Book Review: In the Blue Hour

8 May


Elizabeth Hall is my maiden name. ¬†I like seeing my former name on book covers ūüėČ ¬†I have also read Miramont’s Ghost and The Music of the Deep.

In The Blue Hour multi-generational grief found peace of mind and healing.  The story unfolds in the cultures of New Mexico with a compelling connection to Olalla, Tennessee.

Reference: ¬†Consulting mediums is condemned and forbidden in the Bible. ¬†Deuteronomy 18:10‚Äď11 echoes Leviticus and expands it, including diviners, sorcerers, witches/wizards, anyone who casts spells, and anyone who practices child sacrifice. ¬†This link is a concise summary from GotQuestions. ¬†

However, there is an engaging exchange, point/counter point to rationalize “hunches” and explain the journey. ¬†BONUS: ¬†Recommendation of Spook: ¬†Science Tackles the Afterlife by Mary Roach

Peace of mind calls for knowledge and connections in spite of 1000s of miles distance and decades of time lapse.



Walk this way

30 Apr

Planting purple wave petunias concludes five days freshening flower beds

with seven cubic yards of hardwood fine mulch.

Stay at home!  2020

Three bags full…times TWO

24 Apr

Days for Girls International mission is to provide reusable feminine hygiene products to underserved women and girls around the world since 2008.

Unexpected opportunity to provide above Elfcroft’s normal capacity making trip-fold flannel pads and liners with PUL, pockets and wings….drum roll! ¬†staying home during the coronavirus! ¬†Made possible by JoAnn’s Fabrics staying open. ¬†I did need to restock fabric, thread and PUL.

Each of the 3 bags supports 10 kits with 8 flannel pads and 2 liners for 80 pads and 20 liners.

What we are looking at here totals 480 pads and 120 liners supporting 60 kits.  The Avon DfGI Chapter completes the kit drawstring bag, panties, wash cloth, etc.




16 Apr



Wild thing.  Office assistant.  Pillow topper.  Beauty.

Found in Dad’s cattle trailer Dec 24, 2007. ¬†Said “good bye” April 13, 2020…

Beginning:  Christmas Eve.  Ending:  Easter.

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Empty bowl                                                                               RIP

Spring Gardening or…

9 Apr

what are they?


Spoiler alert:  Amazon sells them.  (That is how I discovered the name.)

I have been in garden centers often over the years and never saw one.  I acquired them from an estate a couple of years ago.    They are:

rotary tillers (with a broom type handle)

Applied testing: ¬†It does a nice job freshening up last year’s mulch and also works well mixing homemade compost with clay type soil.


Mask you say…from a bandana?

6 Apr

The possibilities…for starters:

My stash of 24…all washed and ironed!

Cowboy style? ¬†Perhaps with red or blue ones…not tie dye, pink camouflage, commercial or holiday.

I like the idea of having one around my neck and quickly pulling it up over nose and mouth.  A triangle fold make for at least 2 layer coverage, if not 4 layers with another fold.  Recommendations are to wash after each use.

My favorite application for bandanas is a drawstring bag.  I made one in Girl Scouts kept it for years.  That one was inspiration for birthday party favors in the 90s (before digital photography).  Check out this post by


Upcycled Bandana DIY Drawstring Bag


News plus flashback

23 Mar

Kenny Rogers, singer, songwriter and photographer passed away.

‚ÄúThe Gambler,‚ÄĚ the Grammy-winning story song penned by Don Schlitz, came out in 1978 and became his signature song with a signature refrain: ‚ÄúYou gotta know when to hold ‚Äėem, know when to fold ‚Äôem.‚ÄĚ ¬†In my humble opinion, that line applies in life to more than card games. ¬†(I have been known to quote it.)

Another personal note: ¬†1987 I was astounded by an interview KR did promoting a recently published book. ¬†Amazing professional photography, KR included personal notes about the photo shoots and subjects….80 leading citizens. ¬†Three subjects are former U.S. Presidents.

Woo!Hoo!  My sister was in Atlanta that year and got an autographed copy for me.

One of the joys of having a personal library.  RIP KR

Acorns: Spring planting

11 Mar

We removed dozens of trees @ Owl Creek in 2019…Some had been dead for a long time… ¬†Some were volunteers too close to driveways or barn…Some were contortions of trees…bent, split, broken. ¬†Several logging projects in the past 50 years harvested hard woods…walnut, maple and oak trees. ¬†Our understanding is that oak seedlings are difficult to locate.


To get 2020 spring plants off to a bigger start, I gathered acorns from the backyard.  Mostly green, squirrels had not run off with them.

“How to Grow Oak Trees from Acorns” Shelly Wigglesworth Oct 16, 2018, published in New England Today, Living

How to Grow Oak Trees from Acorns

I like the idea of refrigerating with peat and barley in a sealed container over winter.

Shelly recommended discarding acorns with pin holes. ¬†They are made by “inch” worms exiting the hull. ¬†I believe the worms enter under the cap. ¬†After checking closely and drying ¬†about two weeks, I discarded 20 acorns of the 60+ I had gathered from our backyard.

Here we “grow” again…today March 11, 2020…

Responding to the loss oak seedlings ruined by squirrels going for the meat of the acorn…I have turn the table! ¬†Using a small cage to keep wild life out and protect future tree…rather than keep animals IN. ¬†45 acorns in peat pots.

Hmmmm…what yield will we have?



Book Review: The Bookshop of Yesterdays

5 Mar

This is an amazing book! ¬†The setting is LosAngelos, which didn’t appeal to me until the storyline developed fully. ¬†Short quotes from classic books (of different genres starting with Shakespeare) expertly punctuated the narrative. ¬†Cause of death and paternity was a mystery for Mira, who had been misled. ¬†She also processed the enormity of inheriting a struggling bookshop 3000 miles from her new home and teaching career on the east coast…learning the financial record keeping, personnel/staffing, business cycles and plan to turn a profit.

Anyone involved with handling an estate with a significant number of books will appreciate this novel!

Books Review: Seven Days in Utopia, Golf’s Sacred Journey and The Sequel

18 Feb

We saw the movie.  I knew I needed to read the book, bonus found the sequel.

The movie starring Robert DuVall and Lucas Black is warm, genuine and inspiring. ¬†In my youth, I took golf lessons and followed tournament play. ¬†As an adult, I played in a golf league after work. ¬†I’m fond of movies about baseball…Field of Dreams, A League of Their Own, The Natural… ¬†Frankly, it never occurred to me that there were great stories and lessons to be told about golf. ¬†(I don’t count¬†Caddy Shack.)

Seven Days in Utopia narrative differs between the movie and the book. ¬†(Both are equally time well spent.) ¬†The book has more details on honing technical golf skills. ¬†There is an opportunity loss, if practice is dominated by driving range parameters. ¬† Improving skills means practicing with up and downhill lies, behind trees, bare ground, deep grass…and more…

What is extraordinary about the lessons?  The originality, experiential and spiritual nature of the situations.  Watch or read for yourself.