85 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 4-29-17

  1. I’m up too early, thanks to Annie. What a pest she’s become in the early mornings. Oh well, I suppose it’s just as well today since it’s the garage cleanout launch. Linda showed up in a dream I had last night. I just remember bits and pieces — walking through a neighborhood, going to a supermarket — and I’m not sure what her role was exactly, but she was there for some of that. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Last night I watched Bridge of Spies with Tom Hanks about the Cold War, it was more interesting than I thought it would be.

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  2. My internal clock is now set to rise around seven. The alarm clock has got to me.

    I’ve been looking at the course material for next week. The equations for the statistics course made me want to scream and run away. Did I mention math is not my strong point? There was a reassuring statement in the lecture notes, that the math skills needed were at the primary school level, but those equations are nothing like what I remember of primary school math.

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  3. My stepmother and my aunt were in a car wreck yesterday. Gigi’s car is totaled but she is OK. My aunt has a broken sternum. They were in Gainesville, headed to South Florida. They are 77 and 78. My stepmother has Parkinson’s. When I talked to my stepbrother last night he told me all the things he has taken away from her–like her step stool so she can’t get to the higher cabinets (She and my dad built this house together and he was 6’6″–those cabinets are high).
    It hurts my heart a little because she has always been such a strong, independent woman. J has convinced her she can’t do yard work between 10am and 6pm–Remember we live in the hot, humid, Sunny South. She can no longer mow with the lawn tractor. He lives with her now and is doing all those things for her. He told me last night she is going to have to give up driving long distances.
    Today I will need to call my cousin and check on Auntie V. She just had a knee replacement and I just can’t imagine how much a broken sternum hurts. Mr. P said a lot.
    Getting old isn’t for sissies is it?

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  4. Six, from yesterday: he seems to get all over the place. If you are somewhere between here and New Jersey, he has been by there a couple of times. Between here and Florida, yep. Between here and Texas, yep. Between here and California, yep. Between here and Seattle, yep He is enjoying it again, though I don’t know how much he is going to enjoy the snow between here and Texas.

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  5. Kim, from what I’ve heard, the sternum is one of the most painful breaks to have (and breaking any bone is excruciating). The driver who hit my father’s car, when he was seriously injured many years ago, was an elderly woman. She did not survive. His car was hit and wrecked a few years later by another elderly female driver (no one was hurt that time). The elderly hate to give up their independence – the husband of the couple really should not be driving, but he will not admit to his physician any symptoms that might cause his license to be taken away – but of what use is that independence when one is dead or seriously injured. The problem of frail seniors driving is significant enough in Ontario that when seniors reach 80, they have to renew their license every two years by attending a special driver training session and, if necessary, pass a road test.

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  6. Yay, I made it into someone’s dream.
    At 5:30 this morning, I mumbled to my husband, “This cat can tell time perfectly but doesn’t have a handle on the days of the week.”

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  7. Oh, I’m so sorry Kim. I’m glad it wasn’t worse but still … How do they treat (as in can they re-set) a broken sternum? Or is it like breaking a rib, it just has to heal on its own in time?

    Driving does seem to be one of the hardest “freedoms” to give up as we all age. Understandable.

    Uber and other ride services help, but can be expensive and it certainly isn’t the same as hopping in your own car and just taking off when you want or need to go somewhere.

    Someday, if they can ever master and turn the ‘driverless/ car concept into a safe reality, it could be resolved, though. Not sure that will ever happen, but they sure seem to be working hard on it so it is seen as “doable” somehow.

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  8. Sooooooo….

    Anybody else catch that thrilling, come from behind, Yankee victory last night?

    ๐Ÿ˜€

    I know at least one of you did. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  9. As I tell husband, it is simply moving to other talents. Wisdom and experience don’t usually happen overnight. Stepping aside from the manual to the spiritual and mental is important. It is the loss of the younger folk if they don’t step up to learn from the elders.

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  10. I’ve heard other people lament that their elderly parent is dangerous behind the wheel, & they hope the parent doesn’t end up injured or dead in an accident. My thought is. . .what if they injure or kill someone else? It’s not only the safety of the elderly parent that is at stake.

