Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Inauguration Day

 It's been a wonderful day! Congratulations, President Biden and Madam Vice President Harris! 

I love both of these new families coming into the White House. The Bidens have endured so much loss, and yet they're a beautiful example of a family (not without their flaws) that love each other fiercely and unconditionally. They're all exceptionally close. And have you seen the way the new, first Second Gentleman looks at his wife? They, too, have a lovely, devoted, decent family. How refreshing.

On a related note, did you see the lone soldier kneeling by Beau Biden's grave at the moment his father was sworn in this morning? In his speech today President Biden said this about his son:

“Ladies and gentlemen, I only have one regret. He’s not here, because we should be introducing him as president.”

That made me cry, as did so many other moments today. As the swearing-in started, I poured myself a tiny little half glass of champagne to celebrate, even though technically I was working from home until 4:30. I had to wait until now to have a full glass! And as soon as Gregg gets home from work (late on Wednesdays) we'll have dinner and then I'm going to have a few drinks to celebrate!  It's the perfect occasion to get a little tipsy!

I'm so grateful that everything went off without a hitch today, that leaders of both parties (including the outgoing Vice President) behaved with dignity and decency towards our new President, and that we now have hope of healing and reconciliation. Onward and upward!

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

At long last, only one more day!

 It's been a long exhausting four years, but as of noon tomorrow we will finally have a new president! I can't tell you how happy I am to see the Trump years draw to a close. Of course I know it won't be all sunshine and rainbows, and that the cult 45 people are still out there and causing trouble, and the pandemic is raging, and there are still many, many, evil and corrupt politicians who enabled Trump and his ilk who will do it again as soon as they see half a chance. I know all too well how much trouble this country is in at the moment no matter who the president is. 

But damn, it still feels good to know that this dark chapter in our history is finally about to be over. I wanted to do a little dance when I saw footage of the moving trucks being packed at the White House. What a relief after the fear and stress of the past four years.

It's sad to see the military presence required for tomorrow's inauguration, but unlike my husband, I don't think Biden and  Harris should be quietly sworn in in a room somewhere and all public events canceled. F*** that. To me, any concession to lunatics and rioters and insurrectionists is a mistake. Period. I don't care how much military and National Guard protection it takes to make the event safe, this is America and damn it, our newest President and Vice President deserve all the same pomp and ceremony as any other! Mind you, if it were just a matter of being safe during a pandemic, I would be all for a scaled down ceremony. But to appease domestic terrorists? No.

I'm glad I'll be working from home tomorrow and can watch the coverage of the inauguration! I plan to pick up a bottle of champagne to open as soon as I sign off work at 4:30. I'm going to make two desserts tomorrow night as a further celebration: apple pie for America, and peach cobbler for the great state of Georgia that helped us win the presidency and take back control of the Senate! Although nothing will magically change overnight when 45 leaves office, I hope we're turning a corner and headed for better days in this country. 

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Life with boys

It's been five months since my girl Ginger went and left me as the lone woman in this house. Between her passing and the Covid restrictions on gatherings of friends, I find myself surrounded by males 24/7. This house is seriously low on female energy at the moment. But hey, I guess you could say I'm the Queen Bee!

The Marcoman "supervising" Gregg's  water change technique.

George looking sadly towards the door as Gregg was backing out of the driveway this morning, headed to work. George thinks we should all stay home as a pack, together, all day every day. He has no respect for the what it takes to earn a living! Speaking of which, here's a photo I emailed to the whole staff at work on Friday. My work-from-home office assistant helping himself to my coffee--and standing on my keyboard to do it. Talk about no respect!

With the exception of my husband,  the boys in this house are way more needy and troublesome than Ginger ever was. (Gregg's just a normal "husband" level of needy and troublesome! lol) Marco is naughty, but super cute and smart enough to charm you just when you're about ready to open a window and toss him out. Yesterday a wineglass slipped from my hand when I was washing it and shattered, dramatically, on the hard kitchen floor. Marco, who was perched on the countertop a foot away, stared, wide-eyed, for about 3 seconds and then said in a little doleful voice, "You bad bird." Even he rarely destroys something in so dramatic a fashion.

George is a total love these days, but he's so needy he's like an overgrown puppy. He depended on Ginger and probably loved her more than he loved us, and now we've had to step up and give him lots more attention. He's eating it up, and getting super spoiled. He's going to be a sad boy when I go back to work. Which, by the way, isn't happening for an extra week. He's going to have to suck it up and deal with it eventually, though.

One day we'll probably get a puppy or else a young dog as for a companion for George. We're still not ready in any way, but maybe by the end of this year. And it's going to be a little girl!

Thursday, January 14, 2021

A walk in the sunshine

 I took a walk around the neighborhood with George this afternoon while taking a short break from work. The sun is finally out and it's been a pretty day. I snapped a few pictures to show you how blue the sky was and how pleasant our little walking loop can be, even in the winter.

It's nice to see the sun again!

