A View From the Field








May 2015

May 31

I made it into bed by 10:30 last night, but it didn't seem like I slept very deeply. I don't know why. I had set the alarm for 6:30, and I got up then, although I sure didn't want to. I was early all morning, so I guess I don't have to get up until 7:00 during the summer. That will be nice. 


Church was nice. There was communion with the old service - although Pastor sort of mixed it up - and we had one young man confirmed. It was a long service, but I don't think anybody minded too much. We sang two songs, and we didn't do too badly on either of them. 


I think I got home around 1:00, and I read my newspapers before I had something to eat. I very rarely eat lunch, and I haven't solved the problem of what to eat. I was so tired that I didn't do anything for the rest of the afternoon, even make my pork chops. In the middle of the afternoon, I got so sleepy I almost went to sleep in my chair, but not quite. I'm not quite there yet.


The weather was pretty but cold. The high temperature was only 44 and that was at 4:00, briefly. It was closer to 40 for the rest of the day. The official low was only 39, but there was frost on the garage roof and Mary Ann said there was frost around her house in Copper Harbor proper, too. Sometimes I wonder if they chose the right place to put that weather station. The wind was under 10 mph all day, mostly from the east. It started out clear this morning, but it clouded up more as the day went on. Now it's more cloudy than not, although the sun is shining a bit over in the northwest.


The guys were mostly sleepy. They both got a lot of lap time this afternoon. When I went toward the studio with my lunch, they were both in the navy blue chair, and Louie was half vertical, with one foot hooked in the top of the back. He was apparently a lot more comfortable than he looked, because as I went by, he barely opened his eyes to look at me. 


Bettyann said today that she has the third week of June off, and she would like to come and help me out. I sure would like to have her, but it will mean I have a whole lot of stuff to do before then. I know it sounds funny, but I want to do what I can so that when she comes, she can do what I can't, like the floors and the powder room and maybe the kitchen. We'll see. Today I was very achy again, probably because the temperature was low and the humidity was high. It wasn't the barometer, which was quite high until this afternoon.


So that was a nice Sunday, and the plan is to go to bed soon. It's a partly cloudy, cold evening in the field. And May is over. Wow.


May 30

This is really early tonight, but I'm going to try hard to get to bed at a reasonable hour. It wasn't completely reasonable last night, but it was better than the night before. I got up around 10:30, I think, and I knitted. I finished the fourth repeat, and it's coming along fine. It's so nice to work with that yarn. It's alpaca and silk and it's so soft!


Other than that, I didn't do anything. I had thoughts, but they never happened. In fact, I was going to have a nice dinner tonight, but I was too late to start it, so it will have to be tomorrow, and I had pizza. Not bad, but not pork chops with Spanish rice, either.


The weather was cold. It started out cloudy and dull, but around 10:30 it began to clear up, and the afternoon was - and is - completely clear and blue. So pretty! It's cold, though, and there are frost warnings for the interior for tonight and tomorrow night. Between 10:00 and 3:00 today, it was 40 with a bit of wind, up to 15 mph from the north. It's warmed up a little now, to 44, and the wind has abated to under 10 mph, but it's cold out there. That's all right; I put on a jacket and I love to see the blue, blue skies and the blue, blue water.


The guys were sleepy, of course. They both got some lap time. Grayson wanted to sit on me right after breakfast, but I didn't want another accident, so I got up and went away. He came back later. Then Louie came and went to sleep on  my lap, purring all the time.


When I looked out the windows this afternoon, I realized that my chokecherry bushes - the ones that are right down at the lake - are now in bloom, and they are so pretty against the blue of the water. You can see one of them in the camera, so look at them tomorrow morning when the sun is behind the house. The other bush is something else - possibly a pin cherry - and it isn't out yet. It will come. The serviceberries are all in bloom now, so there are white flowers all over the place. The maple flowers are going and being replaced by red leaves just coming out. Even the oaks are beginning to get their leaves. This is such a pretty time of year. When I wish it was a little warmer, I remember that the cold weather settles the bugs. I guess I can stand that. I have to keep reminding myself that this isn't paradise, and the bugs serve to remind me. 


I must say that the slightly warmer weather, along with the lower humidity we have this afternoon, and the high barometer are all working together to make my poor old bod feel a lot better. I am actually walking around fairly well right now. My back was bad this morning, but it was more humid then. I am a walking weather forecast... I was cold, so I finally gave in and put on a fleece jacket, and that, plus some dinner, has warmed me up.


I began thinking about the charts I made for the edgings on the Trellis Wrap, so I reworked them this afternoon. The side edgings used double yarn-overs, and on size 6 needles, that was going to make much bigger holes than the picture shows - much too big, in my opinion. Actually, I believe that the picture shows an edging that is what I finally charted, not what the pattern shows. I hate it when people do that. I had also messed up the top and bottom edgings a bit, so I fixed that. Oh, and I am not getting any blue ink at all out of the printer, so I really need to order some new cartridges. They are so expensive that I've been postponing it, but I can't do that anymore. I don't know about that printer. I may have to fiddle with it some more. Fiddle, fiddle. That seems to be mostly what I do these days.


So that was a quiet day, and I am hoping to do what I have to do now and get to bed at a reasonable hour tonight.


Now it's a clear, cold evening in the field and we should see stars, as well as frost, overnight, although the moon is almost full, so it will be bright.


May 29

Last night was almost a repeat of the night before, except that I got up around noon. I'm doing this a little earlier than usual, because I hope to get to bed a little earlier tonight. I knitted, with a little difficulty. Evidently my mind wasn't altogether. I also made another change to the chart. This is going to be a pretty thing, much prettier than the original, because all the decreases (well, except for a few in the first repeats) will be going in the right direction to properly define the patterns. It's very disheartening to me to see how casual people are about things like that.


Anyway, I put myself on a schedule. I got up at noon, knitted until 1:00, ate, went right to the bathroom, packaged up the yarn that needed to be returned, and left the house at shortly after 2:30. It would have been earlier, except that it was raining and I needed a jacket. 


I went to the post office and the store, where I got a green pepper for pork chops with Spanish rice, which I will have tomorrow. After I got home, I could relax a bit, and I did, while I finished my email and my surfing. But I did find that when I have to, I can take myself in hand and do what needs doing. Now if I could only keep doing that...


The weather was rather unpleasant. The high temperature was 66, for a couple of hours around noon, and then it began to go down. Now it's 50. By 4:00 the wind had shifted from the southwest to the north and it was a bit stronger than it was earlier. And around noon, it started raining. I think it has dripped ever since, although after about 4:00 it didn't register on the rain gauge. For a while it was very foggy, although that has gone away pretty much. It was humid all day, and now the humidity is 93%. Not very nice.


The guys just slept. Grayson was very disappointed not to get to sit on me right after breakfast, so he did so a couple of times later. Louie was around when I got up, but I haven't seen much of him since. This is not good weather for man nor beast.


When I looked at the mail, there was a strange envelope that said "payment included" and a check (or what looks like a check) for $20. I have no clue what that was about, and I am suspicious about strange checks coming in with no explanations, but it looks like a legitimate check, so all I can do is try to cash it and hope it's legit. People (or organizations) who send out checks should at least include a stub or a letter with some explanation. The name is an individual, and while the address looks like an organization, there is no indication of what it is. I am at a loss to explain it, but it's money, and I'll take it, if the check will clear. Weird.


So that was another quiet day, and now it's a cool, damp, yucky night in the field.


May 28

Well, that was interesting. I was reading (Special Forces) and the music was nice (including Beethoven's Fifth) and time just passed, and then I had to wash my hair. When I finally did get to bed, lying down gave me a coughing fit, so it was 5:00 AM before I finally got to sleep. I was up a couple of times, but it was 3:30 (!!!) before I finally rolled out of bed. Talk about cycling around! I was so late that I didn't knit, and I didn't do much except read my email before I set off for church.


Driving down US-41 is a pleasure these days, with the pale green trees and all the white bushes and trees. The serviceberries are mostly out now, and the early cherries and some other early fruit trees are coming out. To make it even nicer, Cliff Drive is finally open! Not only is that a nice drive, it makes the trip much shorter, even though I got behind a guy who was only going about 35 mph (the tourists are here...). The road is completely torn up where they were working last fall on some remediation of Central Creek. I don't know what they were doing, but they made a complete mess. Now there are fences along the road, inside of which is bare soil, and the road might as well be gravel right there. They tore out all the trees and everything else that was there. I hope something eventually grows back, but right now it looks terrible. However, after you get beyond that, the road is actually quite good for a change.


Choir was nice. Barbara and Ted have one of their daughters visiting them, and she came and sang with us, along with her two daughters. That was nice, as Frances has a very nice voice. So we will sound pretty good on Sunday, even though one thing we're singing is brand new and we couldn't keep the music. Well, we cope.


There was a short shower while I was driving on Cliff Drive, and evidently we had a thunderstorm while we were singing. Otherwise, it was a mostly cloudy, not very warm day, except right at the end. The temperature here peaked at 9:00 at 62. When I left church, the thermometer in the car said 65, and the humidity must have been 100%, because I ran into some patches of light fog on my way home. There wasn't much wind, except in the rain. We had 0.09", which is pretty good for an hour. It's still very humid.


Oh yes, and the bugs are out in force. I let at least four mosquitoes into my car when I got in at church, and I only killed three of them. 


When I got home, the door from the house to the breezeway had blown open and you-know-who was in the breezeway. Evidently he had been there for some time and checked everything out, because he didn't try to get into the garage (of course, I was closing the garage door, and that would spook him) and I was able to herd him into the house. Now he knows it's not cold out there anymore, but he also knows there isn't anything very interesting out there, too. Oh, Grayson! What a guy you are! Louie didn't even try to go out, which interests me, but he is much more timid than Grayson is. Anyway, Grayson did learn that if he tries to stay out when I go in, he's likely to get shut out there, and he doesn't like that, even when it isn't cold. He came and asked for a piece of my steak, which I gave him, and now he's gone away.


I wasn't sure what to have for dinner, because I didn't get home until 9:30, but I figure that's about when I've been eating anyway, so I had a piece of my nice flat iron steak, which was very good. The other half is in the freezer. I was doubtful because my right toe knuckle hurts, and that used to be a sign of gout, but oh, well. If I'm careful for the next few days, it should be all right. And that steak tasted so good.


So now it's a dark, cloudy but fairly warm night in the field, and I think I will go back to bed, although that story calls...


May 27

I was a little late last night, too, and I don't quite remember why, except that I probably spent some time staring at the floor. I got up around 11:30, which felt about right, although I'm tired again now. I knitted about 24 rows, and that felt right, too. A whole repeat (32 rows) is a little more than I can usually do.


