A bit of a setback
vala3
Well, I had been doing so well that I did not have to return to the bone marrow clinic for 3 months. However this last week when I went my IgLamda number had spiked a little so now have to go back in 5 weeks. Hopefully this is just a small glitch and the next number will be back down. Sure hope so.
I did have some issues with back and neck spasms in the last couple of weeks and I woke up one morning and could hardly walk because of the pain. Toughed it out for a day but then had to go into the clinic to get checked out. X-rays showed no cellulitus, gout, or myeloma in my ankles so we are not sure what was going on. But I am trying to get back on my feet again so I can start doing some activities. I hate just sitting around.

For the good news, I went to my first Bone Marrow Transplant Reunion with Ann_tara and SP. It was nice to see many others who had gone through the same processes. There was a young man sitting at our table who had renal failure, heart failure and had to be placed in an induced coma for 15 days during his transplant.
They did not think he would survive but he pulled through. Unfortunately he suffered the renal failure and needs a transplant. The Tampa hospital won't even try to find a match until he can raise $5000 to do the tests. I just can't believe the health care systems sometimes.

Have had all sorts of issues with my land line in the last couple of weeks and finally got it resolved, but was without a computer for three days as well. The first time the phone line had been grounded out by the placement of the flags to locate the line. Great huh. That only took 9 days to resolve. Then about four days later the landscapers even though the lines were marked managed to cut the phone line. Hopefully that is the last of the problems as the line has been replaced and just got buried.

I have been trying to catch up on some movies lately. Saw The Grand Budapest Hotel, Frozen, Thor the Dark World, among others. Might try to catch another one in the next week. Happy that Longmire has started again, and am watching the Next Food Network Star. Looking forward to the Tony Awards. Only chance I will most likely have to see excerpts of Broadway shows.

Not much new around here but that is the nice lazy summer for you. I still love it. Guess I just a hot child in the city. So take care all.

Biusy lately
vala3
I have been doing a lot of things in the last few days and am now playing catch up. Went to the beach this past weekend and it was a nice relaxing time. Hadn't planned anything big and friend Sporangia joined me after she got off work on Saturday. We went to one of our old standby restaurants on Saturday night and enjoyed a big filet with the trimmings. We even split one of their deserts (and I nearly split) but it was one of their specialty crepes and enjoyable. The next morning for breakfast, we went to our little hole in the wall place on the beach as we had lunch plans at our favorite place. And after that did some walking around town. It was a bit warm so we did not stay out in the sun much, but enjoyed ourselves just the same. Had a great lunch (mine was a lobster and seafood crepe in a spinach cream sauce) and we each had half a salad. Sounds like all we did was feed our faces but Sporangia had to return home that evening to work the next day. She wanted to visit a small town across the bridge on the ocean so we did, but on the way back got caught in a big traffic jam so we pulled off at a restaurant and had a couple of 'virgin' daiquari's. Man were they ever refreshing on a hot day.

The only hitch in the weekend was that my friend elemgli developed a renal stone and had to go into the hospital. They did the procedure to try to laser the stone but didn't get it all. Went over to see her just before I left and had her go stay at my place with momcat until I returned. Got back on Monday and fixed supper for them. Since elemgli wasn't supposed to eat much in the way of animal protein, I made a spaghetti marinara with mushrooms. And being the super cool person that I am, while I was trying to drain the spaghetti into the colinder, the pot holder slipped and I managed to spill the whole thing, mostly on the floor. What a mess. And momcat had to run to the grocer to get more while I tried to clean up. At least it tasted good when we did get to eat. Elemgli has to go back into the hospital this Friday to get another procedure to try to get the rest of the stone out so she will be coming back here again to recover. Since they only got a part of the stone last time they had to place a ureteral stint. Hoping they get it all this time and she will be able to get the stint removed shortly thereafter.

Did make it back to my Tai Chi class this past Monday and did a workout on the treadmill afterwards (over 3 miles) then lifted some weights. Tore a part of my bicep tendon abut 4-5 weeks ago and am trying to build the rest of the muscle back up. Taking it easy though as I don't want to wind up completely tearing it.

