going.  I decided not to be a baby and go.  Each step I took increased and radiated pain. By the time I arrived at my destination I was in agony.

I was thankful for the good railing up to the second floor and I used it as leverage to pull myself up the stairs. Some activities I accept the pain no problem.  This, however was due largely to managing to mop all 7 floors in my house and vacuuming two rugs as well and it was not welcome at all!

I gingerly sat down in the chair ~ spotting a magazine article from February on The Brain.  I knew I would not have time to finish as I had arrived with minutes to spare.  My doc came out and the first thing I asked after saying hello was if I could borrow the magazine.

Since the offer had been extended in the past I already knew the answer would be yes.  I promised to return it next week and cannot wait to dig into it.  What I read sounded very interesting.  Just the kind of thing I love to absorb into my memory banks.

Since we had watched Game of Thrones instead of the Mall I had to wait an extra day for my gift, so I knew that I would be in for a treat later on that day.  I was wishing for a wooden cutting board and had no indication of what was on my son's brain regarding the gift.

I gave him a call as I walked home after my appointment.  We spoke briefly and he told me that he was coming over after the Mall.  That conversation killed a few minutes of the painful walk home.  On those days, when the pain is high and I have to do something important I look forward to seeing the familiar buildings of my neighborhood ~ especially the one that marks the top of my street ~ then I know I only have to walk by three more houses ~ yesterday it took forEver!!!!

I gratefully entered my house and wanted to collapse.  I couldn't however, since I ran into Tom's Dad out and about and he was bringing Tom's bike back finally.  I left him a block and a half from my house so he could pick up his glasses.

The wait for him was eternal as well.  When he finally did show up he parked Tom's bike on the porch and I gave him my first baby from my Spider Plant.  I hated to give up my first but there will be plenty more ~ it is flourishing like mad!

Since it was 81 degrees here I got my peppers out on the front porch so they could soak up some sun.  The vitamins have been working wonders on them ~ no casualties so far and my friend brought me over some liquid fertilizer for them.

My son, the critic (middle child) said they were not getting enough light so I am hoping the move to the porch does them good.  He is also a hater on the pineapple plant ~ doubting I will ever be able to grow it here in this climate.  I am up to prove him wrong!

I got my garden tentatively mapped out and discovered an animal hole under the fence.  I have a feeling it is a woodchuck.  I do not want to grow a garden for him so I have to do some investigating and brainstorming before I plant my garden.

I got to lay down for an hour before Pat arrived with my gift.  I was catching up on Once Upon A Time ~ two hour finale from Sunday night which I missed.  I went downstairs to let him in and he came in with a big box this year.

Inside was an awesome Canon Printer with fax, copier and scanner and it was wireless so I guess I can print off of all of this technology which I do not own ~ tablets, phones, etc.  It weighed a ton and a half and I had problems sliding it out of the box.

Thomas brought it out into the living room and I began to check out the set up book.  It was not a cutting board ~ but it was something I have been wanting for a while.  Now I have a mini office setup.  Well, not quite ~ now I have another room to reset up to make everything work.

After the guys left I began attaching wires and cables and got the ink in.  I was feeling like crap still so I left getting it on line for morning.  Which I might add went pretty well considering I couldn't use the set up disc.  I found what I needed on line and printed out a part of my latest story and it printed very well.

I am glad he got extra ink because I am sure I am going to need it!  It will be interesting seeing my work that I have done over the past couple of years in black and white and in my hands to read instead of locked in a box.

My son does know me pretty well and despite teasing me I really do know he loves me and I was happy as could be when he phoned me today to see if I got the printer set up and how it worked.  I thanked him again and again and told him that it worked great ~ so far so good!

I went out and did errands and my back is flaring again, but I wanted to share the second half of my day and a little bit more...

Sunday, May 11, 2014


I find myself with some unexpected free time today.  Not that I have no plans, they just got shifted as I was stuffing the roast beef with garlic and pre-heating the oven my middle son called, "Happy Mother's Day, Mom ~ what are you doing?"  I said I was starting dinner ~ "Wait, don't start dinner yet, we need to eat later than normal ~ 5 or 6."

Fine by me.  I was worried that I was starting dinner too late, since I decided to take a walk on this gloriously beautiful and warm day.  As I was walking I got lost in thought, thinking it would be a perfect Ocean/Beach day ~ just the right amount of sun with a nice breeze to cool you off when the sun got too warm ~ the only thing I am missing is the Ocean!

