Thursday, July 30, 2020

Pointing you to my Wordpress blog at

By Elizabeth Prata

See you at

I've had this blog for 14 years. I've written on on and off all that time.

When Wordpress came along I added a blog there too, in case this one was suspended by Blogger. I don't own the content on blogger, Blogger owns it. They can shut down the blog without notice for any reason. In these perilous thought-times, this is happening more and more. So I thought it'd be a good idea to have a mirror blog at Wordpress.

That means I've been posting here AND there. When I write on The Quiet Life blog, I post here AND there. It's getting burdensome to post and re-post. WP doesn't handle things the same way as Blogger so essentially it means I am writing it twice, every day.

Blogger is introducing a new interface this month. I don't like it. So...I think the time has come to move exclusively to Wordpress. I will continue to write every day, but only over there. The address is

Still written by me, still the same name of the blog. Just go to

See you there!!

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Buoy

By Elizabeth Prata

Did you know that the spot where Francis Scott Key penned the verses to what became the National Anthem of the Star Spangled Banner is in the Patapsco River, and marked by a red-while-blue buoy? It's maintained by the Coast Guard, explained here (excerpt):

The US Coast Guard tending the buoy. It's not for navigational purposes,
rather, it's a monument to our history. Photo source
On Sept. 14, 1814, Key was a prominent Georgetown attorney, and he was aboard a flag-of-truce vessel, trying to secure the release of William Beanes, a Maryland doctor imprisoned by the British for arresting English soldiers near his home. It was then that 25 British ships began their bombardment of the port of Baltimore and Fort McHenry. Through the night, Key witnessed cannon and gunfire pummeling the fort, and, when he saw the flag still flying at dawn in an unbeaten defiance, he immortalized the scene in a four-verse poem. More at link
Here's what Baltimore Harbor looked like in the early 1990s when we sailed past that buoy and anchored in the harbor.

It felt good to look at the buoy as we passed it, and to refresh our memory. That is exactly one reason why we traveled, to learn more about our country and to see where important events in our nation's history occurred. It's sad that we have a current climate of ravening, ignorant crowds pulling down monuments willy nilly. Monuments are important. At least this buoy is in a spot where they can't get to it.

I enjoyed sailing past the buoy and learning more about that spot and the history behind our national anthem. If you pass a statue or plaque or marked spot somewhere on your daily routines or travels, please take a minute to learn why it's there and the history behind it. Someone thought enough to put it there for a reason.

Thursday, July 02, 2020

The Perfect Vignette

By Elizabeth Prata

I like design shows and tips for upcycling and home decorating. I like to make my place look nice, be functional, and have pleasant surprises for the eye. I'ts hard to do on a budget and within 410 square feet, but I manage. I like the challenge, too!

There are free short videos to watch on the new Design Network. ( This is an online channel started by Jason Harris, CEO of Furnitureland South, which is "located in High Point, NC, Furnitureland South is the world’s largest furniture store, with 1.3 million square feet for home furnishings showrooms. Recognized in 2018 as America’s Best Large Independent Furniture Retailer, Furnitureland South represents over 1,000 of the finest brands and offers nationwide white glove delivery," according to the company's blurb.

TDN features lots and lots of channels of short videos offering tips on most any style of design you enjoy. By short, I mean about 7-20 minutes. Some of the titles of TDN's videos I've enjoyed include
  • Commissioned, Follow talented artists as they tackle a commissioned artwork piece with design in mind.
  • Design(ish) with Genevieve Gorder, who is always a delight to watch
  • Dressing Rooms with Carson Kressley and Gina Alem, who take a client's outfit and bring elements of their outfit into the room. It's interesting.
  • Design Smackdown with Thom Felicia
  • MidMod Then & Now, I really enjoyed. Two designers go through a Palm Beach luxury home and demonstrate how the actual mid-century modern has been updated and referenced in today's designs Fascinating.
There are tons of other videos, too.

I also watch AMB Design Inc. which is Utah designer Ann-Marie Barton on youtube. Her channel has a lot of different videos but I like the channel Gracious Living. She has a quiet and relaxing way about her, and she explains why this element or that element works in the room she is designing for her client. She speaks well and not a word is wasted in her short videos.

