There's rosemary, that's for remembrance.
William Shakespeare: Hamlet, Prince of Denmark

Monday, December 31, 2007

Oh, the weather outside is frightful....and a goodbye.

New Year's Eve, a time to reflect, bitch a little and say good bye to an old friend. Yes, it has been snowing for days. Outside our door here is what we see......white stuff everywhere. At the moment the sun is showing its shameful face but there are dark clouds all around us holding what? SNOW.

Steve did a good job of clearing the driveway. Where did he put all of the snow? Across the street in the is public land not private in the culvert. He was discrete and you can hardly tell anyway.

Yep, we can and did climb up to the roof just for fun; and to check the half of a light string that seems to not want to stay on.

The stuff closest to the house if roof fall off, the rest of it is fallen snow. We figure we have about 5 feet standing in the yard and the neighbor agreed with us.

These are the last pictures I was able to take with my HP PhotoSmart 733; it died shortly afterwards. I tried to take a picture of Violet sitting in Drake's old bed as she was gazing into the fire, but nothing happened. I have replaced the batteries a zillion times to the tune of 2 zillion dollars and it has just worn out. I don't know if it is the dock or the camera itself, but it is 5 years old and is ready for retirement or a quiet burial. So, I used Steve's reward certificates from Staple's and bought a Kodak EasyShare Z885 and will start taking pictures with it as soon as I read the how-to book and download the software. I am going to bow my head and have a moment of silence...because the old camera is silent too.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Two CD reviews.

I rarely "review" or mention a movie or music I like other than Joni Mitchell and Jackson. I am no good at reviews and usually the most you will get is "Gee, it was really good and I liked it!" Most of you know my two passions are books/reading and music. I am picky with my reading; I am almost a fiction purist. I love all kinds of music...pretty much every genre has something good about it, so I am gonna go out on a limb and make an attempt to review two CD's we got for Christmas. Here goes......

The first CD is an untitled one by Angela Baldwin, my adopted blog daughter. We received her music as a Christmas gift all wrapped in a red package with Love Angela on the tag. I had heard a few of her pieces on her blog but had not heard a whole collection of her piano compositions. This gentle, dynamic, soothing, dramatic, sad, alive, mystical, realistic music made my heart feel is a total expression of Angela the woman and child. The titles are reflections of her personality; Hold Me Now, Ebb and Flow, Gypsy Eyes, Reverence, The Faerie Queen and Amore Mio are some of the pieces. Angela plays the piano as if she was born with the sounds tinkling in her brain and emerging through her fingertips. To say she is talented is a gross understatement. She is blessed, so very blessed with talent. I downloaded the CD Christmas Day to my iPod and have had my ear buds in constantly since then! I. L.O.V.E. T.H.I.S. M.U.S.I.C! Check out her blog as she may have a YouTube of her music or it may be linked on her side bar. Sorry Angela for not asking for permission to post your beautiful face.

The next CD is Amy Winehouse Back to Black. My daughter gave this CD to Steve, but I kind of "stole" it to download to my iPod and have had it on the CD player in between listening to Angela. When I was trying to think of how to describe this CD the only words I could come up with were Contemporary 60's. This is a powerhouse voice, unforgettable melodies with stunning, stinging lyrics. Amy is a troubled young woman and has recently been in the news for problems with drugs, public intoxication, issues in Norway and falling apart because her husband is jailed in a witness tampering case. She tells her story in this CD.....with blunt honesty. You will need to get past her language and just hear her (my new favorite word is fuckery....sorry). Amazon described her as a cross between Billie Holiday and Lauren Hill and I'll add a sprinkle of Diana Ross. I can't stay still when I am playing her music...I have to move to the beat; I know I am singing annoyingly loud and off key...but I love her music. She has incredible talent and if she can just get on track in her personal life she can be a NAME!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

What I got for Christmas in 2007...

Let's see......on the dark side of Christmas....the side where all of the bulbs burn out..... I got a tooth ache. I had a crown done right before we left for Vegas. The crown was "clicking" for several weeks after it was "installed." I was sure the tooth ache was in the remaining stump of tooth under the crown. Oh no, lets kill off the root of the tooth in front of the crown and make that one hurt. So, on the 8th I get to have a root canal and build up for yet another crown. I am really pleased to have just spent $500.00 and can now round that off to a cool thou.

Then when the bulbs went back on....We got a CD of Angela's beautiful piano music. This woman is so talented, so gifted....but I am only her adopted blog mother so I can only give her praise and not advice.