I had a nasty accident, which led me to wash the load of clothes that had been building up in the laundry. It's in the dryer now. And while my dinner was cooking, I got the dishwasher loaded except for my dinner dishes. I would like to have had pork or steak for dinner, but by the time I finally went to make dinner, I just had something easy. At least I will have clean dishes tomorrow.


The weather was so-so. It rained all night, 0.37", but it was clearing by the time I got up, and there was actually a little sunshine around the middle of the afternoon. The high temperature was 65, briefly, and the temperature sort of yo-yoed all afternoon, for reasons I don't know. There wasn't a lot of wind, again. The barometer is rising, which is a good thing, although it's still humid. It was at least partly cloudy all day, and it was clearing when it got dark. Sort of blah.


The guys were themselves. Grayson slept on me long enough that I had an accident, and I just had to shoo Louie off my lap so I could type. 


So nothing much happened, and I'll be off to the north end soon. I had to rechart the edgings for the stole, and I did that, I think right, although I won't know until I try them, and that won't be for a while. Now it's apparently a clearing, coolish night in the field, and there might be a star or two tonight.


May 26

I was a little later than I wanted to be last night, but I washed my hair, and at the speed I move these days, that took time. When I took my bedtime pills I discovered one reason I was so sore Sunday night: I was apparently so tired and anxious to get to bed that I forgot to take the pills. Oh. I'd been wondering if I really needed that Tylenol at bedtime, and now I know: yes, I do.


I got up around 10:30, I think, and I knitted for quite a while - longer than I intended there, too. Time passes and I just ignore it these days. My left shoulder and right knee were still sore - in fact, my right knee almost went out from under me - so I took some more Tylenol, and that helped. However, I was so late getting to the studio that I didn't do anything much. I almost got the dishwasher unloaded. I need to wash dishes, but I think I will wait until tomorrow. I'm running out of cereal bowls again. 


I had my nice fish for dinner tonight. I was going to eat the whole thing, but when I looked at it, I realized that no way could I eat a pound of fish, so I froze one fillet for later. Yum. It is so good! I have some more freezing to do, but that's for another day, when I decide what to eat tomorrow. Beef or pork? Decisions...decisions...


The weather was almost as bad as yesterday, except that it didn't rain, or at least it didn't start raining until 9:00 tonight. The high temperature was 56, at 5:00, and by 7:00 it was 46. It was moist and foggy for most of the day. There wasn't much wind. I remember one June not so long ago when the whole month was like this. I hope it gets it out of its system soon. The only good I can see is that it lays the bugs pretty well, and they only live so long. Also, my radio seems to be working right again. The bugs are important, so in a way, I hope it stays cool and damp for at least the next couple of weeks, my joints notwithstanding.


The guys did what cats do in weather like this. I agree with them.


So it was another quiet day. Now it's a dark, dank, foggy night in the field.


May 25 - Memorial Day

I guess Memorial Day hasn't ever meant much to me except the beginning of summer. I suppose I should pay more attention to it, since my father was in WWII. Anyway, it was a very un-summer-like day in Copper Harbor, so I ignored it. There were a couple of things I wanted to do that I couldn't because everything is closed.


I was so tired that I was in bed by 11:30, and I was more tired than I sometimes am when I don't go to bed until 4:00 or 5:00 in the morning. I was sore all over. I was up several times, and I had a terrible time walking to the bathroom, because I was so sore. I was up around 8:30 or 9:00, but I was still tired, so I went back to bed and it was 12:30 before I got up. I probably got 9 or 9 hours' sleep out of it. 


I knitted for an hour. I am enjoying the alpaca and silk yarn a whole lot. I don't have the pattern completely in my fingers yet - it's a 32 row pattern and I've only done one and a half repeats - but it is going to be nice. I really think it would work better on a smaller needle, but it will be very lacy. Today my worst problem was counting on the return rows. My pattern rows were fine, but I had problems counting to 39.


I was so sore and creaky that I broke down and took some Tylenol. I try to avoid taking more of that than the two I take when I go to bed, but I just couldn't contemplate another day of being so sore. I wanted to see if the Tylenol would work, and I'm happy to report that it did. I was much more pain-free than I had hoped, and I was moving quite freely. Good thing, because I had an accident after breakfast. Grayson was sleeping in my lap and I didn't really want to move...sigh. Anyway, I guess I will have to hope that I can keep my use down to an amount that won't do my liver any damage. Tylenol has possible liver damage and the NSAIDS are hard on the kidneys. So are most of the meds I have to take, so I have to avoid anything else. If it's not one damn thing, it's another. Anyway, my shoulders are beginning to get sore again, so I guess it's time to consider  taking my nighttime pills and going to bed.


The reason I was so sore and creaky (besides my exertions of yesterday) is that it started to rain around 4:00 AM and it has been raining ever since. We've had 1.04" of rain, which is considerable. We needed it, but I was sorry to see it today, because they have a program at the fort, and I'm not sure where they would hold it when it rains. Of course, the humidity was over 90%. The temperature plummeted after midnight, and while it got to 58 around 11:00, it went down after that, and it's now 44. There was almost no wind. It was also very foggy, and we had a while when there was a thin cloud over the harbor and above it you could see the mountain. Cold, rain and fog - yuck! No wonder I hurt!


The guys slept, mostly. Louie wanted to sit on me so bad that at one point I booted him off my lap and he grabbed my pants and my leg, and I'm sure I have scratches on my thigh. He did get some lap time, and so did Grayson. We don't like this weather very much.


After I cleaned up from my accident, the talking had started, so I didn't have time to do much besides my surfing. That's the only problem with my strange hours, but I really needed that sleep last night.


Now it's a cold (for May), rainy, foggy night in the field. Yuck.


May 24

I was all set to go up to the north end last night when I decided to see if I could get a larger copy of the hymn the choir sang this morning. So I scanned it, and then I had the usual problems finding what I'd scanned and figuring out how to print it. Since there are no manuals for anything anymore, I wonder how anybody without a computer background and a lot of imagination manages to do anything at all. Maybe they don't. I finally found my scans and figured out how to print one. It wasn't exactly what I'd planned - it came out landscape - but it was large enough that I could easily have read it without my glasses while holding at waist level. So I guess that worked, but it made me later than I'd planned.


I got to bed around 10:30, and it felt like I had a hard time sleeping, except that time kept passing too fast for me to have been as wakeful as it felt like. I was up several times, of course, and perhaps part of my problem was that I had some gas (or something) I couldn't get rid of. Anyway, of course I was up around 6:00, but I went back to bed and I dozed until 6:30, and then I didn't want to get up. I was still a little later than I intended to be, but since it turned out that so were the rest of the choir people, it worked out. 


I am here to tell you that the tourists are back. As well as the locals taking a nice, leisurely Sunday drive. Ugh! Gak! Well, at least if they're all coming to Copper Harbor, it will be a good thing.


Church was good, with communion, and Pastor's sermon was good, even though he admitted he was rather wiped out.


After church, I had to shop and get gas, and I met at least eight or nine people from church in Pat's. I got what I needed, and nothing that I didn't, but it was still expensive. I will eat well for the next few days and maybe longer than that - lamb, fish, and a flat-iron steak. Yum. I had one of the pieces of lamb tonight, and while it was tough, it was tasty. Yum.


Even though I had put on my Crocs before I went shopping, my feet were killing me before I got done. I think it's because both my regular shoes and the Crocs had pulled my socks back over my toes, and I can't stand anything on my toes. I was really tired, but I had to get gas. The price is up to $2.759 in my neck of the woods, although I expect it's cheaper in Hancock and at Walmart. I'm not sure why that is; the price of crude hasn't gone up lately. More gouging by the oil companies, I suspect.


Eventually I started home, only to get behind a guys who refused to go faster than the speed limit and three other guys. I managed to pass the slow guy, then there were several others on my way north, until I finally got behind someone who was going at a reasonable rate and I followed him all the way to Copper Harbor. Arrgghh! Tourist season!


I finally got home around 2:30 and then I sat in the powder room and read most of my newspapers, so it was late when I unloaded the car and even later when I got everything packed away. The fridge is bulging, but I now have lots of good things to eat again. I have enough fish and steak for two meals each, and another meal of lamb before I have to resort to the freezer again. Of course, I will freeze the fish and probably the steak for use later. I think I can sneak that in around all the rice and breakfast food. And I will have nice, fresh lettuce for quite a while. Yum.


The weather was warmish, depending upon where you were. It was only 64 when I left here this morning, but it was at least 10 warmer in Laurium. It was 76 when I left Calumet, and it went up a degree or two on my way north, but when I got to Copper Harbor, it was 64 in town and 60 when I turned down Woodland Drive. It had gotten up to 67 at 6:00 before it dropped back, and once the wind dropped to nothing, it went back up to 66 for a bit. The wind was calm all afternoon. Unfortunately, the humidity is going up and the barometer is going down and there is a humungous band of rain to our south that is moving ever so slowly in our direction. It's going to rain tomorrow, and it may rain Tuesday. My joints have been telling me that all day. At least I had a couple of good days to show me how nice it can be.


The guys were mostly sleepy, although they were both around when I was unloading the car and bringing the stuff in. Grayson got some lap time, but I had to fiddle around to get my backup disk in the reader and that annoyed him enough that he left. Louie wanted to sit on me, too, but he jumped up from the floor rather carelessly and gouged me with his claws, so I heaved him off. He will have to learn to either be more careful when he jumps up or to come up from around the sewing machine and down onto my lap from the desk.


So that was my quiet day, and I'm tired. It's not all that early, though, because I didn't eat until after 9:00, for various reasons. Now it's a cloudy, calm relatively warm night in the field and the rain is coming.


May 23

So last night, it was only around 1:30 when I got to bed. The low humidity and high barometer left me feeling good enough that I didn't dread getting up. However, I tried to make up for my sleep deprivation, and it was 11:00 before I got up today. I was up around 8:30, and I just didn't feel good enough to stay up. Then I knitted, 24 rows, so I was late anyway. 


In fact, I was so late that I had to rush to get to the post office, but I made it, and it was good, because all my end-of-month and beginning-of-month bills were there. There was also an anonymous contribution to the camera fund - thank you, whoever you are! I haven't said anything much about helping with the camera (which includes the Internet connection, of course) but that doesn't mean I don't need it anymore. If I were to win the lottery, one of my dreams is to pay you all back. 


There was also a magazine that has a cross stitch project in it that I think I will just have to do. We'll see about that. It's black silk on 40-count linen (over 2, so it's only 20 stitches per inch), but it's absolutely fascinating.


