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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

A Band of Brothers and Sisters

We are all burned out on the topic of Coronavirus, and truly, none of us would keep our sanity if we lived coronavirus 24/7.

Except, there are people who do live coronavirus 24/7, so people like me can stay home.  It's humbling, to say the least.

As I blogged about on Sunday, I've disagreed with some of what our our Governor, Andrew Cuomo, has proposed over the years.  However, I've been inspired by his daily COVID-19 press conferences. 

Last week, I listened as Cuomo talked to the Army Corp of Engineers gathered at New York City to do battle against COVID-19 and I wrote this down as he spoke:  "This is going to be a long day, an ugly day, a sad day...this enemy attacks the weakness of us. It attacks our most vulnerable...these are our parents and grandparents, our aunts and uncles."

Cuomo continued: "You are living a moment of history.  This is one of the moments of history they will write about in history..a moment that forges character, forges people, changes people, makes them stronger...10 years from now you'll be talking about today to your children or grandchildren and you will shed a tear, because you will remember...the faces, and the names [of those who died], and how hard we worked...and you should...but you will also be proud of what you did.  You will be proud that you showed up....now go out and kick coronavirus' ass."

I am not an avid reader of Shakespeare but those who are were immediately reminded of a speech given by Henry V of England before he and his men went into battle during the 100 Years War against the French at Agincourt.  It is called the "St Crispin's Day Speech" because it was given on the eve of St. Crispin's Day, 1415.  The English, greatly outnumbered, are camped, knowing they would go into battle the next day.

"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers", King Henry V (back in the day when kings and emperors went to war with their troops) exhorts his troops. He reminds them that, one day in the future, others will wish they had been at the front lines of the battle.

Now it's time for us to forget blue and red and remember the red, white, and blue, to paraphrase another Cuomo press conference speech.  It is time to become a Band of Brothers and Sisters and put our differences aside.
Lourdes Hospital, Binghamton, New York, March 29, 2020
This, fellow brothers and sisters, is part of the front line of the battle. We don't see the inside of these buildings but we see this.  Near every ER where I live in New York, we see the triage tents.

Waiting....

Tomorrow starts the Blogging from A to Z Challenge.  26 days, 26 letters of the alphabet, starting with "A" on April 1.  I invite you to join me for my theme "America the Beautiful". It may be more a local theme than I had originally envisioned. But I hope the beauty of art, flowers, and sunsets will inspire you as you join the world against the foe we all are fighting, each in our own way.

(And, by the way....the English won the battle.)

Monday, March 30, 2020

A Walk #MusicMovesMe

It's time for another episode of #MusicMovesMe. 


Who are the members of Music Moves Me ?  We are bloggers who blog with music each Monday. If you have music to share with us, you are most welcome to join! (Music Posts Only- Please post containing links to You Tube or Vimeo for actual music.  Other posts are subject to removal or labeling as "No Music".)  Every other week we have a theme and on alternate weeks we have "You Pick".  

Our conductors? First, there is XmasDolly.  Her chief co-conductor is Cathy of Curious as a Cathy. Her other co-conductors are Stacy of Stacy Uncorked, and me.  

For March our guest conductor is Marie from Athena Cat Goddess Wise Kitty.


Her theme for today is "It's Walking in the Park Day - so the theme is Walking."  

Do you remember when you could walk without fear? It's hard for many.

Back when times were less perilous, my spouse and I used to enjoy walking on the Vestal Rail Trail in Vestal, New York (about 150 miles north and west of New York City).  We are still walking, weather permitting, but trying to find places less crowded.

So I'm all about walking in all sorts of ways, such as the Bangles and "Walk Like an Egyptian".

Looks like many of my selections will be oldies - not moldy, just oldies.  Next up, the one hit I am aware of by The Left Banke - from 1966, "Walk Away Renee". I love its melody.

Or, from 1963 and my preteen years, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and "Walk Like a Man"?

"Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves.

A song from my early teen years.  From 1965, "Remember (Walking in the Sand)" by the Shangri-Las.

Before I sign off, I must post a last minute tribute to country singer Joe Diffie, dead from COVID-19.  Here is one of his hits from 1994, Pickup Man. Perhaps he is giving a concert "up there" right now.

