The way to love someone
is to lightly run your finger over that person's soul
until you find a crack,
and then gently pour your love into that crack.
~Keith Miller

Monday, January 23, 2017

Photo aging

Kinda amusing - photo aging application.  I guess it's just a wrinkle overlay. Most certainly my hair will continue to get lighter and lighter - whiter.  Tried two fairly recent photos, one with, the other without makeup, to see if the process renders a similar looking aging result.  That technology is pretty cool.  Several of my childhood friends did this too and it was a lot of fun to see their results.  The older versions "look" like family.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Covey - Seven Habits summarized -

1. Take responsibility for your choices and their consequences.

2. Envision "the" ideal version of how you want things to be ... your relationships, your accomplishments, your environment, etc. ...value what you value...

3. First things come first as you spend your time on goals, roles and relationships. 

4. Think win/win. Abundance ... 

5. Seek to understand first ... Empathetic listening ... 

6. Cooperate ... Positive teamwork ... Supportive leadership

7. Maintain balance in your life ... Upward/outward spiral

New one ... 

8."Find your voice and inspire others to find theirs..." 

also Dr.Covey


Max, 10 weeks
He's almost big enough to hop up on to the couch (which is allowed) all by himself.  We are training Max to be an inside dog.  Sammy did great inside, but preferred being outside on the porch mostly, or far enough back in the yard where he could see in to the house.  I walked Sammy several miles most days and he seemed to really like that.  This pup will be a dog who enjoys a walk too.  He is doing great with his leash training.  We are making the mistake of taking him outside through the front door without a leash for "potty time".  As big as he is going to be he really shouldn't leave the house or backyard when he's not on a lead. Last week we meet a Great Pyrenees on our trail.  He was walking with a couple who are about my age and the dog was huge!  Bigger than Sammy ever was.  I think I'm not exaggerating to guess the dog was around 185 pounds and probably a full hand taller than Sam as well.  The man was wearing heavy leather gloves and warned that his dog didn't like puppies.  Pyrs are by nature very laid back dogs so I was "eyebrows up" and moving along.  The dog, his dog,  seemed perfectly calm and observant to me ... .  That to note - this dog is going to be big, or bigger than big, and the window of opportunity to train him is ever decreasing.  This bred is notoriously stubborn too so ... once he gets his head set he'll be leaning heavily in that direction ... redirects are more difficult than getting started right are.

My husband likes that the dog follows me from room to room.  I do like that he keeps an eye on me as Sammy did.  He is a bit more attentive than I want him to be though.  I especially don't like that he nips at me, attempting to move me in the direction he wants to go.  His bred is for guardian/herding.  He also stops right in front of me (occasionally), sometimes turning around to face me,  attempting to  move me around.  He has also tried bumping me to redirect.  I'm not going to have any of that.  At all.  It's a lot of work training a pup.  This bred will attempt to dominate but I can already tell that he's going to be a good at accepting leadership.  I laughing say he may need some billygoats to boss around ... the (2) cats are uncooperative, but tolerant of his natural tendencies.

Here is a list of "dominant" behaviors from a good dog behaviors site:
  • Stubborn
  • Headstrong and willful
  • Demanding
  • Pushy
  • Begging
  • Pushing a toy into you or pawing in order to get you to play with them
  • Nudging you to be petted
  • Sitting in high places, looking down on everything
  • Guarding a human from others approaching. People like to call it “protecting” but it's actually “claiming”—dog owns you.
  • Barking or whining at humans which many owners consider "talking" (without a command to do so).
  • High-pitched screams in protest of something dog does not wish to do.
  • Jumping or putting their paws on humans (without a command to do so).
  • Persistence about being on a particular piece of furniture when asked to stay off (dog owns it)
  • Persistence about going in and out of doorways before humans
  • Persistence about walking in front of humans while on a lead
  • Persistence about getting through the doorway first
  • Refusing to walk on a lead (excludes untrained puppies, dogs with injuries or illnesses)
  • Nipping at people's heels when they are leaving (dog did not give permission to leave)
  • Not listening to known commands
  • Dislikes people touching their food
  • Standing proud on a human lap
  • Persistence about being on top, be it a lap or stepping on your foot
  • Persistence about where they sleep, i.e. on your pillow
  • Annoyance if disturbed while sleeping
  • Likes to sleep on top of their humans
  • Licking (giving kisses) in a determined and focused manner
  • Carrying themselves with a proud gait, head held high
  • Not liking to be left alone and getting overly excited upon the human’s return 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Edge-On NGC 891
Image Credit & Copyright: Alessandro Falesiedi
Explanation: Large spiral galaxy NGC 891 spans about 100 thousand light-years and is seen almost exactly edge-on from our perspective. In fact, about 30 million light-years distant in the constellation Andromeda, NGC 891 looks a lot like our Milky Way. At first glance, it has a flat, thin, galactic disk of stars and a central bulge cut along the middle by regions of dark obscuring dust. But remarkably apparent in NGC 891's edge-on presentation are filaments of dust that extend hundreds of light-years above and below the center line. The dust has likely been blown out of the disk by supernova explosions or intense star formation activity. Fainter galaxies can also be seen near the edge-on disk in this deep portrait of NGC 891.

The ability to routinely look at the NASA Astronomy pics of the day is absolutely a gift.  Amazing what we have available to see.  This is gorgeous, magnificent.  Amazing.  Most of the days have pictures that are equally ... epically amazing.  I am reminded of the phrase significantly insignificant.