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  11. Chas, GiGi has Parkinson’s. She has had tremors for a few years but has only recently admitted it. I am glad her son has moved up here from south Florida to live with her.

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  12. It was a nightmare to get my dad out of the car and the doctor was of no help whatsoever. My dad had a stroke that impaired his decision making abilities, cognitive function AND spacial senses. He was an accident/death waiting to happen. I don’t know how many times we BEGGED the doctor to revoke his license.

    “If we take away his license, it will remove his desire to improve.”

    I finally said, “Fine, then you’re assuming liability for him in the car. Tell me the ethics if we are not willing for our own children to ride with him and yet he’s on the road putting other people and their children at risk.”

    He finally pulled it.

    My poor father. We hired a driver to drive him around all day long as necessary. One day they visited every DMV in Los Angeles where my father went in and tried to renew his license. He didn’t understand all the information was in the computer.

    I get that Uber can be pricey, but if you are just driving around a small area, it seems to me just as helpful as a taxi. The IRS allots 55 cents a mile to own a car. If I don’t have to own the car, pay insurance, gas, licensing and repairs, PLUS I can have someone haul in my groceries if I ask nicely enough when I’m frail, why wouldn’t I use Uber, Lyft or hire a taxi?

    Monetarily, I’m not sure how far behind I’d be.

    In a case like this, DJ loses money when she drives to Hollywood to help Carol–because it’s not just wear and tear on the ar, it’s time as well.

    Try that argument.

    It wouldn’t work on my dad, but he had money to pay a driver.

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  13. Ugh! From this age 80 seems so young. I know so many still driving and living independently. We see how fast that can change, too, though. I do understand about the Parkinson’s. I have some of that in my extended family. It is difficult to make these decisions.

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  14. And most of us are old enough to realize we’ll be ‘there,’ too, before we know it.

    Took a ‘before’ photo of the garage, today is haul out, vacuum, preliminary first sorting

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  15. Michelle, my oldest brother tried to talk Mom into the “sell the car and take a taxi when you need one” approach, telling her she wouldn’t pay any more money on that choice. She wanted freedom to come and go, but she hardly ever went anywhere. When she died, we found that she kept scrupulous records on her driving, recording every fill-up and the car’s mileage in a small notebook in the car. And she’d hardly been driving at all, I think something like 300 miles in the previous year. It indeed would have been cheaper to use a taxi for her occasional trips than to insure a car, keep it repaired, and so far. The few hundred she could get for the car, plus the insurance savings, would have covered her, and she wouldn’t have had to worry about getting gas, taking the car for repairs or new tires, breaking down, and so forth. She wasn’t going to church very often, being mostly a shut-in, but I imagine someone could have picked her up and certainly had she gotten a ride there by taxi, someone could have taken her home.

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  16. Making a lot of progress out there, weird seeing pieces of your forgotten past on the driveway ๐Ÿ™‚

    Such as:

    Crutches (from when I sprained an ankle)
    A cool antique bookcase I’ll use again
    A nice wooden chair that unfortunately is broken(?)
    A plastic witches’ caldron (Halloween decor to hold candy from years past; after years in the garage, it truly does look like a caldron now!)
    Nativity set
    Bike tire pump
    And just a lot of other really random stuff. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Great storage cabinets in there and a big shelf high in the back that will hold a lot of the containers of things I’m keeping. Plenty of room for the Jeep when it’s done. Apparently most of it was jammed toward the front and the back part of the garage wasn’t as stuffed.

    And now I can get to the weather vane I snatched off the garage of the house I grew up in when I sold it 20+ years ago to someday put on this house. I have a spot in mind and maybe can have whoever paints the outside of the house put it up then.

    And there’s the old rusty water pump from my mom’s childhood home in Iowa.

    Meantime, I set up a Salvation Army pickup for the coming week (I already had some boxes packed and ready to go from inside the house) and garage worker will be back to deal with the “big” stuff (old furniture I’m getting rid of, etc.) early in the week. But he’s still working out there, trying to shop-vac up all the debris so it’ll be a nice, clean slate to work with when he comes back Monday.

