New Page------New Day

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Happy Doggy Days

Today is my BIG 8 -0. Just wanted to remind everyone. Now to what's new...

Our house guest ,Lucky, had a play day yesterday with a neighbor dog.  They played so hard that I had to close Lucky in a bedroom, so Kookie could catch her breathe. Cricket sat on the couch and watched. She is a great observer. The only time she showed concern is when her favorite toy was in another dogs mouth. But not enough to leave the couch.  I don't have to wonder what goes on in her head. I can read her pretty much. When I pet Lucky, Cricket pushed between us so that she is next to me. Yesterday, she evn got under Lucky's longer legs so she was in my face. And if I put the food bowls down, she looks over to see what Lucky got. Cricket has even taken to eating Lucky's kibbles . Lucky is abtly named. He doesn't care. He just ate her kibbles. What a easy house guest. Lucky are the people who own him,too.

Having two dogs in the house is no more work than one. Really. And I get in one more walk. Bob usually takes the evening walk, but I do it now with two dogs. I have a system. And it is amazing that the dogs "go" at the same time. They must send out soome kind of signal. I just bring a larger poop bag.

It's never too late to be happy that we can take in Lucky for this week so his parents can have a wonderful vacation. I haven't told Cricket that she is going to Lucky's house for a month. When I take out the suitcases, I'll tell her.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

32 days to go !

This is the quiet before the storm for us. Or is it the lull before the storm. January will be here in a few days and that will start a very busy time for us. How could I say no to a grandson and his wife's visit. Or no to my husbands three sibs plus wives. Or to my daughter and her husband. Or no to meetings and planned dinners with friends. Probably it is a very good thing that so much is happening in the month of January. That will make the next 32 days fly by. I took down our suitcases yesterday. And I sorted through sweaters . Which to take . I hardly wear sweaters here.I don't know why I even have so many. Maybe because I like to knit. But that changed when I started playing the violin. Both bother my shoulder, so I can only do one. The violin won. Sometimes , you just have to make choices. I will miss my violin for the month that I am away. I have the name of a violin teacher in Jerusalem. I might take a few lessons with her. It might be a challenge to do that, but I always accept challenges. Oh well. Another new month and now I will start counting days instead of the weeks. It's never too late to just get excited thinking about what we are about to do. I think I need my head examined.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Put it off

I remembered to count the weeks until we leave for Israel. Five. Time to get our condo in order for the renter. I am looking at everything with a different set of eyes. What I see now, is not what a stranger will see when they walk in for the first time. Time to do some damage control. First will be the closets. The reason I have not too many kcotchies out is that they are all in the closets. That'll have to stop. And things that I never use. In the closet. Ironing board. In the closet. Vacuum cleaner. In the closet. What do you do with these things when space is limited. In the closet. I did straighten out the spaces under the bathroom sinks. And the linen closet. They look wonderful. But that is only a tease. It puts off addressing the closets.I'll put them on my "to do list". I like to clean things when the mood strikes me. Right now, the mood isn't here. Maybe it will come as I get closer to my departure date. After all ,it's never too late to put off until tomarrow what you don't want to do today. 

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Do the dogs know how important they are in our lives ?

Many of the snow birds are back. And so are their dogs. It's like having a relative come back. The pets seem to remember each other. The tails wave, they smell each other,they walk together side by side. It's nice. The snow birds that are not back yet, we talk about. We dog owners are worried about their health. Why else wouldn't they be back by now. I think it is nice how we worry about each other. Some of the dog people have no names. We know tha dogs name, but without realizing it, we do become family. Right now, I am concerned about Bella's family. Bella should be back by now. And since coming back, Ben's Dad has been walking him ,when in the past Ben's Mom walked him in the morning. I was right to be worried. I saw the Mom and she is having serious health issues . The dog walking community is close enough for me to have noticed. The dogs think the walk is for them, but really, it becomes a time for the owners to bond , too. It's never too late to think about having  a pet. They unconditionally do so much for their parents.

