73 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 2-29-20

  1. Good morning!
    It’s cold, and it’s not raining. The weather report said it’s been one of Georgia’s rainiest Feb. on record.

    Over at the First Baptist of Decatur (which got dismissed as part of the Southern Baptist Convention for having had a woman pastor), Hillary and Chelsea will be doing a program about their new children’s picture book. I won’t get a ticket for that (Duh). The Georgia Center For the Book, which I think is part of the library system, is in charge. When they have overflow events for the library they use that church, the Carter Center, or Agnes Scott College to handle the crowds.

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  2. It is a good morning. Spring time warn: thirty five and clouds. My sis in law sent me a puzzle so I need to get to work on it on my days off from grandbaby time. Three thousand pieces.

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  3. I have to pick up around here before my friend comes. I also bought some fresh hanging flower plants for the front porch to replace the dying poinsettias. It’s time.

    It is weird to have a “Feb. 29.” And after having yesterday off, I kept thinking this was Sunday. When I was about to go to sleep last night I checked in on the blog and thought “oh, AJ forgot to put up Rants and Raves today.” I’m entirely confused.

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  4. Art drove my car today because my brother will be at the office to unload those boxes of printer paper.

    I have been revising my story this a.m. in getting it ready to submit to the contest. I pulled a smaller chair up to my desk chair for Miss Bosley to sit in when she wants to visit. She stayed there a bit and then went elsewhere for a nap. She used to walk all over the keyboard, but now she acts more like a mature cat. I am thankful.

    Everything has gotten backed up on the housework since I have been concentrating on writing and submitting in four categories to the contest. I seem to be an all or nothing person with my work efforts. I have also been helping the person who will be my roommate with critique of her work which thankfully is not competing in my categories. That could be a little awkward, but it would be okay. I am utilizing critiques I received in the past to help in revision of my contest entries. Critiques are great in helping to improve writing skills.

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  5. We have had a 3K puzzle for many years. It has been worked on some, but never completed. It is in large chunks and pieces in the box. We have a 3D shark one, too, that I remind the grandchildren about now and then. Those are a challenge.

    The senior living place we go to each week for a music jam has a puzzle room. It is filled with puzzles in boxes and they line the walls. One was framed for the main social room and another was just glued and put by the soft drink machine, since it is a Coke themed one. Sometimes one will be out on a table in that room for anyone to work.

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  6. That’s actually dangerous for me. If there’s a puzzle out, I’m working on it. We usually limit ourselves to when the children are home and we use it as a group conversation activity. I’ve got a large whiteboard with a wooden frame, about 30 inches by 40 inches. We only have one table and it’s the dining table. So we place the whiteboard on the table and work the 1000-piece puzzle against its white background.

    When we need to use the table, say to eat, we just pick up the board and move it elsewhere.

    The 3K piece puzzle is almost three times as big, obviously, and it would fill up at least a third if not half of my kitchen island. I have a large piece of whiteboard my husband removed from a Sunday School classroom at church. We were going to use it at Christmastime for the puzzle but never got that far. Maybe later . . .

    Someone suggested buying a large piece of plexiglass and work the puzzle on the island. When the Island is needed, say for food prep (!), just place the plexiglass on top.

    Maybe.

    I’m addicted, though. Once I start, I have trouble leaving it alone until it’s finished. 😦

    Which is also why I’m a good genealogist and researcher–always hunting the missing piece!

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  7. We had a 3000 piece puzzle, but we never did it, not just because of the room, but also because it wasn’t a very interesting picture. My parents remember a family friend having a five thousand piece puzzle on a table in their front room for anyone to work on who entered the house. Over the years we have done several 3D puzzles, usually of famous European architectural structures. We have also done several History Through Time puzzles. They are layered puzzles, with the first layer being a historical map, the second a modern map, and the third layer being plastic models of buildings, with a timeline of when each building was built. We did one of London and one of New York, and one of my nephews asked for and got one of Chicago. There are also versions for ancient history, and Eldest Sibling’s family has done one of Ancient Egypt; and also fantasy ones, and once again, Eldest’s family has done one of Middle Earth, and another nephew who likes Batman got one of Gotham City. We have also done novelty puzzles, that have whimsical shaped pieces within the puzzles and we have done several mystery puzzles, where there is a mind puzzle within the puzzle. But I think my favourite puzzles are those of famous artworks, as putting the puzzle together allows you to study the artwork in detail. The works of M. C. Escher are especially challenging, as his lithographs were only in black and white, making putting together his weird perspectives and optical illusions even more challenging.

