Fun on Fridays

Andy has finished his Christmas gift to me and put it up to my delight. (He’s planning to do some more hand sanding, but they are essentially finished.)

andy jan 2019 his wooden names

Many years ago – nearly 40 – I bought two wooden cutouts of the names Alice and Emily at a craft fair in Westfield, New York…Andy was not born yet. but in 1983, when he was a year old, I found an “Andrew”, which went well with the first two, at a similar event.

In 1985 I put them above the door to the kitchen from our new addition, the family room. Now Andy has made wooden cutouts of the names of my grandchildren. We are not sure of the final location, but they look pretty good where he put them for our Friday night dinner.

family jan 2019 family dinner andys letters up

Emily, Sofia and Clara came for dinner Friday. I was trying out my new slow cooker which had a random pot roast in it. For my vegetarian offering I made a new recipe of spaghetti squash stuffed with cheese and broccoli. It was a big hit and I was asked for the recipe. It’s rather a fun recipe because you can do so many things with the concept of baking the squash, removing the strands, mixing with other things and baking again. I found a few other ideas here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6yPvjLQilxY

family jan 2019 fri dinner happier em

family jan 2019 family dinner fia

family jan 2019 fri dinner andy

Andy’s wearing his new Christmas T Shirt from Em. It says, “Plays well with Otters”.  I’m sure this is true of my dear son!

After dinner, we played Trekking, a National Parks based game I had given my granddaughters for Christmas. ( I especially loved it because our local National Park, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, is part of the game.) I’d been a bit afraid it might not be fun, but that fear was false. We all loved it and apparently Em has been playing it with the girls fairly often since Christmas. Sofia is especially good!

family jan 2019 dinner game trekking

In other news, all my orchids are beginning to re-bloom. I’m really lucky with them doing this so often. I think they like the high but indirect light in my north facing family room.




It’s been snowing all day, with those huge slowly falling flakes that take me back to my childhood and looking out my grandmother’s kitchen window. It’s a bit below freezing and I watched a deer resting in the snow and wondered how it could be comfortable at all….

deer jan 20109

How many people of different faiths and/or astrological signs does it take to change a light bulb?


Charismatic: Only 1 – Hands are already in the air.

Pentecostal: 10 – One to change the bulb, and nine to pray against the
spirit of darkness.

Presbyterians: None – Lights will go on and off at predestined times.

Roman Catholic: None – Candles only. (Of guaranteed origin of course.)

Baptists: At least 15 – One to change the light bulb, and three
committees to approve the change and decide who brings the potato salad
and fried chicken.

Episcopalians: 3 – One to call the electrician, one to mix the drinks,
and one to talk about how much better the old one was.

Mormons: 5 – One man to change the bulb, and four wives to tell him how
to do it.

Unitarians: We choose not to make a statement either in favor of or
against the need for a light bulb. However, if in your own journey you
have found that light bulbs work for you, you are invited to write a
poem or compose a modern dance about your light bulb for the next
Sunday service, in which we will explore a number of light bulb
traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, 3-way, long-life and
tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence.

Methodists: Undetermined – Whether your light is bright, dull, or
completely out, you are loved. You can be a light bulb, turnip bulb, or
tulip bulb. Bring a bulb of your choice to the Sunday lighting service
and a covered dish to pass.

Nazarene: 6 – One woman to replace the bulb while five men review
church lighting policy.

Lutherans: None – Lutherans don’t believe in change.

Amish: What’s a light bulb?

How many members of your horoscope sign does it take to change a light

Part 1:

Aries: Just one. You want to make something of it?

Taurus: One, but just “try” to convince them that the burned-out bulb
is useless and should be thrown away.

Gemini: Two, but the job never gets done–they just keep arguing about
who is supposed to do it and how it’s supposed to be done.

Cancer: Just one. But it takes a therapist three years to help them
through the grief process.

Leo: Leos don’t change light bulbs, although sometimes their agent will
get a Virgo to do the job for them while they’re out.

