Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I love all the seasons here on Cape Cod. Our Spring occurs late and the winds contain a sharp bite deep into May, thus the verdant green coming forth after the stark beauty of winter is so welcome. Summer is short, heralded by the warm and soft breezes, and when the sun warms our faces, we are sure why we choose to live here, but when the equinox announces Fall, Cape Cod remains warm and we have the most picture perfect clear days and cool nights. The marshes begin to turn the most heavenly hues of gold and burgundy. Our temperatures are warmer because we are nearly surrounded by water, thus the foliage changes come late compared to the inland trees. The exceptions are the sugar and swamp maples. I see this tree every morning on my way to work, and as I stopped to take this photo, I thought just how symbolic the STOP sign is, as I just want to stop time for a little bit to prolong the beauty, and the clear light of Fall. My spirit feels light this Fall and I want to savor this feeling. It has been a long time coming. This photo was taken last week, and I noticed this morning that half the leaves have already fallen. STOP

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Priceless Gift for Teddy

Saturday evening LM and I had a date with this charmer!
I wasn't quick enough with the lens to get a shot of him standing by the door with his Daddy to greet us. He's a young man on the move these days, and the gates at all the doorways are proof. He wants to be everywhere, chuckling and shrieking as he goes...oh, how I love that baby shriek! Happy, happy baby.
Teddy, excitedly, had something to show me........a gift he received from his aunt, my very talented and loving sister, Margaret. His very own quilt with all sorts of "friends" and messages to find. (Forgive the bib, he's very drooly these days).

There is Mrs Cardinal perched in an upper corner....and a darling bunny leaping along
A happy robin singing....and even some chickens to celebrate our heritage.
This kitty, says, "Hello Teddy," and is a tabby to match Teddy's cat, Sting.

Little hearts include Teddy's Dad, Mom, and cat, Sting

It is more beautiful than words or photos can portray. Handquilted, exquisitely, by one of Margaret's good friends, they collaborated on the many messages for Teddy which cover the quilt. Tears of sheer gratitude and joy were shed as I held this lovely gift and my dear Teddy!

After all the excitement, BT fell sound asleep as we took a drive to have Cambodian food! YUM!
A lovely evening.
PS....he did wake up in time to charm fellow diners with his chuckling.

Monday, September 28, 2009

The Queen Ruling her Kingdom

Saturday was the most glorious Fall day and I was up and out of LM's early to have some work done on my car and do a little shopping.
Ms G, meanwhile, was seen ruling her kingdom and it is very obvious that her chief subject is well under control!
First several pictures around the house....the sedum is beautiful right now in many places. We put little gourds and pumpkins above the front door....Love that little shelf.
Whipping her subject into submission with her tail. She was repeatedly hitting LM as he was trying to enjoy some relaxation after mowing the lawn.....eating home made rhubarb pie! She leaps from the dining room table to the back of this chair and creates a startle every time.

Sitting in the bedroom hallway, staring intently, as we are taking much too long to fill her need for treats.
No work on the computer could be accomplished without this sort of help, and also there was plastic with tape on it to be chewed (kitty crack to Ms G) in LM's to be filed pile.

It was a lovely weekend.....story of a special visit with Baby Teddy and parents, and a priceless gift, coming tomorrow.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lunchtime Views

My usual daily routine has really been disrupted the last few weeks with the arrival of the great white sharks along our coastline. They are gone now, and many seals were eaten (a good thing, as we have WAY too many - the balance of nature in force).

Because of the sharks, there has been no parking possible at the lighthouse unless you wait and circle. My lunch time doesn't allow that, so I sought other spots to enjoy and thought you might like to see one of my "new" views. These photos were taken at Stage Harbor. It is at the south east point of Chatham, a busy working port for fisherman, and empties out into Nantucket Sound passing by Monomoy Island. The first shot is looking NW at the Harbormasters building, with navigational markers lined up for maintenance. They will be placed in the ever changing boating lanes to guide mariners away from shallow water..."green left, red right returning." Looking east and across part of the harbor, in the distance is a lovely house built by my firm a few years back. Looking in closer, there are several men in the water quohauging (hard shell clams). They are running huge rakes along the sea floor in search of these delicious treats.