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  8. When I was a Mumsee’s, I believe we completed one puzzle and then did two more. Mumsee does not consider simply doing the puzzle enough of a challenge. She also puts away the box, so that there is no picture to refer to (a couple of the mystery puzzles my family have done also had no pictures, while a third had the pictures, but things were shifted around or details were changed between the lid and that actual puzzle, making the picture on the lid an unreliable guide). The absence of a picture will make those 3000 pieces even more of a challenge.

    Speaking of puzzle piecing rules, do all you puzzlers start with the edges first?

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  9. Good afternoon or morning. For various reasons, we haven’t done any puzzles for a very long time, though I myself have found them enjoyable in the past. We’ve generally started with the edges on smaller puzzles, but will sometimes begin with a distinctive feature, wherever it may be, within a larger puzzle.

    —–

    I have a question about personal articles insurance policies. My husband recently spoke with our insurance agent where we have several types of insurance, including homeowner’s, and, long story short, he added some extra for the grand piano.

    Today in the mail we received four pages of information about the grand piano addition: 1. Declarations Page; 2. Personal Articles Schedule; 3. Amendatory Endorsement ([my State’s name]); and 4. Balance Due Notice

    The question I have is about something written on the Amendatory Endorsement page. There is a section with the heading Loss Settlement Endorsement, with this written below it:

    “The following is added to the Loss Settlement provision of this policy: Any property we pay for or replace becomes our property.”

    What does that even mean? If our house burns down and my teaching piano goes with it, if the insurance company pays to replace the piano, then that’s their property??

    I asked hubby if he knew what that meant, and he had no idea, either. I plan to go talk to the agent next week, but would like to have some foreknowledge on the topic. Any input from those of you with experience with this is welcome. I don’t know if this is a state thing (it was on the page that specifically listed my state, so maybe this isn’t a universal or common thing)?

    Thanks.

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  10. 6, I have no experience with homeowners insurance, but the way I read that clause is that say something insured was stolen and the insurance replaced that stolen article, but then the stolen article was recovered, because the insurance company has already replaced the article with another for the owner, the recovered article becomes the property of the insurance company, rather than the original owner.

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  11. I took over the children’s school table. We are flexible. Daughter actually tried to look at the picture! I hid it. Is it a puzzle if you look at the picture?

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  12. I haven’t done a puzzle in a while. but it really is best as a group activity and my dogs and the cat would only serve to scramble it all. Well, the cat would just swoop it off the table with one swipe of her paw. That’s very satisfying for cats, for some reason.

    Been picking up and wiping down furniture, counters, floors all morning. Almost done, just need to get the bathroom finished and hang the new plants on the front porch, take some stuff on the patio into the garage …

    Just finally had breakfast, bacon and eggs. That was lunch, too.

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  13. The last time I did a puzzle was before most of you were born> I Know I haven’t done one since I joined the AF in 1949. I used to do them with K.B. Beach. A school chum. . .

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  14. Roscuro–those layered puzzles sound fascinating. My machinist son has one of those minds that sees in 3-5 dimensions–which is why he’s so good at Lego, puzzles and his job. He lives in a small house, but he’s love one of those!

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  15. This puzzle is forty eight inches by thirty two. Seems to have ocean life in it. I see corals and parts of clown fish and some others. Should be fun. I generally do edges first but if I don’t find them all, it is okay. Then proceed to any colors that catch my eye.

    The most difficult sis and I shared and neither finished was hay in a needlestack. I don’t remember how many pieces.

    I enjoy doing them with others but none of the current children are puzzlers. They used to be, when they were younger, we did a lot of them. Most adults do them faster than I can keep up so I can enjoy them with others or by myself.

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  16. I’ve done puzzles up to 1,000 pieces, including one with irregular edges (a horse shape–for that one, I had a friend who liked puzzles over for dinner, and she put together the tail, which I found “too much.” When I broke apart the puzzle after it was finished, I left the tail together). I wouldn’t want more than 1,000, as I find 1,000 really more than I prefer. I do have quite a few puzzles, including some custom-made ones, but haven’t done any since we married. We do now have a dining room table, though.

