Tuesday is usually a good day to shop

I have just returned after a morning of shopping. This is a rarity for me as I usually go to one or two stores and spend maybe an hour out doing this chore. I pick Tuesdays to do my shopping as it has been a quieter day in retail. Too many people are getting the same idea, though, and the stores have become a bit more crowded, especially as the day progresses.

This morning’s first stop was Orchard Supply Hardware. I was looking for another lavender plant as the one from last year finally gave up the ghost. I found one I liked, and picked up some more potting soil as this plant will go into a pot, a lavender-colored pot.

My main reason for going to Orchard was to get more “bug boxes.” These are great little cardboard boxes that pop out of their packaging and go out around the doors into our house to catch the bugs that might be trying to get in. Although I use essential oils indoors, these boxes work so well outdoors to stop the critters in their tracks. Once the box is filled on one side with dead bugs, I turn it over and fill the other side then toss the whole thing in the trash bin. I had run out of these boxes and found that Orchard was out of them, too. Or, at least the Orchard in my neighborhood. The manager checked and found that the store a couple of miles away had just gotten a shipment of 30, which meant a total of 60 “bug boxes” as there are two per package. I immediately went over and bought 5 packages. While there I chatted with a couple who was trying out all of the wind chimes to find just the right one. Orchard had the wind chimes on sale. I had bought one at the other store as I wanted a replacement for one that has seen better days and has lost its lovely sound. I pointed out the one I had selected, and the couple liked it, but wanted it in a bigger size.

My next stop was the school supply store where I would get some more prizes for the first graders. One of the classes got a score of 86 percent on their final assessment, the highest of the four classes, so I wanted to give them a reward. They were also only one star away from another prize for their star chart, a tool I use for classroom management. I was able to find coloring books on the clearance aisle. Also found erasers that can be used for next year’s prizes and some fun things for my grandchildren to play with. I checked out the puppets as I want a toucan. The school supply store is a favorite place of mine.

On to Salvation Army Thrift Store where I found some items to help decorate for my daughter’s Vacation Bible School at which Terry and I will be working. The theme this year is “Shipwrecked.” I got more pants and backpacks which I will deliver to Columbia tomorrow. A friend of mine has Alzheimers and crocheting helps calm her mind and keep her focused. People are always giving her yarn for her projects.  Today there were bags and bags of yarn at Salvation Army. Most of the bags were very large with 10 or more skeins in all sorts of colors. I looked for a smaller bag, one with four skeins, to take to my friend. I don’t want to overwhelm her.

My last stop was at Sprouts and it was noon. The store was packed with customers, and it was getting a complete makeover so it was also packed with store personnel. The shelves were being emptied and changed out. Chaos ensued. Nothing was where it used to be. Maybe Tuesday isn’t the best day for shopping any more. I was able to find most of what I needed and got back home just before 1 o’clock.

I have installed the new wind chime.


What is domestic violence?

Does your partner:

Insult, demean or embarrass you with put-downs?

Control what you do, who you talk to or where you go?

Look at you or act in ways that scare you?

Push you, slap you, choke you or hit you?

Stop you from seeing your friends or family members?

Control the money in the relationship? Take your money or Social Security check, make you ask for money or refuse to give you money?

Make all of the decisions without your input or consideration of your needs?

Tell you that you’re a bad parent or threaten to take away your children?

Prevent you from working or attending school?

Act like the abuse is no big deal, deny the abuse or tell you it’s your own fault?

Destroy your property or threaten to kill your pets?

Intimidate you with guns, knives or other weapons?

Attempt to force you to drop criminal charges?

Threaten to commit suicide, or threaten to kill you?

If you answered “yes” to even one of these questions, you may be in an unhealthy or abusive relationship.

Source: The National Domestic Violence Hotline

Where to call

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233

More love, less anger

I had no more than posted yesterday’s piece about angry people when I see the police chief on TV telling us a horror story about a man who kidnapped his ex-wife and two children because he was angry to see her posting pictures on Facebook with another man.

Not only did he kidnap these people, he beat the ex-wife and 11 month old son and left them for dead. They were rescued by a man in the park where the bad man had taken them to inflict this punishment. He told the woman that he wanted her to feel like he did when he saw that picture on Facebook. How insane is that.

The police chief told the whole horrid story (I have given you a very shortened version) because he wanted to find the ex-husband and arrest him. The man has already been arrested six times for domestic violence. You think it will make any difference on the seventh try? They did find him and he is back in custody, but for how long? I don’t know. I cannot follow this story as it makes me angry, and I’m trying to not be angry.

I was thrilled to hear part of Bishop Curry’s wedding sermon this morning to the royal couple (and for the rest of us, too), where he talked of love.

This love, this is the way of Jesus. And it’s game changer.
Imagine our homes and families when this way of love is the way.
Imagine our neighborhoods and communities when love is the way.
Imagine our governments and countries when love is the way.
Imagine business and commerce when this love is the way.
Imagine our world when love is the way.
No child would go to bed hungry in such a world as that
Poverty would become history in such a world as that.
The earth would be as a sanctuary in such a world as that.
We would treat one another as children of God, regardless of differences.
We would learn how to lay our swords and shields down by the riverside to study war no more.

