A Boomer Lifestyle Blog

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Glimpse of my Future Butterfly Garden

My sugar was very high this morning.  No walk for Buddy yet today.  I am once again so thankful that whoever owned Buddy before he escaped, trained him on puppy pads.  It makes days like this so much less stressful for me.  Not only is my body dragging but my mind is not working on all gears.  So I decided to share some pictures of my future butterfly container garden to put a smile on my face. 

Start with good soil.  I ordered 4 bags because I didn't have any idea how much each planter took and I figured it wouldn't go to waste.  This is part of my huge Amazon order.  Not only did I get a great price but they delivered them to my door.  Poor mailman. 

I headed to the really good Plant Nursery in the neighborhood but they are only open on Weekends right now.  I'm sure that will change soon as I could see they were stocked up but I was on a mission.  I ended up at Lowe's.  I thought I was going to walk around and get ideas.  Nope. I bought 3 each of 6 types of plants.  I threw caution to the wind and didn't follow the recommended plants exactly.  Hahaha.  This is what they look like.  Carrying them from the store to the car and then the car to the apartment was a chore.  All of the parking spaces immediately in front of my apartment were full.  So I parked on the side and made multiple trips. 

I purchased 3 Plumbago and 3 Jasmine both of which grow gloriously in my neighborhood.  And although they are great butterfly plants, the small ledge planters will not accommodate them so I have to go back to my old house and get the big planters I left there.  

I bought two colors of Dianthus and two colors of Lantana - both in small containers.  I was going to mix the plants up like in my book, but now I'm thinking of keeping sames together.  It will make sunlight and water needs easier.  

For some strange reason, all the Family has different plans this Easter weekend so I chose to be alone with my garden.  My sister is coming to see the new apartment the weekend after Easter and it would be nice if I could get my planting completed.  Luckily with sisters, if it is half finished and dirt on the floor, she will see the beauty to come.  

Hopefully, my energy will increase again.  Last night I stayed up until 5:00 in the morning.  I went to bed on time but, as sometimes happens, my energy was wound up.  I got up hundreds of times - read a little, ate a little and listened to a book on tape.  Nope.  Just no slowing it down.  

I'm going to try out a new internist next week and I'll discuss sleep problems with her.  

More later ... 

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Butterfly Gardening

I have to laugh at myself.  In my last post, I said my legs were getting less giggly when I should have said jiggly.  Hahaha.  Oh well, you knew what I meant.

I think I told you I am giving up on my bird feeders because the way my balcony, stairs, and outer fence are situated. There is no room for the birds to swoop in and out from the feeders which is the way birds prefer.  I did try moving the feeders to another part of the complex and hung them on a tree but since I would only see them in that location when I walked Buddy, I convinced my sister she needed them.  Win-Win.

In place of my beloved bird feeders, I have decided to start a butterfly garden.  While I was trying to get my head around this task and gather all the information I needed to accomplish it, I noticed one of the upper apartments had a planter on their rail like this one below. 

I stopped and discussed this planter with them (and met new neighbors) and we agreed that it was just right for our wide ledges.  Sturdy enough not to be blown off by normal big winds they said but light enough to remove from the rail without breaking your back. 

Synchronicity strikes again.  I looked on Amazon to get information and pricing on these planters and found out that I had about $150 in credit sitting on their books (don't ask me how I did this, I just took the money and ran).  And, to make it more amazing, my prime account was set to deactivate in 2 days.  The money would still have been there, I think, but the free prime shipping would not have been available. 

So I ordered four planters and a lot of other items to use up my $150.  The planters are 24" long and about $15.  One of the other items I ordered was this book which I had just gotten from the library and I had been trying to snap pictures on my phone of the info I wanted to remember. 

Container Theme Gardens
by Nancy J. Ondra and Rob Cardillo

If you are interested in any kind of container gardening, this book is great.  It is divided into many sections with 4-6 plants listed that go together well for a purpose, such as: living perfume, pond in a pot, salad on the deck and, another one I want to try, Bursting with Berries.  It is a delightful book and just bursting with ideas and suggestions.  It is not very expensive or you can do like me and try it from the library before you buy. 

There are a lot of things I will learn as I go such as will I have too little or too much sunlight.  Will the plastic pots dry out more often than I want to water.  Will the butterflies find my little heaven and will Buddy scare them off.  

Yep.  A whole new adventure.  

Friday, April 12, 2019

Long Walks with Buddy

Leave no bush untended is Buddy's motto.