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  17. And my old stereo from ‘home’ (other driveway worker from the dog park expressed an interest in that since it has a turntable — and they’re making a comeback — so I’ll likely offer it to him if he wants it; it’s something like 40 years old but is in a nice cabinet that still looks decent; not sure of its working condition, but he’s one of those handy guys and could probably fix it if he was so inclined to take and keep it).

    And the bedroom dresser (painted orange when I was a teen-ager in the 1960s) was way in the back of the garage, too. Funny. Why would I have kept that? Oh well. Soon to be gone-gone-gone.

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  18. Said he found evidence where there had been wasp nests in there and I now remember having one appear on the outside of the garage one summer (which got removed).

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  19. Luckily, I don’t find it hard to get rid of things — it’s just that I tend to procrastinate on the sorting and actual physical turmoil caused by the giving-throwing away process. It’s always been easier to “put it in the garage for now.” lol.

    NOW I’m paying the price for that …

    (I still remember how my mom had asked me to help her clean out the garage one year but somehow we never got to it. When she died not long afterward — very unexpectedly — guess who got to clean out the garage after all? ๐Ÿ™‚ )

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  20. Among the garage finds:

    * A silver-handled carving set with a yellowed note from my grandmother saying it should go to me since my dad had sent it to her while he was in the service.

    * Our old rotary dial yellow telephone, found inside the right-side oven of our old stove.

    * A very cool wood chest. Unfortunately, no gold coin treasure inside, only some super-old newspapers and other family letters. But I’d like to have that restored for use in the house.

    * Carol’s dad’s old tool box which she’ll be happy to hear I still have (I thought it was stolen when my garage in the last house was broken into but I think they just stole the tools out of it — over time, I came to think the whole thing was taken whenever she’d bring it up.

    Weird, the tank to the old toilet is missing. It was next to the rest of it in the backyard all this time but today when worker was looking to move it into the throw-away pile, it was simply gone. Oh well.

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  21. Over the years I have gotten rid of most of my things. I just have a closet of kitchen things and books. Oh, also a dresser, a table, and a loveseat at a friends house.
    Doesn’t it feel good, Dj?

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  22. I sent that link on to son, who does not understand why somebody might make that choice for his or her baby. He will send it to his friends, I suspect.

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  23. Well, I was going to get Carol to the MetroPCS on Monday to get her phone fixed and paid for for the next month but she got paid today and has blown through every cent already. Argh. I went Dutch uncle on her this time and then she cried and I felt awful … She keeps sabotaging herself. Now she has to wait until June and she got none of her necessities paid for, none.

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  24. Good Sunday morning, y’all.
    Scott’s been out of town since Thursday on a fishing trip. Connie has stayed with us while he’s gone. She starts a new job as a full-time nanny on Monday. The family lives less than a mile from us and she gets off at 4:15, so we’ll still get to see her….it’ll be so odd not having her–she’s worked for us now for twelve years……

    I went to bed early last night….around 9:30….so I awakened at five and have already ingested my maximum limit of coffee….the rest of the house is completely silent–though Mia has already been barking loudly at early-morning joggers, stray cats, etc….

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  25. DJ, how can someone without a phone spend money without leaving her room? I know, the internet, but what on earth does she buy?

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  26. Oh, and have you asked her what she plans to buy her brother for his birthday? (By the way, I don’t buy birthday or Christmas gifts for any of my siblings most of the time, nor they for me. I do buy for some of my nephews and a niece–my sister’s children. My husband doesn’t buy for his sister. That’s normal.)

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  27. It was pay day so all she needed was bus fair to Rite Aid where she said she initially was going to buy one of their phones. She said they were “out of phones” so I presume she went ahead and spent all her money on things there, she typically buys a lot of junk food and just a lot of ‘junk’ basically, it’s all more about the rush she seems to get from spending money.