Today had the maids in for the once a month cleaning. I am able to do most of the housework now but it is nice to have a little help once in awhile. Last time they were her they found out that one of my toilets was leaking and helped me clean in that bathroom. Had to call the plumbers since none of us could get the valve that closed off the water to close. (if you don't turn them every so often, they have a tendency to freeze on you.) Wasn't sure I could get the plumber over that day, but they were very nice and got someone over pretty quickly. Even he had to use a wrench to close the valve. The toilet was an old one so instead of repairing it again decided on replacing it. Had been considering putting new ones in and this seemed the appropriate time.

Have to get up early in the a. m. and go to the Toyota dealership. A crack developed in my glove box and I want to get it fixed before it gets any wider. So they had to special order the part and I thought it would take longer to come in but it was here the next day. Will be glad to get it done. I try to keep my car in as good a condition as I can. Took it in for a carwash today after being over at the beach and getting all the sand and gunk on it. And yesterday at the gym, they were trimming trees and mulching them so I had a lot of detritus from that on the car. Looks good now. And noticed it is time for a oil change and tire rotation. Can't believe everything seems to hit at once.

Have been watching Fargo and am enjoying it a lot, though like the movie, it is a bit violent. But Billy Bob is a great creepy villain.
And have started liking Marvel's Agents of Shield a lot more since all the twists that have occurred after the Captain America movie have made it a lot more interesting. Still follow Grim, Blacklist, Person of Interest, and Criminal Minds. Also like the little half hour show called Beat Bobby Flay. Went and saw The Grand Budapest Hotel and it was a hoot. I recommend it.

Well back to trying to get some work on the house done. Need to call a landscaping company to see what they can do with my yard and flower beds, at least in the front. Going to have to wait on the back yard. Lost the palm tree that a company tried to relocate and it never made it. It was sure nice when I first got it, but while I was in the hospital the yard guys that I had then, overtrimmed it and it didn't quite recover. And the shrubs are badly in need of trimming. Amazing the things one has to do when you have a home. But wouldn't want it any other way.

So take care all.

catching up
vala3
A bit of a soggy weekend here, but still managed to get out and enjoy some things. Friday night a small group of us went out for
sushi at one of our new favorite restaurants and had a nice visit. Then on Saturday I took momcat to Carrabas for her birthday. Sporangia and elemgli joined us. That was nice since we hadn't been able to visit with elemgli since they keep changing her work hours. Sometimes evenings and other times nights. So it was good that she could make it. She was wearing this lovely green dress and it really became her or so I thought..being the 'fashionista' that I am. Had a very nice meal and I did treat us to another dessert besides the canoli that was her birthday treat. I got the panna cotta with raspberries and we shared it. Quite nice and not too sweet.

Had to have some work done around the house. Two trees had to be removed and one was very big. The guy had to do it manually, as
the space where it was located was too small for the machines. And did he ever do a good job. Just shinnied up that 100 ft. tree and
managed to get it down without it destroying the roof. The other tree was just a small one so not bad. Then they cleaned off the
whole roof, driveway and sidewalk. That was above what I thought they were going to do when they mentioned the cleanup. And all the
limbs, trunks, and branches were towed away by mid afternoon. I was impressed. Of course it set me back a pretty penny. Then I went
into the bathroom on Tuesday and the floor was covered in water. Both bolts holding the tank to the commode had rusted off and I
couldn't get the water turned off, as the valve was also rusted shut. The toilets are over 20 years old and I have been starting to
have issues with them. A friend of mine replaced his and they weren't as old as mine, so I was giving it some thought. Didn't really
want to have to do that so soon after paying for the tree removal, but it's part of the upkeep I guess.

Hope everyone is having a nice Easter. I had totally gotten mixed up and until late this week was thinking I had another week to
go before the Bunny came. So ran out yesterday and did my grocery shopping since many of the stores are closed today. Not wanting
to go out and work in the wet, drizzling weather, I decided to go to a movie. Went to see The Grand Budapest Hotel, which ann_tara and her SU both gave a thumbs up. I agree with them. Very enjoyable movie and it had a ton of cameos. Managed to recognize most of them.
I concur and recommend it as well. Saw previews of a couple other movies I want to see, Chef and A Million Ways to Die in the Old West.
(Probably didn't get that title right, but close.) Have to try to get to see Captain America too, since it apparently relates to the
television show, Marvel Agents of Shield, and will clarify certain plot elements. So far I am beginning to like the series more than I did at first. Did see the new Fargo the other night and I am already hooked on it, though it is very violent. A lot of the characters
resemble some of the ones in the movie, but I watched the whole episode and didn't realize that the 1 1/2 hours went by so quickly.
Already looking forward to the next show. Also enjoyed Supernatural this past week. Really wish they would get some new episodes of
the Blacklist, Criminal Minds, and Person of Interest soon. Getting tired of tuning in and catching reruns.

