Friday, January 26, 2007

Seeing More of Delaware


During this past week our friends Dave and Robin came to visit for a few days. It was wonderful having them here. We spent the time conversing and seeing some of the sites. Robin is a native of Delaware and so it was good to get her perspective even though she has not visited this part of the state much.

It has been pretty cold this past week and it was overcast and crusty on Monday so we decided to drive to Rehoboth and then to Dewey Beach. Well, since we were almost there we drove on down to Bethaney Beach and then to Fenwick and Ocean City. It was pretty amazing seeing all of the building that is taking place and it was particularly interesting to see the older historic places. We made a stop at the Life Saving Station and pondered being lost at sea and also wondered about the times the likes of Black Beard visited the area.

The first picture you see below is of the Fenwick Light. Not only does it mark the eastern border of the Mason-Dixon Line it is noted for its importance in providing warnings for the shipping lanes into Delaware and to the Chesapeake Bay.

The next picture was taken on Tuesday. It was a much clearer day but colder as is evidenced by Dave's coat and hood. Here he is trying to make out some of the structures along the coast line. He was also counting the ships.

Robin was also cold but not as covered up as Dave. She is looking out to sea in this picture. Take note here that she is no longer wearing her starter earrings. She is wearing the real things. (We graduated Monday night.)

This next picture is of the sand. It looked cold. The tide was high so we did not venture too very far at all. In fact, we stayed on the boardwalk above waves and sand.

The water was pretty although choppy. I seem to take a lot of these pictures hoping to someday capture a perfect wave.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

George Ann

Have you ever tried to get a picture of an elusive cat? Georgie has been part of our family for almost 14 years now and getting a good picture of her is almost impossible. She is very shy except when it is time to eat and then we must pay strict attention to her. Pictures of her eating are not good pictures. Let me show some example of my latest efforts to photograph her:
"I will just turn my head this way!"

"This is a good time to turn and walk away."

"I will not hold my head up for you."

I was hoping to get a good picture and then to go on and tell about our latest adventure with her. Instead, we will just have to get along with regular old "I will not be photographed or seen" pictures.

George came to live with us in 1993 to be company for our dog Samantha or that was the logic used by our daughter to convince us we needed another pet. Sammie was 5 at the time and she and George developed a lifelong love-hate relationship. The dog was forever chasing the cat away and the cat was forever pestering the dog. But, when one was gone the other would cry or wait at the top of the stairs or by the door for the other's return. They were each jealous of the attention the other would get. This continued for over 12 years. Sam was 17 when we lost her. She left a huge hole in our hearts and in George's too.

Georgie is pretty smart and keeping a collar on her has been next to impossible whether it is a collar or a harness. In fact, when she was very young she figured out how to undo the dog's collar until we started getting Sammie collars that did not buckle. George can open almost any cabinet door and uses a cabinet as an excellent hiding spot.

George is getting older right along with the rest of us. When we started our cross-country move she was in the carrier right between us. Fortunately for all of us, Erica arranged to have George fly from Pocatello to Washington, DC with her. That was better for us and much better for the cat. When getting the certification we needed for George to fly we learned that she probably had diabetes. But we should wait until we were settled before proceeding with any treatment.

We started insulin treatments and hopefully this little cat will put on some much needed weight. She has been very loving since we moved here and since going on insulin she has gotten back her 'tude. That, I am not sure is a good thing.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Keep Checking Out the Area

Yesterday we decided to take a drive to Milford and Slaughter Beach. For some reason they seem so far away but they are only 10 miles from here. I think we are getting out of our "Oh, it's just 100 miles down the road" mode. Anyway, we need to learn more about this state that is only 100 miles long and 30 miles wide. We live in the southern most of the three counties. This county, Sussex, and the next one up, Kent, are often referred to as "slower Delaware" as opposed to "lower Delaware." I will have more on this as we learn more of the particulars. According to the 2000 census, Milford's population was 7,201 compared to Milton's 1,791. They have both grown since as is evidenced by the large numbers of new subdivisions in the entire area. Slaughter Beach's population in 2003 was listed at 203.

So, we drove first to Slaughter Beach because it sounded so ominous but is named after some guy whose last name was Slaughter. Maybe, there is some more we can learn about other place names like Murder Kill and Broad Kill. We are also scoping out more of the local beaches. Below is a picture of Bill walking up from a point on Slaughter Beach.

He says that he didn't like this beach as well. It is "shorter" or so he says. But, it is probably because there is not much open sea here. It is part of Delaware Bay.