No worries at all today ~ I stopped by the store and picked up some ice cream and some cheese since the Australian Sharp Cheddar I bought the other day when I made it to the market picking the right part of the day with a 50% chance of rain and 100% cloudy sky, making it almost impossible to predict when to go!  I made it back dry and loaded down with all of my necessities for the Feast today.

I shut off the oven, continued my task of stuffing the roast, chopped some onions and chopped the ends off the green beans I picked up at the Big Y.  No fresh only these pre-cut ends which as I said needed work.  I tried not to remember my experience at the Big Y (there is always something!)

My eldest son just phoned so I have heard from two out of three so far...I might get an unexpected visit after their dinner by he and Ainsley!!  I always look forward to that!  Just speaking to all three of my son's on any given day is a bonus ~ to lay eyes on them all on the same day is like a double rainbow!

Ains and I had a great time during our "Girl" Sleepover on Friday night.  She was anxious to arrive so she came before dinner (I love that she loves to visit me!).  I was not worried as I had burger thawed out.  Since she hadn't eaten it ensured that I would actually eat that evening (I hate eating alone!)

She brought two of her little Fairy's over with dresses and accessories for us to play with so we played with Tink and Periwinkle (I got Tink).  We flew into the kitchen and stocked up on Pixie dust and went shopping in the Boutique before we prepared Burgers.

I had been softening butter so we could bake some cookies, a very fun activity, so after she helped make burgers and I was cooking them she was anxious to begin creaming the butter and sugar (are all six year olds this eager?), I gave her some sugar and took over when it got too hard to stir and she helped measure the brown sugar and then I got her chopping walnuts since the stirring was up to me.

We learned that you could substitute Sea Salt for table salt (who runs out of table salt????) I also learned afterward that you should crush said Sea Salt however, some cookies were salty!  She got interested in the chopper after chopping the nuts.

She began chopping combinations of things, stale mini marshmallows, chocolate chips and sea salt, making an interesting creation indeed!  She really liked the sea Salt, so much so I had to put it up high so she would not get carried away with it, or it by her.

We had a great night together, although she really missed Thomas and we had to call him.  I think she wanted him to come and visit with Patrick and play with her, but Tom and Pat were involved in whatever they were involved in so it was the two of us.

After eating some awesome burgers and baking cookies we played outside ~ it was once again cloudy and looked like rain ~ still, but still no rain.  She wanted to go to the playground, but I was firm, since there has been a lot of trouble up there and it was Friday night that we were not doing that.

We opted for Slushies at King Kone instead, taking the "long way" not going through the Common - all I could here was my son's voice about right and wrong and felt that he would have disproved.  Safety first I always say.

After we got our slushies we headed back home.  We could tell the Park was deserted so we took a chance and walked through the newly paved and well lit area encountering a few children running the track and riding bikes.

We made it home without incident and took off our shoes and coats.  We decided to put television on upstairs and get into our jammies.  I was totally exhausted by that time anyway from overdoing it all week even though I tried hard not to.

She finally crashed just before 11 ~ just like Thomas used to be ~ one minute awake and full of energy and then in the blink of an eye ~ out like a light.  I went downstairs and had a smoke and put on the television.  I was really missing Thomas now ~ after Ains falls asleep he usually has me watching something way too late.

I gave him a call ~ knowing he would still be up ~ it was noon for him just about even though it was 11:30 at night.  He knew that I missed him.  He chatted with me for a few minutes and then I let him get back to his quality time with Pat and Bruce.

Now I have one more hour left and only potatoes to peel to be ready to start cooking.  It has been an awesome day without anything at all happening.  I have been blessed with well wishes since before I even woke via text and phone calls.

I do love my life!  I can't wait to see what Patrick and Thomas got me since Pat peaked my curiosity during the middle of the week!  Jeffrey expected me to have planted the beautiful flower that he and Lisa got me already but I am going to utilize it in my dining room for fragrance during dinner ~ it is so delicious!

I hope I can hold out for dinner without beginning with dessert first!  It is Mother's Day after all and I am so proud to be the best Mom I can be which for me has been and will always be my highest priority!  Thank you to my three sons, without whom none of the best parts of my life would be possible!

