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Recently I have been in a mild system overload and tried to clean the house.  There was an electronic recycling day in town and a paper shredding event and I decided that I needed to get things out.  That old dead VCR/DVD player that had stopped working years ago and had taken up permanent residence on a shelf in the basement – out.  Those old bills from eight years ago … did I really need electric bills from Stonington?  I didn’t think so.  Did they need to be shredded?  Probably not — but it was a goal.  Things had to be sorted and out of the house … by this date.  I am a procrastinator.  Goals and deadlines are essential.

Well, as part of this I am cleaning and sorting and everything must be shifted for I have lived in this house since December of 2007! (dang, really that long?)  I decided to move my bedroom and move my office and move … you get the picture.  It is a very good thing my children are as big as they are for I discovered that moving a king size bed is a king size pain in the butt.cats in the window

Anyway … I moved my desk.  This is just a desk … not meant for computers and all that and I have shifted it to what was formally called the cat room … I could now possibly call it my writing room, if I ever went in there to write.  I know how can you write without a computer?  Pen and notebook?  Who uses those old-fashioned things nowadays?  I actually wrote a REAL note on a note card and everything!  (I found them when I cleaned my stuff and moved everything around!)

So, I use this desk to store my journal and keep my note cards.  It is a lovely south-facing window and I may just keep the name of the room, the cat room, for they love the new furniture…

It is New England … we must prepare for winter.  You know, when we need wood for the stove and have to make sure the pantry is full and that we have enough water for three days … oh wait that could be hurricane season too.  I am so confused.

But what I have been doing to prepare for winter is spread out the tarps that we use to cover the wood pile and dry them thoroughly and fold them and put them away.  Since we have many tarps (and I had to throw two out!) this actually took two days.  There is a very particular process.  Spread them out.  Weigh down the corners with stray bits of wood.  Wait a few hours.  Turn them over.  Wait a few hours.  Then fold them.tarps

This was actually quite freeing.

I never realized how cluttered the wood area looked with wadded up tarps.  I also didn’t realize how many puddles of mosquito breeding water filled the area until we tried to move tarps without getting soaked.

So – I may not have the whole area ready for summer.  BUT I am one step closer to being ready for winter!

Wait, I only have three cats, am I a Crazy Cat Lady?  Maybe I am a Crazy Cat Lady in Training?

In the morning I like to sit quietly and write in my journal, read a meditation and look at an oracle card.  Prepare for the day in peace.  It really is hard when I have two sentinels waiting for their breakfast.  I took this picture and sent it to my daughter telling her to save me for I was surrounded.  She claims not to have received the text.  I could have been eaten alive by the cats and she would have said, huh?tea time

The cats really love to perch on the arms of my comfy chair.  When I eat dinner and my plate of food is on the little table, the grey tabby will reach out his paw and pull of tasty bits.  Now since most of the food we have eaten lately is vegetarian … one would think he wouldn’t be interested.  Have you ever heard of a cat wanting to eat lettuce, carrots and beans?  But he doesn’t seem to care.  If I am eating it, he wants it.  I also have a dark orange cat and he and the grey tabby dislike each other greatly, however the dark orange cat will rest at my feet when I am sleeping and the grey tabby will sleep leaning against my back.  The dark orange cat will curl up against my chest under a blanket and the grey tabby will glare from the arm of the chair.  It is a feline cold war that has spats of heat.

The morning is fun with the kitties and when my daughter opens her bedroom door all three cats will greet her at the bottom of the stairs. Meowing as if it has been twelve days since they last saw food instead of twelve hours … but we love them anyway.  Aren’t pets grand?

Yes I must live in New England.

One night people are covering plants to protect them from the frost and the next day it is so warm that short sleeves would have been good when walking (but I got dressed when it was frosty and was wearing a turtleneck) and a sunburn now graces my face.cats and catnip

My cats were angry with me because I had shut the door to the porch over night.  They don’t care about frosty temperatures because they have fur coats.  I actually started a fire in the wood stove and it felt pretty good.

Tonight it should be in the 60’s and so I will probably leave the window open.

The birds were angry with me because I woke up after they did and wasn’t quick about putting the bird feeder out again.  I now have to bring that inside at night because of our local ursine creature that enjoys emptying the bird feeder.  I don’t have the courage to tell him (or her) that he isn’t a bird and it is not for him.  Since I have never seen said creature I guess I am just making the wild assumption that it is a bear … it could have been a troupe of travelling raccoons perched precariously on top of each other and tipping the feeder to share with the others.

Yes, Spring has finally sprung.  The cats are loving it.

