The last post from 2020, from outside my house on Christmas Eve. Wow, the tree lights fill the house. I hadn’t noticed it before!
There is a world out there beyond my door and with the exception of the drive to the desert, and a couple of walks to the store, and a trip to the Garden Center, and the valley deliveries, I haven’t been out of the house for so long I don’t even know how long. It feels safe and comfy here inside my little house.
My next-door neighbor to the north, her garden facing the street. Her front windows are safe from the view of the cars, but also shaded from the light.
I was and remain a little uncertain about this bush (so much dead-heading required, so much dead-heading not done) but awww so sweet.
I got this delivery a week+ ago and now there are no delivery slots available. That’s a lot of groceries, and yet now I need more.
Windy and I drove out to Yucca Valley to deliver gifts and pick up gifts and have a very distant visit with Liz, Gary, and Dev. That’s the yucca tree in front of their house. Wow, right?!
We saw the mammoth sculpture from the highway and tried to stop for a nice roadside attraction. But no, closed for the covid. We’ll check back another time. We did spend 10 minutes just watching the little yellow bird (full-on telephoto in the camera And in the computer..”there it is, oh wait no, there it is…). It was a delight!
Every December we Monday Nighters have our favorite event of the year. Alicia hosts and makes a perfect turkey, dressing, and gravy, we all bring our assigned contribution for a perfect Thanksgiving meal. We dress up, we exchange a mountain of gifts, and it is So Much Fun not the least because it’s a night that is always the same and has been since the beginning of time.
Except now, in the time of covid. We did our best and everyone had FUN.
Marsha, me, Ann, Alicia, Marija with Ljubica on the phone, Lourdes, Becky (due to technology constraints Ljubica and Maxine couldn’t make it)
Every year I keep adding a few birds and pretty soon I’m going to have a Bird Tree. If I was a better person I’d stage these pictures more carefully and figure out the lighting. Apparently I’m ok with the way it is…
Here are some Holiday funnies.
My holiday angels are protected by a face guard…and this is how I look these days. Lordy.
The dog is four years old but new to Muriel, and a delight. They come here so Maggie can have some time off-leash to RUN. You can tell she’s been playing in the grass.
The pictures were a last minute thought, Maggie is leashed-up and ready to go, and please don’t worry, these are telephoto grab shots, we stayed apart and totally wore masks except for two minutes to snap the pictures.
Recently Steve and Celina moved up to Ventura from the San Fernando Valley and are doing a massive remodel of their new downsized home. They took me on a zoom-tour of the project and it was so much fun! The outside is finished including adding a new room and spiffing up the patio. January 3rd they are moving into a nearby Residence Inn to get the work on the inside done. It’s so exciting (and stressful for them..) and in four months it’ll all be over, and it’s going to be great!
Aren’t we all watching SO Much Television?!
The above picture is from a wonderful program. The first 3 seasons are called Midnight Diner and the next 2 seasons are called Midnight Diner – Tokyo Stories. The Tokyo Stories I think are the best maybe because they got into the swing of the format. You meet all the characters in the first set though. However you see them, each episode is a jewel you rotate in your hand, admiring every facet.
Here are some more shows I’ve enjoyed in the time of Covid. Of course I’ve seen many many more, and there are more that I would note but just can’t remember.
Rake; The Crown; Father Brown; Death in Paradise; High Fidelity (tv series); Perry Mason (the new one); Tin Star; Catastrophe; Mystery Road; Sanditon; Better Things; Barry; Pen15; Insecure; Chernobyl; Schitts Creek; Travels with My Father; Hap and Leonard; Russian Doll; The Good Place; Good Omens; Delhi Crime; Prime Suspect (w/Helen Mirren); I May Destroy You; Midnight Diner and Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories; Endeavour; Bosch; New Tricks; Boston Legal (I watched it for the third time); The Closer; Red Oaks; Fleabag; Wolf Hall; Justified; Rizzoli and Isles; Episodes; Jeopardy (reruns); The Mentalist; River; and So many more.
Now I’m watching another Japanese subtitled show called Giri/Haji that’s pretty good too.
Looking at this list I know I’ve seen a number of recommendable documentaries that are missing .. I’ll add them when they come to mind.
This happens SO often. I’ve contacted the city asking for red paint on the curb of my driveway to highlight when someone is illegally parked. Would I be fussing over this in busier more normal times? Yes. I think yes. Who wants to drive over a curb to get in or out of the driveway? No one! I also think there have been more problems because the hospital is busier, and since the day care school opened on the corner.
Parking enforcement came by, wrote a ticket and called the owner, and then the owner moved the car. No big deal to that guy. “You can’t park here.” “Sure I can, it just costs $75.” An example of why fixed fines (and cash bail) are an unfair form of justice.
Arrow through three pictures below (the arrow isn’t so obvious):
It’s the persimmon tree that’s making the color. The wisteria drop their leaves too but they just turn brown and fall off. Everything is going to go dormant soon so I’m extra-appreciating all the colors and blooms now before they’re gone.
