On the Mend

I am happy to report that I felt much better today after sleeping in this morning. Walter and Jasper went to their yard jobs, and Lina went out driving for Lyft. I realized I didn’t have some beads I wanted for my sewing project, so I combined several errands, taking Lucy to Walmart and a drive-through for lunch, and continuing on to Hobby Lobby to buy my beads.

Shortly after returning home, I left again to attend a book signing, although I already have the book and it has already been signed. I like to support my fellow authors when I can. Plus I had a great cup of tea and some good conversation!

The rest of the day has been divided between sewing on beads and grading papers. I finished the beads (because the deadline is tomorrow) but still have some grading to do. I’m making some good headway though.

A Slow Day

It’s been kind of a rough day, because I’ve been struggling with a very painful sinus infection, but I still had to get stuff done. I went grocery shopping this morning and Jasper went with me because I’m still not allowed to carry heavy bags. I kind of miss the days when he used to go with me every week!

After that I had to take a nap to recover before I went out again. I still needed to go to the bank and the post office and Walmart. Most of the rest of the day I haven’t done anything more strenuous than reading, because moving my head hurts. I haven’t felt well enough to work on my grading, which is what I really need to do. I’m hoping I’ll be able to do it tomorrow.

I did spend time doing a little bit of hand sewing, and will try to finish that tomorrow as well. Looks like the next couple of months are going to be very busy and I need to start making plans to fit everything in.

Small Beginnings

This morning started with another trip to the doctor. I chose this doctor because she is a woman, but didn’t really know anything about her since she is new in town. At first I wasn’t sure that I was going to like her, but I really do. I feel she has made a real effort to keep track of me and make sure I am healing okay. I have had three post-operative check-ups and will have one more. All of these post-op visits are included in her surgery fee.

So anyway, I am doing fine and am healing more or less as expected. Another month and I should be mostly back to normal.

After the doctor, I had to pick up a few groceries before heading home. We were out of both bread and tortillas—a real tragedy.

This afternoon I did some organizing and spent some time mending, which is always so satisfying. I packed up my class supplies from the weekend and made a detailed list of where everything is. Except my slates, which I still haven’t found.

Earlier this month I had a bright idea. I’ve been kind of envious of young homeschool moms who get together for their “moms’ night out” once a month. I do not belong in those gatherings anymore—but I miss the moms I used to hang out with back in the day when my kids were younger. So I messaged a bunch of them and suggested we have a ladies’ night out once a month for those of us who have graduated (or are about to) from homeschooling.

Everyone loved the idea, but the process of coming up with a good day has been a huge challenge. After settling on this Friday, it turned out that no one else could make it and I would have been by myself! So I asked if anyone could make it tonight (Thursday) and my neighbor Sylvia said she could do it. Since we are neighbors, Sylvia picked me up and we drove to the restaurant together. We had an enjoyable dinner. I hope we will have more moms next month. I think once we get into the habit of getting together, people will make it priority. We may have started small, but I think we’ll have a pretty good group together by the end of the summer.

I would appreciate prayers for my health. All day I have been aware that another sinus infection is brewing—not unexpected at this time of year when my allergies are at their worst—but not at all welcome! Pray I will recover quickly as I cannot afford to be sick!

Parting Shot:


Our daffodils have bloomed late this year.

Slower Pace

Finally, a less-crazy day! I had my usual Wednesday tutoring student this morning, but she is a joy to teach and I don’t mind at all. After her lesson I made a quick run to Walmart to get sandpaper so Walter can finish the work on Lucy’s new desk.

I took a much-needed nap this afternoon, worked on some paperwork, made a couple of phone calls, and made waffles for the family’s supper. I still have some catching up to do, but I feel like I might be making headway.

I took Jasper to youth group also. He is very happy to be well enough to socialize again. Now if we can just get him caught up on his schoolwork . . .

Teaching, Painting, Speaking

I am really ready to have a more restful day—but today wasn’t it. I had a student to get ready for this morning, while also preparing to speak to my writers’ group tonight. After my student left I had less than 10 minutes to get my watercolor stuff together and head off to my watercolor group. I painted something that was supposed to look like our state flower—the bluebonnet. They are just now starting to bloom around here.

Then I headed to the grocery store on the way home to pick up a few supplies so I could make brownies to take to the meeting. Shortly after the brownies were done, it was time to leave. I didn’t get so much as a speck of a nap today—and I still kind of need one!

