Welcome reader to my blog - a mixture of this and that. Now that we are living in a retirement community in downtown Columbia, MD my personal gardening activities are somewhat curtailed. I still enjoy visiting gardens, reading, watching wildlife on my walks, traveling, and occasional food commentary. Please leave a comment if you feel inspired to do so. I read every one of them.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Heron


This is the dam at Wilde Lake across the street from where I live.  We walk there frequently.  On this cold December day the blue heron was perched on one level and three ducks at water level.




Sunday, January 13, 2019

Snow!

It snowed overnight and continues even now as I write this on Sunday morning.

Church is canceled.  Family gathering in Virginia postponed for a month. A visit with youngest granddaughter will have to wait for another time.

This is the first significant snow we have had since moving to Vantage House in the summer of 2016. Thankfully we don't have a long steep driveway to shovel and snow blow. We can sit warm in our apartment and watch the snowflakes fall.  Or take a walk outside and enjoy it.

What fun!

Table on balcony coated.


The lake iced and snow covered.


Roads barely passable.


All covered in white from here on 11th floor.

Postscript:

Went for our walk





Second postscript at 7 pm.
Storm was to end at 4 pm but it strengthened and now will dump more snow until midnight.  Roads that were clear are now snow covered again.  Snowing so heavily we can see it in the dark passing our windows.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

My 2018 Reading List

I read 81 books last year.  This was a nice increase from 2017 when I only read 66.

The list of books is on the sidebar for now.  Soon I'll have to begin my 2019 list which already has three books on it.

Looking over the list all the books were relatively good, though some better than others.  Typically if I don't like a book I quit reading it unless it's for the book club I'm in.  Even then if I can't stand it, I will skim read it and read the end so I can at least participate in the discussion.

So here are a few recommends for you to read in 2019.

Under mysteries:

Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz

Any of the Charles Todd mysteries featuring Ian Rutledge, of Scotland Yard. These are set after WWI in England.  I've gotten hooked on these and haven't been reading them in order but it hasn't really mattered.

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware

Glass Houses by Louise Penny







Under good story telling:

Song of Hartgrove Hall by Natasha Solomons

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

The 2nd Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers

Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles










And I re-read my all time favorite book for the third time last month:

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historic Park


The Wednesday before Christmas Dan and I took a mini vacation to Cambridge, MD.  Before we checked in at the Hyatt we visited this Historic Park dedicated to Harriet Tubman who was born near here.  Lucky for us it was before the government shutdown because this place is likely closed now.


It was a windswept day as you can see from the clouds.  The site is fairly new.  I think I remember it being dedicated by President Obama.

Inside the exhibits are gripping, charting Tubman's life and her incredible dedication to bringing slaves to freedom.
















Dan and I were in Auburn, NY last spring.  Now I wish we had visited her home there which is also a historic museum.  I guess it's a reason to return to Auburn soon.


Looking forward to seeing this $20 bill in another year.


***********
Update on my surgery.  
Pathology report came back benign. Energy level increasing every day and belly pain is lessening but feeling limited in what I can do and for how long.  I have not tried to drive yet, though there is no restriction on that.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Out of Commission

Wednesday, I had my gall bladder out.

I'm out of commission posting for a bit.
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