Back home in New Orleans..Let the Good Times Flow

The Christmas season seems to have gone on for a very long time. When I was a kid,the season started after Thanksgiving and was over December 26.Lights from commercial places were down January 1. Then, because it was New Orleans, the city started getting ready for Mardi Gras. This year, I remember that Christmas came after Halloween. And it is still going strong. Too bad, we don't get excited about Mardi Gras here. That can be a great time to party. And that is another holiday that you don't have to exchange gifts. But I guess unless you come from N.O. and are Christian, it doesn't have the same meaning. I would just use it as an excuse to have some wonderful New Orleans food and especially King Cake. The story with that, is that if you get the slice of cake with the plastic baby, you have to have the next party. New Orleans is very creative with party time. It is just behind Godliness. I am reminded of food and N.O. because I got a wonderful book from the library about all of the good places to eat in N.O. Some I know, but I need to go back and look up the other recommended places. I owe this to myself. It's never too late to think about food and N.O. and celebrating. It's so natural there.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

I won't let it go. It's more fun to keep

When I tell people that I don't like my birthday, they always seem surprised. I can not remember one happy thought about my birthday during my childhood. It has been suggested that I change my birthdate. I could do  that, but I guess I would rather carry the negative around. It gives me the opportunity to be in a better frame of mind now. Now that I am grown up, I can make my birthday anything that I want. And I want . A lot. I asked my children to each buy me one lottery ticket from their state. If I am not a winner, at least I was a contender. Then I start way in advance of my birthday and I buy myself presents. So far , I have a camera and a silver bracelet. And the date isn't even here yet. I also eat favorite things. One year, I made the best steak sandwiches. I may do that again this year. They were that good. We were in our condo in Gulfport, Mississippi that time. That's the one that was completely destroyed by hurricane Katrina. I'm glad that I at least have a good food memory to remind me of that place that is no more. It's never too late to move on. I still will keep my unhappy childhood birthdays around, though. I have to have something to complain about.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

A day on the calendar

Many years ago, we were spending the Christmas holidays at Bob's parents home in New York. We  didn't have our fourth child yet, I don't think. Bob and I went into the city to see a play and took a late train back to Great Neck. It was a magical walk from the train station to his folks home. The sky was clear, you could smell the wood burning fireplaces, the snow was fresh and clean and if there wasn't a full moon, it was clear enough to see the stars. We walked down the middle of the street,it was so quiet . If Santa had decided at that moment to make an appearance, I would not have been surprised. It was a magical feeling and I still remember that. We were so young. Our kids were safe at Grandma and Grandpa's. Who could have it any better. It's never too late to remember that and just be thankful that even though Chritmas is just a calendar day for us, it is a magical time .

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

I'm lucky and I know it

I had a wonderful day with my friends. Ladies only. Lunch ,shopping,laughing.And the best part was that when I got home, Bob was safe and sound. No medical emergencies. It was a great day. On the way to join my friends, I was behind a car that had a bumper sticker that said "Laugh,love, live", or the other way around. But that was the message. Later that happy day, I bought myself another birthday present. It was a silver bracelet with disks that I could select myself. I chose a disk that said,"Laugh,Live,Love". It will be a reminder to me of the fun day that I had,just being a girl, with friends who care about me. 

The year is coming to an end, but I am looking forward to what is to come. The Grandkids are in good places, my kids are in good places, Bob is holding his own and I am still growing. It's all pretty good. It's never too late to just be happy to be here.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Count down, continued

I forgot to count the weeks left until I go to Israel. I save Sunday  to do it. It's not that I forget how many weeks until we go, I am just hoping that I miscounted and there are fewer weeks. It hasn't happened. There are six weeks to go. I was so busy trying to be in the moment, that I forgot to look ahead. But I am focused now. Week six  and counting. Yesterday we got the walking stick seat for Bob. It is supposed to fit in a suitcase. Maybe if you use a steamer trunk, it would. But it is very jaunty, with a shoulder strap for carrying around. He'll look dashing with it over his shoulder. I hope security doesn't give us a hassle. I am also thinking of upgrading our seating. More leg room might be a good thing. I checked how long the flight is and it isn't so bad. 9 hours and 47 minutes if all goes well. Sleep 6 or 7 of those hours, eat for at least one hour and you are almost there.  It's never too late to keep thinking of last minute changes and additions that I want to make to what I want to be the best experience that Bob and I have had on an an adventure. What have I overlooked?