Thursday, May 8, 2014


It took me two days to recover from all of my activity over the weekend.  No matter how long I slept or how soundly I woke more tired than when I had gone to bed.  Finally on Wednesday I woke refreshed and energized.

The weather ~ being what it is in the Berkshires ~ which is a combination of you never know!  One minute the sun is out and it is warm with a slight breeze and the next the sun is gone the wind is fierce and you are suddenly freezing!

It has indeed been a peculiar Spring around here.  The buds on the trees have begun to appear, along with the flowers and the Robins.  The maintenance men were at the house the other day raking and cleaning the yard.

I even got my garden hoed ~ which really kind of bummed me out.  It was an unexpected kindness which I am pleased and grateful for but I was really looking forward to turning that soil myself.  Despite feeling like crap during the beginning of the week I managed to get errands done and transplant my pepper plants.

I am the proud cultivator of 25 Green Pepper Plants and 25 Jalapeno plants ~ we shall see how many of them survive to the next stage.  My son is a wonderful critic ~ he said they are not getting enough light.  I agree they could use more but it hasn't been warm enough at night to put them on the enclosed porch where they will benefit from a greenhouse environment and the best sunlight.

I also planted some basil and my pineapple is showing some strong roots as well as some fine roots.  My granddaughter is coming over Friday night so we will be able to plant the sunflower seeds along with the daisy seeds.

I love these little planting projects.  I do hope that I am successful with the pineapple!  The replacement avocado tree is looking like it is growing a fine root as well but I haven't gotten the stalk to pop yet.  I think it should be anytime now ~ last time it was overnight.

So, yesterday after the maintenance guys were here and they had to come in to check the radiators and change a valve I was so disgusted with myself yet again for my untidiness that I killed myself cleaning.  I have been so much better lately with the floors but they are going to be my downfall.

I can't help it if the repetitive motion screws with my neck and my pain levels.  What chore regarding floors doesn't require repetitive motion?  Be it mopping, sweeping or vacuuming they are all the same.  I woke up today feeling not so great and a bit grouchy.

It was a good day for Thomas to sleep late, and probably a better one for him to be going over to his brothers house ~ which he did ~ pain is a bitch to be sure.  I can make a nice person mean and a happy one not so happy.

I want to be at my best tomorrow when my granddaughter is here.  The planting of the seeds and maybe making some cookies and our usual painting/drawing should pretty much fill our time and be low key as well. Since Thomas will me absent I won't have his help but I should be o.k....

I am looking forward to Mother's Day on Sunday as well.  It is going to totally be a family weekend which are the best kinds as far as I am concerned.  My two youngest boys are so funny about it.  My middle son questioning my younger son in front of me if he told me what my present was.

Trying to bait me to be curious.  My middle son is devious for sure.  He knows his brother would never betray his confidence at all.  I am sure he will blow me away with his skill in gift choosing.  He inherited that from me.

I am looking forward to a delicious roast beef dinner with all of the fixings ~ mashed potatoes, homemade gravy and green beans.  We are meat and potatoes all of the way.  I have been instructed I can make regular mashed as opposed to garlic mashed on the condition that I stuff the beef properly with garlic.  Like there is any other way!  I am getting hungry for Sunday dinner already!

I hope the weather holds up tomorrow so I can get to the market.  I think I need to redeem myself from Easter and the over steaming of the green beans ( a rookie mistake).  Since dessert is not required I think it is the least I can do.

It has been a while since I have walked to the market.  My friend Lisa has been gracious enough to bring me grocery shopping for my primary groceries, which is cutting down on my necessity to walk to the market every few days and also cutting down on my walking as well so I am looking forward to it.

I just stepped away from the computer to find something random and went up to my room to look there and inadvertently organized by category the stuff in the four boxes I have been putting off doing.  Now I have a box of puzzles, a box of decorative items, a bag of toys and colored pencils, a pile of papers and a box of video and media.

That was much easier than I expected so now I have a base for the other boxes to organize into.  I will have to resist the temptation of doing more tonight however.  These things have a way of taking over and I do not need that mess around when Ainsley is here.  Better to stack it back up in the corner where it was for another day, I have too much to do to prepare for my visit without adding more to the "To Do" List to be done by tomorrow!

Thomas is out, like I said for the evening.  I heated up some leftover pizza in the oven for dinner and I am feeling like it may actually be an early night of television.  I missed "The Americans" last night.  I hope I can stay awake for the whole thing!