Molly gave me a silver musical snow globe with doves in it. I would have showed you a picture of it, but the camera from hell has the day off. The globe is on the table just to the left of the picture below. She baked several dozens of cookies for Steve; everything from frosted and sugar to chocolate chip oatmeal. She is a whiz in the kitchen and makes cheese cakes, fabulous dinners and everything in between. She is also my best friend and I love her.

Sachi and Spencer had their little hand prints made into a moose and a reindeer. I love these little hands and the thought that was behind the gift of them. I have a very special daughter-in-law....and of course she is married to a pretty special man. They both know how much I miss my grandchildren and go out of their way to call and have the kids call as well. To have these mementos makes my heart glow.

My sweet, thoughtful....and have I mentioned that she is wonderful?....daughter got me a compact engraved with my initials on the top and inside is a picture of me and Steve on Grouse Creek. We were younger, had blond hair and all of our own teeth. The heart shaped frame is from Chris as well. It has a special saying in it. The frame is mother of pearl and is lovely. She enclosed a special bar of soap for me too...smells delicious but I hate to use is wrapped beautifully and ....smells delicious! She also gave Steve a picture of me that was taken in 1961 or 1962. I am a happy, smiling teenager. Made him cry when he saw the picture. Steve got the newest Amy Winehouse CD from Chris. He loves it. Me too.

Steve surprised me with this note from Hong Kong. He had the concierge write Dearest Rosemary, then I love you in Chinese characters. Steve bought the frame and put the note in....he is a sweetheart. I love him.

We got a kitty calendar from Christopher...we kinda like cats and kittens so this is perfect. I already have the litter changing dates circled! Christopher gave me a wish box. It is about the size of a sugar cube and I have already written my wish on a tiny piece of paper and put it inside. The box is in Louie. We are so blessed to have this wonderful bunch of kids and grand kids. We were alone yes, but all of them called (even the JW daughter called on Christmas Eve) and told us they loved us and appreciated our gifts. We have had so many bumps in our road the last few years but all of them are tolerable as long as we have each other and our family.

Were any of you wondering about the weather? Fear not for the snow continues to fall and fall and fall. The cute little mounds of plowed snow I posted last week have grown two fold and I can't see out the upstairs window to the street anymore. The UPS truck is chained up, the substitute FedEx driver did some berm jumping in our back yard last week when he was lost and two cars have gone off into the ditch at the turn just past our house because of idiots behind the wheel. This is the most snow we have had this early into winter at our home since 1998....I keep track.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Twas the day after Christmas.....

........and the tree was systematically being undecorated. It isn't much of a tree to start with; maybe 2 feet tall AND in a pot because we must have a shortage of trees in our forest and need to plant one in the spring. There used to be red ribbons and a red garland on the tree. Seems a kitten pooped out a red ribbon this morning (thankfully) and there were pieces of garland on the floor plus almost all of the tips of the tree branches. Hum, seems to be a kitty butt and tail at the back of the tree and that would be Guido Fortunato. Not that sweet little Emma Lee is innocent. She is hiding in back of the stand to the left. So, the tree had the ribbons taken off, then the garland and now it is out the balcony door with its lights on for the turkey, birds, squirrels and the moose to enjoy. Tomorrow I'll tell you what Steve and I got for Christmas.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

And a few more Christmas pictures......

I have not one clue as to where this picture was taken or the year....but....that is my first grandchild, Christopher, in the picture with me. Nice tree. Looks like there are lots of presents to go around and I look like I am having a good time. That was a good year, which ever year it was.

This picture was taken in California, umm in 2002 or '03. We are at my youngest son's home and if I remember correctly we all gave each other sentimental gifts that year. Sachi was a toddler, Tyler was growing up to be a football player and Steve and I were getting greyer and greyer. That was a good year for sure.

This was our tree last year. We cut it down in our forest and it looked beautiful and full there. Inside, not so much. Obviously Santa had not arrived gifts!!!

We had Christopher (yes, the same Christopher in the first picture) on the right, and AnthonEy with us last year. It was wonderful having kids in the house. They both loved the snow, relaxed, ate and slept the time away. I wish it was last year again.

The circle of love in our family continues to turn. The kittens are growing, Steve is home, the sun popped out for about 30 seconds and the ice on the driveway melted. All is quiet at Momikat's home in Idaho.