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

The internet is a wonderful thing

I found a Reform Synagogue in Jerusalem. They even have a woman Rabbi   ! Of course , my daughter was quick to remind me, the whole service will be in Hebrew. Duhh. I'll be in Israel, so of course the language will be Hebrew. I just want the experience of going to a service. And better yet, the Synagogue  looks like it is a few blocks from our apartment. With the internet, I found the Synagogue, I searched Google World and found the building and viewed a small area around it. This is amazing. How can someone not go online and just have so much fun learning anything they want to know. We do live in an amazing time.  I needed a recipe for a dish that I want to make and I went right to the internet to find one. I have dozens of cook books, but the internet has hundreds of recipes for one item. I just put in how specific I wanted to be..baked..marinated..and up it popped along with a review of how to make it even better. Is this not wonderful ? Someone actually took the time to tell me how to make this even better. That put a personal twist on the recipe. If I wanted too, I could email her and thank her for her input. That would introduce me to one more person. I could make this experience more personal.  So maybe the internet isn't such a singular activity. Maybe that is why people use Face Book. It can shrink the world. I'm going to have to learn how to use it more comfortably so I can take everyone to Israel with me via the internet. It's never too late to do that. I wonder if I can get Cricket to check out Face Book.?

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

I've got it all

For some reason, as I was mashing potatoes last night, I thought of all of the kitchen appliances and tools that my Mother did not have. When she mashed potatoes, it was a kitchen fork. When we had whipped cream, it was another kitchen fork. Turn over a piece of meat and it was a fork, not a fancy tool. Potato peeler was a dull knife. No measuring cup, but a tea cup. Having appliances would not have helped her cooking skills, but it might have been more fun.  Now that I am thinking about it, most of our vegetables were from a can. Spinach, asparagus,peas and string beans. We lived in the south, they had long growing seasons, why didn't we eat fresh veggies. My favorite dish that she made was green beans cooked to death. Butter and onions can make any canned veggie taste good. Back in those days, even we could have a cook and who ever was our cook, followed my Mother's lead and cooked the same way. I thought it was great until I started being interested in cooking. The first dish I fixed for the family was chop suey. Everything came out of a can. We loved it.

Now, I own almost every small appliance made. I even have two of some things. I use some of them once a year, but I love having them. Every once in a while, as I am putting the appliance away, I think that what would I do when I I leave these things. Will I be able to. Maybe I will only take one of everything. I still wish that I had my Kitchen Aide that I gave to my daughter. It's never too late to learn how to use a fork as an appliance. I wonder what else I can do with one.

it's Never Too late
leona uchitelle

A year of birthdays is now almost complete

All of the birthday's ,for our immediate family, are soon to be  over for this year. Some of us have moved into new decades. Fifty,sixty and eighty. That spans a lot of living, a lot of growing and a lot of great memories. How did we all get to be so lucky that we reached these milestones.Good health has a lot to do with it. So does a comfortable life style. Not that there were no issues along the way, but family prevails and we are closer and smarter because of those. My late father in law gives credit to indoor plumbing for our longer life. I can't argue that point. I give credit to being able to be who we are. Take the six of us, put us in a room and we have seven opinions and ways of seeing the world. But who cares. The bottom line is family and we are all a year older and a year wiser. It's never too late to know that this is all good. Happy birthday ,everyone and happy Chanukah to all and to all a good day.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Use it while you have it

I suspected that I had an addictive personality,but now I can confirm it. I have been downloading games onto my iPad so that Bob and I can play them on our flight. I only do the free games. After I download, I play them to see if they are suitable for Bob. I eliminate a lot of them, because frankly, I don't understand what you are supposed to do. But,one caught my fancy. It's called Dots. You drag your curser across a field of colored dots and they pop. I love the sound and I am really good at color coding and popping. Talk about mindless fun. Pop, Pop, Pop, I win. It's embarrasing that I like this so much. I showed it to Bob, but he isn't fast enough and he looses because he runs out of time. With cognitive impairment,  it's not that easy. So we went to Checkers on the iPad. He won, I cheated. I wonder how many games of this we will play. I downloaded BackGammon, too. They play that in Israel, a lot. If I can remember how to play, we can alternate between Checkers and Backgammon on our flight. This iPad is a wonderful instrument. Hours of free enjoyment. I will have to break away from Dots long enough to share the pad with Bob. It's never too late to check on what else is free on my Pad. There might even be something that makes me use my brain. Use it because you can, through no fault of your own, lose it.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Pass the lotke,please