I watched the movie "Were The Millers" today after lunch.  I really thought it was funny and laughed out loud more than a few times.  Nothing like a good comedy.  It was during that when my son phoned and told me it was warm outside.

I had been freezing all day.  I was, when he phoned snuggled up under my comforter in my bed and I was still cold.  I thought he was fibbing so I paused the movie and went outside and he was right!!  Like I said ~ weather in the Berkshires ~ you just never know!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


I have been so extremely busy both in and out of the house beginning with my always fun First Friday ArtWalk.  The night was warm and I had gotten a call from my friend New Orleans Dave ~ who was manning Lisa's Studio at NU Arts asking me if I was going to come up.

I had already told Lisa I would stop in and water her tomato plants she has growing there so I told him I would be leaving soon.  After a busy afternoon I hadn't had more than a few minutes to relax before heading out with, obviously Lisa's my first stop.

I found Dave sitting in Lisa's studio with the lights off.  There were barely any people around so he was obviously bored ~ used to a more energetic crowd in New Orleans than Pittsfield on the second floor with not much street traffic.

I was eager to get started checking out Art.  I look forward to seeing the new Artists each month, especially if they are in attendance and are interested in chatting.  I was also sympathetic to Dave.  I had babysat my friend Diane's studio before and I thought I would lose my mind despite the semi steady flow of foot traffic.

I found the lights to encourage people to come in, found the water bottle and solicited his help with the plants in the window closest to him to give him something to do for a second and I misted the plants in my window and watered the ones that were already transplanted.

We chatted for a bit but I was out the door and off exploring the various artists who were on display beginning with a very cool Student Art Show 7th grade to 12th grade at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts. I really enjoyed the various art on display from all age groups.

It delights me to see the variations on similar projects.  That, to me shows some really thought was put into the projects. I had my little camera and took some shots ~ some better than others as always.  I really need to figure out how to use all the features on that thing one of these days!

Mark V. Mellinger had some interesting Mixed Media across the street at the Downtown Pittsfield, Inc..

It was indeed different and varied work which I saw in this show.  I really liked the paintings the best ~ and my favourite was this final picture above.

There were not too many artists about, but what I had seen so far had been interesting.  I had told Dave I would be back in 15 minutes and I still had a minimum of three places that I wanted to check out ~ maybe four so I scurried over to the MarketPlace Cafe to check out the work of Autumn Doyle.

I was thinking she was someone I had met out and about and I was correct. I did not know she was an artist prior to this.  I like her work.  It is unique and creative.  I hope my pictures do it justice.  I love the bird piece she did and the painting which pops out at you.

We both share the same views about showing at the Cafe ~ it is awkward to view without feeling like you are intruding on someones meal ~ one gentlemen was gracious enough to remove himself from his seat so I could get a picture ~ for which I was thankful!

 As I headed down the street to utilized what time I had left of my ArtWalk time I snapped this picture.  I was hoping the rain would continue to stay away as I hurried Over to the Kinderhook Real Estate  to check out Marlena Leondards' Pastel and Watercolors and get a peek at Karen S. Jacobs Oil on Canvas at Unusual Wedding Rings ~ both located at 137 North Street.

 I was having a wonderful conversation with Karen when I remembered Dave..., she was very kind to share the fact that she had retired and begun doing Art again after a number of years away from it.  She enrolled in school and had such a great time!  She was very inspiring and had some work which I was really drawn to!

I really need to figure out where the zoom is on the camera!  Those far shots are not nearly good enough to show how good her work is but you get the idea!

I had been noticing Judy Albright's work in the window for a couple of days prior to artwalk.  He fun Pastel Paintings in the window of Steven Valenti Clothing for Men ~ always a wonderful display on their own ~ Judy;s paintings added touch more fun to the window displays.

I snapped a few inside and out ~

I headed over to Mack Waggaman's show at the Berkshire Community College Intermodal Gallery at the BRTA.  He had some really interesting art.  I really liked it.  Sadly the artist would not like any pictures of his art on the Internet so if you are curious go over to the bus station ~ you may be lucky to catch someone there after 1 and before 4 but don't count on it.  I have tried a few times to catch it open without success.

After that disappointment I figured I had spent my 15 minutes and then some, considering I was chatting with a few of the artists and a couple other random people I encountered along the way.  I headed back up to see how Dave was faring.

