Thursday, October 15, 2020

To Friendships and Goodbyes

Time just seems to be marching on whether we can get out and enjoy it or not. That makes us have a lot of time to reflect, plan, contemplate. That can get you in a whole lot of trouble or it can simply your life.

I have come to the conclusion that it is time for me to simply my life. I am strung far too thin, can't seem to finish what I know I must or find joy in the tasks I have thought were the most important. 

You just have to make priorities! 

I have loved blogging. Been at it about 12 years. And, in 12 years I've gotten older and slower and needing to make priorities. So, I am going to say goodbye. 

I am going to miss all you wonderful people, my blogging buddies. I've cherished your friendships and won't forget you. You've brightened my life so very much. I've learned lots, cried with some, laughed with others. That's what friends do. 

I am going to keep my facebook account open. (have to have some way to keep  up the grandkids who think social media is the only way to go these days). 😀 If you like, look me up on facebook and send me a friend request. I'm listed as Willie Latane Barton. 

I wish you the very best, now and always. Keep on keeping on!! With love, Latane

Saturday, October 10, 2020

My Only Sea Voyage

 It was 1959 and my husband and I were standing on deck, hanging onto two toddlers and keeping an eye on our 7 year old. We were waving goodbye to our friends on the pier. The Navy band was playing 'California Here I Come.' After two years of duty on both Hawaii and Midway Island we were headed home.

As the ship pulled away from the pier, I took the lei from around my neck and toss it into the water. Tradition had it that if the lei floated back to land, you would return to the islands, as well. But, sadly that has never happened.

We made our way down to our 'stateroom'. Hey, we were on a military transport ship. No stateroom. I remember two sets of bunk beds, a porthole, a closet, a head (that's bathroom in sailor talk). Maybe there was more. I don't know.

As the ship eased it's way out of the harbor, there came a loud announcement over the speaker. "This is a drill. This is a drill. Put on your life vests and report on deck".  I was beginning to feel weird... already. I'd taken a dramamine, not working. And, we weren't out of the harbor yet. Oh boy, I knew I was in trouble. 

As hubby helped the children with their life vests and was headed out the door (do you call it a door or a hatch?) anyway. There I am struggling with that darn life vest. I got it half on and hurried after them. 

Once we were on deck hubby took one look at me. 'You have your life vest on backward.' So, I turned it around. And, I am getting more and more unsteady. We are given instructions on what to do in case we started to sink. I had been so stupid. The week before I had gone down to the theatre and watched the movie 'Titanic'. Duh.. Bad Idea. Drill over, we go back to our room. And, I hit the head and then the bunk. 

And, I stayed there for most of the entire trip, unable to stand up. Hubby kept saying that this is the calmest sea he's ever been on. Well, Goody for him. But, it doesn't feel that way to me.  Every time I stood up, I threw up. 

He took over the care of the children, a two year old, a three year old and the 7 year old who thought she was big enough to take care of herself and did. When he dressed our little three year old daughter, he had one requirement out of me. 'would you please brush her hair?'  She had Shirley Temple curls that would be tangled. And, I had to tie the little sashes on her dresses.  And, back on that pillow  I would go. 

Every mealtime hubby would take the children down to eat. The steward would ask, 'Missus sick again today?' and hubby would nod yes. So, the steward would bring fresh oranges and packs of saltines for him to bring to me. 

The voyage took six days if I remember correctly. When we finally sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge and docked in San Francisco I was one happy woman. I bet hubby was happy too. Now maybe some of his babysitting chores could be shared. I was never so glad to put my feet on land again! Oh hallelujah! 

I had lost 10 lbs. that week. Not my favorite way to diet, I tell you.

As you can imagine, I have never been on a cruise or taken a ship again. Nope, that trip cured me of any future voyages on the sea. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

A Fire-breathing Dragon

                                        You can just feel Fall in the air! 

Yesterday was one gorgeous day so Shirley and I escaped our four walls and did a little fun stuff.

We went to a nice restaurant next to a creek. We've been there before so we knew the food would be great. And, they were doing a great job keeping everyone safe during this virus. So we felt that it was the best place to get some yummy food. 

When I saw collards on the menu... well, that decided it for me. They came with Memphis Barbeque chicken and french fries. It was soooo good. 

Shirley got a Cobb Salad with extra shrimp. It looked good, too but since we moved to Virginia 20 years ago, I've eaten so much seafood.... I'm about tired of the stuff! So, bring on the collards!!

I'd been seeing a gift shop on facebook and asked if we could stop there. It was huge, a big 2 story house with every room crammed full of things. It was just tooo much! I bought some large tomatoes and a bag of orange slices. Wish I'd gotten more tomatoes. Best tasting ones I've had in forever. 

There were some nice pumpkins and mums outside.

We stopped then to check out a fire-breathing mosaic dinosaur. He wasn't in the fire mode. But, I know he does that because there was a propane gas tank attached to his tail.😁

Our next stop was Evans Farm Market. It's small but did offer a nice photo-opt area. 

 Time to head home. Tummy full, naptime!! 

Sunday, October 4, 2020

A Rocket in the Sky.

 In these later years, since I have more time to devote to myself, I have loved doing things for the first time. It may not be on my bucket list but it's marked off it anyway. 

Shirley told me that the Antares rocket was going to launch (if nothing happened) on Thursday night. I should go out on my balcony to see if it was visible from my apartment. 

Well, I'm in my jammies, pulled on some socks and went out the door with my camera in hand. I waited a few minutes and lo and behold.... there it was.... an orange streak in the night sky. We do have tall pines trees lining our driveway so I didn't have much time to get any pictures but I did get one that I want to share with you. 

It was pretty exciting. I'd seen the space station before but I had never seen a rocket on it's way to the station! So, mark that one off. 

Did you get to see it? It shot off from the Nasa facility at Wallops Island on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. 104 miles from me (as the crow flies. Alexa told me that! 😊)

That rocket was carrying 10 tons of gear, food and even a space toilet. Guess theirs wore out???? Now, they have a new one. 

I used Adobe Photoshop to enhance the photo a bit to see if I could get it clearer. Here is what I came up with.  See the trees.... it wasn't long until the rocket was behind those and I lost all sight of it. But, hey, I got to see it! A first! 

Hey, and see that bright spot just above the clouds. That's Mars.

 In a previous rocket shot to Mars my son-in-law had all his family names put on board and the info was left there on the red planet. Hope whoever lands on Mars can read English! What if it's an alien... 😉

Thursday, October 1, 2020

A Pies Surprise

 As most of you know, my daughter Susan had her ankle replaced 13 days ago. 

And, what does she do!!

I found a box sitting outside my door yesterday. It was from her. Guess she's getting bored lying up in bed with that foot elevated 😉

Inside was a small box with 4 'tiny' (their description, not mine) pies. Apple, cherry, chocolate and pecan. 

The smell coming outta that box just took my breath away. The instructions said 'eat within 3 days'. 

Hmmmmmm. Okay, I'd better get right to it, then. Don't want them to spoil. 😊

So, I pulled out the pecan and bit into it. Oh my.  I'm southern and do love a good pecan pie and that one was superb! 

Wasn't that just the sweetest thing for her to do? 

Gee, I wonder which one I will choose for today's treat? 

Which would you?