Thursday, April 30, 2020

December 2019 Randoms

Sam's bed is so cozy-looking after the sheets and blankets are washed and it's freshly made.

I'm not a big Joel Osteen fan but I like this.

Sam with his huge pencil from Plimoth Plantation. Looks like we're gonna need a bigger pencil sharpener. 😄

We we were doing so well with all of this just a few short months ago. It makes me sad and angry that it's all been undone now. 😢 

President Nelson called it back in 2018!

This is true, and I believe that someday everyone will know it and understand it.
I'm fed up with the LGBTQ+abcdefg lobby ruining so many shows and movies (not to mention the effect it has on our culture and society). (See this blog post of mine, #6, for why I feel this way and why it doesn't make me homophobic.)

Case in point: we saw the new Star Wars movie, and I was very disappointed by the unnecessary lesbian kiss at the end. I wanted to shield the boys' eyes from it and I wish we hadn't gone to see it. Plus Kylo Ren died. And the storyline with the resurrected Palpatine (or was it his clone?) didn't make a lot of sense because it wasn't explained well. The movie was a let-down in many ways and fell far short of my expectations. Very disappointing, especially because it had started out so well with The Force Awakens, which I loved.

This was outrageous and unmerited. Simply put, what Trump did didn't warrant impeachment. It's going to come back to bite the Democrats in the future. 

Alan Dershowitz is a Democrat, BTW...

Sam playing around at John's ninja competition.

I love cardinals and it makes me happy whenever I see one in the yard.

I went to a fun parent-kid activity at Sam's school. We made a snowflake together. 

I went to what turned out to be a solitary lunch at The Wayside Inn. It was supposed to be with Meredith and Sharalyn, but Sharalyn had to help her parents (her mom ended up passing away a few days later) and Meredith got a flat tire on the way there. I was almost there when I found out about that, so I went on my own since Meredith didn't need my help. It was nice to be at the Inn, which is one of my favorite places, but it was more depressing than I thought it would be to dine there alone.

I think in the future that people are going to realize that marijuana is way more dangerous and detrimental than they presently realize.

"The same political culture that is in a fury over legal opioids, and is trying to bankrupt drug companies as compensation, seems to have no problem celebrating a drug that may be damaging young brains for a lifetime." H-Y-P-O-C-R-I-S-Y.

"Older generations don't realize that the pot grown and sold today is on average four to five times more potent than what they smoked in college. There's also a misconception that pot is no more addictive than alcohol..."

"...Pot is more dangerous than people realize, and Americans should pause on the rush to legalize until we understand how much medical and social harm it is doing." 👍👍👍

Home sweet home, nice and bright and warm and cozy. This was on Christmas night.

This hot fudge sundae at The Cheesecake Factory was SO GOOD! I really miss eating out.

I was excited about Masterpiece's new show Sanditon that was going to be airing on PBS in January. It ended up being just okay for me; it had promise but it was kind of a let-down (except for one (and only one) charming storyline with a happy ending that I loved).   

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

John's December Adventures

John's December adventures started out rather quietly...

And then things got a little more exciting with his winter band concert (which turned out to be the  one and only concert of the school year, thanks to the Chinese Communist Party the coronavirus).

Do you see him? He's on the left in front of the guy with red hair.

And then the adventures really ramped up with some good ninja competitions that he did well in.
Here he is getting ready to take his turn on the course. I don't have pictures of him actually doing the course because I took a video from this point on. This was at the gym of one of the stars of NBC's American Ninja Warrior, Dave Cavanaugh. You can see him in this picture--he's the guy in the blue t-shirt standing at the other end of the rings from John. 

Waiting for his turn to go at another gym's ninja competition a week later.

And then things got downright thrilling (and chilling!) when a few days after Christmas John went on a two-day adventure to the White Mountains of New Hampshire and did a hard-core trek to the top of a mountain, carrying all of his gear on his back and staying in an unheated cabin halfway up the mountain overnight. It was with some of his Young Men's group from church and it was a replacement for last summer's Scout camp, which was sadly and suddenly cancelled due to the threat of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in the area (and, it turns out, a harbinger of things to come!).

This wasn't an easy adventure at all and John was the youngest one who went but his leaders said he did awesome. His physical fitness and strength really helped him. It's challenging enough to hike up a mountain in good weather, but imagine doing it in the cold, icy winter with all of your gear strapped to your back!