Was talking with my 85 or 86 year old Uncle in Texas this last week. He has a 'girlfriend' that he met online. Turns out she only lives
about 21 miles away from him and they have gotten together a couple of times. She is a nurse and works running a clinic, so the only
time they see each other is on the weekend. I am so happy for him. He and my aunt had been married for almost 60 years when she passed
away a number of years ago. I know he has been lonely. Still living in the same house that they first bought when they went to Texas. So I am really pleased for him. Hope they have a nice relationship.

Best be thinking about fixing supper soon. Haven't eaten since breakfast which was a half bagel and a half banana. Did have my juice and coffee too. Can't go without those. So my little tummy is making growly noises. Got me a steak and picked up some nice shitake
mushrooms which I will reduce down with red wine and butter, (thank you sporangia for the recipe), fix some kind of starch and a small salad and have a decadent respite on Easter. I even have a little dark chocolate egg that I bought at a new chocolate shop I had not visited before. So going to start the fixings now and will stop boring everyone with my ramblings.

Back from MegaCon
vala3
Well, I attended MegaCon for the first and last time. A friend had told me that it was very crowded, but I thought it was also
not very organized. Not sure even they were expecting the crowds they had especially, on Saturday. They actually had to quit selling
tickets due to Fire Department restrictions. I arrived on Friday and had a pre paid ticket. When I got to the South Concourse,
which was a goodly distance from where my hotel was located, the line was huge. After waiting for an hour, arrived at an escalator
taking us down to a huge cavernous site where I thought I would get the band for the con, but found out there was another line, a' la Disney, wrapping around and around. Another two hours finally got my arm band for admittance. After that I just perused the vendors
room and left. Decided to wait until the next day. Another mistake. When I left my hotel, the traffic on International Drive
extended so far back I couldn't see where it began. All three lanes were at parking lot speed. I wouldn't have been able to get
my car out had I so desired. Did another long walk to the Con mainly to get Karl Urban's autograph for a friend who so wanted to
come but she couldn't make it. Had another line of over two hours to get his picture signed for her. After that I just didn't stay
since you were unable to move and people rather walked all over you. Don't think the younger generation has ever been taught manners
or courtesy. While walking over to the building, one of the rickshaws almost ran me down and the guy gripped that I had moved over
on the most narrow part of the path. It would have been my right to smack him one if he didn't have passengers. Did have much better
luck on Sunday as I just sauntered over after a late breakfast and it turned out Karl's photo op had been changed to that morning. Hadn't planned on getting one but it turned out I got the second to last ticket and the line moved immediately. Only waited about
fifteen minutes for that. And have to admit, he was very nice and thanked me for coming and as I started to move away he reached
out and shook my hand. Also made it to his panel that afternoon and his stories about being pranked were quite funny. He also found out about a lot of people missing his photo op because of the change, and he promised he would let them take the photo in his autograph line. Nice of him. So Sunday was a winner. Many of the costumes that people had made were fantastic. Some people are so talented. Didn't recognize a lot of the fandoms though, as I am apparently behind the times.

Of course being in Orlando I had to do some fine dining. Found the new restaurant at the Grand Hyatt (formerly the Peabody).
It was called Napa and I had a very nice lunch there. A green salad with roasted grapes, candied walnuts and Loch Duart Salmon with
pomegranate vingerette. And the ambience was beautiful. Some of the restaurants I looked into had Happy Hours so went over to Oceanaire where I was able to order Oysters Rockefella, which were delicious and at half the price of the dinner order. My last night there I splurged and went to Ocean Prime on a Sunday and was pleasantly surprised that they had a three course dinner for only $39.00. Had a wonderful salad an 8 oz filet on harcort verts with veal reduction and a wonderful warm butter cake with ice cream, fresh fruit and a raspberry couli. Wasn't expecting full size dishes and a fancy restaurant for that price but it was a great deal. And the staff was so very nice. After years of attending medical meetings, I judge many establishments about how they treat single women at a
dinner meal. I refused to stay in my room and order room service durning those times. After all that food I just 'waddled' out of there and drove back tothe hotel. Although my taste for wine still hasn't returned, I did have a couple of glasses of champagne over the weekend. Unfortunately, the bubbly is always the priciest wine to get. Did find a couple of places that served a decent one.

