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From the Archives: Magical Meringue

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm still playing catch up so I'm back to reaching into my archives for a while more. Have fun out there.

Today's post was first published on April 15 2015. =============
Clang, clang, clang with my right hand.

Clang, clang, clang with my left hand.

Repeat and repeat. Then repeat again. And, again.

It always amazes me how I can get soft peaks of meringue just by beating egg whites. I'm sure there's a simple, straightforward explanation for the transformation, and maybe one day I will really want to know. Until then, I'm perfectly happy, making clang, clang noises with the egg beater against the stainless steel pan as the clear egg whites change to foam, to thicker, clingy foam, and finally to meringue. It's magic. Olé!

From the Archives: Rooty Toot Toot

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm still playing catch up so I'm back to reaching into my archives for a while more. Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on November 22, 2015. =============
A warning for delicate ears: Bodily toots are being mentioned on today's post. (Giggle.)

I'm one of those people whose body systems get all relaxed when she wanders around a bookstore. The moment I enter the door, total zen. Unfortunately for those around me, I'm one of those book browsers who not only gives the occasional loud ah! when she sees an interesting book cover, but also an occasional silent toot, leaving a lingering aroma. I try not to, but, hey, better out than in.

Sorry for the TMI, but it's to set you up for this next paragraph. (Snort)

The future-Husband and my first adventure included a visit to a used bookstore in his neighborhood. I have no idea if the shop still exists. I hope it's…

From the Archives: Just for Me

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm still playing catch up so I'm back to reaching into my archives for a while more. Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on April 11, 2015. = = = = = = = = = = = = = Knock, knock.

The Mama opened the kitchen door, which was the back door at our house on 44 Shore Road.  I sat at the kitchen table, keeping her company as she prepared dinner.

Uncle Frank! The Daddy's younger brother. He carried a tree stump in his arms. 

"I cut down a tree in my back yard," said Uncle Frank, putting it down next to the kitchen counter. "I thought it was the right size for Susie."

I was four. Either Uncle Frank or the Mama held my hand as I climbed onto the stump. Yaaay! I had a wonderful view of the counter.

I don't remember much of those very early years. But, I must've been in the kitchen a lot with the Mama. Enough so that Uncle Frank thought I ought to  have so…

From the Archives: The Wager

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I've been reaching into my archives the last several days so I can play catch up around the house. "I'll do it tomorrow." has finally reared itself into today.  Such is retirement. :-) Have fun out there. I'll be back with a new post tomorrow.

Today's post was first published on April 26, 2014. ============
I knew the pet store was to the left, so I turned left. 

"I think it's to the right," said the Husband, sitting in the passenger seat.

"No, it's this way," I said, firm in my belief.

"I think it's back that way," the Husband said, firm in his belief.

"No."

"Yes."

"I'll bet you it's this way," I said.

"I don't want to bet money," he said.

"Jumping jacks," I said. "When you lose, you do 10 jumping jacks."

"Okay," he said. Here, dear readers, you should note that the Hu…

From the Archives: Ssssssh, We're in a Hospital

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm reaching into my archives for a couple more days so I can play catch up around the house. "I'll do it tomorrow." has finally reared itself into today.  Such is retirement. :-) Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on August 30, 2012. It was originally titled "Quiet. Hospital." ============
The Mama may be coming home from the hospital today. The ambulance took her there on Monday afternoon. All of a sudden the Mama could not move her legs or arms, no matter how hard she tried. She caught the nasty bug from the Husband who has had it for a few days. On her, it turned into pneumonia. What made it worse was that she was dehydrated. Stay hydrated, folks!

Hydration, however, is not what today's post is about. Nope.

After two nights alone in her hospital room, the Mama got a "roommate" with a loving extended family to visit her. The Mama, in cont…

From the Archives: Molly's Great Adventure

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm reaching into my archives for the next several days so I can play catch up around the house. "I'll do it tomorrow." has finally reared itself into today.  Such is retirement. :-) Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on April 26, 2012.  It's narrated by Molly the Cat, who had been living with us for over two months when she had her adventure. ============
"Hey, Kid, your people are looking for you," said Lickity Split, as he speeds by me. I barely get onto the sidewalk when he turns the corner at the end of the street. There is no use following him. All afternoon I was following him. Just as I catch up to him, he jumps onto a fence and climbs over it into the unknown.

I scoot back into my hiding place. Everything was fine and dandy when I first got outside, but it's now dark and cold. I have no idea where I live.

If I was home right now I would …

From the Archives: Going to Church with the Daddy

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm reaching into my archives for the next several days so I can play catch up around the house. "I'll do it tomorrow." has finally reared itself into today.  Such is retirement. :-) Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on February 13, 2013. Warning: Cursing ahead. ============
One of the last times I went to church with the Daddy was a Good Friday. The Mama scored big that day as she got both the Daddy and me to go with her. I don't know how she did it. I did daydream through the service. That is, until the Daddy caught my attention.

It was a struggle for his old cartilage to do all the physical activity that takes place during a Catholic mass, especially at the much longer Good Friday service. You stand, sit, and kneel a lot.  I don't think the Daddy realized he was protesting out loud. I still wonder if God and I were the only ones who heard him. 

Stand.
Sit.

From the Archives: The Solicitation

Hi ya! Hey ya! Hope all's well with ya. All is well with us. I'm reaching into my archives for the next several days so I can play catch up around the house. "I'll do it tomorrow." has finally reared itself into today.  Such is retirement. :-) Have fun out there.