Also as an aside here are Olivia’s plantings in the back from the first week in December:
Pot – cilantro, chives, collard greens
Kitchen plot – purple needlegrass; sedum (in shallow pot); yarrow, rue, lavender
Plot by B – Cedros Island verbena; calendula (flowers)
The grocery stores are open and the shelves are full, so far. To keep the distancing Whole Foods is opening very few cashiers, one per aisle instead of two, and one on the express lane instead of up to four. There are lineups inside and outside too. I didn’t see anyone buying ten of anything so that’s good, no panic shopping, so far. I surely hope it stays that way.
That’s the driveway and you’ll notice the car is gone. Why? Because I Drove The Car to the repair shop for service and a new battery. I drove the car for the first time in more than four months. WOW, I know! I could sit for the five minutes it took to drive there and later the five minutes it took to drive it back. The repair shop is five blocks away so no problem walking home to wait.
I’m so excited. I’m going to drive to the car wash tomorrow.
Now it’s tomorrow and I DID drive to the car wash. I feel so much safer having a car that will start, full of gas, and me being able to drive it. I’ve still got many weeks of wound care but what an improvement.
For when people ask me about this soaking tub, here’s my really small 6×8 foot bathroom that has some side-storage on the porch, and there are no doors to save floor space. The above picture is mighty distort-o to get it all in.
When I sit in that bathtub gorgeous rich steamy-hot water comes up to my chin. Another month maybe and I can have my first bath in months, since The Incident. I’ve been so looking forward to that day.
I did this remodel in 1998 back when I bought the property. The tub is installed below floor level and I can still get in by swinging my legs around but in another few years I’ll have to get a footstool to make it out safely. The skylight was also part of the remodel and it still doesn’t leak (crossing my fingers and knocking on wood).
Curtains for guests and a place to comb my ever decreasing number of hairs.
..in the time of Covid. We exchanged dishes, the couple I made and the many they made, and then enjoyed a zoom-giving with thanks that such a thing could even happen.
DAR&L are watching Oliver’s half-brother Dude for the holiday weekend. They are SO cute together. That’s my gum tree bag of delights. The bag and containers are included! The bag says “gum tree peace out 2020!”.
Snagged from Darryl’s instagram.
“”Yes Dad, I do need all three devices.” Device 1: For watching the movie. Device 2: For chatting with a friend while watching the movie. Device 3: For making the Thanksgiving card while chatting with a friend while watching the movie.”
Lilly left this card on the path for me to pick up. SO adorable, she made the Happy Turkey Day look like a penny.
You might think so because we are here celebrating Jo Ann’s 80th birthday. I should spell that, Eightieth birthday. She’s constantly out-and-about, tutors at Cal Arts, creates works of art, and is a blessing to her family and friends. She’s an inspiration to us all. Here is the gorgeous gingerbread cake that Muriel made. I forgot to take a picture of the bucatini and tomato sauce that she also made. We ate like Queens!
Can you see Candle Man at the left in the picture. He holds the birthday candle so you can still make a wish when you blow out the candle but also not blow on the cake. Happy Birthday Jo Ann.
Ben and Bonnie picked me up, I leaned on their big console in the front seat…and we’re off!
We had a deeelish brunch in the sand at the restaurant at the Annenberg Beach House called, not surprisingly, Back on the Beach. You can see it there in the distance with the salmon umbrellas, matching my salmon shirt. Thanks Bonnie for taking my picture.
We didn’t walk far – there’s the pier in the near-distance. It was a Stupendous day, and SO few people, it was wonderful, warm and breezy in the winter sun, thanks for taking me out!
That’s me on my cushy guest chair >this< close to Sitting Down! Thanks Marsha! AND my shoulder is free of dressings – two down and one to go, one week shy of four months. I’m still glad I didn’t get the skin graft. The wound care has been peaceful and what else was I going to be doing anyway?! (If you don’t know, the story starts back on August1.)
My $3 flowers from TJs; a cat peering into my kitchen from on top of the car; a Very nice restaurant two blocks down the road (thanks Sharon!); sadly I know way too much about all those bandages.
I ate the last persimmon yesterday, a few kumquats are showing themselves but I’m stressing a little over that tree, the Meyer lemon has one fruit and I don’t know if there will be any more this season, the grapefruit is its same ancient weary self, but the orange tree is again making farmers market quantity fruit.
But nearly. Rienato will have been here four days, Alex has come three days and has to return to clean up the cracks in the patch. And I myself, by myself (what?! YES!!) primed and painted before the new sink could go in. Wow, right? You can imagine all that has gone wrong to make so many visit necessary.
Click here for the first part of the story!
And below is a bit of work-in-progress.
Nine days from the last one I posted (and have since deleted..I had tooo many of them)…one week and two days, more than 1,000,000 new cases, more than 10,000 more deaths. Last time I showed this chart they didn’t include the hospitalization number. That’s how many covid patients are in the hospital right now.
Here’s a bright light, Lilly fooling around with zoom backgrounds. It’s a dove, the Bird of Peace!