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  17. Thanks, Roscuro (1:48). That makes sense.

    Speaking of stealing articles (specifically musical instruments), though an acoustic piano, especially a grand, wouldn’t be an easy thing to steal, something like a violin (or viola, in my case) could, of course, be grabbed and whisked away more easily. But that reminds me of a joke I heard.

    You know how violas/violists are sometimes the butt of jokes in the classical music world? A certain choir director who knows I’m a violist said once, “Do you know how to keep your violin from being stolen?”

    A: “Hide it in a viola case.”

    Ha ha ha. 😉

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  18. 6, ha! Yes, it is not easy to steal a piano. I was thinking, with a violin or other instrument, the relationship between musician and instrument is very personal. Most just want their own instrument back, not an insurance replacement, so that would be a difficult clause. The worship pastor of the city church had several instruments stolen, and it was gut wrenching for him. Thankfully, the police tracked several down.

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  19. Edges first, of course. Then it tends to be whatever stands out, such as distinctive patterns or objects. That means the hardest parts are inevitably done last, those bits of blank sky or shadowy corners where there are few features to catch the eye. Then, you have to go by shape alone. I have an uncle who is colour blind, and I remember a puzzle we had with a sunset. He could not distinguish the sunset colours so he had to go by shape alone to put a piece in. Eldest in-law always threatens to get us (we do at least one big puzzle as a family over Christmas/New Year’s) the puzzles that are all one colour, where the only point is to put the puzzle together by shape alone. As he enjoys the picture puzzles as much as anyone, I doubt he would really do it.

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  20. We had one of those single colors once— challenging, but not too bad. Escher is tricky but the worst was a bunch goldfish against a blue background. We got rid of it as soon as we finished it— after a long month 25 years ago. VanGogh’s Starry Night was surprisingly challenging, too.

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  21. I got a puzzle catalog for a few years, and ordered from them once or twice. They had one puzzle that was crazy difficult because both sides of the pieces were printed, same picture, rotated maybe 90 degrees. To me something like that simply wouldn’t be fun.

    I do the edges first, and then after that it depends on the color. Sometimes I sort pieces by color and start seeing what in each “batch” fits together; sometimes I put together specific items within the picture. And yes, I use the box. Not constantly, but I don’t think I’d want to do a puzzle without it, at least not one with more than 250 pictures or so.

    My mom talks about the time they got a custom puzzle made for one of my older brothers. He was putting together pictures of goats and a person, and he kept referring to the person as “the man.” Not until the puzzle was nearly complete did he realize that “the man” was in fact himself. I’m not sure how old he was (it would have been before I was born), but presumably under ten.

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  22. We usually have one person working the edges and another looking for matching color sections, and we do use the box cover as a help. We have not done one lately. I actually have one of the Twin Towers before 9/11. I have never been emotuonally able to open it. We like to do them annually at Hilton Head but have not recently due to health issues.

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  23. I love that there are so many puzzlers here. I enjoy them, too. The chef and I do puzzles during the slow season at lunch. She’s in Israel right now so I just did one all by myself.

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  24. Roscuro, how awful for the city church pastor who had so many instruments stolen! I’m glad some(?) of them were eventually recovered. Were they damaged at all, or did the thief(ves) try to sell them?

    You know that I play in a string ensemble at church periodically. The rest of the players are mainly high school age. After one of our rehearsals last year, two of the players purposely left their instruments at church and went home. Apparently they didn’t have time to practice at home between that rehearsal and the next time they’d need to play it (at church a day or two later).

    The other member of our quartet saw their instrument cases on or near the pews after they’d left and looked at me with huge eyes and raised eyebrows, and said, “I wouldn’t have left my instrument here!”

    I couldn’t agree more. It’s either at home or with me when I need it elsewhere. (With the obvious exception of when it needs to be in for servicing.)