Last night was lotke night. They were not my best effort, in that they fell apart. This was my fault because I tried to make a healthy version of them. I had one sweet potato, aging in the basket. One Idaho potato waiting to be used and one zucchini squash. Plus egg,and for a change ,flour insted of matzo meal as I usually use. I also decided to hand grate instead of the food processor. The end product was authentic because  I immediately drew blood on my knuckle. Two frying pans and a smokey kitchen later, we had really good lotkes, although different. Sour cream and applesauce do wonders .Maybe this is the Jewish trilogy,,lotkes, sour cream, applesauce. 

The miracle of Chunukah is that after eating all of this fried food, we seem to be here the following year,repeating the same high fat treat. Now that is a miracle. It's never to late to enjoy the symbolism of this holiday. Thank goodness ,it comes once a year. Pass the lotkes and the lipitor. Thank you.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

Don't forget to light the Menorah

This year, I will make a real effort to light our Menorah every night of Hanukah. In the past, not when the kids were home, we would forget a night and end up with a collection of Hanukah candles. So far, after the first night , we are on a roll. Only seven more nights to remember. Hanukah was always a great celebration in our house. The presents were wrapped and placed on the mantle of our fireplace. We are not big gift givers, but each kid had eight small presents. A deck of cards, a bicycle bell, stuff like that. We had a house rule (we were so mean),no presents that were advertised on TV crossed our threshold. No one seemed to mind. They spent hours pouring over the Sears Wish Book ,knowing that they probably were not going to get any of those things. They were always happy with what they got and they don't seem to have any deep scars about not getting those big items. "Cherry Picker", was my favorite. I wonder if they still make that board game.Every night ,each kid could pick which wrapped present to open. It was fun.I wonder what kids get now. Would I feel like I should give them iPads and things like that?  I was in Best Buy and I was over hearing a Grandma tell the sales person that she needed four iPads for her Grandchildren's Christmas presents. Wow. I bet my kids would have liked to be in her family. But our four turned out extra good. We are all still friends. No deep seated hidden problems,that I know of. I don't think they will tell their shrink that they never got what they wanted at Hanukah. It's never too late to celebrate the Festival of lights, even if we forget a candle or two, it's such a hopeful holiday.

It's Never Too Late
leona uchitelle

In my moment

Have you noticed how blue the sky is, lately. How can anything be wrong in the world when the sun is shining and the sky is so blue.  I have a favorite time of day when the light just seems perfect. It's in the late afternoon. Even when we had our cottage, this was the time of day that everything seemed so much clearer and sharp. I wished that I had talent enough to paint, because this would have been my time to do it. This time is the time of my day that I can sit and just look . I am not seeing anything in particular. Just looking at the clear colors around. Come to think of it, this might be my being in the present moment. I should probably work on experiencing more of these moments instead of letting my head swim off with the mundane thoughts of my every day existance. How important can what is triwling in my head be. "I need to start dinner", "Cricket is waiting for her walk", there is a doctor's appointment tomorrow",the books are due at the library". Stop it . Just being quiet and looking should be my priority. All the rest is commentary of life. It can wait. It's never too late to remind myself that this moment won't be here after right now. So I will sit and enjoy. At least for a few more quiet minutes.

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Latest comments

29.08 | 13:45

Don't quite know how this got to me but it was on the top line of my computer (not in email) But I really enjoyed it. I truly admire you.

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31.07 | 07:02

Leona, do you have a date or a booked flight that you come back ?

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20.07 | 13:55

Everything sounds so wonderful Leona. Venice will seem boring . I would want to move to Portownsend where the kids are living. All sounds great . Is there?

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19.07 | 12:33

That lavender sounds very nice!

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