Finally I also enjoy CoralTV, again, on Youtube. They will produce short videos on 'How to Style Your Bed' or '1 Couch Two Ways'.

These are free and since they are pretty and short, sometimes enjoy watching one before bed. The tv-host professionalism varies from designer to designer, and some have a voice for the shower only and not TV, lo, but all in all these ate cute videos and helpful too. If you enjoy home design.

There are spots on my apartment I enjoy, that are just perfect for me. The designers are always talking about 'this moment in the room' meaning this little vignette or spot where something surprising or cute is happening. I like how my teacups are arranged on my kitchen counter. I like the art hanging over my desk in the bedroom. And I like this:

I had found that little stand at a resale store. It's not meant to be a bookcase per se, but I needed something small to go in a narrow spot, so I turned it into one. I like that there is space underneath to put my slippers. My bookcases, all 7 of them, are arranged thematically. This one holds my Puritan library. I am proud of my library. It's taken a long time to accumulate exactly the books I want. I'm happy that I have them and that I've made a way to store them conveniently and in a pretty way despite having so little room.

On top I especially love this vignette:

These three items are some I enjoy. I bought the painting a few years ago at the High School art show. It's done by a student. The style reminded me of Maine artist Marsden Hartley. His work hangs in the Smithsonian and Museum of Modern art, among other museums. Here's Marsden-

I like being able to support a budding artist. I also enjoy the scene itself. The turtle in the bowl was a gift from a friend who'd visited the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador and brought that back for me. Finally the bowl is mid-century modern and I think it's cool. I like to look at it.

Anyway, today was change the sheets day. Not that I have a particular day, it's just when I feel like it. My bed doesn't move so in order to get the fitted sheet on that back corner I have to fling myself toward the spot and wrestle it under the mattress while I am laying on it. Quite a feat. What is it about making up a bed with fresh sheets that makes you want to lay on them right away? At least this time Murray was snoozing in his little bed in the kitchen and didn't try to scoot under the sheets AS I was putting them on the bed!

He figured out where I  was soon enough and came to check it out. His favorite spot. He enjoys watching the many birds in the yard from the window there. And this morning somehow a moth had gotten in and he woke me up by chasing it all over the bed. Murray is a good watch-cat. He saved me from the moth. All is well now.

When I make the bed up for the first time with fresh sheets, I like to make everything symmetrical. The medallion on the bed centered, and the fringe hanging just to the bottom of the bed rail and as straight as I can make it. I know, it might be obsessive, but when I walk into the room, MY vignette, MY 'moment', is seeing everything in order, straight and neat. Who doesn't like that? Here it is-

My plans for the rest of the day is to feed the cat, who is bugging me even as I write this. He has dry food. But he knows the wet, delicious, terrific food is coming. So pretty much after noon time he is relentless. he stares at me from 4 inches away. He puts a paw on my arm. He winds around my feet. Sigh, cats, you know?

Then I'll probably head to the library to pick up a book on hold. It's about the Titanic. Maybe head to The Special Store after that to see anything new that has come in. I binged on a bunch of TDN/Gracious Living/Coral design videos and now I'm fired up. Of course, on the videos, they are busy gutting the 50 foot kitchen in their vacation home in Cabo San Lucas, while for me fired up is buying a saucer. Different strokes! I hope you have a great day and a nice holiday weekend!

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

My morning of errands

By Elizabeth Prata

The southern heat gets me. The dew point gets me. The humidity gets me. So I just stay inside with air conditioning most of the summer. No sense complaining. It's Georgia, it's summer, it's hot. Not much is going to change that. The only time I have to go out is church and when I have to do errands. Not a fan of errands.

But they need to be done and I am doing this adulting thing pretty well if I say so myself, so I go.

I decided to head out early before the worst of the heat sets in, like be at the grocery store at its opening at 7 am. I didn't do too bad, I got there at 7:06.