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Just a Wednesday

 There's been precious little sunshine in my part of the world lately. Every day has been chilly, damp, and gray with only the occasional bit of sunshine peeking through the leaden clouds. I wish we'd get some snow. It's been three years since we've had any, and we've yet to see it happen in the new house. I've been dreaming of sitting by the fireplace sipping wine with snow falling outside the window since we moved in. Oh, well...the winter's not over yet, I suppose.

This afternoon between work calls and emails I took George outside for a quick walk around the neighborhood. About halfway through I noticed turkey vultures circling around a yard, and saw what looked like something small with brown and white fur lying in the dead grass of my neighbor's yard. A squirrel? A rabbit? Not  sure, and I averted my eyes because I really didn't want to know. Then when we rounded the next corner I saw more and more vultures showing up, and eventually counted 13 of them. Thirteen vultures seemed like a bad omen, so I hurried into the house and shut the door. I can't imagine why there would be so many of them for a single squirrel or rabbit or (god forbid) a cat. Maybe there are other dead things around. Turkey vultures will never make anyone's top ten list of favorite birds, but they provide a valuable clean up service and I respect that. I just don't care to watch them at work.

Speaking of birds, Neil mentioned American robins vs. English robins yesterday. When I went out later in the afternoon to pick up a few things at the grocery store the trees around our house were full of robins. A large flock of them seem to be moving through the neighborhood this week. Our yard teems with good juicy earthworms so it's probably like a robin's buffet after rain forces the worms up to the surface of the dirt!

 I was out back today thinking about where to put a bluebird box we've been saving for a few years, since my late mother-in-law gave it to us as a Christmas gift some years ago. She loved feeding wild birds and she and her husband kept several bluebird nesting boxes at their home in Raleigh, NC. I wish she could visit our home....not only would she love the house itself, but she would really love all the birds and animals we see here. I miss her. Even though she's been gone for three years I can't really write about her too much, yet. I spoke to her husband a while ago. He's in his eighties but seems a good bit younger. I like to call him once a month or so, just to check in and to let him know that we haven't forgotten him. He doesn't feed birds or maintain nesting boxes now that Edythe's gone, it was really always more her thing than his, but despite Covid restrictions (which he's been observing very strictly) he manages to have a full and busy life. He loves the internet and technology and is far more tech-savvy than I am, probably. He regularly has Zoom meetings with his "old geezer" friends to talk politics and eat meals together (but apart). He also takes part in a virtual version of a group that call themselves "Pints for Presbyterians". That's men in his church that meet up at a pub once a week (with the pastor!) to have beer and conversion. They've moved it to Zoom for the duration of Covid, and I'm sure they're all looking forward to getting vaccines so they can resume their in person meetings this year! Lou is a gem. My mother in law picked a good man to be her husband for the last 20 years of her life! We respect him a lot because of how tenderly he cared for Edythe when she was dying, and also because he's a smart and interesting guy. He liked hearing about how we'd be putting up the bluebird box she gave us soon (and finally!)

So that's it for my gray Wednesday afternoon in Florence, SC. Working from home, wishing for snow, missing my MIL. 

What's today been like for you?

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Flowers and showers

In the comments on my last post, Steve asked me to show a picture of my blooming Christmas cactus. I had mentioned it but didn't share a photo at the time because I didn't have a good one. Here is a photo of of it alongside my blooming orchids. I'm also throwing in pictures of the two smaller orchids that I took yesterday.

Flowers really brighten up the house when the weather outside is cold and gray!

For the rest of you who love Marco stories and Marco pictures, I snapped some of him fresh from the shower the other day. He loves to shower with me and then he loves getting blow dried afterwards!

Friday, January 8, 2021

On a more positive note...

I don't like having yesterday's post as the most current one on my blog. We can all get enough of the news elsewhere (and likely you're all as sick of it as I am) so I decided to kick off the weekend with a happier post.

First of all, I wanted to show you the beautiful holiday cards I got this year. I couldn't bear to put them away with the rest of the Christmas stuff at the end of December. I also kept out some fairy lights that I put around them so that they'd glow and sparkle at night.

Next, here's something else that's making me happy. My orchids and my Christmas cactus are blooming. The orchids are my favorite.

The weather has been wet and cold this week. On Wednesday morning while working from home I started a crockpot of homemade vegetable beef soup and let it simmer all day. It's been our supper for the past two nights, and it's maybe one of the best batches of soup I've ever made. Delicious, and just the thing for the kind of weather we've been having. This is comfort food at its best.

Last of all, this sweet boy. He loves basking in sunshine as much as any cat. On bright days he follows the sun through the house and parks himself wherever he can soak up a few rays. This was early yesterday morning.

Wishing you all a weekend filled with comfort, content, and the happiness that comes from the little things in life. 

Thursday, January 7, 2021

A shame and a disgrace.

I don't know what to say. Words seem inadequate to express my horror and disgust at what happened in our nation's Capitol yesterday. It's a disgrace. A national embarrassment. A dark day in this country's history. 

THIS is what support for the Republicans' orange demon god has brought our country to.

So my question now is this: are the Republicans finally going to denounce and root out the rot in their party that has led to this sad day? Have they had enough yet? Is this what you Trump voters wanted to see happen? 

Because if you voted for this criminal, especially for a second time, this is on you. Shame on you. Shame.