One Thing At A Time

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A Family Float taken years ago

I’ve been a bit quiet blogging lately so here’s an update as to why. When this isolation started I thought I was going to continue writing posts from my already outlined file. Yet, when I read a draft its level of importance in life has changed. For most, it just doesn’t feel like the right time to post them. They’re not deleted their day may come.

I’m sure I’m not alone feeling that with each added week of isolation I’m becoming more unsettled. Motivation has become my biggest obstacle. My attitude sways towards, “I’ll do it tomorrow,” it’s not like there’s anything else happening. I’ve lost the scheduled routine of what needed to be done every week.

Don’t get me wrong, part of this slowed down lifestyle I think we needed and I hope to continue practicing it.

I use to always tell myself, “I’ll sleep or relax when I’m dead”. My new motto might just be, “Every minute of every day shouldn’t be scheduled unless time to relax is included.”

Or, maybe my motivation issue is because most of the enjoyable stuff is done on my to-do-list.

I have been ticking things off which feels great, but I also hope this isolation ends before I have to do some of the remaining boring items. My temporary remedy is the other day I added about 10 new things to the list for more choices.

I should probably be ashamed to mention these, but I’m actually proud of myself for getting them done.

Our son is married and has a young son, and I recently got all of my old stashed notes recorded in his baby book.

Another impressive feat was completing the “Grandmother” book our older set of grandchildren gave me in 2003. This one has 64 pages of questions to be filled out regarding my childhood right up to views for the future, and then it’s to be given back to them. It’s now sitting here waiting for us to be able to deliver it.

I have material from 2006 to make a quilt which has finally made it to the cutting table, but we’ll see how far I get with that.

Our snow has finally melted and spring has arrived, so outside work takes priority. It also means I can start some woodworking.

Have you gotten anything done that’s been on your list for a long time?

Do you have something on your to-do-list you’re not looking forward to tackling?

My main one is, resealing our paved driveway which I’m guessing is around 1000 square feet. The worst part is we know this chore has to get done.

All in all, things with Mister and I are as good as can be expected. Life hasn’t stopped throwing us a few curve balls, but I’m sure that’s happening to everyone. 

(knock on wood) We’re still virus free, and as far as we know family and friends also are, so this is great.

It looks like summer is going to be nothing like what we had planned which sucks big time, but that’s out of our control.

Stay healthy and sane everyone. (smiley face)

Why Is It Called Dog?

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Do you need something besides Covid-19 to think about?

Here’s something I often wonder, and even Google hasn’t given me satisfying answers.

Why is a dog called dog? Why is a house a house? Why is walk walk? Why are we called people?

Can you see the big question? Why, how and when did the words we use originate?

I decided to Google “when did humans start speaking.” It appears I’m not alone in wondering about this. There’s a few theories and speculations, but nothing very helpful.

These are quotes from one article I found.

“The origin of language and its evolutionary emergence have been subjects of speculation for several centuries. The topic is difficult to study because of lack of direct evidence.”
Okay, I get that, but it wasn’t very satisfying.

Here’s a helpful line.
“The shortage of empirical evidence has led many scholars to regard the entire topic as unsuitable for serious study.”
Sounds like me after awhile of thinking about this, throwing my hands up in the air and muttering, “I don’t know.”

This statement pretty much sums up my research.
“In 1866, the Linguistic Society of Paris banned any existing or future debates on the subject, a prohibition which remained influential across much of the Western world until late in the twentieth century. Today, there are various hypotheses about how, why, when, and where language might have emerged. Despite this, there is scarcely more agreement today than a hundred years ago when Charles Darwin‘s theory of evolution by natural selection provoked a rash of armchair speculation on the topic.”

If I had the gift of time travel I would go back and search for answers.

Well, I think I avoided my chores long enough. No more researching this mystery for me today. 

But really, why is a tree called a tree, a mountain called a mountain?

Sometimes my mind rests, but not often.

I’m curious, have you ever given this subject any thought?

I hope you have support and are staying strong and healthy during this social distancing and often isolation.

Which Group Are You?

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When something goes wrong our instinct as parents and grandparents is to gather our family, stay close, protect and support each other. Right now the opposite has to be done if younger family members are unable to completely isolate because of their jobs.