Back home now and no more trips planned. Next year if they still have it, I might go to The Away Mission. I remember some good times
that we used to have at Vulkon's in Tampa. One nice thing that has happened is that I only have to go into the Bone Marrow clinic every three months currently. It is so nice to have time to plan to do things and not having to get labs all the time. Do have a friend who is juststarting on her chemo so myself and another lady who had it for ovarian cancer last year are offering her all the encouragement
we can. I am also getting over a torn bicep tendon that just seemed to occur out of nowhere. Not going to have surgery because it would take 9 months to a year to heal and I am not going to be playing football or baseball. Just going to let it heal and hopefully I won't losetoo much function. Course it does look a bit lumpy. Old age ain't for wimps, as I have told my friends.

So much for this post. Was going to try to do better but have to wait until I have something to report.



to me.

Now it is Febuary
vala3
I did have aspirations about posting more frequently, but alas, I have been derelict. Somehow the days seem to get
by without my having done much to talk about. However I shall try.

Have continued with my Tai Chi course and am taking another class now. It is easier now as I am beginning to catch
onto the forms. Some of them harken back to a time when I took karate. Didn't do that very long but do remember
some of the moves. It is much more difficult now that I am an senior citizen. Doesn't help that I have never in
my life been able to touch my toes or do a split. Guess my body isn't built that way. The instructor we have is very
knowledgeable after having studied it for over 20 years. I also try to do some cardio and lift weights a couple of
times a week. This week we had a couple of beautiful days, so on one, I walked down to a park and around the trail there.
I think it was around three miles so it was a decent hike. A lot of people were out and playing volleyball, basketball and kids were swinging on the sets. I am still trying to build up my stamina and endurance. Don't think I will ever get to
pre transplant shape, but at least I can walk across my living room without loosing my breath and
having to sit down to rest.

Currently I am waiting for the cable guy to come over and try to find out what is wrong with the cable box. I had this
same problem last September and after they gave me a new cable box, thought it was fixed. We had a rather major thunderstorm
blow through yesterday, so at first I thought it was just the cable being out due to the storm, but no. Tried to call and of
course I got robotech. We went through the same process that had been tried before and after getting caught in the Mobius
Loop of their Menu, and not having it fixed, I called back later, when I wasn't screaming at the phone, and tried to talk with a human. I finally got one last night between 8:30 and 9:00, but they couldn't fix it either. So here I sit waiting again. Needless to say, frustration level a bit on the high side.

Just met with some friends and went to one of our favorite sushi restaurants. It seems as if I am craving sushi about once
a week now. Don't know why. I do love the Gyoza and the Shumai there as well. Tomorrow we will be going to IHOP since
I have a gift card I want to use. This Hop has crepes and I have always loved those be they sweet or savory. Noticed that
there is a new one that is filled with sweetened cream cheese served with different fruit toppings. Kind of reminds me of
a blintz. There is only one place where I can get blintzes now but they are pricey. Great coffee though.

Took my first ceramics class today. It was fun but got to remember to not concentrate so much that I don't look up for
three hours! Used to do that when I was illioing for the old Star Trek fanzines and does it ever give you a stiff neck.
I am trying to do a coil pot that is a bit more delicate than what many are doing. It will probably bust during firing.
Met a nice number of people in the class including one lady who had just relocated here from Anchorage Alaska. We were
all plying her with questions. She was a civil engineer for the DOT and traveled a lot while there. One person
asked her if she had seen a polar bear and not only had she, but it apparently put it's giant paws on the hood of their
vehicle. Think she is going to bring a picture of it next class.

Still haven't seen as many movies as I wanted to, but I do have some money left on my Regal gift card so perhaps if
there is a good one playing soon I will try to see it. Was sort of interested in Monuments Men, but the reviews were
not as great as I thought, so might wait for that to come to the red box. I am currently watching Almost Human, Justified
Marvel Agents of Shield. After the Olympics want to see Blacklist, Supernatural, Grimm and Person Of Interest again as hopefully
there will be no more repeats. Really wish Fox would quit jerking Almost Human around. Showing the episodes out of
order and not really supporting them sucks. Reminds me of what happened to Firefly.