My grocery store of choice is Kroger. The prices are good, they send me coupons, and the variety is excellent for my dietary needs. I've recently even discovered a lactose free yogurt that doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

Since it was early I got the first spot, next to the bushes. Crossing hot asphalt in the Georgia summer isn't my favorite thing. The first spot! I felt special, like I won something.

These faux terra cotta pots looked cool all stacked up outside the store. I liked the graphic design.

The Sahara dust storm has reached Georgia now. The haze the other day was quite visible. It was like the floor of the desert had levitated to just above the tree line and hung there, yellowish orangey brown brooding, just hovering. The dust had laid on a thick coat all over the car. I thought it best to get it washed off before the paint got pitted or scratched.

I've always been scared inside of automatic car washes but I just breathed steady and called on the name of the Lord and I was OK.

On my way back out of the Kroger parking lot I saw some mockingbirds flitting where the planters were. I like dhow the gray chairs and the gray table matched the little bird. They know just where to land, don't they?

It's important to maintain the car but I am hesitant to do some of the things by myself, and that includes tires. When I was 16 I accidentally blew up my 10-speed bike tire and I never got over the loudness of the explosion and the suddenness of the bang. Tires Plus guys are kind to do that task for you. They'll check the air and add it if the tires need. I bought 2 new tires from them and they patched another, but I think they will do it even if you are not one of their customers. Since I was in the neighborhood during the day, which is unusual since I normally go to Kroger after church on Sunday evenings, I thought it prudent to do the adulting thing again and have them check. Sure enough, the two front tires were low.

I stopped at the Dollar General store to buy a few hard goods. I didn't need much, just sandwich sized storage bags, toothpaste, and an empty spray bottle. I've ordered some frosted film to put on my kitchen window, and it adheres by spraying water, placing  the panel of frosted film on the glass, then squeegeeing the water out. No adhesive, which is good for a rental unit. The review said it was easy to apply, so after I ordered some at Amazon I trotted to the Dollar store to get me an inexpensive spray bottle to do the deed.

I did't find any. It was just after their opening at 8:00 and the store was empty except for me. The three employees were busy cleaning and wiping the front door. I asked one of them where the empty spray bottles were. With barely turning around one of the employees brusquely said in a nanosecond, "We're out." I said, "You're out of all your spray bottles of any kind?" "Yep."

The Dollar store is noted for their low prices, not for sparkling customer service, so I chalked it up and figured I'd check another store later in the week when the frosted film arrived from Amazon. At least I got toothpaste.

Last stop, the bank. The sign is ridiculously large. It's about the same size as the front of the bank. But the ladies inside are very gracious and helpful so I forgive the bank its massive and ugly sign, lol.

The little neighborhood I pass through on the way home has several homes that take care of their front porches and rotate their decorations on them. They are cute to look at. With the 4th of July holiday coming up, this home had decorated with the red, white, and blue semi-circular banners. They looked nice hanging over the large porch and contrasted against the white.

I took pride in winning the grocery game of "bring it all inside in one trip". I can't do it anymore since I started buying a case of seltzer water. But I'm serious about the one-trip thing when I can do it. Apparently so are others! Take a look-

Home at last, I made it back by 9 am. I got my things put away and re-heated the coffee and finished my second cup. Ahhh, the pleasure of having done my jobs!

As I was putting away the groceries, the delivery man knocked and handed me my bonito flakes. At Kroger I'd bought seaweed. Alton Brown has a video on making dashi, which is a Japanese broth composed of soaking the previous two items and then straining. Bonito flakes are made from the bonito, a fish they dry, and make into flakes. Apparently bonito flakes are FULL of protein. I'll do another essay about them when I make my broth. I hope you have a great day and week ahead, everyone.

It's always nice to come home to your cat. What is it with cat in a box?

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Saturday errands

By Elizabeth Prata

Yesterday was one of those days where you had to go out and around doing errands. Errands aren't my favorite thing, but they're part of life. So I try to be observational and consciously look for cute or interesting things to remember. It keeps my observation skills sharp (which I had to develop as a roving news reporter back in the day), and it keeps my mind focused on something positive. Else, I'd grumble the whole time about errands.