I guess everyone who thinks, or wonders, about what an eternity in Heaven would be like reaches a unique conclusion, or takes a unique route towards conclusions.  One of the things that I think, or naively hope is probably more accurate, is that there will be opportunities to actually see things like this.  I like to float, on my back or on a tube, just relaxing and reviewing in my mind's eye cool things I've seen.  When I reflect on a picture like this I wonder how it would feel to approach this ... to have the experience of circling around it ... to understand the complexity of this evolving phenomena.  I think about being "smart enough, and knowledgeable enough" to truly comprehend the majesty of this.  I imagine coming closer and closer to this until it is unseeable because of the smaller parts of it becoming larger - more in view as trees in a forrest, as birds in those trees.  I wonder if God put other lives on even one of those planets housed within this system.  I wonder what it would be like to see a world similar to ours which was immune to the ravages of our inherently compromised tendencies.  I wonder about the possibility of stories being told by lives within that galaxy.

Pictures like this "feel" like a peek at possibilities for what to do during forever.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


At Zilker Park

How to hit home runs: I swing as hard as I can, and I try to swing right through the ball... The harder you grip the bat, the more you can swing it through the ball, and the farther the ball will go. I swing big, with everything I've got. I hit big or I miss big. I like to live as big as I can.
~Babe Ruth

River - 7.16

This is out of order, I said I'd try to post a picture of me once a month while I;m doing this blog so the kids could see me aging ... .  Going back through tonight looking at unposed drafts and this showed up, clicked publish, but since it wasn't previously published it jumped to the top - lets say its from summer 2016.

You become ... .

IQ Millenial Question

Friday, January 6, 2017

treasure boxes

While some of the kids were still here I began to feel uncharacteristically grouchy - turned out I was getting sick.  It's the severe cough and cold type of sick - manageable with rest and fluids.  I have time to lounge around waiting for feeling great to return.  I told my husband that in a weird sort of way not feeling great is okay because it reminds me that I usually take good health for granted.  I'm also hoping that all this coughing counts towards the abs of steel workout.

And boy is it cold around here!  The new pup's house training schedule is getting me outside whether I want to or not.  Burr-ry!  I could feel tiny ice crystals popping against my legs this morning!  It's so hard not to rush his business!

I contacted Tommy's wife's adult daughter about figuring out a way to get some of Tommy's things to me.  He was the custodian of many of out family "treasures", pictures mostly, mementos ... junk to any one else.  I told her that her mom had chosen not to communicate with me, but that I did care to have some of the things as her mother became ready to clear them out.  Those two green ammo boxes were always stored under my brother's beds.  I don't remember a time when they weren't under their beds once Tommy graduated from his crib.  After Tommy's house was robbed several years ago he sent me several trinkets from these boxes for save keeping. I am happy to be able to return them to where they best belong.

That other box is from our Dad's workshop.  It's good to have that old box of Daddy's.  It would be great to have some of his tools, but those are probably mixed in with Tommy's things and lost to me now.  It never occurred to me to "legally clarify" where things might go while Tommy was still here to make his wishes known and ... honestly, it doesn't matter much at all.  I am happy to have what was sent over.  The old family dictionary ... the binding is loose with wear and the pages wobble ... I'm the only one who knows that our Dad had us looking up words for ourselves when we still needed a step up to get to where that dictionary stayed.  He taught me to keep a card in my borrowed books, or write on the back inside cover if the book was mine, any word I wasn't 100% sure of it's meaning ... and look them up.  A lot of my old books have definitions written in the back.

One of those boxes holds a small book - Tarzan - and a fork from my momma's silverware drawer. There is a worn pool cue chalk ... we all considered ourselves destined for sharky greatness.

I asked for a little bedside table which the daughter said would come later.  Hoping.

midnight 2016-2017

At midnight last night we burned the best Christmas tree ever.  Took some Tiki torch fluid to get it going but go it did!  All fired up for 2017.

I did start back on my diet today - happy about that.  I haven't checked my weight recently, but I bet I gained a few pounds during the holidays and - so what.  That's a period.  A few pounds to work off after the first is no big deal.

Not only is this a new year for us all, it's a new year for me as my birthday is coming up.  I'll be 58 in a few days - approaching the big 60 - wow - incredible.  We live near one of those Del Webb's Sun City.  I think most of my choir friends are Sun City residents.  I get why people opt for the 55+ communities.  I love the wood working shed, shared veggie garden, pottery studio, walking trails, on and on amenities ... . Wow.  No "punks".  If there is loud music it would most likely be from my playlist ... . No kids on bikes ... no joggers pushing strollers ... probably not a minivan in sight.  I think I would miss the broader demographic.  I like kids ringing the door bell hoping to sell cookies or whatever, I like the makeshift lemonade stands, the peels of laughter and the possibility of a stray baseball.  I am interested in conversations with the pre AARP set.  And yet - I can understand how the tidiness of those well maintained yards is very seductive.

I am really hoping that 2017 will hold a house of our own over here.  I don't like renting.

I can't think of any resolutions ... I do need to remember to take all my vitamins and that red rice yeast for higher than optimal cholesterol.  Doc said hereditary high cholesterol.  I also have bone density concerns in my lumbar area.  I don't feel a problem, but apparently there is one.  Weight training needs to get back on my schedule.

This year I would like to take a first time ever cruise and my husband said plan it, a short one incase we are not sailors.  

The thing I really don't like about Sun City is this apparent air of  entitlement (although I agree 100% that they are entitled to spend out their lives as they see fit) to please only themselves.  There is a lack of basic courtesy or consideration for others in their way of doing things, driving, and grocery shopping for example.   We grew up in the best of times, riding our Swinn Stingrays with banana bars...

those glorious days don't have a exit leading to  Sun City.

I have a couple of years to position myself for the big 60 ... rather than make some New Year's resolutions, I am thinking about how I'd like to shape up for my 60s.

More consistent Yoga and back to reading more are the things I can think of.  I need to find a place to volunteer some of my time.