I was hoping he had a room full of art enthusiast and was in his glory.  That was not the case.  He was funny in his misery.  I was prepared to hang out until Lisa arrived from work but that was not to be.  I got a phone call and had to leave my entire Art experience where it was.

I was pretty satisfied with the art all in all.  I saw some new artists.  I was hoping to be back to head over to the Whitney.  I hadn't been in two months!!!  It was not to be since I got held up.  I did get a ride to the store and was able to bring soda home to my son without having to lug it three blocks so all in all life was pretty good.

This was just the beginning of my very full weekend.  I had accepted an Ushering gig.  I woke up around 4 a.m. not feeling too good so I just slept until I felt better.  When I woke up at a decent hour I was fit as a fiddle with errands to do which did not include much computer time.

I had to walk to the bank and pick up the rent so my landlord could get it the next morning.  He was in fact the reason I woke up at about 9:30 ~ phone ringing and a mad dash down the stairs and through the entire house.

I really need to get working phones upstairs.  I am going to break my neck one of these days sprinting for the phone before the machine picks up.  It was good cardio anyway!  The sun appeared to be out and I made a tea and put on the weather channel to check the rain status for the evening.  It looked like I had a 30% chance of rain while I was out.

Not bad.  I was glad I had bought the black pants for the show.  I had to walk and I had no umbrella having left them 8 moves back on Forthill Ave another lifetime ago.  The things you forget when you move in a hurry!

I got back from the bank without any rain.  I had been half tempted to just go buy an umbrella but was eager to get home and relax before I had to go to the Theater.  I was already for the landlord and I didn't get mugged (joke).

It is always fun being around the Barrington Stage Crew.  They are very nice and have great stories.  They really do appreciate their volunteers, which I love!  It was ticketed seating and I was sort of used to the seating on one side of the Theater so I asked if I could have that side again, which I could.

Saturday night was another fun evening ushering at the Barrington Stage for the Zip/Stohr Comedy Show.  I caught a comedian and a half before intermission where I hung out at the end of the alley to make sure patrons did not leave with beers.

I had dinner plans with the guys after intermission so once the patrons went back inside I helped pick up the lobby and checked the ladies room before walking home.  I was a little fearful as I approached the Common.  It was dark and there has been a bit more trouble there than usual.

I made it through in one piece to encounter a friend of mine on his bike.  I could tell it was him with his new headlight shining and I greeted him and joked that it was too bad he wasn't on the other side of the park before I walked through alone ~ he said he tried and we both laughed and headed the rest of the way to my house.

The guys were at my house already.  Thomas had heated up the soup for me.  It was technically his dinner.  I just provided the Chicken Soup I had made the day before.  It is always a pleasure to have a great night and come home to a house full of people to hang out and eat with.

People feed my spirit.  So after a great two nights of people out in the world as well as in my inner Sanctuary of my home I was feeling WONDERFUL!  I still had the Finals of the Berkshire Idol the next day and had Sunday evening shows to look forward to as well with my son.

I had no idea what to expect on Sunday.  I know I was smart to wear my sneakers, expecting a bunch of young talent and activity.  It was less than a nice day.  It looked and felt warm here and there, but rain was coming calling for sure.

I made it up to the BSC and it was sunny and semi warm for a while.  Before too long however it began to get colder and spit out some rain.  I was in a good place on a rainy day for sure!  All of the contestants were seated in one area which was roped off.

They ranged from ages 7 to adult in three age categories.  The kids looked nervous.  I was on that side of the room ~ the opposite from what I was used to but it was open seating so I mainly just had to point out the contestant seating to the contestants and hand surveys and pencils out to everyone else.

The thinking was that people would remember their ballot books from the day before.  That was not really the case but it went pretty smoothly regardless. The show began with the MC calling up the youngest group up first to announce the 8 lucky winners out of that group to compete for first place, then the young adults and then the adults.

The contestants who made it went down to the green room to wait their turns to sing.  It was pretty entertaining and I watched all of the youngest and most of the second group before I began to wonder when they were going to call intermission.

I can only sit for so long myself before I need to stand ~ walk and stretch, so I made my exit between performers to see what I could find out, use the bathroom and have a smoke.  It had rained while I was listening to the performers.

