Friday, March 31, 2017

Baby Book -- 1917

Continuing my cleaning and de-accessioning of books (six boxes in the Jeep ready to go to the library for their book sale,) I came across my mother's baby book from 1917.

I was intrigued by some of the entries -- for example, when did baby go into short clothes. Evidently most babies started out in long gowns but, according to my grandmother's entry, "Baby's clothes was all made short."

My mother's name was Virginia but my grandfather often called her Jean. Now I know why. At the age of 16 months, she declared that her name was Jean Cutt -- much easier to say than Virginia Northcutt.

My favorite is the Bright Sayings wherein it is recorded that one day Jean asked, "Mama, who is God's grandmother?"

Little Jean's mama had been a Sunday School teacher before her marriage. Her answer, however, is not recorded.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Spring Song in Eight Parts


Spice Bush

Downy Woodpecker

Ornamental Crabapple



Downy Woodpecker


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Thanks to Facebook

Back on Saturday John and I had a visit from a woman who'd been a student of ours when we taught at Independent Day School in Tampa back in the early Seventies.  

Alicia had been one of a pair of girls that I admired deeply for their creativity and high spirits. I connected with both these ex-students through Facebook a while back and when Alicia, who lives in L. A., messaged me that she would be in the area (Greensboro) for the weekend and would like to make the three hour trip to the farm, I was thrilled.

 It was a wonderful visit -- catching up and hearing about Alicia's rather amazing life. Some of the highlights included working as a sketch artist at Disney World, working as part of an illusionist's act, traveling with the circus and with carnivals (did you know that circus people look down on carnies?), and then moving to L.A, to follow her passion for music. 

She's a singer and a keyboardist, a studio musician, a teacher of voice, and a member of a Blues group called The Scorch Sisters. She's married to another musician (who is with Three Dog Night which was touring in the area, thus her visit) and their children are also musicians. 

We also had a fine time talking politics -- she and John and I are on the same page -- and she has even written a book about "the myth that is modern conservatism: the myth of the free market, the invisible hand, the magical trickle-down theory, the myth that all you need is bootstraps, and that a rising tide lifts all boats."

Dang!  What a joy to meet old students and find that they are new friends.  

Monday, March 27, 2017

Oh Baby!

A baby shower at Claui's parents' house yesterday showed off the cooking/decorating talents of her friends as well as of her folks. (Alas, the focus was off on my camera and I didn't notice till near the end.)

Things are looking serious now . . . due date is May 13 . . .

Amazing food . . .

Lots of gifts -- and children's books . . ..

 I made some bibs  . . . and got the baby a pretty nifty pair of Carhart overalls . . . size nine months. 

The baby's name was made public -- Josephine Claire Skemp 

. . . to be called Josie . . .

Young Penelope (3 years old) gave us a taste of the cuteness in store . . .

And the attitude.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Little Political

Happy that the effort to replace the ACA (aka Obamacare) with Trumpcare has stalled. The ACA needs work, for sure but the proposed massively flawed replacement was going to dump a lot of people off healthcare.

One would think that with seven or eight years of trying to repeal Obamacare, the Republicans could have come up with a plan that was actually better.

Instead, their plan was anathema to Democrats, worrisome to moderate Republicans who had constituents in danger of losing their insurance, and didn't go far enough for the Republicans of the Freedom Caucus. It took an unholy alliance to derail this awful bill -- I would be happier if a vote had driven a stake through its heart. But I'll settle for seeing the Blusterer-in-Chief frustrated on this one.

The Closer became the Loser. 

Of course he's already spinning it -- it was the Democrats' fault. The whole thing was political. He never said he would repeal and replace Obamacare immediately. (Wrong. He did.) He really wanted this to happen so the ACA would implode. And make no mistake, he'll do (or not do) whatever he can to destroy the ACA.

No time to gloat, as Michael Moore said. No time to relax. But I have taken a tiny bit of delight in the moment.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Gon Out. . . Bisy . . .Backson . . .

The title is probably imperfectly remembered but I'm quoting from a classic.

Anyone recognize it? Anyone?