We had our critique group gathering before the meeting as usual. My critique group has been so helpful over the years. At the meeting I shared some of what I learned over the weekend at WORDfest. And I still had to help Jasper with some homework after I returned home. Tomorrow afternoon I should have a bit of a breather.

A Busy Weekend & A Birthday

Didya miss me? I didn’t even take my computer with me this past weekend. I knew I wouldn’t have time to post anything.

I took off on Friday afternoon and drove to the other side of Dallas where my friends Don and Gwen live north of Fort Worth. After a nice visit and a fitful night of sleep, I was up early on Saturday morning to get ready for WORDfest. (I wrote more about it on my writing blog:https://wordpress.com/post/steadfastscribe.wordpress.com/241.) My primary preparation was to make myself a thermos of tea.

The drive to the venue wasn’t too bad first thing on a Saturday morning. The conference was being held at a community college on the north side of Dallas. I arrived a little early by design so I would have time to drink a mug of tea before going in.

Although I have a nice wheeled briefcase, I have begun using a backpack at events like this where I don’t need to lug my computer. (I did, however, need to lug a seat cushion!) Every class I went to was helpful. During the lunch break, I walked back out to the car for another cup of tea. There are some things I just can’t do without.

When the program ended for the day, it was still just midafternoon, so I took off for my favorite Indian grocery store to buy a few goodies that I knew Don and Gwen would appreciate. Then I continued to my favorite samosa place and got some samosas to take them too. It wasn’t “on my way” but I wasn’t in a big hurry so it worked out.

We had a great visit over supper and the treats I had brought were a big hit. It was a good day, but also a long one, so I was very glad to take a shower and go to bed.

Sunday morning I was up early making tea again. Don got up to see me off and carry my suitcase out to the car for me. I am still restricted as to how much weight I can carry. When I arrived at the college, I carried out my plan of stacking my two boxes full of supplies onto a trolley and wheeling it into the building. I don’t think I exceeded my restrictions by doing it that way. Lots of other people were doing the same thing!

Sunday’s event was different from Saturday—it was a “make-up” day for Writers in the Field. Even though I had been able to teach my class last October, they asked me to teach it again this weekend. I never did find my “real” slates. No one minded. I had to use an electric hot plate to heat sand and wax, and I discovered that one little burner can heat up a whole room! The class was a success. I had a dozen very interested students.

After my class ended and I hauled all my stuff back to the car, the rest of the day was sheer enjoyment. I loved every minute of it. My last class was on “fighting dirty” taught by a martial arts master. He taught us how to use whatever’s on hand as a weapon in a life-or-death situation.

I drove home through brilliant sunshine and arrived in time to have a late supper with the family, including Mercy and Daniel.

Today was Daniel’s birthday, but before I could do anything about that, I had a class to teach. We only have three more classes this semester! Where has the time gone?

This afternoon, I went to work on Daniel’s birthday dinner. He had requested beef stew, mashed potatoes, green beans, and biscuits, with carrot cake for dessert. I rarely make stew because it is more effort than I normally go to—but of course for a birthday I am happy to do it. Everything turned out well and Spencer joined us for the celebratory meal. The only part I could eat was the green beans, so I made myself a hamburger patty to have as well.

Mercy and Daniel had to leave shortly after we served the cake, and I was able to send some stew and cake with them. It was good to see them two weeks in a row! But now we have to wait till Easter to see them again.

Parting Shot:


The lady with Victorian clothing was back at Writers in the Field yesterday. This dress from the 1830s fascinated me. It is tiny. I am sure the waist is less than 20 inches. The owner told me that even a size 0 mannikin was too big for this dress! That must have been one very petite lady!

We Rest On Thee

We Rest On Thee

Edith E. Cherry

We rest on Thee, our shield and our defender!
We go not forth alone against the foe;
Strong in Thy strength, safe in Thy keeping tender,
We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go.
Strong in Thy strength, safe in Thy keeping tender,
We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go.

Yes, in Thy name, O Captain of salvation!
In Thy dear name, all other names above;
Jesus our righteousness, our sure foundation,
Our prince of glory and our king of love.
Jesus our righteousness, our sure foundation,
Our prince of glory and our king of love.

We go in faith, our own great weakness feeling,
And needing more each day Thy grace to know:
Yet from our hearts a song of triumph pealing,
We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go.
Yet from our hearts a song of triumph pealing,
We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go.