Since moving, Buddy and I have been taking 1-2 long walks each day.  I aim for two a day and if one of those is only around the block, I count that as mission accomplished. 

Not fancy but really big.

There is so much beauty in the old houses and new builds of this neighborhood.  I think some of the folks might think they have a stalker when I stop and stare for a while. 

The problem is, again, my sleep habits.  I'm up all night and then sleep till noon.  I try resetting my clock but it never feels right to get up early (before noon).  This means my first walk is after I've had my coffee and read my phone (boy does that sound strange).  I would judge the start time around 2:30-3:00 since the school crossing guard is out.  I try to go down the small side for a couple of blocks and then do two long blocks on either side of where I stopped.

Well kept duplex.

As the evenings get longer my evening walk is getting later but I think it is really giving me more energy late at night when I should be slowing down. 

This old beauty has been purchased. I don't 
know if it is slated for remodeling or tear-down.

I think my legs are getting a little less giggly.  I don't expect miracles but if the results are something I can see - double reward (also helps with the diabetes). 

Grandpa and Granddaughter riding after school.
I see a lot of grandparents picking up schoolers.

Sometimes when we get back to the apartment steps Buddy just stops.  I can't tell if he doesn't want to go home or he is too tired to walk.  I take a couple of steps and if he doesn't leap past me I pick him up.  After all, he is a little guy and those legs have been going 90 to nothing for quite a while. 

These two live near us and love to run the
fence line with Buddy.

So watch out if you are out walking and you see a little salt and pepper lady with an apple belly and shapely legs walking a chihuahua - it might be me. 

Thursday, April 11, 2019

The Book Club movie

I've started a new post about three times lately and never got any of them finished.  So here goes another try.

I watched the Book Club movie last night.  It was one of those movies that I hesitated to watch fearing that it would not live up to the popularity of its many stars. 

First, because I'm 69 and single I enjoyed the reluctance Candice Bergen and Diane Keaton had over dating.  I recently met a man online who sounds like a good match for me, even if just a friend.  There is a tennis match going on in my head.  Am I crazy/It might be fun?  I tend to let things just die away like an unwatered plant.  So, I liked that it was a romantic comedy about women over 65, but can't imagine that appealed to a large portion of the movie-going public.

Of course, I cannot help but dissect the look of our favorite stars.  Jane Fonda is 81.  I'm sorry but you are not supposed to look like that at 81.  I look in the mirror and wish I looked like my 35-year-old self, so I'd like to look 34 years younger.  Hahahaha.  Jane looks almost better than her 50-year-old self except that she always looked great.  EXCEPT, it looks like a strong wind would break her in half.  I've noticed in her last couple of movies her character did not eat.  I'm thinking that might be true of her personally.

Diane Keaton is 73 to Andy Garcia's 62. He is the baby of the men in this movie.  I thought he was aging well but then in my book 62 is not all that old.  What I did notice about Diane is that she is finally (?) getting jowls.  Every once in a while her hair would hang away from her head and you could see the weakened jawline.  I've heard that jowls have something to do with smile muscles falling.  I think that is probably just an old wives' tale but I enjoy believing it.  I use to have a big smile and it disappeared about the same time my jawline started sagging so I believe my smile, like my bosom, is dropping.  Now Diane's characters always wore unusual clothes.  Her smile and her clothes are what we remember about her.  So even though she continues with her high necklines, her waist seemed unusually wide.  I don't mean it in a gained weight way, it's just that her belts looked weird.

Candice Bergen is 72.  Her character was a Judge and took to online dating.  I thought Candice looked the best for her age and by that, I mean that she was an attractive 72-year-old woman.  She may have had some surgery but she doesn't look like she has tried to halt the years like Jane.  Her clothes were attractive and age-appropriate, aka not the style of Diane Keaton.  Her figure was a little square and a little thick which is the norm for most of us that age.  So she gets my star for the most attractive, age-appropriate of the women.  Richard Dreyfus who is 71 played one of Candice's online dates.  Ed Begley, Jr. who is 69 played Candice's ex-husband. 

Mary Steenbergen was the baby of the women at 66.  Her character's main complaint, as the only married woman, was not enough sex.  Since I haven't been married in 100 years I can't comment on her plight.  My main complaint was that her hair was too dark.  I think it was the same shade it has always been and as they say, you have to go a shade lighter as you age.  Craig T. Nelson, her husband in the show, is 75.  Like all of the men in the show, his character had only a small part. 