So, guess I will keep waiting for the Cable Guy. No fun.

What to talk about in January?
vala3
Trying to come up with something pertinent to say for this month is not coming forth from the old grey matter. The holidays are over, the bloody cold weather has come, bills and income taxes are going to be due, and decorations are put away leaving the home site a bit less gaudy and ketchy. But I did get down to visit my friend ann_tara and her family to get them their belated Christmas gifts. Still have one Christmas exchange to do which will occur next week. Ann_tara's SU made a wonderful Cherry Pie from scratch and it was delicious. Glutton that I am, I had one piece at night after we came back from dinner, one for breakfast the next morning and they sent a piece home with me which was thoroughly enjoyed. Had a nice relaxing weekend there.

Been alternating from covering plants on the porch and bringing a couple in, to returning them and uncovering the rest. Don't think the
weather realizes it is supposed to be warm down here, not having temps in the 20"s. This little alabaster body just isn't meant for
those kind of temps. But then I look at the weather in the Midwest and north and am sssooo glad I am down here in the south. Cold, blowing snow and ice and negative temps are very good detriments for me ever to return.

Went to see Saving Mr. Banks yesterday with Sporangia and momcat. I enjoyed it and Emma Stone did a great job at potraying P.L. Travers.
Tom Hanks was no slouch either. The next movie I want to see is probably Monuments Men. A movie with Clooney, Damon, Goodman, and Murray has to have redeeming qualities. So far the best movie I have seen this year has been Philomena. After the movie we returned to my place and I made steaks in mustard cream sauce flambé (of course the fire alarm went off...nice to know it keeps on working.), long grain and wild rice and a garden salad. Have to pat myself on the back, cause it turned out quit edible. Saw a small wild blueberry pie and got that for dessert. But tonight it is back to less food and less expensive victuals. Do enjoy eating like that every once in awhile.

Am now taking Tai Chi twice a week and am going to try to get back into working out and lifting some weights. Still taking it easy after having a severe neck spasm that literally almost brought me to tears. I am rather tentative now about lifting anything heavy over my head, but decided to get back and try again. The tai chi is very good for loosing all the joints and slowly stretching muscles groups. The forms are more tricky as you try to get the arm and foot motions to coincide without looking like a wounded duck.

Did sign up for the ceramics class that I didn't get to take last fall due to some health issues. Though, now, I went to the Bone Marrow clinic and I get six weeks before I have to return again. I am getting all the boosters shots that had given me
immunities prior to getting the chemo that killed all the bone marrow prior to the transplant. So had 3 this visit and will get the other 3 next time. Two injections weren't so bad but the last the nurse said this might sting a bit.....Understatement! And had sore shoulders for two days afterwards. But now back to normal or as normal as I can be. So I am keeping a positive view that I will be
able to get to the Ceramics class this time. It is only a four week course so when I would have missed two of them last year decided to just try again this year.

As I stated, not much going on "in the winter of our discontent" though I do love the super blue skies on the frosty days. as long as I am inside looking out. Everyone stay warm.

touching base
vala3
Okay the new year is upon us and just finished taking down all the Christmas decorations. Had a lovely Christmas and a quiet New Year. It was even better since I had most of my friends over Christmas Eve for a buffet and present exchange. Didn't really need anything as I am trying to debride some of the objects I have received over the years. Just too many pretty things that I hate to give away, but others will enjoy them as well. Did get a lot of gift cards that I requested and plan on using them as needed. Just finished eating the last of the cookies friends made for us over the holidays, however the candy dish is still full of M & M's and I have some chocolates that must be eaten soon....such a trial...grin.

Have finally seen a few movies that I had on my list and still have a few to go. Luckily I received a gift card to the theaters and I have been happily using it. Have seen Gravity ( very good), The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug, (not my thing) and one of the best of the season, Philomena. If anyone wants to see a great movie with mighty fine acting, I recommend it without any caveats. Dench is wonderful and the gentleman who co-stars with her is also great. They work so well together. If you want to see a good show, (and I don't see it as a chick flick), get out and go.

Waiting for the after the holidays t.v. to start back up. Am looking forward to Blacklist, Almost Human, Sleepy Hollow, Person of Interest, among others. It was great to see a new episode of Elementary, and am very glad that Major Crimes was presenting new programs. Still like Top Chef and enjoyed the holiday shows on The Food Network. I like football but this inundation of bowl games has diluted the enjoyment I used to get watching them.

