Thursday, November 30, 2023

Santa Claus Is Coming to Town

 Or at least the Santa collection has arrived on the shelves at the Reeder homestead. 

As Tom says, I could just show the same photos I took last year, or the year before that, but that would be cheating. I need to prove that we really did make the effort again this year.

The hand made wooden Santas from a friend are in their same place on the mantle. That friend is gone now, but memories linger. 

I have fun unwrapping and handling each one. There are many memories.

These guys are very special: from Whidbey Island, from upstate New York, from a woodcarver's shop in Rothenburg in  Germany, and the Yule Tomte for my Scandinavian heritage. It looks like the hand carved Santa with toys needs a new bundle of sticks. Maybe nobody has been bad this year?

Collected over many years from many different places.

Today we put up the travel tree. Now there is only the big tree to do. With all of the ornaments we have accumulated, that is a big job. We might have to take some time out to play first. 

Monday, November 27, 2023


 It's beginning to look a little like Christmas.

Tom has been busy outside. Inside I continued to take down and put away. Autumn is all gone. Next up, the Santa collection!

I got some good news today. I got my appointment with my hip doctor moved from three months out, which was set yesterday, to only a couple of weeks away. Yay! I guess the mild explosion of discontent I expressed then had results. 

And my original hearing aid order is back on and I will take delivery in about three weeks. The follow up appointment is also set.

Both of these changes came out of the blue through phone calls from my provider staffs. I feel taken care of. I am happy.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Reporting In

 I last posted on Tuesday and it's late Saturday afternoon already. I guess I've been busy.

There was lot of cooking and prepping on Wednesday. Thanksgiving Day went smoothly. We had time in the morning to sit and be thankful, sort of watch the parade on TV, and send greetings to our siblings far away. Guests arrived on time, with food. The turkey was done on time and smoky good. We had fun conversations around the table, and I took no photos of any of that. 

In the afternoon we had our wreath making workshop. Jan, Jake, and Dan have all taken theirs home.

We had pie and then the guys left, Dan headed for home, and Jake to meet up with his cousin and drive into the dark to get to the family cabin at Rockaway Beach on the Oregon coast. Tom and I put finishing touches on my wreath. 

Jan stayed over and went to Friday breakfast with us. We "elderly" don't like to drive in the dark.

 After breakfast I had an hour long Physical Therapy session, my first in a long time. I was back with Erica, who has worked with me for years. I needed her to see me walk to begin to figure out what changes to make in my exercises to hopefully see some improvements over time. I have my work cut out for me. 

Friday afternoon was grocery shopping, watching college football, and eating leftovers for dinner.

Now Saturday is almost over. I made a wreath for Jill.

We used all natural materials, except the bow, most of which came from our yard. 

We'll take it to her soon, as we are due to pick Jill and Irene up from the airport when they arrive from Colorado and Thanksgiving with the other grandparents. Isaac is staying a day longer. 

Tomorrow I'll take down all the autumn decorations and hang up my wreath.

And then Monday we clean house and get ready to start decorating for Christmas. Tom has the outside lights on the house already. 

We'll pace ourselves. 


Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Happy Thanksgiving

 I'm posting that greeting a bit early, but I have to work everything into my schedule these days.

The table is set. The dishes are old, probably from my grandmother. I got them from my cousin, who got them from her mother. The goblets are from that same aunt. I made the runner a couple of years ago.

The flowers are from the grocery store, with a bit of added greenery from the garden. 

The Thanksgiving cactus are blooming.

Things are getting done along with continued medical appointments. Yesterday I visited two dentist offices, cancelled one appointment to wait for renewed insurance in the new year, and agreed to the procedure, but delayed, to extract a badly broken tooth and have an implant, in the new year. 

Today I was at the medical center to see one of my sports medicine docs and get a hip injection. We are "stabbing" in the dark to try to see what might be the source of my hip problems. This wasn't it and I'm glad the effects are wearing off in a few hours. I almost fell down our stairs when we first got home when my numbed muscle buckled. Good thing I always hold in tight to the rail. 

In happier news, Granddaughter Irene came to visit at lunch time today. She is home from college and she and Jill and Isaac will fly to Colorado tomorrow to be with the other grandparents. I enticed her over with Campbells Chicken Noodle soup and a nice crisp apple. She loves that soup and said the only fruit they are getting in the dining hall is not ripe cantaloupe. She didn't turn down the ice cream Drumstick either. We had a good visit before she went on to check more things off her list. She is very happy at school in Bellingham. 