Remember...and keep your eyes on the thought of better days ahead when we get through this.   Why not visit other music bloggers and see how they are walking today.



You know the drill, please be kind, and rewind...no, that isn't it.  Just be kind.  And join me next week for the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, AND Music Moves Me.  That should be interesting.


Sunday, March 29, 2020

The Family Dinner

Although I've disagreed with some of what our our Governor, Andrew Cuomo, has proposed over the years, I've been inspired by his daily COVID-19 press conferences.  

Today, the Governor talked about Sunday dinner, saying we should, in these hard times:

Create some joy

Look for the silver lining

Cuomo talked about growing up in an Italian family.  Sunday dinner was a two or three hour affair.

As a divorced dad, the Governor tried to continue the tradition with his children, but he was not a great cook.  So bought the meatballs and sausage from a store, and then would prepare and simmer the sauce. Spaghetti and meatballs with sausage were served.  He would never admit he didn't make it, and his children, knowing what a terrible cook he was, wouldn't eat it.  So they would go for Chinese after.

Today he will have the family dinner on Skype and by phone.

This reminded me of when I first started to date my spouse, almost 50 years ago.  We were of different religions and cultures.  I was invited to Sunday dinner at his house - spaghetti and meatballs/sausage with sauce.  I was in a panic, because spaghetti wasn't often on the menu at my house.  Could I even eat it without getting it all over me?
A past dinner
I literally worried myself sick that day.  

But I grew to love Italian food, especially the food my mother in law, and later my spouse, made.  My mother in law was an excellent cook, and her son follows in her footsteps.

In my mother in law's last years, we would buy frozen meatballs and jarred sauce, and cook it in her small apartment in an independent living project.  We crowded around her small dining table, and it brought each of us joy.

No, we aren't going to have a family dinner today, and we don't know when we might have one next.  But just thinking of those meals brings me joy.

What about you?  How are you hanging in at this time of stress?

Saturday, March 28, 2020

The Reel to Reel Tapes

This is part of a post originally made on Christmas Day, 2013, with an update. We were together with my grown son, and my mother in law, for Christmas.

My son has been interested for years in obsolete technology, as I've blogged about before.

Years ago we had told him of how I purchased a Sony reel-to-reel recorder back around 1971, when I was in college. We left it behind in Arkansas moved to upstate New York in the mid 1980's. The tapes, though, recorded from about 1971 to 1974 and even later, had been in storage at my mother in law's house for years.

He wanted them, and he volunteered to go into the attic to get them.

We had sent them from our apartment in Florida to his mother shortly before my spouse joined the Air Force in 1976.  All these years, we had the tapes back.

My son, who is in his mid 20's, got such a kick out of the box. Black and white television. Imagine!

We opened the box, and this is what we saw.  After all these years, the tapes looked like they were still in good condition.  (If they are playable, though, it might be a minor miracle.)

I had forgotten how meticulously I typed up lists of each song - name, artist and year.  He got a true Christmas Eve gift. It's fine with me if he keeps the tapes, and he did.

Now, after all these years, my son is looking for a tape player or another way to test one of the tapes.

Another activity for staying at home?

Friday, March 27, 2020

The Backyard #SkywatchFriday

It was a day off from work last Friday.  I sat in the backyard, feeling fortunate that I have a backyard to sit in.

When I was young, I used to watch the clouds and use my imagination.  Now, I just like to sit and stare.
Two different pictures, taken at different times that day, showing the moods of the sky.
It's pretty amazing, those moods.
Nature is providing us with spring, and I hope we all have an opportunity to participate, even if it is from our living room windows or back yards.

I can only hope today is a day where we get some good news - something, anything, to give us hope.

Joining Yogi and the other skywatchers watching the sky at #SkywatchFriday.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

One More Snow #ThursdayTreeLove

Just when I thought it was safe to put our snow equipment away where I live in upstate New York, here came the snow again on Monday.
Snowy Bush near Sunrise
So, for my fans in tropical climes that never see snow, this one's for you.  At least I can get out, although it's only supposed to be to exercise walk or food shop.  Most businesses are closed.  But we are more fortunate, here in upstate New York, than many of you are, and I realize that.

It's not the first time we will get snow in spring but at least it had melted by the next day.  This isn't exactly a tree, but a bush, but I am bending the rules because it looked so pretty.