This isn’t a, woe is me, post, but it does suck to be in that higher risk and more vulnerable age group. I’m certain everyone of you who is feels the same.

“Thank Goodness to today’s technology.” Who else agrees that without it this isolation would be so much more difficult?

Using devises and Internet we can not only hear our family and friends voices, we can see their faces, or easily share pictures and videos. We only have to physically isolate, so to keep our sanity any kind of call interactions are greatly appreciated.

Video chats is now how we visit Monkey (our newest grandson) who seems to grow and learn new things each day. It’s depressing not being able to share these in person, but we hope not doing it now means a better chance of doing it for years to come.

We get virtual tours of projects and changes at the son and daughter-in-law’s place and lots of video visits while we watch Monkey play.

Our daughter also keeps us up-to-date daily with life in the country for her and her husband. She sent pictures of their house renovations, which they luckily had supplies on hand for. We get to see what her fur baby is up to, and she’s keeping us posted on spring progress with her horse.

The effort each and every individual puts into social distancing will make a huge difference.

Remember, just because you can’t see social distancing results in the moment it could literally be life altering.

Mister and I are starting our 4th week physically separated from family and friends. Boredom or running out of projects isn’t an issue yet. Like many of you, I would be lying if I said at times it doesn’t sadden and frustrate us, but there really seems to be no other option.

This situation has increased our desire to move closer to the kids. We had just listed our place for sale before this virus took over. Now, I doubt the chance to sell and relocate will happen anytime soon.

My prayers go out to all during these terrible times. Especially, those whose job takes them out in the public.

Lets keep these people healthy by isolating ourselves if we have symptoms or have been around someone with symptoms.

Lets stay home unless it’s a necessity.

Lets learn what is a necessity.

Lets learn to be happy in our homes. I hear it’s a great time to move furniture around.

Stay Positive.

Be Kind and Considerate to others.

Be Diligent with hygiene, social distancing or self isolation.

I Hope You have someone or something that Can still make you Smile.

What is something you can’t wait to do once this virus subsides?

For me it’s, be in the same room as family and friends. I should clarify that, family and friends other than Mister, because he is certainly both of those.

Probably, do one of our Chinese food get togethers with the kids. I’m craving something not home cooked.

Hold and play with Monkey of course.

Pet and wrestle the grand puppy. Spend time in the barn with the daughter and her horse. Technology hasn’t been able to bring me the smell of horse, leather and hay.

Be able to clear my throat without causing public panic, and be able to touch my nose, eyes or face in a store lineup without fearing illness.

Have you learned any new ways of communicating or staying connected with family and friends while social distancing?

I hope you and yours can remain Safe and Healthy. 

Have You Gotten Reacquainted

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I have started a new social distancing activity called reacquainting myself with stuff.

I won’t refer to the digging in and going through nooks and crannies as cleaning out, because I rarely throw anything away.

It’s more like taking inventory.

For instance, I have 4 of my previous wallets stashed in a box. Two of them have been in the box for over ten years, one was put in there because it was my all time favourite but is falling apart. The forth one is my traveling wallet and is occasionally used.

Does anyone else save old wallets after buying a replacement?

Worse than that is my collection of glasses cases, drugstore sunglasses, and readers, that I can’t even wear now because of my prescription. Not all of them are in this box. I have no explanation for this, but as long as there’s room in this box things are safe. Once it’s full I will not start another one. That’s when something will have to go.

The box that is getting scary is the one housing out dated phones, cameras, chargers and cords. It’s getting full, but it’s not on my to conquer list yet.

My memory is still pretty good as to what we have and don’t, but I don’t always remember right away where something is stashed. Which can lead to a little frustrated search. So, I’m enjoying this rediscovering.

I’ll admit I had a brief moment of, I should make an alphabetical list of where stuff is. I guess I’m not bored yet, because that didn’t happen.

Have you gotten reacquainted with stored things yet?

Hopefully you and yours are staying healthy, and you are finding ways to fill your social isolation days.

This Is A First

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5:28 am. I’ve said many times I’m a morning person, so seeing these clock numbers is not unheard of, but being up at this hour for today’s reason is a definite first for me.

Mister is stirring in the bedroom and is about to join me which is even more unusual.

