Goodbye 2020 (thankfully)

Everyday Life, Memories

This year has been a lot. It’s been hard, scary and at times down right miserable. But for those of us who have thankfully survived, we should take a moment to really appreciate that fact. Life is going to move on, and things will eventually go back to some semblance of normalcy. We just have to hold tight and keep going. So here’s to 2021 – May it bring us more ups than downs, and most importantly, an endless amount of memories and moments that we can hold onto forever.

The Heist

Everyday Life, Memories

So here’s my story for yesterday. I was at the bank in the drive thru window waiting to make a transaction. I put my materials into the tube and sent it on it’s way as I was patiently waiting for the teller to process it. After about a minute, the teller sends it back and says “Sorry Sir, we’re closed” and pulls down all the shades. I’m like, what? It’s around 11 am – why would they close immediately at this time? So, I said oh well, I’ll come back another time and left. Well, come to find out, as I was waiting, apparently a robbery was occurring inside just at that moment. Sounds like the person got away on foot and they’re still looking for them. Not sure how much the person got away with or how they could just disappear on foot like that, but that’s the story. I did seem to notice of a lot of police cruising the area now that I think about it, they were probably looking for the individual. Anyways, good thing I was at the drive-thru instead of inside!

I stopped making New Years’ Resolutions a while ago as I never seem to keep to them after a few weeks but this time I think I’m going to try one and it is to be more generous and to try to just be a better person. That’s my goal moving forward.

Good Stuff

Everyday Life, Food, Memories

I got some really great gifts this year – the big prize was this giant bean bag that I can lay in (like, my whole body fits inside it – it’s so large). Takes up a good chunk of the room which might be problematic but who cares! Also got some needed clothing, a wonderful photobook of our adventures from 2020 utilizing a lot of the personal photos from the year, a Carson mousepad and a heating pad and bear slippers. The last two I’ve been using for a while already because I got to open those early! The best was watching Carson open his gifts!

For lunch I went ahead and made and prepared some Cranberry Chicken and Herby Pan Stuffing. I’ve discovered that I think shallots are way better than onions. Will do a frozen pizza in the oven tonight.

I had to pick up one of the lighted reindeers out front. The winds knocked him over but overall, the wind didn’t seem to be that big a deal and that was a good thing. It was the only thing that fell out of place.

Today’s movie watch was Elf. (A movie I’ve actually never seen until now), can you believe it?) Last night was National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

Winter Solstice Meditation

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Solstice Meditation

Spent some time tonight engaging in Winter Solstice Meditation. I recommend you do the same. After the day I had today it was needed. Actually it wasn’t all that bad – in fact it ended up pretty well.

We made a new recipe last night too – a turkey meatball sauce utilizing a spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot. Believe it or not it actually tastes pretty amazing!

Illuminations 2020

Art, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Somerville residents homes all lit up. This one has a working Ferris wheel on the porch over to the right by the Santa head!

Took a ride tonight around Somerville to check out some of the homes decked out for the holidays. Here are some of them that we visited. Very impressive displays! Perfect weather for checking them out tonight!

Hiking to King Philip’s Cave

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography, Things that make me go Hmmm

King Phillip’s Cave is a cave in Norton, Massachusetts near Lake Winnecunnett.

The cave is so named because Metacomet, the Wampanoag sachem also known as “King Phillip”, is said to have hid here near the end of King Philip’s War before meeting his death in the Great Misery Swamp in Bristol, RI.

We happened to be in the area so we checked it out. Very cool rock formations. I think I need to read up on Philip a bit more, sounds like he got a pretty raw deal. I wouldn’t really call it a cave though, more like two boulders that crisscrossed on top of one another and provided a gap beneath them.

We also checked out a quick hike over in Taunton at a place called Boyden Wildlife Area. This area is beautiful and quite scenic with some nice overhangs overlooking a nearby river that parallels it. Definitely going back to this location again.

Illuminating Schedule

Everyday Life, Memories

Plotting out tomorrow’s Illuminations Tour drivebys to see what holiday lights everyone’s put up.

I just popped on a new smart tv for us for us as a holiday gift. Time to get into the current century with technology. Should be arriving next week sometime – kind of exciting, went for a Samsung 40″ 1080p with smart tv features.

Tonight we made some homemade craft ornaments using seashells (some we collected from our prior beach trips) and glitter and modpodge and beads and wires and created our own creations for the tree, while that old Rudolph the red Nosed Reindeer television show was playing in the background.

We also cooked a ton of stuff tonight, partly to get rid of some of the stuff we had hanging around. I’m talking soups, turkey burgers with mushrooms and dijonnaise, squashes and chilis.