Do you love trees?  If you do, why not join Parul at Happiness and Food each second and fourth Thursday of the month for #ThursdayTreeLove?

Let's remember the trees we've known, the trees we've photographed, the trees that watch over us now in ways we can't imagine.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Farmers Market #WordlessWednesday

Nothing says spring like a farmers market.  In normal times, these sights would be pretty, but everyday.

Now they are special, because I don't know if they will be open this Saturday.
Radishes are a sign of encouragement. It's one of the earliest crops.

Carrots, so sweet.  Our local supermarket is actually rationing carrots right now.

Some milk to make bones strong.  And nothing like supporting local businesses, but....

These pictures were taken earlier in March - We did not go last week and I'm not sure if it is worth risking our health to try to go again.  As of right now, this Saturday year round market is still open (Saturdays only) although some of the farmers are staying home and taking pre orders now, for pickup.


We must hope of better times ahead.
Join Sandee at Comedy Plus for #WordlessWednesday.


Tuesday, March 24, 2020

The Purse Dial

One day, several years ago, spouse and I were shopping in a Home Depot, when suddenly, my purse started to talk to me.

"Hello, hello?" my purse said.  I stared at it, realizing that the voice sounded familiar...

It was someone I used to exercise walk with at work before she retired.  I grabbed my phone before she hung up and we spoke for several minutes.

It was my introduction to purse dialing.  I quickly learned how to set my phone so it wouldn't happen again.

Fast forward to February, 2020.

I was at work, but my spouse (retired) was home.  Suddenly, the phone rang.

Spouse was watching TV, and our cable system has a really nice feature if you get your TV and phone from them - caller ID on your TV screen.  Anyway, although our phone's spam filter cut off the call after one ring, the caller ID came up.

It was someone I knew who had cancer surgery back in December. (Her prognosis is good.) It's been a slow recovery for her.

She would not have called during the day, knowing I'm at work.  Thinking something bad had happened, my spouse went for the phone but, as described above, the ringing stopped before he could reach it.

Then the phone rang again.  Same number.

This time, spouse managed to answer.  My caller had no idea she had dialed our house.  She was trying to find something in her purse.

They ended up talking for over a half hour.

I'm not big into calling people but these times are not normal times.  I called her and we caught up.

Now, I wonder how my New York City friends and relatives are holding up during this terrible time. This person lives in New York City.

I'm calling this person once a week now. Somehow, we end up spending almost all our phone time discussing life during COVID-19 and some of her trials and tribulations. I'm not a big "keep in touch by phone" person and I had not been reaching out to her like I should have been.  The coronavirus changed that.

Is it grim?  Not at all.  Believe it or not, we laugh constantly.  Is her situation funny?  Well...sort of yes and no.  But this person is a big believer that you could laugh or you could cry, and she chooses laughter.  At least with me. 

That purse dial? It was meant to be.

In the next few days, I'll share how I keep in touch with a couple of other people.

Here's another take on friendship in the time of Covid-19.

While we are at it, it's a little late for this St. Patrick's Day, but let's change the subject and drink to the everyday heroes in our lives.

New York City was my home for some 21 years.  I grew up there.  I've walked down the streets on the news reports.  I've ridden the subways perhaps thousands of times.  But the familiar is no longer familiar.

We watch as our world changes, maybe forever.

We need each other and our friendships more than ever.

I am so thankful for the technology that brought me together with a friend.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Earworms for These Times #MusicMovesMe

It's time for another episode of #MusicMovesMe. 

Who are the members of Music Moves Me (4M)?  We are bloggers who blog with music each Monday. If you have music to share with us, you are most welcome to join! (Music Posts Only- Please post containing links to You Tube or Vimeo for actual music.  Other posts are subject to removal or labeling as "No Music".)  Every other week we have a theme and on alternate weeks we have "You Pick".  

Our conductors? First, there is XmasDolly.  Her chief co-conductor is Cathy of Curious as a Cathy. Her other co-conductors are Stacy of Stacy Uncorked, and me.  

For March our guest conductor is Marie from Athena Cat Goddess Wise Kitty.


Her theme for today is "You Pick".  