The sun (or maybe the wind) had dried up a good portion of the rain leaving some puddles to prove it had happened.  I had a strong feeling there would be more rain before the night was over however by the look of the sky.  It was freezing with the wind and I regretted what I had worn earlier in the false warmth of the sun and knew I would have a cold walk home.

Turned out they were going to go through all of the performances before intermission and then during intermission the Ushers would go around and collect the ballots, the surveys and the pencils and they would tally the votes over the course of the 20 minutes.

We got to work collecting ballots and when they were all in I began the sweep of the semi empty Theater which was less than tidy.  Finding more than one offending M&M wrapper on the floor to go with soda bottles and a few empty water bottles.

I figured it would make the end of the day easier to get a jump on it and a couple of staff thought it was a good idea also and joined in.  It had been a long weekend and we were eager to find out who won and get back to our homes.

Finally they flashed the lights marking the call back inside.  Everyone headed inside and got to their seats.  When the lobby was empty I headed in and grabbed a seat.  It was very exciting to watch the runner ups and the winners announced.

I really had a good time and was half tempted to go to the reception they were having at Spice Dragon.  Once  I got outside I decided I really just wanted to go home and make a cup of tea and relax and get ready for quality time with Thomas.

It was really windy so I phoned my grand daughter to warm up my spirit and distract me from the wind.  She answered the phone and we discussed her birthday dinner.  I had asked the guys if they wanted to go to our special dinner out and they were less than agreeable to the idea.

I had an idea to see how Ainsley would feel if we made it a girls dinner and invite her Mom as well.  Lisa's birthday is 9 days before Ainsley's birthday and I thought it would be a nice bonding experience for the three of us.

Ains really liked the idea and said she would ask her Mom if she wanted to go.  She also asked if she could come over next weekend and you know me ~ the answer is always yes to my girl.  That really warmed me up and I promised to check my calendar when I got home and let her know.

Mother's Day is the only thing I have going on.  I knew that we would probably have Friday night since she would have to spend the day with her own Mom ~ (Gramma's are sooo smart [wink, wink].)  When we spoke during the week she told me she could come on the 9th after dinner!

So I am sure you are about tired of reading my ramblings.  I know this one has got to be a very long post.  I am not going to apologize ~ only for making you wait for it!  Hope you enjoy it and thanks for reading ~ until next time!

Sunday, May 4, 2014


I have had such a fun and wonderful weekend through and through that I just can't wait to give you a full report with some pictures as  well ~ but it is Sunday Night and I just watched Game of Thrones, did some research on those jeans that I bought the other day because it turns out they were the best find of the day with out a doubt ~ $8.00 for the most amazing fitting black jeans with a label of "Christopher Blue" whom I have never heard of before ~ and didn't notice until after I wore them.

Turns out that they are high end jeans and I will be looking out for this label.  I must say ladies ~ if you want to feel really good about yourself invest in a pair for yourself!!!!  Save your pennies though ~ like I said they are pricey and I would never in my life spend full price on jeans for myself so unless you are lucky like I turned out to be don't drop dead of sticker shock!

I am planning on writing about ArtWalk on Friday ~Comedy on Saturday and Berkshire Idol today ~ however, it is Sunday and I am minutes away from watching Nurse Jackie after grabbing a quick Kielbasa and Onion Sandwich between shows, games and writing this ~ guess which one got the least amount of time?  This cuz I was blown away and had to share about the jeans!

Have a great night everyone and I will catch up tomorrow somewhere during my normal Monday activities ~


Thursday, May 1, 2014


I should have threatened to make Chicken Soup sooner since Mother Nature did a turnaround with the weather unexpectedly today when I was preparing for the scheduled wash out of a rain day again today, she decided to warm up and be a gloriously warm and sunny day!

That did not stop me from simmering my soup stock, cuz living in the Berkshires it is only a matter of hours before the weather changes going from sun to rain or dreaded snow in the blink of an eye at times.  I decided since it was so warm, that I was going to go shopping today.

My friend Lisa called me and asked me if I could help her move and install a painting in the hallway of her studio in the afternoon, so I told her my plans and asked her to give me a call when she was ready, since I wasn't planning on being home and wasn't sure where I would be when she was ready to move the piece.

I went to my favourite Consignment store on North Street, within walking distance, and found within five minutes of leaving my house just how warm and overdressed I was already for the day, I took off my blazer and was still too warm!