I was going to stop at the store on my way home, because I need JD, but there were so many cars around that I passed. Ah, this is Memorial Day weekend. Living in my little bubble, I keep forgetting that. There were a whole lot of bicyclists in town, for what I do not know. The latest advertising committee doesn't seem to be publicizing events like some of the older ones did. I missed the birding week completely. So now we are officially in Tourist Season, which means, among other things, don't go to the post office on Saturday, and expect to have a hard time parking at the store. Also, stay home on weekends, except to go to church.


Oh, yes, and I regret to report that the black flies were out last weekend. Ron was part of a charity walk from here to Eagle Harbor (22 miles!!!!) and he got chewed alive. That means, don't go out if you don't have to, and wear bug repellent if you do. That got me thinking; the past two or three springs (I use that word advisedly) were so late and so cold that we didn't have to worry too much about bugs. This spring has been as near to normal as we've had in several years, and that means bugs - tons and tons of bugs, starting now and going through Fourth of July at the earliest. Later on, it will be mostly mosquitoes, and they are mostly a problem in the woods or early in the morning and late in the evening. That's all right. Our seasons have been so weird for the past several years that it is a pleasure to contemplate that we might be having a normal year for a change. In spite of the bugs. Maybe I'll be able to open up the house this summer?


Speaking of that, it was hot today. The official high temperature was 79 - yup, that's almost 80. My thermometer only recorded about 68. so  I was skeptical until I drove to the post office. Then I was sure of it, and on the way back, with the windows wide open (not a good idea with the black flies out, actually) when I turned down Woodland Road and the temperature dropped precipitously, I believed it. The wind was out of the northwest, with gusts into the low 20s mph, and it was hot by the holding ponds and in town. That doesn't seem to be a record, by the way, but it was close. It was clear, but there were a lot of aerosols up in the atmosphere that left the sky very pale blue. The humidity is low, which is helping my poor old bod a whole lot. Not that I am without pain, but I'm moving a whole lot more freely and there is a lot less pain. I guess I will have one more day of that, and then it's going to rain. I will be interested to see what happens when it gets humid and it's warmer. I haven't nailed down yet what combination of weather causes me the most problems.


Not that I'm unhappy about the rain, by the way. When I looked at yesterday's MODIS imagery, in the first picture, there was clearly a forest fire due south of Keweenaw Bay, probably around US-141. In the second picture it had increased and there was a long trail of smoke to the southeast, showing what direction the wind was from. And there was another one, over south of the Apostle Islands, which I couldn't tell whether it was in Michigan or Wisconsin. I think they were both gone today, but there were some clouds and it was hard to tell. In my most pessimistic moments, I think about what would happen if there were a fire in the Norland...


The guys mostly slept. Louie tried to get me up around 9:30 or 10:00 this morning, but I wasn't having any, so he went to sleep in the bathroom. He just tried to get on my lap, but I can't do that when I'm typing, so he went away. Grayson got some lap time earlier. One of these days, I'm going to have to bite the bullet and go down into the basement.


So that was another quiet and truncated day, and I have to get up to the north end and get ready for tomorrow. I have to leave early; we are meeting the organist (Jan is away) at 10:00 to practice our songs and I want to be there - I need to be there. One is a hymn and the other is one we've sung before, but still, we haven't practiced for three weeks. So I need to get to bed, because I will be setting the alarm for 6:30. And after church, I have to shop for food. There are a few things I'm running out of - JD and lettuce being the most important. I kind of hope to get another one of those yummy flat-iron steaks and some other things that I need fresh.


Now it's a relatively clear, warm night in the field, although rather suddenly, the wind has dropped to nothing. Ah, summer!


May 22

I was marginally earlier to bed this morning, mostly because I was too tired to get up and go. Around 11:00, Louie started telling me I had been in bed for too long, so I got up. Then he went to sleep - all he wanted to know was that eventually I would fill his dish - in the bathroom, where Grayson was already zonked out.


Well, that turned out to take longer than I thought. I cast on a new stole - this one is called "Trellis" and it has three or four different lace patterns, one in the center, one (or is it two?) on either end, and one on the sides. The center ought to go relatively fast, because it is only 39 stitches wide, but it took me a long time and some ripping this morning. I guess it was mostly because I made a few changes to the pattern, and at least one of them I had to see how it would work out before I could change it, then I had to change a couple of rows, and in the course of doing that, I got an extra stitch. Now I think that's taken care of and I can zip ahead. Well - not zip, because almost every other stitch is a knit-two-together (or three) or knit-through-the back-loop, so it's slow going. It will get easier as I go ahead. I also spent considerable time trying to figure out how to make it longer, and in the course of doing that, I discovered that in no way can I get the arithmetic in the pattern to come out right, so I guess I will have to press on and hope it doesn't look too bad in the end. The yarn is scrumptious. This is some of the good (read: expensive) stuff, alpaca and silk and hand-painted. It's yummy. 


I was so long at that that I didn't get to go to the post office. The UPS guy came with a package I wasn't expecting - Amazon was early this month - and then the Schwan's guy came with my order and i had to pack that away. I did get to see the baccalaureate chapel service. Funny, even though I went to a college that was affiliated with the Baptists at that point, I don't think we had a baccalaureate chapel service. So I read my email and did my surfing during the talking. 


This evening, while I was eating dinner, I replayed the CTSFW commencement ceremony. I was curious, partly because I don't remember anything at all about my own commencement (way back in 1962) and partly because I wanted to see if I could see Pastor. The ceremony didn't jog my memory at all, although it was nice. I do love those academic robes. Two guys had bright red robes, and another couple had pale blue ones with black stripes on the sleeves. I like those hoods, too. They are so colorful. Most of the faculty has hexagonal (or octagonal?) soft caps with tassels, although there was at least one guy with a lovely pompom on his, and another whose cap was a soft red thing like a Phrygian cap (he also had a full beard). I'd love to know where they went to school, but I don't know who they were. I didn't see Pastor, and in fact, I didn't see anybody who even resembled him, so I hope he got there. They didn't train the camera on the alumni very much anyway, and in order to stream it, I can't use the HD setting, so things aren't very clear. Anyway, it was fun. They sang "A Mighty Fortress" (the Bach setting) very loudly as they recessed. I wish our congregation would sing a quarter as loud.


The weather was beautiful, if a little cool. The high temperature was 51 for much of the afternoon. There wasn't much wind for most of the day, although it has risen to gusts of 23 mph from the west lately. It was completely clear and blue. So pretty. I noticed that one of my serviceberry bushes (a small one) is in bloom, but the others are just budding out. The leaves on the trees are growing. My bod felt much better today than it has lately, mostly, I think, because the humidity was quite low (mostly under 40%) and the barometer is quite high. My kind of weather for a lot of reasons, except that it's not very good for the allergies. Oh, yeah, the allergies. With all those trees blooming, the pollen counts are pretty high. Achoo!


The guys were sleepy, of course, although they were up (and I think Louie was in the basement) when delivery people came. Grayson slept on my lap through most of chapel. I'm sure he likes it that I'm streaming chapel, because it means I won't move for 40 minutes or so. Unfortunately, the academic year ended today, so they won't have chapel until the summer session starts. We'll both miss that.


So that was a quiet day. Now it's a clear, coolish, dark night in the field.


May 21

So I was ridiculously late again this morning and ridiculously late getting up. I think it was nearly 1:00 when I finally got up. Sigh. I got right at the stole, and I ripped out the entire skein of yarn I had worked on, back to row 2. Now I don't know quite what to do, so I guess I will call the company tomorrow and see what they say. I like the original yarn a lot - the colors are really pretty. I do NOT like the second dye lot at all, and it's going to be hard to properly incorporate it into the stole, especially that skein with all the tan in it. So we'll see.


I was so late that I didn't do anything. I watched my church service, and today they were placing the deaconess candidates (a deaconess in the LCMS is a peculiar calling). The service was Matins, and lo and behold, they sang the Te Deum. Yea! I do love that chant! The chapel was more full than usual, and everybody sang at the top of their lungs. I suppose there were a lot of families there. I was interested that most of the placements were either in the Dominical Republic or Panama, but I suppose there, a deaconess can serve in the place of a minister. The rest of them probably serve in the inner city. I don't know very many congregations that can afford to support a deaconess.


The weather was nice, although it was cool. The high temperature, 59, happened between 2:00 and 4:00 AM, and between 4:00 and 5:00, it went from 59 to 45. A front, no doubt. I still think of those things more as "affront" than anything else. During the day, it was in the upper 40s, although it did get to 50 briefly. There was very little wind, not more than 12 mph, from the north. It was clear and beautiful. When I finally went into the kitchen to get my dinner, Venus and the moon were over in the northwest and Jupiter was above and to the south of them in a very elongated, narrow triangle. The moon was too high for the camera to catch tonight.


The guys were their sleepy selves. One time when I got up, after it was light, they were both asleep on the tub surround on the towel I put there. Or, I should say, Louie was on the towel and Grayson was clinging to the edge with his head on the tub. They had some kind of dust-up after I went back to bed, but it wasn't a lot.


So that was my truncated day. Now it's a beautifully clear, cool, calm night in the field.


May 20

Oh. Journal. Oops.


I was stupidly late again this morning, but I got up around 11:30 anyway. I started to knit, and I quickly discovered that the hank of yarn I chose to continue the stole wasn't going to work at all, so I picked another one, and that one isn't right either. After looking at it for quite a while. I decided what I need to do is unknit the whole thing (about a month's worth of work) and redo it, using two hanks at a time. It still won't look right, but it will be better. I'm not sure whether I want to do that or just put it aside for a while and work on something else. The problem is, even though the tags say there are only two dye lots, the hanks look like four dye lots, and they are completely different. The second hank from the first dye lot is much darker than the first, and the two from the second dye lot are so different they don't look like the same colorway. I think perhaps I can compensate well enough to make something I can wear, but I'm annoyed. I know there can be variations in hand-dyed yarn (although this one doesn't say it's hand-dyed), but even I, who have never dyed yarn, could keep the hanks more uniform than these are. I think that if I hadn't opened all the hanks, I would send them back and start over. Grr.


I was so late that that was about all I did. I watched my church service. The officiant today was from a church in Indiana, and boy, I bet his congregation loves him! He is a huge man, in his late 60s, I guess, but he has a loud bass voice and a very forceful delivery. And I chuckled, because he didn't chant as much as some of the other guys have, and when he chanted the benediction, he used the tune from the old service. Heh, heh. Of course, he was ordained in 1974, before there was a new hymnal or anything like that. I bet his congregation stuck with the old one until the latest one came out. Anyway, it was a nice service. I believe the Kantorei sang, although it was mostly the psalm, and they did the last verse in parts. There were trumpets, too, but I sort of think they were sight-reading, because parts of it didn't come out very well. 


