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Friday, May 14, 2021
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  • New systems can lead to new compromises
    Monday, May 10, 2021 4:00 AM
    I finished my bath and saw that the rust-orange towel had molted all over my body. 
    I was covered with tufts of orange fur. It was not a good look, and it felt worse than it looked. Worse yet, it gave me a taste of what the next two months would be like. 
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  • Opening the last box and moving memories
    Monday, May 3, 2021 4:00 AM
    “Oh my gosh. I don’t want to open that box.”
    Moving furniture and books and clothing is easy. It’s moving memories that is hard. 
    I am going through the last of my boxes. I used to say I was not a packrat. I thought I was more like my mother than my dad. My dad might tuck a piece of wood away, thinking it would find a use someday. My mother would be of the opinion that it’s easier to buy a board when (and if) it was needed. Generally, it wasn’t. 
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  • Dealing with nocturnal negotiations nightly
    Monday, April 19, 2021 4:00 AM
    It’s amazing that anyone shares a bed. 
    I know there are plenty of married and cohabiting couples who have separate beds, or even separate bedrooms, and I can see the logic in avoiding the snoring, the thrashing, the different sleep schedules and the need to negotiate the complicated issue of bedding. 
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  • Sister-in-law, Lori, went out like a lion
    Monday, April 12, 2021 4:00 AM
    March is winding down and my sister-in-law, Lori, is going with it.  
    There is too much food and too many flowers because that is what we do when someone is dying, when we don’t know what else to do as, gradually, the unthinkable becomes accepted and even ordinary. We make more food and bring more flowers. But there is too little time. There is always too little time. 
    Lori is spending most of the time she has left sleeping, which means she is not in pain but also that no one can talk with her and we miss her already, while she is here among us. 
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  • Lori’s laughter helps us through lonely months
    Tuesday, April 6, 2021 4:00 AM
    Throughout the past year, my husband, Peter, and I have been seeing no one except Peter’s sister, Lori, and her husband. 
    Lori has Stage 4 cancer and has had a tough fight. She’s been on oxygen all this time. The decision of how careful we needed to be was easy. If we were going to see Lori, we had to be extremely careful. And as a reward, once a week we have heard Lori’s laughter. 
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  • Celebrating and making mother’s cheese fondue
    Monday, March 29, 2021 4:00 AM
    It’s our anniversary, and Peter and I will be celebrating, like everyone has this past year, the best we are able. 
    We have not yet won the vaccine lottery. I recently received a note from the health department that basically said, “Don’t get your hopes up.” Newspaper columnists are not, apparently, considered essential workers and, of course, I am not. Meanwhile, we continue to visit my sister-in-law, Lori, whose health remains precarious. 
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  • Not the only one with some travel fantasies
    Monday, March 15, 2021 4:00 AM
    I know I am not the only one having travel fantasies. 
    My husband, Peter, and I were not planning to do a lot of traveling in the past year. That was our plan, and we certainly made good on it. We didn’t realize at the time that, “not a lot of traveling,” would mean a bi-weekly trip to the grocery store. Like a lot of folks, we’ve been tracking how many months we’re getting on a gallon of gas.
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  • Entertaining Remington on our twice-weekly visits
    Monday, March 8, 2021 4:00 AM
    I remember, a long time ago, when I used to have a social life. 
    My husband, Peter, and I have been visiting his sister, Lori, once a week while she battles cancer. She was in yesterday for another radiation treatment, and we are waiting to hear if she will be feeling well enough for a visit this weekend. And so we stay home, as we have since March of last year. 
    Lately, we have taken to picking up our groceries at the curb. I was skeptical. I’d never had another person choose my broccoli for me.
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  • 20-somethings singing sea shanties
    Monday, March 1, 2021 4:00 AM
    I am not exactly a connoisseur of contemporary culture. 
    I haven’t seen the latest series on Netflix or anything else. I don’t follow Twitter or Snapchat or Instagram. But somehow, a TikTok phenomenon came to my attention that I found too delightful to ignore. 
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  • Such a good book and such a good recommendation
    Monday, February 22, 2021 4:00 AM
    I’ve always loved librarians. 
    I remember my first school librarian. Her name was Mrs. Scheau, and she rode a bicycle to school, back when this was still a novelty. She wore a plaid skirt every day, and she was enormously kind. 
    I had no idea how to find a book I would like to read (and isn’t this still a challenge?) But Mrs. Scheau would always have a suggestion when I walked in. 
    “What should I read next, Mrs. Scheau?” And she would hand me the next book. 
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  • Playing it safe with belt and suspenders planning
    Monday, February 15, 2021 4:00 AM
    My husband, Peter, is taking no chances. 
    I knew this about him before I married him. Peter has a plan for everything and a plan in case the first plan doesn’t pan out. My father would call this “belt and suspenders” planning. Peter’s been walking around in a belt and suspenders ever since I’ve known him. 
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  • The Flatworm Principle and my morning meal
    Monday, February 8, 2021 4:00 AM
    A friend of mine told me something so amazing, I had to look it up to see if it was true.
    In 1960, a series of experiments was done with flatworms in which a bunch of flatworms were taught where to find food. This was news all on its own, as the flatworm is not a species known for its scholastic aptitude. But that wasn’t the interesting part. 
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  • Gradually living in your sweatpants full time
    Monday, February 1, 2021 4:00 AM
    I don’t remember exactly when I took to living in stretch pants full time. 
    The process was gradual, I’m sure of that. I started out wearing a pair of bell-bottom stretch pants when I was writing. I didn’t actually live in them; they were part of my writing costume and they were comfy. 
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  • No treats for now, but extra treats next time
    Monday, January 25, 2021 4:00 AM
    Dax stared at me in disbelief. I am the Treat Lady, and I had no treats. It was inexplicable. 
    Dax is one of my regular customers. He is a young black dog with a lot of energy. His sister, Zia, is a little older and has the uncanny ability to find me with or without her owner anywhere in the vicinity. On this particular day, Dax was with his owner on a run and he was beside himself to suddenly encounter the Treat Lady, without even the help of his resourceful sister. Dax was over the moon. That’s when I discovered I had no treats. 
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  • This year is a big Swedish surprise, waiting to happen
    Monday, January 18, 2021 4:00 AM
    My 2021 calendar is hanging from the closet door. 
    Every year I’ve lived in this house, I’ve gotten a cloth calendar, hung from a dowel. My mother’s mother always had a cloth calendar hanging in the farmhouse kitchen. As soon as the year was over, the calendar would be conscripted into use, usually to cover cinnamon rolls as they rose, to keep them moist until they were large enough to put into the oven. 
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
127 E. Main St. Suite 103 
P.O. Box 272 Crawfordsville, IN 47933
Crawfordsville, Indiana 47933

 

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