I was in the market for some black pants for my volunteering stints since the dress code is always black and white and I was tired of my grey slacks which fall slightly out of the "uniform".  Upon entering my favourite little store, after admiring the formal dresses in the window which I didn't even dare to try on, but which I LOVE!!!, I headed to the pant area and pulled four pairs off the rack.

I loved one, liked two (dry clean however) and hated one, so I settled on the pair that I loved and went back to see if I had overlooked any other possibilities the first time, knowing I hadn't.  I glanced over at the shoe rack and stripped myself of my sneakers and socks and tried on some of the coolest black velvet open toed high heels which, for the money (they were on sale in addition to the already low price) I put them down as a "maybe" and continued shopping.

Since the summer season is coming up and all navy and orange tickets were additionally discounted, I decided to check out what else I could find.  I looked at the tops and found three which after trying them on decided to get and then thought to check the spring dresses just in case.

I found one dress that I liked so I tried to try it on, but I couldn't figure it out ~ the straps cross and I would hate to have to get into that dress in a hurry!  After some help by the owner who got the dress back to how it should go (I am not a girlie girl!) I finally got into the dress and it fit so nice that I could not resist, especially with the additional savings.

So now I had a pair of pants which I came in for and three shirts, a pair of shoes I will probably never wear, and a dress and asked for a grand total.  Then I saw the Fairy pin in the cabinet...It was also on sale!!!  My grand total was under $50.00 ~ or should I say, just over $40.00 for the sake of thriftiness here, and I may or may not be set with my granddaughters birthday present (I really want the pin for myself, but she would love it!)

I left feeling slightly guilty, but in reality it is only the second time I have bought anything new in the previous 7 years for myself as far as clothing goes.  I know, I have a ton of clothes but not a ton of clothes that I can/will wear.  I am guilty of needing to go through my clothes and let go of some things which I will probably never wear.

When I was finished I called Tom's Dad whom I was trying to meet to pick up some groceries from which he got for me, but he was not home, and Lisa didn't answer when I phoned her.  I began taking a leisurely stroll down North Street, enjoying the day towards Lisa's house when she phoned, which she did withing 10 minutes.

I told her I would meet her at her house and we both arrived at about the same time and we took down the painting she did of a Wolf and put it in her truck and made our way to the studio.  She had a spot already for it so getting it in and up on the wall was pretty routine.

We were chatting away when Rick called from his place across the street, so I told him I would be over when I was finished helping Lisa.  On the way across the street I ran into one of the tenants in his building who decorates furniture and stuff with pictures.  Today he had a end table with some pretty amazing pieces, I couldn't tell if they were Royo or Vallejo and neither did he but he did cut them out of a book and used them (shame on him), but they were so cool that I forgave him (sort of!)

He asked me if I had a second to check out his room which I had heard about from Tom's Dad ~ wall to wall every inch of his room from floor to ceiling and the ceiling covered with pictures which he cut out and did ~ I asked him if I could take some pictures ~ honoured to have been invited in and he said I could so I did before Rick came charging down to drag me out yelling at me for twenty feet of hallway like I was some child doing something wrong!

An artist and his work

 Some people just do not understand ART!!!  Not this guy!  I have no idea what his name is but I had to share this amazingly crazy and interesting room.

He said he had the entire room done once and he used less quality pictures and wasn't happy so he tore the whole thing down                                                                      and this is what he                                                                    got!

He has an idea to do the entire floor and cover it with a protective plastic if he can get permission~ that will be something else~ this girl will be curious to see if he gets permission or noT!



Kitchen Cabinet
These were all I could manage in the two minutes I was in the room.  I do not think I could live in a room like this personally, but I think it took great vision and he has a bunch of really cool pieces which he is always showing on North Street.

I am encouraging this man ( name unknown) to get involved in the art world and show some of these unique and creative pieces with people outside of pedestrians walking on North Street.  Call me crazy but I think they are cool, interesting and unique to say the least.  I only wish I had more time to take some more pictures and really absorb what I was seeing through my eyeballs!

Needless to say it was well worth the 10 minute scolding which I received.  I should be flattered that someone had my back (although I think I was good with the situation!)  So after that excitement I enjoyed a really nice walk home and thankfully my soup stock did not all cook away, although I forgot all about the roasting pan in the oven which I was warming up the pan drippings from said Chicken which were pretty well loosened and a bit charred!

All and all it was a pretty wonderful day out and about in my world!  Hope yours was the same!