I picked a couple of earworms stuck in my ears for parts of this week, and a few bonus songs.  But with the sad news from this weekend that Kenny Rogers had passed away, I wanted to start with a Kenny Rogers/Dolly Parton duet I love.

Islands in the Stream.  I never knew this song was written by Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees.

My spouse's favorite - Kenny Rogers and the First Edition with Just Dropped In (To See What Condition my Condition was In).

From 1976, the great Billy Joel and Say Goodbye to Hollywood


My brand new home office (working from home as of Thursday) is my adult son's old bedroom.  His posters are still on the wall, including one from Eminem.  I am not a bit Eminem fan but I absolutely love his song "Lose Yourself".  "Opportunity comes once in a lifetime...you get one shot, do not miss this chance..the beat goes on...."  I've had this on my blog before and it is time to have it again.

The classic "Crying" by Roy Orbison. 


Here are the members of Music Moves Me.

And finally, if you crave concerts, here is a list of livestreamed concerts you can check out even now. 

Folks, it's a wrap.  Remember, it's going to get worse before it gets better.  Keep washing your hands.  Be kind to each other.  Thank any essential employees you know, and please do what they ask you to do.

One day, history teaches, it will get better.


Sunday, March 22, 2020

Squirrely

A light moment for your Sunday.

Squirrels in my back yard.  Now that many of us are supposed to be staying at home, we are either alone at home experiencing cabin fever, or we are on top of each other in the house, ready to explode.

Not all of us have back yards.  I have a small one.  I am lucky.  I watched this squirrel.  I do not like squirrels.  They dig up my flower pots.  But today, this squirrel gave me joy, just living its life, not caring what humans think.  Jumping along my fence, nimbly enjoying a warm, overcast, rainy on and off day.

As our governor of New York says "life will go on.  Different, but life is going to go on."  "Don't hoard...don't overreact. Dealing with hardship makes you stronger.  Life is not about avoiding challenges." " Life is going to knock you on your rear end...and then life becomes about overcoming these challenges.  America is America because we overcome challenges."

Watch nature.  Tell people in your life that you love them. 

Over and out.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Gratefulness Edition

Spring has come, but it's a spring like our country has not seen in over 100 years.  I'm fortunate, I can still get out but maybe not for much longer.

Today, I call out the great ones in our society.  To paraphrase Governor Cuomo of New York, and add to their list, they are:

Farmers, who show up at our farmers market (exempted from the "you must close" order as an essential business).

Healthcare workers: doctors, nurses, cleaners, all other support staff.

The supermarket workers who keep food on the shelves and have to deal with irate customers who blame them for shortages.  At our local supermarket, when you check out, you wait behind a line while the cashier sanitizes the belt (between each customer). Then he/she instructs you to put your purchases on the belt, while you stand behind the line. After you are rung up, you are then allowed to move up and pay.

The pharmacists and their helpers.  At this market's pharmacy, you stand behind one line until it's your turn. Then there is a second line you stand behind while the pharmacist gets your prescription.

Our first responders: Police officers, Firefighters 

Public transit workers.  In the city where I worked until I was sent home to work there, they drive the buses (which are free for the duration) risking themselves so others can get to and from where they need to go.  On our buses the driver is enclosed, and people must get on or off the bus by the back door.

Childcare workers, who make a lot of the above possible.

Anyone who works in a nursing home or assisted living facility.  After the seven months my mother in law spent in a nursing home before she passed away in 2018, I have only the greatest of respect for those workers.

These flowers are for you.

One more thing - are you anxious or fearful of what is happening around us?  Living in New York State, I can't help it.  But here is a free resource that may be able to help:
Free Resources to Help Manage Anxiety, Fear, and help to center you.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Our Turn #SkywatchFriday

Looking up and watching the sky is more important than ever.

Tuesday, knowing I would soon be working from home (that actually started yesterday afternoon), I walked around a quiet downtown Binghamton, New York.

I said goodbye to some of my favorite views, because spring is starting to spring, and I won't be there.

Buds on the magnolias are swelling.

Our Civil War monument, reminding us how worse things could be.
Nearly empty street at lunchtime.
Sky reflections on courthouse windows.

Earth abides, on this first full day of spring. The world keeps turning and now it's our turn to weather the COVID-19 crisis.   Let's check up on each other; let's carry each other through.  Let's keep our eyes on the beauty of our world.  Thank someone today for being there for you.