Virgo: Approximately 1.0000000 with an error of +/- 1 millionth.

Libra: Er, two. Or maybe one. No – on second thought, make that two. Is
that okay with you?

Scorpio: That information is strictly secret and shared only with the
Enlightened Ones in the Star Chamber of the Ancient Hierarchical Order.

Sagittarius: The sun is shining, the day is young and we’ve got our
whole lives ahead of us, and you’re inside worrying about a stupid
light bulb?

Capricorn: I don’t waste my time with these childish jokes.

Aquarius: Well, you have to remember that everything is energy, so…

Pisces: Light bulb? What light bulb?


A: Three. One to change the lightbulb, one NOT to change the lightbulb,
and one to neither change nor not change the lightbulb.


A: Eight. One to call the electrician, and seven to say how much they
liked the old one better.


A: The Unitarians wish to issue the following statement:
“We choose not to make a statement either in favor of or against the
need for a lightbulb; however, if in your own journey you have found
that lightbulbs work for you, that is fine. You are invited to write a
poem or compose a modern dance about your personal relationship with
your lightbulb, and present it next month at our annual lightbulb
Sunday service, in which we will explore a number of lightbulb
traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, three-way, long-life
and tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence.”


A: Ten. One to change the bulb and nine to pray against the spirit of

Q. How many Mormons does it take to change a light bulb?
A. Seven. One to change the light bulb, one to say the opening prayer,
one to say the closing prayer, and four to bring green Jell-o salads
and red punch.

Q. How many agnostics does it take to change a light bulb?
A. We can’t know.

Q. How many motivational speakers does it take to change a light bulb?
A. One to do it, and every other one on earth to stand around saying
that they did it first in the 80’s.

Q. How many deists does it take to change a light bulb?
A. None. If the light bulb no longer interferes with the world, why
bother interfering with the light bulb?

Recently some of us began talking of lyrics of hymns we misheard when we were children….I remember the friend who thought there was a line in “Onward Christian Soldiers” which said, “Christ the Royal Master, Leans against the Phone.”

Other misunderstandings came out when, as a teenage babysitter, I asked the little boy next door to draw something from the Bible. He was busy a few minutes and then gave me a picture of a car with one man in the front seat and two people in the back. He told me it was God driving Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden.

This afternoon I had a phone call from my younger daughter. She and her children were trying to remember  the parody lyrics to “We Three Kings of Orient Are” which I had told them about a few weeks ago. The lyrics which mention rubber cigars and explosions. I imagine most of you know these, but if not friend Google will help you out. Today is the feast of the Epiphany, of the Three Kings, of course.

And then there is this list of apropos hymns:

  • The Dentist’s Hymn – Crown Him with Many Crowns
  • The Weatherman’s Hymn – There Shall Be Showers of Blessings
  • The Contractor’s Hymn – The Church’s One Foundation
  • The Tailor’s Hymn – Holy, Holy, Holy
  • The Golfer’s Hymn – There Is A Green Hill Far Away
  • The Politician’s Hymn – Standing on The Promises
  • The Optometrist’s Hymn – Open My Eyes That I Might See
  • The IRS Agent’s Hymn – I Surrender All
  • The Gossip’s Hymn – Pass It On
  • The Electrician’s Hymn – Send the Light
  • The Shopper’s Hymn – Sweet Bye And Bye
  • The Realtor’s Hymn – Mansion Over the Hilltop
  • The Massage Therapist’s Hymn – He Touched Me
  • The Pilot’s Hymn – I’ll Fly Away
  • The Paramedic’s Hymn – Revive Us Again
  • The Judge’s Hymn – Almost Persuaded
  • The Psychiatrist’s Hymn – Just A Little Talk with Jesus
  • The Credit Card Holder’s Hymn – I Have A Charge to Keep
  • The Zookeeper’s Hymn – All Creatures of Our God and King
  • The Postal Worker’s Hymn – So Send I You
  • The Waiter’s Hymn – Fill My Cup, Lord
  • The Gardener’s Hymn – Lo, How A Rose E’er Blooming
  • The Lifeguard’s Hymn – Rescue the Perishing
  • The Criminal’s Hymn – Search Me, O God
  • The Baker’s Hymn – When the Roll Is Called Up Yonder
  • The Shoe Repairer’s Hymn – It Is Well with My Soul
  • The Travel Agent’s Hymn – Anywhere with Jesus
  • The Geologist’s Hymn – Rock of Ages
  • The Hematologist’s Hymn – Are You Washed in The Blood?
  • The Menswear Clerk’s Hymn – Blest Be the Tie
  • The Umpire’s Hymn – I Need No Other Argument
  • The Librarian’s Hymn – Whispering Hope

