Cemetery

I’ve spent more time having cemetery conversations this week than any other time in my life.

Last week, on the anniversary of my mother’s death, I went down to put down flowers.  She’s buried in a family plot with my dad, my sisters and various others.  And I noticed there is a small marker, about the size of a shoe box, at the end of one of my sister’s grave.  It looks homemade and had initials JMS on it.  My sister’s headstone only has her maiden name (the m part) but not her married name (the s part).  Her husband killed her in 1970 and my mom purposefully left her married name off.  She had a 2 year old when she died so I assumed he’d put it it there.  But he didn’t.  After checking with the small town funeral home and cemetery association, where it came from remains a mystery.

Several years ago when one of my uncle’s passed away, my parents and one of my dad’s sisters went together and bought 16 plots.  12 of them are now occupied.  2 are reserved for me and my nephew.  And this started with my cousin who lived in New Mexico all of her married life asking about the 2 on her parents’ side.  Odd that she wants to be buried in my hometown (not hers) but she wants to be with family.  I talked to my nephew today to make it very clear that I would not be using mine.  I want to be cremated as cheaply as possible and have my ashes scattered.   I told my nephew he and his wife could go there …he could surprise her with that info in her Valentine’s card!!  I’m buying a small marker with a Texas Tech Double T on it to show I existed.

I hope this is our last cemetery discussion ever.

Bread

Not sure exactly when it happened but bread is supposed to be our enemy.  With low carb, Atkins,Keto diets bread is one of the many things we are not supposed to eat anymore. I try not to eat too much but bread is still my friend.

When I was a little girl, my mom made biscuits every day but when she discovered they came in a can the homemade’s went away.  And there was a standard loaf of white bread in the breadbox for sandwiches and toast.  So when I had a home of my own, that’s what I ate.  But as I try everyday to eat better, I try to eat less and better bread.  I used to laugh at my sister who always had multi-grain, brown gross bread full of crap but I’ve actually found a bread full of crap that I like.  But it does not fit everywhere.

So I have trolled Pinterest and found bread recipes and have decided from now on I’ll make my own.  What I’ve found mostly is Artisan breads, the loaves in the bakery section of the grocery that are $6 a loaf and turn green in 3 days.  And they are not sandwich breads but I don’t need to eat lunch meat either so that’s ok too.  I made a Rosemary bread which turned out really well except I found I don’t like Rosemary.

Today was an interesting bread day.  I found a great sounding recipe for Honey-Cranberry-Walnut No Kneed bread.  Looked simple enough.  7 simple ingredients. Top of the recipe says 15 minute prep, 45 minute bake, 1 hour, easy peasy.  So yesterday I think I’ll start.  But as I read the directions, in step 14 of 20, it says “after letting dough rise 12-18 hours…” and I’m like, um, what?  So at 10pm last night I’m putting bread together and leaving oven on all nigh so I can put the bowl on top hoping it will be warm enough for bread to rise.   I have to get the dough which is pretty wet out of the bowl, onto parchment paper and put a little flour on it to make the crust crispy & let it rise 45 minutes more.  Then I bake in a covered Dutch oven for the 45 minutes.    So it looks good and tastes pretty good although it’s chewy as hell.   And the texture looks strange but it seems done.

Normally, I’d try an iffy  recipe again but I don’t necessarily see that happen with this recipe.  Easy enough to mix but 12-18 hours to rise?  Seriously?  Maybe I’ll try again some day but probably not soon.

Funniest thing is one of the steps in the recipe instructions tells me to put on oven mitts before pulling a pan that has been in a 450 degree oven for 45 minutes out of the oven.

Next:  French Bread (normal rising time)

Jars

jars

I don’t consider myself a perfectionist but I do like my life in order.  I mean if the laundry doesn’t get done today, it will still be there tomorrow.   If my bed doesn’t get made (like today) that’s ok.  But there are parts of my life that I have put in a jar and put tight lids on.  And while sometimes the jars keep things safe, the lids keep a lot of things out too.

I’m hard on people.  I don’t remember always being this way but after some incidents where I felt taken advantage of, I’m slow to forgive.  I have many acquaintances but have a hard time making new friends. I have a really hard time in crowds.   I don’t know how to mingle.  Basically, no one gets close.  I try in some ways but it’s extremely hard for me. I’ve decided that if people don’t make an effort to interact with me, I don’t make the effort either.   It’s a jar with a tight lid.

BUT  I spend too much time alone.  When you call me, I’ll talk you to death because sometimes I have a lot to say and no one to listen.  If you invite me somewhere one on one I don’t say no unless I have something else to actually do.  My sweet dad was lonely after I made him move in with me.  When I needed to go somewhere he was already to go too even if he just sat in the car.  It’s a great fault that I don’t know how to fix.  It’s a jar with a tight lid.

