Sunday, July 10, 2016

Beach Read Day!

Even though we live near the ocean, three of my friends and I decided we don't go to the beach enough, so we organized a Beach Read Day.

We packed up and headed out!

We came prepared! 

Before reading though, we had to get that sand between our toes and and enjoy watching the waves. 

Then before picking up our books, we decided a stroll along the beach was in order.  
This guy decided to join us!

Seriously, were we supposed to be looking down at our pages when there were the flocks of pelicans to watch overhead?

Of course we would read soon, but first we had to chat about what we had been doing in the three days since we had seen each other.

Well, maybe Beach Read Day did turn into Beach Gab Day, but at least our books got out of the house and enjoyed the scenery as well!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

It's Puzzling

(You know Betty is living a wild life when she devotes an entire post to her thrill at putting together a puzzle.)

I came across this the other day in a store and bought it for a puzzle-loving friend of mine, but then I was too intrigued by it to give it away.

I hadn't done a puzzle for a very long time.  Why not just start this 1000 piece one?

As you can see, I had some help.  Zelda was right there to lend a paw.

Until it was nap time, of course.

My son and daughter-in-law soon got in on the action.  I discovered that I was completely drawn in by this activity.  

(That is another way of saying I was a complete nut--staying up late, getting up early, getting sharp, shooting pains in my neck and shoulders and still continuing to search for the piece that looked like the state of Missouri and had part of a green Ju-Jube on it.)

I think more puzzles are in my future!  Woo-Hoo!  Watch out world!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Sipping Our Childhoods

I stood in the aisle of Galco's Old World Grocery trying not to cry.  It's not every day a soda standing on the shelf in a grocery store can reduce me to tears, but when my son pointed out the Grapette, well, I pretty much lost it in the store.  

The owner of the store came up and looked at me.  "Grapette?" he said.  I nodded.  "This is the good stuff, not the kind from Walmart.  You gotta go to Guatemala for this.  They are the only ones who have the original formula now."

I stood there and picked up one of the bottles, feeling the way it fit into my hand and my mind went back to a hot July day in Kansas when I was six.

My father was a busy farmer and didn't have much time to spend with me, his fifth daughter, especially during the prime daylight hours.  However, on this day he let me ride the three miles to town with him on the tractor.

The John Deere pop-popped down the rock road, then turned on the paved road into town.  Cars passed us occasionally and meadowlarks flew overheard.  I did not envy either.  I wanted the ride to last forever.  I was riding high, perched on the front of the plywood board that made up the seat of the tractor.  My father sat behind me, his strong hands on the black steering wheel.

Once in town, we got down off the seat and went to the pop machine in front of the lumber yard.  I rarely got soda so I was amazed when Daddy slid the quarter into the machine, opened the small side door and pulled out that bottle of Grapette.  Using the bottle cap opener on the machine, he popped off the lid and handed me the slick, ice cold bottle.

I did not realize it then, but now I think I can safely say that no drink in the world, either before that moment or after that moment ever tasted as good as that one.  It was not the sweetness of the drink as much as the sweetness of the moment.

I was safe.  I was on a grand adventure. I was with my daddy.

As I stood there in the store, holding that bottle, Brian was across the store, holding a bottle of Green River, a drink his father used to buy for him as a treat.  Needless to say,  when we left the store, we had our treasures.

Yesterday on the patio, we opened them up, breathed in the smell and then sipped the sweetness.

It all came back--all of it--retrieved from the distant past.  We sat, side-by-side, each in our own lovely bubble of memory, smiling, feeling lucky and grateful and maybe, just maybe, a little melancholy too.

Cheers to all.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Trip to the Sugar Store!

Hi All!

After we enjoyed the scenery of the arboretum and botanical garden, we went to Galco's Old World Grocery Store in Los Angeles to see some real beauty.

The store stocks all the goodies from the past.  I loved the sights and smells of this store.

It was also a great place to take pictures.  

Cherry Mash is a favorite of my sister.  I am going on a road trip with her very soon.  I wonder if Betty got her a little treat to keep her quiet in the car?  Hmmmmm....  I wonder?  

Galco's brought back so many memories of the grocery store I used to go to with my mom and dad.

Tomorrow you get to see what I bought there.  Oh!  Ah!