Sunday, August 30, 2020

The Return of Josie

Hey, it's me, Josie.  Did you wonder where I was? I have been to the beach. It takes a lot of stuff to go to the beach.

I am ready for anything,

We were on the side of the island where the waves aren't big and scary and I could be brave.

Look how far out I went all by myself!

 Making sandcastles is my favorite thing. I love the beach!


Saturday, August 29, 2020

Further Adventures in Zoom

But wait, there's more! Yesterday, with the help of the invaluable administrative assistant, I found the link to the recording of our session so that I could send it to the class. One student in particular was having trouble hearing and since an automatic transcript accompanies the recording, it seemed like just the thing to fill in the blanks.

The opening interchanges were somewhat surreal--like a lesson in a foreign language--or Waiting for Godot.

Me: Good. . .

D: I can hear you. . .

N: You hear me. Here I am. I hearing. See you. Do you see me. . .

Me: I do not see you. . .

N: can read. . .

Me: There may be a thing that you turn on. . .

If you keep on long enough, it turns into an existentialist play.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Kicking and Screaming (Internally,) into the Zoomosphere

My brain hurts. Last night was the first meeting of my online class via Zoom. Just after lunch I participated in an online session for those of us instructors new to Zoom, and I began to wonder if I could do this. Last semester we used Google Hangouts which was fairly simple (especially as one of my students was also an administrator of the program and she did all the signup and inviting for me) but one of my this term students had told me that Zoom worked better for him.

Endeavor to persevere, I told myself, and with the help of the above-mentioned administrator, managed to get into Zoom and formulate the invitation to the class. I realized that much of what the formal session was about (breakout rooms! Whiteboards! Etc.!) was stuff I wouldn't be using. I'm of the old school persuasion--a (virtual) log with the teacher on one end and the student on the other. 

Not quite ready to age out of the new technology. I even spent a little time trying out a recording of a Birdie story. It was interrupted by barking dogs. Also, while I can post a video to Facebook, I can't put one of any length on this blog. I guess I could upload it to YouTube and post the link. Anyway, I'm working on it. 

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Mountain Moods

After spending too much time staring at the computer screen while working on an essay requested by a local magazine (publicity!) it was nice to sit on the porch and stare into the distance, watching rain showers sweeping across the mountains.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Saying Goodbye to the Hummer Feeder

I've retired my humming bird feeders after realizing that in hot weather cleaning them every day was going to be necessary to prevent black mold. Black mold can be lethal to hummers (and fermented sugar water can cause liver damage.) So, much as I enjoy seeing the little critters buzzing around, I'm swearing off the feeders. It's not as though there's a dearth of flowers around.

This little lady was visiting the fuchsia and the scarlet runner bean blossoms. Do you see her amidst the leaves?

In the future, I'll make a point of having more flowering hanging baskets and pots of flowers on the porch.

Monday, August 24, 2020

Back in the Corn

The second tier of corn is mostly ripe now and I harvested a gracious plenty yesterday.

It's a pleasure to sit on the porch and shuck the ears.

Most got blanched, cut off the cob, and put in the freezer. But I saved out some for supper.

John's pronouncement regarding the corn he was eating: "If God made anything better than this, He kept it for Himself."

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Selling Oneself

As I think I've said before, this is the part I hate--publicity. But needs must.

 I spent much of yesterday sending off emails to publications and libraries in the area, making them aware of my forthcoming novel -- pitching it to specific interests where possible. (Some of the action takes place in Greeneville, TN! Maryville, TN! Asheville! Civil War stuff! Strong women! Folk magic! The relevance of a divided country . . .)

You have to sell yourself, someone once told me. I know what they meant but unfortunately, the first thing that phrase brings to mind is prostitution. Hey, Library Director--looking for a good time  read? I'll talk dirty books online to anyone.

Friday, August 21, 2020

More Fairy Friends for Josie

When I came up on Wednesday, there were two more fairies from Aunt Fay. (Did you know Fay means fairy? That's what Meema said.  Maybe she is my Fairy Great Aunt.)

They watched me eat breakfast. Meema made some funny pancakes.

This one is an octopus and it made me feel a little funny so I saved it for later. Then Bobadog ate it.

After breakfast, I introduced the new guys to the others.

They had snacks and a conversation.

Then they all went swimming. This box is the swimming pool. It is crowded but they don't mind.

Later on my babies were jealous of the new guys and I had to take care of them. They felt better soon, just like I do when my mommy takes care of me.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Get Off My Bird Feeder!

Kids today! You can't tell them anything...

Once they figured out the bird feeder, they got no time for their old dad who wore himself to a frazzle bringing food when they were in the nest. Little ingrates.

And punk goldfinches! Don't get me started!