Some of you may not know, but I was born and raised in Southern California. I lived there until 1998 when we moved to Idaho full time. While I may crab and complain about the snow in Idaho (and pretty much everything else) it seems to me that snow in December at this particular time in December is the way God intended it to be. All I knew at Christmas time was sun and rain. Now, seeing the first snow of winter can really be a beautiful thing; seeing it melt in March or April is also beautiful. So, from me to you, all of my wonderful blog friends, I wish you the happiest of times this Christmas and a bountiful New Year.

Friday, December 21, 2007

California: Sweet Joni

Where my heart will be Christmas morning......

Thursday, December 20, 2007

I am a flat and a sharp off....

I have been trying for over an hour to create a play list....don't ask me why, I don't know exactly. In any event, I can't do it because I am either stupid or can't quite grasp the English language as it pertains to the instructions.

So, I want you to hum along with is what I would have loaded onto my play list:

Quando, Quando, Quando; Michael Buble and Nellie Furtado
The entire Blue CD by Joni Mitchell
Like a Star; Corrine Bailey Rae
Falling in Love in a Coffee Shop; Langdon Pigg
Christina Aguilara's Mi Reflejo...the whole CD
These Days; Jackson Browne
1234; Feist
Can't Let Go; Lucinda Williams
The Way I Am; Ingrid Michaelson
Hot Fun In the Summertime; Sly and the Family Stone

Oh to hell with it....just a whole lot of my favorite songs. Play anything, I'll like it.

More memories from Christmas past.

Here we have the 1950's white aluminum tree with all gold ornaments. We put it up one year only. My mother was a tinsel fanatic and this one was ....well.....just all tinsel I guess. No fun. See that adorable dollie? I ruined her by taking her in the bathtub with me; she was made of cloth. See the TV in the far left corner? It had a "remote control box" that had a cord that could reach all they way into the dinning room. It had dials for channel changing and volume control and the box was probably 9 inches square and 3 inches deep. My mother loved that TV.

My mother was the only person that put tinsel on the tree. It was done one strand at a time and the strands all hung at even lengths. It took her days to finish. As they fell off, I would throw them onto the tree. Really irritated her. She eventually got over that obsession and good thing because my brother was a monster child and undecorated the tree as fast as my mom decorated it.

This was in 1968. I remember buying that outfit with money I had made cutting hair for some of my mother's friends. I was in cosmetology school and this was my Joey Heatherton look....I know...who is Joey Heatherton. I am thrilled at getting something in that envelope, but I can't remember what it was. My hair actually looks shiny. Must be the lighting because I had bleached it to destruction to get it WHITER THAN WHITE aka platinum. My hair is naturally white now and I hate it. Go Figure.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Memories of Christmas past....a really long time ago!

I was going through old pictures again. I found some Christmas ones that are really pretty neat.

This one is quite "Christmasy" with a picnic setting in bright sun, don't you think? That's my mom in the background on the left with the dark hair. Sitting with her is my cousin Caroline. My Aunt Rowena (Caroline's mother) is sitting in the foreground with the sun hat on......nothing says Season's Greetings like a sun hat and a little sketch of a fireplace and holiday decorations! This was probably 1943 or 1944. I wasn't born yet.
This is my first Christmas picture...wasn't I cute? See the shoes? I wore that style until I went into first grade and had to wear a uniform and saddle oxfords. They were called black patent bow shoes. I loved them. This was probably taken in 1946.

I found this letter with the picture. Seems I had asked for a dollie. While Santa says he is not sure he has enough dolls, I got Sandy that year, my very favorite dollie ever.

Monday, December 17, 2007

dan fogelberg - same auld lang syne

Good Bye, Dan

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Another good-bye

We have had some tough days since we got home from Vegas.......

Our sweet Drakie died today. She was 16. This is the cat that has gone through so much this last year...thyroid surgery, kidney failure and multiple medications including subcutaneous fluids several times a week to keep her going......for us.

Drake is my son's cat. She was all he wanted when he graduated from college.....not a computer, not a trip to Hawaii; he wanted a cat. We searched every pet store and shelter within a 30 mile radius of our home to find the perfect kitten. She was a feral kitten and had been turned into a pet store across the street from the railroad tracks where Drake and her sister had been dumped. She was full of fleas, ear mites and undernourished....but......she did the paw-on-the-glass-crying/miaow-help-me-get-the-hell-outta-this-place and my son was in love.

She was a vibrant, athletic, sleek, adorable, I'll let you know when I want to be petted kitten and cat; quintessential. She was so very black that trying to get a good picture of her was almost impossible and she always seemed above having her picture taken; just looking at me should be enough to dazzle you she seemed to be telling us.