The weather has turned nice again. The temperature rose slowly all day, from 38 at midnight to 57 at 9:00 tonight. I just lost the internet. There was a little wind, up to 20 mph earlier in the day, but it has gone calm now. Skies were mostly clear, although there were a few clouds occasionally. There were a few clouds in the west when the sun went down, but in the last picture from the camera (at 10:30!) It's nearly dark and there is a nice thin crescent moon shining in. Pretty.


The guys did nothing much. I caught them both sleeping in the navy blue chair in the great room, and Louie looked a little guilty. He made up for it by going after Grayson, who was on the desk, just a little while ago. I think that was to get back at me, because I wouldn't let him sit on me. They're just like little kids.


So that was another quiet day, and I hope I can upload this so I can go to bed. I'm really tired. it's a nearly clear, quite warm night in the field.


May 19

Poo. I was so tired that I was too tired to get up and do what I knew I had to do, so it was ridiculously late when I finally got to bed. Sigh. I had to wash my hair before I could go to bed. I got up around 11:30, I think, and that wasn't nearly enough sleep. I knitted, and I almost finished the first hank of yarn. knitting right off the hank without winding it into balls is working quite well, although I've had some problems with tangling that I'm still working on. It's untangled when I stop, but it's all tangled up when I start again. The only thing that worries me is that I'm not halfway done with the first half of the stole. So I guess I will just forge on and make it as long as I can. Maybe it will work out, because of course I had the cast-on to do out of the first hank. We'll see. According to the pattern, I should have plenty of yarn, but...


Other than that, I didn't do anything. I watched my chapel service, and the homily (homily = short, sermon = long?) was given by the student body president. All I can say is, if he can do that well now, he's going to be great when he has some years under his belt. It was a good one, although now that I think about it, maybe it wasn't as tightly written as it could have been. Anyway, this kid is in his middle 20s, so it was impressive.


The weather was better off ignored, at least for a while. The camera hung up around 9:15 this morning, so I don't know when it cleared up. It was still cloudy and foggy this morning, but sometime between 12:00 and 4:00, it cleared up completely, the humidity went down and the wind died down. When I got up the first time, I couldn't tell if we were having fog, rain or snow, but I guess it was rain. That was nasty, so I went back to bed and ignored it. The high temperature was 44, around 8:00 this evening. It only got down to 32 overnight, and not for very long, although I suppose it was colder in Calumet. The wind got up to 24 mph, from the north, between 10:00 and 12:00 and then it began to die down. Now it's calm. It was a bit windy all night, and it was so nice to hear the lake singing. Of course, when it's calm, I can hear the bell buoy, so that's nice too.


The guys were sleepy. Louie is still fascinated by Grayson's tail, and Grayson doesn't help it very much by whipping it around when he knows Louie is looking at him. It looks like Louie does that on purpose, to get Grayson to go after him, and then he can go after Grayson and make him cry. Humph. Anyway, they both got some lap time, although I've been trying to brush both of them when they sit on me, and they don't like that very well. Grayson slept in my arms for about half the chapel service.


So that was another quiet day. Now it's a clear, calm, cold night in the field, but it should start warming up tomorrow. I've had enough winter.


May 18

Oh, I fiddled around and fiddled around and it was late before I got to bed, so I didn't get up until 11:30 or so, I think (I guess I looked at the clock, but I don't remember what it said). I knitted, of course, and I almost started the next repeat before I caught myself. Eight rows is enough.


I was so late that after I watched my church service, I was still doing my surfing while the talking was going on. Otherwise, nothing.


It was a nasty day, weatherwise. It was already foggy when I got up and it stayed that way all day, except that we had some rain in the middle of the afternoon, and it's so humid that the raindrops are still on the windows and the deck is still wet. The temperature fell steadily until about 11:00, and then it stabilized in the low 40s. Quite a change from yesterday. There was a brisk north wind, which is now backing northeast and rising some. It's around 24 mph now, and I can hear the lake grumbling. The temperature is down to 36, too. Not a nice day at all, so I ignored it.


So did the guys. They slept. Grayson got some lap time, but Louie came around when I was doing something else, so he didn't get his, at least not yet. 


I do have a picture to share with you. While I was knitting, I noticed something flying around over Ron's place, and when I got a good look at it, I realized it was a vulture, not an eagle. I wonder what died? Anyway, I was looking back at the camera archive, and I discovered that we actually caught it on camera. There's no question what that is. There's a first for everything. Of course we have vultures around here; there is too much stuff lying around at the campground. This is the first time, I think, I've ever seen one over the lakeshore, and for sure the first time I've ever seen one flying over our end of the harbor. Anyway, I hope that doesn't mean something has happened to our eagles. I haven't seen them this spring, but of course, I haven't been looking at the sky every moment.


So that was my quiet day. Now it's a cold, foggy, windy, nasty night in the field.


May 17

Well, I made it into bed by 9:30 or so, and then I had a little problem getting to sleep. I think it was mostly because it was warm, because I was certainly tired. I was up several times, of course, and I was really sleeping well when the alarm went off at 7:00. As a result, I was moving very slowly, and I didn't get off to church until a little later than I like.


When I got to church, I realized it wouldn't have mattered. They are about halfway done with re-roofing the church, and they left their equipment in place - right over all the handicap parking places! So I had to walk across the parking lot, which wasn't easy. It's not big, but by the time I get there, I'm usually pretty stiff and sore. It was a nice service and Pastor's sermon was a good one. He is obviously thinking ahead to his reunion this Thursday and Friday, when the alumni will have to march in with the students and all. 


I came right home. I was thinking about doing some shopping, but then I rethought it and decided I would only spend money to get some things I like that I don't really need yet. Maybe next week.


When I got home, I read my newspapers and had the rest of my dinner from last night. I was doing mostly nothing when I realized that it was getting on toward 9:00 and I hadn't eaten dinner, so while I was fixing that, I got the dishwasher almost loaded. I'm running out of dishes, particularly bowls. I seem to use more cereal bowls than any other things, for my salad and my rice, mostly. This time I used more bread-and-butter plates and fewer small dinner plates. I don't quite know why. However, when I'm having a 6-ounce piece of fish or a 5-ounce piece of stuffed chicken and the rest of my dinner goes in bowls, I don't see any reason to put that little thing on a big plate. It's the reason I don't use very many big (10") dinner plates, either. I pick the plate to fit the food I'm putting on it. Anyway, the dishwasher is packed. This time, I hope I can unload it once everything is clean, so I can load it as I go. I also don't intend to leave the sink full of pots and pans, either. We'll see how all that goes.


The weather was nicer than they forecast, but it wasn't the best. The temperature got up to 66 for a while this afternoon, but it was windy, with gusts up to 38 mph from the south. It was humid. The relative humidity never got below 75% and it has now gone up to 90%. No wonder I hurt. The sky was partly to mostly cloudy, and there was some fog late this afternoon. There was some sunshine, but it was spotty, and it seemed like wherever I started out from, it was sunny, and wherever I was going it was cloudy and dark. We did have a very little rain between 5:00 and 7:00 this evening.


The guys slept. I saw Grayson, and he got some lap time, but I haven't seen Louie since this morning.


So it was a very quiet day, and I'm tired. It's a cloudy and somewhat foggy night in the field.


May 16

Last night, I was in bed by 1:00, about as early as I have been for some time. I slept fairly well, although I was up at least four times and I was a bit restless because my joints hurt. I got up around 9:30, I think (I don't remember) and I did my knitting. This stole is going to be a pretty thing, but it's a boring knit.


Otherwise, I did almost nothing. I emptied the dishwasher of the last dishes, finally, and I washed up the pots and pans that were clogging up the sink, so that I could put all my dishes in to soak. Much as the dishwasher manufacturers would like you to believe otherwise, dried-on and baked-on crud does not come off. Period. Never. So I soak all my dishes, and there is one casserole that has been on the counter for too long because there was some baked-on stuff that I missed when I pre-washed that didn't come off. Anyway, I'm running out of dishes, so I have to wash them tomorrow sometime. We won't talk about the trash on the counters. My back was hurting pretty bad before I had my dinner cooked.


I did download the monthly Windows updates, with no problem, for once. However, when I tried to plug in the laptop, it didn't plug. I finally took everything apart, put it back together and plugged the cord into the wall. I know the surge suppressor is still working, because the little light I use at night still works, so all I can figure is that something happened either to the place the cord is plugged into the transformer or the plug in the computer wasn't working. I need to try a couple of other things, but not tonight. Those plugs are hard to get into the receptacles and I feel weak.


The weather was nice, although I didn't go out. It was awesomely foggy all night - I couldn't even see the lighthouse for most of the night - but by sunrise it had all gone away to the east and the day was almost completely clear. The temperature got up to 63, and there was almost no wind. It's supposed to cloud up overnight, and the "S" word is in the forecast for Tuesday - again. I'll believe that when I see it. This is the middle of May, after all.


The guys slept, of course, but Grayson got some lap time, which we both liked. He almost fell asleep purring. I haven't seen Louie since this morning.


So it was a very quiet day, and I need to get to bed early tonight. I got the pills I had run out of, too, so I need to put them in the pill dispensers. So now it's a warmish, clearish evening in the field, but tomorrow it may rain.


May 15

I was too late again last night, in spite of how tired I was. I finally got to bed, and a couple of hours later, I woke up feeling nauseated. I stopped to get the barf bucket out of the closet and I was so dizzy (or something) that I just barely made it across the room. I don't recall feeling like that ever before. Oh, the joys of getting old...


Anyway, after everything came out the bottom, I felt better and I went back to bed. I woke up around 9:00, and I thought I might get up, but after two rows on the shawl, I realized that was a bad idea and I went back to bed and to sleep, and I didn't get up until 11:00 or so. I felt much better then.


So I finished my eight rows, and that was all I did. Sigh. There is so much to do and I so do not feel good enough to do it...


By the way, the problems PastyNet was having a day or so ago evidently didn't go away. I didn't get any email between about 3:00 yesterday afternoon and 2:00 this morning, then it was all right until 3:30 AM, and it quit until around 11:15. I got everything, as much as I can tell, but it was sporadic and scattered. My daily devotion, which usually comes in around 7:00 PM, didn't get here until almost noon today. Good thing I wasn't looking for it, but I still had to search, because it was in the middle of the 66 other messages I got (mostly advertising). It's been behaving itself since, so I guess it's all right now.


The weather was not inspiring. It has been cloudy, dull and more or less foggy all day. It apparently rained from about 6:00 until 10:00 this morning, and we had 0.12" of rain. For the rest of the day it was foggy and nasty. The high temperature was 50, briefly, and it was in the upper 40s for most of the day. No wonder I hurt. The humidity was around 90% all day.