Today's post (edited) was first published on May 13, 2010.  Yes,  this really did happen. ============ Ding dong.

"Who can that be?" asked the husband, not getting up from his desk.

I scrambled up from mine and down the stairs.  Not another salesperson from the carpet cleaning or bug zapping service, I hoped. I also didn't want to find someone clutching slick campaign material. Most likely no religious people; they rarely show up around dinner time. Aw, gee. What if it was a friend? The husband and I bought hot dogs at the Farmers Market for dinner, only enough for the Mama and us.

Our front door was open, but the security door was locked. "Hello," I called from the botto…

Post Flashback: The Utensil Choir

I'm reaching into my archives for today's post. It was originally published on April 24, 2015. See ya tomorrow. Earlier this month, the Husband and I entertained ourselves while he washed dishes and I dried them. The result was a rundown of the utensil choir. This is the make up of the choir, according to the Husband, a musician at heart.
The soup spoon sings bass.The special spoon, which is a Korean soup spoon, sings baritone.Teaspoons sing soprano, while tablespoons sing alto or tenor.Forks sing four-part harmony, of course. Salad forks? Three-part harmony! Knives are tone deaf. When they sing, the sound cuts to the heart. I didn't want the knives to feel left out, so I let them hold the music sheet for everyone.

Flight

On the afternoon that the Mama died, the Husband, Long-time Friend Kathy, Molly the Cat, and I sat on the patio and ate our lunch. The Mama's apple tree and her butterfly bush gave us shade from the warm Spring sun. The sky was blue. The Mama's roses, daisies, and other flowers were in bloom. The birds serenaded us. The Mama's bedroom window faced the backyard. I like to think that she could see, smell, and hear the day as we did and that she enjoyed listening to our relaxed cadences and tones.

At one point I leaned back in my chair and gazed at the sky. A crow was lazily flying back and forth. It was like a photo, the crow framed by the foliage of the Mama's trees and bushes. As I watched the bird, I felt like I could see the Mama's spirit flying up towards the crow and dancing alongside it.

When I finally looked away, I saw a white butterfly fly out of the Mama's garden by the  rose bushes. That was the first white butterfly I saw that day, which, ever since…

It's Elementary, My Dear.

"Make an effort."

This morning I read that line in Emma: A Modern Retelling by Alexander McCall Smith). I felt like the character, and the author, was talking to me.

Please make an effort, Susie. 

The Mama said it another way about herself when she felt tired, which was every day for her last several years. Plain and simple, she used to say, "I push myself."

After we buried the Mama this past April, the Only and Older Brother said to me, "Keep on living."

I scoffed at what the Only and Older Brother said. Of course, I'd keep on living. Why would I not? Lately, though, honesty keeps trying to surface. Drat that honesty. For that matter, dang to introspection, rumination, and heart-searching that show up in my dreams.

Sigh.

So, this is my effort today for the letter E for this week's ABC Wednesday: a story that I shared three years ago (April 5, 2013) about an amazing thing that reminded me of the wonderful effortlessness of life.

Flying with the Eag…

From the Archives -- The Mama and Her Superstitions

Today is another archival post from my first blog, Cu'Pie Bird says Chirp. Chirp.

Superstitions (originally published Tuesday, October 9, 2007)
Today was originally supposed to be my mom's quarterly doctor's appointment, but because it would be falling on the ninth of the month, I had to change it. According to my mom, the ninth is a bad day to go anywhere, make critical decisions, just do anything important. Hence she reminds me that I should not be traveling, paying bills, or signing contracts on the ninth. 

However, this is in contradiction to an astrological article I once read that stated the ninth is a lucky day for Sagittarius. So whenever my mom tells me not to do something because it's the ninth, I tell her it's okay for me. But I do wonder whatever happened to her--or to an important adult in her life--on a ninth or on successive ninths that causes her to say the ninth is a bad day. After all isn't that how superstitions begin.

When I was a kid, I was rep…

From the Archives -- The Daddy and Religion. Kinda

Today's archived post is from my second blog, This and That, Here and There, Now, Sometimes Then. What Daddy Told Me (originally published May 7, 2010)
My dad didn't advise me much when I was growing up. When he did, they were humdingers, and usually they were one-liners.  For instance, on the day of my senior prom, he told me rather placidly, and unexpectedly, "Don't go f***ing around." The idea hadn't even entered my mind.  And, when I was attending community college, Daddy pronounced suddenly in his usual unruffled way to me, "Don't be a hippie." Nothing more.

Probably the most profound guidance Daddy gave me was when, as a teenager, I decided to check out different churches. Not because I was looking for a church to join but because I was curious about how different churches worshiped. I didn't know that Daddy had noticed what I was doing. Even if he had, I didn't think he would've cared since we were not avid churchgoers.…

Digging into the Archives

The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is over. Thank you very much. A part of me would like to say, "See youse all later, alligators." But, I'm not ready to throw in the white flag of posting every day in 2015. I will, however, take a break from doing original posts and instead put up past stories from deep inside my archives. For a few days. 

In honor of the Husband's and my first adventure together (I didn't do dates.) 20 years ago in May, I give you this piece that I published on January 31, 2010. 


Where Romance Is
Where is the most romantic destination you have visited?

I've come across this question several times during the last few days, both in print and online. Some publishers say that if I write about it in a minimum number of words (usually between 100 and 200) or less and it gets published, then they would send me money.

Easy, right?

Writing about something in so many words is no problem. I may ramble, but I can edit unmercifully when necessary.…