When we were getting ready to move to Idaho full time in 1998, Drake (who is named after Perry Mason's side kick, Paul Drake; PM was my son's favorite TV show back then) was already a part of our cat family and to have separated her from Fuzzy her BFF would have been hard on both of them. So, she moved to Idaho with us.

I have loved this cat beyond words or comprehension. Some of those feelings stem from my love for Gil. There was a rat named Dee that captured my daughter's heart along with a dog named Fudge and a hamster called Bright Eyes that my oldest son had for about a year. These creatures also weaseled their way into my heart; maybe not the rat so much but I cried when she died. To see how my children took care of these animals and loved them was enough for me to love them as well.

We tried to keep Drake as comfortable as possible the last few months. I bought her a heated bed, tried every kidney sparing food made, adjusted medications as needed and one day when she was feeling puny carried her on my shoulder while I dusted and then washed the kitchen floor.

When we returned from Las Vegas it was apparent she had gone down hill fast. The vet tech I have come in to care for the cats when we travel had warned me she was declining. She had not eaten since Saturday, could hardly get to the water bowl by her bed, was pottying on the carpet but only dime size output and was sleeping all of the time. Since last Thursday we had given her SubQ fluids every day and I tried to comfort her as much as I could, but she was tired and she was miserable.

While Drake has been in Idaho for the last 8 years, my son has missed her. He always asked about her and I would send him pictures of those few captured moments when Drake was not on guard. He will get her little paw print in clay. I will get one too. I am having her cremated and will bring her home again. I love you Drakie and miss you more than you will ever know.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

They ......I can't find the words.

We saw Mystere last night. I had seen Quidam probably 10 or more years ago and it was magnificent. I can't find the words to describe Mystere....not that I am good at reviewing anything; I'm not.

Fabulous, amazing, spectacular, remarkable, great, colorful, extraordinary....and on and on.

I didn't understand the story of Quidan and didn't understand Mystere either.....I was so caught up in the performances, costumes and the feats of the athletes/artists/super-human performers that it really didn't matter. There were 2 men (all of the performers have 0% body fat and muscle beyond belief) that came up through smoke from the floor of the stage wearing leotards, no shirts. To say they were magnificent specimens is an understatement. They did slow motion lifts with each other, turning their bodies in ways I had never imagined.

I wonder if they have 2 sets of performers because doing this show 2 times a day, 7 days a week is beyond comprehension and tolerance of the body.

Did I mention lots of half naked men? Did I mention sweaty bodies a few times? Did I mention live music that was modern opera so beautiful the lady next to me cried?

Did I mention a 6 foot plus man in back of me coughing on my neck the whole time? Did I mention I am getting a cold and feel kinda crappy? Did I mention I am home sick and miss my kitties? Did I mention Penelope had surgery while we were gone to have growths taken off of her eyelids? Did I mention she got her teeth cleaned while under anesthesia and she had 2 fractures with pulp exposure and abscesses? Did I mention the vet said she could have died from the infection? They took the teeth out and she is still in the dogie hospital on IV antibiotics. That her teeth are in such bad shape is no surprise to me. Her former owners were not stellar dog folks. The vet asked if she chewed a lot....she probably existed on rocks some days to fill her belly before she came to live with us.

Violet cried all day yesterday the kennel girl told me; she wasn't barking she was crying probably because she missed Penny. We leave tomorrow and will pick up the girls Friday. It's time. We have seen all that we want to see in Vegas and we have only so much money to throw away......although I have not played my vouchers. I think I will just cash them in and call it even.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

weiners, burgers, cinnamon rolls and Starbucks

Still in Vegas; still eating, still shopping. I now have 3 vouchers to cash in; $24.01,$60.50, and $104.75. Yup, I'm ahead just a tad. Steve has lost.

Last night was Mexican food, we have done Starbucks 2 mornings and I am in love with a guy named Carmel Macchiato. To change it up a bit we ate in the Coffee Shop this morning and I had French Toast. I think the walking I have done in the Fashion Show Mall has worked off a few calories.

This mall is HUGE. There are 3 floors and has an East and West wing. The anchor stores are Dillards, Neiman Marcus, Macy's and Saks. There are a zillion little shops and 2 zillion kiosks. I have gotten lost both days I went there but luckily there are maps all over the place. I have been to a lot of malls in my life and I have to say this one is the largest...larger than South Coast in California, larger than any in San Francisco, Chicago or any other place where I have been a mall rat.

We are going to Cirque tonight and tomorrow Steve gives his talk and then we head home to several feet of snow on Thursday!!!!