We’re not up because we’re sick, headed to a doctor, going on a trip, picking someone up at a airport, nothing like that.

We’re taking Covid-19 serious, but this I actually found funny. Well, I don’t think I chuckled the instant I threw the warm cozy blanket off and rolled out of bed.

It’s Wednesday, March 18, a coffee sits beside me as I start this post which I will finish later.

What are we up to?  We’re headed for groceries.

A store in a nearby Town is opening at 7:00am, a hour early for seniors and vulnerable people to shop during the Covid-19 social distancing. 

We live about a half hour drive from this town, and I shouldn’t be in public without at least one cup of coffee so that’s why I’m up long before the sun today.

We appreciate the store doing this, and hopefully we find the pork chops and few other things on our list.

The store wasn’t as crowded as we were expecting which was nice.

Experts say don’t touch your face, eyes or mouth when out in public, so of course standing in line I got something in my eye. Not wanting to use my finger and thinking I’m smart I took off my glasses and used the arm tip to rub my eye. Than I was like, wait, when was the last time I cleaned that part of my glasses. Needless to say, I stopped what I was doing and tried to clear my vision by blinking alone.

I won’t bore you with details, but we came home with everything on our list. We should be set to hunker in for awhile once again.

With all coffee and crafting get-togethers here canceled for now it’s a good time to dig out some tucked away projects. Maybe after a nap though.

Have you been having trouble finding or getting out for supplies?

What are you doing to ward off boredom?

Bittersweet Driftwood

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Reusing or recycling items during our craft afternoons is something this group tries for as often as we can.

Many here share my appreciation for driftwood’s natural beauty and uniqueness. Last winter the crafting group agreed it made perfect sense to use the wood for a project, but we needed to wait with the lake frozen and the shoreline under snow.

Living at a lake resort on a damned mountain fed river means driftwood floating downstream occurs every thaw season.

The resort likes to keep the marina and beach debris free so last summer a few of us would go gather pieces to stock pile so they would dry and be ready to be transformed this winter.

Doing a “driftwood” search on Pinterest brings up tons of ideas of what to make. For many of us that was the hardest part of this craft.

Candle holders, wind chimes, sun catchers, wall art, ornaments and even a serving tray were created this day.

Perhaps, I should have zoomed up on the projects for the picture, but the women’s smiles is more what these afternoons are about.

Emotions snuck up on me as I wrote this post which is why “bittersweet” is in the title.

You see, I have a sister and brother-in-law who for years use to come to their cottage here on weekends and holidays. My sister, who also loved to craft, and I would often get up early to paddle our kayak up and down the shorelines and around the island, searching and gathering driftwood. We would load the kayak with as much as it would carry and sometimes the bigger pieces for our yards we would drag behind with a rope.

These were great times, and she would have been in her glory at this craft afternoon, but they sold their cottage a few years ago.

Now, my sister, only 7 years older than me, lives in a world where we can’t visit. She has advanced Alzheimers, and I miss her dearly.

Sorry for that unexpected turn this post took.

Back to crafting. I’m showing a close-up below of a project I made because the fish are a result from a previous craft session. Each one is 33 layers of construction paper completely glued together, dried for a day, the edges beveled and sanded, then finished with a couple layers of clear nail polish. You can make beautiful pendants, fridge magnets, etc. with this simple process also found on Pinterest.

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I will share some of our other crafts in future posts.

Have you ever crafted using things from nature, or reusing or recycling?

I’m always looking for suggestions for future craft projects.

Are You A Curious Person?

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When mild curiosity strikes do you search for answers right away?

Have you ever noticed these long tags and little tabs on some big transit trailer rims?

I have numerous times, and I’ve always wondered what was their purpose. Then by the time I’d get home I would forget to do some research. But, I finally remembered to question our son who’s in the transit industry.

The long tags have a couple purposes. They are not a mandatory item, but they’re a safety feature usually used by trucking companies that haul to and from large yards. When the trailers are slowly maneuvering, or backing in and out of spots, others driving or walking in the yard can see the tab movement and can stay clear and safe.

For drivers pulling these units for their runs seeing the spinning tabs in their side mirrors indicates no problems like locked trailer brakes.