We rest on Thee, our shield and our defender!
Thine is the battle, Thine shall be the praise;
When passing through the gates of pearly splendor,
Victors, we rest with Thee, through endless days.
When passing through the gates of pearly splendor,
Victors, we rest with Thee, through endless days.

A Trim & a Missing Thing

Today I had my hair trimmed. I have to trim it much more often than I used to because so much of it fell out and the ends are so thin as to be almost nonexistent. Today the stylist cut off two inches and the trimmings would probably have fit into a tablespoon. Pathetic. However, he told me there is lots of new hair growing in (at last!) so over the next year or so maybe I will regain at least some of my hair. Meanwhile, I have to keep trimming it until the “new” hair catches up!

Most of the day has been spent preparing to teach my writing implement class again. I did more research. I made more reed pens. I haven’t lost the knack for it and actually find it quite enjoyable. My new quills arrived and they are nicer than my old ones. I hope I get at least a couple of good pens from them.

Melting sealing wax proved to be a challenge since I won’t be allowed to use candles at the venue where I’ll be teaching. I had a nifty mug warmer that I thought would do the job, but alas it does not get hot enough to melt wax. Which makes me wonder if it could even keep my tea warm enough to suit my preference. . . .

So anyway, I also have an electric stove burner that I need for heating the sand to temper the quills in. That does get hot enough to melt wax, but it’s so much less convenient and elegant than using a candle or even an alcohol burner. It will just have to do.

I thought I had all the materials for this class in one place, but there is one glaring omission and I’ve been going crazy trying to find the missing items—my two old-fashioned writing slates with their slate pencils. I have looked in every likely (and unlikely) place and haven’t found them. Nor have I managed to remember why I would have moved them out of the box where everything else is.

Now here’s the thing. I can teach the class without the slates, because a couple of months ago I was at Aldi and I noticed they had some slate serving trays which had been marked down. I bought a couple to have as “backup” slates because they were so cheap and they even came with slate pencils. But of course they are not as smooth as the ones designed for writing on and they are, you know, trays. But they are real slate and if that’s all I’ve got by the time I leave tomorrow, I’ll just have to go with it.


On the Mend

Thank goodness Jasper was feeling noticeably better today. He ate food! He even cut up a bunch of bamboo for me—because yes, I am back in the reed pen making business. This weekend I will be teaching my historical writing implements class again, and I hope to have enough reed pens to pass out to the attendees. I’m trying not to panic over the fact that I only have two days to get everything ready—and this time I’m not allowed to use candles, which will greatly complicate everything.

I had my regular tutoring student this morning, and then zoomed up to buy the bamboo and also some more paint for my box and tray project. I worked on painting some this afternoon and evening. My painting still always looks like it was done by a deranged five-year-old, but I don’t even care. I enjoy it, and I like the results, so people can laugh behind my back all they want. This is one area of my life where I am not a slave to perfectionism.

I also did some laundry today and heated up a bunch of stuff from the freezer for supper. I am trying to clear out our freezers at least a little. We have two fridge-top freezers and one upright freezer. One of the little ones is dying so it needs to be completely emptied. And the big one is in dire need of defrosting. So we’re going to have some weird meals as I try to use stuff up.

Books & Art

This morning I did battle with my printer as I tried to prepare for my tutoring student. My printer isn’t really that old, but it’s become quite crochety. I have to turn it off and on quite often, and now it outright refuses to print on cardstock. *sigh*

So anyway, I barely managed to get ready for my student in time, but I did manage it. After he left, I had time for a quick rest before heading out to my book club meeting. Once again, I had to “cram” to finish the book over the weekend, but I’m glad I did. We had another great discussion. This club is so good for me. It’s got me reading books that I’d never choose on my own, and then discussing them with a varied group of people that I’d never otherwise meet.

Today after the book club, I stayed for the art group. This is a different group than the watercolor group I also attend. This one is wide open—you can work on whatever art project you like. So, since I had a box and a tray I wanted to paint, I took them and at least got a little start on them. Our hostess was held up in another town and never made it, so I was sorry to miss her.

Lucy’s bookcase arrived today (another part of her birthday gift) and she assembled it herself. Her room is overflowing with books!

When I came home from the art group, I had more pressurized reading to do to get ready for tomorrow’s tutoring student. Good thing I’m a fast reader!

And Jasper is still sick. Very sick, actually. A visit to the doctor may be in his future if he doesn’t start feeling a lot better soon.