Don Johnson, Jane Fonda's love interest, is 69.  I have always liked his looks.  He has that Marlboro Man look - if you are old enough to remember print ads for cigarettes.  And yes, my ex-husband has that same kind of look.  Hahahaha.  Somethings never change I guess. 

As for all of the men, they all needed to have their eyebrows darkened.  Maybe it is just me because I am getting so many white hairs in my brows (what's that all about), that I am conscious of eyebrows being too pale. 

So that's my opinion of the Book Club movie and its characters.  I enjoyed it more than I thought I would.  I didn't read the book but I think the laughs and situations were spread a little thin in the movie because of the number of main characters.  I'm going to read the book next to see how it compares. 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Google Changes

I just happen to notice this on some page I accidentally clicked on.  I never used Google+ but if you are having problems with comments not posting, etc. you might want to check this out. 

+1 buttons: The +1/G+ buttons and Google+ share links below blog posts and in the navigation bar will be removed. 

Please note that if you have a custom template that includes Google+ features, you may need to update your template. Please contact your template supplier for advice. 

Google+ Comments: Support for Google+ comments will be turned down, and all blogs using Google+ comments will be reverted back to using Blogger comments. Unfortunately, comments posted as Google+ comments cannot be migrated to Blogger and will no longer appear on your blog. 

A Little of This and That

I'm pretty much settled in and not much exciting to tell.  We had a little rain late last night.  It was so quiet inside.  Buddy doesn't like Thunder and goes into a panic if it is close but he didn't even go to the panting stage over it.  I think these walls must be pretty well insulated. 

I've only heard my neighbor's TV once and my rocker is right next to the wall between us.  He is very quiet - as we older people often are.   I still use my headphones when I watch TV because I know I have to turn it up loud even with my hearing aids on. 

Speaking of walls, I ordered myself a poster.  I have a hard time not posting comment after comment on facebook about our idiot President.  I know it is not the place and that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and are not waiting with bated breath for mine.  This poster makes me feel better.  I may be old but I am still a child of the 60s. 

Speaking of old, I saw this Tennessee Ernie Ford Album at the Thrift Store last week when I was there on Seniors' Day looking for a chair for my balcony.  You know I was humming (and singing) that song for hours afterward.  Hahaha.  You load sixteen tons and what do you get .....

I try to give Buddy two long walks a day both for his sake and mine.  Some days I don't make two long trips, sometimes only once around the block but I try to keep moving even when the diabetes makes me want to sleep. 

I missed a couple of doses of my blood pressure and cholesterol medicines last week and I swear I had more energy.  I think the blood pressure medicine is the one affecting my energy.  I know the doctor lowered my dosage last time I was there but I'm curious.  Is anyone else aware of their blood pressure medicine making them tired?  

I will never understand people who answer “How are you?” with “I can’t complain.”

I should do a little research on that. 

More later ....

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Library Photos

I made a run to the library today.  It is also on the Boulevard.  I don't go as often as I used to since I rent most of my audiobooks through the Library on OverDrive but I did have have some CDs I had checked out to listen to in the car.  It makes sitting in traffic so much nicer. 

The Heights Public Library opened in 1926.  

This photo doesn't do it justice.  The shrubs to the right are all 
white azaleas and it feels like they bloom year-round 
in this part of the country

This is a close up of the carving at the top 
and below the carvings on either side of the entrance.

Below is the glass room that was added on that surprisingly 
blends so well with the old architecture.  It is primarily the
magazine area and extra reading room.

This is an inside shot.  Before the Library System went to 
self-checkouts,  the librarians stood behind the desk and under the 
second story.  I'm sure that originally the second floor must have been 
full of shelves of books. I know you could also rent the Library 
for weddings and events at one time.  
I'm not sure if that is true anymore.  

This is looking into the children's section.  Beyond those shelves
are small chairs and tables and beanbag type seating that my 
Grand Girls love.  You can also see the lovely windows
that are all along the side of the building.  

You can see in this picture the size of the area designated 
for bicyclers - between the car, and the stripe beginning the 
traffic lane. You can also see from the car in the far 
right lane, which is the traffic lane, how wide 
the area marked for bicycles is.  
The bicycle path continues like this on both sides 
of the street for the entire Boulevard.  

Buddy and I have been taking many nice strolls around the apartments.  I want to take some pictures of the houses in the area - new, old and indifferent.  

More later.... 

