Tuesday, March 29, 2016


If major life events come in groups of three then we are due to be done with them for a while. My mom had a stroke on the 17th, I rushed Ken to the ER with a raging fever and abdominal pain on the 20th, lost my mom on the 25th and have spent the last several days at the bedside of my dying sister in law. If one more person reminds me not to be surprised by all of this because it's that stage of my life right now, I think I'll slap them. I mean, really. WTF. Is that supposed to make me feel better?

I am home now for a few days to regroup and tend to our business. Man oh man oh man, are my solo driving skills ever rusty. Gone are the days of making 20 hour drives with two or three potty breaks. I just barely pulled off a four hour stint. We're talking stops every 30 or 40 minutes and full out, lie down, stretch out, use the bag of dirty clothes as your pillow naps in the back of the van now. 

I am so relieved to be home and a certain creamsicle cat has been very happy to welcome me back.

Monday, March 14, 2016


K knows that any sudden appeal to stop the car and turn around means one of two things...a pile of stuff by the side of the road with a free sign in front of it or a fabulous photo op worth turning around for, no matter how heavy the traffic. 

And so it was the other day. A perfectly mundane kind of day. Packing in the morning, trips into town to ship, gassing up the car and checking the air pressure in the tires. I saw it immediately, lying there on the ground next to the air machine. A large, gnarly crab apple limb, recently broken off in the previous night's wind storm. I was sure it could be saved. I'll force it, you'll see

Trying to look excited, K cast a slight eye roll my way and muttered something that sounded an awful like anything for you, dear. Then he dutifully got back out of the car, retrieved the roadkill and placed it carefully in the back of the van. 

It's been two weeks since that day. Two long weeks of no action, unless you count the many times the cats knocked it over trying to drink out of the pitcher. And then suddenly this morning those buds weren't just slightly swollen, they were green, and by day's end it was easy to see that we'd soon have blossoms indoors.
It's been a very mild winter but that hasn't softened my desire for it to finally be Spring. Force it, I say. Make it happen indoors if you have to. Every now and then Mother Nature needs a little help.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016


It's way too early but who cares. 
It's Porch Sittin' Weather and the rockers are coming out of storage. I'm even making them new seat covers too
Spring is such a welcome relief, even in years where we've had little in the way of winter. 
Grateful to have time to savor every second of the new season this year.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016


Back in January, after thinking about my Aunt Kathy for some time I looked her up on Facebook, found her (recognizing her wedding photo which hung in my childhood home) and sent her a friend request. I hadn't seen her in at least forty years and boom, just like that, we were reconnected.

My most vivid memories my aunt are of her visiting during summer vacation. She was glamorous, full of life and fun, and stunningly beautiful. I was certain she was a princess. 

Yesterday a box arrived in the mail from her. It was full of family photos. Images of my mom and her brother when they were little. Photos of my mom and dad before they were married. Photos of my paternal grandparents and maternal great grandparents. 

Some day I'll tell the story of my mother's childhood. A tale which includes unspeakable sadness of almost every kind. But that is for another day. Today is for focusing on the beauty and innocence of her precious young face, the unbounded joy in her eyes as a toddler and the fact that in the end, her story had a such a sweet and happy ending. 

Bless you, mom. I will never cease to be inspired by your courage, your dignity, your strength.


First trike

With her beloved brother, Bobby

 Ready for school

 As a young teenager

 A glamorous career gal in NYC

Friday, March 4, 2016


March came in on roaring winds and cold temps. Soon it'll be in the 60's again. This on again, off again Winter...no wait it's Spring! HAH, fooled you again, it's still Winter stuff is starting to get a little old.

So here's what we did yesterday...
Yeah, we thought we were done with the whole selling antiques thing, but I guess we weren't...not totally at least. We're selling Marmalade Mercantile merch along side antique pieces at a lovely shop in Corning. Adding a second income stream is good and having a physical presence for MM is wonderful. We'll see how it works out!