Want to start a class in Ceramics this month. Enjoyed taking the Watercolor course last year so am trying to keep up with the arts that I haven't done much with or anything in the past.

Going to make this short as I believe my moniter is going out on my computer. Of course it is the original 17" one I bought that came with my first computer so guess I got good service out of it.

After Thanksgiving
vala3
Have to admit I have been derelict in my posting since the last missive. Had a lot going on plus a rather nasty cold that took some energy out of me. But now I am doing well and hope to enjoy the holidays.
Had a great Thanksgiving spent with friends and ate enough to "gag a horse". The food, as always, was very good with everyone contributing and enjoying the repast. Got to see a lady friend who used to invite us to the house of her and her husband up in the mountains. He passed away not long ago and this is the first time she has been back here to visit her sister. It was such a treat to talk with her again. Sporangia's bro and sis in law invited us to their place and we had some great appetizers, while waiting for the turkey to get ready for consumption. I kept telling myself not to eat too much since my stomach isn't able to digest as much as it once was. But did I heed the good advice to myself....of course not. Ate way too much and by the time I returned home just sat like a slug and did nothing. Didn't even eat the leftover turkey on a sandwich that I had planned. I swear if I didn't gain some weight after all that food, don't know what else would work. Last time I weighed I was up to 102 lbs.

Today I spent all morning and some of the afternoon putting up Christmas decorations. Been using a small 4 ft. tree since I do not want to lug the big 6 ft. one down from the art studio. The new tree is a pre lit one and that is a nice aspect. Although with the last one the bottom strand of lights went out a year after I purchased it. I am hoping this one lasts longer.

Last month was my birthday and sometimes I think I don't deserve the friends I have. Got some gifts from my favorite artist that Sporangia and momcat knew I loved. Elemegli bought me a very nice garnet bracelet. Plus many people have taken me out for meals. And did have a great meal that was home cooked by other friends. Needless to say I feel as if I have been gifted by just the friends.

Did have a fun time at the little art exhibit that had two of my paintings. Our watercolor instructor wanted to do it for her students and since most of us were beginners, she made all the arrangements. She really did a nice job of it. We brought finger foods and she made about three different desserts. Turned out to be a horrible rainy night that kept many people at home but more showed than I thought. All in all it was a success. There was one woman who did some fine graphite drawings of people's faces. Some works were even for sale, but I doubt that there were many that were purchased since the next day was the huge downtown Art Festival here. Ann_tara came up for that and we had a nice walkabout looking for deals. Have to say she made some fine purchases. Especially one ring that had a very interesting band and the stone was a rutilated quartz that had iron in it so it was totally different.

Closing now and wanting to let everyone know that I am thankful for every single day that I get to spend on the beautiful planet. Was looking out this morn and a large bunch of azealas are blooming in my back flower bed and carnations are blossoming in front of my house. Filled the bird bath this morning and the cardinals will hit it soon. Fed the silly stray cat who will now sit on my lap if I go out on the porch. Anyway for those of you out there who read this, try a little act of kindness and that can really lift your spirits not to mention those who you touch.

Take care and have A Merry Christmas, Happy Hannuaka, and fun holidays.

