Coffeepot Declared Not Guilty

I took no chances with my mocha coffee after losing six cups a few days ago. I not only stayed in the room the whole time it was brewing, I made the camera document the levels of water and coffee. There were 10 cups in the reservoir.

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The machine yielded just under 10 cups of a very satisfying brew.

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I am no nearer solving the mystery of the missing coffee, but I have ruled out murder and theft on the part of the coffeemaker.

When Logan Says….

When neighbor Logan (7) says, “Look what I can do,” you look quickly.

He said, “I can move like a worm.”

He dropped to the floor and wiggled across the room in jig time. I was pulling the camera out of my pocket as he rolled to his knees and jumped up without using his hands. Both John and I asked him to repeat the worm show. This was too good to miss.

Logan was with us in the middle of the day because he had a snow day. The white blanket outdoors had disappeared by then, letting the battered daffodils rise up again. His first choice was to play basketball on John’s computer. John set a time limit, after which they played a few games of checkers.

I had Logan stomp on a few air bags. He loves that noisy chore. I want the bags deflated before we throw them away, and he loves to jump on them. That’s child labor you don’t have to pay for!

I was surprised he didn’t want to work the jigsaw puzzle I bought for him at the thrift shop. He put the pieces out on the floor and almost immediately began putting them back in the box. I’m just now realizing he did that cleaning up without any prompt. His mother will find out when she reads this. [Good going, Shawn!] I pointed out that one piece was missing, and there was damage to a few pieces on the edge. I said I picked it up because it glowed in the dark. I had hardly finished that sentence when he was running down the hall. He had a few pieces in his hand and ducked into a closet to check out the glow business. It didn’t work. When he came back, I told him the glowing pieces felt a little rough. We found one, which he took to John to hold up to his bright desk lamp. He invited me in the closet with him, and we saw the dim glow. He did this several more times before putting all the pieces back in the box. I got my miserly money’s worth, after all.

I had intended to feed the horses with grandson David, but we didn’t get around to it. When I mentioned I had apples, Logan threw on his boots and jacket and streaked out the door. The horse DW ambled over to see what Logan was doing and promptly ate every piece he held up. It didn’t last long, but horse and boy were happy. We looked at a show on TV and just came to the end when Shawn called him to come home. There is never a dull moment with Logan around.

A Snowy Day

There was snow during the night, which continued through our walking time. The temperature was well below freezing, but it was the wind that concerned us. The weather station said it was 15 mph. We went out anyway, making our ice report to neighbor Joyce. If the roads have black ice, we text Joyce to be careful going to work. The wind had been quiet, but near the stop sign it began to blow. We turned and went home, enjoying the snowy neighborhood as we walked.

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The little cat accompanied us half way to the stop sign and waited for us to come back. She was in hunting mode, but would pause (paws) now and then to be petted.

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We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast of Egg MacMehrling and coffee in our toasty-warm house.

Sponge Coffee

I made a bizarre pot of coffee while John was taking grandson David back to college. Normally John makes a pot of coffee every morning, and we both drink it. His is dependable coffee, always the same. On the recommendation of his cardiologist, he uses three parts decaf to one part regular. I have no restrictions, so I’m glad to drink whatever he prepares.

When John goes away, though, I like to brew something different. I had a bag of mocha coffee, Walmart brand. Several times I used it in the single-serving machine, and it was fine. This time I poured water to the 10-cup level in the regular pot and estimated how much coffee to put in the basket. I pushed the “on” button and went back to reading blog posts. When the lovely aroma reached the other room, I went for a cup. Oddly, the machine was still sputtering. After all that time, only four cups had dripped into the pot! I cut it off, drank one cup that was a bit strong, and left the machine to cool off.

Had I broken the machine? Where was the missing water? It had not leaked on the counter. I picked up the machine and tilted it, thinking I’d hear water if it had escaped into the bottom somewhere. I turned it upside down. No water came out. It remains a mystery to me. Coffee powerful enough to make six cups of water disappear has got to be Sponge Coffee.

Thank You, Daylight Savings Time

For the first time in my life, there was a plus to moving the clocks ahead. We began the adjustment around 9 pm, when I changed all the clocks I could remember. I needed a running start so that I’d go to bed earlier. Despite that, grandson David and I were nodding during Sunday School. The advantage came at 3:30 pm when John and David left on the long drive to New York. I walked back in the house and went straight to bed for a nap. It was not unusual for me to wake to an empty house, so that cushion of time eased the ache of waving goodbye.

Last week, when neighbor Bob said he should begin walking again, John told him I’d be leaving the house around 7:30 on Monday. If he and Logan walked with me, that would put them at the bus stop at the right time. I was not sure it would be light by then because of the clock change. Regardless, John texted me from Pennsylvania as my alarm went off, asking if I were going to walk. Instead of going back to sleep, I looked at the weather forecast. The map showed the clouds clearing the area, while the chart forecast 10% chance of rain. Despite the darkness outside, I walked out of the door at 7:35.