I want more love, less anger, in this world of ours.



Too many angry people

As I’m writing this we are still hearing the news out of Santa Fe, Texas, of another school shooting, killing at least eight people. Early reports say that it is a student at the school. My question, every time, is why are these kids so angry?

The problem, though, is not just in the schools, but every where. There are so many angry, impatient people out there. I hear people yelling at one another. I hear it at school. I hear it on the streets. And, of course, we hear it in the media.

The roads seem packed with outraged drivers. Too impatient to wait for pedestrians. Too impatient to even stop before making a right hand turn into oncoming traffic. Yesterday, on my way home from school, I stopped at a red light, waiting to make a right hand turn, and also keeping my eye on a young boy who planned to cross the street. He had the right of way. I had a red light. We made eye contact. He knew I was there, but I was waiting for the light to turn green. The guy behind me honks. And waves his hand. “Turn already,” seemed to be his message. I inched out into the crosswalk, the young boy and I still making eye contact, and checked for oncoming traffic. I made the turn. The guy behind me did, too, without taking those precautions. He raced around me.

I would have liked to have just sat at that intersection waiting for the light to change. Waiting for the young boy to cross, safely. I was not in a hurry. I was not angry. But the guy behind me was. There is a risk in doing something that purposely makes the other driver angry. Or angrier. Road rage is common on our streets.

Angry people don’t seem to know how to handle their anger and frustration but to take it out on someone else. Fresno has one of the highest rates for domestic violence, too.

Getting back into the groove of reality

Being gone for four days can mess up one’s routine, but I guess that’s one reason to go away and see some new sights. Get out of the routine. Now, it’s time to get back in the groove.

Our granddaughter celebrated her ninth birthday this weekend. We picked her up at school on Friday and she and her brother spent the rest of the day and Friday night with us. We went to her favorite restaurant for dinner and then they stayed overnight at the hotel with us. She had an all-day, all-night party happening with her friends on Saturday. I took our grandson to the aviation museum for most of the day. He bought Lego kits to build some model helicopters and planes so that also kept him busy and out of his sister’s hair.

On Sunday we all went to church together and then out to lunch at a downtown Italian restaurant that makes food we can all agree on–pizza, pasta, and amazing salads. It was combination Mother’s Day and birthday party. By Sunday night I was very tired and ready to go to bed very early.

We came home Monday and the grandchildren returned to school. Our grandson wanted us to pick them up at school again, but we had run out of time. It was back to reality for all of us. We will be back with them in two months when we help out with Vacation Bible School for a week at our daughter’s church. She handed me our assigned materials before we left on Monday.

Part of my reality is to get Leeya’s Book 9 laid out and published. I use Shutterfly for this project, and every year they change the software and seem to make it less intuitive. For someone who had all those years of yearbook experience, it should be a piece of cake, but every year, twice a year since I do a book for each grandchild, I struggle to make the software do what should be so easy to accomplish.

Sparkle plenty

Terry looks at me as I sit at the breakfast table this morning, sunlight streaming in on my face.

“You have glitter all over your face. Is that a new makeup?”

“What? No! I’ve not even showered and washed my hair yet.”

We slept in until 6:30. This is a day I don’t have to be anywhere so I plan to stay home and clean the patio, run the sprinklers, prune some shrubs. I’m still in my pajamas although I have been out to turn on sprinklers in the yards and begin to move patio furniture.

Terry looks at me again and says that the glitter is mostly on my left side. Then I remember: Leeya’s birthday card. I worked on it last night, right before going to bed, and on the same desk where my laptop spends the night. Leeya loves sparkly things so the card I bought for her, and put $9 in because she will be nine, is covered with sparkles and glitter. I wrote swirly letters of love all over the card and decorated the envelope.

I guess I accumulated glitter on my hands and then put it on my face when I got in bed and tucked my hands around my head. Since I sleep mostly on my left side, that side of my face got the most.

After I do my exercise routine I’ll shower and wash my hair, hopefully sending the remaining sparkles down the drain. However, it will probably be making an appearance all week as glitter seems to spread and multiply.

May Day, May Day

May is one of my busiest months of the year. School is wrapping up and there are lots of pieces to those final weeks. Throw teacher appreciation in there, too. Then this year I had a funeral luncheon in the first week. Whew. I’ve been scrambling to rearrange my schedule at school, put all the pieces together for the luncheon, and make arrangements for activities later in the month.

Our granddaughter’s birthday falls in May, and ever since I’ve been doing the school chaplain thing and she has been in school, we have missed seeing her on the special day. She voiced regret to her mother last year that none of her grandparents were at her birthday. I decided right then that it would not happen this year. We made plans to spend the weekend with her. Then learned that her parents really needed us to come on Friday as well because they had obligations on both sides of the Bay. I scrambled and changed our plans to coincide with their needs.

My hair stylist and my dentist need to see me in the next week. Last week my internist wanted to check on that blood pressure project. Communion is on Sunday and I am the one who prepares the elements. Although I’ve been in the stores off and on all week, getting supplies for the funeral luncheon, that, by the way, came off very successfully yesterday, I’ve not gotten the bread yet.

All of this in the first four days of the month with lots more to come.