Where did October go?
vala3
Hard to believe it is getting down to the final days of October. Seems as if time is moving incredibly fast nowadays. I remember as a child thinking time moved like molasses on a winters day. How things change as we age. I do enjoy life though and am going to hang around as long as possible.
Many of my friends are up in North Georgia and North Carolina for the leaf change and all the fall festivals going on in Asheville and Franklin. I have been up there at this time before and it has just become to cold for me to enjoy it like I used to so I will try heading up there this next summer. Did just return from the Mouse's House where I went to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival for the first time in about 4 years. Of course it was warm and Epcot extremely crowded for the event. Did have something going on so on the first day there I only ate one item and eschewed any wine. That night I tried to get into the California Grill for some of Yoshe's sushi, but no luck. That place is almost impossible to get seated without making a reservation about six months in advance. So went to Downtown Disney and had some sushi at Wolfgang Pucks. Not as good. Think the wasabi was more different than I am used to. It was a bit astringent. The next morning still wasn't up to par so had a smallish breakfast and again walked all around Epcot. Those two days of walking showed me that my stamina wasn't near the level I would have wished. Had to sit down a number of times to rest. But at least I did it and that made me feel better except when I got up the next day and my calves were so sore I finally had to take some Ibuprofen. Can't take it very often but the Dr. did okay it every once in awhile. It helps so much more than Tylenol. Did get to the Party of The Senses this year. Was told the wrong time though. The guest services at the hotel tried to find the times on the internet, then even called the Disney Dining number and was told it was still 6-9. Needless to say we that arrived early had to stand around for an hour and fifteen minutes since we could get in. Time was changed to 7:30 to 10:00 for us plebians that paid the general admission price instead of the $250 reserved table price. They were let in at 6:45. Another reserved group that also paid a lot more got in at 7:15 while the rest of us didn't get in until the last. Then we were herded to the back of the room so we wouldn't interfere with the reserved parties. Needless to say, I was less than pleased at the arrangement. We still got the same food, small plates, cheese tables, desserts and the wines so I still wouldn't pay all the extra. The food was pretty good this year and my stomach finally decided it was hungry so I had some nice dishes. My favorite was a butter poached lobster with a pumpkin risotto. Had a good duck breast and a nice vegetarian dish as well as a number of other samples. Did have one dish that I had to spit out. It was a Asian dumpling that when I bit into it had some kind of very hot pepper inside. I absolutely can't eat peppers. That was the only glitch though. Had some quaffs of a nice champagne. That being the one drink that seems to agree with me. Did try a cab with a beef dish and it was okay with the meat. Had one Chardonnay that was not too bad, but didn't drink the merlot except for a sip. You only get a two ounce pour so guess I had very little wine again. Even left a little early this time and caught some of the fireworks. It wasn't a bad walk back to the hotel and I rested and watched some college football. Couldn't believe how many upsets there were this weekend but that is why I like the college games so much more. Lots of emotion and excitement.
On Sunday just took it easy. Did take a boat ride over to Hollywood studios and went to a couple of shows. But didn't stay too long. That evening went over to the Dolphin to Shula's restaurant and had a salad and a bowl of lobster bisque.
Afterward went back to the hotel and played like a kid at the Arcade. Played three games and did not do well, but hey, it was a fun time. Then I went over to Beaches and Cream and had a Vanilla cone.
Now I am back home to the old grind but have a bunch to do this week. Going have a new privacy fence put in to replace my 20 year old one. And then on Saturday, will start a class in ceramics. Haven't done that since I was in college and I am trying to do different things. Still enjoying the Tai Chi classes, but did miss this Mondays since I was driving back home.
In a few weeks the big Downtown Art Festival will be here and ann_tara is coming up to join me. Will be good to see her again. She has had a lot going on lately so maybe it will give her a break. Going to try to leave my class early so we can get there before it gets too crazy. The festival is now one of the top ten in the nation according to the paper.
Have to find out if anyone has any wants for the upcoming holidays.
Better end this jabber so no one who reads this gets too bored.

Inner Child???
vala3
Okay, the other day there was a beautiful blue sky with lots of white, fluffy clouds about. I decided it would be a fun and memorable thing to get in touch with my 'inner child' and seek out imaginary cloud animals. Used to lie on the grass and do that when I was young. So, yep, decided that I could do that once again. Unfortunately, I think my exterior adult vied with the long ago little girl. Looking up into the bright sky, what do my eyes behold.....a large anatomically correct....penis. Oookkkaaayyy. It was all there and standing at attention. Scrotal sack, cap and looking very pert. No matter how I tried could not turn the thing into a giraffe or elephant. And it was right in front of my eyes whenever I looked up. Don't know why I couldn't see a nice bunny or puppy or even a bird, but no.
So I am wondering if I have turned into an dirty old reprobate. Think I am scarred for now and don't know if I should attempt this again any time soon. Alas...I miss my innocent childhood. Think that lasted until about eight.

Had a nice coupon for Carrabas Italian Restaurant that I wanted to use before it expired. So called a friend and we went there. Had a nice meal, but the surprise was we decided to split a dessert. It was a panna cotta with raspberries and one of the best I have had. Nice, creamy, not overly sweet and tangy with the fruit. As a friend is known to say "I would have that again".

Not much to post this go around but wanted to see if people on my friends list are getting my lj posts. I usually get their posts on my friends page and I think I am missing a few. Of course everytime I get the hand of using my e-mail, posts or lj, the site is always changing.

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