The turkey is thawing. The ingredients for all the fixings are gathered. Tomorrow we'll bake pies and make cranberry sauce and stuffing and brine the turkey. On Thanksgiving Day we'll host a small group of family to share the cooking and the feasting and the family fun. 

Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful. I am. We have a lovely home, more than a shelter. We have retirement income to keep us fed and clothed and transported and medically cared for. We have loving family near and far, and friends to commune with. And most of all, I have my wonderful life partner, Tom, who puts up with me when I get grouchy and takes care of me when I need it, takes care of the garden I love, and continues to love me after all of these years. 

Happy Thanksgiving, dear friends. May your blessings be bountiful. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

On the Road, and On the Ground

 Tom, my trusty chauffer, companion, and moral supporter and I have been making frequent trips to medical facilities, especially to Capitol Hill in the city.

We decided Sunday morning was the best time to have an appointment - very light traffic! This time it was for a brain MRI. We are still trying to figure out what's going on with me. In this case, do I have Normal Pressure Hydrocephalies or not. The report was inconclusive again, but since they forget to do the deeper scan my doctor wanted, I was called back in Tuesday morning. That was a quickie. I await a follow up appointment with one of my docs to evaluate the findings.

But the trip was lovely on Sunday morning. We have been enjoying the fall colors along the I-5 corridor, each time deeper than the time before until on the last trip the leaves have begun to fall. 

The Mountain was out too. 

On Monday Jake went with us for a day trip to Whidbey Island to do some repair work in the cabin garden. They had to replant some things after work was done on the septic system. The guys are all about using natives and low water plants now to save on maintenance and water usage. 

I took my laptop so I could work on another medical issue. I had just ordered new hearing aids when I got a letter informing me that insurance coverage was going up after the first of the year, which would save me thousands of dollars. I needed advice and then made notification of cancellation of the 2023 order so I could wait for 2024 to reorder. That meant needing a new hearing test and starting all over, but I was able to get that scheduled and the audiology department is hopefully going to help me set of the follow up appointments on a timely manner instead of having to wait months like I did before.

Today our friend Jan got us another free turkey, one for Christmas, since she spends money but doesn't need a turkey.

We worked outside this morning. It was harder for me, but I like being outside and I want to help as much as I can. 

It was nice being at the cabin for a day on Monday. The lagoon was full of ducks and two Great Blue Herons were perched on pilings. 

No more appointments now until Monday, and then Tuesday. We get time off for Thanksgiving. :-)

Saturday, November 11, 2023


 One day this week we planted some daffodil bulbs. Tom did the work. I consulted.

Tom has been outside working most days, cleaning out beds, mowing/mulching the lawn, and putting stuff away.
The raised beds are cleaned out and covered for winter. The bonsai trees are sheltered under the hoop house.
I did some work too. I spent three hours cleaning out this bed on Thursday. I was safe. You can't fall down when you are already on your knees. This is the bed where Tom dumps the lawn mower bags of mulch when he mows. Soon it will have a layer of bright red. 

It was a pleasure to work under and around our trees, 
Tom divided some plants and potted them up for Laurie's plant sale next spring. 
Under control now.

On Thursday we slowed down. We enjoyed breakfast with friends in the morning and then went grocery shopping. I needed to spent $150 at Safeway in order to get a free turkey. I bought most of my Christmas baking supplies. I needn't have worried. With the price of groceries now I could have earned two free turkeys! But...limit one. 

Tom and Jake went to the Sounders match Friday evening. I watched at home. The Sounders won and advanced to the conference semi finals. 

This morning, Saturday, we started slowly. There was more clean up to do after last night's wind and rain so we were then outside again. I raked up tree debris on the driveway and Tom did the picking up. Then I came in but he is still out there. You can see where he has been.

I have a line up of NW college football to watch: Huskies, Cougars, Beavers, and Ducks. I'll have to miss some while I switch to the OL Reign, our women's professional soccer team, playing for the national title. 

I'll watch all those young athletes do their work.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Fall, and Driving Around


I guess that's why they call it Fall. All the lovely leaves will soon be on the ground.
But there is still lots of color around.

We drove down into the valley below us yesterday to shop at Costco and the street and parking lot trees were amazing.

The green belt on the hillside was golden.

Driving down and back up our hill was golden too,
Even looking down our street when I walked out to get the mail was colorful. 

I will miss it when it goes, as fall it must, but I'll enjoy every bit of it while I can.