    I guess I can ask her if there was anything she bought yesterday that can be returned and suggest that if so, she do it and get some of that money back. But that’s unlikely. She’s facing a full month with no money, not even bus fare. (It’s normally free for her but that was contingent on her renewing — for $15 — her transportation “access” card this month which she’s lost; she also has pension money in NY waiting for her, but that was contingent on her paying $15 to notarize the needed paperwork to send in.)

    She apparently has books overdue at the library also and now has no bus fare to get to the library, of course; she wanted to know if I’d come take her since I have next week off. But I’m so completely frustrated with her right now I don’t know if I’d be very helpful company to her (and I am steeped in the garage project here, frankly, my days off are pretty much planned).

    I told her I would have made the time to take her around Monday to “take care of business” — get the phone working and paid for, the transportation card replaced & the paperwork notarized for her pension, provided she had the money for those priorities. Guess I was just sort of speechless when she said she will have no money for any of that now until June, though I don’t know why that surprised me so much.

    I just hope that at least part of her rent was paid as she’s already behind on that.

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  28. Cheryl, I no longer exchange gifts with cousins or friends, we’ve all reached the stage (years ago) where we just don’t do that. Cards, maybe something token, and that’s it. I’ll exchange small gifts with a couple people at work.

    She did mention to me yesterday that her birthday’s coming up (I suppose “just in case” I wanted to “help her out” and count it as her BD present).

    I’m concerned that now she’s just in a self-destruct mode and has given up. Her health also seems to be worsening again, she may be low on potassium (which typically gets her hospitalized) and she’s in a lot of pain with her legs but already gets the max amount of pain medication they’re allowed to give her.

    She feels isolated, I know, and is resentful that her brother never calls and that people from her former church (where she’s still a member) have mentioned visiting but never do, she thinks they’re “hypocrites.” I told her they no doubt mean well but she is a distance away from them now.

    She said you have to be a member before Hollywood Presbyterian will provide any help such as transportation (which I find hard to believe, but her attendance there is quite spotty so I suspect she’s just fallen under their radar).

    I am going to suggest she get back in touch with Janey, the one woman from the church in Hollywood who tried to help her before, and see if she’d be willing to sit down with her now and seriously figure out her finances, but I’m pretty sure that won’t happen.

    I don’t really know how to help her right now and feel I’m lacking the grace needed to even try.

    ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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  29. Mumsee, that’s probably the best idea — and maybe it would help her mood to be able to look forward to what she can really do differently in June.

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  30. And, lest that seem harsh, she does have food and shelter where she is. She needs to either stop spending or enlist somebody to take over her monies. It would be one thing if she listened at all but she is apparently just using you. If you step back, she will use somebody else and you will get a break. Try again next month.

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  31. And I know it is frustrating, and you just want to get her to see the light. I have a daughter like that. She cannot stop spending. On junk.

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  32. Thanks, mumsee, I think that ll has helped me, at least, to leave “May” behind and try to focus her attention on a more hopeful June.

    So I have a window in the garage over the work bench — just an old slider window, aluminum frame — but worker yesterday said there’s a lot of water damage underneath it and he suggested just boarding it up and then stucco-ing over it on the outside, said I don’t need a window in the garage. It would be cheaper that way than replacing it I suppose. And I guess the window is an extra that isn’t needed unless one is working in the garage? But it’s kind of nice to have it there for some air circulation?

    Are windows in garages a good thing? Since this is southern california, weather isn’t so much a problem with them.

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  33. The sermon this morning, by one of the church elders, was on lament and trust, using Psalm 42. I have never seen a church mourn so intentionally before, and yet focus that mourning deliberately on the Lord.

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  34. โ€œThe U.S. government has a technology called a printing press (or today, its electronic equivalent) that allows it to produce as many U.S. dollars as it wishes at not cost.โ€™
    Ben Bernanke, November 21, 2002 s

    I am currently reading Fed Up by Danielle DiMartino Booth. Danielle work(s) โ€“(ed) (?) for the Federal exchange (FED) in Dallas.
    I am only half through the book and confess that I donโ€™t understand lots of what Iโ€™m reading. She uses lots of acronyms and abbreviations. E.g. the most common one is TARP. That is the government Troubled Asset Relief Program that was programmed to prevent the big banks and finance companies from failing due to the financial fiasco of the 1980โ€™s.

