- A Fitting Tribute
My 90-year-old uncle (my dad's brother-in-law) died last week, after spending several years in a nursing home. He just got tired, I think, and decided it was time to move on. His funeral service was last weekend, in the small Nebraska town of his birth, where he had lived until the last 10 years or so. It was certainly a memorable event, the perfect ending to his life.
- New Baby Due Soon
My husband and I have five grandchildren aged nine, seven, four, two, and one—yes, all the same family. They are darling, blond, blue-eyed geniuses who will no doubt find cures for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and the common cold—all while winning multiple gold medals in the Olympics and serving on the Supreme Court. That, of course, is a totally unbiased opinion.
- Prescient Author
My sophomore honors students are just finishing up with George Orwell’s 1984. Some of them love the book, and some of them hate it. But, what we can all agree on is the amazing way Orwell predicted the lack of privacy that would be made possible through the use of technology. Of course, he didn’t have any clue about the Internet, but his ideas about telescreens and the ability of others to know what we are doing is positively spooky.
- Farmers Market
Our small Nebraska town has had a farmers market for a number of years, but in the last three or four years it has really taken off. It runs from June through October and showcases fresh, local produce and baked goods.
One of the hottest items is the fresh corn that appears in July. Lines of people wait at one of the several local stands, ready to snap up a few dozen ears for family enjoyment or for canning and freezing. Our part of the country also grows some wonderful melons, cucumbers, squash, and tomatoes.
- Presidential Election FeverIs it election time yet? It seems that this has been going on for nearly two years . . . wait, it has, hasn’t it? I had high hopes that maybe the mudslinging that went on in the Kerry–Bush contest might not happen this year; however, that certainly hasn’t happened.
- Christmas Plans
I can hardly believe it. We've made some plans for Christmas already. We usually start talking about it with family members at Thanksgiving, and then we can't really come to an agreement because everyone has multiple celebrations to schedule with in-laws and out-laws.
- Reading Older Books
I bought quite a few old paperbacks at our library book sale, and I've been doing some reading in them. I found several I liked, but I'm not going to review them because they may be out of print or difficult to locate. The authors are familiar names: Ken Follett, Alice Hoffman, and Jonathan Kellerman.
- What's a Mockingbird?
I understand there was some confusion about two of the books I previously reviewed, To Kill a Mockingbird and Mockingbird. Here's the difference:
To Kill a Mockingbird is the story of Scout Finch, a young girl growing up in Alabama during the 1930s, her father Atticus, and brother Jem. The three of them are affected by the legal case of a black man accused of raping a white girl. It is fiction, although loosely based on people and events in the life of Harper Lee, the author.
- Love Those Olympics
I stayed up too late watching the Beijing Olympics. Men's gymnastics—what a nail biter! The young USA team managed to pull out a bronze despite losing two of their experienced members. It was also fun to watch Michael Phelps in his quest for more Olympic gold. He's some kind of athlete!
- No Kitchen
We have decided, after nearly 30 years in our house, that it's time to redo the kitchen. A few years ago, we changed the dark pine kitchen cabinets by painting them a cream color, put some self-stick tile on the floor, installed new cabinet hardware, and added some track lighting. Well, that was all very well and good, but it didn't change the fact that the widest drawer or door on the cabinets was about the same width as a dinner plate. Sometimes that made it very difficult to find a place to put anything that was even a little oversized.
- Christmas Plans