I had a tough jar weekend.  I cannot go into every detail but it started early with cousins from my dad’s side.  Nice comfortable dinner with cousin and her husband of 40 years. And on Saturday a cousin from my mom’s side got married so I actually went to a wedding, a place full of strangers.  And another cousin from mom’s side & her husband came too so go to spend time with them too.   We had a meal.  We went to family cemeteries.  It was nice too.  But while I know the first cousin very well, 2nd cousin is a very sweet virtual stranger.   My sweet aunt raised wonderful, kind children and all have always been very nice to me but I have always felt out of place with them.  They all have great careers and families and live an around-the-world-lives while mine is more a trip to Dallas every year.   It’s me, not them.

I got back yesterday to a garage door malfunction that will be costing me money later this week.

And 16 years ago today my mom died.

The other thing that I won’t write about was very upsetting to me.  Like I have not slept in the last 2 nights.  It and the garage door are jars that have been knocked over and things have spilled out.  And today I had trouble dealing with spilled jars.

If I did not leave the house for the rest of the week I’d probably be ok.  And I always land on my feet.  So I’ll jet my jars lined up again soon, lids tightened, labels facing forward.

 

Dog Sitting

I’m not a dog person.  Or a pet person.  I’m not horrible.  I don’t kick them or anything but I also don’t like them jumping on me, licking me, following me around or looking at me.   To be fair, I’m barely a people person.  I like a discussion.  I don’t mind a 10 second hug by someone I like.  But let’s not get too touchy-feely.

I just spent the weekend dog sitting.  And he’s a nice dog but he jumps on me, licks me, follows me around and looks at me.  All of the time.  He wants to sit on the couch looking at me.  He jumps on the bed I’m sleeping on and won’t get off until I push him off and then I have to put him out in the living room to stop him from doing it again.  My cousin left me a list of “commands he knows”.  He should have written “none”.

I know he misses his people, who will be home tomorrow.  For Buddy and I it’s going to be a really good day.

 

Pictures & Clouds

Pictures first.

I’m really not a picture person.  I mean I like looking at pictures but that is about it.  I have some pictures of my family, in frames, but not many.  I did not grow up in a picture family.  I grew up in the old days when you had to buy and develop film.  It was expensive for us at the time.  I have one picture of my big sisters & me that was not taken in the front yard.  My uncle took it.  Cathy & Jo were probably 13 & 12, I was 2.  All other professional pictures were school pictures.  I had to take a head shot last year for my business card and that may have been the first professional shot since I graduated from high school in 1975.  Now we live in an era where if a parent pulls out their phone, their 2 year olds strike a pose.   I take pictures on vacation to put on Facebook but don’t really ever look at them again.  But for some reason, I feel like I should save them.  Hmmm.

This week I had a training class on Google Drive and part of that is Google Pictures, where the pics live on a cloud that I don’t understand.   I’m lead to believe that by setting this up all of my cell phone pictures & pictures I save on my computer go to the cloud and I should be able to delete from phone & pc and the cloud carries them.   I know I’m doing something wrong but the cell pictures are on the app on my phone and the pc pics are on the app on my PC.

Part of me hopes all of the pictures will meet someday on the same cloud.  But all in all I’d probably be ok if they didn’t.   I have a few pictures in a box & last year I made a picture book of my mom & dad & aunts & uncles for my niece & nephew.  But what exactly would they do with all of my pictures?  Not a sentimental bone in either of their bodies.  My pictures are just one more thing they will have to throw out when I go.  And I HATE it when people send me pictures of their kids.  I’m never sure what they expect me to do with them.   So if I know you, no offense, but don’t send me pictures.

I guess we’ll see what happens if I ever need to post another picture.

Adrian Beltre

I am a long time Rangers fan and my favorite player of all time is Rangers 3rd baseman Adrian Beltre.  Always has a smile on his face and has more fun playing baseball than anyone ever on the planet.  Today was possibly his last game.  He’s 39 years old and has had some tough injuries the last couple of years.  He has not said he’s retiring for sure but all of the interviews seem to be pointing there.  I saw one interview today, have read several on Twitter and I have cried every time.  It’s irrational.  I don’t even know the man.  But I know that the Rangers and 3rd base will never again be the same.  If I could same something to him, I’d thank him for giving me joy every time I watched him play.  And I’d tip my hat right back if I had one.  I may have to wear my Beltre jersey this week.

MLB: Texas Rangers at Seattle MarinersUpdate:   On November 20, he made his retirement official.  Happy for him, heartbroken for us.  #ThanksAB!!