Memorial Day, a holiday known in history as Decoration Day, that name makes much more sense in my mind.  Decoration Day was a day when you put up bunting and flew flags and decorated graveyards.  A Day of Remembrance for those who lost their lives to give us the freedoms we should hold dear.flag

I think that I never truly understood this holiday until I worked at a museum.  Yes, I was a Girl Scout and marched in the parade in town for many years.  We would bring little bouquets to place at graves of those with little American Flags.  We would hear the “old guys” speak and we were told to be respectful and quiet and sing when others sang.  But it was a day off from school when we were so close to the end of the year.  A little taste of summer before the long weeks began.  If you watch the commercials … we should have our grills out, our coolers large enough to hydrate a professional football team and our lawn furniture prepared for hours of leisure (what’s that?).

Maybe it is a sign of maturity that I think that Memorial Day should go back to being Decoration Day.  Keep the BBQs and picnics for the Fourth of July.  I am all for large gathering on the Fourth of July, it makes sense to celebrate then.  It is a birthday.  Memorial Day is really a Death Day.

I guess that having to work the past few years hasn’t helped me feel too festive … but seeing the flags for soldiers at large cemeteries doesn’t either.

As a staff member pointed out … it was mine.  But when it was my idea and not a reality it was going to work SO much better, because that is what ideas do!  Right?

I have been saying for about seven years now – wouldn’t it be great to have a table with a puzzle on it so that patrons could come in and work on the puzzle for a little while and pick up some new books and then go away.  Everyone will help and it will be a community effort and wouldn’t it be grand?

Yeah, right.puzzle

In an ideal world when puzzles actually had different shapes and real colors — this puzzle is the Hunger Games of puzzles.  This puzzle proves that distopia exists.  My style of puzzle creating is to look at the shape of the missing piece and then look for that piece.  This puzzle is torture in the fact that all the pieces are basically the same outies at either end and innies in the middle.  How can you put a puzzle together when all the pieces are nearly identical?

I used to do puzzles a lot — in the winter my family would have one going near the wood stove most of the winter.  We would have a large cutting board to put over the puzzle for when the cats decided that lying on a hard table was preferable to sitting on the blanket covered sofa.  We learned to do that the hard way when we discovered pieces all over the floor from a cat that liked to roll over on the partially completed puzzle.

When I lived with my cousin for a summer she would get these gargantuan puzzles … like 2000 or 3000 pieces.  These lovely picturesque puzzles of seaside villages near the ocean.  She would do the village and surrounding area and leave the sky for me.  I got good doing sky parts of puzzles.

But — I highly dislike this puzzle.  All fuzzy muted colors.  All pieces identical.  UGH UGH UGH … but, when this puzzle is done … we have the American flag puzzle next … that should be better … those colors are bright and strong.

I have a glider that my mother-in-law bought me a very long time ago … maybe Mother’s Day 2003?  or maybe a little later but I did indeed have it in Stonington.  It was on the little concrete deck that I had my grill on just next to my “3 Season Room”  and then it would come inside during the late autumn and winter to be protected while the snows blew.  It had a nice tan flowered cushion that you were supposed to Velcro in place those straps frayed over time because of course you couldn’t leave it out during inclement weather.  Oops!  Did it just rain while I was at the grocery store?

When it was brought inside during the late autumn and winter, it would reside in the “3 Season Room” in front of the propane stove and the kids and I would sit on it and read in the warmth and it was glorious.  But I differentiated the “Rocky Bench” from the sofa so the kids would know which room I wanted to go to.  Back then the three of us could fit on the rocky bench and be quite comfortable as we read “Sheep in the Jeep”, “The Alpha Boat” and “Harry Potter”.  We would gently rock and read and be content for hours.Eomer and cushion

When we moved to Goshen the rocky bench came with us.  It moved from garden shed in winter to either the back deck or the screened in porch depending on my mood in the spring.  Unfortunately the cushion got left out one too many times and somehow never dried all the way and maybe a cat was sick on it and I debated throwing it out.  But the frame was strong still and so I decided to find cushions.  I gave the bistro set to my sister — I never quite knew what to do with that set.  (Why have a tiny table with two chairs when you have 3 people in your family?)  The moving of the bistro set made plenty of room for the rocky bench and when I went to my most favorite store (Ocean State Job Lot — my local store is sort of like ‘Cheers’ they may not know my name, but they say hello cheerily every time I walk in and when I come in at a different time the manager says … you don’t usually come in now!) to look for cushions I found something that I thought would work … and it has my cat’s seal of approval!

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