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  25. 6, they found one of the homeless population busking with one of the instruments, while a few others were found in a pawnshop in Toronto, which is close enough for there to be daily comings and goings between the cities. Clearly, someone was using them to get quick money. They were stolen from the church, and the thought was that someone cased the joint, hid during the day when the church was unlocked (the building is old and has been built onto, so there are a lot of nooks and crannies) and then, after everyone had gone home, broke into where the instruments were kept. The church is right in the downtown core where the homeless population is extensive and pervasive. There was a tent city on the wide pavement pitside the church for a while, before the city moved them (the church made sure they had been offered shelter before it was broken up). I have seen people wandering around stoned, having psychotic breaks, etc. all in the vicinity of where the church is. The homeless occasionally wander in, some to listen to the service and perhaps participate (the church baptized one former homeless person while I was there). But others come to panhandle or more sinister purposes (we had a rather disturbing incident where we had to take measures to protect two of our children from someone who followed them off the street). Some months before the theft, I saw one of the homeless population leaving the church from an odd direction, as if he’d been in the area where the offices were, an area most congregants do not frequent – I recognized this person as one who had, some years before when I was also in the city, actually entered the church to panhandle and there was always something about his manner that made me suspect criminal intent. I have wondered if he had anything to do with the theft.

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  26. Staying from church, only got to bed at 2:30 or so (friend left at 1 am. — or maybe around 1:30, can’t remember now, but it was let); I’m barely awake now.

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  27. After several days of being behind on comments here, I have finally caught up.

    Re: Puzzles – A couple of times, my mom liked the picture on a large puzzle enough that she did the puzzles on a board just the right size, and when it was finished, she shellacked them and hung them up as art.

    Chickadee, like Peter’s daughter, was doing puzzles for older kids when she was really young. Later, as a teen, she got into doing Sudoku puzzles. She does them pretty fast, and once finished one quicker than a brilliant engineer (so I was told) doing the same puzzle. Recently, Nightingale and I were amazed to learn that she does them in pen.

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  28. We all went to early service, and after that is Sunday School for grades 6 and under, and Bible study for those older. However, I ended up coming home with 6th Arrow, who started feeling quite ill again by the end of the service. (Sick, heavy feeling in the stomach; crying that she wanted to go home.) Fortunately, we’d taken two vehicles to church, so the ones who stayed for Bible study had a vehicle in which to return home, without my having to drive back to church later to pick them up. Daughter wanted someone home with her, which gave me a clue she really was feeling awful, as, at 12 years old, she loves those infrequent times everyone else is gone from home and she can be here by her own self.

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  29. Roscuro, I can’t remember if I’ve asked you this already, but have you played on Benjamin Britten’s Simple Symphony? The third movement, Sentimental Sarabande, is one of the few orchestral works I’ve played that has a lovely viola melody (the 2nd violins, also, on that movement — I don’t recall if you played 1st or 2nd violin in your orchestra experiences?

    The (IMO) really gorgeous part is from about 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 minutes in:

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  30. Home from church and the snow clouds are moving over the mountains towards us. This shall be a “lazy day” for us 😊 (daughter and I always waiting in the car for husband to exit the church for at least 15 minutes…the difference between extro and intro verts!) 🙃

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  31. Here are some replies to some comments:

    Mumsee – In response to my comment about Nightingale’s messes downstairs, you wrote that her stuff should remain upstairs, and that she should have done the Cub Scout project upstairs. Mostly, I agree.

    The items that collect on the counter, and often on the table, are things that need to be taken upstairs, like mail or glasses/cups/etc. that were brought downstairs but belong upstairs, but don’t get taken up right away. Sometimes I will leave some items on her stairs to go up. But I let the end-of-the-counter stuff pile up until it is too much. Lately, I’ve been trying to deal with it before it gets to that point.

    Yes, I know that she should probably deal with it, but it is part of what I do to help. But since I don’t know where everything goes, I leave the stuff on the stairs or on her little table in the upstairs kitchen.

    As for the CS project, my dining room has more room for that than anywhere upstairs. It was a case of bad timing to have that project and my cleaning, and then the Valentine’s Day visit with Chickadee, come together the same week.

    Eventually, whenever we can begin renovating the upstairs (which probably won’t be for quite a while), we are going to be combining all her kitchen stuff with mine, which is going to be quite a challenge considering that my kitchen is small with not enough cabinets. Before then, we will do a lot of weeding out, and thinking about how else to store whichever kitchen items “overflow”.

    To be continued. . .