That day I needed to go to the Dollar General store to get shades. I was finally going to solve two problems. Someone has kindly bought me a three-step ladder. I need to change out the curtains sometimes, or get them down for a wash, or change the shower curtain, and I have to stand on precarious things to do it. Not good when you live alone and aren't nimble. I'd been waiting to see of The Special Store had one, (a second hand, vintage store) but the lady says whenever they come in, they go out fast. Finally I bit the bullet and searched for a new one but they are expensive. I wished for one and a very generous someone blessed me.

The second thing that gets solved with this ladder is the curtain situation. I've never been happy with the curtains over the kitchen sink. Its a very dark area of the apartment, but it's where I spend most of my time. The neighbors on the other side of the house have their kitchen window looking directly into mine For privacy's sake I put up a couple of sheers, that way the light still comes in but blurs the view. It never looked good though, just makeshift and temporary. I found these lightweight blinds at Dollar General, they don't have a cord (saves the cat) and they don't require hardware to put up. Best of all, they are only $5 so if I make a mistake putting them up, no big loss.

So one of the errands is heading to the store to get the shades. If they work, I'll get some more and put them on the bathroom window and the front door window. I need the light and want the privacy and these are supposed to do both.

Also- I headed to the library to return books, and Kroger to buy a few necessities. I didn't need much. Fruit was on sale. Blueberries for $2.50, pineapples were $2, and grapes 88-cents a pound. Too good to pass up. It also gets me out of the house. The Library book drop was closed, only accepting books M-F, so I'll have to go back during the week. Grrr, another errand.

I snapped some photos along the way, like this one at the BBQ place. It wasn't open yet. When it is, it's crowded. And for you northerners like me, barbecue to Yankees is an activity you do pushing around meat over an outside grill. But to Southerners it's a meat item that is slow cooked with drippy sauce. Totally different things.

I thought the seats at the BBQ place looked like Mexican sombreros

It was a nice day. The Car Wash place was buzzing with activity. The automatic car wash is expensive but the vacuuming is free. Tons of people cleaning out their cars.

A lot of cars on the road hauling little campers or bass boats. I know where people are headed this nice Saturday!

You know you've been bingeing on too much of the survivalist reality program Alone when you see an A-frame doghouse and think, 'Awesome shelter, man!' lol.

I saw a woman wearing a mask. While driving. Alone in her car. Hm.

I've noticed this year the birds in my yard seem very active and very plentiful. Maybe that's just because I've been home since early spring and not at work like normal, so I can observe them more,  but even now during summer when I'd normally be watching and listening, they seem to have peppered the yard with calls, low flights, and lots of insect-catching. Right on, keep doing that, birds!

I hope you all have a nice weekend.

Friday, June 19, 2020

A beautiful day

By Elizabeth Prata

It's a beautiful day here in north Georgia. We have been enjoying cooler days with even cooler mornings. That trend is on the upswing now, but today at least, it's nice out. Nice in June means no air conditioning.

I enjoy a little something special in my coffee one a week. I had an unfortunate reaction to whipped cream, so I abandoned that. Cool Whip grosses me out. So I've been taking my morning coffee with cream and nothing on top for a while. Sadly. Then I read about Affogato. Affogato is an Italian word that means drowned. To make this Italian dessert, you put a scoop of ice cream into a glass, preferably a short glass. You can add chocolate shavings or caramel. I added caramel. Then pour hot espresso over the top, 'drowning' the coffee.

Now, my changes to this easy recipe were: less ice cream than the recipes call for. It's actually a dessert, and I didn't want to have that much ice cream in the morning, so I only added a tablespoon of my vanilla lactose-free. The recipes call for espresso, and I had just coffee, and I don't make it that strong. And I had only a taller glass. But it's still delightful! In the actual recipe, the ice cream as it melts makes a nice foam and drips creamily down as it does. I'll only do this once in a while because of the calories. It's meant to be a treat, not a daily consumption. Here's mine-

Here's the recipe and how it's actually supposed to look-

In taking a little stroll around the yard this morning, I caught these scenes. I live in a nice area. Nice means clean, no litter blowing around the sides of the road. Rural. That means green rolling pastures filled with animals. Bucolic. That means lots of varieties of birds soaring through the air and nesting in the many trees. Little traffic. Perfect silence at night. I wake up at 2 am and I hear nothing except breeze. Sometimes, adding to the atmosphere, there might be a little dog barking far into the distance, or a cow lowing. Occasional bird calling to itself. Maybe he is announcing "It's 2am and all's well, birdie friends!" In June there's fireflies and stars and a clear moon, hanging low over the pastures. My description sounds like a scene-setting in a movie script. But it's really like this here.