Now, more than ever, join Yogi and the skywatchers at #SkywatchFriday.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

And Then Into the Unknown

Whoever would have thought?

I'm fortunate to work in a good department at a good company, and we are a kind of support system to each other.  All of us are at an age where we've already gone through caring through aging parents and in laws and are past that (due to the inevitable) , or are facing those challenges right now.  It's been stressful these last few months as we worked on a large project that had to be completed by year's end, but we are near the end, and can share some good laughs now and again.

I've privileged to still be here, agonizing about my life.

But now, nature has intervened in ways we could not have dreamed of on New Year's Eve.

Earlier this year, I announced my retirement to my company.  The date is mid April. I would have my last day, eat some cake, get a gift (hopefully), wave goodbye and head off into the sunset.  Not entirely, because I was going back to work, but part time only. 

That was while COVID-19 was still a faraway thing, happening to other people

Now, COVID-19 is happening to everyone.  And, effective Friday, I am working from home. For how long, I don't know.  I'm an introvert, but I think it's still going to be a lonely experience. The socialization is part of why I had made the decision to go part time (retiring first) to begin with.  Now I have to learn a whole new way of working.  I'm not greatly technological, either.  Fortunately, I have a son who is.

I am not a health care worker, a supermarket employee, a pharmacy employee.  I am fortunate.  Some of my cousins are thick in the fight - one is an emergency room doctor; one is a non medical staff member in a hospital.  Still another works in a retail store which is remaining open.  Others are teachers, with their classrooms closed, learning to teach remotely from home.

All this time, I've seen what is happening around me.  Each day, we awaken to a brand new world.  Already, downtown Binghamton, New York (where I work) was emptying out. Already, restaurants are only allowed to do takeout and must close by 8pm.  Most of our local communities have declared states of emergency. The City of Binghamton and some others have a curfew. Now, our downtown department store is closing until the end of March.

More and more retail stores are closing.  Some. like JC Penney (closed yesterday, until April 2), say it is temporary but I know not all these icons will survive.

Some employers are being decent - like Home Depot.  One of my cousins works for them.

My spouse and I own our home, but many others have to pay rent, and how do you do that when you have no job?   So I have little to complain about except, perhaps, for some bad timing.

I don't think it takes much vision to see that our world will change in ways we can't quite foresee yet.  And those who are high risk, like me, wonder what we will have to go through to see it.

I could joke that it's all because I decided to retire.  What a way to start....

No, not really.  But you know what?  It's time for me to join in and provide comfort in even a small way, through photography and music. We are marching into the unknown, but today, let's take music as our companion.

Let's chillax with the Dropkick Murphy's and their St. Patrick's Day concert, live from Boston, completely on line.  After all, today (near midnight) spring begins.

And then - into the unknown we march.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Blooming Despite the News #WordlessWednesday

Well, it's official.

As of last night, we have one confirmed case of COVID-19 in our community, and 70 pending results of testing.  (If you know how hard it's been for many to get tested in our country, 70 pending results is a bit scary, I will admit.)  Several local supermarkets are opening to seniors for the first hour of their opening.  Some banks are drive through only.

No unnecessary travel, many local buildings closed, all senior centers closed, local hospitals are working together, asking people to use virtual walk ins.

I am still working from my office but this may change in the very near future - fortunately my job can be done remotely but I think of first responders, supermarket employees, sanitation workers, and others.

The City of Binghamton, New York, where I work, is on a nightly curfew as of last night.

So, what can you do, but take a walk in the fresh air (as long as we are permitted to) during the day, and watch spring unfold?

Which is exactly what my spouse and I did.  Spouse took these pictures because my back was acting up - not bad at all for a beginning photographer.   I love this one especially, with the shadows.


Flowers - so welcome, to maintain our mental health.  We are reminded that nature will persevere somehow, with us or without us.  We must try what we can do to limit our stress.

Join Sandee at Comedy Plus for #WordlessWednesday.


Tuesday, March 17, 2020

St. Patrick's Day Special

Just a short post today.

It's St. Patrick's Day and things are getting pretty grim all over our United States.

So how about a little chuckle?

I saw this "St. Patrick's Day" special at a local market a couple of weeks ago.  I'm sure lots of people will want to take advantage of this bargain.

