A New Life: Great Expectations! 2023 – 15

‘tWas  A Hard Day’s Night

Two doctors’ visits in Cary, one in the morning and one in the late afternoon tired us both out. We were late with dinner and everything else. In bed at eleven p.m., I could not sleep until past twelve, which made for a very short night. Our caregiver was sick, so we were without help for three days. And even though all the tasks are easy, being on my feet all day for three days in a row was not easy. I forgot to lock the front door and start the dishwasher before retiring, and had to do a major cleanup of my office on Friday. Next week, our Monday and Friday caregiver will be on vacation. Sometimes I think I can do it all myself, easy! But then, after a whole weekend, I am so happy to see a caregiver, so I can relieve my back, do some exercises, respond to doctors’ questionnaires online and more. On Friday morning I went to the Club for a meeting, and tacked on ten minutes on the leg press in the fitness center, my favorite machine. Well, that was just too much of a good thing. My hip hurt so much for two days that I had to take Advil and take it very easy. Based upon that experience, I have decided that at my age I have to scale back. My new goal is walking 8,000 steps a day instead of 10,000 or more. And the leg press? The next time I am at the fitness center, I will adjust it to a lower setting.

Home Cooking

Although I enjoyed the preparation, it was a little disappointing. We both loved the food, but I was in the kitchen, out of sight, for all the time it took to prepare it. Too long. I am looking forward to making banana ginger bread and ginger-carrot cake and banana-ginger jam, like I used to, but I hope to teach those skills to my mid-week caregiver.

Most of the days are uneventful and busy. The housekeeper did not come for four weeks because she was sick, and I have not had a caregiver for two weeks! One of them was sick and the other one is on vacation. Our good Apex friend has come to help me part of the time after her morning work, and she was a blessing. So I value my caregivers more than ever, and look forward to tomorrow, when our favorite person will be back, and Wednesday, when our housekeeper will hopefully be healthy again. They are talking about another Covid booster; but I am just not ready for that yet. I know the dates we had ours, because they are on the calendar, but I can’t find the cards that they were officially noted on. What’s new?

This is a wrap!

Looking forward to my next writing time,




A New Life: Great Expectations! 2023 – 14

Birds and a more

We added our little hummingbird feeder to the tree in front of the other window, left of the fireplace. It took a week, but now the humming birds have found it! The ones I saw look different from the ones we had in Prescott. Looking forward to see more of them when (if) I sit down. Gold finches are coming and Cardinals, even a woodpecker. Recently, I saw swallows overhead and found out that yes, there are several kinds of swallows in North Carolina. A thin black snake looked at me from the border on our evening walk, and when I looked it up on Google later on, I read that black snakes are quite common in North Carolina, and not venomous. Two ducks, living in the large pond at the end of the neighborhood, like to travel around and I have seen them way on the other side, sitting on somebody’s front lawn.

The Kentucky Derby last Saturday, was a lot of fun. I met new people, had delicious food and tasted a mint julep, which I really liked. We placed $1 bets on the horses, but I bet on all the wrong ones, so I did not make any money.

Property Maintenance is in full swing. Last week, all white fences and patios were power sprayed with chlorine water, rinsed with regular water. Next week, the gutters will be cleaned. We get advance warnings of the date and time our property will be cleaned, so we can be prepared and move plants out of harms way.

Visits to a Berry Patch, salads and home cooking!

After six years, I felt like cooking again. I made authentic nasi goreng, with a fried eggs, pisang goreng and sliced tomatoes. Delicious! Next on the menu is Rendang with chicken over Jasmine rice, and I will throw in some haricots verts for good measure. I discovered that my rice cooker is not working any more, and my wok does not look very good. they need to be recycled in a special place and our son will take care of that for us. For now, I will make do with instant rice, but I hope to get a new rice cooker and also a wok soon.