We just drove around Milford to see what was there. There were a couple fast food restaurants. There is a lack of them in Milton. This is not bad. There were some other stores and businesses that we now know about and will visit as our needs dictate.

The next picture is of some plant life that is abundant here. These grasses grow very high and are protected in order to slow beach erosion. These were alongside the road. There are other grasses but these amaze me because they are so tall and whenever I see them there is either a marsh or a pond not far away.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Another Boomer Reaches 60 --

Sandy Turned 60 on Friday, Oh My!!

Oh my, I let Friday pass without wishing my dear old (figuratively) friend Sandy a "Happy Birthday!" Sandy, is another of my sorority sisters who has been in my life for a long while now. She was my maid of honor when I married.

(This picture was taken a couple of months after our wedding. I know that she would not like me to share a picture of her in the "lovely" bridesmaid dress.)

Through the years we have had some wonderful times chatting, laughing and I am so fortunate to have known Sandy's parents and to share with her some excellent times with them. They were always the most incredible hosts at their home in McCall.

Sandy was the world traveller among my friends. She had lived in many stations abroad when she was growing up and her tales always entertained and enlightened those of us who had barely made it to the next town. She has continued to love travel to places far and near. I am always in awe as she describes where she has been and what happened while she was there.

Like almost all of the friends I hold dear, "Sandra Teresa" has a wonderful sense of humor. She is not a "I Love Lucy" slapstick kind of person but she has a delightful sense of fun and frivolity. She is one whose laughter I can hear when I think of her.

What makes this person so special is that once I decided who she was, she has remained just that -- a friend to end. A friend who loves the arts, travel, good food, good wine, and good friends.

I am so proud of Sandy and what she has done. She is the Executive Director of the Idaho State Board of Nursing. It suits her, just as being a nurse at the Brigham in Boston suited her; just as being sorority president suited her; just as being the head ear piercer suited her. But, mostly, I am proud to call her "dear friend." To me, that suits her just fine.

Happy Birthday Sandy. I am sorry this is late. Hope you had a marvelous one and that we all have many more happy times together.

Thank you for being a friend.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Recycle the Tree and then to the Beach

Today we took the tired old Christmas tree to the recycling facility. It is on the edge of Cape Henlopen State Park. This is a beautiful area that has beautiful beaches, nature reserves, camps, walking and bicycle trails and holds much history of the area. We have learned that the park is very busy during the summer. However, it is really special during these down months. I hope that we get to go there more often and learn more of the history soon.

As you can see by this picture, it was a beautiful day. I can't believe that I was able to catch the seagull in flight. We did not walk too far since I still have to get used to walking in the deeper sand that you have to go through to get to the water. Even so, we did stroll along the beach and enjoyed the sun and surf.

Here are some more pictures that I took today.

Along the water's edge
The dunes

Shell and Seagull Tracks

Cape Henlopen Lighthouse

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Distractions for the Tasks at Hand

It is really hard to keep on task when I look up and have the moon just shining in on me. This is especially true when the moon comes out around 5:00 p.m. I went out to the back steps to take this picture. I had a hard time staying still but if you notice the jiggly on the right side of the moon you might be able to see that it is an airplane crossing just as I was opening the shutter.
The new year is starting on a quiet note but not unlike so many new years past. We have devoted the larger portion of today and some of yesterday taking down the Christmas decorations, repacking them and putting them away safely until the next time they bring smiles and warm our hearts. We will bring them up starting around the December 1.
Tomorrow we will take the tree to Cape Henlopen where there is a conservation project going on to help with shore and beach erosion. It is a good way to dispose of the tree and it will give us an excellent excuse to spend some time at the beach. With the warm temperatures we have been having it should be quite comfortable.
Every year for the past few years we have purchased several poinsettias to place on my garden cart. We have tried numerous colors and combinations, purchasing seven or eight plants each year. This year when we went on the quest for the plants, I was quite interested in a hanging plant(s) and after thinking some on it decided to purchase the arrangement. I could clip out the hangers and put the ot on the garden cart. Not only was it less expensive but it would fill the cart better. We have been so pleased with the pot which holds several plants, at least seven, that we have decided to do the same next year. The single pot and its contents filled the cart beautifully.
Here is the arrangement today. It does look a bit tired but is still quite lovely. It will stay for a while now to remind us of the good holidays. However, all the other decorations are in their place and ready for their assignments next year.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

Just a simple greeting for a joyous, productive and peaceful New Year. For just today I would like to share this from St. Francis of Assissi:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

where there is sadness, joy;

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand;

to be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive;

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Happy 2007