Greetings from Seattle

Sunday, February 19, 2017


I realize I haven't been posting much lately. 

I am preoccupied by politics, and many of you would rather not hear about our current affairs coming out of Washington DC on another blog. There is plenty to take in, or avoid, as your choice may be, from news sources and social media. 

I will say that it has been a crazy four weeks since DJT took office. I can't see it getting much better, but I am still maintaining my activism.

Other than spending several hours a day reading political postings and on line news papers, I have been occupied with routine stuff. We walked almost every day this week, except when it was pouring down rain. We spent two evenings at the stadium downtown working on Sounders soccer stuff. We are making huge overhead banners, and I ran a serger, sewing seams 25 to 100 feet long. It was good to feel appreciated and to work with good people, all of whom are much younger than we are. 

Wednesday we went out to lunch with retired teachers from my former school, the McMicken Lunch Bunch. There were six of us this time, and it was fun to get together and catch up and visit and share laughs.  Friday mornings are always reserved for the Des Moines Breakfast club, with retired teachers from Tom's former school. 

At home I have worked on my ongoing sewing project, a quilt top made of hexagons. Today I finished the borders and the quilt top is finished. Here is a peak. 
Now I'll have to add the filling and the backing, quilt and bind it. I'll post more about the whole process at another time. It has been a fun project to work on during these winter days. 

Saturday, with Tom away at a family work weekend at the Rockaway Beach cabin, and Jill in the mountains teaching a Mountaineers class, I had charge of the kids. 

They wanted to go to Costco, and we all needed a few things, so we spent some time there. Irene found all the food samples. Then Isaac had to track down the latest set of Pokemon cards, and that search took us to several more stores. Back at home we had lunch and played a board game until it was time to go to Irene's basketball game. 

Irene's team has struggled, and has lost all of their games, but those girls really hustled and tried hard out on the court. I asked Irene later what she was thinking as she was out there, and she said she really didn't like it, and "I'm never going to do this again!"

I gave her credit for sticking it out through the season - this was the last game - and not giving up. And I told her I was quitting too. I was going to give tai chi three months and then decide, but I am quitting after just two months. At $66.00 a month, I'm not going to pay for something I am not enjoying or getting much out of. I'm sure if I practiced it for a year I might get to the point where I would see some gains, but it is just not for me. I'll keep on walking.

The kids and I went to Red Robin for dinner and topped our meal, and our day, off with mud pie. Yum!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Happy Valentine's Day

Tom and I don't do much for Valentine's Day. We will take a walk together in the sunshine for our celebration of this day for love and lovers.

We will also make a delivery to our daughter and grandchildren's  house to leave a little treat for them to find when they get home from school. 

In the evening we will be donating time to helping our Sounders supporter group prepare for the home opener match of the new season in March. 

All of these things we will do with a happy heart.

February is hearth month. To all of you, I wish you a day to experience your own happy heart and to have the opportunity to bring happiness to the heart of someone else. 

Spread the love.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

A Day in the Garden!

I thought the poor little snow drops would be crushed under the weight of eight inches of heavy, wet snow. but they have rebounded!

 Tom's collection of cyclamen are also beginning to bloom in the little winter garden outside the family room windows. 

 The air here is perfumed by the winter blooming sacacocca, with it's lovely vanilla scent. 
The snow is all gone except for the remnants of the mound shoveled off the driveway. 
Since our snow last Sunday and Monday, we have had lots of rain, a day of temps in the 50's, and today, Sun!
So we made this a gardening day, a day to get out and do the clean up that is needed after wind and rain and snow storms, when you have lots of big trees overhead. 

Branches have been picked up and the lawn raked, collecting lots of twigs and fir cones 

 The patio is clean again. 
 We even got down on hands and knees and began cleaning out some of the flower beds. 

You have to watch out where you step because the bulbs are coming up, daffodils here
 and tulips there.

 The buds on the magnolia stellata are getting plump and fuzzy. 

We spent almost five hours working outside. It felt great, although we are a bit stiff and sore now. 

But we had a very satisfying day in the garden, and bins full of yard waste to show for it. These were all empty when we started.

Politics are still very much on our minds. Our week three activism included more phone calls and emails and donations to organizations fighting for our progressive principles. We are very proud of the work of our governor and state attorney general and solicitor general in taking on the President and winning the first round in the immigration/travel ban. Yay, Washington State!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Big Snow

We live in the temperate marine climate influenced by the salt waters of the Pacific Ocean and Puget Sound. We don't get snow often, so when we get lots of it, it's a big deal. 

On Super Bowl Sunday it began to snow in micro climates around the region. For us the snow began about 5:00 in the evening. It snowed all night and into the morning hours, heavy, wet snow falling in temperatures just below to just above freezing. It loaded us up, sometimes to the breaking point. There were power outages as tree limbs snapped and brought down power lines. We were lucky. It looks like we escaped with no major losses, just lots of little branches and bowed down shrubbery.

It was beautiful while it lasted.

 By the time I got out to the street to collect the newspaper, it was about 10:00. A few folks had managed to navigate the hill. Oh, but not the newspaper delivery guy. No paper. 

 Monday is garbage day and Tom had to drag out the garbage can to the street. It made for easier walking for me. Later we got the message that there would be no pick up. Maybe today, maybe not.  

 Green man on the green house likes his new hat. 

 We left this one glass flower out for the winter. The snow has turned it into an exotic orchid. 

 The snow stick (ruler) measured just over nine inches in the lower yard, away from the tall trees. 
 My Muck Boots were required footwear. 

 Hydrangea blooms hang heavy. 
 Forsythia buds say "Not yet."

 There is a nice soft cushion on the garden seat. 

 By now the thick snow collected on the fir and cedar boughs overhead was beginning to fall in continuous avalanches, so I hurried under these and stayed close to the house as I made my way around the yard. 

 Tom had already been here before me to take photos with his phone to post on Facebook. Posting snow photos was the thing for the day. 
 The witch hazel had opened last week. Now it has to peek out from under puffs of fluff. 

 Another heavy hydrangea hanging over the path. 

 Tucked under the eaves, a survivor! Most of the winter jasmine in the garden got fried by an earlier hard frost. 
By the late afternoon, there was a steady drip, drip, and most of the crashing avalanches were over. We shoveled the driveway pad. 

Of course it all froze up overnight. We have appointments this afternoon so we'll try to get out of the driveway and up the hills. Gotta' go.