This view to the southwest toward Nantucket Sound
A close-up of a seasoned quohauger.
AlthoughI I drive by this place often, it was a delight to spend some time watching the working fisherman and muse on the fact that Chatham was originally a sleepy fishing village. On another day last week, I ate lunch on the other side of this harbor and watched boat after boat come in with heavy crates of clams. These fishermen and women work so hard. Their catch brings high price, but it is tough work, especially in the cold months. Next month they will be raking for scallops. They are quite rare these days, and those tasty nuggets are VERY expensive. The best are from Nantucket.
Good to have a different view, and that applies to all aspects of life.
PS. I finally got a parking place at the lighthouse today!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Letter from the Ex-Cat

It is truly lovely here in Harwich. There are warm nests for my sleeping comfort, and I especially love the double thick fleece blankets on LM's bed.

My favorite trick is to scare LM and make him jump....I get on the stairs and leap from a very high point onto the dining room table with a huge thud. It never fails to startle.

Mum came to visit on the weekend and we had a long time alone on Saturday night while LM went out to walk the beaches with his surf rods in search of striped bass. I had such fun with the fishing line and little plastic bits as LM rigged up his gear before fishing. Mummy and I snuggled on the couch and watched a movie. Purrrrrrrr.

During the day, I just love the french doors in the kitchen which allow me a perfect place to watch birds and follow the funny antics of the tail-less chipmunk who lives under the steps. Mummy planted some really pretty large pots of mums near the terrace and I've been watching the buzzing bees in the sunshine.

On Saturday Mummy moved the carrier from its usual position.....mmmmmm. What do you suppose that means?? Anyway, when Sunday afternoon came round, you can be sure I hid in the deepest recesses of the upstairs room where no one could get near me. They don't think I understand but I hear LM each time he says, "she must go home to be with you, as she is your baby, your comfort."

Before LM got up on Sunday morning, Mummy and I shared tea and breakfast and played our little chase game. Just like the old days, I hopped sideways at her with my tail and back blown up and Mummy came chasing after me....lotsa fun. I bet she thought I was preparing for Halloween!

Company came for a long visit on Sunday and there was lots of chatter and laughter. Kristi came by, too, and she came upstairs trying to find me many times, but my hiding skills are very keen.
Mummy brought a huge bouquet into the house and I had great fun chewing on the lacy bits.

Now it is quiet again, Mummy went home, and I have LM all to myself. I am helping him with all his computer work and making sure he stays in bed late to cuddle with me.

As "Torn Between two Lovers" plays, I am over and out. It's time for another nap, after I have some Temptations, which are always at my disposal, thanks to LM.
I'm wondering how Mummy is doing all alone......if only I could get over my fear of the car and be continued.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

...and the Walls come Tumbling Down

Murphy's law prevails here in the land, sans Ms G. After the sublime dancing feather sunset on Sunday, my heart seemed light and I returned home ready to start a new week with not too much planned except to have dinner with a dear friend on Monday evening, have my car detailed, and prepare for guests to stay at my house this coming weekend. Work was rip-roaring crazy all day Monday (I'm always at my best on crazy workdays), and I set out at 5 to drive to Hyannis to meet Debra for dinner. Unbeknownst to me, she had called my cell phone in the afternoon to leave a message that she couldn't meet me as planned. Something told her she better call me again at 5:15 to be sure I got her message. That phone call took the wind out of my sails, and hit my grief button with rapier force. Debra has been battling breast cancer, and Monday she was told that it has come back in her bones . She is in pain, and experiencing a tough range of emotions. After we ended the call, I could not stop sobbing. There is loss everywhere around me, and I am not coping well with it these days.