Note the prediction was for 10% CHANCE of rain. Reality was 10% rain. Water fell from the sky at 10% of the rate it COULD HAVE fallen if it had set its mind to it. I put my hood up for a short while. That limits vision, so I let the drizzle fall on my head for the most part.

Note to self: You’d need to be striding out at the appointed time. You saw the bus chug up the hill and pause for Logan, who would not have made it walking with you.

A Lasting Memory

Grandson David could not get the Valparaiso Chorale out of his mind. We talked about that fantastic choir all the way home from the concert on Tuesday. The itinerary was on the brochure, and he knew the next performance was on Thursday in Charleston.

He said, “I would REALLY like to hear that choir again.” He repeated the statement several times, until I realized he had an intense longing to go to Charleston. John heard it, but like me, did not react to it. We talked about it while walking Thursday morning.

After breakfast on Thursday, John asked him if he wanted to go. Looking at the clock, he said, “That would mean leaving in three hours.”

David’s “YES!!!!” said it all.

I did my best to keep my face from showing disapproval. A four-hour drive for a two-hour concert? Nah! Not worth it! We had planned to go out for our main meal, so I had to quickly devise a menu and begin cooking. They ate and left.

Replaying the words in my head, I remembered the extreme excitement in David’s voice. When John outlined the trip, I knew John had caught David’s exuberance and challenge to do the impossible. They were dragon-slayers on a mission! I was glad I had kept my mouth shut and happy they went. Turning the focus from the past, I looked to the future. I know that David will NEVER forget the day his grandpa dropped everything to make their last-minute dream come true.

I was in bed long before they came home. The trip had taken 12 hours. As we walked the next morning, John told me the highlights of the adventure. They found the church in the old section of Charleston 20 minutes before the program began. There was even parking on the street nearby! The pastor was greeting people at the door. Knowing they were strangers, he asked how they knew about it. John explained that they heard the choir two days before and longed to hear it again. During the break in the middle of the program, the pastor announced that people had come from North Carolina to be there. The music itself was a little different because it was in a different building. John and David sat very close to the front this time and could hear individual singers. After it was over, they chatted with the tour director whom we had seen on Tuesday. When the man found out David goes to Concordia Bronxville, he said he knew people there. He mentioned two names and fished for the third. David supplied the last name of the one the man couldn’t recall. And yes, David did know them.

The photo for today is of David holding a large barbecue sandwich at Haywood Smokehouse. I didn’t think he could get his mouth around it, but he did so happily.


Is it What I Said?

John mentioned the forecast the night before, but I didn’t get excited about snow. I said, “Even though I love snow, I’m not pulling for it now – not with daffodils and Bradford pear trees blooming.”

He agreed with my sentiments, and we thought no more about it. I stayed up much too late, watching a screen-saver slide show with grandson David. I suggested he pull up videos of the Valparaiso choir on the computer so that he could recognize faces of singers we had just seen. He, with his young eyes, spotted them easily on his phone. I didn’t move away from the monitor quickly enough, and the old photos began their parade. We got hooked. The program randomly chooses from all the pictures I have taken since 1962. I didn’t go to bed until 1:30.

Before the alarm went off, I heard a text message ding my phone. No matter what it was, it could wait. Too bad I didn’t get up. It was a message I would like to have seen immediately. Daughter Kate texted from New Jersey that schools were closing, and she might get 10 inches of snow. Glancing out the front window, I saw white and jumped to the conclusion we were in heavy fog. When I flung back the glass door curtains, I saw SNOW! It was already sticking to the deck. I said to myself, “ Hurry! Hurry! Get your clothes on and get out there to walk!” John and I are well-matched. He was thinking the same thing.

We were half way to the stop sign when blue sky loomed on the horizon. I whipped out my phone and said I was going to take a picture, wanting to get the snow behind us and not the blue sky. In addition, I wanted friend Karen to see the hat she made me, covered with snow. I took a couple of shots and turned the phone to look at them. “John!” I demanded. “Why did you hide?”

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Now John is a good husband, one who does not intentionally antagonize his wife, even about photographs. He said, “I thought you were just getting yourself. I didn’t know I was in it.”

His statement had a ring of truth. My hands were cold, so I laughed as we continued walking. He was probably thinking, “Whew! Ducked that one!”

Here is the first photo.  What do you think?  Did he see the camera aimed as us and take cover????

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I’m convinced the clouds read my thoughts about not pulling for snow. Note to self: mentally push snow away so you’ll get more.

The blue sky did not win that battle, after all.  We got more snow after we got home, and I enjoyed watching every flake.  Snow blanked out the mountains as the sun beamed on the pasture.  Flakes showed against the brown post.  Yea, Snow!

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