The guys felt it, too, and they slept. Both of them got some lap time, one after another. The first time I got up, they both figured I was going away and they camped out in the bathroom, but the second time, they decided everything was normal and they didn't show up until about the time I was ready to get up and get dressed. They like routine, and they know what the routine should be.


I did watch my church service today. It was Matins, which I guess it usually is on Friday, and since I've brought my hymnal down to the studio, I got more out of it. They had a children's choir from one of the local churches, who sang very nicely, although it was only the psalm. They are still singing the Ascension hymns, and the hymn of the day was one the guys really liked, so even though there weren't as many of them as there were yesterday, they made just about as much noise. I like that one, too. I hope we sing it. The preacher was a Japanese man who is on the faculty, and it was clear that he has a real sense of humor, but he also preached a wonderful, Christ-centered sermon, the kind I like. It was a bit difficult to understand him, but I managed to get most of it.


Then I went off and found a document with the biographies of the faculty, and I guess I know why the guy yesterday genuflected: he did his PhD work at Notre Dame. Now, why he would do that, rather than at a Protestant school, is another question. However, he did preach a good Lutheran sermon, so I guess not a lot of it rubbed off on him. I wish he wouldn't genuflect, though.


So that was a quiet, rather truncated day. Now they're playing Beethoven's Violin Concerto, and maybe after that, I can go to bed? It's a dark, foggy night in the field.


May 14

Of course I was later than I wanted to be, for no good reason, except that I had to take a bath. Then I didn't sleep at all well. My joints were so sore I had a hard time falling asleep, and I was so full of gas it was a wonder I didn't float away. Louie decided to sleep with me, down by my feet, and that made it very hard for me to turn over or get up or anything. He finally got mad and moved down onto the rug. Anyway, I had set the alarm for 9:00, and I got up, even though I didn't want to. I dawdled around enough that I was eating my breakfast when the live stream of the church service started.


I got through the prayers, and then I had to run to the bathroom and on to change my underwear. The fortunate thing is that the service is available to stream right after it's over, so when I was cleaned up, I watched the rest of it.


The only startling thing about today's communion service was the officiant genuflecting. WOW! I didn't know any Lutheran pastor would ever do that! I don't like it. That's way, way too close to the Catholics, and I was brought up to be very conscious of the differences between Lutherans and Catholics. I'd like to know more about the background of the officiant.


Anyway, after that, it was off to see Johanna. I feel much better for my massage, although it's cool and humid enough that my joints are still bad. She had a lot of news, too. It seems Harbor Haus has finally been sold, to two people we know, and it will be open for lunch as well as dinner his year. One of the owners has a background as a chef, and the other's parents owned The Pines for many years. I hope they can keep up the quality. There were some other changes, too, that may make a difference in town. 


After I came home, I didn't do anything but my surfing. I was and still am really tired. I expect to crash after I upload this.


The weather wasn't bad, except that it is still very humid. The high temperature was 61, at 4:00. It wasn't quite that warm when I was out. There wasn't much wind, but it started out from the west and has shifted to the south. There is a big area of rain to our west and headed in our direction, although it hasn't rained yet. It was mostly cloudy except for a brief hour and a half around noon. 


The guys were sleepy. Grayson got some lap time, but Louie hasn't yet. They didn't like it when I got up early and went away for a while.


So that was my day, and oh, I am so sore and tired! I hope I don't have the gas problem again tonight. Or the problem with my shoulders. Now it's a relatively warm, cloudy night in the field.


May 13

Again I was late last night for no good reason. I was up around 8:30 and that was just too little sleep, so I went back to bed and it was 11:00 or so before I got up. I knitted with no glitches today.


I was late getting to the studio, and when I tried to look at the Internet, it was down. I did get to read my devotion, because most of that is text, which downloads. It's things with pictures that don't load when I'm disconnected. I called, and they were "doing maintenance," whatever that means. The person I talked to said it would be half an hour, but between my own experience and my experience with PastyNet, I sort of discounted that, and I was right. It was around 3:00 before it finally came up.


Then I wanted to stream my church service, before I even did my regular surfing. Today was a full-blown communion service, and I wanted to see how they do it. I don't like it, but it was interesting. They process with the cross and two candles. They don't read the Old Testament lesson, which disappointed me. Then they read the Gospel after they process into the middle of the church. I think that's an unnecessary amount of ceremony, frankly. Anyway, the sermon was a good one, based upon the readings, all about love. The preacher and officiant is a very animated speaker, and it was a good, if short, sermon. 


There was the officiant, and then there was another guy, also wearing an alb (yes, they both wore albs - boo!) who did the praying. As I was afraid, the officiant faced the congregation while he said (or chanted, mostly) the blessing of the sacrament. I was interested to hear parts of the service we've never done at St. Paul's. And they give communion in continuous fashion, and there are four guys who actually give the sacraments. The congregation goes up to the altar rail, kneels, gets the sacrament and leaves, and as soon as they do, some more people come up and kneel, and after everyone has communed, the officiant gives the blessing once, to everybody. I don't like that way of doing it. They did that at Christ the King on festival days (although we didn't kneel) and I didn't like it there, either. I can understand why they do it, though, because they get the whole thing done in less than an hour (of course, they leave out parts of the service).


They also don't sing very much, which is disappointing. The choir sings an offertory, and there was a communion hymn, partly sung by the choir. I think we had the Kantorei today. The Lutheran church is a singing church, and I think we should sing all the time. Besides, those earnest young men and women (they are teaching deaconesses now) sing louder than any congregation I've ever heard, and I like to hear them. 


Another thing that interested me is that even though they have kneelers, almost nobody kneels to pray after they come back from the altar. I learned that at Peace. In fact, it looked like most of them don't pray at all after communion, just like almost nobody does at St. Paul's either. I learned that at Peace, too, and I wonder why they don't do it at the seminary. More things to ask Pastor about. At the end, the officiant, in his beautiful alb, raised both arms over his head to chant the benediction. Oh, I do love that! Pastor Claus, who confirmed me, always did that (although he didn't chant - nobody did in those days!), and nobody since has done it, so it was lovely to see it again.


Anyway, it was a nice service, and I was sorry I wasn't there, although I am so slow, and there are five steps with no railings into the chancel, that it would have been hard for me to take communion. And I discovered that they are going to have another communion service tomorrow, for Ascension Day. I haven't decided whether I will go down to Laurium or not, so in any case, I will be able to get my church.


That was about all I had time to do today. I did have barbecued pork chops again, and they turned out lovely. I threw two potatoes into the oven with the casserole, so I got to have a nice baked potato with my chop. 


The weather was blah. The sun came up to clear skies, but it started to cloud up around noon, and at sunset it was completely cloudy. The official high temperature so far, 45, is now, but it was in the low 40s all day. There was a little wind earlier, but it's been calm since about 4:00. Blah. I did see the first dandelions of the season today, though.


The guys were sleepy. Grayson sat on me for a little while, but then he heard something (maybe my gurgling?) and he left abruptly. Louie wanted to sit on me a couple of times, but I was doing something else, so he hasn't gotten his sit yet. He is still going after Grayson, and I still don't understand why.


So that was another quiet day, and I'm tired. It's a calm, cloudy night in the field.


May 12

I wasn't nearly as early to bed as I'd planned, mostly because I fooled around, and I took a bath. I was only up once, though, and I got up around 10:30. Then I started to knit, and ugh. I noticed yesterday that one particular repeat of the pattern didn't look quite right, so when I got to it today, I decided to try to fix it. Oh, my what a mess! I finally got it right, but I had to pull out nine stitches back four rows and do the whole thing over again. Fortunately, one of the forgiving aspects of most knitting is that after you've knitted a section, you can pull it in all directions and the stitches will even out, and after it's blocked (if I ever get it blocked), nobody will ever know I had a problem. I rely on that a lot. I think the European knitters who do (or did) it for a living just ignore the errors and go on, but I like things to be right.


I was up for the first time around 8:15, and just as I was going back to bed, I looked out and there was the Isle Royale Queen chugging toward the gap. Oh? I thought she was supposed to go yesterday, but I guess the weather was bad enough that they postponed their first trip. I wouldn't want to be over on Isle Royale in weather like this, mostly camping out! Ugh. I am not the type to rough it.


That took me long enough that I was quite late getting to the studio, and then I had a really ugly accident. By the time I cleaned up from that and started the washer, I had just time to watch my church service before the talking started. This one was Morning Prayer 1, which is another service I wasn't familiar with, but it is very nice. The Walter Maier who preached is a relatively young man, but it was a good sermon. This one was like last Friday's, on a passage from Deuteronomy, but all these guys can immediately make the connection between that Old Testament Law and the Gospel. After the end of the service, there was an honors convocation, which I watched because I was curious to know what they give awards for. They range from best sermon to best scholar of Greek. They don't have chapel when classes aren't in session, so I guess they will only be doing it for another couple of weeks, although they may resume when there are summer classes. Anyway, now that I know about it, when I can't get to church, at least I can watch them. I will have to ask Pastor what they do on Sundays, because there is no stream for that day. 


The weather was abysmal, but at least I didn't see more than one or two snowflakes. We got 0.10" of cold rain, though. The low temperature was 35 and the high was 37, and there was a 15-20 mph wind out of the north. The humidity was around 90% all day - but my joints were telling me that. It was dark and cloudy and miserable. I was glad not to go out.


The guys slept, of course, but both of them got some lap time. Grayson is still very loving, and I don't know quite why, but it's nice. He is still shedding like mad, and so is Louie. They got into a tussle in the hallway this morning, and there was fur all over the place.


So it was a quiet day, although I did empty the wastebaskets at the north end, which were overflowing. I'm still tired and very sore, so I hope to get to bed at a reasonable hour tonight. It's a dark, cold, rainy night in the field.


May 11

I wasn't quite as early to bed as I'd planned last night. I remembered that Pastor mentioned that his seminary - Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne - was streaming their morning services, so I went out and found the site, and then I had to hear the Friday service. It only takes about 40 minutes - the Friday one was Matins, with only one hymn - and it was very nice. Wow, do those people sing! The Kramer Chapel is a very modern place - not much to my taste - but it has fantastic acoustics and a fantastic Schlicker organ. I'd heard it, because the hymn accompaniments we use for Monday Vespers in the summer were recorded on that, but hearing it in its space and hearing the prelude and responses and the accompaniment to the choir on it was just wonderful. The choir sang a chorale from "Christ Lag in Todesbanden" (Cantata #4) by Bach that has a wonderful organ part. I think the choir was a children's choir, although they were excellent. And "Reverend Professor" Wenthe was a wonderful, Christ-centered preacher. I was glad I stayed up to participate.