Enjoy the photos from my stroll this morning-

Today's cloud

Five o'clock flower bush. The blooms unfurl in the late afternoon.

I love that there is a pasture next door, separating me and the next closest neighbor behind me. I love that there are a couple of hay bales nestled against the tree line. I love that there are various colors of green and gold to look at. The pasture is dynamic. Not as dynamic as if there was a lake or the ocean to look at, but the sun changes the aspect of the pasture hour by hour. In the morning it's best, when it's golden.

Lights strung over the lawn, the pergola is growing its annual leafy coverage. At night the lights make a nice glow.

Mockingbird across the street with puffed out chest. Grooming himself, or just proud? lol

All in all, things are good where I am.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Frugal cooking this week

By Elizabeth Prata

I have never seen the Milky Way.

I am watching the History channel/Hulu show "Alone". It's involves 10 contestants who join the challenge to remain alone and surviving in the wilderness for up to 100 days. The production is extremely well done, from choosing the contestants, to the locations (Vancouver WA seasons 1-2 and Patagonia season 3). I'm unfamiliar with the show locations from season 4 to 6. I had heard that season 3 was outstanding so I started with that. I am completely absorbed in this quiet, interesting, educational, beautiful-on-the eyes show.

They show these beautifully photographed shots of the surroundings, from the jagged mountains, to snow dusted lowlands, to foggy lakes, to the many stars in the night sky, along with the Milky Way. I'd like to see that someday.

Speaking of the starry skies, something I set the alarm for and plan to try and see tomorrow morning at 5:05am is the Starlink satellites streaking across the sky. Starlink is a satellite constellation constructed by SpaceX to provide satellite Internet access. SpaceX is Elon Musk's company. The constellation will consist of thousands of mass-produced small satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO).  As of 13 June 2020, SpaceX has launched 540 Starlink satellites, according to Wikipedia. Apparently the march of satellites across the sky is quite beautiful, say the people who have already seen it. I am hoping for a cloudless morning tomorrow so I can see it too.

I am taking advantage of the cool day. If it is cool out, I bake. In the oven right now is a bunch of mini-quinoa bites and some roasting broccoli. I also need to do something with the eggplant rolling around in the back of the fridge, and the marked-down picked chicken. I will look up recipes for "eggplant and chicken." Why not?

Found one! Is it bad that I gravitate to recipes that have the word "Easy" in the title? Easy One-Pan Eggplant Chicken Dinner. I have all these ingredients. Should be good! I also have some frozen shrimp defrosting for quick meals. Dinners for the next few days will be shrimp and broccoli and a boiled potato and also the eggplant dish. Lunches, I have deli meat and gluten free sandwich bread, the quinoa bites and also salad makings. A pot of vegetable soup is in the fridge, for either lunches or dinners, depending on how hungry I am.

It's hard to eat all of a pineapple before it goes bad. I found a solution. Freeze some of it. When I want some, I take it out of the freezer, chip some off, and blend in the blender with either banana or strawberry for a smoothie. Add a bit of coconut milk if you like, or just the fruit itself if you like it really thick. Sometimes I eat it thick and add crushed almonds on top, and eat with a spoon.

I'm all set with my frugal meals for the week!

I have church tonight, we are going through Hebrews. I am in the middle of several really good books with some more on deck. (Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment by Jeremiah Burroughs, and Phyllis Schlafly: Sweetheart of the Silent Majority by Carol Felsenthal). With my church event tonight, my books, and the the Alone TV show, I am all set for some good times today.  I hope you have a good day also!

Cheesy Quinoa Bites cooling. Soon it will be your turn, eggplant, soon.