The yellow tabs under some tire lug nuts are another non-mandatory safety feature. They are, loose nut indicators. When the lug nuts on a tire are tightened the points are aligned to make a circle. If during a tire check a point has slipped out of position the driver knows it needs to be re-torqued.

Are you a curious type person when it comes to the “how” and “why” of things?

Google has made finding answers pretty easy these days. Although, If I can, like for above, I still prefer answers from experienced people.

Can You Imagine

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This book is a true story about the authors life after being accidentally shot by a family member.

I don’t usually do book reviews on this blog, but this read is definitely worth a mention.

Don’t be misled by the innocent title. This memoir is the inspiring story of a young girl who at nine years old was robbed of the youth most of us take for granted.

A children’s afternoon outing ends in a hospital miles from family and their farm with her spinal cord severed. She will never walk again. She may never see her thirties.

Her determination and bravery will inspire you as you follow her journey and dreams of owning dogs, horses, riding, and living on a farm again.

Partly from necessity, she discovers she has more than love for animals, she has a talent for training dogs to aid and enhance her way of life.

You’ll read about her special companions who also served a purpose and how they helped add meaning to her life.

 As tragic as this story is, this memoir doesn’t dwell on the negatives. It’s an enlightening and uplifting read. Although, I needed a tissue a time or two.

I can personally vouch for the great person this author became having known her now for forty some years.

The book “Dogs, Horses and Me” is available on Amazon in print and ebook versions.

How Far is Far Enough?

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Do you have a limit as to “how far away” from your home is “far enough” for a hotel or motel stay?

We don’t. Okay, maybe fifteen minutes away might be too close, and it probably matters that we live out of town.

Even with the above view out our window, Mister and I still enjoy getting-away. Long distance trips don’t happen as often for us anymore, but we take a few short jaunts every year.

This post was triggered by our recent venture which is a popular one for us. It’s roughly an hour and a half drive from our home.

Have you or would you stay in a Hotel or Motel that’s near where you live?

I can’t speak for Mister, but what I enjoy most about these little trips is they are usually in a city, and are often closer to family or friends.

It has been 38 years since I’ve lived in a city with everyday conveniences within walking distance.

I loved living in the country with horses out our back door, and here at the golf and lake resort. But, I was born and raised in a city, and I kind of miss that way of life too. Maybe it’s just that “grass is greener on the other side” thing, but living in a smaller city or town remains on my bucket list.

If a “staycation” is when you vacation at home, is there a name for when you stay in the same city as you live or somewhere super close?

In the beginning years of marriage when our kids were young and we lived in the country, a 30-60 minute drive to one of the nearby cities was sometimes our vacation. (Guess what word I first typed at the end of that sentence? Check out my “Holiday or Vacation” post for an explanation.)

When our youngest was about a year and a half old Mister started travelling more and more with his job. The kids and I would go with him as often as we could.

They were (still are) great travellers. It never bothered them to sleep in a different place every night. They never whined about time spent in a vehicle, even if the day was 8-12 hours on the road.

Most of these trips were before in vehicle DVD players, handheld tablets, or cell phones. They would pack books, travel games, and a few toys each for entertainment, or just watch the scenery. Eventually, Walkmans and a few handheld electronic games, plus Gameboy, came out. Books remained one of their favourites along with listening to their own music.

A part of what we loved about these trips with Mister working his way across provinces and states meant we visited a lot of little towns. We’ve traveled many main routes, country roads, and back highways through areas most tourists don’t visit.

If Mister expected his business stop was going to be lengthy he would drop us off to explore shopping areas, playgrounds, parks, main-streets or wherever we thought looked interesting. This part of our life started before people had cell phones. We had to wear watches and coordinate pick-up places and times.

I remember when Mister got a pager, and how when it went off we all had to watch for a phone booth while he drove.

Do you remember the days before things like, “text when you are on your way”

Name Update

It’s still me ” Saddles to Shorelines” just my blog’s name here on my website has changed to match its Facebook page “Kathy Knull’s Life As It Comes Blog”.

The minor change will now show on my posts emailed to subscribers, where I’m mentioned as sender, wherever my blogs name is newly mentioned, and of course I’m working on a new look for my website.

Like before, my blog topics will continue to be as spontaneous and random as life itself.