    From the title, you gather that t Danielle doesnโ€™t think favorably of the FED. She thinks they are a bunch of highly paid PhDโ€™s who try to manage a system they donโ€™t understand. I tend to agree considering the evidence and outcome.
    The reason Iโ€™m posting this now is that I remember reporting on a similar book several years ago. The book, Reckless Endangerment>/i> tells the same story from a different perspective. That of the various financial businesses that were affected; ad the skullduggery they pulled to help themselves and hurt the people; including their clients.

    But Reckless Endangerment comes closest by putting the finger on the real culprit:

    Congress

    The Clintons and Congress, in the 1990โ€™s had determined that everyone should have his own home, whether he could afford it or not. They forced banks and other lending institutions to make a lot of โ€œsub primeโ€ loans. That is, I could get a loan that I couldnโ€™t make payments on for a house that wasnโ€™t worth what it cost.

    Even a dummy like me can see where that leads. But not Congress, nor the Administration (including Bush), nor the PhDโ€™s at the FED. Now, for some time, they have been trying to head of financial disaster by flooding the economy with free money. That is, interest rate approaching zero.
    And a dummy like me can see where that is heading. I suspect Danielle is going there too.
    Free money will soon be worthless. Then what do we do?
    Some retirees, who depend on monthly interest payments are hurting.
    It isnโ€™t fair to people who have saved, to have their assets made worthless by the turning of a crank, a a decision made by a bunch of PhDโ€™s who have never earned a dime in the market.

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  35. Canadians don’t have to worry then, since our bills are not paper ๐Ÿ˜‰ I like the convenience of our ‘plastic’ bills (they are made from some kind of polymer), since they take up a lot less room in one’s wallet. Just don’t put them through the dryer. Washing is OK.

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  36. I’m sorting through boxes and it’s hot out there on the driveway (80 degrees and that sun is so intense today) — will have to drag things inside the gate so I can work in the shade of the patio but right now I’m taking a cold lemonade break inside.

    Finding more curiosities including a Palestinian missions coloring book. I colored everyone with red hair even though the instructions said to color the hair black.

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  37. DJ, the colour red in marker/crayon sets isn’t really the same shade as real red hair ๐Ÿ™‚ There are people with red hair in the Middle East, although they are rare: http://www.eupedia.com/genetics/origins_of_red_hair.shtml

    What is immediately apparent to genetic genealogists is that the map of red hair correlates with the frequency of haplogroup R1b in northern and western Europe. It doesn’t really correlate with the percentage of R1b in southern Europe, for the simple reason that red hair is more visible among people carrying various other genes involved in light skin and hair pigmentation. Mediterranean people have considerably darker pigmentations (higher eumelanin), especially as far as hair is considered, giving the red hair alleles little opportunity to express themselves. The reddish tinge is always concealed by black hair, and rarely visible in dark brown hair. Rufosity being recessive, it can easily stay hidden if the alleles are too dispersed in the gene pool, and that the chances of both parents carrying an allele becomes too low. Furthermore, natural selection also progressively pruned red hair from the Mediterranean populations, because the higher amount of sunlight and strong UV rays in the region was more likely to cause potentially fatal melanoma in fair-skinned redheads.

    At equal latitude, the frequency of red hair correlates amazingly well with the percentage of R1b lineages. The 45th parallel north, running through central France, northern Italy and Croatia, appears to be a major natural boundary for red hair frequencies. Under the 45th parallel, the UV rays become so strong that it is no longer an advantage to have red hair and very fair skin. Under the 41th parallel, redheads become extremely rare, even in high R1b areas.

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  38. Roscuro ๐Ÿ™‚ I picked a very soft brownish red, I noticed.

    And I colored one little girl with blond hair, decided to branch out for some diversity I guess.