Getting in the Grill

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Shot from Scituate Light from the camera roll.

Decided to pull the BBQ back into the shed for winter storage this morning. It wasn’t too cold out and I wanted to do it before it got too cold. Getting it across the expanse of lawn, off the lip of the patio, and lifting it into the shed is a bit much for me by myself but somehow I always manage to do it and today was no exception. It’s true it could stay out all year round but I pride myself on keeping it looking and working like new so that’s why I do it. Folks have come over in the past and wondered if it was a new grill and we say No, it’s around 10 years old, that’s how nice I keep it.

Shameless plug, if you want to purchase some of my photo artwork just click this link in time for the holidays and browse around. Hell, even just get a little magnet or somesuch as a stocking stuffer if you like. Every little bit helps. Bookmark and check back now and then, I add new stuff every so often. Please share the link with others if you think they would be interested as well.

Other than running a couple of errands to CVS, the bank, and a quick side trip to Wellesley to pick up some stuff, that’s pretty much it for today. A quiet night in watching television…again.

Feeling Down but Still Blessed

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Payne’s Creek this summer.

My mental health has been hit or miss the last few months. I’m generally a pretty positive person but I get days, like today, when I feel a little down. I haven’t been updating that much because pretty much lately everyday has been more or less of the same, each day just the same as the last, morphed into one blob of time, and it lends itself to me being in kind of a rut. I’m just hanging in there. I do feel blessed to have a very good support network to help get me through, but I am human after all and it’s probably natural to feel this way, the way things currently are. Sooner or later thing are going to change for the better, just going to take some time and I have my good memories like the scene above from this summer from our time on the Cape to help get me through. See? I told you I was a generally positive person.

Wonky Cell Phone Status

General Website, Memories, Scenic Photography
Guess where? Another photo from the archives.

Just updated the site to the latest version of the CMS. You shouldn’t notice any differences, it’s more just stuff I can use to configure my site better or in different ways if I so choose.

My phone started doing some weird crap today. While I was trying to make a call I could never get a dial tone. I swear this thing is on the way out. I still haven’t popped on the new cell yet but it’s becoming more and more apparent that I probably can’t wait too much longer. Hopefully just enough to last throughout the rest of this awful year. It’s not even worth a trade in anymore as they only give five bucks for it.

Work on our holiday card for the year has been completed and will be going out shortly, so if you’re on our mailing list expect to see it in your mailbox within the next couple of weeks.

Early Morning Wake Up Call

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Red house in the snow, Bolton MA

Woke up this morning to the sound of jackhammers and other street equipment as the town decided to rip out a part of the next door neighbor’s driveway, for what purpose I still haven’t figured out.

A caricature of yours truly.

Found another new cute little library in Somerville today. It looked like a little house with glass doors ion both sides which was pretty neat. It’s right by Powderhouse Circle if you’re familiar with the area if you want to check it out yourself. I placed a book I had already read in there but didn’t take any out since there weren’t any in there that interested me.

A Quiet Time for Reflections

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
Stalking the Great Blue Heron. Love these birds.

Mist rises from the creek —

early morning — a great

blue heron stands still.

A Little bit of haiku for today

I thought this was still a cool picture so I’m posting it again with some minor different editing from last time, a little more natural. Not been a bit of a whole lot happening over the last couple of days. Took a brief jaunt to a beach yesterday but it was pretty cold so didn’t stay too long. Was basically a potato today and didn’t do a whole lot.

Reindeer Ready

Everyday Life, Memories
Lighted Reindeer up and and providing light.

I finally got around to inserting that new bulb I got for the 8mm back at Earth-1. I felt a bit tentative turning it on, afterall, you could tell this was a very old bulb (new but untouched for probably decades) but it worked like a charm. I got around to watching about an hour and a half of old films, highlighted by ones of myself and my sister as little kids and my mom and grandparents in all their glory. It was great and then for some reason the motor to the feeding mechanism just stopped so that was that for now. Maybe it just needs a rest, I’ll tinker around with it some more another time but I’m satisfied with what I did get to see.

After the storm the other day I needed to reseat two of the lighted reindeer out front, they had fallen over in the gales but otherwise were okay. Unfortunately one of the red bows on one must have blown off and flew away as I can find no trace of it anywhere.

The calendar people finally got around to start sharing my image on social media so you might see that around. Not sure why they couldn’t have used a higher resolution for it though. Perhaps I’m biased but I do think my photo is the best one in the entire calendar. Rather fitting that it’s the last one of the year in there as well – best for last! Hah!

Carson the cat sees himself in the mirror with me behind capturing the moment with my cellphone.
Shocking Discovery