Anyway, I got up around 8:30 and I knitted. When I got up to get dressed, I discovered that the weather had done a number on my poor bod. I ached all over and my back was really bad. I was glad to get to the studio and sit down.


So I played today's chapel service, even though it was 2:00 before I did it. They stream it live at 10:00, and then you can replay it later. Today's wasn't quite as nice as Friday's, although the preacher was pretty good. This one used Morning Prayer, which I'm not familiar with, so there was a lot of the chanting I didn't recognize. Tomorrow I will have to bring the hymnal. There weren't nearly as many people there today, either, and most of them were men. And the organist - who played a wonderful prelude - wow! - left during the sermon, so all the chanting after it was a capella. They bellowed it out just as loudly, though. 


I must look tomorrow, though, because the preacher is a name I recognize, although there seem to be a number of Walter Maiers in the LCMS. And there will be a choir tomorrow. It will be another new service. 


I could get really hooked on this. Wednesday is a full-blown communion service, and I must watch that, just to see how they do it. I think Kramer Chapel has one of those altars I don't like, where the celebrant faces the congregation. One of the churches I attended in the east had that setup, and I don't like it. There will be more singing, too, and I enjoy that.


One interesting thing about these services is that most of the service is led by a student, who never approaches the altar closer than the communion rail. And he says "The Lord bless US" for the benediction. Well - not say. They chant the liturgy. I was prepared for that, because Pastor had mentioned it. Also, the whole congregation kneels for prayer. Wow! I haven't been in a church with kneelers since I left Peace in 1985. I suppose the reason most newer churches don't have them (and St. Paul's doesn't) is cost, but I miss them. Not that I could kneel now, of course. Oh, yes, and the officiants and some of the congregation cross themselves. I guess that's OK, because I think Luther did it, but in the very polarized town I grew up in, no self-respecting Lutheran would do that. You have to understand the ethnic divisions in Detroit.


So that was the high point of my day. It was a quiet one.


It was also a cold, damp one. It was raining when I got up, and while I was knitting, there were a couple of rumbles of thunder. It rained pretty much all day, and we got just over half an inch. The high temperature was between 4:00 and 6:00 this morning, 40. It went down slowly from there, and it is now 37. There was not much sustained wind, but at intervals the gusts got as high as 24 mph. The humidity was awful, and it has been around 95% for most of the day. Of course it was dark and gloomy. It was foggy, too. Yuck.


By the way, the camera hung up this morning, and it was 3:00 before I realized that and rebooted. I'm not sure what its problem is, but it seems to me I always have trouble at this time of year. It probably has something to do with the changes in barometric pressure and the humidity.


The guys did the obvious thing: they slept. They wanted to sleep on me, and they both got some lap time, but they didn't stay long, because I wanted to brush them. Louie is still shedding, and Grayson is shedding like mad. Both of them will sit and purr while I'm brushing, but neither of them like it very well.


So that was a quiet day, and I'm off to the north end. It's a dark, gloomy, rainy, foggy and cold night in the field. Yuck.


May 10 - Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all you mothers out there. Pastor said something about it in his sermon this morning and made me cry. There is no way I could have ever made up to my mother for what she did for me. I hope she knew I was grateful.


I've been remiss in my reporting lately about what's going on around the harbor. It's been so nearly calm lately that I haven't heard the lake very much since the ice went away, but every so often when I'm at the north end, I'll hear it singing quietly. It's one of my favorite sounds. Another one is the bell buoy. According to Amanda, the Alder slipped in a couple of weeks ago and dropped it in place, and several times I've heard it sounding softly as it rocks in the waves. And I may just get to hear the Isle Royale Queen sound her horn tomorrow morning as she makes her first trip to Isle Royale. Ah, the sounds of summer. Now if the weather would only catch up.


I can report that my neighbor's forsythia is in bloom and the maples are coming out, finally, although they are just peeking through. There are teensy little leaves on my birches and the alders. The serviceberries aren't open yet, but they're coming slowly. It's so nice to drive down US-41 and see a pale green haze around some of the trees. Pretty soon there will be a red haze around the maples, and then things will green up fast.


I made it into bed a bit before 10:00 last night. I slept well, except that I was up any number of times. Sometimes I had to pee, but at least twice it was because my joints, particularly my right hip, were so sore I woke up. This is not good weather for arthritis.


I was up around 6:00, and I had fallen back to sleep when the alarm went off. I got up anyway, but I was a little behind all morning. I made it to church on time, though. The last time I was out during the day, I noticed there seemed to be tourists (gasp!) in town, but there was no traffic this morning, so I made good time. Cliff Drive is still marked closed. I know it's drivable, so I can only assume they have it closed because of the load limits on the roads. I will be happy when it opens, because then I won't have to go through Mohawk anymore. The sign boards seem to be back up, even though Central and the Eagle River Lighthouse aren't open yet. So slowly the county is getting ready for summer.


Church was nice, with communion, and I think we sang pretty well. Pastor's sermon was short and a bit disjointed, but he made some good points.


I got home around 1:00, but then I read my newspapers and a catalog before I changed my clothes. Unfortunately, I had a yucky accident around 6:00, but I was very much off-schedule today. Otherwise, I didn't do anything except order the pills I discovered I was out of when I filled the dispensers at the north end last night. Fortunately, I can get them by Tuesday. I had put them in my shopping cart but I forgot just how out of them I was, so I didn't order them, but then I discovered I only had enough to last through Wednesday, so I had to order them today.


The weather was not nice. It was cloudy and only about 38 when I left for church, and the temperature only got up to 43 all day. It was very humid, and my joints didn't like it at all. There wasn't much of any wind. It cleared up for a little while this afternoon, but now it's cloudy and dull again. Yuck.


When I got to the computer this afternoon, I discovered that the camera had gone haywire and the picture was broken up. I was able to reset it without rebooting (I had to do that last night) but we'll see how it acts. If you looked at the picture between 9:00 and 2:45, I'm sorry for what you saw. I guess it might be time to trek across the room and check the connections. I haven't done that in a long time.


So now I will go up to the north end and go to bed. Really. I'm tired, and I'm trying hard to get back onto a normal schedule. It's a cold, cloudy night in the field, and I guess it's supposed to rain tomorrow and maybe snow on Tuesday. Yuck.


May 9

I forgot to mention that Thursday (or maybe yesterday? The stuff I read wasn't clear) was V-E Day. That was the beginning of the end. I keep getting them confused, but I think it was probably V-J Day that I remember, because I know grandma and grandpa's porch was open and it was hot. Anyway, it made a big difference in our lives.


I think there may be a little hope; I was in bed by 11:00 last night. I slept well and I got up around 8:15. That's more like it's supposed to be. Of course, I was exhausted last night, because I hadn't had enough sleep for a couple of days. I knitted, and I thought I was feeling all right, but after I had some breakfast and sat a while, it became clear that I was not feeling all right. I am still sleep-deprived. 


However, I did a few things. I washed. The second load is ready to be dried. I have to report that it seems like the gremlins are gone. I set the water level at "very large load" and the final spin went off just fine, thank you, and so did the quick rinse. I'm not going to depend upon it, but it looks hopeful. So whatever was going on in the washer may be over. The only problem I have now is that my water pressure is low enough that it takes a very long time to fill when it wants only cold water. I'm not sure what that's all about. If I see Thomas this summer, I will have to remember to ask him.


I forgot about the pills, but I just filled the dispensers at the south end, and I'm planning to go up to the other end as soon as I finish this and I will do the ones up there. I guess it's a good thing that both the wash and the pills are on the same day now, so I can get both things done for the month. 


The weather was cold. It was cloudy and dismal this morning, but around 1:00 the north wind began to push the clouds to the south, and by 2:00 it was completely clear. It's so pretty when it's clear and blue! The high temperature is 45 now, but I don't think it will get much higher. It's still very humid. The wind was from the north, but it was under 10 mph. I closed the window in the bedroom. For some reason, I've been cold for the past couple of days.


The guys slept, although Grayson wanted to sleep on me and he got to do it for a while. I don't know what his problem is now. Louie tried once to sit on me, but I was doing something at the time, so he went away.


There was something I was going to say, but it's gone now. My mind...


So now it's a cold (for May), clear evening in the field and there may even be stars tonight. 


May 8

I did it again. I sat and sat, because I was too tired to get up, so it was a stupid hour of the morning when I got to bed. When I got to the north end, I sat some more, staring at the floor. I got up around noon, so I didn't get nearly enough sleep, and I'm tired.


I was late enough that I didn't do anything except my surfing. 


The weather was uninspiring. It was mostly cloudy all day. The temperature was actually 67 at 2:00 AM, and it went down steadily from there. It's now down to 43. It was breezy during the middle part of the day, with gusts up to 30 mph from the north, but the wind has died down now. I was interested to see that Copper Harbor made the list of top five lowest temperatures in the state. It was almost 90 in Detroit. This is when I'm so grateful that I live here. I'll take cold any day. The barometer is rising, but it's still very humid. 


The guys mostly slept. I turned down the heat in the bathroom last night (turned it up again this morning) and it wasn't warm enough for them, so they slept someplace else. I have forgotten to mention that I finally figured out where Grayson spends most of his nights. I have a 60" high small chest of drawers in the bedroom, where Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy stand, and it used to have the Yooper Bunny and a stuffed kitty on it. Well, Ann and Andy are still there, and so is the bunny, although her moth-eaten hat is gone, but the stuffed kitty is between the chest and the wall, and that's where Grayson seems to spend his nights, except on the rare occasions when he sleeps with me. He can get to it by jumping up on the chair, but Louie isn't agile enough to get up there, so it's safe and he's close by. That's OK, except I wish he hadn't pulled the bunny's hat off. 


The bunny's hat, mittens and leggings are wool (I don't know if Jodie knitted them or just cut up thrift store sweaters), and the moths have decimated them. I have a ball of wool to make replacements, but I'm not sure if I'll ever bother to do it. She is cute, but she is sort of a blast from the past. The kitty is something I made out of a printed panel, and she is cute, although obviously Grayson doesn't think so. I should rescue her and put her on the dresser with Grandma Dodie. I made Ann and Andy out of panels, too, although I made their hair look like the original books rather than how it's usually made today. They have watched over my bedroom for at least 30 years. Dodie and the bunny are things I bought from artisans who used to live and work in Copper Harbor. Both are long gone, but their work was wonderful and I enjoy it.


So that was a very quiet day, and I'm really tired. The symphony concert was so terrible that I turned it off and I have Classical 24 playing on the computer now. As soon as the Beethoven ends, I will be going up to the north end. I am seriously tired and I need to begin to catch up on my sleep.