Tuesday I awoke crying and really struggled to go to work. Somehow I managed to get my game face on and get through the day. As usual, upon arrival at work, I turned on my computer, and within minutes I had a black screen with gibberish and then nothing. Crashed! I managed to get through the day with a borrowed computer and a promise that our techie would be in Thursday to revive mine. Meanwhile, I struggled along with no contacts, e-mail and all sorts of other annoyances. Tuesday night, I never went to sleep, as my mind was racing, tears were falling, and thinking was askew. I spent the night pacing, writing, and cleaning. There were some not nice things said to LM as well!

Yesterday was not much better with my workday becoming more and more frustrating with the computer issues. There were NICE things said to LM, though.

Last night I slept, woke still a little shakey, but amidst tears, got myself to my post and actually had a fairly decent morning followed by a long walk (hip pain just about gone) at lunch. When I came back from the walk and sat at my desk, I was approached by two very grim faces (two techies), who broke the news that my computer is 100% lost to me. The magnitude of that loss was like another death and the impact is still sinking in, the tears are flowing, and I am beyond frustrated. The worst part is losing my entire MS Outlook workplace.....all my reminders and appointments , all my e-mail, ALL MY CONTACTS, and also, on a personal level, all my fave blog shortcuts and names, as well as many photos. I am sure the list of losses will continue to mount. I found out that they had been in the process of setting up back-up for everyone's Outlook but mine had not been done yet. GRRRRRR. I told the two bearers of bad tidings that they reminded me of two doctors coming into the exam room to give me the worst possible DX! We laughed through my invisible tears. I pride myself in my ability to give anyone in the office an answer, contact, etc at a seconds notice and now I will be unable to do that and it hurts. They will have to understand but it won't be easy as I am command central. It has taken years to amass all the data. There was a lot of data saved on the main server, for which I am thankful, but that only slightly assuages my angst. I know I am probably way over the top about this, but it is all tied in with my grief and just where I am right now.

SOOOOOO, just as this dreadful workday was ending, one of my other dear dear friends called me to tell me that one of his very close relatives had just died. That did it, and I could not hold back the tears. Good that many had gone home. Nick has been through so much lately....he was laid-off (worked at my company), and both his parents have died in the past few months. He had been helping an aunt care for his uncle who died today and it was being done at a huge emotional cost. He not only was devastated with grief when he called me (we are very close confidants), but he is sick with some awful virus. Poor guy.

Thus my tale of woe.....just going to feel it all, do what I can to help those who really need it right now, and know this too shall pass.

To all my readers, if you don't hear from me on your blogs, it is because I have lost my link to you. Some I could remember, others not. Leave me a message.

From the land of Ms G, AKA, LM's house, comes word that working on the computer is impossible because she insists on sitting on the keyboard or the mouse, and she is always trying to "catch the cards" when he plays FreeCell. Poor baby.......he says she is coming back to me on Sunday night. Uh, huh!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Dancing at Sunset

As I have gotten older, I realize more than ever, that it is not the length of time which I spend with my darling LM, but the quality of our time, and the beauty which is in the simplicity.

We both had obligations on the weekend. On Saturday, LM went to swap out a car for a dealer in Bangor, ME (long ride!). For me it was a baby shower for a co-worker, planned as a cook-out but torrential rain found us in a large was really fun, and, and when it was time to leave, LM was just arriving home, so I joined him at his house for a very relaxing evening watching a movie. It was early to bed for us, as he had to be on the road again by 6:30 am to attend a meeting in Worcester. Ms G and I had some nice time together that morning as we slept in, listening to a soft rain. Knowing LM would be back by mid-afternoon, gave me time to come home and settle my things in, shop for produce to get me through the week, and then go back to do a little yard work at LM's before his return. By the way, he brought glorious sunshine back from the center of our state. It was just easy, no pressure, and we decided to eat out at a lovely restaurant on the Cape's northside in Dennis. Below is the garden welcome at "The Marshside." This place has been around for as long as I can remember, but last year the owners did a complete teardown and re-built a beautiful new building. It sits on the edge of a lovely marsh and from many windows there are views of numerous birdfeeders.