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

I forgot what it is like not to have a Washer and Dryer

I hit the little washateria today.  Very nicely appointed with 4 large capacity washers and dryers.  Since I already save a lot of my change for the Little Girls for when they play store, I was ready with a fistful of quarters.  I'll have to be diligent about keeping all of my quarters in the future. 

I have not been without a washer and dryer since I sold my house and started renting, except for one complex.  I have had connections in all my other abodes so I have just moved my machines with me.  There are no hookups in my apartment but I'm going to investigate and see what might be out there that could be hooked up to my kitchen sink.  Got any suggestions? 

Today I saw some ladies painting on the Boulevard.  I'm not sure what they were painting but there was a little wind blowing and they were under some big trees so I'm sure it must have been nice for them.  Then I saw a couple walking by them.  It was the middle of the day and I thought it kind of strange for two middle-aged adults to be out walking.  People watching is good for expanding your imagination.  I'm considering getting a really comfortable chair to put on my balcony. 

Buddy thought the washateria was great fun and asked what our next adventure will be.  He doesn't realize we have to go back to put the clothes in the dryer and then back again to bring them home.  Three trips up and down the stairs - exercise done for the day, I'd say.

More later ...

Monday, March 25, 2019

She Lives

Well, I finally feel like there will be Life After Move.  Everything is unpacked, trashed, packed for storage or piled up for washing.  As soon as I get those chores accomplished my new life will be in full forward process.

My friend stopped by to see me today and she loved my apartment.  I knew I had made a good choice for me but you always feel better when a friend agrees.  She said the layout and decorations of the apartment looked just like me and it is her favorite of my recent moves - aside from my lovely little yard at the garage apartment.  I do feel like I am off into a great new stage of my life.  I think this is partially because I am still in the same area I realized I had missed so much.

The little girls spent the night on Saturday night and Dad picked them up early Sunday.  We had a great weekend of shopping and eating out.

Here's the Little Artist already too picky for my liking. 

And the Youngest who found just the shoes she wanted.

And let's not forget old Buddy Boy upside down in his bed under the buffet. 

And a blurry but exhausted new home owner.

Finally here is a view from my balcony.  The sunlight
coming through the trees at sunset is just gorgeous.

The Boulevard is about 20 streets long, filled with people - individuals, couples, strollers and dog walkers.  There are also bike lanes against the curbs and we have many enthusiastic bikers in this neighborhood.   

I'll share more pictures of the historic neighborhood and I'll try to capture a picture of one of the night-riding bicycle clubs.  

More later... 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

The Move and Unpacking

Just a quick note to let you know I'm more or less settled in the new apartment.  Fresh paint, new carpet and new kitchen countertops makes everything feel fresh. 

I brought almost all of the furniture from the little house.  It fits perfectly.  The uncomfortable couch/great sleeper is at the far end of the room and the buffet with TV atop is at other end.  My swivel rocker is in the middle so I'm close to the TV for my poor eyesight and yet can flip the other way to make conversation with visitors on the couch. 

The dining table has enough room for the insert to be used full time saving me from finding a space to store the insert.  Being alone I never eat at the table but the little girls do when they come to visit.  They also do their coloring there. 

The kitchen while not large, is roomier than I've had in several homes.  Since I don't really cook meals anymore I hate to waste real estate on a kitchen but the layout is nice and I'm glad for the size. 

The bedroom has two nice walk-in closets but there is no linen closet or cabinet in the bathroom.  Seems strange.  The second walk-in closet is used for the girls toys and a storage shelf for odds and ends.  I'm looking at over the commode storage units and other ideas, but I'm missing my last large hall closet. 

I don't have to tell you how hard, physically, the move has been.  Saturday and Sunday I took multiple naps. Monday I pushed through but Tuesday my diabetes had had enough.  Some days I literally can't move or think from the diabetes.  Sometimes one, sometimes both.  Sometimes my numbers are out of whack but other times I just have to admit that the diabetes is driving this body, and when it wants to rest I just have to wait for things to get right again. 

I'm better today so I made a run to the old house and picked up my ferns and bird feeders and some other objects my daughter picked up around the house for me.  Whew. 

The windows at the front of my apartment look out over the boulevard and I have a wonderful wooded view.  It is especially nice to watch the setting sun through the trees.  I'll share some pictures soon.

The people here are really nice.  This is a 55+ community.  At first, I thought everyone looked so old but then I passed a mirror.  I think I'm going to be happy here.  At least I'm planning on this being my last move. 

More later...