I’ve had a bad cold since the 28th of December and may be a bit punch drunk by now. There is hardly any other explanation for this post!

Be thankful that I have not included the list of how members of various faiths change light bulbs!


Fa la la la la la la la la.

Hail the New Ye Lads and Lasses,

Fa la la la la la la la la………

New Year 2019

A few wonderful things happened in 2018. And one almost devastating personal family tragedy did not quite happen. I will be glad to see 2019 begin. I wish you all happiness and achievement and some gentle adventures and a satisfying 2019. Politically I feel as if many places in the world are in a sort of “Descent into the Maelstrom”, but there is not a great deal I can do to change this. What I can do, I will, but it is little. I prefer to concentrate on the little world around me and the dear family that make it so worthy of love and energy and patience and joy. And now, let me stop before I ramble on too much!

I’m on my third day of a bad cold and laryngitis so the looking back on 2018 and forward to 2019 posts I’d been hoping to do are postponed, for a time or forever.

Meanwhile, I wish you all a happy New Year’s celebration and a very satisfying, healthy and happy 2019!

Alice dec 2018 macaron tea room 1

alice dec 2018 macaron tea room 3

Meanwhile I am anticipating having tea at this new tea room with my dd Alice sometime in the next few weeks when I am better….It is part of her Christmas present to me.

If I were in England

it would be Boxing Day. But I’m not, and it isn’t. It’s a sort of recovery day from the pleasures of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

On Christmas Eve Alice and her family came over for our last Advent Singing (in the kitchen), and Andy reading from the gospel of St. Luke. And then the angels rang the bell and we opened the door and rushed into the living room to find the Christmas tree and gifts. Joy all around.

xmas 2018 candles for singing

xmas 2018 singing by candlelight

xmas 2018 andy


(I am not very good with the Ipad camera, especially in low light!)

I so ran out of energy getting things ready for Christmas Eve and Andy helped mightily! After the exchanging of gifts, we had a simple supper – stuffed peppers and salami sandwiches! What a combination. And lots of delicious German cookies from Aldi and Stollen and Beigli and eggnog.


xmas 2018 Hutch with led battery lights

(I’m very happy with some battery operated tiny LED lights I found this year.)

xmas 2018 Nathan and Mike

(Mike was very happy with the copy of Pete Souza’s Shade which I gave him. And Alice liked her copy of Michelle Obama’s Becoming. )

Next day we were at Emily’s home by 1pm for Ingmar’s delectable dinner of roast duck and braised red cabbage and a napkin dumpling (a Semmel dumpling boiled in a huge napkin and served in slices). Emily made creme brulee for dessert.

Of course I forgot my Ipad at home and took no photos at Em’s,

And then we exchanged more gifts. My granddaughter Clara is writing a book for me and I got the first several chapters last night. She also read us poems from a lovely notebook she has with different prompts for poem subjects.  Both of my granddaughters are very creative, and my grandsons are too! I’m a lucky Nana and not biased at all.

Christmas morning I talked to Alice who was a bit exhausted since Stephen woke them up about five times throughout the night wondering if it was time to get up yet.  Finally Alice gave him an alarm clock set for six o’clock and told him he could not get up until it went off! Which it did, probably all too soon! Stephen was VERY excited with his new electric dirt bike.

Today is very low key. Friday I will have all of Emily’s family for dinner and games afterwards.