With Christmas and school break added in, it really was a fun month for John.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

December Roses

A month in my life wouldn't be complete without roses. These were December's beautiful bunch.
They bloomed very nicely!

In a different light. Or exposure. Or both. 🤷

Monday, April 27, 2020

Winter Weather

Pretty much all of the snowstorms of this past winter in suburban Boston happened in the first half of December. Winter was off to an exciting and promising start! But unfortunately for us snow-lovers, it was all downhill after that. (And I don't mean downhill skiing either!)

🎜 Cue the music! "Walkin' in a Winter Wonderland" 🎝

I love this view from the side dining room window when it's snowy out.

It morphed into a mushroom-shaped table

By the time it was closer to Christmas, much of the snow had melted, but there was still a thin layer on the ground and rooftops.

The ice was sparkling brilliantly on this tree one day, which was a harbinger of things to come as far as the rest of the winter weather forecast was concerned. After the December snowstorms it was mainly sleet and ice for the rest of the winter. I'll take the snow instead, thanks! Although the ice is pretty when it sparkles in the sun.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Five Things for Friday

1. It snowed last Saturday. We got about four inches of fluffy white snow. It all melted by the next day, but still, the pool is scheduled to be opened in two weeks! 😮

This was the view that greeted me when I came down on Saturday morning:

I'd been hoping for a warmer than usual April because of a long-term weather forecast I'd read back in March, a forecast that has turned out to be totally wrong! There was a windchill of about 18 degrees on Wednesday morning! I do not enjoy cold springs! Hopefully May will help make up for it.

2. I made bread from my sourdough starter for the first time, and I'm happy to report that it turned out really well! We all liked it and John said that it tasted like "restaurant bread." It didn't have a strong sourdough taste at all, so even Sam liked it. 

I'm glad to have a source of food that we can keep going like our pioneer ancestors did. Bread starters are the coolest (it only took a pandemic for me to find that out! 😆). 

I also made zucchini and tomato flatbreads for dinner one night (thank you HelloFresh!) and they were delicious! And nutritious! They had garlic and basil and lemon in them too, which are all so healthy and yummy. 😋

3. Continuing with the homemaking successes this week, I started indoor grow kits for basil, mint, and strawberries. I need to get started ASAP on vegetable planting. I wasn't planning on doing a garden until next spring so that this spring and summer I could observe where in the yard gets the best light once the leaves on the trees come back and then research and plan (not plant) accordingly, but I'm just going to go for it and do the best I can with my limited gardening experience and instincts (along with a really helpful book I got). It might turn out to be a flop this year, but hopefully something edible will come out of it. I'm going to try to do about half of the veggies and herbs right on our back deck with containers. We'll see what pops up (hopefully!). In the meantime, I need to go to Lowe's to pick up some much needed supplies so that I can get started with the planting, but I'm not very motivated because shopping has become a hazardous pain in the neck!

4. This week the governor announced that school is cancelled for the rest of the school year in Massachusetts. I wasn't surprised, but I was bummed, even though I think it was probably the right choice at this point. The boys seem to be totally fine with it (imagine that!). I feel so bad for this year's high-school seniors. What a sad way to end their high-school years. In the meantime, we continue on with "internet school" and remote learning, which the boys seem to be doing pretty well with. 🤞

(P.S. Isn't my screen saver pretty!? Well, except for the lady and gentleman being beheaded by the text message. 😂)

5. We were supposed to be in Williamsburg, Virginia this week for April vacation, along with my mom. It would have been so fun. This is a beautiful time of year in Virginia when it's not too hot and not too cold, our timeshare resort there is really nice, and we were going to go to some of my favorite historic places--Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown, and Yorktown, and two different amusement parks for the boys. It would have been a great week, but of course we had to cancel it, and everything is shut down down there anyway. To help lessen the sting, the book I'm reading this week is Monticello by Sally Cabot Gunning (she's a historical fiction novelist I like who lives on the Cape). It's about Thomas Jefferson's daughter Martha and it's set in Virginia. It's not nearly the same as actually being in Virginia, but at least I'm there when I read. That's one of the things I love about books and reading. 📚

Well, I wrote this whole post and didn't mention China once until now! There were times when I easily could have inserted something snide, sarcastic, or angry, but I didn't. I'm doing better this week! 🙌