So it's a cloudy, cool night in the field.


May 7

Oh, I screwed around last night, and then I had to take a shower, so it was a ridiculous hour when I got to bed. I opened the east window in the window seat a crack, and that cooled it off a little bit, but I don't think it would have mattered. I got up around 11:30 and I knitted. This pattern is easy enough that I have it memorized already, and it went fast. 


I didn't have time to do anything else much, but I did make a couple of phone calls. I finally made my appointment with the doctor, and I guess everything is going to get done at once, in the middle of June. My doctor has become the medical director for the hospital, so his time with patients has decreased a lot. That's another thing I will have to try to talk to him about. I like him, and I'd like to keep him, but if my little problems are interfering with his more important work, I guess it would be all right to turn me over to someone else, depending upon who that is. So sometime in the middle of June, I will spend a whole Monday at the hospital. Ugh.


Then I called the propane company. I had gotten an email about my next contract from them, and when I looked at it, it said that I was on the will-call program. What??? I've been on the "Keep Full" program since I've been a customer. Well. So I called, and it seems like somebody (who knows who?) called on April 3 and somebody (who knows who?) at the company changed my record instead of the one that should have been changed. I know I didn't call them (I haven't called them since last fall when I was hassling my 2014-2015 contract), so how that happened I do not know. The person I talked to said she would escalate my complaint, but I never trust those things. I have had continuing problems with those people, even though the people who deliver the fuel are great. Anyway, the other problem with that is that according to their records, I should be down to 20% full on my fuel tanks. That's a little lower than I like, so I insisted - and I hope this works - that they send somebody soon to fill my tanks. Anyway, I was rather agitated. The only good thing is that the price of propane has gone down about 30 a gallon since last year, which should mean my monthly payment will be around $100 a month less. That isn't cast in concrete, but it looks hopeful.


Tonight was choir, so I went off to that, and we had a good turnout. I am debating going to the Ascension Day service on Thursday. We'll see. Pastor has decided what we will sing in June, but he hasn't made up a schedule sheet yet, so we had to wing it. We are a good group. I got home around 9:30, but I sat and read my newspapers, so it was 10:30 before I ate.


That was a disappointment. I had hoped to have some more lamb, but when I took it out of the fridge, there were places in it that were green and I decided I didn't want to subject my tummy to that. So now I know that lamb doesn't keep as well as beef and pork do. Sigh. It's tempting to stop Sunday and get some more.


The weather was amazing. The high temperature here was 80. It got up to 84 at the airport, and it was in the low 80s and it rained on my way to choir. When we came out of church, it was in the 70s and extremely humid, but it had dropped below 60 - still horribly humid - in the harbor. It was mostly cloudy and threatening all day. Not good for my joints. 


By the way, when I got home, I discovered that the camera hung up around 10:00 this morning. Sorry about that. I should have checked, but it was hard to tell until I looked at all the archived pictures. Well, it happens.


The guys were sleepy. Grayson just took a flying leap from the printer to behind the monitor and hit a few things, like my pill dispensers, on his way. He is more acrobatic than Louie, but nothing like Buster was. He spent a lot of time on my lap today.


So that was my day. I didn't get nearly enough sleep last night, and I'm tired. It's a cloudy, possibly rainy, warmish night in the field, but it's supposed to cool off tomorrow, and the "S" word is still in the forecast for Monday or Tuesday. Haven't we had enough of that?


May 6

I wasn't early to bed last night, but it was a much more reasonable hour, and despite that I was up four times, I slept well, and I didn't get up until around 11:30, so I think I got enough sleep. I'm getting tired again, so maybe I can be even more reasonable tonight. At least I ate at a reasonable hour.


I knitted, and I transferred the stole to metal needles and it is going much better. I normally use wooden needles for lace, because they grip the yarn better and it's easier to execute some of the difficult stitches. This is an easy pattern, however, and the wood was causing me to tighten my tension too much. After knitting on the waiting room sock yesterday and seeing how much easier it was to knit loosely, I decided to try it with the stole. It worked much better and it felt much more natural. I think my tension will be better, too. So I did my eight rows, although it took me quite a while.


I was seeing double when I started, though, so I did the exercises the doctor recommended, and it was immediately better. The exercises stretch and tension all the eye muscles in a coordinated way, and it really helped. It seems that when one is asleep, the eye muscles all relax and the eyes go who knows where. As one gets older and one's general muscle tone gets worse, the eye muscles lose tone, too, and it may take some time after one wakes up to get them working properly again. The doctor claims there should be a noticeable improvement in a week or so, but I can attest that just doing them this morning helped me a whole lot. It wasn't instantaneous, but within five minutes or so, I could see fine. I will do the exercises morning and night, if I remember, and I'm sure that will solve my problem. They only take a couple of minutes to do. Fortunately nobody but the cats can see me rolling my eyes around in my head. I'm sure it would look hysterical. Rolling them around makes me faintly dizzy, but that passes quickly. I can feel the muscles pulling, which is a good indication that I need the exercise.


Anyway, I was late enough that I didn't do anything else except to wash the two pairs of jeans I messed up over the past two days. Saturday is washday, but if I can do the jeans early, I should be able to get the rest of the loads done without having to do one on Sunday.


It was an unseasonably warm day. In fact, it was like most of last summer was, which makes me suspicious about our summer this year. The high temperature was 68, and there was a moderate (10-20 mph) wind from the south. It was partly cloudy and quite cloudy at sunset, which often happens. I didn't stick my nose out the door, which I should have. It's getting to be time to pull up the shutters.


The guys slept. Louie is still having problems with hairballs. One time when I woke up, he sat and mewed quietly for a couple of minutes. I don't have any idea what his problem was, but it may be the hairballs. He had also dug into the pile of stuff in the corner of the kitchen and pulled a bunch of plastic bags onto the floor, no doubt to chew on them. Grayson was very purry, and he sat on my lap for quite a while until I had to run down the hall to the powder room. He thought he wanted a piece of my steak tonight, too, but I gave him one and he didn't eat it, so I don't know what he had in mind.


So that was a quiet day, and now it's a partly cloudy night in the field. I saw a few stars when I went to bed last night, but I doubt there will be many tonight.


May 5

I was stupidly late getting to bed. I just couldn't get myself up and moving, and time passed. I set the alarm for 10:00, but I was up at 9:00 to pee, and it took me a few minutes to get back to sleep. At any rate, I didn't have nearly enough sleep.


I got out of the house when I planned, and I stopped and voted. Of course, I had to talk to the ladies and some other people I met there, and as a result I had to move fast to avoid being late for my appointment.


That turned out all right. The doctor is going to talk to the doctor who did my cataract surgery, and I will probably have to go down to Green Bay sometime during the summer to have my residual cataracts fixed. Since it's just in the preliminary stages, I don't know when or how long. The doctor agreed with me that I don't want them to touch my corneas, but he seems to think that getting rid of the residual cataracts should improve my vision beyond what it is already. I got my frames adjusted, and they aren't slipping quite as much now, which is good. I was there for two hours, which was longer than I anticipated, but I like it that the doctor takes as much time with his patients as necessary.


I had to stop for gas, and it has gone up to $2.599 since last week. I guess I knew that would happen. It's still good to have it under $3. 


Then I had to drive home. That's always a challenge with my eyes dilated, but what I discovered is that it's about the way I was seeing all the time before the cataract surgery. I've just gotten used to seeing where I'm going. I got home around 4:30.


I sat and did my surfing and listened to the talking and my stomach gurgling, but I waited too long again, so I had an accident. After I cleaned up from that, I just put on my nightgown. Then all I will have to do is brush my teeth. I'm really tired.


The weather was glorious, the kind of springtime weather I hope we have all summer. It was only 55 here when I left, but it was much warmer in Calumet already, and by the time I got home, it was up to 66 here, and it was in the low 70s while I was pumping gas. The wind was under 10 mph and the sky was completely clear. So nice!


I guess the guys slept, and they were asleep when I came home, so it was a while before they noticed that I was back. 


It was humid overnight and this morning, and while the dew point stayed steady around 30 as the temperature rose, I still hurt. The barometer is dropping, and that may be the problem. It wasn't as bad as it's been for the past couple of days, but it's not good. And I am really tired. I just diddled around and didn't get my dinner until around 10:00, so I won't be really early to bed, but I hope not to be late, either.


The doctor showed me some exercises for my eye muscles (the ones that make the eye move) that may help with the double vision I seem to have some mornings when I wake up. I will try to do them. The problem usually goes away after an hour or so, but it's annoying when I want to see my knitting. I guess eye muscles lose their tone just like other muscles do as one gets older.


So that was my day, and now it's a clear, warmish night in the field. I saw Venus while I was walking through the great room, and I meant to look for Mercury, but I didn't. There will be a bright moon tonight, too.


May 4

Ugh. Instead of getting to bed early, I ended up getting to bed late - and to very little effect. I decided I should report my problem with Norton, so I started an online chat, and that, plus trying to upload the information, ended up taking me till almost 2:00. There is something wrong with the Norton website, and I kept getting an "internal server error." Since the file I was trying to upload is around 300kb, it was taking a very long time to upload and the error occurs right at the end. Or maybe it's something else, I don't know. Anyway, around 1:30, I left the thing trying to upload and went up to the north end and I finally got to bed around 2:00. Sigh.


I got up around 9:30, too, and that means I didn't get nearly enough sleep. I wasn't as tired as I was yesterday, but I'm still tired. While I was knitting, I got a phone call that I couldn't take. That was one reason for putting a phone in the bathroom, but it's a wireless phone and it's apparently too far from the base unit to work. It did work for a short while after I put in new batteries, but after a while, it stopped. 


The phone call said I have an appointment with the eye guy tomorrow at 1:30. Oh? I knew I had one in May, but I thought it was in a week or so. I'm glad they called. It will change my plans a bit. There is a special election tomorrow, and one reason is to vote on a constitutional amendment to raise the sales tax. It also fiddles with the gas taxes and will probably raise the cost of gas by 6 or 7 a gallon. I need to vote on that! So I will have to schedule myself carefully.


 After I cleaned up from my accident, I decided to put in a complaint about not being able to upload the information to Norton, and that turned into a long and fruitless pain. The only suggestion they could offer was to use a different browser. Geez. I'm not going to get into that for a single file that I can't run anyway. I have a message into the publisher about that, too. Computing gets frustrating real easy.