    Jo, just remembered I have the small windows at the top of my garage door — so I suppose I will have ‘those’ windows. Sounds like just filling and doing away with the side window might be my most affordable option.

    Packed several boxes for the garage so far — using the weatherproof plastic containers from The Container Store — and have more give-away and throw-away items separated, one box taped up and ready to go with the Salvation Army pile. Still a ways to go, but getting there.

    Among the newest finds:

    * a set of silver spoons that belonged to my grandmother

    * my mom’s baby spoon, also silver ๐Ÿ™‚

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  39. Oh, and exciting news. A guy from the LA Conservation Corps came by (finally!) responding to my latest plea to swap out my dead tree for a live one. He said he’s on it and they’ll be back to me by mid-week.

    My curbside is a little embarrassing right now with my mom’s old sofa & chair and broken coffey table, an old door — and the dead Charlie Brown tree. Very sad. I hate leaving that stuff out there until Friday, but that’s when I can get the free city pickup. Otherwise, I’ll have to pay to get someone to haul it away sooner. Guess I’ll have to just live with it.

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  40. This blog makes for fascinating Sunday afternoon reading! I am totally exhausted from the women’s conference. It was good, but stressful in trying to keep up with my companions, one who could turn up the oxygen and walk really fast, and the other who had walking problems. I think our Bible study on grace is right on target.

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  41. I believe I always used “burnt umber” for the hair color whilst coloring….maternal grandmother had dark auburn hair…paternal grandmother a brighter red…My cousin Chris and I were the only two to have red hair…along with fair skin and freckles…blue eyes. My Mom told me my hair is lightening exactly like my Dad’s Mom’s hair…streaks of blond/white, reddish tones. I look back at old photos and wonder where my red hair went!

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  42. My hair is less-red now than it was, that’s for sure. It still looks red in the sunlight, but indoors it’s faded to mostly brown (though I now call it ‘auburn’ on my press pass applications ๐Ÿ™‚ )

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  43. Speaking of ducks… It’s been raining since Wednesday around here. Mrs L and I spent the weekend in the St. Louis area at a bible conference. It is so wet that our usual route home flooded: a major, four lane divided highway, none-the-less. The suggested detour route was 50 miles out of the way, so we took the scenic route along the Mississippi River. The river is in flood stage, but the highway there was not flooded. At several points the road goes up into the bluffs and you get great views. Here is one from about 200 feet above the river:

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  44. Catching up on the Daily Threads on a rainy Sunday. Now the prayer requests I’ve been reading lately (I have, for the most part, stayed up to date with those, though not the other threads) make more sense, as I see there is extra detail about some of those situations here in the Dailys.

    Mumsee, sounds like he’s probably been sort of / kind of / roughly near here on at least a couple of those trips. That’s a long ways, out to New Jersey!

    Fourth Arrow starts driver’s training class tomorrow. She turns 16 two weeks from today, and wants to learn to drive. I don’t see the big hurry, as she won’t be able to take her road test until at least 6 months after getting her permit, which would get her her license no earlier than November, and her dad has never wanted our kids driving in the winter when they were inexperienced, but . . . since this is what she wants, her dad is in favor, so tomorrow we fork over $350 for that experience . . .

    Gorgeous picture of the Mississippi, Peter. The trees are a lot more leafed out than they are here.

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  45. Hello, everyone! I’ve missed you all. I am just back from son’s wedding in Mexico – we had a blast and it was so good to spend time with our son and daughter-in-law as well as her family and all their friends.

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  46. Beautiful article, Michelle.

    Nice to see you, Kare, and glad you had a great time! Congratulations to your son and daughter-in-law! ๐Ÿ™‚

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  47. Peter, how did you attach your photo to your post?

    Kare, good to have you back, the pics looked wonderful. Mexico really is a beautiful country with a lot of history.

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  48. So wow, I have a lot of old dishes and unique pieces in those boxes. From England, Germany, Italy … I’ll have to figure out what, if any, are worth money as I don’t want to just “give away” something that could help fund the rest of my house renovation. ๐Ÿ™‚

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