PS, yes those are Smarties in the mason jar. I bought two bags on severe markdown after Easter. When I want something sweet but not too calorific, I mix a tube of Smarties with some peanuts for a light snack.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Nuts and Murray's spot

By Elizabeth Prata

Murray sure loves that spot! Even though it's not big enough for him, really. He sits there and watches out the front door. There are a lot of birds that hang our there on the dogwood tree in front or (unwisely) on the ground like the Brown Thrasher the other night hopping all around and cheeping his presence. Then he curls up to nap. I guess it's like when you see little kids twisted into all sorts of shapes and sleeping in spaces not made for sleeping!

Brown Thrasher in the front yard

I love nuts. I always have. At Christmas and Thanksgiving my mother used to put out baskets of a variety of nuts with nutcrackers. The visiting extended family would crack nuts and tell stories and laugh. I like to eat them for fiber and for the crunch. There are some nuts I can't have any more and others I need to limit intake quantities. But I still love them. Edamame nuts are high in protein and low in carbs and have a good about of fiber. Almonds too, in reasonable quantities. And I buy these boxes of 1-oz peanut packs and bring them to school for snacks. I buy the flavored almonds because sometimes Amazon has them for a really low price, so even if they're flavored I don't care, I'm all-in getting some almonds for not a billion dollars.

I'm almost out of soup so I'm going to make some more. Of what kind, I'm not sure yet. Then I'll read my Phyllis Schlafly biography, watch some more birds, and enjoy the day. I hope you do too!

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Daily Murray: Who can resist those eyes?!

By Elizabeth Prata

Summertime. Windows up. At night, drifting off to sleep, all is quiet in this rural county. No trucks, cars, sirens, trains, ambulances...just a distant dog bark and an occasional moo.

Awakened at 3:30 am by a vigorous mighty mockingbird. he was full of the joy! He sang for two hours straight. I listened as the cool humid breeze wafted over me. I enjoy the nature sounds and I know I'm blessed in living in a place where there are lots.

I enjoy the city and have traveled to many of the world's great cities. I especially like New York City with its soaring granite skyscrapers, lofty bridges, and museums of history and art. but I could never live there. The cacophony of noises would over-sensitize me in minutes flat! No, laying comfy in bed in the wee hours listening to the variety of mockingbird sounds is more my speed.

Mockingbirds mock, and can and do imitate a variety of other birds, and even gods an frogs! They can vocalize up to 63 different sounds although other sites say up to 200. Do they sing their own sings? Some say yes, others no. What everyone does agree on is that mockingbirds like to sing, and they sing a lot!

I was serenaded last night by a particularly vigorous one and I'm happy about that.

I got up late, very late for me, but I went to bed at midnight so that is to be expected. Though, I don't like it. I enjoy sleeping 9-4 or 10-5. I don't like midnight to 8. But it seems that as the summer progresses and I'm home from work, the bedtime slips later and later. I want to tighten that up starting tonight. If I can do it I'll skip the nap and go to bed early in hopes of retraining my body on the schedule I prefer. I wake up sharper and happier when it's early.

And look who likes to join me as I drink my coffee in the morning!

I ordered a tea sampler. I'd heard on the tv show Elementary of a Japanese tea made from twigs and leaves. LOL, I'm weird. It sounded good to me.

Kukicha is a Japanese tea made from the twigs and stems of the same plant that black tea and green tea come from. It is also known as twig tea or 3 year tea, and it's aged after harvest and roasted. Kukicha tea has a unique flavor-  sweet, creamy and slightly nutty. I didn't find it bitter. Since the base of it is green tea I can drink it as a Low FODMAP item. The Hojicha was a bonus surprise included in the packet. Apparently it is also made from roasted twigs and leaves from the green tea bush, but is reddish in color. From Wikipedia

It is distinctive from other Japanese green teas because it is roasted in a porcelain pot over charcoal, whereas most Japanese teas are steamed. The tea is fired at a high temperature, altering the leaf color tints from green to reddish brown.