This was the view through the window from our table....looking across to Sesuit Harbor in E. Dennis
After finishing, we took a drive out to the harbor as there were reports of a manatee swimming in the harbor for the past few days. This happened last year, too. They come north by way of the warm waters of the gulf stream. We due hope he/she will find his way back to the south before the cold sets in here. We watched these amazing clouds, as well as many boats coming and going, and just savored the peacefulness we find in each other. No manatee sightings to report, though.
We were actually going to head back to LM's house and I suggested we go to watch sunset on the south side of the Cape at W. Dennis (I know it sounds crazy but E. Dennis is on the northside and W. Dennis is on the south, go figure!) This was the view through some rain drops when we first arrived. That is rain blurring the distance.
Quickly that stopped and the sky began to take on color. We parked in a little corner, and as we brought our vision in more closely off the horizon sailboat, we realized that the corner held a very magical treat. As the pictures below show, there was a feather dancing in an eddy. The dancing never stopped throughout the 45 minutes or so, while the sunset and the feather vied for our attention. We held each other close, and gave thanks for the miracles of nature, and reminded ourselves of the importance of keeping our vision close, as well. At times the feather danced as much as several feet away and back, and lifted up a foot or so.
There were others watching the sunset, too!
High drama began to set in.....
There was more rain

Just as we were leaving...

We really felt like we'd been touched by something very special and felt a strong sense of peace. The question was raised about gathering the feather to keep as a memory of this beautiful moment in time, but we both decided it was meant to stay there and dance. Back to LM's, we said our good nights (Ms G no where in sight), and as I drove home toward the east, the sky behind me was a brilliant magenta. The feeling has stayed with me all day, and LM, too. The feather will always dance in our souls.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

They are Getting Closer

They, as in great white sharks, are coming right into our harbor now. The town is abuzz with activity and the roads leading to the lighthouse overlook (my favorite place to be) are all jammed. Twice yesterday I tried to get there and gave up. Oh well, it is great for our economy....wonder if these sharks are being paid by the Chamber of Commerce??

Not much other news around here right now. Plans for our trip to FL in Nov are still about the only thing happening. The quiet is eerie sometimes, and the lack of demands on my schedule creates an uneasy feeling. I'm trying to just sit in it and allow the dust to settle.

Last week I was supposed to go to the pain center and have a shot into my spine to help control the hip pain. The pain has been lessening and I was very fearful of the shot, so I canceled the appointment and have begun to walk every other day with a friend at work. So far, so good. The pain is managed with Ibuprofen. The invasiveness and warnings about the shot were enough to scare this usually fearless woman.

Watched the President's speech last night and thought he did an excellent job. The outburst from the audience was very disturbing and disrespectful....another embarrassment for our country. Sad, the lack of respect, but I do not think it will negate the impact of Obama's words. I was happy to hear the concise and direct address to the fear mongers among us. Enough is enough.
On with health care for all!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Sharks Abound

For the past few weeks there have been many shark sightings in Chatham, and HUGE crowds gathering at the beaches, hoping to catch a glimpse, mostly in the area of my favorite beach in town - Lighthouse Beach. We have had all the major news networks here with the requisite dish trucks and scientists as well. Swimming is banned! The local marine fisheries' shark experts were able to tag two of the sharks within the last 3 days, and that caused great excitement as they'll now be able to track them and learn much more scientific data when the tags automatically release off the sharks within a few months. The hysteria over it all is so funny....these creatures are natural to our waters and we have an incredibly large population of seals living on our shores so the sharks are having a feast.