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  32. 6, it is – there are both men’s and women’s homeless shelters within three blocks – and it isn’t – city hall, the central library, the courthouse, main bank offices, etc., are also within three blocks. The nearby mall and stores are an odd combination of the stores that crop up around poverty – bankruptcy outlets, lottery booths, payday loan, pawnshops – and the high end stores for well heeled executive – jewelry stores, high end clothing boutiques, delicatessens/groceries with imported foods. The area is both gentrified and run down, poverty and riches side by side. It makes for some unstable situations. When I lived in my attic room, to get to the downtown, I passed through a neighbourhood that had been partially revived via gentrification, with all the accompanying cafes and boutiques frequented by yuppies and hipsters (one of the people in the Bible study group I attended, an artist well known in the theatre world, owned one of the cafes). One morning, as I walked down the revived street, I noticed a sense of unease and unrest, and there were fragments of glass on the ground with boarded windows. An anarchist group, masked and carrying signs decrying gentrification had, the night before, went along and vandalized the shop windows. Incidentally, our church had stones thrown through our stained glass some months later, although the anarchists did not claim responsibility. The city has since had clashes between the anarchists and right wing ‘yellow vest’ protestors, who, in the last months I was there, were fast become a fixture on weekends in front of city hall (their numbers looked to be less than twenty out of a city nearing a million). The city is in depression, as the industries upon which it was built are slowly collapsing, bit by bit. But, the city’s churches are very active. Many within the city church carried out ministries to the community and, as a congregation, sponsored one if the Syrian refugee families and are looking to continue sponsoring refugees.

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  33. Finally filled out my mail-in ballot, I think I’ll drop it off tomorrow at one of the new “vote centers” LA set up this year. Closest one to me is only about 1 mile away, the Little Sisters of the Poor home for the elderly. Sadly, the sisters are bowing out of the ministry they’ve managed since the 1950s in LA (this is their more recent location but they’ve been here since the 1970s).

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  34. Roscuro – Although he may have used the wrong phrasing, the man I mentioned is actually a very intelligent man, working as some kind of techy engineer. Still not sure what he meant that phrase to mean, but I am inclined to think that he was dismissing the matter of his own attitude, especially since he then pointed out the first two comments as lacking critical thinking, leaving no doubt that he was referring to them initially. 😦

    Btw, this is the same man you once warned me about in a private message, saying that he was being verbally abusive, or something like that (on a post about Easter). The thing is, he doesn’t post or comment very often, so I rarely comment on his things, and when he does, I forget my previous determination not to comment to him anymore. I think I will remember after this latest rudeness.

    *******
    Janice – You had mentioned a book you read to Wesley when he was little about a dirty dog. That was Harry the Dirty Dog! I had that book when I was little!

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  35. I got ‘Harry the Dirty Dog’ in boardbook for Sixth Nephew’s birthday this year. By the end of the day when he got it, he and Tiny had gotten the adults in the house to read the story at least four times. Then again, that also happened when I gave Baby Niece her birthday book – she and Little Niece had me read it twice and then got both their grandparents to read it on the same day.

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  36. Feeling out of sorts this morning, because of the tension with Nightingale, I was pleasantly surprised to get a text from her this morning, saying that she is going to take me out to lunch on Tuesday. I had figured that after working eight days straight, with two doubles in there, that she would want to crash on her couch on Tuesday. But instead she wants to take her mother out to lunch.

    I know I said that she is being extra-careful with money this year, but her paycheck for this past week will include three whole days plus some odd hours of overtime pay, so I guess she thinks she can afford this treat for the two of us. (Sunday’s and Monday’s shifts will count as for this coming week in the pay cycle.)

    We decided to go to the Cheesecake Factory and have a selection of appetizers for our meal, and of course, cheesecake. There are a lot of choices, so she suggested that I look on the menu online and choose what I would like for us to order.

    Here is part of our texts to each other, over a period of time (not one right after the other). We often have these gently humorous exchanges.

    Me: Why are you being so nice to me?

    Her: Manipulation. So you think I’m being nice and then. . .

    Me: Should I be scared?

    Her: Yes.

    😀

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  37. Roscuro – When Chickadee was in one of the earlier grades (I forget which one, but she was still pretty young), she took out a book from the library called Stan the Hot Dog Man. She loved it so much that I bought her her own copy of the book. Nightingale came to hate the book, since she heard it being read so many times.