I didn't do a lot other than my surfing and fiddle with Norton, but I just had to get the dishwasher ready to run. I am running out of dishes. Fortunately, I wasn't hungry enough tonight to have my steak, so I had a frozen dinner instead, and all that uses is a fork. However, before I made it, I almost loaded the dishwasher. It isn't completely loaded, and I won't be able to wash all the dishes because there are too many (or I think so), but by tomorrow, the cats and I should have something to eat off of again. The kitchen is full of trash, too, but it will be a while before I can get to that. My joints are still bothering me.


The weather turned out to be nice. While it was cloudy when I went to bed and when I was up during the night, by sunrise it had cleared up, and the day was clear and beautiful. The temperature during the day hovered right around 50, distinctly lower than yesterday (it was still 63 at 1:00 AM). But it was soooo pretty! All blue. There was some wind from the north (no doubt why the temperature went down) up to 20 mph. 


It's getting to the point where I need to pull up the shutters from the screened porch and I would really like to try the bird feeders again, but we'll see about that. It won't be tomorrow.


The guys were sleepy. Grayson wanted to sit on me all day, and he couldn't because I was typing. Louie was around this morning, but I haven't seen him since. He usually comes around at night, but I won't be here long, so he will miss his pet.


So that was another frustrating day, and I was tired to start out with, so now I'm really exhausted. I must go up to the north end, take a bath, and crash. And set the alarm. I need to get out of here by noon to vote before I go down to the eye guy.


Now it's a clear, calm night in the field. There will be stars and a nearly full moon tonight.


May 3

I made it into bed by a little after 10:00 last night. That was later than I wanted to be, but it was OK, except that then I had a hard time getting into a deep sleep. I think it was because it was so warm. I don't know what the temperature in the bedroom was, but it was 78 in the bathroom, and it felt about the same in the bedroom. I should have opened the window in the window seat a bit, but I didn't want to get up any more than I had to already. I finally got into a deep sleep around 3:00, but that meant I woke up around 6:00 and had to pee - and there was no way I was going to be able to wait until 6:30 or 7:00. I had just gotten comfy again when the alarm went off. Arrgghh!


So I got up, and it took me long enough that I didn't get to read my funnies before I had to go up to the north end and get ready for church. I was still a bit late, because I had to sit in the powder room for a while. I noticed, when I was looking at the weather, that there was a line of thunderstorms bearing down on us, and before I left, they got here, so I had to drive through rain. It was very spotty, though, and there wasn't much more thunder where I was. Evidently there was some down around Hubbell during the service there. The worst thing was that I had to wear my slicker. I had hoped to go running out without anything on, but no such luck.


Anyway, church was nice. Today was Matins, which is a service I like, except that we didn't sing the Te Deum. Pastor is trying to get all the good Easter hymns into the service before the end of the Easter season, so we've been singing a lot. Today he preached on Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch, which was interesting, because the Ethiopian Christian church is about the oldest in the Gentile world, all because of that eunuch. There are more Lutherans in Ethiopia than there are LCMS Lutherans in the US. Anyway, it was a nice service and we sang a lot of good hymns. I'm sorry to say we didn't do very well on our second anthem, but oh, well. You win some and you lose some.


I got home around 1:00, because it had stopped raining, but I sat and read my newspapers and part of a magazine for most of the afternoon. I don't know why I had to spend so much time in the bathroom, but I did. Gurgle...gurgle...gurgle. And around 6:30, I was back again. Gurgle...gurgle...


The weather was astonishing. The temperature here was already 64 when I left for church, and when I got home, it was 69. The high was around 2:00, at 73. Then the wind shifted to the north and by 5:00, it was down to 53 before it recovered to 64 at 10:00. We didn't have any more rain, but there may be some more on the way. Except in the thundershowers, the wind was almost or completely calm. It was the kind of day where every joint and muscle in my body ached, and all I wanted to do was sit.


I did that, and in the middle of the afternoon, my eyes got so heavy that I leaned back and closed them and I nearly fell asleep. At least twice I snorted myself awake, with my mouth wide open. I've nearly made it. I've always said I'll know I'm old when I can fall asleep in my chair. I nearly did that today, and I strongly suspect that if I'd been in the ugly chair, I would have. As it is, I'm really tired. Unfortunately, i was so tired that after i finally packed my rice away in the freezer, I was so tired and sore that I just sat, and it was 9:30 before I got up to get my dinner. It was a nice dinner - lamb chop and rice - but I should have eaten it earlier.


I figured out how to make Norton ignore the file they kept deleting, but once I downloaded it, I discovered that it won't run. It came without an extension, but when I added one, it still won't run. It seems to me that I had this problem when I originally downloaded that file, and I forget what I did to make it run. I'm thinking about searching back through all my backups to see if I can find the file Norton deleted yesterday and restore it, and see if that one will run. This is most annoying, and I will have to send Norton a nasty email to let them know I am not pleased when they suddenly decide something that has been quite innocuous is now a threat and delete it without asking my permission. Grr.


The guys slept. When the first rumble of thunder sounded, around the time I was getting ready to leave for church, they both beat it into the basement. Grayson was around for most of the rest of the afternoon, wanting to sit on me a lot, but Louie just came around. Since I'm in the middle of typing, I can't have him on my lap. I found him tearing into the back corner of the couch, too, which didn't make me very happy. 


So that was my quiet day, and I hope to be in bed sometime soon, but we'll see. I am so sore I just don't want to move from wherever I am at any given moment. That has to be a combination of barometric pressure and dew point. If we were going to get this kind of weather, I'm just sorry we didn't get more rain. It is very dry and the fire warnings are high. 


Now it's a cloudy, warm evening in the field. I hurt.


May 2

I diddled around even more last night. so it was a really ridiculous hour when I finally went to bed. it was getting light. Oops. Astronomical summer is coming even if the weather doesn't feel like it. I got up at 11:30 anyway, even though I didn't get nearly enough sleep. I figure to get to bed early tonight, although it won't be as early as I wanted it to be, because it's already 8:00. Sigh.


Anyway, I knitted, and it went much faster today. I guess I'm getting the pattern into my fingers. This yarn is a rather tightly twisted sock yarn, and I'm only hoping it will work well for something that needs to be stretched, 


I actually did a thing or two today. Not much, but something. I went to the post office for the week's mail. There was nothing particularly astounding about it. No new bills yet, thankfully. That will be next week.


The other thing I did was a little thing I've been thinking about for a long time. I made an elastic waistband extender, which I hope will keep my pants up better than they have been. All my dress pants are too tight in the waistband - yes, I've gained weight, but this is mostly old age and the pull of gravity - and I had been closing them with a big safety pin three or four inches below the waistband. Not only is that uncomfortable, sometimes I think people can see the ends of the waistband sticking out through my tops. This thing is just a piece of elastic with a waistband hook on one end and a bar on the other side of the other end. I hope it works. I'll be trying it tomorrow.


In order to do that, I had to look through some of my stuff and I found some thread I can use to work on the pulled-out elastic on a couple of my jackets, as well as a piece of stuff that says it's Lycra elastic and, even though it has to be very old, it hasn't lost its stretch. It's not as wide as I might have liked, but at this point I don't care as long as it doesn't lose its stretch. Now maybe I can begin to work on my stone-colored pants as well as the sleeves of my jackets. It's all going to be a royal pain, because I think all of them have the elastic sewn into one seam of the bands, but I'll work on them, using my handy-dandy X-Acto knife. Then I'll have to fire up the sewing machine, but maybe I'll have a pair of pants that doesn't fall down and some jacket sleeves that actually keep the cold air out. It's the same phenomenon as cars that break: you're just not supposed to keep a jacket or a pair of pants for fifteen years, so it doesn't matter if they use inferior elastic.


I had some more computer problems today. I had to open Excel to print the pages that go along with my payments to Ron and Mac, and ever since the last MS updates, it won't close - or if it does, it takes forever, I'm not sure. So I finally decided to reboot and be done with it. Bad choice. I went off to the bathroom and the post office, and when I got back, there was a nasty blue screen with some information I've never seen before about stopping the computer so as not to damage something (why can't you take a screen shot when you need one?). Yikes! So I shut off the computer and turned it back on, and it rebooted cleanly, except that Norton was screwed up. It deleted a file I've had on the computer since 2013, and it wanted to do a virus scan. I let the virus scan start, and then I wanted to download the file that it deleted. Well, neither of them completed. I don't know why the download stopped - all it said was that it stopped - but the scan was (and still is) taking forever. So I rebooted again, and now I'm letting the scan go. Hopefully, I'll be able to download my file tomorrow. It's an e-magazine I bought, so I want it on my computer. Oh, now I see. For some reason not known to me, it decided to do a complete system scan at the same time it was doing a quick scan. No wonder it's taking so long! The complete scan looked at almost 574,000 files (geez - talk about bloatware!). Now I hope the quick scan completes, too.


The weather was very spring-like. In fact, it's hot in the studio now - 81. The high temperature outside was 64 at 7:00 this evening, but it went up and down as the wind came and went. Mostly it was calm, but we are now having 18 mph gusts from the southwest. It was partly cloudy, but there was enough sunshine to warm up the house.


The guys slept. They both wanted to sit on me at times when I was otherwise engaged, like when I was eating. I think it's a little warm in here for them. 


So that was my quiet day, and I'll be off to the north end as soon as I upload this, whether or not the virus scan is complete. It's a warmish, partly cloudy evening in the field.


May 1

Well. I diddled around and diddled around and it was a ridiculous hour when I finally hauled myself up to the north end, and then I sat and stared at the floor for some more time. Once I finally got to bed, I slept very well, with only one wakeup, I think. I woke up before noon because my hip hurt, but once I got onto my back I was so comfortable that I didn't get up until 1:00. Then I knitted - and eight rows is going to be just about all i can manage in one sitting. The new stole is 136 stitches wide, so it takes a while to do one row, even though the pattern is pretty easy. Size 7 needles aren't small, and they bother my hands more than the smaller ones do.


Anyway, I ate my first meal when I would normally be thinking about dinner, then I had an accident, so I didn't finish my surfing until the talking was almost over. I think I want something else to eat, but my lovely fish is going to have to wait until tomorrow, when, hopefully, I can enjoy it.


When I woke up for the first time, the sky was nearly clear, but it soon clouded over, and it was a cloudy, dull day. For a while there were some showers out over the lake and it looked like it might rain here, but it didn't and almost all the rain is gone now. The high temperature has finally made it up to 55, within the past couple of hours. There was almost no wind. Sort of a blah day, except that it finally has warmed up a bit, which is nice.


The guys slept, too.


So now my task is to try to get back onto a human schedule again. Maybe I can help that along tonight. I won't be early, but maybe I can avoid being ridiculously late. Now it's a warm, cloudy night in the field, and May is upon us.

Last  updated 06/01/15 09:32 PM