I dunno. I just know that due to my FODMAP issues I can no longer drink most of the teas I used to drink (including chamomile, wah!) so I search for other kinds I can drink. The sample size is convenient because I can do just that, sample without investing a lot into the tea before I know if I'm going to like it.

I also have honeybush tea on my list, which is a close cousin of roobois except sweeter, hence the honey in the name. They are both South African teas, and are good for FODMAP diets.

Here are a couple of shots of the mockingbirds that live in the yard.

Have a wonderful day!

The tea samples: I got them thru Amazon

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Daily Murray: We had a little spat

By Elizabeth Prata

Me and Murray had a little spat. He likes to be near me. Since I spend a lot of time at the table writing on the laptop, he jumps on the table and lays down next to me. I bought a little covered bed for him because he was uncomfortable laying on the hard Formica table and wriggled around a lot. He likes to tuck his head under things. It’s so cute. He tucks his head under the rim of the bed.

Lately he’s decided he’d rather not curl up in the bed as often, but spread out on the table and tuck his head under my elbow. This makes it hard to write. I like the contact and it’s really cute, but after a few minutes, I need to move my arm. I’ve been lifting him and putting him in his little bed. Since it’s not his idea at that moment to get in his little bed, he resists being put into the bed, and he jumps off the table.

This went on successively, me lifting him and putting him in the bed (or trying), him jumping down. Repeat. Yesterday he was sitting upright on the table and I moved my hand to pet his head and he got scared and jumped down. Oh no. I do not want him to see my hand coming and be scared of me. I want him to know that every time I touch him it’s for love.

So I quit stuffing him in the little bed and let him decide when to get in it. When he splays out all over the table, to give myself room, I move the laptop over. This is proof that cats rule the house.

Here he is in his little bed, snuffing and snoring contentedly. The little crossed paws are so endearing!

I gotten some books lately. I’m excited at the Nathaniel Philbrick one. After Bill Bryson, I think he is the best non-fiction narrative writer. He makes his stories come alive. I bought this one is called Mayflower and it recounts the Pilgrims’ journey and first few decades of colonizing America. I also received as a gift the Paul Washer book on Fasting. I fast and I want to know more about the discipline and Paul Washer is just the man to teach me!

The Write Better book was recommended by Reagan Rose and Tim Challies. I have accumulated several books on Christian Art. I am interested to know, as a Christian, when I make art or write an essay, how to do it better as a Christian. There are a lot of books giving advice on how to write better or do art better but not from a Christian perspective, giving glory to God.

I’ve accumulated have several books on art in a little section of my book library, but none specifically on Christian writing. Since the Write Better book was recommended by two guys I trust when recommending things, I looked up the book and after skimming it online at Amazon, I got it. I am hoping it fills the bill. The Art books I have are Philip Ryken’s "Art for God’s Sake" and Francis Schaeffer’s "Art and the Bible."

Two requests for inter-library loan books have come in. So now I’m enjoying an embarrassment of riches. I’d requested a library loan for Eric Ripert’s biography (a chef) and the bio of Phyllis Schlafly. Apparently Schlafly’s biographer was a feminist mainly against Schlafly but after spending time with Phyllis and her family, the biographer wrote a gentle and warm bio. I am interested in Phyllis after having watched the Hulu show “Mrs. America”. The 9-episode TV series focused on Schlafly’s influence in stalling and eventually defeating the feminist Equal Rights Amendment. I’m old enough to remember the battle the first time around, and the TV show revived my interest in this woman and deepened it. She is fascinating.

I had decided that since I wrote three essays yesterday on The End Time blog that today I’d re-post an older essay and spend the day reading and crafting. In a providential turn of events, not only is it raining today (reading on a rainy day is so cozy!) but the internet is out this morning. I have spent some time in my Bible, I started Daniel as the next book in the Reading Plan. I read today’s devotional from "Piercing Heaven", prayers of Puritans (different from the Valley of Vision by Bennett). I’ll head to the Library at 10:00 to do the curbside pickup time for the books I’d ordered, and come home and read. I’ll also make a collage, and probably do some word searches, word puzzles, and coloring/painting.

I hope your day goes well. I hope my internet does come back eventually!

(and it did)