Just a little "oops".

(Full disclosure - we went back to that store a couple of days later and they had fixed the sign.)

I want to call out all people working in supermarkets and other retails,  Along with first responders and all in medicine, you have become the heroes of the day.  

Let's stay calm and be kind to each other.

We will get through this.

And a happy St. Patrick's Day to you.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Irish Songs and Blogging from A to Z Reveal #MusicMovesMe #AtoZChallenge

Today, you get two themes for the price of one.
It's time for another episode of #MusicMovesMe.  It's also Theme Reveal Day for the Blogging from A to Z Challenge.

First things first, though:  Music!

Who are the members of Music Moves Me (4M)?  We are bloggers who blog with music each Monday. If you have music to share with us, you are most welcome to join! (Music Posts Only- Please post containing links to You Tube or Vimeo for actual music.  Other posts are subject to removal or labeling as "No Music".)  Every other week we have a theme and on alternate weeks we have "You Pick".  

Our conductors? First, there is XmasDolly.  Her chief co-conductor is Cathy of Curious as a Cathy. Her other co-conductors are Stacy of Stacy Uncorked, and me.  

For March our guest conductor is Marie from Athena Cat Goddess Wise Kitty.


Her theme for today is "Songs about St. Patrick's Day or Ireland".  I will include Northern Ireland for a reason you'll see in a minute.   For today I will feature both a fun song and a grim song about "The Troubles".

The Dubliners and "Whiskey In The Jar" 

The Cranberries and their most powerful song, "Zombie".  RIP, Dolores O’Riordan, who passed away two years ago from drowning due to alcohol intoxication.

Why not listen to others of Music Moves Me?

Now I have to move on to my Blogging from A to Z Theme Reveal.


I've taken the A to Z Challenge every year since 2015.  In 2019, my theme was Finding America through Photos.  For those new to this challenge, on April 1 your topic for blogging begins with "A", then on April 2, "B", and so forth.  Sundays are off days, so you get 26 letters in 30 days.  It's fun!  Why not join us?  Several of the Music Moves Me folks do and you'll enjoy what they plan to do.

For 2020, I had decided on a theme of America the Beautiful without remembering my theme from last year.  But, with everything our United States has been through in the past several weeks (along with much of the world, I might add) we definitely need to see some beauty.

I have over 10,000 photos on my phone and am a confessed photo hoarder.  

So, assuming my health doesn't suffer in the coming weeks, I intend to bring you some of the beauty of the United States (and maybe some photos of Canada, which, after all, is part of the Americas, if I can find them on my computer).

And, as I say every Monday - it's a wrap!

Join me again next Monday for another episode of Music Moves Me!

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day March 2020

It's a beautiful, sunny but crisp and breezy day in my zone 5b yard in the Southern Tier of upstate New York.

We've had a relatively mild winter, and I am so happy to see these early announcers of spring in my outdoor garden.  My thanks, as always, to Carol at May Dreams Gardens for bringing us this 15th of the month flower meetup.

Yellow crocus - a first year for these.  My purple ones aren't blooming yet.

In my back yard, white lenten rose continues to bloom.

Indoors - there is my "miracle" Phalaenopsis orchid I bought on Black Friday at Home Depot, and a couple of blooms are still on the plant. 

Most of my Thanksgiving cacti are blooming.  Here's a red one.

And a pink one.

My poinsettia from December 2018 continues to rebloom.  I have three blooming areas on the plants now.  In the background (upper right) are the daffodils I am forcing - two of them have flower buds now.
One African violet is left blooming right now but it's putting on a nice show.
Still blooming! I got this cyclamen to kill for Valentine's Day and I haven't killed it yet!

My Vicks plant (Plectranthus tomentosa) is blooming! I apologize for the blurriness but my iPhone SE doesn't do macro type photography well.  I've grown these for years but this is the first time any have bloomed for me.  They were nicer several days ago.

Finally, the hyacinth ready to bloom that I bought at Aldi right after February GBBD gave me two blooms, but it is fading away now.  Here it is when it looked better (March 1).

I hope these blooms have given you some happiness today.  Why not visit some other participants of Garden Bloggers Bloom Day and enjoy some more flowers.  After all, the Ides of March aren't something to beware of, if you have flowers!