DJ’s Berry Patch, a few miles from here, opened a few weeks ago and their strawberries are juicy and delicious. I bought a large basket and have been sharing with neighbors. One neighbor brought us a huge tomato from a road side stand in Cary. Well, that asked for Caprese salad! I bought mozzarella balls, and just now a basil plant, and on Mother’s Day we will have Caprese salad for lunch again. For breakfast tomorrow morning I will make scrambled eggs with toast and strawberries on the side. We haven’t had scrambled eggs for a long time, no toast either. Next on the wish list are pancakes. But hey, perhaps I will wait with that until our daughter and grandkids come over this summer. Let them do it!

Mother’s Day

We are surrounded by beautiful flowers, inside and outside, and with all these delicacies on the menu I am sure it will be a wonderful day. Early rise and shine, because these days Lani wakes me up at the exact time that the alarm usually goes off, even when I turn it off in the weekends. Have a lovely day, all of you!

And that’s a wrap!

Until next time,



A New Life: Great Expectations! 2023 – 13

Abundant Life

…at the bird feeder that is, and in the patio. We moved the bird feeder from the patio to the outside, in front of one of the windows next to the fireplace. It took a few days, but then a female cardinal showed up, and then another one. And now, they stop by regularly. We have yellow finches, and a few other little birds I don’t know the names of. The seeds are spicy, something that the birds do not mind, but that the squirrels hate. Today, we had an example of that. A squirrel, jumping on the feeder out of nowhere, took a few bites and then desperately moved in a circle, hanging from his front paws and falling to the ground. Ha! It worked! And it was funny to watch.

In the patio, we have three visiting mourning doves, obviously ground birds. So I sprinkled a variety of seeds in the border and on the cement in the area that we can observe from our chairs. They fly in and out, one went out by crawling underneath the garden gate. He just made it. I really have to do some gardening, pruning and fertilizing, sine the weather is getting beautiful, but I am still too busy inside. I did plant ginger, and perhaps I will get a few little tomato plants, in memory of Sallie, who used to give me three every year.

Why my days are shorter than yours

I figured it out: I spend nine or more hours of the 24 asleep! I could create longer days to get more done by setting the alarm an hour earlier, or to skip my afternoon nap. But I love to sleep! I will just wait patiently until I need less of it 🙂

Our Neighborhood

What a nice neighborhood it is! An unknown neighbor took care of large recycling items here and in the other street that did not fit in the large trash containers that come with every home. Another neighbor got a ten week old Goldendoodle and our two dogs are having nose to nose tail waving meetings, until the puppy starts jumping over Lani, back and forth, which is just too much for her, and she walks on.

Another nice neighbor came over to dig a hole in our backyard outside the fence, and planted a clump of potted grass I had brought from our cottage. And the only thing I asked him was if he had a shovel I could borrow. He came right over, with a shovel and extra soil.

An unknown plant in our border, with dark green leaves and burgundy stems, grew up fast; the stems fell over in the hot sun but straightened up again later in the shade. And now, the cutest lavender bell shaped flowers opened up. Nobody knows what the name is, and I would love it if any of you could tell me, or could look up the name somewhere. I can’t find it on Google. Anybody? Please let me know!

Last Saturday and Sunday we had heavy rain storms, thunder and lightning. During a break in the clouds I ventured out with Lani, without an umbrella. When I was in the other street, and it started raining again, we walked faster and faster, but then the rain suddenly came pelting down. Lani was terrified! We ran across the street to the clubhouse, up the ramp and to the door of the ladies’ restroom. It is an outside restroom, next to the pool area, and has the same door code as all the other doors of the clubhouse. I remembered it! We quickly dove inside and spent a good ten minutes there while waiting until it rained less. We made it home, drenched to the bone, but it was more scary for Lani than for me.

Not a day goes by without us saying to each other how happy we are that we made this jump, out of Waltonwood and into Orchard Grove!

And that’s a wrap!

Be well! Until next time,