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  38. I remember a couple favorite books my mom used to read to me, especially when we’d be staying in Iowa with her parents. One was about a dog who thought he caused to sun to rise because he barked every morning. Another was about a boy who played the tuba and he had to row a boat out onto a lake so he wouldn’t bother people.

    The repertoire also included the little engine that could, chicken little, and other faves.

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  39. I’m happy that yesterday, when I sat down to play the Brahms piece I’m working back up for the March 28 piano concert, I got all the way through it with no memory slips. I really want to perform it “by heart” like I did back in high school, and I’m feeling more secure in my memory now than I did even a week ago.

    The greater portion of it stayed in my memory for these 40 years since I first learned it, but there were several stubborn spots that clearly didn’t stick with me that needed to be analyzed more closely. I had a good, substantial practice session on those areas early last week, but then didn’t have time to practice again until yesterday. The break seemed to do some good, helping me solidify in my mind the structural qualities (form) of the piece, and not just rely on muscle memory, which is the least reliable memory technique, especially during performances, when nervous tension can be an issue.

    I find the process of learning (and/or memorizing) anything so fascinating.

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  40. I once helped a grandson complete a globe puzzle, but we ended up cheating by following the numbers on the inside. He started that and I doubt he would have completed it without doing it. I figured he would still learn something from it.

    My mom would often put a puzzle out for extended family Christmas/Thanksgiving gatherings. It is a pleasant way to visit.

    Chickadee seems to have a good mind for those types of things. My children did them before the ages, too. One father was complaining the ages were all wrong. I agreed and was just about to say the ages were way too late for my children to enjoy them anymore when he said the ages were way to young for his children. I was glad I held my tongue. Not that it matters, but sometimes parents get excited about what is ‘normal’ in someone else’s opinion. It is a good thing we are all different. It would be nice if Chickadee could put that to good use.

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  41. 6, I have not played Britten’s Simple Symphony. I have played both first and second violin in different orchestras. My first orchestral experience was in a music program at an IBLP training centre. I was not very advanced and played second violin very tentatively, all sacred art music, including the Hallelujah chorus. The next orchestra I played in for a year was a community chamber orchestra, where I played first violin. My last orchestral experience was playing second violin in the university orchestra. We had two concerts, and the first we played one of Mozart’s symphonies (No. 40, if I remember correctly), while the second we played Dvorak’s 8th Symphony, which is my favorite of his. We also played other concert pieces by Ravel, Wagner, Mendelssohn, etc., but those were the two symphonies.

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  42. Roscuro, I like the titles of the Simple Symphony movements:

    Boisterous Bourree
    Playful Pizzicato
    Sentimental Sarabande
    Frolicsome Finale

    (I wish I knew how to put an accent mark on that first e in Bourree.)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simple_Symphony

    When I was in college, the full orchestra, which was made up of university students and members of the community, would meet from September until sometime in April. The highlight of the “year,” especially for the audience members who bought tickets, was the annual Symphony Supper, after which date the full orchestra would be done, but the strings (and maybe a few wind players) would continue rehearsing for a chamber performance in May.

    That is when we performed Simple Symphony one year (in May). It was rather an intimate setting, playing in the modest recital hall rather than on the big theater main stage. That’s another reason I like that symphony so much — the small setting and minimal instrumentation. The two went together quite well.

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  43. Harry the Dirty Dog has made a lot of children happy.

    I finally got all my contest entries in, four in all. I wrote a 1,000 word article today and self edited it. I would have preferred to have others look at it before sending it in, but today was the deadline.

    Liked by 3 people

  44. I took a 2-hour nap today, I really am an 8-hour-a-night/day person. Feel much better, though it’s getting dark now. 😦 And I there was another Steyer ad on, I guess he’s bought som eo these spots in advance. Mayor Pete is out now, too. I suspect the party is gathering steam to fight off the Bernie threat and thinning the field is part of that.

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  45. Lazy day for me, too, I watched CNN’s “The Windsors” and the network’s special on the 1964 presidential race. Interesting how that was such a pivotal year in re-forming both parties in many ways.

    I moved the porch plants down onto the front steps to catch a little bit of the rain. We’re not getting much, very light, but it’s something.

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