Saturday, March 14, 2020

Keep Calm and Eat Pie - Pi Day 2020

Oh, do we need some comforting, we in today's United States. We don't know where to turn, and wherever we do turn, there are reminders of us living on the knife's edge (to use a cliche) of uncertainty.

On top of that, today is Pi Day.  You know, in our numbering system 3/14.  Or 3.14.  We are supposed to celebrate by eating, or making (or both), pizza pie, any type of pie.  Pie, yummy pie.

But something not funny happened on the way to the store.  Yesterday, spouse and I went to our local supermarket at 8:30 am to pick up a prescription and get a couple of bagels for breakfast (I had taken the day off of work).  The parking lot was packed, and as we went into the store we felt like salmon swimming upstream, as we passed shoppers pushing carts out of the store, loaded with...well, anything.

This is what I found at the entrance.

The natural remedies section.

Toilet paper.
Wet wipes.

I didn't check the pie section but the bakery area had another hand sanitizer station.

I think we've all seen enough.  It's time to make Pi.

Here are a couple of my posts from previous years, if you need something to get in the mood.

Pizza Rustica
Grass Pie

A link to various (not mine)  "pi" recipes, too.

Guess what, though.  I'm not going to make Pi today.  Spouse and I did get out and take a walk and we went into a store and got something I'll make tomorrow for my son.  Tonight, spouse is making some beef broth and we are going to have onion soup from some of the strawberry onions we bought the other week.

It's hard not to give in to fear, to find that line between social distancing and loneliness, and to remember that there are lots more people in a bad way than we think.  Let's think of our senior relatives and neighbors, or those who are immune-impaired, or the disabled among us with health issues.  Let's wash our hands, not hoard.  Think of someone today.  Call or email them.

Let's turn to music when all else fails.  Let's remember we are the human race.  We are all one.  Our human race has faced adversary before.  We will face it again.  We will get through this.

Too many times, we do forget that.

Friday, March 13, 2020

No Superstition Sky #SkywatchFriday

It's Friday and it's time to watch the sky where I live in upstate New York.

Hoping the snow is gone for good, but you can never tell at this time of year.

But the first work day of Daylight Saving time brought me back to being able to see the sunrise. First, the stage has to be set.
We have our famous cloud cover.

Not epic sunrise, but sunrise.

And then, a few minutes later, where I work in downtown Binghamton, New York.

It's Friday the 13th but I am hoping for a good day.  Our country needs one.

Want more sunrises, sunsets and other sky pictures?  Check out other bloggers at #SkywatchFriday.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Squalls #ThursdayTreeLove

Spring is almost here.  Earlier this week, it was in the low 70's (about 21 C) which is quite warm for the first week of March.

But just a few days before, this was the scene.

This is a snow squall.  I live on the edge of snow squall country in upstate New York - where squalls can be so fierce they can cause massive traffic accidents.  They can come on in seconds, with no warning, and absolutely no visibility for the driver.  The most the weather bureaus can do is issue a warning for possibilities of squalls.  They can't predict where or when.

This one was mild.  It barely made the trees look foggy and we only received a dusting of snow.

I know my friends in milder climes wanted to see snow one more time.  As for me, I'm done with snow.

I hope.

But we in the United States are facing other squalls, as are many others in our world.  It's hard to stay calm, but we must.  Again, we have the forecast but we can't predict where and when.  We must reject chaos.  We must allow the beauty of this world to help us survive the coming weeks.

Join Parul from the blog Happiness and Food and other bloggers who love trees for our meetup every second and fourth Thursday of the month at #ThursdayTreeLove.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Crocus and Bee #WordlessWednesday

Sunday, where I live in upstate New York, I saw my first crocus flower.

As I watched, a bee flew towards another nearby crocus.

It landed.
Then it flew to another flower.
Maybe the bee wondered why it was out when it was still winter, but eventually it flew away.

The flower remained, and soaked up some March sun.

Now, Wednesday, the crocus are out in force, although mine haven't started to bloom yet.

The calendar is wrong. We may get one or two more snows, but we no longer care.  Spring is here.

Joining Sandee at Comedy Plus for #WordlessWednesday.

Joining Esha and Natasha for their Wordless Wednesday.