There are all sorts of jokes, and references to "Jaws" floating around, and I think LM was even heard to say that perhaps he might tie me to a seal and troll the waters to see what he could catch. I believe Ms G put the kaibosh on that idea......LOL

I've just come home after spending a lovely weekend with LM and Ms G. The weather was so perfect nd we got a lot of things done. There was yard work, and I made 48 jars of peach jam. The local peaches have been amazing this year and I was able to find a box at a reasonable price. LM helped in the jam production line and we had lots of laughs. He even went out and bought a lovely new stainless steel pot for for cooking the fruit. I was impressed that he chose a very attrative one from the Martha Stewart line at Macy's. I must confess though, that I got very sad today as we finished up the jam project....looking down I could see the hands of the 3 women who taught me how to preserve fruits and veggies as a child, and later as a young adult: my Mum, my grandmother, and former mother-in-law (Jason's late grandmother). There were lovely peach trees in my childhood and the taste of those peaches is still etched in my taste memory.

Hope everyone enjoyed a lovely Labor Day weekend. I worked hard all day today but it was a labor of love, with my love.

PS. Ms G hid the very minute I began to gather my things to come home. Oh well, I got a lot of love all weekend from the little traitor.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Very Busy Boy

The lure of this little darling, got me over to Sagamore Beach on Wednesday evening to share in the love and fun Jason and Alison are having with little Teddy. He is crawling and climbing and having great fun chasing their cat, Sting. As you can see there are barricades everywhere, especially to keep him away from the stairs. Sting seems to want to engage in a little play but then quickly gets himself to safety when "the crawler and grabber" approaches. We all shared a lovely dinner and Teddy enjoyed gnawing on anything that will calm the approach of some bigger teeth.
Sting likes to perch on the back of the family room couch. He can see everything but is safe from little hands.
It was a fun time and I felt incredible happiness in watching my son and DIL as parents. They love Teddy so much and are relishing every minute, even though, it is a delicate balance to manage their jobs and "baby time."

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Back Home

It was only a week, but feels like longer, that I was over at LM's house. The friends who used my house for a Cape Cod vacation had a great time and left my house better than they found it!

Being out of my own air-conditioned house during a long stretch of unbearable humidity and heat, was a true test, but LM and I managed wonderfully and had some great laughs. Ms G was thrilled to have us both in one place and gave me lots of love.

The night before I moved over to LM's I attended a lovely party and the view below is what we saw from the spacious deck where cocktails were served. As anyone who has been reading here for awhile knows, I always feel so inept at parties. This one was so perfect as there was a nice assortment of people I knew and love, and some very interesting new faces. The night was very damp and hot as Hurricane Bill was heading by us off-shore. The sky and the ocean beyond were very dramatic. The first water you see is an inlet called Sulphur Springs and just beyond is Nantucket Sound. The house is located in a very private area of W. Chatham and is within a 2 minute drive of my house. My company finished the house in 2008.
Here is her royal highness in her favorite vantage spot. She can see the entire first floor at LM's from this perch and then decide if she deigns to grace us with her actual presence or dash back up to her lair.

She adores LM
During the week away we attended a party with Kristi at the home of friends in Eastham. It was a yummy day with some great local seafood and company.
Ms G in one of her favorite poses....she is playing with a fishing line which LM rigged up for her. It is connected to the living room coffee table and she will lay there for long periods of time batting it around, or she gets across the room and charges at it.

One night, I had a fun and delicious dinner with daughter, Sara and granddaughter, Samantha. She is such a sweetheart, and surprised me by loving spicy food.

Otherwise, my life SEEMS to be in a very quiet place right now, and the silence is deafening. The struggle to find my place in the void created by Dad's death is creating a lot of noise and confusion in my mind and body, as I try to fit myself into a comfortable spot within the void. I move about daily in a trance and go through the necessary paces, at times impatient and annoyed, and welcome my time alone, but am not accomplishing much. That is a relative statement as I am keeping my house neat, doing an efficient job at work, etc, but my wheels are spinning when it comes to a new focus or goals. I do feel that out of the deafening silence some motivation is going to arise.

It is feels like Fall here and we are having lovely clear sunny days with cool nights for sleeping.
PS....Ms G is at LM's still. We almost caught her and got her in the carrier but LM's grasp was not quite strong enough to keep her there. She bolted and hid for hours. Oh, well, I will be back there this weekend for 3 nights. Of course, those two are having a blast.